Northern Ireland

Armistice Day: War dead remembered across Northern Ireland

A veteran places a poppy wreath at the Cenotaph at Belfast City Hall Image copyright Pacemaker
Image caption Veterans and armed forces personnel joined the public for the remembrance service at the Cenotaph in Belfast

Ceremonies have been held in Northern Ireland to mark the anniversary of the end of World War One.

A two-minute silence at 11:00 GMT was observed to commemorate the dead of two world wars, and every conflict since.

Parliament Buildings at Stormont were illuminated in red for the first time to mark Armistice Day.

Image copyright Pacemaker
Image caption Belfast's lord mayor and deputy lord mayor led the commemorations at the city's Cenotaph

Lord Mayor of Belfast Arder Carson said the ceremony of remembrance at the Cenotaph at City Hall had been "poignant and emotional".

"I am here today in respect and remembrance of all those who died in the First World War, nationalist and unionist both," the Sinn Féin councillor added.

Democratic Unionist Party councillor Guy Spence, Belfast's deputy lord mayor, said the city had "united to respect the fallen".

Image copyright Pacemaker
Image caption The two-minute silence was observed at services of remembrance across Northern Ireland
Image copyright Pacemaker
Image caption People gathered in the Garden of Remembrance at Belfast City Hall to pay their respects

He added: "My father was a veteran of the armed forces, so it's an emotional day for us all and certainly one we're proud to be a part of."

Northern Ireland Secretary Theresa Villiers joined MLAs for a remembrance service at Stormont, led by Sinn Féin's Mitchel McLaughlin, the assembly speaker.

But nationalists were disappointed that the national anthem was sung at the end of the event.

Image copyright Ross Fernie
Image caption Soldiers with 38 (Irish) brigade took part in a service at Thiepval Barracks in Lisburn, County Antrim
Image caption Unionist politicians Arlene Foster and Tom Elliott attended a ceremony in Enniskillen, County Fermanagh

Armistice Day is one of four days the Assembly Commission has elected for Parliament Buildings to be illuminated during the year.

Earlier, Mr McLaughlin said remembrance "should be a unifying, not a divisive concept".

"My involvement in First World War commemorations over this last year has only underlined to me the importance that the assembly should remember and show respect to the fallen."

Image caption Stormont's Parliament Buildings were illuminated in red as part of the events to mark Armistice Day

In the Republic of Ireland, a remembrance service and parade was held at Glasnevin cemetery in Dublin.

Plaques were unveiled at the cemetery to honour Irish recipients of the Victoria Cross, the highest British military honour for gallantry.

A new exhibition on unionist and nationalist soldiers from Northern Ireland who fought together in WW1 was opened at the cemetery museum after the commemoration.

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