Taoiseach wants clear plan from Dublin Airport to end ‘unacceptable’ queue chaos

Micheál Martin said significant progress had been made on agreeing ban on Russian oil
Taoiseach Micheál Martin speaks to media as he arrives for the European Union leaders' summit in Brussels. Picture: Reuters

Taoiseach Micheál Martin speaks to media as he arrives for the European Union leaders' summit in Brussels. Picture: Reuters

Senan Molony

The Government wants a clear plan from Dublin Airport to ensure gigantic queues and long delays in accessing boarding gates doesn't happen again, the Taoiseach has said in Brussels.

"It is unacceptable what has happened, and it is not good enough," Mr Martin said on arrival at an EU summit.

"People should not be treated in that way. There will be daily meetings between Department of Transport and the DAA. The Government is looking for a very clear plan to ensure that this type of thing doesn't happen again. It has to be done now to improve the operational efficiency at Dublin Airport.”

Micheál Martin was briefed after a meeting of ministers on the current situation, having spoken to Transport Minister Eamon Ryan this morning and learned of a meeting with junior minister Hildegarde Naughton's with management.

Asked if the Irish army should the involved, the Taoiseach appeared to rule it out, saying that the DAA "needs to develop the capacity very quickly to deal with this”.

He stressed: "As I said, the answer lies within human resource management within the DAA and planning within the organisation also."

On Ukraine, Mr Martin said significant progress has been made by member states towards finalising a text for a sixth round of sanctions against Russia, which includes a ban on the importation of Russian oil.

The leaders discuss the issue this evening, with consensus needed and Hungarian leader Viktor Orban currently holding out.

Progress on oil is needed, the Taoiseach said, "because Russia is using income from oil to finance its war”.

"Ukraine essentially dominates the agenda, along with the importance of liquidity supports that will be made available to Ukraine in terms of its budget requirements,” the Taoiseach said.

"€9 billion will be provided to underpin the current budgetary needs of Ukraine in the coming years.

"But obviously, there's a much larger piece of work to be done in respect of reconstruction in the aftermath of the war. And work on that is also underway. But we're focusing on reducing and eliminating the dependency on Russian fossil fuels, with stronger targets for renewables and a broader programme energy efficiencies."

Mr Martin also emphasised food security, "because the global situation around food is a big worry arising out of the war itself in terms of the blockade of Ukrainian grain getting to markets”.

"We know the Middle East and African states are highly dependent on that food supply,” Mr Martin said. “And we are getting increasing warnings from the World Food Programme and others that we could be facing very serious issues around famine and food security towards the latter end of the year."


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