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By Elisabeth O'Leary EDINBURGH (Reuters) - Scotland's devolved government will start a drive to protect its European Union membership and will prepare for a possible fresh independence vote after Britain voted to exit the bloc, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said on Saturday. "We are determined to act decisively in a way that builds unity across Scotland," Sturgeon told reporters, adding that might include a vote on Scottish secession from the United Kingdom. Scots rejected independence in a 2014 referendum by 55-45 percent and at the time the vote was considered a decisive verdict for a generation.
British finance minister George Osborne's chances of succeeding Prime Minister David Cameron have been "much weakened" by the country's decision to quit the European Union, senior Conservative Party member Alan Duncan said on Saturday. "Remain" campaigner Osborne, Cameron's political ally and Chancellor since 2010, had been seen as the frontrunner to become the party's next leader. Chief Brexit campaigner Boris Johnson is now favourite to become prime minister in a leadership contest which will be concluded by October.