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Nicola Sturgeon calls ex-deputy leader of Britain First ‘racist’ in tense confrontation

Counting has begun for the Scottish parliamentary election, with results expected tomorrow.

Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon during campaigning for the parliamentary elections.
Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon during campaigning for the parliamentary elections.
Image: PA

NICOLA STURGEON HAS called the former deputy leader of Britain First a “racist” after she accused the Scottish First Minister of “flooding” the country with immigrants.

Voting in the Scottish parliamentary election ended last night, with results expected in the next few days.

Jayda Fransen, who is standing as an independent in Glasgow Southside, the same constituency contested by Sturgeon, confronted the SNP leader yesterday outside what appeared to be a polling station, according to footage posted online.

Fransen, who has convictions for religiously aggravated harassment, said to Sturgeon: “What are you sorry for? Mass immigration, Marxism?

“I’m not a fascist. I’ve been on the ground speaking to locals who say you are an absolute disgrace …”

Sturgeon said: “We’ll see what the locals’ view is later on.”

Fransen said: “The locals, what the ones you have flooded from other countries?

“The decent people of Scotland don’t want it flooded with immigrants.”

Sturgeon told her: “You are a fascist, you are a racist and the southside of Glasgow will reject you.”

Scotland’s First Minister then walked away with party members as Fransen pursues her, talking about “mass immigration” and “Marxism”.

Responding to footage of the incident on Twitter, Sturgeon later wrote: “Glasgow Southside is the most diverse and multi-cultural constituency in Scotland – one of the many things that makes it so brilliant.

I am confident it will unite today to utterly reject these fascists.

Fransen later tells an SNP supporter who asks her who she is: “I’m not fascist, just a normal, decent unionist patriot.

“My grandfather fought the Nazis.”

In a piece to camera uploaded by the British Freedom Party, she accuses Sturgeon of “running away like a coward”, adding: “Of course if you flood a constituency with foreigners and hardline republicans who absolutely hate Britain, hate the union, they are going to secure their votes.

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“The unionist community are no longer unrepresented and we are coming for you.”

Fransen has previously been pictured outside the constituency office of Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf holding a sign saying “it’s okay to be white” and has said she is running against the “SNP commie, Marxists, naughty people”.

She has previously been convicted of a number of religiously aggravated crimes, including harassment in both 2016 and 2018 – the latter of which saw her sentenced to 36 weeks in prison.

Although a member of the British Freedom Party, documents from Glasgow City Council show Fransen is running as an independent.

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the counting of votes for the 2021 Holyrood election will take place over a number of days, with all results expected to be declared by Saturday evening.

Counting usually begins immediately after the polls close at 10pm and continues overnight, with results declared in the early hours.

But the need for social distancing among count staff has meant votes will be tallied from this morning.

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