Search icon


24th Nov 2023

Miriam O’Callaghan asks Helen McEntee if she failed to prepare for Dublin riots

Robert Redmond

Dublin riots

“Did you fail to prepare enough for something like this this evening?”

Miriam O’Callaghan asked Helen McEntee on RTÉ Prime Time if the government had failed to adequately prepare for the riots in Dublin on Thursday night.

The Minister for Justice appeared on the RTÉ current affairs programme to speak about the harrowing scenes across Dublin city centre throughout the day.

The Minister said that those causing destruction were ‘criminals’ and ‘thugs.’

Woman and girl seriously injured in attack in Dublin.

On Thursday afternoon, a five-year-old girl and a creche worker in her 30s sustained serious injuries in a knife attack on Thursday afternoon outside a school on Parnell Square East.

Two other children were also injured, while a man in his 50s was arrested at the scene and taken to hospital with injuries described as ‘serious.’

Several hours later, anti-immigration protests turned violent in the city centre. A bus, a Luas tram and a Garda car were burnt out, while several shops were damaged and looted. Gardai have made 34 arrests so far.

The rioting has been widely condemned by politicians, including the Minister for Justice Helen McEntee.

Speaking about the rioters, Minister McEntee called them ‘thugs’ and ‘criminals’ who ‘have come into our city centre with the sole objective of wreaking havoc this evening.’

Miriam O’Callaghan asks Helen McEntee if the government failed to prepare for Dublin unrest.

Minister McEntee was interviewed on RTÉ Prime Time and was asked by broadcaster Miriam O’Callaghan if the government had ‘failed to prepare enough’ for the riot.

“Have you as a Minister for Justice failed perhaps to take seriously enough how dangerous these anti-immigrant protestors are?

“And did you fail to prepare enough for something like this this evening?

The Minister said that those causing disruption are a small group and do not represent a ‘large faction of society.’

Minister McEntee said that there was a ‘strong Garda presence on the ground from early in the day’, and that there had been a ‘strong response’ from the police force.

“Miriam, let me be very clear, these are a group of people, this is not a large faction of our society,” said the Minister for Justice.

“This is not about immigration, this is not about the young children who are in hospital this evening.

“These are criminals, these are thugs who have come into our city centre and have used a horrific attack on innocent children this evening for their own gain and benefit.

“These people will be treated with the full force of the law, they will be arrested and be put in prison and that’s exactly where they should be.”

You can watch the full interview below.


Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has condemned those involved in the riots in Dublin on Thursday, stating that they “brought shame on Ireland.”