- 22 Nov 22
"Putin is weaponising migration, Russia is bombing infrastructure to, in many ways, provoke more people to leave Ukraine," the Taoiseach said today.
Recent protests against incoming refugees have only fuelled Vladimir Putin’s war-time agenda, Taoiseach Micheál Martin has concluded.
A large crowd of several hundred demonstrators blocked traffic on the East Wall Road last night as they protested the arrival of 80 asylum seekers who arrived last week.
The 80 men from Somalia, Afghanistan, and Nigeria are the first of 380 people who are to be housed in the old ESB building on North Richmond Street; a low-quality building largely unsuitable for housing anyone. This comes only days after another group gathered on Saturday outside the same building to protest. Speakers at last night’s protest included those from Ireland’s far-right, along with at least one elected representative.
Whilst addressing the second protest, the Taoiseach admitted “There should be consultation,” adding, "But that said, we have a very significant issue in terms of migration, not just in Ireland, but across Europe."
The arrival of refugees into Ireland comes at unprecedented levels due to the influx of Ukrainians as well, seeking sanctuary from their war-torn country.
In his statement, Mr Martin emphasised this point, stating that "Putin wants these types of issues to arise in societies…He is weaponising migration, Russia is bombing infrastructure to, in many ways, provoke more people to leave Ukraine."
"That’s clearly the agenda over the winter period, as well as the weaponisation of food and the weaponisation of energy, which has led to the energy price increases and the energy crisis more generally. As a society, I would appeal that we hold this together.”
Speaking highly of the families who have warmly welcomed Ukrainian refugees thus far into their homes, he urged people to continue with that same spirit, commending the “exceptional work in welcoming Ukrainian families.”
The government has plans to soon announce a call for vacant homes to provide further housing for Ukrainian refugees, as space and capacity remains a challenge.
Roderic O’ Gorman, Children’s Minister, has plans to tell an Oireachtas Committee today that his department is in the midst of plans for a comprehensive, real-time database to cover all properties that may be identified as suitable housing arrangements.
His department thus far has provided accommodation for almost 46,000 Ukrainian people, and 17,000 who have applied for international protection.
Many have spoken out about the influx in far-right, anti-refugee rhetoric in the aftermath of the East Wall protest, pointing out the holes in the #IrelandIsFull arguments.
Many housing activists are stating why migrants and refugees for a decades old housing crisis when the country has over 166,000 empty properties is absurd, and plays into the hands of those responsible for the housing crisis. The Government, vulture funds, multinational corporations, private property holders are seeing vulnerable communities pitted against each other.
People blaming the housing crisis on refugees have made themselves the useful idiots of vulture funds, speculators, and bankers. They have made billions destroying our communities over decades but you're protesting people who just got here?
— Darragh (@Taiwo_Oifigiuil) November 21, 2022
Finglas-Asylum seekers moved after protest against them.
Kill-Equestrian centre that was earmarked for Ukranian refugees set on fire so could no longer be used.#EastWall-Local concerns used by the far right to amplify anti immigrant hate.
A country of a thousand welcomes eh?
— Hazel Chu (@hazechu) November 21, 2022
- 59,247 on the housing list
- 11,689 living in DP
- 10,805 homeless
- 2,583 asylum applications in 2021
- 62,425 Ukrainian refugees in 2021
Meanwhile Ireland has 166,752 vacant houses; 232,887 if we include holiday homes.
IRELAND IS NOT FULL. #HomesForAll
— Conall 🇷🇸🎄 (@Antifa_VP) November 21, 2022
Protest at the new DP Camp at the East Wall in Dublin tonight. It must be trauma upon trauma for refugees inside after spending months in Aramark Tents to come to Dublin to experience this level of racism. MINISTER @rodericogorman your department needs to protect refugees. pic.twitter.com/jlFQEP7qN6
— Abolish Direct Provision Campaign (@AbolishDirect) November 21, 2022
Racists from other parts of Dublin/Ireland bussed in to spread their racism. They’re not welcome in East Wall. Refugees are. https://t.co/dczMpRrt5J
— Tomás Heneghan 🇮🇪🇪🇺 (@TomasJHeneghan) November 21, 2022
People who organise and attend a protest where ‘get them out’ is being chanted in this way have absolutely no interest in ‘consultation’ and would almost certainly object to female refugees too, especially if they were not from the ‘right’ countries. This is #Racism https://t.co/JbYG4UoBrG
— M Ní Raghallaigh (@MuireannNiR) November 19, 2022