STATEMENT FOLLOWING YESTERDAY’S LOYALIST ATTACK ON IRISH PUB IN LIVERPOOL

Cairde na hEireann Liverpool is appalled by the incidents recorded yesterday in Liverpool involving a loyalist parade through Liverpool and distributed widely though social media https://youtu.be/as9y83ME9wE. It is clear that the organisers (Apprentice Boys Of Derry supported by Loyalist bands) lost control of their supporters when they targeted the Liffey Irish Bar on Renshaw Street. During the past 10 years this bar is annually targeted by loyalists during this specific parade as almost every band plays the ‘Sash My Father Wore’ as they pass by https://youtu.be/jPxeROwGsAA. Footage clearly shows loyalists (women and men) making determined efforts to enter the bar and the doors having to be defended and then closed to prevent violence and injury to the customers.

 Cairde na hEireann Liverpool asks that any person subject to racist or sectarian abuse to personally report it via the STOP HATE UK helpline 0800 138 1625.

 Cairde na hEireann is also concerned that yet again Loyalists are allowed with impunity to carry flags of proscribed organisations, with no intervention from Merseyside Police. Yesterday at least one band carried the flag of the outlawed Ulster Volunteer Force. At last week’s English Defence League demonstration in Liverpool the UVF flag was again carried without intervention from Merseyside Police, when local Loyalists supported the fascist organisation. As a parade organiser, Cairde na hEireann is regularly subject to continued scrutiny by Merseyside Police in relation to flags and emblems and in 2014 a ridiculous situation emerged where the flag of the historical Irish women’s patriot organisation Cumann na mBan was banned from being flown by Merseyside Police as part of a centenary parade through Liverpool www.anphoblacht.com/contents/2447 . Cairde na hEireann Liverpool calls on Merseyside Police to treat communities equally and apply the law equally. At present it is clear that Merseyside Police is far from impartial in the way it views and treats the Irish community and Irish community events.

 

CNAE Liverpool.

Communications Team.

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Liverpool Irish pay tribute to Martin McGuinness

Last night we organised a short parade around the streets of the Liverpool Irish heartland, to remember Martin McGuinness in our own way. The following is a Statement read out on behalf of the Band & Cairde na hEireann Liverpool: 

‘ Martin McGuinness was born in 1950, in an Ireland forcibly partitioned by British Imperialism. Martin lived his life in the Bogside Estate, Derry, and grew up under the brutal sectarian Apartheid Orange State. This was a State where the Irish nationalist population were denied even basic rights to a vote, jobs and housing. Martin was active from his earliest youth, in the struggle for civil rights, which was brutally suppressed by Unionist police forces, paramilitaries and then directly by the British State. When armed struggle became the only means to defend the people and advance their rights, Martin lead from the front. When the huge sacrifices of IRA Volunteers, Republican activists and their families created the space for the Irish freedom struggle to be advanced by solely peaceful political means, Martin again led from the front.

In building a peace process based on equality and respect, Martin took great risks and developed many initiatives around outreach, reconciliation and shared understanding with the Unionist community in the north of Ireland, and in the rejection of bigotry and hate. Martin and his comrades built Sinn Fein as a progressive inclusive political party, which not only broke down the sectarian structures of the old Orange Statelet, but also prioritised the advancement of justice and equality issues for all communities. Martin never lost sight of the ultimate goal of a United Ireland, and his lifetime’s work hugely contributed to bringing us so much closer to that final outcome. Sinn Fein is on the rise across Ireland, and at the last Assembly Elections, it ended the Unionist overall majority at Stormont. The writing is on the wall, Irish Unity is coming.

Martin lived and died as a proud Irish Republican. His last social media comment, on 1st March, just before the Assembly Elections, stated:

‘’This election is about equality and respect for all our people, and integrity in the institutions. Vote Sinn Fein for the politics of hope not fear’’

The best way we can honour Martin’s legacy is to ourselves get involved in the political struggle for Irish freedom and Unity. The only fitting tribute to Martin is to build a United Ireland based on peace, equality and justice, an Irish Republic that in the words of the 1916 Easter Proclamation, ‘’Cherishes all the children of the nation equally.’’ ‘

Collusion – Liverpool Says: Time For Truth & Time For Justice.

