Egunkaria, by the way, was the only Basque language newspaper of its time and was closed in 2003 by order of a Spanish court, for allegedly having links to the terrorist organisation ETA. The seizure and closure was later legally declared spurious and politically motivated.
Here is what Glyn said on BBC Wales:
We’re faced with a situation now where we are getting tidal waves of migration, inward migration into our rural areas from England and these people are coming to live, to establish themselves here and to influence our communities and our culture with their own… Now if they were coming here under strict monitoring and control and if, for example, they were made aware of you know the different cultural aspects of these areas and made to or be persuaded to learn Welsh and to integrate smoothly into our communities there wouldn’t be a problem
Glyn was referring to retired, elderly English people moving into the area, sometimes buying secondary homes. As the Egunkaria article mentions:
Gwynedden urtebetean saldutako jabetzen herena kanpotik joandako jendeak eskuratu zuen, eta zinegotzi batzuek Galesko Legebiltzarrari eskatu zioten bertako herritarrek etxeak erosi ahal izateko neurriak hartzeko. Izan ere, ingelesek diru gehiago ordaintzen dute etxeengatik, eta bertako herritarrak kanpora joatera bultzatzen ditu horrek. Glynek egoera hori salatu baino pixka bat lehenago, ikerketa batek ohartarazi zuen nekazari galestar komunitateak desager zitezkeela etxe salmenta handiarengatik.
A third of the properties sold yearly in Gwynedd were acquired by people who came from outside the county, and some councillors have asked the Welsh Parliament to take measures so that local residents can buy houses, as the English pay more money for the houses, which pushes local residents to leave. Shortly before Glyn denounced the situation, a study warned that rural Welsh communities could disappear due to the large sale of housing.
Glyn was vociferously criticised for his remarks from all political sides, called a racist, xenophobe and so forth. Including for his remarks about the Welsh language, about making or encouraging English immigrants learn the language. Curiously, Britain imposing English language qualifications on international immigrants seemed to cause much less waves in the media...
And yet, what he said was and still remains true.
Compare the situation in the North Basque Country, where a full 25% of all housing is classified as 'secondary housing', that is, property that outsiders buy and leave mostly empty for the year, only to come during summer. Meanwhile, the demand for primary housing among actual residents cannot be satisfied, and the prices go up, forcing residents, especially youths, to leave the area altogether. You can imagine the serious deletrious effects this can have on a language community. Physical contiguity of a language speaker community is important.
There are probably thousands of Basque speakers living in Paris and its metropolitan area. But they are spread out and do not constitute a majority in any one place. A Basque speaker who is forced to leave their town in the Basque Country in order to find work and a house that he or she cannot find at home, is a 'lost' Basque speaker in a sea of erdaldunak. And so long as the laboral and housing conditions at home remain poor, there's every possibility that the loss becomes permanent, and they will not return home.
Healthcare in areas that are the subject of secondary housing are focused towards looking after people who are only there for a few days a year, people who contribute in no meaningful way to the life of a place for most of the year. Meanwhile infrastructure that is required all year round for people who live there all year around like public transportation, hospitals, communications and education are neglected. The consequence is this: the Basque Country loses its natives, 'gains' foreigners who are attracted there by the weather. Not exactly a firm basis to create a society out of. Or a Basque language community. The biggest such increases are noted for the coastal areas, but even in the interior (far more rural), the trend is being noted.
Let's examine some of the metropolitan areas in the Basque Country. Basque name first, French name second. These are figures from several years ago, 2015-2017.
Miarritze (Biarritz): 41% of the housing are secondary homes.
Donibane Lohizune (Saint-Jean-de-Luz): 47% of the housing are secondary homes.
Getaria (Guéthary): 48% of the housing are secondary homes.
What to do? Starting with the legal option, tax the shit out of the secondary homes. If they're going to live there, at least get some money out of it to pump back into the region. And that's precisely what some communes have done, with secondary residences paying up to 60% of the housing tax, often in the face of opposition from powerful interest groups and land developers.
The Basque nationalists are the ones who have been fighting against property speculation from the very beginning. They are currently the leading left wing coalition in the Basque Country, and second party overall. Their rise to political relevancy over the past decades in the North Basque Country is stunning, given their extremely humble beginnings. Mainstream political parties on both the left and the right used to create a 'cordon sanitaire' around them, fearing their political (Basque nationalism, independence), ecological (green ecologists) and economic (socialism) ideology. Today however, in many parts of the Basque Country, gaining support or creating a coalition from Basque nationalists is necessary to even govern at all. All this, they have slowly accrued by years of good governance.
Euskal Herria ez da salgai, this graffiti reads: the Basque Country is not for sale. Spayprainted on a secondary house, empty for most of the year. Graffiti and even arson attacks against tourist houses and property speculators (real estate agents) have been recorded as well.