Alex Salmond denies defeat in independence debate

Scotland's First Minister Alex Salmond has refused to concede he lost last night's independence debate despite most most of this morning's newspaper headlines handing victory to the leader of the No campaign Alistair Darling.

The debate over Scottish independence has taken place with the first live television clash between the First Minister Alex Salmond and the man leading the campaign to keep the UK together Alistair Darling being shown on STV.

A poll conducted by ICM for the Guardian has found that Alistair Darling won the first Scottish independence debate by 56% to Alex Salmond's 44%.

There are now just over six weeks to go until voters in Scotland decide whether to remain in the UK or become an independent nation in the September 18 referendum.

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Alex Salmond denies defeat in independence debate

Scotland's First Minister Alex Salmond has refused to concede he lost last night's independence debate despite most most of this morning's newspaper headlines handing victory to the leader of the No campaign Alistair Darling.

I was much more interested in the ICM poll which was conducted through the debate last night. Yes support started at 45% and at end of the debate polled at 47%. Which is one of the highest poll ratings we have ever had and is within touching distance of a majority. What was particularly significant was a 9% rise in support among women, which most polls have indicated has been one of the weaknesses of the Yes campaign.

– Scotland's First Minister Alex Salmond

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