Northern Ireland

NI paper review: Brexit pressure and Euro 2020 fallout

News Letter Monday 3 December 2018 Image copyright NEWS LETTER
Daily Mirror Monday 3 December 2018 Image copyright Daily mirror

The start of a new week means yet more Brexit featuring on the front pages of Monday's papers.

Theresa May has been urged by MPs to publish the full legal advice available on the withdrawal deal she negotiated.

However, the prime minister has argued that the advice is confidential.

Later today, Labour is expected to join forces with the DUP and others in Westminster to push for a full publication.

The News Letter reports that Sammy Wilson has said Mrs May will be exposed as a "liar" if the government releases its full legal advice.

"She has been going around saying that the backstop would only be temporary arrangement, but the legal advice she makes it clear that is not the case," he told the paper.

Image copyright AFP
Image caption Theresa May has argued that the full advice is confidential

Meanwhile, the Belfast Telegraph reads: "DUP move leaves May on the brink".

The paper says the fallout could put further strain on the DUP and Conservative confidence and supply deal.

"Rejection of Brexit deal would lead to second referendum Gove warns," reads the front page of the Irish News.

Image copyright House of Commons
Image caption Mr Wilson and his party have aired concerns over the withdrawal deal

Michael Gove has insisted it is possible for the government to pass Theresa May's Brexit deal through Parliament, even though many MPs have threatened to vote against it.

He added that doing so would pose a "real risk" of a second referendum.

Euro 2020 qualifier

Sticking with a European theme, but away from politics and turning to sport - the draw for the Euro 2020 qualifiers has left Northern Ireland supporters with heavy hearts.

The team were placed in group C alongside the Netherlands, Germany, Estonia and Belarus.

Image copyright Pacemaker
Image caption The decision has left many supporters in despair

According to the Daily Mirror, NI manager Michael O'Neill said it was "possibly the worst draw we could have got".

The move was considered controversial as initially the Republic of Ireland had been placed in the group but, as Dublin is one of the 12 host cities, they were replaced.

Primark fire

Shoppers will be glad to learn that a new walkway is opening around the cordon which was put in place following the Primark fire.

The Belfast Telegraph reports that it will reconnect Donegal Place with Royal Avenue.

Image caption Shipping containers have been placed in front of the burnt-out Bank Buildings

In the run up to Christmas retailers have found trading difficult due to the closure of Bank buildings.

Susan Wylie, Belfast City Council Chief Executive, said: "We're very optimistic about it helping to drive footfall into the city ahead of Christmas".

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Media captionDrone footage shows the extent of the destruction caused by the fire at the Bank Buildings

'Assurance'

The Irish News reports that a memo created by an official at the Northern Ireland Office (NIO) back in 1981, suggests that a former SDLP leader urged the government to deny hunger strikers' demands.

Gerry Fitt is understood to have done so during a call to Jonathan Margetts two weeks before Bobby Sands death.

Mr Sands died after 66 days without food on 5 May.

Image copyright PAcemaker
Image caption Gerry Fitt was the MP for West Belfast from 1966 to 1983

At the time of the call, Mr Fitt had left the SDLP and was opposed to the hunger strikes.

The memo said Mr Margetts gave Mr Fitt "assurance and he was content".

Image copyright Inpho
Image caption Michael Conlan is an Olympic boxer

Boxer Michael Conlan has revealed that a man approached him with a gun, just two days after he lost at the Rio Olympics in 2016.

He told the Daily Mirror: "This guy pulled us over and point a gun straight through the window, a big Desert Eagle.

"I looked at my father, and he said, 'Don't move, stay calm,' he added.

"I was in a mood anyway. My only dream was to be an Olympic champion and I had that stolen from me."