Hourigan signals alarm over Government plans for Irish neutrality ‘in name only’

01 May 2024

Labour’s candidate for the Ireland South Constituency, Niamh Hourigan, has expressed alarm at the Government’s plans to abandon Ireland’s triple lock legislation.

The current triple lock mechanism ensures that for more than 12 Irish troops to be deployed overseas, there needs to be approval from the Irish government and Dáil alongside a UN mandate, either from the Security Council or General Assembly.

Speaking after plans to change the mechanism were approved by Cabinet this week, Hourigan says removal of the triple lock would be de-facto removal of Irish neutrality:

“The Government’s plan to abandon the triple lock mechanism is a concerning move towards an Irish neutrality in name only.

“Ireland’s neutrality is a hugely important foreign policy stance and that’s why I have made it one of the priorities for my campaign.

“The Government has failed to give a legitimate reason for a move away from this long-standing position.

“If this legislation is introduced to the Dáil in June, as expected, it will happen after the Irish people decide who they want to represent them in Europe and people need to know that Fine Gael, Fianna Fail and the Green Party cannot be trusted to safeguard Irish neutrality in Europe.

“As long as neutrality is Ireland’s official position – which can only be changed by referendum – then the triple lock has to be central to that policy and I’m calling for an immediate freeze to Government efforts to undermine it.”

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