Draghi: Ireland's bailout decision 'not that stupid'

The head of the European Central Bank has denied that the bank forced Ireland into accepting a bailout.

Mario Draghi says the decision to seek financial help from the EU and IMF was made by the Irish Government alone.

The ECB has released the full bailout letters this afternoon, showing how the bank threatened to pull funding for Irish banks unless Ireland took its bailout.

October 15, 2010 letter from Trichet to Lenihan Nov 4, 2010 letter from Lenihan to Trichet Nov 19, 2010 letter from Trichet to Lenihan Nov 21, 2010 letter from Lenihan to Trichet

Mr Draghi says Ireland's turnaround proves the decision was "not stupid" - but that the ECB had no part in it.

"The decision to ask for a programme was the Government's decision, it was not the ECB forcing the Government to do this," he said.

"But I think the four letters how exactly the kind of dialogue that took place between the Government and the then-president of the ECB, Jean Claude Trichet.

"So for me, there is very little to add to that."

He also added that, given Irerland latest economic projections, "it's safe to say, after all, that the decision wasn't that stupid".

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