Northern Ireland

What the papers say


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

Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness is the subject of a number of questions related to the investigation into the Claudy bombing.

His admission that he met the priest suspected of involvement in the attack - after previously denying such a meeting - is the biggest story for the Belfast papers.

"So what else has he not told us?" is the question posed in the Belfast Telegraph main headline.

The Irish News quotes Mark Eakin, whose sister Kathryn was killed in the bombing, as saying that Mr McGuinness and the authorities had yet to give the victims the whole truth.

The News Letter calls on Prime Minister David Cameron to tell the House of Commons why the Conservative government of the time concluded that the arrest of Father James Chesney should be avoided.

It believes there are certain to be official papers relating to the matter.

The Mirror says Wednesday's revelation came as a shock, and Mr McGuinness "must now reveal to the families everything he knows about Father Chesney".

The Belfast Telegraph comments that the drip feed of information is only prolonging the agony of the bereaved. And it wonders if the truth is too much to ask.

'Keep trying'

The Anglo Irish Bank maintains its hold on the headlines in Dublin.

The plan to split the bank into two parts and wind them down or sell them is seen by the Irish Times as an attempt by the government in Dublin to calm the financial markets.

But it says details on funding and on the government's timescale are unclear.

One issue is beyond doubt, though. As the Irish Independent reports, the bank has been barred from lending any money in future.

The paper comments that no country has found the solution to the banking crisis, but it's important to be seen to keep trying.

There are tributes and sympathy in the papers and London as they report on the death of David Cameron's father.

'Remarkable individual'

The Times reports how the prime minister used President Sarkozy's helicopter as he raced to reach his father's bedside after he suffered a stroke in the south of France.

The Daily Telegraph quotes people close to Mr Cameron as saying that he was relieved to have been there for his father Ian's last moments.

The Mirror says Mr Cameron senior was a remarkable individual who overcame disability to become a successful stockbroker.

The Sun echoes the prime minister's own description in calling him a hero.

The columnist Bruce Anderson writes in the Daily Telegraph that Ian Cameron was a delightful man, and it's hard to overstate his influence on his son.

If there's any consolation, he says, it's the fact that Mr Cameron, who'd been in failing health, lived to see his son in Downing Street.

Finally, after centuries of deriding the British as culinary philistines, the must-have dish for the French this autumn is... fish and chips.

Or as they call it in Paris, le fish and chips anglais.

But as the Times reports, there are several key differences in the restaurant version.

The batter is Japanese tempura; it's served on porcelain dishes rather than in yesterday's copy of the Daily Mail; and the price tag is slightly higher than you're used to in your local chippy - an eye-watering rather than mouth-watering £17.

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