gridlock | 

Commuters honk horns in frustration as marchers stage East Wall refugee centre protest

One man attempted to drive through the protest but he was stopped as men surrounded the car

A previous protest at East Wall

Eoghan Moloney and Ralph RiegelSunday World

Around 100 people gathered in East Wall this evening outside an old ESB building to protest its current use as a centre to house refugees.

The crowd marched along East Wall Road shortly after 5pm while being monitored by a relatively small Garda presence in police cruisers and on pushbikes.

When the protesters reached the entrance to the Port Tunnel at around 5.30pm they blocked its entrance and exit as well as blockading traffic on the East Wall Road.

Chants of “Irish lives matter” and “help the Irish” were sporadically shouted from the centre of the crossing as dozens of commuters honked their horns in frustration at the gridlock during rush hour.

One man attempted to drive through the protest but he was stopped as men surrounded the car.

He eventually reversed and left the scene.

The entrance was blocked for 30 minutes, causing considerable tailbacks, but at 6pm the protesters eventually let traffic through.

They walked back towards the ESB building brandishing signs that read "caring about Irish people isn’t far right” and “coming soon to an empty building near you”.

This protest was the latest in a series of anti-immigration events held across the country.

Meanwhile, more than 50 people staged a march and protest in the north Cork town of Fermoy over Ireland's immigration policies.

The group marched from Christ Church by Fermoy Park to Kent Bridge on Thursday evening where traffic through the town was briefly delayed.

Protest organisers agreed to keep the demonstration off the roadway so as not to impede traffic when a number of motorists explained their plight and the urgency of their journeys.

Fermoy gardaí monitored the protest which was organised one month after a major anti-racism rally in the town.

That rally was organised after anti-asylum seeker campaigners had protested outside a former convent in the town which is now being used to house international refugees.

Protestors tonight slated the Government and accused them of a shambolic response to the asylum seeker crisis which they warned has exerted unnecessary pressure on an already severe housing crisis in Ireland.

Protest organisers also accused the Irish media of being complicit with the Government and failing to highlight the consequences of what they claimed were excessive levels of immigration.

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