Protest continuing at Dingle Pier over coronavirus spread concerns

Fishermen are continuing their protest in Dingle Harbour after a Spanish fishing boat tried to land there last night.

The protest relates to concerns the fishermen have over the spread of coronavirus.

They have been blocking the pier since 7 o’clock last night and says their protest will continue as long as necessary.

The fishermen say they are concerned over the spread of coronavirus and allege that occupants on foreign vessels have not complied with social distancing guidelines.

Speaking to Radio Kerry News today, a spokesperson for the fishermen said once the coronavirus pandemic was over the Spanish boats would be welcome to land at Dingle Pier, however, they are asking them not to land at the moment due to the health crisis.

The fishermen have been blocking the road down to the pier since 7pm last evening and the Spanish boat hasn’t landed; they plan to continue their protests if necessary.

Last month, blockades were held in Dingle and Castletownbere ports to prevent French and Spanish boats from docking.

However, last month’s protests were condemned by the country’s largest fishing organisations which said the blockades were unnecessary, alarmist and would only serve to damage the Irish fishing industry in the long run.

Last month, Marine Minister Michael Creed said it was critically important to maintain EU fisheries and food supply lines guided by the advice of medical professionals.

He said his department had prepared a dedicated information notice which had been circulated to the fishing industry and harbour masters; these included having separate designated landing zones which all crew will remain in during the landing period; provisions for the vessel will be delivered to this zone.