HC Deb 03 July 1986 vol 100 c1156
5. Mr. Bell

asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will make a statement on cross-border security.

Mr. Scott

Cross-border security co-operation plays a vital part in combating terrorist activity. The last meeting of the Anglo-Irish Inter governmental Conference welcomed the completion of a report by a joint Royal Ulster Constabulary-Garda working party on measures to improve arrangements for the exchange of information and the development of liaison structures. I look forward to receiving progress reports on the implementation of the proposed measures and to seeing the results of other joint Royal Ulster Constabulary-Garda studies which have been commissioned.

Mr. Bell

Will the Minister take this opportunity to pay tribute to the Garda for its success this year in seizing large quantities of arms, ammunition and explosives on its side of the border? While noting with interest the Minister's comments on the report, may I ask whether he is confident that the report will lead to a real and continuing improvement in cross-border security?

Mr. Scott

I certainly pay tribute to the Garda for its success with a number of operations on the other side of the border. I also pay the warmest possible tribute to members of the RUC serving on the northern side of the border, to whose bravery and commitment my right hon. Friend has already paid tribute.

The hon. Gentleman asked whether the report would produce an improvement in cross-border security cooperation. It will, but it is the implementation of the report, not its production, that will be the proof of the pudding. We look forward to that implementation.