With Evan Davis.
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Payday like today is not a day for
sound bites, we will leave those at
sound bites, we will leave those at
home. . I feel the under history our
shoulder, I really do, and I just
think we need to acknowledge that
and respond to it. Maybe it is
impossible to find a way through,
maybe with the best faith in the
world you cannot do it, but it is to
That was two decades ago -
the people voted,
and the Good Friday
Agreement was signed,
cementing the peace
in Northern Ireland.
Now, with Brexit on its way,
comes the idea that the
agreement is flawed.
There's no question
that these Brexit extremists,
in their hard-line support
for a particular dogmatic
position of Brexit,
are actually playing with fire,
they're in danger in the peace
process, and they could incite
dissident IRA groups.
A new potential strain on relations
between the Unionists and
nationalists, the UK and Ireland.
But does it make sense to rewrite
an agreement that is not
delivering self-rule anyway?
We hear from the Irish government.
Also tonight, the rebel-held Syrian
enclave of Eastern Ghouta
could become a second Aleppo,
says the UN.
Almost 200 people
have died in bombings
by government forces there
And a male model tells us
of the inappropriate
behaviour he faces at work.
Two challenges make this a fraught
time in Northern Ireland.
One, it can't agree on self
government, and two, Brexit.
And so it has been interesting
to watch, in the last few days,
a small number of keen Brexit
supporters suggest that the
20-year-old Good Friday Agreement
is past its sell-by date.
Kate Hoey said it's time
for a "cold, rational look at it."
MEP Daniel Hannan wrote a Telegraph
piece arguing that British ministers
should "start working
with their Irish counterparts
on improving the system."
It's gently phrased,
and it's not a Brexit point
they are making per se,
but this sentiment has only
come from that side.
There's an interesting
linguistic point here, too -
critics of the agreement tend
to call it the Belfast Agreement,
perhaps because Good Friday makes
it sound too holy or reverential.
But whatever you call it,
for many, the agreement is,
of course, synonymous with peace.
Today, the Irish government called
those who questioned it "reckless".
The British said they stand
by it "steadfastly".
So what is going on?
Our political editor,
Nick Watt, reports.
The British people have
spoken and the answer is we are out.
They were seismic votes changing the
intertwined history of these
islands, and the legacy of those
referendums, nearly two decades
apart, are haunting the politics of
today. Remain supporters trim of
keeping the UK in the EU, and now
some Unionist supporters believe the
time has come to revisit the Good
Friday Agreement after last week's
failure to restore power-sharing.
think the word refresh of the Good
Friday Agreement of the Belfast
Agreement, as I would call it, is
actually quite important, because
time changes lots and lots of
things, and of course what we are
seeing under direct rule, we have
that space to look at it. We can't
have a situation where there are two
parties in mandatory coalition and
one can always pull the plug and say
we are walking away, and then they
don't go back in until they get some
Today, the Government
made clear it stands foursquare
behind the agreement.
As the House
will recognise, this April marks the
anniversary of the historic Belfast
Agreement. That agreement, along
with successors, has been
fundamental in helping Northern
Ireland moved forward from its
violent past 12 bright, more secure
future, and this Government's
support for the agreements remain
steadfast, as does the commitment to
govern for everybody in Northern
There is fury in senior
parts of government after senior
Tories lent their wits to a rethink
on the agreement, one said it would
be the height of absurdity to make
unilateral changes to the 1998
agreement. From the Prime Minister
downwards, there is a determination
to establish all of its institutions
by brokering a deal between the DUP
and Sinn Fein. But one of the
original signatories to the Good
Friday Agreement says that
government must act by introducing a
short Parliamentary bill to hand the
powers vested in the Northern
Ireland power-sharing executive to
Instead of just going
on with London's intervening from
time to time to do things, but not
having proper decisions made by
people who have their roots in
Northern Ireland and are accountable
to the electorate, the only way we
can proceed is by having a situation
where the assembly can function
without an executive will stop and I
think that is possible, and it would
be a wake of avoiding the present
A former Northern Ireland
Secretary who presided over changes
to the Good Friday Agreement a
decade ago act acknowledges that
there is a precedent for amending
the accord. But he warns that today
is's calls for change, mainly from
Brexit supporters, could have grave
There is no question
that these Brextremists, in their
hard-line support for a particular
dogmatic position on Brexit, are
actually playing with fire,
endangering the peace process, and
they could incite dissident IRA
groups who are very well armed and
have made attacks and killed people
in recent years, although they are
very isolated and marginalised at
the moment, it could incite greater
support for them and a greater
threat from them.
