Anti-Iraq war demos in Ireland
Anti-Iraq war campaigners staged demonstrations at 15 separate locations in the Republic of Ireland today to coincide with International Women's Day.
By:Press Association, as reported on UTV, 4.45 pm.
Two of the protests went ahead in Dublin - outside the city centre headquarters of the Irish parliament, and close to the city`s American embassy.
Another event was orchestrated beside Co Clare`s Shannon airport, where anti-war activists successfully breached perimeter fencing twice earlier this year to cause damage to an American military aircraft.
A total of six demonstrators, protesting at the use of Shannon by the United States during the build up towards a possible war in Iraq, have faced courtroom charges as a result of those incidents, which have led to an intensification of security measures at the airport by the Irish police and army.
Today`s events were backed by Irish Labour Party MEP and former cabinet minister Proinsias de Rossa. Addressing the US embassy anti-war rally, he called on Irish Prime Minister Bertie Ahern to speak out against the war.
He said the Dublin government should not ``sit on the fence`` any longer, but use whatever influence they had to stop the war.
Mr De Rossa added the claims: ``The proposed American and British bombing of Iraq will result in a slaughter of civilians not seen since the First World War. To devastate the cities of Iraq will be a war crime.
``It is not acceptable and the Irish government have to make it clear they will not approve that kind of approach to international relations.``
Other demonstrations went ahead today in Cork, Waterford, Galway and Sligo, as well as Mullingar, in Co Westmeath, Dundalk, Co Louth, Dingle, Co Kerry, Tullamore, Co Offaly, Westport, Co Mayo, Letterkenny, Co Donegal, Maynooth, Co Kildare, and Clones, Co Monaghan.
Former Irish Prime Minister John Bruton today said the Dublin government had a clear obligation to withdraw transit facilities for US troops at Shannon Airport immediately if the Americans started a war against Iraq without a second United Nations resolution.
He also called on Mr Ahern to make it clear to the US that Ireland would stand up for the rule of international law.
RTE: 5.54pm Anti War protests
Over 200 people have taken part in an anti-war demonstration outside the US embassy in Dublin. The demonstration was one of a number around the country to mark International Women's Day.
Anti-war protestors earlier held a small demonstration of between 60 and 80 people outside Leinster House.
And over a thousand people took part in the anti-war demonstration in Cork City.
Former Taoiseach John Bruton said the Government had a clear obligation to withdraw transit facilities for US troops at Shannon Airport immediately, if the US started a war against Iraq without a second UN resolution.
On 'Saturday View' on RTÉ Radio, Mr Bruton said that the Taoiseach should make it clear to the US that Ireland would stand up for the rule of international law.
On the same programme, former Irish Ambassador to the UN Noel Dorr said the current division among UN member states was worse than the splits over Suez and during the Cold War.
Earlier, the President of the Labour Party, Proinsias de Rossa, called on the Taoiseach to speak out against any American-led war on Iraq.
Mr de Rossa said the Government must not sit on the fence any longer and should use whatever influence it has to stop the war. The Labour MEP said that the proposed American and British bombing of Iraq would result in a slaughter of civilians not seen since the First World War.
For other articles about the USA-Iraqi war visit Socialist Youth or for pieces on Youth against the War.
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