Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 27 December 2014

Barack's back home - Obama arrives in windswept Ireland for whistlestop tour

US President Barack Obama is presented with a hurley from Taoiseach Enda Kenny in Farmleigh, Dublin
US President Barack Obama is presented with a hurley from Taoiseach Enda Kenny in Farmleigh, Dublin
US President Barack Obama's visit to Ireland, May 2011
US President Barack Obama with Taoiseach Enda Kenny in Farmleigh, Dublin, where the two held talks.
First Lady Michelle Obama, Dr Martin McAleese, US President Barack Obama and Irish President Mary McAleese, meet school children, Onyedita Ukachukwu 8, Colm Dunne 9 and Margaret McDonagh 10, at Aras an Uachtarain, Phoenix Park, following a tree planting ceremony, during President Obama's visit to Ireland.
US President Barack Obama is greeted by Irish President Mary McAleese, at Aras an Uachtarain during President Obama's visit to Ireland.
US President Barack Obama with Irish President Mary McAleese walking in the Francini corridor at Aras an Uachtarain during President Obama's visit to Ireland.
US President Barack Obama with Dr Martin McAleese at Aras an Uachtarain during President Obama's visit to Ireland.
US President Barack Obama,(centre) walks with Irish President Mary McAleese, followed by her husband Dr Martin McAleese and First Lady Michelle Obama, at Aras an Uachtarain, Phoenix Park, Dublin
US President Barack Obama, Irish President Mary McAleese, her husband Dr Martin McAleese, and First Lady Michelle Obama, at Aras an Uachtarain during President Obama's visit to Ireland.
President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama's signatures in the visitors book at Aras an Uachtarain Phoenix Park in Dublin, during the President's visit to Ireland.
President of Ireland Mary McAleese, US President Barack Obama, First Lady Michelle Obama and Dr Martin McAleese, at Aras an Uachtarain as President Obama and Michelle Obama sign the visitors book during the President's visit to Ireland.
President of Ireland Mary McAleese, US President Barack Obama, First Lady Michelle Obama and Dr Martin McAleese, at Aras an Uachtarain as President Obama and Michelle Obama sign the visitors book during the President's visit to Ireland.
President Barack Obama, left, holds and swings a hurling stick as Ireland's Taoiseach Enda Kenny looks on.
US President Barack Obama's visit to Ireland, May 2011
US President Barack Obama's visit to Ireland, May 2011
A US military helicopter manoeuvres at Dublin airport ahead of the arrival of US President Barack Obama.
A member of the President's entourage is seen at Dublin airport ahead of the arrival of US President Barack Obama.
Two US Marines are seen at Dublin airport ahead of the arrival of US President Barack Obama.
Two US Marines are seen at Dublin airport ahead of the arrival of US President Barack Obama.
The President of the United States and his First Lady
Barack Hussein Obama
Stephanie Casillas takes a picture of Maya Landry, 3, in a John McCain mask and Alex Vincelette, 3, in an Obama mask while their preschool class visits the Arroyo Vista Park polling place in Moorpark, Calif., Tuesday, Nov. 4, 2008. (AP Photo/The Ventura County Star, James Glover II)
President-elect Barack Obama, left, his wife Michelle Obama, right, and two daughters, Malia, and Sasha, center left, wave to the crowd at the election night rally in Chicago, Tuesday, Nov. 4, 2008. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
President-elect Barack Obama kisses wife, Michelle, after his acceptance speech at his election night party at Grant Park in Chicago, Tuesday night, Nov. 4, 2008. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)
Democratic presidential candidate, Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., addresses supporters at a rally in Manassas, Va., Monday, Nov. 3, 2008. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
*** CORRECTS NAME OF PHOTOGRAPHER *** University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign students celebrate on the Alma Mater after Obama was announced the president-elect early Wednesday morning, Nov. 5, 2008 in Champaign, Ill. (AP Photo/The Daily Illini - Ramzi Dreessen)
Supporters of President-elect Barack Obama cheer in the streets in downtown Chicago on Tuesday, Nov. 4, 2008. (AP Photo/Stacie Freudnberg)
Dennis Caudill, of Crown Point, Indiana, places a sign supporting Republican presidential candidate Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and vice presidential candidate and Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin on the mantle at the home of Palin friends Brad and Kristan Cole, Tuesday, Nov. 4, 2008, in Wasilla, Alaska. Caudill was part of a group of McCain supporters and friends from across the country gathered to watch election returns in Wasilla. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)
Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., right, is joined by Gov. Sarah Palin, R-Alaska, during a rally with supporters on election night in Phoenix, Tuesday, Nov. 4, 2008. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)
Joan Crecca kisses a life size cutout of presidential candidate John McCain at the Republican election party in Bellevue, Wash on Tuesday, Nov. 4, 2008. Crecca's husband Joe was a POW in Viet Nam at the same time as McCain. (AP Photo/John Froschauer)

US President Barack Obama has arrived in Ireland for a 24-hour visit.



Air Force One landed amid tight security and wet, blustery conditions at Dublin Airport just after 9.30am.

The President was met by Ireland's deputy prime minister Tanaiste Eamon Gilmore and his wife Carol Hanney, and US ambassador to Ireland Dan Rooney.

Mr Obama is due to call on President Mary McAleese at her residence in the Phoenix Park, Aras an Uachtarain, before holding 45 minutes of talks with Taoiseach Enda Kenny.

The President will then travel to his ancestral home in Moneygall, Co Offaly, ahead of a public concert later in Dublin.

Mr Obama waved as he stepped off the plane with his wife, Michelle.

The visit lacked the ceremony of last week's state visit of the Queen, with only a small welcoming party waiting on the runway apron to greet the President and shake hands.

The Obamas immediately boarded helicopter Marine One to travel the few miles to Aras an Uachtarain.

Airspace around Dublin has been shut down for the President's arrival and transfer over the capital.

President McAleese greeted President Obama at the front steps of the Aras.

"Thank-you so much. We're thrilled to be here," he said.

And despite the grey skies, the President remarked: "The sun's coming out - I can feel it."

He signed the visitor's book before holding private talks in the drawing room of the Aras.

COMMENT RULES: Comments that are judged to be defamatory, abusive or in bad taste are not acceptable and contributors who consistently fall below certain criteria will be permanently blacklisted. The moderator will not enter into debate with individual contributors and the moderator’s decision is final. It is Belfast Telegraph policy to close comments on court cases, tribunals and active legal investigations. We may also close comments on articles which are being targeted for abuse. Problems with commenting? customercare@belfasttelegraph.co.uk

Latest News

Latest Sport

Latest Showbiz