Written answers

Thursday, 6 October 2005

Department of Foreign Affairs

Residency Applications

5:00 pm

Photo of Joe CostelloJoe Costello (Dublin Central, Labour)
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Question 73: To ask the Minister for Foreign Affairs the position regarding the application by a person (details supplied) to reside here in view of the further deterioration of that person's position over the summer of 2005; his likely response to this issue; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [26850/05]

Photo of Dermot AhernDermot Ahern (Minister, Department of Foreign Affairs; Louth, Fianna Fail)
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I am aware of the case to which the Deputy refers and I share the widely held concerns about it. The person concerned was placed under a number of restrictions as a condition of his release from prison in 2004 at the end of the prison sentence which he had served. These restrictions include a prohibition on leaving Israel, and on contacting the media and foreign governments. I understand that the person concerned is still awaiting the outcome of proceedings brought against him in December 2004 relating to breaches of the conditions under which he was released. However, I also understand that the authorities have recently returned computers to him which were confiscated at that time.

The Government has consistently taken the view that the person concerned should not be subjected to the restrictions which were imposed, and the Government of Israel is aware of this position. However, the restrictions have been the subject of judicial review by the Israeli Supreme Court, which concluded that they are not incompatible with the Israeli Government's obligations in respect of its citizens. I do not believe that the Israeli Government is likely to reverse its decision in this matter. In the absence of such a development, the issue raised by the Deputy will not arise. The Government will continue to monitor the situation.

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