Friday 9 December 2016

Polish officials express alarm over 'spike in number of racist incidents in Ireland'

Published 06/09/2016 | 10:26

Michael Mulcahy
Michael Mulcahy

Polish officials have expressed alarm over an apparent spike in the number of racist incidents in Ireland.

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Poland’s Honorary Consul to Cork, Michael Mulcahy, said that while Ireland has been a very tolerant and welcoming country, there is growing concern over a number of recent suspected race hate incidents.

One incident, captured on mobile phone footage, revealed an Irish woman warning her Polish neighbours that the IRA should return to bomb Ireland free of migrants.

In the UK, Polish officials and police officers met with Government members over a post-Brexit spike in the number of suspected racist attacks around London, Essex and Kent.

In one case, a Polish man was beaten to death on the street of a UK town in a suspected hate attack.

Last weekend, two Polish men socialising outside a pub were hospitalised after being attacked by a gang of English men.

The Warsaw authorities have now asked that Polish police be allowed liaise directly with the UK police in a bid to reduce the number of hate attacks.

Mr Mulcahy said there was now growing concern over a number of recent incidents in Ireland which foreign nationals appear to have been targeted.

In Dublin, offensive graffiti was sprayed on the home of East European residents in one estate.

In a Cork town, a woman shouted at her Polish neighbours that “the IRA should come back” to free Ireland from East European migrants.

Mr Mulcahy said the incidents are of concern but do not reflect in general how Ireland has welcomed migrants.

“Ireland, and Cork in particular, has been very tolerant and welcoming places so of course these kind of incidents are a matter of concern,” he said.

The latest incident saw two Polish children admitting they are now afraid to go to school because of the racist heckling by their Cork neighbour.

A shocking video clip, released by the Polish family to Cork radio station 96FM, revealed the female neighbour of the Polish family warning the East Europeans were “leeches” and that the IRA should now tackle the migrant issue.

“The IRA should come back and bomb the Polish out of our country,” the woman shouted at her Polish neighbours.

“They (East Europeans) are taking over the whole f***ing country. They took everything they could out of the system. You took all our work.

Now the Irish cannot even look after the Irish. You’re only scumbags,” she screamed.

The verbal attack was linked to a minor dispute between the neighbours over children playing and cats owned by the Irish woman.

Martina and her 10 year old brother said they are now so intimidated by their neighbour they do not want to socialise outside in their garden for fear of being targeted.

The Polish family does not want to be identified for fear of being targeted.

However, they decided to release the video footage when the woman abused their 10 year old son as he played in their own back garden.

“It started about a month age when she threw eggs at our back garden.

The next day she knocked at our door and gave out to our parents.

Basically just insulting Polish people,” Martina said.

“We have been here for three years – we actually lived here (in this estate) before she moved in.”

“We did complain about her cats but so did everyone else around here.”Martin said the family were appalled when the woman targeted her 10 year old brother.

“She told him he should not be playing with Irish kids. That’s what she said to him. She was insulting him and saying he was Polish.”

Gardaí are now investigating the matter.

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