Nicola Sturgeon has lambasted sick yobs who torched a war memorial in Edinburgh hours after a Remembrance Sunday service – and called for them to be tracked down and “brought to justice”. Scotland’s First Minister was reacting to a shocking incident in which wreaths of poppies placed at the Scottish capital’s Stone of Remembrance – including by Ms Sturgeon herself – were set on fire in the early hours of Monday morning.
She tweeted: “Utterly beyond comprehension that someone would vandalise a war memorial on Remembrance Day – sickening and disgraceful.
“I hope those responsible are identified and brought to justice.”
Edinburgh’s Lord Provost, who like Ms Sturgeon laid a wreath at the service, said: “We remain at a loss for the reasons someone could do something like this which has caused a lot of upset for everyone who respects the memories of all who serve their country.
“Yesterday, it was my honour to lay a wreath on behalf of the City of Edinburgh to remember those who served and sacrificed so much.
“The vandalism discovered this morning, not only to the recently laid wreaths but also Edinburgh’s Stone of Remembrance, is disgusting and disrespectful.”
Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar posted: “This is deeply insulting to the memory of thousands of Scots who gave their lives for our liberty.”
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“It is totally disgraceful that, less than 24 hours after typically poignant Remembrance Sunday services in the capital, moronic idiots would engage in burning tributes that had been laid for our soldiers.
“It is a show of total disrespect towards those who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our country.”
Chief Inspector Murray Tait, Local Area Commander said enquiries were ongoing in a bid to catch the culprits.
He added: “Officers are carrying out enquiries and gathering CCTV footage to find out more information on whoever is responsible.
“I utterly condemn this appalling act of vandalism, especially at this time of year when remembrance services have just been held across the country.
“If anyone has any information that will assist our investigation, please contact officers through 101 with reference number 601 of 14 November.”
A video showing the damage to the wreaths of poppies was shared on TikTok yesterday, with scorchmarks visible on the sides of the memorial.
A Scottish Fire and Rescue Service spokesperson said: “We were alerted at 5.14am on Monday November 14 to reports of a fire at the war memorial at the City Chambers on High Street, Edinburgh.
“Operations Control mobilised one fire appliance to the scene where a fire affecting a number of wreaths had been extinguished prior to arrival.
“Crews ensured the area was safe before leaving the scene.”