Thousands of protesters march on Dublin city centre in support of Palestine

Thousands of protesters march on Dublin city centre in support of Palestine

THOUSANDS TOOK to the streets of Dublin this past Saturday, May 15, in a show of support for Palestine.

It came against the backdrop of the escalating violence witnessed in Gaza over the past week with 132 people killed since Monday.

According to Palestinian medical officials that number includes 32 children and 21 women.

A further eight people have also died in Israel, including two children and four adult civilians.

Eager to show their solidarity with the people of Palestine, protesters gathered around the Spire on O'Connell Street.

They then began marching through the city en route to the Israeli embassy on Pembroke Road in Ballsbridge.

Thousands attended the demonstration with chants of "Free Palestine" heard throughout the day alongside calls for an Israel boycott.

Palestinian flags were waved alongside the the Irish Tricolour, while the majority of those taking part wore face coverings throughout.

Garda were present during the protest but there was no repeat of the violent scenes witnessed during recent anti-lockdown demonstrations and no arrests were made.

People Before Profit TDs Richard Boyd Barrett attended the march, praising“enormous show of support” for Palestine which he felt served as a demonstration that the Irish people were “horrified at what Israel is doing”.

He defended the actions of those who chose to protest despite the government's ban on large gatherings due to the ongoing Covid-19 restrictions

“Everybody is wearing their masks, and the organisers went out of their way to encourage people to wear their masks and stay compliant,” he told The Irish Times.

“When children are being killed . . . People’s feelings overwhelm them, so I can understand that,” he added.

Boyd Barrett also delivered a speech at the protest calling for the expulsion of the Israeli ambassador.

The protest was held on the same day Ireland's Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney hit out at the killing of young children in the Israeli attacks.

He tweeted: “32 children killed since Monday in #Gaza by Israeli fire – that’s approx 1/4 of all fatalities – It’s not acceptable! Israel has [international] legal obligation to protect children in conflict & [are] not doing so! #Ireland will speak forcefully again at UNSC tomorrow.”

In another tweet, respond to the news that another eight Palestinian children had been killed in the Gaza strip, Coveney: “This cannot be acceptable to the International Community.

“#UNSecurityCouncil needs to speak with one voice to hold those responsible to account.”

Similar demonstrations also took place in Belfast, Cork and Galway, while in London hundreds marched on the capital to call for "immediate action" to end the "brutal" violence against the Palestinian people.