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David Cameron expands on how he would seek positive engagement with the SNP-run Scottish executive

CAMERON WITH UNION FLAG In advance of next week's Scottish Tory conference in Perth, Scotland on Sunday reports how, as Prime MInister, David Cameron would want regular engagement with the SNP administration at Holyrood.

This would be be in stark contrast to the attitude of Gordon Brown, whose personal loathing of First MInister Alex Salmond has resulted in virtually no contact between the two men or their ministers.

The contact envisaged by Mr Cameron would be as extensive as talks before Budgets and Queen's Speeches as well as a monthly meeting between Prime Minister and First Minister.

This builds on a commitment earlier in the year on the Conservative leader's part to "work constructively with any administration at Holyrood".

Mr Cameron says:

"I think we can make devolution work better. We've seen in the last year very fractious relations between the Prime Minister and the First Minister, between Westminster and Holyrood. It doesn't have to be like that. We need mutual respect and a politics which is about discussion and delivery rather than about confrontation and grievance.

"There are some institutional stresses and pressures that devolution brings and we have to acknowledge that and confront that, but also there's the egos of politicians. We need politicians to recognise that they have to work together and no one is going to thank them for grievance and confrontation rather than discussion and debate."

"To me the most important thing is keeping the United Kingdom together and I don't like the Scottish Nationalist plans to break it up. But I will be fully engaged with that bit of Alex Salmond's brain that wants to do the best thing for Scotland rather than break up the United Kingdom."

Jonathan Isaby


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