Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney rejected the Bloomberg report. Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

Source close to negotiations says ‘Ireland’s biggest problem is it’s not on the continent’

Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney has announced that new diplomatic missions would open in Chile, Colombia, Jordan, Vancouver and Mumbai on a phased basis throughout 2018 and 2019. Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

Ambitious plan to ‘deepen Ireland’s global footprint’ by 2025 will need more investment

 Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Simon Coveney. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times.

Minister for Foreign Affairs pledges no funding impediments to Brexit preparations

TDs at the announcement of the Future of Healthcare ‘Sláintecare’ report earlier this year. Labour says the proposal is ‘dead in the water’ after not being mentioned in the budget speech. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins.

TDs unhappy at exclusion of universal health care plan which they claim is ‘dead in the water’

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and  British prime minister Theresa May: the Brexit loan scheme will be aimed at SMEs as they deal with the UK’s exit from the European Union in 2019. Photograph: Philip Toscano/PA Wire

Minister allocates €25m to agri-food industry and retains 9% VAT rate for tourism sector

Paschal Donohoe at Government Buildings prior to his Budget 2018 speech. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Corporation tax to remain at 12.5%, health spending to reach total of €15.3bn

Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe is today putting the finishing touches to Budget 2018. Photograph: The Irish Times

Minister for Finance to meet Fianna Fáil and members of Independent Alliance today

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs Katherine Zappone:  “The people will not be in favour of a liberalisation of the abortion legislation to the extent that the Citizens’ Assembly put forward.” Photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

Minister for Children says she wants to encourage ‘conversations’ in run-up to referendum

Minister for Children Katherine Zappone. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Pro-life TDs from Fianna Fáil and Sinn Féin sign statement deploring cancellations

Mary Lou McDonald crossed the floor of the chamber and confronted Leo Varadkar

Inside Politics: The Taoiseach described the Sinn Féin deputy leader as ‘very cranky’ in the Dáil yesterday

Mary O’Toole SC  said trying to put complex provisions into the Constitution was “just simply impossible” as it was very difficult to get very complex ideas into a couple of sentences.

Fine Gael backbencher claims 100,000 people alive in Ireland today due to amendment

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has previously indicated that he does not believe that proposals for a wide-ranging liberalisation of the law would be passed in a referendum.

Spokesman says Leo Varadkar needs to see proposals from all-party committee

Seanad leader Jerry Buttimer: “I would be very worried about the tone that’s taking place on Twitter and social media where there doesn’t seem to be any checks and balances.” Photograph: Eric Luke

Legitimacy of ‘cut-and-paste’ email campaigns questioned

Minister for Social Protection Regina Doherty said she had received a letter from the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform “telling me they made a mistake”. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Minister arranges repayment following report by Attorney General

Leo Varadkar: pledged to take student concerns about the timing of a referendum on abortion into account when setting a date for the vote. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Varadkar will bring indicative dates of various polls coinciding with elections to Cabinet

Leo Varadkar will repeat the Government’s concern that a “clear and satisfactory” solution on the post-Brexit Border has not yet been presented.  Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

Taoiseach to also reiterate no acceptance of direct rule if North talks remain unresolved

“If we win the bid it’s going to be enormous for the island of Ireland. It’s probably is the biggest sporting tournament that we could host as an island.”   Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

Ireland is up against France and South Africa in bid to host 2023 tournament

Galway East TD Anne Rabbitte said she had been “flooded” with emails about the committee’s work since last Friday.  File photograph: Dave Meehan/The Irish Times

Galway East TD Anne Rabbitte says she got 1,500 anti-abortion and 86 pro-choice emails

Members of ROSA (Reproductive rights, against Oppression, Sexism & Austerity) outside Leinster House dressed as “handmaids”, characters from the TV series The Handmaid’s Tale in which women are treated by men as property in a future United States. Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

Ms Justice Mary Laffoy rejects claim that assembly was coaxed into ‘liberal’ stance

An Irish Water meter. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Eoghan Murphy's memo will allow future governments to reduce the limit people can use before a levy is introduced

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar: “It’s the norm in many workplaces to step aside and to ask people to leave if they’re not performing.” Photograph: Stephen Collins/Collins Photos

Unions counter Taoiseach’s comments by saying performance management already ‘robust’

 An Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and Minister for Public Expenditure Paschal Donohoe available. Photograph Nick Bradshaw

Taoiseach calls for ‘individual accountability’ for anyone who falsified breath tests

Ibrahim Halawa with his sisters Fatima, Omaima and Somaia.

