Taoiseach Michael Martin has revealed a number of service members could be prosecuted for sexual abuse in the Irish Defense Force.
Defense Minister Simon Coveney committed to an independent external review following a meeting with the Women of Honor group.
They allege they were sexually assaulted and discriminated against while serving in the Self-Defense Forces.
The women recounted allegations of sexual abuse, discrimination and harassment by other members, which allegedly went on over the course of three decades.
The Taoiseach told Dail this week that abusers “should be monitored” and hinted that gardai could soon be investigated.
He said: “It appears that based on the evidence and what has been presented, there may be a case for criminal investigation into the abuse that has occurred.”
The Women of Honor group represents a significant number of current military, naval, and air force women along with former members, some of whom were forced out after being allegedly raped. rape, sexual abuse, intimidation or harassment.
The group is unhappy with a promised Government review of the allegations and wants a root and branch investigation. Taoiseach said the Government wants to continue working with them and will see them again shortly.
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Last night, Sinn Fein Defense spokeswoman Sorca Clarke also said there was a possibility of prosecutions.
She said: “Victims of this horrific abuse within the Irish Defense Force have been hunted down.
“They were rewarded and forced to sign a non-disclosure agreement that forbade them to talk about their nightmare experience.
“And yet the perpetrators kept their careers, promoted and received pensions. Women who love their country, love the army, love their career have been forced to give it up.
‘ONE BIG COVER’
“It was a big cover-up and it was wrong. Everyone involved deserves to be exposed.
“The Self-Defense Forces to this day are still repaying everyone. They won’t say how much.
“The money is hidden in the budget but you just have to look and see that their legal costs are going up.”
There are around 600 women in the Irish army, about 6% of the force, one of the lowest in the world.
CHANGES MUST BE IMPLEMENTED
The reason for this isn’t just low wages, says Clarke, but has more to do with culture.
“They want to recruit more women but it will be difficult until they change the way they treat women in the Irish army,” she said.
“The Women of Honor group must be heard by the Secretary of Defense and our military chiefs. Zero tolerance for sexual abuse, bullying and harassment in our force. “
https://www.thesun.ie/news/8251449/military-personal-prosecution-sex-abuse-irish-defence-forces/ Taoiseach Michael Martin reveals: Soldiers can be prosecuted for sexual abuse in the Irish Defense Force