20/02/2014 Newsnight


In-depth investigation and analysis of the stories behind the day's headlines, with Laura Kuenssberg.

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Last night's promise of peace just one of the casualties of what looks


like war. The White House has expressed its outrage, EU leaders


have agreed sanctions, but with blood on the streets already what


can they really achieve, as the turmoil spreads far beyond the


capital. Should buying sex be illegal? We can reveal an important


group of British politicians think so. But other countries are relaxing


the rules. We report from Europe's biggest brothel. Do you enjoy it as


a job? When you have nice men, of course. When you don't? Then I'm


also not so friendly. The fallen Queen of the tabloid starts to tell


her story. Brooks Brookes Rebekah Brooks begins her defence in the


hacking trial. After David Bowie's game-changing intervention in the


Scottish independence debate. We are joined by the man who fell to the


Newsnight studio or kind of. Good evening, 75 demonstrators are


dead. Nearly 70 policemen have been taken hostage. This is not just a


battle for the Ukrainian capital's main square, but a violent fight for


the future of a country that now feels on the edge of war on the edge


of Europe. The White House is angry, the EU trying tough diplomacy, but


no-one seems to have a clear idea of how to stop the fighting. Gabriel


Gatehouse in Kiev is there for us tonight. He has been on the streets.


As you would expect his report has disturbing images.


The truce didn't last long. This morning Kiev again awoke to the


sound of gunfire. A small group of protestors was trying to retake


ground (gunfire) They were met by sniper fire with deadly results. She


has just said there are six dead people up there, not just injured,


dead. They have been hit by snipers. Some of the demonstrators pulled


back, dragging their injured comrades to safety, under a hail of


bullets fired by Government forces. The fighting has moved up, as they


tried to retake some of the territory taken off them by the


police some days ago. These are the injured and the bangs remember


hearing is real gunfire. The nearby Hotel Ukraine, where we and other


journalists were saying turned into a makeshift triage centre. One of


the first to be brought in was this man. Is there an exit wound? He had


taken a bullet through the thigh. Easy. Another lay on the floor of


the lobby, bleeding profusely from his foot. The priest's services were


not required, both of these men survived. We left the hotel and


ventured up towards the new frontline. The majority of the


gunfire seemed to be coming from police lines. But not all of it.


From one of the upper windows of the hotel, a shot rang out. Up there,


our hotel. That window, fifth row from the left, second from the top,


one that was open. I saw the shooter, he was wearing one of the


protesters' green helmets. The number of people injured today must


have reached well into the hundreds. They just kept on coming, some still


defiant as they were stretchered off. At the same time fresh


protestors came forward to man the new barricades. TRANSLATION: We


broke through police lines right here says, it was our initiative,


they are unpredictable. So are we. The Mayor of Kiev announced he was


joining the opposition and invited the police force to join him. It is


not clear if any have taken him up on that offer. In other parts of


Ukraine, especially the west, there are reports that security forces are


refusing to follow orders to crack down on the protesters. You have to


be careful, of course, with comparison, but we have seen this


happen in other countries. Peaceful demonstrations eventually turning


violent. Look at that up there, that was the headquarters of the


protestors, until it was ransacked, firebombed and now it is smoking


remains. This is no longer just a protest movement, this is becoming a


rebellion. And the question now is how much further both sides are


prepared to push this. This afternoon two armoured personnel


arriers were parked just beyond the new frontline. The Interior Minister


said police would be issued with firearms. On Independence Square


protesters were busy clearing the beenbury left behind in the --


debris left behind in the areas newly captured from the authorities.


Judges by the hundreds of cartridges they found, there is already no


shortage of guns. Very west visited the office of the mayor, the one who


said he had defected to the opposition. He was nowhere to be


seen. But the place is full of demonstrators, resting, recharging


their batteries, waiting for the next battle. These people too are


armed. Sergei told us his men had captured 30 police officers this


morning, confiscating their weapons and ammunition. His colleague,


Mariam told me how he helped to seize the officers. TRANSLATION:


They got a beating from us. I won't lie. But then we delivered them to


the protest authorities, they will decide their fate. I asked him and


his comrades whether they were worried that the protest was turning


to conflict? They all agreed this is already war. Gabriel joins us now


from his hotel in central Kiev. Appalling violence today, it has


gone way beyond protest. Is it revolution or is it war? Well this


afternoon we saw eight bodies of the dead laid out on the street, the


overwhelming initial reaction, I think, was shock, and grief. People


pouring in to pay their respects and ask why is this happening. But of


course with every death the bitterness and the division grows.


