Salmond calls for Partnership of the Isles

Alex Salmond has called for the British-Irish Council established under the Good Friday Agreement to become the starting point for a new Council of the Isles following Scottish independence, something I’ve argued for myself in the past.

“The British-Irish Council and parliamentary bodies are clear recognition by both governments of the importance of close working relations between the constituent parts of these islands.

“I believe this provides a starting point but with Scottish independence there will be an opportunity to develop and improve our co-operation based on the Nordic model. We would all benefit from a new Council of the Isles.

“This more modern relationship with London and Dublin will leave Scotland with the freedom to flourish. We will take our own decisions on peace and prosperity. And we will have an effective forum to work together as equal, sovereign States.

“Like successful Ireland, it’s time we were equal with England in a new partnership, not run by Britain in an outdated Union. Like Ireland, this independence is the key to Scottish success.” (SNP)

Of course, one thorny issue Salmond doesn’t mention is how Northern Ireland would fit into this new dispensation. I don’t blame him for that omission one bit, since whatever he says on the issue will be used by his opponents to exploit sectarian feelings on one side or another.



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