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Dublin: 15 °C Monday 13 July, 2020

Car of Sinn Féin TD who received death threats last week set on fire outside his home

The Leitrim TD reported receiving death threats following a speech on asylum seekers in the Dáil.

Image: Sinn Féin

THE CAR OF a Sinn Féin TD was allegedly set on fire outside his home in Leitrim in the early hours of this morning. 

It happened outside the home of the party’s justice spokesperson, Martin Kenny, a TD for Leitrim/Sligo at around 2.30am, a statement said. 

Kenny reported receiving death threats, which were submitted to gardaí, following a speech on asylum seekers in the Dáil Chamber last week.

Nobody was injured during the incident and Sinn Féin leader Mary Lou McDonald condemned the alleged arson attack on an elected official. 

“Martin Kenny TD’s car was set alight and burned at his home in Aughavas at approximately 2.30am this morning in what appears to have been a very deliberate and targeted attack.

“I want to extend my solidarity and that of Sinn Féin to Martin Kenny and his family after what was a very frightening experience. Thankfully no member of the Kenny family was injured but it could easily have been different.

“An attack on the home or property of an elected public representative is a deeply serious and sinister development. It represents an attack on the democratic system itself.”

She added: “This despicable act is a reflection on nobody but the criminal thugs who perpetrated it and I know it will be rightly condemned by the people of Aughavas, Ballinamore and Co. Leitrim.”

Justice Minister Charlie Flanagan said: “I am appalled by the attack on Deputy Kenny’s vehicle last night.  In a democracy we deliberate and debate – there is no place for violence.  An attack on an elected member is an attack on all of society. 

“It is an attack on democracy.  I am asking anyone with information to please contact the Gardaí.”

Meanwhile, Fianna Fáil’s Justice Spokesperson Jim O’Callaghan described it as a “shocking act of violence and intimidation”. 

A garda spokesperson confirmed the fire took place at 2.30am this morning. 

“A car was discovered on fire at this location. Gardaí and fire personnel attended the incident. The fire was contained to the car. No other property was damaged and no injuries reported,” they said. 

“A Garda Forensic technical examination will now take place to establish the cause of the fire.”

Gardaí are appealing for anyone with information and who was in the area between midnight and 3am this morning, and motorists with dash cam footage, to contact them at Mohill garda station on 071 9631002, at the Garda Confidential line on 1800 666 111, or any garda station. 

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