What the papers say


Journalist Liz Kennedy takes a look at what is making the headlines in Friday's newspapers.

An inquest into a controversial shooting is said to have been ordered by the new Attorney General.

The Irish News claims an exclusive, reporting that the coroner's office has been directed by John Larkin to hold a second inquest into the death of Francis Bradley, shot in disputed circumstances by the SAS near Toomebridge in 1986.

Meanwhile, the financial savings achieved by library closures in Belfast are totted up on Friday morning.

The Belfast Telegraph says just £50,000 has been saved by the controversial decision to shut down 10 Belfast libraries.

And it notes that at Andersonstown library last year, there were almost 31,000 through the door, while at another axed facility in Ballymacarrett there were almost 32,000 vistors.

The News Letter focuses on the election challenge mounted by defeated Fermanagh and South Tyrone candidate Rodney Connor. Sinn Fein's Michelle Gildernew was deemed elected by just four votes and Mr Connor went to Belfast High Court on Thursday to start a legal battle over alleged discrepancies during the count.

And it's "all eyes on the plume", but not the volcanic ash, this time.

There's mounting tension over the Gulf of Mexico oil crisis. The Independent describes the BP command centre in Houston as a sort of Mission Control, currently facing an Apollo 13 moment.

And a serious situation for President Obama, as his approval ratings plummet in the environmental crisis.


Meanwhile, the case of criminology student, Stephen Griffiths, charged with the murder of three women, is under examination in many of the papers.

The Guardian says that it has become a "murder story cliche" that residents living near a crime scene shake their heads and say "you would never expect something like that to happen round here". But it reports that nobody said that on Thursday, in the area of Bradford, where sex-workers ply their trade.

The Daily Mail says that the police are now involved in a "hunt for more bodies".

A harrowing account of surgery on a young boy is reported in the Irish papers.

The Irish Independent and Irish Times both examine the Medical Council hearing concerning a young boy who had the wrong kidney removed.

The eight-year-old had his healthy kidney taken out. The boy's parents had previously asked medical staff to check on which side surgery was to be performed, but were "embarrassed" to enquire further.

The fitness to practise inquiry said there had been "a skeleton staff" on duty the day of the operation.

His mother is quoted in the Irish Times as saying they had been "naïve" and had trusted the doctors at Our Lady's Hospital for Sick Children in Dublin.

And finally, lightning doesn't strike twice, that's the received opinion, anyway...

In fact, it strikes four times.

Bizarre incidents in the Lake District according to the Daily Express, after four hill-walkers were struck at different locations on Wednesday.

Luckily, their injuries were not serious, even though one man was thrown 30ft into the air.

Elsewhere, eight walkers in a group of 13 were thrown to the ground. A rescue team leader said the sequence of strikes was "rare and amazing".

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