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President Higgins offers condolences to royal family

September 9th, 2022 10:24 AM

By Southern Star Team

Photo: Alessia Pierdomenico / Shutterstock.com

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PRESIDENT Michael D. Higgins has offered his condolences to the Royal Family following the death of Queen Elizabeth II.

'It is with profound regret and a deep personal sadness that I have learnt of the passing of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II,' he said in a statement released yesterday evening.

'On behalf of the people of Ireland, may I express my heartfelt sympathy to His Majesty King Charles and to the Royal Family on their very great personal loss. May I offer my deepest condolences to the British people and to the members of the Commonwealth on the loss of a unique, committed and deeply respected Head of State.'

President Higgins praised her 'personal commitment to her role' and said that her period as Queen will hold a unique place in British history.

'Her reign of 70 years encompassed periods of enormous change, during which she represented a remarkable source of reassurance to the British people. This was a reassurance based on a realism of the significance of present events, rather than any narrow conception of history,' he said.

President Higgins also recalled the historic visit the Queen made to Ireland in 2011, which was the first visit by a British monarch since Irish independence.

'Queen Elizabeth’s Visit was pivotal in laying a firm basis for an authentic and ethical understanding between our countries.  During those memorable few days eleven years ago, the Queen did not shy away from the shadows of the past.

'Her moving words and gestures of respect were deeply appreciated and admired by the people of Ireland and set out a new, forward looking relationship between our nations – one of respect, close partnership and sincere friendship.

As he offered his condolences, President Higgins wanted to 'remember the role Queen Elizabeth played in celebrating the warm and enduring friendship, and her great impact on the bonds of mutual understanding, between our two peoples,' saying 'she will be deeply missed.'

Archbishop Eamon Martin has also expressed his 'sympathies to the new King, to the members of the Royal family and to all those who will grieve the loss of this much-loved and deeply respected monarch.'

'I remember meeting Queen Elizabeth in Enniskillen in 2012, before I was ordained as bishop, when she took the courageous and historic step of visiting Saint Michael’s Catholic Church,' he said.

'She came across as friendly and good humoured and took time to put everyone at their ease.  I have always admired Queen Elizabeth’s quiet dignity and calm nature despite living through very difficult times with much political, economic, social and family upheaval.'

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