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‘Flying’ ferry unveiled by Belfast firm

The Irish World - Lun, 26/09/2022 - 2:04pm

Zero-emission vessel uses hydrofoil to lift above the waves. Design plans for a zero emission 100 per cent electric “flying” ferry have been unveiled. The EF-24 Passenger vessel uses hydrofoils to lift the craft out of the water to sail above waves. Maritime design company Artemis Technologies has described it as a “game changer” for […]

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Ireland’s ambassador to UK urges negotiations to resolve Brexit protocol issues

The Irish World - Lun, 26/09/2022 - 2:03pm

Ireland’s newly arrived ambassador Martin Fraser, formerly Ireland’s most senior civil servant and the individual who led the country’s response to Covid, spoke at a fringe event at the Labour Party conference in Liverpool. He is also a former director of the Irish government’s Northern Ireland division. He stressed the need to find a negotiated […]

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Shadow minister’s border poll remarks alarm Northern Ireland’s unionists

The Guardian - Lun, 26/09/2022 - 11:22am

Labour’s Peter Kyle says he would be prepared to call referendum on Irish unity if certain conditions were met

Northern Ireland unionists have expressed alarm after the shadow Northern Ireland secretary, Peter Kyle, said he would be prepared to call a referendum on Irish unity if certain conditions were met.

Kyle would set out the criteria for calling a border poll if Labour were in power, he told the BBC’s Sunday Politics show at his party’s conference.

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‘It’s bittersweet’: what home-buyers think of chancellor’s stamp duty cut

The Guardian - Ven, 23/09/2022 - 5:54pm

Property-hunters on how permanent reduction for purchases in England and Northern Ireland will affect them

The UK chancellor, Kwasi Kwarteng, has announced a permanent stamp duty reduction for property purchases in England and Northern Ireland – a move that forms part of a mini-budget critics say will reward the rich more than those on lower incomes.

Under the new system, effective from Friday, the first £250,000 of a property’s value will be exempt from stamp duty. Buyers will pay 5% of the value of the home from £250,001, while the portion between £925,001 and £1.5m will continue to be taxed at 10%. Any property worth more than that will be subject to stamp duty rates of 12%.

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What does Kwarteng’s stamp duty cut mean for UK homebuyers?

The Guardian - Ven, 23/09/2022 - 1:52pm

As chancellor announces no tax to be paid on properties up to value of £250,000, we explain changes across UK

The chancellor, Kwasi Kwarteng, has confirmed a permanent stamp duty cut, with no tax to be paid on properties up to the value of £250,000.

Kwarteng announced the policy in a mini-budget on Friday, almost a year after the last stamp duty holiday ended. He also increased the threshold for first-time buyers to £425,000. Here we explain the changes in full.

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British retailers welcome planned return of VAT-free shopping for tourists

The Guardian - Ven, 23/09/2022 - 1:02pm

Government to consult on long-called-for scheme which is likely to cost almost £1.3bn

Retailers and the hospitality industry have welcomed the planned return of VAT-free shopping for international tourists, saying it would help to boost sales.

The government said it would consult on introducing a new tax-free shopping scheme for Great Britain and would modernise the one in place in Northern Ireland.

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Westmeath mum in court for murder of her two children

The Irish World - Ven, 23/09/2022 - 11:34am

A mother appeared in court on Thursday evening charged with the murder of her two children in Co Westmeath. Lynn Egar is accused of murdering five-year-old Thelma and two-year-old Michael (Mikey) Dennany on a rural road in Multyfarnham on 9 September. Lynn Egar, 48, with an address at Winetown, Rathowen, in Co Westmeath, was charged […]

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Taoiseach calls out Russia as rogue state at United Nations General Assembly

The Irish World - Ven, 23/09/2022 - 11:34am

Heightened nuclear risks from Russian aggression ‘unprecedented’, says Martin Micheál Martin talks of a ‘time of crisis’, urges the UN to act on food security and climate change.   The heightened nuclear risks from Russia’s aggression against Ukraine are unprecedented, Taoiseach Micheál Martin said at the United Nations. Potential nuclear threats from Russian military activity […]

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Irish government to move Ukrainian refugees from army tents in Gormanston in time for winter

The Irish World - Ven, 23/09/2022 - 11:33am

Gormanston army camp has been used as a shelter for Ukrainian refugees since July because the Irish government says it ran out of accommodation   The Irish army’s military camp in Gormanston, Co Meath will not be used to house Ukrainian refugees from next month, the Irish government has said. It is currently housing about […]

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Halted murder prosecution of Bloody Sunday’s paratrooper ‘Soldier F’ to resume

The Irish World - Gio, 22/09/2022 - 7:47pm

The discontinued prosecution of a former British Army paratrooper, known as Soldier F, for two murders on Bloody Sunday in Derry in 1972 is to resume.   Prosecutors last year announced they were discontinuing proceedings. Said they feared case could collapse at trial     James Wray (left) and William McKinney who died on Bloody […]

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Northern Ireland’s Catholics outnumber Protestants for first time since partition

The Irish World - Gio, 22/09/2022 - 7:10pm

The latest Census figures for Northern Ireland, published today, show that Catholics (45.7%) outnumber Protestants (43.5%) for the first time since the partition of the island of Ireland. The Census was taken on 21 March last year, the hundredth anniversary of the creation of Northern Ireland. The 2011 Census recorded 48% of the population as […]

