THE UK Government has “indicated support” for the Scottish and Welsh offer to become “super sponsors” for Ukrainian refugees, Nicola Sturgeon has said.

Ahead of her Covid-19 update in the Scottish Parliament, the First Minister said the response from the public in offering to house those fleeing the Russian invasion has been “outstanding”.

As of 2pm on Tuesday, more than 100,000 households have registered interest in supporting a refugee, including one Scottish Government minister.

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Sturgeon has now revealed that the UK Government has indicated it is willing to back the devolved leaders' plan, which could lead to 3000 Ukrainian refugees being welcomed in Scotland “very soon”.

It comes as the LibDems asked the First Minister if arriving refugees will be offered Covid-19 vaccination, due to low levels of roll out before the Russian invasion began.

Speaking to MSPs in Holyrood, the FM said: “The response of the public in offering support has been outstanding.

“Under the UK scheme though – with the exception of people who already know someone seeking refuge – it may be some time before most of those offering help will be able to actually welcome someone from Ukraine.

The National:

The FM said she hopes Scotland will be able to welcome Ukraine refugees 'very soon'

“The Scottish Government’s ‘super-sponsor’ proposal is intended to short-circuit this and allow Ukrainians to get here and be supported more quickly.

“I am pleased to advise that the UK government has now indicated support for this proposal in principle, and has committed to working with us towards its immediate launch alongside the wider UK scheme.

“This is a positive development and I hope – assuming we can agree details – that, as a start, it will allow Scotland to welcome 3,000 Ukrainians to Scotland very soon.”

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The First Minister said she would update MSPs further in Parliament on Wednesday.

It comes as the Scottish LibDem leader asked Sturgeon about Covid-19 requirements for Ukrainian refugees coming to Scotland – pointing out that before the Russian invasion only 35% of adults had been vaccinated in the country.

He added: “They will be coming to a country with one of the highest infection rates in the whole of Europe.

“After everything they've been through, the last thing they need is a bad dose of Covid.

The National:

Cole-Hamilton asked the FM what Covid support will be available to refugees

“And so to that end, can I ask the Scottish Government what plans it has to offer arriving refugees access to immediate vaccination for any refugees wishing to take that?”

The First Minister said that she will set out further details in a statement to Holyrood on Wednesday on the Government’s plan.

She added: “I can say now though that includes intensive work with Public Health Scotland to look at exactly what we should offer both in terms of testing when people arrive and also vaccination of people that are not already vaccinated.

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“So that work is underway as part of the wider preparations to welcome people here.”

We previously told how Sturgeon and Drakeford have repeatedly called on the UK Government to drop visa requirements for Ukrainian refugees, and that their “super sponsor” plan would allow them to get to the UK faster.