Stabbing at Catholic school in Dublin leaves several children and assistant hospitalized
On 23 November 2023, an Algerian man armed with a knife attacked a group of children outside Gaelscoil Choláiste Mhuire, a private Catholic primary school. As a result of the attack three young children and a care assistant who tried to protect the kids were stabbed. A five-year-old girl was critically injured and remains hospitalised in critical condition. The assistant, who received multiple stabs, is also in a serious condition.
Gaelscoil Choláiste Mhuire (engl. St. Mary's College) is an Irish Gaelic-speaking Catholic primary school located in Parnell Square in Dublin. The stabbing attack took place outside the school at approximately 1.30 pm, when the children were leaving. The man who committed the attack, an Algerian naturalized as Irish in 2014 after his deportation order was revoked, already had a criminal record. This, however, did not prevent the man from attacking the children with a knife on November 23 as they left school. The attacker was subsequently disarmed and immobilised by passers-by until the Gardaí arrived to arrest him.
The motivation behind the attack remains unclear; however, considering the assailant's background and the specific target being children leaving from a well-known Irish Catholic primary school, an anti-Christian motive seems not unlikely.
Apart from the victims who are still hospitalized (the 5-year-old girl and the assistant who came to protect the children), a 5-year-old boy and a 6-year-old girl who were also attacked have already been released from hospital.
Dominican Father Conor McDonough, stationed at the priory approximately 1,300 feet away from the school where the assault occurred, expressed profound surprise, stating that "the entire community here is offering prayers for all those affected," as reported by OSV. Catholic Archbishop Dermot Farrell of Dublin echoed the sentiments expressed by Fr McDonough.
During the night of 23 November, in a wave of popular indignation generated by the attack, serious riots took place in Dublin.