11/02/2016 Newsnight


11/02/2016

Emily Maitlis looks at headlines on health secretary Jeremy Hunt, gravitational waves, General Allen on Syria and Zika. And could the Independent be sold?


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Transcript


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The Health Secretary tells us he had no choice but to impose a contract

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What is the alternative? The alternative here is that in the face

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of a union that militarily refuses to negotiate how we can improve care

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for patients that week ends, I just go away.

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The doctors threaten a brain drain - and say he's alienated

:00:32.:00:34.

Predicted by EInstein a century go, Scientists finally detect

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gravitational waves - that change the sound

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Tonight we speak to one of the scientists who worked

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And we're in Colombia, where a 21st century plague

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So, this is Zika almost at its worst. You can see the restraint on

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this patient's arms, his name is Edwin, and the oxygen pipe is

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feeding oxygen into his lungs because he can't breathe on his own.

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It was arguably not the day for the Health Secretary to announce

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a review into junior doctors' morale.

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Junior doctors, by and large, are quite good at spelling

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And if morale is low, they know who they blame.

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This morning Jeremy Hunt took the unprecedented and radical step

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of imposing a new contract on thousands of medics

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across England after negotiations between the Government

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He had, he insisted, included many concessions that had

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been chief stumbling blocks between the sides.

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But the Shadow Health Secretary called the move a sign of failure,

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the British Medical Association said he'd risked alienating a whole

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generation of doctors, some of whom would now vote

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And some hospital chiefs who signed a letter of agreement with the

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contract later stated they hadn't agreed with the imposition.

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So is there a real risk of a brain drain in the NHS now?

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And what happens to patients when trust breaks down

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between the Health Secretary and his NHS staff?

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The dispute over the new junior doctors contract for England

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Tonight these junior doctors met on Whitehall to respond to the fact

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that a new contract is being imposed on them.

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After years of rumbling along and two strikes,

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the Government has taken the advice of its lead

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negotiator to end talks with the doctors' union.

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He has asked me to end the uncertainty for the service

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by proceeding with the introduction of

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a new contract that he and his colleagues consider both safer

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for patients and fair and reasonable for

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What exactly is this dispute between the Government

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It has been running for a few years but it has

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come to a head in the last year because the Tories were elected last

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May on a pledge to introduce what they call a seven-day NHS.

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In short, hospitals should offer more

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services at the weekend, and to do that, they say they need

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to change the contracts for the 50,000 or so

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junior doctors so that it is cheaper to employ them during the weekend.

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This is the current period when junior doctors get normal

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It runs from 7am until 7pm on weekdays.

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Under the new proposals, normal evenings would end

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later, at 9pm, and working on a Saturday would also not attract

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overtime, so doctors will get a boost to their basic pay

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to mitigate the loss of that

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Saturday a normal day is a particular frustration to doctors.

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What would it have taken for the BMA to be happy on Saturday pay?

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I think it would have taken a recognition that junior doctors

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already work Saturdays for patients and will continue to do

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so, and to acknowledge that the Government's

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position that Saturday is the same as any other day of the week is not

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Society is not set up so that schools are open on Saturdays.

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Everybody knows that Saturdays are a bit different

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and the people who work for patients on a Saturday should have a little

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bit of recompense in order to compensate them for working

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The tough question is, how do you de-escalate

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For the Department of Health, they have

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a problem which is if they return

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to the negotiating table it will cost them political capital.

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For the BMA, they would have to persuade

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their members to accept something they have argued about for a long

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time with a Health Secretary that lots of doctors feel has

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Doctors on the picket line seethe about Mr Hunt's claim that death

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There is evidence of that, but there is not good evidence

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that staffing is the critical

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is a cost-effective way to save lives, but a seven-day NHS

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This was the last junior doctors walk out.

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This was the last junior doctor walk-out.

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But they do have public sympathy for their action.

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Two thirds of the public blame Jeremy Hunt for the dispute.

