Scottish voters preserved the country’s 307-year-old union with England, Wales and Northern Ireland on Thursday as the party opposed to secession took numerous areas that could have gone to the yes campaign.

Scottish National Party leader Alex Salmond, who led the push for independence, resigned Friday as the country’s first minister after the results came in. An estimated 55 percent of voters were expected to cast “no” ballots when all the votes were counted.

The Guardian reported:

Salmond sounded a defiant note in a speech shortly after 6am, saying he accepted Scotland had not “at this stage” decided to vote for independence. He also issued a warning to the unionist parties that they must make good on their promises to give more power to the Scottish parliament.

“Scotland will expect these to be honoured in rapid course,” the first minister said, adding that he would “work constructively in the interests of Scotland and the rest of the UK”.

Salmond began his address by thanking the people of Scotland for casting 1.6m votes for independence and praised the inspiring nature of the campaign. “We have touched sections of the community who have never before been touched by politics,” he said.

Read more here.

— Posted by Alexander Reed Kelly

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