Reacting to the announcement of the itinerary of the Elizabeth Windsor state visit, cathaoirleach éirígí Brian Leeson has said that the visit is designed to “rub salt in the wounds of the victims of British violence in Ireland”.
Speaking in Dublin Leeson said, “The itinerary that has been announced today appears to have been deliberately designed to cause maximum offence to the victims of British state-sponsored violence in Ireland. Elizabeth Windsor is to begin her state visit on May 17th, the thirty-seventh anniversary to the day of the Dublin and Monaghan bombings.
“As if this was not bad enough Windsor is to attend a number of events in Dublin city centre, within walking distance of where those car bombs exploded in Parnell Street, Talbot Street and South Leinster Street. The British state, of which Windsor is head, and the British military, of which Windsor is Commander-in Chief, have to this day refused to reveal their role in the slaughter of the innocent that took place in Dublin and Monaghan on May 17 1974.
“Her intention to visit the Garden of Remembrance on Parnell Square is provocative in the extreme. The garden is located only a couple of hundred metres from Parnell Street where one of those British bombs killed eleven people. And the Garden itself is dedicated to those who have given their lives in the fight for Irish freedom. The fight for Irish freedom didn’t end with partition, it continues to this day. For as long as the British occupation of the Six Counties continues the prospect of a British head of state attending a ceremony at the Garden of Remembrance is as insulting as it is provocative.
“Those who have attempted to portray this visit as a non-political celebrity event have now been exposed as complete fools. This state visit has been designed with only one objective - the normalisation of the British occupation of the Six Counties. The itinerary announced today confirms that beyond doubt.
“The elite of Britain and Ireland have now announced their plans for lavish banquets and trips to stud farms at a time when the vast majority of the people in this state are struggling to survive. The entire spectacle is nothing short of disgusting.”
Leeson concluded, “We in éirígí are committed to opposing this visit in as robust a manner as possible. We are calling on the people across Ireland to get involved in the campaign of opposition to this visit. In particular to the young people of Dublin we are appealing. This is their city, the city of the 1913 Lockout and the 1916 Rising, a city with a proud tradition of opposition to British imperialism. A city which we hope will greet the British monarch with protest and defiance.”
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