British authorities have rejected assertions that prime minister David Cameron has pledged his support for Taoiseach Enda Kenny or Fine Gael’s general election campaign.
It was claimed yesterday that Mr Cameron in a letter to Mr Kenny backed him in the election.
However, a British embassy spokesman rejected that assertion, saying Mr Cameron would not seek to interfere in a democratic election of another country.
It is unheard of for a foreign leader to directly intervene in an election in a foreign country and the embassy was emphatic in rejecting any assertion that Mr Cameron had sought to do so.
“While relations between the two leaders are very good, Irish general elections are a matter for the Irish electorate,” a British government spokesman told the Irish Examiner.
Mr Cameron wrote a letter to Mr Kenny thanking him for his support in the recent crunch Brexit discussions in Brussels, saying he was “profoundly grateful” for his assistance.
In the personal letter to Mr Kenny, Mr Cameron said the Taoiseach helped him secure a successful outcome at the EU leaders’ summit.
“It made a real difference and I am profoundly grateful to you,” he said.
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Mr Cameron, who has been UK prime minister since 2010, said that he was “especially grateful for the patience and understanding” Mr Kenny showed during the talks and for his “readiness to be creative in exploring all possible solutions”.
He concluded the note by writing: “My very best wishes for tomorrow’s election. Good luck.”
The claims were made in yesterday’s Irish Independent.
Since the Brexit issue first emerged over a year ago, Mr Kenny and his government have made it clear they would prefer to see Britain remain within the European fold.
The Taoiseach has made several public speeches, including in London, backing a vote to stay within the EU.
Relations between Dublin and London have been harmonious since Mr Kenny assumed office. Those good relations were cemented in 2011 in the visit of Queen Elizabeth II to Ireland, during which Mr Cameron made the decision to come to Dublin to meet Mr Kenny.
Mr Kenny’s office stated:
“With the queen’s visit taking place, the prime minister suggested that this may be an appropriate time to have the bilateral.
“The Taoiseach was more than happy to welcome the prime minister and have the bilateral coincide with the visit.”
The meeting was sought by Mr Cameron with a view to forming an Anglo-Irish alliance in the context of a euro currency collapse, which almost happened in 2012.
In the 2007 election, outgoing British prime minister Tony Blair invited then-taoiseach Bertie Ahern to address Westminster mid-campaign.
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