Taoiseach Leo Varadkar is arriving in New York this evening ahead of an address at the United Nations tomorrow. 

Mr Varadkar will attend the Nelson Mandela Peace Summit at the UN which is being held to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the birth of Nelson Mandela. 

The Taoiseach will also meet with heads of state and government as well as UN officials to make the case for Ireland’s bid for a seat on the UN Security Council.

Ireland worked in partnership with South Africa to organise the Nelson Mandela Summit and Mr Varadkar will be one of the main speakers.

The summit is part of the United Nations General Assembly and will involve representatives of more than 130 countries.

It will be an opportunity for world leaders to reaffirm their commitment to peace and reconciliation.

Speaking ahead of the summit the Taoiseach said the event marks an important opportunity to reflect on Nelson Mandela’s legacy.

"It’s not only a celebration of his life, but also a moment for the global community to see how Mandela’s commitment to peace, reconciliation and human rights, can help us to meet the challenges we face today," he said.