‘It is important that Ibrahim’s needs are immediately assessed,’ says Zappone

Gardasil: TDs have mentioned the HPV vaccine 130 times during the 32nd Dáil, and the Irish Cancer Society says less than 15 per cent of them could be construed as supportive. Photograph: Joe Raedle/Getty

Finian McGrath’s stance on Gardasil is not appropriate for a matter of life and death

Gardasil: Clare Daly TD has called for an independent review of the HPV vaccine. Photograph: Matthew Busch/Washington Post via Getty

TD says concerned parents ‘are not hysterical anti-vaccine conspiracy theorists’

A Fine Gael councillor who claimed Sharia law is ‘operating in Ireland’ is being called before the party’s disciplinary committee over his social media posts.

Taoiseach said he wanted to distance himself and party from Brian Murphy’s comments

The Social Democrats’  ‘think-in’ in Dublin was hosted by co-leaders Catherine Murphy and Róisín Shortall. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Party demands ‘use it or lose it’ policy on hoarded housing land

The performance of Independents  Seán Canney, Kevin ‘Boxer’ Moran, Shane Ross, John Halligan and Finian McGrath in Government may influence how their Opposition colleagues perform in the next election. File photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

Solidarity/People Before Profit aims to puncture Varadkar’s ‘cuddly progressive image’

Finian McGrath: “totally supportive” of the campaign to increase take-up of HPV vaccine. Photograph: Eric Luke

Minister says he is more than aware of the impact of cancer, given illness killed his wife

Speaking to Morning Ireland on Monday of this week, Mr McGrath said he only intended to have “debate and discussion” surrounding the vaccine. Photograph: Dave Meehan/The Irish Times

While in opposition, Mr McGrath asked the government to remove access to the vaccine

Finian McGrath:  he says  he now supports the Government campaign to encourage take up of Gardasil after previously opposing the vaccine

Government TDs bring constituents’ concerns about Gardasil to Minister for Health

Leinster House: some Oireachtas members fear  retention of routine queries of a sensitive nature may be affected by the General Data Protection Regulation. Stock photograph:

Oireachtas members will still be entitled to access electoral registers

Minister for Foreign Affairs  Simon Coveney speaks to the media, at Iveagh House in Dublin, in response to Brexit proposals.  Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

State will be ‘stubborn’ in Brexit negotiations to defend Irish interests, says Minister

Vice-president of the European Parliament Mairéad McGuinness: ‘The idea of leaving and coming back on your own terms is quite an ask.’ File photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

Government insists peace process must not be used as ‘bargaining chip’ in negotiations

Government says UK paper on customs needs consideration

Abortion campaigner Ailbhe Smyth: ‘My gut is telling me Brexit could be problematic.’ Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Pro-choice campaigners express worry over potential impact of UK’s exit on access to services

Under the new system,  TDs from larger parties will be allowed more Dáil speaking time.  Photograph: Alan Betson

Controversial changes on amount of speaking time for TDs also to be introduced

Minister for Social Protection Regina Doherty’s department is to be renamed the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection next month.

