Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy is to announce a number of changes to planning guidelines largely in relation to apartment buildings. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Minister to announce measures intended to make apartments cheaper to build

Seán Ó Fearghaíl: also confirmed a counselling service was available to TDs, Senators and staff at the Houses of the Oireachtas. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Top psychiatrist to train TDs and Senators to help constituents with mental health issues

Currently the unborn has an equal right to life as to the mother and abortions are only permitted when a mother’s life is at risk. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Simon Harris to brief Cabinet and outline steps needed to meet legislation deadline

Minister for Communications Denis Naughten. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Move comes after Katherine Zappone dropped from episode of The Restaurant

Simon Coveney said it was  responsibility of Arlene Foster and  Michelle O’Neill to form a Government in Northern Ireland.  Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

Tánaiste says Government needs to repair its relationship with DUP following Brexit deal

Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan: politicians made a “real and enduring mistake” by allowing the Eighth Amendment to be inserted into the Constitution. Photograph: Colin Keegan, Collins

Oireachtas committee on Eighth Amendment backs terminations up to 12th week of pregnancy

 Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government Eoghan Murphy. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Sinn Féin TD Imelda Munster makes emotional plea to help homeless families

Speaking in Brussels, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar  said he would wait to hear the views of Fine Gael in the new year before the Government decided on a course of action. Photograph: Emmanuel Dunand/AFP/Getty Images

Taoiseach and Fianna Fáil leader decline to say if they would back committee proposals

Anti-abortion protesters outside the Sinn Féin Ardfheis in 2015. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

Party had to stick with rigid position when committee members proposed radical change

Small traders had looked for concessions on the   regulations  which sought strict segregation of alcohol from other products in supermarkets and stores. Photograph: Getty Images

Minister says deal with retailers will see alcohol become less visible in shops

Minister for Health Simon Harris says “detailed consideration” would be given to the findings of the Oireachtas committee’s final report, due to be published on December 20th. Photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

Three anti-abortion members of the Oireachtas committee on the Eighth Amendment to boycott final meeting

Repealing the Eighth Amendment of the Constitution was proposed by Labour TD Jan O’Sullivan and passed overwhelmingly with the support of 13 other members. Photograph Nick Bradshaw

Only two Citizens Assembly recommendations were rejected by TDs and Senators

Senator Catherine Noone (Fine Gael) chairwoman of the Oireachtas  Committee on the Eighth Amendment speaks to committee officials during its meeting on Wednesday.

Sinn Féin members abstain on recommendation to allow terminations up to 12 weeks without restriction

Protesters on both sides of the abortion divide outside the Garden of Remembrance in Dublin. File photograph: Getty Images

Government will be guided by committee but is not bound by its recommendations

 Independent TD Mattie McGrath. File photograph: Eric Luke

Independent TD contacts Catherine Noone to apologise

Senator Catherine Noone, the Oireachtas Eighth Amendment committee’s chairwoman, will not use her vote unless there is a tie among the other members. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Two members say their positions on issue have changed since joining committee

The Oireachtas Committee on the Eighth Amendment is to recommend a series of changes to Ireland’s abortion legislation.

Committee on Eighth Amendment to vote on its final proposals today

 Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan has written to the  Policing Authority asking it to start  the process to select and appoint a new commissioner. Photograph: Collins

Policing Authority begins the process of selecting and appointing new head of the force

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar in a screengrab from a  video filmed on board the Government jet.

Party claim Varadkar has ‘crossed a line’ by using State funds to promote message

Former Garda commissioner Nóirín O’Sullivan. The current commissioner’s salary is €180,613. Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan is keen to begin recruiting for the vacant role. Photograph: Alan Betson

Post dogged by controversy will be advertised internationally, and pay could be increased

Fine Gael’s Hildegarde Naughton: “You cannot turn off the internet nor expect the gardaí to be waiting at our airports for women carrying abortion pills.” Photograph: Alan Betson

Fine Gael TD Hildegarde Naughton confirms her support for Eighth Amendment proposal

Repeal  activists outside the Dáil on a recent day  the Oireachtas committee on the Eighth Amendment was sitting.

