Foreign relations of the Republic of Ireland

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Coat of arms of Ireland
This article is part of a series on the
politics and government of
the Republic of Ireland

The foreign relations of Ireland are substantially influenced by its membership of the European Union, although bilateral relations with the United States and United Kingdom are also important to the state. It is one of the group of smaller nations in the EU, and has traditionally followed a non-aligned foreign policy. Ireland has historically tended towards independence in foreign military policy, thus it is not a member of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and has a longstanding policy of military neutrality. This policy has been moderated in recent years and the country is an important staging-post for US troops in Western Asia. According to the Irish Defence Forces, the neutrality policy has helped them to be successful in their contributions to United Nations peace-keeping missions since 1960 (in the Congo Crisis) and subsequently in Cyprus, Lebanon and Bosnia and Herzegovina.[1]

Main relationships[edit]

 United Kingdom[edit]

Embassy of Ireland in London

Since at least the 1600s Ireland has had political connections with the United Kingdom, with the whole island becoming a part of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland from 1801 to 1922. From the time of Ireland declaring itself independent from the United Kingdom in 1937, the two countries have been involved in a dispute over the status of Northern Ireland. Articles 2 and 3 of the Constitution of Ireland formerly claimed Northern Ireland as a part of the "national territory", though in practice the Irish government did recognise the UK's jurisdiction over the region.
From the onset of the Troubles in 1969, the two governments sought to bring the violence to an end. The Sunningdale Agreement of 1973 and the Anglo-Irish Agreement of 1985 were important steps in this process. In 1998, both states signed the Good Friday Agreement and now co-operate closely to find a solution to the region's problems. Articles 2 and 3 of the Constitution of Ireland were amended as part of this agreement, the territorial claim being replaced with a statement of aspiration to unite the people of the island of Ireland. As part of the Good Friday Agreement, the states also ended their dispute over their respective names: Ireland and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Each agreed to accept and use the others' correct name.

When the Troubles were raging in Northern Ireland, the Irish Government sought, with mixed success, to prevent the import of weapons and ammunition through its territory by illegal paramilitary organisations for use in their conflict with the security forces in Northern Ireland. In the 1970s the Irish warship, the LÉ Ciara intercepted a ship carrying weapons from Libya which were probably destined for Irish Republican paramilitaries. Law enforcement acts such as these additionally improved relations with the government of the United Kingdom. However, the independent judiciary blocked a number of attempts to extradite suspects between 1970 and 1998 on the basis that their crime might have been 'political' and thus contrary to international law at the time.

Ireland is one of the parties to the Rockall continental shelf dispute that also involves Denmark, Iceland, and the United Kingdom. Ireland and the United Kingdom have signed a boundary agreement in the Rockall area. However, neither have concluded similar agreements with Iceland or Denmark (on behalf of the Faroe Islands) and the matter remains under negotiation. Iceland now claims [2] a substantial area of the continental shelf to the west of Ireland, to a point 49°48'N 19°00'W, which is further south than Ireland.

The controversial Sellafield nuclear fuel reprocessing plant in north-western England has also been a contentious issue between the two governments. The Irish government has sought the closure of the plant, taking a case against the UK government under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. However, the European Court of Justice found that the case should have been dealt with under EU law.[3] In 2006, however, both countries came to a friendly agreement which enabled both the Radiological Protection Institute of Ireland and the Garda Síochána (Irish Police Force) access to the site to conduct investigations.[4]

The cultural relationship between the two countries still remain strong, particularly in sport. The British and Irish Lions, for example, is a rugby team made up of players from England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales that undertakes tours of the southern hemisphere playing the major rugby nations such as New Zealand, Australia and South Africa every four years.