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We need to think about the implications of this and to take

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the temperature of our members on what they feel about this

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imposition of a contract that is frankly unfair.

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We will be taking into account when we do that what is happening

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in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland,

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where I have to say the governments there are not

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They are continuing to deliver the seven-day

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services that they have there in agreement with the medical

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staff and agreement with all clinical staff,

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and moving forward in a way that the Government in London has

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For further strikes to work, they need to

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do enough political damage to the Health Secretary to force

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So doctors must gauge if they can take public

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opinion with them through such a campaign, and whether it would be

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worth the likely inconvenience to patients.

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No wonder some are talking about seeking work elsewhere.

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This imposition has never been done before in the history of the NHS. So

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does Jeremy Hunt know what he's doing? I asked him earlier.

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It is really disappointing that it has come to this.

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We have wanted to discuss these changes for the best

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part of four years, but last night Sir David Dalton,

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the chief executive of Salford Royal, which is one

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of our safest and best hospitals, who has been leading

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the negotiations for the Government, said that he did not think

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he negotiated settlement was possible

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and he urged me to do whatever I thought necessary

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That all the time and all the money and all the costly

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negotiations have come to nothing because you have just imposed

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The negotiations had come to nothing.

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He is someone who wrote to me with that judgment.

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He said there is no realise the chance

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of a deal particularly on the issue of Saturday pay.

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This is vital because we have not just a manifesto

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commitment but an absolute determination that if our NHS

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is going to offer the highest quality

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care, patients should be confident that they are going to get the same

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high-quality care every day of the week.

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You are looking for a seven-day NHS, but it is going to be

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cost neutral so you are stretching the five-day NHS to seven.

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How is that possibly going to resolve

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Next year we are putting in an extra ?3.8 billion in real terms

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It is about meeting the clinical standards

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that say that every day of the week you should be seen by a senior

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decision-maker within 14 hours of being admitted.

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If you are vulnerable you should be seen twice

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The problem is, bluntly, that when you have got 98% of highly

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trained, highly educated, dedicated junior doctors who reject

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this, they have read it,

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and say you are wrong, that is your problem.

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What was so sad was that the BMA junior doctors, instead of sitting

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Refused to enter into discussions and balloted for strike,

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and they balloted for strike saying that pay was going to be cut,

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which it isn't, saying that hours were going

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to be lengthened, in fact we are doing the opposite

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in bringing down the maximum number of hours that

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That is not quite true, because there is going to be

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damage, if you like, by removing penalties if doctors

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work excess hours.

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That safety net is going to be removed.

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When they tell you that they are worried about exhaustion

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and the knock-on effects to patient safety, why is that not ringing

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The problem is what we had before was not a penalty,

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it was extra pay for the doctors being

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That created a perverse incentive, particularly because doctors' basic

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And so one of the things we are doing today

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is we are bringing down the weekend premium

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rates but increasing basic pay by 13.5%.

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You keep on telling me I am wrong and if that is the case,

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and this is what we are hearing from junior doctors,

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well educated, highly trained, who have read and rejected

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what you are proposing, what is the message you are giving

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I fully understand in the heat of an industrial relations dispute

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that people are not necessarily going to

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take everything at face value from the politician who has been

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If you do not want to take the Health Secretary's word

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for it, listen to independent people.

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Today's senior NHS leaders, including the head of NHS England,

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Simon Stephens, have said that the new offer on the table

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to what was on the table in September.

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It is very easy to see through that list.

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These are senior respected independent people who say

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that the new contract on the table is fair and reasonable and we have

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We initially said that Saturday should be treated

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We have changed that position and said

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that if you work one in four weekends or more you can get a 30%

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That is a very significant concession.

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The BME have not been prepared to make any

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Which is why I have had to make the difficult decision to give

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The BMA have said this risks alienating a whole generation

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The best outcome, you are going to get more strikes in July or August.

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The worst outcome, you are going to get people voting

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We have heard from doctors who say, I do not know about my future

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in the NHS and I do not know about my future in this country.

