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UK: Cornish identity to be recognised for the first time

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By Euronews
UK: Cornish identity to be recognised for the first time

<p>Cornwall has received a major boost after the British government said it would begin recognising the unique identity of the isolated English county.</p> <p>It will afford Cornish people the same rights as the UK’s other Celtic people, such as the Scots, the Welsh and the Irish.</p> <p>It means the government – and other public bodies – will have to start taking into account the views of Cornwall when making key decisions.</p> <p>Campaigners have long-argued that Cornwall, situated in the far south-west of England, has a separate cultural identity separate from the rest of the country.</p> <p>Nationalists have also called for a degree of devolution or autonomy, along the lines of Wales and Scotland.</p> <p>The UK government said it was recognising for the first time the distinct culture and history of the Cornish under European rules for the protection of national minorities.</p> <p>British Communities Minister Stephen Williams said: “This is a great day for the people of Cornwall who have long campaigned for the distinctiveness and identity of the Cornish people to be recognised officially.</p> <p>“The Cornish and Welsh are the oldest peoples on this island, and as a proud Welshman I look forward to seeing Saint Piran’s flag flying with extra Celtic pride on March 5 next year.”</p> <p>Dick Cole, leader of Mebyon Kernow, which wants Cornish devolution, responded: “Fantastic news. I am absolutely delighted that the government will today formally recognise the Cornish people as a national minority. </p> <p>“It is great that all the Celtic peoples of these islands – the Cornish, Irish, Scottish and Welsh – are now afforded equal protection under the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities.”</p>