Northern Ireland

Newspaper review: NI and Republic of Ireland stories


Journalist Fionola Meredith takes a look at the morning papers.

The crisis in the Ulster Unionist Party is the lead story in the Belfast Telegraph.

"This will be a 15-round fight" - that is the headline and David McNarry's warning to party leader Tom Elliott, promising more to come in what the paper calls this "grudge match".

The paper says that, as a result, Mr Elliott is once more struggling to unite a divided party.

Alex Kane, writing in the paper, says that it might be simpler if the UUP block-booked the Grand Opera House and presented itself as a pantomime or farce.

As with so many of the party's "cock-ups", says Kane, this one could easily have been avoided, because there was no need to keep the talks with the DUP secret in the first place.

The Telegraph also carries a handy cut out and keep guide for those wanting to understand Gaelic games, following Peter Robinson's inaugural appearance at the Tyrone versus Derry match on Saturday night.

Written by Adrian Logan, it Is called "10 things every Protestant should know about the GAA".

There is a very different story in the Irish News.

Declan McGlinchey speaks to the paper about the murder of his mother Mary, on the 25th anniversary of her death.

He says that his mother, the wife of former INLA leader Dominic McGlinchey, pleaded with her killers not to shoot her in front of her children. No-one has ever been charged.

Declan McGlinchey, who witnessed the attack, was 10 at the time, and today he calls for a "proper investigation" into the killing.

The paper says that Mary McGlinchey and her husband were both militant republicans who had been actively involved in paramilitary campaigns.

But it says that Declan McGlinchey has as much right to seek the truth as everyone else who has lost a loved one over the past four decades, and beyond.


Enda Kenny and French president Nicolas Sarkozy get friendly in the Dublin papers.

"Enda gets slap happy with Sarkozy" - that is the headline in the Irish Independent, which shows the Taoiseach giggling as he receives a friendly clap round the ear from the French President.

There is a slightly more sedate shot in the Irish Times.

When the two men got down to more serious business in Brussels, Mr Kenny managed to secure a get-out clause which means the Irish government does not have to insert a new EU treaty into the constitution.

The inquest into the death of Wales football coach Gary Speed dominates many front pages.

The Sun, the Mirror, the Daily Mail and several other papers focus on his widow Louise, and her account of what happened on the night in question.

The coroner ruled that the evidence did not prove that Speed had intended to kill himself.

The Times says the inquest left the big question - why - unanswered.

The hearing, it says, did not deal with the compelling question facing the world of football about the nature of depression, stress and suicide among elite sportsmen.

And finally, good news for dog lovers in the Mail.

Our dogs are capable of loving us as much as we love them.

That is according to the leading vet Bruce Fogle, who says that when dogs are in close physical contact with their owners, their brains release the pleasure chemical, dopamine, in exactly the same way ours do.

Fogle disputes scientists' claims that all the tail wagging and snuggling they give us are simply to get rewards, especially snacks.

He believes that dogs are able to feel purer emotions than we give them credit for.

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