Gardaí have searched houses as they wait to speak to a suspect in hospital.

Gardaí believe “huge progress” has been made in the Ashling Murphy murder investigation in recent days.

They’re waiting to speak to a suspect, who’s currently being treated in hospital for a number of injuries.

The investigation into Ashling’s murder has gathered pace over the weekend.

A number of houses in Dublin and Offaly have been searched – and Garda divers remain at the canal where she was attacked to look for any weapon that was used.

A key focus of the investigation is the man currently in hospital, who has links to the Tullamore area.

His DNA is being checked against samples taken from the scene.

Ashling’s murder has also led to calls for more action to tackle gender-based violence.

A new government strategy is due to be published in March.

Among the measures being called for, the Director of the National’s Women’s Council, Orla O’Connor, says there should be a specific minister responsible for violence against women.

Meanwhile, a minute’s silence is expected to be observed at all schools across Ireland tomorrow morning:

Ashling’s funeral will take place in Mountbolus, Co. Offaly at 11 o’clock tomorrow morning.