MEP humiliates Sturgeon and tells her 'it's IMPOSSIBLE to keep Scotland in EU market'
Esteban Gonzalez Pons, Spain’s most powerful MEP, said any attempt by Sturgeon to negotiate a special deal to keep Scotland in the single market would be “impossible” if the rest of the UK decides to leave.
Mr Pons, who leads Spain’s largest group of MEPs in the European Parliament, claimed his nation’s government would reject any SNP plans in fear it may spark a separatist movement within its own borders in Catalonia and the Basque Country.
The Spanish politician said: “It’s impossible. I’m telling you not only as a Spanish MEP but also as a member of the EPP.
“My position is also my party’s position… It’s impossible. Scotland, while it is part of the United Kingdom, has to be the same as the UK.
“If Spain agrees a special deal for Scotland after Brexit, Spain has to negotiate a special position for Gibraltar and we accept that Gibraltar could be part of the single market.
“We’re not going to accept Scotland in the single market without the rest of the UK.”
Spain is looking to be a “very, very good friend to the UK Government” when Article 50 is triggered and share “the same point of view about the Scottish question”, according to Mr Pons.
He added: “More than any other European country, we want to be the best friend for the UK Government. Spain has many reasons to be a good friend for the UK and having the same point of view they have about the Scottish question.”
The Valencia-born politician warned that Sturgeon’s plan to remain a part of the single market would lead to a hard border with England and that Spain would “reject any negotiations” with other politicians.
Mr Pons’s comments could be damaging to any potential special deal Scotland hopes to strike as all EU member states need to verify the agreement, whether on membership of the European Free Trade Association or the European Economic Area.
Although not the official views of the Government, Mr Pons claimed his views represent that of Spain’s People’s Party (PP).
The Spanish prime minister Mariano Rajoy is part of the PP and said Scotland would need to leave the crumbling Brussels bloc just like the rest of Britain.