28/07/2014 World News Today


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


In the last few hours, there's been a serious upsurge in violence into


and out of the Gaza Strip, as the UN Secretary-General urges both sides


Gaza's main hospital is hit and at least eight children killed


In the past half hour, Israel's Prime Minister has defended


Out of control - a spreading fire at a huge oil depot in Libya prompts


the Government there to plead for international help.


stops international investigators from reaching the crash site of


Most experts agree they were wiped out by a giant asteroid,


but was their extinction a colossal case of but was their extinction


We'll look at the latest theory about the demise of the dinosaurs.


In the past 30 minutes, the Israeli Prime Minister,


Benjamin Netanyahu, has said that Israel must be prepared


He said that it would not finish until the goal of destroying


the tunnels from Gaza had been achieved.


The hope was for a truce to allow the besieged civilians of the


Gaza Strip to mark the Eid festival that ends the month of Ramadan.


But it has been another day of bloodshed, with


a serious upsurge in violence on both sides in the last few hours.


The compound housing Gaza's main Al-Shifa Hospital has been hit.


And Palestinian officials in Gaza say that at least eight children who


were in a nearby playground in a refugee camp have also been killed.


The Palestinians blame Israeli missile fire, but the Israelis say


that rockets misfired by Hamas militants were to blame.


In another development, a mortar attack from Gaza on Southern Israel


Martin Patience reports from Gaza City.


In the main hospital in Gaza, the casualties are arriving. Among them,


children playing outdoors. No street in Gaza is safe. There is great and


desperation in this hospital. Many of the families of those children


hurt in this attack are rushing here and many of them fear the worst.


Caught up in a conflict he cannot possibly understand. This boy and


girl were injured, in what Palestinians say was an Israeli air


strike. Israel denies this, saying they were injured by a misfired


Palestinian rocket. I was at home when I had a huge glass, says this


man, I rushed out of the street and it was full of bodies. Earlier in


the day, amid the ruins, they marked the end of Ramadan. This festival is


supposed to be a moment of joy and celebration, but there was only


bitterness and sorrow here. At eight Gaza Cemetery, families paid their


traditional respects. But even the dead are not spared. The blast of an


Israeli air strike on earth one body, which had to be buried again.


