Socialist Workers Party calls for Roma families to be allowed to stay
The Socialist Workers Party (SWP) has accused the Gardaí of harassing the Roma families encamped on the M50 roundabout near Ballymun. The families have been camped on the roundabout for approximately two months.
The families received notice of their deportation last week. Up to 60 people have agreed to return to Romania. They are currently awaiting their deportation after being removed from the roundabout this morning.
A further 35 people have decided to fight their deportation orders. They have 15 days to prove why they should be allowed to remain in the country.
In an article published today on ireland.com, Ronnie Fay of Pavee Point said that the operation to remove the families was "very professional [and] there was no conflict whatsover."
However, the SWP gave a different view of the operation in a press statement released this morning. According to a SWP spokesperson who speaks fluent Romanian and who was at the roundabout, some of the Roma were offered a bribe to go with the Gardaí. “The Roma were told that despite any injunction, they would be deported anyway and were offered €40 to go quietly, which they refused as an insult”.
Interpreter Diana Kelly said, “They told me they had come here as European citizens looking to work for a better life, but nobody would deal with them because of their ethnicity.
Yesterday the Romanian ambassador to Ireland, Silvia Stancu Davidoiu, refuted the Roma's claims. In an article published in today's Irish Times the ambassador is quoted as saying: “For almost two months now we have witnessed a campaign spearheaded by the Pavee Point and the Roma Support Group, which uses mendacious assertations aimed at misleading the Irish public into believing that for the Roma persons at the M50 roundabout returning back to Romania, and thus putting an end to their difficult situation, is by no means and option.”
She went on to say, “We are first and foremost concerned about attempts to manipulate the Irish public with a blend of untrue declarations and distortions of fact”.
In response to the accusations, Fay, Director of Pavee Point said: “I reject the accusation of lying and media manipulation and the bullying of the Romanian Embassy. The Irish public and media can make up its own mind on this issue and we will not descend to a similar level of discussion or debate. We would make this one point: Over the 24 years of Pavee Point's existence, no recognised body, other than the Romanian Embassy, has ever accused us of lying, no matter how much they disagreed with our point of view”.