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Dublin: 13 °C Wednesday 3 June, 2020

Switzerland to Venezuela: How the world sees today's water protests

“The largest social movement in the country since 2008.”

TODAY’S PROTESTS IN Dublin against water charges have naturally been a huge story here.

But they’re getting a fair bit of attention throughout the world, as well.

Here’s what they’re saying about us:

‘An officer sustained an eye injury…’


Interestingly, BBC World News is leading with one of two reported injuries today – that sustained by a Garda, reportedly after a bottle was thrown.

Missiles have been thrown at police in Dublin as people protesting against water charges attempted to break through a barrier.

The Beeb described water charges as “a key austerity measure,” and said the protest had attracted “thousands of people.”

Channel 4 News reported the Garda estimate of 30,000 protesters, quoted Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams and Socialist TD Paul Murphy, and emphasised that the charges were seen as “double taxation” by opponents.

‘Nous ne paierons pas!’


Swiss news website La Cote carries the imaginative headline: “Irish protest water charges.”

At least 10,000 people on Wednesday marched on the parliament in Dublin, on the third day of demonstrations against water charges.
It’s the largest social movement seen in the country since the financial collapse of 2008.

La Cote also claims Alan Kelly’s recently-announced climbdown “wasn’t enough to weaken the nationwide protest movement.”

The austerity measures announced since 2013 had not – until now – met with particularly strong resistance.

Austerity, austerity, austerity

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Perhaps not surprisingly, many international outlets are viewing today’s protests through the lens of the Troika and the 2010 bailout.

Russia-based RT calls it an “austerity tax”, and the International Business Times says it’s part of an “effort to help repay the bailout.”

Mashable says the charges are “part of austerity measures that the Irish government is implementing under its arrangement with a troika of lenders.”


Notably, the march in Dublin has made it all the way to Venezuela, with news website Hoy Venezuela reporting 10,000 protesters.

Most people have suffered the effects of years of austerity, and not everyone has benefited from the recent economic recovery.

As it happened: Traffic gridlock in Dublin as tens of thousands turn out for water protest>

Riot squad deployed outside Dáil after Garda injured>

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About the author:

Dan MacGuill

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