A Donegal County Councillor has called for a recording from the 2022 MacGill Summer School to be removed from the council’s website, claiming it goes against the local authority’s stance on neutrality.
Cllr Michael Cholm Mac Giolla Easbuig from the Glenties MD said that one specific panel was “pro-NATO” and questioned the state’s long-held policy of neutrality.
The panel in question was broadcast on Saturday 23rd July entitled “In these turbulent times is Neutrality an option anymore?“. A recording remains available for playback on the council’s website.
Cllr Mac Giolla Easbuig said that several speakers made it clear that they did not believe Ireland should remain neutral.
He argued that the topic went against a motion adopted by Donegal County Council in May 2022. The motion, raised by Cllr Mac Giolla Easbuig, stated: “That Donegal County Council reaffirms its strong support for the 26 counties long established policy of neutrality and wishes to place on record its opposition to any attempt to change our position on this crucial issue.”
The motion also paved the way for the Council to call upon the Taoiseach to answer the request that neutrality be inserted into the constitution through the process of a referendum.
This week, Cllr Mac Giolla Easbuig said that the webcast of the MacGill Summer School talk contained “unbiased thinking” and what he viewed as a “controversial contribution” from the Netherlands Ambassador to Ireland.
Cllr Mac Giolla Easbuig said: “While the MacGill Summer School is undoubtedly entitled to hold such a discussion albeit a one-sided one, the real question is why Donegal County Council chose to broadcast this contentious piece? An item that is certainly not in the spirit of the above resolution endorsed by a majority of its elected local government representatives.”
“I am calling on the council to remove the video on their website promoting the conference.”