Today in Dublin, there were three solidarity protests with the Black Lives Matter movement in the United (Disunited) States.
Tensions have been growing amongst the migrant communities in Lesvos since the beginning of January when the new right-wing government (New Democracy) implemented more aggressive migration policies with a view to “decongest” the Aegean islands and to stem the flow of migration. Deputy minister Stelios Petsas announced that “the government, from the first moment, followed a different policy on the refugee-migration issue. With a comprehensive plan based on four axes: guarding the borders, speeding up asylum procedures, increased returns and closed pre-departure centers.” What this translates to is increased spending on border controls, a staggering backlog of asylum claims, fast-track border procedures that fail to protect people (including children) from deportation if they are rejected in the first instance, even if they appeal, along with large scale confinement and detention.
People protest against the Pre-Removal Detention Centre in Moria Camp after an Iranian migrant was found dead, hung in his cell.
Cork showed the far right the door on January 4th as about 300 anti-fascists turned up at city hall to face down a far right rally of about that peaked at about 70. The anti-fascist rally was called by Cork Rebels for Peace, "a broad spectrum of left political & community activists from across the city and county and we’ve called upon a celebration of diversity, inclusiveness and solidarity. We have come together to show the far right that Cork city will not succumb to intolerance."
A very successful anti-fascist Rally For Peace took place December 14th as 100s of anti-fascists occupied the planned site at the Dail of a far-right rally. Stewards did a great job of containing far-right provocations throughout the rally. The 1st group of far right agitators that appeared were visibly bewildered to find the site of their rally occupied. This group included masked members of Generation Identity, the group linked to the New Zealand mass killer & two of whose Irish members were jailed recently. [see video]
MASI - the Movement of Asylum Seekers in Ireland - held its first ever conference Saturday to mark FIVE years of struggle to end Direct Provision.
Hundreds of people attended the conference in Liberty Hall whose theme was 'Towards a More Humane Asylum Process'. People in the asylum system travelled from across Ireland to discuss the past and present of the asylum and deportation machine and to point the way forward to the end of Direct Provision and a more humane asylum system.
Rooskey - when I heard the name, it triggered some flicker of recollection. A memory was stirred. As it turned out, it is not far from where my mother's family come from. I had a cousin who grew up in a nearby Longford village, I had actually cycled through this place. So it vaguely came back to me, and I remembered the bridge spanning the Shannon, as that great river flows onto Lough Ree and down towards Athlone. My mother's people grew up around that Lough. I’ve spent summers listening to the wind whistling through the telephone wires. Today I was on my way to an anti-racist protest.
People currently in Direct Provision talk about the dehumanising conditions and the large profits being made out of their suffering by the companies that own the direct provision centres. People don’t understand why we ended up in Direct Provision, we hope to bring our stories out of the shadows of Irish society. [audio]
Panel from the 2018 Dublin Anarchist bookfair on the intersection between race politics, class and gender in Ireland with a particular focus on the current housing struggles and the Together for Yes referendum campaign / Repeal movement. [audio]