Nicola Sturgeon has hit out at Theresa May’s public plea for Brexit support, saying “almost nothing in this desperate letter is true”.
In a “letter to the nation” published before the Prime Minister met the other 27 EU leaders in Brussels, Mrs May said leaving the union on March 29 2019 would mark “a new chapter in our national life”.
The 800-word message said that the result of the EU referendum in 2016 would be honoured and that freedom of movement would end.
It also stated that the UK would “take back control” of laws and money which, it suggested, could be spent on the NHS.
Scotland’s First Minister described the letter as “desperate” and reiterated her calls for alternatives such as staying in the single market and customs union or holding a second referendum.
Ms Sturgeon tweeted: “I don’t say this lightly, but almost nothing in this desperate letter is true.
“This is a bad deal, driven by the PM’s self defeating red lines and continual pandering to the right of her own party. Parliament should reject it and back a better alternative – SM/CU or #PeoplesVote.”
As EU leaders endorsed the deal on Sunday, SNP MSP Brexit secretary Mike Russell said it “does not work for Scotland”.
“It takes Scotland out of the European Union against our democratic wishes, it removes us from the single market against our economic interests, and it would put us at a competitive economic disadvantage compared to Northern Ireland,” he said.
“The only thing it guarantees is years of damaging uncertainty, which will cost jobs and hit living standards and, by ending freedom of movement, will make it harder to attract the staff we need for our NHS
“That is why the Scottish Government will now work with others to get a better deal for Scotland within the European single market and customs union – which is eight times bigger than the UK market alone – and why we support another referendum on EU membership.”