22 April 2010 Edition
Taxpayers' money used for British Army recruitment in Limerick
Quinlivan slams Jobs Club disgrace
Irish neutrality and sovereignty are being violated by the active recruitment of young Irishmen into the British Army in Moyross, according to Limerick City Sinn Féin Councillor Maurice Quinlivan. He said it was disgraceful that this was being facilitated by a jobs club totally funded by the Irish taxpayer. “Outside the Millennium Jobs club at the Watch House Cross this week I saw an advertisement urging people to ‘Join the Royal Irish Army’ and to ‘apply in Jobs Club’,” Quinlivan told An Phoblacht. “I was appalled. When I expressed my opposition to this I was told that it would be good to ‘instil discipline in them’ and that the Jobs Club employee is no fan of my party.
“Article 4 of the Hague Convention on neutrality states that ‘combatants cannot be formed nor recruiting agencies opened on the territory of a neutral Power to assist the belligerents.’
“As unemployment grows the danger is that more young Irish people will be duped into joining this mercenary force. Indeed I was told that it was a ‘Northern Irish Regiment’ as if such a thing existed outside the British Army.
“It is disgraceful that a local Jobs Club which is funded by taxpayers’ money is attempting to recruit young people to join the British Army. In fact I overheard one conversation between the Jobs Club employee and one young lad, who thought it was the Irish Army he was joining. When he expressed the view that he had a problem serving in the British Army, he was told to ‘Try it out you might like it!’
“I am truly amazed and appalled. When you join an army there is no ‘try it out you might like it’. There was no mention of the role of the British Army as aggressors and occupiers in Iraq, Afghanistan and Ireland, or the fact that many soldiers from that regiment have died in these places in recent times.
“The few local people I spoke to at the library were unaware of the sign and very angry about it”
Following a complaint made by Quinlivan to FÁS, the sign has since been removed.
“The British Army is actively engaged in wars and their recruitment activity in Ireland violates Irish sovereignty and neutrality,” said Quinlivan. “The fact that taxpayers’ money is being used to fund this is scandalous.”