Sunday 18 March 2018

Canadian PM Justin Trudeau recalls an outstanding memory from teen visit to Ireland

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images) Newsdesk Newsdesk

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has described his teenage trip to Ireland and recalled the moment he visited the Lake Isle of Innisfree.

Taoiseach Enda Kenny is meeting with Mr Trudeau later today and this morning the Canadian leader recounted his own memories of Ireland.

Speaking to RTE Radio One, he said he has visited the country: "My best memory was actually as a teenager. I toured around Ireland with my father after he had retired from politics and we got to go on a very misty, cloudy, slightly drizzly morning to the lake isle of Innishfree.

"I was a big Yeats fan. It was one of the things that burned into my mind of just an extraordinary beauty."

Mr Trudeau will discuss Irish-Canadian relations with the Taoiseach when they meet in Montreal later today. He spoke of the role that generations of Irish immigrants had made to Canadian society.

"Every generation comes with different waves of immigration. We have always been open to people who want to build a better world for themselves. Whatever their background is we don't discriminate, we just look for people who are likely to be able to succeed. That is what we build our immigration system on."

The EU-Canada Comprehensive Economic Trade Agreement (CETA) is currently making its way through the Canadian parliament and also needs to be ratified by the parliaments in European member states.

Mr Trudeau said he was excited by the potential it offers.

"Trade deals between countries don't just have to benefit the 1pc." He said that low-income workers got better deals during the trade agreements.

He added that they are "a long way" from watching trade between the US and Canada collapse.

Asked about separatist movements Mr Trudeau denied that other political movements have sparked further calls for Quebec independence.

Mr Trudeau also said that those in favour of independence for the province of Quebec had not been reinvigorated by the Brexit outcome, saying separation "doesn't make as much sense as it perhaps once did".

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