Workers Party councillor Ted Tynan has condemned the actions of gardaí in Dublin last night (Thursday) when they forcibly
broke up a peaceful protest at an Israeli government sponsored film showing in Temple Bar and wrestled a megaphone from Corkman
Dr. Fintan Lane of the Irish Ship to Gaza project while he was addressing the crowd.
Cllr Tynan, a member of Cork City Council, said that videos of the event which were posted on the internet were quite
disturbing and showed clear use of heavy-handed policing.
Dr. Lane had been accosted by a senior garda while was addressing the crowd about the recent illegal boarding of the
m.v. Saoirse in international waters and Dr. Lane’s detention in an Israeli jail. The
garda wrestled the megaphone from Dr. Lane while other peaceful protesters were forcibly removed from outside the venue by
“This type of behaviour by gardaí is completely unacceptable. People
in this country have a constitutional right to peaceful protest and they were exercising that right last night when attacked
by gardaí. It would seem that Israel can illegally detain, shoot at and harass
Irish citizens trying to bring humanitarian aid to Gaza without any real sanction from the Irish government, but when peaceful
protest takes place at an Israeli sponsored event in this country the Irish forces of law and order seem determined to deny
people the right to criticise Israel or embarrass her ambassador”, said Councillor Tynan
The Workers Party councillor called on the Minister for Justice, Alan Shatter and the Minister for Foreign Affairs,
Eamon Gilmore, who both attended the Israeli Embassy sponsored film showing, to see to it that the behaviour of the gardaí
is investigated by the Garda Ombudsman. Cllr. Tynan said that the presence of two government ministers at the Israeli film
festival was disturbing and particularly contrasted with Minister Gilmore’s stated concerns about Israel’s human
rights record and occupation of Palestine. He accused Minister Gilmore of talking from both sides of his mouth when it came
to human rights where Israel was concerned.
Issued 25th November 2011