Indyref2 backed by Holyrood

SNP and Green MSPs have voted together to obtain a majority for the First Minister’s motion to seek a section 30 order giving the Scottish Government permission to hold the independence referendum between autumn 2018 and spring 2019.

The referendum motion was passed by 69 votes against 59, which is 54% for the motion and 46% against.

The Green amendment calling for 16 and 17 year-olds as well as EU citizens to be given a vote was also passed by 69 votes against 59.

Labour, Conservative and Lib Dem motions to block the vote, were defeated.

"Today's vote must now be respected," Nicola Sturgeon said afterward "The mandate for a referendum is beyond question, and it would be democratically indefensible – and utterly unsustainable – to attempt to stand in the way of it." The First Minister said the referendum should occur "no earlier than 18 months from now, when the terms of Brexit are clear." and added "This is, first and foremost, about giving the people of Scotland a choice on this country's future.”

Nicola Sturgeon has previously said that, if the UK Government refuses to engage in talks on a second referendum, she will return to the Scottish parliament after the Easter recess “to set out the steps the Scottish government will take to progress the will of parliament”.

Ross Greer, the Scottish Greens' external affairs spokesman said after the vote "It should be our responsibility, as those elected by the people of Scotland, to fight for their right to choose their own future.”

"Giving the people that choice in autumn of 2018 - when the details of the deal are known - would give us the time to begin extracting Scotland from this mess before the Tories hurl Britain off the hard Brexit cliff - if that is what the voters choose."

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