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Continuity IRA 'claims Dublin hotel gun attack'

Some of the gunman were dressed as police Credit: Splash News

The Continuity IRA has claimed responsibility for a masked shooting at a boxing weigh-in in Dublin and has threatened further attacks on "criminals", according to reports.

One man was killed and two people were injured when attackers burst in to the event at the city's Regency Hotel on Friday, where up to 300 people had gathered.

In a statement to BBC News, a man claiming to speak on behalf of the Continuity IRA said the man who died had been targeted for his alleged involvement in the killing of a leading member of dissident republican group the Real IRA.

The six-man gang that carried out the Dublin attack was said to include one disguised as a woman wearing an "auburn wig", while others wore police costumes.

Two gunman - one of them disguised as a woman (left) - flee the scene of the shooting Credit: INM plc / cascadenews.co.uk

They opened fire in the hotel's lobby, sending bystanders running for their lives.

Amateur footage of the attack posted to YouTube showed the gunfire breaking out just after a weigh-in for a World Boxing Organisation (WBO) title fight between Jamie Kavanagh and Antonio Jao Bento, due to take place on Saturday.

Irish Prime Minister calls 26 February general election

Enda Kenny's coalition is seeking additional support in the upcoming election Credit: Reuters

Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny has called a general election for February 26.

His coalition government is seeking to win over the additional support needed for re-election and avoid a possible political deadlock.

Mr Kenny said the new Dail, or lower house of parliament, will sit again on March 10.

"I am going to make my way to Aras an Uachtarain (the president's residence) to ask the President to dissolve Dail Eireann (parliament)," the Irish Prime minister announced.

Ireland name Best as Six Nations captain

Ireland's new captain Rory Best. Credit: PA

Rory Best will captain Ireland for the Six Nations with uncapped quartet CJ Stander, Stuart McCloskey, Ultan Dillane and Josh van der Flier the 35-man squad's newcomers.

Ulster skipper Best takes Ireland's captaincy from legend Paul O'Connell, who retired from Test rugby after the 2015 World Cup.

Check out ITV's Six Nations website for the full story

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Ireland launches purge of one and two cent coins

A scheme to reduce the number of one and two cent coins in circulation in Ireland launches today, with customers having bills rounded to the nearest five cents instead.

If the customer consents, bills ending in one, two, six, or seven cents would be rounded down to the nearest five, while those ending in three, four, eight or nine cents would be rounded up.

Ireland wants to reduce the number of one and two cent coins Credit: PA

The policy has already been tried in Wexford in the Republic of Ireland, and from today will be rolled out across the country in a bid to reduce the number of low-denomination coins, which experts say are often simply "stockpiled" in people's homes.

Dr Ronnie O'Toole, an economist at Ireland's Central Bank, said he believed it would prove successful.

"Consumers may be surprised at first but, judging from the experience in Wexford, they will embrace rounding very quickly," he said.

Since joining the euro in 2001, Ireland has spent some €37 million (£27m) minting the copper coins.

Similar schemes have already been introduced in other eurozone states including the Netherlands, Sweden, Finland, Denmark and Hungary.

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