Dáil Éireann - Volume 451 - 04 April, 1995

Written Answers. - Algerian Crisis.

47. Mr. Hilliard asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs the actions, if any, the EU will take in response to the murder of almost 800 Islamic fundamentalists by the Algerian Army in the Ain Defla region west of Algiers. [6849/95]

Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs (Mr. Spring): The situation in Algeria is one of very great concern. Reports indicate that up to 30,000 people may have died in what is becoming an increasingly brutal civil war. The incident referred to by the Deputy underlines the scale and tragedy of the conflict.

The European Union is deeply concerned at the deterioration of the situation in Algeria. It has repeatedly called on all sides to cease all acts of violence to allow for peaceful dialogue and reconciliation and has pointed out that respect for human rights is an obligation on all political forces and individuals in Algeria. While acknowledging that it is for the people of Algeria themselves to resolve the current conflict on the basis of reconciliation, the EU has indicated its support for all initiatives aimed at encouraging dialogue between those who reject terrorism and violence.

The European Union has also confirmed its willingness to support a policy of democratic development and economic restructuring in Algeria.