Prime Minister Theresa May has announced a snap general election to be held on June 8.
The announcement was made outside Downing Street in a hastily arranged press statement this morning and comes just weeks after the UK triggered the process of leaving the European Union.
It will come just over a month after local council elections are held across Scotland on May 4.
The Prime Minister had previously ruled out an early election, with the next poll due in 2020, but she will seek permission from Parliament for an election on Wednesday, where she will require the backing of two-thirds of MPs.
The announcement has already been responded to Scottish political leaders. This was First Minister's Nicola Sturgeon's response:
The Tories see a chance to move the UK to the right, force through a hard Brexit and impose deeper cuts. Let's stand up for Scotland. #GE17— Nicola Sturgeon (@NicolaSturgeon) April 18, 2017