Written Answers. - Council of Europe Presidency.

Ruairí Quinn

Question:

64 Mr. Quinn asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs the initiatives, if any, he will take during this country's term as chairman of the Council of Europe; if the period will be marked by incorporating the European Convention on Human Rights into Irish law; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [22383/99]

In relation to the first part of his question, I refer the Deputy to my earlier reply to Priority Question No. 5, tabled by Deputy Mitchell, which dealt with Ireland's chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe.

As regards the incorporation of the European Convention on Human Rights into Irish law, this matter is under consideration by the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform who has indicated that he will be putting proposals to the Government in the near future. I understand that these proposal are in the course of preparation. The Deputy will understand that it is not possible to say, in advance of the proposals, whether or not incorporation can be achieved within the period of the chairmanship.