Royal visit: Prince Charles, Camilla arrive Ireland

Prince Charles, Camilla

Prince Charles, Camilla

FILE

Agency Report

Prince Charles and his wife Camilla begin a three-day visit to Ireland on Wednesday, as part of a series of royal tours for Queen Elizabeth II's Platinum Jubilee year.

The Prince of Wales, 73, and Duchess of Cornwall, 74, are scheduled to visit Tipperary and Waterford in southern Ireland.

Charles, who is the 95-year-old monarch's eldest son and heir, is also due to meet Irish prime minister Micheal Martin, as well as other dignitaries and officials.

The couple have visited Ireland five times in the past, most recently in 2019 when they met President Michael D. Higgins in County Wicklow on Ireland's southeast coast.

On Tuesday, they visited County Tyrone in Northern Ireland, where they met local businesses and members of the community.

Charles -- a lifelong environmentalist -- also planted a tree in the gardens of Hillsborough Castle, which is the British-ruled province's only royal residence.

The royal couple tested positive to Covid last month, forcing Camilla to abandon a scheduled appearance at the Cheltenham festival which is popular with Irish horse-racing fans.

They did, however, earlier attend an event at the Irish Cultural Centre in west London ahead of St Patrick's Day celebrations for Ireland's patron saint on March 17.

The public schedule of premier Martin has also been hit by coronavirus recently after he tested positive just before he was scheduled to meet US President Joe Biden at the White House.

The trip by Charles and Camilla coincides with a series of spring royal tours, including one by his eldest son, Prince William and his wife Catherine, to the Caribbean.

Senior royals are visiting eight of the 14 Commonwealth countries outside the UK where the queen is also head of state to mark her record-breaking 70th year on the throne.

A series of public events over four days are due to take place in the UK in early June to mark the occasion.

The Queen, who turns 96 next month and has been in fragile health, made history in 2011 when she became the first British monarch to visit Ireland since its independence.

The state visit was seen as helping overcome deep-rooted unease and putting Anglo-Irish relations on a new footing.

AFP

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