Royal Watch News
Queen Elizabeth's Northern Ireland visit delayed by bad weather
Jun 26, 2012, 12:01 GMT
Britain's Queen Elizabeth's arrival in Northern Ireland today (26.06.12) was delayed due to bad weather.
The monarch and Prince Philip were due to fly into Enniskillen in Co Fermanaghbut a spokesperson for Buckingham Palace revealed the pair were forced to fly into Aldergrove Airport near Belfast instead, delaying their arrival.
The royals will embark on a two-day tour of the country to mark the queen's Diamond Jubilee, which will include meeting former terrorist and one-time IRA commander Martin McGuinness, who is now Deputy First Minister of Northern Ireland.
The royal couple will attend engagements in Enniskillen, where they will take in a service at St Macartan's Church of Ireland cathedral before meeting schoolchildren and a community group at Catholic church, St Michael's.
The queen and the Duke of Edinburgh will visit Northern Ireland's capital city Belfast tomorrow (27.06.12), where they will attend a party on the grounds of Stormont Estate.
The couple will also take in a lunch arranged by Co-Operation Ireland, a reconciliation charity that sees both British and Irish heads of state as co-patrons.
And it is in a charity context, rather than as a Jubilee occasion, that will see the controversial meeting of Elizabeth and Martin - who is part of the Sinn Fein political party, who believe Northern Ireland should have political independence from Britain - which has been described by Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams as a 'gesture of respect'.
He recently said: 'It is a very significant step and I think it may bring us into a different phase, into a new platform which can be built upon.
'It's good in terms of national reconciliation, it's good in terms of conflict resolution, and while there are still elements here who don't engage in talks and stand back from embracing the peace process, I think it perhaps opens the door to them also.'
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