Wednesday, 15 May 1996
Dáil Éireann Debate
73. Mr. Molloy asked the Minister for Justice the reason for the ending of Operation Shannon; the number of gardaí involved in that operation; the duration and effect of the operation; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [9781/96]
Minister for Justice (Mrs. Owen): I am not in a position to provide the Deputy with the detailed information he has requested in relation to the number of gardaí involved in Operation Shannon on the grounds of security and crime prevention generally. The Garda authorities inform me that operations such as Operation Shannon are undertaken on an ongoing basis, nationally, to address both long-term and short-term  operational needs in the fight against crime. These operations are subject to constant review and may change at any time depending on operational requirements. I understand that Operation Shannon was reviewed on an ongoing basis and on 9 April 1996, based on Garda assessment, it was further extended to take in adjoining areas. This new focusing of Garda resources is designed to meet the specific needs as identified by the Garda authorities and is, of course, subject to ongoing review.
The Garda authorities are not in a position to disclose the specific nature of their operations. However, I understand that, in general, local manpower backed up by specialist emergency response units and army personnel are deployed to the targeted areas as and when necessary. The implementation of all such operations is seen as playing an important role in the fight against crime on a number of fronts. The Garda authorities report that the results have been positive and encouraging in both low key and high profile operations carried out to date.
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