European election: Scottish Greens aim for first MEP

Patrick Harvie said a vote for Scottish Green party would "send a message about the kind of country it wants to be"

The Scottish Greens have pledged to protect public services and end conflict, as the party seeks to win its first seat in the European Parliament.

Co-leader Patrick Harvie said Green aims for peace and economic justice were at the opposite end of the scale from other smaller parties like UKIP.

The Greens also hope a fall in the Lib Dem vote will help them take Scotland's sixth MEP seat on 22 May.

The party currently has two seats in the Scottish Parliament.

Speaking in Edinburgh, Mr Harvie said tackling the "broken economic system" was a fundamental Green policy, adding: "We are one of the richest countries on earth, yet so many people feel discarded."

He added that around one in ten votes would see the election of a Scottish Green MEP, driven by the party's hard work in the Scottish Parliament and "positive contributions" to the Scottish independence debate.

Mr Harvie said UKIP was "well off the radar in Scotland", but added: "There's a real risk that blanket coverage of Farage and co in England will give it a boost here that it does not merit.

"While I'm confident that people in Scotland will continue to reject UKIP at the polls, the most potent way to do that is to back the Scottish Greens as the party which stands in greatest contrast to UKIP."

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