Humza Yousaf Resigns as Scotland’s First Minister

Scotland’s first minister, Humza Yousaf, resigned on Monday in the latest setback for his Scottish National Party, which has been engulfed in a slow-burn crisis over a funding scandal that erupted after its popular leader Nicola Sturgeon stepped down last year.

Mr. Yousaf’s departure had looked increasingly inevitable after he gambled last week by ending a power sharing deal with the Scottish Green Party, angering its leaders and leaving him at the head of a minority government without obvious allies. His opponents then pressed for two motions of no confidence, which were expected to take place later this week.

Having explored his options over several fraught days, Mr. Yousaf, who was Scotland’s first Muslim leader, said that he would quit in a speech on Monday at Bute House in Edinburgh, the official residence of the Scottish first minister.

“After spending the weekend reflecting on what is best for my party, for the government and for the country I lead, I have concluded that repairing our relationship across the political divide can only be done with someone else at the helm,” Mr. Yousaf said in a short and at times emotional statement.

He added, “It is my intention to continue as first minister until my successor is elected.”

His resignation came after little more than a year as leader of the S.N.P., which has dominated the country’s politics for more than a decade and which campaigns for Scottish independence.

Mr. Yousaf took over after the surprise resignation of Ms. Sturgeon, a prominent figure in Britain’s politics, who announced her departure in February last year. At the time Mr. Yousaf was seen as the continuity candidate.

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