Irish Republican News · November 18, 2017
[Irish Republican News]

[Irish Republican News]
IRISH REPUBLICAN NEWS: Rock star rocked back by Sinn Fein Mayor
Rock star rocked back by Sinn Fein Mayor

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Former rock star and TV celebrity Bob Geldof has been accused of hypocrisy after returning his freedom of the city of Dublin in protest at disgraced Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi holding the same honour, while he retains the title of Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire.

Suu Kyi, a darling of Irish celebrities while she was under house arrest in Myanmar (formerly Burma), was described by Geldof (pictured, left) as “an accomplice to murder and a handmaiden to genocide”.

The accusation refers to the treatment of Myanmar’s Rohingya Muslim population by the country’s armed forces.

However, Mayor of Dublin Micheal Mac Donncha (pictured, right) lashed out at Geldof’s decision, saying that it is “ironic that he [Geldof] makes this gesture while proudly retaining his title as Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire, given the shameful record of British imperialism across the globe.” Geldof was knighted by Britain in 1986.

Geldof returned his Freedom of Dublin on Monday morning.

Speaking at City Hall on Monday morning, the Dublin-born singer, activist and businessman declared that he did not want to be on the same list as someone whom he described as a “genocidalist”.

“Aung San Suu Kyi was extravagantly welcomed to this city,” said Mr Geldof, who was accompanied by Independent Dublin City Councillor Mannix Flynn. “I participated in that. And it turned out that she’s a killer.”

He said his friend Bono of U2 had tried to put three or four calls through to Ms Suu Kyi, “because they’re friends”, but that she wouldn’t take the calls.

Mr Mac Donncha claimed Mr Geldof’s protest was hypocritical as the musician holds an honorary knighthood despite “the shameful record of British imperialism across the globe”.

In a statement, Mr Mac Donncha said Sir Bob’s city honour protest was ironic given his British title.

“I find it ironic that he makes this gesture while proudly retaining his title as Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire, given the shameful record of British imperialism across the globe,” he said.

The Mayor further criticised Geldof for “grossly insulting” those who fought in the 1916 Easter Rising against Britain when he compared them to Islamic State (ISIS) fighters last year, “causing offence to Dubliners and Irish people generally.”

The former Boomtown Rats singer rejected criticism of his action and described Mr Mac Donncha as a “geezer”.

“Sinn Fein have always been apologists for mayhem and murder,” he said. “It’s a complete non-sequitur.”

© 2017 Irish Republican News