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Irish Air Space (Breach)

Volume 127: debated on Thursday 11 February 1988

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To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what information is available on a Royal Air Force aeroplane that breached Irish air space on 30 December 1987; and if he will make a statement.

On the morning of 30 December 1987 an Army Air Corps Beaver aircraft penetrated Irish air space. The incident has been fully investigated by my Department and it is clear that it occurred as a result of a misunderstanding by the pilot of the exact terms of the flight clearance given to him, and this has been explained to the Irish Government. Appropriate disciplinary action has been taken and the relevant instructions to air crew in Northern Ireland have been clarified in order to avoid the recurrence of such a misunderstanding.