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Statement by Simon Coveney, T.D., Minister for Foreign Affairs and Minister for Defence

The Department of Foreign Affairs is in ongoing contact with the French authorities in relation to a military exercise planned later this week, taking place in an area of the Atlantic Ocean off the French coast.   The full extent of the area that may be potentially affected includes a small piece of the southern extremity of Ireland’s EEZ, approximately 200km southwest of Ireland territorial waters.  The Irish Aviation Authority (IAA) was informed of the exercises via standard procedures and the Department of Transport has issued a Marine Notice to this effect. As a close EU partner, the Department of Foreign Affairs will, as normal, maintain contact with the French authorities throughout the period of the military exercise.