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Bereavement service up 60pc

There has been a 60pc rise in the number of bereaved parents seeking help from the support group Anam Cara since it was first launched.

It comes as thousands of balloons were released at a special ceremony in Athlone yesterday, which was attended by 75 families.

Overall, around 1,775 parents availed of the services of the support group last year.

There is growing demand for the service, which was created by a group of bereaved parents, helping other bereaved parents.

It was first launched in February 2008, and the charity's awareness and fundraising campaign will run throughout the month of November.

Three dead in Swiss Alp town

Police said they have found three people dead in a Swiss Alpine town, but aren't immediately giving details on how they died.

Police spokeswoman Ramona Mock said officers found three bodies near the railway station in Wilderswil, in central Switzerland, after being called to the scene early this morning.

She had no further details on the incident. Local media reported that the three were victims of a shooting.

Taiwan keeps Burkina ties

Taiwan's foreign ministry has said it is confident of maintaining ties with African ally Burkina Faso following the resignation of the president and an army takeover.

Burkina Faso is one of the three remaining countries in Africa - along with Swaziland and Sao Tome and Principe - that still have formal diplomatic relations with Taiwan, with most countries recognising China instead.

China regards Taiwan as a renegade province to be recovered by force if necessary.

Doctor Who's musical tour

Former Doctor Who star Peter Davison is to be the presenter of a musical tour of the hit TV show's tunes.

The 63-year-old actor, who played the fifth Time Lord for three years from 1981, will be on stage for the Doctor Who Symphonic Spectacular.

Davison hosted a similar tour in Australia and New Zealand earlier this year.