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Firms bring in 200 new jobs

More than 200 jobs have been created at an accountancy firm and at a plastic bottle recycling facility.

Deloitte Ireland announced it has 30 technology consulting positions to fill immediately and plans to recruit at least 150 graduates for its audit, tax, consulting and corporate finance divisions next year.

Elsewhere, Shabra opened a state-of-the-art d3.5m plastic bottle sorting plant in Castleblaney, Co Monaghan, with 35 new jobs over the next three years.

Drunk official slurs UN chief

A UN official has apologised to Secretary General Ban Ki-moon after a tribute to the UN chief turned into a rant because he had been drinking.

Chinese official Sha Zukang was "deeply apologetic" when he went to see the Secretary General the following morning.

Mr Sha, according to a senior official, said: "I know you never liked me Mr Secretary General -- well, I never liked you, either. I didn't want to come to New York. It was the last thing I wanted to do."

Funeral ban on football songs

Football songs and pop music have been banned from funerals in Catholic churches in Australia under new guidelines distributed this week to priests and funeral directors.

A funeral should not be a "celebration" of the deceased's life, Archbishop of Melbourne Denis Hart said in the rules, but a final sacred farewell.

Celebrations of that life should be held at social occasions before or after the funeral, he said. "Secular items are never to be sung or played at a Catholic funeral, such as romantic ballads, pop or rock music, political songs, football club songs."

Ice skaters on the 94th floor

Ice skating in Chicago in January is nothing new but doing it on the 94th floor of a skyscraper certainly is.

Officials at the 100-story John Hancock Centre said they are installing a rink that will allow visitors to skate at 1,000ft up in the air.

About 20 people at a time will be able to skate on the 1,000-square-foot rink. It will be open from January until March.