Friday's headlines: 'Self isolate or be detained' and 'Lady GAA GAA'

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Simon Byrne
Image caption,
Simon Byrne has called for powers to detain NI people suspected of spreading coronavirus

It's been a week of increasingly alarming headlines on the issue of coronavirus, and the Belfast Telegraph's front page this Friday morning is no exception.

'Self-isolate or be held by the police,' it reads.

The paper reports that the Chief Constable has called for police powers to detain people in Northern Ireland suspected of spreading coronavirus.

Similar powers already exist in England and Wales.

Simon Byrne told the Policing Board on Thursday that police there had powers to "compulsorily detain affected people" unwilling to quarantine themselves.

"We don't have that power, so we're in dialogue with the Department of Justice to see if that can be replicated here in case we need to use it," he said.

Image source, PAcemaker

It also covers the trial of a man accused of murdering his wife during a family boating holiday on Fermanagh's Lower Lough Erne.

The court was told the lifeless body of Lu Na McKinney could be "clearly seen" just feet from their hired cruiser.

One police officer described how Stephen McKinney's voice was "very quiet, it certainly wasn't excitable" when her body was spotted.

The News Letter leads with the fall out from Flybe's collapse on Thursday and its impact on Belfast City Airport.

Flybe operated 14 routes from Belfast City Airport - about 80% of its scheduled flights.

Image source, Loganair
Image caption,
Loganair said the two routes, to Aberdeen and Inverness, will be launched later this month

On Thursday afternoon, Scottish airline Loganair announced it will take up two routes - between Aberdeen and Inverness.

The paper quotes airport chief executive Brian Ambrose, who said he is "very confident" other airlines will snap up all of Flybe's routes.

It added that unionist politicians have used the collapse to renew their calls for Air Passenger Duty to be axed, while the Unite union expressed concern "about movement between NI and GB, given the Irish sea border Brexit is expected to create".

The paper also leads with an academic study by the University of Liverpool study that suggests "more than three quarters of non-voters in Northern Ireland would back the union in a border poll".

"It shows that unionist parties have been less successful than nationalist parties in persuading people to vote for them, but those people may well vote in a border poll," it reads.

On that note, the Irish News front page quotes Alliance leader Naomi Long, who said she will "join the conversation about Irish unity".

Image source, PAcemaker
Image caption,
Naomi Long has encouraged unionist politicians to "join the conversation" about Irish unity

She "also urged her unionist counterparts to do likewise, saying the discussions will take place regardless of whether they are involved", it reads.

It also cites the University of Liverpool survey, which suggested that in the general election, almost a fifth of DUP voters migrated to Alliance as support for Arlene Foster's party dropped by more than 16%.

The paper also reports on the spread of coronavirus across the island of Ireland.

Image source, PA Media

"Seven new cases of Covid-19 bring the Irish total to 16," is their second lead.

"Of these, 13 are in the Republic, with three confirmed in the north."

It reports that the latest affected patient, who is being treated at an intensive care unit at Cork University Hospital, has not recently visited northern Italy or any other infected region.

It quotes public health medicine specialist Dr Sarah Doyle, who told a media briefing on Thursday that the virus will soon spread within the community and when this happens, even those with very mild symptoms will have to self-isolate.

Finally for now, "Hurl Royal Highness," is the headline in the Daily Mirror.

Image source, Charles McQuillan
Image caption,
Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, visited Salthill GAA club on Thursday

"The Duchess of Cambridge swapped footmen for footballs on her royal tour of Ireland," it reports.

The picture shows the duchess taking part in hurling practice at Galway's Salthill-Knocknacarra Gaelic Athletics Club on Wednesday.

"Kate missed twice when trying to hit the sliotar with her hurling stick, but she gasped after connecting the third time, sending the ball over the bar."

The picture's caption reads: "Lady GAA GAA."