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Hurtful and offensive

Young Fine Gael hopes this tweet about killing a child didn't cause offence

The Fine Gael youth wing sent a “hurtful and offensive” tweet to a Sinn Féin councillor on Friday.

YOUNG FINE GAEL has said it hopes a tweet about killing a child, aimed at a Sinn Féin councillor, did not cause offence.

The now-deleted tweet was sent late on Friday night after Sinn Féin councillor Sarah Holland tweeted criticism of the Late Late Show interview with Health Minister Leo Varadkar.

In response to one of her critical tweets, the official Twitter account of Fine Gael’s youth wing said:

Sure why don’t we all join the populist movement. Where’s that child I killed?

screenshot-1443441076-89998

The tweet was deleted a short time later, but Holland’s screengrabbed it and tweeted it herself, asking who was behind it and seeking an apology.

Holland, a mother-of-one who is running for the Dáil in Dublin-South West, said the tweet was “hurtful and offensive” as it tried to associate her with the murder and violence of the Troubles.

She told TheJournal.ie:

It’s kind of upsetting but Young Fine Gael have form for that and to be honest I would not try and judge them too harshly because they are teenagers and people in their 20s.

She added: “It’s hard to reconcile being associated with violence and murder when you are someone who is anti-violent.

24/5/2014. Local Elections Counts Sarah Holland with Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams Sasko Lazarov / Photocall Ireland Sasko Lazarov / Photocall Ireland / Photocall Ireland

“What I presume they were doing was associating me with violence and murder, that association that Sinn Féin had as the political wing of the IRA. But I joined Sinn Féin after the IRA ceasefire, from a community-based background.”

Young Fine Gael declined to offer an apology when approached today. A spokesperson said:

The tweet came to our attention this morning, Monday. It was sent in error from the YFG Twitter account & it was deleted immediately. We hope no offence was caused.

They would not answer questions about who sent the tweet and whether any action was taken against the person who did.

More-or-less the same wording was tweeted at Holland this afternoon after TheJournal.ie raised the issue with YFG:

Holland admitted that this was not an apology but said it was probably the best she would get.

“I meet these kids face-to-face now and again and they’re okay, they’re teenagers. They don’t seem to realise that these things are really hurtful. They’ll learn as they get older,” she added.

A spokesperson for Fine Gael said: “Young Fine Gael (YFG), the youth branch of the Fine Gael party, is an autonomous organisation which maintains its independence from the Fine Gael Party. Fine Gael has no control over the YFG Twitter account.”

Read: A Fine Gael TD is being challenged by his own brother

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