Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon reacts as she attends the First Minister's Questions session at the Scottish Parliament in Holyrood, Edinburgh on November 26, 2020 Photograph:( AFP )
SNP is going towards fourth successive term in power but to claim majority, it would need 65 out of 129 seats
Scottish National Party (SNP) on Saturday appeared likely to fall short of gaining absolute majority in the devolved parliament. The SNP strongly favours a fresh Scottiosh independence referendum. The plan has been termed reckless by UK PM Boris Johnson.
The UK voted in local and regional elections on "Super Thursday" in its first major polls since Brexit and the pandemic. The count is much slower than usual due to virus safety measures.
Johnson's Conservative Party has performed strongly in England, outdoing Labour in its traditional heartlands and taking control of northeastern Hartlepool in a key parliamentary by-election.
Labour held onto power in the Senedd Cymru devolved parliament in Wales and also won several high-profile mayoral races.
However, the focus remained on Scotland. where a vote for the devolved parliament in Edinburgh saw the ruling SNP seek a parliamentary majority as a mandate for a fresh referendum on independence, or "indyref2", that could reshape the UK.
SNP has so far won 60 of the 71 declared seats. However, it has had to concede defeat on several target seats. The BBC has projected that SNP would get 63 seats in total.
Scottish National Party leader Nicola Sturgeon said Saturday the devolved parliament would undoubtedly have a majority of members who back independence from the United Kingdom following elections.
SNP is going towards fourth successive term in power but to claim majority, it would need 65 out of 129 seats.
Scots vote twice, once for a constituency MSP and once for a party, with those votes allocated regionally.
The proportional representation system is designed to prevent a single party like the SNP dominating.
(With inputs from agencies)