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Easter Rising

Pictures: Canadian ambassador tackles protester at 1916 ceremony

Kevin Vickers made headlines across the globe in 2014 when he intervened during a terror attack at the Canadian parliament.

26/5/2016 Protestor disrupts ceremony. Pictured is Sam Boal Sam Boal

CANADIAN AMBASSADOR KEVIN Vickers won praise from other attendees this afternoon, after he tackled a protester who began shouting at a ceremony to commemorate British soldiers who died during the Easter Rising.

Security had been tight in the area ahead of this afternoon’s event, which was invite-only. Politicians, the British ambassador and other invited guests gathered at Grangegorman Military Cemetery from shortly before noon, ahead of a ceremony that included readings of historical accounts, music and prayer.

However, shortly after the event had begun, a man started shouting loudly.

“He was shouting that it was a disgrace and things like that,” one attendee told TheJournal.ie. 

Fair play to him, the first person up was the Canadian ambassador – he pretty much bear-hugged him and brought him off to one side before the Special Branch swept in.

Formerly the Sergeant-at-Arms at Canada’s parliament building, Vickers was named ambassador to Ireland in January of last year.

In October 2014, he intervened to stop a terrorist attack in the Canadian parliament – shooting dead a gunman who stormed the building.

26/5/2016 Protestor disrupts ceremony. Pictured is Sam Boal Sam Boal

Gardaí confirmed a man in his mid-40s had been arrested by gardaí from Cabra over a public order offence at the cemetery at 12.10pm today. He’s being detained at Blanchardstown garda station.

“The guards moved in immediately after it happened,” the attendee who spoke to us said.

It didn’t take away from the ceremony at all.

Solemn occasion 

Official State events have been held this year to mark all deaths that occurred during the fighting in Easter week 1916.

For instance, wreaths were laid at six iconic sites associated with the Rising on Easter Monday last.

That followed Easter Sunday’s main military parade on Dublin’s O’Connell Street, and the previous day’s Garden of Remembrance ceremony “to remember and honour those who gave their lives in the cause of Irish Freedom”.

Charlie Flanagan, the foreign affairs minister, laid a wreath at today’s ceremony. Dominick Chilcott, the British ambassador, also laid a wreath on behalf of the British Government.

Politicians from other parties also attended – however Sinn Féin declined an invitation, saying it wouldn’t be “appropriate” to do so.

Read: ‘Not appropriate’: Sinn Féin rejects invitation to commemorate British 1916 deaths

Read: ‘There’s no glory in taking a man’s life’: Canadian ambassador to Ireland on stopping a terrorist attack

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