US president Donald Trump’s trip here could take place as early as June, as he is expected to travel to Europe for the D-Day anniversary in June and to Britain for the Nato summit in December. Photograph: Jim Lo Scalzo/EPA

Richard Boyd Barrett alleges US president ‘has given licence to the politics of hate’

Gerard Kelly began a hunger strike outside of the Dáil to highlight his concerns in relation to the introduction of the controversial Sea Fisheries (Amendment) Bill. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

Seanad passes Bill to restore rights of northern fishermen to six-mile zone

File photograph of Lisa Smith from Dundalk (to right of taoiseach and Chief of Staff) converted to Islam and moved to Syria. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien

Varadkar says jet is not used to repatriate citizens and cannot not fly as far as Syria or Turkey

Taoiseach Leo  Varadkar said talks with the European Commission had been taking place “at official level”. File photograph: PA Wire

Britain will be held to commitments to ensure free movement after Brexit ­­– Varadkar

Schoolchildren during a global protest for action to tackle climate change by school children at Leinster Houseearleir this month. Photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

Varadkar rejects claims the charge would increase fourfold in next budget

The two Northern fishing boats seized by the Naval Service moored in Clogherhead, Co Louth. File photograph: Niall Carson/PA

Legislation to pass Seanad, Dáil by Brexit deadline despite claims haste unnecessary

In 2011, 18 cases of TB were reported following an outbreak     at Cloverhill Prison in Dublin. Photograph:   Cyril Byrne

Figures show 26 prisoners and nine officers contracted contagious disease over 10 years

 Bloody Sunday family members march ahead of the  announcement of a prosecution over the incident, in Derry, Northern Ireland. Photograph: Charles McQuillan/Getty Images

Mixed reaction in Seanad to charging of one former British soldier over 1972 killings

The Minister had wanted to complete all stages of the Irish Fisheries (Amendment) Bill in the Seanad on Thursday to have it finalised before the March 29th deadline for the UK’s departure from the EU.

Legislation aims to restored access by Northern boats to Irish waters

Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Simon Coveney said the legislation was not about empowering Ministers to introduce new legislation, but about protecting existing legislation. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Coveney says: ‘We are as ready as we can be legislatively for March 29th’

 Minister of State with special responsibility for Financial Services and Insurance Michael D’Arcy: called on insurance firms to give policyholders a break. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

D’Arcy will not accept companies with €200 million profits ‘loading premiums’

Cruise liner passengers arriving in  Dublin Port. File photograph: Bryan O’Brien

Port plans to reduce cruise ships due to need for increased container capacity post-Brexit

The Sea Fisheries (Amendment) Bill, which has been passed by the Dáil, restores access for Northern Ireland commercial fishing boats to Irish inshore waters, from zero to six miles offshore. File photograph: Getty

Politicians asked to support suspension of debate until fishermen fully consulted on issue

Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin said a no-deal Brexit was moving closer and the British announcement of a tariff regime would be devastating to the rural Irish economy. File photograph: Alan Betson

Simon Coveney says British government accepts tariffs ‘clearly inadequate in long-term’

Work is continuing on the National Children’s Hospital. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

HSE reply to TD indicates initial price of €450,000 did not include VAT

The Seanad has heard that  some calves were sold for less than 50 cent at a mart in Bandon on Monday. Photograph: iStock

Senator says 380 dairy bull calves sold for less than a euro compared to €110 last year

Ireland will not be the ‘obstacle’ if the UK looks for more time and has a plan on Brexit,  Tánaiste Simon Coveney has told the Dáil. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw/The Irish Times.

Tánaiste says no legal changes to withdrawal agreement in the latest EU-UK package

Two Northern Ireland registered fishing boats seized by Naval Service   in  February. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Seanad to pass Amendment allowing fishing boats from North access to southern waters

Of the 13 prison officers who retired due to injuries incurred while on duty, four had been based in Cork Prison, two in Portlaoise maximum-security Prison and two in Midlands Prison in Portlaoise. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Cash paid out to injured officers in the last three years, according to Minister for Justice

Differences among Ministers have reportedly emerged about whether the referendum should be introduced, based on an apparent urban/rural divide. Photograph: iStock

Electorate to decide whether to reduce waiting period after separation to two years

