Up to 60 people protested outside Carrick-on-Suir Garda Station on Monday night over the arrest of Socialist Party TD Paul Murphy and three others in connection with the trapping of Tanaiste Joan Burton in her car at a water charges demonstration in Dublin.
The hour-long candlelit protest was organised by the Carrick-on-Suir Right2Water Campaign group to highlight their anger over the arrest of Deputy Murphy, Anti-Austerity Alliance councillors for Tallaght Mick Murphy and Kieran Mahon and Scott Masterston of socialist republican group Eirigi by gardai on Monday morning.
The four were arrested in connection with an anti-water charges protest in Jobstown, Tallaght in Dublin last November during which the Tanaiste was blockaded in her car for several hours. They were all released without charge on Monday afternoon after being detained for questioning and a file is being prepared for the Director of Public Prosecutions.
Elaine Power of Carrick Right2Water Campaign group said they were angry at the decision to arrest the four anti-water charges campaigners.
One of the four, Cllr. Mick Murphy, was originally from Killenaule, she pointed out.
She said the incident in which the Tanaiste was trapped in her car at the anti-water charges protest in Tallaght had been “blown out of all proportion” and these arrests were just bullying tactics against the anti-water charges campaign.
“I don’t believe she (Joan Burton) was imprisoned. If they thought she was in danger they would have got her out of there.”
She said they were also angry at the manner in which Deputy Paul Murphy was arrested. She thought it was excessive to send six gardai to his house to arrest him and asked why he couldn’t have just been asked to attend his local garda station by appointment.
This is the second candlelit protest the Carrick-on-Suir Right2Water Campaign has staged outside Carrick-on-Suir Garda Station in the past month.
The first on January 15 was organised to highlight their dissatisfaction over the support they received from An Garda Siochana during their protests against the installation of water meters at some estates in Carrick-on-Suir.