Over 160 new cases of international child abduction in Ireland

The majortity of these are ongoing cases

Over 160 new cases of international child abduction in Ireland

The offices of the Department of Justice and Equality in Dublin | Image: RollingNews.ie

Figures from the Department of Justice show 320 applications were dealt with by Irish Central Authority for Child Abduction in 2015.

The 2015 report, released by Justice Minister Frances Fitzgerald, says 161 of these are new applications.

While 159 of these are ongoing cases.

They mostly relate to parental child abductions - but also include applications relating to the care of children across jurisdictions, requests for social reports and access to children.

Ms Fitzgerald says: "I very much welcome that there was some decline in the number of new applications relating to child abduction in 2015.

"But it is important that we continue to work proactively with other Central Authorities around the world in dealing with this matter and in facilitating the resolution of international parental child abductions where they arise."

Of the 161 new cases, 96 concerned applications coming into the State from other countries, while 65 were outgoing to other countries.

Of the cases still active from before 2015, 81 were incoming and 78 were outgoing.

In line with previous years, the majority of new applications related to England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.

While 56% of applications received last year related to child abduction into or out of Ireland.

The remaining were other types of applications - including international child placements, access applications and social reports.