REFILE-Scottish nationalist leader faces opposition criticism over sterling after TV debate

Thu Aug 7, 2014 10:24am EDT

(Refiles to add dropped first name in second paragraph)

EDINBURGH Aug 7 (Reuters) - Scotland's nationalist leader was grilled on Thursday by opponents over his plans to keep sterling if Scots vote for independence, just two days after a poll showed he failed to win a television debate which was dominated by the currency issue.

Alex Salmond says that if Scots vote for independence on Sept. 18, Scotland will keep the pound even though British ministers have repeatedly ruled out a currency union.

After a television debate in which Salmond was peppered with questions about his "Plan B" for the currency given London's opposition to any currency union, Salmond was again quizzed on Thursday about his plans.

At First Minister's Questions in the Scottish parliament, Scottish Labour Party leader Johann Lamont repeatedly asked Salmond: "What is your Plan B?"

"It's Scotland's pound and we're keeping it," Salmond said. "We cannot be stopped from keeping the pound because it is an internationally traded currency." (Reporting by Alistair Smout; editing by Guy Faulconbridge)

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