Northern Ireland To Host G8 Summit

21 Nov 2012


Immigration News

David Cameron confirms venue for next year's meeting of world leaders during visit to province

Northern Ireland will host next year's G8 summit, David Cameron has confirmed, adding that a golf resort in an area once infamously linked with the Troubles would be the main venue for the gathering.

County Fermanagh is renowned for picturesque scenery, including 365 lakeland islands, but also gained notoriety as a result of atrocities such as the 1987 Enniskillen bomb. But next year Barack Obama, Vladimir Putin and Angela Merkel will be among the visitors to Fermanagh for the annual gathering of leaders of the most powerful nations.

Speaking at a factory near Craigavon, County Armagh, on Tuesday, Cameron said: "I want the world to see just what a fantastic place Northern Ireland is. I hope I won't have any trouble keeping President Obama off the golf course."

On his one-day tour of the province, Cameron told workers at the Nacco material handlings firm on the Carn industrial estate: "The world's leaders are going to be here next year debating the issues that are vital to the future of our world, vital to the future of Northern Ireland and seeing this brilliant, beautiful part of the United Kingdom. And seeing it's open for business, great for investment, fantastic at training skilled workers ready to take on the world."

The location of the prime minister's first stop on the tour was also loaded with significance. The industrial zone is close to the M1 motorway, not far from where republican dissident terrorists ambushed and killed prison officer David Black on 1 November.

Security was tight around the area on Tuesday morning, with armed police checkpoints on the roads, police search teams with sniffer dogs and helicopters overhead – an operation that will be dwarfed in comparison to the secure ring imposed around the Lough Erne five-star golf resort next June. The resort will be set on a lake in the rural borderland in the west of the province, making difficult for the anti-globalisation protesters to access

The leaders of the US, UK, Russia, Germany, France, Canada, Italy and Japan will stay at a five-star hotel that is currently up for sale having gone into administration in May 2011. It consists of 12 rooms and luxury suites as well as a conference hall for up to 400 people. The hotel also has a helipad.

Cameron's confirmation that Fermanagh will host the G8 comes in the same month as the 25th anniversary of the IRA bomb at nearby Enniskillen, which saw 11 civilians killed in the Poppy Day explosion.

The first minister of Northern Ireland, Peter Robinson, thanked the prime minister for agreeing to hold the summit in the county. "For the duration of the summit the spotlight will be on Northern Ireland and when the world's media arrives here to report on the summit, we will ensure that the message that goes out is that Northern Ireland is not only a top visitor destination, but also a great place to do business," Robinson said.

Source: http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2012/nov/20/northern-ireland-host-g8-summit


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