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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: 15th March 2019

    What is remarkable about where we stand is not what has changed but how much has remained the same. Ever since Mrs May triggered Article 50 with no long term plan (supported, remember, by the Labour and Conservative Parties) it has been obvious to anybody who understood the process that we would by this point have three choices: to accept a deal from the UK Government, crash out with no-deal, or simply revoke it. The underlying choice is rigid and will not shift until one option has been picked. So what has changed? For much of the last two years the terms of the deal were not clear. Now they are and no amount of last minute Strasbourg bells and whistles can disguise it. MPs once again voted it down on Tuesday and next week will get the opportunity to do so again.
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  • Scotland in Europe Update: 8th March 2019

    With little of note happening on the Brexit front in Brussels this week, I was privileged to be in the gallery at Holyrood on Tuesday to watch the EU debate. It was an historic day because it was the first-ever joint motion presented in the name of almost all the parties in our national Parliament and also the National Assembly for Wales, the Senedd. Scotland’s SNP government and the Welsh Labour government have been working hand in glove on Brexit since the stramash was visited upon us, and it is testament to our outstanding Scotland in Europe Minister – Michael Russell – that we have such a strong joint position. The message was clear: Brexit will be damaging and should be put back to the people, while a no-deal Brexit is unthinkable and must be taken of the table. The only exception to the unity we saw was from the Tories. They know that Brexit is damaging and against the clearly expressed wishes of the Scottish electorate, but because the UK voted to Leave Scotland must apparently follow. The unity of the UK comes above all else and instead of seeking compromise they have doubled down on the base. They’re barely speaking for 20% of the Scottish population, and alienating the rest. They tried to portray the SNP as seeking grievance and using Brexit as a pretext for an independence referendum and I’ll confess I take personal offence at this. I’ve sat through the countless meetings where we’ve had to bite on hard reality – we’re not independent and we can’t wish Brexit away – and thrash out genuine compromises about how we could salvage the maximum possible. I’ve written extensively in the Scottish and other European media about how Brexit is absolutely not about independence. All this is ignored by a group of people so desperate to deflect attention from their own disaster.
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  • Scotland in Europe Update: 1st March 2019

    Amid the week’s sound and fury Mrs May has for the first time explicitly put both a way for the House of Commons to block a no-deal Brexit, and to extend the Article 50 period, on the table. Both are news, as is Labour’s slight shift in policy in changing its language on a second EU referendum if no other way out presents itself. But she’s put them on the table in a way that makes using them almost impossible and keeps her in charge. Nonetheless, the prospect of a delay, giving us more time to turn this around, did nudge up a notch or so yesterday, so we need to be ready for all eventualities.
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  • MEPs unite for action on citizens' rights

    As the deadline to reach a Brexit agreement approaches, and with no obvious way forward to reach a deal, Alyn Smith MEP has today authored a joint letter to EU leaders calling for swift action to protect the rights of citizens in the event of a chaotic no-deal.
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  • Alyn takes UK Gov to task on ferry bodge

    Following news that the UK Government awarded a lucrative ferry contract to a company that has yet to run a ferry service, Alyn Smith MEP has written to the European Commission to request an investigation into the UK Government’s procurement process.
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  • Alyn Publishes Major Report On Scottish Twitter

    SNP Member of the European Parliament Alyn Smith has today (Friday) published a report he commissioned into Scottish Twitter and online discourse in Scotland. The independent report, "Scotland and Social Media, Trolls Under the Bridge?", researched and compiled by former Metropolitan Police Inspector turned investigative journalist and author JJ Patrick, found that some 4.25% of Scottish Twitter activity is identifiable as potentially malign, though this rises to a maximum of 12.24% in an assessment of certain account types.
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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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  • 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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  • European Parliament Recognises Scotland’s Remain Vote

    Alyn Smith, SNP Member of the European Parliament and Joan McAlpine, SNP Member of the Scottish Parliament have today welcomed the draft European Parliament resolution which will form the basis of the first official response to the triggering of Article 50 by the UK government.
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  • Alyn urges Scottish applications for EU animal welfare board

    In a move set to promote animal welfare throughout the EU, the European Commission has today (Tuesday) created a dedicated animal welfare platform. 
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