[Sinn Fein]

29th June 1999

Ó Caoláin welcomes go-ahead for Walsh Visas Scheme

The Irish Peace Process Cultural and Training Program Act of 1998 (the Walsh Visas scheme) is to go ahead with the first visas coming on stream in October. The news was announced by Cavan/Monaghan Sinn Fein TD Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin who was informed today by Congressman Walsh's office in Washington DC that funding for the Scheme has been cleared.

The visas are targeted at people under 35 in the Border Counties and the Six Counties. 4,000 visas will be granted in each of three years. Deputy Ó Caoláin said:

``This scheme is a tangible demonstration of the peace dividend for the people of the Border Counties and the North of Ireland. It is a direct and concrete demonstration of positive US participation in the Irish peace process.''

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