The county council banned fast food outlets within 400 metres of schools but granted planning permission for a Chinese takeaway within the exclusion zone because the takeaway opened at 5pm. File photograph: Bryan O’Brien

Planning permission granted for drive through restaurant 300 metres from school

Northern Ireland Secretary Karen Bradley  said she is profoundly sorry for deeply insensitive comments she made on Wednesday suggesting that deaths caused by soldiers and police during the Troubles were not crimes. Photograph: Aaron Chown/PA Wire

Northern Secretary criticised in North and State for saying killings by soldiers, police ‘not crimes’

Senator Fintan Warfield (SF) said ‘two days after the Eurovision final last year Israeli forces killed 62 Palestinians in Gaza’. File photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Warfield claims Israel using final to present ’prettier face and distract from war crimes’

Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney attends  a St Patrick’s Day dinner at the Embassy of Ireland in Belgravia, London on Wednesday night.  Photograph: Jeff Spicer/PA Wire

Tánaiste Simon Coveney rejects any suggestion killers will escape justice

A file image of builders carrying out remedial work at St Luke’s National School in Tyrrelstown, Dublin after structural defects were identified. File photograph: Colin Keegan/Collins.

Minister tells of concern that initiative could affect legal process in relation to structural defects in buildings

Tánaiste  Simon Coveney  said talks had not ‘gone particularly well’ between the EU and UK. Photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

Simon Coveney warns Ireland and EU must prepare for UK to crash out of bloc

Sinn Fein’s Imelda Munster accused Shane Ross of being “incompetent” over controversial green card issue. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Minister said he was making analogy and got caught up in heat of debate over green cards for motorists post Brexit

Brexit: People from the Bogside in Derry  not happy  that they need the card to cross over to Buncrana in Donegal. Photograph: Charles McQuillan/Getty

Simon Coveney insists Government cannot act alone - issue for European Commission

The Taoiseach said  the Garda Commissioner decided to establish another armed support unit in the northern region to deal with cross-border organised crime, cybercrime and  burglaries. File photograph: Colin Keegan/Collins.

Varadkar says additional officers will focus on issues like burglaries, organised crime

Roof damage at the Hyde Square apartments in Kilmainham, Dublin.

Eoghan Murphy says such a move would put taxpayers at risk and potentially let off builders

Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy announced the Rebuliding Ireland Home Loan scheme in January of last year for people who had been turned down when applying for a mortgage. Photograph: Tom Honan/The Irish Times.

Fianna Fáil leader claims suspension of iniative has ‘dashed’ hopes of some seeking a home

John Paul Phelan: “these are completely uncharted waters”. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill

When Brexit is finalised Ireland will gain two extra seats, one in Dublin and the second in Ireland South

Labour leader Brendan Howlin said that Scouting Ireland would proceed with their normal camps this weekend, although the letter from Tusla recommended that the agency review the practice. Photograph: Laura Hutton/The Irish Times

Agency to conduct a review into how the voluntary organisation supervises children

The HSE last week wrote to Biogen, the company that produces the drug, rejecting the price offer. File photograph: Getty Images

Estimate of €600,000 for treatment per child incorrect, say Fianna Fáil and Sinn Féin

Opposition politicians joined families of children with spinal muscular atrophy who are seeking access to a new drug, Spinraza, in a march to Leinster House on Thursday. Photograph: Paul Cullen

Coveney asks TDs not to treat HSE as a ‘cold body’ that does not want to approve Spinraza access

The Tánaiste said that trying to put Ireland under pressure in terms of beef ‘is not a tactic or official position being adopted by the British government’.

Creed says agrifood supports only ‘when we know what sort of Brexit we’re dealing with’

Fianna Fáil foreign affairs spokesman Niall Collins asked about the letter members of Congress had written to Taoiseach Leo Varadkar. File photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

FF spokesman asks if Government has responded to letter over Occupied Territories Bill

The Taoiseach said the Government had delivered on the issue with 80 per cent of homes and businesses now served but he acknowledged the lack of service to the remaining 20 per cent. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

Decision by Easter but project an issue for current and future administrations, says Varadkar

Tusla has written recently to Scouting Ireland and recommended an immediate review of the supervision of children involved in scouting.

