PATRICK Harvie has renewed his party’s commitment to campaign for a Yes vote in any new referendum on Scottish independence.

Speaking the day after his party gathered for their Spring Conference, he underlined that he continued to see independence as the best future for Scotland.

“The Greens have always tried to conduct the debate on independence in a manner of respect and understanding and listening to one another we still have members and are happy to do so who voted no last time.

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“The clear majority voted Yes and the party will campaign Yes again because there is a clear distinctive Green vision about what independence could mean and it’s not about flag waving it’s about a better, greener society,” he said in an interview with BBC’s Sunday Politics Scotland yesterday.

Securing a second independence referendum was discussed at a fringe meeting on Brexit, Ireland and the UK during the party’s conference held in Greenock on Saturday.

Ross Greer, the Scottish Greens’ Europe spokesman was pressed by a party member who called for a independence referendum to be held without getting permission from the UK Government. Nicola Sturgeon last year wrote to Theresa May seeking a Section 30 order of the 1998 Scotland Act - the legal power required for Holyrood to hold a binding vote, but May refused to give it.

“I’m absolutely fed up with having to refer to the UK Government as being eminent. We can do whatever we want politically. We can do it and let’s do it now,” the member said.

But Greer said holding a referendum without a Section 30 order would lead to practical problems in facilitating the new vote and result in a new constitutional crisis rather than independence.

“On the point of just going ahead and having a referendum, I don’t at all believe it’s an advisable path to go down. There are practical reasons which would just not make it possible. The idea of us being in a situation where we had to attempt independence with the absolute resistance of the UK government, I don’t think, would make independence actually possible,” he said.

“We would probably be in a situation where if we held a referendum without the consent of the UK Government it would simply be boycotted by supporters of the Union and it would then lack democratic legitimacy.”

He went on to consider the situation in Catalonia, where despite the Yes win in last year’s referendum, independence has not materialised. “We can draw some lessons from Catalonia’s experience of winning a referendum without the consent of the state level authority,” he told the meeting. “For all I strongly object to the Spanish state’s quasi fascist actions, for all I am utterly opposed to the UK in its current form, and believe in Scottish independence ... we have a realistic path to independence but it does depend on a referendum with consent built into it. We have to get the consent of the United Kingdom Government. If the referendum was not legally binding any local authority controlled by any combination of Conservative, Labour and Liberal Democrat party could refuse to facilitate that referendum. You would end up in an incredibly messy situation. Our focus should be on how do we create the political leverage to get the section 30 order we need ... to have a referendum that we know we can win but we also know will actually result in independence rather than a constitutional crisis.”