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Part of the debate – in the Scottish Parliament on 7th November 2013.

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Photo of Nicola Sturgeon Nicola Sturgeon Scottish National Party

He continued:

“All those countries have expressed interest in joining the United Kingdom in a collaborative programme that would” bring

“together ... members of the Commonwealth ... while driving down costs for the Royal Navy.”—[Official Report, House of Commons, 31 January 2011; vol 522, c 575.]

Is Johann Lamont’s point that it would be only a future independent Scotland that the UK would not and could not collaborate with?

I understand that Johann Lamont does not support independence—I have got that message. She will campaign hard against independence. I accept that—I even respect it—but this is a question about what happens after Scotland has democratically voted for independence. Surely she will not threaten, bully and seek to blackmail Scottish shipyards. Instead, she should be saying that, in that scenario, the MOD should do the only thing, the right thing and the best thing.

Here is what Jamie Webster, the union convener of the Govan yard—somebody who knows more about the Clyde than the rest of us put together—said:

“If the situation is that Scottish people by democratic vote, vote Yes, I would expect, no sorry, demand, that every single politician of every section supports us”.

My question to Johann Lamont is simple: will she support the Clyde to build the frigates even if we are independent? [Applause.]