Tuesday, 5 November 2019

Questions (314)

Micheál Martin


314. Deputy Micheál Martin asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if he discussed the 39 deaths in Essex with his counterpart in the UK; if they discussed port security on both sides of the Irish Sea; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [44613/19]

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Written answers (Question to Justice)

The incident referred to by the Deputy is a tragedy for all concerned and I have previously expressed my deepest sympathies and condolences to them in this House.

I can assure the Deputy that the Government is fully committed to addressing the challenges of human trafficking and migrant smuggling under Irish and EU legislation and the principal international conventions. We are active domestically, including by ensuring immigration control at Irish airports and ports, and at the international level on these matters.

Of course I maintain a positive relationship with my UK counterpart and we are in contact to discuss various matters of security as required.

Further and as the Deputy will appreciate, crimes such as human trafficking and migrant smuggling are transnational by nature and accordingly necessitate a collaborative approach to policing with law enforcement agencies across jurisdictions. An Garda Síochána utilises all available international mechanisms for police cooperation and training including CEPOL, Interpol, and Europol.

In relation to the specific incident referred to by the Deputy, I understand that criminal investigations are ongoing and An Garda Síochána are providing assistance to the UK authorities in this matter as appropriate.

Question No. 315 answered with Question No. 280.