Tara Protestors Picket Ahern At Boyne Site
4NI Northern Ireland News - 06 May 2008
Protestors used today's opening of the Battle of the Boyne site as a platform to criticise the outgoing Taoiseach's reign and to protest against the plans for the construction of the M3 motorway. The 'Save Tara' protestors descended on the official opening of the 500-acre site, which borders Co Louth - bought by the state in 1999 to preserve the site - to mark outgoing Taoiseach Bertie Ahern's time in power as a "monument to bad planning and unsustainable development".
Mr Ahern was today making his final official public engagement before he submits his resignation to President Mary McAleese at Áras an Uachtaráin this evening, marking the end of his 11-year reign as Taoiseach.
Vincent Salafia, a Dublin lawyer from TaraWatch, criticised Mr Ahern, saying: "When it comes to the environment, Bertie has not been a 'fixer' or a 'peacemaker'. He has been a wrecker and a bully.
"The Tara dispute is driving a stake through the tourist potential of Ireland, which is the only industry that we will have left to rely on, if things keep going the way they are. We will now be closing the Bertie petition, and launching a UNESCO petition, to ask them that the M3 be rerouted, before Tara is declared a World Heritage site.
The Hill of Tara, located near the Boyne site has been a major source of contention in the past few years. Thousands of protestors have asked the Irish government to re-route the M3 motorway from the Hill, as they believe it will destroy the heritage. A petition containing almost 40,000 names was handed to Mr Ahern's office urging him to reconsider the route as one of is last acts of office.
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