GARDAI CAME under attack from missiles thrown by angry revellers during nightmarish scenes witnessed in the centre on Dublin on Friday night.
The attacks came as part of a night of serious unrest in the Irish capital with 14 people arrested during the ensuing chaos.
One garda officer also required hospital treatment for a leg injury incurred during the violent clashes which took place across various locations in the city centre.
A garda patrol car was also damaged during the attacks.
According to an official Gardaí statement, the clashes related to a serious of public order offences reported at locations like St Stephen's Green, Temple Bar, and South William Street.
Officers from the garda public order unit were reportedly pelted with “glass bottles and other missiles” thrown by people partying on South William Street.
They revellers, who were in breach of Ireland’s Covid-19 restrictions, were eventually dispersed using a garda baton charge.
Footage of the baton charge was shared on social media with some expressing criticism at the tactics used by officers on the scene.
The scene followed on from more violence on Grafton Street where a man in his 40s required hospital treatment after suffering a slash to the head.
Elsewhere, an employee at a local business was assaulted and left with facial injuries.
A garda spokesperson issued a statement detailing the incident in full:
"Yesterday evening, Friday 4th June 2021, large crowds were present in Dublin City Centre with the vast majority of persons socialising responsibly and enjoying outdoor activity.
"A number of public order incidents occurred at various locations in the South City Centre, primarily involving large ‘organised groups’ congregating at a number of locations including South William Street, Saint Stephen’s Green Park and Templebar Square.
"A significant uniform Garda presence was on patrol and interacted with various groups. In particular whilst interacting with a specific group at South William street, glass bottles and other missiles were thrown at Gardai.
"Having attempted to engage with these persons, with no positive response, Uniform Gardai, supported by ‘soft cap’ Public Order Gardai then dispersed this particular group from South William Street.
"In total, 14 people (nine adults and five juveniles) were arrested for public order offences and detained at Pearse Street and Kevin Street Garda Stations. Six persons were charged with public order offences and released. Two persons received the Adult Caution while one was released pending a summons for public order offences. The five juveniles were released and referred for JLO’s.
"One Garda member sustained a leg injury and received hospital treatment. One Garda Patrol Vehicle was damaged.
"In support of Government announcements on reopening the economy and society with a specific continuing emphasis on outdoor activity An Garda Síochána will continue to patrol and manage crowds on public streets and spaces. While extra facilities are being provided by Local authorities An Garda Síochána appeals for consideration for other persons using the spaces, local residents and businesses.
"Where crowds gather An Garda Síochána's responsibility is preserving public order and preventing and investigating any criminal offence, which may occur. An Garda Síochána has been consistent from the start in our response to the Covid-19 pandemic, based on our tradition of policing by consent, An Garda Síochána will continue to focus on the approach engage, explain, encourage the public with enforcement only as a last resort.
"An Garda Síochána continues to appeal to the public to support and comply with public health guidelines to avoid crowded areas and large gatherings; take personal responsibility to protect yourself and others, wear face coverings in open spaces, and maintain social distancing. The wearing of face masks outdoors and social distancing are public health guidelines and are not penal regulations.
"The COVID-19 Pandemic remains a public health crisis and An Garda Síochána continues to appeal to all citizens to demonstrate personal and social responsibility to comply with Public Health Guidelines and Regulations, in order to continue to save lives."