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US officials due in Dublin to finalise plans for Obama's visit

Enda Kenny has confirmed that free tickets will be made available for the US President’s public address in Dublin.

Taoiseach Enda Kenny meeting with Barack Obama on St Patrick's Day 2011.
Taoiseach Enda Kenny meeting with Barack Obama on St Patrick's Day 2011.
Image: AP/Photo

SENIOR US OFFICIALS will arrive in Dublin before the end of this week to finalise plans for President Barack Obama’s visit later this month.

Responding to questions yesterday in the Dáil, Enda Kenny confirmed that tickets for Obama’s public address at Dublin would be free, but a venue has yet to be confirmed. He also said that Michelle Obama would accompany her husband on the state visit and they would stay overnight.

He said Obama would visit Moneygall in Co Offaly and would also meet with President McAleese at Áras an Uactharáin.

Meanwhile, the combined security costs for the state visits of the British monarch and US President this month are estimated to reach almost €30m, although Enda Kenny and Justice Minster Alan Shatter have said they don’t know exactly what the visits will cost the government.

However, one small saving looks possible: the US secret service will supply their own beer to Ollie Hayes’s pub in Moneygall in case the president takes a drink while visiting the home town of his great-great-great-grandfather, the Herald has reported.

Read: Security operations for Queen and Obama visits will cost almost €30m – report >

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