Ireland's first Ambassador to New Zealand appointed

Ambassador Peter Ryan was officially appointed at a ceremony at Government House in Wellington.
Ambassador Peter Ryan was officially appointed at a ceremony at Government House in Wellington. Photo credit: Supplied

Ireland's first Ambassador to New Zealand, Peter Ryan, has been appointed at a ceremony at Government House in Wellington.

The ceremony included a guard of honour and pōwhiri, and the Ambassador's opening remarks were delivered in Irish and te reo Māori.

"I am deeply honoured to have been given the privilege of representing Ireland as the first resident Ambassador to New Zealand. In taking up the role, I am conscious that we are indeed fortunate to enjoy special ties of kinship and history with New Zealand and with the many New Zealanders of Irish heritage," Ambassador Ryan said in his speech.

"I am particularly mindful today of the rich contribution of generations of Irish women and men to the development of New Zealand, and their love of both countries."

To show respect for the traditional culture of New Zealand, Ambassador Ryan wore a korowai supplied by one of the elders of Ngati Kahungunu of Hawkes Bay.

The opening of new Embassy in Wellington was first announced by Irish President Michael D. Higgins during his visit to New Zealand in late 2017.

There are approximately 15,000 Irish-born citizens in New Zealand and hundreds of thousands of people of Irish heritage.

Newshub.