27/02/2014 World News Today


27/02/2014

The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.


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This is BBC World News Today with me, Kassia Madera. Russia has said

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it's willing to work with the West to resolve the crisis in Ukraine.

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Military movement within Ukraine is raising tension. The new interim

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prime minister says they don't want ANY foreign intervention.

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No boots on the ground. Ukrainian Department of defence and Ukrainian

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Department of home security is capable of doing their job.

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The German Chancellor addresses the British Parliament saying she wants

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a strong UK with a strong voice in Europe.

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Also coming up: returning to scene of the crime - The Italian captain

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of the Costa Concordia cruise ship visits the wreck as part of his

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manslaughter trial. And we'll take you to the world's

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oldest art - Caves in Northern Spain open for a select few to visit place

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called the prehistoric Sistine Chapel.

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Hello and welcome. Western nations have called on Russia to ease

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tensions in Ukraine's Crimea region. The US Secretary of State has said

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everyone needs to take a step back and avoid provocation. The Russian

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Government has said it's willing to work with the west on averting a

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crisis in Ukraine, but it has warned NATO against taking decisions on

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behalf of the Ukrainian people. All the tension comes as armed

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pro-Russia supporters stormed the regional parliament in Simferopol.

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This idiot in Ukraine but the crowds were shouting Russia today as they

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celebrated the storming of the local parliament by men with guns. The

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building was barricaded so that MPs could not come and go and nobody

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knows who the occupiers are. It shows how little control the

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Ukrainian Government has in Crimea, a peninsular in the south-east of

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the country. The heavily armed men took over the parliament at about

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four o'clock this morning. Witnesses say they were carrying rifles and

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grenades and forced their way and throughout the police who been

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guarding the building. This morning's actions by an armed

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group is dangerous and irresponsible. I urge Russia not to

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take any action that could escalate tension.

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But along the border with Ukraine, Russia is conducting what it calls

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military preparedness exercises. It involves thousands of men. Given the

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interest in Crimea which was historically Russian, it has only

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exacerbated concerns in the West. We expect other nations to respect

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Ukraine sovereignty and avoid provocative action. That is why I am

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closely watching Russia's military exercise.

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The alarm increased when seven armoured personnel carriers, thought

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to be Russian, briefly turned up on the outskirts of the city. They've

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probably part of a legitimate between bases. Ukraine's new prime

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Minister begged other countries not to get involved militarily.

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My first message is no boots on the ground. The Ukrainian Department of

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defence and the Ukrainian Department of home security is capable of doing

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their job. We believe that we will definitely find a political

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solution. Ukraine's deposed president, Viktor

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Yanukovych, has not been scenes on Sunday night. But tomorrow, he will

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give a press conference in Russia. 70 miles from the Ukrainian border.

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Following developments from Kiev is Duncan Crawford. Duncan, we heard

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there from the new interim prime minister, saying they don't want

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foreign boots on the ground. Is the new Government trying to play down

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all the sabre rattling? I think there is concern about the

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situation but clearly they do not want it to escalate. The new leaders

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coming into power have seen difficult times before with Russia.

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There is no surprise that Ukraine and Russia can get into arguments

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over matters like this. There have indeed been separatist goals in the

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past from Crimea as well. Earlier today, the interim prime minister

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told the BBC that he does not expect Russia to interfere in Ukraine. He

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believes that Russia will refrain from trying to take any action which

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would see Ukraine split in two. Tonight, the US Secretary of State,

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John Kerry, said the military manoeuvres which have been taking

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place in the West of Russia, right along the Ukrainian border, they

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were preplanned. He spoke to Sergei Lavrov, the Russian Foreign

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Minister. There is a sense that the key players involved in orders are

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trying to downplay the tensions. Thank you.

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With me is the political risk analyst Natasha Grand. She's

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Director of Research at the think tank INSTID.

