19 June 2017
The Minister for Justice and Equality Charlie Flanagan TD today welcomed 355 new Irish citizens at a citizenship ceremony hosted by the University of Limerick. 
Speaking at the ceremony Minister Flanagan said "It is a great honour for me to be here today to welcome our newest citizens. It is very fitting that one of my first official duties as Minister for Justice and Equality is to attend a citizenship ceremony. Becoming a citizen goes to the very essence of our democracy and constitutional principles, principles which as Minister for Justice and Equality I have the honour to uphold."
Welcoming our newest citizens Minister Flanagan said "The ceremony today is of course a joyous occasion for our new citizens but it is also a day of celebration for our nation. Ireland has sent our people abroad to the furthest corners of the world and it is important that as an open, inclusive society that we welcome those who seek to become Irish citizens.The people who are here today have made Ireland their home. They are our neighbours, our friends, our work mates who have enriched our culture by bringing their own unique traditions with them". 
Minister Flanagan acknowledged and thanked the University of Limerick for hosting this event and highlighted the importance of bringing ceremonies to different parts of the country "As a rural TD I am delighted that these ceremonies have been brought to different parts of the country and this is something that I will continue in my time as Minister. I would like to thank President Fitzgerald of UL for hosting the ceremony today which is of great credit to this institution".
In order to allow Irish people witness what happens at a Citizenship Ceremony the Department of Justice and Equality will be live streaming the ceremony on the Department of Justice and equality website at - http://justice.ie/en/JELR/Pages/WP17000199
Note for Editors
Total number going to Ceremony    
Ceremony  - 355 
Nationality Numbers
Poland 59
Nigeria 38
United Kingdom 36
Romania 31
India 18
Philippines 17
Latvia 15
United States of America 11
Brazil 10
China (Including Hong Kong) 10
Thailand 10
Since citizenship ceremonies were first introduced in June 2011 a total of 124 Citizenship Ceremonies have been held at which a total of 76,000 applicants received their Certificates of Naturalisation. If we include minors, who are not required to attend a ceremony, the total granted Irish citizenship is over 100,000.