New portfolios require revamped door plaques, ministerial seals and stationery

Stephen Donnelly has said he cannot believe Customs officers have been asked to halt their efforts to come up with ways to ensure an open Border after Brexit. Photograph: Eric Luke

Stephen Donnelly criticises Taoiseach’s order to Revenue over Border solutions

Government Chief Whip Joe McHugh has said Ireland should be repaid by the European Investment Bank for its role during the financial crisis. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Joe McHugh says the bloc must help Ireland after it bore the brunt of European austerity

Government Chief Whip Joe McHugh: “The peace process is still a process as far as I am concerned.” Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill

Joe McHugh appeals to British politicians not to send State ‘back to dark days’ post-Brexit

Leo Varadkar: “If they can’t come up with solutions, well then maybe they might talk about mine”

Varadkar says after 14 months those in favour of hard Brexit have failed to offer proposals

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar arriving at Queen’s University, Belfast. He said Northern Ireland was a “unique place” for which a “unique solution” may be required from the Brexit discussions. Photograph: Getty Images

Taoiseach says he does not believe difficulties between SF and DUP are insurmountable

Vice-chancellor Richard English with Taoiseach Leo Varadkar at Queen’s University Belfast: “Who do we in Europe speak to when we want to speak to Belfast?” asked the Taoiseach.  Photograph: Liam McBurney/PA

Leo Varadkar’s hard line may be attempt to shock DUP into moving beyond its rhetoric

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar at Queen’s University in Belfast. Photograph: Paul Faith/AFP

Taoiseach attending Pride breakfast during Belfast visit

  Leo Varadkar in the Great Hall at Queen’s University,  Belfast. Photograph: AFP/Paul Faith.

Taoiseach says abortion vote may be before or after summer

Committee chairwoman Kathleen Funchion of Sinn Féin said Leo Varadkar “could have been a little more diplomatic” in his recent pronouncements about Brexit. Photograph: Alan Betson

Former taoiseach says any physical Border would be bad for the peace process

Labour Party member Loraine Mulligan breastfeeding her son Dylan at the launch of a  Labour party policy paper on breastfeeding. Photograph: Alan Betson

Party proposes measures to counteract Ireland’s ‘formula feeding culture’

Leo Varadkar has confirmed he will attend a Pride breakfast event in Belfast on Saturday morning. Photograph: Getty Images

Taoiseach also rejects DUP criticism of the Government ahead of Northern Ireland talks

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has confirmed he will attend the Pride breakfast event in Belfast on Saturday morning after meeting political leaders in Northern Ireland on Friday. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times.

Taoiseach on DUP view on same-sex marriage: ‘I won’t be making any compromises’

Aasylum seekers, refugees and human rights supporters marching to the Department of Justice as part of a national day of action to end direct provision. File photograph: David Sleator/The Irish Times

Taoiseach defends direct provision but admits current system ‘doesn’t work’

The write-off of almost €5,500 in unpaid Dáil restaurant and bar tabs has been described as ‘simply inexcusable’ by the Social Democrats.

Social Democrats criticise move to settle outstanding accounts ‘at public expense’

Leo Varadkar: he said he had raised the DUP’s opposition to marriage equality with party leader Arlene Foster

Varadkar has signalled intention to support cause of marriage equality in the North

DUP leader Arlene Foster and deputy leader Nigel Dodds. Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA Wire.

‘I think he is very low level’: DUP’s Jeffrey Donaldson declines to engage with Richmond

The Dáil Chamber: TDs and Senators can avail of a tab facility when ordering drinks or bar food in Leinster House, which they can pay off later. Photograph: Alan Betson

New credit policy is being devised by Oireachtas officials for TDs and Senators

Members of the Cabinet Francis Fitzgerald, Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar  and Paschal Donohoe. Photograph: Collins

Micheál Martin says Sunday Independent pensions story ‘ludicrous’

 Michael D Higgins and   Leo Varadkar  with  Mr Justice Frank Clarke (L) as he was appointed  Chief Justice of Ireland and President of the Supreme Court. Photograph: Aidan Crawley/The Irish Times

Taoiseach says there would ‘potentially’ be a presidential election next year

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar: said there was a political border between the Republic and Northern Ireland, but not an economic one. Photograph: Collins

‘We’re not going to help design some sort of border we don’t believe should exist’

‘Asked about a newspaper story that reported tensions between the British and Irish governments, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar let rip.’ Photograph: Collins

