Wednesday 21 August 2019

Baby blimp takes to the skies as hundreds protest

Protestors show their anger at Donald Trump’s visit to Ireland. Photo: PA
Protestors show their anger at Donald Trump’s visit to Ireland. Photo: PA

Ian Begley and David Raleigh

Just as the US president touched down at Shannon Airport, an inflatable, nappy-wearing Trump took to the skies above Dublin.

Hundreds of demonstrators assembled at the Garden of Remembrance yesterday, including the famous inflatable Trump baby, to protest the American leader's visit to Ireland. A coalition of civic society organisations and political parties led the colourful demonstrators down through O'Connell Street and College Green before returning to Parnell Square.

Many made their opposition to Donald Trump crystal clear by carrying placards bearing slogans that critiqued his most controversial policies, such as "F**k you and your guns", "No wall, no borders", and "Trump is a climate denier".

The rally, co-ordinated under the umbrella group Stop Trump Ireland, featured numerous speakers, including asylum seeker Lesley Mkoko, from Swaziland.

"It's disgraceful that the Irish Government have stood idly by and done nothing while Trump continues to cause so much harm to so many," he said.

Many children also attended the demonstration with their parents, including brothers Conall (11) and Fiach O'Bryon (10), from Dublin's North Strand. "We just don't like how he's treating kids in Mexico," said Conall.

"He just doesn't seem like a nice person and I'm really surprised that people voted for him in the first place."

Meanwhile, protests in Shannon were still in full swing as Mr Trump returned to Co Clare after attending a D-Day commemoration in France.

"We are supposed to be a neutral country yet we have consistently allowed American military planes through Shannon. No planes have ever been examined. They do what they like here," said Fiona Wheeler, from Ennistymon, Co Clare.

Others who travelled to Shannon included Trump supporters Catherine Purcell, from Thurles, Co Tipperary, and Co Laois couple Sheila and Larry Sheehan, holding a large poster saying 'God Bless Trump'.

Irish Independent

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