Scots would "almost certainly" demand a second independence referendum if Britain votes to exit the European Union, Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said. The remarks come after Prime Minister David Cameron announced that a referendum will be held on British membership of the European Union on 23 June.
Sturgeon told the BBC's Andrew Marr show that she though that the people of Scotland would demand a second referendum on leaving the UK if the country left the EU "against their will".
SNP leader Sturgeon said she would be campaigning for Britain to remain part of the EU. The Conservatives, Labour and the Liberal Democrats all back Britain remaining part of the EU.
Ukip, led by Nigel Farage, is campaigning for Britain to leave the union of 32 European nations.
In 2014, Scotland narrowly voted to remain part of the UK in an independence referendum.
When asked whether Scots would seek a second referendum if Britain votes to exit Europe, Sturgeon replied: "Almost certainly, I think that would be the demand of people in Scotland.
"I hope this scenario doesn't arise. I hope the UK as a whole votes to stay in the EU for a whole variety of different reasons.
"But if you cast your mind back to the Scottish referendum, the 'No' campaign then said if Scotland voted 'Yes' then our membership of the EU would be at risk. That was rubbish then, but that was a key argument."
She went on: "If, a couple of years later, we find ourselves, having voted to stay in the EU, being taken out against our will, I think there will be many people – including people who voted No in 2014 – who would say the only way to guarantee our EU membership is to be independent. That, I think, is inescapable."