Scots Spurn Independence

In a historic referendum, Scotland spurned independence in a huge for millions of Britons including Prime Minister David Cameron.

The referendum threatened to rip the United Kingdom apart and cause financial turmoil in Britain. A vote for the 307-year union was greeted by unionist who cheered, kissed, and drank wine at a party in Glasgow. Nationalist leader Alex Salmond conceded defeat in front of an image of a giant white on blue Scottish flag in Edinburgh.

Scots Spurn Independence

“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,” Salmond said. Salmond added British politicians in London must respect their last minute promise of more powers for Scotland. “Scotland will expect these to be honored in rapid course,” he said before walking off the stage.

“We have chosen unity over division, and positive change rather than needless separation,” Alistair Darling, head of the “Better Together” campaign and a former British finance minister.

Scots were asked to answer “Yes” or “No” to the question: “Should Scotland be an independent country?” Voters lined up at polling stations to vote with 4.28 million voters, or 97 percent of the electorate, registered to vote.

The prospect of breaking up the world’s sixth-largest economy had stoked concern in the United States and Europe. Washington made clear it wanted the United Kingdom, its main ally in Europe, to remain together.

“The risk of huge disruption from Scottish independence is gone. Not for good, given the still high support for a No in the polls, but for a considerable time,” said Robert Wood, economist at Berenberg Bank. “For now markets can return to normal.”

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