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Casement Memorial : 04-October-2011
Casement Memorial : 04-October-2011
Photographs supplied by Graeme Saunders

A plaque commemorates the twentieth anniversary of the death of Bobby Sands and other hunger strikers.

The Casement Support Group, which was set up in Australia in 1983 to highlight the plight of Irish political prisoners and the injustice of British rule in Northern Ireland, organised the plaque with Craig Johnston, the Australian Manufacturing Workers Union State Secretary, and other Victorian unions.

The 1981 Irish hunger strike was the culmination of a five-year protest during The Troubles by Irish republican prisoners in Northern Ireland. The protest began as the blanket protest in 1976, when the British governement withdrew Special Category Status for convicted paramilitary prisoners. In 1978, after a number of attacks on prisoners leaving their cells to "slop out", the dispute escalated into the dirty protest, where prisoners refused to leave their cells to wash and covered the walls of their cells with excrement. In 1980, seven prisoners participated in the first hunger strike which ended after 53 days.

The second hunger strike took place in 1981 and was a showdown between the prisoners and the British Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher. One hunger striker, Bobby Sands, was elected as a Member of Parliament during the strike, prompting media interest from around the world. The strike was called off after ten prisoners had starved themselves to death—including Sands, whose funeral was attended by an estimated 200,000 people. The strike radicalised Irish nationalist politics, and was the driving force that enabled Sinn Fèin to become a mainstream political party.

Location

Address:Victoria & Lygon Streets, Trades Hall, Carlton, 3053
State:VIC
Area:Foreign
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -37.806324
Long: 144.966146
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Details

Monument Type:Plaque
Monument Theme:Government
Sub-Theme:Dissent

Dedication

Actual Monument Dedication Date:Wednesday 6th December, 2000
Front Inscription

CASEMENT MEMORIAL
In Proud Memory Of The 10 Republican
Prisoners Who Died On Hunger Strike
In The "H" Block Of Long Kesh in 1981.  
"It is not those who can inflict the most, but
those who can endure the most who will
conquer".  Terence McSwiney.

Unveiled by Martin McGuinness, Sinn Fein,
MP, MLA, Minister for Education
Wednesday 6/12/2000
Donated by AMWU, Craig Johnston State Secretary

Source: MA
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
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