High-level Government officials spoke first thing that morning, after which visiting figures from the commission were called to Merrion Street for an unscheduled meeting at 9am.
Quite what transpired remains unclear. By all accounts, however, a severe rebuke was delivered by a high-level Department of Public Expenditure official over the intervention by the source close to the commission. The exchange has been described as “difficult” and “tense”.
At one point a commission official is said to have declared that he did not like the “attitude” on the Irish side. His concerns were immediately dismissed. The European official was told – in uncompromisingly direct language – that there would be no change whatever in attitude or tone.