Sturgeon: UK Government increasingly reckless on Brexit
The First Minister said the Scottish Government is stepping up its no-deal planning.
The UK Government is becoming "increasingly reckless" in its approach to Brexit by refusing to rule out a no-deal outcome, the First Minister has said.
Nicola Sturgeon said her administration had "no alternative" but to step up its no-deal planning, with 44 days to go until the UK's March 29 EU exit date.
She was speaking to STV News on Wednesday after meetings in Glasgow of the Scottish Government's resilience committee and the cabinet.
It comes as Scotland's chief economist earlier warned that a no-deal Brexit would lead to a "major dislocation" to the Scottish economy.
On Thursday, MPs will debate Brexit options and vote on an amendable, non-binding UK Government motion.
The SNP is tabling an amendment calling for an immediate extension of Article 50, which would postpone Brexit.
The First Minister told STV: "The UK Government is behaving in an increasingly reckless and negligent fashion.
"They must rule out allowing the UK to leave the EU without a deal - not to do so, given the implications of no-deal and the amount of work that has already had to go into mitigating against that, is completely reckless.
"But we do appear to be dealing with a UK Government that is behaving in a reckless fashion, where the interests of the Tory party are more important than the interests of the country as a whole.
"Because of that, the Scottish Government has no alternative but to do what we've done today, which is step up our no-deal planning, but we will continue to do everything we can to see that taken off the table and ruled out."
Referring to the option of Scottish independence, Sturgeon said Scotland has a "longer-term alternative which becomes more attractive, I think, to more people with every day that passes".
But she added a decision on a second independence referendum would only be made when it becomes clear if the UK is leaving the EU on March 29 with or without a deal or staying in.
In a State of the Economy report published on Wednesday, Scotland's chief economic adviser Gary Gillespie suggested that disruptions to logistics, supply, trade, investment, migration and market confidence caused by a no-deal exit from the EU could result in a "significant structural change" to the Scottish economy.
Speaking at Prime Minister's Questions on Wednesday, Theresa May told the SNP's Ian Blackford that the best way to avoid a no-deal scenario was to back her Brexit deal.