Irish Deputy PM welcomes apology from EU's Hogan, says more needed

FILE PHOTO: Ireland's Prime Minister Taoiseach Leo Varadkar speaks during a news conference on the ongoing situation with the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) at Government Buildings in Dublin, Ireland March 24, 2020. Steve Humphreys/Pool via REUTERS

DUBLIN (Reuters) - Ireland’s deputy prime minister welcomed a more detailed apology on Sunday from European trade chief Phil Hogan for attending an event that may have breached COVID-19 rules, but said a further explanation was required.

The Irish representative on the EU executive commission was asked on Saturday by Ireland’s prime minister and deputy prime minister to consider his position after his attendance at a golf dinner caused public outrage. Hogan will not resign over the matter, an EU official close to him said on Sunday.

“It is our view that an apology is welcome but he also needs to account for himself and answer any questions that might arise, not just in relation to the dinner but also in relation to his movements around Ireland... If he can’t do that, then he needs to consider his position,” Leo Varadkar told RTE Radio.

Reporting by Padraic Halpin; Editing by Alex Richardson