Taoiseach Leo Varadkar is to make his first visit to the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) to meet Irish troops deployed there over the Christmas period.

He is due to arrive there tonight.

Mr Varadkar will be accompanied by Minister with Responsibility for Defence Paul Kehoe and Chief of Staff of the Defence Forces Vice Admiral Mark Mellett.

This Christmas around 580 Irish troops will be serving overseas in locations including Mali, the Middle East, Bosnia and Western Sahara.