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Security Forces (Republic of Ireland)

Volume 447: debated on Tuesday 20 June 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland pursuant to the answer of 23 May 2006, Official Report, column 1605W, on security forces (Republic of Ireland), why no record is kept of occasions when security forces from the Republic of Ireland enter Northern Ireland with the consent of UK authorities while on operation. (77211)

PSNI “operations” are broadly defined as duties which include all manner of policing activities such as anti-terrorism, combating drug-smuggling, briefings, presentations, joint enquiries, investigations etc. These activities will, of necessity, cross many District Command Units and Departments and the resultant records are likely to number in the thousands. To quantify the number of occasions during which operations from the Irish Republic have, with consent, crossed into Northern Ireland would, therefore, be time-consuming and disproportionately costly.