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The National (Scotland)
The National (Scotland)
Ninian Wilson

Nicola Sturgeon reacts to election of new SNP Westminster leadership team

NICOLA Sturgeon has congratulated Stephen Flynn and Mhairi Black after they were elected the SNP’s new Westminster leader and deputy leader, respectively.

The First Minister tweeted her congratulations after the party’s MPs held an online ballot to decide who would takeover from the departing Westminster leader Ian Blackford and deputy leader Kirsten Oswald.

In a tweet minutes after the result was announced, the First Minister wrote: “Congratulations to new @theSNP Westminster leader @StephenFlynnSNP and deputy leader @MhairiBlack – a truly formidable team.

“Looking forward to working with them both.”

Flynn's only competitor for the Westminster leadership position was Glasgow MP Alison Thewliss, who he has thanked for her contribution and described as "hugely talented" and that she will "continue to play a key role in our movement".

The Aberdeen MP went on to say he is "delighted" with his new position, adding: "It's an honour to be elected to lead the SNP's strong and talented team of MPs during such a crucial period for Scotland.

"Under my leadership, SNP MPs will be relentlessly focused on standing up for Scotland's interests and our democratic right to decide our future in an independence referendum.

"Families across Scotland are paying a devastating price under Westminster control, with Brexit, austerity cuts and the Tory cost of living crisis hammering household budgets.

"SNP MPs will work harder than ever to hold the Tory government to account - and make the case that independence is the essential route to safety, fairness and prosperity for Scotland."

Meanwhile, Black said: "I'm delighted to have been elected as SNP Westminster deputy leader and look forward to working closely with Stephen Flynn and MP's across the parliamentary party as we stand up for Scotland and make the case for independence.

"Westminster is failing Scotland. With the Tories and Labour Party both wedded to Brexit, austerity cuts and democracy denial, it's clearer than ever that independence is the only way to escape the damage of Westminster control and get Scotland back on the path to prosperity."

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