Fire at former Dublin pub was arson

Fire at former pub
Image caption,The building was formerly known as the Shipwright pub

A fire at a former pub in Dublin which was due to be used as emergency accommodation for homeless families is being treated as arson by gardaĆ­ (Irish police).

The blaze at the vacant building in Thorncastle Street, Ringsend, started at 02:00 local time on Sunday.

The site, formerly known as the Shipwright pub, was the scene of anti-immigration protests last month.

Protesters demonstrated outside the building amid false claims that it was to be used to house asylum seekers.

It took nearly 30 firefighters and six fire engines to bring the blaze under control on Sunday morning.

The fire caused substantial damage to the building.

Dublin Regional Homeless Executive confirmed in a statement that it had planned to use the building as emergency accommodation for homeless families.

It described the fire as “very disappointing”.

“Families who experience homelessness are like any other; some are working, all are trying to juggle schools and busy lives as well as looking for somewhere to rent,” it added.”

“If we cannot open facilities, there is a risk that families will not have access to basic shelter.”

Police have set up an incident room at Irishtown Garda Station and are appealing for witnesses.

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