Irish man drives truck into Russian embassy gates, arrested

"I've done my bit, lads," the man said as he was carried away by Irish authorities.

 A truck is seen after it crashed into the gates of the Russian Embassy, amid Russia's invasion of Ukraine, in Dublin, Ireland March 7, 2022 (photo credit: @Dublin14Weather VIA REUTERS)
A truck is seen after it crashed into the gates of the Russian Embassy, amid Russia's invasion of Ukraine, in Dublin, Ireland March 7, 2022
(photo credit: @Dublin14Weather VIA REUTERS)

A man was arrested on Monday for driving a lorry through the gates of the Russian embassy in Ireland in protest at Moscow's invasion of Ukraine.

Videos posted on social media showed the driver reversing the articulated truck through the gates of the embassy in Dublin and stopping after one gate was torn off.

One video showed the man, speaking with an Irish accent, handing out photographs that he said were of a family killed in Ukraine on Sunday and telling those gathered outside that he wanted the Russian ambassador "to leave this country."

The man, identified as Leitrim businessman Desmond Wisley by The Irish Times, reportedly said "I've done my bit, lads," as he was carried away by Irish authorities.

 Gardai (Irish Police) watch as workers assemble security barriers at the Russian Embassy, following an incident where a truck reversed through the entrance gate to the embassy, in Dublin, Ireland March 7, 2022 (credit: REUTERS/LORRAINE O'SULLIVAN) Gardai (Irish Police) watch as workers assemble security barriers at the Russian Embassy, following an incident where a truck reversed through the entrance gate to the embassy, in Dublin, Ireland March 7, 2022 (credit: REUTERS/LORRAINE O'SULLIVAN)

The Russian Embassy described the incident in a statement as a "criminal act of insanity" that was a cause of extreme concern. It called on Irish authorities to take comprehensive measures to ensure the safety of its staff and their families.

Protesters have painted anti-war slogans on the walls of the embassy in recent days.

Ireland has a long tradition of military neutrality, but the government has said it is not politically neutral on this issue and has joined the global condemnation of the Russian attacks.

Almost 2,000 Ukrainian refugees have so far arrived in Ireland, Prime Minister Micheál Martin said on Monday. The government also asked households willing to accommodate arrivals to register their interest from Monday.