The 3rd International Day in Support of Irish Republican Prisoners of War was held on October 26 and 27. Protests and solidarity events were held in nine countries on three continents. The international POW-Day is an independent initiative to raise awareness of Irish Republican Prisoners. The initiative is in its third year. The committee that organised the 2013-POW-Day consists of members of the Republican Sinn Féin International Bureau, the James Connolly Association (Australia), Cumann na Saoirse Náisiúnta (USA) and Liberation Irlande (France).
While the committee and the involved organisations support all republican prisoners, the POW-Day 2013 focused on demanding the release of republican internee Martin Corey, demanding justice for the Cragaivon 2 and the release of political activist Stephen Murney.
In Australia the James Connolly Association held pickets in Melbourne and Sydney.
The ANSWER Coalition and Students for Justice in Palestine organised an International Day for Palestine and Irish Political Prisoners with music, food and the screening of documentaries in Albuquerque, New Mexiko. Between October 26 and October 28, Cumann na Saoirse Náisiúnta organised a lecture tour, dinners and screenings of In the Name of the Father with Gerry Conlon. On Saturday, October 26, Gerry Conlon appeared live on Radio Free Éireann. This was followed by a book signing and a movie viewing at the Rocky Sullivan’s. The October 27 event in New York with Gerry Conlon was co-hosted by the Westchester County Ancient Order of Hibernians and Cumann na Saoirse Náisiúnta. A third event was held on October 28 in New Jersey.
In Europe protests and solidarity events were held in a wide range of countries. In Rome, Italy, Republican Sinn Féin held a picket on Piazza di Spagna. In Paris, France, activists of Liberation Irlande rose awareness at a solidarity event of the Corse association SULIDARITA. In Utrecht, the Netherlands, activists of Republican Sinn Féin held a small picket. Pickets were also held in the German cities of Marburg by activists of Republican Sinn Féin, Hamburg by activists of the 1978-Society Hamburg and in Darmstadt by the Irish Republican Solidarity Group of Darmstadt.
In London two separate protests were held by Republican Sinn Féin and the Irish Republican Prisoners Support Group outside the 26-County Embassy. In Manchester a picket was organised by the Gaughan Stagg Cumann of the 32CSM in England and Wales.
The Volunteer Charles Carrigan Cumann of the 32CSM in Scotland held a picket on Buchanan Street in Glasgow City Centre.
In Ireland the Release Martin Corey Committee held a successful White Line Picket on the Falls Road in Belfast. Further protests were organised by Republican Sinn Féin at the Bridge of Peace in Drogheda, on the Ha’penny Bridge in Dublin and the Bullring in Wexford.
Following the successful 3rd International POW-Day, the chairperson of the International Independent Committee to Support the Irish Republican Prisoners of War, Dieter Blumenfeld said: “This year’s POW-Day once again showed the huge support for all Irish Republican Prisoners. Pickets and solidarity events were held in nine countries on three continents. This initiative is in its third years and this very fact should send a clear message to the British colonial regime in Ireland that Irish republicans are not alone and the prisoners are not forgotten. We hope that our support will give the prisoners in Maghaberry, Magilligan, Hydebank and Porlaoise strength in their daily fight against the brutal prison regime.”
Photography’s will be uploaded soon.