SNP Westminster leader Angus Robertson has been forced to defend himself after telling a German magazine that he is not a nationalist.

Opponents seized on half-German Mr Robertson's claims in Weiner Zeitung when asked if the Queen would still be head of state if Scotland was independent.

Mr Robertson said: "Yes, I think so, in the context of the Commonwealth. I believe that our overall relationship with England would be a better one: Scots are open and friendly people, we are cosmopolitans – the German translation of my party's name makes me angry: we aren't nationalists."

Labour spokeswoman Patricia Ferguson said: "Coming just days after the SNP banned the word independence, for Angus Robertson to deny he is a Nationalist is ludicrous. "

Tory leader Ruth Davidson said: "If the SNP aren't nationalists, what are they?"

Mr Robertson said: "It's a shame that nobody in the Labour or Tory parties appears to be competent at the German language or understand German or Austrian history.

"I am an internationalist and Scottish Nationalist in favour of an independent Scotland, but not a 'Nationalist' in the sense it can be understood in the German language."