FIRST Minister Nicola Sturgeon confirmed on the BBC's Andrew Marr show today that she is preparing to seek a Section 30 order from Westminster in a "matter of weeks".

The SNP leader will put pressure on Boris Johnson to grant the order needed to hold a second independence referendum before the end of this year.

Speaking on the Marr show, the First Minister stated: "We will do it the appropriate moment when the legislation is passing - it is likely to be over the next matter of weeks. It is coming soon."

She continued: "We don't yet know who is likely to be in Downing Street, the situation is very fluid. That's why I've taken the decision to do it now, the preparations that are within our control here right now and we're getting on with it."

Legislation to hold referendums in Scotland is currently passing through Holyrood, however an independence referendum would require a Section 30 order from Westminster.

The news follows a new poll that reveals support for independence in Scotland is at 50%, with a majority believeing that Scotland's economy will do better as an independent nation in the EU than it would in post-Brexit UK.

This marks a five point increase since the previous Panelbase poll asking the same question.

Writing in the Sunday National this morning, Sturgeon said: "A key part of political leadership is knowing when not to make a miscalculation that those in opposing parties would like you to make.

"That is why I will not fall into the trap that our unionist opponents want me to, by deviating from our current path of ensuring the next independence referendum is legal and constitutional.

"We don't need to be talking about Plan B when we have a perfectly good Plan A."

She added: "If we were to try to hold a referendum that wasn't recognised as legal and legitimate - or to claim a mandate for independence without having demonstrated majority support for it - it would not carry the legal, political and diplomatic weight that is needed.

"It simply wouldn't be accepted by the international community, including our EU friends and partners."

The SNP conference gets underway in Aberdeen today.