 United States[edit]

Embassy of Ireland in Washington, D.C.
See also: United States Ambassador to Ireland, Embassy of the United States in Dublin, United States Ambassador's Official Residence in Dublin

The United States recognised the Irish Free State on 28 June 1924 with diplomatic relations being established on 7 October 1924. In 1927, the United States opened an American Legation in Dublin.[5] Due to the ancestral ties between the two countries, Ireland and the U.S. have a strong relationship, both politically and economically, with the U.S. being Ireland's biggest trading partner since 2000.[6] Ireland also receives more foreign direct investment from the U.S. than many larger nations, with investments in Ireland equal to France and Germany combined and, in 2012, more than all of developing Asia put together.[7]

The use of Shannon Airport as a stop-over point for US forces en route to Iraq has caused domestic controversy in Ireland. Opponents of this policy brought an unsuccessful High Court case against the government in 2003, arguing that this use of Irish airspace violated Irish neutrality.[8] Restrictions such as carrying no arms, ammunition, or explosives, and that the flights in question did not form part of military exercises or operations were put in place to defend Irish neutrality, however allegations have been made against the Central Intelligence Agency that the airport has been used between 30 and 50 times for illegal extraordinary rendition flights to the U.S.[9]

In 1995 a decision was made by the U.S. government to appoint a Special Envoy to Northern Ireland to help with the Northern Ireland peace process. During the 2008 presidential campaign in the United States, however, Democratic Party candidate Barack Obama was reported as having questioned the necessity to keep a US Special Envoy for Northern Ireland. His remarks caused uproar within the Republican Party, with Senator John McCain questioning his leadership abilities and his commitment to the ongoing peace process in Northern Ireland.[10]

As of 2013, Anne Anderson is the Irish ambassador to the United States while there is no U.S. ambassador to Ireland.

 China and  Taiwan[edit]

Embassy of Ireland in Beijing

Ireland's official relationship with the People's Republic of China began on 22 June 1979.[11] Following his visit to China in 1998, former Taoiseach Bertie Ahern authorised the establishment of an Asia Strategy.[12] The aim of this Strategy was to ensure that the Irish Government and Irish enterprise work coherently to enhance the important relationships between Ireland and Asia.[12] In recent years due to the rapid expansion of the Chinese economy, China is becoming a key trade partner of Ireland, with over $6bn worth of bilateral trade between the two countries in 2010. In July 2013, the Irish Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade were invited to China by the Chinese foreign minister Wang Yi on a trade mission to boost both investment and political ties between the two countries.[13]

Ireland has raised its concerns in the area of human rights with China on a number of occasions. On 12 May 2007, during a visit to Beijing, former Taoiseach Brian Cowen (then Minister for Finance) discussed human rights issues with Chinese Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing.[14] Former Tánaiste Mary Coughlan also raised human rights issues and concerns with visiting Chinese Vice-Premier Zeng Peiyan.[14] Ireland also participates in the EU-China Human Rights Dialogue.

Concerning the Taiwan issue, Ireland follows a One-China policy. In 2007, the former Irish Minister for Foreign Affairs, Dermot Ahern summarised the Irish position as follows:[15]

Although Taiwan continues to exercise autonomy and to term itself ‘The Republic of China’, this is not recognised in international law. Taiwan’s official status is that of a Province of China...Ireland recognises the Government of the PRC as the sole legitimate government of China. Ireland does not maintain diplomatic relations with Taiwan and there is no inter-Governmental contact between the two sides. A Taipei Representative Office, established in Dublin in 1988, has a representative function in relation to economic and cultural promotion, but no diplomatic or political status.

The former Minister's emphasis on the One China policy and to the Taiwan issue being best settled through dialogue "between the parties concerned" was consistent with Beijing's wish that the Taiwan issue be regarded as a domestic one between Chinese on both sides of the Taiwan Straits.

Europe and the European Union[edit]

Ireland is consistently the most pro-European of EU member states, with 77% of the population approving of EU membership according to a Eurobarometer poll in 2006.[16] Ireland was a founding member of the euro single currency. In May 2004, Ireland was one of only three countries to open its borders to workers from the 10 new member states. EU issues important to Ireland include the Common Agricultural Policy, corporation tax harmonisation and the EU Constitution. The Irish electorate declined to ratify the Treaty of Lisbon in 2008. A second referendum in October 2009 passed the bill, allowing the treaty to be ratified before it was ratified legal guarantees on issues such as the right of Ireland to remain militarily neutral (and not engage in any kind of "European army"),the right of the state to maintain its low levels of corporation tax and that the treaty would not change the right to life article in the Irish constitution making abortion illegal and an act of murder under Irish constitutional law.[citation needed]

As of 2013, Paschal Donohoe is Minister of State for European Affairs at the Department of Foreign Affairs. Ireland has held the Presidency of the Council of the European Union on seven occasions (in 1975, 1979, 1984, 1990, 1996, 2004 and 2013).

