UPDATE : A picket will be held outside Portlaoise Prison next Saturday , 1st May 2010 , in support of the ‘Political Status’ campaign. Republican prisoners in Portlaoise Prison will, by then, be on a fast in solidarity with their comrades in Maghaberry Jail. Transport arrangements to and from the Portlaoise Prison picket , which will be held from 12 noon to 1pm, will be announced in the next day or two. We ask those concerned with the welfare of our imprisoned comrades to please make themselves available for this picket – Saturday , 1st May 2010, Portlaoise Prison, 12 noon to 1pm.
Between the hours of 12.30pm and 2.15pm , approximately forty Irish Republicans held a well-received picket directly outside the British Embassy in Dublin today , Saturday 24th April 2010. The usual ‘Special Branch’ (political police) harassment was received , with eight of their uniformed colleagues staying , for the most part, in the background ie between the protestors and the Embassy entrance.
For almost two hours, the Republicans received a warm welcome from drivers who slowed down to look at the scene , sounding their car horns in support.
The POW’s in Maghaberry are being locked-up in their cells for 23 hours each day, meaning that they are expected to receive visits , shower , exercise and eat their meals (only served after the food has been out of the kitchen for an hour-and-a-half) during the one hour each day that they are allowed out of their cell. Medical facilities are such that there may as well not be any, they are not allowed free association , have no access to education programmes , are forced to watch and listen as their visitors are set-upon by the prison ‘drug-dogs’ and then listen, again, as their visitors tell them that British Crown Force members are following them home and practically camping outside their houses.
It was announced today at the picket , by a member of the RSF POW Department, that on the afternoon of Friday next , 30th April 2010, Republican prisoners in Portlaoise Prison will begin a 48-hour fast in support of their comrades in Maghaberry : more on this later , as the details become known…
Also, the injustice done to Lurgan , County Armagh man , Martin Corey, was mentioned by another representative of the POW Department : Martin was arrested on April 16th last and sent to Maghaberry Jail – he had served 19 years of a British-imposed 25-year sentence before being released in 1992. He did not sign any licensing agreement with the British in order to gain his freedom, and it was correctly stated at the picket today that his reincarceration is actually internment – that he is now a political hostage in his own country!
Finally : those present were reminded that a bus will leave from Aston Quay in Dublin at 8.30am tomorrow morning (Sunday 25th April 2010) for those travelling to the POW picket at Maghaberry Jail : the return fare is five euro per person. The organisers and those who took part in the picket today are to be commended for a job well done ; for speaking-up for those who, because of their Republican beliefs , are unable to speak-up for themselves. Well done!
Thanks for reading!