Dáil Éireann - Volume 356 - 19 February, 1985

Written Answers. - Children Detainees.

434. Mr. N. Andrews asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs if, with regard to the detention in Chile shortly before Christmas 1984 of 19 people (details supplied), all of whom are opposed to the present Chilean regime of General Pinochet, he will consider, in his capacity as Minister for Foreign Affairs, making urgent representations on their behalf to his equivalent in the Chilean Government; if he will press for the release of these prisoners; if he will consequently [43] denounce the ongoing persecution of members involved in human rights organisations and opposition groups there.

Minister for Foreign Affairs (Mr. P. Barry): Together with our partners in the European Community, we have expressed concern on many occasions about breaches of human rights and democratic freedoms in Chile.

As the Deputy will be aware, Ireland does not have formal diplomatic relations with Chile. We shall, however, raise the cases of the persons referred to by the Deputy with the Chilean authorities through diplomatic channels, and I shall communicate with the Deputy when a reply is received.