Fury over visit coverage: 'Post' says Higgins snubbed Irish in Britain


LEADING members of the Irish community in Britain have reacted with fury to coverage of President Michael D Higgins’s visit to London last week by the Irish Post.

The Postwas highly critical of Mr Higgins under a headline “Silence”, saying he had “delivered a huge snub” to Irish people living in Britain by failing to answer “key questions” about what he would do to help emigrants.

In an editorial headlined “Higgins’ silence speaks volumes”, accompanied by a cartoon showing the President with a zip in his mouth, the Post said it was not right that he “should be suddenly struck dumb or gagged the moment he takes centre-stage”.

The editorial said it was “difficult to have respect, let alone reverence, for a president who blatantly snubs 100,000 of its readers by refusing to answer the paper’s questions”.

During a visit to the Irish Centre in Camden, Mr Higgins was interviewed by The Irish Times, RTÉ and the Irish Independent, and separately by the Irish Postand its London rival, the Irish World.

The Federation of Irish Societies said it anticipated that many Irish living in Britain would be “ shocked at the coverage and disrespect shown” to Mr Higgins.British Labour councillor Sally Mulready, a member of the Council of State, said “ the overwhelming majority of Irish people in Britain will be horrified by the nasty, vitriolic, personalised and totally ill-informed attack” on him.