Protests at gates of Leinster House

Wednesday 29 September 2010 21.59
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Leinster House - Truck driven up to gates
Leinster House - Truck driven up to gates
Leinster House - Anglo Irish Bank slogans on truck
Leinster House - Anglo Irish Bank slogans on truck

Protestors gathered outside Leinster House in Dublin this afternoon to mark the first day of the new Dáil term.

Many were opposing Government cuts and the supports being offered to banking institutions.

One man will appear in court tomorrow after he drove a cement truck up to the gates of the Dáil early this morning.

There were up to 20 individual groups or causes protesting.

There have also been demonstrations outside Anglo Irish Bank headquarters on nearby St Stephen's Green.

Among the groups gathered in Dublin were the Irish Congress of Trade Unions, the Children's Mental Health Coalition, the Irish National Organisation for the Unemployed, People Before Profit, Patients Together, SIPTU and the Aerial Spraying Protest Group.

The protests were part of a European day of action.

Truck protest

A 41-year-old man will appear in court tomorrow after a concrete mixer truck was driven up to the gates of Leinster House.

The words 'Anglo Toxic Bank' were displayed on the drum of the truck and a billboard on the back of the truck said 'all politicians should be sacked'.

The truck has since been removed and Kildare Street has fully reopened to traffic.

The operation to clear the entrance was made more difficult because the vehicle's brake lines had been cut, immobilising it.

On RTÉ's Morning Ireland, Fine Gael TD Fergus O'Dowd claimed a garda on duty had to jump out of the way as the truck was driven up to the entrance.

'I think it's a very serious incident and I think it's an appalling vista to be doing your job as a garda or usher in Dáil Éireann and to be seriously injured', Mr O'Dowd said.

A statement from the Houses of the Oireachtas confirmed that the incident would not disrupt today's proceedings.

This is not the first time this truck has been involved in a protest.

It blocked the entrance to a branch of Anglo Irish Bank in Galway in April.

Elsewhere, more than 200 people attended lunchtime protests in Galway organised by SIPTU health workers and the lobby group ‘Galway Says No to Health Cuts’.

Campaigners held a demonstration outside the offices of Anglo Irish bank before joining the trade union rally in Eyre Square.