And if you look across Ukraine you see in the west more protests,


Government buildings being taken over. One local governor being


hauled out of his offices and handcuffed to the front. In the east


traditionally thought to be more Russian-facing, we heard a local


governor talking about a clampdown on those who undermine state


authority. In the Crimea, other statements. This feels like a real


threat of Civil War. It is not there yet. Sometimes it feels on the


streets of this capital like the talks of division of split are a


little bit overdone and that one thing that many Ukrainians have in


common, they often say they just want to live together in a country


free from corruption. And briefly, the diplomatic machine is now being


cranked up in the west. But does that even feel relevant where you


are? On the streets I have to say it feels very irrelevant, just briefly


to tell you what's happened. Both Russia, the US and the EU have said


they have come together to try to broker a solution, but then you see


the divisions there and the diplomatic game. The EU and the US


introducing sanctions against those they see as responsible for the


violence. Russia saying that this is an attempted coup on the streets, as


said, people finding this utterly irrelevant, they say they just want


to get rid of the Government. Thank you very much indeed. As was


suggested the unrest has not been confined to Ukraine's capital, but


spreading right across the country. Protests have also rocked cities in


the broadly pro-western regions of the country. In Lutsk, the governor


appointed by President Yanukovych was seized by anti-Government


protesters and frog marched in handcuffs to stage in the city's


main square, after he refused to resign. Here protestors set fire to


the local headquarters of the Government security forces and took


control of several Government buildings. And in this area,


anti-Government forces stormed the local Security Services building.


But in the broadly pro-Government east of Ukraine there were few signs


of unrest. In fact, in the city of Donetsk a group of miners set off to


Kiev to support the Government beleaguered forces. Joining us in


the west of the country is a student activist and one of the protesters.


Thank you for joining us, is the Kiev Government in charge where you


are? Good evening to you. I wouldn't be you know, I don't want to say


this because we are ready to support every single sane idea and every


single sane instruction that comes to us. But whenever lately,


especially we have been instructed in such an utter horrible


instructions, you know, we didn't obey that. So I can say the


Government is in charge, I can't say that, I have to say people are in


charge. If the Government refuses to budge and leave, how long will you


keep on protesting, how long will you keep on fighting? Till we reach


our end. There is no other choice for us. The choices are either this


Government goes down and the, actually somebody hears the voices


of the people, or we're just going to stand there until it happens,


that's it. Does that mean war? Not necessarily, no. At the moment let's


say in my city we are having a civilian police controlling the


public and not allowing any more violence. So we're not, we want to


be peaceful. We want to stand until something has changed. With us now


are Alexander Nekrassov a former Kremlin adviser and Robert Brinkley


who was the British ambassador in Ukraine. Firstly to you Robert, you


know this country very well, is it slipping into Civil War? I don't


know if we can yet call it "Civil War", but there is clearly very


serious protests. The pictures in the film earlier were horrifying


what is happening in Kiev, a city I know well and love. Which was a


peaceful city, even through the orange revolution when there was


half a million people out on the streets for weeks on end. Then there


was no bloodshed. Now very different. So there is a civil


conflict, but the actual conflict and the fighting is still confined


in a very small area of the capital city. But we have seen how it is


spreading across the country. Alexander Nekrassov is there a real


risk here of civil war? Of course there is, the problem is the so


called opposition has been hijacked by radicals who are now arming the


followers. What I find strange to be honest with you is we have seen the


report by your correspondent, why didn't he talk to the other side.


