Game Of Thrones star Liam Cunningham says Stardust campaigners ‘abandoned’

Stardust campaigners were “abandoned” by the State, Game Of Thrones star Liam Cunningham has said.

Mr Cunningham said he was supposed to be in the nightclub on the night of the fatal fire.

He said that he and one of his sisters had planned to attend go but ultimately did not. However another sister and her best friend did go.

He searched for them after learning of the fire and found they were being treated at Jervis Street Hospital.

Forty-eight people were killed when the blaze ripped through the nightclub in north Dublin in February 1981.

After more than 40 years of the victims’ families campaigning for justice, last week an inquest found that the 48 young people had been unlawfully killed.

Taoiseach Simon Harris delivered a State apology to the campaigners on Tuesday.

On Wednesday, Mr Cunningham said it was a “disgrace” that the apology took so long as he called for a memorial to the victims.

He particularly criticised then-Taoiseach Charlie Haughey’s response to the tragedy, saying: “When it came to it, he didn’t want to know.”

The Dublin actor made the comments at an event where he endorsed People Before Profit (PBP) candidates for the European Parliament elections.

He cited Stardust families being “abandoned by the State” as one of the reasons for his support of People Before Profit (PBP).

He also said Fianna Fail and Fine Gael housing policy had led to adult children living in their parents’ homes, which he said was “dancing upon” the social contract in Ireland.

“The Government is abandoning the people that they’re paid to represent and it’s absolutely obscene that they use neoliberalism to justify it – and I’m sick of it.”

He said he was “raging” with the Government, adding: “What we need in Europe is people who are going to be a thorn in the side of attempts to undermine.”

Mr Cunningham also said Ireland’s neutrality and triple-lock system for the overseas deployment of troops needed to be protected from “warmongers”.

PBP is running a candidate in each constituency – Brid Smith TD in Dublin, Brian O’Boyle in Midlands-North-West and Cian Prendeville in the South.

Ms Smith, who thanked Mr Cunningham for his work alongside PBP in pro-Palestinian solidarity campaigns, said Europe has played a “most disgraceful role” in support for Israel during the conflict.

Rose Dugdale funeral
People Before Profit candidate Brid Smith thanked Mr Cunningham for his support(Brian Lawless/PA)

Ms Smith further warned that “we’re hurtling towards a third world war”.

Describing itself as an EU-critical party, PBP said Ireland needs to send “radical socialist voices” to Brussels to challenge “hypocrisy and double standards”.

It added: “We have no illusion that a few MEPs can change its undemocratic structures but we can expose the power of corporate lobbyists and backroom dealings.”

Ms Smith warned that there was increasing polarisation across politics in Europe, particularly around immigration.

She said some of the candidates being fielded were participating to make arguments against migrants, Europe and “the solidarity we need during these troubled times”.

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