Morning top 5: Tributes pour in for Liam Cosgrave; Catalonia labels Spanish government "irresponsible"; Study claims Ireland on path to full employment

The top stories this morning on Newstalk.com ...

Tributes are being paid to the former Taoiseach Liam Cosgrave who has died at the age of 97.

President Michael D. Higgins said he was “committed to serving the people of Ireland with all of his energy, intellect as well as passion.”

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said Ireland has lost a great statesman while his predecessor Enda Kenny described Mr Cosgrave as a man of great loyalty.

Mr Cosgrave led the country in government with the Labour Party between 1973 and 1977.

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The girlfriend of the Las Vegas gunman has said she had no idea he was planning violence.

Marilou Danley said Stephen Paddock - who killed 58 people on Sunday - was “a kind, caring, quiet man.”

Meanwhile US President Donald Trump has met with some of the victims of the attack, commending their “tremendous bravery.”

After meeting staff at a Las Vegas hospital, President Trump said the emergency service’s response to the attack was "indescribable."

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The ESRI is forecasting that Ireland will be close to full employment by the end of next year.

In a new report, the economic think-tank says consumer spending is one of the main reasons for strong economic growth.

But it is advising the government to bring in a 'neutral' budget.

Report author Professor Kieran McQuinn says increasing spending too much could cause problems for the economy.

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Gardaí are continuing to detain a man and a woman in Dublin, after they were arrested as part of an operation targeting gangland crime yesterday.

They were arrested after Gardaí seized a loaded handgun and ammunition from a car they stopped in Rathborne Village in Ashtown yesterday afternoon.

The pair – who are both in their 30s – are being held under the Offences against the State Act at Finglas Garda Station.

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The Catalan President has said his government will "carry out the will of the Catalan people" following the independence referendum.

Carles Puigdemont was speaking after the Spanish government rejected calls for mediation over the region’s push for independence.

Mr Puigdemont criticised the Spanish King Felipe VI for following the central government's "catastrophic" policies since the political crisis began – and labelled the decision to reject mediation “irresponsible.”