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1916 Easter Rising: Irish president and Taoiseach attend first official ceremonial event to mark 2016 commemorations

By Nicola Anderson

Published 01/01/2016

A member of the Irish defence forces salutes the National Flag which was flown from the GPO on O'Connell Street during the rebellion, as the first major event to mark the centenary of the 1916 Rising takes place at Dublin Castle in Ireland. PA
A member of the Irish defence forces salutes the National Flag which was flown from the GPO on O'Connell Street during the rebellion, as the first major event to mark the centenary of the 1916 Rising takes place at Dublin Castle in Ireland. PA
Irish Government handout photo of the raising of the flags which were flown on O'Connell Street during the rebellion, during the first major event to mark the centenary of the 1916 Rising at Dublin Castle in Ireland. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Friday January 1, 2016. The ceremony attended by President Michael D Higgins, Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Tanaiste Joan Burton. Invited guests including relatives of those who died in the Rising will also take part. See PA story POLITICS Rising Ireland. Photo credit should read: Mark Maxwell/PA Wire NOTE TO EDITORS: This handout photo may only be used in for editorial reporting purposes for the contemporaneous illustration of events, things or the people in the image or facts mentioned in the caption. Reuse of the picture may require further permission from the copyright holder.
Irish Government handout photo of the raising of the flags which were flown on O'Connell Street during the rebellion, during the first major event to mark the centenary of the 1916 Rising at Dublin Castle in Ireland. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Friday January 1, 2016. The ceremony attended by President Michael D Higgins, Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Tanaiste Joan Burton. Invited guests including relatives of those who died in the Rising will also take part. See PA story POLITICS Rising Ireland. Photo credit should read: Mark Maxwell/PA Wire NOTE TO EDITORS: This handout photo may only be used in for editorial reporting purposes for the contemporaneous illustration of events, things or the people in the image or facts mentioned in the caption. Reuse of the picture may require further permission from the copyright holder.
A member of the Irish defence forces holds the National Flag which was flown from the GPO on O'Connell Street during the rebellion, as the first major event to mark the centenary of the 1916 Rising takes place at Dublin Castle in Ireland. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Friday January 1, 2016. Three flags which were flown on O'Connell Street during the rebellion were raised over Dublin Castle in the ceremony attended by President Michael D Higgins, Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Tanaiste Joan Burton. See PA story POLITICS Rising Ireland. Photo credit should read: Brian Lawless/PA Wire
A member of the Irish defence forces holds the National Flag which was flown from the GPO on O'Connell Street during the rebellion, as the first major event to mark the centenary of the 1916 Rising takes place at Dublin Castle in Ireland. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Friday January 1, 2016. Three flags which were flown on O'Connell Street during the rebellion were raised over Dublin Castle in the ceremony attended by President Michael D Higgins, Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Tanaiste Joan Burton. See PA story POLITICS Rising Ireland. Photo credit should read: Brian Lawless/PA Wire
Tanaiste Joan Burton (centre) arrives for the first major event to mark the centenary of the 1916 Rising, at Dublin Castle in Ireland. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Friday January 1, 2016. Three flags which were flown on O'Connell Street during the rebellion were raised over Dublin Castle in the ceremony attended by President Michael D Higgins, Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Tanaiste Joan Burton. See PA story POLITICS Rising Ireland. Photo credit should read: Brian Lawless/PA Wire
A member of the Irish defence forces holds the National Flag which was flown from the GPO on O'Connell Street during the rebellion, as the first major event to mark the centenary of the 1916 Rising takes place at Dublin Castle in Ireland. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Friday January 1, 2016. Three flags which were flown on O'Connell Street during the rebellion were raised over Dublin Castle in the ceremony attended by President Michael D Higgins, Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Tanaiste Joan Burton. See PA story POLITICS Rising Ireland. Photo credit should read: Brian Lawless/PA Wire
President Michael D. Higgins (sixth left) inspects a guard of honour during the first major event to mark the centenary of the 1916 Rising, at Dublin Castle in Ireland. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Friday January 1, 2016. Three flags which were flown on O'Connell Street during the rebellion were raised over Dublin Castle in the ceremony attended by President Michael D Higgins, Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Tanaiste Joan Burton. See PA story POLITICS Rising Ireland. Photo credit should read: Brian Lawless/PA Wire
Taoiseach Enda Kenny (second left) with Tanaiste Joan Burton (right) during the first major event to mark the centenary of the 1916 Rising, at Dublin Castle in Ireland. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Friday January 1, 2016. Three flags which were flown on O'Connell Street during the rebellion were raised over Dublin Castle in the ceremony attended by President Michael D Higgins, Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Tanaiste Joan Burton. See PA story POLITICS Rising Ireland. Photo credit should read: Brian Lawless/PA Wire
President Michael D. Higgins (second left) inspects a guard of honour during the first major event to mark the centenary of the 1916 Rising, at Dublin Castle in Ireland. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Friday January 1, 2016. Three flags which were flown on O'Connell Street during the rebellion were raised over Dublin Castle in the ceremony attended by President Michael D Higgins, Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Tanaiste Joan Burton. See PA story POLITICS Rising Ireland. Photo credit should read: Brian Lawless/PA Wire
Members of a choir look on as members of the defence forces form a guard of honour during the first major event to mark the centenary of the 1916 Rising, at Dublin Castle in Ireland. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Friday January 1, 2016. Three flags which were flown on O'Connell Street during the rebellion were raised over Dublin Castle in the ceremony attended by President Michael D Higgins, Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Tanaiste Joan Burton. See PA story POLITICS Rising Ireland. Photo credit should read: Brian Lawless/PA Wire
Taoiseach Enda Kenny (second right) with Tanaiste Joan Burton (right) during the first major event to mark the centenary of the 1916 Rising, at Dublin Castle in Ireland. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Friday January 1, 2016. Three flags which were flown on O'Connell Street during the rebellion were raised over Dublin Castle in the ceremony attended by President Michael D Higgins, Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Tanaiste Joan Burton. See PA story POLITICS Rising Ireland. Photo credit should read: Brian Lawless/PA Wire
Grandsons of James Connolly, one of seven signatories of the Proclamation, James Connolly (left) and John Connolly, following the first major event to mark the centenary of the 1916 Rising, at Dublin Castle in Ireland. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Friday January 1, 2016. Three flags which were flown on O'Connell Street during the rebellion were raised over Dublin Castle in the ceremony attended by President Michael D Higgins, Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Tanaiste Joan Burton. See PA story POLITICS Rising Ireland. Photo credit should read: Brian Lawless/PA Wire
Members of the Irish defence forces leave Dublin Castle after the first major event to mark the centenary of the 1916 Rising took place in Dublin, Ireland. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Friday January 1, 2016. Three flags which were flown on O'Connell Street during the rebellion were raised over Dublin Castle in the ceremony attended by President Michael D Higgins, Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Tanaiste Joan Burton. See PA story POLITICS Rising Ireland. Photo credit should read: Brian Lawless/PA Wire
Members of the public during the first major event to mark the centenary of the 1916 Rising, at Dublin Castle in Ireland. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Friday January 1, 2016. Three flags which were flown on O'Connell Street during the rebellion were raised over Dublin Castle in the ceremony attended by President Michael D Higgins, Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Tanaiste Joan Burton. See PA story POLITICS Rising Ireland. Photo credit should read: Brian Lawless/PA Wire
Members of the Irish defence forces during the first major event to mark the centenary of the 1916 Rising, at Dublin Castle in Ireland. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Friday January 1, 2016. Three flags which were flown on O'Connell Street during the rebellion were raised over Dublin Castle in the ceremony attended by President Michael D Higgins, Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Tanaiste Joan Burton. See PA story POLITICS Rising Ireland. Photo credit should read: Brian Lawless/PA Wire
Sinn Fein's Martin McGuinness (left) alongside grandsons of James Connolly, one of seven signatories of the Proclamation, James Connolly (centre) and John Connolly following the first major event to mark the centenary of the 1916 Rising, at Dublin Castle in Ireland. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Friday January 1, 2016. Three flags which were flown on O'Connell Street during the rebellion were raised over Dublin Castle in the ceremony attended by President Michael D Higgins, Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Tanaiste Joan Burton. See PA story POLITICS Rising Ireland. Photo credit should read: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

