Former Prime Minister Brian Cowen - "Don't blame me - I was only the Taoiseach."Google Images

Ireland will not  be requesting funding for the state from the European Union or the International Monetary Fund according to Brian Cowen. Speaking last night, the Irish Prime Minister insisted that a funding application will not be made at todays meetings in Brussels, as the country is funded up until the middle of next year.

“I have a job to do which is to ensure we do the right thing by the country,” said Mr Cowen, who added that the purpose of the meeting was to sit down with its EU partners and discuss “how we underpin banking and financial stability in the medium and long term.”

Mr Cowen also said that today's meeting in Brussels would move to discuss the cost of money for Ireland on the bond markets.

“In a context where there is a lot of turbulence and worry and concern, I am just making the point that we will calmly and in a considered way deal with these issues in the days and weeks and months ahead,” the Prime Minister said in an interview on RTÉ television.

EU president Herman Van Rompuy expressed confidence in Europe's ability to overcome its debt crisis.

"We are in a survival crisis," the president said at a conference in Brussels today. "If we don't survive with the eurozone we will not survive with the European Union."

Meanwhile the European Central Bank vice-president, Vitor Constancio, today said  if Ireland asked for external support at today's meeting it would help to stabilize markets.

"It would stabilize the situation," he told reporters at a press conference in Germany this morning. "It's up to Ireland" to decide, he said, adding that "several countries are under pressure" from financial markets.

“The Irish state is financed until part of next year, but it is also a problem of the banks that are at the center of the problems in Ireland and considerations have to be pondered," he added.

He said the problems of the Irish banking sector “are not only problems of liquidity but also in some cases problems of capital”. Even though the EU rescue fund can’t lend directly to banks, he said Dublin can “use the money for that purpose”.

Amid continued speculation, all Irish eyes will be on Brussels anticipating the outcome of todays meetings.