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This is BBC World News Today, with me, Philippa Thomas.
Crunch talks are getting under way between European leaders in Brussels
As the leaders gather after populist parties gain seats
across Europe, they are saying it cannot be business as usual.
Brussels has got too big, too bossy, too interfering.
We need more power for nation states.
It should be nation states wherever possible,
The missing Nigerian schoolgirls, now the military claims it knows
where they are, but it's too dangerous to rescue them.
The human cost of the Ukrainian military's operation to retake
Donetsk airport becomes clear, dozens of pro-Russia separatists
And ahead of the Tour de France's arrival in Yorkshire,
lessons on the effects of endurance cycling from the first
The leaders of European Union states, including Britain's David
Cameron, are dining together in Brussels, their first chance to
talk about the EU's priorities, after the weekend's surge in support
Mr Cameron said as he arrived that Brussels needs to
"change" because it has become "too big, too bossy, too interfering".
The French President Francois Hollande says new efforts are needed
to tackle the problems of unemployment, inequality and fear.
Our Europe editor, Gavin Hewitt, reports from Brussels.
Late afternoon, the leaders began sweeping into Brussels for an
inquest into an election that saw huge increases for Eurosceptic
parties. David Cameron pushed an agenda for change. The EU cannot
shrug off these results and carry on as before, we need change, we need
an approach that recognises Europe shall concentrate on what matters,
growth and jobs, and not do so much. Brussels has got too big, it has got
too bossy and interfering. The French resident Holland Micro said
he was looking to reorientate economic policies -- policy towards
growth and protect jobs -- President. In Perth -- in Brussels,
Angela Merkel is now more influential than ever, will she back
and EU doing less but better? Will she responds to voters turning
against austerity? -- respond. Some of the winners have been setting out
their approach in the new European Parliament. This is the French far
right leader Le Pen. Our objective is to block all
harmful developments by the European Union which involves defending the
interests of friends and the French. And in a sign of the new tension,
the powerful German Finance Minister today denounced her party as
fascist. Another Victor, Nigel Farage, was back in Brussels looking
for allies but rejecting any alliance with Le Pen. There is
absolutely no chance of any accommodation, of any kind, been
found between UKIP and the French National front. There is a sense of
politicians and leaders scrambling to adjust to a political earthquake.
What do they need to get out of this meeting?
It is ironic because there are two forces at work in the EU. One is
that within the Eurozone, the 18th countries using the single currency,
there is a feeling that maybe not this week, but over the next couple
of years, there needs to be closer integration if the single currency
is to survive -- 18 countries. If you are saying to voters that you
hear the message that the union needs to do less, that has to,
within the European Union, involving 28 members -- that has to come
within. They look at a country like Italy where a new young fresh centre
(Minister did very well, Matteo Renzi, he had a mandate. -- French
sent -- fresh centre Prime Minister. Some leaders need to take account of
what voters were saying. At when prop -- but when people say the
usual do less, what does that mean? In the UK, that means rather more
than in France where Holland Micro would not go along with some of what
he would see as the more radical proposals -- Holland Micro.
-- Francois Hollande. We heard Nigel Farage saying he is
not going to do any deal with Spain Micro, is there a sense they cannot
form an effective block in European politics. -- with Le Pen.
The majority of the next Parliament will be broadly European, they have
to find compromise. There will be several locks of five Micro who do
not agree with the status quo. -- locks. -- blocks of MEPs. There will
be a lot of competition to win friends and allies because to form a
group, you have to have 25 MEPs from seven countries, that brings more
funding, more influence, more speaking time, to get your message
out and win more votes in the next election. To do that, it you could
see different parties competing for some of the newer MEPs arriving
here, a lot of horse trading going on. The parties on the centre ground
but wants to forge a new legislative agenda. -- will want to forge.
We have had reports on more attacks in northern Nigeria.
Senior military leaders in Nigeria claim that they know where
the Islamist group Boko Haram is holding more than 200 schoolgirls.
But they won't reveal the exact location and they have
The schoolgirls were taken six weeks ago from their school in Chibok
It is thought they are being held somewhere
in the Sambisa forest reserve, an area 16 times the size of London,
The BBC's Will Ross reports from the Nigerian capital, Abuja.
addicted -- abducted girls since this video was released two weeks
ago, very embarrassing for the military which has deployed ground
troops and planes. When it crowd turned up in support of the much
criticised military, it was announced the girls had been
located. The good news is that we know where they are but we cannot
tell you. Just leave us alone, we are working, we will get the girls
back. He did suggest using force would be too risky. This is what is
left of the school from where the girls were seized in Chibok. There
were taken in the middle of the night and loaded onto trucks. A
Father whose two daughters are missing told us what he made of the
news. I used to be completely downhearted but now we have some
information about their whereabouts, we are beginning to feel comforted.
The government should do everything it can to secure their
The government should do everything alive. The news may be seen as a
breakthrough, but plenty here reluctance to take official
statements at face value. In churches and mosques, Nigerians keep
praying for the return of the girls and an end to the relentless
violence. Almost 500 people have been killed by Boko Haram since the
girls were abducted six weeks ago. Using the military is not the only
option for the government. We have learned negotiations have an
attempted with Boko Haram and eight deal was almost struck that would
have seen 50 girls released in exchange for setting free Boko Haram
prisoners -- a deal. The government backed out at the 11th hour.
