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President Obama hails peace process

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US President Barack Obama with Irish President Mary McAleese

US President Barack Obama with Irish President Mary McAleese

Barrack Obama and his wife Michelle land at Dublin Airport on Air Force One (AP)

Barrack Obama and his wife Michelle land at Dublin Airport on Air Force One (AP)

US President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama drink Guinness as they meet local residents at Ollie Hayes pub in Moneygall (AP)

US President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama drink Guinness as they meet local residents at Ollie Hayes pub in Moneygall (AP)

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US President Barack Obama with Irish President Mary McAleese

US President Barack Obama has praised the work involved in achieving peace in Northern Ireland.

In a speech in Dublin, the President said: "America will stand by you always in your pursuit of peace."

"Ireland, you need to understand that you have already passed the world's highest hopes."

He added: "A dream has turned to a reality because of the work of this nation."

The President met Northern Ireland First Minister Peter Robinson and Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness before making the speech.

In a resounding address, the president said: "This little country that inspired the biggest things - your best days are still ahead of you."

The President said the US and Ireland had a centuries-old relationship.

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"And that's why I can come here today, as American president, and reaffirm these bonds of affection," he said.

After a 24-minute speech, the President went down from the stage and shook hands and chatted with well-wishers lucky enough to be at the front of the massive crowds.


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