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Our Navy's show of force off Rockall

IT'S claimed by the British, the Danes and the Icelanders but the Irish Navy has again reinforced this State's claim to Rockall.

The LE Roisin exercised Ireland's sovereign rights over the craggy outcrop in a "showing the flag" patrol.

The rock lies 230 nautical miles northwest of Bloody Foreland in Co Donegal.

It may only be a dot in the Atlantic, but ownership of the tiny island -- which rises 70ft out of the ocean and is a mere 83ft across -- is hotly contested given its location.

It sits on what is believed to be vast oil and gas fields worth billions of euro.

The Defence Forces said the Irish Naval Service routinely conducts maritime security patrols to exercise Ireland's sovereign rights.

In 1955 the British announced they had landed a party on Rockall and taken possession of it in the name of Queen Elizabeth. A flagpole was erected, the Union Jack hoisted and a commemorative plaque bolted to the granite.

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