Written answers

Tuesday, 3 February 2015

Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

National Flag

Photo of Seán CroweSeán Crowe (Dublin South West, Sinn Fein)
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496. To ask the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade if the flag over his Department's building was flown at half mast on 23 January 2015 to mark the death of King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia; and if his Department requested that other Department buildings do the same. [4518/15]

Photo of Ruth CoppingerRuth Coppinger (Dublin West, Socialist Party)
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499. To ask the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade if he approved the lowering of the national flag over his Department's building on Saint Stephen's Green, Dublin 2 on 23 January 2014; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [4569/15]

Photo of Charles FlanaganCharles Flanagan (Minister, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade; Laois-Offaly, Fine Gael)
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I propose to take Questions Nos. 496 and 499 together.

On the occasion of the death in office of Heads of State or Government, or other figures holding high office in the international community such as Foreign Ministers or others, the condolences of the Irish authorities can be expressed in a number of ways. Following the death recently of Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud, Ireland’s Ambassador in Riyadh offered condolences and attended the traditional occasion for the paying of respects. The Book of Condolences at the Embassy of Saudi Arabia was also signed by an official of my Department. The national flag was not flown at half mast over the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade on this occasion.

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