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VOICE OF THE SCOTTISH DAILY Mirror: Shame of Scotland.

IT'S one league table that no country wants to be vying for the top spot in, but for murder Scotland comes dangerously close.

There is something deeply worrying about a situation in which a Scot is three times as likely to meet a violent end as someone south of the border.

The myth pervades that the carrying of blades on our streets is a thing of the past - that we have moved on from an unenviable reputation for casual violence earned through the gang wars of the 60s and 70s or football thuggery in the 80s.

But the bald fact is that the only western European country with a higher homicide rate than Scotland is Finland.

And while amnesties and advertising may be enough to steer some away from that culture of violence, the figures show that much has still to be done to end the pointless loss of life.

Justice supremo Kenny MacAskill says his department is determined to take action on the long-term problem.

But how many more innocent lives will be lost before Scotland becomes even as safe a place as her neighbour?
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Title Annotation:Leaders
Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Jul 16, 2007
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