Protests against the government’s handling of the migrant and refugee crisis continue to grow in number and size, with significantly larger numbers turning out in Mullingar and Ballymun last night, along with other protests in Tallaght and Aungier Street.
In Ballymun, protesters marched to the roundabout and blocked traffic on the M50 and M1. Mark Egan, a speaker at the demonstration, said that the government’s policies were “dangerous and foolish” and urged Minister Roderic O’Gorman to pay attention to the concerns of local people.
Yesterday, the Minister asked other Departments to make halls, including arts centres, sports centres, student leisure centres and “any other large buildings” available to house migrants and asylum seekers.
Many of the protesters carried homemade banners, saying that Ireland was full, and that communities were concerned about large numbers of “unvetted men” being placed in the area.
A grand crowd out in #Ballymun#EnoughIsEnough #IrelandIsFull pic.twitter.com/ldy8nRVgnV
— Mark Egan 🇮🇪 (@EgoEire) February 2, 2023
In Mullingar, locals said up to 500 people marched in the town tonight in protest at the decision to commandeer Columb Barracks in the town to house 120 male migrants claiming asylum.
The barracks in the centre of the town is being used by up to 30 community groups, and locals are angry at what they see as a lack of consultation. “There’s also a lack of respect for the people who live in the town, our opinions don’t matter; our safety doesn’t matter,” one woman attending the march told Gript.
A group opposing the centre, ‘Mullingar Says No’ has ben formed and they say more marches are planned.
Protests also took place in Aungier Street in Dublin and in Tallaght. Last night, protests in East Wall, Coolock and Finglas saw significant growth in the numbers turning out to voice frustration with the government’s handling of the crisis.