5th January 2003
Use of Irish airports by US warplanes must end
Sinn Fein TD Aengus Ó Snodaigh speaking in Limerick this afternoon has accused the government of fundamentally undermining neutrality by allowing US warplanes to use Shannon airport as a base. He has called for an immediate end to the use of Irish airports, airspace, or seaports for war preparation by foreign powers. Deputy Ó Snodaigh said:
Over the last decade we have seen the abandonment of neutrality to the US and to the developing EU military structures. The most blatant example of this is government approval for US warplanes to use Shannon airport as a base. Prior to Christmas I raised this matter in the Dáil and sought clarification regarding how many US warplanes had landed and also how many overflights were taking place each week.
The government is clearly acting in violation of this state s position of neutrality. It is time that they gave an assurance that will act at all times in accordance with their constitutional and legal obligations in relation to the granting of overflights or landing permission at Shannon.
Sinn Fein is calling for neutrality to be enshrined in the Irish Constitution and codified in legislation and for an immediate end to the use of Irish airports, airspace, or seaports for war preparation by foreign powers.
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