Boris Johnson's 'aggressive' Union Flag strategy 'feeds nationalism,' warns Mark Drakeford

27 March 2021, 13:42 | Updated: 27 March 2021, 13:51

By Seán Hickey

The Welsh First Minister has hit out at the PM's 'counter productive' policy of making the flying of the Union Jack on government buildings mandatory.

Welsh First Minister Mark Drakeford spoke to Matt Frei in advance of Wales easing lockdown restrictions on Saturday.

The conversation turned to flags following the Government's decision this week to impose mandatory flying of the Union Flag on all government buildings. Matt wondered what Mr Drakeford thought of the move.

"It's part of the UK government's attempt to roll back devolution and in an aggressively unilateral way," he claimed, arguing that the policy is an attempt to "reassert the United Kingdom."

"I want Wales to be part of a successful United Kingdom," the First Minister clarified.

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"Aggressive unilateral actions of this sort just feed nationalism in different parts of the UK. It's an entirely counter-productive strategy."

Mr Drakeford went on to tell Matt that he wants Boris Johnson to "think again" on the strategy, adding that while he's "very happy to see the flag flying," making it mandatory breeds hostility.

He reiterated his support for the Union and the flying of the flag, but "not in that aggressive sort of way."

"Forcing it on people," the Welsh First Minister concluded, "really is counter-productive."