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For Lefties too Stubborn to Quit
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Farewell from NWL Sun May 19, 2013 14:00 | namawinelake
Happy 70th Birthday, Michael Sun May 19, 2013 14:00 | namawinelake
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The Household Charge - How They Failed to Shape Our Perspectives Wed Apr 25, 2012 10:48
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Peat Removal Begins at Bellanaboy
Wednesday April 04, 2007 00:28 by 1 of Shell to Sea
Mayo News Article
The peat removal process has started from the refinery site at Bellanaboy.
Protesters are watching the process for the moment.
Some people from outside Erris will be travelling down over Easter and next week to have a look.
If you are in Dublin, and want to come down and have a look with some Dublin activists next week, call 087 132 33 69.
Gardaí outnumber protesters
Áine Ryan Mayo News April 2nd 2007
THE LARGEST Garda presence in north Mayo for months facilitated the first day of peat removal, since before the jailing of the Rossport Five in June 2005, from the proposed Shell refinery site at Bellanaboy on Monday morning last.
Shell to Sea members claimed that over 200 gardaí were deployed between Bangor and Bellanaboy, outnumbering the protest group by around four-to-one. They also claimed that the inflated force of gardaí had been conveyed to the area by a large coach as well as seven Paddy Wagons and six squad cars.
Chief Superintendent Tony McNamara declined to verify the precise Garda numbers to The Mayo News. “For operational reasons, I am not prepared to disclose our numbers on the ground. There are people monitoring our movements with a view to disrupting our operations if, for example, we had an insufficient presence. I will confirm the gardaí were all from the Mayo division and that there was no trouble,” said Chief Supt McNamara.
He added that each lorry-load of peat was not escorted by Garda vehicles as claimed to The Mayo News by a number of protestors. He also categorically denied that a coach was used to convey the inflated force to north Mayo on Monday morning.
“The peat lorries were not flanked by the Gardaí. I understand there was one incident where a local protestor proceeded to drive his vehicle very slowly in front of a lorry and that Gardaí intervened,” he added.
Shell to Sea spokesman, John Monaghan, strongly challenged this assertion. “I was there and every lorry, or at least over 90 per cent of them, was accompanied by a Garda vehicle. This was the largest presence of gardaí I have seen here for months, even bigger than our last Day of Solidarity in February, which attracted people from all over the country,” said Mr Monaghan.
In a written statement, Shell announced the re-initiation of the 350,000 tonnes of peat removal operation, from Bellanaboy to a Bord na Móna cut-away bog, eleven kilometres away, at Shramore.
“The operation will be completed by October 2007, when construction of the onshore gas processing plant will begin,” the statement said.
“There are currently almost 200 people working on the Corrib Gas project and this figure will rise to approximately 350 in the coming weeks, with the peat haulage operation. By autumn 2007, 700 jobs will have been created by the project with the construction of the onshore terminal,” it continued.
Meanwhile, Rossport Five’s Micheál Ó Seighin has corroborated Dr Jerry Cowley’s recent contention that the phones of those close to the campaign were being tapped. “I have no doubt that my phone has been tapped for a long time. You would think technological advances would be able to silence the audibility of recording click-noises,” said Mr Ó Seighin.
Last week Minister for Justice, Mr Michael McDowell declined to specifically answer a written question by Dr Cowley regarding interceptions on his own phone, that of Seanad candidate, Dr Mark Garavan, and those of the Rossport Five.
“It is not the practice and it would be contrary to the public interest to disclose if an authorisation to intercept has, or has not been, granted in any particular case,” said Minister McDowell.
Dr Cowley has since spoken to the Garda Commissioner, Mr Noel Conroy, about the allegations and will also contact Complaints Referee, Judge Carroll Moran who has powers to examine such charges under Section 9 of the Postal Packets and Telecommunications Messages Act 1993.
He also intends bringing legislation before the Oireachtas for the institution of an Interception of Communications Officer, whose remit, like in Britain, would ensure there is more transparency about sanctioned interceptions.