20/08/2014 World News Today


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This is BBC World News Today with me, Daniela Ritorto. Widespread


international condemnation as an American journalist is beheaded by


The murder of James Foley was shown in a video released by Islamic


State. They say he was killed in retaliation for US airstrikes.


They claim out of expediency that they are at war with the United


States or the West. But the fact is that they terrorised their


neighbours and offer them nothing but an endless slavery to their


After a week of calm, there are explosions again in Gaza and


Southern Israel. Airstrikes and rocket attacks restart; talks


Also coming up: living with the neighbours - A new study shows


modern humans and Neanderthals coexisted ten times longer than


The man regarded by many as the father of modern yoga,


B.K.S Iyengar, has died at the age of 95.


We'll find out how he popularised yoga in the West.


Hello and welcome. International leaders have expressed their horror


and disgust over the beheading of American journalist James Foley by


Islamic State fighters. In the last hour, president Obama said he has


spoken to the family offering his condolences - and described the


killing as an act of violence that's shocked the conscience of the entire


world. The killing was filmed and posted online by the militant group.


It appears to have been carried out by a man with a British accent. He


says the death is in retribution for recent US air strikes in Iraq. The


40 year old photo-journalist had been missing since he was abducted


in Syria two years ago. This report now is from our International


Correspondent Ian Pannell in Washington. It does not show the


full video, but you may find some images from it distressing.


He eventually turned his lens to the crisis in Syria. A country that has


taken the lives of more journalists than any. He was kidnapped by


militants in the north of the country. Last night, the Islamic


State released a horrific video appearing to show James Foley being


beheaded. It is too graphic to show. But the killer appears to have a


British accent. As a Government, you have been at the forefront of the


aggression against the Islamic State. The film is addressed to


President Obama, with a threat that a second American captive will be


killed if US air strikes continue. America's bombing campaign against


Islamic State fighters has halted their advance. Iraqi and Kurdish


troops are taking back some territory. The group formerly known


as ISIS, is still advancing across northern Syria. Now, American


intelligence officials have just said they have verified this video.


James Foley's life stands in stark contrast to his killers. They have


rampaged across cities and villages, killing innocent, unarmed civilians


and in cowardly acts of violence. James Foley, seen here working in a


little, is one of tens of thousands of people to have died at the hands


of militants, rebels and above all, Government forces. He was aware of


the dangers of being held captive, having been held in Libya. No matter


what ethic you think you have, you know, it is never a worth it. In a


statement, his mother, said: friends of James Foley said they can


only imagine what it must have been like for him. He was a lovely guy. A


professional, he knew what he wanted. He was not a chance. He was


very professional. James Foley went to Syria to draw the world's


attention to a tragedy that has been largely ignored. President Obama


tried to keep America out of this conflict. That no longer looks


tenable, as US officials said fighter jets and drones have


conducted more air strikes. In the words of a former deputy head of the


CIA, this is the Islamic State's first attack against America. It


will not be the last. Jim Foley's parents spoke to


journalists at a press conference a short while ago and said they think


of their son as a martyr. It is horrific. I mean, people can


die in lots of different ways, but this way was the most horrific. It


haunts me that he, how much pain he was in, and how cruel this method of


execution is, as opposed to others. It testifies to his courage. He was


courageous to the end. The parents of James Foley.


