Sinn Féin ‘want to be as disruptive as possible,’ Minister claims

Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney expressed confidence that the Government will defeat a no-confidence motion
Sinn Féin ‘want to be as disruptive as possible,’ Minister claims

Vivienne Clarke

Opposition party Sinn Féin “want to be as disruptive as possible” with the tabling of a no-confidence motion in the Government, a Minister has claimed.

Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney expressed confidence that the Government will defeat the no-confidence vote because of relationships built with Independents.

While he was not surprised by the move by Sinn Féin, it was unhelpful given the issues facing the country, he told RTÉ radio’s Today with Claire Byrne show.

“They will want to be as disruptive as possible,” he said.

This was unfortunate at a time when the Government was going to spend the summer preparing for one of the most important Budgets in years, he added.

He said it was a shame that the Dáil would be spending the last week of the current session debating the no-confidence motion at a time when there was a range of issues that should be the object of focus.

Mr Coveney said he was “very confident” that the Government had a strong working majority. The mica redress Bill had passed with four votes, despite the defection of Fine Gael TD Joe McHugh, he said.

“I think we will deal with the no-confidence motion. I think we will win,” he said.

Many Independents would not want an election at this time, he said, although he acknowledged that some would. He said he was confident that the relationships built with the Independents on key votes would give the Government a strong working majority.

Japan shooting

The Minister also paid tribute to former Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe, who died on Friday following a shooting on the campaign trail.

“He was very decent, a gentleman,” Mr Coveney said.

He explained that the two had met during an Irish trade mission to Japan.

News of the shooting and death of Mr Abe was very shocking, particularly at an election event and in a country like Japan, Mr Coveney added.

The former prime minister had been a central figure in Japanese politics who changed the economy. He had also been a major figure in world politics, Mr Coveney said.

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