The Catholic Archbishop of Dublin has said parishes with a surplus of funding have been asked to contribute to a general fund that he said has not yet been used to compensate victims of clerical sex abuse.

Dr Diarmuid Martin was responding to a report in The Irish Catholic newspaper, which claims that parish funds are being used to cover the cost of clerical abuse claims in the Dublin archdiocese.

A spokesperson for the archdiocese confirmed that while current abuse claims can be met, it may not be able to meet all anticipated future settlements.

Speaking on RTÉ’s Morning Ireland, Dr Martin said money from parishes has been transferred to a fund that is used for many purposes, not exclusively for sexual abuse settlements.

The Dublin diocese has so far paid €13.5m for the settlement of claims and it is estimated it may still have to pay another €6.34m.