199 new members joined An Garda Síochána today, having completed 32 weeks of training.

The passing out ceremony took place at the Garda College in Templemore, Co Tipperary.

Garda Commissioner Drew Harris, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan were among those in attendance.

Sixteen of the new gardaí are originally from outside Ireland and include recruits from England, Romania, Scotland, Latvia and Kenya.

Women make up a quarter of the new intake.

Over 800 new members have joined An Garda Síochána this year, with overall numbers expected to increase to around 14,000 by the end of the year.

The Department of Justice has said the force is on track to reach its target of 15,000 by 2021.

Mr Varadkar said there are "about 600 more gardaí than this time last year" and the force will continue to expand in the coming years.

He said the Government is not making contingency plans in terms of policing for a hard border in the event of a no-deal Brexit.

Mr Varadkar added that the Government will have to take into account any changes that arise because of Brexit such as a possible increase in smuggling and other illegal cross-border activities.

Mr Flanagan said there was a high level of cooperation between An Garda Síochána and the Police Service of Northern Ireland.