Newspaper review: NI and Republic of Ireland stories


Journalist Mike Philpott takes a look at what is making the headlines in Thursday's newspapers.

The Belfast Telegraph reports how the death of a young Northern Ireland man saved the lives of five others.

One of them, four-year-old Riley Greenwood from Manchester, is pictured on the paper's front page. He and his mother are visiting Northern Ireland for the Transplant Games.

As the Telegraph reports, Riley was born with a condition that caused his liver to damage his kidneys, meaning that he needed a rare double transplant.

The donor was 19-year-old Mark Elliott, who died from meningitis last November.

The News Letter reports under its main headline that dissident republican supporters are using a Facebook page to post photographs of serving police officers in what it calls "a sinister response to the recent arrests over the murder of Constable Ronan Kerr".

In one image, it says, an officer is clearly pictured on patrol.

The Irish News leads with a report that a former president of the Ulster Farmers' Union is facing charges of illegal dumping.

It says Graham Furey, who lives near Killyleagh in County Down, will appear at Downpatrick Crown Court in October accused of seven counts in relation to the dumping of waste and building rubble on farmland.

The Daily Telegraph and The Independent are the only two with similar stories, concentrating on the economy and on the turmoil in world markets over fears about European debt. That also, incidentally, makes the lead in the Irish Times.

Capital punishment

The Times reports that the welfare system is facing chaos as thousands more people live past the age of 100. It says that by 2066, there will be more than half a million centenarians in the UK.

The Daily Mail reports that MPs may be forced to debate the death penalty, after the government promised to put forward for discussion in the Commons any topic that gathered more than 100,000 signatures on one of its web sites. The paper says it could force the first vote on capital punishment for 13 years.

The Mirror's front page is dominated by a picture of Madeleine Pulver, the millionaire's daughter from Australia who spent 10 hours with what she believed was a bomb around her neck after she was trapped by a masked intruder. The paper says the police in Sydney had to call bomb experts in the UK for help.

The local edition of the Mirror says 2,000 people here could be affected after Holidays 4U went bust.

The Daily Express warns of a month of holiday hell. The Mail, meanwhile, has been talking to some of those affected. They include a boy who broke down in tears at Manchester Airport after discovering that his holiday had been cancelled, a woman who heard that the company had gone out of business on the car radio on the way to the airport, and another woman who spent more than a thousand pounds on tickets less than 24 hours before the news was announced.

The Sun advises anyone booking holidays to ensure that the operator is covered by the ATOL scheme.

The Daily Telegraph says it's causing us to do the unthinkable, in its view - using phones during films or plays.

The Sun reports that a quarter of people keep a phone by their side during meals.

And its headline reflects that one in five are willing to answer a call while on the toilet - I'm on the throne, it says.

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