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Differing age profiles – and Brexit – ‘key to understanding shifts’, says head of census

The Irish World - Gio, 22/09/2022 - 7:10pm

Protestant community is, on average, older than Catholic community The differing age profiles of Northern Ireland’s Protestant and Catholic communities are key to understanding the region’s shifting demography, the head of the census has said. The director of census and population statistics at the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (Nisra), Dr David Marshall, said […]

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National insurance increase will be reversed from 6 November, says Kwasi Kwarteng – as it happened

The Guardian - Gio, 22/09/2022 - 6:31pm

This live blog has now closed, you can find our latest political coverage here

Catholics outnumber Protestants in Northern Ireland for the first time, a demographic milestone for a state that was designed a century ago to have a permanent Protestant majority, my colleague Rory Carroll reports.

Thérèse Coffey is deputy prime minister as well as health secretary. Speaking on ITV’s Good Morning Britain this morning, and responding to a question from the former Labour MP Ed Balls, who was presenting, she said that as deputy PM she would be “chairing things like the home affairs committee and different elements like that”. But she rejected claims this meant she would be doing the health job part time. She said:

I’m conscious that in two weeks we’ve already pulled together our plan for patients and we will continue to develop that.

I don’t think it will be a case of being part-time ... We don’t have fixed working hours.

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Northern Ireland power sharing slips to 2023 as few relish a winter election

The Guardian - Gio, 22/09/2022 - 2:33pm

Delay to protocol resolution likely to pause Stormont elections that were expected this year

The UK has given a six-month deadline for the Northern Ireland protocol row to be resolved, indicating Liz Truss is far more relaxed about the absence of a devolved government in Stormont than previously indicated.

An April 2023 date for the resolution of the Brexit row emerged after a meeting between the prime minister and the US president, Joe Biden, and would coincide with the 25th anniversary of the Belfast Good Friday agreement.

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To survive, unionism now has to be inclusive of Northern Ireland’s Catholics | Malachi O'Doherty

The Guardian - Gio, 22/09/2022 - 2:15pm

Now that ‘Protestant Ulster’ no longer exists, defending the union will mean becoming secular and liberal

Census results don’t predict change; they just help to describe what has happened so far. The transformation of Northern Ireland to the point where Roman Catholics now outnumber Protestants has already occurred, and it is no longer the place I grew up in.

This represents the collapse of the political idea that prevailed after partition and is clung to hopelessly still; that the survival of the union depends on unionism being Protestant. Now there can no longer be a majority for staying in the UK that does not include Catholics. Any strategy for defending the union must appeal across sectarian lines.

Malachi O’Doherty is a writer living in Belfast. His latest book is Can Ireland Be One? (Merrion Press)

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Keeping the tradition alive  

The Irish World - Gio, 22/09/2022 - 1:03pm

Iarla Ó Lionáird told David Hennessy about his special gig with Julie Fowlis in London this weekend, how the future of The Gloaming is uncertain following the death of their guitarist Dennis Cahill and the time he got to sing for the Queen. Iarla Ó Lionáird will come to London this weekend for a special one-off […]

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Burren is ‘best place’ for holiday in Ireland

The Irish World - Gio, 22/09/2022 - 12:21pm

The Burren has been named as this year’s Best Place to Holiday in Ireland in a competition organised by an Irish national newspaper and the tourism agency Fáilte Ireland. The Burren won the competition hosted by The Irish Times and Fáilte Ireland, for what they called ‘its stunning landscape and its vision for sustainable tourism’. […]

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Catholics outnumber Protestants in Northern Ireland for first time

The Guardian - Gio, 22/09/2022 - 10:48am

Demographic shift shown in census was expected but will still deliver psychological blow to unionists

Catholics outnumber Protestants in Northern Ireland for the first time, a demographic milestone for a state that was designed a century ago to have a permanent Protestant majority.

Results from the 2021 census released on Thursday showed that 45.7% of inhabitants are Catholic or from a Catholic background compared with 43.48% from Protestant or other Christian backgrounds. The 2011 census figures were 45% Catholic and 48% Protestant. Neither bloc is a majority.

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UK aims to end Stormont row before planned Joe Biden visit in 2023

The Guardian - Mer, 21/09/2022 - 11:03pm

US president’s potential visit next Easter to mark 25th anniversary of Good Friday agreement is ‘absolutely vital’ moment

The UK has a six-month deadline to resolve the Northern Ireland protocol row, with plans afoot for a state visit next year for Joe Biden to mark the 25th anniversary of the Good Friday agreement.

The government believes the date next April is a vital moment to get the Northern Ireland executive up and running again, with unionist parties blocking the power-sharing institutions as part of a protest against post-Brexit trading rules.

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UK elections watchdog calls for action to tackle candidate intimidation

The Guardian - Mer, 21/09/2022 - 2:38pm

Electoral Commission finds four in 10 candidates in Great Britain suffered abuse, intimidation or threats during May’s local ballots

About four in 10 candidates for May’s local elections in England, Scotland and Wales reported suffering abuse, threats or intimidation, rising to more than seven in 10 in Northern Ireland, the UK’s elections watchdog has found.

Responses received by the Electoral Commission from more than 1,000 candidates uncovered what the organisation called alarming levels of such behaviour, saying ministers needed to take urgent action to address the situation.

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