Country Formal Relations Began Notes
Albania Albania
Andorra Andorra 1995
Armenia Armenia 1996
  • Ireland recognised Armenia’s independence in December 1991.
  • Armenia is represented in Ireland through its embassy in London (United Kingdom) and an honorary consulate in Dublin.[19]
  • Ireland is represented in Armenia through its embassy in Sofia (Bulgaria) and through an honorary consulate in Yerevan.[20]
  • Both countries are full members of the Council of Europe.
Austria Austria 1951
Azerbaijan Azerbaijan 1996
Belarus Belarus 1992
Belgium Belgium
Bosnia and Herzegovina Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bulgaria Bulgaria 1990
Croatia Croatia 1995
Cyprus Cyprus See Cyprus-Ireland relations
Czech Republic Czech Republic 1929
Denmark Denmark 1962 See Denmark-Ireland relations
Estonia Estonia 1991
Finland Finland 1961
France France 1922
Georgia (country) Georgia 1996
  • Ireland is represented in Georgia through its embassy in Sofia (Bulgaria).
  • Georgia has an embassy in Dublin.

Ireland supports EU initiatives to promote peace between Georgia and Russia. Ireland recognises Georgian sovereignty over the separatist regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia. Ireland condemned the decision of Russia to recognise South Ossetia and Abkhazia as independent states.[34] The separatist Parliament of Abkhazia expressly called on Ireland to recognise Abkhaz independence, drawing parallels between Ireland’s own historic struggle for independence and international recognition with its own, the Abkhaz Parliament’s statement recalling that:[35]

“Just like Ireland, Abkhazia has finally acquired long-awaited independence and recognition at the cost of enormous efforts...[Ireland] was de facto independent for a long time, but remained unrecognised. Ireland was the only unrecognised country in Europe until the world's largest country recognised a free parliament of Ireland. And that country was Russia.”

The parallel the Abkhaz Parliament referred to stems from the fact that the breakaway and largely unrecognised Irish Republic (1919–22), enjoyed some form of recognition from the RSFSR.[citation needed]

Germany Germany 1922
Greece Greece 1975 See Greece–Ireland relations
Guernsey Guernsey
  • Ireland has signed several tax treaties with the Guernsey.[39] The treaties provide a mechanism for inter-governmental sharing of information about offshore assets, and avoidance of dual-taxation.[40]
Holy See Holy See 1929 See Holy See – Ireland relations
Hungary Hungary 1976
Iceland Iceland
Italy Italy 1922
Jersey Jersey
  • Ireland has signed several tax treaties with Jersey.[39] The treaties provide a mechanism for inter-governmental sharing of information about offshore assets, and avoidance of dual-taxation.[40]
Kazakhstan Kazakhstan 1992
Kosovo Kosovo 2008 See Ireland–Kosovo relations
Latvia Latvia 1991
Liechtenstein Liechtenstein
Lithuania Lithuania 1991
Luxembourg Luxembourg 1925
Republic of Macedonia Republic of Macedonia 1994
Malta Malta
Isle of Man Isle of Man See Ireland-Isle of Man relations
  • Ireland has signed several tax agreements with the Isle of Man.[55] The agreements provide a mechanism for inter-governmental sharing of information about offshore assets, and avoidance of dual-taxation.
  • Ireland and the Isle of Man have collaborated on preparing reports and jointly opposing the Sellafield nuclear plant to the UK government.[56]
Moldova Moldova 1992
Monaco Monaco
  • Although Ireland has an Honorary Consulate in Monaco, Ireland is represented through its embassy in Paris (France).
  • Monaco has an Honorary Consulate in Dublin.
Montenegro Montenegro 2006
  • Montenegro declared its independence from Serbia on 3 June 2006 and Ireland recognised it on 20 June 2006.
  • Both countries are full members of the Council of Europe.
Netherlands Netherlands 1922
Norway Norway 1949
Poland Poland 1976
Portugal Portugal
Romania Romania 1990 See Ireland–Romania relations
Russia Russia See Ireland–Russia relations
  • Ireland has an embassy in Moscow.[68]
  • Russia has an embassy Dublin and an honorary consulate in Limerick.[69]
  • The Russian SFSR was the first country to recognise the independence of Ireland in 1918.[citation needed]
  • Cooperation between both countries has been more active since the end of the Cold War. Many bilateral treaties exist between both nations in various fields (taxation, investment protection, cultural and scientific, aviation, etc.).
  • Both countries are full members of the Council of Europe.
San Marino San Marino
  • Ireland is represented in San Marino through its embassy in Rome (Italy).
  • San Marino has two Consulate Generals in Ireland (Dublin and Limerick).
Serbia Serbia 1977
Slovakia Slovakia 1993

