Northern Ireland

What the papers say

Newspapers

Journalist Keith Baker takes a look at Monday's newspapers.

The shock and sadness of last week's Cork air crash is still very prominent in today's papers.

The first of the funerals take place. The Mirror reports that the priest who gave victims the last rites broke down during a special mass on Sunday. It describes how Father Michael Murphy choked back the tears as he described the horrors he witnessed.

The Belfast Telegraph says the accident could lead to a shake-up in the aviation industry. It thinks there could be new rules about what are known as 'virtual airlines', such as Manx2, which lease their planes.

The Sun says the traumatised victims who survived are considering legal action.

And one survivor features widely. On the front page of the News Letter, there's a picture of Lawrence Wilson and his wife at their home near Larne. He describes himself as the luckiest man alive, but he says he can't forget the people who died.

Mr Wilson is pictured in the Irish News as well. But the main story there is spending on jobs in the health service.

It says more than £400,000 has been spent by the Health and Social Care Board on 25 new intern admin posts. And this, according to the paper, is despite warnings by the health minister of job cuts and hospital closures.

Job cuts are a theme in the Dublin papers as well, where the election campaign is in full swing.

The Irish Independent looks at tonight's party leaders debate. It says the Labour leader Eamon Gilmore will make a desperate attempt to scare voters by claiming that if Fine Gael get into power on their own it'll mean big job losses for nurses, teachers and the police.

Meanwhile the Irish Times says the Fine Gael leader Enda Kenny is meeting Angela Merkel this morning to tell her that if he's in charge he'll be seeking changes to the big bail-out deal.

Meanwhile, it's awards galore this morning.

Not just the BAFTAs, but also the IFTAs - the Irish equivalent which was on in Dublin at the weekend.

The Irish News features Martin McCann, from west Belfast, who won the best actor award, beating stars like Cillian Murphy and Liam Neeson.

As for the BAFTAs, Colin Firth features widely of course with lots of regal references. "Majestic Firth" is what the Belfast Telegraph calls him.

Pages and pages of newsprint are dedicated to the frocks. But as for the quality of the fashion, well you pays your money and you takes your choice as they say.

Liz Jones in the Mail notes that it was raining last night and says it was a soggy night for style as well.

On the other hand, the Sun's fashion writer says there was no dampening the BAFTA glamour.

Tess Daly in the Mirror worries that there was a lot of rain on long dresses, most of which were on loan. She tells us she went to a big do in a borrowed gown recently and put her stiletto through the hem.

But this sort of thing wasn't on the minds of the women of Italy yesterday.

A million of them came out in protest across the country, complaining about Silvio Berlusconi. The Irish Times says he has made an enemy by waking the sleeping beauty that is Italian feminism. The Independent says some of the placards bore slogans with the message "Italy is not a brothel".

No comment from Mr Berlusconi himself, although he's said to have watched it all on television. But the Daily Telegraph quotes the education minister who said: "it's just a small protest from trendy radical chicks".

Meanwhile, the Guardian says a recent survey on the gender gap shows Italy lying 33 places behind Kazakhstan.

And let's not forget Valentine's Day.

A letter-writer in the Daily Telegraph says he went to buy a card at the weekend. He found one that said "you are my one and only". It was in a pack of three.

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