Britain has narrowly voted to leave the European Union, according to U.K. broadcasters’ forecast of the country’s historic referendum.
ITV News, Sky News and the BBC early Friday all projected that the pro-Brexit Leave campaign’s lead over the Remain camp was now unassailable.
With more than three quarters of voting districts reporting, Leave had gathered 52 percent of the vote while Remain trailed at 48 percent.
The results sent the pound sterling plummeting against the dollar in overnight trading. By 4 a.m. local time (0300GMT), the currency was worth $1.37, down from more than $1.50 just five hours earlier.
It also raised questions about the future of the United Kingdom as a single country after it was confirmed that Scotland had voted by a wide margin to remain a EU member.
Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon – who previously warned Scotland that being taken out of the EU against its wishes could trigger another independence referendum – said Friday that her country had spoken “decisively”.
She said in an early morning statement: “Scotland has delivered a strong, unequivocal vote to remain in the EU, and I welcome that endorsement of our European status.
“And while the overall result remains to be declared, the vote here makes clear that the people of Scotland see their future as part of the European Union.”
Fiona Hyslop, the Scottish Cabinet secretary for Culture, Europe and External Affairs, said in a live BBC interview: “Decisions have consequences. And as the United Kingdom has made a decision against the interests of the Scottish people, that will have consequences.”