In 2010 Slovak airport security planted actual explosives in the luggage of unsuspecting passengers as part of a security exercise. As result of additional mistakes, the explosives were flown to Dublin, Ireland causing international controversy.[71] Prime Minister Fico refused to dismiss the interior minister after the incident.

Slovenia Slovenia 1991
Spain Spain 1924
Sweden Sweden
Switzerland Switzerland 1934
  • Ireland has an embassy in Bern and an honorary consulate in Zurich.
  • Switzerland has an embassy in Dublin.
  • As of 2010 there are 1,449 Swiss people living in Ireland.[77]
  • Both countries are full members of the Council of Europe.
Turkey Turkey 1972
Ukraine Ukraine 1992
United Kingdom United Kingdom See Above and Ireland–United Kingdom relations

Americas[edit]

Country Formal Relations Began Notes
Antigua and Barbuda Antigua and Barbuda 2000
Argentina Argentina 1947
The Bahamas Bahamas
  • Ireland is represented in Antigua and Barbuda through its embassy in Ottawa (Canada) and an honorary consulate in Nassau.[84]
  • The Bahamas are represented in Ireland through their High Commission in London (United Kingdom).
Barbados Barbados 2001
  • Ireland is represented in Barbados through its embassy in Washington D.C., USA and an honorary consulate in Bridgetown.
  • Barbados is represented in Ireland through its embassy in London, United Kingdom.
Belize Belize
Bolivia Bolivia
  • Ireland is represented in Bolivia through its embassy in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
  • Bolivia is represented in Ireland through its embassy in London, United Kingdom.
Brazil Brazil 1975
Canada Canada See Canada–Ireland relations
  • Canada and Ireland enjoy friendly relations, the importance of these relations centres on the history of Irish migration to Canada. Approximately 4 million Canadians have Irish ancestors, or approximately 14% of Canada's population.
  • Ireland has an embassy in Ottawa
Chile Chile
Colombia Colombia 1999 See Colombia–Ireland relations
  • Ireland is accredited to Colombia through its embassy in Mexico City, Mexico,[85] and an honorary consulate in Bogotá[86]
  • Colombia is represented in Ireland through its embassy in London, United Kingdom.[87]
  • Colombia received over €1 million in aid from Ireland in 2011.[88]
Costa Rica Costa Rica
Cuba Cuba 1999
  • Ireland is accredited to Cuba through its embassy in Mexico City, Mexico,[85] and an honorary consulate in Havana, Cuba.
  • Cuba has an embassy in Dublin.
  • A proportionate number of Irish people migrated to Cuba in the 19th century.
Dominica Dominica
Dominican Republic Dominican Republic 2009
  • Ireland is represented in the Dominican Republic through its embassy in Washington D.C., USA.
  • The Dominican Republic is represented in Ireland through its embassy in London, United Kingdom.
Ecuador Ecuador
El Salvador El Salvador 2000
  • Ireland is accredited to El Salvador through its embassy in Mexico City, Mexico,[85] and has an honorary consulate in San Salvador.
  • El Salvador is represented in Ireland through its embassy in London, (United Kingdom).
  • Irish-Salvadoran diplomatic relations were established in Dublin on 13 July 2000.[89]
  • El Salvador received over €1 million in aid from Ireland in 2011.[88]
Guyana Guyana
  • Ireland has an honorary consulate in Georgetown, Guyana.
  • Guyana is represented in Ireland through its embassy in London, United Kingdom.
Mexico Mexico 21 August 1975 See Ireland–Mexico relations
Nicaragua Nicaragua
Paraguay Paraguay
  • Ireland is represented in Paraguay through its embassy in Washington D.C., USA.
  • Paraguay is represented in Ireland through its embassy in London, United Kingdom.
Peru Peru
  • Ireland is accredited to Peru through its embassy in Mexico City, Mexico,[85] and an honorary consulate in Lima.
  • Peru has an embassy in Dublin and has an honorary consulate in Cork.
Suriname Suriname
  • Ireland is represented in Suriname through its embassy in The Hague, Netherlands.
  • Suriname currently has no formal relations with Ireland.
Trinidad and Tobago Trinidad and Tobago
  • Ireland is represented in Trinidad & Tobago through its embassy in Washington D.C., USA and has an honorary consulate in Port of Spain, Trinidad.
  • Trinidad & Tobago is represented in Ireland through its embassy in London, United Kingdom.
Uruguay Uruguay
Venezuela Venezuela 1980
  • Ireland is accredited to Venezuela through its embassy in Mexico City, Mexico.[85]
  • Venezuela is represented in Ireland through its embassy in London, United Kingdom.

