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Monday, 24 January, 2000, 06:46 GMT
Celtic cousins' Cornish campaign

Cornwall Mebyon Kernow wants self-government for Cornwall


Mebyon Kernow - the party for Cornwall - is launching its campaign for a parliamentary seat with the help of Plaid Cymru.

Plaid Cymru members in Blaenau Gwent are lending their support to celtic cousins Mebyon Kernow in their fight for the Falmouth and Camborne constituency.

The branch is now officially twinned with the Cornish constituency.

Plaid's Adam Rykala said the campaign "is a promising start to future co-ordination between our parties, who are keen to make more links.

Closer links

"Already several other local branches in south east Wales are keen to create closer links with Mebyon Kernow."

Plaid Cymru's success in Wales has long been held up by their Cornish counterparts as a goal.

Mebyon Kernow chairman Dick Cole said: "Plaid Cymru is doing tremendously well.

"We view Cornwall as being in a similar position to Wales and Scotland. We don't consider ourselves as being part of England."

Mebyon Kernow has been campaigning for devolution for Cornwall for nearly half a century.

Language

Mr Cole said: "Our long term aim is self government in Europe.

"In the short term our aim is for a Cornish assembly, a local development agency and a university."

In last year's local elections, MK put up 25 candidates - its highest number ever.

Mebyon Kernow is closely linked to the Scottish National Party and Plaid Cymru and in Parliament the Welsh nationalists often raise issues for their Cornish cousins.

There is a campaign to get Cornish recognised by the government and for it to be included in the European charter of minority languages.

However, Mr Cole is not overly optimistic that their campaign will gain government support.

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See also:
19 Mar 99 |  UK Politics
Devolving England

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