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An Garda Síochána – EUROPOL Operation FIRESTORM, 6th-9th March 2023

Issue Date: 21 March 2023

Between 6th and 9th March 2023, An Garda Síochána took part in a EUROPOL coordinated joint exercise of surveillance and intervention units across the EU.

The exercise, involved units connected with the ATLAS network and the European Surveillance Group, from Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Ireland, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.

Units from An Garda Síochána attached to Garda National Crime and Security Intelligence Service including Special Tactics and Operations Command were integral parts of the exercise. 

The coordinated exercise, executed in real-life conditions, started in Ireland and culminated with several simultaneous interventions in Luxembourg and Maastricht, the Netherlands.

Speaking about Operation FIRESTORM Assistant Commissioner Michael McElgunn, Garda National Crime and Security Intelligence Service said "An Garda Síochána is committed to working with our International Partners in ensuring the safety of citizens here in Ireland and in Europe. Operation FIRESTORM demonstrates that An Garda Síochána has the capacity and capability to be engaged in policing and security activities at the highest level.”

Assistant Commissioner McElgunn further highlighted that "Live exercises, such as Operation FIRESTORM, are essential in ensuring Ireland and Europe’s readiness to respond to terrorist and criminal activity. An Garda Síochána will play its part in protecting domestic and international communities.”