Demonstrators hit streets of Dubin to protest against Donald Trump’s visit
Around 2,000 people have filled Dublin city centre in a noisy and colourful protest march against the visit of Donald Trump to Ireland.
The Trump baby blimp flew overhead as demonstrators left Ireland’s Garden of Remembrance for Dublin city centre.
Climate change, left-wing, pro-Palestine, anti-racism and anti-war activists mounted a rally after Mr Trump returned to Ireland following D-Day commemorations in France.
Andrew Grossen, 23, from Minnesota, a student at a Dublin university, said: “I am an American citizen joining my Irish friends protesting the president.
“I believe he is morally, constitutionally and temperamentally unfit for the office of the presidency.
“His abuse of powers in the role constitutes impeachment and removal from office, and this is a good show of support for taking that action.”
Protesters marched past Dublin’s historic General Post Office, scene of the Easter Rising in 1916, on the main artery of O’Connell Street and raised their voices to urge the US President to go home.
An environmental campaigner who is a member of Extinction Rebellion dressed as the Statue of Liberty.
Joseph Campbell, from Belfast but living in the Republic for almost 50 years, said: “There are protests all over the country and there seems to be lots of people out there who want Mr Trump to go home and not have a good time.
“I am sure he will have a great time.
“He lives in a big castle and is closed away in his ivory tower but anyway we get a chance in our democracy to tell people what we think about them, especially politicians that we don’t like.”
A local Irish police officer estimated around 2,000 people took part in the protests.
Earlier, around 100 people gathered at Shannon Airport as the US President landed at a facility regularly used by the US military, with around 10 campaigners staying on site for an overnight vigil.
On Thursday morning, Mr Trump travelled to France for a ceremony to mark the 75th anniversary of the D-Day landings.
He tweeted: “Heading over to Normandy to celebrate some of the bravest that ever lived. We are eternally grateful.”
During a meeting with Irish premier Leo Varadkar shortly after arrival at Ireland’s west coast on Wednesday, Mr Trump drew a parallel with his planned wall between the United States and Mexico as he expressed confidence that the Brexit logjam over the Irish border would work out “very well”.
At the start of a bilateral meeting with the Taoiseach at Shannon Airport, Mr Trump said Brexit could be “very, very good for Ireland”.
The president agreed the current free-flowing Irish border should be preserved.
Mr Trump and First Lady Melania Trump are staying at the president’s Doonbeg hotel and golf resort in Co Clare.
Two of his sons visited a number of pubs in the village hours after their arrival.
Eric and Donald Junior arrived to cheers from locals as they swept up in Range Rovers.
They spoke to several villagers, posed for selfies with children and received even louder cheers after asking: “Does Doonbeg love Trump?”
The Trump family visit comes amid a massive security operation in west Co Clare.
A ring of steel has been erected around the five-star Doonbeg resort.
Around 3km of barriers and 3km of 6ft-high fencing have been put in place for the visit.
Some 1,500 gardai have been drafted in throughout the area for three days.