President Michael D.Higgins has praised the role that Derry and its people have played in nurturing the peace process.
He made his comments during a visit to the city yesterday.
While there, President Higgins visited Rosemount Primary School, and delivered a key lecture at the Magee Campus of the University of Ulster.
Speaking on the theme “The transformational power of culture”, President Higgins predicted Derry's reign as UK City of Culture will be a success, and said he looks forward to the sights and sounds of what will no doubt be a wonderful chapter in the history of this great city.
He said creativity is a powerful resource that must be nurtured in our communities. In doing so, he said, we lay the foundation for social cultural and economic transformation.
Following a series of engagements in the city, President Higgins concluded that Derry and its people have, in many ways, been the creative influences of the peace process, and have led the process of transformational change.
It was Mr Higgins's' second visit to the city as president, one of his first engagements after his inauguration was to attend the All Island Schools Choir final in the Millennium Forum.