Jul 5, 2024

Shannon Airport Facilitated Eleven US Military Direct Flights to Israel Since October

A further 85 US military flights stopped at Shannon Airport on the way to the Middle East

Brídín Ní Fhearraigh-JoyceEditor in Chief

Shannon Airport has facilitated eleven US military flights to Israel since October 2023, according to human rights group Shannonwatch.

Organiser Kate Thompson stated “[b]y allowing the US military to use Shannon airport, Ireland is in breach of its duty under international law to prevent genocide. We’re appealing to Irish politicians to end this complicity in war crimes in Gaza, but we also want to reach ordinary citizens, who may not be aware of how their governments collude in assisting Israel to carry out genocide.”

US military aircraft made 34 landing requests of Shannon Airport in April of this year alone, according to an investigation by The Ditch.


When questioned whether an unsearched US military aircraft boarded by US General Erik Kurilla contained weaponry, Minister for Foreign Affairs Micheál Martin responded “no airport in Ireland, or Irish sovereign airspace, is being used to transport weapons to the conflict in the Middle East, or any other war.” 

Since October, Shannon airport has been used as a stopover for 85 flights to the Middle East. Barry Sweeney from World Beyond War Ireland spoke to The University Times, stating “These stopover flights are just going to distribution centres and then to Israel and other destinations like Cyprus, Crete, Sicily, or Kuwait. Then the Israeli army comes over and picks up the troops or the arms.”

Sweeney went on to describe the use of Shannon airport by the US military as “utterly reprehensible”.

In 2003 a similar uproar was caused when the Irish government allowed the US military to bring weapons to Iraq through Shannon airport.  

Shannonwatch are hosting a vigil every weekend for July and August to highlight the government’s complicity in Palestinian genocide. 

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