President Joe Biden will host Taoiseach Martin for a virtual bilateral meeting on St. Patrick's Day that will focus on the coronavirus pandemic and the political situation in Northern Ireland, the White House has confirmed. 

Martin was forced to forego the traditional visit to the White House this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic and both leaders agreed to mark the occasion virtually. 

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki confirmed the virtual meeting in a statement on Friday night and said that Biden was looking forward to celebrating the United States' close relationship with Ireland. 

Psaki said that the two leaders will reaffirm the "deep, historic partnership and extraordinary people-to-people ties" between the two nations during the virtual meeting. 

Biden and Martin will discuss the COVID-19 pandemic and the political and economic situation in Northern Ireland, while they will also discuss other global challenges. The two leaders will also explore how they can increase the shared prosperity of Ireland and the United States.

Martin has not ruled out asking Biden for COVID-19 vaccines during the virtual meeting on Wednesday. 

The United States is currently storing 30 million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine in warehouses as the jab has not been approved for use yet, prompting a furious debate in Washington over what to do with them. 

"We will have a discussion about COVID and vaccines with the President, of course, we’ll have that discussion," Martin told DublinLive. 

He said that the discussion will focus on the relationship between Europe and the United States. 

"There is an ongoing discussion between Europe and the US and it is in that context I will have that discussion as well with the American President."

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