Questions For Drew


From top: 34 Frederick Street North, Dublin last night; Garda Commissioner Drew Harris

This afternoon.

The Irish Council for Civil Liberties has released a statement in regards to the removal of housing activists from 34 Frederick Street North, Dublin 1 last night – which the group says involved “over disproportionate and unaccountable tactics”.

They write:

The Irish Council for Civil Liberties (ICCL) is today demanding answers from An Garda Síochána over the tactics used during an eviction of housing rights activists from a building at North Frederick Street in Dublin’s North Inner City last night.

ICCL is calling for a swift public report from the Garda Commissioner regarding the Gardaí’s decision-making in advance of last night’s operation, and the reasons for and circumstances of the arrests and alleged injuries sustained by protesters.

Liam Herrick, Executive Director of the ICCL said:

ICCL has been highlighting the lack of transparency regarding the Gardaí’s policies and tactics in the areas of protest policing and use of force. We are calling on the Garda Commissioner to provide answers about what decisions were taken in advance of, and during, last night’s operation.

We want to know: what was the legal basis for the Garda operation? Was it on request of the owner? What are the protocols for such requests? Was there engagement with the occupiers in advance of the Garda operation? What consideration was there of the need to use minimal force? What was the basis for the arrests?

ICCL demands answers from Gardaí over disproportionate and unaccountable tactics used at North Frederick Street eviction (Irish Council for Civil Liberties)


“What we have seen raises concerns about possible excessive and unnecessary use of force against what appear to be largely peaceful protestors. Whenever the lawful use of force by An Garda Síochána is unavoidable, it must be used with restraint and in proportion to the seriousness of the law enforcement objective.

Gardaí should only facilitate and support the actions of private security personnel where they are lawful and do not involve excessive force. In this regard, it is of concern that the private security personnel reportedly failed to display identity badges, as required under section 30 of the Private Security Services Act.

We urge that these events be investigated as a matter of urgency to ascertain if human rights abuses were committed, and if so, ensure appropriate action.”

Fiona Crowley, Research and Legal Manager for Amnesty International Ireland this afternoon.

Earlier: Second-Hand Import?

How Can You Justify These Actions?

Yesterday: What’s Going On Here?

Eamonn Farrell/Rollingnews

38 thoughts on “Questions For Drew

  1. Giggidygoo

    Someone, somewhere knows where the thugmobile has been stored. God help the thugmeister once it’s found out.

      1. johnny

        …the only thugs involved are the private paramilitary force sanctioned by FG and its brit commissioner to forcibly evict peaceful protestors….
        are you getting well paid to be such a twit?

        1. Cian

          forcibly evict peaceful protestors?
          They were asked to leave and refused.
          They were given a court order to leave, and they refused.
          So yes, they needed to be forcibly ejected (or they wouldn’t leave).

          1. johnny

            … it was a peaceful protest at the govt’s dereliction of duty towards its citizens in providing affordable housing or the environment to actually build housing, like say capital.FG’s minister of justice and its brit commissioner approved the violent and intimidating show and use of force by a landlords own private Policía Federal.Drew also send a few the ‘heavier’ lads around,just to keep an eye on things and provide backup and support if required…….
            still a decent distraction for FG from the absolute and total diplomatic fiasco of a cancelled POTUS visit, there’s sure to be a breakthrough any day now in some long forgotten cold case!

          2. DeKloot

            It was an illegal protest. Sure. No question. But if the Garda are to get involved, they should be applying he letter of the law to resolve. They did not. They allowed masked and unidentifiable ‘security’ to access the property, violently remove the protestors and protect them while they did so. This was clearly a criminal act and they supported it. This was appalling and if the new boy in the Park wants to hang of to his new gig for a wet Wednesday, he’d better sort this stuff out.

            I’m no supporter of illegally occupied properties, but this sort of thing will only make it worse for everyone – absolutely everyone – not better.

          1. Johnny

            …the biggest twit and bore on here is you,day in day out,tread after tread it’s Sinn Fein,this/that,your the only commentator that’s managed to make any “connection” here!
            Why ?
            Do you really have nothing better to do,with clearly your rather pathetic existence,the only excuse is your getting paid,if not then….
            Your a useless troll.

          2. Marylou's ArmaLite

            so you agree it wasn’t sanctioned by FG, but by the courts, glad we cleared up your fake news, good boy.

    1. SOQ

      Thugmobile ha.

      Knowingly driving an illegal and probably unsafe vehicle into a place where there was crowds of people was downright dangerous. If the guards stopped you or I in similar, the vehicle would be impounded and a prosecution would follow.

  2. newsjustin

    I have a question…..more a wonderment really…that someone might be able to clarify.

    Cards Commisioner Harris is wearing medal ribbons in the picture above. Presumably these are medals awarded for his services in the North. What’s the protocol/rules with wearing medals on a uniform that’s not the uniform you were awarded the medals in?

      1. Andyourpointiswhatexactly?

        The Old Boy was wondering about that last week. I’m not sure if there was an answer to it, though.

    1. The Old Boy

      I agree that it is very odd. I mentioned it when that photo first appeared on Broadsheet last week. There was a letter in the Irish Times this morning from a retired captain of the Irish Army stating that usual protocol is only to wear the decorations awarded by the state the uniform of which one is wearing. I imagine the Garda rulebook has specific rules on how and when decorations may be worn on the uniform.

      1. Andyourpointiswhatexactly?

        I actually spent time online trying to find any such Regs last week. I couldn’t find any.

          1. Brother Barnabas

            and you’d be right not to

            is certainly very capable of doing things well – but only things she WANTS to do. i’ve long since stopped asking her to do anything.

        1. The Old Boy

          Good luck getting your hands on Garda internal documents. They treat last week’s canteen menu as Top Secret.

      1. The Old Boy

        Callinan’s medals are Garda issued though – on the left is the Garda Millennium Medal, issued to all members serving in the year 2000. I think the one on the right is a long service medal.

    2. Mattress Pat

      The “British” way of doing things is to wear them on the other side. The Defence Forces do not wear decorations awarded by other nations, not sure about the Gardai.

  3. Jonickal

    Those protestors weren’t leaving unless you dragged them out kicking and screaming, which is what had to be done here this morning. If you don’t like that, tough, because that’s the way it is.

  4. f_lawless

    Just a thought,was this a bit of poorly conceived optics from the Gardai’ – ie to intimidate and deter would-be protest squatters from future actions?

  5. gringo

    In fairness, Harris is only using a system he is most familiar with, using the legitimate police force as backup for paramilitary thugs.

  6. Truth in the News

    Would it not be easier for Commissioner Harris to wear his PSNI issue uniform and leave the
    decorations on where they were originally affixed rather than using the Garda Siochana uniform
    Has Harris relinquished his British Official Secrets obligations if he has he should be able to
    assist in investigations into collusion in the North during his tenure with the Police there.

Comments are closed.