Submission recommends GP-led service up to 12 weeks for terminations without reason

Pro-choice demonstrators outside Leinster House in Dublin last month. Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

Irish Times/Ipsos MRBI Poll finds support for repeal consistent among supporters of all parties

George Soros: Amnesty said the Soros grant accounts for nearly 2.5 per cent of its total annual income, but returning it would set “a dangerous precedent”. Photograph: Olivier Hoslet/AFP/Getty Images

Standards in Public Office commission deems €137,000 donation in breach of law

Former Garda commissioner Nóirín O’Sullivan with Garda chief administration officer Joe Nugent: Mr Nugent confirmed he examined Ms O’Sullivan’s personal email account. Photograph: Colin Keegan

Joe Nugent did not find any ‘sensitive emails” in former commissioner’s personal email

A letter in Eamon O’Cuív’s name had been used in Séamus McGrane’s defence. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

‘It was absolutely not a character reference for Séamus McGrane,’ says Éamon Ó Cuív

Minister for Children Katherine Zappone: “time for the State to get out of the business of controlling reproduction”. Photograph: The Irish Times

Minister’s vexed remarks come as committee reviewing amendment set to make proposals

Deputy Garda commissioner John Twomey who appeared before the Oireachtas Committee on Justice onThursday. Photograph: Collins

Report sought after it emerged O’Sullivan used commerical email to send Garda correspondence

Fianna Fáil’s  Billy Kelleher: it is “wholly unacceptable”  people are  fearful of seeking medical attention or advice on abortion. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Most of committee backs removal of clause with formal vote to take place next week

Fianna Fáil TD Billy Kelleher: he says terminations should be provided in certain circumstances, such as fatal foetal abnormalities, incest, rape and when there is a risk to a woman’s health. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Members agree on holding referendum, but diverge on scrapping Eighth Amendment

Former tánaiste Frances Fitzgerald and Taoiseach Leo Varadkar: It would have been “wholly wrong” of Ms Fitzgerald to involve herself in the workings of a commission of inquiry, says Ms McPhillips.  Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Acting general secretary Oonagh McPhillips to appear before Oireachtas committee

Katherine Zappone: she will bring a report on the expert technical group on the Tuam site to Cabinet next week

Minister confirms new forum will be established to support former residents

The Danish Ambassador to Ireland is to write to the Oireachtas committee on the Eighth Amendment contradicting evidence given by an anti-abortion witness. Photograph: Getty

Carsten Søndergaard contradicts evidence given to committee on the 8th amendment

Chair of the committee Catherine Noone said the members had made a decision to hear only from experts in this area and not from advocacy groups. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons.

Politicians due to produce Eighth Amendment report on December 15th

Minister for Local Government Eoghan Murphy:  will bring a memorandum to Tuesday morning’s Cabinet meeting with proposed terms of reference to set up a local government boundaries committee. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Fine Gael and Independents reach compromise to create between five- and seven-seaters

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar with Tánaiste Simon Coveney and Ministers  Heather Humphreys and Josepha Madigan at Government Buildings on Wednesday. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

First-time TD Josepha Madigan elevated to arts, culture and the Gaeltacht

Minister for Foreign Affairs  Simon Coveney has been appointed Tánaiste. Photograph: EPA

New Tánaiste lost out to Leo Varadkar in the Fine Gael leadership race earlier this year

Josepha Madigan with her husband Finbar Hayes and sons Luke and Daniel ahead of the first meeting of the 32nd Dáil at Leinster House. Photograph: Alan Betson / The Irish Times

Madigan replaces Heather Humphreys as Minister for Arts after Fitzgerald resignation

Heather Humphreys had served as Minister for Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht since 2011. Photograph: Barry Cronin

Biography: TD previously served as Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar with the new Tánaiste Simon Coveney, Minister for Business Enterprise and Innovation Heather Humphreys and Minister for Arts Heritage and Gaeltacht Josepha Madigan at Government Buildings. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Humphreys appointed Minister for Business while Josepha Madigan takes on Arts portfolio