Why didn't he talk to any official in Kiev and ask him what is going on


the other side. Why didn't we see any dead policemen. I have seen


footage on the Russian media where a group of protestors beat a policeman


to death with bricks. Now why don't you show this for once. Because you


are always showing these protesters as if they are some freedom


fighters. We have seen very clearly the Ukrainian security forces using


AK-46s on people in the streets. We don't know, we are not sure if they


are armed but it was clearly very serious violence. And in the west of


the country are you calling that girl a violent radical? I'm talking


about the people who are armed snipers and shooting at everybody.


The problem is that when you say the police were armed, they did not have


any live ammunition until the protesters, the "protestors" because


they are basically insurgents if they are armed, they started


shooting and killing policemen. On Tuesday it was announced that 25


people were dead, nobody bothered to say that 12 were policemen. This is


very biased. Is he right about that? Well, certainly there was some


policemen among the dead on Tuesday. Can I say that all violence in this


situation is to be condemned, whoever is responsible for it. But


the fact is that the vast majority of the protesters have been


peaceful. There has been a small number, a couple of hundred, a few


hundred maybe who have engaged in violence in the last couple of


weeks. That is reprehensible, it is not to be cone doned. But the


Government, President Yanukovych has had three months to try to resolve


this situation. And they have let it fester and that's why the


radicalisation has grown. G Putin go along with this violence? I think


Putin and the whole leadership are worried and anxious about this


situation growing and growing and turning into civil war. Let me point


out another thing, before the Ukrainian Government and the


Ukrainian President refused to sign that agreement with the EU, no-one


in the west was criticising him, no-one was talking about corruption


in the Ukraine. He suited them. The moment he said we're not going to


sign this, suddenly everything changes. You are disagreeing? I have


to disagree with that, Yanukovych, well before this has had a very bad


reputation for corruption, for enriching himself and his family.


That is why he's so desperately unpopular in the country. And what


started off as a protest out of shock that the Government had


suddenly done a U-turn on the association agreement with the


European Union very quickly turned into major protests against


Yanukovych. What we are seeing now is these protests right across the


country, would Russia ever tolerate part of the Ukraine, the west,


breaking away and splitering off? It is very difficult to say now.


Because we snowed to resolve this situation -- need to resolve this


situation first. We are seeing at the protesters go and take orders


from America. Do you have evidence of that? On Monday all the prisoners


who were arrested during the violence were released. Immediately


a provocation is organised on Tuesday near the parliament building


and they started attacking the parliament building. How does that


happen? Who gives these orders, and explain to me one thing that I would


love to ask your correspondent, how is it that peaceful or semi-peaceful


unarmed protesters are with standing attacks by armed police. This I


don't understand. Ambassador is that even vaguely plausible that some how


this is being masterminded by EU leaders like America? I don't find


it plausible at all. What happened on Tuesday was that the opposition


were expecting the parliament to start debating reform to the


constitution to remove some of the additional presidential powers which


Yanukovych has given himself. Instead Yanukovych's party said


there would be no debate on that. We must leave it there, thank you very


much indeed for coming in. You Newsnight has seen the final report


from a group of MPs that will say buying sex should be against the law


in England and Wales. That would follow Sweden, Norway and soon


France where the clients of prostitutes are considered


criminals. But other European countries are going in the opposite


direction, legalising the trade. In a moment we will ask which route we


should take, but first Germany has the most liberal laws. It has been


very good for a certain kind of business. We have been allowed to


film inside Europe's biggest brothel. And a warning, there are


images of nudity from the very start of this report.


This is the result of an experiment, one its critics say has gone badly


wrong. In 2002 Germany legalised the buying and selling of sex. The 16


billion euro industry is now dominated by so called megabrothels


like this. Paradise in Stuttgart is the largest of its kind, at a cost


of ?5 million, it is home to 80 women and hundreds of male customers


every night. The sex trade here is so out in the open, it can feel a


bit uncomfortable, even shocking at first. But large brothels like this


have now spread across cities in this country. The decision to relax


prostitution laws in 2002 was meant to make life safer for sex workers,


critics say it has just made Germany into the bored Dell low of Europe.


