The Government is to accelerate the decision-making process whereby a person seeking international protection is either granted leave to stay, or is served with a deportation order.

Minister for Justice Simon Harris said more than 640 deportation orders were served since September, of which 128 were issued since the beginning of the year.

He said that Ireland was a "fair and compassionate country" and the Government wants to "make sure that anyone fleeing persecution can seek refuge here in our country".

However, the minister added: "We also operate within a rules-based system and those rules will be applied fairly, efficiently and effectively."

"We are working to make sure applications are accelerated more quickly. So, if you come to our country and you have a right for protection - you will get that certainty. But if you come to our country illegally - you get asked to leave," he said.

Minister Harris said he was working "very closely with the gardaí" to ensure they can fulfil their role at Dublin Airport.

'NPHET style response'

Labour leader and TD for Dublin Bay South Ivana Bacik said there is a requirement on the Government to ensure that resources and clear information is in place.

She also said a minister needs to be assigned specifically with responsibility for the housing of refugees as she said Minister for Integration Roderic O'Gorman is not getting sufficient support.

"We need a NPHET style response to this."

Fine Gael TD and Minister of State Jennifer Carroll MacNeill said "every solution" needs to be looked at in terms of housing of refugees.

She acknowledged any delay to the availability of modular housing relates to identifying sites that are suitable.

"Some of the sites that came back were unbelievably ridiculous."

She also said there is an EU community fund to help develop facilities locally.

Minister O'Gorman has written to Government departments urgently seeking buildings to accommodate refugees.

The buildings can be located anywhere in the country, the minister told colleagues in a letter seen by RTÉ News.

Large halls where camp beds, mattresses and sleeping bags can be set out for people are being sought as the Department of Integration struggles to find accommodation for refugees arriving in Ireland.

Earlier, Aontú leader and TD for Meath West Peadar Toibín said in some working class areas people feel they are not getting the "dividends" when refugees arrive into communities and that is a "difficulty".

Speaking on RTÉ's Saturday with Colm Ó Mongáin, he said these communities are already feeling under "fierce pressure".

Labour deputy Aodhán Ó Ríordáin said the Government is "missing the point" if it's only talking about deportation orders when it comes to increased numbers of people applying for International Protection here.

He said a "whole of government" response is required to tackle the racism and threats of violence which were directed at people staying in accommodation centres last week.

The Labour deputy said there was also an "information vacuum" which was allowing "bad actors from the far right" who were filling it with "conspiracy theories" and increasing "tensions within our communities".