Ireland to decide in coming weeks on new EU referendum

Ireland to decide in coming weeks on new EU referendum

Czech leaders downplay Klaus anti-Lisbon meeting in Dublin

Prague/Dublin - Czech leaders Wednesday sought to downplay Czech President Vaclav Klaus' meeting with Ireland's leading opponent of the Lisbon Treaty, which spurred a diplomatic row ahead of the Czech Republic's EU presidency.

"I find it legitimate when someone presents his opinion. And I respect it even if I have a completely different view," said Czech Prime Minister Mirek Topolanek, who supports the EU reform pact.

Czech Vice-Premier for European Affairs Alexandr Vondra said that "one dinner can't undermine the Czech presidency, which the government has responsibly prepared for two years."

Scantily clad Ryanair airhostesses land charity calendar in trouble

Ryanair closes base in eastern SpainMelbourne, Nov 12 : Irish airline Ryanair, known for being a low-cost airline, recently landed itself in trouble when its latest charity calendar was branded sexist.

The calendar only had pictures of scantily clad female cabin crew, which made the airhostesses look more like page three pinups than plane staff.

Czech leader causes diplomatic row with Lisbon-No meeting in Dublin

Dublin - Irish Foreign Minister Micheal Martin on Wednesday described visiting Czech President Vaclav Klaus' meeting with the leader of the Eurosceptic group that campaigned successfully against the Lisbon Treaty in June as "an inappropriate intervention."

Speaking on Irish state RTE Radio, Martin said that while Klaus had the right to include private elements to his state visit, his appearance before reporters with Declan Ganley of the Libertas group Tuesday evening meant that a private dinner "turned out to be much more political."

Irish lawmaker criticizes Czech president during state visit

Party finally over for Irish Progressive DemocratsDublin  - Ciaran Cuffe of Ireland's Green Party has denounced visiting Czech President Vaclav Klaus as ultra-conservative and anti- European and has asked the Irish government to express some concern over his views, national broadcaster RTE reported Tuesday.

The Czech Republic, which assumes the rotating EU presidency on January 1, will have to deal with Ireland's rejection in a June referendum of the Lisbon Treaty aimed at streamlining the decision- making process in the 27-member bloc.

Queen Elizabeth 2 departs Southampton for Dubai

Queen Elizabeth 2 departs Southampton for DubaiCork, Ireland  - The departure of the Queen Elizabeth 2 from Southampton on November 11 marks the end of an era which will see the last of the great ocean liners sail through the Mediterranean and the Suez Canal en route to her final resting place in Dubai.

From November 27, Cunard's longest-serving liner and flagship will become a floating "hotel, retail and entertainment destination" at the Palm Jumeirah, the enormous palm-shaped artificial island currently being developed as a complex of tourist hotels and apartments, also by Dubai World from 2009.