Saturday 20 January 2018

Risk of a terror attack in Ireland 'low' - Flanagan

Minister Charlie Flanagan
Minister Charlie Flanagan

The risk of a terror attack in Ireland remains low despite the horrific and well-organised killings carried out by IS in Paris, the Foreign Affairs Minister Charlie Flanagan has said.

The minister was speaking as the country's main security enforcement agencies met to asses the threat of such an attack taking place her.

The National Security Committee includes high-ranking officials from the Department of Defence, Justice and Foreign Affairs and members of the gardai and the Defence Forces.

"[The committee] is assessing the response and what we in Ireland should do in order to ensure we have maximum protection should Ireland fall victim to an attack," Minister Flanagan said.

On Friday, Mr Flanagan described the attacks as "an appalling act of terrorism".

But yesterday he said the risk of a similar attack here is still "low".

Justice Minister Frances Fitzgerald said she was "satisfied" with security arrangements in place here and happy with the level of information exchanged between the different security agencies.

But she also said "more resources are needed" to effectively tackle the threat of terrorism.

One Irish person has been confirmed injured in the attacks. Special consular assistance is being provided through the Department of Foreign Affairs in Dublin and the embassy in Paris.

Meanwhile, Security at the Aviva Stadium will be at "maximum level of alertness" today ahead of the crucial Euro 2016 qualifier against Bosnia and Herzegovina.

An FAI spokesman said security personnel and sniffer dogs will sweep the stadium prior to kick off, in line with the existing arrangements.

"In relation to security tonight, we would already have a rigorous and thorough match-day security operation at the Aviva Stadium for every other football game," he said.

"In the wake of the series of catastrophes in Paris, and obviously the one at Stade de France, the level of alertness will be absolute maximum."

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