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Rupert Murdoch Arrives In Scotland And Considers Backing Independence

The owner of The Sun has been spotted in Aberdeen with just days to go until the referendum vote. But will his paper endorse either side?

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Rupert Murdoch has arrived in Scotland, sparking further speculation as to whether his Scottish Sun newspapers will publicly support independence.

Rupert Murdoch in #Aberdeen to declare for Yes? #IndyRef #RadicalYes

Radical Indy Abdn@RIC_ABDN

Rupert Murdoch in #Aberdeen to declare for Yes? #IndyRef #RadicalYes

1:41 PM - 13 Sep 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

The 83-year-old businessman was photographed in central Aberdeen on Saturday after apparently having lunch in a local pub.

Murdoch has taken an active interest in the Scottish independence campaign, with occasionally cryptic tweets on the country's economic prospects and the early release of polling data commissioned by his newspaper.

His Scottish Sun newspaper, which backed Alex Salmond's Scottish National Party in the 2011 Holyrood elections, has yet to take an official line on independence but has adopted an increasingly pro-nationalist slant in some of its reporting.

Salmond a friend, great politician, man of the people, etc, but I would be much happier with another great Scottish AS - Adam Smith!

Rupert Murdoch @rupertmurdoch

Salmond a friend, great politician, man of the people, etc, but I would be much happier with another great Scottish AS - Adam Smith!

10:22 PM - 11 Sep 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

Okay, how would Salmond govern? Socialist paradise no. People need jobs, decent pay, streamline bureaucracy,new investment. No EU.

Rupert Murdoch @rupertmurdoch

Okay, how would Salmond govern? Socialist paradise no.
People need jobs, decent pay, streamline bureaucracy,new investment. No EU.

8:53 PM - 10 Sep 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

A spokesman for the The Sun told BuzzFeed News earlier this week that a decision had yet to be taken on whether the newspaper would back either side, offering only: "You'll have to keep buying The Sun every day to find out".

Video of Murdoch's visit to the Prince of Wales pub in Aberdeen shows him surrounded by supporters of both the Yes and No campaigns:

View this video on YouTube

youtube.com

His arrival was first reported by ITV News, who said he had also made visits to central Glasgow and Fife.

ITV News understands Rupert Murdoch visited Central Glasgow, Fife, and had lunch in the Prince of Wales pub in Aberdeen

Matt Brindley@mattbrindley1

ITV News understands Rupert Murdoch visited Central Glasgow, Fife, and had lunch in the Prince of Wales pub in Aberdeen

2:55 PM - 13 Sep 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

One Twitter user claimed Murdoch was seen at today's pro-independence rally in central Glasgow:

Rupert Murdoch was at Yes rally/HQ in Glasgow today. How can ANYONE vote yes knowing this corrupt phone hacking oligarch backs it #indyref

Dominik Sokalski@DominikSokalski

Rupert Murdoch was at Yes rally/HQ in Glasgow today. How can ANYONE vote yes knowing this corrupt phone hacking oligarch backs it #indyref

12:27 PM - 13 Sep 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

@claptonisgod1 because I saw him!! He was walking straight towards the rally. A woman even shouted 'it's Murdoch' and his guards hurried him

Dominik Sokalski@DominikSokalski

@claptonisgod1 because I saw him!! He was walking straight towards the rally. A woman even shouted 'it's Murdoch' and his guards hurried him

1:32 PM - 13 Sep 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

Yes Scotland said Murdoch had not visited the campaign headquarters but did confirm some pro-independence activists had reported seeing him at a Yes Scotland stall on Sauchiehall Street in central Glasgow.

UPDATE: Murdoch was also spotted in this central Glasgow bar, while STV is reporting the Scottish Sun may formally support independence.

We had a visit and a wee chat with Rupert Murdoch this morning. Topic of conversation? The Referendum of course!

Sloans Glasgow@SloansGlasgow

We had a visit and a wee chat with Rupert Murdoch this morning. Topic of conversation? The Referendum of course!

1:06 PM - 13 Sep 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

Rupert Murdoch tells @STVNews that the Sun newspaper is considering backing a Yes vote. #indyref #ScotDecides

Joanne Bonnar@STVJoanne

Rupert Murdoch tells @STVNews that the Sun newspaper is considering backing a Yes vote. #indyref #ScotDecides

4:14 PM - 13 Sep 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

Jim Waterson is a politics editor for BuzzFeed News and is based in London.

Contact Jim Waterson at jim.waterson@buzzfeed.com.

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