Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - Security in Northern Ireland.

15.

asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs if, during his visit to Canada in March 1989, he said that the presence of British troops is an essential aspect of security in Northern Ireland.

I assume the Deputy is referring to an incomplete report in a newspaper of a television interview given by the Tánaiste during his very successful visit to Canada in March last.

In response to a question about the presence of British troops in Northern Ireland, the Tánaiste said that he hoped eventually that the need for any troops, or any force or any use of violence, would disappear. He went on to say that his objective could be advanced through the achievement of progress in a number of areas, which would serve to marginalise the men of violence. In reply to a further question about the presence of British troops in the North, the Tánaiste referred to their presence as a part of security and said this should be seen as apro tem aspect at present.