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Scottish Labour bosses block vote on single market 

Former party leader Kezia Dugdale wanted to change the party's Brexit policy.

Scottish Labour's ruling body has blocked an attempt to change the party's policy on Brexit ahead of its annual conference.

Several local constituency branches, as well as former leader Kezia Dugdale, had called on the party to allow a vote on whether or not to remain in the European single market after the country leaves the European Union.

All mention of the single market has been excluded from the text of a statement agreed by the Scottish executive committee (SEC) at a late night meeting in Dundee's Apex Hotel on the eve of the conference.

After a heated debate on the motion, the SEC formally backed it unanimously after it was clear that those proposing a change to party policy did not have a majority in the room.

A senior pro-EU source in Scottish Labour said: "It will be a democratic outrage if a vote on permanent single market membership is blocked in this way.

"We have a proud history of democratic debate in this party, but members now risk being denied their say on the biggest issue facing our country.

"This was never about personalities, it has always been about the workers we represent."

STV News obtained a copy of the statement before the SEC meeting begun.

https://stv.tv/news/politics/1409567-kezia-dugdale-leads-campaign-for-single-market/ | default

A Scottish Labour insider told STV News: "The executive agreeing to a unity motion is a step in the right direction.

"It will allow for a good debate on the issues-hopefully everyone sees sense and makes this about policy, not personalities."

A debate on Brexit will still go ahead, but the text of the motion which will be put to delegates will simply call on the conference to back a Brexit deal which will prioritise "working people's jobs", " a new permanent customs union" and reaffirms that "all devolved powers coming back from Brussels to be returned to Holyrood".

Dugdale, as well as Edinburgh South MP Ian Murray, had launched an internal pressure group named Scottish Labour for the Single Market in a bid to support the move.

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