Ireland is sending a navy vessel to help with the migrant crisis in the Mediterranean.
The LE Eithne will take part in a mission to prevent further migrant ship tragedies, a spokesman for the Republic’s Defence Forces confirmed.
Thousands were rescued and 10 bodies recovered off the Libyan coast last weekend. At least 1,750 people have died this year trying to cross the sea separating Europe from North Africa.
A Defence Forces spokesman said: “The LE Eithne is going to the Mediterranean.
“The Minister of Defence Simon Coveney said it would be ready by Friday.”
A spokesman for Taoiseach Enda Kenny said the decision to send the vessel had still to be formally approved by the Cabinet.