'Grow up…' – Tanaiste hits out at Mary Lou for marching behind 'England get out of Ireland' banner

Sinn Fein president Mary Lou McDonald has been heavily criticised after marching in New York ahead of St Patrick’s Day with a banner saying “England get out of Ireland”.

The picture was taken during a parade in New York city. Sinn Fein posted the image, tagging in the Dublin TD, saying “No explanation needed”.

However, many politicians have taken to social media to demand an explanation from Sinn Fein, with many unionist representatives saying the banner was “anti-British”.

And Tanaiste Simon Coveney slammed the act as “offensive”.

“This is NOT leadership,” the Foreign Affairs Minister said.

“It’s offensive, divisive and an embarrassment – grow up, this is NOT Ireland in 2019! We are better than this”.

Naomi Long MLA said the banner “sends out a hostile and offensive message”.

“This banner is not just profoundly stupid (England is not now and never has been or could be in Ireland) but it sends out a hostile and offensive message to anyone English or of English extraction on this island”.

SDLP MLA Claire Hanna said “Ireland has moved on”.

“Contrast Varadkar’s confident, constructive tackling of prejudice with Pence yesterday and this,” she said.

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