21/02/2018 Newsnight


21/02/2018

Donald Trump meets the survivors of the Florida school shooting. President Assad's Syria plan. And torture in Egypt.


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The brutal attack on Syrian

civilans in Ghouta seems

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like bloodthirsty madness.

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But is there a method behind it?

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Unicef issued a blank press

release today to describe

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what's happening in Syria because,

they say, there are no

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words to describe it.

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And yet there are.

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What Assad wants is to repeat

what happened last March in Homs,

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when the rebels agreed to evacuate

rather than further harm

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the local population.

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Closing out this opposition

stronghold in East Ghouta would

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effectively represent an opposition

strategic defeat, and the effective

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or de facto victory

of the regime in Syria.

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We'll ask the UN's

man in Syria what,

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if anything, the outside

world can do.

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Also tonight...

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We go to the airport, I cannot get

on the plane with bottled water, but

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we leave it to some animal to walk

into a school and shoot our

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children.

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Silence from the President

as he hears from the families

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and the survivors of Florida.

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But is he listening?

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And this is what Egypt

looks like in the years

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after the Tahrir Square uprising.

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A military regime more violent

and repressive than ever.

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And far quicker

to resort to torture.

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Good evening.

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The UN has described the situation

in Syria's Eastern Ghoutta

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as "hell on earth".

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In the face of so much bloodshed,

it seems crazy, unthinking perhaps,

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to talk about strategy.

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But as the world is forced -

by the sheer level of inhumanity -

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to look up, tonight we try

to explain to you what

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the Assad plan is.

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The answer could lie in looking

at what has happened

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elsewhere in Syria -

sustained attacks and bombing

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of civilians that raises

the pain-level of the local

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population to a point

where they are ready to turn

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on the rebels in their midst

and agree an evacuation.

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It worked for Assad

in Homs, and in Aleppo.

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Rebels eventually agreed to be

bussed out en masse.

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Here's our diplomatic

editor, Mark Urban.

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Take in the local media

outlets covering Syria,

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and you'll learn much

about the objectives and tactics

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in this latest offensive.

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Syria's own new agency emphasises

the role of East Ghoutta as a haven

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for terrorists who've been shelling

areas of the capital for years,

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and indeed, in recent days.

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TRANSLATION:

The city

of Damascus is full of good

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people who face terrorism

and are living their normal lives

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despite all the mortars

that are fired at them.

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We call on the Syrian Army to hit

them with an iron fist.

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TRANSLATION:

If we had evacuated

and stayed at home every

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time the mortars fell,

we definitely would not have

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remained steadfast at this stage.

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School exams will continue,

as postponing them

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wouldn't be of any use.

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Syrian Army video also portrays

operations against East

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Ghouta as a war on terror,

setting it to suitably heroic music.

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With rebel groups mopped up

in the east and other major

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centres like Aleppo,

the Army is now free to bring more

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firepower to bear against the last

major centre of resistance

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near the capital.

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Closing out this opposition

stronghold in East Ghoutta

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would effectively represent

an opposition strategic defeat,

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and the effective or de facto

victory of the regime in Syria,

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so the significance is huge,

which I guess is why many of us

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would be questioning why

the international community

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is paying relatively little

attention to what is happening.

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Pro-regime media has this week shown

armoured units being moved up

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in preparation for ground attacks

on the rebel enclave.

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In the meantime, air strikes

are setting the stage.

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What's happening in Eastern

Ghouta, essentially, is,

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with the backing of Russia,

the Syrian government

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has been deliberately

targeting its own people.

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This is part of a wider pattern,

a wider strategy, that we have been

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documenting for quite some time now.

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It's essentially the ugly face

of the Syrian government's strategy,

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known as "surrender or starve".

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Given the heavy casualties that

would be taken in storming Ghouta,

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it's likely the regime will use

a playbook it's already applied

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in Homs, Aleppo and elsewhere,

raising the pain level

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of the civilian community

to such a level that they

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ask rebels to leave.

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That leads to evacuations,

often facilitated by humanitarian

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organisations, taking buses out

to safe havens elsewhere.

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And, indeed, in this report last

month by Iran's Press TV,

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a Syrian soldier fighting in Ghoutta

talked about the evacuation option.