Cairde na hEireann Liverpool launches a new campaign to highlight the need for truth and justice for the families of hundreds of Irish Nationalists/Catholics murdered by loyalist paramilitaries aided by a variety of British State Forces from 1969 through to the 1990’s. The campaign will be launched by a March & Rally on Saturday 3rd September 2016. Assemble 12 noon Chinatown for march to Liverpool city centre for Rally.

In recent years, several investigations by both the BBC and RTE have found mounting evidence of the extent of collusion between Loyalist paramilitaries and British State Forces Britain’s Secret Terror Deals (BBC) Collusion (RTE). June of  this year saw the publication of the Loughlinisland Report by the Northern Ireland Police Ombudsman which found active collusion between members of the Royal Ulster Constabulary and the Ulster Volunteer Force which left 6 civilians shot to death as they watched the Ireland Vs Italy World Cup game in a bar in 1994 BBC News Report.

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The truth is starting to unravel for Britain and its acts of collusion with loyalists to kill, what were in effect, its very own citizens. Join Cairde na hEireann Liverpool on Saturday 3rd September and show you support for Truth with Justice. More information to follow.

2016 Liverpool James Larkin March and Rally to remember Merseyside International Brigade Volunteers 80 years on.


wp-1465247659173.jpgOn Saturday 16th July, the James Larkin Society will hold its annual March and Rally. The March will Assemble at 12.30pm at Combermere Street (Larkin’s birthplace), off Park Road, Liverpool 8,  and proceed to the city centre for a Rally.  

The main theme of the event this year is to mark the start of the Spanish Civil War (1936-1939)in July 1936, and to honour all the Merseyside volunteers who enlisted in the International Brigade and fought against Fascism and to defend democracy in Spain.

Over 200 volunteers from Merseyside fought against Fascism in Spain. They included Communists, Socialists, Trade Unionists and Irish Republicans. Over 30 were killed in action. 

One of the most famous Merseyside volunteers was Jack ”James Larkin” Jones (1913-2009), a Liverpool docker who went on to become leader of the Transport and General Workers Union. Jack and his comrades saw the struggle in Spain in the context of battling Mosleyite Fascists more locally, and as a precursor to the struggle against Hitler and the Nazis in World War Two.  As he stated in an interview years later:
For many men who went, it wasn’t a sense of adventure by any means. It was a feeling we were on the right side – the side of justice. For us it was the battle against fascism, including our local Mosley crowd, and that inspired me and encouraged me to do what I could against it, even if it meant laying down my life for it”
The Liverpool March and Rally on 16th July will remember all the Merseyside volunteers of the International Brigade with pride and respect. 

In the context of the current rise of Far Right, racist and Fascist groups across Europe, the message of the International Brigades, of hope against fear, is more relevant than ever.

The James Larkin Society would like to encourage all Trade Unionists, and community groups to take part in the event, and to bring along their banners.

ENDS

Notes for Editors:
The James Larkin Society was formed in Liverpool in 2003, to celebrate the life and work of the Liverpool-born Irish Trade Unionist and Socialist, James Larkin (1876-1947), and to highlight the relevance of the message of his struggle and achievements to today’s world.



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The Irish Community on Merseyside and Elections 2014

This Thursday 22nd May 2014 see’s voting in Local Authority and European Parliament elections across the Merseyside boroughs of Liverpool, Sefton, Wirral and Knowsley. Irish people across Merseyside will have a chance to vote for local candidates from a broad range of political parties.

Cairde na Eireann Liverpool has a simple message for the Irish Community: Dont vote for racists and fascist political parties or their candidates. Political parties such as the United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP), British National Party (BNP), National Front (NF) and the English Democrats , have in recent years on Merseyside fermented anti-Irish sentiment through their active support for street based fascist politics and at times supported direct attacks against Irish community parades in Liverpool.

Cairde na hEireann Liverpool urges a strong message be sent to these parties on election day that their message of hate and division is not something the Irish community supports and will be rejected. The Irish on Merseyside have a strong history of confronting and fighting fascism and racism. Please use your vote to send the racists and bigots packing, reject sectarianism and racism; promote diversity and tolerance.

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Cairde na hEireann Liverpool urges Irish support for Liverpool March Against Fascism.

