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Shatter must address use of dangerous drug by Defence Forces – Mac Lochlainn

24 May, 2013 - by Pádraig Mac Lochlainn

Sinn Féin justice and defence spokesperson Padraig Mac Lochlainn has urged Minister Shatter to address the use of lariam in by the defence forces.

Speaking this morning Deputy Mac Lochlainn said;

“Last night's Prime Time programme will have increased the already widespread and well-founded concerns around the use of the anti-malarial drug, lariam and its use by the Irish Defence Forces.

“The dangerous and harmful psychological side affects of lariam have been described by many serving members of the Defence Forces.

“The US military ceased using lariam several years ago but inexplicably the Defence Forces here continue to use it.

“As shown by last night's Prime Time programme, there are alternative anti-malaria drugs which do not have the same dangerous side affects of lariam.

“The gravity of this issue is underlined by the belief that use of the drug is linked to suicides among members of the Defence Forces.

“I have raised this issue with Minister for Justice and Defence Alan Shatter on several occasions. It is now something the government must deal with as a matter of urgency.

“The health and indeed lives of members of the Defence Forces should not and cannot be put at risk for short term financial reasons.”


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