282. Deputy Sean Sherlock asked the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence the number of overseas appointments being filled by NCOs; the number of overseas appointments now filled by officers; when these appointments were made; and the location of each. (Question 52254/17 asked on 06 Dec 2017)

Minister of State at the Department of Defence (Deputy Paul Kehoe): As of 01 December 2017, Ireland is contributing 639 Defence Forces personnel to 9 different missions throughout the world. These include, 141 commissioned officers, 249 non-commissioned officers and 249 are drawn from other ranks. The main overseas missions in which Defence Forces personnel are currently deployed are the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) with 377 personnel and the United Nations Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF) in Syria with 136 personnel. Deployment to these missions rotate on a six monthly basis with a number of key headquarter appointments rotating on a yearly basis. The current Naval Service deployment to the EU naval mission (Operation Sophia) commenced in October 2017 with 55 naval personnel, and is due to return later this month.

The overall current contribution of some 639 personnel to overseas missions reflects the Government’s continued commitment to our responsibilities in the area of international peace and security.

Full details of all personnel currently serving overseas are listed in the following table.

The information requested by the Deputy as to when appointments were made in each case cannot be compiled in full within the time permitted.

Members of the Permanent Defence Force Serving Overseas as of 01 December 2017

UNIFIL (United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon) HQ UNIFIL 111th Infantry Battalion UNIFIL Sector West HQ 30 339 8 9 45 6 20 133 2 1 161 Lebanon
UNTSO (United Nations Truce Supervision Organisation) Israel & Syria 12 12 4 x Syria 4 x Jerusalem 3 x Lebanon 1 x Tiberius
MINURSO (United Nations Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara) 3 3 Western Sahara
MONUSCO (United Nations Stabilisation Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo) 4 4 Democratic Republic of the Congo
UNDOF (United Nations Disengagement Observer Force) HQ UNDOF Staff Appointments UNDOF 56th Infantry Group 1 5 130 1 5 15 54 61 Syria
Total 532 100 209 223
EUFOR (EU-led Operation in Bosnia & Herzegovina) 5 4 1 Sarajevo
EUTM Mali (EU-led Training Mission) 20 7 13 7 x Bamako 13 x Koulikoro
KFOR (International Security Presence in Kosovo) HQ 12 5 7 Kosovo
Naval Service EU Mission (Op Sophia) 55 10 19 26 Mediterranean
Total Number of Personnel Serving with UN Missions 92 26 40 26
Staff Officer, High Level Planning Group, Vienna 1 1 Vienna
Total Number of Personnel Serving with OSCE 1 1
Brussels 4 4 Brussels
Military Adviser, Permanent Mission to UN, New York Military Adviser, Irish Delegation to OSCE, Vienna Military Representative to EU (Brussels) Liaison Officer of Ireland, NATO/PfP (Brussels) EU OHQ Operation Althea, Mons, Belgium Irish Liaison Officer to SHAPE and Military Co-Op Division, Mons, Belgium 1 1 4 2 1 1 1 1 4 2 1 1 New York Vienna Brussels Brussels Belgium Belgium
OVERALL TOTAL 639 141 249 249