YOUNG Scots for Independence, the youth wing of the SNP, has given its “full support” to an independent Scotland’s membership of Nato, in light of “unprovoked Russian aggression.”
Saturday’s announcement signals a reversal of the YSI’s prior opposition, and follows First Minister Nicola Sturgeon’s recent assertion that joining the EU and Nato would be “cornerstones to an independent Scotland’s security policy.”
The proposal was put forward by YSI member Jack O’Neil, who commented following its successful adoption: “The SNP is now unified in its sensible foreign policy approach and desire to play its part in the defence of our ideals, principles, and democracy as a full member of Nato’s defensive alliance.
“Nato membership not only offers us protection, it signals our support and solidarity to the nations whose democracy and ideals remain under constant threat from the tyrannical Putin regime.
One of the proudest moments in my political life. Over the moon that the YSI have affirmed their support for NATO. Delighted to propose the resolution and play my part over years in adopting this sensible foreign policy. pic.twitter.com/IZpiQ7Ar0C
— Jack O’Neil 🇺🇦 (@JackONeil90) May 21, 2022
O’Neil added: “This does not for a second put us at odds with our commitment to remove nuclear weapons from Scotland, nor does it end our opposition to the existence of weapons of mass destruction.”
SNP defence spokesperson Stewart McDonald welcomed the move, describing it on Twitter as “a historic moment”.
However, Green MSP Ross Greer also commented on social media: “If you are rightly horrified by Russia massacring civilians in Ukraine but think its fine to sit in Nato alongside Turkey whilst it commits ethnic cleansing against the Kurds, how do you square that circle?”
Following revived discussion within the SNP over what might be expected of Scotland as a Nato member, Scottish CND this week warned: “We now expect an unequivocal re-assurance from the party leadership that its zero tolerance of nuclear weapons is unchanged and that accession to the TPNW [Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons] remains a priority.”
Earlier this week, Ógra Shinn Féin – the youth wing of Sinn Féin, whose vice-president Michelle O’Neill met with Nicola Sturgeon this week – stated: “Ireland will not join Nato.”