Intelligence on suspected Islamic extremists collected by State

Minister for Foreign Affairs Charlie Flanagan
Minister for Foreign Affairs Charlie Flanagan

The Government of Ireland has admitted to compiling intelligence about suspected Islamic extremists living in the country.

Foreign affairs minister Charlie Flanagan confirmed the existence of files on extremists in the wake of a meeting of EU foreign ministers, where recent terrorist activity in Europe and the surrounding region was discussed.

Mr Flanagan said the potential infiltration of Islamic State fighters into Ireland is “a matter of great concern” to government ministers.

He added that he keeps in “very close contact” with justice minister Frances Fitzgerald on the issue of intelligence-gathering and -sharing.

Speaking to RTÉ’s News at One yesterday, he said: “I believe it’s important that we have an appropriate programme of intelligence-gathering right throughout the European Union.

“That’s why I’m fully supportive of the exchange of information regarding passengers on air flights.

“I would again encourage all EU states and in particular European parliamentarians to adopt appropriate protocols because I believe we need to ensure safety for our citizens, for people in the European Union and that will involve in the first instance intelligence and an appropriate sharing of information across a range of levels.”

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