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Protestor to complain to GSOC about use of "undue force" by Gardai at Gaza demonstration

NewsBy Morgan Flanagan Creagh
Shot by Adele J King
Shot by Adele J King

This footage shows what has been described as “undue force” being used by gardai while removing a protester from the road near the Israeli embassy in Dublin.

22-year-old Joe Rooney was rushed to hospital after suffering an epileptic fit while allegedly having his head dragged along the ground by officers.

The incident took place at the “Gaza demonstration” last Saturday.

Three uniformed officers can be seen pulling Mr Rooney along the ground in the Ballsbridge area of South Dublin to remove him from the street.

“The activist seen in this video was handled in a manner which could have seriously endangered his life as he was dragged by his feet, thus compromising his neck, causing his ears to bleed, which was followed by an epileptic fit” wrote Adele J King who recorded the shocking footage.

Mr Rooney told the Mirror that he was in shock: “They grabbed me by the legs and dragged me along.

“I’m in shock. You wouldn’t just pick someone up and drag them along the road. It’s surreal, I still don’t believe it.

“They have a duty of care to the public and they didn’t show that by the way they handled it.”

Mr Rooney alleges that gardai arrested one protestor for breaching a barrier and that another two were taken into custody a short time later.

“The crowd wanted to know why they were arrested so they decided to stand in the road until the guards told them why” said Mr Rooney.

“After 10 minutes a garda came over and issued a section to the entire group of people. He told us to leave the road.

“At this point I was sitting on the ground and I got up and walked to the side of the road” he told the Mirror.

“The guards pushed me on the ground and I don’t remember anything after that. I woke up in hospital that evening at 8pm.

“I don’t remember being lifted up or anything.  An individual had to give me medication because I was having a seizure.”

The disturbing footage shows Mr Rooney going into a seizure and being assisted by members of the public and Gardai.

The Garda Ombudsman told our reporter that they were unable to comment on whether or not any complaints have been made to them in relation to the Gaza march.