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In difficult situation like this there is no risk-free route,

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but what I have done today is given certainty for the future.

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There would be huge risks to the service

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if this uncertainty had continued to paralyse the service.

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Is there a plan in place if there is a mass

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I don't believe it will come to that because I think doctors

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will look at what was proposed and they will see this,

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when you impose a contract, which is the last thing anyone

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wants, you can impose anything you like, you have moved

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beyond the process of negotiation, I actually

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chose to impose a position which moves a long way

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to address the concerns of the BMA and many other

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We have had eight studies in the last five years saying that

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mortality rates are higher at weekends.

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Six of those top about staffing rates as being one of

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You have been accused of being rash and misleading for using a figure

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of 11,000 more deaths at the weekend when is no evidence

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as to how those were created or whether your solutions

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There was one study that had the 11,000 figure.

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We've had seven other studies in the last five years.

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I don't know any doctors who are saying there is not an issue

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about the weekend effect and the vast majority would say

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I cannot as Health Secretary sit here and say that is not something

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How do you as Health Secretary work with NHS staff who do not trust you?

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You need them onside to get the public to

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believe in the service, and they do not at the moment.

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That is unfortunate, because we are in the

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middle of a very difficult industrial relations dispute

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and in any industrial relations dispute,

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if you ask the protagonists

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you will not get a particularly complimentary

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language, but what is the alternative?

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The alternative is that in the face of a union that militantly

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refuses to negotiate how we can improve care for patients

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at weekends that I just pack my bags and go away.

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I cannot do that as Health Secretary.

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I have to be there for patients and I think in the end

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that is the right thing for doctors as well.

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The sound ripples detected in the fabric of space time have

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something more akin to a huge and excitable scream

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from the scientists that discovered them.

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Of that ilk, all credit must go to EInstein who first predicted

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Today, in an anouncement that electrified the world,

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astronomers finally detected the waves - and conceeded

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The skies - one said - will never be the same again.

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It's him again, making waves in the world of physics.

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This is the equation behind Albert Einstein's

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theory of general relativity, conceived 100 years ago.

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A pillar of modern physics, it told us

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everything from the motion of the planets to the presence

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But it also proposed the existence of something else.

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Our universe is a gobsmacking sight, but one of its most intriguing

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It's awash with them, but we've never

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We have detected gravitational waves.

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The news today that we finally found them is quite literally

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Almost certainly Nobel Prizes will be given out for what some

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are already calling the discovery of the century.

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The idea is that as any object moves through the fabric

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of the universe, it gives off waves of gravitational energy,

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much like the ripples that emanate across the surface of the water

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Everything on the move including you and me emits them,

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but, in universal terms, we are pretty puny, so our waves

:15:16.:15:17.

When it comes to cosmic giants, though, like

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exploding stars, these generate tsunamis of gravitational energy,

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so a good opportunity for scientists to

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As gravitational waves move through the universe,

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they eventually reach the Earth, and when

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they do, they gently warp anything and everything they pass through,

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stretching and squeezing atoms, but by a tiny, tiny amount.

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And it's this minute disturbance that

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scientists have detected emanating from this explosive event that took

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Two black holes moving ever closer together.

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Eventually they smashed into one another, merging.

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The collision generated a surge of gravitational ripples that

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reached Earth just in time for the switching

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on of an experiment designed to find them.

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So, why should anyone care about a few ghostly oscillations?

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on of an experiment designed to find them.

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So, why should anyone care about a few ghostly oscillations?

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Aside from providing another feather in Einstein's cap,

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who has been proved right once again, it heralds

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Until now, even our most advanced telescopes could share only

:16:38.:16:41.

Now we can detect gravitational waves, we will be able to learn more

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about the events that generated them, looking

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deeper into space and further back in time than ever before.

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It really does give us a brand-new perspective of the universe.

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Professor Sheila Rowan, Director of the Institute

:16:59.:17:01.

for Gravitational Research in Glasgow, is one of the researchers

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I cannot imagine what your day has been like.

