Video: Nphet ponder restrictions, Foley defends back to school plan and Team Ireland in Tokyo

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Nphet meeting

The National Public Health Emergency Team (Nphet) are due to meet today to consider its advice for the Government.

At a press briefing on Tuesday, officials warned the situation in the State remains uncertain, with a very high level of transmission noted across the country, particularly among younger people.

Chief medical officer Dr Tony Holohan said he was confident restrictions could ease over the coming months, but urged people to get vaccinated and avoid higher risk social activities until they are fully protected.

Nphet will pass their advice to the Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly, who will bring the suggestions to Cabinet. The Government's updated roadmap for the easing of restrictions over the coming months is due to be published next week.

Back to School

Schools around the country have begun the return to the classroom over recent days.

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Concern has been raised by unions and groups representing unvaccinated pregnant teachers, however, who believed they should not be forced back to the workplace when they do not have the protection of the vaccine.

On Wednesday, Minister for Education Norma Foley defended her department's approach for the return to school, adding unvaccinated pregnant teachers could take sick leave if they were not yet 14 weeks pregnant and therefore not able to receive the vaccine.

Electric Picnic

The organisers of Electric Picnic are calling on Laois County Council to reverse its decision to deny them a licence to hold the annual festival in Stradbally following comments from the chief medical officer.

On Tuesday, Dr Tony Holohan said the were no major public health concerns for a festival going ahead with only fully vaccinated attendees.

Following Dr Holohan's comment, Melvin Benn from Festival Republic, one of the event's organisers, said: "Change the decision Laois County Council and let's have the Picnic. Tell us tomorrow and we are on our way."

Afghanistan evacuation

A team from the Irish Defence Forces has landed in Afghanistan to aid the evacuation of citizens following the Taliban's takeover of the country.

There are now 36 Irish citizens waiting to leave Afghanistan as the August 31st deadline for foreign evacuations looms.

The Department of Foreign Affairs is liasing directly with the Irish people seeking removal, working with other EU member states, the UK and the US.

Team Ireland in Tokyo

Day One of the Tokyo Paralympics got off to a bright star for Team Ireland with five personal bests claimed in the early hours of this morning.

In the pool, Nicole Turner qualified for the final of the Women's S6 50M Freestyle, clocking her fastest ever time, before taking eighth in the final, claiming another personal best.

Limerick's Róisín Ní Riain was in similarity impressive form, snatching a spot in the Women's S13 100M Butterfly, also swimming a personal best, finishing eighth in the final this afternoon.

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