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GOOD MORNING

The 9 at 9 Rising rents, London sword attacker trial and Chinese motorway collapse.

GOOD MORNING.

Here’s all the news you need to know as you start your day.

Rising rents

1, Across the country, rents for new tenancies grew on average by 9.1% last year, with renters in Limerick City hit the worst with a 22.1% increase in the year. 

By comparison, Waterford City had the lowest annual growth rate in rents for new tenancies at 5%. 

The figures are included in the Residential Tenancies Board’s Q4 2023 Rent Index Report which is published today.

Spying allegations

2. The BBC has instructed lawyers to contact a specialist tribunal over claims one of its investigative reporters was spied on by police.

The corporation said the allegations relate to former BBC journalist Vincent Kearney and his work on a 2011 Spotlight documentary that probed the independence of Northern Ireland’s police watchdog.

Sword attack

3. A 26-year-old man is to appear in court charged with murdering a 14-year-old boy in a sword rampage in east London.

Marcus Aurelio Arduini Monzo will appear at Barkingside Magistrates’ Court having been charged by police on Wednesday evening.

Harvey Weinstein 

4. Prosecutors asked for a September retrial for Harvey Weinstein during a hearing at a Manhattan court today, the disgraced movie mogul’s first appearance since his 2020 rape conviction was overturned by an appeals court last week.

The film producer, wearing a navy blue suit, was seated in a wheelchair pushed by a court officer as he entered the preliminary hearing in Manhattan.

Mount Street

5. Several people have been refused accommodation at the Citywest following the dismantling of a makeshift migrant camp in the city centre, it is understood.

It comes after “just under” 290 people were removed from an encampment outside the International Protection Office (IPO) on Mount Street during a multi-agency operation.

Abortion laws

6. Florida introduced one of the strictest abortion bans in the United States today in what President Joe Biden called a “nightmare” triggered by his election rival and predecessor Donald Trump.

US Vice President Kamala Harris was visiting Republican-led Florida to deliver a speech condemning Trump as the ban on abortions after six weeks of pregnancy took effect.

Vanishing bus stop

7. A Dublin City councillor has called for a tracker to be placed on a bus stop that’s been “repeatedly removed by a local resident”.

Green Party councillor Donna Cooney told The Journal that she was recently contacted by a resident in Raheny who was concerned about older residents having difficulty in getting to the bus stop after the one closest to them was repeatedly removed.

Northern Ireland border

8. The Government has “confirmed” there will be no gardaí deployed to the border with the North, according to a statement from the Northern Ireland Office (NIO).

Tánaiste Micheál Martin had a ‘constructive phone call’ with Northern Ireland Secretary Chris Heaton-Harris last night, amid diplomatic tensions after Dublin said there had been an upsurge in asylum seekers crossing the border following the passing of the UK’s Safety of Rwanda Act.

Littering 

9. There’s nothing like a day at the beach when the sun shines in Ireland. With sandy stretches and clear water, there is a feeling that, sure lookit, you could almost be anywhere in the world. Except for the rubbish, that is.

“Daddy, look I found an AirPod” a little girl shouted excitedly to her father on a sunny day at my local beach last summer. I watched on as she ran up to him, waving the short white object in her hand. 

Read the rest of Niamh O’Reilly’s Voices article here.

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