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TRANSLATION:

We gave

the terrorists the chance

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to leave to Idlib in green buses.

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Now I tell them there

are no more green buses.

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Now this is their fate.

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But now the evacuation buses

could come back on the agenda,

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as the government seeks

to add Ghouta to the list

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of conquered places.

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With the heavier costs they can

impose on the civilian

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population to pivot that pressure

on the armed opposition,

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to basically give up or surrender,

exactly represents their best case

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scenario, but as I say,

East Ghouta in particular has been

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besieged de facto for over five

years, and still it has consistently

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presented that kind of stalwart,

stubborn opposition

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to regime control.

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So I would suggest that,

like in Aleppo, we will continue

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to see a steady escalation

in the bombing campaign,

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and then an eventual ground

incursion that, yes,

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probably will eventually lead

to that same result.

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After more heavy bombing today,

a rebel spokesman in Ghouta said

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ceasefire talks had broken down.

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But the government has

capitulation in mind,

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and many more people may have to die

before those holding out

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in the enclave could agree to that.

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Joining me now is Panos

Moumtzis, the UN's

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humanitarian coordinator

for the Syria crisis.

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And in the studio Dr Lina Khatib

from the Chatham House think-tank.

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Until that point of evacuation, it

is presumably impossible for the UN

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to go in and do its job?

At the

moment it is impossible, we have no

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or for organisations to go inside

although assistance and everything

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we have needed is within ten miles

distance. It is often Damascus where

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there is a

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there is a urgent need for food. But

more important to protect civilians

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in the enclave where there are

thousands of people living at the

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moment. Our only hope at the moment

I would say is the Security Council

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resolution being discussed to bring

an immediate ceasefire. The ongoing

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discussions I hope will bring

results. There is an agreement that

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comes to place for cessation of

hostilities that is desperately

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needed.

Without the UN Security

Council 's, the best way out for

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civilians is a deal.

They have to

let the rebels giving? At the moment

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it is an extreme situation.

Spiralling out of control, because

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it has been heavy bombing that has

taken place for three continuous

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days are reports of hundreds killed

and many more injured. Health

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facilities have been attacked, water

cut, food is low. Electricity, there

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is no electricity in place. People

are afraid to go out, most hiding in

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basements. A grim situation. We

think of children, families living

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under this.

This is a cycle, as we

have heard. Each time the evacuation

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happens means that Assad has gained

ground. You understand, I guess, how

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involved you are in that cycle?

We

hope it will not be a repetition of

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what happened in Aleppo, that

extreme level where a city or area

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is destroyed and more importantly

lives are lost. This is why we are

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calling for a ceasefire. A cessation

of hostilities and something needs

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to change. The situation is not

business as usual, it is extreme.

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Everybody needs to put pressure on

to bring a change.

Could you put

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more pressure directly from the

ground on Assad if you withheld

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humanitarian aid from the pro-rebel

areas and said you will not provide

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aid to his pro-regime areas, does

that work?

No, because we are guided

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by humanitarian principles, to help

people indeed in all locations. We

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are not driven by politics but by

people need. We do not think it

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right not to help people in

extremely dim one location in order

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to bring a change on ground, we are

driven by severity of needs criteria

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or where to help.

This shows the

cycle. The UN is in a position where

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it would not deny anyone

humanitarian aid but they are almost

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completing the Assad strategy.

Assad

has been good at taking advantage of

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opportunities and essentially using

UN aid to his advantage but I do not

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think in this case the UN can do

very much.

You mean on the ground or

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the UN Security Council?

The UN on

the ground. And the UN Security

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Council has been rendered impotent

by the veto. Every time there is a

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proposed resolution can result in

that they have vetoed it.

I have

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been asking that for seven years.

Does the UN have any political

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purpose longer-term?

I think the UN

can be a vehicle to implement a

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political settlement is Syria but we

can no longer rely on the UN to be

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the instigator of a solution to this

conflict. I think this is the role

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of the United States and the west in

general and sadly we are not seeing

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this political will in the west or

the US in particular.

That is a

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change because at one stage we said

these problems and conflicts have to

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be solved within the region and now

you are saying we need intervention,

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you cannot imagine saying that ten

years ago, but you say we want the

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US right back on the ground and you

want the UK and the rest of the

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country is looking on?

