Dáil Éireann - Volume 641 - 08 November, 2007

Written Answers. - Commemorative Events.

Deputy Arthur Morgan asked the Minister for Defence if he proposes to reinstate the Committee for the 1916 100th anniversary commemoration. [27576/07]

Deputy Aengus Ó Snodaigh asked the Minister for Defence his proposals in relation to the 2008, 1916 commemoration and commemorations for the years leading up to 2016. [27575/07]

Deputy Jack Wall asked the Minister for Defence when he will issue invitations to all party leaders to nominate spokespersons to serve on the All-Party Oireachtas Consultation Group in relation to an appropriate commemoration of the 100th anniversary of the 1916 Rising in 2016; if he intends to ask the Group to place particular emphasis on a social objective as an appropriate memorial to the men and women of 1916; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [27715/07]

  Deputy Tom Kitt: I propose to take Questions Nos. 29, 42 and 51 together.

In relation to the commemoration of the 1916 Easter Rising in 2008, a meeting of the relevant Inter-Departmental Committee will be held later this month to consider the appropriate arrangements that should be put in place for this commemoration. It is expected that the arrangements will be broadly similar to those put in place in 2007 and that the Committee should be able to finalise its recommendations by the end of the year.

When the Inter-Departmental Committee has finalised its recommendations, it is proposed to re-establish the All Party Oireachtas Consultation Group and to convene a meeting of the Group to brief them on those recommendations and to take on board any views that they may have in relation to them. Prior to that, the Minister for Defence will write to Party Leaders to ask them to nominate spokespersons to the Group.

With regard to the preparations for the centenary commemoration in 2016 and in the lead-up to that year, it is the Government’s intention that the centenary commemoration programme, at national, regional and local level, would include a wide range of commemorative, cultural and artistic initiatives. Where appropriate, the commemoration programme could include an agreed social objective. It is the Minister’s intention that [484] this matter would be considered by the Consultation Group at its first meeting.

In the previous Dáil, the Group had agreed to the setting up of an Expert Working Group that would provide specialist and academic advice in relation to the historical events and appropriate commemoration initiatives. It is anticipated that the Group will wish, generally, to continue with this approach.

The first meeting of the Consultation Group is expected to take place early in 2008.