Defence Minister Simon Coveney launches white paper for strategic development
A white paper for the strategic development of the Defence Forces over the next 10 years was launched today by Simon Coveney, Defence Minister.
It is only the second time in the history of the state that such a document has been published.
"Ireland has been guilty of under investing in defence for a long time.
"This is an extremely complex but much needed piece of work," he told Morning Ireland.
The Minister said that such planning took a backseat in the past and was not priortised.
"Historically we were of the opinion that there was no threat to us because 'everyone likes the Irish'.
"The time has now come to enhance our defence forces, and it is hoped that we can double the number of women," he said
"If you look at the actions of the defence forces in the Mediterranean at present, or of those on peace-keeping missions - it's clear that it's a very exciting career that is there for the taking," he said
Minister Coveney expressed his view that the Irish defence forces will continue to play a meaningful role on the world stage.