The Taoiseach of Ireland (Prime Minister) Enda Kenny stands by the comments he made on the Vatican, in the Dail (Irish Parliament) following the publication of the Cloyne Report, into the coverup of clerical sexual abuse carried out by the Irish Catholic Church.
The Irish leader maintains that he was expressing the anger of the Irish people. Speaking at a two-day Fine Gael conference in Galway he said the failure of the Catholic Church to co-operate with the Murphy inquiry into cover-ups and clerical abuse amounts to interference.
He said “I made the point that this is a statutory commission of inquiry and as such nothing less than full co-operation is required, and anything less than full co-operation in my view is unwarranted interference.”
Kenny explained that the Vatican had interfered with the government ordered Murphy report which had investigated the abuse and cover-ups in Dublin.
He continued “As a member of the Catholic Church, I want to see the Church of which I am a member as absolutely above reproach in the issue of this and other areas. And for that reason, my claim in the Dail still stands, because this was a statutory commission of inquiry.
"And in 2006, and 2007 and in 2009, there were requests for information and assistance to the Vatican by the Murphy Commission and in each of these cases that request was either refused or rejected."
On July 20 Enda Kenny accused the Holy See of being dysfunctional, disconnected and guilty of elitism. He said that their reaction and method of dealing with clerical sexual abuse had mean that the rape and torture of children had been down-played.
Last week the Vatican rejected his criticism and denied that they had impeded any inquiry into child abuse in the diocese of Cloyne in County Cork.
Kenny said that after his attack on the Vatican he received many phone calls including one from the Archbishop of Dublin Diarmuid Martin calling for him to explain his actions.
Mr Kenny insisted he was standing by his unprecedented attack on the Catholic hierarchy on July 20 following calls by Archbishop Diarmuid Martin for him to explain himself. He also said that his comments were widely supported. He said his comments had expressed the anger frustration and concerns of the Irish people.
Enda Kenny's speech in the Dail on July 20:
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