Analysis: Taoiseach’s extraordinary outburst signifies a distinct change of mood

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar: the Government i s “absolutely committed” to the Judicial Appointments Bill which will provide for a lay majority in the selection of judges

Fianna Fáil Amendments will delay controversial Judicial Appointments Bill, says Varadkar

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and British  Prime Minister Theresa May in Downing Street. Photograph:  Philip Toscano/PA

Taoiseach says ‘if anyone should be angry, it’s us’

Simon Coveney as he recently announced that over 500,000 passports have already been issued this year so far

Government says onus on Britain to come up with border solution

Passport control at Dublin Airport. There is currently no dedicated facility in Ireland for holding people the authorities decide should be deported. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Brazil’s foreign ministry raises ‘discontent’ with Irish diplomats over border procedures

The digital age of consent refers to age from which it is legal for data controllers to hold data gathered from minors. Photograph: Thinkstock

Ireland is required to harmonise its laws with a European directive on data protection

Charlie Flanagan: he said he had made anti-corruption measures to deal with so-called “white collar” crime a priority since becoming Minister for Justice

New Bill will address recommendations in Mahon tribunal, says Minister

Those who apply for legal aid at the Legal Aid Board’s Dolphin House office in Dublin will only have their applications processed  if it involves  proceedings for ‘a domestic violence remedy or enforcement of maintenance’.

Board in funding talks with Department of Justice amid ‘unprecedented move’

Mr Justice Peter Charleton  at Dublin Castle. So far €207,000 has been spent on the inquiry.  Photograph: Dara MacDónaill

Government sources say Mr Justice Charleton ‘acutely aware’ of need to monitor costs

The licences will be subject to annual renewal and sales can only take place between 10am and 6pm daily. Photograph: Alan Betson

Nearly every town now has its own craft brewery, says Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan

Frank Clarke: he was the first member of his family to go to university

Shane Ross said to be ‘satisfied’ with process for appointing new chief justice

Finian McGrath: Called for publication of Olympics ticketing report. Photograph: Dave Meehan/The Irish Times

Department of Transport confirms Cabinet decision to publish report in August

Minister for Justice  Charlie Flanagan  and  Chief Justice Susan Denham at  the annual report of the Courts Service for 2016 in  Smithfield. Photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

Chief Justice Susan Denham to step down after six years as head of judiciary

The “Craft Beer Bill” allowing breweries and distilleries to sell their products on their premises, originally proposed by Labour TD Alan Kelly, will  be discussed at Cabinet. Photograph: Collins

Last Cabinet meeting before summer recess to also discuss costs of whistleblower inquiry

An RTÉ spokesman said the organisation had concluded a diversity report and would be progressing an internal diversity initiative, based on the report. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien / The Irish Times

Kevin Bakhurst forced pay hike for underpaid female newsroom staff

Chief Justice: Ms Justice Susan Denham is retiring after six years in the role. Photograph: Aidan Crawley

Concern that Susan Denham’s successor would not be in place before retirement

Paloma Aparezida Silva-Carvalho (24) who was arrested after arriving in Dublin Airport ahead of an Irish holiday.

Paloma Aparezida Silva-Carvalho detained at Dublin Airport after arriving for holiday

Dublin from space: a radar image distinguishes between densely populated urban areas and relatively unsettled areas on the edge of the city. Photograph: Nasa

Cabinet told population of State to rise by 19%, to 5.6 million, by 2040

The process for refunding money to Irish Water customers could add €10 million to the €170 million refund bill.

Irish Water customers face online application process to get their money back

Leo Varadkar: Modest minimum wage increases are sustainable.

