Motion to reopen embassy defeated
A motion to reopen the Irish embassy in the Vatican has been defeated at the Labour party conference in Galway.
Delegates rejected a recommendation from Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Joe Costello to refer the motion to the party’s central council and then went on to vote it down on a show of hands.
Proposing the motion, Sean Canniffe (Tuam, Co Galway) said the Vatican was the centre of the Catholic world and the embassy was a very important symbol of its relationship with Ireland.
“I am not suggesting that anybody who is not a Catholic should believe this, but that is what Catholics believe,” he added.
“They are our fellow Irish citizens, fellow workers and friends.” Mr Canniffe said that Ireland needed to network and garner influence above its size.
“We are a small, open economy,” he added. “We need to find out what people are thinking.”