Line Of Duty star Martin Compston has urged Scots to back Nicola Sturgeon in Thursday's election, as the leader "best placed" to take Scotland out of the pandemic.

The Greenock-born actor, who stars as Steve Arnott in the hit BBC drama, made the plea in an online rally, which aired shortly before the Line Of Duty finale.

At the event, Compston was joined by other high-profile SNP supporters, including actors Alan Cumming and Brian Cox, crime writer Val McDermid and Mogwai musician Stuart Braithwaite.

READ MORE: Willie Rennie set on securing seats throughout Scotland to prevent SNP majority 

With the next Scottish Parliament election taking place in just a few days, the actor told voters: “Scotland’s future is in your hands. Don’t leave it to chance.

“The only way to make sure we re-elect Nicola Sturgeon as First Minister is to make it #BothVotesSNP.

“Make sure you and all your pals get out to vote.”

HeraldScotland: Line of Duty with Adrian Dunbar as Superintendent Ted Hastings, Martin Compston as DS Steve Arnott

Picture: PA Photo/BBC/World Productions/Steffan Hill

With the election taking place during the coronavirus pandemic, Compston said: “I think even people who don’t like Nicola Sturgeon, for whatever reason, have had to admit that she has been by far the most competent leader on these islands dealing with this crisis.

“And she’s the one I think is best placed to take us forward getting out of it.

“So, I do really think that we are in a situation now where we need the best people, the most competent people, in charge of Scotland. To make sure that we come out of this a better place than we went in.”

Compston, who lives in the US with his American wife, continued: “Everyone is allowed an opinion. Whether that be politicians down south or some lovely incredible entertainers who have moved abroad for whatever reason.

“Myself, I’ve lived across the world. That’s the beauty of free speech. Everyone is allowed an opinion. But what matters is votes.”

SNP MP Mhairi Black, who interviewed the actor for the online event, said that the May 6 election was “the most important in Scotland’s history” as she stressed that “every vote will count”.

READ MORE: Nicola Sturgeon says she is the only candidate offering "serious leadership"

Ms Black said: “Only by casting both votes for the SNP can we guarantee Nicola Sturgeon is re-elected as First Minister to keep Scotland safe through Covid, build a strong, fair and green recovery, and put Scotland’s future in Scotland’s hands.

“I want to thank Martin and all of the actors, writers, musicians and cultural figures who have given their support to the SNP at this crucial election.

“The last year has changed our world. This year we have the opportunity to build a better and fairer future for Scotland by voting SNP.”