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20 January 2017, 07:09
Independence would result in "turbo-charged austerity'' for Scotland and a "glaring hole'' in the cash for essential public services, Jeremy Corbyn has warned.
While First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has said Prime Minister Theresa May's plan to take the UK out of Europe's single market "undoubtedly'' makes a second referendum more likely, the Labour leader cautioned Scots against leaving the UK.
He also insisted the vote for Brexit could bring "opportunities'' for Scotland, with the possibility of further powers being devolved to Holyrood.
Mr Corbyn said while "of course Scotland has the talent and ability to run its own affairs'', he did not believe this "would be the best option for the Scottish people''.
Since the 2014 independence referendum, the case for Scotland leaving the UK had "weakened'', he claimed, citing the plunge in North Sea oil revenues as one reason for this.
Speaking out against independence in Glasgow, he insisted: "It would lead to turbo-charged austerity and a glaring hole in the money required to fund essential services, and would not be in the interests of the people of Scotland.''
His claim was, however, rejected by Ms Sturgeon, who branded it "rubbish''.
The SNP leader tweeted: "If Corbyn wasn't leading such a pitifully ineffective opposition the Tories wouldn't be getting away with half of what they are.''