Murder investigation underway after teacher was killed while out jogging
A man arrested in connection with the suspected murder of a young woman in Co Offaly is to face further questioning.
As reported in The Irish Times, the victim, who was from just outside Tullamore and aged 23, had been out jogging when she was fatally attacked on Wednesday afternoon. She was named locally as Ashling Murphy.
It is understood that another woman arrived on the scene and disturbed the attacker, with a second woman also arriving almost immediately.
Although emergency services were alerted and arrived quickly, Ms Murphy was pronounced dead at the scene.
Ms Murphy was well known in Tullamore as she worked as a primary school teacher and was also involved in the arts.
National Educational Psychological Service (NEPS) counsellors will come to the school where she worked this morning.
Close contact rule changes
Ireland’s deputy chief medical officer has warned people who are close contacts and fully boosted not to “drop all protective measures” following the change in isolation rules.
Dr Ronan Glynn said he recognises that guidance for close contacts in recent weeks has been “complex”.
Dr Glynn made the comments as the Government signed off on plans to relax the rules for close contacts of Covid cases, which will take effect from midnight on Thursday.
“I’d be hopeful that the simplification (of rules) would mean that any potential increase in infection by reducing measures on the one hand will be offset by increased compliance with all the other measures on the other hand,” Dr Glynn said.
“Clearly there’s a risk in anything that we do other than telling people to stay in their rooms for 14 days.
Government and health officials 'optimistic' that further restrictions can be eased
The Government and health officials have indicated that further restrictions could be eased later this month despite high Covid-19 case numbers.
As reported in The Irish Times, discussion at the Cabinet on Wednesday was “cautiously optimistic”, according to sources present, with Government forming a view that the worst of the pandemic has passed.
“The mood is becoming more optimistic,” said one Minister.
Meanwhile, chief medical officer Dr Tony Holohan said the possibility of lifting Covid-19 restrictions on hospitality and other sectors was “all in play” next week when the impact of the Omicron variant will be considered in more detail.
Dr Holohan also said it was “fair” to question why hospitality settings would not be reopened fully when higher rates of infection among young people are likely to lead to a high level of population immunity.
According to Dr Holohan, The National Public Health Emergency Team (Nphet) needed another week to ensure what they “might have feared” from Omicron had not played out.
Truss says ‘deal to be done’ on Northern Ireland Protocol
Liz Truss said the European Union had a “clear responsibility” to solve the problems caused by Northern Ireland’s post-Brexit deal as she prepared for her first face-to-face talks with Maros Sefcovic.
The British foreign secretary, who assumed responsibility for the negotiations following Lord Frost’s resignation, will host European Commission vice-president Mr Sefcovic at her Chevening country retreat in Kent for talks on Thursday and Friday.
She said the EU must show a “pragmatic approach” to the issues created by the Northern Ireland Protocol, which effectively creates a trade barrier in the Irish Sea for goods crossing from Britain in order to prevent a hard border with Ireland.
Mr Sefcovic will be treated to a dinner of Scottish smoked salmon, Welsh lamb and apple pie made with fruit from Kent.
McGregor’s Dublin pub attacked ‘hours after he was there’
Gardaí are investigating an incident of “attempted criminal damage” at a pub owned by Irish UFC star Conor McGregor.
The Black Forge Inn on Drimnagh Road, Dublin, was attacked on Wednesday night.
No damage was done.
The former UFC champion, 33, was in the pub earlier on Wednesday, according to social media posts.