Not Enough Being Done By The Government To Bring Richard O’Halloran Home
Addressing the Taoiseach today, Aontú Leader and Meath West TD Peadar Tóibín sharply criticised the Taoiseach and Simon Coveney for not doing enough to bring Richard O’Halloran home to his family and friends.
An Teachta Tóibín: “This is a heart-breaking case. Richard is being held against his will for over 1,000 days. He has spent another Christmas being held against his will. This despite being completely innocent of any wrongdoing for nearly 3 years. He is the only Irish citizen ever to be the subject of a Chinese exit ban. The Chinese exit ban is due to an allegation against a shareholder in the aircraft leasing company he worked for. Richard travelled to China voluntarily two years ago, to try and resolve the issue. Shockingly he has been detained there ever since. There is no complaint, allegation, charge or suspicion of wrongdoing against Richard. Richard O’Halloran has fully cooperated with all legal requests made of him. In Ireland his wife and 4 children have suffered enormous stress and worry. The pressure that has been put on this family is indescribable. They need their father back in Ireland now.”
“Both the Taoiseach and the Minister have not been personally involved with the case for sometime. Shockingly European Commission has not been contacted by the government to help. Why is Ireland not using her voice on the international stage to bring one of its people home?
Why is the Minister not using our position at the UN to rally support? I don’t know whether it is prioritising diplomatic or commercial interests, or fear of the Chinese government, but it is simply unacceptable that the Irish government is being so quiet when one of its citizens is being forcibly imprisoned abroad without any accusation of wrongdoing. Ireland should be raising this case at the EU, the UN and in every diplomatic meeting with our allies until Richard is back on Irish soil.”