Oceania[edit]

Country Formal Relations Began Notes
Australia Australia See Australia–Ireland relations
New Zealand New Zealand

Africa[edit]

Country Formal Relations Began Notes
Democratic Republic of the Congo Democratic Republic of Congo
  • Ireland is represented in the Democratic Republic of Congo through its embassy in Pretoria (South Africa).
  • Democratic Republic of Congo received €7.4 million in aid from Ireland in 2011.[88]
Ethiopia Ethiopia 1994 See Ethiopia–Ireland relations
  • Ireland has an embassy in Addis Ababa.
  • Ethiopia has an embassy in Dublin.
  • In 2011, Ethiopia received €36.4 million in aid from Ireland.[88]

Ireland disbursed USD 71.67 million to Ethiopia in 2008, making it seventh in worldwide bilateral donors to the country.[96] Irish foreign aid to Ethiopia includes grants towards focuses on Vulnerability, Health, Education, HIV and AIDS and Governance, either directly, through NGOs, and missionary societies. These grants amounted to 32 million in 2007,[97] and over €37 million in 2006.[98] In January, 2003, the Irish Minister of State with responsibility for Overseas Development Assistance, Tom Kitt, visited Ethiopia to see how his country could assist in famine relief. He planned to visit the Tigray Region, which was reported as being the most affected by famine at the time.[99]

