Gardaí were in the firing line as they attempted to manage large crowds during an anti-lockdown protest in Dublin today.
The protest began at 2pm as they marched through the city towards St. Stephens Green. Access points to the green were closed, preventing protesters from entering.
An Garda Síochána implemented a policing plan which included traffic diversions, road closures and some LUAS services being suspended.
A video on social media shows one protester making their way through a crowd towards a garda line and appears to have aimed at the gardaí and let off fireworks in their direction. As gardaí responded and made attempts to capture the person, the video shows other protesters appearing to block gardaí from their efforts.
Gardai have said a number of arrests were made following the clashes.
Antoinette Cunningham, General Secretary of the AGSI tweeted ‘the blatant disregard for their (garda) safety’ and ‘policing colleagues are having to deal with very difficult policing challenges today.’
I have been spoken with a number of @AGSI_Ireland colleagues after today’s shocking scenes in Dublin…the blatant disregard for their safety & the complete disregard for public health is truly unacceptable…our Gardai and the general public deserve better after a difficult year https://t.co/D8uMTzWffX
— antoinette (@antoabs) February 27, 2021
Simon Harris TD described the protests as ‘pure thuggery on the streets of Dublin’.
Pure thuggery on the streets of Dublin today. It’s not a “protest”. It’s an attack on our national effort. The abuse directed at the Gardai is sickening & shameful. Disgraceful. Thoughts with the Gardai and their families
— Simon Harris TD (@SimonHarrisTD) February 27, 2021