RISHI Sunak has told the SNP to “respect” the No vote of 2014, dashing any lingering hopes Nicola Sturgeon may have had of an agreed second independence referendum.

The new Prime Minister said he was prepared to “disagree” on the issue.

Mr Sunak made the comments at his first PMQs outing in reply to Alyn Smith, the SNP MP for Stirling.

Ms Sturgeon has said that if the Supreme Court rules Holyrood can hold a vote under its existing powers, Indyref2 will be on 19 October next year.

If it rules Holyrood cannot proceed, then she has said she will fight the next general election as a ‘de facto’ referendum on independence.

However, her clear preference has always been for an agreed referendum backed by both Holyrood and Westminster, as happened before the vote eight years ago.

Like many speakers at PMQs today, Mr Smith congratulated Mr Sunak on his appointment as the UK’s first Asian PM, saying: “We might not agree on everything, but I think we can all agree a more diverse politics can only be to the good.

“Now we on these benches believe that Scotland's best future is independence in Europe.”

After jeering from Tory MPs, Mr Smith said: “I really would urge the members opposite to show a little more respect.

“It's not just us, it’s not just us, it's not just the SNP -  and I will not be shouted down - it's not just the SNP.

“In the last opinion poll, 72 per cent of the people of Scotland want back into the European Union.

“So if the Prime Minister is to maintain any credibility in the eyes of the people of Scotland, how long does he think he can deny Scotland's democracy?”

Mr Sunak responded: “I thank the honourable gentleman for his kind words. He talked about respect.

“I would gently urge him to respect the result of the referendum that we had on Scotland.

“Whilst we will disagree on that issue, I can tell him that I do remain committed to working constructively in partnership with the Scottish Government to deliver for the people of Scotland.”