Morning top 5: Bus Éireann recommendation expected; US-Russia relations 'may be at all-time low'

The top stories this Thursday morning...

The Labour Court is expected to issue a recommendation on the Bus Éireann strike by lunchtime.

Unions say pickets - which have been in place for three weeks - will continue until the recommendation is issued, but are due to be lifted to allow a ballot of workers to take place.

However, it could be tomorrow before Bus Éireann services begin fully operating again.

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The water charges regime introduced by the last Government will come to an end later today.

The Dáil will vote to accept the report of the water services committee.

It says only those who excessively use water will pay, refunds will be issued, and there will be a referendum to prevent water services being privatised.

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The Dáil will vote on a motion of no confidence in the Garda Commissioner later.

However, the Sinn Féin motion will be defeated as it does not have the support of Fianna Fáil or Fine Gael.

Both parties say the Dáil has no legal role and therefore the motion would have no effect.

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Gardaí are now legally allowed to test drivers for drugs on the roadside.

New laws came into effect at midnight letting them look for cannabis, cocaine, heroin and several other drugs.

Anyone found to be over the limit faces a minimum of a one-year disqualification from driving.

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US President Donald Trump admits America's relationship with Russia "may be at an all-time low".

The two superpowers are continuing to clash over a chemical gas attack in Syria - widely blamed on the Moscow-backed Assad regime.

President Trump admits ordering a missile attack on Russia's long-time ally Syria last week has damaged relations.

Russia yesterday vetoed the latest UN resolution condemning the suspected use of chemical weapons in Syria.