For the first time in a century, a British monarch has set foot on Irish soil. Queen Elizabeth II has arrived in Dublin for an historic four day state visit.
The British monarch met Irish President Mary McAleese before laying a wreath at Dublin’s Garden of Remembrance.
The visit is meant to symbolise reconciliation and emphasise the strong bond between the two countries, built on generations of Irish emigration.
But a demonstration in the centre of Dublin, coupled by a flurry of bomb alerts, is a reminder that a small minority remain opposed to the British presence in Northern Ireland. The security forces swung into operation and the protest was quickly suppressed. It is the biggest security operation ever mounted by the Irish state.
The last monarch to make a state visit was the Queen’s grandfather George V in 1911.
Ireland was given self rule in 1921 and severed its last ties to the British monarchy in 1948. The North remains part of the UK.