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Spain's foreign minister, Josep Borrell, has said today that he believes the United Kingdom will break apart before Spain does. "I am very much [more] worried about the unity of the United Kingdom than the unity of the Kingdom of Spain. I think the United Kingdom will split apart before the Kingdom of Spain", he said in an interview with Politico Europe.

The minister made the comment in response to a question about potential Scottish independence as a result of Brexit.

Borrell had earlier said that if Scotland were to become independent after Brexit, in accordance with British law, Spain would have no problem with that. Specifically, he says they wouldn't block Scotland from joining the EU: "If Westmister agrees, we wouldn't be more Catholic than the pope". He said that such a case would not be comparable with the independence of Kosovo, which Spain doesn't recognise.

He also reiterated Spanish calls for greater involvement in discussions over Gibraltar's future post-Brexit. This follows prime minister Pedro Sánchez saying, earlier this week, that unless there are changes over Gibraltar, Spain will vote no to the draft Withdrawal Agreement.

Borrell expressed opposition to the growing calls within the UK for a second referendum on Brexit, suggesting it would not "look very democratic". Sánchez had earlier become the first major European leader to show support for such a vote. As for the original referendum, he said that “[then prime minister] Cameron played poker with his country at least twice: on Scotland and on Europe”, and that he won't go down "as the best prime minister in history". He also brought up Catalonia when talking about the idea of a referendum for Catalonia: "I am not Cameron and we are not Britain; it is not going to happen".

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