British intelligence services are working to identify the man seen


beheading James Foley in the video. The masked militant has a British


accent. The Prime Minister, David Cameron, described the murder as


'shocking and depraved'. Our Political Correspondent Ben Wright


The crisis in Iraq has come closer to home. The beheading of an


American by a man believed to be British brought the Prime Minister


back to Downing Street. He shortened his holiday to lead the


Government's response. Ministers and officials from across Whitehall met


in number ten. In the last few minutes, David Cameron gave his


reaction. It is an act of murder. Murder without any justification. We


have not identified the individual responsible on the video. But from


what we have seen it looks increasingly likely that it is a


British citizen. What we must do is redouble all our efforts to stop


people going and take away passports of those contemplating travel, to


arrest and prosecute those who take part in this extremism and


violence. To take extremist material of the internet and do everything we


can to keep our people say. We are brothers from Bangladesh, Cambodia,


Australia, UK... British jihadists in Syria. The Government says around


400 British citizens have left the UK to fight for Islamic State. One


counter extremist think tank says the Government must do more. It is


increasing. We know that a significant number of British


Muslims are fighting in the region. The Government has no strategy to


combat nonviolent extremism and to prevent it from becoming violent in


the first place. The murder confirms what the security services and


ministers have known for many months. The conflicts in Syria and


Iraq are magnets to some radicalised British Muslims. The questions now


begin. Did intelligence services know about this man? How can the


flow of British jihadists be stopped? What can Britain do to


tackle Islamic state forces in Iraq? There is work that needs to be done


with communities across the UK to support families and parents in


trying to stop the recruitment of youngsters, first of all to a


radical ideology here in the UK, or indeed travelling to be trained by


ISIS or other jihadis forces in the region. In Iraq, RAF planes are


being used in surveillance of Islamic state forces. The UK's


transporting arms from other countries to Kurdish fighters, known


as the Peshmerga. The UK might decide to carry out air strikes on


Islamic State forces. The United States already is. The Government


has ruled out putting British troops on the ground in Iraq. UK soldiers


might help train the country's army. One of the problems in the


Syria and Iraq crises is that these are words of the soul of modern


Islamic Middle East. Nothing the Government can say can counteract


that. A lot of young jihadists see this as their sacred duty. While the


Government rattles with the problem of British Edison 's travelling


abroad to fight with Islamic State, it is concerned about their return.


-- British citizens. With me is Peter Neumann . He's


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


Director of the International Centre Thank you for coming in. This is a


nightmare scenario for British security forces. We can tell that


from David Cameron's cutting short his holiday and convening an


emergency meeting of the Cabinet. It has been taken very seriously, this


British element. Yes. We believe that 400 or 500 British citizens


have gone to Syria over the past few years and there is concern that they


are doing bad things in Syria and Iraq but that the May return and


subsequently become involved in terrorism in the UK. Let's talk


about the choice, if you think it is that, of a British accented man,


some would go as far as to say it was a deliberate choice to have him


on the video, delivering this message. My personal theory is that


they... The most important thing was to have a man speak to the American


public. There are not that many foreign American fighters inside


Iraq. Probably in the location with the hostage was being held, the only


English big around was a British person. It could have been an


Australian. There are a number of them over there. Being ported things


to have the message delivered in an English accent so that news media


across America would pick it up. You have studied radicalisation. What is


it about ISIS that is attracting these young men? Particularly from


Western Europe and Australia. Not so much the United States. What is


attracting them to go there? There are a couple of things going on.


There is the thing about adventure and Brotherhood and potentially


becoming a hero. That is attractive, especially to younger men. There is


also the more serious message, the idea of genocide. Bashar al-Assad is


killing your brothers and sisters and you must come and defend them.


There's also this exciting and positive prospect of building a


caliphate, being involved in something really historical.


Something that people in 1000 years will still be talking about. That is


very attractive to some people. I want to pick up your point that


there are fewer American Muslim men going over there. Why is that? There


is a mundane fact that it is more difficult to travel to Syria via


Turkey from America. Also, for a number of years we have observed


that very few Muslim Americans have become involved in violent


extremism. Many argue that American Muslims are better and do better in


American society. That it does not quite exist in the same way in


Europe. Perhaps that makes them less susceptible to the message of


extremists. A fascinating insight. Thank you very much for coming in.


Benjamin Netanyahu has said his country's operation is not over in


Gaza. This comes after renewed violence on both sides. At least 20


Palestinians have died in the last 24 hours. That is according to local


officials. Hamas says the wife and child of its most senior military


commander is among the dead. The commander himself is still alive.


A huge turnout for the funeral of the wife and infant son of the top


Hamas military leader. Many carried the green flags of his Islamist


group. This was a show of support and defiance. Earlier, medics


directed bulldozers, as Hamas policemen kept watch at the site of


Israel's deadly attack. This pile of dusty rubble is all that is left of


a house where relatives of the head of Hamas' military wing, Mohammed


Deif, used to live. It was hit by Israeli airstrikes overnight. Hamas


says this was an assassination attempt. Today, Palestinian


militants fired rockets into southern Israel. The Iron Dome


defence system was back in action. But still, some properties were


damaged. Meanwhile, the Israeli military says it hits doesn't


offsite is across Gaza used to launch and store missiles.


