Written Answers. - Deportation of Ukrainian Children.

Tom Kitt


115 Mr. T. Kitt asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs the action, if any, he has taken to trace the Ukrainian children who are in need of medical attention and who were deported from Shannon Airport recently; the arrangements, if any, which have been made to medically treat these children in Ireland; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [16824/96]

My Department has responsibility for the admittance to Ireland of programme refugees, i.e. those refugees admitted to Ireland under Government decisions. The question of the possible admittance of any other persons claiming refugee status is a matter for the Department of Justice. The Ukrainian nationals referred to in the question are in the latter category. I have been in touch with our Embassy in Moscow, which has been active in assisting people coming to Ireland under the Chernobyl children project, which enables thousands of children who were victims of Chernobyl to come to Ireland for holidays and necessary medical attention. To date the Embassy has received no application for visas to come to Ireland from either of the families concerned. Similarly, our Embassy in Prague, which is the accredited Embassy for the Ukraine, has to date received no application for entry visas from either of the families. Any applications received will be considered in the normal way. The Department of Health would then be consulted regarding the possibility of providing appropriate medical treatment.