Belfast Telegraph

TDs to vote on details of bailout

The fine details of Ireland's 85 million euro bailout package will be put before the Dail next week.

Taoiseach Brian Cowen confirmed TDs will vote on endorsing the Memorandum of Understanding between the Government and the European Union and International Monetary Fund on Wednesday.

Despite previously rejecting demands for a debate, the Government claimed one would force the Opposition parties to back the rescue package or spell out an alternative.

"The Memorandum of Understanding has been put in place legally, legitimately and in the national interests of this country," said Mr Cowen.

"However, Fine Gael, the Labour Party and Sinn Fein continue to try to make the public believe that there is an easy way out of the country's funding crisis.

"Given the seriousness of the situation, I do not believe this myth can be allowed to continue unchallenged."

The motion was put forward by TDs Michael McGrath and Thomas Byrne at a meeting of the Fianna Fail Parliamentary Party and unanimously passed.

Mr Cowen said the Opposition will have the opportunity "to either come clean, recognise that this deal is essential and in the best interests of the country, or spell out their alternative".

He went on: "Debating and supporting a motion in the Dail will also give certainty to the international community that the deal has been confirmed by the parliament, that the country is doing what needs to be done to repair its public finances and that Ireland is up to the challenge."

Member's of the parliamentary party meeting also endorsed the leadership of Mr Cowen to lead Fianna Fail into the forthcoming election.

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