I am saying

it is political will, I'm not

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talking about military intervention,

I do not think that could do much at

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this stage. What we are seeing is

the west turning a blind eye to what

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is happening in Syria and Assad and

Russia are taking advantage of the

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inaction to widen the scope of their

activities

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activities knowing is no

accountability. Do you think Assad

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has won the war? He has not, he is

taking over areas militarily and

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only doing so by not just making

rebels evacuate by force, but by

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making these areas uninhabitable for

the original residents. We are

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seeing a process of democratic

change in Syria that Assad with

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Russia is orchestrating and this

will be damaging for Syria in the

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long run.

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In the UK's highest court, defeat

today for the Metropolitan Police

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and a judgment that could have far

reaching implications

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for all police and crime victims.

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The Met lost an appeal

against the awarding of compensation

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to two victims of the black cab

rapist John Worboys over

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the police's failure

to investigate him properly.

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The women had argued

their treatment by police

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breached their human rights.

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The Metropolitan Police

have accepted the ruling

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and are braced for more claims.

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I mean, let's be clear,

we've always been held

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to account for investigations.

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We have a long history of that

and it is right and proper

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that the police service

is held to account.

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We are a public service,

that's what we do.

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Of course, there will be more

claims, there is the potential

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for that, and people will no doubt

pore over and look at this judgment,

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as we all will, and work through

what are the policy implications?

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What do we now need to change?

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What are those things,

where do we have to look

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at balance and priorities?

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Well, to discuss whether this

is a landmark ruling -

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and what the implications

are for both victims

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and the police - I'm

joined by the barrister

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Kirsty Brimelow QC.

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Nice to have you. In layman 's

terms, what does this actually do?

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What does it change?

It's very

significant, because what it has now

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set out is that you and I as

individuals, if we are subject to

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serious assaults, serious violence

is committed against us by an

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individual, and the police commit

serious errors in their

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investigation of our complaint to

them about the crime committed, we

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can hold them accountable as

individuals. So it's moved away from

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any suggestion that the police don't

have accountability to an individual

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if it's not them actually who are

carrying out the crime.

If you were

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in a police force now, would you be

worried about the cases that might

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come?

The police have an

obligation... This is under human

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rights law. They have an obligation

to provide an effective

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investigation if there is a crime

committed. The article, article

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three, means that we as individuals

are protected against inhumane,

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degrading treatment and torture, and

its binary. That means the state has

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to pass laws to protect us. In this

case there is an offence of rape, so

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somebody cannot commit a rape and

there is a punishment for that.

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There is also a procedural

obligation on the state that means

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they have to carry out an effective

investigation

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investigation if a crime is

committed. As for some of the

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comments coming from the police that

this is a problem for them, they are

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saying resources, and one of the

things they are saying is that they

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may have to move resources away from

fraud or these type of allegations,

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but I have to say I don't see that.

They are obliged to carry out an

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effective investigation. In this

particular case, the Worboys case,

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there were a series of serious

omissions from the first complaint

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that was made in 2003, and it took

them until 2008 to finally carry out

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a proper investigation into it. And

they have apologised. This should be

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good for the police. We want an

effective police force for the white

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if you were perhaps one of the young

men who have been falsely accused of

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rape. There was the case of the

young man whose phone messages have

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been checked. Under this change in

this law, would he be able to take

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this grievance? That would be

slightly different. There has to be

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a real egregious error.

They could

have sent him to prison.

This seems

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to be more to do with issues of

disclosure at the CPS, at the

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prosecution stage. They might be

slightly different positions. This

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is where someone is complaining of a

crime committed against them,

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someone being prosecuted for a

crime. So the same things won't

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apply.

What sort of cases due thing

will be applied? Individual cases,

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or mass cases like Hillsborough? Is

it going to take us to places

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where...

What is important is the

common law. Through the courts at

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the moment, you cannot bring a case

against the police for negligence,

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as an individual. This is a saying

that if there has been serious

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failures for a crime committed, very

serious, serious violence, inhumane

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treatment or torture, offences like

rape, serious assaults, serious

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domestic violence, then with those

cases, I could take the police to

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court, sue them, hold them

accountable for their lack of

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effective investigation. It doesn't

open the floodgates. It's not going

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to be for every single omission or

oversight by the police, but it is

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significant, because it should keep

the police on their toes in future.

