Former UN Assistant Secretary-Geneary seeks to end U.S military use of Ireland's Shannon Airport


With a protest planned for Shannon Airport on Sunday afternoon, the Afri peace and human rights organisation, have launched a new campaign to ask Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs, Eamon Gilmore, to uphold our neutral constitution by preventing what they say is the illegal U.S military use of Shannon Airport. The campaign is supported by former UN Assistant Secretary General, Irishman, Denis Halliday who has said “Irish people do not want to make a living on the backs of dead Iraqis, dead Afghanis and dead Pakistanis. That is not the way we do business. We all want to make a living, but that is a price no Irish person is willing to pay.” petition

Afri claim that the Tánaiste and figures such as President Higgins, Ministers Pat Rabbitte and Ruairí Quinn, and Taoiseach Enday Kenny have all spoken out against the military and CIA use of Shannon in the past and it's not good enough for them to forget their principles once in power.
Speaking on the campaign, Afri coordinator Joe Murray said

"The people of Ireland are being pulled into wars we don't support. The work of the Shannon Watch team show us that every week planes full of armed U.S troops pass through Ireland's Shannon airport en route to conflict zones. The airport has been directly involved in the illegal invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan. Over two million U.S troops have used Shannon Airport since 2002. The people of Ireland love America but the vast majority don't support this."

"Ireland has even given an exemption to fees for these military flights. In addition, CIA rendition torture aircraft have regularly used the airport en route to the notorious Guantanamo Bay prison camp and other torture sites. Shannon's use as vital cog in the illegal U.S. renditions programme has been highlighted by Amnesty International, the Council of Europe, the UN Committee Against Torture and others. It's time to show the world that we don't support the bombing, killing and torture of innocent people. With Shannon back in the news, we now have a real opportunity to put pressure on politicians to hear our voices."

"Successive opinion polls show the vast majority of people want Ireland to remain neutral and that we don't support economic development based on the slaughter of innocent people abroad. In 2003, 100,000 of us marched in Dublin against a war the then pope described as '"illegal, immoral and unjust". 100,000 Iraqis have since died in a war that Ireland is complicit in."

"Irish President Michael D. Higgins has previously spoken out on this, as have people such as Eamon Gilmore, Pat Rabbitte, Ruairí Quinn, and actor Martin Sheen. Enda Kenny has also spoken out on the use of Shannon. At the start of the Iraq war he said "We are not the 51st state of the United States. We are a free nation."

"The militarisation of Shannon airport is illegal under both Irish and international law. Political parties and individual politicians have promised action on neutrality and flight inspections, but once in power, have abandoned their promises."

"That's why Afri is asking people to join the growing chorus of voices who want to bring about a democratic, independent and neutral Ireland that supports diplomacy, peace and an end to the use of Shannon airport as a war-port. If enough of us join together, we can put pressure on the Irish government to respect Ireland's Constitution – which is committed to “the pacific settlement of international disputes” – and ensure an end to Ireland's participation in unjust wars."


Afri - Action From Ireland
Working for peace, justice, human rights and sustainability.

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Background info

Shannon Watch

Amnesty International Ireland on Shannon renditions

Peace and Neutrality Alliance (PANA) on Ireland's neutrality
Open Society - Globalizing torture (renditions) info
Irish Anti-War movement


Shannon airport in the news

Behind bars with the Shannon One
February 1st, 2014

Peacemakers like Margaretta D’Arcy uphold the greater moral law
Jan 28, 2014

Shannon protesters spoke for many of us
January 27, 2014

Aosdana calls for release of jailed peace activist
January 24th, 2014

79-year-old Aosdana member jailed for three months over Shannon protest
January 16th, 2014

US plane landed at Shannon armed with weapon, admits Gilmore

October 18, 2013

New Red C Poll Shows that Irish People Want Neutrality

September 17, 2013

Ireland told ‘atone for helping US rendition
September 12, 2013

Report shows Ireland facilitated CIA rendition programme
February 5th, 2013

Extraordinary U-Turn on Extraordinary Rendition by Labour Leader in Government
February 24th, 2012

Supporting US Wars Costs Ireland Over 4 Million Euro a Year

January 11th, 2012 ;

Shannon protester conviction overturned
April 2011

Programme for Government should mean an end to U.S. Military use of Shannon Airport
March 11th, 2011

First Irish Wikileaks document reveals US attitude on Shannon Airport

Anger at rendition flights through Shannon

September 2, 2011

Ahern suspected US carried prisoners through Shannon: WikiLeaks
Dec 17th, 2010

US Embassy was concerned over Shannon

Dec 9, 2010

WikiLeaks: Irish Government focused on U.S.-Shannon flights to gain support in election
December 02,2010

Government faces fierce criticism over US-led renditions

June 25, 2008

Eamon Gilmore calls for Shannon inspections following Amnesty report
14 March 2008

Troop use of Shannon airport called into question by former Irish army commandant
August 1 2007

Military use of airport wrong, says Irish cleric

July 22, 2007

CIA is still using Shannon for torture flights

December 13, 2006

Ireland-US row brews as Shannon Five acquitted by jury

July 26, 2006

Labour says Govt can't feign ignorance on extraordinary rendition following Council of Europe report
7 June 2006

Concerns grow in Ireland over use of Shannon airport as US military stopover
Jan 21 2006

Ruairí Quinn presses government over Shannon airport
October 9th, 2005

Cracks appear in Dail argument for use of Shannon airport
March 23rd, 2003

Pat Rabbitte says Ireland will be ashamed of its war role in years to come

Rabbitte seeks clarification from Bertie on use of Shannon
March 21, 2003

Government wins Dáil vote on Shannon
20 March 2003

Irish protest military use of Shannon airport
January 19, 2003

Green party renew airport demands
January 18, 2003

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