Shannon

Shannon runway blockade and arrest of peace activists on World Peace Day

Sunday, 1st September 2013:

On World Peace Day, September 1st, two members of the Galway Alliance Against War, Margaretta D’Arcy (79) and Niall Farrell (60) blocked the runway at Shannon airport to express opposition to the continued use of the airfield by the US military as part of its wars in Asia, Africa and the Middle East. On behalf of the 2 peace activists, the Galway Alliance Against War released the following statement:

“Over the past twelve years consecutive Irish governments have colluded in Washington’s campaign of wars from Afghanistan to Yemen, in which up to 2 million people have perished. By allowing the US military to use Irish airspace and Shannon airport to wage these wars we have become a willing accessory to mass murder. We have blood on our hands.

“Irish democracy has been subverted in the interests of this US war machine: the Greens and Labour entered government with a mandate to oppose Ireland’s role in these wars and develop a policy of neutrality, but reneged on their promises. Therefore, we feel we have no alternative but to block the runway at Shannon to highlight Irish involvement in this carnage. We have also come on the runway to conduct, what President Higgins proposed, a “conversation” in public places about Irish society. There is no more relevant place in Ireland than Shannon airport’s runway to discuss the need for the government to return to Ireland’s traditional policy of neutrality and cease its collusion in these criminal wars.

Shannonwatch/GAAW 1 day solidarity fast with Guantanamo strikers.

07/09/2013 - 06:45
07/09/2013 - 20:00

Shannonwatch and Galway Alliance Against War (GAAW) are organising a one day solidarity fast at Shannon Airport on Saturday 7th September in support of the prisoners being held at Guantanamo Bay. The fast will run from sunrise (6.45am) to sunset (8pm), and members of the public are invited to join in for some or all of the fast.

A press conference will be held at 12 noon on the day.

Over six months ago prisoners at Guantanamo embarked on a prison-wide hunger strike, as it was the only way left for them to protest about the appalling conditions of indefinite confinement in which they find themselves. Many of the men have been detained in Guantanamo for over 11 years without any contact with their families. They have been bound, beaten and made to suffer extremes of temperature. They have been denied justice, first under President George W. Bush, and now under President Barack Obama.

More than 100 of the prisoners in Guantanamo are now on hunger strike, and many are being brutally force-fed. The United Nations Human Rights Commission considers this practice, in which detainees are strapped to a restraining chair, have tubes pushed up their nostrils and liquids pumped down their throat, a clear form of torture. One detainee said the process felt like a "razor blade [going] down through your nose and into your throat."

As Shannon Airport was one of the stops used by the aircraft that kidnapped and brought these men to Guantanamo, it is particularly appropriate that they should be remembered at the airport. For that reason the fast is being held there as a small symbolic sacrifice to draw attention to their plight and to Shannon's shameful role in putting them there.

ShannonWatch - Court Report: Margaretta D'Arcy's Questions Unanswered

Source Thu, 11/07/2013 - 17:05 by shannonwatch http://www.shannonwatch.org

On Wednesday 10th July Margaratta D'Arcy appeared in Ennis District Court in connection with an alleged offence of improper use of Shannon Airport last October. Some of the national media reported that she caused mayhem in the court room when she confronted the judge in a bright orange jump suit. That may have been the case from some observer's point of view, but it would have been more accurate to report that she had tried to initiate a conversation relating to the charges being brought against her, and about the wider issues of war, renditions and the grave misuse of Shannon Airport.

Woman in court in orage jump suite

Here is our report on the court proceedings.

Court Report

Wednesday 10th July 2013, Ennis District Court,  Judge Patrick Durkan presiding.

Defendant : Margaretta D'Arcy (representing herself)

Proscecution : Inspector Tom Kennedy

The case was listed as no. 52 of 57 on the list for that day's proceedings.

