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Protest at Irish Consulate In Edinburgh in support of Rossport 5
A solidarity action calling for the release of the Rossport Five [jailed at the behest of Shell for blockading the construction of a gas pipeline in the west of Ireland] took place today outside the Irish Consulate in Edinburgh. In an action planned from the Irish Barrio and spread through the spokes council system, a bus load of Dissent participants left the camp at 7.30am and picketed the consualte.
As usual the Irish barrio is acting as some predicatable social hub for anyone who likes staying up staring in to a fire and having intense conversations. It was 3am last night, we were still up and there came a panic an alarm that the police were entering the site. Rumour mill churning this was no occupation, but rather two bobbies on the beat.
So with sleep supergluing our eyes together we got up before seven and shuffled over to the embers of the fire, before heading off on an over flowing fifity seater into the city to picket the consulate in solidarity with the Rossport Five. In an interview not a so long ago Philip McGrath referred to some of those at the solidarity gathering as 'Hairy mollies' this morning the hairy mollies struggled with hangovers and the paranoia of constant repetitious meetings and the tailing of the bus by cops to carry out what has so far been the most enjoyable action here yet.
There were about five cops at the consulate when we got there, guarded like every other building on the street contrary to some peoples paranoia. We danced as a fiddle, drums and guitar emerged. while clowns subverted the power of the cops others handed out hundreds of leafletts to passers by. The police when they move move in en masse, moving people off the steps and back on to the streets.
A jackeen [slang for someone from Dublin] clown described how
Enda Duffy, a participant over from UCD [Irish University] said basically I'm here to in solidarity with the four people that have been imprisoned illegally by the Irish state because because they woudn't allow a pirvate company basically an unethical company to come on to their land and what they had left of their farms. Its a disgrace whats been doen to these people, its just a disgrace the irish state has once again let the people its meant to represent down.'
Eoin his brother described how 'basically we were just sitting on the steps peacefully, the cops have just come out and basically there was a van each per person so theres a big line of cops on the steps and we are peacefully protesting.'
Another described how 'Out of nowhere we hear the sirens, and then one riot van, two, three, four, five, six and there was nearly one riot van per person which is quite ironic really as it was intimidation tactics and we have to remember we have a right to be here and we will not allow these people to intimidate us.'
Now its off to get a bus and decide upon our course of action for the blockades.
More on the issue of Shell, the Gaspipeline and Rossport
More on the G8 and the protests in Scotland