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Dublin: 10°C Wednesday 20 October 2021

The 9 at 9: Thursday

A poll on refugees and the Irish State, the Taoiseach chairing a UN Security Council meeting and the Mica scandal.

Image: Alamy Stock Photo


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

Afghan refugees

1. The findings of a poll have indicated that most Irish people want the State to take in more Afghanistan refugees than the 230 the Government has committed to.

A majority of Irish people are also in favour of family reunification for Afghan people.

In August, Minister Roderic O’Gorman said that 230 Afghan citizens have been issued with refugee status.

Taoiseach in New York

2. Achieving the first ever UN resolution on climate and security is the key aim of Taoiseach Micheál Martin as he chairs a high-level open debate of the UN Security Council (UNSC) today. 

The Taoiseach is in New York this week for a series of week-long UN events, which includes him chairing today’s high-level debate, as well as addressing the UN General Assembly tomorrow.

Martin will use his speaking time today to push for a resolution that would establish a system for monitoring climate-related conflicts.

Mica Scandal

3. The Irish-American community are behind the homeowners in Donegal and around the country who are affected by the Mica scandal.

That is the message of two protesters who confronted the Taoiseach at his New York hotel today.

Affected homeowners in Ireland have demanded that a government scheme, which was launched just last year after years of campaigning, particularly by communities in Donegal, be changed to cover 100% of the costs associated with fixing their homes.


4. The potential collapse of arguably China’s largest property development company, Evergrande Real Estate Group, has cast a pall over global markets in recent days.

That panic crystallised in a stock market sell-off earlier this week with Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index closing down 3% on Monday while the S&P 500 suffered its biggest drop since May.

Cooler heads are beginning to prevail, however, after the company gave some indication that it will be able to make interest payments due on its debts.


5. The parents of children who attend a special school in Dublin have said they feel the State has abandoned their families after all on-site therapists were removed from the school.

The children who attend Carmona School in South Dublin have severe to profound intellectual disabilities, they are all non-verbal and several are fed through a tube and require respiratory help. 

HSE Cyber Attack 

6. The HSE cyber attack would “not have been prevented” if health service computers were running more up-to-date software, Minister of State Ossian Smyth has said.

The Minister of State for Public Procurement and eGovernment told an Oireachtas Committee that the use of Windows 7 computers is “one risk of many, and it’s not the sole reason that this attack happened”.

Tuam attack

7. Gardaí are investigating after one person was arrested and seven injured following an incident of violent disorder at a graveyard in Galway. 

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A around 4pm yesterday, gardaí were called to the scene of the violent altercation between a large group of people at a graveyard in Tuam.

Around 30 gardaí had to physically intervene between people present.

‘Turning point for humanity’

8. Earth is not “some indestructible toy” British Prime Minister Boris Johnson told world leaders, as he spoke of the upcoming Glasgow COP26 summit as “the turning point for humanity”.

Johnson addressed the United Nations General Assembly in the early hours of this morning in a speech in which he conceded a rise in temperatures was inevitable but said we can hope to “restrain that growth”.

The address was the last stop on Johnson’s visit to the United States which has seen discussions held on trade, the Covid-19 pandemic and climate change.


9. A teachers’ union is “flabbergasted” by the decision to relax the rules for Covid-19 close contacts in primary schools.

The Department of Health issued new guidance yesterday that children who are close contacts in a primary school will no longer be required to restrict their movements if they do not have Covid-19 symptoms.

The change comes into effect from Monday 27 September.

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