Scots launch campaign for independence


Alex Salmond, Scotland’s First Minister and leader of the Scottish National Party, attends the Yes campaign launch with campaign supporters at Cineworld on May 25, 2012 in Edinburgh, Scotland. The Yes campaign for Scottish independence is urging Scots to sign a declaration showing their support by the time of the referendum, which is expected to be held in the autumn of 2014.


Jeff J Mitchell

With songs, speeches and some Hollywood glamor, Scots launched a campaign for Scotland's independence from Britain on Friday, according to Reuters.

Alex Salmond, the leader of the Scottish National Party, told supporters in Edinburgh, "This is the beginning of something really special - the beginning of the campaign to restore nationhood to Scotland," according to Reuters. He said, "We want a Scotland that is fairer and more prosperous."

Salmond predicted that at least a million Scots would sign up to join the mass movement for independence, which already has the backing of actors Sean Connery, Brian Cox and Alan Cumming, according to the Guardian.

The "Yes Scotland" movement will probably need two and a half years before the expected referendum in 2014 to persuade Scottish residents to support independence.

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Former UK chancellor Alistair Darling released poll numbers before the campaign's launch that indicated that support for leaving the UK was only at 33 percent among Scots and 57 percent among Scottish National Party backers, according to the Guardian.

The "Yes Scotland" movement's declaration reads: "I believe that it is fundamentally better for us all, if decisions about Scotland's future are taken by the people who care most about Scotland, that is, by the people of Scotland," according to CNN.

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UK Prime Minister David Cameron made the case for Scotland to remain in the United Kingdom in February, saying, "Inside the United Kingdom, Scotland – just as much as England, Wales and Northern Ireland – is stronger, safer, richer and fairer," reported CNN.

Darling, a Scottish Labor MP, will likely be launching a pro-union campaign later in the year, said the BBC. "I believe that people will come to see that we are better and stronger with the UK," Darling said. "I think that there are an awful lot of risks in simply walking away from the UK."

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