Candidates selected

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SNP PRESIDENT Ian Hudghton MEP and Stephen Gethins, a former special adviser to the First Minister on European Affairs, have been selected by the SNP to contest next year’s European elections.

Ian Hudghton MEP lives in Forfar and has served in the European Parliament since 1998, being a member of the powerful European Parliament Fisheries and Internal Market Committees. Ian is the leader of the SNP Group in the European Parliament and president of the Scottish National Party. Before becoming an MEP Ian Hudghton was Leader of Angus Council.

Stephen Gethins is from Perth where he attended Perth Academy and joined the SNP there in 1993. He studied International and European Law at the University of Dundee.

Over the past four years Stephen has worked as a special adviser to Scotland’s First Minister Alex Salmond on European Affairs, as well as Rural Affairs, Energy and Climate Change.

Previously he worked as an adviser in the EU Committee of the Regions working with local authorities from across Europe and at Scotland Europa in Brussels helping Scottish organisations influence and gain funding from EU institutions. He also worked on conflict resolution in the Balkans and former Soviet Union.

Ian Hudghton MEP said: “I am delighted to have been nominated again by the SNP as a candidate for next year’s critical European elections. The European Union has a big impact on our day to day lives and it is important for our communities to have a strong Scottish representation in the European Parliament.

“Our fishermen and farmers in particular have been badly let down by successive Westminster Governments who described our fishing communities as expendable and short changed our farmers. Scotland can’t afford not to take next year’s opportunity to become independent and I will be campaigning for that on the run up to the European elections and beyond.”

Stephen Gethins said: “I have worked and campaigned for the SNP for over 20 years and it will be a privilege to be able to make the case for an Independent Scotland in Europe as part of that campaign. These elections will be critical for Scotland coming just weeks before the Independence Referendum. Scotland needs to make its own case in Brussels rather than relying on an out of touch and increasingly isolated Westminster Government.

“I have worked on European affairs in Brussels and in the Scottish Government for several years and have witnessed at first-hand how badly Scotland needs its own representation. Our businesses and not least fishermen and farmers badly need a strong Scottish voice in Brussels to make their case in what will be a crucial few years in the EU.”