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Operation Anvil has failed absolutely - Ó Snodaigh raises Dublin shootings in the Dáil

27 September, 2006


Speaking in the Dáil today following two shootings in 12 hours in the Dublin 12 area Sinn Féin TD for Dublin South Central and Justice spokesperson Aengus Ó Snodaigh condemned the government for failing to ensure that the Garda fight against gun crime is adequately resourced.

Speaking during Order of Business he said, "The government are not channelling enough resources into the fight against drugs and related gun crime, including 2 shootings in the Dublin 12 area in the space of 12 hours today. Operation Anvil has failed absolutely to deliver on its purported objective of tackling gun crime, as a result of under-resourcing and despite the courage of Gardaí, leaving thousands of Dublin residents at risk."

Speaking afterwards he said "Michael McDowell needs to sort out his priorities. He's recently taken on the role of Tánaiste despite the fact that he's failing in his duties as Justice Minister.

"When it was introduced in May 2005 Operation Anvil was declared to be the principle Garda response to gun crime. However it has proven to be, for long periods, little more than a clap down on vehicle tax and insurance. And while recent drug-related arrests and seizures are to be welcomed we must not ignore the fact that Operation Anvil was established to tackle gun crime and since its introduction serious gun crimes like the two shootings today within a space of 12 hours, appears to be rising. A mere 135 firearms have been seized under the operation in the last 9 months and the number of firearms searches have also been relatively low when compared with other areas of Garda focus.

"In mid August it was announced that the traffic core was to receive an additional 200 Gardaí. Using fully-trained crime fighting Gardaí for traffic duty is not an effective use of resources. Sinn Féin have argued for a long time now that such tasks should be civilianised to free up Garda numbers. Its about time gun crime was given the attention it urgently requires."

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