11 November 2021

Armistice Day marked in Belfast and Dublin

11 November 2021

Armistice Day has been marked with acts of remembrance across Ireland

One of the largest gatherings took place at Belfast City Hall led by the Royal British Legion where the Deputy Lord Mayor Tom Haire and High Sheriff Michael Long were part of a delegation at the Garden of Remembrance

A crowd gathered in the grounds as the Last Post was played before a two-minute silence was observed at 11am.

In Dublin the armistice was marked at Glasnevin Cemetery.

Flagbearers during a ceremony to remember the war dead on Armistice Day at Glasnevin Cemetery in Dublin (Brian Lawless/PA) (PA Wire)

It was attended by Deputy Lord Mayor Joe Costello, Lord Lieutenant of Belfast Fionnuala Jay-O’Boyle, British ambassador to Ireland Paul Johnson as well as the French, Canadian and German ambassadors.

Also in attendance was Major General of the Defence Forces Anthony McKenna and John Connolly from the RAF Association Ireland.

An ecumenical service was led jointly by Fr Richard Sheehy and the Rev David Oxley.

Some seven wreaths were laid while a piper played a lament.

The DUP and UUP took part in acts of remembrance at Stormont.

First Minister Paul Givan, accompanied by his party’s deputy leader Paula Bradley and MLA Christopher Stalford, laid a wreath.

UUP MLA and veteran Andy Allen, accompanied by MLAs John Stewart and Roy Beggs also laid a wreath.

At PSNI headquarters, the chief constable Simon Byrne attended an act of remembrance at the RUC GC Memorial Garden.

The Royal Irish Regiment held a service of remembrance at St Anne’s Cathedral in Belfast on Sunday.

It was attended by Mr Haire as well as the ambassador of the Republic of Korea Kim Gunn, who laid a wreath in memory of soldiers from the Royal Ulster Rifles killed during the Korean War.

The two-minute silence observed on Armistice Day marks the end of the four-year conflict in 1918 where an agreement between Germany and the Allies was made “on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month”.

The annual commemoration was disrupted last year due to the coronavirus pandemic, with many opting to mark the date at home.

People during a two-minute silence at City Hall, Belfast, for Armistice Day (PressEye/PA) (PA Media)

Meanwhile there was condemnation following the erection of a republican poster at the Enniskillen war memorial on Wednesday night, where acts of remembrance are more poignant following an IRA bomb attack in the town on Remembrance Sunday in 1987 which killed 12.

DUP MLA Deborah Erskine said: “For an organisation to erect these posters ahead of the acts of remembrance takes a special kind of twisted nature. They should front up and explain their need to be so insensitive and offensive.”

Ulster Unionist leader Doug Beattie criticised it as a “hideous attempt to stoke up tensions”, adding: “we should all stand to condemn this deliberately offensive action”.

The poster was removed later on Wednesday night.

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