:17:04.:17:12.

He knew about this a hundred years ago.

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People have written books about the history of the field because it is

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so interesting. Einstein made this prediction 100 years ago but for

:17:34.:17:37.

decades it remained a mathematical curiosity. People were not sure that

:17:38.:17:41.

this prediction of gravitational waves had any real physical meaning,

:17:42.:17:46.

that it was an effect we could detect and it took until the 1960s

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before people thought that this was maybe something that was real that

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we could try to sense, and they have taken the following decades in

:17:57.:17:59.

between to get to the point where we are now. The sound of space has

:18:00.:18:09.

changed. Through that sound, do we get the history of the Big Bang? Do

:18:10.:18:17.

you buy that? Not yet, but that is a call for us in future. What we have

:18:18.:18:22.

started to be able to do is listen to the gravitational history of our

:18:23.:18:26.

universe and hear sounds from our local universe, from black holes,

:18:27.:18:34.

spiralling, and so far we can listen to those within a certain volume of

:18:35.:18:41.

our local universe. We would like to make our detectors even more

:18:42.:18:44.

sensitive to sense further out into the universe. The further out we go

:18:45.:18:49.

the further back in time we can sense and eventually if we can make

:18:50.:18:54.

our detectors sensitive enough we would like to reach back to

:18:55.:18:57.

gravitational signals potentially coming from the Big Bang.

:18:58.:19:05.

Extraordinary. Does this tie in with Einstein's theory of relativity?

:19:06.:19:12.

Does it prove it? Today's result is a fantastic confirmation of

:19:13.:19:16.

Einstein's theory of general relativity. Everything we detected

:19:17.:19:20.

today fits with general relativity and in some ways that is a fabulous

:19:21.:19:28.

confirmation. We know that general relativity, a fabulously, does not

:19:29.:19:36.

tell us everything, the. The of all the forces that govern our universe.

:19:37.:19:41.

In some ways it is a fabulous confirmation of general relativity

:19:42.:19:44.

but still there are boundaries to push. Does it disturb things that

:19:45.:19:51.

scientists had thought were set in stone? Has it created more problems

:19:52.:19:59.

for you? I do not think it has created more problems for us. It has

:20:00.:20:04.

given us a new tool that we did not have before to study the dark side

:20:05.:20:10.

of our universe, because pretty much everything we know so far we have

:20:11.:20:16.

got by going out and turning our telescopes are up and sensing the

:20:17.:20:20.

light we can see. It has all been done with light and visually. Light

:20:21.:20:26.

and its different spectrums, x-rays and gamma raise, all part of the

:20:27.:20:32.

spectrum of light. What does this do to our understanding of gravity? It

:20:33.:20:38.

has always been mysterious. It gives us a new tool to try to understand

:20:39.:20:44.

where our limits of Einstein's theory stop because for the first

:20:45.:20:51.

time we have objects that have the strongest gravity that we can think

:20:52.:20:56.

of, like polls are black because not even light can escape them, and two

:20:57.:21:04.

merging is gravity in its strongest form and we have just darted to be

:21:05.:21:08.

able to see what is happening in those limits of the strongest

:21:09.:21:15.

gravity we can think of. We got our first ignored today, our first hint.

:21:16.:21:20.

To study those systems it will push our understanding of general

:21:21.:21:23.

relativity to the limits and test what we know. Thank you.

:21:24.:21:29.

The Zika virus, carried by the Aedes Egypti mosquito,

:21:30.:21:33.

is suspecting of being the cause of 400 birth deformities in Brazil.

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Now the disease has moved north to Colombia where it has also been

:21:39.:21:41.

The science behind Zika is not proven but the fear is real enough.

:21:42.:21:49.

Imagine losing control over the muscles in your body.

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Tropical Colombia is at the centre of a 21st-century

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And the suspected cause is the Zika virus.

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You can see restraints on the patient's arms.

