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Irish government seals finance deal

The Irish minority Government has secured support from the Opposition parties to pass the Finance Bill and dissolve parliament next week.

Senior representatives from the main parties, Fine Gael, Labour and former coalition partners the Greens, have agreed in principle to the plan.

The deal, to be signed off by party leaders, would see extended Dail sittings over the next four days.

Sinn Fein refused to accept the deal and accused the parties of keeping a failed government in power.

Talks with Finance Minister Brian Lenihan in central Dublin have broken for a short while to allow consultations with party leaders.

Sinn Fein's Pearse Doherty claimed his party was asked to leave the meeting after lashing out over proposals to put the Bill through the Dail rather hold an immediate election.

"What is happening in the Department of Finance is nothing short of disgusting," he said.

"It is the consensus of cuts all over again where the Labour Party and Fine Gael and the Green Party are supporting the Government to introduce the Finance Bill by Saturday."

Mr Doherty said the deal would see the Dail dissolved between Saturday and Tuesday.

Sinn Fein will not return to the talks.

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