I propose to take Questions Nos. 401 and 402 together.
My Department's policy on the protection of the archaeological heritage is set out in two key documents published in 1999, Framework and Principles for the Protection of the Archaeological Heritage and Policy and Guidelines on Archaeological Excavation. They are available in the Oireachtas Library.
I refer the Deputy to my reply to Question No. 481 of 24 February regarding excavation reports submitted in each year from 1997 to 2002, inclusive.
Under existing legislation all archaeological objects with no known owner are the property of the State. Following their excavation, recording and conservation, as may be appropriate, excavators are obliged to hand over objects to the State, through the National Museum of Ireland, for curation.