Stephen McNeice
Stephen McNeice

09.53 31 Mar 2021


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Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe says the scenes of large crowds of people gathering in Dublin yesterday were 'appalling'.

Photos and videos from the Portobello area showed large crowds gathered by the canal yesterday afternoon and evening, with apparently little social distancing.

Images from a park in Milltown, meanwhile, showed a large number of young people gathered.

Some locals also complained about the amount of litter left behind afterwards.

The scenes came as ministers were meeting to decide on a cautious easing of restrictions.

The guidelines around two households meeting outdoors are not being eased until April 12th.

On The Pat Kenny Show, Minister Donohoe was asked about the videos and images.

Scenes of large crowds gathering in Dublin were 'appalling' - Donohoe

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He said: “They are appalling scenes, and it’s exactly the risk of that kind of behaviour that runs the risk of unravelling the progress we are making… and making it even more difficult to get to a better place for our country in the coming weeks and months.

“It is the kind of behaviour that poses a risk to all involved in it and their loved ones… and the repetition of it in the coming weeks and months would directly undermine our ability to beat this disease.”

He said he has no information about whether gardaí responded to the scenes.

However, he added: “I would imagine they were on their way. I know the moment they’re notified of behaviour like that, how seriously they take it.

“I see it directly in parts of my own constituency that would have green areas and a canal running through it… that if behaviour like that happened both any suppliers of alcohol and gardaí take it very, very seriously.

“It’s shocking behaviour, and I know gardaí would have responded back as quickly as they were aware of it.”

Main image: Large crowds of people in the sunny weather at Dublin's Portobello on Tuesday. Photo:Sasko Lazarov/RollingNews.ie

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