I don't think
there's any threat, any long-term
threat to what we agreed 20 years
ago. And I don't think there's any
chance of there being a breakdown
and a return to violence.
agrees that dissident republicans
pose no threat to the peace process,
but the party warns of the dangers
of challenging the Good Friday
represents nothing more than a
wrecker's charter, and in fact the
very wrong-headed and irresponsible
nature of the interventions at this
particular point in time, in fact,
exaggerate the extent of the
political crisis that we are living
through. The Good Friday Agreement
has been under relentless push back
from sections of political unionism
from when it was first signed.
Referendums are meant to settle
political disputes for a generation,
from the Good Friday Agreement to
Brexit, we are learning that to some
they are not the final word.
Nick Watt reporting.
I am now joined from Dublin
by the Minister for European Affairs
in the Irish government,
Good evening to you, thanks for
joining us, what is your reaction to
this debate that has cropped up in
this country over the last few days?
Well, what I would welcome, firstly,
is comments by Karen Bradley and
other members of the British
Government, who have very clearly
said that the Good Friday Agreement
is the only way to move forward and
is essentially the only show in
town. The Good Friday Agreement is
an international peace Treaty and
has been for the last 20 years the
only way that every political voice,
every political view and expression
has been heard and can be heard, and
I think for any suggestions that
have been made that it is past its
sell by date, that it is no longer
of use, I would ask those people too
maybe reflect on what things were
like 20 years ago, before the
agreement was in place. So I welcome
confirmation from the British
Government that it is the only way
forward, and the Irish government
are saying the same.
this down, what would happen if the
British Government did unilaterally
change aspects of the Good Friday
Agreement in an attempt to make it
work better, for example? What
actually happens if it does do that?
Well, I mean, the Good Friday
Agreement is an international peace
treaty, a young treaty, and you
would be essentially changing the
way in which citizens north and
South, East and West work with each
other, engage with each other, and
what we have seen over the past 20
years is that we have been able to
work together, parties in the north
have been able to work in a
power-sharing executive. Yes, we
have hit a bump in the road, but
that has not been we need to
completely change path, it just
means we need to work together, and
that is our focus, the Irish,'s
focus -- the Irish's government
focus to work with everyone to make
sure that those elements of the
agreement can be upheld.
we can't go on forever pretending
that the agreement is working if it
is not delivering an assembly or an
executive in Northern Ireland that
is operating. How long would you
give it before everybody has to sit
down and think again? It has been,
what, 30 months now, do you go on
and on saying, let's try?
mean, I think it is disappointing
that we are over one year on and
that we don't have an executive, and
last week's events were obviously of
concern, but there are a number of
mechanisms through which we can work
on what is happening, the executive
being the most important one, but we
also have areas of cooperation, the
North-South Ministerial Council and
the British Irish Council, and we
need to make sure, in the absence of
a functioning executive, that they
are given the power and ability to
uphold the elements of the
You have said something
very important, sorry to interrupt,
something very important - is that
your backstop, substitute for the
working of the executive and the
assembly? Your substitute is joint
sovereignty of the Republic and the
UK over Northern Ireland? Is that
what you want to see if the parties
in the North don't get together?
Well, what we want to see is an
executive functioning Emma North,
and what we will do is work with the
that, but what is your Plan B?
make sure those mechanisms are in
place, the North-South Ministerial
Council and the British Irish
Council are already there, already
functioning, and in the absence of
an executive, we need to make sure
that we are working to the best of
I understand your
focus, I understand that getting it
to work, yeah, yeah. But what about
plans to reform our Northern Ireland
works? You could say that he would
move to the Welsh model, the
assembly chooses the executive, you
don't enshrine in an international
peace treaty, you know, a coalition
that will permanently operate
between the two sites, you say, we
will let the assembly picket. If
they can't get it together, would
you be open to the idea of joint
talks, not unilateral, where that
was the kind of thing on the table?