-- bordello of Europe. Most of the people here didn't want to appear on


camera. But the brothel said 22-year-old Hannah would speak to


us. She has been working in the sex industry for two years, sleeping


with five other six men a night. I started at 6.00 and finish 3.00 in


the morning, and it is OK. I can say no when I don't like. I can search


what like. I don't have to do anything that the men like, I do


what I want. How much could you earn, or how much could a girl in


general earn in one night? Totally depends. So you can make from


100-1,000 euros, it depends on it. 1,000 euros a night? When you have


luck, it can be, but not often. If prostitution was banned in Germany,


if these places didn't exist, would you still work as a prostitute? No.


Then it is not safe. So you wouldn't work at all in that area? No, it is


really too dangerous, too many crazy people. Do you enjoy it as a job?


When I have a nice man, of course. When you don't? Then I'm also not so


friendly. This is a good thing. You don't have to be every time


friendly. These are working rooms, can you look inside here, very nice


rooms. By treating it as a job like any other, the idea was to price


women away from the pimps that run the trade. Sex workers can now pay


into social security and demand health insurance. But, partly as a


result of the new law, the number of prostitutes in Germany is thought to


have doubled to 400,000. Most of the women here are from Eastern Europe,


countries like Romania and Bulgaria. Critics say the policy has led to a


rise in trafficking, as girls are shipped in to meet demand. The


people who own and run large brothel chains strongly deny that's the


case. Does it also increase prostitution


in general in Germany having places like this?


Germany now has the most liberal prostitution laws in Europe. It is


one of handful of countries alongside the Netherlands to have


legalised the profession. In the UK the buying and selling of sex is


technically legal, but brothels, kerb crawling and solacetation are


all against the law. At the other end of the spectrum, Sweden, Norway


and Iceland, they are selling sex legally, instead it is the man


paying for it who is punished with a heavy fine and prison. The same


Swedish model is being considered by Northern Ireland and six other


countries. Most notably France where legislation is going through


parliament model is being considered by Northern Ireland and six other


countries. Most notably France where legislation is going through


parliament. When the new law goes through it means everyone in France


could get a fine, where a few hundred metres over there


prostitution will be legal. Both countries are going in completely


different directions when it comes to tackling exploitation and the sex


trade. For some that is a clear business opportunity. On the


outskirts of the city workers are busy on the new Paradise Brothel.


The sixth the chain has built across Austria. From next month 80 women a


night will work in the 30 or so private rooms here.


Critics will say what they are trying to do in France is protect


women there. What you are doing is quite a cynical way to exploit a


change in the law. But if the idea behind legalisation


was to drag the industry into the light, then here that hasn't


happened. There are a number of regulated brothels here, but on a


cold Friday night there are still young girls working the streets. The


city's left-wing mayor supported the decision to relax prostitution law,


she has firmly changed her mind. But for the moment the EU appears


split down the middle on the sex trade. Next month a parliamentary


inquiry in the UK will recommend we reject legalisation and officially


criminalise the buying of sex for the first time. Whichever direction


Europe follows, whether it is the liberal, German or strict Swedish


approach, that could decide the way thousands of women and men are


treated for decades to come. Joining me now are Laura Lee a sex worker


and spokes person for the Internationl Union of Sex Workers.


Dr Belinda Brooks-Gordon, author of The Price of Sex, Dorcas Erskine,


who works with traffiked women, and Mary Honeyball a Labour MEP who


campaigns in Brussels on just this issue. Welcome to you all. Laura


Lee, firstly to you, just to be completely clear about this, men pay


you for sex, that's been your career for many years? Yes, they do. Men


indeed pay me for sex, I have been a sex worker now for just under 20


years. I love my job. I truly do, and I don't believe I'm quit the


different from the vast majority in saying that. The current proposals


that are on the table really concern me because it seems to me that it


will create a police state, because when consenting adults are having


sex that is none of the state's business. But when you see the rules


relaxed so far that there is that kind of warehousing of sex, like in


that megabrothel, what do you make of that, would you be happy to work


somewhere like that? Personally speaking would I be happy to work in


a megabrothel, yes. I'm not saying the sex industry is for everybody


necessarily, it is my choice and I love what I do and the same can be


said for many of my colleagues. My big concern with the current push


going on is the voices of sex workers have not been heard or


consulted. Belinda Brooks-Gordon you also believe the rules should be


relaxed to such an extent that sex businesses should even pay tax, be


formalised like that? That is the circumstance in Austria and


Switzerland, you never hear problems of those states. What is interesting


is areas where it is very prohibited, Thailand, Jamaica, it is


actually more visible. We should treat it like any other business


like selling bread and milk down the shops? Not like any other business.


