Taoiseach to give keynote speech at US event marking anniversary of Good Friday Agreement

Leo Varadkar has been asking US State governors how to deal with Donald Trump ahead of their meeting later this week.

The Taoiseach says he is not apprehensive about the meeting, but has asked the pro-Trump governors of Texas and Oklahoma how to approach the US president.

Mr Varadkar says they have shared some pieces of advice.

He said: "I have asked them since most of them have met him on occasion. What they have all said to me is it is what you expect, the person you see on TV is the same person you'll meet in the office.

"So, I'm looking forward to that meeting obviously."

The Taoiseach will give the keynote speech at an event marking the 20th anniversary of the Good Friday Agreement in Washington DC today.

The event will take place at the Library of Congress on Capitol Hill, as Mr Varadkar continues his St Patrick's week visit to the States.

His trip will culminate with his meeting with Donald Trump in the White House on Thursday.

Mr Varadkar observed: "I think there is a risk of widening differences and widening gaps between Europe and America... around issues such as tax, trade, different approaches to climate change, security.

"I actually think that's where Ireland can have a very important role - being a bridge between America and Europe, interpreting one to the other. That's a role that will perhaps become more important in the future, particularly as the United Kingdom leaves [the EU]."

Today's forum commemorating the anniversary of the Good Friday Agreement will also feature speakers including former US special envoy to Northern Ireland George Mitchell, former Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams, and SDLP leader Colum Eastwood.


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