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Complaint to Garda Ombudsman over treatment of protesters during China visit

The Garda Ombudsman is reviewing a complaint concerning the treatment of protesters during the recent official visit of China’s Vice President to Ireland.

Chinese vice-president Xi Jinping samples an Irish coffee during his visit to Ireland
Chinese vice-president Xi Jinping samples an Irish coffee during his visit to Ireland
Image: Maxwell Photography/PA Wire/Press Association Images

THE GARDA OMBUDSMAN Commission has confirmed that it has received a complaint concerning the treatment of protesters during the recent official visit of China’s Vice President, Xi Jinping, to Ireland.

A spokesperson for the Ombudsman told TheJournal.ie that the complaint was currently being reviewed by Commission to see if it warranted investigation.

A group of Tibetan protesters have claimed that they were not permitted to protest and escorted by Gardaí from the Phoenix Park during Xi’s visit, according to RTÉ.

The Taoiseach Enda Kenny emphasised the “special relationship” between Ireland and China, and the Minister for Transport, Sport and Tourism said claimed it would “boost tourism” to Ireland.

However, others were more critical of the event: Socialist Party TD Joe Higgins criticised what he called the “obsequious welcome of the political, business and media establishments” of the Chinese vice-president, saying that the human rights abuses of the Chinese regime had been “completely airbrushed out of the saturation coverage” of Xi’s visit to Ireland.

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