A still image from video show Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon speaking following the results of the EU referendum, in Edinburgh, Scotland, Britain June 24, 2016. REUTERS/UK Parliament via REUTERS TV
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Britain's vote to leave the European Union instantly put the question of Scottish independence back into play Friday, with Scotland having voted heavily for the U.K. to remain in the bloc. Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said the result put an independence referendum "on the table," adding that it was "highly likely" within two years.She had made her intentions clear throughout the referendum campaign: If Scotland was pulled out of the EU against its will, that would be grounds for a second referendum on seceding from the United Kingdom.The U.K. as a whole voted by 52 percent to 48 percent to leave the EU.However, Scotland voted strongly for Britain to remain – by 62 percent to 38 percent, with a majority in all 32 of its local authority areas.Wales and England – except London – voted for Britain to leave the EU, while Northern Ireland voted for it to stay in.While Britain has voted to leave the EU, it may retain continued access to the European free trade zone.
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