MPs announce Scots independence probe
29 June 2012
MPs are launching an in-depth inquiry into the defence implications of Scottish independence, it has been announced.
The Commons Defence Select Committee will be taking evidence throughout the year on the full range of defence issues that would need to be considered should Scots vote to break from the United Kingdom in 2014's independence referendum.
The committee will look to define Scotland's current contribution to UK defence and what items must be negotiated should Scots vote for independence.
The Scottish Affairs Committee is already conducting a broader inquiry into the overall implications of Scottish independence and has heard from defence ministers who warned that the basing of the nuclear deterrent in Scotland could be a major sticking point in separation negotiations.
The defence committee will be looking to determine how long the separation process may take and how any resulting defence shortfall could be "made good", as well as the implications for Scottish personnel in the armed forces.
Evidence sessions will also seek to determine what size any future Scottish defence force might take. The Scottish National Party, which campaigned for the referendum, has reportedly not yet held talks with the British government on the size and shape of such a force.