Irish Republic pardons wartime deserters
Category: Northern Ireland
Published: 12th Jun 2012 18:26:21
The Irish government is to pardon more than 4,500 former soldiers who deserted the Defence Forces during World War II to fight with the Allied Forces.
Irish Defence Minister Alan Shatter said the government apologised for the manner in which the deserters were treated by the state after the war.
Mr Shatter said the government recognised the importance of their contribution to the Allied victory.
He said the war gave rise to grave and exceptional circumstances.
Mr Shatter said the government would introduce legislation "to grant a pardon and amnesty to those who absented themselves from the Defence Forces without leave or permission to fight on the Allied side".
In his statement to Dail Eireann, he said that in August 1945, the government of the day summarily dismissed soldiers who had absented themselves during the war and disqualified them for seven years from holding employment or office remunerated from the state's central fund.
Individuals were not given a chance to explain their absence.
No distinction was made between those who fought on the Allied side for freedom and democracy and those who absented themselves for other reasons.
"In addressing the question of desertion during World War II, the government acknowledges that the war gave rise to circumstances that were grave and exceptional," Mr Shatter said.
"Members of the Defence Forces left their posts at that time to fight on the Allied side against tyranny and, together with many thousands of other Irish men and women, played an important role in defending freedom and democracy.
"On behalf of the state, the government apologises for the manner in which those members of the Defence Forces... were treated after the war by the state."
During World War II the Irish Defence Forces had approximately 42,000 serving personnel.
Over the course of the war, it was estimated that more than 7,000 members deserted.
Of these, about 2,500 personnel returned to their units or were apprehended and were tried by military tribunal.
More than 4,500 deserters were the subject of dismissal under the Emergency Powers (No. 362) Order, 1945.
At 16:00:40 in HeadlinesIceland has issued a red alert to the aviation industry for the Bardarbunga volcano, meaning significant ash emissions are likely.
At 15:58:00 in WorldThe authorities in China have shut down the 11th Beijing Independent Film Festival on its opening day.
At 15:52:21 in EnglandAn Oxfordshire after-school club for children with learning disabilities has been closed after it was rated "inadequate" for a second time.
At 15:51:28 in SportAs Barcelona prepare for Sunday's La Liga home opener against Elche, the Nou Camp outfit can certainly reflect upon a busy summer.
At 15:47:13 in HeadlinesPalestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has called on Israel and Hamas to attend fresh talks in Egypt.
At 15:47:08 in WalesCardiff Bay plays host to some of the world's best sailors as the Extreme Sailing Series returns to the Welsh capital for a third consecutive year.
At 15:38:28 in SportBritish gymnast Giarnni Regini-Moran claimed his second gold medal of the Nanjing Youth Olympics with floor victory on day seven in China.
At 15:29:01 in SportShakhtar Donetsk's Donbass Arena has been damaged by two explosions as unrest between national forces and pro-Russian separatists continues.
At 15:25:04 in HeadlinesIvory Coast has become the latest African country to close its land borders to prevent the spread of the deadly Ebola virus on to its territory.
At 15:21:21 in EnglandUnusually high numbers of whitebait have been causing the sea off west Dorset to apparently "boil".
Harvard CitationBBC News, 2012. Irish Republic pardons wartime deserters [Online] (Updated 12th Jun 2012)
Available at: http://www.ukwirednews.com/news/1434153/Irish-Republic-pardons-wartime-deserters [Accessed 23rd Aug 2014]
News In Other Categories
As Barcelona prepare for Sunday's La Liga home opener against Elche, the Nou Camp outfit can certainly reflect upon a busy summer.
Iceland has issued a red alert to the aviation industry for the Bardarbunga volcano, meaning significant ash emissions are likely.
With the doors to its brand new £1million training centre officially open, one of the UK's leading apprentice training providers, Bristol based S&B Automotive Academy, is showcasing its world-class facilities by launching a series of foreign student exchanges for the first time in its 41-year history. To get a flavour of what life is like as an apprentice in the UK, the Academy hosted 16 apprentice engineers and bus drivers from the G9 Automotive College in Hamburg, Germany, as part of a Europe-wide vocational training initiative called the ‘Leonardo Programme’ with support from the European Social Fund. In a reciprocal arrangement, S&B will be sending nine apprentices to Germany during February 2012 so that they can get an appreciation of life in the automotive industry on the Continent. A further three German exchange groups are being planned for next year. Designed to assist the development of vocational skills and training across Europe, including work placements for trainees, the Leonardo Programme has a budget of €1.75bn, which is helping to encourage UK organisations to work with their counterparts abroad. In what is expected to be another challenging year for employers in the UK automotive sector, S&B’s Chief Executive, Jon Winter, claims that the exchange initiative will bring many benefits to the Academy and its apprentices: “In a world of global automotive brands, it’s important for our learners to understand the international context of the industry they have chosen to make their career. This new exchange programme will enable apprentices and Academy staff alike to achieve a better understanding of the challenges and opportunities within the automotive arena in Europe. With the Academy’s influence also extending to the USA and Asia, there’s every possibility that this initiative could move further afield in the future.” Continued Winter: “The need for skilled technicians across the world is on the increase and we actively encourage our apprentices to look at broader horizons during their training. Many of them have already learned the phrase ‘Vorsprung durch Gelehrtheit’, quite simply, ‘Advancement through learning.” In the 2010/11 academic year, S&B doubled the number of successful Apprenticeships over the previous year with some 350 apprentices graduating from the Academy. At the same time, achievement levels reached an all-time high with an overall success rate of 85%. For those learners on the Advanced Apprenticeship three-year programme, success rates were even higher, at over 98%. PHOTO CAPTION: As part of their exchange visit, S&B Automotive Academy arranged for the German apprentices to visit Hampshire bus operator, Bluestar, at its Barton Park depot. The students are pictured with S&B’s Andy West (3rd right) and Steve Prewett, Bluestar’s Area Engineering Manager (2nd right). Ends http://www.sandbaa.com
A comedian who was named best newcomer at last year's Edinburgh Fringe has scooped the Foster's Comedy award for best show at this year's festival.
An NHS trust has lost a computer disc containing details of 42,000 ambulance patients.
Can you keep a secret? The technology industry sure can't.