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The Hill of Tara and The M3 Motorway



7 July 2009

‘Complaint Over Hill of Tara and M3 Motorway Submitted to UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon’

TaraWatch has submitted a complaint to the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Ban Ki-moon, on the day of his visit to Dublin, concerning the Hill of Tara and the M3 motorway.

It has been sent to him and various relevant UN agencies, including UNESCO, the Secretariat, the UN High Commission on Human Rights, the UN Global Compact, and the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues.

The complaint petitions the UN to intervene in the controversy and initiate a problem-solving initiative, while the European Court of Justice considers if Ireland is in breach of EU law, in the case currently being argued by the European Commission against Ireland, and until the Minister for the Environment John Gormley completes his nomination of the Hill of Tara to UNESCO.

Breaches of various UN laws, which Ireland has ratified, are cited in the complaint, including:

  • Charter of the United Nations

  • UNESCO Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage

  • UNESCO Constitution

  • Universal Declaration of Human Rights

  • International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights

  • International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights

  • International Convention on the Rights of the Child

  • Universal Declaration on Cultural Diversity

  • United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples

  • Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide

  • UN Global Compact

  • United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change
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The complaint has been given to the Labour Party and Sinn Fein, who will be attending meetings with the Secretary-General today, in the hope it will be hand-delivered to him. Arthur Morgan, TD, will be attending the lunch today for the General-Secretary, hosted by Taoiseach, Brian Cowen. Michael D. Higgins, TD, and Senator Dominic Hannigan will be attending the meeting of the Joint Committee on Foreign Affairs today, which the Secretary-General will attend.

TaraWatch spokesperson, Vincent Salafia, said:

“We have petitioned the Secretary-General to intervene and initiate a problem-solving initiative in order to prevent further destruction of the Tara landscape, as well as breaches of EU and UN law.

“Works at Tara should cease until the European Court of Justice decides the case currently being brought against Ireland by the European Commission.

“UNESCO should intervene now that the Minister for the Environment has begun the nomination of Tara to become a UNESCO World Heritage Site.


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