348. Deputy Jack Chambers asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade the status of a review his Department is undertaking relating to the work and potential remuneration of the 11 special Irish peace monitors on secondment to the OSCE in eastern Ukraine; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 39390/16 asked on 13 Dec 2016 - Overseas Missions)

Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade (Deputy Charles Flanagan): The OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine performs vital work in extremely difficult circumstances, particularly in Eastern Ukraine. As I outlined in response to a Parliamentary Question No. 343 on 25 October 2016, there is currently no funding for supplementary payments by the Government to Irish monitors. However, my Department continues to keep the issue under review.
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343. Deputy Jack Chambers asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade the status of the work of the 11 special Irish peace monitors on secondment to the OSCE in eastern Ukraine; if the monitors receive no pay or allowances from his Department for their work; if his attention has been drawn to the fact that Ireland is the only western European country that does not provide its monitors with such allowances or pay; if he will consider extending such payments to the monitors; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 31929/16 asked on 25 Oct 2016 - Overseas Missions)

Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade (Deputy Charles Flanagan): The OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine, which was established by decision of the Permanent Council of the OSCE on 21 March 2014, is composed of international staff from OSCE participating States and unarmed, civilian monitors, supported in their work by local staff from Ukraine. As of 12 October 2016, there were 693 international monitors in Ukraine, of whom 10 are Irish. 
Members of the Special Monitoring Mission are not...

489. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade if he has consulted with the Department of Defence regarding the implications of the deployment of Irish troops to Mali, given the potential impact of such a deployment at this time on the perception of Ireland’s neutrality abroad; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 45531/15 asked on 17 Dec 2015 - Overseas Missions)

Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade (Deputy Charles Flanagan): On 16 November, in the wake of the horrific attacks in Paris, President Hollande stated that France was invoking Article 42.7 of the Treaty on European Union. The article states that “If a Member State is the victim of armed aggression on its territory, the other Member States shall have towards it an obligation of aid and assistance by all the means in their power, in accordance with Article 51 of the United Nations Charter. Th...

677. Deputy Mick Wallace asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade if he raised any opposition to the European Union proposal to commence a military mission to prevent illegal smuggling off the coast of Libya; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 23333/15 asked on 16 Jun 2015 - Overseas Missions)

Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade (Deputy Charles Flanagan): In the wake of tragic loss of life in the Mediterranean, the European Council in April agreed that the immediate priority is to prevent more people from dying at sea. It undertook to use all tools at the EU’s disposal and to work with countries of origin and transit of migrants to tackle the root causes of the current human emergency. Ireland strongly supports this comprehensive approach which includes continued provision of deve...

412. Deputy Micheál Martin asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade the position regarding the triple lock system; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 35641/14 asked on 07 Oct 2014 - Overseas Missions)

Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade (Deputy Charles Flanagan): The conditions under which Irish military personnel may be deployed for service outside the State as part of an International Force, referred to as the ‘triple lock’ mechanism, are set down in the Defence (Amendment) (No. 2) Act of 1960 as amended by the Defence (Amendment) Act of 2006. The service must be as part of an International United Nations Force as defined by the legislation; it must be approved by the Government; and, w...

156. Deputy Pat Deering asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade if a request has been made to send Irish troops to Syria. (Question 30100/13 asked on 25 Jun 2013 - Overseas Missions)

Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade (Deputy Eamon Gilmore): There are currently two United Nations peacekeeping missions which operate in Syria, the United Nations Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF) and the United Nations Truce Supervision Organisation (UNTSO), the latter of which is headquartered in Jerusalem. 
At the beginning of June a decision was taken by the Austrian Government to withdraw its peacekeeping contingent from UNDOF. In response to this, the United Nations a...

157. Deputy Andrew Doyle asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade if annual reports are still made and compiled by the Permanent Mission of Ireland to the United Nations in New York; the use and purpose of these reports and who they are accountable to in his Department in Dublin; if these UN reports by the delegation are made public and if they are laid before Dáil Éireann and the Houses of the Oireachtas, either on an annual basis or otherwise; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 30108/13 asked on 25 Jun 2013 - Overseas Missions)

Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade (Deputy Eamon Gilmore): It is not the practice for my Department’s overseas missions to prepare annual reports. In common with other missions, the Permanent Mission of Ireland to the United Nations reports on a regular and ongoing basis on a range of issues to relevant Divisions of my Department. Overseas missions also prepare annual business plans in consultation with and under the oversight of Headquarters. These plans are reviewed by the ...