Northern Ireland

Newspaper review: NI and Republic of Ireland stories

Newspapers

Journalist Keith Baker takes a look at what is making the headlines in Monday's newspapers.

The word 'meltdown' is back.

Over the last month it's been used in coverage of the crisis in Japan. On Monday morning some of the papers use it to describe Rory McIlroy's final round in the Masters.

Agony's another word.

It's used in the main headlines in the Mirror and the Belfast Telegraph, along with pictures of McIlroy looking distraught and matched by several pictures of his fans at Holywood Golf Club suffering along with him.

The Irish Times says he slipped from master to bogey man.

He had the green jacket all sized up. All he had to do was go out and do what he'd done for the previous three rounds.

But the paper points out - of course, that's easier said than done.

Both the News Letter and the Sun talk about a horror show.

But the Belfast Telegraph report from Augusta doesn't think this disappointment will last long.

One bad day shouldn't cloud judgements, it says. And it thinks he still has the quality to become a true master.

Omagh rally

Turning to another story from the weekend, there's much coverage of the big rally in Omagh.

It came a week after the murder of Constable Ronan Kerr.

The Irish Times talks to two police officers who were there on duty. One says - "It's bad to be back at this type of thing again" but the paper says he was impressed by the solidarity being shown.

The Belfast Telegraph says the people of Omagh sent a clear message to the men of violence and by their numbers they showed they'll never be cowed by terrorism.

But the News Letter points out that amid a week of protests the bombers were defiant - with that 500lb device that was found near Newry.

The Times points out that election day, 5 May, is the anniversary of the death of Bobby Sands 30 years ago.

It says security agencies believe the dissidents want to step up their activities to coincide with this.

To them, the paper says, the prospect of Sinn Fein becoming the largest party in the Government of Northern Ireland is the ultimate betrayal.

There's a quote from a security source - "Frankly, they could have picked a better day for an election."

The Irish News has a major investigation into rather macabre activity at the old Belvoir Park hospital.

Belvoir was closed five years ago after many years of treating cancer patients. But the Irish News says sensitive files were left behind.

The paper carries this story over 10 pages.

It says at least 20,000 patient files and x-rays were abandoned and some ended up for sale on the internet.

And it says a leaked report also shows that senior health officials decided not to tell the information commissioner or the public about the scale of the breach.

The Irish News says that since the hospital closed there's been such free access, that macabre mock-ups of scenes from horror films have been staged there and posted on the internet.

According to the paper, when staff and patients departed, the electricity was still switched on and the Victorian buildings became a magnet for what it calls eccentric individuals.

And talking of which, several papers have fun picking through the guest list for the royal wedding.

The Mirror says the list includes a Transylvanian count, the nephew of a Nazi and a Kazakh tycoon.

Many of the guests will be wondering what to wear, of course.

In the Mail, Tara Palmer Tomkinson has a different problem.

She's hoping she'll have her new nose in time.The word 'meltdown' is back.

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