Your Friday evening catch-up

Here’s a briefing on some of the stories and issues highlighted on irishexaminer.com today.

Your Friday evening catch-up

TOP STORY - MALI HOTEL SIEGE

There are no more hostages left in the luxury hotel attacked by gunmen in Mali, according to state TV, but 18 bodies have been found so far. Malian special forces earlier entered the Radisson Blu Hotel in Bamako and freed scores of people, according to a military spokesman.

To follow the latest events on the Mali hotel siege see our live updates here.

IRELAND

Politicians have been warned to stop using Oireachtas envelopes paid for by taxpayers to send out general election leaflets after "a number" of TDs and Senators were caught misusing the service.

Former Minister for Justice Alan Shatter has said that he was aware of up to 40 people who left Ireland to fight with the so-called ’Islamic State’ group in Syria during his time in office.

We love to complain about the weather, but even the grumpiest among us have to admit that it’s generally been unseasonably warm for the last couple of months. But that’s all about to change now folks, and there could even be some snow on the way.

WORLD

There are to be stricter controls at the European Union’s external borders following the Paris attacks. EU ministers have agreed to draw up plans after the suspected mastermind slipped into France undetected.

Health officials in Liberia have confirmed a new case of Ebola more than two months after the west African nation was declared free of the deadly disease for a second time.

SPORT

Rory McIlroy remained in pole position to be crowned European number one for the third time in four years as former supermarket shelf-stacker Andy Sullivan claimed the halfway lead in the DP World Tour Championship.

Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini says this weekend’s clash against Liverpool will be a special occasion for Raheem Sterling.

BUSINESS

Gerry Mallon has been appointed as chief executive of Ulster Bank in the Republic of Ireland. He is stepping down as head of Danske Bank in Northern Ireland and will take up his new role in June 2016.

A senior government official has said the Central Bank needs to “satisfy themselves they are compliant with the law” after revelations managers have been given retention payments worth 21% of their salaries at the same time as workers have faced 20% cuts.

ANALYSIS

Ask them what their view is on the gender pay gap in Ireland, which has widened from 12.6% to 14.4%,  writes Alison O’Connor

LIFESTYLE

You may have seen her in Breaking Bad, but Krysten Ritter is about to really hit  the big time in her new Netflix show, writes Ed Power

VIDEO

After lighting up hurling and football pitches across the country in his heyday, GAA legend Jimmy Barry Murphy used his magical touch to switch on the Christmas lights in Cork City last night.

VIRAL

The Irish Examiner has obtained a video which captures the moment a commuter plane was forced to abort a landing at the last moment due to high crosswinds at Cork Airport yesterday.

Armagh’s ’Karate Kid’ Jesse Jane McParland was in the media again recently after appearing on The Ellen DeGeneres Show in America.

TECHNOW

GAMING: Professional Farmer 2016 is a totally real game, and here’s the full trailer.  You can use realistic machines to plough your fields and prepare your crops and cope with seasonal changes and real-time weather as you work towards harvest.

MOVIES: The Little Prince is an acclaimed 1943 novel by French writer and aviator Antoine de Saint-Exupéry  and it’s coming to the big screen in a ravishing animated form.

TECH: A new report has some startling figures about smartphone usage - there are over 100 million iPhones currently in use in the United States.

SHOWBIZ

James May has said he thinks it is “very good” this his new Amazon Prime motoring show will have a credible rival in Top Gear.

MOST READ RIGHT NOW

"Am I rattled? Damn right I am. This is too random." Ronan O’Gara reflects on a traumatic week in his current home, Paris

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