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The 9 at 9 Reaction to Iran’s barrage against Israel, tax promises and Greece 15 years after the crisis.



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

Iran strikes against Israel

1. Iran launched hundreds of missiles and drones against Israel overnight, injuring at least 12 people.

The state launched more than 300 drones and missiles towards Israel in its unprecedented attack overnight, an Israeli army spokesman said this morning.

One of those injured was a seven-year-old girl from a Bedouin community near the southern town of Arad, who was in intensive care, according to the medical centre that received her.

Sydney stabbings 

2. An Irish man living in Sydney has described the “absolutely horrific” scenes he witnessed amid a shocking stabbing attack in a shopping centre which killed six people yesterday.

Niall Naughton, who is from Boston, Co Clare, described hearing the reaction to the attack as it got underway while he was in a fitting room in one shop.

“I could hear what sounded like a stampede of cattle coming running through the shop. I had the curtain closed in the dressing room so I couldn’t see anything but I could hear everything,” Naughton told RTÉ.

Farmers and the weather

3. The recent spell of wet weather has wreaked havoc for farmers this spring.

Rainfall was above average in most parts of Ireland last month and the EU’s Copernicus Climate Change Service’s latest monthly report also identified that March was wetter than average across western Europe more broadly.

The Journal asked farmers to share their experiences of how they’ve been impacted by the weather conditions. We also heard from workers in other industries connected to the land about how the rainfall has affected them. 

You can read their stories here.

Emergency accommodation providers

4. More than 30 private companies were paid over €10 million by the Government for accommodating Ukrainians and asylum seekers last year, a significant increase on 2022.

Despite a pledge by the Government to end Direct Provision within its lifetime, last year saw companies which run these centres collectively paid more than €130 million.

These hotels, state bodies and Direct Provision providers are just some of the companies behind Ireland’s refugee housing sector.

FF Ard Fheis

5. After weeks of the Fine Gael show, its coalition partner Fianna Fáil moved back into the spotlight with the party’s Ard Fheis yesterday.

Tanaiste Micheál Martin issued a warning to social media firms to do more to protect children, and appealed for calm from Iran in his speech during his televised address. 

One of his predecessors, Bertie Ahern, also popped up at the Ard Fheis with some advice for the current Taoiseach.  

Tax package

6. Finance Minister Michael McGrath has promised a substantial income tax package in the Budget next autumn.

Speaking at the Fianna Fáil Ard Fheis in Dublin yesterday, McGrath said “this is vital for individuals and families”, adding that it is also important that Ireland has a competitive personal tax system. 

 Greece 15 years on

7. More than a decade after the financial crisis decimated the country, young Greeks have spoken out about a lack of prospects facing them.

It came as part of a visit by The Journal to Athens in advance of the EU elections to find out how young people have fared in comparison to Ireland.

Ireland’s biggest landlord

8. Ires REIT, Ireland’s biggest private landlord with some 3,700 apartments, has branded its €1,800 average rents as ‘undervalued’.

Following a long and relatively costly battle with a major shareholder, the company is now looking to go back to focusing on its day-to-day business – and this may well mean that rents will continue to rise, albeit constrained by the rent caps, as Paul O’Donoghue explains.

Rugby wins

9. Ireland end long wait for Women’s Six Nations win after bonus-point heroics in Cork against Wales.

The 36-5 success was the first in the competition since April 2022.

Meanwhile, Leinster motored past Ronan O’Gara’s La Rochelle to secure a Champions Cup semi-final in Croke Park.