Every afternoon, TheJournal.ie brings you five things you really need to know at 5 o’clock.
1. #GM FOOD: Ireland has “altered its voting position” on allowing genetically modified foods to be sold in the state, according to the outgoing Minister for Agriculture Brendan Smith.
Ireland will now back proposals from the EU Commission to place “food, food ingredients and feed containing, consisting of, or produced from genetically modified maize and cotton” on the market. It will also back the “the low-level presence of, as yet, unauthorised GM varieties in imports of animal food”.
2. #GE11: Fine Gael leader Enda Kenny has admitted that it would cost as much as €1 billion to lay-off 30,000 public sector workers – as his party has proposed in its plan for the sector’s reform.
Asked where that amount of cash would be found, Kenny said: “That money’s got to be borrowed.”
Kenny will not be challenged on this point during tonight’s leaders’ debate on TV3, as he has chosen not to attend. However, you won’t miss the action as TheJournal.ie will be live tweeting from the studio – follow us on @thejournal_live on Twitter.
Keys and Gray will present a flagship three-hour weekday show between 10am and 1pm, beginning next Monday.
4. #KOREA: After months of escalating tension, military representatives from North and South Korea have held their first official meeting.
The two countries had recently been engaged in serious confrontations following the death of four people during the shelling of Yeonpyeong island, which is ruled by the South, in November 2010. Just months earlier the South had also accused the North of attacking a naval ship and killing 46 people.
5. #HOMEOPATHY: An American magician and well-known sceptic has launched a campaign against homeopathy by offering $1 million to anyone who can prove that the alternative medicine actually works.
James Randi, a MacArthur Foundation fellow, said that homeopathy was a “pseudoscience” and challenged manufacturers to conduct a double-blind test in order to establish whether their medicines worked – and offered $1 million (€732,33,00) if they proved him wrong.