"Death drones" anger
Updated 3:57pm Tuesday 1st April 2014 in News
A local councillor has reacted angrily to claims that "death drones" are being tested from Parc Aberporth.
Cllr Gethin James, who represents Aberporth on Ceredigion County Council, says the drones tested are being used for surveillance but adds that the village has a "long and proud" history of weapons testing dating back to the 1930s.
And he clashed with council colleague and Cabinet member Cllr Alun Williams who said that he was "profoundly unhappy that Ceredigion was being used for death drone development."
The drones testing came under attack in a special performance at Small World Theatre in Cardigan on Saturday night which was staged by the National Theatre of Wales and broadcast live on the internet.
"Who controls the drones in my sky" was billed as an "evening of free thinking performance and debate". The capacity audience called for more public information on the drones and a lobbying of European parliamentary candidates to discuss the issue. The multi-million pound Parc Aberporth site was built with the aid of European cash and the backing of Ceredigion County Council. When it was first mooted more than a decade ago the site promised hundreds of local jobs, which have yet to materialise.
"As far as I understand Watchkeeper UAVs are tested at Aberporth which are for surveillance and used to protect our troops," said Cllr James.
He added that Predator UAVs which carry weapons were not tested at the base.
He also claimed it was hypocritical to point the finger at drones when weapons testing has been carried out at the MoD site in Parcllyn since World War II.
"Aberporth has benefitted from 75 years of military testing with generations of locals having employment at the site," he said.