By Sarah Barchus
United Kingdom leadership signed an agreement Monday that will place a referendum for Scotland independence on the ballot in 2014, the Cable News Network reported.
British Prime Minister David Cameron and Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond met in Scotland to sign the Edinburg Agreement, which will allow voters as young as 16 to vote yes or no to Scottish independence from Britain, The New York Times reported.
The referendum could end The Act of Union that joined Scotland and Britain in 1707, after Robert the Bruce led Scotland to independence in the early 1300s, CNN reported.
First Minister Salmond belongs to the Scottish National Party, which has been pushing for independence since its founding, almost 80 years ago, The New York Times reported. Salmond said that Monday was "a historic day for Scotland and a major step forward in Scotland's home rule journey."
First Minister Salmond pushed for the referendum to be in 2014 for its patriotic and historic significance. The referendum will mark the 700th anniversary of when the vastly outnumbered Scottish army annihilated the army of King Edward II in the Battle of Bannockburn, The New York Times reported.
Prime Minister Cameron opposes the division of the United Kingdom and said in February that he will fight with everything he has to keep it together, CNN reported. He said a joined United Kingdom "is stronger, safer, richer and fairer."
The referendum raises economic issues and questions to what extent an independent Scotland could influence international affairs, the New York Times reported.
John Curtice, a professor at the University of Strathclyde in Scotland, said recent polling showed about 37 percent of potential voters are in favor of independence, The New York Times reported.