Scotland would be welcomed with open arms into the European Union, the First Minister has insisted as the debate about what the country's future would be like if it voted for independence rages on.
Alex Salmond has come under pressure over his position on whether Scotland would enjoy a smooth transition as a new member state or be forced to join the queue with other aspiring EU members.
The Scottish Government admitted last week that it did not seek specific advice on a future place in the EU, despite initially going to court to keep that information from the public.
As the row continued at Holyrood, opposition leaders accused their SNP rival of making assertions over what would happen after independence without having the evidence to back them up.
Labour leader Johann Lamont told Mr Salmond: "The charge at his door is that he asserts things for which he has no evidence. And it is about time that the First Minister got serious about the future of Scotland.