Barroso: Scotland must reapply to EU

Dec. 7, 2012 at 3:22 PM

EDINBURGH, Scotland, Dec. 7 (UPI) -- Scotland cannot expect automatic membership in the European Union if it becomes independent, EU President Jose Manuel Barroso says.

Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond, leader of the Scottish National Party and a strong advocate for independence, has said the country would remain in the European Union, The Scotsman reported. But Barroso disagreed in a response to David Martin, a member of the European Parliament representing the Labor Party.

Barroso said a European Commission statement in 2004 that secession invalidates EU membership still stands.

Scottish Finance Secretary John Swinney said Thursday the country could negotiate with the European Union at the same time that it negotiates terms of independence from the United Kingdom. British officials say Scotland must first declare independence and then negotiate with the union.

Scotland and England have had a single head of state since James VI of Scotland became King James I of England in 1603. They have been politically united since 1706.

Related UPI Stories
Latest Headlines
Top Stories
Hyon Yong Chol disparaged Kim Jong Un prior to execution, analyst says
Officials debate 'when to suspend' search for missing Florida boys
In Khamenei Tweet, man resembling Obama holds gun to head
Gangs in El Salvador kill at least six bus drivers to intimidate government
Venezuela arrests 212 suspected criminals, recovers stolen apartments