Mairead McGuinness has dismissed British reports of security concerns around Ireland's intake of Ukrainian refugees.
The European Commissioner for Financial Services was speaking as Britain's Telegraph reports government ministers there are concerned about the security impact of the Common Travel Area between Ireland and the UK.
Its deputy political editor Lucy Fisher says British ministers have "raised concerns about Ireland's open-door policy to Ukrainian refugees, arguing it creates UK security risk."
"Ireland has basically opened the door to everyone in Ukraine, which creates a problem due to the CTA", one UK source says.
Exc: Ministers have raised concerns about Ireland’s open-door policy to Ukrainian refugees, arguing it creates UK security risk.
Dublin joined EU-wide scheme welcoming refugees for 3 years, via which Ukrainians can travel to UK (Common Travel Area) without biometric checks
— Lucy Fisher (@LOS_Fisher) March 7, 2022
Commissioner McGuinness told Newstalk Breakfast Britain is entitled to its view.
"I think what's justified is that we focus on humanitarian help for distraught people.
"I think we shouldn't mix these issues: this a war and it's on European soil. It demands us to think and act differently than in peace time.
"I think we have to say, as a European country, Ireland is getting its priorities right.
"And I think the issue of the 'what ifs' and the Common Travel Area - I think that the UK is not part of the European Union, they have a right to express their views.
"But frankly, given what I've seen on video and what I'm hearing from people that are on the ground out there, these are people whose lives have been torn apart.
"And there should be no question but that children, women, and disabled and people who are vulnerable are protected and looked after".
'Dependency on energy'
EU Commissioners are meeting in Strasbourg to examine the impacts of sanctions on Russia so far.
Commissioner McGuinness says further sanctions need to be focused.
"Hitting the Central Bank in Russia has been the direct target, and is having a huge impact on the Russian economy.
"The question of dependency on energy is on our agenda today.
"What we need to really focus on is we want to impact the Russian war machine, we want to limit the impacts within Europe.
"It makes sense for us to do that, rather than sporadic issues and hit us instead of hitting Russia.
"But clearly there comes a time when everything is looked at".
She says: "We need to do things that impact Putin and his oligarchs - that's done and more can be done there.
"Secondly we need to act quickly to accelerate the Green Deal, investment in renewables, diversification of supplies.
"And there is the question of oil as well in the mix here.
"We're not fully dependent but we're over dependent, and it is a question that is our minds and on our agenda.
"And I think the question we have to answer is how do we move away from that reliance towards other sources, and increase our investments in renewables, in a way that allows European citizens and businesses not to be impacted completely.
"There is an impact already: look at the price of oil, look at the price of petrol".
She adds: "Nothing has been off the table from the very beginning".