"Darragh O'Brien forced to clarify he didn't sign off on pilot scheme to shoot seals. MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 28, 2020 - 16:58 PM
AOIFE MOORE, POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT
The minister for housing has been forced to clarify after a response to a parliamentary question, written in his name, said the Government was “examining the potential for a pilot scheme” which would see seals shot with high-powered rifles from boats.
The story, which ran in Monday’s Irish Examiner, quoted Darragh O’Brien’s response to Independent TD Michael Healy Rae-that the scheme would “determine its efficacy in protecting fishermen’s catches”.
The schemes, which “involved shooting seals, including from boats,” were being examined despite “concerns about this approach to seal management, given the potential safety concerns arising from using high-powered rifles on moving platforms.”
The story caused outrage from environmental and animal welfare groups."