Morning top 5: Aleppo operations 'suspended' to allow evacuations; European Investment Bank to open Dublin office

The top stories this Friday morning...

Russia says Syria's army has halted its attacks in Aleppo to allow trapped civilians to be evacuated.

Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov says around 8,000 people would be taken out of the besieged city.

Government forces have retaken three quarters of east Aleppo in recent weeks - areas rebels have controlled for four years.

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Most voters favour hiring more public servants than public sector pay rises, according to a new poll out today.

The Ipsos / MRBI survey in The Irish Times shows most people would rather see more public servants hired, rather than higher salaries.

We also favour capital spending, ahead of tax cuts or welfare increases.

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The European Investment Bank will open its first office in Dublin later this morning.

Loans for major projects that commercial banks are unlikely to take on will be made available at more favourable terms.

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The Central Bank has imposed a fine of €98,000 on Bray Credit Union in County Wicklow.

A settlement has been reached on breaches of the Criminal Justice Act 2010.

The Central Bank says the majority of breaches persisted for more than five years.

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President Obama has paid tribute to the legendary astronaut John Glenn - the first American to orbit the Earth - who has died at the age of 95.

Mr Obama's described him as "an icon and a friend" and someone who always had "the right stuff".

The former Ohio Senator made three orbits in 1962 - and even went back into space in 1998 at the age of 77, aboard the space shuttle Discovery.