Enda Kenny has strongly condemned the attack on a British Labour MP and has suspended campaigning on Brexit for the remainder of the day.
The Taoiseach had travelled to Liverpool this morning to encourage Irish communities in the UK to vote to remain in the European Union.
However, news of the shooting and stabbing which has left Jo Cox in a critical condition, filtered out as Mr Kenny was speaking at St Michael's Irish Centre in Liverpool.
He said: "I have heard about the shooting and the stabbing of Jo Cox in West Yorkshire. This is an appalling crime on a public representative going about her duty, a mother of two young children." he said.
"I hope and pray that she will be ok. Although I understand she may be in a critical condition. And I understand that police have arrested a man in respect of this particular atrocity, this outrageous behavior."
The Taoiseach said he would not be commenting further on Brexit today out of respect, however he would be still attending a business even in Manchester tonight.
"I also understand that the 'Remain' campaign and 'Leave' campaign have cancelled their campaigns for today. So out of respect for those decisions, I will not make any further reference to the referendum to be held next week during the course of my remaining duties here today,” Mr Kenny said.