Video shows water balloon hitting Joan Burton at Jobstown protest

Video shows water balloon hitting Joan Burton at Jobstown protest

Video footage has emerged of the moment Joan Burton was hit by a water balloon at the water-charges protest in Jobstown yesterday.

The Minister was attending a graduation ceremony at Cósan college, where she was met by a group of protesters.

Repeatedly chanting "shame on you" and "we won't pay", the protesters surround the Tánaiste, who is being ushered along a short walk to the college by a line of gardaí.

The video footage shows the moment a water balloon makes contact with Ms Burton's neck and head (3.11), soaking her hair on one side. She clearly starts when the balloon makes contact, then moves on and through the gates of the college while the protesters continue chanting and waving placards.

The protest - involving up to 1,000 people - also saw the Tánaiste trapped in her car for more than two hours after she left the graduation ceremony.

Paul Murphy from the Anti Austerity Alliance said the protest was not as fraught as people have said.

"It was peaceful," he said. "It certainly was the case that (Joan Burton) was blocked in her car for a period of time and then there was a negotiated exit.

"There were a few eggs being thrown by people who were not really participating in the protest and the residents were repeatedly asking people not to engage in that kind of thing."

He also said: "I was there at the time Joan Burton got into the car. It's true that for two or three minutes there was some banging on the car. I don't think that counts as violence. Joan Burton was inside the car. She was safe.

"That then stopped and we then had a sit-down protest that was entirely peaceful."


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