The Minister for Justice has expressed his ‘deep concern’ after reports of a fire at a hotel in Leitrim which was due to accommodate asylum seekers.
A technical examination of the Shannon Key West hotel is due to get underway this morning, after a fire at the vacant premises was reported last night after 8pm.
A security man was on the site of the hotel when the fire broke out last night, but he was uninjured in the incident.
In a statement to Shannonside FM this morning, Charlie Flanagan claims that final preparations were being made to house up to 80 asylum seekers at the hotel, and now says that it is also too early to say when the hotel might be ready to accept residents.
He also says that the Department will examine the hotel and “all of the necessary assessments, certifications and any remedial works required must be carried out” before the government will be able to estimate when the facility can re-open.
The area around the hotel the hotel remains closed this morning and motorists are advised to avoid the scene.
Minister for Justice is Charlie Flanagan:
The full statement from the Minister is as follows:
“I am deeply concerned at the reports of the fire, which broke out in the Shannon Key West Hotel in Roosky last night.
I wish to commend the emergency services and An Garda Siochana for their quick response to the incident, which undoubtedly minimized the potential damage to the hotel.
The hotel had recently contracted with my Department to provide accommodation for 80 asylum seekers who have come to our country to seek protection. The final preparations were being made in the hotel for their arrival. Thankfully, there were no residents in situ when the fire broke out. A security guard who was on the premises was not injured and managed to raise the alarm.
The investigation into the cause of the fire must now take place and I do not wish to speculate at this point. It is also too early to say when the hotel might be ready to accept residents. All of the necessary assessments, certifications and any remedial works required must be carried out before we have a clearer timeframe. In the interim, my Department will continue to meet our obligation to provide accommodation for persons seeking our protection.”