Thursday 20 June 2019

Letters to the Editor: 'Rockall row is about more than just our fishery rights'

'Any concession to British threats would be enormously damaging to our fishing industry but also to the wider Irish national interest.' Stock image
'Any concession to British threats would be enormously damaging to our fishing industry but also to the wider Irish national interest.' Stock image
Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor

Colette Brown, (Irish Independent, 12 June 2019) suggests “it is difficult to understand why Scottish ministers have adopted such a belligerent attitude over Rockall of late”. 

Unfortunately, it is not surprising at all.  What is being referred to as the “Scottish government” is a devolved part of the British state run by Westminster and it is the British state which has made the claim to Rockall. 

The claim is almost certainly in breach of the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea. But we should not dismiss this episode as mere pomposity: there is a clear strategic objective being pursued.

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Any concession to British threats would be enormously damaging to our fishing industry but also to the wider Irish national interest.

Conceding the principle of British sovereignty over Rockall, even as part of a deal which granted temporary Irish fishing rights, would involve the concession of oil, gas and mineral exploration rights as well.

Being drawn into negotiations which tacitly recognise the British claim must be avoided. The issue must be settled in an international court.

Sean Gibbons

Balbriggan, Co Dublin

Ireland some distance from making territorial claim stick

REGARDING the Opinion article by John Downing (‘Coveney dials back rhetoric as historic Rockall tug-of-war rears its ugly head’, Irish Independent, June 12): “The long-disputed territory, which is located around 385km from the coast of Scotland, but 370km from Ireland.”

Actually, the closest part of Ireland to Rockall is Tory Island at 423km.

The Scottish St Kilda archipelago is 301km from Rockall. And the permanently inhabited Scottish island of North Uist is 367km from Rockall.

Furthermore, Ireland and the UK have agreed to an Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ)boundary that places Rockall within the United Kingdom’s EEZ.

Incidentally, an EEZ stretches from the baseline out to 370.4km from its coast.

Thomas Murray

Perth, Scotland


Hillarites should realise Trump will cruise 2020 vote

ONE would have thought by now the Hillarites would have stopped with the whingeing (‘Voters didn’t elect Trump – it was the US electoral system’, Letters, Irish Independent, June 11).

The American system is what it is, designed in a manner which prevents states with large populations dictating to smaller states. It’s not perfect, however neither is our own system nor the British ‘first past the post’.

In 2014 I was on a cruise from Texas. All the passengers were American.

I’m a smoker so I tended to join others in the smoking area.

The general attitude amongst my fellow nicoteenies was Hillary, no way – ABH. Many had voted Obama and felt betrayed.

The smoking congregation contained persons of many hues. We smokers are a broad church.

Many of my brethren were from the Bible Belt, Rust Belt, some from California and Michigan.

The Californians were unhappy with the way their liberal (?) legislatures spent their tax dollars protecting illegal immigrants who were undercutting wages. Others were unhappy jobs were being exported. I took the Fifth on that subject.

Now all of this occurred before Trump descended from the mountain bearing his tablets of intent.

He preached in the Agora to the people, while in Olympus Hillary berated the Deplorables.

And so it came to pass, Trump ascended to the White House while Hillary ended in the Whinge House.

Hillarites should cease scourging themselves, accept what cannot be changed, gird their loins and search for a safe place in 2020 when the lord of votes is triumphantly crowned Potus.

Stand with awe, mouth agape, as Ivanka becomes his anointed successor.

Gerry Floyd

Drogheda, Co Louth


Surely we can sniff out a solution to save the bee

MIGHT I suggest a possible solution for all interested parties to the absolute crisis of the reduced bee population?

As I understand it, one of the major factors contributing to this crisis is the fact the bees extract nectar from both sprayed and non-sprayed flowers/weeds as they cannot tell the difference between the two.

When they extract nectar from the sprayed ones they are, at the same time, consuming the poisonous spray which is in turn killing them.

Why not then research the possibility of adding some sort of bee repellent odour to such spray?

Dorothy Ryan-Purcell

Cloughjordan, Co Tipperary

Irish Independent

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