Scottish flag raised over Downing Street

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The Scottish flag was hoisted over Downing Street on Tuesday as Prime Minister David Cameron launched a fresh push to stop Scots voting for independence next week, although it fell down on the first attempt.

The blue and white saltire made it halfway up the flagpole above Cameron’s office before it slipped down, but it is now in place and will remain there until the referendum on September 18.

Opposition Labour leader Ed Miliband has called for public buildings across the country to raise the saltire over the coming days to show their support for the 300-year-old United Kingdom.

Cameron and Miliband announced they would skip their weekly parliamentary debate on Wednesday to campaign in Scotland after a weekend poll put the separatist vote ahead for the first time.

“Over the next few days we want cities, towns and villages across the UK to send the message to Scotland — stay with us,” said Miliband, after watching the flag raised over the council building in Liverpool in northwestern England.

“We want to see the saltire flying above buildings all across our country.”