UFC star Conor McGregor took to Twitter to vent his frustration regarding the tightening COVID-19 restrictions, mandatory vaccinations, and his belief that the Republic of Ireland should leave the European Union.
The former two division UFC champion took aim at politicians in the EU and Ireland in a series of social media posts shared with his approximately 9 million Twitter followers, adding: “It is time to talk Ireland leaving the European Union.”
McGregor’s criticism followed a Friday address by Taoiseach Michael Martin, who revealed that Ireland would reinstate certain COVID-19 restrictions during the Christmas period in an attempt to curb rising rates of infection and to limit the spread of Omicron variant should it become dominant.
“The risks associated with proceeding into the Christmas period without some restrictions to reduce the volume of social contacts is just too high,” Martin said during his national address.
The restrictions include social distancing requirements for bars and restaurants, as well as the closure of nightclubs.
With fears of another difficult winter due to the highly contagious Omicron variant, which has been detected in more than two dozen countries, European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen said it was “understandable and appropriate” to discuss how to “encourage and potentially think about mandatory vaccination” among member states in the EU. Austria has since announced plans to make the COVID-19 vaccine compulsory while Greece is mandating the vaccine for all those over the age of 60.
McGregor, however, insisted that “forced vaccines” constitute a “war crime.”
“You think forcing people to inject something into their body is not a crime? McGregor tweeted on Friday. “People must have the right to choose. An attempt to mandate vaccine is coming, per the head of the EU. I cannot agree to this. I know our lap dogs in power will just do as they are told.”
Despite McGregor’s rant, it is important to note that COVID-19 vaccines are effective at helping protect against severe disease and death from the virus that causes COVID-19, including known variants such as the Delta variant. COVID-19 vaccines can reduce the risk of people spreading the virus that causes COVID-19.
People can sometimes get COVID-19 after being fully vaccinated. However, this only happens in a small proportion of people, even with the Delta variant. When these infections occur among vaccinated people, they tend to be mild.
McGregor has since deleted the aforementioned tweets.