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Free Niall Harnett & Pat O’Donnell now!

By: 
Joe Higgins - MEP

Wednesday’s jailing of Shell to Sea activist, Niall Harnett, is a travesty of justice and further exposes Shell and the State’s attempts to criminalise peaceful protest and discourage young people and activists from opposing this pipeline.

Niall, who was last month sentenced to five months in prison on trumped up assault charges, has been given a further sentence of 6 months, to run concurrently, for daring to put the interests and safety of the community before the profits of Shell and for aiding a fellow activist who was being assaulted by Gardaí.

Niall will join fellow community activist, Pat O’Donnell, in Castlerea Prison while the real criminals, Shell and the Irish state continue to put lives at risk and profit off our natural resources.

This ruling is not just a warning to community activists in Rossport and Shell to Sea but a warning to all workers, community groups and campaigners that any attempt to defend their rights and stand up against the bosses and multinationals will face the full force of the state.

The trade unions and other groups must not tolerate these attempts to criminalise peaceful protest and must organise against Shell’s pipeline and demand the immediate release of Niall Harnett & Pat O’Donnell.