 Former tánaiste, Frances Fitzgerald, after her resignation. Photograph: Colin Keegan/Collins

Department of Justice says it ‘fully complied’ with tribunal’s orders of discovery

Frances Fitzgerald attends the Fine Gael Dublin West selection convention after resigning as Tanaiste. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Inside Politics: Fine Gael TDs and Ministers felt betrayed by Tánaiste’s failure to give them full picture of events

Former tánaiste Frances Fitzgerald leaving Government Buildings on Tuesday evening following her resignation. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

It was ‘game over’ for the tánaiste when emails emerged on Monday evening

Outgoing secretary general of the Department of Justice Noel Waters: the sixth senior office holder to depart. Photograph: Eric Luke

Two further departures on Tuesday as the controversy continues to rumble on

Tánaiste Frances Fitzgerald has stepped down due to the growing controversy over the handling of the Maurice McCabe case. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Tánaiste tells Cabinet she will be ‘vindicated’ by findings of Charleton tribunal

Tánaiste Frances Fitzgerald  leaves Government Buildings on Monday night. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

Fresh revelations about treatment of Garda whistleblower Sgt Maurice McCabe undermine effort to resolve crisis

It is understood John  Deasy TD has informed Fine Gael  he would not be available to run in a snap general election due to health concerns.  File photograph: Cyril Byrne

Waterford TD does not seek to run at selection convention for party

Documents released by the Department of Justice on Monday confirmed Tanáiste Frances Fitzgerald was contacted on May 15th, 2015 and July 4th, 2015. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien

Frances Fitzgerald’s secretary confirmed she noted contents of 2015 email

Micheál Martin began probing this with Taoiseach Leo Varadkar during Leader’s Questions on Tuesday. Photograph: Alan Betson / The Irish Times

A number of Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael members have expressed frustration with the handling of the current crisis

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar is seen on Monday at the funeral of former TD Donal Creed in Cork on Monday. Mr Varadkar will resume talks on Monday with Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin in a bid to avoid a general election. Photograph: Daragh Mc Sweeney/Provision

Varadkar and Martin to resume talks tonight in a bid to avert general election

Tánaiste Frances Fitzgerald leaving Government Buildings on Friday evening: she is understood to be adamant she will not resign.  Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Parties look to December 19th poll despite idea of Fitzgerald temporarily stepping aside

The Tánaiste Frances Fitzgerald leaving Government Buildings on Friday evening. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Email in relation to Garda legal strategy leads to Government crisis

Independent Alliance members Seán Canney, Kevin “Boxer” Moran , Finian McGrath, John Halligan and Shane Ross. File photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Independent Alliance calls on Taoiseach and Martin to swallow pride

Sinn Féin leader: Mary Lou McDonald will lead the party into a snap election this winter. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Gerry Adams said he would not stay on as president for Christmas poll

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar on RTÉ’s Six One News on Friday

Taoiseach and Fianna Fáil leader hold one-hour meeting amid Government crisis

Simon Harris insisted it was not the role of the Dáil to hold a “parallel process” or conduct its own “kangaroo court”. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Ministers back embattled Fitzgerald but believed FF would back away from its position

Tánaiste and Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald and Taoiseach Leo Varadkar. File photograph: Cyril Byrne

Fine Gael executive council to meet as officials get ready for election in mid-January

Frances Fitzgerald: Sinn Féin has agreed to table a motion of no confidence in her  if she fails to clarify outstanding issues in the Dáil

Opposition parties offer Fitzgerald last chance to detail her knowledge of McCabe case

Tánaiste  Frances Fitzgerald at Templemore Garda College  with the then garda commissioner Nóirín O’Sullivan last April. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

Controversy around Fitzgerald’s awareness of legal strategy against Maurice McCabe continues

Tánaiste Frances Fitzgerald speaking on justice issues in the Seanad tonight. Photograph: Oireachtas TV

Frances Fitzgerald gives Seanad staunch defence of actions over Garda whistleblower controversy

