The SNP has hit back at Gordon Brown after the former Labour leader attacked the party’s stance on independence during a speech in Glasgow

In a speech that touched on a number of topics, including an investigation of the Brexit party, the former Prime Minister claimed the SNP are now pushing for a “far more extreme version of independence than we have ever seen”.

Touching on the SNP, Gordon Brown accused the party of moving from “soft independence to hard independence”.

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The SNP response came from Christian Allard, who is second on the list of its EU election candidates. He said: “People in Scotland remember Gordon Brown as playing a key role in the campaign to ensure that we would continue having to live under Tory governments we didn’t vote for – and now that Tory government is trying to drag Scotland out of the EU against our will.

SNP MP candidate Christian Allard hit back at Brown telling The National: “So if he wants people to even consider listening to Labour on anything, Mr Brown should start by apologising to Scotland for the mess he has helped create.

"Voters in Scotland can send a message to the parties who have ignored Scotland’s people and our Parliament by voting SNP on Thursday. While Labour are all over the place on Brexit, a vote for the SNP is a vote to stop Brexit.”

Scottish Labour leader Richard Leonard and the party’s European election candidates at the event, with Brown delivering a speech to the audience saying: “In 2014, Alex Salmond told us we were only leaving the political union, that was all, we were staying in all the other unions. But what’s the policy now?

“It’s a far more extreme version of independence. They’ve moved from soft independence to hard independence. Because now they will leave the British pound, they’ll leave the UK currency union. “It’s nothing like the policy of 2014 when Alex Salmond said it would be part of the British pound, it would be part of the UK monetary policy committee. Immediately they get independence, if they ever got it, they would leave the UK currency.”

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Brown added: “They want to stay in the European Union and they want to leave Britain so they have to leave the UK customs union as well. They have to leave the UK single market, they’ll leave the UK social welfare union, because pensions and everything else will have to be decided in Scotland.

“So this is a far more extreme policy that the SNP are now putting forward and people have got to recognise if you vote for the SNP on Thursday, you’re voting to give recognition and legitimacy and credibility to a more extreme form of independence than ever we’ve seen. Independence is separation. That means a separate currency, a separate customs union from the rest of the United Kingdom, a separate single market from the rest of the United Kingdom, a separate social welfare union.”

Brown also accused the SNP and Scottish Tories of being “interested only in this Punch and Judy fight on the constitution” while “neglecting issues that worry the Scottish people”.