Garda with Operation Fanacht to strengthen Level 3 restrictions announced in the country as part of the Covid defense.
The Garda has set up 132 new checkpoints on major roads as part of Operation Fanacht.
However, the Garda has not been given more powers to strictly enforce the Level 3 regulations. However, there will be Garda full-time on the streets to catch violators.
Jim Mulligan, president of the Garda Representatives Association (GRA), welcomed the government’s decision to provide additional facilities for policing.
Compared to the situation in March, the activities of the Garda are returning to normal. However he acknowledged that strict imposition of rules might add pressure on Garda.
Restrictions can only be effectively enforced with the mutual cooperation of the Garda and the public. Mulligan said it was imperative that co-operation between the people and the Garda continued in the event of Level 3 restrictions being declared across the country.
At the same time, Garda Commissioner Drew Harris clarified that the Garda has not been given new powers as part of the Level 3 restrictions.
He said there is no confusion about the level 3 restrictions and that more checkpoints had been set up as part of the effective implementation of the regulations.
He said that people should cooperate with the regulations in the context of the Covid outbreak and not go out or travel unnecessarily. The Garda will patrol across Ireland to ensure that people follow public health measures.
He added that mobile checkpoints would be set up on secondary routes in cities and villages every week as part of ensuring security arrangements.
At the same time, Justice Minister Helen McEntee said it will be a crime to organize public events as part of Level 3 restrictions and she also said that people should cooperate with the Garda in Covid defense activities.