DUBLIN (AFP) - The Irish government was on the brink of collapse Monday after accepting an international bailout package worth up to 90 billion euros to shore up its debt-ridden economy. On a dramatic day in Dublin, Prime Minister Brian Cowens coalition administration appeared to be splintering over the deal as the Greens, the junior partners, called for a general election to be held in January. Green Party leader John Gormley said the Irish people needed political certainty after being misled and betrayed and called on Cowen to name a date for the country to go to the polls. The anger towards the government was evident as around a hundred protesters forced their way through the gates of the parliament building and into the courtyard where they clashed with police. After a week insisting it did not require help from the European Union and International Monetary Fund, the government caved in on Sunday and requested assistance, following Greece as the second EU nation to be rescued this year. Finance Minister Brian Lenihan said Ireland was left with no choice but to accept external help because it faced a very difficult market position and an extraordinarily difficult banking crisis which had deepened our difficulties immeasurably. The news of the bailout initially calmed fears about the single European currency, with the euro rising above 1.37 dollars but it fell back to 1.3609 dollars at 1630 GMT. The call for an election from the Greens, whose six lawmakers hold the balance of power in the governing coalition, leaves the government in chaos as it faces a by-election on Thursday which it is likely to lose. Defeat in the vote in Donegal South-West would reduce its already slim governing majority. Irelands request for aid was approved by EU finance ministers late Sunday as officials moved to quell fears that the debt-laden nation could spread contagion to weak euro economies. Lenihan said it would take several weeks to finalise the exact amount of the bailout. But diplomatic sources in Brussels said the bailout would be between 80 and 90 billion euros (110 and 123 billion dollars). Speaking Sunday, Cowen insisted the bailout should allow a return to a robust and sustainable growth, safeguarding the economic and social position of the people of Ireland. The EU has agreed in principle to use a 750-billion-euro fund, the European Financial Stability Facility, which was set up in May after a 110-billion-euro EU-IMF bailout of Greece. The EU moved to assist Ireland because of fears its problems could spread to other debt-laden economies such as Portugal. Portugals Prime Minister Jose Socrates insisted his country has no need for any aid and called for an end to senseless speculation. There are no links between Portugal and Ireland, he said. Britain, not part of the 16-country eurozone, said it was considering a separate loan to Ireland of about seven billion pounds (11.2 billion dollars). It is in the national interest that we should be prepared to help them at this difficult time, British finance minister George Osborne said in a statement to parliament. But in a blow, the Moodys credit rating agency warned it was likely to downgrade Irish sovereign debt by several notches in view of the costs of the EU-IMF rescue. Germany said Monday that Irelands low rate of corporation tax a source of envy for its eurozone colleagues and a key magnet for foreign companies would be among the points under negotiation for the EU-led bailout. This apparently contradicted earlier statements from Dublin that the 12.5-percent rate was not part of the talks. An angry press said Ireland had been humiliated by performing a U-turn and taking a bailout. The Irish Independent said the public was roundly furious at the manner in which the government has 'lied about the unprecedented events of last week. In the past three years, Irelands public finances have been ravaged by a property market meltdown and the global recession. Domestic banking sector rescues have severely restricted the countrys room for manoeuvre.