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    DFA launches charter, registration facility

    Wednesday, January 23rd, 2008

    The Department of Foreign Affairs has launched two new services on its website, aimed at those travelling or resident overseas. The two services are:

    • a Consular Services Charter for citizens, called “Travel Safely, Slán Abhaile” – a document setting out the range of services provided by embassies and consulates abroad, as well as advice on steps to take before travelling abroad.
    • an online travel registration facility for Irish people resident or travelling abroad – aimed particularly at those travelling to remote or dangerous locations, and at improving the DFA’s capacity to locate Irish citizens caught in a major crisis or family emergency.

    In launching the services, Minister for Foreign Affairs Dermot Ahern said,

    As people travel more frequently, the demand for our Consular services has increased….This new service will significantly improve our capacity to locate and connect with Irish citizens caught up in a crisis and to get assistance to them. It also will improve our ability to provide timely and accurate information to their relatives in Ireland.

    He added that the DFA’s approach to consular assistance

    is interventionist and places the welfare of Irish citizens in need at its core. Officers of the Department at home and abroad repeatedly display a willingness to go the extra mile and deliver on that commitment. I know from my own direct dealings with people in difficulty and their families that this is greatly appreciated. Last year alone, the Department of Foreign Affairs provided direct assistance in over 130 cases of deaths abroad.

    Irish people made nearly eight million trips abroad last year. ‘Travel Safely, Slán Abhaile’ will be distributed widely through public libraries, schools, universities and colleges, travel agents, citizen information centres and at missions abroad.

    See the press release for more information.

    See the Travel Registration page on the DFA website.

    See the Consular Services Charter on the DFA website.

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