Zappone tells Dáil actions of key personnel in safeguarding may have been compromised

Katherine Zappone  said abuse survivors wishing to come forward should contact Tusla, or An Garda Síochána. Photograph Nick Bradshaw

Zappone tells Dáil of child and family agency’s concern over standards in scouting body

MetroLink protesters at the Beechwood Luas stop, in Rathmines,  Dublin. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw/The Irish Times

Varadkar dismisses claims FG more concerned about elections than transport

Tánaiste Simon Coveney said “the UK is leaving the European Union and today we still don’t know how or under what conditions”. Photograph: Salvatore Di Nolfi/EPA

Government determined to ‘maintain strong, special relationship’ with UK

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar: ‘The design team should be appointed and I’m exasperated as to hearing one excuse after another as to why that can’t be done so they should go ahead and do it.’ Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Varadkar says he is tired of ‘one excuse after another’ for failure to appoint design team

Leo Varadkar responded to  issues covered in an interview given by Clodagh Hawe’s mother Mary Coll (above) and sister Jacqueline Connolly on RTÉ’s Claire Byrne Live programme broadcast on Monday night. File photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Too easy for authorities to ‘throw a blanket of silence over such cases’ and close them down

 Alan Hawe with his wife Clodagh and their children Liam (13), Niall (11) and Ryan (6). Photograph: PA

Killer Alan Hawe transferred money to bank account 'while his family were dead around him'

Zoe Weber Hall and Aoife Munro from Dublin enjoy the mild spring weather in Dublin’s Merrion Square. Photograph: Alan Betson

Warmest winter day in UK with 20.6 degrees, but Ireland misses record by one degree

Fianna Fáil TD Anne Rabbitte. File photograph: Dave Meehan/The Irish Times

NTA bought 150 buses months before ban introduced on diesel-run vehicles

SDLP leader Colum Eastwood addressing the 79th Fianna Fáil ArdFheis in City West. Photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

SDLP leader echoes Donald Tusk in criticism of Sinn Féin at Fianna Fáil Ardfheis

North Dublin local election candidate Keith Connolly told the Fianna Fáil Ardfheis that lack of significant prosecution and the lifestyle of some drug dealers make it attractive for youngsters.

FF ardfheis hears call for minimum 10-year sentence for adults luring children into crime

After 27 years in the Dáil and Seanad, Billy Kelleher has turned his face firmly towards Brussels in the May 24th election although a date for the selection convention has yet to be confirmed. File photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Cork North-Central poll topper snubs FF leader’s demand he stay in Dáil

Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney. Photograph: Hannah McKay/Reuters

Coveney responds to UK threat to import Brazilian beef on a tariff-free quota

Fat Boy Slim and Drake are playing the 3Arena in March and April. The Dáil was told of big price gaps between ticket prices here and in Europe to see the acts.

Fat Boy Slim and Drake tickets cost over double as same gig in Netherlands, Belgium

Social Democrats TD Catherine Murphy said millions of  Land Commission records, which date back to the early 1890s, should be released now.

Catherine Murphy queries why Land Commission records available in North but not in State

The Tánaiste rejected FF claims of inaction and insisted that “this Government will not be found wanting” and would support farming. File photograph: Getty Images

Coveney rejects Fianna Fáil claim of inertia over risk to UK exports valued at €1.25bn

People Before Profit TD Richard Boyd Barrett claimed the Government had prevented Bríd Smith’s legislation from progressing ‘because the Taoiseach and the Government do not support its contents’.    Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

Richard Boyd Barrett accused the Government of ‘sabotaging the democratic process’

Children’s hospital overspend: Simon Harris said the Government would “ensure lessons are learned”. File photograph: Brian Lawless/PA

No-confidence debate in Minister for Health marked by heated exchanges

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar: “Accountability lies with the person who actually made the mistake – the clinician who did not do their job properly.” Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Varadkar: Inquiry under consideration but priority is service for those children affected

 Taoiseach Leo Varadkar told the Dáil on Wednesday  the two main causes of family homelessness were family breakdown or a notice to quit being issued by a landlord and neither of those was a choice. File photograph:  Gareth Chaney Collins

Leo Varadkar says debate over homeless services shows they have improved

Michael Martin accused Simon Harris of attempting to destroy the reputation of the CervicalCheck team. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins/File