Kenya Kenya 1979
  • Ireland is represented in Kenya through its embassy in Dar-es-Salaam (Tanzania) and an honorary consulate in Nairobi.[100]
  • Kenya has an embassy in Dublin.
  • Kenya received €9.3 million in aid from Ireland in 2011.[88]
Lesotho Lesotho 1975
  • Ireland has an embassy in Maseru.[101]
  • Lesotho has an embassy in Dublin.
  • Lesotho received €11.3 million in aid from Ireland in 2011.[88]
Liberia Liberia
  • Ireland is represented in Liberia through its embassy in Abuja (Nigeria).[102]
  • Liberia is represented in Ireland through its embassy in London (United Kingdom).
  • Liberia received €7.5 million in aid from Ireland in 2011.[88]
Malawi Malawi 2002
  • Ireland has an embassy in Lilongwe and an honorary consulate in Blantyre.[103]
  • Malawi has an honorary consulate in Dublin.
  • Malawi received €17.5 million in aid from Ireland in 2011.[88]
Mozambique Mozambique 1996
  • Ireland has an embassy in Maputo.[104]
  • Mozambique is represented in Ireland through its embassy in London (United Kingdom).
  • Mozambique received €42.2 million in aid from Ireland in 2011.[88]
Sierra Leone Sierra Leone
  • Ireland is represented in Sierra Leone through its embassy in Abuja (Nigeria) and an honorary consulate in Freetown.[105]
  • Sierra Leone is represented in Ireland through its embassy in London (United Kingdom).
  • Sierra Leone received €9.1 million in aid from Ireland in 2011.[88]
Somalia Somalia
South Africa South Africa 1993
  • The opening of bilateral relations were strongly considered by both governments in the 1930s and 1940s, following a successful state visit by South African prime minister General J. B. M. Hertzog to Dublin in 1930. At this time connections between the two "restless dominions" were particularly cordial, based also on an earlier Irish nationalist identification with the Boer cause during the South African War of 1899-1902, but cost concerns prevented an exchange of high commissioners. Nevertheless, there were regular private visits by South Africa's London-based high commissioners, most notably Charles te Water in the 1930s, and Dr A. L. Geyer, who was a guest of Taoiseach Éamon de Valera in 1952. While purely financial considerations had prevented the mutual exchange of ambassadors, by the 1960s a principled stand against apartheid came to prevent such an upgrading of relations. As a result, Ireland was the only EU country that did not have full diplomatic relations with South Africa until 1993, when an exchange of ambassadors was agreed with the De Klerk administration in anticipation of the ending of apartheid, despite vociferous protests from the Irish Anti-Apartheid Movement, led by Kader and Louise Asmal, which regarded such relations as premature. Prior to this, relations were handled by a Johannesburg-based honorary consulate.
Sudan Sudan 1984
  • Ireland is represented in Sudan through its embassy in Cairo (Egypt) and an honorary consulate in Khartoum.[104]
  • Sudan is represented in Ireland through its embassy in London (United Kingdom).
  • Sudan received €9.6 million in aid from Ireland in 2011.[88]
Tanzania Tanzania 1979
Uganda Uganda 1994
  • Ireland has an embassy in Kampala.
  • Uganda is represented in Ireland through its embassy in London (United Kingdom).
  • In 2011 Uganda received €42.7 million from Ireland through a variety of aid programmes.[88]
  • Irish people are one of the few citizens that do not need a visa to travel to Uganda.[109]

It was found in November 2012 that €4 million worth of Irish foreign aid was misappropriated by senior officials of the country. Instead of going towards aiding the development of the country, this money was redirected into the personal account of the prime minister of Uganda. The Irish government then halted all aid payments towards Uganda until the money was recouped, which eventually occurred in January 2013.[110]

Zambia Zambia 1965 See Ireland–Zambia relations
  • Ireland has an embassy in Lusaka.
  • Zambia is represented in Ireland through its high commission in London (United Kingdom).
  • Zambia benefits greatly from Irish Aid programs, in 2010 the country received €20.58 million in total from the country.[88]
Zimbabwe Zimbabwe 1984
  • Ireland is represented in Zimbabwe through an honorary consulate in Harare.[111]
  • Zimbabwe is represented in Ireland through its embassy in London (United Kingdom).
  • Zimbabwe received €7.6 million in aid from Ireland in 2011.[88]

Asia[edit]

Country Formal Relations Began Notes
Afghanistan Afghanistan
China People's Republic of China 1979 See People's Republic of China–Ireland relations
India India See India–Ireland relations
  • India has an embassy in Dublin.
  • There are 16,986 Indians living in Ireland.[29]
  • India received nearly €3.5 million in aid from Ireland in 2011.[88]

Indo-Irish relations picked up steam during the freedom struggles of the respective countries against a common imperial empire in the United Kingdom. Political relations between the two states have largely been based on socio-cultural ties, although political and economic ties have also helped build relations. Indo-Irish relations were greatly strengthened by the such luminaries as the likes of Pandit Nehru, Éamon de Valera, Rabindranath Tagore, W. B. Yeats, James Joyce, and, above all, Annie Besant. Politically relations have not been cold nor warm. Mutual benefit has led to economic ties that are fruitful for both states.[citation needed] Visits by government leaders have kept relations cordial at regular intervals.

