Republicans seize bank HQ

Six Eirigi protesters including Dublin city councillor Louise Minihan locked themselves inside the headquarters of Anglo Irish Bank in Dublin on Saturday morning.

While the six stormed the entrance of Anglo Irish Bank and occupied it for nearly four hours, outside, hundreds of protesters blew whistles, displayed banners and used air horns.

They were demonstrating against the National Asset Management Agency (NAMA) which now owns the bank, the subject of a criminal fraud investigation.

There was a minor scuffle with the Gardai as the protesters escaped from the building.

Eirigi chairman Brian Leeson said: “Ireland is in crisis. Half a million people are unemployed while thousands more are emigrating.

“All the while the Dublin government is trying desperately to save the banks and the business class, while workers suffer,” he said.

“Drastic action must be taken to oppose these anti-social policies. Today’s action has been taken in this spirit.

“Eirigi is calling on community groups, trade unions and every organisation that represents working people to take similar action to bring this appalling situation to an end. “

The Irish Republican Socialist Party said its members attended the protest in solidarity against what it said was “the blind robbery of working people” in the form of the government’s NAMA proposal to manage the assets of the failed banks.

“This government, the establishment and its cronies are of the view that throwing billions at our banks and robbing the taxpayer blind through NAMA is ‘manageable’, but nothing could be further from the truth,” the IRSP said in a statement.

“While these institutions, who played a major role in this crisis are being bailed out, normal working people continue to suffer. The IRSP believes that this money would be much better spent coming to the aid of struggling families, and in providing homes for those who are suffering the most.”

They said it was “inexcusable” that Irish men and women must sleep on the streets in their thousands with over 300,000 properties said to be lying derelict in Ireland.

“We would urge all workers, whether private or public sector, to unite and to mobilise to bring about radical and lasting change in this country.

“Republican Socialists must continue to fight against NAMA and indeed every facet of this system which subordinates the interests of ordinary people to the profiteering and risk-taking of corrupt millionaires.”

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