Mike Pence arrives in Ireland for first official visit as US vice president

US vice president Mike Pence has arrived in Ireland for his first official visit.

The senior statesman was accompanied by his wife Karen Pence after Air Force Two touched down at Shannon Airport in the west of the country on Monday afternoon.

Mr Pence and his wife paused to wave at assembled media at the top of the steps of the plane, before being officially welcomed by Ireland’s deputy premier and foreign affairs minister (Tanaiste) Simon Coveney.

Mr Pence and Mr Coveney then took part in a bilateral meeting at the airport.

The vice president will later travel to Doonbeg, Co Clare, where US President Donald Trump owns a golf resort, and also where Mr Pence’s family has historic links.

On Tuesday Mr Pence is expected to meet Irish President Michael D Higgins and Taoiseach Leo Varadkar in Dublin.

Mr Pence spoke ahead of his visit about looking forward to celebrating his Irish roots. His mother Nancy Pence Fritsch and sister Ann Pence Poynter are also visiting.

Donald Trump on a past visit to Ireland
US President Donald Trump during a visit to Ireland in June (Liam McBurney/PA)

It comes just months after Mr Trump and First Lady Melania Trump visited Ireland.

There were both protests against Mr Trump’s visit in Dublin and Shannon, as well as a warm welcome in Doonbeg.

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