Taoiseach says screening programme group did good job but carried out a ‘botched audit’

Minister of State for Defence Paul Kehoe: ‘I do not believe there will ever be a European army.’ Photograph: Nick Bradshaw/The Irish Times

Minister of State for Defence rejects claim he is ‘leading the way to a European army’

Fianna Fáil’s housing spokesman, Darragh O’Brien, said his party’s  proposed Bill was aimed at people who already paid management fees for services where they lived. Photograph: Laura Hutton/ The Irish Times

Fine Gael Ministers concerned about potentially steep hikes in property levy

Minister for Employment Affairs Regina Doherty said that without JobPath they would not have 5.3 per cent unemployment which had dropped from 15.7 per cent Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

Doherty defends scheme as English company linked to contract goes into administration

 Ruth Coppinger  alleged ‘conservative Catholic control of hospitals and a very narrow law with criminalisation are having a chilling effect and forcing such women to travel abroad’.  Photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

Ruth Coppinger says woman carrying baby with Edwards Syndrome treated like a ‘leper’

 Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martion to An Taoiseach Leo Varadakr that  ‘people are quite frankly fed up of yarns, fed up of spin’ Photographs: Gareth Chaney/ Collins and Nick Bradshaw

Taoiseach accuses Micheál Martin of engaging in ‘conspiracy theories’ about costs

People carrying €10,000 or more in cash through an Irish airport must make a declaration to customs. Photograph: Kate Geraghty/ The Irish Times

More than half the €9.5m in cash confiscated in the past decade subject to appeal

 Independent TD Mick Wallace: “The extra costs we are looking at now will be far exceeded in time if the Government continues along this road”

Former builder warns costs will soar further if the Government sticks with the current contract

 Independent deputy Mattie McGrath   hit out at Government Ministers appointing ‘spin doctors’ and ‘yet the Government is telling the nurses it cannot pay them’.  File photograph: Eric Luke

Row erupts over Independent TD’s call for review of appointments of press advisers

Michael McGrath said in 2014 €4.6 billion was collected which rose to €6.9 billion in 2015. Photograph: Alan Betson / The Irish Times

FF says there are ‘serious questions’ about sustainability of receipts

‘Ireland is an outlier’ in personal injury awards compared to other countries, Dara Calleary said. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill / The Irish Times

Government wants to to deliver same cost reduction for business as in motor insurance, Coveney says

Maureen O’Sullivan questioned the decision to seek a seat for the 2021 to 2022 rotation. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

TD claims cost of seat involves risk of losing respected ‘non-aligned, impartial’ voice

Shane O’Farrell “was obviously a much loved son and brother”, Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan told the Seanad. Photograph: Collins Courts

Shane O’Farrell (23) was killed in hit-and-run incident in Co Monaghan in August 2011

People Before Profit TD Bríd Smith Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Councillor Cyril Burke topped poll at party recent selection convention in Castlebar

Tánaiste  Simon Coveney  said he took on board the concerns of TDs who raised the nuclear issue and that ‘we need more details on it’ Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Tánaiste will discuss proposal with Northern Secretary later this week

Minister for Children Katherine Zappone  met Tusla and the service’s representatives and had sought further clarification from Tusla about funding Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Zappone ‘deeply regrets’ funding not available for service she says does valuable work

Leo Varadkar said that sometimes decisions were taken ‘often from the heart rather than the head’. Photograph:  Clodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters

FF leader: ’Politics doesn’t make for good clinical decisions’

Fianna Fáil’s  Jim O’Callaghan said 25 per cent of all violent crimes reported internationally involve a man assaulting his wife or partner. Photograph: iStock

State to ratify Istanbul Convention combating violence against women when law passed

The Consumer Protection (Gift Vouchers) Bill places a minimum five-year expiry date on gift vouchers. Photograph: iStock

Gift vouchers that used person’s familiar name have often been refused by airlines

Fianna Fáil TD Robert Troy said it was particularly difficult for people in rural areas where there was little public transport. Photograph: iStock

Fianna Fáil says RSA target waiting time ‘far from reality’ in most test centres

The Taoiseach Leo Varadkar insisted in the Dáil that  taxpayers’ money had not been wasted on the children’s hospital project. Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA

