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Scottish government will launch citizenship proposal in an independent Scotland

Jamie Hepburn, Minister for Independence and First Minister Humza Yousaf
Jamie Hepburn, Minister for Independence and First Minister Humza Yousaf
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This week, ministers will lay out the specifics of who would be qualified to become a Scottish citizen after independence.

On Thursday, the Scottish Government will publish the fifth prospectus paper for independence, which will describe who will automatically qualify and how others can apply.

In addition, it will outline proposals for a Scottish passport and the provision of consular assistance for Scottish citizens travelling, living or working abroad.

Migrants’ rights, freedom of movement, and fairer fees to apply for citizenship are also expected to be discussed within the paper, which will be launched by First Minister Humza Yousaf and Minister for Independence Jamie Hepburn.

Hepburn said: “As an independent nation, Scotland would have the opportunity to redefine what it means to be a citizen of this country, building on our inclusive national identity and sense of collective purpose.

“Independence would also enable us to take a fairer and more welcoming approach to citizenship to make it easier for those who have made Scotland their home to settle here permanently, helping to grow our population and support our communities and public services.

“The proposals in this paper explain how we plan to achieve these aims, on the way to re-joining the European Union as an independent nation, and I look forward to setting them out with the First Minister on Thursday.”

The last independence paper, which focused on plans for a written constitution in an independent Scotland, stated there would be a “an inclusive and welcoming approach to the entitlement to Scottish citizenship”.


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It said: “The interim constitution would grant Scottish citizenship to all British citizens living in Scotland at the point of independence and to all British citizens who were born in Scotland.

“There would also be a simple process for other British citizens with a close and enduring connection to Scotland to register as a Scottish citizen. Rules would be clearly set out to allow nationals of other countries to become Scottish citizens if they chose.”

In May, Scotland’s most senior official John Paul Marks defended the involvement of the civil service in drawing up the prospectus after UK Government ministers questioned the “constitutional propriety” of his team taking orders from Hepburn.

The first paper in the “Building a New Scotland” series, published in June last year and launched by then First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, focused on making the argument that Scotland is being held back by being in the Union, using examples of similarly sized countries around the world that outperform the UK on a variety of measures.

It was followed by a publication which focused on the subject of renewing democracy through independence, making the case for exiting the Union on the basis that Westminster “is eroding and constraining Scotland’s democracy” and arguing that devolution was insufficient to tackle this challenge.

The third paper outlined economic and currency plans.

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Dulal Ahmed Chowdhury

Dulal Ahmed Chowdhury is the Editor of The Daily Dazzling Dawn. Previously, he has been serving in important positions in all the famous national dailies of the Bangladesh since the nineties. He has played a commendable role in journalism by participating in various events at the national and international levels. United Nations Conference, World Climate Conference, SAARC Summit are notable among them.

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