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We heard Duncan say that there is hope that Russia will not get

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involved militarily. We have seen these exercises on the border. What

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you make of this? Is there an appetite and Russia to do anything

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further? I agree that Russia would not be

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willing to be seen as the country who is rocking the boat. We have had

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enough bad publicity. Also, the Russian foreign policy has been very

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much underlying the stress on international law. Russia would want

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to be seen as an important international player. One of the

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great powers who sits at the table together with Europe, together with

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United States and see how they can resolve this together. Ukraine is

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not likely to make it on its own. There needs to be international

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agreement. It is fair to say that Russia will be willing to be part of

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a legitimate agreement. Having said that, it is important to understand

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that this city is an important location because it is unable base.

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For centuries, Russia has been fighting words to get access to the

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Black Sea. The previous Government leased the military base to Russia.

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The majority of the population in the Crimea is Russian. It is very

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different from the rest of Ukraine. This particular region needs to be

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regulated separately and Russia will be paying a lot of attention to

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that. It is crucially important for

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Russia, this particular region. Who do you think these people are who

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have taken control in Crimea? Probably local people. Crimea only

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became part of Ukraine in 1964. There is a long history of Russian

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tradition in that area. It would most likely be local residents,

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being very weary of what is happening in Ukraine.

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In terms of what you think the next situation is going to be, or the

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next steps are going to be, we have the referendum and of course we have

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the former president Yanukovych making a statement on Friday, what

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you expect to happen? We should expect further

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negotiations, very intense to gushy Asians happening both publicly and

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behind the scenes between the Ukrainian Government and

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international players. Nobody is willing to put boots on the ground

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now. Everyone wants the situation resolved peacefully and it is just

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about flexing some muscles, perhaps, to show what each side is capable

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of, the stakes are very high, but as I say, it would be better for all if

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the result is peacefully. We will continue to monitor that

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situation. Thank you. German Chancellor Angela Merkel has

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said she will work with Britain to reform Europe saying she wants it to

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remain a strong voice inside the EU. Chancellor Merkel was given the rare

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honour of addressing both houses of the British parliament. While she

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did not speak about Britain's possible re-negotiation of its

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relationship with the European Union, as many had expected, she did

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urge Britain to remain within the EU. Our political correspondent Rob

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Watson reports. She is the most powerful politician in Europe and

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only the second German leader to address parliament since the war.

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Her message to the Eurosceptics is that the EU had helped to bring

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peace and prosperity to the continent. She had not come to

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London to promise a radical shake-up.

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Some expect my speech to pave the way for a fundamental reform of the

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European architecture, which will satisfy all kinds of alleged or

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actual British wishes. I am afraid they are in for a disappointment.

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She insisted that Europe does need to change and move with the times.

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That would be easier with Britain still a member.

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We need a strong united kingdom with a strong voice inside the European

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Union. If we have that, we will be able to make the necessary changes

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for the benefit of all. The two leaders clearly are not

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entirely in step over the future of Europe but David Cameron insists

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they are at least on the same side and that change can and must happen.

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We had excellent discussions at lunch time. Angela Merkel and I both

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want to see change in Europe. We both believe that is possible. I

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believe that what I am setting out, sort of changes that Britain wants

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to see, to build confidence in membership this organisation, and we

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will hold the referendum before 2017 and give the public a choice.

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Angela Merkel has been treated like what the Mac royalty, enjoying tea

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with the Queen. She does not have a lack of love here, it is the lack of

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detail that matters. Britain is pushing for reform of the EU but it

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will not see just what changes it wants. It may be that the Queen will

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have to provide a whole host of European leaders very great deal of

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tea between now and the prime Minister's planned referendum in

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2017. Getting some any countries to agree reforms clearly will not be a

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piece of cake. The captain of the Costa Concordia

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returned to the stricken cruise ship, more than two years after it

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sank in a tragedy that claimed 32 lives. Francesco Schetino stands

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accused of abandoning the ship and went on the visit as part of a

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court-ordered inspection of the vessel, which still lies in the

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shallows off the Italian island of Giglio. From there, Alan Johnston

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sent this report. Returning to the scene of the disaster, Captain

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Schettino is heading for the Concordia. Going back for the first

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time, since that night. He joined 18 appointed by a court to examine

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evidence on board. We cannot know what was going through his mind as

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he moved about the wreck of his ship. Surely, there are memories of

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the moment of his downfall. The shocking collision, the slow

