The Impartial Reporter stated on the 31st July:
Fracking company Tamboran has taken out a High Court injunction, which warns that a prison sentence, fine or seizure of assets could be on the cards for anyone who enters the Belcoo drill site; interferes with or prevents Tamboran from carrying out exploratory drilling; or obstructs access to or exit from the site.
The injunction was granted by The Honourable Mr. Justice Horner last Thursday, July 24, initially to last until midnight on July 30. It was up for review yesterday (Wednesday) and has been extended until there is a further Order of the court.
The injunction does not apply to people being on the Gandrum Road in general, unless people or equipment are prevented from entering or leaving the drill site.
Yesterday afternoon, a Tamboran spokesman said that since the company’s arrival in Belcoo on Monday, July 21, “a number of individuals sought to gain unlawful access to the site, and interfere with access to the site”.
They say that they sought an Injunction “in order to protect the safety of local people, site security and protesters” and this was served on Friday July 25.
“The company has since sought and secured an extension to the Order on Wednesday July 30 following additional unlawful incidents that took place since the initial Order was served. The court ruled that the Order would continue until there was a further Order of the court. Further information about this Order will be made available at www.tamboran.com. This is an existing quarry site and although there is no drilling equipment on site security work has been ongoing.”
He added: “Tamboran respects people’s right to protest and we welcome calls from local people to ensure that the protests are peaceful. It is important to stress that the company is undertaking work it is required to do under the terms of the licence from Government and intends to meet its obligations in full.”
On the exploratory drilling, the company “would ask that people approach with an open mind and willingness to listen to all the facts before making an informed decision”.
In granting the initial injunction, Mr. Justice Horner took into consideration a lengthy affidavit from Karl Prenderville, Regional Director of Tamboran. This affidavit, dated last Wednesday, July 23, included the lease agreement signed with Acheson and Glover, showing that Tamboran paid £35,000 for the use of the quarry. Tamboran’s four month lease on the quarry began on July 17. The affidavit also contains copies of emails sent to Tamboran Chief Executive Joel Riddle, who is based in Sydney, warning “the frackers” to stay out of Ireland. The High Court Judge also took into consideration of a video taken by security men at the site of protesters trying to break down the security fencing last Monday night.
The injunction was pinned to the Belcoo drill site gates on Saturday. While it is aimed at unknown persons (which means effectively anybody who breaches the stipulations) it contained a list of groups which had spoken out against Tamboran online at any stage in recent years.
As more people continue to visit the protest camp, which is running 24-hours-a-day, a code of conduct is in place, urging protesters to treat others with respect; not damage equipment or property; act in an exemplary manner if arrested and “know the limits of anger or despair and develop strategies to manage and channel these emotions constructively”.
On Sunday, a large crowd gathered to continue their opposition to fracking. Last Thursday local farmers arrived in convoy to the gates. Another tractor run is being organised for this Sunday, leaving from Belcoo at 12 noon and travelling to Enniskillen.
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