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Government fail to appropriately commemorate centenary of anti-conscription strike – Peadar Tóibín TD

23 April, 2018

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Peadar Tóibín TD, has said that the government are failing to commemorate key events in Irish history. 

This has resulted in major historical events, such as the mass demonstration to oppose conscription in Ireland one hundred years ago today, passing by with virtually no official government recognition.  

Deputy Tóibín said:

“I criticised Minister Madigan last month for her inaction in forming a Commemorations Committee at the Culture, Heritage and Gaeltacht Oireachtas Committee. 

"The Minister said she not know when it would be constituted.  Meanwhile dates such as the general strike against conscription have passed by without commemoration.

“The mass movement against conscription in Ireland was the biggest of its kind with hundreds of thousands of people involved. 

"A general strike, the first of its kind in either Ireland or Britain resulted in the country shutting down with virtually no rail lines operating. 

"This occurred one hundred years ago today and there has been not a peep from the government apart from ‘supporting’ a single talk held by History Ireland in Liberty Hall today.

“This surely deserves greater recognition and remembrance. The result of this campaign was that, despite a conscription bill for Ireland being voted through Westminster, the effect of the organised protest was such as to make it unviable to introduce conscription here. 

"As a result countless thousands of lives were saved with no Irish man forced against their will to supplement the British Army.

“This was a remarkable achievement among many others in this historic centenary year. The dates to mark the 1918 Election and the first Dáil are fast approaching .

"It’s vital that the Commemorations Committee is reconstituted immediately. The Minister must ensure that tribute is paid to these historic events which shaped our nation.”

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