CPI condemns Garda violence

Statement by the Communist Party of Ireland 
6 November 2014

The Communist Party of Ireland condemns the increasing state violence against peaceful protesters and communities. 
      Yesterday afternoon and evening saw a further stepping up of Garda violence against protesters in Santry, Dublin, and again outside Coolock Garda Station. The gardaí used pepper spray, physically removed protesters, and arrested a number of people. The state, through the judiciary, has also strengthened an injunction for Irish Water by establishing a 20-metre “exclusion zone” around water meters. 
      Local communities are also increasingly concerned about the rumour that the army is being put through crowd control exercises, to be used against communities as the state steps up its campaign against the people. 
      The general secretary of the CPI, Eugene McCartan, said: “The increased violence against people shows that we are winning, and that protesting is working. The call should not be for peaceful protests so much as for the right to peacefully protest. It is violence by the Garda Síochána, acting as a private security firm for big business, that is creating these situations. 
      “Working people have the right to protest and to blockade, and yet the state is planning to use the Gardaí, the army and the judiciary to prevent this. 
      “Working people will continue to resist water charges and to fight for public control and ownership of this vital resource. 
      “It is clear from today’s meeting and the selected leaks that the Government is stepping up its carrot-and-stick approach in its continuing efforts to split the water charges campaign: the carrot of a rebate for those who are compliant, and the stick for those who continue to resist these anti-people charges.”