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realisation that the ship was lost. The deaths. Images from the

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nightmare more than two years ago. The captain is accused of abandoning

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his ship while hundreds of passengers were still aboard. They

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were struggling to reach lifeboats. A furious Coast Guard commander

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ordered Sketty knock again and again to get back on board. -- they

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ordered Captain Schettino to get back on board. After his visit to

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the wreck, he confronted his accusers. He refused to discuss his

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emotions, wanting to stick instead to technical detail surrounding the

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evidence gathering inspection that had just been completed. The

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captain's trial is continuing and he faces the possibility of spending 20

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years in jail. Meanwhile, plans are unfolding to refloat the wreck of

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his ship and remove at the summer. But for the families of the victims

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of the disaster, the memory of all that they lost in this place will

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always remain. Let's catch up with some of the day 's other news, in

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its latest report on files leaked by US whistle-blower Edward Snowden,

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the Guardian newspaper in London says GCHQ with the help of the

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American national a security agency intercepted and stored still images

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of your whole webcam chats. A suicide car bomb has exploded in the

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Somali capital Mogadishu killing at least 12 people and wounding eight

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others. The explosion occurred outside the headquarters of the

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security services. The al-Qaeda-linked al-Shabab group has

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claimed responsibility. The explosion comes just days after an

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attack on the presidential palace. A second member of the "Cuban Five"

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spy ring has been released from an American prison after spending more

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than 15 years behind bars. It's not clear where Fernando Gonzalez is now

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being held or when he will return to Cuba. The five were convicted in

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2001 of conspiracy, but they are hailed as heroes in Havana.

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Don't leave it too late to have children, it's a warning that women

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hear all too often, myself included. Now a major new study suggests that

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the male biological clock may be ticking just as loudly. Research

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involving millions of people shows that children, whose fathers are

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over 45 years old, are more likely to suffer from a wide range of

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disorders and problems. The investigation has been conducted

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jointly by Sweden's Karolinska Institute and Indiana University, in

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the United States. Brian D'Onofrio is the lead

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researcher on this and he joins us now from Indiana University in

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Bloomington in Indiana. This is a huge study. Just talk us

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through what are the key findings. The key finding is that as father 's

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age, we found that was associated with greater risk of children's

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problems, psychiatric and academic and what was most important and most

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surprising was that the association was much larger than previous

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studies. Are you suggesting that male sperm actually has a sell by

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date? That is one of the hypotheses that can explain the findings but

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there are other explanations that can account for the increased risk

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in the offspring as well. There are some suggestions that older fathers

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parent their children in different ways than younger fathers. Perhaps

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they provide less supervision, less emotional support, that is one of

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the hypotheses. There could be a genetic explanation. How concerned

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should we be? We have so many different studies and it is mainly

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women actually whose ear about this biological clock. How concerned

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should men be? That is a great question and let me be clear, we are

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not saying that every child will have a psychiatric problem, in fact

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our study shows that the overwhelming majority of children

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will not have these problems. But we are saying that is fathers get

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older, it increases the likelihood that their children will have

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tricked and academic problems. -- psychiatric. Older fathers have a

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lock themselves to offer that could counteract these kind of problems

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that you are suggesting. Yes, that is a great point. There are many

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advantages to delaying child-bearing. They are all very

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protective factors for kids but answered these -- our study suggest

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there are greater risks. Couples will have to make decisions,

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weighing up the pros and cons. Very good to talk to you. I am very

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pleased to hear that the men can hear that biological clock as well.

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Thank you very much for your time. In Los Angeles, excitement is

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building in advance of this weekend's Academy Award ceremony.

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While there seems to be consensus selections when it comes to some of

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the trophies there's little agreement over who will triumph in

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the best foreign film category. Tom Brook reports now on who's in the

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race. This film from Belgium is the only

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foreign language nominee with a strong musical theme. It brings

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together American bluegrass with the Flemish language drama. A

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relationship unravels after the death of this couple 's daughter.

