Rejoiner dream crushed as EU nations do NOT back UK return to bloc – no support above 50%

Andrew Marr grills Nicola Sturgeon on plans for independence

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In polling to mark the anniversary of the 2016 referendum today, EU nations expressed division on whether the UK should rejoin the bloc if a future referendum was held. Polling undertaken by Redfield and Wilson reveals less than 50 percent of France, Germany, Spain and Italy showed clear support for the UK returning to the EU.

The polling data reveals in France, 36 percent would want the UK to rejoin the bloc while 18 percent said no, 34 percent said neither support or oppose and 12 percent didn’t know.

In Germany, the percentage was slightly higher than 40 percent backing the UK rejoining the EU while 19 percent said no, 30 percent said neither support or oppose and 11 percent didn’t know.

Spain and Italy expressed higher support with 46 and 43 percent of people backing the UK rejoining the EU.

In Spain, however, 16 percent said they opposed the UK to rejoin the EU, 31 percent said neither and 7 percent didn’t know.

In Italy, 14 percent opposed the UK rejoining the EU, 34 percent said neither support or oppose and 8 percent didn’t know.

Support for an independent Scotland rejoining the EU, however, was significantly higher with the majority of people in Germany, Spain and Italy supporting the move with percentages of 51, 56 and 54 percent retrospectively.

In France, however, only 44 percent of people wanted Scotland to rejoin the bloc, an ambition for the SNP, the largest party in the Scottish Parliament after achieving independence from the UK.

Veteran pro-European Lord Heseltine said Brexit was the “very opposite” of what the country needed following the pandemic.

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Lord Heseltine, the former deputy prime minister who is now president of the European Movement, said the outlook was “ominous”, with the Northern Ireland peace process under real threat.

Speaking to mark five years since the 2016 vote, he added: “Five years on, Brexit is far from ‘done’.

“It has only just begun and the forecast is ominous.

“Storm clouds are gathering on the horizon, chief among them the threat to the Good Friday peace agreement in Northern Ireland.

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“The fishing industry has now voiced its betrayal and the Australian trade deal will slowly erode the competitiveness of British farmers over the next 15 years.

“Meanwhile, the financial services industry quietly moves its activities to Europe in order to escape the continuing Brexit uncertainty.”

Alyn Smith MP, SNP Foreign Affairs spokesperson, said: “This poll is significant as it shows the level of awareness in EU member states about Scotland’s position.

“In 2014 we were promised that voting ‘No’ meant staying in the EU despite the ‘Yes’ campaign warning that ‘No’ could lead to Brexit.

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“Not only does it show high awareness but also support and that is very welcome. It shows that Scotland has friends in the EU willing to support Scottish membership.

“As an independent country, Scotland will be in a partnership of equals with the rest of the UK and the EU instead of having to put up with Westminster governments we don’t vote for, and the people who live here will decide how we rebuild our country after the pandemic.”

But Boris Johnson has said the historic vote five years ago to leave the EU will now act as a spur to jobs and renewal across the UK as it recovers from the pandemic.

In a statement, the Prime Minister said it is his “mission” to use the freedoms it gave to deliver a better future for the British people.

However, in a sharply contrasting message, the veteran pro-European Lord Heseltine said the outlook was “ominous”, with the Northern Ireland peace process under real threat.

In his statement to mark five years since the 2016 vote, Mr Johnson, who spearheaded the successful Vote Leave campaign, said the country had voted five years ago to “take back control of our destiny”. 

The survey of 1,500 people in each of the four countries — France, Germany, Italy and Spain was undertaken by Redfield & Wilton Strategies on June 7 and 8.

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