Friday 27 April 2018

Garda Commissioner emphatically denies claims gardai are monitoring journalists' phones

Noirín O’Sullivan
Noirín O’Sullivan
Ralph Riegel

Ralph Riegel

GARDA Commissioner Noirín O’Sullivan has emphatically rejected suggestions gardaí were now monitoring journalists’ phones.

“Absolutely not,” she said. “The relationship between the Garda Siochana and the media is very important ... We very much respect the role of journalists and the role of the media in making sure that the public interest is best served.”

She said the new TRUST initiative aims to enhance and protect the relationship between the gardai and the media.

The Garda Commissioner was speaking at the Garda College in Templemore, Co Tipperary, where 97 new recruits had their passing-out ceremony.

Meanwhile Justice Minister Frances Fitzgerald signalled that Ireland will review key anti-hate crime regulations amid mounting concern over a spate of racially motivated attacks.

Ms Fitzgerald warned that Ireland must promote equality and tolerance.

Ms Fitzgerald said: “We do have the Incitement to Hatred Act, which is the appropriate legislation there.

“There is a report out suggesting the legislation may have gaps in it. I am certainly open to reviewing our legislation as it does go back to 1987.

“I totally regret any race crime such as we have seen.

“Overall in this country, in terms of integration compared to other countries, we have been very lucky,” Ms Fitzgerald said.

“Every race crime or hate crime has to be condemned unequivocally. It must also be dealt with appropriately.”

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