20/01/2014 World News Today


20/01/2014

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This is BBC World News Today with me Zeinab Badawi. A question mark looms

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over whether the peace talks on Syria due to start this week will go

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ahead. With no let-up in the fighting on

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the ground - the Opposition say they will withdraw their participation

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unless the UN withdraws its invitation to Iran to attend the

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talks. The deadline is now. A wake up call 800 million

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kilometres from Earth - we look at an extraordinary European space

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mission to rendezvous with a moving comet.

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Also coming up - escalating violence in Ukraine as opposition leaders

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urge more people out onto the streets saying the President's ban

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of demonstrations is a threat to the entire country.

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And half a century of celebrity watching - we talk to the

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photographer Terry O'Neill as a new exhibition showcases his portraits

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of the stars. Hello and welcome. Urgent and

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intensive discussions are going on now to try to put talks on ending

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the Syrian conflict back on track. They were due to start on Wednesday

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after the main Syrian umbrella opposition group agreed belatedly to

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attend the talks. Then the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon

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invited Iran to join the talks and the Syrian opposition suspended

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their participation. Iran is a major ally of Damascus. It's not clear how

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this diplomatic drama will be resolved. In a moment we'll be

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asking the main opposition spokesman what it will take to get them back

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to the negotiating table. First our Diplomatic Correspondent James

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Robbins. Almost three years of increasingly

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brutal conflict in Syria has ripped the country to shreds. The Western

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powers are desperate for peace tock. The UN leaned President Assad for

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most of the war crimes and said half of the population is dependent on

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humanitarian aid. Translation macro terrorism is rife

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everywhere. On the political side it is possible

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for dialogue. But now the question is will the

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peace process in Geneva happen at all? The idea is that President

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Assad will have representatives at the talks.

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But the opposition is deeply divided. Only the Western backed

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Syrian National Coalition is invited, not those regarded as

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extremists. Then there are the big international supporters of the

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opposing sides. Saudi Arabia is nominally Anne Western ally, but it

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supplies weapons to groups the West finds an acceptable. Iran supports

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the Assad regime. But no arguments over Iran's part in

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any peace effort have put the process in doubt. The UN invited

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Iran on the basis it accepted future power-sharing. Ban Ki-Moon has been

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warned by the United States to withdraw.

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The foreign secretary is in the American camp but worries the peace

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process would collapse. We have no problem in principle with Iran

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attending, but it has to be on the same basis as all of us.

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On Saturday some Syrian opposition leaders voted to join the peace

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talks. Iran wants to keep President Assad.

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So the chaos in Syria is reflected in political chaos around the peace

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tock. As the agony for the Syrian Apple intensifies every day. --

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Assyrian population. Let us stay with Iran. The United

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States and the European Union has announced they are suspending some

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trade restrictions on Iran. Earlier the United Nations nuclear agency

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confirmed that Tehran had started curbing uranium enrichment. . The

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agency said that Tehran had stopped enriching uranium above five per

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cent, well below what would be needed to produce nuclear weapons.

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Iran is expecting to resume trade in petrochemicals and precious metals

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and retrive billions of dollars of oil revenue frozen overseas.

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We were hoping to go to a spokesperson from the Syrian

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opposition. We will go to heaven in a moment.

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-- we shall go to that spokesperson in a moment.

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A leading opposition figure in Ukraine, Vitali Klitschko, has

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called on Ukrainians to come to the capital Kiev to join protestors in

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what he describes as the battle for the future of the country. Mr

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Klitschko made his call after the worst night of violence since

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political unrest began nine weeks ago. President Yanukovych has

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promised talks with opposition leaders to try to resolve the

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crisis. Our correspondent Daniel Sandford sent this report from Kiev.

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This morning police were using plastic bullet is. The fighting is

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the worst the country has seen in decades and has led to dozens of

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injuries. The most serious clashes were in the night. Protesters made

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missiles from cobblestones. A few months ago these were demonstrations

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in favour of joining the European Union, now they have boiled over

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into anger directed at the government and the Russian

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presidents. There are only a few hundred truly

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violent protesters, but they have earned a dozen police vehicles

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overnight. -- they have earned. After two months of protests it was

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new laws passed last week that restrict demonstrations that

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produced this explosion of anger stop.

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It is not a peaceful demonstration any more. The government is

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because. Something had to happen. This is the

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response to the new law. The president has set up a Coalition

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to deal with the crisis. The violent protesters, who seemed to be

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supporters of mostly far right groups, have lost patience with the

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main parties. Today our wake-up call of sorts

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sided 800 million kilometres away in space. It happened on a probe that

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has had all systems shut down for two used to save energy. It was

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launched in 2004. Its mission was to land on a moving, it later this

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year. Did Rosetta managed to wake up? This was the moment everybody at

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the European space agency had been waiting for. The computer screen

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told the scientists that Rosetta is responding.

