Catch-up with what you've missed with our morning briefing

Good morning. Here’s everything you need to know before you start your day.
Catch-up with what you've missed with our morning briefing

ELECTION 2016 

LATEST... The first TV and radio debate of the election campaign takes place tonight. Tonight the leaders of the four main parties will go head to head in the debate hosted by TV3 and Newstalk.

LATEST... A full hearing of the Green Party’s legal challenge against RTÉ’s criteria for inviting leaders to take part in its televised debate is due to begin today.

LATEST... Momentum is building within Fianna Fáil for the party to consider going into government with Fine Gael after several TDs said such an option must be examined if the party emerges as the larger one after the election.

LATEST... An autistic general election candidate and her autistic children have been targeted by vile online abuse which branded them “inbred mongolians”.

ANALYSIS... Victoria White writes that election promises continue the attack on families with just one income.

SOCIAL... There is little doubt that Twitter has become a key 'weapon' in #GE16 with all of the political parties and groupings availing of its unique potential. Keep track of the Twitter action from the parties, leaders and main players HERE

Visit our #GE16 SECTION for the latest General Election news, views and social content.

IRELAND

A massive five-day security operation is set to begin this evening for the funeral next Monday of gangland victim David Byrne.

There are calls for a more visible Garda presence in the Shankill, Dublin following reports of assaults and attempted assaults in the area.

Thousands of Luas commuters face travel disruption this morning as Siptu workers down tools in a bid to seek a pay rise of up to 54%.

A consultant orthopaedic surgeon, who had to cancel four out of five hip operations yesterday, has blamed the health minister’s new escalation protocol which he said “effectively castrates local bed management”.

WORLD 

Republican Donald Trump and Democratic candidate Bernie Sanders are focusing their presidential election efforts on the next state battle for votes after decisive wins in New Hampshire.

Turkey’s leaders have lashed out at the UN and others who are pressing the country to open its border to thousands more Syrian refugees, accusing them of failing to shoulder the refugee burden or stop Russian bombings that have triggered the exodus.

SPORT

Dublin’s senior teams could make the National Sports Campus (NSC) their new training home before the start of the Leinster championships. Set to open on April 2, a significant part of the GAA’s 30-acre national games and development centre on the Abbotstown site is set to become a de facto centre of excellence for the county.

Ireland’s half-back combination have been put on a par with New Zealand’s World Cup-winning pair by the man aiming to stop them in Paris on Saturday.

BUSINESS

Oil prices should recover in the second half of this year and end 2016 at between $60 and $65 per barrel, Tullow Oil chief Aidan Heavey has said.

One of the country’s largest residential landlords is expecting significant growth during 2016 despite the Government’s two-year rent freeze introduced late last year.

ANALYSIS

Challenging the authority of the Church was not easy, but 50 years ago this week, Gay Byrne helped spark a cultural revolution with the ‘bishop and the nightie’ affair, writes Ryle Dwyer

LIFESTYLE

Being in love is one of the best feelings in the world but please tell me that true love really does exist says Paula Burns, a self-confessed diehard romantic

VIDEO

Disturbing eye-witness footage of the scenes just moments after David Byrne was shot dead at the Regency Hotel last Friday have emerged, showing the assassins making their getaway and what happened before gardai arrived.

VIRAL

Scientists may be poised to make a major announcement that will open a new window on the universe.

The number of active Twitter users failed to rise in the last three months of 2015, the social network has reported, as it continues to struggle.

TECHNOW

GAMING: After two months on hiatus,  Blizzard's Overwatch  is playable again in beta form.

MOVIES: Unsurprisingly, Disney isn't ready to let Frozen go just yet. The smash hit is heading for Broadway with a launch  planned in the spring of 2018. This will follow a preparatory production somewhere outside New York next year.

TECH: Sony has released the Xperia Z5 in green to celebrate St Patrick's Day in style.

SHOWBIZ

Ronan Keating has said it would be “fun” for Boyzone to team up with Westlife to form a supergroup. The 38-year-old singer from Dublin said he would “never say never” but he is currently concentrating on his solo music with a new album out on Friday called Time Of My Life.

MOST READ RIGHT NOW

A massive five-day security operation is set to begin this evening for the funeral next Monday of gangland victim David Byrne.

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