Saturday 12th October sees the Unite the Union organised ‘March Against Fascism’ in Liverpool. Speakers at the rally include – Salma Yaqoob, Colette Williams (BARAC/Chair of Unite Community), Len McCluskey (Unite), Billy Hayes (CWU), Bob Crow (RMT), Paul Nowak (TUC), Christine Blower (NUT), Dave Prentis (Unison) and Weyman Bennett (UAF) and Joe Anderson (Mayor of Liverpool).

We in Cairde na hEireann Liverpool urge Irish community support for this important event that aims to send a message out to the haters that Liverpool is One Community and to reject the message of hate sent out by various fascist groups and individuals. The Irish community, more than any other community in Liverpool during the past 2 years, has faced an onslaught of attacks, threats and intimidation from far-right groups aimed at driving Irish community events/parades of the streets of Liverpool. These attacks were fully documented in our February 2013 launched document Under Pressure:  A Report Into Far-right And Loyalist Attacks Against Irish Community Parades/Marches in Liverpool During 2012.

Cairde na hEireann Liverpool urges members of the Irish community to join in with the Irish contingent on next week’s march and send a clear message that we as a community will not be cowered by the behaviour and threats of fascists and to remember with pride the very real anti-fascist tradition inherent within the Liverpool Irish history and identity.

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Irish Citizen Army 100th Anniversary Proudly Remembered in Liverpool

On Saturday 7th September 2013, Liverpool’s Irish community remembered the 100th anniversary of the formation of the Irish Citizen Army (ICA). Led by 7 Republican flute marching bands from Liverpool, Scotland and Ireland, the march followed a city centre route through Liverpool with an outdoor rally in the Holy Cross area.

In this Decade of Centenaries, the formation of the ICA of trained trade unionist volunteers by Liverpool-born Irish Trade Unionist James Larkin and Jack White was established in response to attacks by Police and gangs in pay of the employers during the Dublin Lockout of 1913. Other prominent members included James Connolly, Seán O’Casey, Constance Markievicz, Francis Sheehy-Skeffington. In 1916, it took part in the Easter Rising – an armed insurrection aimed at ending British rule in Ireland.

The rally was addressed by both Steve Higginson, Secretary of the Liverpool-based James Larkin Society and Sinn Fein Councillor Micheal Mac Donncha of Dublin City Council. Clr Mac Donncha is author/editor of the recently published book ‘Lockout 1913 – Austerity 2013’. In his speech to the rally Clr MacDonncha made linked the current economic climate to the conditions faced by the Dublin working class of the early 20th century and the need for the formation of the ICA as a way of defending striking workers from both Police and Scab labour. Clr Mac Donncha also highlighted the fact that the irish in Liverpool are the first community/city to recognise the ICA and the positive role in Irish community life Cairde na hEierann Liverpool plays as it remembers the decade of centenaries.
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The Liverpool Irish Community and a Decade of Centenaries.

Cairde na hEireann Liverpool wishes to state its commitment to ensuring that the Liverpool Irish community plays its role in remembering historic events associated with the ‘Decade of Centenaries’.

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Ireland 1912-1922 experienced a huge political upheaval associated with the ending of British rule in a majority of the counties of Ireland and foundation of an independent 26 county Irish state. Important events being commemorated during this period include the Centenary of the Ulster Covenant, the foundation of the Irish Volunteers, Irish Citizen Army, the Home Rule and Land Bills, the 1913 Lockout, the 1916 Easter Rising and many anniversaries relating to World War One including the Gallipoli landings, the Somme offensive and the battle of Messines Ridge. Also of note will be the Literary Revival, the suffrage movement, the struggle for workers’ rights and many other key events and themes of the period.

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Liverpool and the Liverpool Irish community played its part in the events associated with the Decade of Centenaries as witnessed by Irish National Party support in Liverpool for the Home Rule Bill, support for the 1913 Dublin Lockout, formation of the Irish Volunteers in Liverpool and participation in the Easter Rising, and Irish Republican Army in Liverpool 1919-1921.

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Cairde na hEireann Liverpool believes that the Irish community in Liverpool has a right to commemorate these important events in the spirit of historical accuracy, mutual respect, inclusiveness and reconciliation. The Irish community in Liverpool should be rightly proud of its support for Irish independence, workers rights and equality during this period in Irish history and it is right that its commemorations remember the individual women and men who’s histories often remain unwritten and forgotten. As stated previously, Cairde na hEireann Liverpool aims to remember these individuals and organisations during the coming years and that their sacrifices for Irish freedom and equality are justly remembered.ICA2