Ireland to remember Battle of the Somme anniversary
The Irish government has revealed details of a series of events in Dublin to commemorate thousands of soldiers from across Ireland who died in the Battle of the Somme.
Writing in the Belfast Telegraph today, Charles Flanagan TD said that the events during the 100th anniversary of the battle next summer would "acknowledge the important place the Somme holds in the history of this island".
The Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade made history in July when he was the first senior Irish Minister to lay a wreath at the Somme commemoration in Belfast. And Mr Flanagan will lay a wreath at the Remembrance Sunday ceremony at Belfast City Hall this weekend.
He said that there will be "high-level representation" at the commemorations in France as well as an Irish-led ceremony to mark the battle. "The terrible losses experienced by those involved, and particularly by the 36th Ulster Division, will be especially remembered during this ceremony," he added.
A military ceremony will take place in Dublin on July 1, followed by a major State-led commemoration on July 9 at the War Memorial Gardens in Islandbridge in conjunction with the Royal British Legion.