Fianna Fáil has begun moves to put together a new Government, contacting a number of Independent TDs to discuss possible support in the Dáil.

With just over two weeks to go before the 30th Dáil meets for the first time, efforts to put together a government majority are gathering pace.

Fine Gael has already contacted the five Independent TDs to discuss possible support, and today Fianna Fáil got into the game, speaking to Finian McGrath, Jackie Healy-Rae and Beverley Flynn.

None of the Independents were prepared to say exactly what had been discussed, but all said they were determined to do their best for their constituencies.

Mr Healy-Rae told RTÉ News he had received one phonecall from a senior figure in Fianna Fáil, while he received three calls from Fine Gael figures.

The two PD votes are also seen as crucial. The party's candidates and directors of elections met in a Dublin hotel this evening to review the party's disastrous election performance. Acting leader Mary Harney said it was a 'sad day' for the party.

Ms Harney confirmed that she had been approached by Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael about the formation of a new government, but said that today was not a day for making decisions.

Meanwhile, the Labour Party, which has one fewer TD since the election, met in Dublin this afternoon.

Labour leader Pat Rabbitte said he had not been contacted by anyone in Fianna Fáil.

Sinn Féin also set out its position today, saying it was open to talks with either side on the formation of the next Government, but that it would want seats in Cabinet in return for its support.

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