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The oxygen pipe is feeding oxygen into his lungs because he can't

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The connection between the creeping paralysis and Zika

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But here at the front line, it's taken for

:22:44.:22:49.

Fabian is 22, a young man in the prime of his life.

:22:50.:22:56.

Then he got pins and needles, lost feeling

:22:57.:22:59.

in his legs, and then he couldn't breathe.

:23:00.:23:04.

I ask, did you use mosquito repellent?

:23:05.:23:13.

That is his wife, and she's pregnant.

:23:14.:23:42.

He's recovering, but he can still barely

:23:43.:23:44.

This is the alley where his family live.

:23:45.:23:58.

There is fear here, but the message isn't

:23:59.:24:10.

People should wear long-sleeved shirts, trousers and use repellent.

:24:11.:24:17.

It doesn't take long to find where the mosquitoes might come

:24:18.:24:23.

It is Zika's suspected effect on unborn

:24:24.:24:42.

babies which is causing her as much anxiety as the fate of her husband.

:24:43.:25:01.

Before 2000, there are no reports of Zika causing birth defects.

:25:02.:25:04.

Along with other scientists he's noted that Zika

:25:05.:25:15.

used to be a mild virus and now it isn't.

:25:16.:25:18.

It looks as if the virus has changed in some way.

:25:19.:25:25.

We have to see exactly what happened.

:25:26.:25:28.

I'm afraid that there is a change in the genome of the virus.

:25:29.:25:35.

Zika plus, a mutation in this genome.

:25:36.:25:39.

And a problem in the environment that is specific

:25:40.:25:41.

to South America and Central America.

:25:42.:25:43.

We will have the answer soon I think.

:25:44.:25:45.

The health systems in our countries have to deal with the complications

:25:46.:25:52.

that we did not have, and we are not really ready to deal

:25:53.:26:00.

All that the authorities can do is fumigate,

:26:01.:26:11.

and hunt down the Zika larvae which flourish in still water.

:26:12.:26:31.

So this is absolutely what you don't need

:26:32.:26:33.

How can you convince people who live in a tropical area to cover up?

:26:34.:26:39.

The hospital here is under massive pressure, not least from patients

:26:40.:26:41.

like this one from Venezuela, who the doctors believe have got

:26:42.:26:44.

Zika, and now the beginnings of paralysis.

:26:45.:27:10.

Instead, she ended up here in Colombia.

:27:11.:27:15.

So far, the Western world has been watching the spread of Zika almost

:27:16.:27:18.

Soon the southern United States and even parts of southern

:27:19.:27:24.

Europe may be dealing with its grim reality.

:27:25.:27:27.

Russia has submitted a proposal for a ceasefire in Syria,

:27:28.:27:38.

Russia's foreign minister gave few details but it's understood

:27:39.:27:46.

to envisage a truce starting on the first of March.

:27:47.:27:48.

The US has demanded an immediate end to hostilities, as it suspects

:27:49.:27:51.

Russia wants to give Syrian government troops three weeks

:27:52.:27:54.

Earlier I talked to General John Allen, a former commander of US

:27:55.:28:00.

forces in Afghanistan and President Obama's special envoy

:28:01.:28:02.

He's flown in from the States to take part in the Intelligence

:28:03.:28:11.

I began by asking him why there are still no Western fighting

:28:12.:28:15.

We are there to provide air support, precision air support to both deal

:28:16.:28:23.

with Daesh as a target, but also to support the manoeuvre

:28:24.:28:26.

of the Iraqis, and the Syrian opposition element.

:28:27.:28:30.

We have trainers on the ground at multiple training sites

:28:31.:28:33.

throughout the region who are training Iraqi security

:28:34.:28:35.

We have advisers on the ground who are with some of

:28:36.:28:41.

these manoeuvre forces and helping them to gain the advantage locally.

:28:42.:28:45.

We have special operators on the ground to work closely

:28:46.:28:49.

with their counterparts so that in the event we can target a key

:28:50.:28:52.

Isil location, a compound, a leader, an infrastructure,

:28:53.:28:54.

