Na­tion­al­ists fu­ri­ous over de­volved pow­ers ‘at risk’

The Press and Journal (Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire) - - NEWS - BY KATRINE BUSSEY

Re­la­tions be­tween the Scot­tish and UK gov­ern­ments have reached a new low as SNP lead­ers threat­ened to with­draw their co-oper­a­tion with West­min­ster, ac­cus­ing Con­ser­va­tives there of forc­ing through a Brexit “power grab”.

Scot­tish Govern­ment min­is­ters and SNP MPs were out­raged when amend­ments to the EU With­drawal Bill re­lated to de­vo­lu­tion were passed by the House of Com­mons after just 15 min­utes of de­bate.

SNP West­min­ster leader Ian Black­ford said: “I’m afraid the nor­mal re­la­tion­ships be­tween the Scot­tish and West­min­ster gov­ern­ments have to be im­pacted by this.”

It comes as min­is­ters in Edinburgh and Lon­don have been en­gaged in a stand-off over what should hap­pen to pow­ers re­turn­ing to the UK after Brexit. While Con­ser­va­tives at West­min­ster say some of these must come to par­lia­ment to al­low for com­mon frame­works to be es­tab­lished in ar­eas such as agri­cul­ture and en­vi­ron­men­tal reg­u­la­tions, min­is­ters at Holy­rood fear the pow­ers of the Scot­tish Par­lia­ment could be re­strained for up to seven years.

Scot­tish Sec­re­tary David Mun­dell hit out at the Na­tion­al­ists for “con­sti­tu­tional pos­tur­ing”, say­ing it was “quite clear that it was never go­ing to be pos­si­ble to get agreed amend­ments be­cause quite sim­ply the Scot­tish Govern­ment, the SNP, Ni­cola Stur­geon have a dif­fer­ent view of the con­sti­tu­tion from ev­ery­body else”.

Mr Black­ford said: “He ought to re­sign and the fact we have seen pow­ers taken from the Scot­tish Par­lia­ment and our elected rep­re­sen­ta­tives have not been able to de­bate this is an ut­ter, ut­ter dis­grace.”

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