Protest and parties planned for May Day


There will be four days of protests and street parties hosted by the Reclaim The Streets campaign over the May Bank Holiday weekend in Dublin to coincide with the accession into the EU of the new member states. 

One of the organisers, Mr Mick Dooley, says that unlike the cancelled "Beautiful Night" concert, "everyone from around the world is welcome to come to Dublin for this, not just those that satisfy the demands of Fortress Europe.

"The Government's so-called Day of Welcomes is a sham. The European Union is more about keeping people out than welcoming people in," he said.

A foretaste of the campaign begins with a street party and leafleting on Grafton Street next Friday lunchtime.

Dublin Grassroots, an affiliate of Reclaim the Streets, will distribute 50,000 leaflets encouraging people to participate in their Mayday weekend protests.

The organisation's website says their action will "focus on symbols of all that is wrong with the EU as it currently stands: militarism, neo-liberalism, fortress Europe and the EU police state.

"We are inviting people from all over Europe, and the world, to join us in Dublin on Mayday to show our leaders that their agenda for EU integration, driven by the wealthy and powerful, will face resistance."

The centrepiece demonstration will be outside Farmleigh in the Phoenix Park where a dinner will be held for EU Ministers on Saturday, May 1st. Protestors are being asked to "bring pots and pans, bells and whistles, horns and drums to generate the biggest noise possible".

"May 1st is historically a day for the ordinary people's wishes to be heard. They have chosen to ignore us but they cannot keep it up if we scream and shout", the organisers say.

The weekend protests begins with a tour of the city streets on Friday April 30th, on bikes, skateboards, pogo sticks and on foot. Among Saturday's planned action is the painting of footpaths and streets blood red in protest at the attack on Iraq.