So there are boots on the ground, there are Western forces

:28:55.:29:01.

on the ground, and that's the kind of support we want to provide

:29:02.:29:04.

to the indigenous population so that they

:29:05.:29:07.

are the authors of the defeat of Daesh.

:29:08.:29:10.

So just to clarify, because when people talk about boots

:29:11.:29:12.

on the ground, they mean, as you know,

:29:13.:29:16.

Western boots doing a military, as in a fighting, job.

:29:17.:29:18.

I think we should be very clear that as the operational environment

:29:19.:29:27.

evolves, we should be prepared to make the kinds of decisions that

:29:28.:29:30.

There could be the day when as Daesh continues to feel the pressure,

:29:31.:29:45.

the continued global pressure that we

:29:46.:29:46.

are bringing to bear on it, that we could see a real

:29:47.:29:49.

vulnerability, and we should have the capability of moving very

:29:50.:29:52.

quickly with indigenous forces, with the right kinds of Western

:29:53.:29:54.

forces if necessary, to exploit that for ability.

:29:55.:29:57.

The question isn't whether we apply large numbers of forces.

:29:58.:30:00.

The question is whether they stay on the ground for long

:30:01.:30:02.

Do you think the West missed a chance

:30:03.:30:05.

in not going into Syria a lot earlier?

:30:06.:30:08.

It isn't a hypothetical question in the sense that they had

:30:09.:30:12.

I think more could have been done earlier, frankly,

:30:13.:30:18.

with some of the Syrian opposition elements.

:30:19.:30:20.

We would be in a different place today.

:30:21.:30:22.

But again, the question begs how much

:30:23.:30:27.

and how long and who would have contributed, and we didn't do it,

:30:28.:30:30.

so we are where we are today, and that

:30:31.:30:32.

is a real challenge, it is a humanitarian catastrophe

:30:33.:30:34.

of unparalleled extent in the aftermath

:30:35.:30:38.

of World War II, and we are going to have to deal with that for a long

:30:39.:30:42.

You could argue in that absence, Assad got stronger, Russia came in,

:30:43.:30:48.

how much do you think Russia has changed this whole game

:30:49.:30:51.

when you look at what is happening in Aleppo now?

:30:52.:30:53.

We had had some hope that, with the Russian incursion,

:30:54.:30:59.

there could be a partnership in dealing with Isil.

:31:00.:31:02.

There could be some reduction in the violence that the regime has

:31:03.:31:05.

And there could be a coherent conversation about a political

:31:06.:31:17.

We had hopes in all of those areas, and none of them have come to pass.

:31:18.:31:22.

In fact, the violence is greater than it has been before.

:31:23.:31:25.

There have been valiant attempts to create a political conversation

:31:26.:31:31.

about transition, but the Russians and their allies in the region

:31:32.:31:34.

are about the destruction, if you will,

:31:35.:31:35.

of the terrorists before we can have this coherent political

:31:36.:31:38.

Where do the differences lie between you and

:31:39.:31:41.

President Obama in terms of strategy on Syria, an Isis?

:31:42.:31:43.

I'm not going to answer that question.

:31:44.:31:45.

There have been, and I offer my advice to our leadership,

:31:46.:31:52.

and they are free to take that advice as they choose.

:31:53.:31:56.

I think that there have been areas where I have

:31:57.:32:01.

offered advice that has been embraced, and those areas I think

:32:02.:32:04.

are areas where we are now finding that we are making some progress.

:32:05.:32:09.

But it's not just me, it team effort, and that team has

:32:10.:32:12.

been together now for some period of time

:32:13.:32:14.

dealing with this crisis and trying to give the president our very best

:32:15.:32:17.

The focus is also including Libya now.

:32:18.:32:20.

Is it right to step on the Isis in Libya?

:32:21.:32:28.

I think we should attack Isis wherever we find it.

:32:29.:32:37.

