Protesters vow to 'shut down' Israeli embassy in Dublin
Published 04/06/2010 | 05:00
PROTESTERS blocked off access to the Israeli Embassy in Dublin last night.
Some 200 demonstrators sat on the street outside the building in Ballsbridge, chanting slogans. They vowed to stay the night to "shut down the embassy".
Earlier, the latest Irish-based deportee from the Gaza aid flotilla addressed the gathering and spoke of his terror at being confronted by Israeli troops. Libyan-born Isam Ben Ali described the ordeal of his ship being taken by Israeli soldiers. "They (the soldiers) came to us at 4am," he said.
"They came to our boats, they shoved us with their guns. Four or five boats came around our boat and jumped inside. We tried to protect ourselves -- we don't need to fight with them."
Mr Ben Ali, who holds an Irish passport, added that he was electrically tasered several times while others were hit with the guns.
Also speaking at the protest was Labour Party human rights spokesman Joe Costello, who called Israel's actions against the aid ships as "nothing less than a war crime".
The organisers, the Irish Anti-War Movement, used the event to call for the expulsion of the Israeli ambassador to Ireland and a boycott of Israeli goods.
Another demonstration will take place in Dublin tomorrow, assembling at Parnell Square at 2pm.