The Good Friday Agreement as, I
think, the full support of the
Northern Ireland citizens, and also
citizens in the Republic as well,
and we heard the statistics at the
beginning of the show, over 71% of
people overwhelmingly voted in
favour of this process, this
mechanism, joint power and
cooperation, and in the south those
figures bring it up to 94%. So the
idea of trying to amend something
that has worked very successfully,
as I said, yes, we have hit a bump
in the road, yes, there are
challenges not just in Northern
Ireland, but obviously with Brexit,
and we are dealing with those, but I
think the Good Friday Agreement is
something that we need to work
Helen McEntee, that point
you have made very clearly, thanks
so much for joining us.
Now, Nick Watt joins me with news
of further ructions in the Tory
ranks this evening over Brexit.
What has been happening?
talking to a Remain member of the
Cabinet this afternoon, who was very
cheerful after the speech by David
Davis, when he said the UK would not
have a race to the bottom with the
EU, but then this letter from 62
members of the Eurosceptic group was
leaked to Sam Coates of the Times,
and this makes clear that they take
a much more restrictive view of what
the Clemente is, the transition
period would look like.
line than David Davis was saying?
They are essentially saying to the
Prime Minister, be very careful,
don't go too far in what you
concede. I have been talking to
sources in that European research
group, and they are saying there are
hundreds of us, that is the message
to Number Ten, so you better watch
out. But interestingly, they say
their real target is not Theresa
May, it is the Cabinet Secretary,
and the UK's chief negotiator. They
are concerned that they are going to
lay down what they regard as tricks,
so that in 13 months' time, when we
are out of the EU, our hands can be
Briefly, what about
Labour? Has the language changed,
inching towards a clear position
about being in out of the customs
Jeremy Corbyn said that the
UK would have to be in a customs
union with the EU, that would be
important to sort out the Northern
Ireland border, so not the customs
union. Labour says they can't be in
that because you have to
that because you have to respect the
result of the referendum, but the
reason they say a customs union and
not in the single market is that you
don't have the regulatory
requirements of the European Court
Every day, more names are brought
forward in the campaign
against inappropriate behaviour,
of all kinds, at work.
The charity sector is feeling
the heat at the moment,
and today the PM programme
on Radio 4 revealed allegations
of inappropriate behaviour
against the former CEO
of Save the Children
UK, Justin Forsyth.
Now although you may
not have heard of him,
Mr Forsyth is a important player
in international aid
He was a close associate
of Brendan Cox -
both of them were at Save
the Children, and both also worked
for Gordon Brown at Number 10.
When Mr Brown was caught on mic
referring to Gillian Duffy
as a bigoted woman, he was talking
to Justin Forsyth.
The new accusation is that
while running Save the Children
before 2015, there were three
separate complaints of inappropriate
behaviour towards female
members of staff by him,
sending a series
of inappropriate texts,
commenting on how they looked,
and prompting them to respond.
Mr Forsyth left and has since gone
on to one of the most
senior posts at Unicef,
the UN children's fund.
He admits to having made some
personal mistakes during his time
at Save the Children,
to what he described as "unsuitable
and thoughtless" conversations
with colleagues, which he
subsequently apologised for.
He added that there were
no formal complaints,
and that they were dealt
with through mediation.
Save the Children told us
that they were commissioning
a root-and-branch review
of its organisational culture,
and that they apologised for any
pain these matters had caused.
To reflect on all of this I have the
Labour MP Peter Carlin, a man who
himself has worked in international
aid crisis charities. Do you think
that Justin Forsyth should be
working for Unicef in a senior role?
There are questions about that right
now. The important thing is that
Unicef is in touch with Save the
Children, Unicef said there doing
that. I do not know the details of
this but it is clear that that needs
to be looked at in light of these
Unicef have said they
are aware of the media reports and
welcome the decision of us to
Forsyth to come forward and
acknowledge past mistakes and that
they are discussing this with him
and with Unicef and Save the
Children. Not physical accusations
in this case, but the sheer volume
of things coming out about the
charity sector must be damaging it.
