22/10/2013 World News Today


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This is BBC World News Today, with me, Philippa Thomas.


Syria's fractured opposition is urged to speak with one voice, as a


new attempt is made to end two and half years of civil conflict.


In London, a group of Western and Arab nations push for peace talks in


Geneva next month, but some Syrian groups say there's no room for


President Assad's men at the negotiating table.


A worldwide hunt for the White Widow - Now the BBC tracks down the


Nairobi address of British terror suspect Samantha Lewthwaite.


Also coming up: A blonde, blue-eyed girl is taken away from a Roma


couple in Ireland, just days after a similar case emerged in Greece.


And Queen Elizabeth is known for liking her race horses, but how


about this one at the the National Theatre in London?


Hello and welcome. A fresh attempt is being made to try to a broker a


Syrian peace deal between the official opposition and president


Bashar Al-Assad. The group of western and Arab nations who call


themselves "friends of Syria" have today held talks in London with


various opposition groups. Their message - that the groups should all


commit to negotiations in Geneva next month. Our World Affairs


correspondent Rajesh Mirchandani has more.


In all of the government checkpoint in Syria. Rebel and linked to


Al-Qaeda have been blamed, another sign of how complicated this civil


war has become and how difficult it will be to stop the bloodshed.


Against that backdrop, international leaders met in London to talk about


peace talks. Smiles mask concern about extremism and deep splits in


the opposition of Syria. They agreed that only a political settlement


will end the war. The only sustainable way to end this conflict


and the suffering of Syrian civilians is a political transition


in Syria. The purpose of our meeting today has been to send a signal of


our resolve, or unity and her determination in bringing that


about. On the ground, all rebel groups are fighting to topple


President Assad, but they are not united. Some are extremist Islamist


groups not interested in peace talks. Others will not talk unless


Assad Stepstone first. Here is another obstacle to negotiations,


President Assad insists he's not going anywhere. TRANSLATION:


Regarding the pointer losing to me personally, I do not see any reason


why I should not run in the next election. In his country, UN


inspectors are continuing their work to rid Syria of chemical weapons.


The head of the team says the Syrian government is cooperating. Critics


say the deaths caused by conventional weapons are going


unpunished. More than 100,000 Syrians have died over to have years


of fighting. International leaders today said the ultimate objective


was to end civilian suffering. The greatest victims, the people who


suffer the most are the Syrian people themselves who are being


driven from their homes and killed in the most wanton violence and who


are having an increasingly profound impact on surrounding countries


Both the UK and US pledged more money to help the millions of Syrian


refugees, one concrete outcome of today's meeting. A key selling


opposition group still has not committed to the stocks for an end


to the war is no closer. -- the Syrian opposition group. One month


after the deadly seas at the shopping while in Nairobi, questions


are being asked as to who the attackers were. Interpol have issued


a red notice, as it has known, for the rest of the woman known as the


white middle, some in the was married to one of the suicide


bombers who attacked the London Tube network in 2005. She is one of the


most wanted terror suspects in the world and it has emerged that she


has been living in Nairobi as recently as two years ago.


This is the apartment where she lived between January and July 011.


The people living here knew her as a mother of four young children as she


lived with a partner only known to the people here as Mick. Jihad for


young children, the youngest must have been five months old, and the


eldest eight years old. The day she was leaving she was in tears,


saying, her mother had passed away. With regard to the Westgate shopping


centre attack, there has not been any evidence linking her to that


attack but there has been much speculation. What is now likely to


reside close is the fact that her apartment was located less than 100


metres from another shopping maul, an upmarket shopping maul in Nairobi


popular with the middle class. She had a clear line of sight to that


shopping maul and has been on the run from the police since 2011. We


have been told that one week after she moved out of the apartment the


detectives arrived looking for her but she has been on the run since


then and just last month Interpol issued a writ -- the red notice


against her. That was in Syria. Samantha


Lewthwaite is one of a number of Britons suspected of joining


Islamist organisations. With me is Peter Neumann, Professor


of Security Studies at King's College London where he's Director


of the International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation. I want to


