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06th May 2023

Taoiseach describes King Charles as “friend of Ireland” at Royal Coronation

Rory Fleming

Taoiseach Coronation

Both the Taoiseach and President Higgins will attend today’s royal coronation in London.

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and President Michael D. Higgins met with King Charles III on Friday evening at a reception at Buckingham Palace, preceding Saturday’s royal coronation.

The pair will also be in attendance at proceedings at Westminster Abbey later on Saturday, with the Taoiseach and President being invited to attend Britain’s first coronation in seven decades.

Both the Taoiseach and President met with King Charles III at a Buckingham Palace reception on Friday evening. (Credit: Rolling News)

Also at Friday’s reception were high ranking UK government officials, various members of the royal family and a host of other international heads of state and dignitaries.

Speaking after the reception, Mr. Varadkar was steadfast in his extending of friendship towards the British monarchy, describing King Charles and his wife Camilla as “friends of Ireland”.

“King Charles and Queen Camilla are long-standing friends of Ireland and King Charles has visited regularly in the past two decades, supporting good bilateral relations, co-operation, peace and reconciliation. I expressed my hope that his regular visits will continue into his reign”.

The Fine Gael party leader went on to add that he was “pleased” to accept the coronation invite and attend what he remarked was “a historic moment for British people, for the realm, and for their friends around the world”.

Michelle O’Neill will also attend the coronation in an act of bipartisanship. (Credit: Getty Images)

Sighting the close economic and cultural ties between Ireland and the UK, the Taoiseach expressed his hope that Britain will flourish under King Charles’ reign.

“A vibrant British community actively contributes to life in Ireland in so many ways. And, of course, there are many people, in the North especially, who are both British and Irish”.

Also set to be in attendance at today’s coronation is Sinn Féin’s Vice President and leader in Northern Ireland, Michelle O’Neill.

Ms. O’Neill had received backlash from certain sectors of the Republican community for accepting Buckingham Palace’s invitation, but the Mid Ulster MLA was adamant that she would attend, describing herself as “a First Minister for all”.

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