European Council president Herman van Rompuy warns the euro and wider EU face a "survival crisis" as the continent's sovereign debt crisis escalates.
Ireland came under intense pressure last night to request aid to help ease the pressure on Europe's peripheral nations, which have seen their borrowing costs soar in recent weeks.
Dublin earlier resisted calls to seek a state bail-out, insisting only its banks may need help. The outcome of the talks is seen as key to the future of the EU and its currency.
European economic affair commissioner Olli Rehn said the EU executive, the European Central Bank (ECB) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) were all working on ways "to resolve Irish banking sector problems".
van Rompuy, who chairs EU summits, told a Brussels think-tank the future of the 27-nation union was at stake in the latest spasm of a debt crisis .
"We are in a survival crisis," he told the European Policy Centre. "We all have to work together in order to survive with the euro zone because if we don't survive with the eurozone, we won't survive with the EU."
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