The US Ambassador to Ireland, Jean Kennedy Smith, is to be given honorary Irish citizenship.

On 4 July the US Ambassador to Ireland, Jean Kennedy Smith, welcomed dignitaries to her residence in the Phoenix Park, Dublin. This was to be her last public engagement as US Ambassador. 

Speaking at the event, Taoiseach Bertie Ahern praised Mrs Kennedy Smith's unique contribution to Irish life and announced plans to confer the ambassador with honorary citizenship of Ireland. 

An honour that is given to very few.

Ambassador Kennedy Smith thanked the Taoiseach, the government and the people of Ireland for their warmth during her time in Ireland. 

Though I am leaving soon, I am not really going away because my heart will always be here.

An RTÉ News report broadcast on 5 July 1998. The reporter is Ingrid Miley.