A LEADING member of the dissident republican movement in Derry has accused Sinn Fein's Martin McGuinness of selling out republicans by toasting Queen Elizabeth II during President Michael D Higgins's state visit to England.
Gary Donnelly told a crowd of several hundred people at an Easter commemoration event in the city cemetery in Derry that the 1916 Easter Rising "was not about tuxedos and toasting the queen of England". The event, which was organised by the 32 County Sovereignty Movement, the political wing of dissident republicanism, passed off without incident.
ILLEGAL CIGARETTES BOOM
ONE in four cigarettes sold in Ireland is part of the black market tobacco trade. A report compiled by JTI Ireland Ltd – the country's leading tobacco supplier – has called on the Government to take more action to clamp down on cigarette smuggling.
It says criminals are earning profits equal to 1,000 times the fines imposed by the courts, while annual lost revenue in taxes is now €250m. The retail trade says it is losing €450m each year because of the problem. "Cigarettes are at least 50pc cheaper on the streets," said John Freda, JTI Ireland general manager.
DEER'S HEAD SEIZED
A deer's head has been seized as part of an investigation into poaching code-named Operation Bambi.
The discovery was made by Tallaght gardai when five officers entered a house last Friday week after they obtained a warrant under the Wildlife Act. It is believed some of those involved are supplying poached deer directly to British dealers.
BOWE GETS ENGAGED
RUGBY heart-throb Tommy Bowe is officially off the market. The 30-year-old Ulster player proposed to his girlfriend Lucy Whitehouse, a former Ms Wales. The couple (inset) have been together for three years.
FLASHMOB TAKES OFF
A VIDEO by student dancers has become a viral flashmob sensation.
The talented Irish World Academy of Music and Dance's flashmob at Shannon Airport has had over 158,000 hits in just over one week. The Shannon Flashmob was delivered to mark the start of the airport's summer season, complete with its biggest number of new route launches in 10 years.