Taoiseach says army "on standby if needed" with weather warnings in place

Leo Varadkar says he is not aware of any threat to food security

Taoiseach says army "on standby if needed" with weather warnings in place

Leo Varadkar in the Newstalk studio

The Taoiseach has said the army “is on standby if needed” as a Status Red snow and ice warning grips much of the country.

On Newstalk Breakfast this morning, Leo Varadkar said he is not aware of any “threat to food security” amid reports of customers stocking up on basics ahead of the cold snap.

In a wide-ranging interview, Mr Varadkar discussed the ongoing political tussle over the Irish border post-Brexit, the controversy over the promotion of the Ireland 2040 plan and the planned upcoming referendum on the Eighth Amendment.

Addressing the ongoing political controversy over the publicity campaign for the ‘Ireland 2040’ development plan, Mr Varadkar insisted the new Government Strategic Communications Unit ran the campaign “at arm’s length.”

He said the only content supplied to newspapers were “the facts” insisting that "total editorial freedom was given to newspapers" and “no photographs were provided.”

He said that he did not pay much attention to recent comments by the British Foreign secretary Boris Johnson on the Irish border, adding “when I listen to the British government, I listen to the Prime Minister."

He said he hope a speech the British Prime Minster Theresa May is due to make on Friday will “give us insight on how our relations with the UK will work.”

On the Eighth Amendment, he said the Government is asking the public to “trust women and trust doctors” – adding that after 12 weeks the medical profession must be trusted to make the best medical decisions.

You can listen beck to his full appearance on Newstalk Breakfast here: