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Tuesday 28 March 2023 Dublin: 8°C
The 9 at 9 Memphis disbands police unit, life on Ireland’s islands, and a Defence Forces whistleblower speaks out.


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

Tyre Nichols 

1. The US city of Memphis has of today disbanded the special police unit whose officers fatally beat a young Black man, after graphic video of the assault sparked widespread shock and outrage.

The video, which shows five officers repeatedly kicking and punching 29-year-old Tyre Nichols as he moans and calls out for his mother, triggered calls for police reform.

The southern US city on Saturday announced it had deactivated the officers’ special unit, known as Scorpion, which was launched in 2021 to reduce illegal activity by assigning more police to high-crime areas.

Offshore islands an afterthought

2. Population decline on the Irish islands following the Famine of the 1840s has been an ever-present threat for island dwellers, and is on the cards again as Census data points to worrying declines in recent years. 

As part of our cross-border ISLAND NATION project we wanted to get to the bottom of the depopulation crisis and examine if islanders voices are going unheard with potential tragic consequences for island life as we know it. 

We spoke to dozens of islanders and community leaders, and visited islands from Cork to Donegal to better understand the key issues facing the islands, with residents calling for a platform, not a crutch, through coordinated, joined-up policy to ensure the islands not just survive, but thrive. 

 Defence Forces whistleblower speaks out

3. A former soldier who suffered alleged abuse throughout her 30-year career has launched a stinging criticism of Government ministers, including Tánaiste Micheál Martin, and a senior civil servant for how they handed complaints. 

She has also rounded on senior military leadership going back to the 1980s for what she said were repeated failings to deal with her, and other women’s, complaints of abuse. 

Karina Molloy, who served for three decades in the Irish Defence Forces, has released a new book which catalogues a series of alleged sexual assaults during her service but it also tells the stories of her wider experiences of military life.


4. Challenges navigating the  system to avail of grants for solar panels are holding back some businesses and farmers from applying, according to an industry insider.

The government has introduced new grants, planning exemptions and other supports in recent years to encourage households, farms, businesses and community venues to install solar panels that will allow them to generate their own renewable power.

However, many prospective solar-switchers are held back by uncertainty over how to navigate the web of supports, said Pat Smith, chair of the Micro-Renewable Energy Federation.

Israeli government reacts to attacks 

5. The Israeli security cabinet has announced measures to revoke certain rights of “terrorist families” after two attacks in east Jerusalem, one of which killed seven people near a synagogue.

Ahead of the meeting late Saturday, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had promised a “strong” and “swift” response to the attacks carried out by two Palestinians from annexed east Jerusalem.

Afterwards the security cabinet announced measures to revoke the rights to social security of “the families of terrorists that support terrorism”.

The attacks came after one of the deadliest Israeli army raids in the occupied West Bank in two decades, rocket fire from militants in the Gaza Strip and retaliatory Israeli air strikes. 

 Pakistan tragedies  

6. At least 51 people have been killed in two separate transport accidents in western Pakistan today, when a bus plunged off a bridge and a boat carrying a class of children capsized.

Forty-one are so far confirmed dead after their bus crashed into a ravine in southwestern Balochistan province, while at least 10 students died in the boating accident in northwestern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, officials said.

Up to nine are still missing in the waters, local police said, with a rescue operation underway.

Attack on migrant camp

7. A number of men with dogs, sticks and a baseball bat attacked a migrant camp in Ashtown, north Dublin, on Saturday, The Irish Times reports. 

“The group of men arrived at about 12.45pm at the encampment, comprised of about 15 tents in a forest area, on the bank of the Tolka river on River Road, near the Ashtown pound.” 

Investigation into discovery of body on Clare beach 

8. Gardaí are investigating the discovery of a body on a beach in the southwest of the county yesterday afternoon.

The alarm was raised at around 3pm when a couple out walking found the body at White Strand beach between Doonaha and Carrigaholt on the north shore of the Shannon Estuary.

Gardaí were initially dispatched to the scene while volunteers from the Kilkee unit of the Irish Coast Guard were also tasked. On arrival at the scene, Gardaí located the body of a male on the shoreline around the high water mark.

A post-mortem will determine the course of the investigation. 

 David Moran

9. There is a symmetry between the start and the end of the David Moran senior story in Kerry colours.

On a Saturday night in early February 2008, Kerry trekked up to Ballybofey and handed a senior league debut to a 19-year-old at wing-forward.

That was the beginning of senior football day for Moran. Tomorrow Kerry return to MacCumhaill Park but Moran will be absent, the squad adjusting to life without him after he officially pulled the plug last Monday on his playing days.

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