Refugees from Northern Ireland are accommodated at the RDS in Dublin and at the Ursuline Convent in Sligo.
On 9 August 1971 internment without trial was introduced, under the 1922 Special Powers Act, into Northern Ireland by Prime Minister of Northern Ireland Brian Faulkner. This policy also known as known as Operation Demetrius was against those suspected of IRA and terrorist involvement.
Driven from their homes by fear of rioting, dozens of families fled across the border seeking refuge in the Republic of Ireland. The refugees are given shelter in army camps, schools and institutions all over the state.
Women and children travel from Northern Ireland by bus to the Royal Dublin Society (RDS) Showgrounds in the Dublin suburb of Ballsbridge. It is estimated that some 101 refugees are being cared for by the Civil Defence at the RDS and about 70 per cent of them are children.
One woman interviewed says she left Northern Ireland because of the British soldiers,
They were firing rubber bullets in through our windows.
Another woman left for the same reason. She saw British soldiers firing without a legitimate cause.
A girl that was with us was shot with a rubber bullet as well.
The sisters at the Ursuline Convent in Sligo are also accommodating refugees. Some of the refugees make the most of the facilities on offer and play tennis or football.
An RTÉ News report broadcast on 14 August 1971.