The Government has announced that the events to mark the 1916 Easter Rising Centenary will be “Irish only,” meaning that the British Royal family will not attend the celebrations next year.

Only Irish-based ambassadors will be invited to the program of events, known as 'Ireland 2016.'

Initially, the Irish Government indicated that the British monarchy could play a role in the celebrations following the highly successful visit of Irish President Michael D Higgins to the United Kingdom last year and Queen Elizabeth's historic visit to Ireland in 2011.

However, it has not been decided that such a state visit would merely be a “distraction” from the commemorative events.

Irish leader Enda Kenny ruled out any involvement by the monarchy following several email exchanges between the Irish government and the British ambassador to Ireland, Dominick Chilcott. In March 2015, just before the updated Ireland 2016 program of events was launched, an official from the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) wrote to Chilcott providing him with the state's "public line in response to any question about inviting high-level visitors to the core Easter 2016 events,” according to the Irish Independent.

The statement read:

"The events in the Ireland 2016 State ceremonial program will be moments for national commemoration.

"Therefore, high level representatives of Ireland's international partners will not be in attendance at these Easter events, although as is normal for many State Ceremonial events, members of the Diplomatic Corps accredited to Ireland may be invited to particular events."

Although the monarchy will not be involved in these events, the DFA confirmed that “Ireland 2016 Global and Diaspora program” will involve international players.

The British Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) said in a statement:

“Her Majesty's government is committed to working closely with the Irish government during the decade of centenaries marking the events of 1912 – 1922 to promote a greater understanding of our shared history, and to do so in a spirit of historical accuracy, mutual respect, inclusiveness and reconciliation.

"Our hosts have suggested that this is something that is appropriate for the diplomatic corps. We wish to be represented at appropriate level and that is a standard part of diplomacy.”