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  1. Scotland's first minister backs police boss
  2. Man found with bomb-making equipment
  3. Council orders lollipop man to stop 'high-fiving' children
  4. Royal Bank of Scotland announces loss of £3.5bn
  5. Celtic gear up for Europa League clash in Milan

Live Reporting

By Thomas McGuigan and Marianne Taylor

All times stated are UK

Get involved

Bye for now

Marianne Taylor

BBC Scotland news

Right, that's all from Scotland Live for today.

Join us tomorrow at 07:00 for all the latest news, sport, weather and travel from around the country.

In the meantime, you can keep up with developments on the

BBC News Scotland website.

For an in-depth look at the news, tune in to

Scotland 2015 on BBC Two Scotland and the
BBC iPlayer at 22:30.

Ancient reads

Huw Williams

BBC Scotland reporter

Books printed pre 1501 - digitised by @GlasgowUni on show @hunterian and on @BBCScot2015 tonight

Air ambulance benefits from bank fines

Scotland's Charity Air Ambulance has welcomed

£250,000 of funding it is to receive, raised from bank fines.

The service, based at Perth airport, has rescued almost 500 people since it was launched in May 2013.

Air ambulance
Perthshire Picture Agency

Air ambulance services across the UK have each been awarded a share of £5m paid to the government in Libor fines levied on banks who tried to manipulate financial markets.

SCAA chairman John Bullough said the money would pay for new equipment.

'Litter hero' launches new campaign

An eight-year-old "litter hero" from Elgin is urging others to get involved in keeping their community tidy.

Bronagh Dallas was inspired to collect litter from her local streets every day after hearing how dangerous rubbish can be to wildlife.

She launched Keep Scotland Beautiful's #2MinuteCleanUp campaign alongside Scottish Environment Secretary Richard Lochhead at the Scottish Parliament.

Bronagh Dallas
Malcolm McCurrach

Bronagh said: "Every day on my walk to school I put on my rubber gloves and grab a big bag. Most days my bag is full by the time I get there. I have been disgusted by the amount of glass bottles, cans, plastic bags, cardboard and even used nappies.

"Picking up litter has become second nature to me now and I would love it if other people could make a small difference too."

Coming up...

BBC Reporting Scotland

TTIP: critics not convinced NHS will be excluded following leaked draft of terms. More on #Repscot, BBC One, 18:30

Kick by kick coverage

Thomas McGuigan

BBC Scotland News

@celticfc v #Inter in #EuropaLeague BBC live text coverage



Teacher numbers agreed

Jamie McIvor

BBC Scotland education correspondent

All 32 councils in Scotland have now

agreed not to cut teacher numbers.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon made the announcement during First Minister's Questions at Holyrood.

One council, understood to be Shetland, had not reached a deal with the government before the official deadline last week. Many non-SNP councils felt they had no real choice but to accept.

The issue led to the most serious dispute between some councils and central government since devolution.

Victim's family seeks "closure"

The daughter of a Scots aid worker apparently killed by "Jihadi John" said the families of his victims will "feel closure and relief once there's a bullet between his eyes".

David Haines, below, was beheaded last September after being taken hostage in Syria in March 2013 while working for an international relief agency.

David haines

"Jihadi John", the masked Islamic State militant shown to apparently behead western hostages in a series of videos,

has been named today as Mohammed Emwazi, a Kuwaiti-born British man in his mid-20s from west London.

Reacting to news that he has been identified, Bethany Haines said: "It's a good step but I think all the families will feel closure and relief once there's a bullet between his eyes."

Broadway break

A Scottish play performed in English and Gaelic is to

go on tour to New York.

In My Father's Words, a Dundee Rep production, is to take part in the Brits Off Broadway festival in the American city in June.

Dundee Rep
Dundee Rep

The theatre has been awarded £58,000 by Creative Scotland to take the play to the States.

The play has previously had runs in Dundee and Glasgow and toured the Highlands and Islands.

Ciftci banned

Dundee United striker

Nadir Ciftci is facing a two-match suspension after being accused of violent conduct against Inverness Caledonian Thistle.

Dundee United

That would rule the 23-year-old Turk out of the Scottish Cup quarter-final and the 21 March Scottish Premiership game, both against Celtic.

A9 still closed

A serious crash between two cars has closed the A9 in both directions near Dunkeld.

The road was closed between Bankfoot and Birnam following what Police Scotland called a "serious road traffic collision" at 16:05.

Officers have advised drivers to use alternative routes where possible.

Traffic Scotland warned that the road would remain closed "for some time".

Tunnel open

BBC Scotland Travel


Breakdown on #A739 Clyde Tunnel S/B cleared but traffic still very heavy & routine congestion not helping.

Team news

BBC Sport


Celtic team v Inter Milan: Gordon, Matthews, Denayer, van Dijk, Izaguirre, Brown, Bitton, Mackay-Steven, Johansen, Armstrong, Guidetti.

Clyde Tunnel closure

BBC Scotland Travel


Glasgow's Clyde Tunnel closed southbound to recover a breakdown - queues on approach back to Jordanhill. TT

Blazing row over NHS

Brian Taylor

Political editor, Scotland

Why did today's FMQs remind me of Mel Brooks' film Blazing Saddles?

