The founder of the Mayo based charity Candle of Grace has has admitted that they did not inform Tusla in advance of the arrival of 60 “non accompanied minors” from Chernobyl into Dublin airport yesterday.
Lily Luzan told Midwest News today that everything was planned meticulously by the charity to successfully evacuate the children from Chernboyl, however, the success of the evacuation depended on secrecy.
A number of the children were left waiting for hours at Dublin Airport yesterday as Tusla were not made aware of their arrival in advance and Child protection officers at the airport refused to immediately grant entry visas for 60 children classed as “unaccompanied minors” until vital child protection screening was carried out.
The group of children, aged between 4 and 17, were among 113 children evacuated to county Mayo yesterday by Candle of Grace. Some were accompanied by their parents or guardians, while 60 were classed as unaccompanied minors.
The children had been travelling since Sunday and arrived in Dublin on board a flight from Poland subsidised by Ryanair.
Buses chartered to transfer the children and adults to Mayo waited for up to 10 hours and eventually all of the children were finally granted entry visas.
After leaving a meeting with representatives of Tusla and Mayo County Council just today Lily spoke to Midwest News editor Teresa O’Malley about the ordeal…