Alex Salmond to launch independence referendum

Today Scotland's First Minister Alex Salmond, leader of the SNP will set out to the Scottish Parliament plans to hold a referendum on Scotland's independence in Autumn 2014.

The First Minister, who last night gave the prestigious Hugo Young lecture in London on Scotland's place in the world,  will begin the day by marking Burn's day with the launch of the Robert Burn's app.

With international attention on Scotland Alex Salmond will address the Scottish Parliament at 13.35. He will explain how a referendum on Scotland's future could be run, set out the timing of a referendum in autumn 2014 and the question proposed by the Scottish Government.

Following the statement to Parliament the First Minister will be joined by SNP Depute Leader and Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and Cabinet Secretary for Governance Bruce Crawford at an international press conference in the Great Hall of Edinburgh Castle.

The press conference, attended by over 70 journalists and TV crews from other parts of the globe will put Scotland on the world stage and showcase one of our leading attractions.

At the same time Fiona Hyslop, Cabinet Secretary for External Affairs will meet with representatives of governments from around the world to discuss Scotland's future.

Nicola Sturgeon will end the day by participating in the BBC Burns Night debate on Scotland's referendum.  

You can keep up with developments throughout the day on twitter with @alexsalmond, @nicolasturgeon and @thesnp.  Befriend us at or stay with for updates.