asked the Minister for Agriculture whether he has seen a report concerning interference on the 12th instant by a foreign fishing vessel with the Irish fishing boat "Ros na Ríogh", and, if so, if he will make a statement on the matter.
Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - Interference with Irish Fishing Boat.
I have received particulars of the incident referred to by the Deputy and an having the usual steps taken to contact the owner of the foreign vessel alleged to have caused the interference complained of with a view to obtaining compensation for the aggrieved party.
If the Parliamentary Secretary wants evidence in this connection I have it here, the net, and some of the foreign rope that pulled the net on board, belonging to the foreign fishermen.
In view of the frequency of these happening and in view of the statement made last week by the Minister for External Affairs that proceedings for the enlargement of the area of our territorial waters are being dropped, will the Parliamentary Secretary consider placing the vessels of the "Loch" class which are operated by the board in these waters so that we can make a display of fishing strength and warn these people who are indulging in these, to put it mildly, inconsiderate practices?
I will do everything possible.
Will the Parliamentary Secretary take some positive steps to ensure that the protection which the Department of Defence provides will be made available in these areas where these occurrences have become more frequent during the past 12 months?
I have already taken the matter up with the responsible Minister and I can assure the Deputy that everything possible will be done so far as the protection of our fisheries is concerned.
Would the Parliamentary Secretary state whether he would make a net available to the man involved who at the moment is idle?
That is not relevant.
That is another question entirely.