"Claims made by the Vatican in a submission to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) last December were so inaccurate, it prompted Minister for Justice Alan Shatter to write to Rome seeking clarification, The Irish Times has learned.
The Vatican asserted to the UNCRC that the four religious congregations that ran Magdalene laundries in Ireland were willing to pay part of a compensation scheme developed by the State for women who had been in the laundries.
However, two of the religious congregations concerned have since repeated their unwillingness to contribute to any compensation scheme for the women.
When the UNCRC issued its final report on the Vatican’s child protection record last February, Rome came in for unprecedented worldwide criticism.
In its response, the Vatican said it was “heartened by the openness of the religious sisters to engage in discussions about issues of compensation and their willingness to pay a part of a compensation package developed by state authorities”.
But the four congregations involved have all publicly declined to contribute to the proposed compensation scheme.
A spokesman for Mr Shatter this week confirmed that the Minister had been so surprised by the Vatican statement he wrote to the congregations, asking whether, “based on the statement from the Holy See, they had reconsidered their position with regard to making a financial contribution to the scheme”..."