Posted: Tue 15th Mar 2022

Calls for Welsh government to speak out ahead of Boris Johnson visit to Saudi Arabia

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales
This article is old - Published: Tuesday, Mar 15th, 2022

Plaid Cymru Leader Adam Price MS has called for Welsh Government to speak out ahead of a reported visit by the UK Prime Minister to Saudi Arabia. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

The visit is reported to be part of plans to convince the regime to boost oil production. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

Speaking in Questions to the First Minister today (Tuesday 15 March), Mr Price warned that “the Saudi Government will no doubt seek assurances that their policy in Yemen for the last eight years, of bombing innocent civilians, will not be obstructed by the UK.” ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

Noting that the Senedd sits “in the heart of Tiger Bay” which is home to a fifth generation Welsh-Yemeni community, Mr Price called on the Welsh Government to “make it clear”, that, should the visit go ahead, it’s “not in our name.” ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

In response, the First Minister Mark Drakeford said that the solution is to focus on renewable energy, in which Wales is so rich, so that the Prime Minister “wouldn’t need” to travel to Saudi Arabia. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

Plaid Cymru has long called for the economic levers and powers over the Crown Estate to be devolved to Wales, to ensure that it is the people of Wales who benefit from this opportunity to create a greener future, by having control over the leasing of the seabed. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

During First Minister Questions, Mr Price also raised concerns over the UK Government Homes for Ukraine scheme, which are centred on fears that entrants will not be given refugee status. Instead, Mr Price called for Welsh families to be able to register their interest with local authorities, Welsh-based charities or the Welsh Government. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

In response, the First Minister confirmed he was in receipt of a letter from Michael Gove MP confirming that people entering the UK from this scheme will have recourse to public funds, public services and be allowed to work. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

Adam Price MS, Leader of Plaid Cymru, said, ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

“Should reports be true, that Boris Johnson is to visit Saudi Arabia in a bid to convince them to boost oil production, the Saudi Government will no doubt seek assurances that their policy in Yemen for the last eight years – of bombing innocent civilians – will not be obstructed by the UK.” ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

 “It is wholly wrong to seek to appease one murderous dictatorship in order to resist another.” ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

“Given that our Senedd is at the heart of Tiger Bay, home to a fifth generation Welsh-Yemeni community, and that Welsh Government shares Plaid Cymru’s commitment to race equality, our support and solidarity to innocent civilians has to be the same, whatever the colour of people’s skin, wherever they are, whatever their creed.” ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

“We should not swap dependence on one murderous scheme for another. Should the Prime Minister go ahead with his trip to Riyadh to appease the Saudi regime, we should make it clear it’s not in our name.” ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​


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