Labour’s candidate for the Carmarthen East and Dinefwr Westminster seat has been condemned for his views on Welsh speakers in the county.

Rhys Williams stated in an article he wrote for the Welsh language magazine Barn that he believed Welsh speakers used the language as a weapon. Councillors representing Welsh speakers in Carmarthenshire have called on the Labour candidate to make a public apology and for the Labour party in the county to condemn their candidate.

Cllr Fiona Hughes, who is a non Welsh speaker that represents the Cwman area where Rhys Williams lives, said: "I think these views are totally outrageous. Carmarthenshire has the highest number of Welsh speakers in the country and is a proud Welsh speaking area. My experience is that Welsh speaking or not this county is a very welcoming and warm place. I think Rhys' personal attack on the people of this area is very disappointing.

For a representative of the Labour party to accuse people from this area of using the Welsh language as a weapon and to state that as a collective he hates Welsh speakers is a disgrace."

Saron Cllr John Edwards added: "I would hope that Rhys Williams comes out and apologises unreservedly for these comments and the Labour party locally have the decency to distance themselves from these views. The statement is not only insulting to Welsh speakers but to the county as a whole."