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Minister with Responsibility for Defence, Paul Kehoe, T.D.
Welcomes home L.. James Joyce

Friday, 30 September 2016

The Irish Naval vessel, L.. James Joyce, returned today (Friday) to the Naval Base and Dockyard, Haulbowline in Cork following deployment to the Mediterranean last July.
L.. James Joyce was the second naval vessel to be deployed this year to assist the Italian authorities with the continuing search and rescue humanitarian operation in the Mediterranean. During her deployment, L.. James Joyce rescued a total of 2,678 people. Tragically, 21 bodies were also recovered by L.. James Joyce.

Lieutenant Commander Neil Manning and the crew of L.. James Joyce received a warm welcome from families and friends gathered around to celebrate their return home.

The Minister said “I am delighted to be here to meet you all and to join with your families and friends in welcoming you home. I had the privilege of visiting you earlier this month to hear your experiences of the important work you are undertaking on behalf of the people of Ireland. You can now look forward to enjoying some well deserved time off from your duties. I am very proud of your work over the past months in assisting with the humanitarian crisis in the Mediterranean. Many lives have been saved as a result. ”

The Minister added “To date, Irish participation in the humanitarian mission has resulted in the recovery of over 12,500 migrants, which clearly demonstrates the value of Ireland’s involvement in this important humanitarian response.”

L.. Samuel Beckett departed Haulbowline on 23 September 2016 and will replace L.. James Joyce on the mission in the Mediterranean in the coming week or so. It is anticipated that L.. Samuel Beckett will be deployed until the end of November 2016 and will continue the remarkable work carried out to date by Irish Naval Service vessels. ENDS

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