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External Relations Act

The External Relations Act, 1936 was an enactment of Dáil Éireann in 1936 that

  • recognised the abdication of King Edward VIII as King of Ireland, and accession of his brother, George VI to the Irish throne. (The abdication of the Edward VIII from each of his Commonwealth thrones had to be recognised in statute law in each kingdom.)

  • vested in George VI as the King of Ireland his only remaining role, that of representing the Irish Free State on the international stage, through
    • accepting credentials of foreign ambassadors to Ireland;
    • signing Letters of Credence accrediting Irish ambassadors to other states;
    • signing international treaties on Ireland's behalf.

The Act was passed in tandem with the Constitution (Amendment No.27) Act which removed the Crown and the governor-generalship from the Irish Free State Constitution. A third Act, the Executive Powers (Consequential Provisions) Act, passed in May 1937, retrospectively abolished both.

The External Relations Act, 1936 was repealed by the Republic of Ireland Act, 1948 which came into force on April 1, 1949.

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