NEWS FROM THE CELTIC LEAGUE
The CPT has been asked by the Celtic League to look into the arrest of children by police in the West Tallaght area of Dublin over recent days. The arrests were in connection with anti-austerity protests in the area last November.
The issue has also been raised with the UN CRC (see earlier post)
Text of CPT letter below:
Council of Europe
F67075 Strasbourg Cedex
I draw the attention of the CPT to allegations made by a member of the Dáil earlier today that a number of children were included amongst persons arrested in the west Tallaght area of Dublin.
The TD who made the allegations suggested that children ranging from 14 -17 had been arrested and in relation to the 14 year old a separate news report suggests 8 members of An Garda Síochána in three police vehicles were used to conduct the arrest.
Bearing in mind that it is just weeks since your Committee used the 25th anniversary of its founding to upgrade its ‘Standards’ and in particular focus on the area of safeguards surrounding the detention of juveniles we would urge you to look into this issue.
I should stress that the arrests referred to were in connection with civil protest last year about ongoing austerity programmes instituted by the Irish government. We are therefore not talking about serious criminal offences. However not withstanding that I trust that the CPT will agree with us that the overwhelming use of police resources (as alleged in these cases) to detain a number of minors in any circumstances is disproportionate.
The decision to affect the arrest of children in the early hours of the morning is also in our view intimidatory and flies in the face of the ‘Standards’ set by the Council of Europe and also the United Nations (Beijing Rules).
I trust you will with a degree of urgency raise the matter with the Irish government and obtain assurances about the manner in which children detained were treated.
J B Moffatt (Mr)
Director of Information”
A sixteen year old arrested yesterday claimed in an Irish newspaper that up to 10 gardai “nearly broke in the front door” when they arrived at his home at approximately 7am.
He said “It was degrading in the way we were treated as a whole.
“I’m a student and I should have been going to school, getting an education. I have exams coming up and everything.
“But instead I ended up going to the local garda station for nothing,”.
J B Moffatt (Mr)
Director of Information
(Please note that replies to correspondence received by the League and posted on CL News are usually scanned hard copies. Obviously every effort is made to ensure the scanning process is accurate but sometimes errors do occur.)
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