Iran Iran
Israel Israel 1975 See Ireland–Israel relations

In 2010, the Israel Defense Forces forcibly boarded an Irish aid ship destined for the Gaza Strip which resulted in worsened relations, Israel's Mossad was also involved in the counterfeiting of five Irish passports used in an assassination, and 2 members of the Israeli ambassador's security staff in Dublin were subsequently deported.[117] In 2010, there were numerous protests at the Israeli embassy in Ireland over the treatment of Palestinians.[118]

Japan Japan
South Korea Republic of Korea 1983
Malaysia Malaysia
Pakistan Pakistan See Ireland–Pakistan relations
  • Ireland is represented in Pakistan through its embassy in Riyadh (Saudi Arabia) and an honorary consulate in Karachi.
  • Pakistan has an embassy in Dublin.
  • There are 6,847 Pakistanis living in Ireland.[29]
  • Pakistan received over €1.5 million in aid from Ireland in 2011.[88]
Palestinian National Authority Palestinian Authority
  • Ireland has a representative office in Ramallah.[123]
  • The Palestinian Authority has a general delegation in Dublin,[124] upgraded to mission status is 2011.[125]
  • In 2011, Foreign Minister Eamon Gilmore spoke at the United Nations in favour of Palestine's application for membership.[126]
  • The Occupied Territories of Palestine received €5.4 million in Irish aid in 2011.[88]
 Philippines See Ireland–Philippines relations
  • Ireland-Philippines diplomatic relations officially began in 1986 and have become more intense over the years as increasing numbers of Filipinos have migrated to Ireland.
  • The Philippines appointed its first resident ambassador to Ireland during 2009.
  • There are 12,791 Filipinos living in Ireland.[29]
Saudi Arabia Saudi Arabia
  • Ireland has an embassy in Riyadh.[127]
  • Saudi Arabia has an embassy in Dublin.[128]
East Timor Timor Leste 2003
  • Ireland is represented in Timor Leste through its embassy in Singapore (Singapore).
  • Timor Leste received €3.4 million in aid from Ireland in 2011.[88]
  • Since 2003 Timor Leste is one of 9 priority countries receiving Irish Aid assistance.[129]
Vietnam Vietnam 1996

Overview[edit]

  Diplomatic relations, accredited Ambassador from Ireland and/or the respective state
  Diplomatic relations maintained trough the Irish UN mission in New York
  Diplomatic relations, no Ambassador accredited
  non-diplomatic representation

As of 2008 Ireland maintains diplomatic relations with 173 states (including the Republic of Kosovo), the Holy See and the European Union.[132]

Ireland has not yet established diplomatic relations with:

United Nations[edit]

The United Nations was founded in 1945, but Ireland's membership was blocked by the Soviet Union until 1955,[134] "partly because of Dublin's neutrality" during the Second World War.[135] Since 25 July 2007, the Irish ambassador to the UN Office at Geneva has been Dáithí Ó Ceallaigh.[136] Ireland has been elected to the UN Security Council as a non-permanent member on three occasions — in 1962, in 1981–1982 and most recently in 2001–2002.[137]

Ireland is a member state of the International Criminal Court, having signed the Rome Statute in 1998 and ratified it in 2002.[138]

Peacekeeping missions[edit]

Ireland has a long history of participation in UN peacekeeping efforts starting in 1958, just three years after joining the UN. As of 2006, 85 members of the Irish Defence Forces had been killed on peacekeeping missions.[139]

List of major peacekeeping operations:[140]

As well as these missions, Irish personnel have served as observers in Central America, Russia, Cambodia, Afghanistan, Namibia, Western Sahara, Kuwait and South Africa.[139]

International organisations[edit]

Ireland is a member of or otherwise participates in the following international organisations:[141]

Foreign aid[edit]

Ireland's aid program was founded in 1974, and in 2006 its budget amounted to €734 million. The government has set a target of reaching the Millennium Development Goal of 0.7% of Gross National Product in aid by 2012, a target which is projected to amount to €1.5 billion based on current GNP growth.[142] Irish development aid is concentrated on eight priority countries: Lesotho, Mozambique, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Zambia, Uganda, Vietnam and East Timor.[143] in 2006, Malawi was announced as the ninth priority country, with a tenth country to follow.[144] Aid has had to be reduced because of the 2008–2011 Irish financial crisis.

