"We declare the right of the people of Ireland to the ownership of Ireland..." ~ 1916 Proclamation of the Irish Republic
Over a dozen protesters gathered at the Shell garage on the Tallaght by-pass yesterday evening as other protests were taking place simultaneously at other locations across the country. The numbers present were made up of members of éirígí, WSM, as well as individuals who wished to lend their support. The protest succeeded in effectively closing the garage during the rush-hour period with only a handful of motorists choosing to enter.
Public response to the protest was extremely positive with many motorists conveying their support as they passed by. This reflects the fact that the government is not acting in the interests of the people of Ireland. Irish natural resources should benefit the people and not serve to boost the profits of multinational oil companies.
The protest also received the attention of a large number of both uniformed Gardaí and Special Branch. During the protest, a number of Special Branch cars, Garda cars and riot vans were present. The harassment continued after the protest was concluded with most of the protesters being stopped and questioned by members of the Special Branch after they returned to their cars.
The lines have been clearly drawn, with the forces of the state supporting the interests of the multinationals over the interests of the people. It is clear that the positive response from the public needs to be built on in order to show that the people of Ireland demand ownership and control of their natural resources.