Kerry mayor condemns racist stickers targeting Killarney convention centre

The mayor of Kerry has condemned a number of racist stickers that appear to be aimed at the Killarney convention centre where thousands of new Irish are conferred with citizenship each year.

Kerry mayor condemns racist stickers targeting Killarney convention centre

The mayor of Kerry has condemned a number of racist stickers that appear to be aimed at the Killarney convention centre where thousands of new Irish are conferred with citizenship each year.

Up to 30 “You’ll never be the Irish” black background adhesive stickers were placed at several spots along the Muckross Road overnight on Tuesday.

They depict people in Islamic, eastern European, Chinese and African dress overlooked by a sign saying “Convention Centre”.

Some 2,900 candidates became Irish citizens at the Killarney Convention centre in April involving people from over 90 countries.

Killarney itself has a significant Muslim population from Bangladesh and other countries who mainly work in the hotel industry.

The stickers do not target the town’s large Polish population.

The mayor of Kerry, Niall Kelleher, said the council removed the stickers and he himself removed a number of them. He has reported the matter to the gardaí.

“As Mayor of Kerry and as a public representative in Killarney, I'm disgusted and enraged by the appalling incident that occurred in the town of Killarney in the early hours of Tuesday morning,” Mr Kelleher said.

He said the stickers "have no place and are not welcome in our town or in our communities" and appealed to anybody with information to contact An Garda Siochána.

The Killarney Chamber of Tourism and Commerce also spoke out about the "vulgar" stickers.

“Killarney Chamber of Tourism and Commerce condemns, in the strongest possible terms, the mindless and completely unacceptable actions of whoever was responsible for placing racist, vulgar and pitiful slogans in a public area, under the cover of darkness, on Tuesday morning,” it said.

Such dreadful behaviour has no place in the progressive and successful town of Killarney where there is a warm, genuine and universal welcome for everybody.

The chamber said it appreciates the enormous contribution made by people from overseas, over several decades, who come to live and work alongside us and become our neighbours, friends and colleagues and our children’s friends, classmates and teammates.

"Racism is an ugly weapon that must have no place in society and as long as mature, decent and responsible people stand up against the uneducated bullies that engage in such unacceptable acts, then they will have far more limited opportunities to spread their hatred," it said.

"The Chamber’s steadfast view is that there must be absolutely no tolerance for discrimination, prejudice, insult or antagonism directed at anybody because they are of a different race or ethnicity."

The chamber is encouraging anybody with any information that might help to identify those responsible to contact Killarney Garda Station on 064-6631222 or the Garda Confidential Line on 1800-666-111.

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