US President Biden in high spirits during Dublin visit today

by Rose Barrett
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BY ROSE BARRETT

US President Joe Biden – the 46th President of the United States – was met this morning at Áras an Uachtaráin by Irish President Michael D Higgins, before making his way to Farmleigh House to meet Taoiseach Leo Varadkar.

There, President Biden signed the Visitor’s Book at the state reception room within the 78 acre estate in the north-west of Dublin’s Phoenix Park. Farmleigh House provides palatial accommodation for visiting dignitaries and guests of the state.

President Biden further inspected a military guard of honour, before planting an oak tree and ringing the Bell of Peace which was erected in 2008 to commemorate the tenth anniversary of the signing of the Good Friday Agreement.

The Irish weather clearly did not dampen President’s spirits as he jovially said, “We’ll give it one more ring for peace!”

Within the past few hours, President Biden addressed the Houses of the Oireachtas and is expected later to attend a private function at Dublin Castle. Visitors can visit the castle on Saturday next for free and experience the rooms as dressed for the arrival of the 80-year-old US Number One.

Dublin City was on high security alert today with road blocks and increased number of gardaí on duty, and will remain so until the US President’s official visit is over.

Mr Biden described Áras an Uachtaráin as an ‘incredible place…just like the White House!’

President Biden has had a few busy days, having met with UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak in Belfast on Tuesday and Wednesday, where the US dignitary delivered a speech at the University of Ulster.

He also visited Co Louth, where he visited Carlingford Castle and Dundalk, before finally resting at the Conrad Hotel in Dublin City.

PHOTOS – JULIEN BEHAL

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