Five things you need to know today

End of the line: Barack Obama, Bus Éireann Expressway and Apollo House

Bus Éireann vehicles at Busaras Dublin. Photograph: Eric Luke

Bus Éireann vehicles at Busaras Dublin. Photograph: Eric Luke

 

Bus Éireann may be forced to close Expressway

Closing down Bus Éireann’s Expressway network of intercity services may ultimately be the only viable option for dealing with the company’s perilous financial situation, external consultants have advised.

At total of 516 staff could lose their jobs if Expressway, which is the commercial arm of the State-owned Bus Éireann, was shut down while up to 10 existing depots would face closure.

http://iti.ms/2j4ugee

Arlene Foster’s talks offer unlikely to stop ‘brutal’ election

The prospect of avoiding imminent and “brutal” Northern Assembly elections appeared remote last night, despite Arlene Foster saying she is open to talks with Sinn Féin to prevent the collapse of Stormont.

The DUP leader and outgoing First Minister also announced plans to carry out a public inquiry into the flawed “cash for ash” heating scheme which precipitated this crisis.

http://iti.ms/2j4ywdK

Apollo House occupiers to ask court to allow them stay

Home Sweet Home (HSH), the coalition of homeless people and activists occupying Apollo House in Dublin city centre, will on Wednesday morning ask the High Court to allow them stay.

They had been due to leave the vacant office building by noon on Wednesday, following an order by the High Court on December 21st.

http://iti.ms/2ieMTbk

Contenders must show ‘mettle’ by questioning Kenny leadership

A Fine Gael TD has urged Ministers who wish to succeed Enda Kenny to show their “mettle” by standing up and questioning the Taoiseach’s leadership.

Kate O’Connell made her comments in light of Irish preparations for the formal talks on Britain’s withdrawal from the European Union, which are due to begin by the end of March.

http://iti.ms/2j4IM5O

Gunman sentenced to death for Charleston church massacre

White supremacist Dylann Roof has been sentenced to death for killing nine black church members, becoming the first American to get the death penalty for federal hate crimes.

A jury in South Carolina deliberated his sentence for about three hours, capping a trial in which Roof (22) did not fight for his life or show any remorse. At the beginning of the trial, he addressed jurors directly, insisting that he was not mentally ill, but he never asked them for forgiveness or mercy, or explained the crime.

http://iti.ms/2ieO6Q0