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Open letter to Alan Shatter and Noel Mc Mahon at Shannon Garda Station

category clare | anti-war / imperialism | press release author Thursday January 17, 2013 14:05author by margaretta D'Arcy - Women in Media & Entertainment Report this post to the editors

Part of Drone Action Week

Why have I not been charged for being on the runway at Shannon airport Oct 7 as part of the Drone action week?

Open letter from Margaretta D’Arcy, 10 St Bridget’s Place Lower, Galway-
to the sergeant in charge, Noel Mc Mahon, Shannon Garda Station and Alan Shatter, Minister for Justice, Equality and Defence.

On October 7th 2012, I was arrested on the runway at Shannon as part of the drone campaign network week of action and held for three hours at the Garda station at Shannon. I am still waiting to be charged. I want to know why I am waiting to be charged?
I was told that two aircrafts had been delayed because of my presence, the question I want to ask, is - am I going to be charged?

The reason I want to be charged is because the open court is the only public space left where my questions concerning the whole role of Shannon in aiding and abetting the U.S. military- it is a civilian airport and yet there is no transparency to monitor or inspect suspect rendition aircraft passing through Shannon.
There is no transparency or inspection of cargoes suspected of transporting munitions.

The use of Shannon Airport to support the U.S. occupation of a foreign state is indefensible, as its role in the C.I.A. kidnapping and torture operations. Even more worrying is the likelihood that Shannon may now be playing a part in the U.S. drone (unmanned aerial vehicle) attacks in Pakistan and other parts of the world.

The use of drone strikes by the U.S. flouts international law and may encourage other nations to follow suit, according to Christof Heyns, the UN special investigator on extrajudicial killings. In June 2012 he told the UN conference in Geneva that some of the attacks may constitute war crimes and that the US needs to be held legally accountable for the use of armed drones.

What compounds it now, is the new head of the CIA, John Brennan, who was the architect of the secret and deadly drone programmes and in actual fact the CIA now has become a quasi military base, waging war in secret and only by its own rules.

An Garda Síochána is the national police service of Ireland. The Mission of An Garda Síochána is Working with Communities to Protect and Serve.
Following the establishment of the Irish Free State in 1922, the Dublin Metropolitan Police merged with the recently established An Garda Síochána in 1925.
Today, An Garda Síochána is a community based organisation with over 14,500 Garda and Civilian employees, who serve all sections of the community.
Headquartered in Dublin’s Phoenix Park, we are represented in every county in Ireland, listening to, acting and working with the community. The current Garda Commissioner is Martin Callinan, who was appointed in 2010.

Some of An Garda Síochána’s core functions include:
• the detection and prevention of crime;
• ensuring our nation’s security;
• reducing the incidence of fatal and serious injuries on our roads and improving road safety;
• working with communities to prevent anti-social behaviour;
• promoting an inter-agency approach to problem solving and improving the overall quality of life.
An Garda Síochána has a long established tradition of working closely with communities all across Ireland. By fostering and maintaining effective community partnerships, and ensuring a more visible Garda presence, we work to achieve a reduction in crime and the fear of crime in our communities.

Article 29 of the Constitution of Ireland.
1. Ireland affirms its devotion to the ideal of peace and friendly co-operation amongst nations founded on international justice and morality.
2. Ireland affirms its adherence to the principal of the pacific settlement of international disputes by international arbitration or judicial determination.
3. Ireland accepts the generally recognised principals of international law as its rule of conduct in its revelations with other States.

As a citizen, trying to secure the nations security and being concerned for the safety of civilians at Shannon Airport, if one is on the runway, it is a serious danger for civilian aircrafts landing and leaving. It is the duty of the state to protect the runways. I must assume that if you are not charging me, it is because it is a cover up because you don’t want the reputation of Shannon airport to be seen as an unsafe location.

On the other hand, if you don’t charge me, I accept this from you as an invitation that I am particularly in my rights to be on the runway, to stop and prevent any planes from coming in, highlighting the take over of a civilian airport by the U.S. military.

Yours sincerely,
Margaretta D’Arcy

Caption: Peace Activists Block Shannon Airport

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