EU would want an independent Scotland as a member

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by a Newsnet reporter 

SNP MEP Alyn Smith has welcomed comments by Professor Henri De Waele, senior lecturer in EU law at Radboud University in Nijmegen in the Netherlands, which supported EU membership for an independent Scotland.  Prof De Waele said that other member nations would be open to ensuring that Scotland quickly became a member in her own right.

by a Newsnet reporter

SNP MEP Alyn Smith has welcomed comments by Professor Henri De Waele, senior lecturer in EU law at Radboud University in Nijmegen in the Netherlands, which supported EU membership for an independent Scotland.  Prof De Waele said that other member nations would be open to ensuring that Scotland quickly became a member in her own right.

Prof de Waele is an internationally respected academic specialising in EU law.  His remarks give a lie to the claim often made by Unionist supporters that Scotland would be shunned by Europe and left out in the cold.  The professor also backed the claim made by supporters of independence that Scotland would rapidly achieve EU membership, pointing out that as a part of an existing member state, Scotland already complies with EU membership criteria.  The professor said that he expected Scottish membership would progress very quickly.  

Prof De Waele also pointed out that even were the rump-UK to be considered the successor state to the existing UK, it would still be forced to re-negotiate the terms of its EU membership.

As a state controlling large oil resources, and an extraordinary capacity for renewable energy production, supporters of independence believe that other European states would be keen to ensure that an independent Scotland remained a member of the EU.

Prof De Waele has given a boost to the independence camp by saying that there would be no legal impediment whatsoever to Scotland becoming independent or to achieving EU membership.  Speaking to the BBC Scotland’s Newsweek Programme on Saturday, Prof De Waele said:

“From an EU perspective, people would be very open to, quite quickly, make sure that Scotland would become a full member in its own right.

“There is no impediment whatsoever to Scotland, as such, being let’s say a lawfully separated state or lawfully separated territory from the UK, becoming a state in its own right, or indeed henceforth trying to get its way into the EU ASAP.”

Welcoming Prof De Waele’s contribution, SNP MEP Alyn Smith said:

“Scotland is well respected and known across the world, and nowhere more so than with our friends and neighbours in the European Union.

“It is encouraging that European Union experts like Professor De Waele have rightly gone some way to putting myths to bed about any issues facing an independent Scotland’s ability to have the choice to be in the EU.

“Scotland already exists and is recognised within the EU, all be it as part of the UK at present.

“However, speaking with politicians from all over Europe on a regular basis they are very interested and supportive of our nation’s growing desire to become independent.”