Locals' concerns have been listened to, and “the reason for the blockade to be in place no longer exists,” according to Senator Timmy Dooley
This morning, Minister for State for Integration Joe O’Brien informed the Inch residents in Clare that over the next four weeks, no new additional International Protection (IP) applicants will be brought to Magowna House.
Speaking to Newstalk Breakfast, Senator Dooley said locals have met with Government representatives and had their concerns listened to.
“I never supported the idea, but I understood where people were coming from,” he said.
“Conversations will be had but we do need quickly to move to the removal of the blockade now – the time and space was given.”
‘Them and us’
Senator Dooley said the next step for the community is “engagement and dialogue” with asylum seekers.
“Working with the asylum seekers as well to ensure that there isn't a ‘them and us’ in the community,” he said.
“[It’s] picked up from social media and elsewhere where every minor indiscretion by an asylum seeker is amplified and highlighted on social media.
“The message abroad is that the asylum seekers are a marauding bunch of young men wielding swords and attacking – awful stuff.”
Senator Dooley rejected the argument that this compromise made the Government “look weak.”
“The purpose being put forward by some of the locals was the need to continue the blockade because they were afraid more was coming,” he said.
“The operator of the business at the time said there will be no more coming because the property is not ready to take any more and that will take at least a month.
“In my conversations with the group that were there and with the owner, they said ‘Well, we need to get that from the Government.’
“I think Joe O'Brien's presence was about clarifying.”
People Before Profit–Solidarity TD Eugene "Gino" Kenny said the roadblocks and rhetoric around the asylum seekers in Clare “is just not helpful at all.”
“The vast majority of time asylum seekers have been into the community across the country, people have invited them in with welcoming arms,” he said.
“Thus far, Ireland has welcomed nearly 100,000 people and that's unprecedented.”
A protest in Deputy Kenny’s constituency of Clondalkin was reported following the announcement that the area would house asylum seekers.
“They have a right to protest – I disagree with them,” he said.
“Our own people went across the world and sometimes they didn't meet that welcome.”
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