President Higgins has today begun a two-day visit to Wales, his first to the country since taking office.
Accompanied by wife Sabina, his visit will include meetings with members of the Senedd and the cultural and educational life of Wales.
He will also honour the centenary of the birth of Dylan Thomas, which is being celebrated at the time of the visit.
This is the President’s 7th visit to Britain but his first to Wales since taking office.
On arrival in Cardiff this morning the President was greeted by Dr. Peter Beck, Lord Lieutenant of South Glamorgan and Ireland’s Ambassador to the Britain, Dan Mulhall.
A visit to the Mansion House in Cardiff followed where he is attending a lunch hosted by Cllr. Phil Bale, Leader of Cardiff Council.
In the early afternoon the President will visit the Ty Hywel, for a meeting with the Rt. Hon Carwyn Jones, First Minister of Wales before heading to the Welsh National Assembly.
Later in the evening the President will visit the Dylan Thomas Centre in Swansea where he will officially open the exhibition and afterwards attend a performance of a segment of Dylan Thomas’ ‘Under Milk Wood’.
The President and Sabina will then attend the Grand Theatre, for the final session of the ‘Dylathon’, celebrating 100 years since the birth of Dylan Thomas.
They will be met by director Michael Bogdanov and Sir Ian McKellen and as part of the ‘Dyathlon’ the President will be invited to read from ‘Elegy’ an unfinished poem by Dylan Thomas.
Tomorrow, the President and Sabina will visit Swansea University, where there will be a particular focus on the Ireland-Wales Programme.
After visiting 11 projects funded by the Programme, the President will deliver an address at the university.
Later both the President and Sabina will attend an Irish community reception at the Wales Millennium Centre, hosted by the Irish Ambassador.
This event will celebrate the economic, political, cultural and community links between Ireland and Wales - and provide an opportunity for the President to meet and address the Irish community in South Wales.