More marches and demonstrations are planned, and on the city streets
across Nigeria, the calls to bring back our girls are alive will still
ring out. -- alive. Meanwhile, Cameroon has deployed
some 1,000 troops and armoured vehicles to its border region with
Nigeria to counter a rising threat To discuss all of this,
I'm joined by our security First, that claim the government
knows where the girls are. I would project a note of
scepticism. I know the girls are in north-east Nigeria, an area twice
the size of Rwanda. Do they mean they note the exact grid
references? It is likely. -- do they know. They had been split into
smaller groups and moved around, some of them are in caves. Even US
droves sweeping the area do not know for certain. So that statement came
in response to a pretty righteous anger either friends and families
who doing daily marches to the defence Ministry in Abuja saying,
where are our girls? What are you doing to bring them back? Reports
say not very much activity is going on, there is not much coordination
between the federal government in Abuja and the regional authorities
in the north-east. Is that a lack of willpower or is the militarily
scared to go after Abuja? -- Boko Haram. They are under resourced. The
Nigerian military does not have the capacity to go into that area and to
affect a cost free hostage rescue. As the military have said, they are
not going to do that because it would end up in a bloodbath. Some
reports say they do not have night-vision goggles, they do not
know that area. Boko Haram does, they will no escape routes, they
have been operating there for some period and they are well motivated.
They hold the cards because they have got these abducted girls, they
have got them at gunpoint effectively, but they have proved
they are not afraid, they have no qualms about slaughtering civilians.
In the attacks in the last 24 hours, they have gone just for security
personnel but they have slaughtered lots of civilians and some of their
die-hard militants are not afraid to die so it is a tough option to going
even when British special forces went in two years ago, it did not
result in hostages. So our Cameroon trying to protect itself -- so is
Cameroon train to protect itself? It is a spin off from the Paris
conference where Nigeria and neighbouring countries declared war
on Boko Haram which is making it difficult for Goodluck Jonathan
because he is being asked privately to negotiate. The only way they will
come out unharmed is through negotiation and he said they will
not free the militants. A negotiation was nearly done to free
some of the girls for some of the militants and that is tough to curse
those militants will rejoin Boko Haram. Cameroon, 1,000 soldiers, it
is a drop in the ocean in a long border, it is to shore up the border
to stop spilling over and establishing camps. Thank you very
much. Ukraine's new president,
Petro Poroshenko, has vowed to stop The government
in Kiev says it has recaptured Donetsk airport in the east from
pro-Russian separatists, following This is the aftermath of that
intense firefight around the airport yesterday, this truck is burnt out.
The windows have bought holes and around the base of the truck, there
is plenty we cannot show you because it is too graphic -- bullet holes.
We have seen body parts and blood from the fighting that took place
yesterday. We have been here this morning and there have been some
gunshots from the airport but not the same intensity as yesterday.
There was sporadic gunfire from inside the airport compound and we
understand the Ukrainian troops are largely in control of the airport
base. But it seems there was some kind of clear out operation to try
to flush out the last elements of rebel control from the airport. Kiev
is determined the airport does not fall to the insurgents, or the
terrorists, as they put it. It would really give the separatist groups
here a real advantage in trying to access this region. And there is the
Crimea factor, back in February when pro-Russian insurgents launch their
income of Crimea which led to the annexation by Moscow a month later.
When they took the airport, that was the first key based they took
control of, so Kiev determined the first key based they took
cow -- to clamp down. -- the first key based. Petro Poroshenko is
elected and he said yesterday key based. Petro Poroshenko is
and the negotiation would be over within a matter of hours
and the negotiation would be over months, and you see the impact of
that in this area around the Donetsk.
Some of the day's of the news. The blast happened as worshippers
were gathering for midday prayers in Police said at least 34 people
were injured in the blast. The attack comes as Iraq's
Shiite-led government struggles Lawyers for a Sudanese woman
sentenced to death for apostasy, The woman who is married to
a Christian was convicted earlier this month after she refused to
renounce Christianity. The woman who is married to
a Christian was convicted earlier US President Barack Obama is
expected to announce in the next half hour, plans to leave nearly
ten thousand American troops in Afghanistan even after most of the
soldiers pullout later this year. They will train the Afghan army and,
when necessary, British prime minister,
David Cameron, says any US announcement would not
affect any British decision. They may not have to risk death on a
foreign field. These are the additions to the mightiest military
ever known. Fresh Marines where the president has ordered men to follow.
We can claim all the discipline that we have lost over the years. But for
somebody reluctant to use force, the president has docked a few
challenges. President Obama was only in the job for a few months when he
was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. Many question how it has worked out.
