The number of deportations carried out so far this year has fallen dramatically and there has been a similar drop in the number of new deportation orders signed.
Statistics from the Department of Justice show that as of the end of September, 103 deportations had been effected. At the same stage last year, 368 people had been deported from Ireland and 428 were deported in all of 2016.
The department said the time lag between deportation orders being signed and then carried out, coupled with the lead-in period for new procedures under the International Protection Act, impacted on the number of people being deported.
Last year saw the number of deportation orders signed off almost double to 1,196, up from 764 the previous year. This year, to the end of September, 705 deportation orders had been signed, meaning the annual tally is likely to be more in line with those in 2014 and 2015.
A spokesman for the department said the rise in deportation orders issued last year was largely as a result of increased resources having been made available through the establishment of a case-processing panel.
The figures came as the department said Ireland was not particularly affected by a ruling from the Courts of Justice of the EU, in which an Iranian man had brought a legal challenge in Austria for refusing his application for international protection and seeking his removal to Bulgaria. The judgment said that where the transfer does not take place within six months, responsibility reverts to the country which requested the transfer.
A department spokesman said this particular CJEU judgement relates to decisions to transfer a protection application to another EU member state under the Dublin III Regulations and not deportations per se. He added that the processes outlined under the Dublin III Regulations were already the current practice at the International Protection Office here.
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