In light of ongoing controversies concerning lack of accountability of the Gardaí, and serious shortcomings on the part of the Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission (GSOC), Afri, supported by the undersigned, wishes to draw renewed attention to serious concerns around the policing of the Corrib Gas Project. Local residents have exhausted all available means of redress – including reports to GSOC, the Minster for Justice and the Garda Commissioner – without receiving satisfactory responses. Therefore, we now call for an independent and comprehensive enquiry into all aspects of the policing of the Corrib Gas Project to seek redress and accountability in relation to abuses which are, sadly, ongoing.
These concerns include, for example, the verbal and physical abuse of Willie Corduff by Gardaí as he took part in a peaceful protest in Glengad on April 22nd and 23rd 2009.This was followed by an attack by a group of men in dark clothes with their faces covered. During this attack Mr. Corduff was struck on the head by a blunt leather-covered object and then beaten until he lost consciousness. Mr. Corduff was removed to hospital and suffered serious pain and distress for many weeks afterwards. This attack occurred while Gardaí were in close proximity and no satisfactory investigation into the attack has ever taken place.
There are concerns also about the sinking of Pat O’Donnell’s boat the Iona Isle, which was boarded by masked men in June 2009. Pat O’Donnell, recipient of a state bravery award in 2013, and his crewman Martin O’Donnell were attacked and held down while the Iona Isle was holed and sunk under cover of darkness. Some hours later men fitting the description of those who boarded the boat were reported to have been picked up in Killala harbour by a transport vehicle used by the Shell Corrib Gas project. Both Mr. O’Donnell and his crewman were later admitted to Castlebar General hospital. Continue reading “Call for Independent Enquiry into Policing of Corrib Gas Project”