Friday 23 February 2018

The highs and lows of a 14-year presidency

•November 1997: Inauguration as the eighth President of Ireland.

•December 1997: President takes communion at a Church of Ireland service, contrary to canon law.

•July 1998: President celebrates the Twelfth of July at Aras an Uachtarain.

•November 1998: She meets Queen Elizabeth for the first time, when they unveil a tower at Messines in Belgium in memory of Irish World War One dead.

•December 1999: President makes an address to a joint sitting of the Houses of the Oireachtas.

•September 2001: President makes unscripted response to the September 11 attacks, capturing the public mood.

•June 2003: She opens the Special Olympics World Games, "a time when Ireland was at its superb best".

•October 2003: President leads largest-ever Irish trade delegation to China.

•November 2004: President re-inaugurated for second seven-year term.

•December 2004: President calls Council of State and refers nursing home charges legislation to the Supreme Court, which strikes it down.

•January 2005: President has to apologise after claiming Northern children were taught to hate Catholics in the same way Nazis despised Jews.

•October 2008: President volunteers to take a pay cut as the economic crisis hits.

•September 2010: During trip to Russia, President criticises lawyers, economists, and regulators for their role in the crisis.

•May 2011: President hosts an official and historic state visit by Queen Elizabeth, the first by a British monarch in 100 years.

Irish Independent

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