NICOLA Sturgeon has hailed voters for rejecting a "far-right thug" at the ballot box as she held her Glasgow Southside seat with a comfortable majority. 

The First Minister said she was "proud" that convicted racist Jayda Fransen, former deputy leader of Britain First, managed just 46 votes.

Elsewhere, she paid tribute to her opponent Anas Sarwar, the Scottish Labour leader, who secured 10,279 votes to her 19,735.

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Ms Sturgeon was previously praised for standing up to Ms Fransen during an ugly confrontation outside a Glasgow polling station. 

In a speech after winning Glasgow Southside, Ms Sturgeon said: "It is the privilege of my life to represent the most multicultural, diverse constituency in the whole of Scotland

"And yesterday, not for the first time, the constituency was targeted by far right thugs. 

"The far-right thug who led that confrontation got 46 votes and I am proud that once again Glasgow Southside has shown the racists and the fascists that they are not welcome in Glasgow Southside, they are not welcome in Glasgow and they are not welcome anywhere in Scotland, and let that be a note of unity."

Ms Fransen, who was standing as an independent, was found guilty of religiously aggravated harassment and ordered to pay a fine of £1000 after she targeted a Muslim mother of four who was wearing a hijab in Luton in November 2016.

She was also convicted of another religiously aggravated harassment in 2018, which saw her sentenced to 36 weeks in prison.

In a video posted on social media, the far-right activist was seen approaching Ms Sturgeon in the street before asking her to apologise for "mass immigration and Marxism".

She was heard saying: "The decent people of Scotland don’t want it flooded with immigrants."

Ms Sturgeon told her: "You are a fascist, you are a racist and the southside of Glasgow will reject you."

READ MORE: Nicola Sturgeon downplays SNP majority as 'very, very long shot'

During her speech at the count in Glasgow, the First Minister thanked her campaign team and Mr Sarwar, her main opponent.

She said: "Anas and I are opponents but I think we are in a strange position, perhaps, in politics – I think I can speak for him, although he might correct me if I'm wrong here – where we actually quite like each other, and that can make it difficult to campaign against someone. 

"But I congratulate him on his campaign."

Mr Sarwar increased the Labour vote but failed to eat into Ms Sturgeon's majority.