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Ireland comparing critical incident plans with senior police from 35 European countries

Assistant Commissioner of the Dublin Metropolitan Region Patrick Leahy said, “We have a plan and we think we’re ready.”

SENIOR POLICE OFFICERS from 35 countries in Europe are in Dublin this weekend discussing how to prevent and respond to critical incidents.

The policing conference started in Dublin Castle yesterday and will continue today.

The two-day conference is being chaired by Assistant Commissioner of the Dublin Metropolitan Region Patrick Leahy.

He said the focus of the event yesterday was mostly on mass casualty events.

“We have the chief of police from Moscow and Azerbaijan to Paris, Rome, Madrid, Brussels … all of the places that have suffered critical incidents.

“These are all the people with the experience, they’ve all been through these events and they have been speaking very openly and candidly to us and telling us what went well, what didn’t go well, what changed as a consequence of the events that they had and what they’re doing differently now. For us, it’s a real opportunity.

Everybody is looking at their plans, we’re comparing our plans to see what state of readiness we’re in, what’s our understanding of the situation.

“We haven’t been through it at this point in time but we have a plan and we think we’re ready and we’re ready in the context of the threat level that we have, which is moderate, but now we’re talking to people who have been through it and they’re gone to much higher levels in terms of threat and it’s a real opportunity for us to learn from them, without having to go through the pain ourselves.

We have people in the room who have been through this already and while we have a plan in place at this point in time, it gives us a real opportunity to test what we have so that’s what it’s about for us.

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8126 Chief Garda members_90544136 Members from police forces from all over Europe arriving at Dublin Castle today Source: Leah Farrell via RollingNews.ie

Asked if Ireland will be safer as a result, Leahy said, “Absolutely, this is one of the best and most practical conferences I’ve been at.

“If we look at how we are ready to respond to an event at the moment, with the moderate threat level that we have, would I compare it to others across Europe? Absolutely, we’re doing the same things, we’re training with these people across Europe.

“In terms of a tactical response I’m confident we will respond appropriately.”

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