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19.09.14

Scotland votes No in independence referendum

Scotland has elected to stay in the United Kingdom, as 55% of Scots voted ‘No’ in yesterday’s independence referendum.

David Cameron has declared a “clear result” with ‘No’ receiving 2,001,926 votes, compared to 1,617,989 for ‘Yes’. The prime minister says that result has settled the debate for a generation.

Scotland's first minister, Alex Salmond, has said he accepted his defeat: "It is important to say that our referendum was an agreed and consented process and Scotland has by a majority decided not at this stage to become an independent country.

"I accept that verdict of the people and I call on all of Scotland to follow suit in accepting the democratic verdict of the people of Scotland."

Alistair Darling, leader of the Better Together Campaign, said the people of Scotland had made history: "Two million people have voted to say 'we're better together as part of the UK'," he said.

Attention will now turn to the devolution of further powers to Scotland. Cameron has asked Lord Smith of Kelvin to oversee the process of devolving powers over tax, spending and welfare with draft legislation by the end of January. At the same time leader of the Commons, William Hague, it to look into making changes to Westminster so that only English MPs can vote in English matters. 

Cameron said: "We have heard the voice of Scotland and now the millions of voices of England must be heard."

(Image: c. Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire)

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