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Garda Siochana, a brief history

An Garda Siochana

In Ireland a policing tradition can be traced back to the establishment of the County Constabulary in 1822. In 1836 the Irish Constabulary (later known as the Royal Irish Constabulary) and the Dublin Metropolitan Police were established to replace the County Constabulary. In 1922, the Royal Irish Constabulary was disbanded and the Irish Free State was formed and the Garda Siochana was established. Later in 1925 the Dublin Metropolitan Police was amalgamated with the Garda Siochana. The meaning of «An Garda Siochana» in English is «The Guardians of the Peace»

Today, An Garda Siochana, as the national police service, exercises all police functions in the country, including state security services and all criminal and traffic law enforcement. The strength of the force is currently 11,747 and this includes 1,700 detectives who operate in civilian attire. Uniformed members do not carry firearms only modest wooden truncheons. Detectives are armed.

The first Garda Commissioner , Commissioner Michael Staines ( 1855-1955) said «The Garda Siochana will succeed not by force of arms or numbers, but by their moral authority, as servants of the people».