0:17:530:17:58

Thank you very much.

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Egyptians will vote in presidential

elections next month.

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The former army chief

Abdel Fattah el-Sisi looks

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certain of re-election.

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Serious challengers have been

disqualified, arrested or have

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dropped out of the race.

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Human rights groups say

the election will be a farce.

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They accuse the President

of presiding over an unprecedented

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crackdown on human rights

during his four years in office.

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Press freedom is also under attack,

and Egypt is now in the top three

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countries world wide

for jailing journalists.

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But tonight, we bring you a rare

opportunity to hear the stories

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of some of those in Egypt who have

borne the brunt of the el-Sisi

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regime, courtesy of the BBC's

Middle East Correspondent Orla

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Guerin.

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She joins me now.

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One that it is nice to have you.

This has been a very tough place to

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work as a journalist.

First we

should say thank you to our

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interviewees who agreed to be in the

film. I have been based in the

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country for four years, and over

that time, people have been

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increasingly reluctant to speak.

That fear has been palpable. It's

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not just a case of going back to the

bad old days to Hosni Mubarak.

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Seasoned human rights campaigners

would tell you that it's going back

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to the bad old days. Serious. Lots

of people being tortured. One of the

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victims said, torture now is a must.

In the course of making the film, we

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were in contact with many families

whose loved ones had disappeared or

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been tortured, or killed in some

cases. They wanted to highlight the

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abuses, but were scared of reprisals

and too frightened to tell their

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stories on camera. It was tricky for

us to make the film. I have worked

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across the Middle East over the last

couple of years, including places

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like Saudi Arabia and Iraq. From my

experience, taking out a TV camera

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is more difficult to do in Egypt

than any of those countries. The

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minute you do, the police are on

you.

0:19:590:20:07

you. They are trying to shut you

down. It's a country where

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journalist 's face high risk,

particularly local journalists. A

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number of journalists behind bars at

any time, and you can be accused of

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spreading false news, which is an

offence in Egypt. That can be used

0:20:180:20:23

against journalists and against

human rights workers. Let's have a

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look at your piece.

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Welcome to Egypt.

0:20:340:20:35

Enticing images of timeless

hospitality and ancient

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attractions.

0:20:360:20:38

A picture postcard view

the authorities are keen to promote.

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But there is another Egypt,

a military backed regime.

0:20:430:20:49

Where dreams of freedom

have been crushed.

0:20:490:20:54

It is understandable

to be scared, with a

0:20:540:20:56

regime that is not

hesitant about killing.

0:20:560:21:02

I've never seen a regime as

bloody as Sisi's regime.

0:21:020:21:10

It all looked so different

seven years ago.

0:21:130:21:19

This was Tahrir Square

in February 2011.

0:21:190:21:24

The night the people broke free

of President Hosni Mubarak.

0:21:240:21:32

Ending 30 years of

authoritarian rule.

0:21:320:21:39

Or so they hoped.

0:21:390:21:44

But now the square feels

like a place of lost

0:21:440:21:46

opportunity.

0:21:460:21:52

Standing here in Tahrir Square

seven years on, there is

0:21:520:21:55

really nothing to indicate that this

was the cradle of an uprising, that

0:21:550:22:00

it was here that the people

toppled an autocrat.

0:22:000:22:04

The monument is bare,

no list of names of all of those who

0:22:040:22:07

were killed, and that is just

the way the authorities want it.

0:22:070:22:12

It is as if the revolution

has been erased

0:22:120:22:15

and along with it

the hope it brought.

0:22:150:22:22

Icons of the

uprising, like Alaa Abd

0:22:220:22:24

El-Fattah, have been

treated as enemies of the state.

0:22:240:22:30

He was a leading light

of the Tahrir protests.

0:22:300:22:32

Secular, articulate,

a software developer.

0:22:320:22:40

Alaa Abd El-Fattah was accused

of organising this protest.

0:22:430:22:48

The demonstrators appeared peaceful.

0:22:480:22:52

The authorities were not.

0:22:520:23:00

Others told the authorities

they organised the

0:23:050:23:09

protest, but he was still

sentenced to five years.

0:23:090:23:12

Another member of

Egypt's Generation Jail.

0:23:120:23:20

His fractured family go

through the motions.

