Scotland politics

Angus Robertson to stand for SNP deputy leader role

Angus Robertson Image copyright PA

SNP Westminster leader Angus Robertson has confirmed he is standing for the party's deputy leadership.

Current deputy Stewart Hosie is stepping down from the post at the next party conference later in the year.

Mr Robertson, the MP for Moray, said he was running for the job because he wanted to protect Scotland's place in Europe.

Party sources told the BBC earlier this week that he had the backing of some other SNP MPs.

Mr Robertson wrote on Twitter: "Big job to protect Scotland's place in Europe, which is why I am running for the deputy leadership of @theSNP."

Christopher McEleny, leader of the SNP group on Inverclyde Council, is so far the only other person to have declared as a candidate.

However, MEP Alyn Smith and MP for Edinburgh East Tommy Sheppard are reported to be considering whether to run for the post.

Mr Hosie announced he would step down following headlines about his personal life, amid reports that he had an affair with a political journalist.

The MP recently split from his wife Shona Robison, who is an MSP and the Scottish government's health secretary.

First Minister and SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon said Mr Hosie had made the right decision to step down.

Nominations for the role of deputy leader are open until August, with an election for the post at the party's autumn conference.

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