 Senator Rónán Mullen, Mary Kenny from Limerick,  and Independent TD Mattie McGrath lead a protest alleging pro-choice bias in the   Oireachtas Committee on the Eighth Amendment. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Committee told Irish women are having terminations later due to travel difficulties

Tánaiste Frances Fitzgerald insisted she did not recall the email sent to her in 2015 and was only reminded of its contents during a briefing by the Department of Justice last Thursday. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Whistleblower McCabe insists criminal complaint never raised at inquiry

 Sgt Maurice McCabe: The Tánaiste was advised a “serious criminal charge” was being levelled against him.  Photograph: Alan Betson

Email set out legal strategy pursued against whistleblower Sgt Maurice McCabe

Protesters in Dublin last weekend called for an end to direct provision. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Ban on right to work will be lifted after review conducted by Department of Justice

Frances Fitzgerald was minister for justice until June 2017. File photograph: The Irish Times

Department says Fitzgerald ‘knew of a clash’ in 2015, one year earlier than Varadkar said

Fresh questions have  emerged regarding Tánaiste Frances Fitzgerald’s knowledge of a legal strategy pursued by former Garda Commissioner Nóirín O’Sullivan during the O’Higgins Commission. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons
Who guards the Garda?

Inside Politics: Fresh questions emerge on legal strategy pursued by former Garda Commissioner during O’Higgins Commission

Katherine Zappone, the Minister for Children  will meet the Minister for Communications Denis Naughten, Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan to discuss digital safety. Photograph: Dave Meehan/The Irish Times

Ministers to discuss digital safety and the need for greater regulation online

Mary Lou McDonald has not made any public comment on her intentions since Gerry  Adams announced his intention to step down. Photograph Nick Bradshaw

Six TDs have voiced support for Mary Lou McDonald to replace Gerry Adams

Tánaiste Frances Fitzgerald: The revelations will place significant pressure on Taoiseach Leo  Varadkar to correct the record of the Dáil and for Ms Fitzgerald to outline the depth of her knowledge.

Revelation contradicts statement by Leo Varadkar in Dáil

Bullet riddled minibus at scene of 1976 Kingsmill massacre. Photograph:  PA Wire

Cabinet approval sought for greater co-operation between Garda and PSNI

Mary Lou McDonald is poised to be appointed Sinn Féin president after two of the main contenders confirmed they would not take part in a contest. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Pearse Doherty and Michelle O’Neill out of race to replace Gerry Adams

Fianna Fáil’s Jim O’Callaghan: “Imposing a monitoring system on people who continuously commit offences can be a method of sentencing,” he said. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Proposal to amend law would make electronic monitoring a condition of bail

Martin McGuinness’s widow, Bernie; Gerry Adams; Michelle O’Neill; and Mary Lou McDonald at the Sinn Féin ardfheis. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Flanagan says SF not fit for government and engages in ‘Paul Daniels economics’

Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy: “All of our housebuilding targets and our social housing support targets are looking like we will exceed our numbers for this year, and we are more ambitious again for next year.” Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill

Eoghan Murphy criticised by Opposition over lack of ambition as situation deteriorates

Gerry Adams during his address to delegates at the Sinn Féin ardfheis. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Sinn Féin leader says he will not contest election for President of Ireland

Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy said the Government was fully aware of the scale of the difficulties it faces in housing crisis. File photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

Minister denies there is Government strategy to downplay housing market problems

 Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin said Sinn Féin was unsuitable for government and Fianna Fáil would not do business with them. Photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

Fianna Fáil leader criticises Adams’s party for always ‘putting provisional movement first’

1Gerry Adams after delivering his address to delegates at the Sinn Féin ardfheis. Photograph Nick Bradshaw

Party president announces he will stand aside in 2018 after 34 years as head of party

Sinn Féin politicians attend the party’s ardfheis at the RDS in Dublin.  Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

Deputy leader Mary Lou McDonald tell ardfheis party cannot ‘cop out’ on abortion

John Halligan: “There was no direction given but just gave us some advice. We are all in agreement that we should not travel.” Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Independent Alliance Minister attended Department of Foreign Affairs briefing this week