0:23:230:23:27

Without a much-loved son,

husband and brother.

0:23:270:23:33

Human rights groups say

there are thousands like

0:23:330:23:35

them in Egypt, families

of political prisoners.

0:23:350:23:40

His sister campaigns

against civilians being tried in

0:23:400:23:42

military courts.

0:23:420:23:47

In this household, resistance

runs in the family.

0:23:470:23:52

But she says the struggle

for change is harder than

0:23:520:23:55

ever under President

Abdel Fattah el-Sisi.

0:23:550:24:02

The level of bloodiness

is beyond anything I've

0:24:020:24:04

ever heard or experienced.

0:24:040:24:06

And the way they have

managed to desensitise

0:24:060:24:09

people towards death, to belittle

the value of people'slives.

0:24:090:24:17

To make people get used

to death sentences,

0:24:190:24:23

to forced disappearances

and abduction.

0:24:230:24:24

To torture, to torture victims.

0:24:240:24:29

This is becoming daily news.

0:24:290:24:34

Her brother has another year

to serve, then faces a further five

0:24:340:24:37

years on probation with

stringent conditions.

0:24:370:24:41

In this tightly-knit group,

the empty space at the table

0:24:410:24:44

is keenly felt.

0:24:440:24:51

Those who end up in custody can

expect the harshest treatment.

0:24:510:24:57

My sources say torture

is commonplace, but few victims

0:24:570:25:01

are willing to speak.

0:25:010:25:09

Mahmood Mohammed Hussein

has first-hand experience

0:25:100:25:13

of the latest torture

techniques.

0:25:130:25:20

He was accused of attending

a banned protest and held

0:25:200:25:22

without trial for

more than two years.

0:25:220:25:25

He says the only reason

he was arrested, aged just 18, was

0:25:250:25:28

because of his T-shirt.

0:25:280:25:31

The slogan read -

a nation without torture.

0:25:310:25:39

Aren't you afraid that

by speaking out like this,

0:26:180:26:21

that the authorities

could come after you again?

0:26:210:26:28

Torture victims used to have one

refuge - the Al Nadeem

0:26:570:27:00

Centre in Cairo.

0:27:000:27:06

But, last year, the

authorities moved in

0:27:060:27:14

and forced it to close its doors.

0:27:150:27:16

Its co-founder,

a psychiatrist, says

0:27:160:27:18

the prevalence of torture

in the

0:27:180:27:19

Sisi era is the worst

she has ever known.

0:27:190:27:22

I have worked in this

field since 1993.

0:27:220:27:25

And I have been hearing about this

field since my university years.

0:27:250:27:32

What I have been seeing

and what my colleagues at the centre

0:27:320:27:36

have been seeing since

2013 is unheard of.

0:27:360:27:41

It was never, never ever that bad.

0:27:410:27:43

So how widespread would you say

the practice is now?

0:27:430:27:51

As widespread as the country.

As widespread as the country.

0:27:510:27:56

What would you say to government

officials here in Egypt who deny

0:27:560:27:59

there is torture?

0:27:590:28:00

You are liars.

0:28:000:28:02

I would say, you are liars.

0:28:020:28:05

I would say you know

there is torture

0:28:050:28:07

because you practise it.

0:28:070:28:11

And then there are

those who are hidden

0:28:110:28:16

behind the sun.

0:28:160:28:22

That's what Egyptians

call the growing numbers

0:28:220:28:26

who vanish from the streets

and are held in secret by the state.

0:28:260:28:30

Anyone opposing

the regime is at risk.

0:28:300:28:36

Human rights campaigners say

enforced disappearances are a

0:28:360:28:38

trademark of the Sisi era.

0:28:380:28:43

They have documented

at least 1500 cases in

0:28:430:28:47

the past four years.

0:28:470:28:53

But they believe the

real figure is much

0:28:530:28:54

higher.

0:28:540:29:01

This is Zubaida, a student of 23,

who wants to open her own business.

0:29:010:29:06

Her mother says she and Zubaida

were arrested near a demonstration

0:29:060:29:14

in 2014 and convicted

of offences including

0:29:190:29:21

attending a banned protest.

0:29:210:29:22

She says they were in the wrong

place at the wrong time and spent

0:29:220:29:25

seven months in jail,

but were later acquitted.