Irish president Michael D Higgins and Taoiseach Enda Kenny TD have led the first State ceremonial event to mark the beginning of the centenary year.

The 2016 commemorations began with a flag-raising ceremony at Dublin Castle.

Cor na nOg performed Danny Boy, followed by an opening prayer.

The president inspected a military Guard of Honour and the names of all 78 on the 1916 roll of honour were read aloud, followed by a minute's silence.

Then the flag of the Citizen Army, - which flew from the Imperial Hotel during Easter Week 1916 and the flag of the IRB and the tricolour - which were flown from the GPO, were raised before the Irish national anthem was played.

Amid teaming rain, around 250 members of the public turned out to observe, along with 1916 relatives, politicians and ambassadors.

Amongst those present were EU commissioner Phil Hogan and Sinn Fein President Martin Mc Guinness and Tanaiste Joan Burton - who looked none the worse for her ducking in the floods in Kilkenny yesterday.

Later this evening, the Irish Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Heather Humphreys TD, will host a special Peace Proms concert in the Convention Centre, featuring over 500 young performers from across the island of Ireland.

Throughout 2016, more than 40 State ceremonial events will be held as part of the Ireland 2016 Centenary Programme, as well a growing list of more than 4,000 events nationwide, including 2,000 community-led initiatives and over 1,000 international events.

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