-- and asked. More than 150,000 Palestinians have been forced out of


their homes by the fighting. Most are staying at UN schools, but there


were no gifts for the children, only desperation from their parents. We


have fled from our homes and there is no Eid here. The situation is


miserable. I do not even have anything to give to my son or


daughter, we have nothing. The Israeli military continues to


destroy tunnels used by Hamas to stage cross-border attacks. Israel


says until the safety of its citizens is guaranteed, it has the


right to continue this offensive. Bethany Bell joins us now


from Jerusalem. We have been hearing from Benjamin


Netanyahu while -- why he feels it is necessary to continue the


offensive. Yes, he said that Israelis should be prepared for a


long campaign, we do not know exactly what that means in this


context, but what he did not do was to announce an expansion of this


operation in Gaza. He said that the target remained taking out these


cross-border tunnels that goal from Gaza into Israel, and in fact, this


evening, the Israeli army has said that initial reports of an incident


in which militants came up through those tunnels and exchanged fire


with Israeli soldiers, they say a search is now underway, so, sketchy


details at the moment about that incident north of the Gaza Strip,


all of which will increase the support likely in the Israeli


population for what the Army is doing in Gaza. As we were saying,


each side blames the other for this hit on the hospital compound and the


beach nearby. It'd create whose ordnance was involved? -- is it


clear yet. We have had Hamas saying it was result of Israeli air strike,


on a playground in which it says each children died, and on a


building in the main Al-Shifa Hospital conflict in Gaza. Israel


says the Israeli army says that these strikes were the result of


rockets misfired by a listing in militants inside Gaza. So, both


sides blaming the other. -- misfired by Palestinian militant --


militants. With me is Rosemary Hollis,


Professor of Middle East Policy Studies and Director of the


Olive Tree Scholarship Programme Thank you for coming in. We have


just heard that determination from the Israeli Prime Minister to


continue for as long as it takes to get rid of these tunnels. Why this


should eject -- what is the strategic importance? I do not think


they thought the word as extensive as they are. Only when they went in


on the ground, looking the stockpiles of rockets, the original


intention of the Israeli opening of another round of warfare with Hamas


was to get rid of those rockets, but then discovering they had another


plan, which was to infiltrate Israel under the security fence that


surrounds the Gaza Strip, they have got a stronger agenda the damage


Hamas in military terms. I do not think Benjamin Netanyahu can expect


any tolerance if he agrees to a cease-fire on human attaining downs,


and will have been seen to have not finished the job he claimed he was


starting. Is there a sense in which Israel has been wrong-footed by


Hamas? In terms of keeping the rockets firing and there is a more


extensive underground network than they thought. Mustard -- it was


certainly politically weak at the start of this campaign because of


the change of Government in Egypt. Which is increase the support behind


Benjamin Netanyahu to crack down on Hamas. However, by Hamas showing


that they can put up a serious resistance, they can do serious


harm, they can disrupt the Israeli economy and that they have plans to


try another tactic in the future, that will have rattled the Israelis.


That is interesting about the attitude of Egypt. Because we have


Ban Ki-Moon, John Kerry, saying we have to have a cease-fire, and on


the other hand, they seem to be saying there might be some tacit


support for hammering Hamas from other Arab states. There is a


scenario for the future of Gaza, not necessarily one that the Israeli


leadership has wholeheartedly embraced, but one seriously under


discussion, which would involve the Egyptians and the Saudis, who are so


Italy anti-Muslim brotherhood -- bitterly, but almost like to --


definition they are against Hamas as an offshoot of the Muslim


Brotherhood, they want to use this opportunity, much as they wanted to


use the previous opportunity when Israel was at war with Hezbollah in


Lebanon, to smash what they regard as a serious problem in terrorist


terms, in terms of being against what the Egyptian Government and the


Saudi Government stand for in the region. So, there are mentions of a


wider power struggle, the Israelis find themselves with some backing


from what they would call moderate Arabs in the region. The Americans


are not the only players who can talk to the Israelis now. Does that


mean that if there is to be any cessation, even if it is not close,


it could be to do with the regional solution? The conspiracy would be to


wipe out Hamas as the political authority in the Gaza Strip and


replace them not necessarily Mahmoud Abbas, but Fatah elements, including


those that Hamas posted in a firefight in 2007 over control of


Gaza. Up against this scenario is the fact that Hamas is not just a


leadership, it is part of the population of Gaza, it is embedded


in the population. It is literally underground, which is what the


tunnels are about. The population in Gaza once the Israelis to suffer for


what they are suffering. Thus far, Hamas is doing more to hurt Israel


than any of the people in Cairo or read, or indeed the West Bank. -- or


in Saudi Arabia. The Libyan Government says a fire


at a huge oil depot near Tripoli Airport has spread to a


second tank and is out of control. The Government says


the fire could cause a "humanitarian and environmental


disaster", and is calling for The facility, which stores 6.6


million litres of fuel, was hit The fire is still raging in Tripoli


amidst the country's West cycle of violence in three years. These are


the latest flames engulfing the skyline. A fuel storage tank struck


by a stray rocket on Sunday saw firefighters battling the blaze for


hours as ongoing clashes between rival militias continued. This dual


storage compound as more than 20 million litres of petrol, gas and


diesel. Libyan officials are warning of a potential humanitarian and


environmental disaster. In the face of indiscriminate shelling, no one


knows what will happen. Residents within a five kilometre radius have


been told to evacuate. For two weeks, rival militias have been


battling for this, Tripoli's International airport, insignificant


cash cow for any group running it. There is not much of it left now.


But the battle here is beyond controlling the key facility, it is


a power struggle that mirrors Libya's divisive politics in the


last three years. It is not just the capital, Lydia's second city,


Benghazi, has been fighting its own war, entrenched in an ideologically


divided. There are forces there now locked in a continuous battle with


Islamist militants in the city. Militant groups calling for Shari al


all are blamed for the daily assassinations and bombings


targeting the military, police and activists. Most foreign nationals


have now been told by their governments to leave the country


immediately. Many worry that the cycle of violence across Libya may


now be beyond anyone's control. Brigitte Scheffer is from


BBC Arabic. We were just saying that this could


also be an environmental disaster. It is not under control in any way.