Blazing Saddles
Getty Images

Read my blog to find out.

Calm before the storm

Alasdair Lamont

BBC Scotland

It's not a bad old stadium the San Siro...

San Siro

Swinney: Austerity 'flawed'

Westminster's austerity agenda is "fundamentally flawed" according to John Swinney.

The deputy first minister said it was important to cut the UK's budget deficit but added that the human cost of austerity was being ignored by the coalition government.

John Swinney

In a speech to the Scottish Council of Voluntary Organisations in Glasgow, Mr Swinney said: "The UK economic strategy - with its focus on the deficit to the detriment of all else - has been fundamentally flawed.

"The policy agenda in the Scottish Parliament is largely a progressive one - we have maintained free higher education, mitigated the worst of Westminster's austerity agenda, while managing to extend the provision of childcare and school meals."

A9 closure

BBC Scotland Travel


UPDATE on #A9 - both ways CLOSED btw #Dunkeld & #Bankfoot due to 2 vehicle RTC. Will remain closed for some time.

Union ballots oil workers


consultative ballot on possible strike action by North Sea contract workers is to be held by GMB Scotland, it has been announced.

The union claims the terms and conditions of its members in the offshore industry are under threat.

Oil platform

Officers sought permission from the union's regional committee to ballot members covered by the Offshore Contractors Agreement.

The consultative ballot will now take place over the coming weeks.

Can't smile without you...

Catriona Renton

BBC Scotland

More on Mr Smiley the ex-highfiving lollipop man on #reportingscotland at 18:30.

Lollipop man

Road disruption

BBC Scotland Travel


High Blantyre: A725 blocked westbound by RTA, traffic queuing. Affecting traffic from the M74 at the Raith heading to East Kilbride. TT

Last 16 for Celts?

BBC Sport


Inter Milan v Celtic LIVE on #BBCSportsound from 5:30pm on

BBC Radio Scotland 810MW/digital/online (kick-off at 6pm). #EuropaLeague

Ship towed to bay

A cargo ship that ran aground last week has been moved to a more sheltered position following forecasts of gale force winds.

The Lysblink Seaways, which was carrying paper from Belfast to Norway, got into difficulty near Ardnamurchan Point. It later refloated.

Lysblink Seaways

More than 150 tonnes of fuel oil has been removed from the ship.

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency said a decision about where it will be taken for repairs has still to be made.

Let it snow, let it snow...

Steven McKenzie

BBC Scotland Highlands and Islands reporter

Storms have brought more snow to Scotland's mountain snowsports resorts, Ski-Scotland says.

However, the high winds and blizzards have also prevented some from opening every day to the public.

Ski Scotland
Steven McKenna

Ski-Scotland, which promotes skiing and snowboarding, said snowsports have already generated £14m for the economy.

Skiing and snowboarding generated more than £29m for the Scottish economy in the winter of 2012-13 - one of the best seasons in years.

On the airwaves now...

BBC Radio Scotland

For all the latest developments in Scotland, the UK and around the world, tune in to Newsdrive on BBC Radio Scotland, presented by Bill Whiteford.

You can listen live now by clicking on the "live coverage" tab at the top of full Scotland Live page or clicking


Rare 'rant' by rescuers

A Scottish mountain rescue team has made a rare intervention by

criticising the actions of two climbers.

In a post on its Facebook page Lochaber the Mountain Rescue Team also claimed its job was being made more difficult by the creation of a single Scottish police force and the privatisation of the search and rescue helicopter service.

Ben Nevis
SAIS Lochaber

The post - which the team itself called a "rant" - followed the rescue of two men on Ben Nevis on Wednesday.

Cannabis recovered in Edinburgh raids

Two men have been arrested after cannabis plants and cash

were seized in police raids in Edinburgh.

Officers searched addresses in the capital on Wednesday.

Cash totalling £16,000 was found during a search of a home in Bavelaw Road along with evidence of drug packaging.

Further searches at a commercial property in Home Street found 28 mature cannabis plants and 3kg of "herbal matter".

The recovered drugs have a potential street value of £45,000, police said.

Bankers' bonuses - your views


Bert Hunter: It absolutely amazes me that RBS has to pay £421m in bonus to people with "fairly technical jobs" and they end up with losses of £3.5bn. Surely they should be hiring people that will make money not lose it, or is that not the way bankers like to do things???

Road re-opened


BBC Scotland Travel


A821: Aberfoyle to Brig Of Turk Road is now re-open at Dukes Pass - it was closed for a few days because of the snow.

Full stream ahead?

Clearer information is needed on the coverage and range of speeds a Scottish superfast broadband network will deliver,

Audit Scotland says.

The Scottish government wants the network to offer speeds of 40-80 megabits per second to 85-90% of premises by March 2016 and 95% in 2017.


But Audit Scotland said the contracts to create the network do not guarantee the speeds for all the premises.

The government said Scotland could be a world-leading digital nation by 2020.

Call to tackle legal highs

Reevel Alderson

BBC Scotland's social affairs correspondent

New legislation may be needed to tackle the problem of so-called legal highs,

a report says.

