Portrush alert, Stormont talks and uni strikes: Thursday morning's Northern Ireland news headlines

'Portrush alert'

Police remain at a security alert in Portrush after a suspicious object was found in the Glentaisie Park area.

It was reported to the PSNI yesterday evening. Coleraine Leisure Centre was opened to residents who were moved from their homes by police.

Members of the public have been advised to avoid the area and traffic diversions are in place.

'Stormont round-table'

Stormont parties are due to meet with the secretary of state later today.

It comes after Chris Heaton-Harris met with the EU's lead Brexit negotiator Maroš Šefčovič on Wednesday evening.

Issues including the Protocol, Northern Ireland's budget and the implementation of opt-out organ donation law are all expected to be on the agenda.

'University strikes'

Some staff at Queen's and Ulster Universities are set to begin the first of a two-day strike.

Members of the University College Union are taking the action as a result of an ongoing dispute over pay.

More than 70,000 staff from 150 universities across the UK will take to the picket lines. Further action is due to take place later this month.

'House sales down'

House sales in Northern Ireland dropped by around 25% in January. That's according to the latest report by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors and Ulster Bank.

It shows that the number of home buyer enquiries have dropped as well as the overall supply of homes for sale.

'Ireland v France'

After a super start to their Six Nations campaign away to Wales last Saturday, Ireland will be hoping to clinch another victory this weekend against France.

Coach Andy Farrell is set to announce his team selection later today.

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