And in the context of how Isis has globalised,

:32:38.:32:39.

we find that there have been a number of organisations,

:32:40.:32:42.

one in Libya, one in the Sinai, one in West

:32:43.:32:44.

Africa, Boko Haram, which people are familiar with.

:32:45.:32:46.

And in other locations where they have been

:32:47.:32:48.

franchised by Isil to fly the black flag.

:32:49.:32:50.

We're going to need to deal with these over time.

:32:51.:32:52.

We have to prioritise our efforts, because we

:32:53.:32:54.

don't have the capacity, we being the Western community

:32:55.:32:56.

of nations, we don't have the capacity to deal

:32:57.:32:58.

But I do believe as your question implies

:32:59.:33:02.

The presence of Isis has made it much

:33:03.:33:09.

more difficult potentially to find a political solution in Libya,

:33:10.:33:12.

but the presence of Isis in Libya has a destabilising effect

:33:13.:33:15.

to Egypt, and potentially across the Mediterranean

:33:16.:33:21.

So we have to watch this very closely, and we should be,

:33:22.:33:25.

and we have been, attacking Isis forces

:33:26.:33:27.

And how significant is the British involvement?

:33:28.:33:32.

I'm always very careful to point out it is not

:33:33.:33:35.

about the numbers of aeroplanes or numbers of bombs or special

:33:36.:33:37.

It is the presence of Britain in the crisis

:33:38.:33:41.

General John Allen speaking to me earlier.

:33:42.:33:51.

Its slogan when it first launched was "It is -

:33:52.:33:54.

The paper that wore its editorial independence with pride,

:33:55.:33:57.

the Independent, could be moving off the press to become online only.

:33:58.:34:00.

The final decision has not yet been made but the paper,

:34:01.:34:02.

which has existed for 30 years, is in the process of selling

:34:03.:34:05.

the iPaper to the owner of the Scotsman in a ?25 million deal.

:34:06.:34:08.

Today the Independent's editor, Amol Rajan, sent staff at the paper

:34:09.:34:14.

an e-mail acknowledging a lot of questions and uncertainty.

:34:15.:34:16.

Steven Glover was one of the founder members of the paper

:34:17.:34:19.

What is your gut feeling about this? Are we nearing the end of the

:34:20.:34:30.

Independent? It won't be the end of it, because it will have a life

:34:31.:34:33.

online, and that will be the future of the many newspapers. If it is

:34:34.:34:38.

true, I think it will be the first of many newspapers which stop their

:34:39.:34:43.

print editions and have another existent online. That e-mail went

:34:44.:34:48.

out today suggesting that the editor doesn't quite know what is going on.

:34:49.:34:53.

It is very difficult when you are talking about staff. I guess the

:34:54.:34:58.

bigger question is, does a paper need to exist paper for many more?

:34:59.:35:05.

It is a good question. Anybody under 35 who reads the Independent

:35:06.:35:08.

probably read it online, so whether the print edition continues is not

:35:09.:35:13.

really an important question. For people who like reading newspapers,

:35:14.:35:19.

as I do, it does matter. And there is a longer question as to whether

:35:20.:35:22.

online newspapers will be able to support the same number of

:35:23.:35:26.

journalists that went newspapers traditionally have. Will they have

:35:27.:35:29.

the same resources? Will they be able to do the same sort of

:35:30.:35:34.

journalism. We have some pictures I think of the early days of you and

:35:35.:35:38.

colleagues starting this off. Did you have an impression in your head

:35:39.:35:42.

of its life span? Did you think that it would still be going today? Many

:35:43.:35:47.

people thought we would be out of business in about six months. That

:35:48.:35:52.

was the common Fleet Street view. We were more optimistic, but if you had

:35:53.:35:56.

asked me whether I would be around in ten or 20 or 30 or 100 years, I

:35:57.:36:01.

wouldn't have been able to give you an answer. What decides, there are

:36:02.:36:06.

some hope as you can't imagine not exist in paper form, and there are

:36:07.:36:10.

some that seem to be able to make that transition. What is it, what

:36:11.:36:14.

decides whether a paper stays in paper form? What decides it is in

:36:15.:36:19.

the end the bottom line. The Independent is now selling so few

:36:20.:36:22.

copies that it doesn't really make sense to go on printing it everyday.