‘We have a real concern that some companies have been low-balling, coming in with very low tender prices to get the contract’

Aintree Racecourse, Liverpool: A tripartite agreement, which   currently exists under EU law,  allows for the free movement of and trade in horses between Ireland, Britain and France. Photograph:   Getty Images

30,000 sport horses, excluding thoroughbreds, move across Irish Sea every year

Tolls on the   M7  motorway. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien

Annual discounts worth €500 for private cars and €1,000 for commercial vehicles

Simon Harris told Fianna Fáil TD Barry Cowen that capital expenditure on the project was ‘in line with the expected expenditure profile’. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Spokeswoman for Minister indicates he will apologise this week

Minister for Agriculture, Food and Marine  Michael Creed said he had “no imprimatur by virtue of the programme for government or a mandate from the people” to ban the industry. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill

Creed cannot close down a ‘legitimate, highly regulated’ sector employing over 100

Minister for Employment Affairs Regina Doherty said some 41,000 people got full-time jobs through the JobPath programme. File photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

TD claims only 9% of jobs earned through programme lasted more than year

It was “amazing” that Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe (pictured) did not ask for updates on the hospital as the budget approached, Fianna Fáil public expenditure spokesman Barry Cowen said. Photograph: Tom Honan

Zappone tells Dáil she would ‘not be satisfied’ if not given information about €391 million

Day 2 of iNMO Nurses strike outside St. Vincent’s Hospital. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Minister says nurses’ demands would ‘tilt the public finances into an unsustainable spiral’

 Minister for Health Simon Harris: said he was ‘not in the business of having bets on the floor of the Dáil’.

Simon Harris rejects claims review of smear tests will not be finished by year end

 Labour leader Brendan Howlin was accused of lecturing the Government on what to do while being a “bloody hypocrite” and a “blackguard”. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Howlin accused of being a ‘blackguard’ during Labour’s time in coalition government

Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy (l) with Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe (r).  File photograph: Tom Honan for The Irish Times.

Minister for Housing involved in heated row over escalating costs of children’s hospital

Explaining the revised numbers for testing, Simon Harris stressed there were two different issues involved. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Martin’s claim Harris offered free retesting against official advice is ‘false’, Minister says

The Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation   insists the Government has to address nurses’ salaries to resolve the dispute. Photograph: Getty Images

Up to 50,000 will be affected by next nurses’ strike on Thursday, and the Psychiatric Nurses Association is due to extend its over(...)

Phil Ní Sheaghdha, General Secretary INMO, joined members on the picket line outside St. James’s Hospital, in Dublin. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Government told ‘substance must replace spin’ in its approach to the nursing dispute

A view of the construction site of The National Children’s Hospital. Photograph: Tom Honan/The Irish Times.

Former National Roads Authority head steps in amid controversy over the escalating cost of the project

File photograph of President Michael D. Higgins and his wife Sabina voting in 2014. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Poll about franchise for presidential election campaigns was initially expected in May

The US has accused Huawei and its chief financial officer of stealing American technology, breaking US sanctions against Iran and cooperating with China’s spy agencies.

FF calls on Government to ’steer clear course’ to ensure best technology into future

The Minister said  last year the IDA delivered 113 regional investments, “which is the equivalent of 56 per cent of new jobs created outside Dublin”

Fianna Fáil TD for Waterford Mary Butler claims there seems to be a ‘two-tier approach to regional job-creation’

Minister for Enterprise Heather Humphreys said the EU and UK both accept that avoiding a hard border was essential. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Integrity of EU customs union and single market must be protected, Minister says

Up to 50 events a year are affected by ticket touting especially for major acts including concerts by U2, Britney Spears and the Spice Girls, Minister for Enterprise Heather Humphreys told the Dáil.

Long-awaited ban on ticket touting moved a step closer as Minister introduces Bill in Dáil

Members of the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation picketing outside Connolly Hospital in Blanchardstown, Dublin on Wednesday. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill/The Irish Times

FF criticises Government for saying it respects nurses but is considering docking pay

Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan said the entitlement civil partners have to equality should be protected but that had to be balanced against the Constitutional “special protection” given to marriage. File photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

FF spokesman questions privilege in modern society ‘where not everyone gets married’

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