Thursday, 5 February 2004

Ceisteanna (9)

Kathleen Lynch


8 Ms Lynch asked the Minister for Defence if he will report on the progress of the investigation into the circumstances in which a suspected pipe bomb was found inside the perimeter of Gormanston Army Camp; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [3298/04]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí ó Béal (3 píosaí cainte) (Ceist ar Minister for Defence)

As I indicated previously to the House, investigations are being conducted by the Military Police and the Garda Síochána into the circumstances surrounding the discovery on 15 April 2003 of an improvised explosive device, IED, inside the perimeter of Gormanston camp. The IED, which was discovered by a member of the Defence Forces based in the camp, was disarmed by a Defence Forces explosive ordnance disposal team. Sections of the IED were taken away for forensic examination by the Garda. The remainder was destroyedin situ in a controlled explosion by the EOD team.

I am advised that the Garda is in the process of finalising its investigation. A report on the investigation has been requested from the Garda authorities and is expected to be forwarded to the Military Police shortly. The Military Police investigation can then be finalised. Once this is completed, any recommendations which arise from its report will be implemented as appropriate. The occurrence of such an event is obviously a matter for concern. However, I am glad to report there has been no further occurrence at Gormanston or any other barracks.

Why is the inquiry into this matter taking so long? It is ridiculous that it is taking so long. Do the military authorities see this as a serious matter?

Matters such as this are always treated with the gravest concern. I have no control over the completion of the investigation by the Garda, but I understand it is imminent. The most important thing is that the investigation is thorough and complete and that it enables the Military Police to complete its own investigation.

Written Answers follow Adjournment Debate.