McGuinness to meet Queen during NI visit

McGuinness to meet Queen during NI visit

Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness has confirmed he will meet The Queen during her visit to the region later this month.

The monarch and the Duke of Edinburgh are set to hold a series of public engagements between Monday 23 and Wednesday 25 June.Secretary of State Theresa Villiers said the visit will be an opportunity to put on show "the best that Northern Ireland has to offer" and the peace-building work that is being done.Sinn Féin's Mr McGuinness will meet with the Queen for the second time this year during her three-day visit.He was among those who met the Queen at Windsor Castle in April, when the monarch welcomed President Michael D Higgins as the first Irish head of state to make a state visit to Britain.On Wednesday, Mr McGuinness said: "In my capacity as deputy First Minister and as a representative of all our people I will be meeting with Queen Elizabeth."The visit by Queen Elizabeth is an opportunity to demonstrate mutual respect and to further build on the process of reconciliation."Despite the current difficulties I am determined to provide positive forward thinking political leadership."The Queen and Prince Phillip last visited Northern Ireland in June 2012 as part of her Diamond Jubilee celebrations when she first shook hands with Mr McGuinness in what was seen as a symbolic gesture towards peace and reconciliation.


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