talk about Somalia first, and the number of Britons or Somalis living


in Britain who beat egg being radicalised and going back. We think


that since 2008, roughly, there have been around 60 or 70 Britons that


have gone to Somalia. They were partly dictated by the very


aggressive recruitment campaign by Al-Shabab which has produced very


slick videos in English, aimed especially at English speakers and


ever since those videos have come out and increasing of Americans and


Britons have gone to Somalia. We know that the Internet is key, I be


focusing on a particular demographic? Most of the people who


have gone people in their 20s, that is much in these videos that tries


to capitalise on people 's sense of excitement, since of adventure, one


of the videos and said come to Somalia, this is the real business


aligned. There clearly is a sense in which they are banking on people's


one young male's sense of excitement and adventure. Who pays for that


adventure? In most cases they pay themselves, they make the one-way,


ask their parents for money at it and it will money and tap into their


savings. Once they are there, Al-Shabab takes care of them.


Turning to Syria, this is something that is confounding diplomats, how


important our foreign recruits to the efforts of the Islamist militias


on the ground? They are particularly important to be to have distractions


which are strongly supported by foreigners. We estimate that around


6000 foreigners have gone to Syria since the beginning of the conflict


but 1000 of those are Europeans They are from different European


countries, 200 or 300 from Britain, 200 from Belgium, which is probably


the capital of the skin of them There are many theories about this.


There seems to be a group of people who are actively facilitating


treatment from four cities in Belgium, one a very small city where


and 50 people have gone. Do you think that John Kerry and William


Hague are right to be concerned about this? They see the favoured


factions losing ground. Absolutely and the danger with those foreign


jihad is is twofold. On one hand the often join very extreme factions. In


the creating a lot of bad outcomes instead of Syria. The second problem


is that at some point he makes return to their home countries that


have nothing to do, but the ideological indoctrinated and


brutalised. Something you have tracked is that it is hard to


counter the appeal when the Western governments are also saying that


Assad must go. They are going to Syria with the same thought. Yes,


there is no counter narrative. Before the hit that other


politicians get up in the Assad is a brutal dictator who killed his own


people, we are sending weapons there but you are not allowed to go, it


does not make any sense. It adds fuel to the flames. Yes. Is this a


problem likely to go? I think so. As long as this conflict continues it


will continue to draw new people in. A lot of empty freight there are


absorbed by the conflict in Syria so in that sense it is OK, these people


are over there, but in 510 years these people will come back with


nothing to do and that may contain a problem nothing to do. Thank you


very much for speaking to us. While a small number of foreigners


are entering Syria to fight with opposition forces, tens of thousands


of Syrians continue to flee the violence. On Monday we reported on


their perilous journey across the Mediterranean to Europe, which they


see as a safe haven. Today the BBC's Matthew Price meets a family which


travelled overland from Syria to Libya, before buying places on a


vote to Lampedusa. Matthew followed their journey through Europe, to


refuge in Vienna. They came in on the overnight train


from Italy. Scared, vulnerable and alone. An educated family, the


family is an architect. They sold their two properties in Syria to pay


for their escape. Now, one bag contains everything they own.


Exhausted, the stock in a cafe. They asked us not identify them.


TRANSLATION: I want a better life and stability for my children. I


want them to go to school and live just like other children. The


children are living in fear. They ask me, where is our house? My


daughter asks me about her bed. She wants to sleep in her bed. I don't


want to say to her. We first met them in the refugee


centre in Lampedusa, Italy. The mother describes their vote journey


as a suicide. We almost died, she said. Six days later, she was in


Vienna showing the photos. Of the house in Libya are the people


smugglers kept them. Of that dangerous vote trip from Africa to


Europe. Italian officials then flew them from Lampedusa to another


refugee centre in southern Italy. And there, they were free to go


TRANSLATION: We were given the choice to stay in Italy or leave. So


the Red Cross to a spike after train station. Someone from the refugee


camp helped us put the tickets. And we took the train to Vienna.


Thousands of migrants have been arriving in Italy and under EU law


that is where any claim for asylum should be processed, and yet as we


found inside this cafe with this family that did not happen. Italian


officials did not require them to stay, in fact part of the system


actively encourage them to head north. Then they take a tram towards


the refugee centres here. Like many, they know the rules. The new


to register only in the country where they wanted to stay. In the


case, Austria. Whether you have now formally apply for asylum. Since the


filming of that study the couple featured have been offered asylum.