His desire for a new relationship with Islam has had few results. The
US seemed a bystander in the Islamic revolutions. Israel has been able to
defy without any retribution. There was a crisis in Ukraine and the
presidential pivot has -- to Asia has seen a rise in Chinese
aggression. There are questions today about the United States that
have not been there at times in the past and I think that creates a
vacuum. In that vacuum, other people stepped in. So I am very concerned.
There is a lack of a clear-sighted foreign policy in my country.
Training on the job can be tough. Pity those poor Marines stuck unable
to move up or down. While the President's opponents say that he
sometimes seems frozen by indecision, even some friends will
admit that he sometimes stumbles and he does not use the immense power of
his office to dazzle all sweet talk otherworldly does. There is this
widespread perception across the world that President Obama has not
been leading with as much energy and vigour has its predecessors. Some of
their criticism is unfair but the White House needs to deal with it.
It president proud of bringing the truth home seems stung by criticism
that he looks weak. He is about to fight back. The White House says
that this is time to him to set out how the Americans can leave the rest
of the world. India's newly elected prime
minister, Narendra Modi, has held bilateral talks with
his Pakistani counterpart. Following the 40-minute meeting,
Nawaz Sharif said the two sides had an historic opportunity to turn
a new page in relations. Mr Modi urged Mr Sharif to crack
down on attacks by militants these are a reminder of the main
contentious chapters in their history.
It's been announced in the last few hours that voting
in Egypt's presidential election will be extended for a third day.
Turnout has been unexpectedly low across the country
The front-runner, former army chief Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi, is hoping
He's standing against only one other candidate,
The frontrunner is Abdul Alf -- Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.
Day two of the election. No rush of voters. At this Cairo polling
station, staff were left idle. State employees were suddenly given the
day off and Egyptians were threatened with fines for staying
away. But many seems to have ignored all that. At this polling station,
voters are still coming and going, but it is far from crowded.
Officials were not keen for us to show that. Also the authorities have
not had the numbers they wanted and turnout is critical. The low 80s,
the weaker the mandate. But Abdel Fattah el-Sisi's retreat is not in
doubt his supporters remain in doubt -- remain sanguine. I believe in
him, 1 million times over. Not 100%, 1,000,000%. This is one person
refusing to vote, saying he has blood on his hands. This is the last
photo off a husband, taken at a mosque last August as security
forces were moving in. They brutally cleared a Muslim Brotherhood
sitting, killing at least 600 protesters. But as we filmed at
Yasmin, angry neighbours gathered outside, intimidating her children.
They prevented us from leaving, claiming we were spies. A small
example of the mistrust and bitter divisions in Asia. When the police
came, we were detained, along with Yasmin, and held for almost two
hours. Supporters of Abdel Fattah el-Sisi say that he will save this
troubled nation but not all the nation is convinced and admit
concerns about a low turnout, voting has now been extended into a third
day. The greatest cycle race in the
world. What effect does it have on the human body. Our correspondent
has been trying to find out and he began by meeting one of Britain's
cycling greats. Yorkshire born and bred, Ryan
Robinson is still cycling at the age of 83. He is a true sporting icon,
the first Briton to finish the Tour De France. Great, isn't it? This was
Brian in 1959, finishing 20 minutes ahead of the rest of the field after
a gruelling 150 mile stage. One of the biggest winning margins into
history. More than half a century later, the tour is coming to
Yorkshire. Brian will be there and hopes that he has more years of
cycling to come. I can recommend it. They say that it puts ten years on
your life. If it gives me another ten years, I will be very happy!
Elite cyclists are among the fittest people on the planet. One small
study suggested that they live eight years longer than the general
population. But the same may not be true for the growing army of Lycra
clad climbers. A climate this does not feel that good for your health.
But what does this kind of injuries exercise have on the body. At the
University of Kent, scientists measured my physiology by
University of Kent, scientists to the limit on the
University of Kent, scientists of -- INO Chris
University of Kent, scientists results show that my heart health is
good. results show that my heart health is
cardiovascular disease results show that my heart health is
also have a lower risk of mortality. So your advice to the
middle aged men is to keep cycling? Keep doing what you're doing. That
is my best win. Ryan Robinson is living proof of the benefits of
cycling. He says that is only health problems have been when he has
fallen off his bike. A reminder of our main news. The
leaders of European states are dining together tonight in
Brussels, their first chance to talk through the EU's priorities. Where
does it go from here after the weekend's surge in support of -- for
anti-EU charity -- anti-EU parties. Mr Cameron says that the EU has
become too big and too interfering and we need an approach that
recognises that Europe should concentrate on what matters. The
French president, who was also hit by the National front in France,
to tackle instability, unemployment to tackle instability, unemployment
and fear. That meeting happening in Brussels tonight. It may be more of
a meeting of minds we may not expect any particular pronouncements.
Also, within the last hour, we have had news of more attacks in northern
Nigeria. Militants are believed to have killed many people in two
attacks on Monday night. Senior military people say that they know
where the missing girls are, where Boko Haram is holding them. But they
don't intend to go to the rescue. Thank you for joining me on
programme-macro. -- on world news today.
It will continue into the next few days. A bit brighter further west
and the weather is coming from the east. This area of low pressure
dominating Eastern Europe. These weather funds will bring persistent