David Andrews

From Academic Kids

David Andrews is an Irish Fianna Fáil politician and barrister.

Born on 15 March 1936 in Dublin, he was educated in Roscrea and went on to qualify as a barrister from University College Dublin and King's Inns. Andrews hailed from a very politically minded family. His father, Dr. C.S. (Todd) Andrews fought in the War of Independence and became a founder-member of Fianna Fáil. Andrews' mother, Mary Coyle, was a member of Cumann na mBan. Andrews was first elected to Dáil Éireann in 1965 as a Fianna Fáil deputy. From 1970 to 1973 he served as Parliamentary Secretary to the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence. In 1977 Jack Lynch appointed him Minister of State at the Department of Foreign Affairs. In the 1979 Fianna Fáil leadership contest Andrews supported George Colley. Charles Haughey, however, was elected leader and Taoiseach.

Andrews paid dearly for backing Colley in the leadership bid. He was confined to the back benches during Haughey's thirteen-year period as leader. During this period he maintained his legal practice and campaigned for the Guildford Four, the Birmingham Six, and Brian Keenan. In 1992 Albert Reynolds replaced Haughey as party leader and Taoiseach. Andrews was initially appointed Minister for Foreign Affairs; however, he had to vacate this position when Dick Spring, the then Tánaiste and Labour leader, insisted on the job. Andrews became Minister for Defence and the Marine. In 1997 Bertie Ahern became Taoiseach and Andrews was appointed Minister for Foreign Affairs.

His period as Foreign Minister was extremely successful regarding the Northern Ireland peace talks. In April 1998 the Good Friday Agreement was signed and adopted by the people of the Republic and the North. In 1999 Ireland joined the Partnership for Peace project. Andrews retired as Minister for Foreign Affairs in January 2000. Subsequently, in May of that year, he was appointed to the voluntary position of Chairman of the Irish Red Cross Society. He retired from Dáil Eireann at the General Election of 2002. His brother, Niall Andrews, was an MEP for Dublin until his retirement from politics in 2004, while his son, Barry, followed him into politics and was elected to Dáil Eireann in 2002.

Political Career

Preceded by:
Desmond O'Malley
Parliamentary Secretary to the Taoiseach
Succeeded by:
John Kelly

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Preceded by:
Seán Barret
Minister for Defence
Succeeded by:
Michael Smith
Preceded by:
Ray Burke
Minister for Foreign Affairs
Succeeded by:
Brian Cowen

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