Mr Salmond condemned the union between Scotland and England in 1707 as an "old-fashioned, imperialist" political structure, which harmed the interests of modern Scotland. "The agenda of the 21st century is the sophisticated pooling of sovereignty in the new Europe, not submergence of Scotland within an early 18th-century political arrangement," he said. Scots were "effectively political prisoners within a totally incorporating union".
Addressing the Foreign Press Association in London in the latest stage of the campaign to win support for independence outside Scotland, Mr Salmond called for an independent state in a federal Europe.
Under Labour's proposed Scottish parliament, key areas such as nuclear arms and access to oil revenue would be the preserve of Westminster, he said.