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Hello, and welcome to the website of Alyn Smith MEP. Here you can find out more information on my work in the European Parliament, sign up for my newsletter, and get in touch.

Below are some of the latest pieces from around the rest of the site, click read more to go to the full article. 

  • Scotland in Europe Update: 21st September 2018

    As the saying goes, the darkest hour is right before dawn. Without getting ahead of ourselves too much, the events of this week may prove that statement right when it comes to Brexit. In a major development, today the Court of Session in Edinburgh - Scotland’s Highest Court - agreed that the our case asking whether the UK can remain in the EU on the present terms (in other words unilaterally revoke the notification of Article 50) must be referred to the Court of Justice of the European Union. For the avoidance of any doubt, we're not trying to 'overturn' anything; we want clarity. Before MPs vote on whatever cobbled-together patchwork deal May returns with, they need to know if it's possible to revoke Article 50.
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  • Scotland in Europe Update: 14th September 2018

    This week has been a very busy week in Strasbourg. Notably, Jean Claude Juncker gave his final State of the Union address outlining how the EU is performing, and what policies we will be looked at next year. He did, inevitably mention Brexit, though only briefly. Crucially he reiterated a few points for the benefit of those Brexiters who keep feigning deafness. Firstly, “if you leave the Union, you are of course no longer part of our single market, and certainly not only in the parts of it you choose. Secondly, the European Commission, this Parliament and all other 26 Member States will always show loyalty and solidarity with Ireland when it comes to the Irish border.” You can read the full speech at the link below. What struck me was how the EU (except the UK) is coming together around a lot of the challenges we face. They are getting on with the day job of making Europe better.ec.europa.eu/...
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  • EU Copyright Reform: needs more work

    The European parliament today, by 438 votes to 226 against with 39 abstentions, voted to approve the negotiating mandate for the next stage of complex negotiations over the reform of Copyright in the digital Single Market.  The SNP European Group, Ian Hudghton and Alyn Smith, supported a workable compromise between the most contentious elements of the Directive, in particular Articles 11 and 13, and the right of copyright holders to receive fair remuneration for their work when published online. 
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  • Scotland in Europe Update: 7th September 2018

    This week has seen some good news for EU citizens as the Scottish Government unveiled its Programme for Government. Building upon existing SNP policy, the Government announced that it will bring forward legislation to ensure that all EU nationals resident in Scotland maintain their Scottish voting rights in the event that Brexit takes place. It is very simple really: anyone living in Scotland is Scottish. We are a nation comfortable with multiple identities and nobody who lives here should be cut out of our society. After all, we need more people not fewer. I am proud that our Government is taking real moves to reassure people - who have paid us the supreme compliment of making Scotland their home - that they are welcome, valued and part of the community. 
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  • Scotland legislates to include EU nationals post-Brexit

    Scotland's government has announced that it will bring forward legislation to ensure that all EU nationals resident in Scotland maintain their Scottish voting rights in the event that Brexit takes place. The measure, announced as part of the Programme for Government, builds on the existing policy of the SNP that all residents in Scotland should have the same democratic equality as their neighbours.  In the referendum on Scotland's independence all EU nationals resident in Scotland had a right to vote.  The Electoral Franchise Bill will also implement reforms to ensure all legal residents, from all countries, will be able to vote.
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  • European Parliament Digital Single Market Copyright Vote

    "NOT THE END OF A COMPLEX STORY, AND NEEDS MORE WORK" SNP Member of the European Parliament Alyn Smith has today welcomed the refusal by the full European Parliament of the negotiating mandate on the reform of copyright in the EU Digital Single Market by 318 votes to 278 with 31 abstentions.
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  • Scots food produce at risk of Brexit labour shortages

    SNP Member of the European Parliament Alyn Smith has today (Monday) reacted with concern to findings published by NFU Scotland that conclusively prove the scale of the crisis facing Scots farmers due to Brexit uncertainty.
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  • Statement on Citizens' Rights

    I believe it is utterly wrong for people to be placed in a situation where - after making a home, enriching a community, and contributing to society - they are now facing this awful uncertainty. The European Commission has produced the following 23-page memo on citizens' rights, which I believe may be of interest. https://ec.europa.eu/commission/sites/beta-political/files/2017-12-12_qa_citizens_rights.pdf
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  • We must work together to correct harmful immigration falsehoods

    IN the last few months I’ve grown really weary of unthinking tribalism in Scottish politics. Like many SNP types, I started my political journey identifying most closely with the Labour Party. I never joined the party, as my time in Brussels and London that crystallised my view that Scotland could be better independent, but I still rejoiced at the 1997 election when Tony Blair’s Labour swept away the Tories. I joined the SNP the week after. It turns out 20 years is a long time in politics! But I say all that to prove that I’m up for coalitions.  First published in The National, 2 August 2017
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  • Credit where it’s due – it’s EU that has ended mobile roaming charges

    ONE of the few good news stories to emerge from the UK’s decision to leave the EU is that people have started to engage with European politics in a more active way. I admit this is ironic but it means that for the first time people are aware of developments in the EU beyond that being covered by the major news outlets. First published in The National, 28 June 2017
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