For example the situation in Germany is that people can't be made to go


into that business in the labour exchange, for example. And the


client can't enforce the contract. But the sex worker can if he doesn't


pay. Mary Honeyball nice bit of cash for the Treasury? It doesn't work


quite like that in Germany. There are about 400,000 women who work in


prostitution across Germany. They are supposed to have access to


healthcare, be able to claim benefits and all those sorts of


things that Belinda talked about. They don't, at the last count only


44 out of those 400,000 had actually done that. So it isn't nice money


for the Treasury. You have to ask why those women working in


prostitution doesn't actually come forward and take advantage of what


the state claims that they will give them. Many of them, Dorcas Erskine,


like Laura here said they made a choice to do this for a living. Do


you have a problem with the choice they make, a problem with the choice


that Laura has made? No with respect to lawyer a she seems happy with the


choice she made. She doesn't represent the vast majority of


people in prostitution, please don't interrupt me. I believe laws are


made not to protect the minority who are fine but the majority who are


not. Even people who do not agree with our stance on prostitution, I


quote research from someone who is very verdant about our stance on


prostitution that they did for the Home Office. They noted most of the


women they interviewed had entered prostitution at the age of 13 years


old. That 78% of them were in the care system and that a lot of them


also came from migrant backgrounds. Those are people who are vulnerable.


And I don't believe that making a choice of very limited economic


choices is the best that we can offer women in those vulnerable


states. I believe that as soon as Eton and Cheltenham ladies


colleagues put on the curriculum that prostitution is available for


everyone to do for every social class and race and economic


background, then let's talk about choice but we are not there yet. Are


you saying that sex work and legal class doesn't exist? I'm not, I'm


saying the majority of women who work in it are women who are from


these socioeconomic backgrounds. That is not what the evidence says.


