THE Scottish Government hopes Scots would be granted dual citizenship with the UK under independence, allowing them to keep British passports.

Ministers say 500,000 people born elsewhere in the UK, plus their spouses and children, would be entitled to dual citizenship.

They expect millions more Scots to continue using British passports, which would give them access to UK diplomatic support abroad.

External affairs minister Humza Yousaf said: "We have always said we would have an open and inclusive citizenship."

A Government spokesman said: "An independent Scotland could recognise the complex history of Scotland and the United Kingdom by offering shared or dual citizenship."

Labour MSP Iain Gray said there was no evidence the UK would agree.

He added: "I would be able to use the facilities of any British embassy or consulate around the world while the Scottish Government would contribute nothing - that is most unlikely."