Simon Coveney defends Taoiseach's travel to Brussels for 'essential work'

Taoiseach Micheál Martin. Photo: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Simon Coveney has defended the Taoiseach's decision to travel to Brussels later this week for the EU Council Summit.

Micheál Martin will visit the Belgian city to discuss the EU's funding and budgets on Friday and Saturday.

He has yet to confirm whether he will self-isolate on returning - though as an essential worker it is expected he will be exempt from the rules.

Foreign Affairs Minister Simon Coveney has said it is an essential trip for the Taoiseach.

"Certainly I think that the Taoiseach travelling to a European Council meeting to try and finalise the budget for Europe for the next seven years, along with trying to finalise things like a €5bn Brexit reserve - if that's not essential work for Ireland I'm not sure what is," Mr Coveney said.