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Written Answers. - Common Foreign and Security Policy.

Wednesday, 27 March 2002

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 551 No. 3

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 48. Mr. Timmins Information on Billy Timmins Zoom on Billy Timmins  asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs Information on Brian Cowen Zoom on Brian Cowen  the advances he has made regarding the Government's European Common Foreign and Security Policy; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [4804/02]

Minister for Foreign Affairs (Mr. Cowen): Information on Brian Cowen Zoom on Brian Cowen Ireland is a full and active participant in the formulation and conduct of the European Union's Common Foreign and Security Policy, CFSP. Ireland was a full and equal participant in the negotiations at successive intergovernmental conferences which agreed the objectives and parameters of CFSP as set out in the treaties of Maastricht and Amsterdam, which were approved by referendum of the Irish people. The development of the CFSP has been fully consistent with, and provides an important vehicle for, the pursuit of Ireland's foreign and security policy traditions, in particular the priority we attach to the rule of law in international affairs; the importance of the United Nations, where the EU are collectively the largest contributor to the UN budget and programmes; humanitarian and development issues, where again the EU is the world's largest donor of humanitarian and development aid; human rights issues, which are an integral focus in the conduct of the EU's relations with third countries; and conflict prevention and crisis management, which are at the core of the capacities being developed through the European security and defence policy. Ireland's voice in the world is greatly enhanced though our participation in CFSP, and like my predecessors I have accorded it high priority in the conduct of our foreign policy. Ireland's participation in the CFSP is fully consistent with our traditional policy of military neutrality.

Question No. 49 answered with Question No. 46.

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