Survivors of the 1961 siege of Jadotville have been presented with specially commissioned medals in Custume Barracks in Athlone.

The medal has been given to the members of A Company and relatives of their late comrades, 56 years after the five-day siege in September 1961.

The medal depicts a Celtic warrior, and is inscribed in Irish with the words bravery, defence and calm.

155 Irish peacekeeping soldiers held out against a force of more than 2,000 men until they ran out of ammunition, food and water during the siege.

A number of efforts to get reinforcements to them failed, and they were finally forced to surrender.

No Irish solider lost his life during the siege, but a number were wounded.

For many years those events in the Congo went unrecognised by the Irish State and the Defence Forces but in recent years a number of events recognising what happened have taken place, culminating in the award of today's medals.