Scotland politics

Scottish independence: Henry McLeish in 'appeal to hearts' call

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Media captionFormer First Minister Henry McLeish answered questions in a BBC webcast

Former Labour First Minister Henry McLeish has urged the pro-Union Better Together campaign to adopt a more emotive approach.

He told the BBC's Isabel Fraser in a BBC webcast that Better Together must try and appeal to the hearts of Scots.

He said a person could be a "practical unionist" but also a passionate Scot.

He added: "The danger is that we are driving those two concepts apart when most Scots are proud of their nation and want the best for it."

"There seems to be a reluctance among some of our Westminster MPs to be distinctively Scottish.

"I'm a No voter and I'm proud of my country - I don't think these issues are in competition."

Mr McLeish said a "more mature" debate was needed, agreeing that it was important for politicians to be able to ask difficult questions without being accused of being negative.

He also reaffirmed his support for the Union, adding: "I would find it nearly impossible to vote yes [to independence]."

Mr McLeish was speaking in the latest in a series of BBC Scotland webcasts ahead of the independence referendum, which will be held on 18 September.

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