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Irish bishop says US should be denied Shannon Airport facilities

The Catholic Bishop of Kerry has called on the Irish Government to withdraw facilities at Shannon Airport from the US military due to its decision to launch a unilateral, pre-emptive war against Iraq.

The cabinet was expected to discuss the matter yesterday morning local time, but Prime Minister Bertie Ahern, has already hinted that he will allow the US to use Shannon as part of the war, regardless of the views of the United Nations.

This is despite his earlier statement that a UN resolution authorising war was a "political imperative" and that Ireland's stance on the Iraq crisis was based on supporting the UN.

The Government has argued that withdrawing Shannon facilities from the US air force would harm Ireland's interests, but Bishop Bill Murray said this approach is selfish.

"They should be informed by moral principles rather than self-interest," he said.


Ahern to support US use of Shannon (Belfast Telegraph)

20 Mar 2003