Nicola Sturgeon rattled over Scottish independence support
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Despite fears of nuclear war amid the Ukraine conflict, it appears that Scotland’s First Minister does not want the UK’s trident nuclear deterrent to remain in her country. Ms Sturgeon still has made clear that if Scotland voted to no longer remain part of the UK, she would remove Trident from the Faslane naval base on the Clyde. She said in 2019: “We should lead the way by scrapping nuclear weapons and investing that money in our communities and our public services.
“The fact that the Westminster parties are united in their opposition to this approach will only confirm to many Scots that independence is the only way to scrap Trident once and for all.
“My message is simple – the overwhelming majority of countries the world over do not have nuclear weapons.
“We do not need nuclear weapons. And we should never, ever use nuclear weapons.”
Prof Andrew Futter, a nuclear weapons expert from the University of Leicester, told Express.co.uk that removing the trident deterrent would cause a major “headache” for the UK Government and warned that it would come at an “enormous cost”.
He told Express.co.uk: “The submarines and warheads ready to be loaded on the missiles are all based up there in Faslane, not far from Glasgow.
“There are potentially other places where you could move all that infrastructure but it would cost cause an enormous amount of money.
“It would mean building quite significant new facilities to do this, it would mean giving up the very good access to the sea from Scotland.
“You would need all the facilities for docking the submarines, the facilities for loading the warhead onto the missiles, the storage for all the warheads, the personnel..so it would be a pretty big operation.
“It is doable, whether it would be politically feasible or economically feasible is another question. It would cause a real headache for the UK Government if that was to happen.”
Rear Admiral John Gower has warned that forcing Trident subs out would be a threat to the UK deterrent.
He told the Sunday Times: “To leave Faslane and Coulport in short order after a referendum, and that is the SNP’s position, would represent a very significant threat to the UK deterrent.
“A precipitate departure from Faslane would represent a clear and present risk to that deterrent.
“Seeing the departure of nuclear weapons from an independent Scotland might be seen as an easy gimme, a cosy feel-good, risk-free by-product of independence for many Scottish voters.
“However, they need to be made aware, on a factual basis, of the repercussions for Scotland, the rest of the UK, the wider Nato alliance. Allies, both in Europe and North America.”
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And most Scots do not seem too confident about Ms Sturgeon’s stance.
A poll from Survation revealed that 58 percent of people in Scotland want to keep the Trident nuclear programme.
In a statement, the SNP said: “While an independent Scotland would seek to work effectively and collaboratively with our NATO colleagues and partners, Scots have made clear across several elections that they do not want to play home to abhorrent weapons of mass destruction, especially not just 25 miles from our biggest city and metropolitan area.”
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