Mobile phone providers in Donegal and other border counties could be asked to cut signals during the G8 summit amid fears terrorists may use them to detonate bombs. Defence Minister Alan Shatter warned there was a “real danger” lives could be lost in such an event.
“It is possible that terrorist groups may try to use the occasion of the summit to, at the very least, garner publicity for themselves,” Mr Shatter said.
“This is not to ignore the very real danger of the loss of life if such a device were successfully detonated.”
Eight world leaders will jet in for next month’s G8 summit in Co Fermanagh, including US president Barack Obama, who will also use the trip to make his first visit to Belfast. Details of First Lady Michelle Obama’s travel plans will be announced at a later date but she is widely expected to return to the Republic and visit her husband’s ancestral homeland in Co. Offaly. Other politicians to attend the G8 conference will include German chancellor Angela Merkel and UK Prime Minister David Cameron. It is believed the meeting on June 17 and 18 will generate up to £40 million for the local economy with hotels in both Donegal and Sligo reporting brisk enquiries and reservations.
Minister Shatter said the summit, at the Lough Erne golf resort on the outskirts of Enniskillen, created a real necessity for legislation to give the Government the power to ask phone companies to cut or limit signal.