Nicola Sturgeon. Photo: Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images

Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon warned on the BBC's Andrew Marr Show Sunday that the results of the U.K. election — which saw her Scottish Nationalist Party win 48 out of 59 Scottish seats in Parliament — mean Prime Minister Boris Johnson cannot ignore her requests for another independence referendum.

The big picture: Johnson and his Conservative Party are opposed to Scottish independence, a movement that Sturgeon has continued to champion even after it was defeated by 10% in a 2014 referendum.

  • Brexit, which the majority of Scottish voters oppose, has driven a wedge between Scotland and the rest of the United Kingdom, invigorating calls for another independence referendum as the U.K. prepares to leave the European Union on Jan. 31.

Because the Conservatives won a huge majority in Friday's election, however, Johnson's government is under no obligation to take up Sturgeon's request, as the BBC's Andrew Marr pointed out.

  • Sturgeon countered that it would be "fundamentally not democratic" for Johnson to ignore her, noting that the Conservatives lost seven of their 13 Scottish seats while standing on a platform opposed to independence.
  • "It's a fundamental point of democracy — you can't hold Scotland in the union against its will," Sturgeon argued. "You can't lock us in a cupboard and turn the key and hope everything goes away. ... [I]f Boris Johnson is confident in the case for the union then he should be confident enough to make that case and allow people to decide."

Go deeper: Boris Johnson's big win means Brexit is coming

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Deadly Hurricane Zeta churns inland after lashing Louisiana

A satellite image of Hurricane Zeta. Photo: National Hurricane Center/NOAA

Hurricane Zeta has killed at least one person after a downed power line electrocuted a 55-year-old in Louisiana as the storm moved into Alabama overnight.

What's happening: After "battering southeastern Louisiana and southern Mississippi," it began lashing Alabama late Wednesday, per the National Hurricane Center.

49 mins ago - World

Taiwan reaches a record 200 days with no local coronavirus cases

Catholics go through containment protocols including body-temperature measurement and hands-sanitisation before entering the Saint Christopher Parish Church, Taipei City, Taiwan, in July. Photo: Ceng Shou Yi/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Taiwan on Thursday marked no locally transmitted coronavirus cases for 200 days, as the island of 23 million people's total number of infections reported stands at 550 and the COVID-19 death toll at seven.

Why it matters: Nowhere else in the world has reached such a milestone. While COVID-19 cases surge across the U.S. and Europe, Taiwan's last locally transmitted case was on April 12. Experts credit tightly regulated travel, early border closure, "rigorous contact tracing, technology-enforced quarantine and universal mask wearing," along with the island state's previous experience with the SARS virus, per Bloomberg.

Go deeper: As Taiwan's profile rises, so does risk of conflict with China

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

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