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Our vast lump of rock and ice. Blasts of vapour sting from its

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surface. This animation shows the hostile world that a spacecraft will

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try to land on. Throughout human history the glowing tales of comets

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have proved both frightening and enchanting. They have remained far

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beyond reach and till now this is an audacious budget. We are doing

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something we have never done before. We have taken snapshots from

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hundreds of kilometres away. Rosetta is going to get up close to the

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comets. It was nearly ten years ago that the Rosetta spacecraft was

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launched. You need patience to be a space scientist because only now is

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the mission approaching it key phase.

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This mission will try something daring. It is powered by solar

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animals. Each one is 14 metres long. -- solar panels. Rosetta's journey

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has seen it race away from Earth and looped past marriage using the

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gravity to speed up a series of orbits -- looped past the planet

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Mars. It has taken Rosetta towards Jupiter. It is now circling back in.

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It is gaining on the comets. If all goes well it will close in for the

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first ever attempt to touch down on one of these bizarre objects.

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First Rosetta will will orbits the comets. Then it will release a small

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craft. Comets are older than the planet so we may learn they brought

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as water and the building blocks for life.

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Comets act as a time travel capsule. They contain all the earliest water

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and organic material that was the. By analysing game we can understand

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where our water on Earth came from. How from a swirl of rocks they

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eventually got the planets and their life. This mission to the comet may

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help answer these questions. Let us talk more about this.

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The European space agency have said that this was a unique mission. It

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was technologically and philosophically unique. Why are they

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saying that? Because it'll tell us so much about

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the solar system in which we live and how it formed. Comets hold clues

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about what went on 4.5 billion years ago. The chemical signatures that

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were around when the planets formed at in the comets. It is difficult to

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tell what went on back then because the Earth recycles all its rocks.

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You have to go to comets to find evidence for what happened all that

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time ago. This simple message that they received means that the

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spacecraft is alive and ready to chase down the comet in the next few

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months. It will arrive there in the middle of summer. It will take

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pictures. It will assess the comets. It will decide where to land.

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That'll happen in November. It must have been quite an

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experience, the atmosphere must have been quite extraordinary. It has

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already delivered some fascinating science.

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It has been in space for ten years. In order to get towards the comet

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that has had to loop around the planets a few times to pick up the

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gravitational energy that needed to get out of the orbit of Jupiter. It

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has passed two large asteroids. We have got some fantastic pictures

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from those. There is interesting science there as well. This mission

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has already delivered but the main focus is yet to come.

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Thank you. Now a look at some of the day's

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other news. The Central African Republic has a

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new interim president. The parliament has voted to choose

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Catherine Samba-Panza as the country's new leader. She was mayor

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of the capital, Bangui. She'll have the task of trying to restore peace

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to a country ravaged by religious conflict. She replaces Michel

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Djotodia, the leader of the Seleka rebels who seized power in March.

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Police in Pakistan say at least 14 people have been killed by a suicide

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bomber in the city of Rawalpindi. The Taliban says it carried out the

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blast, which hit a crowded market near the Army's national

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headquarters. Eight soldiers are among the dead. The attack comes a

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day after another Taliban bombing killed at least 20 soldiers in the

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Northwest. A trial involving the French

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footballers Franck Ribery and Karim Benzema has begun in Paris with the

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two facing up to three years in prison on allegations they slept

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with an underage prostitute. The escort in question, Zahia Dehar,

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who's now 21, has said she had lied to the players at the time, telling

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them that she was 18. Ribery says he didn't know she was a prostitute or

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a minor. Benzema denies the allegations.

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After years of dizzying growth, China's economy is finally showing

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signs of stabilising. Official data suggests that the growth rate of

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around 7.7% in 2013 was the same as in 2012. And economists expect 2014

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to see the slowest pace of growth since 1990.

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One of the great orchestral conductors of recent decades, the

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Italian Claudio Abbado has dry. He was 80. Abbado had performed in many

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countries across the world. His career also took him to prestigious

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venues like La Scala in Milan and the Vienna State Opera. Claudio

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Abbado, who'd been ill for several years, had also made hundreds of

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recordings from the classical repertoire to 20th century music.

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David Hannah looks at his life. Claudio Abbado was the ultimate

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musician's musician, revered by the world's great orchestras and opera

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houses. In his career, he was musical director at the Berlin

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Philharmonic, the London Symphony Orchestra and the Vienna

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Philharmonic. He also founded his own all-star Orchestra. Claudio

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Abbado made his debut in 1960 in his hometown of Milan. When he returned

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where last year he was given a 15 minute standing ovation. His

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strength was matched by his mastering of his classical

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repertoire and support for music of the 20th century. It is an

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extraordinary range of music and it is special because he tried to talk

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about his musical quality. Orchestral musicians often talk

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about the fact he said very little and rehearsal. It was all in the

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performance. A person who was very supportive of musicians. Claudio

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Abbado is survived by his second wife and four children and leaves

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behind the legacy of hundreds of recorded works.