0:29:250:29:27

She tells me that in 2016,

Zubaida was detained

0:29:270:29:30

again at a police

checkpoint and disappeared.

0:29:300:29:36

She was dumped by the roadside

after 28 days, a changed girl.

0:29:360:29:43

But her legal papers show

the anguish did not end there.

0:30:170:30:21

As Zubeida was

struggling to recover,

0:30:210:30:27

she disappeared for

the second time last April.

0:30:270:30:30

Her mother says neighbours

saw her being taken by

0:30:300:30:32

armed and masked police.

0:30:320:30:40

Zubeida's treasured keepsakes

are just as she left them,

0:31:030:31:06

waiting for her return.

0:31:060:31:12

Her mother refuses to give up hope,

refuses to be silenced.

0:31:120:31:20

We wanted to ask the authorities

about Zubeida's disappearance

0:32:010:32:05

and the other cases in this report,

0:32:050:32:10

but they wouldn't

give us an interview.

0:32:100:32:14

Previously, the authorities

had told me there is no

0:32:140:32:18

systematic torture.

0:32:180:32:22

But if mistakes are made,

officers are punished.

0:32:220:32:28

They have also denied there

are enforced disappearances and

0:32:280:32:30

widespread human rights abuses.

0:32:300:32:38

On the banks of the Nile, there

is little hint of change.

0:32:390:32:42

Egypt looks locked in the past.

0:32:420:32:48

Elections are coming,

but President Sisi

0:32:480:32:50

doesn't need to worry

about the outcome.

0:32:500:32:52

Several potential challengers

have been intimidated

0:32:520:32:54

out of the race.

0:32:540:33:02

Many here are concerned

about security amid bomb

0:33:020:33:04

attacks by the so-called

Islamic State.

0:33:040:33:07

The president says he is

waging war on terror.

0:33:070:33:11

But human rights

campaigners say he is using

0:33:110:33:13

that as a pretext to

wage war on dissent.

0:33:130:33:21

Having been here for more than four

years, I know a lot of the

0:33:220:33:25

problems that Egypt is facing.

0:33:250:33:28

There are real economic issues.

0:33:280:33:30

There are serious

security threats from IS.

0:33:300:33:35

But this is the most populous

country in the Arab world and if

0:33:350:33:39

Egypt can't steer a course towards

real democracy, that is a problem

0:33:390:33:44

for the Middle East

and it is a problem for the west.

0:33:440:33:48

And I'm leaving here with questions.

0:33:480:33:50

How long before all

of the repression

0:33:500:33:53

here starts to backfire, and how

many more prisons can the regime

0:33:530:33:56

fill?

0:33:560:34:04

And you can see a longer version

of Orla's film on Our World this

0:34:070:34:10

Saturday and Sunday at 9.30pm

on the BBC News Channel

0:34:100:34:12

and on the iPlayer.

0:34:120:34:18

In the last hour -

extraordinary footage

0:34:180:34:20

from the White House.

0:34:200:34:24

President Trump has been meeting -

in public - survivors

0:34:240:34:26

of last week's shooting

at Marjory Stoneman Douglas

0:34:260:34:28

High School in Florida

that killed 17 people.

0:34:280:34:32

Also there, relatives of the dead.

0:34:320:34:36

For over half an hour, the President

sat almost silent as they laid

0:34:360:34:40

bare their pain and talked

of the need to open America's minds

0:34:400:34:44

to all kinds of solutions to gun

crime in schools and asked him not

0:34:440:34:48

to allow this to be just one

more school shooting.

0:34:480:34:50

The President opened

proceedings with some words

0:34:500:34:52

on tougher gun regulations.

0:34:520:34:55

We're going to be very strong

on background checks,

0:34:550:34:59

we'll be doing very strong

background checks, very strong

0:34:590:35:04

emphasis on the mental health

of somebody, and we are going to do

0:35:040:35:07

plenty of other things.

0:35:070:35:11

Once the President had

made his opening remarks,

0:35:110:35:17

it was a chance for those whose pain

is still raw to have their say.

0:35:170:35:21

My daughter has no voice.

0:35:210:35:24

She was murdered last week,

and she was taken from us.

0:35:240:35:28

Shot nine times on the third floor.

