Evening top 5: Saudi Arabia to allow women to drive; 8th Amendment referendum planned for next May or June

The top stories this Tuesday evening...

Government planning 8th Amendment referendum for next May or June

The Taoiseach has confirmed an abortion referendum on the 8th Amendment to the Constitution will take place in May or June next year.

Leo Varadkar has told the Dáil of Government plans for a total of seven referendums between now and the summer of 2019.

Saudi Arabia to allow women to drive

Manal al-Sharif, a Saudi Arabian activist who started the #women2drive movement and was arrested for driving. Picture by: NurPhoto/SIPA USA/PA Images

Saudi Arabia has announced it will allow women to drive - a move which will end an internationally condemned rule in the ultraconservative country.

Saudi Arabia's King Salman issued a Royal decree introducing the country's new policy to allow both men and women to have driving licences - although the changes will not come into effect until next June.

The move was welcomed by activists, with prominent Saudi campaigner Manal al-Sharif saying she was in tears after the news was announced.

Coronation Street actress Liz Dawn dies

Tributes are being paid to British actress Liz Dawn who has died aged 77.

She played the character Vera Duckworth in the long-running soap Coronation Street for 34 years.

In a statement, the 77-year-old's family said the actress died peacefully at home on Monday night with relatives around her.

 

Ceremony held to mark 10 years since deaths of two Bray firefighters

A picture of Firefighters Mark O'Shaughnessy (left) and Brian Murray. Picture by: Niall Carson/PA Archive/PA Images

A ceremony has taken place to mark 10 years since two Wicklow firefighters died in the line of duty.

Brian Murray (46) and Mark O'Shaughnessy (25) lost their lives when the roof of a disused factory in Bray collapsed during a blaze in 2007.

 

Bere Island syndicate collects its Euromillions prize

A syndicate of Lotto players from the tiny Bere Island off the Cork coast has collected its €500,000 Euromillions jackpot.

It has been seven days since the 180 residents of the island were thrust into the international spotlight after a winning Euromillions Plus ticket was sold at the island's post office.