The Charge (which was not read out to the court on the day) was that Mrs. D'Arcy had, in Oct 2012, 'interfered with the proper operation of an airport' contrary to S. 14 of The Airport Bye-Laws of 1994.   which is subsequently a contravention of S.16 (6) of the Air navigation Act 1950 as Amended by Section 28 of the Air Transport Navigation Act 1988 and S72 of the Irish Aviation Authority Act 1993.  (Which amendments basically increased the penalties)

Court case against GAAW member, Margaretta D’Arcy

10/07/2013 - 10:30
12/07/2013 - 18:31

Court case against two GAAW members, Margaretta D’Arcy and Niall Farrell.

Margaretta is due to attend Ennis District Court on July 10th 2013 at 10.30am, to face the totally absurd charge that she

“DID INTERFERE WITH THE PROPER USE OF THAT AIRPORT BY GOING ON THE RUNWAY WITHOUT PERMISSION.”

In fact, Margaretta and Niall went on the runway to prevent the IMPROPER use of that civilian airport. And on July 10th Margaretta will represent her views on this matter – without the need of a lawyer – by showing that Shannon’s civilian airport has been IMPROPERLY transformed into a US military base in contravention of Bunreacht na hÉireann and numerous international human rights conventions, including the Convention against Torture.  To back up her argument she will arrive at the court with two wheelbarrow loads of hard evidence and a selection of dictionaries to help determine the meaning of the “PROPER”.

However, Margaretta will not be presenting a “defence”, rather she intends to use the court to hold a “conversation” in a public place as proposed by President Michael D. Higgins.

We would urge peace supporters from all over the country to come and show solidarity with Margaretta and opposition to the on-going militarisation of Shannon airport at Ennis Court on July 10th at 10.30am.

TDs Join Protest Against US Military Use of Shannon

TDs Join Protest Against US Military Use of Shannon
Shannonwatch,  6 June 2013
As part of their ongoing response to the continuing use of Shannon Airport by the US military, Shannonwatch are holding a vigil outside the airport from 2pm to 3pm on Sunday June 9th. The vigil will be attended by independent TDs Clare Daly and Mick Wallace who will call for government action in line with its stated commitment to international law and Irish neutrality.
“The programme agreed by the present government says that they will enforce a prohibition on the use of Irish airspace, airports and related facilities for purposes not in line with the dictates of international law.” said Clare Daly TD this week. “Yet the routine movement of military planes through Shannon without any obvious oversight or inspection shows that they have little intention of doing so. We would have expected more from Labour, many of whose ministers were quite vocally opposed to the military and CIA use of Shannon in the past. But they and the rest of the government are continuing to bend the knee to the US, despite damning reports about Shannon’s involvement in renditions, the continuance of Guantanamo as a detention centre, and Obama’s drone policy.”

GALWAY PEACE ACTIVIST CHARGED

GALWAY ALLIANCE AGAINST WAR PRESS RELEASE   GALWAY PEACE ACTIVIST CHARGED

 Galway peace activist Margaretta D’Arcy is to face charges before Ennis District Court on July 10th. She has received a summons in relation to an anti-war protest carried out on the runway at Shannon Airport last October to mark both the 11th anniversary of the Afghanistan war and an international campaign to highlight the deadly use of killer drones. 

Ms D’Arcy faces the charge that she “did interfere with the proper use of Shannon airport by going on the runway without permission..”. In response Margaretta D’Arcy said: “I will be arguing in court that I was interfering with the improper use of the airport. Shannon airport is being used as a US military hub. Millions of armed troops have travelled through that airport en route to wage war and commit war crimes. CIA torturers and kidnappers have used Shannon as a stage in their “extraordinary rendition” flights. Millions of tons of arms, including killer drones, continue to be transported via Shannon to kill and maim innocent people in foreign lands. What is happening at Shannon airport is criminal – our action last October was just. It is not us that should be in the dock, but the Irish state for being an accessory to mass murder.”

The protest last October was organised by the Galway Alliance Against War. Participating with Ms D’Arcy in the protest was another peace activist Niall Farrell. He, however, has not yet received a court summons.

 

Syndicate content