The General Election campaign was temporarily stalled as rival politicians delayed events to pay respects to the victims of the Cork air crash.
Political parties in the midst of the campaign offered condolences to the families of those killed and injured in the tragedy.
Enda Kenny, leader of the main opposition party Fine Gael, held a minute's silence at a press conference.
"I would like to offer my deepest condolences to those affected by the tragic accident today in Cork Airport," Mr Kenny said. "My prayers are with the families and friends of those who have lost their lives today, and anyone who has been injured."
Taoiseach Brian Cowen said his thoughts were with all of those affected by the crash, adding: "I also want to commend the work of the various rescue crews and all of the emergency and support staff working to help those involved in the crash."
Sinn Fein President Gerry Adams said his thoughts and prayers are with the families of those involved, adding: "I want to praise the emergency services who had to cope with this morning's awful events."
Micheal Martin, Fianna Fail leader, said: "I am greatly saddened to learn of the tragic accident in Cork Airport. My thoughts and prayers are with those who have sadly lost their lives or have incurred injury. I want also to commend the emergency services for their work and commitment."
President Mary McAleese also expressed her deep shock and sadness.
It later emerged that one of the victims was a relative of the President's husband Dr Martin McAleese. Brendan McAleese, who owned the Central Laundries business in Cookstown, Co Tyrone, was a cousin of Dr McAleese and was married with a young family.
Bishop of Cork and Ross John Buckley arrived at the airport to offer support to relatives of the dead and injured. "I came up here immediately," he said. "All we can offer is our support, our help and our prayers at this time."