Tag Archives: Gilmore

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A  section of Taoiseach Enda Kenny’s diary – released to Sinn Fein under the Freedom of Information Act – which suggests that Mr Kenny met or was supposed to have met Justice Minister Alan Shatter on the morning of Sunday, March 23.

March 23 was the day Attorney General Máire Whelan told Taoiseach Enda Kenny about the practice of recording incoming and outgoing Garda station phone calls. Justice Minister Alan Shatter was supposed to have been told of the practice, and the Ian Bailey tapes, the following day, on March 24. The then Garda Commissioner Martin Callinan resigned on March 25.

A spokesman for the Taoiseach has since said there was an error in the diary released to Sinn Fein and that no such meeting between Mr Kenny and Mr Shatter took place on March 23.

In the Dail earlier this afternoon:

Mary Lou McDonald: “Today, we will commence statements on the report by Mr. Guerin. However, I wish to step back a couple of weeks to revisit the account of events given by An Taoiseach in respect of his knowledge of the revelations of the practice of taping phone calls to and from Garda stations. Those matters are the subject of a separate commission of investigation led by Mr. Justice Fennelly.”

“An Taoiseach has stated on the public record that he was first informed of the taping practice on Sunday evening, 23 March, when during a phone conversation with the Attorney General on an unrelated matter, she raised the issue. The Taoiseach then said that on Monday 24 March he met the Minister for Justice and Equality and Brian Purcell, Secretary General at the Department of Justice and Equality, and that he asked Mr. Purcell to go to see the Garda Commissioner at his home. We all know that this meeting resulted directly in the subsequent resignation of the Garda Commissioner.”

“It strikes me that the Tánaiste was left out of the loop in that sequence of events, and that was confirmed again by the subsequent developments around the resignation of the former Minister for Justice and Equality, Deputy Shatter. I will say no more about that.”

“I have obtained, through a freedom of information request, the Taoiseach’s diary from the week in question. It does indeed refer to a meeting or conversation with the Attorney General on Sunday evening, 23 March, at 5.30 p.m. to be precise. However, it also contains a reference to an earlier meeting on that Sunday and it reflects that at 7.30 a.m. the Taoiseach met the Minister for Justice and Equality and his officials. The Taoiseach has made no reference whatsoever to that meeting in his public account of the events or in his account to the Dáil.”

Ceann Comhairle Seán Barrett: “Could the Deputy ask a question please?”

McDonald: “A number of questions arise. Was the Tánaiste aware of the meeting? Did the Taoiseach inform him of it? Could he tell us which officials from the Department of Justice and Equality were present at the meeting? Was Brian Purcell there? Could he tell us what was discussed at the meeting? Was the taping of phone calls to and from Garda stations discussed? Was the fate of the Garda Commissioner discussed? Might that explain the marked reluctance of Brian Purcell to deal with the matter before the Oireachtas Joint Committee on Justice, Defence and Equality?”

Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore: “It seems to me that they are all questions Deputy McDonald should usefully put to the Taoiseach. I do not keep the Taoiseach’s diary. I do not know what meetings he did or did not have on Sunday 23 March. With the greatest respect, Deputy McDonald should ask him directly about those issues.”


SF claims Kenny knew earlier about Garda phone taping (Irish Times)

Previously: Thin Blue Line Updated

Pic via Michael Brennan

Transcript via Oireachtas.ie


“The Government is set to reopen the Vatican embassy, The Irish Times has learned. The Cabinet is this morning considering a request from Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore to open eight new embassies and consulates at its weekly meeting. The list includes re-opening the Vatican embassy, as well as new embassies in Bangkok, Jakarta, Nairobi, Zagreb and consulates in Austin, Texas, in the US, Hong Kong and Sau Paulo.”

The Irish Times this morning.

“The Government has “no plan” to reopen the Irish Embassy to the Holy See, Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore has said. In a written response to a question posed by Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin, Foreign Minister Gilmore said he “will be keeping the deployment of our diplomatic and consular resources under review in light of ongoing national priorities and the availability of resources”. However, the Tánaiste said “there is no plan to re-establish a resident embassy to the Holy See in the immediate term”.

