FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT 1997

Security, defence and international relations.

24

24. (1) A head may refuse to grant a request under section 7 in relation to a record F45 [ ] if, in the opinion of the head, access to it could reasonably be expected to affect adversely—

( a) the security of the State,

( b) the defence of the State,

( c) the international relations of the State, F46 [ ]

( d) matters relating to F47 [ Northern Ireland, or ]

F48 [ ( e ) matters relating to the functions of the Independent Commission for the Location of Victims Remains (within the meaning of the Criminal Justice (Location of Victims' Remains) Act, 1999). ]

(2) F49 [ A head shall refuse to grant a request under section 7 if the record concerned ]

( a) contains information—

(i) that was obtained or prepared for the purpose of intelligence in respect of the security or defence of the State, or

(ii) that relates to—

(I) the tactics, strategy or operations of the Defence Forces in or outside the State, or

(II) the detection, prevention, or suppression of activities calculated or tending to undermine the public order or the authority of the State (which expression has the same meaning as in section 2 of the Offences against the State Act, 1939), F48 [ or ]

F48 [ (III) the functions of the Commission referred to in subsection (1)( e ), ] F50 [ or ]

F50 [ (IV) the functioning of the Independent Monitoring Commission (within the meaning of the Independent Monitoring Commission Act 2003), ]

( b) contains a communication between a Minister of the Government and a diplomatic mission or consular post in the State or a communication between the Government or a person acting on behalf of the Government and another government or a person acting on behalf of another government,

( c) contains a communication between a Minister of the Government and a diplomatic mission or consular post of the State,

( d) contains information communicated in confidence to any person in or outside the State from any person in or outside the State and relating to a matter referred to in subsection (1) or to the protection of human rights and expressed by the latter person to be confidential or to be communicated in confidence,

( e) contains information communicated in confidence from, to or within an international organisation of states or a subsidiary organ of such an organisation or an institution or body of the European Union or relates to negotiations between the State and such an organisation, organ, institution or body or within or in relation to such an organisation, organ, institution or body, or

( f) is a record of an organisation, organ, institution or body referred to in paragraph (e) containing information the disclosure of which is prohibited by the organisation, organ, institution or body.

(3) Where a request under section 7 relates to a record to which subsection (1) applies, or would, if the record, existed, apply, and the head concerned is satisfied that the disclosure of the existence or non-existence of the record would prejudice a matter referred to in that subsection, he or she shall refuse to grant the request and shall not disclose to the requester concerned whether or not the record exists.

Annotations:

Amendments:

F45

Deleted (11.04.2003) by Freedom of Information Act 2003 (9/2003), s. 19(a), commenced on enactment.

F46

Deleted (26.05.1999) by Criminal Justice (Location of Victims' Remains) Act 1999 (9/1999), s. 9(a)(i), S.I. No. 155 of 1999.

F47

Substituted (26.05.1999) by Criminal Justice (Location of Victims' Remains) Act 1999 (9/1999), s. 9(a)(ii), S.I. No. 155 of 1999.

F48

Inserted (26.05.1999) by Criminal Justice (Location of Victims' Remains) Act 1999 (9/1999), s. 9(a)(iii) and (b), S.I. No. 155 of 1999.

F49

Substituted (11.04.2003) by Freedom of Information (Amendment) Act 2003 (9/2003), s. 19(b), commenced on enactment.

F50

Inserted (7.01.2004) by Independent Monitoring Commissions Act 2003 (40/2003), s. 9, S.I. No. 5 of 2004.