1940 – Emergency anti-IRA legislation is introduced in the Free State.

On 23 December 1939, IRA members stole almost the entire reserve ammunition store of the Irish Army from the Magazine Fort in Dublin’s Phoenix Park. This became known as the “Christmas Raid” in IRA folklore. The Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) found two and a half tons of the stolen ammunition inside County Armagh on 2 January 1940. The next day the Irish Minister for Justice, Gerald Boland, at an emergency session of the Dáil, introduced the Emergency Powers bill to reinstate internment, Military Tribunal, and executions for IRA members. It was rushed through and given its third reading the next day creating the Emergency Powers Act.

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