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That was Claudio Abbado who has dry. Some tones are finding it difficult

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to cope with the steady influx of refugees from Syria. One tone has

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accepted three times more refugees than Sweden's biggest cities. The

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tone's reputation as a haven for Orthodox Christians has made it a

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magnet for Syrian refugees but beneath the hospitable ear, the tone

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is struggling to accommodate an estimated 1000 Syrians who arrived

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in 2013. The Maher would like to remove the right of newcomers to

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decide where to live some other towns can share the burden. Poverty,

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more children that cannot get a good education because you do not involve

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-- arrived here at six years of age. Many refugees live in cramped

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conditions. With her three children and husband, this woman fled Aleppo

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when the fighting became unbearable. To be a refugee is horrible but

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compared with other people who are living in tents and then very bad

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conditions and are freezing to death and have no food, we have a very

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good year. Now where is the welcome better than in education. At this

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school, 90% of pupils are from immigrant backgrounds. Only five

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indigenous Swedes remain. These is a mess belief in society today that

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foreigners and refugees are going to affect the accounts. That is not the

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case, it is the opposite. A school with a mixed population of children

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get the best results, all research shows that, so that is why a

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segregated society is very profound everyone. The tone is expecting to

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receive a further 2000 refugees during the coming year. These

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numbers will add to the -- unemployment rate, twice the

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national average. To the indignation of right-wingers like this, that

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means more generous welfare checks. We are being betrayed by the

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government. We cannot afford to have an open door policy because in the

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long run, we will take more and more and it will take more resources.

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With no end in sight and one-way traffic, the government has promised

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extra money to municipalities but will not restrict freedom of

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movement. Some other news in brief. A court in

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China has convicted a man of poisoning dumplings. The food worker

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injected them with insecticide in 2008 in a protest against his

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employer. The violinist Vanessa Mae is set to

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ski for Thailand and the Winter Olympics next month. She has been

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competing using her Thai father's surname.

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A talented lady. Another talented person is joining me in the studio.

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The work of British photographer Terry O'Neill hangs in national

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galleries and private collections worldwide. He is regarded as one of

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the most important photographers of the 20th century and has taken

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pictures of key figures like Hollywood stars, and political

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figures from Churchill to Mandela. His ability to build relationships

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with his subjects gave him unrivalled access to even the most

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private of stars. Terry O'Neill's work over half a century is now the

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subject of a new exhibition at the Little Black gallery in London. Did

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you like that introduction? Superb, thank you. Remind us, how would you

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define your style? I do not know. I just picked up a camera and

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accidentally took a picture of somebody who turned out to be

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famous, the English Foreign Secretary. A newspaper reporter saw

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me and wanted the pictures and took the film and I was offered a job

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when the editor saw it because he liked my work. I have never looked

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back. We have Audrey Hepburn relaxing in the pool. You could not

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mess with horror, a fabulous woman. I wish I had worked more with her.

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She was incredible. Looking at this picture, she is normally... Here she

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looks quite casual. You just snapped? She hated water, that was

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the funny part, but you would never guess. Another great one, Elizabeth

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Taylor in make up. She was just about to announce her engagement to

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John Warner, the American equivalent of William Hague. Husband number

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four or five. That was in moment in the dressing room but she was a

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fantastic woman, the hottest star in the world, but she was really a nice

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person. Who else have we got? Frank Sinatra surrounded by his body

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guards. Ava Gardner, who I got a chance to talk to, I told him I had

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a chance to photograph him. This is my first moment and I wondered what

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I had let myself in for. He was such a powerful man and he came to

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London, or Frankfurt or Philadelphia, and the tone revolved

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around them. -- town. Tell us something about their personalities.

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If I do not know a person I find out about them because I think it is

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important. Brigitte Bardot. That was the last shot on a roll of 35 and I

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was waiting and I thought, shall I take it? I could not wait to develop

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it and it turned out to be one of my best ever. It was not posed? I am

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good at getting moments and watching. That is what I do. David

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Bowie. I just say the names and play, ! -- they come up! I was

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taking the pictures for Diamond Dogs. When the flash went up, the

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dog would leap up. The final one, Joan Collins. You dirty lot of

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glamorous women. She is a fantastic woman. She looks as great today as

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she did then. We could even get into Western Churchill and Nelson

:26:25.:26:29.

Mandela... Watch one out of those was your favourite? To work with,

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Frank Sinatra and Audrey Hepburn. It was an honour. And the most

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beautiful? Ava Gardner, without doubt.

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And that investigation, next steps the weather. From me and the team,

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goodbye. Although the week has started on a

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note, --. I note, it is set to get into when as the week progresses.

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Rain moving slowly. Here is an

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