Michelle Ballantyne, the former leader of Reform UK Scotland, hit out at the SNP’s plans to hold a second independence referendum by 2023 following Queen Elizabeth II’s death. Speaking to GB News, Ms Ballantyne said: “I think that what we’ve seen is actually an outpouring of grief in Scotland. Up until last week, there was a sense that Scotland was somehow making all this noise about not wanting to be part of the UK and yet we’ve seen that turned on its head in the last few days.
“We’ve seen in reality that thousands of people turning out on the streets in Scotland to show their grief, to show their respect, to show their support; not only for our Queen and her passing but our new King to show that we do support the monarchy.
“We are not a nation of separatists or republicans who do not believe in the United Kingdom.
“We’ve seen the silent majority on the streets in the last couple of days.
“Out and about talking to people, what they’re saying to me is they feel heartened to see the other people with whom they share a view.
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“We’re seeing that silent majority who love Scotland, who love their monarchs, and who want us to stay part of the UK.”
It comes as the proclamation for King Charles III was read out and a gun salute echoed from the city’s ancient castle, a small but noisy group of protesters began heckling.
In a ceremony dating back centuries, a government official dressed in red ceremonial robes stood on a stone plinth outside St Giles’ Cathedral and read the proclamation. He then declared “God Save the King” and the crowd shouted the phrase back.
Connor Beaton, a 26-year-old wearing a t-shirt with the words “another Scotland is possible”, had been waiting for this moment. He cupped both his hands around his mouth and began booing as loud as he could.
But differences over Britain’s departure from the European Union, despite a majority of Scots voting to stay in, has increased support for independence.
Many also resent overall British rule being in the hands of the Conservative Party, which is far less popular in Scotland than it is in England and fares poorly in elections north of the border.
The United Kingdom government has repeatedly rejected the Scottish government’s demand for a second independence referendum.
Next month Britain’s top court is set to hear a case about whether the Scottish parliament may legally hold a second referendum to leave the United Kingdom.