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Leading critic of controversial Welsh farming proposals ‘receives death threats’

A farmer who has been campaigning against controversial Welsh government funding proposals for his industry says he has received death threats.

Gareth Wyn Jones, who has been a vocal opponent of a new subsidy scheme, said the latest threat was the “fourth or the fifth” one made against him and his family.

“Whatever your political beliefs, whatever your agenda, I just don’t think it’s fair to threaten people and their families with their lives,” he said in a video posted on X.

“I think I will really have to step back a little bit. I have to think about my family.”

Mr Wyn Jones, from Conwy, was among the farmers who met with Prime Minister Rishi Sunak outside the Welsh Conservative Conference in Llandudno on Friday to voice their concerns about the plans.

Rishi Sunak speaking with farmers after he delivered a speech at the Welsh Conservatives Conference 2024.
Pic: PA
Image: Rishi Sunak speaking with farmers outside the Welsh Conservatives Conference. Pic: PA

The sustainable farming scheme will replace the basic payment scheme and will compel farmers to meet a series of environmental targets in return for financial support from the government.

One of those is a requirement for farmers to plant trees on 10% of their land.

While this applies only to land where conditions allow, farming unions are worried about its impact on the industry’s future.

First Minister Mark Drakeford has defended the proposals and said farmers cannot be allowed to “decide what to do” with public funding.

The plans are still undergoing a period of consultation, but farmers have been demonstrating across Wales in recent weeks, including with go-slow protests along some of the country’s roads.

One arrest was made after a protest outside the office of the Welsh government’s rural affairs minister in Wrexham.

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A spokesperson for North Wales Police said the force was “aware of reports of online threats directed towards Mr Jones and his family”.

The force said the family was “being supported by officers while our investigations are ongoing”.

Officers are asking anyone with information to get in touch.

Sky News Source