As of 2012, Joe Costello is the Minister of State for Trade and Development at the Department of Foreign Affairs.

Human rights[edit]

There have been no serious civil, human or social rights abuses/problems in the State, according to Amnesty International and the U.S. State Department.[145][146] The country consistently comes among the top nations in terms of freedom and rights ratings.

Index Ranking (Most Recent) Result
Freedom in the World – Political Rights 1st (Joint) 1 ("Free")
Freedom in the World – Civil Liberties 1st (Joint) 1 ("Free")
Index of Economic Freedom 9th 76.9 ("Mostly Free")
Worldwide Press Freedom Index Ranking 15th -4.00 ("Free")
Global Peace Index 6th (Joint) 1.33 ("More Peaceful")
Democracy Index 12th 8.79 ("Full Democracy")
International Property Rights Index 13th (Joint) 7.9
Corruption Perceptions Index 16th (Joint) 7.7
Failed States Index 170th (7th from the bottom) 26.5 ("Sustainable")

Ireland and the Commonwealth of Nations[edit]

Ireland was a member state of the British Commonwealth from 1922 until 1949, initially as a Dominion called the Irish Free State from 1922 until 1937, when Ireland adopted a new constitution and changed the name of the state to "Ireland". Although the king was removed from the Constitution in 1936, a republic was only formally declared from 18 April 1949. Under the rules at the time, a republic could not be a member state of the Commonwealth. This was changed a week later with the adoption of the London Declaration.

Since 1998, some people in Ireland have advocated joining the Commonwealth of Nations, most notably Éamon Ó Cuív and Mary Kenny.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Ireland and the United Nations". Retrieved 2010-07-15. 
  2. ^ "Dóms- og kirkjumálaráđuneyti : Reglugerđ varđandi afmörkun landgrunnsins til vesturs, í suđur og til austurs". Reglugerd.is. Retrieved 2010-10-24. 
  3. ^ Irish Government must pursue Sellafield case via EU — European Parliament press release, 8 June 2006.
  4. ^ "Irish Sellafield appeal ruled illegal". The Guardian. 30 May 2006. Retrieved 27 October 2013. 
  5. ^ A GUIDE TO THE UNITED STATES' HISTORY OF RECOGNITION, DIPLOMATIC, AND CONSULAR RELATIONS, BY COUNTRY, SINCE 1776: IRELAND
  6. ^ "Ireland Trade Visualization". Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Retrieved 28 October 2013. 
  7. ^ "Ireland ranked as fourth largest destination for investment from US companies". Irish Central. 7 October 2013. Retrieved 28 October 2013. 
  8. ^ Horgan v. An Taoiseach & others IEHC 64 (28 April 2003) — High Court judgement in the unsuccessful case brought by Ed Horgan
  9. ^ "US report accuses Ireland of collusion in 'extraordinary rendition' flights". BreakingNews.ie. 5 February 2013. Retrieved 28 October 2013. 
  10. ^ "Obama seeks to recover from Irish blunder". Republican News. 5 September 2008. Retrieved 28 October 2013. 
  11. ^ Centre for Asian Studies, University Collete Dublin, China the Emerging Power: Prospects for Sino-Irish Relations, By Conor O'Clery, Asia Correspondent, The Irish Times
  12. ^ a b Irish Department of Foreign Affairs: a Decade of the Asia Strategy
  13. ^ "Tánaiste begins four day political and economic mission to China". Department of Foreign Affairs. 29 July 2013. Retrieved 29 October 2013. 
  14. ^ a b Oireachtas: WRITTEN answer on Wednesday, 31 January 2007. Ref No: 43859/06
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External links[edit]

  • Department of Foreign Affairs official site
    • Irish Treaty Series "All treaties published in the Irish Treaty Series since 2002 are available in pdf format on this site. A limited number of selected treaties published in earlier years is also available"