Actually the evidence does that. We can pinpoint back and forth about


this and that research. On the wider issue, the wider issue is. Research


is important. Why should sex be... . Why is it for you to tell her what


to do for a living? I'm not. Which is why I respect the Swedish model


which Mary is putting forward. I really do not believe, and it really


annoys me that the state criminalises women in prostitution,


especially when they come from these backgrounds. I believe we need to


look at criminalising the buyer. The Swedish model where the client


becomes the criminal, but Laura? I'm not speaking from research or


papers, I'm speaking from 20 years of on the ground absolute experience


in the sex industry. As to your not representative argument, I have


worked in five-star Penthouse apartments down to what could be


reasonably described as a chicken coup and everything inbetween, I


have met some very, very desperate women in those circumstance, but to


criminalise the buyer of the sex act is not the way forward. You need to


hit the traffickers. 1,140 women in our organisation have been trafficed


your experience can't be the only voice to hear. Whether you like the


idea of prostitution or not, whether you want to accept it or not, and


many people do not understandably, isn't it better however to have


women inside a place of business where they are safe, where they are


inside and not having the trade pushed to dark corners in unsafe


parts of our cities? I would like to challenge the dark corpers idea. If


the buyer is criminalised the woman who is not the criminal can come


forward. On the trafficking issue, there is good evidence from Sweden,


gathered by the Swedish police that trafficking has actually halved in


Sweden since the law was introduced there in 1999ue, there is good


evidence from Sweden, gathered by the Swedish police that trafficking


has actually halved in Sweden since the law was introduced there in


1999. I think that Swedish model with the criminalising of those


buying the sex has brought a drop. Are you saying there is something


wrong with having sex. Purchasing or paying for sex would not be


considered by many people? What is the subtle difference between


consenting adults behind closed doors having transactional sex, and


it is sometimes just time. Let her finish and I will bring you in. The


Poppy Project have a vested interest. Rather than a row over the


statistic, finish your point. You used to think all sorts of things


were acceptable, like accepting children up chimneys are acceptable


and slavery acceptable, why continue now forever to think it is


acceptable? It is only sex and only earning money. The average sex


worker will earn over ?50,000 a year, 85% of the sex workers


according to the academic they ary. -- theory. On that point, it is only


sex it is only money what is so wrong with that? I guess the


formulation of that argument is to make it seem like we're


conservative, we're quite puritanical, but I don't see what's


conservative about saying that sex should be free. I haven't finished


and I also don't see what's conservative about believing that we


want a society as they are producing in Sweden where men can feel they


don't have to purchase sex on the backs of those who are vulnerable,


what a radical conservative idea. If it was going forward, what


difference would it make to you, if your clients are criminal? Let's


bear in mind I work with a lot of disabled clients, guys who are in


dire, dire circumstances, not that I'm saying that entitles them to


sex, I'm inviting the viewer to take a different view. What an insulting


view. Don't talk across of me. Section 39 effectively says the


police can come and kick my door in to investigate the fact I'm having


consensual sex behind closed doors. Really quickly very briefly on


legislation? In the European Parliament not yet. The point is you


legislate for the majority. The majority of women who work in


prostitution have either been traffiked or have been coming out of


care. It is not free choice. There is clearly huge dispute over the


numbers and strong views on all sides. We must leave it there, thank


you all very much indeed for coming in.


Thank you. The life story could be perfect tabloid fodder itself. A


girl done good, from sweeping the floors and making the tea at the


Warrington Guardian, to one of the most powerful newspaper editor jobs


in the land. But the unfortunate twist of the hacking scandal landed


Rebekah Brooks in the witness box today, as the defence case began,


the judge ordered the jury to acquit her of one of the charges she faced.


The one relating to the procurement of pictures of Prince William at


Sandhurst. With all that information we have this report.


She's best known as one of the most powerful and influential women in


the country. Can we have it down for a bit now. Editor of Britain's two


biggest-selling tabloids, personally close to prime ministers and a


favourite of global media mogul, Rupert Murdoch. But that was then.


Today at the Old Bailey, after months of prosecution evidence,


Rebekah Brooks finally got the chance to tell her story. The


opening exchanges with her QC, John lap Laidlaw, produced lots of the


kind of colour, as they call it in the trade, that might well have


graced the newspapers that Rebekah Brooks used to. She was born in


Cheshire in 1968, an only child she looked after two aged grandparents.


She was state educated, her father a gardener, her mother a PA. When she


was 21 they split. But she said she had already caught the journalism


bug from her grandmother. My grandmother she was a writer, she


wrote a lot of poetry and wrote a protestity column for a local


number. The idea probably stemmed from her. From a Saturday job at a


local paper e owned by newspaper entrepeneur Eddie Shah, to London


and the News of the World magazine, and in no time to the features


department which she became head of at the age of 26. She described for


the jury a very male newsroom culture. Dominated by internal


competition. It was also standard practice, she said, for the news and


features departments to each keep records of mistake, errors and other


Sunday drew information about the other. And so it was Rebekah Brooks,


told the court, that the news department had stories about her.


