Highlands & Islands

Islands campaign leaders hold meetings with UK ministers

The leaders of Scotland's three island authorities are set to hold meetings with UK ministers in the coming days.

The talks form part of Orkney, Shetland and the Western Isles councils' Our Islands - Our Future campaign.

The local authorities have sought greater autonomy for the islands, and talks have already taken place with Scottish Ministers.

The latest meetings will involve Scottish Secretary Alistair Carmichael and Energy Secretary Ed Davey.

Mr Carmichael said: "The UK government is firmly supportive of the efforts of the islands councils to seek greater influence and clout in decision-making, both at Westminster and Holyrood.

"Discussions so far have been very constructive. The Scotland Office is working closely with the councils to make sure that islands' priorities are represented and promoted at the heart of the UK government.

"We now need to focus our efforts on getting formal agreement on the priorities that we have both agreed are important to us."

Talks will also feature Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander, Advocate General for Scotland Lord Wallace of Tankerness QC ,and Europe Minister David Lidington.

Our Islands - Our Future calls for islanders to be given more control over their resources.

The three councils want this to happen whatever the result of September's independence referendum.

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