6 June 2017
The Irish Government has sent its deepest sympathies to the United Kingdom and especially the families and friends of the victims of the horrific attack in London, which comes so soon after the appalling bomb attack in Manchester.
The public will be aware of reports that one of the persons named as likely to have carried out the attack may have spent time in Ireland.
This is the subject of a live investigation in Ireland and in the UK and therefore we must be careful about speculating on what is an evolving situation.
We are not in a position at present to comment on the movements of persons who may have been involved in the attack. These are the kinds of operational details that could be relevant to an ongoing investigation which is being undertaken by our closest neighbour in the most difficult and serious of circumstances.
I can assure people that everything required is being done and the absolute focus of An Garda Síochána right now is on offering every support and assistance to their UK counterparts. The Garda authorities are in direct contact on a continuous basis with their UK security counterparts.
My Department and I are in ongoing contact with An Garda Síochána. I met the Commissioner and other members of Garda senior management last night. Commissioner O’Sullivan outlined the ongoing Garda contacts with their counterpart agencies in the UK. For obvious reasons, it would not be appropriate to disclose any details of the investigation that is ongoing in the UK. An Garda Síochána will, as and when possible, put into the public domain as much information as possible, while ensuring that that investigation is not interfered with in any way.
The expert threat assessment is that while an attack here is possible it is unlikely, and there is no specific information in relation to any threat to Ireland from international terrorism. The level of threat from this source is kept under constant and active review by An Garda Síochána. The Gardaí have in place the necessary operational measures in terms of intelligence, a well-trained and equipped special intervention capability and other national support resources. They are supported in this, as needed, by the considerable skills and resources of the Defence Forces.
The necessary resources and supports are being given to An Garda Síochána. Additional dedicated funding for countering terrorism was provided last year to address identified operational needs in terms of equipment and training. In addition a dedicated Armed Response Unit for the Dublin Region was established, there is increased overtime and ongoing accelerated recruitment with appropriate training.