Indeed. This afternoon, a second storage tank was hit by a rocket and


is now in flames as well. The Government have asked the local


population within five kilometres to evacuate the area, because of the


toxicity of the fumes. This second tanker exploding is certainly not


going to help stop I think there is about almost ten tankers in that


storage area, so if they all blow up, it will pose a real problem for


Tripoli on many levels. And very hard to go in and deal with it when


triply itself and the country is so unstable. And I do not think they


have the resources to deal with a petrochemical fire like this, it


will be very hard to put out. So, they are very under resourced, so


this could go on for a while. They have over 6 million litres, it is a


serious problem. It is tragic on many levels, because we associated,


have associated Olivia with oil and massive oil reserves. -- Libya. It


was spotted -- it was thought that the new Libya could at least rely on


oil revenue. Yes, it is a shame that the oil industry has virtually


collapsed. For a long time it was a provider and if holds Africa's


largest reserves. Bay have gone from that to being one of the smallest


producers of OPEC countries. Because of the ongoing militia trouble that


they have had, other militia groups have controlled the terminals and


there is still a negotiating process taking place to liberate some of the


terminals from rebel hands. They have asked for international


help to deal with the fire, they are looking for experts. In general, who


do they look to? To Americans or European backers?


In the past they have looked to the west, particularly France, England


and the US, who initially backed this revolution and help them. I


think the situation on the ground has deteriorated so badly on the


ground that a lot of the embassies are closing or have closed.


Everybody is urging their citizens to leave the country, unless they


have a reason to be there. They have asked for international assistance


without specifying who. More of a plea for help, I think. What they


might need is technical assistance in dealing with this fire.


They queue for joining us. We will keep an eye on that story.


Ukrainian officials are claiming that data


from the black box flight recorders on the Malaysian Airlines flight


MH17 confirms it was destroyed by shrapnel from a missile blast.


In their words, there was "massive explosive


Fresh fighting - close to where the plane went down -


has prevented international monitors from accessing


the crash site for the second day in a row - despite assurances they


Meanwhile, the United Nations human rights chief says


the crash over eastern Ukraine could constitute a war crime.


From the region, our correspondent Tom Burridge reports.


On the roads through eastern Ukraine we saw families fleeing the


fighting. Victoria and her grandson are crammed in their car.


TRANSLATION: They are bombing houses, we want to stay alive.


Off-white cloth is their plea for no harm. Where the smoke is rising, the


city which they left. We saw Ukraine's army fire heavy


artillery. For months, pro-Russian rebels have held much of the land, a


conflict in which much of the civilians have died. Now the


Ukrainian army is on the offensive. Misses as far as we have been able


to go. There is fierce fighting in this part of eastern Ukraine,


particularly around the strategically important city of


Donetsk. It is Ukrainian government forces that have been making


advances. Generally speaking in that direction, towards the crash site of


flight MH17. The fighting prevented investigators and security observers


from reaching the site, even with armed guards.


We are sick and tired of being interrupted by gunfights despite the


fact that we have agreed there should be ace is fire.


But it appears the crash site is not the main objective for these


Ukrainian forces. We want to take round and main roads to the east of


the near risk, which link that important city to Russia. -- done


yet. Meanwhile, life of those still here is anything but easy. The wait


for essentials. The fighting goes on.


Now a look at some of the day's other news.


And international court in the Hague has told the Russian government to


pay compensation of $50 billion to shareholders in the defunct oil


company Yukos. company, Yukos. The court said


Russian officials under President Putin had manipulated the legal


system to bankrupt Yukos. It said the company's former head, Mikhail


Khodorkovsky, had shown signs of becoming a political competitor. The


Russian government says the ruling The Liberian government has


closed most border crossings to The disease has killed at least 660


people in West Africa this year. Testing centres will be set up


at the international airport and the few other entry points to


the country which will remain open. The French government has said it's


ready to give asylum to Christians in Iraq who have been threatened


by the jihadist group, Thousands of Christians have fled


from the northern city of Mosul after the Islamic State -


previously known as ISIS - told them they had to convert,


pay a religious tax or face death. Students who survived the sinking


of a South Korean ferry in April have said they were repeatedly told


to stay in their cabins They're giving evidence


during the trial of the captain and crew members who face charges


ranging from negligence to murder The Australian government has


approved the development of what could potentially be


the country's biggest coal mine. The government says strict


environmental conditions Freak storms have struck the


west coast of the United States. One man has died and


at least fourteen others were taken to hospital,


after being struck by lightning They were caught


as rare summer thunderstorms swept This was the scene minutes after a


violent electrical storm caused panic in one of America's most


famous beaches. Emergency services responded to reports that several


people had been injured by lightning. People on the beach said


the only warning was when the sky suddenly darkened.


