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Police with fans queuing outside Stade de France for the French Cup final earlier this year. Alamy
Rugby World Cup

Gardaí to be stationed at Rugby World Cup in France

Gardaí will not have police powers in France, but will assist in interactions with Irish citizens there.

MEMBERS OF AN Garda Síochána are to be stationed in France for the Rugby World Cup.

Justice Minister Helen McEntee got the go ahead to deploy eight members of an Garda Síochána to work with the French police and the Gendarmerie at the sporting event, which is to be held in the autumn.

A further three gardaí will be in France to help during the tourist season. The same assistance was provided last summer.

French authorities will fund accommodation for visiting gardaí.

The Garda Síochána Act 2005 permits the Garda Commissioner to assign eligible members for duties with another law enforcement agency outside Ireland.

Members have been assigned to countries within and outside the European Union in the past., including for major sporting events. 

It is understood that the duties of gardaí deployed to France will involve general patrolling, in uniform, in the company of French officers. They will not have police powers while in France. Their role will be to assist in any interactions with Irish citizens, such as anyone who is a victim of crime.

Three gardaí will go to France for the month of August, as requested by France, and will be stationed in tourist hotspots in Mont St Michel, Giverny, and Paris.

The second deployment will be between 8 September 6 and 8 October and will see gardaí stationed in Bordeaux, Nantes and Paris during the Rugby World Cup. Depending on how the Irish team fare, gardaí may stay longer.

This initiative is seen in Cabinet as a ‘positive opportunity’ to build relationships with police services internationally.

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