Of course and we know it is. But
some of these accusations are
grotesque and from very senior
managers, that is the thing that is
most shocking. It is clear that in
some of these organisations there is
the sense that protection of a moral
organisation is more important that
individuals working in it. You've
seen the same thing in the church,
and the BBC. Some people feel
organisations are so morally
important and significant that
covering up things within the
organisation is worthwhile and a
means to an end. We've seen that in
the charity sector recently and it
needs to be busted.
I wonder whether part of the
interest in this, it is
organisations that seem to be on the
high moral ground being brought down
by personal foibles and
inappropriate behaviour of the
people within them. I wonder if that
is feeding some of the interest.
doubt. It is quite right to hold
people in the charitable sector to a
higher standard than perhaps others.
We do have high expectations of
people doing this moral work.
British aid works, the people
working in the front line, the vast
majority are extraordinary people
who put themselves into harm. We had
four aid workers killed last week.
So people are doing some
extraordinary work. But I have been
a front line aid worker as well and
I've seen the work that does not
meet the moral standards we would
expect from organisations. Sexually?
In almost ten years doing this work
I never saw anything that was
criminal or even a whisper of some
of the things that are being
revealed now. But I did see work
that was overly territorial,
culturally inappropriate for the
kind of work they were doing and
some of that morally indefensible.
One example I could give you if we
have time. I was doing some work,
asking for assistance from a British
Nato general. He told me he had put
up the order to stop working as
well-known, large international
charity based in the UK because he
had offered work and had refused and
the reason given was they had a lot
of money given to that organisation
from British donors and by law that
money must be spent within that
country. And that charity did not
want to be in that country for a
long time so they literally were
squandering money. I have been
saying this stuff for a long time
and now I have the platform as an
MP, people are listening more.
goes well beyond the sexual
harassment and exploitation customer
the aid industry has become very
competitive and that tipped over to
becoming territorial and further to
So when bad things
happen, whether work that does not
go right, whether a member of staff
not performing right or some of the
really dangerous stuff we have heard
recently, then the instinct is to
hide it. So there is a link between
these different things. Culturally
we need to look at the aid industry,
do the investigations and the
enquiries as the Charity Commission
is doing now and also have a root
and branch think about how we use
these big aid agencies. The
behaviour that we incentivise from
aid agencies. And get off a lot
better at getting the right people
into the right jobs on a front line.
And if they drop perform we have to
get them of there. -- if they do not
A lot is happening in Syria
right now - a war that is,
if it was possible,
ever more brutal and
ever more complicated.
There has been a tragic
intensification of the bombardment
of Eastern Ghouta, outside Damascus.
Huge numbers of deaths
in the last couple of days.
More on that in a few minutes,
but let's hear more
about the other development first.
Because today, in a sign
of the messiness of the coalitions
fighting with or against each other,
the Syrian government found
itself fighting the Turks,
in order to defend Kurdish forces
who have been fighting
the Syrian government.
Our diplomatic editor,
Mark Urban, is with me now.
To me this just seems very peculiar.
What has been happening? Well since
Islamic State so-called was defeated
in the east of Syria, additional
forces have been available and are
focused on three places. Idlib in
the north, Ghouta and another area
where the incident was going on
today, between Syria and Turkish
forces, in Afrin. The town is that a
key point on the Turkish border.
Kurdish forces are there. They said
they are the PKK, the same people
who have been mounting attacks in
Turkey over many years and they have
gone in there to sort them out. The
Kurds in Afrin have always had an
ambiguous relationship with the
Damascus government certainly in
recent years. In times they appeared
to be in opposition to them but in
general they seem to have some de
facto agreements. Now the Damascus
government is siding with them and
trying to protect them from this
Does it look better
for some kind of peace that these
former enemies and can now sit down
No, is the short answer
because they always had this de
facto corporative relationship. This
particular area of the Kurdish
resistance. And you have the
Americans bordering on the area, the
Iranians and Russians also involved.
It is a dangerous situation in the
north of Syria.
Well going back to
the issue of Easter in Ghouta. And
we have been looking at how it is
receiving such treatment.
Since Sunday, there's been
a sharp increase in Syrian
military attacks on Ghouta -
dozens of airstrikes a day have been
hitting the besieged enclave,
and the death toll is now
approaching 200 in those three days.
For the quarter of a million
or so people who live there, it's
been one of the worst times in more
than six years of conflict.
We are witnessing some of the worst
fighting of the entire conflict
and the widespread destruction
of civilian infrastructure.
