Page last updated at 11:08 GMT, Monday, 7 September 2009 12:08 UK

Radio 4 Profile: Alex Salmond

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Alex Salmond, Scotland's First Minister and leader of the SNP, is a private man with a very public image.

He is passionate about horse racing and renewable energy, a pragmatic nationalist, a leader who reshaped his party and then abruptly left as leader in 2000 only to return 4 years later.

So who is the real Alex Salmond? And how serious is he about the drive to Scottish independence?

Jonathan Maitland talks to, among others, Salmond's biographer and current and former members of the SNP to find out.

BBC Radio 4's Profile of Alex Salmond was originally broadcast on Saturday, 5 September 2009 at 1900 BST.

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