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Dublin: 8 °C Tuesday 19 November, 2019
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The 9 at 9: Friday

Nine things you need to know this morning: Freezing weather is set to continue (we’re sorry); Appeal for infomation on Blathnaid Timothy continues; Anarchists take responsibilty for Rome embassy attacks; and Kate Middleton makes us do a double-take…

Image: Cappellmeister via Creative Commons

This morning, TheJournal.ie brings you nine things you really need to know with your Christmas Eve coffee.

1. #BRRR: Christmas Eve is set to be another freezing day, with snow, ice, freezing fog continuing around the country.

Mét Éirean says that snow flurries will the east Ulster and also Leinster coasts. Ice and lying snow will persist across the country, and freezing fog will affect inland areas. Highest temperatures -7 to +3 degrees.

The last push for people to get home for Christmas is on, and operations for Dublin are at maximum capacity. Dublin Airport has reopened this morning – but airlines have warned travelers to expect delays.

Dublin Bus services will end at 9pm today, however additional Airlink Services through the night on Christmas Eve and early on Christmas Day if the airport remains open. 

2. #CHILDREN: Minister for Children Barry Andrews does not want to increase the remit of the Murphy Commission beyond the Diocese of Cloyne, saying it would take a lot of time without much benefit. He said: “I’m not convinced the length of time and the expense would teach us any more than we know already. Anyone that has committed an offence can be prosecuted in the normal way. Any child exposed to risk will have to be protected by the HSE. I don’t think any further inquiry will teach us anything new after Cloyne.”

3. #ROADS: 23,000 people have been fined for using a mobile phone while driving to the end of August, according to the latest garda figures.

The revelation comes after a warning from coroner Dr Kieran earlier this week concerning the dangers of driving while talking on a phone, after a 33-year-old man, Paul Gerard Monks, died when his car veered off the road and hit a tree as he was talking to his brother on his mobile.

4 . #BARRED: Three nurses have been barred from practicing for assault, unauthorised use of medication, and other reasons.

An Bord Altranais struck nurse Stephen Boyling off the register after he was found guilty of professional misconduct on 12 separate counts relating to the treatment of one patient. Separately, Sr Mary Kate Murphy had seven allegations of misconduct, including taking medicines for personal use, proven against her.  In a third case, it was found that nurse Mary Anne Morris has assaulted a patient in the nursing home where she worked as a matron in November 2007.

5. #BLATHNAID: Blathnaid Timothy’s sister, Aoife, has made an emotional appeal for information about her missing sister. “We miss and love and want you home,” she said “We are in a vacuum at the moment.”

Blathnaid was last seen around 8pm on Tuesday the 14 December. She took out €60 and hailed a taxi on Sir John Rogerson’s Quay, in Dublin. She is 5ft 6in, with medium-length, dark-brown hair; she is of thin build with a pale complexion. She was wearing a black and red scarf with a pattern and a three-quarter length black coat.

6. #ENVIRONMENT: It seems that the Green Party will fast-track the long-awaited climate change bill, so that the reforms are put in place before they exit government.

However, as the bill cannot pass through the Oireachtas until late next month at the earliest, this may push the date of a general election back by an entire month.

7. #NAMA: Nama has said that it does not suspect it was given misinformation by the banks, as suggested by the Dáil Public Accounts Committee.

Nama’s chief executive, Brendan McDonagh, has been accused of backtracking on earlier his comments about the agency, in which he indicated that Nama had been “misled” by the banks.

8. #ITALY: An Italian anarchist group has claimed responsibility for attacks on two embassies in Rome yesterday, as police continue their investigations. The Rome prosecutor’s offices says it has been exploring ties between Italian and Greek anarchists.

Meanwhile, one of the people injured yesterday could lose an eye.

9. #WEDDING: As the preparations for the upcoming royal nuptials in Britain gather pace, the merchandise machine is proving well-oiled.

A commemorative coin has been released to celebrate the marriage of Kate Middleton and Prince William, which depicts the couple… or at least, we think it does. The female character is not exactly a flattering depiction of the bride-to-be, having  – as The Guardian puts it – the “flattened features of a pugilist”. See here.

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