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Fianna Fáil down in Dublin, dissidents on the rise, and pets on tour

Paperround: Your digested guide to the Sunday broadsheets.

THE RECENT INCREASE in activity by dissident republicans is covered by commentary in the Sunday Business Post and the Sunday Times.

For the Post, Tom McGurk writes that dissidents are luring a whole new generation of followers into their violence.  The Times writes that the terrorists are trying to revive the IRA and pose a serious new threat.

The Post reports that Fianna Fail is at its “lowest ebb” throughout the Dublin constituencies, but Labour is surging ahead. Polls suggest that while Fine Gael was the party’s main threat six months ago, Labour now looks strong and more likely to take seats. Figures published by the paper for the Dublin constituencies show that while in 1999 Fianna Fáil took 20 seats for the region, the number fell to just six by 2009.

On a similar vein, a title on the front page of the Sunday Independent claims that Lenihan is Fianna Fáil’s only hope. An accompanying poll conducted by the paper says 72% of respondents want a general election in the autumn.

The Leaving Cert results are out on Wednesday, and The Post recommends taking time to think about post-exam options, rather than rushing out to celebrate the results. The paper carries a three-page spread on the exams, with advice on balancing a student budget, finding decent accommodation, and the benefits of picking a private college.

Newly-released convicted rapist Larry Murphy features across the papers, with the focus on the media interest in the case. The Times writes: “Press freedom is more important than a rapist’s,” before pointing out that a person is more likely to be hit by a car than face anything like the ordeal of his victim over 10 years ago.

The Sunday Tribune and the Independent speculate about what the impact of the media frenzy will be on Murphy, and whether he will flee the country to avoid the media focus.

On the lighter side, the Sunday Independent writes that implementing more pet-friendly facilities in Ireland could be help boost tourism as people become increasingly reluctant to leave their furry friends behind.