The SNP is today highlighting further confirmation that the only threat to Scotland’s place in the EU comes from Westminster following new UK Defence Secretary Michael Fallon’s admission that; "It certainly is a Eurosceptic cabinet".
As reported in today’s Herald, Mr Fallon’s comments on BBC Radio Four’s Today programme about David Cameron’s reshuffle follow on from Phillip Hammond’s promotion to Foreign Secretary and David Cameron’s misrepresentative comments by EU President Jean Claude Junker.
The new Euro-sceptic appointees have also been described as "extremists" and "head bangers" by Mr Cameron’s coalition colleague and Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg following reports of the PM’s plans to repeal the Human Rights Act and challenge the European Court of Human Rights.
SNP MSP Christina McKelvie, who is also Convener of the European and External Affairs Committee, said:
“As if there was ever any doubt, this admission by the UK’s new Defence Secretary has sealed the fact that the only threat to Scotland’s membership of the EU comes from Westminster.
“The promotion of Philip Hammond - who is openly anti-EU - to UK Foreign Secretary has put one hand on the exit door leading the UK out of the European Union.
“I’m not going to get involved in trading insults – the UK government seem to be doing a fine job of that themselves – but the lurch to the right by the Tories is an alarming development.
“There is now a huge risk that Scotland will be dragged out of Europe against our wishes – which would do great damage Scottish jobs and investment - and the new Tory Defence Secretary has admitted as much.
“Opinion polls consistently show that people in Scotland want to remain in Europe – and that the risk of being taken out of Europe by Westminster boosts a Yes vote in September.
“The message now is crystal clear – only a Yes vote can protect Scotland’s future in Europe.”