Sinn Féin TD Martin Ferris will be in Dundalk and Drogheda on Saturday 9th December to launch ‘Ireland’s Hunger For Justice’ the story of Ireland’s 22 hunger strikers.
The book was compiled in County Kerry by the Tomás Aghas (Ashe) Centenary Memorial Committee consisting of Martin Ferris TD, John Buckley, Pól Ó Clúbháin, Seán Ó Braoin, Éamonn deBairéad, Seán Ó Luing and Tadhg Ó Duinneacha.
The purpose of the Committee was to commemorate the centenary of Tomás Ashe whose death occurred on 25th September 1917.
Deputy Martin Ferris said “What we set out to do was to honour the memory of Tomás Ashe and while we discussed Ashe’s life and death we realised that there were 21 others who also gave their lives on hunger strike from 1917 to 1981. We decided to write a short book detailing as much as possible, the story of each of these brave men. Some died in British jails but others too died in Irish jails and have almost been written out of history.”
“I am honoured to have played a small role in bringing this book to print, hunger strike was sometimes the only option republican prisoners had to use, the suffering and sacrifice of these 22 brave men should never be forgotten.”
“This is the first time that their stories will all be told in the one book and I am looking forward to launching it in County Louth on Saturday.
Martin Ferris TD will be in Muirhevna Mór Community Centre on Saturday at 12noon and then Barlow House, Narrow West Street in Drogheda at 2.30pm.
Louth Sinn Féin have organised a protest for Wednesday afternoon at 4pm at the Market Square in Dundalk to highlight the plight of Palestinian prisoners.
1,500 Palestinian political prisoners launched a mass hunger strike on 17th April and say they are determined to fast until the death or until they get basic demands as conditions in the Israeli prisons deteriorate to a new low.
There are currently 6,500 Palestinian prisoners being held by Israel including more than 500 ‘administrative detainees’. These are detainees that have been arrested on ‘secret evidence’ and are not aware of what they are accused of and are not allowed to even defend themselves in court.
A spokesperson for Louth Sinn Féin said “we are concerned and want to highlight the contravention of International Humanitarian Law, which says that prisoners from
file photo from Dundalk 2014
occupied territories must be held in that occupied territory. That law is being broken here, these prisoners are being held in Israel and their families are regularly being denied entry into Israel, so the prisoners are further isolated from family and support.”
The spokesperson continued “as we approach the 36th anniversary of Bobby Sands, I would ask everyone to attend the protest on Wednesday at 4pm and show your support for the Palestinian prisoners and highlight the injustice of their situation. We went through it before in 1981, show your solidarity for these hunger strikers in 2017.”
Their demands include:
- Installation of a public telephone to allow communication with their families
- To resume bi-monthly family visits
- To increase the duration of the visits
- Allow prisoners to take photographs with their families
- To end deliberate ‘medical negligence’ (more than 50 prisoners have died owing to medical negligence inside Israeli jails)
Wednesday, 26th April, Market Square, Dundalk at 4pm – Everyone Welcome