PRESIDENT MICHAEL D Higgins is beginning an official State visit to three Central American countries today.
Higgins departed from Dublin Airport yesterday morning as he embarks on an official visit to Mexico, El Salvador and Costa Rica over the next week-and-a-half.
He is being accompanied by his wife Sabina and the Minister of State for Trade and Development, Joe Costello.
Later today in Mexico City the President will lay a wreath at the memorial to Batallón de San Patricio – a unit of the Mexican army comprising of many Irish immigrants which fought against the US in the Mexican – American War of 1846 to 1848.
The President is also due to visit the Museum of Anthropology in the Mexican capital this evening.
Tomorrow, the President will lay a wreath at the Altar of the Nation in Chapultepec Park before he and his wife meet with Mexican president Enrique Pena Nieto at the National Palace.
On Tuesday, Higgins will attend a business breakfast hosted by Enterprise Ireland before travelling to Guadalajara to make a keynote address at the Mexico Business Summit along with President Nieto.
After engagements on Wednesday, the President departs for El Salvador where on arrival he will be presented with the freedom of the city by the acting Mayor of San Salvador, Gloria Calderón Sol de Onate.
On Thursday, Higgins will meet with president Mauricio Funes and hold a bilateral meeting. He will hold a number of public engagements on Friday, before departing for Costa Rica on Saturday.
Higgins and his wife will meet with the Costa Rican president Laura Chinchilla on Monday week, while on Tuesday, 29 October, he will given an address entitled ‘Human Rights in the 21st Century, Reasons for Hope’.
The President and his wife depart central America on 31 October.
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