NICOLA Sturgeon has made clear she will not take Theresa May’s No for an answer and remains “determined” to have a second Scottish independence referendum on her desired timescale.

The First Minister took to the airwaves after the Prime Minister delivered her “now is not the time” message.

In an interview with BBC Scotland's Jackie Bird, Ms Sturgeon stressed how she had an "unequivocal mandate" to hold a second referendum and that a majority of MSPs were likely to back her call for so-called indyref2 in a Holyrood vote next Wednesday.

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"You are asking me to accept that a Conservative Prime Minister, who has one MP in Scotland has the right to lay down the law to Scotland's democratically elected parliament. That is unacceptable," declared the FM.

She stressed how she was “determined that I will have one on my timescale, because the will of the Scottish Parliament will be respected”.

Ms Sturgeon went on: "I accept that the Prime Minister has said what she has said today. What I don't accept is that that position is an acceptable one, a democratic one or a sustainable one."

She explained that Mrs May seemed to suggest that a vote on independence could not be held until "long, long after" the UK had left the EU.

This, argued the FM, would mean the "damage of Brexit will have started to be done" and it would be "too late for Scotland, without suffering that damage, to choose a different path".

The SNP leader, who will address her party’s spring conference in Aberdeen tomorrow, claimed the UK Government had "sunk the Brexit ship" and was now seeking to "puncture Scotland's lifeboat".

She suggested it was like "going back to the bad old days of Margaret Thatcher".

However, referring to the UK Government's U-turn on the plan to raise National Insurance Contributions for the self-employed, Ms Sturgeon said the PM was "not the Iron Lady" and had shown she was capable of changing her mind in the face of public opinion.

Her colleague Alex Salmond accused the PM of breathtaking "arrogance" and of treating Scotland like a "county rather than the country" it was.

Meantime, Kezia Dugdale, the Scottish Labour leader, supported Mrs May’s rejection of agreeing to a second independence poll.

She said: "There absolutely should not be another independence referendum until after Brexit. People cannot be asked to make a decision about the future of our 300-year old union in the dark.

"If after Brexit we have that clarity and the people of Scotland want a referendum on leaving the UK, then it isn't the job of the UK Government to stand in the way of that."

However, Jeremy Corbyn has made clear that if Holyrood voted for a second referendum, then Mrs May should not block it. Following the PM’s announcement, he appeared not to have given his response. His office said Scottish Labour was leading on the issue.

Willie Rennie, the Scottish Liberal Democrat leader, said: "Scottish Liberal Democrats are opposed to a divisive second referendum. It is not the right time, there is not public demand for one, and there is not a proper mandate for one."

His colleague, Tim Farron, the Liberal Democrat leader, added: “The SNP have no full mandate because they are using an EU clause in their manifesto yet won’t guarantee EU membership will be an automatic part of the referendum package.”

However, Ross Greer, the Scottish Green MSP, said: ''If a Tory Westminster Government that Scotland did not elect seriously think they can block our right to choose - and that they can veto a decision of our elected parliament - they will only increase support for independence. Today's comments underline the contemptuous attitude the Tories have toward Scotland."

Earlier at Westminster, the SNP’s Pete Wishart, speaking at Business Questions, said: "Can I just say ever so gently to the Leader of the House, if this Government are thinking for one minute of standing in the way of Scottish democracy, it will be the biggest recruiting sergeant possible for the cause of Scottish independence."

In response David Lidington pointed out how the Autumn Statement and the spring Budget together had given Scotland roughly £1.25 billion of extra spending.

"They could use that money to reduce the tax hikes on business and middle income families in Scotland. They could use it to improve failing schools in Scotland, to help struggling hospitals in Scotland. That would be a much better service to the people of Scotland than posturing about a further referendum," insisted the Commons Leader.