Dáil Éireann - Volume 393 - 23 November, 1989
Written Answers. - El Salvador Violence.
Mr. M. Higgins Mr. M. Higgins
24. Mr. M. Higgins asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs if he will make a statement on recent events in El Salvador; and if he will outline the present attitude of the Irish Government and the Twelve to recent events in that country.
Mr. Gilmore Mr. Gilmore
51. Mr. Gilmore asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs if he will outline the Government's policy on current developments in El Salvador; if it has made any protest to the authorities there over the killing of six Jesuit priests and two other civilians, apparently by the security forces on 16 November 1989; if the Government intend to take any initiatives through the EC or UN to try and secure peace there; and if he will make a statement on the matter.
Minister for Foreign Affairs (Mr. Collins) Gerard Collins
Minister for Foreign Affairs (Mr. Collins): I propose to take Questions Nos. 24 and 51 together.
The Twelve agreed in early November, in the light of the developments there, to make a demarche to the Government of El Salvador covering the Twelve's concern at the grave attacks, in particular on civilians, religious, political and trade union organisations and the condemnation of these acts. They also called for the resumption of the interrupted dialogue in El Salvador.
On 16 November the Twelve issued a statement on the situation in El Salvador as follows:
Faced with the present bloody events in El Salvador which follows the acceleration in the cycle of violence in recent weeks, the Twelve urgently appeal to the parties to the conflict to renounce all recourse to violence and  without delay to resume serious negotiations on the basis of the Esquipulas and Tela agreements. Particularly concerned by the consequences of the fighting they urge all parties to respect the civilian population.
The Twelve also issued a statement on 17 November on the assassination of six Jesuit priests as follows:
The Twelve are deeply shocked and moved by the asassination of Fr. Ellacuria, Rector of the Central American University, and of five Jesuit priests from the same university. They condemn this ignominious act of violence as they do all attacks against innocent victims among the civilian population. They reiterate their appeal that an end be put to the violence which has been unleashed in El Salvador.
Ireland strongly supports the Twelve position and the Minister of State called in the adjournment debate in the Dáil on 16 November for both sides to return to the negotiation table as quickly as possible.
Information to hand indicates that no Irish citizens have been affected by the current violence but we continue to monitor developments in El Salvador most carefully with the co-operation of our partners in the Twelve.
Dáil Éireann 393 Written Answers. El Salvador Violence.