Events are being held today in honour of the more than 6,600 people who died from Covid-19 and those affected by the pandemic.

A national day of remembrance and reflection began this morning with President Michael D Higgins ringing the Peace Bell in Áras an Uachtaráin five times - for those who died during pandemic, for those who made sacrifices, for those who lost loved ones, for frontline workers and those who still have Covid.

In a speech he said: "Today we have to the forefront of our minds the more than half a million people in this country who lost loved ones during the pandemic, and all those, too, living abroad who have endured painful separation from loved ones at home in Ireland at times of great distress and grief."

Taoiseach Micheál Martin, who is still isolating in Washington DC after testing positive for Covid-19, issued a statement paying particular tribute to frontline health workers.

"Without hesitation and before we even understood the true nature or scale of the threat, they put themselves in harm's way to protect the rest of us," he said.

"Without complaint, they cared for our sickest and brought dignity and compassion to the most fraught and difficult situations."

The main ceremony took place in the Garden of Remembrance in Dublin this afternoon.

Representatives lay wreaths for those who died during the Covid-19 pandemic (Photo:

It was held to remember all those who died during the pandemic and to pay tribute to everyone who contributed to facing the challenges.

The ceremony comprised a specially commissioned poem, reflections by a hospital chaplain and a representative of those bereaved.

The majority of those attending were representatives of those who lost loved ones during the pandemic and those who worked on the frontline over the last two years.

During the ceremony representatives laid wreaths in the cruciform pool.

All local authorities were requested to host their own ceremonies over the weekend and the national flag is at half-mast on all State buildings.