The Irish Catholic, September 26, 2013

Government considers re-opening Vatican embassy (Irish Times)

Gilmore stands firm on Vatican Embassy (The Irish Catholic)

Previously: A Knock Knock Joke

Mark Stedman/Photocall Ireland


“Eamon Gilmore, leader of the Irish Labour party, said he hoped the cabinet would decide on Tuesday to set a date for a national vote on endorsing full equality for same-sex marriages. Gilmore said it would be “important to win this referendum” which could be held as early as mid 2014.”

Irish deputy PM pushes for gay marriage referendum date (Henry McDonald, Guardian)

Sam Boal/Photocall Ireland


The Irish Congress of Trade Unions Biennial Delegate Conference opens today in the Assembly Rooms in Belfast, and runs until Thursday. It will see over 700 delegates and observers debate different motions regarding the economic crisis, reform of trade union structures, workplace rights and equality.

The theme is Decent Work, Better Future.

From ICTU:

“Delegates will debate key motions on the economic crisis that call for “an end to the failed deflationary policies which for five years have depressed domestic demand and prevented growth”, and demand the introduction of a sustained programme of investment to create jobs and for Ireland to sign up to the Financial Transaction Tax.”


Biennial Delegate Conference 2013 to open in Belfast (ICTU)

John Douglas elected ICTU President (RTÉ)


On foot of the Government’s attempt to bring in further public sector paycuts, Independent TD Clare Daly told Tánaiste and Labour leader Eamon Gilmore to join Fine Gael during Leaders’ Questions in the Dáil earlier, prompting him to criticise Ireland’s “ultra left”.

Clare Daly said:

“Tánaiste, my question to you, is since you don’t believe in struggle and solidarity, is it not time that you did the honourable thing, follow the path of the tradition that you are now full and firmly in and follow, like Michael O’Leary before you, go off and join Fine Gael and bring Minister Howlin with you?”

Eamon Gilmore responded:

“When you have problems of this scale, you can either rant and chant about them, as you do. Or you can try and fix them. And that’s what the Labour Party is, that’s what the Labour Party, that’s what the Labour Party is in Government to do and that is what we are doing.”

“You can go through constituency by constituency and you know what, where will you find the ultra left, you’ll find the ultra left opposing every single proposal, to industrial development, for the location of industry. I’ve an example of it in my own constituency, where a proposal by a company, to find additional employment is being actively opposed by you, by your colleagues on your benches. So, you know, you can’t have it both ways, you can’t rant and rave and shout slogans about youth unemployment and then oppose every single measure that’s being taken, whether it’s correcting the public finances or whether it is advocating a particular industry in a particular area to which it is trying to solve it. The difference, you and I, Deputy Daly, you and I, you and I, Deputy Daly, you and I, Deputy Daly, share the concern about the level of youth unemployment and the problems of working people in this country. But the difference between you and I, Deputy Daly, is you shout slogans at it, and I work in Government to try and solve it.”

Via Merrion Street


Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore spoke to journalists before he met with the EU’s other foreign affairs ministers in Dublin Castle for a ‘gymnich’ chat.

One of the reporters, unidentified, asked him about Cyprus, prompting the following:

Reporter: “The banks there (in Cyprus) are now urging the politicians to go back to the plan and impose the levy. And, it’s also been reported today that the rest of the EU is prepared to cut Cyprus loose in order not to have contagion. Is that the situation?”

Eamon Gilmore: “Well, I think Irish people have a lot of sympathy for the situation in Cyprus and certainly, I do. I think that the people in Cyprus are facing a really difficult set of circumstances right now. I can identify with that because, two years ago, when the government of, of which I’m a part of, my party is a part. When we took office two years ago, we were facing a situation where our banks were in serious trouble. The country was running out of money. And we had to make some very difficult decisions and make them very quickly. And I remember the first month that the new Government was in office here, we had to make a lot of decisions in a very quick period of time.”

“I think that the government in Cyprus and the parliament in Cyprus, they have decisions to make. I think, as I understand it, they’re going to be considering that over the next couple of days. I wish them well, in that. I believe that it is important that the rest of Europe stands in solidarity with Cyprus and the people of Cyprus. The whole approach that we have taken to the financial and banking crisis in Europe has been one of countries staying together, working together and helping each other out of the difficulties that we’re in. And I hope that we’ll be able to continue to do that with Cyprus.

Watch here