An Irishman armed with a sword and a number of knives was arrested yesterday after attempting to enter Leinster House, the seat of the Irish parliament in Dublin.

Shortly after 4:30 pm local time the suspect, who is 19-years-old, approached the front gates of Leinster House and jumped over a barrier. Holding a sword, he made his way towards the building’s entrance and was quickly apprehended by gardaí (police), one of whom sustained minor injuries.

It was discovered the suspect also had a number of knives tucked into his socks. He was taken to the Pearse Street Garda station, where he was arrested for possession of offensive weapons and is being detained.

The grounds of Leinster House were quiet on Monday, as the Senators and TDs were on the final day of their Easter break.

Junior Minister Sean Sherlock, who witnessed the foiled intrusion, spoke about the incident on the evening news.

He described the sword as “something that you would see out of a movie. A typical rapier if you will, a side arm that would be carried by perhaps a soldier, built into the waist like something you would take out of a scabbard.

“He was brandishing the sword, ran past me, and he wasn’t screaming or shouting. He appeared to be quite calm throughout it.

“That’s what made it surreal, because I just happened to turn around and I saw this gentleman baring towards the doors.

“But in fairness to the gardaí, they were there and on the ball. The staff here at Leinster House were on the ball. They had the building locked down in due time I would say.

“While it was a breach at the front gates, I would argue that it is a one in a million incident.”