Scotland’s First Minister held a press conference at his official residence in Edinburgh after ditching his powersharing agreement with the Scottish Greens.

Humza Yousaf gave a short speech on the end of the Bute House Agreement before taking questions from journalists.

Here are some of the key points from the press conference.

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The First Minister said he ‘terminated’ the deal

The language from both sides has been heated at times in the aftermath of the deal being axed, with Mr Yousaf saying he had told Scottish Green co-leaders Patrick Harvie and Lorna Slater he was “terminating” the agreement.

He said: “Following a discussion with my Cabinet this morning, I have formally notified Patrick Harvie and Lorna Slater that I am terminating the Bute House Agreement with immediate effect.”

The SNP will now lead as a minority Government

The First Minister conceded operating as a minority Government will be “tough”.

He said: “We will seek to work not just with the Scottish Greens, but with MSPs from across the chamber.

“The SNP has of course governed as a minority for most of our time in office.”

Yousaf said the deal had ‘served its purpose’

The Herald:

The First Minister said the deal, signed by the SNP and the Scottish Greens in 2021, had “undoubtedly brought a number of successes”.

He added: “It is now my judgment that the balance has shifted. The Bute House Agreement was intended to provide stability to the Scottish Government, and it has made possible a number of achievements. But it has served its purpose.

“It is no longer guaranteeing a stable arrangement in Parliament. The events of recent days have made that clear.

“Therefore, after careful consideration, I believe going forward, it is in the best interests of the people of Scotland to pursue a different arrangement.”

The First Minister believes dropping the deal marks a ‘new beginning’

Mr Yousaf said the SNP will now “step up its ambition”.

He said: “The SNP needs the freedom and the flexibility to ensure that we move Scotland forward and adapt to that changing world.

“We need to speak to the country with one voice, our voice, and as such I am clear that today marks a new beginning for the SNP Government.”

Yousaf denied being weak

The First Minister, who had hailed the Bute House Agreement earlier this week, faced several questions from journalists over whether ending the deal made him appear “weak” – but he insisted that is not the case.

Asked if he, as the Scottish Greens claim, is “weak and hopeless”, Mr Yousaf said: “Quite the opposite. It shows leadership.”

He insisted he is not going to quit

Mr Yousaf was also questioned whether he is “heading for the exit door”, but he was adamant he is staying in position.

When asked: “Isn’t it clear that you are a lame duck leader who is basically heading for the exit door?”, he replied: “No, not at all. This is leadership. This is the ability to say we are taking control as a party and indeed as a Government.”