Harrington claims 'she was in a dark place' after immigration tweet

Harrington claims 'she was in a dark place' after immigration tweet

Irish boxer Kellie Harrington has claimed that she "was in a dark place" after a tweet she made back in October 2022 about Irish immigration created a media firestorm.

The Portland Row's tweet from English broadcaster GB News was in response to an incident where a 12-year-old girl in France was killed by an immigrant.

Harrington's tweet read, “Very, very sad. A powerful message from Eva Vlaardingerbroek. Our own leaders need to take a listen to this. She believes this is the 12th girl in France this year who has been killed by an immigrant [...] and that’s just France.”

The tweet received huge backlash online and was subject to criticism by the general public.

Months later, Harrington appeared on the popular sports platform Off The Ball to promote a campaign for Spar. The boxer was asked about her comments and also if she stood by them.

“So, I feel, right now at the moment, that you’re trying to hang me out to dry. So, for that, I’ll say, 'next question' and 'you're like a dog with a bone' were remarks made by Harrington in the combative interview.

After a number of probes where it was clear that the Dublin native wasn't going to answer, the interview resulted in another debate around whether Harrington should hold those views as a public figure.

Speaking to The Irish Times this week, the Olympic gold medalist revealed that she was sorry for any offense caused by the tweet.

“I’ve been in a bit of a dark place with it. I’m just sad. I’m sorry for the tweet I put up. It just happened. People say things without thinking about the consequences of it. And that was what happened.”

The boxer now admits that she will be careful with what goes up on her social media going forward. Despite the remarks, she admits that she is not a hateful person as people made her out to be.

“I’m so careful now about what comes out of my mouth. That never used to be the person I was.

“I’m always cautious now of what I say. Even there, I was cursing, and then I was going, ‘Jesus, I’d better not say Jesus.’ That’s what’s in my head now a lot of the time.”

She added: “To be very honest with you, I never thought of the hurt that I could cause to anybody by retweeting it.

“I never thought of what I said in the retweet either. I just said it and I put it up on Twitter.”