Irish Prime Minister Enda KennyAP

Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny has repeated his call on the Vatican to co-operate fully with all state investigations into clerical sex abuse.

Kenny has told the Irish Parliament that he fully expects the ‘complete and unreserved co-operation of the church authorities’ to ensure the safety of children from further abuse.

The Fine Gael leader also confirmed that he has had no contact with Irish Church leaders or the Vatican since his criticism of the handling of child abuse cases after the publication of the controversial Cloyne Report.

The PM told Sinn Fein’s Gerry Adams that he accepts the Holy See’s sorrow and shame over the clerical abuse of children in Ireland.

“I acknowledge the Holy See is sorry and ashamed for the terrible suffering of victims of child abuse in Ireland and their families and the acceptance of grave failures over the handling of the child sex abuse scandal,” said Prime Minister Kenny.

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“I accept the testimony of Cardinal Seán Brady that the Holy See statement was carefully prepared and respectfully presented.

“Many people were disappointed that elements of the Vatican’s response were technical and legalistic, rather than focused exclusively on the Government’s concerns about the welfare of children.

“But I am satisfied the response is of value in coming to terms with the sad history of abuse and the inadequate handling of cases.

“It suggests the way forward is through continuing dialogue and co-operation. With confidence, I require and expect to have the complete and unreserved co-operation of the church authorities and everyone in our society to that end.”