22/10/2013 World News Today


22/10/2013

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

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

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

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

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

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President Assad's men at the negotiating table.

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

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Nairobi address of British terror suspect Samantha Lewthwaite.

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

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

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

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about this one at the the National Theatre in London?

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

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Syrian peace deal between the official opposition and president

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

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

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

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commit to negotiations in Geneva next month. Our World Affairs

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correspondent Rajesh Mirchandani has more.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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and the suffering of Syrian civilians is a political transition

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

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our resolve, or unity and her determination in bringing that

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

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

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

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Assad Stepstone first. Here is another obstacle to negotiations,

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

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

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

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

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

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say the deaths caused by conventional weapons are going

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

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of fighting. International leaders today said the ultimate objective

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

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suffer the most are the Syrian people themselves who are being

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

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are having an increasingly profound impact on surrounding countries

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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against her. That was in Syria. Samantha

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Lewthwaite is one of a number of Britons suspected of joining

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Islamist organisations. With me is Peter Neumann, Professor

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

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

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

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

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

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

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aggressive recruitment campaign by Al-Shabab which has produced very

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slick videos in English, aimed especially at English speakers and

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

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

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focusing on a particular demographic? Most of the people who

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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important our foreign recruits to the efforts of the Islamist militias

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

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which are strongly supported by foreigners. We estimate that around

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

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but 1000 of those are Europeans They are from different European

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

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

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

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

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

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

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factions losing ground. Absolutely and the danger with those foreign

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

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

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

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have nothing to do, but the ideological indoctrinated and

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

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counter the appeal when the Western governments are also saying that

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

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there is no counter narrative. Before the hit that other

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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their perilous journey across the Mediterranean to Europe, which they

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

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

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

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refuge in Vienna. They came in on the overnight train

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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Europe. Italian officials then flew them from Lampedusa to another

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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explanation of the documents introduced. Tests have not yet been

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

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identity of a motherboard girl discovered in a Roma community there

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

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parents and are now investigating almost a dozen missing children

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cases. And now the centre of an

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international trafficking probe It is now a week since police

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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Meanwhile police have searched other Roma communities in the area and

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several arrests have been made on suspicion of wider trafficking

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

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this mysterious keys moves on. The prosecutors say all birth

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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there something more sinister and tragic involved?

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Spanish judges have ordered the release of a convicted mass militant

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after the European Court of human rights ruled against continued

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

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

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

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

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

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that anyone committed of the most serious offences including terrorism

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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difficult questions again. Thank you very much.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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three children. A man from Liverpool in northern

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

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

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McArdle was arrested after he admitted calling the police just as

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

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

:20:26.:20:30.

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

:20:31.:20:34.

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

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

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have a child and decided to do something about it.

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

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

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

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

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

:21:13.:21:16.

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

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

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

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

:21:32.:21:36.

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

:21:37.:21:40.

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

:21:41.:21:48.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

:22:56.:22:58.

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

:22:59.:23:07.

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

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

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

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plans to be around for a long time yet.

:23:22.:23:29.

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

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

:23:34.:23:38.

director. Parallel Dimitri Janklow denies organising the assault on

:23:39.:23:43.

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

:23:44.:23:45.

rivalries at one of Russia's greatest cultural institutions.

:23:46.:23:51.

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

:23:52.:23:56.

prison if they are convicted of intentionally causing grievous

:23:57.:23:59.

bodily harm. All three deny the charges.

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

:24:03.:24:06.

international Peter. Its first performance was Hamlet, performed by

:24:07.:24:12.

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

:24:13.:24:15.

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

:24:16.:24:21.

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

:24:22.:24:24.

impact of national data. The Queen backstage at the National

:24:25.:24:34.

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

:24:35.:24:41.

exciting. It was a wonderful adventure to have begun the

:24:42.:24:46.

company. Laurence Olivier, extraordinary actor and. Laurence

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

:24:54.:24:58.

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

:24:59.:25:05.

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

:25:06.:25:13.

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

:25:14.:25:17.

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

:25:18.:25:23.

a more astute commercial institution. Warhorse transferred to

:25:24.:25:32.

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

:25:33.:25:37.

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

:25:38.:25:46.

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

:25:47.:25:50.

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

:25:51.:25:57.

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

:25:58.:26:03.

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

:26:04.:26:07.

think the National Theatre understanding is re-met is also

:26:08.:26:13.

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

:26:14.:26:18.

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

:26:19.:26:27.

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

:26:28.:26:38.

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

:26:39.:26:44.

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

:26:45.:26:55.

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

:26:56.:26:59.

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

:27:00.:27:06.

to whip up particularly across the south coast. Low

:27:07.:27:07.

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