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The Academy has nominated Cambodia for the first time this year. It is

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a documentary chronicling how the Camaro Rouge 's rain of terror

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affected families. Italy is any race with the great beauty, it follows a

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journalist in Rome as he ponders his life. Some of the world is bigger

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film markets, the US in the digger, are resistant to movies with

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subtitle is that subtitles. Palestinian film director has been

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meeting the press. The nomination will help you as a

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foreign-language movie. It will help you win United States but also in

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the world. It is the second time this director has been nominated. It

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is a love story set on the West Bank. It tells of a Palestinian who

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gets involved in the shooting of an Israeli soldier. I think it is tough

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for Israelis to watch. I am also encouraged by the Israeli

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crewmembers that we had working with us. They felt that this was a very

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powerful story that needed to be told. Also in the running for a foul

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-- foreign-language film Oscar is denatured film the hunt. It

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chronicles a close community when a teacher is falsely accused of child

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molestation and everyone turns against him. A new open voting

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system has made it difficult to predict the winner. But when pushed,

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many forecasters believe the prize will go to the Belgian tear-jerker.

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Next month, the Internet will turn 25 at years old. That is the day it

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was first introduced as a concept. A lot has happened in the past two

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decades. A research data in the US have compiled data on how Americans

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have used this data through the decades.

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Happy birthday World Wide Web. You are almost 25 years young. On March

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12, 1989, the paper was written that would lead to the creation of the

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web. The Internet had been around for years but the web is what

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allowed regular folks to take advantage of the technology. How did

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Americans respond as the web grew up? Let's head down memory lane.

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Almost half said it would not be all that great to use computers for

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sending messages. We seemed pretty naive in 1983. They predicted the

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pitfalls of online shopping when Amazon was still just a river.

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Fast forward to 1995, according to the reaches Centre, 42% of Americans

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had still never heard of the Internet. But they were already

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getting attached to technology. A majority said it would be hard to

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give up their computer. Time marched on, long with use of the Internet.

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One in ten people still are not online. But today the web is the

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number one technology people are loathed to give up. We all know that

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the World Wide Web can be a wild West of behaviour. But a majority of

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those survey to say the Internet is good for strengthening

:23:33.:23:37.

relationships. This positively women crew positivity expands across all

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demographics. Mostly it has been a good ride on the information

:23:44.:23:50.

superhighway. A few lucky people in Spain have been given the

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opportunity to see some of the oldest art on the planet. The

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colourful cave paintings on the ceilings of the Altamira caves,

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which show bison, deer and horses, date back 22,000 years. Five people

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have been selected through a lottery to see the site, which has been

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called the Sistine Chapel ceiling of cave art.

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You as a young child actually visited the originals. That is

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extraordinary. Yes, on a camping holiday in Spain. We visited the

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cave. And I think probably it had such an impression on me, it was

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what started me into archaeology. And you are probably one of the last

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few to see it. Since then, it has been decided that humans should not

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be anywhere near it. Humans enlarged members. Yes, it became such a

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popular attraction that it was necessary to close it so that all of

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the breathing and perspiring and taking in seeds and things on your

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shoes had to stop. Such a shame. We are looking at some of the images.

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Talk as to what we can see on these incredible drawings. It is an

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extraordinary cave. The ceiling is not very high. It is a little bit

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misleading to refer to the Sistine Chapel because as you go in, it is

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about two metres high and then it slopes down to very low. Only part

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of it is high above you. As you look up, around the formations in the

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ceiling of the cave, you can see this wonderful group of bison, which

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the artists have used the humps and bumps to create the shoulders and

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the big hindquarters of these animals. Very impressively into

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colours. Often the outline is black and then they will fill with this

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red. Of course, when it was first done, this was all done in the

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flickering light of lamp is and burning torches, without moving

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light, these animals would have almost breathed from the ceiling.

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Amazing. Just to think that these are 22,000 years old. Very briefly,

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how important are these drawings, historically? Enormously important.

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Both historically and in terms of the art itself. It is the first case

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to be discovered with art and still over 100 years later, one of the

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best. I could talk to you all night but unfortunately, we are out of

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time. Thank you so much. Good night. A wintry night ahead. In the north,

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the warnings are out for ice. Further south, we could well have

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some snow won the hills. It is all tied in with this area

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