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Plaid Cymru blast Drakeford’s ‘insular world view’ on independence

13 Apr 2021 3 minute read
Liz Saville-Roberts. Picture by Plaid Cymru. First Minister Mark Drakeford AM. Mark Hawkins / Alamy Stock Photo

Plaid Cymru has criticised Mark Drakeford for his “insular world view” on independence.

The party’s Westminster leader and campaign director for the Senedd election, Liz Saville Roberts MP has issued a scathing response to Labour First Minister’s suggestion that independence would “shut us off” from the world.

She said that Labour voters will feel “let down” by the comments and said that he would rather “defend a dying Union” than promote a “self-confident Wales” that was “free from Tory Westminster rule”.

The First Minister was also accused of being “out of touch” with the growing support for independence.

Drakeford said he was “interested in internationalism, not nationalism” and wanted a Wales that was “outward-looking”, while speaking with ITV as part of a series of interviews of different leaders at the Senedd election.

Plaid Cymru’ says its vision for Wales is outward-looking and underpinned by international cooperation.

Liz Saville Roberts MP said: “The panicked response from the First Minister proves how out of touch he is with the growing support for independence.

“Labour voters will rightly feel let down by these comments as they in no way reflect the majority view of their party.”

‘Sharp contrast’ 

She added: “In sharp contrast, Plaid Cymru has dedicated a whole chapter in its manifesto to making the positive case for independence.

“Wales and the World” is our outward looking vision underpinned by mutual respect and co-operation with other nations.

“Numerous small independent nations will be left aghast at the insular world view of the Labour leader, who would rather defend a dying Union than promote a self-confident Wales making its own way in the world free from Tory Westminster rule.”

In the ITV interview, host Adran Masters had asked Mark Drakeford if he was aware of the Plaid Cymru by-election in Carmarthenshire in 1966 in which Gwynfor Evans won Plaid Cymru’s first seat.

“I remember coming downstairs that morning to the kitchen and turning the radio on to hear that Gwynfor Evans has won the by-election,” he said.

“I was very alert to all of that – I was very interested in all of that, even from that young age.”

Asked if he was tempted by the idea of independence, however, he said he was not.

“No. I never have been,” he said. “I’m interested in internationalism, not nationalism.

“I want a Wales that is outward-looking, that is engaged in the world. That doesn’t think that the way to deal with the world is to shut ourselves off.”

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