MSPs back call for a second referendum
A call by Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon for a second independence referendum has been formally backed by the Scottish Parliament.
MSPs voted by 69 to 59 in favour of seeking permission for a referendum before the UK leaves the EU.
Ms Sturgeon says the move is needed to allow Scotland to decide what path to follow in the wake of the Brexit vote.
However, the UK government has already said it will block a referendum until after the Brexit process has been completed.
Ms Sturgeon has warned it would be ‘democratically indefensible and utterly unsustainable’ to attempt to stand in the way.
Scottish voters rejected independence by 55% to 45% in a referendum in 2014.
Prime Minister Theresa signed the letter that will formally begin the UK’s departure from the European Union on Tuesday night.
Giving official notice under Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty, it will be delivered to European Council president Donald Tusk later.