US congressional delegation to visit


A delegation of US congressmen will visit Ireland this week to hold talks with political leaders on issues ranging from Northern Ireland to the undocumented in America.

The trip will be lead by Friends of Ireland chairman Congressman Richie Neal and will involve meetings with the President, Taoiseach, Tánaiste and Opposition politicians.

The Friends of Ireland promotes Irish interests in the US Houses of Representatives and helps foster trade and cultural links between the two countries.

The week long trip begins tomorrow when they will meet separately with Taoiseach Brian Cowen, President Mary McAleese and Tánaiste Mary Coughlan.

On Tuesday, Ceann Comhairle John O’Donoghue and Congressman Neal will co-chair bi-lateral talks between the Friends of Ireland Delegation and Irish Parliamentary representatives.

Brief meetings will also be held on Tuesday with Fine Gael leader Enda Kenny and Labour Party chief Eamon Gilmore.

The US delegation was invited by the Ceann Comhairle and the visit has been arranged by the Irish Parliamentary Association.

The delegation will be made up of eight Congressmen - seven Democrats and one Republican.