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Fiona Hyslop marks St Andrew's day in Brussels

Fiona Hyslop - Scottish Government 

Fiona Hyslop marks St Andrew's day in Brussels

The Scottish Government is to mark St Andrews Day in Brussels today as the Brexit row rages in the UK.

Culture, Tourism and External Affairs Secretary Fiona Hyslop is to host an concert and reception at the European Parliament and also update MEPs on the Scottish Government's position.

EU leaders have backed Theresa May's negotiated deal which would take the UK out of the Common Agricultural Policy and the Common Fishing Policy but have special customs and trade arrangements for Northern Ireland.

However the deal is still to be ratified by the UK and European parliaments.

Speaking ahead of the trip, Hyslop said: "St Andrew's Day is an opportunity for all of Scotland to celebrate the outward-looking and compassionate spirit of our nation - values that Scots are renowned for worldwide.

"Especially this year, in the face of the many challenges posed by Brexit, this is a time to reaffirm our commitment as an open, welcoming, inclusive nation. Remaining in the EU continues to be our strong preference and we believe the political declaration on the future relationship represents a dangerous 'blindfold' Brexit.

"The deal between the EU and the UK doesn't work for Scotland. It will see us lose our rights as EU citizens and ignores our distinct needs on inward migration. Most importantly, it will leave our nation - and indeed the whole of the UK -economically and socially poorer.

"That is why we will continue to seek support for a compromise position that sees Scotland maintain membership of the Single Market and Customs Union, which is eight times bigger than the UK market alone. We will do everything we can to help steer Scotland - and the UK - towards a better future."

Various events are being held across Scotland to mark St Andrew's day, who is also the patron saint of Greece, Russia, Romania, Ukraine and Barbados.

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