Irish people denied their say on Neutrality once again – Ó Snodaigh and Crowe
Sinn Féin TDs Aengus Ó Snodaigh and Sean Crowe have expressed their disappointment following the vote on the Sinn Féin bill calling for a referendum on Neutrality in the Dáil this afternoon.
The Bill was once again voted down by Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael.
Speaking after the vote, the Sinn Féin TDs said:
“Once again we have seen the two main parties in the state conspire to deny the people a say on this fundamental issue.
“This bill sought to create the opportunity for a genuine debate on the issue of neutrality and for the people to have their say in a referendum.
“At a time when European leaders are blatantly paving the way for an EU army, Sinn Féin believes it is only right that this issue be put before the people.
“We have seen a rapid increase in European militarisation in recent years and this will only get worse in the future as €13 billion has been proposed under the next EU budget for increased military spending.
“Meanwhile, Fine Gael MEPs are calling for the current protections on neutrality to be further undermined. They have asked for an amendment to the so called 'Triple Lock' to allow Irish Defence Forces be deployed on overseas operations that are not mandated by the UN.
“They have voted in favour of measures that would see a five fold increase in defence spending for Ireland.
“The Irish government has deployed troops to Mali without Dáil approval despite the so-called 'Triple Lock' requiring such approval.
“They have allowed over 3 million US troops to pass through Shannon Airport.
“They have signed up to EU military structures and have signed off on our participation in Battlegroups.
“Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael are insulting the intelligence of the Irish people by continuing to deny that our neutrality is being eroded.
“Today’s vote adds injury to that insult by denying the people their say.”