BaileNuachtCartlann Aitheasc agus Preaseisiúintí

Air Corps prepare for possible air-lift of Irish citizens from Libya


The Taoiseach and Minister for Foreign Affairs, Mr Brian Cowen, has, following consultation with the Minister for Defence, Eamon O'Cuiv, approved the immediate deployment of two Air Corps planes to Malta to stand-by for a possible air-lift evacuation of Irish citizens from Libya, tomorrow.

The decision follows increasing concern in relation to their safety arising from the latest assessment of the deteriorating political situation in that country.

The Department of Foreign Affairs is continuing to issue advice to Irish nationals in Libya in regard to arrangements for evacuation.  These arrangements are being coordinated by Ambassador Pat Hennessy, the Irish Ambassador in Rome who is accredited to Libya.  According to information available to the Embassy there are approximately 40 Irish nationals remaining who are seeking to leave the country.  The Department's Crisis Centre will continue to operate tomorrow and  can be contacted at 01-4180222.

Photographs will be sent this evening by Maxwell's Photo Agency.

22nd February 2011