CALLS to suspend the dumping of sediment from the Hinkley Point C nuclear plant off the coast of Cardiff have been rejected by the Welsh Assembly.

Assembly Members voted down the motion by 26 votes to 22, despite some AMs saying more should be done to reassure the public that the sediment is safe.

Campaigners have argued proper tests on the mud dredged from the plant site in Somerset had not been carried out and it could pose a health risk to people living in South Wales.

However, the Welsh Labour Government and its sponsored body Natural Resources Wales have denied the accusations, saying existing tests showed the mud is not harmful.

Protesters took to the steps of the Senedd, home to the Welsh Assembly, in Cardiff on Wednesday evening to voice their objections to the "mud dump".

New Plaid Cymru leader Adam Price gave a speech to the crowd, criticising the decision to have sediment dredged from England and dumped in Wales.

Mr Price said: "Now they've dug up everything of value from us, now they want to give us their mud.

"That is the attitude that has prevailed towards Wales down the centuries, that we are passive victims. I tell you, we are passive victims no more."

Inside the debating chamber, Cabinet Secretary for the Environment Lesley Griffiths called the campaign "scaremongering and lies".

After the motion to suspend the action was voted down, Independent AM Neil McEvoy, who has campaigned against the dumping, said: "We have Labour politicians in Wales voting to dump 320,000 tonnes of just a mile off coast.

"They've been made aware of the scientific concern about the lack of testing and the fact that only one kind of testing is done, and to identify particles that could be dangerous that could be in the mud."

Mr McEvoy said fellow campaigners now needed to "regroup" but would carry on voicing their objections.