That they had labelled "twit 1", "twit 2", "4, 5, 6" and so on. She


described it as old school misogyny. But she did well. She brought the


paper Gazza's shock confession to domestic violence and the interview


with Divine Brown, the prostitute ought in action with Hugh Grant. It


cost $250,000, money spent in part to stop colleagues from the Sun and


Mail to get to her. It did Rebekah Brooks's helpcation bosses no harm


at all. Rupert Murdoch began to take a personal interest, promoting her


from features editor to deputy editor at the Sun, a big move


considering she had no daily newspaper experience Bach to the


Mirror editor, she was 32 years old. It is accepted that at that time


significant amounts of phone hacking were going on at the News of the


World, and some people have already pleaded guilty. Rebekah Brooks said


she didn't even know the name of Glenn Mulcaire. With 125 editions in


her two-and-a-half years as editor, 200 stories a week, and double that


discussed at some point: It is impossible to know every source of


every story because of the sheer volume of material coming into the


paper. Which, along with much of the rest of what her QC took her through


today will no doubt be a key plank of her defence, to the broad thrust


of the prosecution case that she simply must have known what was


going on. All the defendants deny all of the charges against them. Now


it was meant to be a bit of friendly advise to take a look at what could


be a matter of life and death. An e-mail published today revealed the


Medical Director of the NHS in England told his counterpart in


Wales that death rates in six Welsh hospitals ought to be investigated.


Sir Bruce Keogh described the figures as "worrying". Similar types


of data provided the vital clues as to what was going appallingly wrong


at Stafford Hospital. But the Welsh authorities say so far there is no


need to make further inquiries, whatever the data, some Welsh


families believe they have been badly let down. Our policy editor


has been to meet one of them. There was birth and condition, if you want


to put it that way it was a result of the birth, subsequently his death


was, and because he died in the situation around it the coroner had


ordered an inquest. Which no parent should have to sit through. Noah


Tyler died ten months old in December 2011. A coroner as


described his dead to a gross failure in the care provider to him


and his mother Colleen Tyler at the University Hospital of Wales in


Cardiffder to him and his mother Colleen Tyler at the University


Hospital of Wales in Cardiff. When she was born she was upstairs and he


was put on a cooling mat to stop brain-damage. He had tubes and wires


going in and out of everywhere. That is what the birth of Noah. His is


just one of the cases that have contributed to high death rates


among the hospitals' patients. Now a senior medical official who has just


completed a review of 14 low-performing hospitals in England


wants an inquiry. Sir Bruce Keogh, Medical Director of NHS England,


wrote to his counterpart in Wales to suggest that he too should hold a


similar investigation. Sir Bruce said that there are six hospitals in


Wales, including University Hospital of Wales in Cardiff that show


persistently high mortality rates. The letter itself is receipt weeks


ordinary. Sir Bruce, an official with responsibility in England,


takes direct issue with the quality of care in Wales. He said that those


hospitals with poor mortality warranted investigation. He admitted


he was worried about the political implications of that. Mortality


statistics need to be treated with caution, but they can highlight


serious problems. It was mortality numbers that first highlighted the


hor roughically poor levels of care in Staffordshire. The Conservative


MP who uncovered Sir Bruce's e-mail says Wales has failed to learn the


lessons of that strategy. It is particularly appalling because it is


so reminiscent of what we saw with mid-staffs, instead of saying good


niece me what should -- goodness me what should we do with this data to


make sure there is a problem. The reaction is there is nothing wrong


with the data, nothing to see, carry on. Sir Bruce's letter also drew


attention to the difference between NHS performance in England and in


Wales. Almost half of all Welsh patient wait longer than six weeks


for an MRI scan. In England fewer than 1% do. More than 10% of recent


Welsh Accident and Emergency patients were kept waiting for


longer than four hours, in England the equivalent number was under 5%.


The NHS in England is very different to the NHS in Wales. Where as


England has tried to drive up performance by using private


providers, lots of data and lots of targets, Wales has largely kept to a


rather old fashioned centralised form of management. The real


question is whether that's now going to have to change? For today


ministers are fending off Sir Bruce's critque. They say that they


do not believe an inquiry is necessary. But others disagree. I


hope and I pray that they will do something and they will look into


it, because I can't get Noah back, my husband and I will have to one


day explain to our son why his Big Brother isn't here. We have to live


with that and the people that have lost their loved ones also they


can't get them back. But it kind of takes away any positive meaning that


comes from our loss, if they aren't even willing to look into it and


make changes and to call it unnecessary. It is just a slap in


the face as far as I'm concerned. With us tonight from Cardiff is the


Welsh Health Minister Mark Drakeford. Thank you very much for


joining us. Firstly, just to be clear, when your health service gets


an e-mail from Sir Bruce Keogh, that's something worth paying


attention to isn't it? And it was, it received very clear attention and


very proper attention too. So when he, the most senior doctor in NHS


England says six of your hospitals ought to be investigated, why on


earth would you not launch an investigation? Well that is


absolutely not what he said. And your report has very badly


misrepresented Sir Bruce's e-mail, as well as being very badly


factually flawed in a number of the assertions it has made. Mr Drakeford


may I quote you the e-mail, and I quote directly, "I'm worried about


the broader political implications of the data, there are six hospitals


with a persistently high mortality which warrants investigating". He


goes on to say he hasn't been able to do his own checks on the data.


