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Laura Hutton via Photocall Ireland
Under fire

Some Labour TDs are not happy with Charlie Flanagan

The Foreign Affairs Minister has been criticised after Ireland abstained from a UN vote on Gaza.

THE FOREIGN AFFAIRS Minister, Charlie Flanagan, is being criticised after Ireland abstained from a UN Human Rights Council vote on Gaza yesterday.

The vote on whether the Commission of Inquiry should be started to investigate Israel’s offensive was backed by 29 other countries.

Labour TDs, Michael McCarthy and Derek Nolan, have criticised the decision along with members of Fianna Fáil and Sinn Féin.

Attempts were made to contact Minister Flanagan for his reaction to the criticism but no reply has yet been received.

‘Shameful Act’

McCarthy said he was ”surprised to learn of the Government’s decision not to support an international inquiry into Israel’s actions in Gaza”.

Ireland was among 17 countries that abstained. The US was the only country to vote against the proposed inquiry.

Nolan said, “To condemn Israel is not to condone Hamas, and intermixing the two gives a false impression. It was open to Ireland to propose a separate motion concerning the indefensible actions of Hamas.”

Fianna Fáil’s Micheál Martin and Brendan Smith commented:

Ireland once had a proud tradition of strong, principled and independent foreign affairs policy. The decision to sit on our hands and abstain from what should have been a very clear position on this UN resolution is a dereliction of this country’s proud history in foreign and humanitarian affairs.

While the Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams described it as a “shameful act of political cowardice”.

The Israeli government is acting with impunity and the EU and the Irish government are failing to stand up to Israeli aggression.The statistics of death and destruction, and in particular the slaughter of women and children, has to be stopped.

“The government should move immediately to expel the Israeli ambassador in a clear message of condemnation of the actions of the Israeli government.”

Read: Why did Ireland abstain from a UN Human Rights Council vote on Gaza?>

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