0:35:280:35:34

We as a country failed our children.

0:35:340:35:38

This shouldn't happen.

0:35:380:35:41

We go to the airport -

I can't get on a plane

0:35:410:35:44

with a bottle of water,

but we leave some animal to walk

0:35:440:35:49

into a school and shoot up children.

0:35:490:35:51

It's just not right,

and we need to come together

0:35:510:35:59

as a country and work on what's

important, and that's protecting

0:36:000:36:03

our children in the schools.

0:36:030:36:08

To feel like this, ever, I can not

feel comfortable in my country

0:36:080:36:14

knowing that people have, will have,

ever going to feel like this.

I want

0:36:140:36:23

to feel safe at school.

0:36:230:36:28

We heard from President Trump at the

end of that extraordinary outpouring

0:36:300:36:34

of thought and of pain and one of

the ideas President Trump picked up

0:36:340:36:38

bomb was to talk of more guns in

schools for specific teachers, he

0:36:380:36:44

said that would be something that

could cut short any attack by a

0:36:440:36:48

gunman in that situation. Not maybe

the only idea that the students had

0:36:480:36:54

pledged to him but we will see if

that goes further in coming days.

0:36:540:37:04

Looking at the papers, The Times,

more people should get pills to beat

0:37:040:37:08

depression. Extra people should be

offered antidepressants in the

0:37:080:37:12

largest study of its kind. Academics

investigating anti-Semitism on

0:37:120:37:19

Twitter. That more people shared

tweets that challenged any kind of

0:37:190:37:23

racism than shared of the thing

itself. In the Guardian newspaper

0:37:230:37:31

the picture of many young people in

America marching for gun control. In

0:37:310:37:37

Florida, a day that saw thousands of

people across the States to walk out

0:37:370:37:42

and join those marchers. And also

the black cab racist given legal

0:37:420:37:49

aid. I think we can cross to the

Washington bureau and speak to our

0:37:490:37:55

correspondent in Washington. We saw

some of the speakers and heard from

0:37:550:37:59

the president himself. What is your

reaction on what impact that has

0:37:590:38:03

made tonight on the President

himself.

It seems as far as

0:38:030:38:08

President Trump's thinking is

concerned the solution to mass

0:38:080:38:12

shootings is not fewer guns, but

more. He said he would be backing

0:38:120:38:19

this controversial proposal to

basically have more weapons amongst

0:38:190:38:25

school staff, to have teachers

armed, perhaps people in other roles

0:38:250:38:30

in the School armed and be able to

adopt what is called here concealed

0:38:300:38:36

carrying, to have weapons about

their person. That view was

0:38:360:38:40

countered by a man called Mark

Burdon, whose son died in the Sandy

0:38:400:38:48

Hook massacre. His wife is a teacher

and he said simply that this could

0:38:480:38:52

lead to shoot outs on school

property. He said school teachers

0:38:520:38:58

had quite enough to do, based on his

wife's example, already, rather than

0:38:580:39:04

act as vigilantes. The president

said he was considering tougher

0:39:040:39:10

mental health checks on people who

buy guns in the United States and he

0:39:100:39:15

promised his administration would

find a solution to this, as he put

0:39:150:39:20

it.

For people looking for a

political sea change from this

0:39:200:39:25

Republican president, is your sense

it will come?

Not really. We have

0:39:250:39:31

had over the past days signs the

president was keen on limiting

0:39:310:39:38

certain... Putting in place certain

limitations on firearms, the backing

0:39:380:39:44

of a bipartisan bill for more

stringent back ground checks that

0:39:440:39:49

sort of thing, but he appears to

have rowed back completely with the

0:39:490:39:52

idea there should be more guns in

schools, not fewer.

Thanks.

0:39:520:39:56

That's it for tonight.

0:39:560:39:58

Before we go, the world's

biggest and best known

0:39:580:40:00

international photography awards,

the Sonys, are about to announce

0:40:000:40:02

who's on the coveted

shortlist this year.

0:40:020:40:08

Here's a sneak peek at some

of the top contenders.

0:40:080:40:10

Good night.

0:40:100:40:18

# Like a sound you hear in your ear.

0:40:340:40:40

# No matter what you do, it is going

to have a hold on you.

0:40:400:40:46

# California soul.

0:40:460:40:54

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