But he says "again it would seem sensible to investigate". On whose


planet is it not worth at least taking a second look at this? Not on


our planet, certainly, because we do take a second look. You are


absolutely wrong to assert that we did not. Had you gone on and read


the rest of that e-mail you would have found Sir Bruce saying that he


didn't have data to validate, he didn't have data that bore out the


data that had been passed to him. He was giving it to us to say it's


worth investigating. We did. We published our mortality data every


quarter, it showed the mortality rates in Welsh hospitals have


improved quarter on quarter. Is Sir Bruce happy now with what is


happening. He says clearly in this e-mail, despite the fact he has bent


been able to check the -- he hasn't been able to check the data it


warrants investigation. It seems sensible to investigate. Are you


saying he was wrong and is he happy now? I think I have explained to you


three times that we have investigated the data, and data is


published for everyone to see. It is published every three months. Is Sir


Bruce satisfied then? It is not for Sir Bruce to be satisfied or


otherwise. Sir Bruce has no part to play in the Welsh NHS. Nor was he


claiming to have one. He wasn't claiming it was up to him, but you


established it was worth paying attention to what he has to say. He


very properly passed on information that had been passed to him, saying


to us that he thought we ought to look at it. We did exactly that. So


you have concluded after what you are saying was an investigation,


even though you apparently have officially refused to have an


investigation that there is absolutely categorically no problem


here in your view. You are saying that on the record? You are mixing


up several things, you are asking me to agree to an assertion of yours,


which I certainly won't. I'm asking you to respond to the quote directly


from Sir Bruce Keogh? You give me a chance and I will do that. I have


become coldly furious of the constant misrepresentation of the


condition of the health service in Wales. A misrepresentation that is


deeply politically manipulated and driven. Here in Wales we take data


very seriously. If we are passed data we investigate that data. We


have done so in relation to mortality figures. They show quarter


after quarter that mortality levels in Welsh hospitals have improved.


Does that mean that everything is as it should be? Of course not. Does it


mean there is not more we could do? Of course there is, but does it mean


that there is some deep crisis in the Welsh NHS? Absolutely certainly


not. OK, well, Welsh Health Minister thank you for answering questions


tonight. That is nearly all from us. As we showed you last night, David


Bowie used the Brit Awards to channel a message to the people of


Scotland, via Kate Moss. Imploring them not to leave the UK. So today


Alex Salmond channelled some David Bowie into First Minister's


questions. I'm sure the whole chamber will want to join me in


congratulating eve Muirhead in winning the bronze medal in the


winter Olympics. That is a demonstration that we all can be


heros just for one day! How might the coolest rock unionist respond to


that, only one to find out, ladies and gentlemen, Newsnight presents,


Mr David Bowie. Or close enough. # It's a God awful small affair


# But I want you to know I care # Major Tom is begging you know


# And Ziggy doesn't you to go # Even though I am nowhere to be


seen, # Us Because I live the American


dream # They won't let you join the EU


# There will be no pound in Aberdeen # Cameron might be a saddening bore


# You but he's no Salmond # If we switch we will be like fools


# I ask you to stay with a Scotland # Stick with us I urge you


# Oh man I just don't want you to go # Better together you know


# Please don't take Andy Murray # He's just as much our guy


# Scotland wonder if you'll ever know


# You're in a best-selling show # Don't put Fife on Mars


Good evening, after a chilly night and maybe even a touch of frost in


place, Friday is going to be a bright day for most of us with


occasional showers and they will be heavy, hail and thunder as


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