News / Europe

Thousands of Irish Protest Austerity Measures

Thousands of protesters parade through Central Dublin against the Republic's four-year austerity plan, Ireland, 27 Nov. 2010
Thousands of protesters parade through Central Dublin against the Republic's four-year austerity plan, Ireland, 27 Nov. 2010
Tom Rivers

Tens-of-thousands of protesters marched through the streets of Dublin Saturday to express their anger at the government's handling of the country's financial crisis and its budget-cutting austerity solution.

The demonstration, organized by Ireland's trade unions, is the biggest yet since the country's economic woes became apparent.

Among those in the crowd were people from all walks of life, united in their condemnation of the government and wary of the looming European Union-International Monetary Fund bailout, which was brought on by years of reckless bank lending that turned bad after a property bubble burst.

"I am very angry and very upset. I am very sad about what has happened to our country, very worried about my grandchildren, just everything is collapsing," said one protester. ""We are protesting against the huge debts that are being imposed on us now…I do not know when we are ever going to come out of this, which is why I am basically here."

Phil McFadden is President of the Dublin Council of Trade Unions and was an organizer. "We were fairly much aware that there could have been problems today and we are glad that it passed off peacefully," he said.

Unions represent roughly a third of Ireland's workforce.

A number of speakers rallied the large crowd on O'Connell Street. The general theme was one of fairness, mindful that many citizens were already struggling with reduced wages and rising bills.

It was the first major demonstration since the country opened negotiations with EU and IMF representatives on a likely $113 billion loan to save the country from bankruptcy. Irish media have been reporting that the interest rate of the bailout will be somewhere between six- and seven percent, a figure viewed as too high by many in the country.

In conjunction with loan rescue, the government of Brian Cowen has formulated a four-year austerity plan that includes tax hikes and budget cuts. The details are to be published on December seventh.

European finance officials are finalizing the Irish agreement this weekend and they hope to announce its specifics on Sunday.

You May Like

Philippines, Muslim Rebels Try to Salvage Peace Pact

Peace process faces major setback after botched military operation to find terrorists results in bloody gunbattle between government forces, Moro Islamic Liberation Front fighters More

Republicans Expect Long, Expensive Presidential Battle

Political strategist says eventual winner will be one who can put together strongest coalition of various conservative groups that make up Republican Party More

Video New Wheelchair Is Easier to Use, Increases Mobility

Engineers have come up with a lever-operated design that makes use of easily accessible bicycle technology More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More