US State Department issues warning for Irish music festival, locals mock the paranoia

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The world can be a dangerous place and the US State Department often warns its citizens to avoid travel to defined hotspots. This weekend alone the department issued warnings concerning planned suicide bombings in Afghanistan, arson in Haiti, demonstrations in Mali, and a suburban music festival in Dublin, Ireland.

One of these events is not like the others, yet the US State Department warned US citizens in Ireland of “a potential for violence” at the Longitude festival, which runs until Sunday in Dublin’s leafy Marlay Park. “Be aware of your surroundings and exercise caution if in the area,” it tweeted on Friday.

The tweet did not mention its sources, but was published shortly after a similar message from the US embassy in Dublin, which warned Americans to avoid the festival altogether, monitor local media for updates, and “notify family and friends of your safety.”

The Irish police insist there’s nothing to worry about and the locals mocked the state department’s paranoia.

“Violence?,” one tweeted. “Are ICE agents doing security or something?”

“Ah lads, this is Ireland, the only report to be worried about is the weather report this weekend,” another added.

“There could be a bit of banter over a few pints,” one said. “There is however no chance of an armed gunman using a semi automatic weapon fire on festival goers.”

The Irish police (Gardaí) posted pictures of officers mingling with the crowd on Friday. “Nothing to see here folks except good fun, good music and above all a very enjoyable evening,” the force tweeted. By Saturday afternoon, “no incidents of note” had been reported.

The only notable arrest came before the festival began, as rap megastar A$AP Rocky was detained in Sweden on Friday, on suspicion of assault a week earlier. The rapper was due to headline Longitude on Friday night.