Eurosceptic unionist party Ukip and pro-independence socialist party Solidarity have announced their candidates for the Scottish Parliament election.

Ukip Scotland, led by MEP David Coburn, who is standing on the Highlands and Islands list, has pledged to fight for "a strong Scotland in a strong free United Kingdom" outside the EU.

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Solidarity, convened by former Scottish Socialist Party MSPs Tommy Sheridan and Rosemary Byrne, will campaign for "an independent socialist Scotland".

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Announcing his 26 Scottish candidates, Ukip leader Nigel Farage said: "I am certain that this team, led by David Coburn, will break into Holyrood and provide a voice of serious opposition to the stale political consensus in Edinburgh.

"An over-powerful executive needs real opposition, and Ukip in Scotland will provide that."

Mr Coburn said: "Ukip will be contesting this election with a belief that our message of proper independence, fiscal responsibility and driving power away from the politicians into the hands of the people who matter, ordinary men and women across Scotland, will resonate with the voter.

"Nobody else is prepared to speak for those left behind, nobody is prepared to point out that a strong Scotland in a strong free United Kingdom is the best way to secure the interests of Scotland and her people."

In a letter to members, Solidarity's conveners said: "Our party is now registered to stand in every one of the eight regional lists across Scotland.

"We have an excellent group of candidates across the country and a very powerful manifesto which promotes a vision for a new and better Scotland, an independent socialist Scotland.

"We call on all members and supporters of Solidarity to concentrate on positive promotion of our key manifesto pledges including an IndyRef2 private member's bill, organised defiance of Tory austerity cuts and the replacement of the unfair council tax with our fairer and radical Scottish service tax."

He urged supporters to "refrain from involvement in negative posting on social media and concentrate on our positive vision for a new Scotland and a socialist world".