'Legal highs' are not controlled so users do not know what they are taking

Experts studying new psychoactive substances (NPS) said the Scottish government should work with the Home Office to create new laws.

Drug legislation is currently reserved to Westminster.

However, police said tackling the problem could be like "chasing a bouncing ball," as NPS producers change their recipes slightly to get round new laws.

An independent expert review group which was established in August 2014 has published its report, recommending a range of measures to tackle the problem.

Horne to start at fly-half for Scotland

Peter Horne has been named at fly-half in place of the banned Finn Russell

in one of four changes for Scotland to face Italy in the Six Nations.

Fit-again Tommy Seymour replaces Tim Visser on the wing in the other change among the backs.

Peter Horne has been named at fly-half

Euan Murray comes in for Geoff Cross in the front row, while Tim Swinson replaces the injured lock Richie Gray.

Edinburgh forwards Ben Toolis and Hamish Watson could win their first caps from the bench.

Scotland coach Vern Cotter had been forced into the change at fly-half after Russell's appeal against a two-week suspension was rejected on Wednesday.

Sturgeon backs police chief

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon

says she has "full confidence" in Police Scotland boss Stephen House.

The chief constable of the country's single police force has faced controversy over the service's stop-search policy.

Police Scotland boss Stephen House

At First Minister's Questions, Ms Sturgeon was asked if she would give her backing to Sir Stephen.

She told Holyrood: "Yes I do, I still have full confidence in Chief Constable Sir Stephen House."

The policy of stop-and-search is under review and Ms Sturgeon says a report will be with Justice Secretary Michael Matheson by the end of March.

'Near miss' on A9

Steven McKenzie

BBC Scotland Highlands and Islands reporter

A man has been reported to the procurator fiscal after a video was posted on the internet allegedly showing a near miss on the A9.

Police Scotland investigated footage on YouTube showing a lorry pulling out of the Tomich Junction near Invergordon and car swerving to avoid it.

A 43-year-old man has been reported to the fiscal for road traffic offences.

The incident was reported to have happened on Monday.

FM extremism call

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has urged Scots to stand together to combat the threat of extremism.

Speaking at today's First Minister's Questions session at Holyrood, Ms Sturgeon said her thoughts were with the families of the three girls from London who are thought to have travelled to Syria to join Islamic State fighters.

Nicola Sturgeon

At least one of the girls is believed to have been in contact via Twitter with Aqsa Mahmood, who left her Glasgow home in November 2013 after becoming radicalised.

Ms Sturgeon said: "I think at this time the most important message is that in our wonderful diverse Scotland, the most important thing we can all do is pull together and stand together."

'Unexplained' baby death

Giancarlo Rinaldi

South Scotland reporter, BBC Scotland news website

Police are investigating the "unexplained" death of a five-week-old baby boy in Dumfries.

Beck James Standing from the town's Stakeford Street died on Tuesday.

Police said enquiries were continuing into the death, adding that the procurator fiscal had been informed.

A post mortem examination has been arranged.

Leaders argue over NHS 'crisis'

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon should stop using previous Labour policy to excuse current problems in the NHS, according to the party's deputy leader in Scotland.

During heated exchanges at First Minister's Questions, Kezia Dugdale quoted two leading doctors - the Scottish vice president of the Royal College of Emergency Medicine and the president of the British Orthopedic Association - who both said there was a "crisis" in NHS services in Scotland.

Kezia Dugdale

Ms Sturgeon countered that waiting times were down and consultant numbers up.

"I'm quite staggered to listen to a representative of the Labour Party talking about declining acute bed numbers when acute bed numbers declined in every single year of the last Labour administration," she added.

Mundell presses for new junction

Willie Johnston

BBC Scotland

Campaigners calling for a new northbound junction on the M6 motorway south of Gretna have been pressing their case at a meeting with a UK government's transport minister.

Claire Perry accepted an invitation from Dumfriesshire MP David Mundell to view the traffic situation at Junction 45 for herself.

'Save the high fives'

Parents in Dumbarton are "right behind" lollipop man Nkosana Mdikane, according to David Dufton.

Mr Mdikane, who is known as "Scotland's happiest lollipop man" has been

banned by council officials from high-fiving children as they cross the road outside the town's St Peter's Primary School.


Mr Dufton set up the "Save the high fives" Facebook group and said almost 3,000 people had shown their support so far.

A petition on the issue has attracted 1,000 signatures.

MSP second job rules to be reviewed

Rules on MSPs taking on paid directorships or consultancy work are to be reviewed in the wake of the latest Westminster "cash for access" row.

Scottish Labour leader Jim Murphy wrote to Presiding Officer Tricia Marwick with concerns following

allegations against former foreign secretaries Sir Malcolm Rifkind and Jack Straw.

Jack Straw and Malcolm Rifkind

Holyrood's standards and public appointments committee will review the rules after Ms Marwick saw merit in examining the issue "with a critical eye".

She confirmed in a letter to Mr Murphy that some MSPs do hold company directorships and second paid roles, but said most of them "receive small amounts of income for a limited amount of their time".