Including medical facilities.
WHO has received reports of attacks
on five hospitals in eastern Ghouta
and is working to verify these
reports and the casualties.
We continue to call for unimpeded
access to eastern Ghouta to provide
medical supplies that will mean
the difference between life
and death for the very sick
and injured and for the immediate
evacuation of urgent medical cases.
From the outset, geography defined
the conflict in Ghouta.
Its location on the eastern
outskirts of Damascus made it easy
for rebel groups to move
to and from Sunni-dominated areas
to the east and north.
And government positions
on Mount Qasioun, which is heavily
fortified, in the al Assad suburb,
as the name suggests a regime
stronghold, and in Adra,
site of another big army base,
all helped to hem in the Ghouta
pocket and were used as launching
spots for attacks on it.
But those holding out inside have
refused to capitulate.
Just a few miles from central
Damascus, Ghouta was the target
of a chemical weapons attack in 2013
- the aim then, according
to the Pentagon, was to follow up
with infantry and storm the enclave.
That attack failed.
Tonight there are also reports
of Syrian troops moving
to assault positions.
Within the enclave are
several thousand fighters
from different groups.
Jaish al Islam -
a militant Islamist group -
holds eastern and northern areas.
Ahrar al Sham, at one stage
Qatari backed and linked
to the Muslim Brotherhood,
a pocket in the west.
And Faylaq al Rahman is in the south
- they're affiliated to the Turkish
backed Free Syrian Army.
At times these factions have
clashed, but equally,
none has been tempted by the Assad
government's offers to switch sides.
Now, earlier today we spoke
to Seraj Mahmoud, a volunteer
with the Syrian Civil Defence team
as the White Helmets.
For the last 48 hours,
Seraj and his fellow
volunteers have been
recovering the dead and the injured
sifting through the rubble.
Earlier today, Seraj told us he lost
one of his colleagues
in the bombardment and in the last
40 days his division
lost four volunteers.
He spoke to us from Douma
city in Eastern Ghouta,
where he was seeking shelter
from the ongoing bombardment.
Joining me now is Geert Cappelaere,
Unicefs's regional director
for the Middle East
and North Africa.
Thank you for coming in. How does
Easter in Ghouta compared to some of
the other names that have become
grimly famous in this Syrian war
such as Aleppo?
The situation is
comparable with what we've seen over
the past seven years. Very
comparable from the point of view of
the children. Today once again
dozens of children have been killed
in eastern Ghouta, several children
have been killed in Damascus.
Children simply continue paying the
highest price of a brutal war that
is not of their making.
Stephane said it has the risk of
becoming a second Aleppo and he
hopes we have learnt lessons from
that. What lessons have we learnt
from Aleppo that we did not already
know? It seems the world is
powerless to do anything.
important lesson learned from
eastern Aleppo, is that no single
party has at any moment put the
protection of children at the core
of their action. If we want to
prevent bloodshed, further bloodshed
of children, if we want to prevent
thousands of children being maimed
then we need to learn the lessons
and this time around for the
protection of children of the core
of everyone's attention and action.
Does that basically mean the people
there surrendering, yielding to the
Syrian government? Because often it
looks like they are going to, in the
end, lose and there will be a lot of
suffering in the meantime.
an incredible suffering from
children's perspective. Again, we
have seen, within Eastern Ghouta,
over the last few months only, the
number of children suffering from
severe, acute malnutrition,
life-threatening malnutrition, the
numbers have been increased by ten
in a few months' time, probably one
of the best indicators to show, to
tell the world how dire the
situation of children is today. And
with a very limited means for the
international community, for the
national partners to provide the
assistance, the much-needed,
urgently needed assistance to the
But is there an
option for them to surrender, and
deep down is that what you would
like them to do, just to stop the
continual suffering of these young
people? Because they are probably
not... What is the point in hanging
on in there if the Syrian government
will prevail anyway?
children's perspective, this war
needs to stop. Children have
suffered way too much already, and
this is a call for all parties who
are responsible for that endless
children's suffering. Thousands of
children being killed, hundreds of
thousands being maimed, close to 3
million children, Syrian children,
not able to attend regularly school.