I said, we should go inside, because I don't feel like getting killed


today. And then moments later, all hell broke loose.


It was the loudest under I have ever heard. All the mothers were grabbing


kids. There was a flash of light and noise


and it felt like someone punch me in the back of the head. It went all


down the right side of my body, my leg locks and I fell over.


At least a dozen people were treated at the scene. Most of those had been


in the water when the lightning struck.


They have been sent away, for the most part they are doing very well.


There was the initial person who received some serious injuries may


have been transported to a local facility.


Of those taken to hospital, one has been critically injured and one has


died. Helicopters patrolled the shoreline searching for more


casualties. Lifeguards fanned out across the surf to make sure no one


had been missed. The storm was a brief interruption on a sunny


afternoon, but for at least one family, it meant that a date the


beach ended tragically. Dinosaurs were wiped out


by an asteroid impact when they were at their most vulnerable, according


to a new international study which says the creatures were already


suffering from food shortages, as The 11 leading dinosaur experts


conclude the dinosaurs might have survived


if the asteroid had hit the Earth a So their extinction


65 million years ago was a case One of those experts is


in our Birmingham studio now. Dr Richard Butler is from the School


of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences


at the University of Birmingham. Thanks for joining us. Tell us more


about the fact they were vulnerable at this particular time. Why?


65 million years ago dinosaurs went extinct, and prior to that was a lot


of intense environmental change going on. There were a lot of


volcanic eruptions in India, leading to changes in climate, and also a


lot of sea-level changes. A long-term fall in sea-level. All


these things would have placed stresses on dinosaur communities.


What we see in some of the large groups of dinosaurs are long-term


declines in diversity or current over the last few million years or


so prior to extension. These declines in diversity would probably


have had the impact of weakening dinosaur amenities as a whole and


making them more vulnerable to the effect of this asteroid impact.


So if the asteroid had not hit then but hit a few million years later,


dinosaurs might have been resilient enough to survive? For how long?


It is possible. We cannot rerun the table history and look at what would


have happened if it has hit at a different time, but it was certainly


a very bad time for it to hit, and dinosaurs might have survived if it


had been a few million years later or earlier, and I think if they have


survived they would have been with us today. They were very successful


for around 180 million years, and if you look at the last six to 5


million years of Earth history, nothing has happened that would have


been enough to wipe out dinosaurs. -- 65 million years.


What would that have meant for us? Would we be here talking about


this? It is a good question. If we look at


what happened after dinosaurs went extinct, mammals were actually


around for a long time alongside dinosaurs but they were never able


to diversify. When dinosaurs disappeared, mammals undergo this


explosion that ultimately leads to the evolution of humans. Dinosaurs


had not disappeared, this may not have occurred and we may not have


evolved. So we may all our very existence to this asteroid impact.


While it was colossal bad luck for the dinosaurs, it was probably


colossal good luck for us. Many species were weakening anyway


because of environmental factors. Some people would say, they would


not survive anyway. There was a decline that was well underway.


That decline is only limited to a few groups of dinosaurs. If you look


at dinosaurs as a whole, they seem to have been doing pretty good up


until the asteroid impact. Some groups, large bodied herbivorous


groups, they were in decline, and we don't know whether this would have


continued. Are probably would not have been enough to drive all


dinosaurs to extension. Thank you for joining us and giving


us those ideas about dinosaurs who could have still been here today.


A video of the Turkish Prime Minister, Recep Tayyip


Erdogan, scoring a hat-trick in a football match has gone viral.


The Prime Minister, who was once a promising junior with a Turkish club


side, showed off his skills during an exhibition match to inaugurate


Mr Erdogan is standing as a candidate in next month's


I think you can tell the goalkeeper wasn't trying too hard. IQ for


joining us tonight, you can get in touch on Twitter.


Plenty of showers around, and we will see some winds pushing into the




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