Anti-LGBTQ+ far-right groups on the rise in Ireland, report finds

The study highlights that a considerable part of the extremist scene in Ireland consists of anti-LGBTQ+ and anti-trans groups.

This article is about anti-LGBTQ+ far-right groups in Ireland. In the photo, a protest organised by far-right group Yellow Vest.
Image: Via Facebook - Yellow Vest Ireland

According to a new report published by The Global Project Against Hate and Extremism (GPAHE), far-right groups that have anti-LGBTQ+ agendas have grown in recent years in Ireland. The report highlights how a considerable part of the Irish far-right extremist scene of the last six years is made up of anti-LGBTQ+ organisations.

The study Irish Far-right Hate and Extremist Groups conducted by GPAHE and published on August 21 profiles 12 Irish extremist groups that with their beliefs and activities “demean, harass, and inspire violence against people based on their identity traits including race, religion, ethnicity, language, national or social origin, caste, gender, sexual orientation, or gender identity.”

A total of eight of the 12 far-right groups identified in Ireland are classified as anti-LGBTQ+ or specifically anti-trans. The study highlights how after the establishment of marriage equality in 2015 and the recent repeal of the 8th amendment from the Irish Constitution, which expanded abortion rights in the country, these groups found a foothold and are still growing. Some of these groups are established political parties, such as the Irish Freedom Party founded in 2018 or the National Party, Ireland’s largest far-right party.

“Far-right extremist movements inspire terrorism, mass killings, and rights-restricting policies around the world, and the various movements are increasingly interconnected,” said GPAHE president Wendy Via, “It’s critical that people, locally and globally, understand the far-right extremist landscape, how it operates, and how the dots are connected within countries and transnationally in order to counter the threats from these groups. Community safety and democracies are at risk. We hope these reports will help advocates do that.”

On the list, we can also find the Irish LGB Alliance, an anti-Transgender group that believes that “adding the + to LGB gives the green light to paraphilias like bestiality – and more – to all be part of one big happy ‘rainbow family,’” as they posted in a tweet that was later removed from the social media platform.

Another group that made the list is the Iona Institute, which has strongly campaigned against marriage equality and is deeply embedded in the anti-LGBTQ+ movement in Europe. It has been reported that they have received substantial funding from Russia to pursue their anti-gender agenda.

Another interesting theme that emerged from the report is that these groups seem to communicate and coordinate and, interestingly, they seem to be influenced by American far-right extremists. This was evidenced by the fact that these groups share their strategies and that they actively engage with extremist groups from America, as well as from the rest of Europe.

“Similar to the U.S. and other parts of the world, there’s a disturbing trend in Ireland where white nationalist, anti-LGBTQ+, anti-immigrant, and anti-lockdown groups seem to be coming together and echoing each other’s hateful rhetoric,” commented the co-founder of GPAHE Heidi Beirich. “One of the scariest things about this coalescence is that they are able to spread their extremist messages wider and recruit more people into their movements. Unfortunately, we expect the far-right in Ireland to continue to grow.”

© 2022 GCN (Gay Community News). All rights reserved.

Support GCN

GCN has been a vital, free-of-charge information service for Ireland’s LGBTQ+ community since 1988.

During this global COVID pandemic, we like many other organisations have been impacted greatly in the way we can do business and produce. This means a temporary pause to our print publication and live events and so now more than ever we need your help to continue providing this community resource digitally.

GCN is a registered charity with a not-for-profit business model and we need your support. If you value having an independent LGBTQ+ media in Ireland, you can help from as little as €1.99 per month. Support Ireland’s free, independent LGBTQ+ media.

0 comments. Please sign in to comment.