:36:23.:36:27.

But that has to be the editorial content, then, essentially? You

:36:28.:36:31.

could say it is what attracts in advertisers, but is it that

:36:32.:36:36.

advertisers will only come into a high end money focused paper like

:36:37.:36:43.

the FT, awkward content do it? The FT, I wouldn't be at all is a prized

:36:44.:36:47.

if the FT itself stops printing copies in the foreseeable future.

:36:48.:36:53.

You think it will? Think it is likely. The ones that may follow

:36:54.:36:57.

quickly are the FT and the guardian, within the next few years. How many

:36:58.:37:03.

papers will be on the shelves in five years? Most of them, but not

:37:04.:37:09.

all. In 10-15 years, not very many, I'm afraid. Do you recognise the

:37:10.:37:14.

same paper today as the one that you launched? Do you read it? I do look

:37:15.:37:20.

at it. It has been an very depleted resources compared to what it had

:37:21.:37:23.

when we launched it, but it is still a feisty little paper, it still has

:37:24.:37:28.

high standards, and it has been very well edited. Its reach on social

:37:29.:37:36.

media, on Twitter, on the sites, is probably a totally different

:37:37.:37:38.

audience, but it is very visible online, isn't it? It is, and the

:37:39.:37:47.

Independent is something like the eighth most read newspaper in the

:37:48.:37:52.

world, and I think they will put more resources into the online

:37:53.:37:57.

version. UI divided between saying closing is

:37:58.:38:01.

not quite staying closing, do you think from the emotional

:38:02.:38:04.

perspective, your baby has gone now? It has grown-up certainly

:38:05.:38:09.

transformed into something we couldn't have conceived of 30 years

:38:10.:38:12.

ago, but I think it will still be there. In some way, the dream lives

:38:13.:38:17.

on. Stephen Glover, thank you very much, thanks for coming in. Let's

:38:18.:38:21.

take you through tomorrow's front pages. The Independent has the

:38:22.:38:26.

theory of relativity proved, going back to those gravitational waves.

:38:27.:38:30.

The Daily Telegraph has the same picture, and their top story is the

:38:31.:38:34.

deal that could split the Tories, they said 130 grassroots members

:38:35.:38:38.

want Cameron he risks the future of the party if he ignores their views.

:38:39.:38:46.

The Guardian has the doctors vowing to fight on. The Times, Turkey

:38:47.:38:51.

threatens Europe with millions of migrants, saying tensions mount as

:38:52.:38:56.

the President of Turkey warns that we are not idiots. They are

:38:57.:39:03.

expecting another 600,000 people to flee over the border. The Daily Mail

:39:04.:39:08.

has the flight of the strike doctors, junior doctors threatening

:39:09.:39:12.

a mass exodus to Australia, and the FT has a day of turmoil as negative

:39:13.:39:17.

rates strike fear into global markets.

:39:18.:39:19.

We leave you at Propsman, the propeller specialist

:39:20.:39:22.

Props to them, forgive us, for apparently inventing what looks

:39:23.:39:25.

like an authentic 21st century sport.

:39:26.:39:27.

Good evening. It has been turning pretty cold and frosty across many

:39:28.:40:21.

parts of the country, particularly the central and northern areas.

:40:22.:40:26.

Further south, rather more cloud, so not as cold as it was on Thursday

:40:27.:40:31.

morning. Some bright spells through the day, but also one or two

:40:32.:40:36.

showers, wintry over higher ground. Some of the snow fit Easter Scotland

:40:37.:40:42.

right down to lower levels. Brightness across the borders, just

:40:43.:40:45.

Emily Maitlis looks at the stories behind the day's headlines on health secretary Jeremy Hunt, gravitational waves, General Allen on Syria and Zika. And could the Independent be sold?


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