Police in Ireland have moved the seven-year-old club girl from a Roma


family and taken her into care. The family told officers that the


tales was there as the police in Dublin were not satisfied with your


explanation of the documents introduced. Tests have not yet been


carried out. The case comes as Greek authorities seek to find the true


identity of a motherboard girl discovered in a Roma community there


last week. Police have widened their investigations to try and find her


parents and are now investigating almost a dozen missing children


cases. And now the centre of an


international trafficking probe It is now a week since police


swooped on Farsala. They found the Peel Maria living amongst aroma


community. The couple are suspected of kidnapping her. Medical tests


show she is five or six years old. The lawyer for the couple told me


today no crime had been committed and that her clients were given the


child. But there are still questions over her origin. There is no


evidence that Maria was begging or that my clients were exploiting her.


The couple said her real mother was Bulgarian but I have doubts. Maybe


the woman who gave Maria said she was from that country. They have


been charged with abduction and having false papers. He has been


transferred to the local prison while she will be moved out of the


town. And so the couple have been separated. He remains here at the


prison while his partner will await trial in custody in Athens.


Meanwhile police have searched other Roma communities in the area and


several arrests have been made on suspicion of wider trafficking


network. The couple's house is closed up, neighbours watching how


this mysterious keys moves on. The prosecutors say all birth


certificates from the past six years will be checked for benefits fraud.


I used to see the mother. She would come here to the square to beg with


a child. At 1.I asked her how she had got such a blonde angel. She had


said she had conceived at whether blond man. How could we know what


was going on? What aroma here feel under threat and marginalised,


worried about the impact this could now have. We do not sell or buy


children, says the president of the community. We have lots of my own, I


have five, my father ten. The charity looking after Maria have had


thousands of calls from around the world and is passing leads on to


police. The aim to find out whether this was a simple adoption, or was


there something more sinister and tragic involved?


Spanish judges have ordered the release of a convicted mass militant


after the European Court of human rights ruled against continued


detention. Ines del Rio Prada of the separatist group ETA has been


serving a 30 Mac Pro -- 30 - year sentence for bomb attacks in the


1980s. Let's go to Madrid now and speak to our correspondent. Tell us


why she was released? Essentially, the Spanish government was keeping


Ines del Rio Prada in prison using a ruling back in 2006. At ruling said


that anyone committed of the most serious offences including terrorism


offences could not be eligible for early release. The European Court of


human rights ruled that she should be eligible for release and that is


why it is now the possibility of not only her case that has been reviewed


and she has been released but other convicted members of ETA could now


be eligible for release. I no amongst ETA supporters there has


been anger about her treatment, but there has been more anger at this


sight of her walking free? There has. One question, from the


organisers representing the victims of ETA, is how one woman convicted


of several bombings in the 1980s, before completing her full 30-year


sentence, there has been a lot of anger and frustration. The


government have accepted the decision, but they haven't ridden


their disgust at the decision, which in the Spanish government's eyes is


a must take. How much has ETA and it seems men alive issue in Spain? It


hasn't. That is the interesting thing. For decades the issue of ETA


was the number one issue here for photos. Abel lived in fear and to a


certain extent it was a huge issue. -- people. It was hugely


instrumental in the politics of the regions in the Basque country. ETA


has been weakened by a series of arrests. It's called a cease-fire


two years ago. Although ETA has not disbanded, we are almost in post-ETA


Spain. It is such an emotive issue, of people feel strongly on either


side of the debate. A lot of people in Spain condemned ETA as terror


arrests. But ETA does have its supporters in the Basque country. I


think once again we are seeing a very difficult issue, one that has


hung over this country for so many decades. Although it has gone into


the background in recent years, this case is brought up some very


difficult questions again. Thank you very much.


Let's give you a brief look at some other news. More than 100 religious


clerics in Saudi Arabia have gone to the Royal Court in Riyadh to protest


against growing pressure to lift the ban on women driving. In one video


posted on YouTube, one cleric said they had come to tell King Abdullah


about the serious risk facing the country. A court in Italy has halved


the amount - in alimony - that the former prime minister, Silvio


Berlusconi, will have to pay to his ex-wife.


