BORIS Johnson and Jeremy Corbyn will go head to head in a TV election debate for ITV, but the SNP and LibDems will be forced to watch from the sidelines.

Only Labour and the Tories will get to put their message across on the main event, to be broadcast on November 19, and hosted by Julie Etchingham.

The other parties will get to take part in a live interview-based programme afterwards.

ITV also revealed plans for a multi-party debate at some point in the run-up, with all parties, including the Greens, Plaid Cymru and Nigel Farage’s Brexit Party, taking part.

READ MORE: Spain readies fresh warrant for Catalan Clara Ponsati

The SNP’s Ian Blackford said the proposed show would be “deeply misleading for audiences.”

He added: “If Boris Johnson and Jeremy Corbyn think they are good enough to be Prime Minister, then they should be up to debating the SNP – and broadcasters should not let them hide from that challenge.

“Instead of one head to head debate and then a further one – potentially including a party that has never won a seat at Westminster – there should be a leading debate that includes the SNP.

“That would reflect the party’s status as one of the biggest by membership in the whole UK, the third party in the current House of Commons and as the government of Scotland.”

Blackford said politics in the UK had “long stopped being a choice between two tired old parties.”

He added: “Viewers would be better served by debates with all the key players involved, not ones which exclude the party that is in line to hold the balance of power.”

The National: Jeremy Corbyn and Boris Johnson will go head to headJeremy Corbyn and Boris Johnson will go head to head

Johnson, who famously shirked TV debates during the Tory leadership contest, welcomed the prospect of debating Corbyn: “Looking forward to making the positive case to the country that we should #GetBrexitDone & deliver on the people’s priorities – #OurNHS, schools, tackling crime & the cost of living.”

Corbyn said: “This is a once in a generation election. So it’s welcome that Boris Johnson has accepted our challenge of a head to head TV debate. The choice could not be clearer: Boris Johnson’s Conservatives protecting the privileged few or a Labour government on the side of the many.”

At the 2017 election there were two leaders debates – though Theresa May refused to take part in either.

Meanwhile, in other election campaign news, the Scottish Greens have announced plans to stand against Pete Wishart in Perth and North Perthshire.

Elspeth Maclachlan has been named as the candidate in the marginal seat where the SNP only just beat the Tories in 2017.

Wishart, who is defending a majority of just 21, said the news would be welcomed by Murdo Fraser.

Asked by the Scotsman, if there was a chance that Green candidates could split the pro-Remain vote in some constituencies, MSP Ross Greer said: “If the SNP or LibDems are concerned about the vote being split they are more than welcome to stand down in our favour.

“Political parties stand in elections. We have just as much of a right to stand as everyone else.”

Taking to Twitter, Wishart said: “I have a majority of 21. The last time the Greens contested P&NP they got over 1,000 votes.

“Our independence comrades know that they possibly can’t win here. The Greens ‘bete noire’, one Murdo Fraser, will be raising one for the Greens tonight.”

The Greens are set to stand candidates in around 20 constituencies across Scotland, including in all five constituencies in Edinburgh and several others across the central belt, including Glasgow North.

Elsewhere on the campaign trail, Nicola Sturgeon encouraged Scots who support independence to “demonstrate the desire” by voting for her party.

When asked at an election rally in Leith, Edinburgh, whether she believes Labour would grant a Section 30 Order to enable a vote on Scottish independence, Sturgeon answered emphatically: “Yes” saying she was a “believer in the power of democracy.”

Scottish LibDem leader Willie Rennie said: “Scotland doesn’t need another independence referendum.

“Scottish Liberal Democrats are now the only ones who can be trusted to stand up for the union. If you want a party who will stand up for Scotland in the UK, you need to vote for the Liberal Democrats.”

Scottish Conservative acting leader Jackson Carlaw said: “Nicola Sturgeon is not listening – she is obsessed with independence and we must send her a message at this General Election.”