Readers like you keep news free for everyone.

More than 5,000 readers have already pitched in to keep free access to The Journal.

For the price of one cup of coffee each week you can help keep paywalls away.

Support us today
Not now

Taoiseach on suspicious package: 'Come after us, don't come after our staff or families'

The white powder in the envelope addressed to the Health Minister was confirmed to be non-hazardous.

Image: Leah Farrell/

THE TAOISEACH HAS said ‘oddballs’ wishing to send a message to politicians should not target their staff or families, after an envelope containing white powder was sent to the Department of Health.

The building was evacuated after the envelope, which was addressed to Health Minister Simon Harris, was opened by a member of staff.

Harris was in the building at the time but was not in the room when the envelope was opened. Technicians from the Defence Forces have since confirmed that the powder was non-hazardous.

Reacting to the incident, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said his concern is for the staff in the department who opened the mail.

“I’m not sure what kind of oddballs send suspicious packages in the post but they should be well aware that it’s not the politician who’s going to be opening the mail, it’s somebody doing a normal job,” he told reporters.

It could be a receptionist, it could be a security guard, it could be a clerical officer or somebody working on the constituency team and if you want to come after us, come after us, but don’t come after our staff or families.

Minister Harris earlier thanked emergency services for their diligence in responding to the incident. He said it was a “difficult day” for his staff, particularly those working closely with him.

Making a difference

A mix of advertising and supporting contributions helps keep paywalls away from valuable information like this article.

Over 5,000 readers like you have already stepped up and support us with a monthly payment or a once-off donation.

For the price of one cup of coffee each week you can make sure we can keep reliable, meaningful news open to everyone regardless of their ability to pay.

The envelope has now been handed over to gardaí for their investigation.

- With reporting by Christina Finn. 

Read next:


This is YOUR comments community. Stay civil, stay constructive, stay on topic. Please familiarise yourself with our comments policy here before taking part.
write a comment

    Leave a commentcancel