‘Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael did not want Sinn Féin to enter Government.’: Mary Lou McDonald speaks on coalition government at party ardfheis

Mary Lou McDonald: ‘This is us saying we believe that we are ready’

Tipperary TD Mattie McGrath and  other Independent TDs   have met with the Standards in Public Office Commission to discuss forming a new group ahead of the next general election. Photograph: Eric Luke

Party would oppose efforts to repeal eighth amendment and promote rural issues

Vouched annual expenses will be introduced allowing members to claim €5,000 per annum. File photograph: Getty Images

New accommodation rate is also being introduced for overnight stays in Dublin

Sinn Féin TD Eoin Ó Broin has been directed by the party, along with SF TDs Jonathan O’Brien and Peadar Tóibín, not to engage in public disputes over the abortion issue. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

SF will adopt a policy on the issue at the event – and members will be expected to toe that line

The Oireachtas committee examining the Eighth Amendment has heard how “disingenuous” agencies are spending vast amounts of money to outbid the State-funded organisations.  Photograph: Paul Mezzer/FRF/Getty

Oireachtas committee hears how agencies use Google adverts to appear high up in results

Meath West Peadar Tóibín criticised the Oireachtas Committee on the Eighth Amendment for an alleged imbalance in its list of witnesses.  Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill.

Direction follows disagreement between a number of party Deputies on abortion

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar TD speaking during at the launch of a “national conversation” on the Future of Europe at the Science Gallery, Trinity College, Dublin. Photograph: Collins.

Taoiseach says State will have to build new alliances and increase presence in Brussels

Photograph: iStock

Oireachtas committee to be told of inappropriate tactics used by some organisations

Under the new Bill retailers must put alcohol into a separate area in the shop and keep it in a closed storage unit. Photograph: Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland

Minister runs rule over proposed measures under new Bill to quarantine drink in shops

Meath West TD Peadar Tóibín, who is against abortion, says his cumann  will be tabling a motion calling for a free vote. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill

Party will expand position to include protecting the life and health of the mother

Party says it has serious concerns about Taoiseach’s use of Government websites

John Halligan (centre):  the Independent Alliance Minister of State expressed his remorse for the comments, stressing it was a “genuine mistake” and was never meant to cause offence. Photograph Nick Bradshaw

Minister remorseful about questions put to woman during job interview

Minister of State John Halligan told the interviewee “I know I shouldn’t be asking this”. Photograph: Cyril Byrne.

‘I am not too sure how repayment could work but I have no problem in paying the money’

Theatre-maker Grace Dyas called on those who were on the Gate Theatre’s board at the same time as Michael Colgan to step down. Photograph: Alan Betson

Humphreys aims to facilitate industry-wide consultation on abuse of power in arts

Rosa (for Reproductive rights, against Oppression, Sexism and Austerity) activists highlight a RedC/Amnesty poll. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Anti-abortion professor declines to give evidence to ‘kangaroo court’

Committee chairwoman Catherine Noone has asked anti-abortion members to submit names of witnesses on numerous occasions. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons.

US professor is second ‘pro-life’ witness to decide not to give evidence on Eighth Amendment

Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan: said the Bill conflicts with the work of the Commission on the Future of Policing. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

FF’s Jim O’Callaghan says Bill is needed to help restore public confidence in Garda

Consultant psychiatrist at the National Maternity Hospital Anthony McCarthy: “As doctors we must be aware of the complexities involved for everyone, and listen and not prejudge.” Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Oireachtas committee to hear need to travel to UK may delay presentation for abortion

Members of the TUI and the ASTI picketing during a strike in 2014. Members of the INTO, the TUI and the ASTI have all rejected the public service pay accord. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Public servants outside pay deal face nine-month delay in salary increases

Chairman of the Oireachtas culture committee Peadar Tóibín is seeking support from the committee to hear from the Arts Council, the actors’ union Equity, and the chair of the Gate’s board. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Taoiseach says allegations should be investigated ‘in the first instance’ by theatre

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