Rail union leaders have said their members are "standing firm" across Scotland ahead of a dispute which threatens a "total rail shutdown" during COP26.

Rail union RMT confirmed this week that workers will undertake industrial action which centres on a dispute over pay and conditions at the beginning of November, 

General Secretary Mick Lynch said: "Our members are standing firm across Scotland again in this on‎going fight for workplace justice.

"It comes at the end of a week when our members voted by a massive majority to strike throughout COP26 right across Scotland in a company-wide battle for fair pay.

"Our Caledonian Sleeper staff will also be taking action alongside their Scotrail colleagues over the crucial pay issue."

ScotRail staff will strike from Monday, November 1 until Friday, November 12 while staff on the Caledonian Sleeper, which is run by Serco, will hold two 24-hour strikes - one from 11.59am on Sunday, October 31 and one on Thursday, November 11, also from 11.59am.

Mr Lynch added: "It's about time those calling the shots in Scotland took responsibility for Britain’s longest-running industrial disputes which are over the basic issue of pay equality and justice on Scotrail and the sleeper services.

"With the prospect of a total rail shutdown during COP26 looming large it's time to settle the pay disputes which shame Scotland."

The SNP Minister for Transport Graeme Dey urged RMT bosses to accept the most recent pay rise offer and claimed that other major rail unions have indicated they are content with ScotRail's terms.

READ MORE: Warning 'no ScotRail trains running' and 'every service disrupted' during COP26 strikes

He said: "The ballot for industrial action was launched and conducted on the premise that no offer had been made by ScotRail, but it predates an offer being made.

“Many RMT members will have voted unaware of the offer which is now on the table.”

A ScotRail spokesman said: “It’s extremely disappointing that the RMT have opted to continue with this highly damaging strike action, particularly when a pay offer, negotiated over several weeks, has been made to the trade unions.

“We’re seeing customers gradually return to Scotland’s Railway, but the scale of the financial situation ScotRail is facing is stark. 

“To build a more sustainable and greener railway for the future and reduce the burden on the taxpayer, we need to change. All of us in the railway – management, staff, trade unions, suppliers, and government – need to work together to modernise the railway so that it is fit for the future.”