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'Finally I can say I'm Irish': Meet our newest citizens

For the 5000 men and women who have just sworn an oath of allegiance to the state, this is a very special day

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No place like home: Jill Holtz, a new Irish citizen who lives in Oranmore, Galway. Photo: Andrew Downes/ Xposure

No place like home: Jill Holtz, a new Irish citizen who lives in Oranmore, Galway. Photo: Andrew Downes/ Xposure

Andrew Downes Xposure

No place like home: Jill Holtz, a new Irish citizen who lives in Oranmore, Galway. Photo: Andrew Downes/ Xposure

Today is St Patrick's day and joining the millions of people around the world who'll be marking their Irish heritage are 5,000 people from 135 countries, who earlier this month officially became Irish citizens, receiving their certificates of naturalisation and taking the oath of fidelity to the Irish State.

Among them was Majo Rivas, a human rights lawyer originally from Paraguay now living in Cork. Her journey to Ireland from her home on the outskirts of the Paraguayan capital Asuncion came via South Korea, where she met her future husband on a scouting trip 12 years ago.

Now married and working here, Majo put down her roots in Ireland five years ago. "I have a great family here and a great network of friends. People couldn't have been more amazing, especially my husband," she says of her early days in Ireland.