THERE are just under three weeks until crucial climate talks are due to be held in Glasgow.

Thousands of dignitaries from around the world, leaders and climate activists are set to hit the SEC campus as negotiations get under way to reach a consensus on tackling the climate crisis and keeping world temperatures under control.

So, who is set to be coming to Scotland’s biggest city, and what have they said about Scottish independence?

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The National:

Boris Johnson

The Prime Minister has consistently said that he won’t allow a second independence referendum to go ahead, even telling Scots on the eve of Holyrood’s May 2021 election to forget about holding a “reckless and irresponsible” second vote.

We told how a “rattled” Johnson has warned UK Government ministers not to talk about the constitutional question amid fears it makes them appear “needy” and only provides a boost to the Yes side.

The National:

Alok Sharma

COP president Sharma has remained relatively tight-lipped on Scottish independence. Nicola Sturgeon was forced to hit back at claims Downing Street were trying to cut her out of the climate summit to stop it being used as an “advert for an independence campaign”.

Probed on what role the First Minister will play in the talks, all Sharma would tell a recent Holyrood committee meeting was that it was up to the Prime Minister.

The National:

Mark Carney

The former Bank of England governor will be at the climate conference as an envoy for both the UK and the UN. His role has involved gathering banks into the Glasgow Financial Alliance for Net Zero to reform and reassess their investment portfolios.

During his tenure overseeing the Bank of England, he was relatively neutral on the issue of Scottish independence in 2014, but hinted that talks on a currency union wouldn’t be easy. He said an independent Scotland using the pound would be “incompatible with sovereignty”.

However, fast forward four years to 2018, Carney insisted it would be possible for an independent Scotland to share the pound, but added that it didn’t mean it would be “politically desirable”.

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The National:

Joe Biden

Back in 2014, the then vice president was campaigning in Iowa when a reporter asked him about the Scottish independence referendum that year.

Biden said: “I think the United Kingdom, uh, well look, I learned from Scottish friends, the last thing to do is to suggest to a Scot what he should do. So I’m going to stay out of that. We have a great alliance now."

In August this year the President’s position was made clearer by a senior US diplomat. Ellen Wong, former principal officer at the American consulate in Edinburgh, said that Washington is keen to build business and cultural links with Scotland, but that the US wants stability from international allies.

The National:

John Kerry

The former US Secretary of State (SoS) will be attending COP26 as Biden’s special envoy on climate, spending most of the past year visiting foreign capitals in a bid to reach a broad coalition to allow the climate agreement to be reached.

During his tenure as SoS, Kerry called for the UK to remain “united” during a press conference with then Foreign Secretary Johnson. He said: “The United States of America depends on a strong United Kingdom. And we mean united. And it depends also on an engaged United Kingdom.”

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The National:

Ursula von der Leyen

The President of the European Commission, like other EU politicians, has not said outright whether or not she supports Scottish independence. However, in May 2020 she angered unionists after stating that the EU would leave a door open for Scotland.

Asked by an MEP what the chances for an independent Scotland to rejoin the EU are, von der Leyen said: “Any European State, which respects and promotes the values of the EU, may apply to become a member of the Union.”

The National:

Frans Timmermans

First Vice President of the European Commission since 2014, Timmermans has reportedly said he was unsure if Scotland would be given straightforward re-entry to the EU if it gains independence from the UK.

He said he was not sure if it would be possible “given the position of many member states on this ... I would not be overly optimistic.”

The National:

Xi Jinping

Whether or not China’s president will come to the climate talks is one of the biggest questions ahead of the summit.

And, although Jinping himself hasn’t said much on the cause of independence, there were multiple reports in the lead up to the 2014 vote which said the world superpower was watching Scotland closely.

China’s Foreign Ministry denied to comment on the vote at the time saying it was an internal matter.

However Chinese premier, Li Keqiang, said he wants to see a "united United Kingdom" during a press conference with David Cameron in 2014.

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The National:

The Queen

Although the head of state has to remain strictly neutral on political matters, the Queen has waded in a few times on the constitutional question.

Ahead of the 2014 Scottish independence referendum, the Queen told a well-wisher outside Crathie Kirk, close to her Balmoral estate: “Well, I hope people will think very carefully about the future.”

There were also reports that the Queen was prepared to intervene in 2014 to help shore up support for the Union. The monarch is also supposed to be heading up a “charm offensive” to save the Union alongside Prince William and Kate.

The National:

Sir David Attenborough

Attenborough was one of more than 200 celebrities who signed a letter to Scots in 2014, urging them to vote no to independence. The letter said that the decision will have a “huge effect on all of us in the rest of the United Kingdom” and how much the signatories valued “our bonds of citizenship”.

The letter called for Scots to vote no and “stay together” with the rest of the UK. Other signatories on the letter included Steve Coogan, Dame Judy Dench and Stephen Hawking.

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The National:

Greta Thunberg

The 18-year-old would only have been aged 11 during the 2014 referendum, so has not said much on the topic.

However, in August she became embroiled in a row around climate targets after the BBC said she doesn’t regard Scotland as a world leader, with many criticising the way her comments were framed.