I received some of the video footage removed from the internet by representatives of Saoradh. While some people will disagree with my decision, I decided to upload the video footage. Here I explain why…
On Thursday, May 18, activist and journalist Lyra McKee was shot dead by a masked gunman during riots residents and the PSNI in Derry’s Creggan estate. In a statement to the Irish News, the „IRA“ claimed responsibility for the fatal shooting.
On the morning after the death of Lyra McKee, the political party Saoradh stated on their website that they regret the death of Lyra McKee and put the blame for the riots on the PSNI for their “aggressive invasion” of the estate.
Since the death, Saoradh and the New IRA face a massive public backlash. The social media accounts of the organisation have been frozen by Facebook and Twitter.
Less than 48 hours after the death of Lyra McKee, Saoradh held their national Easter commemoration in Dublin. This was their first commemoration in the southern Republic of Ireland. Previous national Easter commemorations were held in Coalisland, Derry and Belfast.
Many bystanders and observers considered the march of about 40 men and women in paramilitary-style uniforms through the city centre as a provocation. Videos of the commemoration have since been deleted by Facebook.
I received some of the video footage removed from the internet by representatives of Saoradh. While some people will disagree with my decision, I decided to upload the video footage.
Republican organisations advocating a radical, physical force tradition just like Saoradh and the New IRA are undoubtedly enjoying visible support in certain parts of Ireland. These are no pockets of die-hard splinters, contrary, as the video footage shows, Saoradh can rally small but visible support behind them.
The first part of this video shows the Saoradh parade assembling at the gates of the Garden of Remembrance and marching down O’Connell Street towards O’Connell.
The second part of the video shows the main oration given by Belfast republican Dee Fennell outside the GPO. Fennell is a national executive member and the head of the international department of Saoradh. Proceedings were chaired by Saoradh chairperson Brian Kenna from Dublin.
During his speech, he called on the IRA to apologize: “Lyra McKee’s family, friends and partner are suffering an incredible loss. (…) They have lost someone they loved in the most tragic of circumstances.”
While excerpts of his speech appeared in newspapers over the following days, this video shows his speech in full lengths.
Both videos will provide a crucial understanding of the ideology and public appearance of radical Irish republicanism in the 21st century for researchers, the media, and the general public. Hence, I decided to upload these videos to document some events during one of the most tragic Easter weekends since the signing of the Good Friday Agreement.
Here is the link to the video…
Advertisement poster for the Saoradh Easter commemoration in Dublin.