Thousands of people have flocked to add their names to a letter urging the European Parliament to guarantee that an independent Scotland could rejoin the EU.
The organisation Europe for Scotland published the letter just days ago. It had already been signed by 170 prominent culture figures in the UK and beyond.
Since its publication almost 8000 people have signed up to its demand. Most have come from Scotland but people from all over Europe have also signed.
Europe for Scotland co-coordinators Andrea Pisauro and Nina Jetter said they were delighted with the response so far. They said many of the Scottish signatories had attached messages saying how deprived and betrayed they felt by the UK government’s decision to pull Scotland out of Europe against its will.
‘There was a real feeling of sadness from many of those in Scotland who signed the letter,’ said Ms Jetter.
Some people we approached wanted to see the election result before committing to sign
She and Mr Pisauro had organised the project after being asked to get involved by their friend Anthony Barnett of openDemocracy. Cultural figures who signed it included actors Sam Heughan, star of Outlander, Brian Cox, whose long list of acting credits include Succession, former Scottish makar Jackie Kay, author Val McDermid and U2 and Talking Heads producer Brian Eno.
The organisers expect more cultural figures to sign up if a pro-independence majority is elected at Thursday’s Holyrood election. ‘Some people we approached wanted to see the election result before committing to sign,’ said Mr Pisauro.
We want to build a bottom up citizens campaign demanding that EU institutions break the silence
The letter was published simultaneously in Scotland, elsewhere in the UK, Denmark, France, Italy, Portugal, Czech Republic and Poland.
The next step after the Scottish election will be to widen the campaign to involve more people living in Central Europe. Ms Jetter said: ‘ We want to build a bottom up citizens campaign demanding that EU institutions break the silence, express their solidarity and offer support to Scotland ahead of an independence referendum.’
Mr Pisauro added that many people living in Europe were not aware that Scotland had voted against Brexit and the campaign wants to raise awareness of that.
He added: 'We have an extensive network of contacts thanks to campaigns we got involved with in the past, including an open letter to Angela Merkel demanding European solidarity in response to the pandemic.'
You can sign the letter urging the EU to pledge to allow an independent Scotland to rejoin at europeforscotland.com, where it has been translated into 18 languages, including Scots and Gaelic. Sign the letter here.