Govt 'has expressed no interest in 1916 memorabilia'

The Government is coming under fire for failing to express an interest in purchasing memorabilia from the Easter Rising that is due to go on auction today.

A total of 450 items related to the 1916 uprising are due to go under the hammer at a Dublin auctioneers in a sale that could be worth up to €3m.

The lot attracting most interest is a manuscript of the national anthem signed by author Peader Kearney which is expected to make between €800,000 and €1.2m.

The auctioneers say the Government has expressed no interest so far in any of the items going up for sale, which means many could end up being purchased by foreign buyers.

Sinn Féin TD Sean Crowe has expressed disappointment with this, saying it flies in the face of the Taoiseach's calls for people to get involved in commemorating 1916.

Heritage campaigner Vincent Salafia, meanwhile, said the State should have a responsibility to purchase the items as they are part of the heritage of every Irish person.

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