The levels of malnutrition, the
children preventing from being
children - this needs to stop, all
parties need to take their
responsibility. Anyone with
authority over the fighting parties
need to take their responsibility,
this cannot be accepted any longer.
Geert Cappelaere from Unicef, thanks
very much indeed, thanks.
Last night, we heard the eloquent
testimony of a Chippendale
male entertainer on the groping
and grabbing that he puts up with
from his mainly female audiences.
He enjoys his job and was relaxed
about most of it,
knowing exactly what to expect -
it's all part of the show.
But among men who are not
but who do sell their looks,
there is often a simmering annoyance
with the unprofessional
sexualised conduct that they face.
Male models know it's all about
looking right for the part
but do not expect to get work
on the basis of their willingness
to satisfy casting agents' lust.
We've spoken to quite
a number of male models
and have collated
some of the experiences
they've told us about.
Some testimony from male models
Some testimony from
male models there.
Reece Sanders has worked
internationally as a model.
He joins me now.
Good evening to you. Does everybody
have things like this, or is it a
I think people
have been made to feel uncomfortable
more than you'd think in certain
situations, but these tales are a
minority amongst especially male
models, which I can only speak on
What is the worst that
has happened to you? What sort of
Lines crossed in the sense
of a stylist or someone, when
dressing you, has gone a bit too
far, attacking a shirt in, a bit too
handsy, it is noticeable but they
play it like it is nothing.
this phrase, the front tag, what is
That is when a stylist, it
doesn't have to be a stylist, anyone
who is dressing you at the time, is
tucking the shedding, they take
advantage of that.
photographs of you, you are getting
changed, photographers are around,
the making of the campaign, there
are back up photographers? Is a lot
of that inappropriate?
I find the
worst thing is, during Fashion Week,
or when you are doing a show, for
example, if you are backstage, there
are a lot of photographers coming
and going, and they are all licensed
to be there, and you know, someone
wants to take a photograph of you in
your underwear and you are aware of
it, you are selling your image, and
if your image is your body, you
might be fine with that. But if they
are doing it without you knowing,
even if you are OK with it, are you
OK with having it done without your
knowledge? What kind of photo is it?
Where is it going?
interesting, model two in that be
said there is a relationship with
the photographer, and it can be
quite a sexualised relationship, is
that actually part of the sort of
making the thing work, that there is
flirtation or something going on
with the photographer? Or can it be
fairly anonymous and professional?
We have heard stories from people,
and with so many eyes being on
fashion, at the end of the day,
there are thousands of models
working with thousands of
photographers all over the industry,
and people need to understand that
the industry is not one company. It
is thousands of companies making it
up. If somebody leaves a shoot at
the end of the day and tweet or
Instagram, anything on social media
about how well the
about how well the day has worked
with hundreds of photographers, and
I have stayed at their houses, their
families have made me breakfast in
the morning, we have had friendly
relationships. No lines have been
crossed, everything has been fine.
But when it does get crossed, so
many eyes are on the fashion
industry that these are the stories
that come to the surface, some rises
to the top, so we see the stories
But I am guessing that
you and the other people on the
fashion circuit, you all know who
are the ones who are creepy and who
are not. You are swapping stories
the whole time?
You do spend a lot
of time and castings, you can spend
hours waiting to see a client, and
you swap stories with other models,
someone who has been doing it for
months or years, and we do hear
about certain names of people and
things come to light in the
mainstream media as well, people
that are doing this. So these are
people we try to avoid any way, and
when you fear about these, from my
personal experience, your agency
will do anything to not put you with
They will try and protect
You can go into your agencies.
That is nice.
For myself, I have
What is striking, you
were saying before, you are 25, now
getting to be considered quite late
What are the
age of your average model?
depends, for Fashion Week, they like
a younger looking guy, so 16-19.
Teenagers, who are really not going
to be very experienced and how to
handle all these situations.
Exactly, so when I have been in
these positions where the front tuck
has gone too far, and I have not
said anything because maybe I have
not thought about it that way, but I
should have said something at the
time. There is a lot of young kids
coming through, and I feel that we
need to make and safe. I'm not
saying it is extremely seedy, this
is a minority of people, but if we
can eradicate them and make it safer
for the next generation of models,
that we be the dream, really.
That is all we have time for
tonight. A very good night.