100,000 take part in street protests against austerity days after government deal


Trade union officials have claimed that over a hundred thousand people marched against austerity in Ireland on Sunday.

Public disquiet was evident on streets across the country less than 24 hours after the government formalised a promissory note deal with the European Central Bank.

The Irish Congress of Trade Unions has claimed the marches were a success despite the Government’s hard-won bank debt deal according to the Irish Times.

The paper reports on the various rallies to protest at spending cuts imposed by the banking crisis.

Trade union marches took place in Dublin, Cork, Galway, Limerick, Sligo and Waterford.

Officials have claimed that 60,000 attended the Dublin protest although police offer a smaller figure of 25,000.

Congress general secretary David Begg told protestors that the campaign against the debt burden will continue until the European authorities fully honour the agreement reached last July to separate bank debt from sovereign debt.

He said: “There will be no more stoic little pixie heads and no more Mr nice guy.”

Begg added: “Congress will begin campaigning with 60 million trade union members in the European Trade Union Confederation.

“A situation where Irish people are paying 42 per cent of the European bank debt burden is unfair.”

Begg claimed to the Irish Times that around 100,000 people had taken in the series of demonstrations organised around the country today by the Irish trade union movement.

Demonstrators heard some dissenting voices claim the protests were ‘tokenism.'

Others said people need to ‘hear some real leadership from the trade union movement on how it’s going escalate resistance to austerity.'