Indyref2 debate at Holyrood postponed until Tuesday

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A suspended vote on a possible second Scottish independence referendum will take place next Tuesday, Holyrood has confirmed.

MSPs had been expected to vote to give Nicola Sturgeon the authority to seek talks with the UK Government over a fresh ballot but business at the Scottish Parliament was suspended on Wednesday afternoon, part way through the debate, following the terror attack at the Palace of Westminster.

Presiding Officer Ken Macintosh said that was “an expression of our support for our sister Parliament” in London.

READ MORE: Indyref2 vote on hold after Scottish Parliament suspended

Mr Macintosh chaired a meeting of party business managers on Thursday morning over the rescheduling of the debate.

MSPs had been due to vote on whether the Scottish Government should seek discussions with the Conservative administration at Westminster on the details of a section 30 order, the legal mechanism that would allow a second independence ballot to be held.

Police presence in the main chamber at the Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh.

Police presence in the main chamber at the Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh.

The debate was taking place after the First Minister’s shock announcement last week that another referendum should be held in the wake of the Brexit vote.

Ms Sturgeon has said she fully supported the decision to suspend proceedings at Holyrood, but stressed: “It should be made clear, however, that this was not because of any specific threat to the Parliament or to Scotland.”

Business at Holyrood resumed on Thursday morning and flags at the parliament were flying at half mast as a mark of respect.

A minute’s silence is due to be held at 9.33am in solidarity with parliamentary colleagues at Westminster.

Speaking after the Scottish Parliament suspended the indyref2 debate yesterday, Nicola Sturgeon said: “My thoughts, as I’m sure the thoughts of everybody in Scotland tonight, are with people caught up in this dreadful event.

“My condolences in particular go to those who’ve lost loved ones.

“My thoughts are with those who’ve sustained injuries and we all feel a sense of solidarity with the people of London tonight.”

The First Minister stressed that there was no intelligence of any risk to Scotland.