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

Lebanese Media Unite to Support Palestinians in Gaza

Joint newscast billed as Arab world’s first unified news bulletin in support of Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip More

Photogallery Australian PM Alleges ‘Coverup’ at MH17 Crash Site

Meanwhile, Russia's ambassador to Malaysia denies plane's black boxes were opened before they were handed over to Malaysian officials More

Despite Advances in AIDS Treatment, Stigma Lingers

Leading immunologist tells VOA that stigma is often what prevents those infected with disease from seeking treatment 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.
Nature of Space Exploration Enters New Agei
X
Elizabeth Lee
July 20, 2014 2:36 AM
Forty-five years ago this month, the first humans walked on the moon. It was during an era of the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union. World politics have changed since then and -- as Elizabeth Lee reports -- so has the nature of space exploration.
Video

Video Nature of Space Exploration Enters New Age

Forty-five years ago this month, the first humans walked on the moon. It was during an era of the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union. World politics have changed since then and -- as Elizabeth Lee reports -- so has the nature of space exploration.
Video

Video Chicago’s Argonne Lab Developing Battery of the Future

In 2012, the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science awarded a $120 million grant to a new technology center focused on battery development - headquartered at Argonne National Laboratory in suburban Chicago, Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there scientists are making the next technological breakthroughs in energy storage.
Video

Video In NW Pakistan, Army Offensive Causes Massive Number of Displaced

Pakistan’s army offensive in North Waziristan has resulted in the large-scale displacement of the local population. VOA's Ayaz Gul reports from northwest Pakistan where authorities say around 80 percent of the estimated 1 million internally displaced persons [IDPs] have settled in Bannu district, while much of the remaining 20 percent are scattered in nearby cities.
Video

Video Kurdish Peshmerga Force Secures Kirkuk, Its Oil

The Kurdistan regional government has sent its Peshmerga troops into the adjacent province of Kirkuk to drive out insurgents, and to secure the area's rich oil fields. By doing this, the regional government has added a fourth province to the three it officially controls. The oil also provides revenue that could make an independent Kurdistan economically strong. VOA’s Jeffrey Young went out with the Peshmerga and filed this report.
Video

Video Malaysia Reeling: Second Air Disaster in Four Months

Malaysia is reeling from the second air disaster in four months involving the country’s flag carrier. Flight 340 vanished in March and despite an extensive search, no debris has been found. And on Thursday, Flight 17, likely hit by a surface-to-air missile, came apart over eastern Ukraine. The two incidents together have left more than 500 people dead. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Kuala Lumpur.
Video

Video Diplomatic Crisis Grows Over MH17 Plane Crash

The Malaysia Airlines crash in eastern Ukraine is drawing reaction from leaders around the world. With suspicions growing that a surface-to-air missile shot down the aircraft, there are increasing tensions in the international community over who is to blame. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Undocumented Immigrants Face Perilous Journey to US, No Guarantees

Every day, hundreds of undocumented immigrants from Central America attempt the arduous journey through Mexico and turn themselves over to U.S. border patrol -- with the hope that they will not be turned away. But the dangers they face along the way are many, and as Ramon Taylor reports from the Rio Grande Valley in Texas, their fate rests on more than just the reception they get at the US border.
Video

Video Scientists Create Blackest Material Ever

Of all the black things in the universe only the infamous "black holes" are so black that not even a tiny amount of light can bounce back. But scientists have managed to create material almost as black, and it has enormous potential use. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Fog Collector Transforming Maasai Water Harvesting in Kenya

The Maasai people of Kenya are known for their cattle-herding, nomadic lifestyle. But it's an existence that depends on access to adequate water for their herds and flocks. Lenny Ruvaga reports for VOA, on a "fog collector."

AppleAndroid