Former Presidential candidate David Norris has left the country for a break - following the tumultuous revelations over his intervention on behalf of his lover on sex charges.
Senator Norris flew out to Cyprus as his former partner Ezra Yitzak Nawi began a round of media interviews expressing regret for the statuatory rape of a 15-year-old boy and the consequent effect on Senator Norris’s campaign.
The Trinity scholar is staying at the holiday home he often shared with Mr Nawi when they were a couple for 26 years.
The revelation that he had sent a letter to a court in Israel seeking clemency for Mr Nawi on his 1997 conviction led to Mr Norris’ decision earlier this week to withdraw from his campaign to be the next President of Ireland.
“I’m heartbroken. David has paid the highest price for our relationship,” Mr Nawi said today.
He added that Mr Norris’s decision not to run for president was a loss to the Irish people.
But he said he could understand public upset over the Senator's letter appealing for clemency over the statutory rape of a 15-year-old boy.
Speaking on RTÉ's News at One, Mr Nawi (60) claimed that Israeli sources were involved in leaking the story.
The Israeli-based human rights campaigner, said he regretted the incident in the early 1990s that led to his conviction.
He said he had paid his debt after serving three months in prison and denied that he was a paedophile. He said he didn’t want to justify his actions but the young man had wanted to have sex with him.