The Embassy had the pleasure to welcome Minister for Foreign Affairs Timo Soini to Ireland. It was a perfect way to mark 100 years of Finnish Independence in Ireland; the last visit by a Finnish Minister for Foreign Affairs to Dublin took place nearly 10 years ago.
Minister Soini had a busy programme in and outside Dublin. He met his new counterpart Minister Simon Coveney to discuss bilateral issues, the implications of Brexit, as well as other EU and international affairs. Minister Coveney invited Minister Soini to visit Monaghan at the border of Ireland and Northern Ireland. There Minister Soini met non-governmental organisations and business representatives in order to learn more about the concrete impact of Brexit on trade and the Northern Ireland peace process.
In addition, he gave a keynote speech on the development of EU's Common Security and Defence policy at the Institute of International and European Affairs (IIEA). He paid a visit to the Houses of the Oireachtas, where he met with Mr. Brendan Smith, Chairman of Joint Committee on Foreign Affairs & Trade & Defence, and Mr Michael Healy-Rae, Chairman of the Joint Committee on European Union Affairs. They all stressed the need to promote cooperation in today's Europe.
You can read Minister Soini's IIEA speech here: http://www.iiea.com/ftp/Transcripts/2017/Minister_Soini_IIEA_July_2017.pdf