Gardaí protecting Russian embassy should be deployed elsewhere, Dáil told

Fianna Fáil TD John Lahart claimed up to 10 gardaí a week have been committed to protecting the embassy since the beginning of the war in Ukraine
Gardaí protecting Russian embassy should be deployed elsewhere, Dáil told

Gardaí protecting the Russian embassy in Dublin should be deployed elsewhere to crack down on other crime in the capital, a local TD has told the Dáil.

Fianna Fáil TD John Lahart claimed up to 10 gardaí a week have been committed to protecting the embassy since the beginning of the war in Ukraine, and said surrounding areas have suffered as a result.

The embassy on Orwell Road in Rathgar has become a focal point of public protest against the war and has been under Garda protection as a result.

“Every day you have two gardaí over two shifts, and other gardaí I’m sure involved, totally committed to coverage of the Russian embassy – who should be on duty, who should be patrolling the streets, and who should be keeping the people of Tallaght and Rathfarnham and all the adjoining areas safe,” Mr Lahart said.

His comments come as Dublin has seen an increase in high-profile assaults in recent weeks, including one that left a tourist in critical condition.

In mid-March, The Irish Times reported that a new static post – involving a permanent Garda presence – had been created at the entrance to the embassy, involving a Garda car being parked outside with two gardaí in the vehicle.

Cost

Special public order barriers and a permanent vehicle barrier were also put in place across the entrance.

Garda sources told The Irish Times that maintaining a two-person static post would on average require between 10 and 12 gardaí being assigned to the task full-time.

Several shifts of gardaí would be required in each 24-hour period, while resting time and annual leave must also be factored in.

The same sources said the cost of posting two Garda members outside the embassy would be about €12,000 per week or close to €55,000 per month.

That expenditure must be covered by the State rather than the Russian embassy.

When asked for comment on Wednesday, a Garda spokesperson told Breakingnews.ie that “An Garda Síochána does not comment on operational or security matters.”

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