Mr Berlusconi - one of Italy's richest men - will now give the


equivalent of 1.9 million dollars a month to Veronica Lario and their


three children. A man from Liverpool in northern


England has been jailed for a year over a bomb all on his wedding day


to disguise the fact he had forgotten to book the venue. Neil


McArdle was arrested after he admitted calling the police just as


is bred was getting ready. Across the western world, there are


a growing number of women who choose to have a child alone, facing the


prospect of raising a child without the help of our partner. As part of


our 100 Women series, call the Lucy Hockings has been to meet a woman,


who after the age of 50, realised she might have missed the chance to


have a child and decided to do something about it.


The intense love that mother feels for her child is something Sally.


She would never experience. It came as a decision, not as a question any


more. I am going to give this a try. Then if it doesn't work, I will


graciously and gratefully let go of the chance for having it. Sally


needed a little bit of help as she calls it to conceive her child and


went through IVF. She was a private house in Port of the medical


community work, given she was an older woman on her own. I was


amazed, they were fantastic. They were very positive. More and more


people here in the UK are choosing to have the children in


nontraditional family units. Since 1986 there has been a 26% drop in


children being born to married couples. In terms of women over the


age of 40, 6.5% of all children are registered to a sole parent. The


organisation here makes -- helps women make the hard decisions. Our


demographics are changing so we are seeing an increase in the number of


women who have reached their late 30s and 40s who always probably


thought they would have children and suddenly find out that they are


perhaps going to be childless. For the first generation, the first time


that generation has a choice. The last few years haven't been easy for


Sally. The usual sleepless nights and the pressure of work. She does


not have a single regret. It is just fantastic. It is just fantastic He


just gives me joy every day. No sleep, but lots of jolly. I kept


hearing people say the thing I am most proud about and what is most


important to me is my children. At a certain point of life you can be


detached from that. When you keep hearing that, you think, what can


that mean? I thought, I have got to try and have a chance to experience


that. Now I have. Now I understand! Male friends and family are also


role models to her child and she is happy is raising him alone and she


plans to be around for a long time yet.


One of the stars of the Bolshoi Ballet has gone on trial in Moscow


accused of masterminding an acid attack on the ballet's artistic


director. Parallel Dimitri Janklow denies organising the assault on


Sergei Filin earlier this year which explores bitter behind-the-scenes


rivalries at one of Russia's greatest cultural institutions.


Pavel Dmitrichenko and two alleged accomplices face up to 12 years in


prison if they are convicted of intentionally causing grievous


bodily harm. All three deny the charges.


Far less controversy here in London, where 50 years ago, the queen of


international Peter. Its first performance was Hamlet, performed by


Peter O'Toole, directed by Laurence Olivier. 800 productions later, the


Queen was back on stage today as part of the day to's anniversary


celebrations. Our arts editor Will Gompertz has now looking at the


impact of national data. The Queen backstage at the National


Theatre. Peter O'Toole as the Danish prince, Hamlet. It was immensely


exciting. It was a wonderful adventure to have begun the


company. Laurence Olivier, extraordinary actor and. Laurence


Olivier was the founding director. His brief was to represent a


repertoire of classics alongside new plays. It was a dream. It began in


the 19th century, we to have a National Theatre. It seemed that we


should have a central place of high standards were almost anything could


be done. In the last decade, the state funded institution has become


a more astute commercial institution. Warhorse transferred to


Broadway. There is no doubt that the National Theatre has made a great


success of its here in London. But what effect has it had on nation's


Theatre? I went to Newcastle to find out and speak to the man behind the


national's hit show which started life here at the live Theatre. What


Nash -- do you think National Theatre could do more? I think it


could collaborate on productions. That is probably the best way. I


think the National Theatre understanding is re-met is also


regional as well a central. The National Theatre has been criticised


by some for becoming too big, too dominant. But other argues that it


is envied around the world. Time to remind you of main news


Western and Arab leaders have urged Syrian troops for peace talks in


Geneva next month. I am Philip atomic 's. -- Philippa Thomas. Good


night. A lively night of whether a head. Some very intense downpours


accompanied by some strong and squally winds. Those wins that start


to whip up particularly across the south coast. Low


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