Employer representatives on Low Pay Commission disagree with proposals

Lord Alfred Dubs announced the inquiry. Photograph: Jack Taylor/Getty Images

Inquiry will focus on issues relating to women travelling from Ireland to Britain

Simon Harris (R): ‘You cannot be worse off for having abided by the law of this land than those who didn’t abide by the law’. Photograph: Collins

€170m will not come from ‘whip around’, Leo Varadkar says

File photo of Conservative MP Andrew Rosindell. Photograph: Scott Barbour/Getty Images

Conservative Andrew Rosindell hopes EU will not come between Britain and Ireland

Emily O’Reilly has described the ongoing Brexit negotiations as “the chess game of our lives”. Photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

British-Irish Parliamentary Assembly hears ‘frictionless, seamless’ border is possible

Solidarity TD Paul Murphy, Ruth Coppinger TD, Cllr Michael Murphy and Mick Barry TD photographed at Buswells Hotel, Dublin on Friday. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Paul Murphy claims there was ‘political policing’ in false imprisonment trial

Justice Mary Laffoy: “I urge the members of the Oireachtas to view their recommendations with the respect and due consideration they deserve.”

Pope visit in 2018 to create political sensitivities around termination of pregnancies

Defendants in the Jobstown trial (left to right) Michael Banks, Ken Purcell, Paul Murphy TD and Scott Masterson leave the Dublin Circuit Criminal Court after being found not guilty on charges of the false imprisonment. Photograph: Collins Courts

Solidarity TD says Joan Burton tried to ‘criminalise a working class community’

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar: I intend to recruit a number of special advisers. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill/The Irish Times

Inside Politics: Taoiseach says he wants a ‘working understanding’ of his role before forming a full team

 Noel Rock: “While it’s obviously a setback, the commission is independent and we have to respect its findings no matter how painful they may be”

Fine Gael backbencher complains about losing 20% of his voters ‘at the stroke of a pen’

Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau leaves at the conclusion of a news conference in Ottawa this week. Photograph: Chris Wattie/Reuters

Leo Varadkar has spoken of admiration of Justin Trudeau

 Catherine McGuinness says if the Chief Justice were to chair the board it ‘would go a long way’ towards addressing the concerns of judges.  Photograph: Eric Luke Staff Photographer

Ex-Supreme Court judge says not having Chief Justice as chair says ‘you’re not good enough’

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and US President Donald Trump spoke by telephone on Tuesday for the first time. Photograph: Julien Warnand/EPA

US president tells Taoiseach: ‘We have so many people from Ireland in this country...I feel I know all of them’

An Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar, during a photo opportunity with the Ministers of State. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill / The Irish Times

Taoiseach says seven out of 12 female TDs who support govt are ministers

Leo Varadkar was somewhat star struck when he met cricket legend Sunil Gavaskar.

‘I know the rules, or should I say the laws,’ says Taoiseach

Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade with Special Responsibility for Brexit Simon Coveney: “What we are insisting on achieving is a special status for Northern Ireland that allows the interaction on this island as is currently the case to be maintained as close to the current norm as possible,” he said. Photograph: Stephen Collins/Collins

Minister for Foreign Affairs calls for invisible border and special status for the North

Minister of State Pat Breen has been charged with working across four Government Departments.

Some of the Taoiseach’s junior ministers are charged with working to multiple departments

Anti-abortion demonstration: Senator Des Hanafin with anti-abortion demonstrators outside the Dáil in 1992. Photograph: Joe St Leger/The Irish Times

Long-time politician was a leading anti-divorce and anti-abortion activist

Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar introduces his mostly male line-up of  Ministers of State, Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Varadkar chooses just three women for his team of 19 Ministers of State

Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar with new Ministers of State. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill / The Irish Times

Inside Politics: Varadkar was unable to mine a seam of female talent due to his ban on favouring those elected in 2016

Marcella Corcoran-Kennedy, one of two ministers of state who were sacked to accommodate the changes, said she found Mr Varadkar’s comments on merit to be “very offensive”. Photograph: Alan Betson

Women’s groups criticise Taoiseach over ‘new Cabinet, same old gender imbalance’

 Marcella Corcoran Kennedy: she said Mr Varadkar told her he wished he could retain her, but there were not enough jobs and he needed to make room for his supporters

Corcoran Kennedy says gender balance does not appear to be factor in ministerial choices

Senator Catherine Noone.  File photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons/The Irish Times.

Oireachtas committee examining abortion law meets for first time

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