Wales will be next! Campaigner says Welsh will follow Scots out of the Union after Brexit
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Sion Jobbins, chairman of Yes Cymru, believes Scotland will vote for independence if SNP leader and First Minister Nicola Sturgeon succeeds in forcing a referendum on the issue – and if she does, he believes the case for Wales will become undeniable. Unlike Scotland, the independence movement in Wales has been relatively quiet in recent years – but the most recent poll commissioned by Yes Cymru via YouGov in November 2020 suggested 33 percent would now back the idea.
Mr Jobbins, speaking in the wake of similar claims by former Bank of England economist David Blanchflower last week, suggested the landscape was evolving rapidly.
He told Express.co.uk: “Nothing is inevitable, but we think Brexit will hasten up the break-up of the UK.
“People voted for Brexit for many different reasons, but it’s been implemented by the Conservatives as a British nationalist project.
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People in Wales are watching events in Scotland very closely
“For instance, under the guise of Brexit the Westminster government are using the Internal Market Bill to grab powers from the Welsh and Scottish Parliaments, the different trade rules for Northern Ireland (which economically is now almost a part of the Republic of Ireland and EU) makes Irish unity more likely.”
By “ignoring” the Remain majority in Scotland four years ago, Westminster had given a strong argument for Scots to vote for independence and either rejoin the EU or the European Free Trade Area, Mr Jobbins argued.
He said: “People in Wales are watching events in Scotland very closely. YesCymru believes there will be an independence referendum there otherwise the SNP will split.
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“Scotland can now legitimately hold a referendum which Westminster can’t refuse after the EU showed no opposition to UK holding Brexit referendum.
“The arguments for Ireland reuniting are now becoming economic common sense and Wales will not allow itself to be incorporated into a UK which has gone from being a ‘family of nations’ to a master and servant ‘union’ of England and Wales.”
With specific reference to events north of the border, he added: “We believe the Scots will vote for independence.
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“Westminster can try and play games and delay or not recognise the democratic vote, but this isn’t a new tactic by Westminster governments.
“We’ll remind people that the Irish voted and declared Independence in 1919.
“Westminster ignored that democratic vote, but three years later they were are at the negotiating table and recognised the Irish Free State.”
He also drew parallels with the collapse of the Soviet Union, saying: “Lithuania and the other Baltic nations voted and declared independence in 1988-89 – these were ignored by Moscow, but a few years later, in 1991, the USSR came to an end and the independence of the small nations were recognised.
“When Scotland leaves, the arguments for staying in the Union, even for people who are today against Wales becoming its own nation-state, will fall.
“Once Scotland goes, Northern Ireland will certainly leave and then Wales.
“Once Scotland goes, Northern Ireland will certainly leave and then Wales.”
Yes Cymru describes itself as a non-party-political campaign for an independent Wales.
Referring to Wales’ main nationalist party, led by Adam Price, Mr Jobbins said: “Plaid Cymru has promised to hold an independence referendum within five years if they’re the government following the Welsh Parliament elections in May.
“Even if Plaid doesn’t win, it will be difficult and negligent for a Welsh government not to have some kind of Plan B for when Scotland leaves Westminster rule.”
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