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SOCIAL BOOKMARKS

Three arrested following Cork City Hall occupation released without charge

Update: The three people arrested under the Public Order Act after they refused to leave the council chamber in Cork City Hall have been released without charge.

Gardaí say files will be prepared for the DPP in due course.

Earlier: Three arrested after refusing to leave Cork city council chamber

Three people have been arrested under the Public Order Act after they refused to leave the council chamber in Cork City Hall.

The two men and a woman who are now in custody in the Bridewell Garda Station were among four people who occupied the room from 11am until just after 3pm.

Gardaí have confirmed this afternoon that they arrested three people who failed to leave when requested to by gardaí.

A garda spokesman said enquires are ongoing.

It is understood that gardaí were called after council management made a formal complaint alleging trespass.

Housing campaigners are due to stage a protest outside City Hall before tonight’s city council meeting.

Update 3.50pm: Gardaí remove four housing activists occupying Cork City Hall

Gardaí have removed four housing activists who were occupying the council chamber at Cork City Hall.

It is reported that the four are being taken to the Bridewell Garda Station.

The city council announced on social media this afternoon that public access to this evening's council meeting will be restricted.

More to follow...

Earlier:

Cork's Housing Action Group have begun an occupation of City Hall as they are calling on the city council to declare the housing and homelessness crisis an emergency.

Tony Walsh, the group's chairperson, condemned the "waste" of public money on projects that are not essential.

"Council seems more concerned with corporate image and large-scale development projects than with delivering on housing rights – millions are being wasted on a bridge that no one wants and on other such extravagant waste," Mr Walsh said.

[quote]To spend €300,000 on a logo is insulting to those families in social housing who badly need repairs made, for damp proofing and insulation[/quote]

"There seems to be an attitude in City Hall which finds money for such costly non-essential schemes but claims to be hands-tied when delivering services to people."

The group who began their occupation at 11am this morning are calling on Cork City Council to declare a National Emergency on housing and homelessness and also to write to the Government requesting that a National Emergency Committee be established to deal with it.

A public protest will take place outside City Hall this evening at 5pm.

In a statement released this morning, the group said that "the rally will hear a significant announcement on the escalation of the campaign".