Belfast based nationalist newspaper The Irish News is to be sold in the Republic of Ireland.

Established in 1891, the paper merged with the Belfast Morning News the following year. Over ninety years later, the paper is still entwined in the many strands of nationalist politics in Northern Ireland.

In 1982 Martin O'Brien became the youngest newspaper editor in Belfast when taking over at The Irish News. Since taking the helm, he has made many significant changes at the paper including the banning of Provisional IRA death notices. Now a decision has been taken to enter the newspaper market south of the border.

We're convinced there is a demand for The Irish News in the South.

Martin O'Brien believes that making The Irish News available in the south will appeal to those originally from Northern Ireland or who have an interest in affairs there.

Despite the circulation drive at the paper, a dispute between journalists and management is ongoing. Trade unions are not happy with management at The Irish News over failing to fill a senior journalist vacancy at the paper despite advertising the position.

Journalists Una Murphy and David Morgan explain the ongoing dispute. They believe that the expansion of the paper is being made at the expense of journalists and their workload. Martin O'Brien refutes these claims and says that in the last fifteen months staff numbers have increased from seventeen to twenty-five. 

An RTÉ News report broadcast on 20 October 1983. The reporter is Gary Honeyford.