Hardliners in the Israeli cabinet now want a wider operation against


Hamas. We have to fight it. And it takes


patience. You know, the Second World War went on for six years. We have


to persevere. We have to beat this group of evil terrorists.


About 2000 Israeli reserve soldiers who had been sent home are being


recalled. All of this has thrown Egypt's efforts to broker a longer


term ceasefire deal into jeopardy. The refusal of the Israelis to give


the Palestinians their rights and freedom and open the borders and


lift the siege and implement the past agreements, make the


Palestinians continue to stand in front of the Israelis and resist and


defend their people. In Gaza, tens of thousands have been


left homeless after the recent fighting. Some are camping out in


And they face greater uncertainty with the renewed violence.


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


There've been clashes between police and protesters


The demonstrators were angry about their neighbourhood being


quarantined due to the Ebola outbreak.


Police fired tear gas and eyewitnesses say residents


Heavy fighting continues to be reported in rebel-held areas


of eastern Ukraine, with street clashes in both the two separatist


More than 2,000 civilians and combatants have been killed


since mid-April, when Ukraine's government sent troops to put


It's reported that a Russian aid convoy into Eastern


In Pakistan, thousands of opposition supporters have marched on


parliament demanding the resignation of the prime minister, Nawaz Sharif.


The two key opposition figures - Imran Khan and a cleric, Tahir


ul-Qadri - accuse the government of vote-rigging and corruption.


Iran's reformist President Hassan Rouhani has


suffered a political set-back with a decision by parliament to impeach


The Science Minister Reza Faraji-Dana - who is also in charge


of the country's universities - angered conservatives by deciding to


re-admit students expelled after the anti-government unrest in 2009.


Critics say he also tolerated student publications that questioned


Islamic teachings and promoted sedition and riots.


With me is Amir Paivar from BBC Persian Television.


The on. Now this has been the lead story. In this minister and what has


he done? -- thank you for coming in. Was one of the most reformist


members of the President's Cabinet will stop and linear reformist is


relative. You take him back 15 years and put him in the former


President's Cabinet, the same statement would not apply. All he


did, as you referred to, was to admit students that had been


expelled from university, readmit assessors forced into retirement


under President Ahmadinejad. But also, what triggered this


impeachment was that his ministry started investigations into a list


of 3000 PHD and postgraduate students, who allegedly had received


state scholarships to study overseas without going through the process of


selection. As it happens, the MPs who initiated the impeachment had


some relatives and family members on that list. So is there a little bit


more internal political intrigue going on here than just a straight


fight between conservatives and reformists? You're right. We should


look at it on a macro level. This is the last episode in a series,


whereby those loyal to Ahmadinejad are clearly picking up a fight


against President Rouhani. This started with campaigns against


journalists, foreign or domestic, and now they are pointing the finger


at the key minister for President Rouhani. This is a fight against the


president. And he is a -- in a difficult situation. He has branded


himself as a moderate but if he does nothing he will lose popularity with


voters, and if he does something, this will go back to the same fight


we had under previous presidents, and that is not what President


Rouhani once. Wonder if this impeachment could have happened


without a nod and a wink from the Ayatollah? Definitely not. Every


other analyst we have been talking to today, they have said it could


not have happened without a nod from the supreme leader, and he has


himself been criticising the higher education ministry's record in the


past year. He is the man who has the last word on everything in that


country. As always, fascinating to talk about Iriney in politics. --


Iranians. A new study suggests that modern


humans and Neanderthals co-existed in Europe ten times longer than


previously thought. It was thought Neanderthals died out


around 500 years But it turns out that


the two species lived alongside each other in Europe for up to 5,000


years and even interbred. Our Science correspondent


Pallab Ghosh reports. Tens of thousands of years ago,


Europe was home to an ancient species of humans. The Neanderthals.


They are now extinct. Researchers have gathered there remains to find


out why they died out. Some scientists believe that our species


hunted them out of existence. But a new, more accurate dating of


hundreds of samples, published in the journal, Nature, has changed


their view. The research tells us that modern humans arrived in Europe


thousands of years earlier than people had previously thought.


45,000 years ago. That is when we first met the Neanderthals. It was


thought that they died out soon after, around 5000 years after we


first arrived, and it turned out that our species quits listed for


much longer, around 5000 years. And in that time, our numbers increased


bugbears gradually faded away. -- our species coexisted. Until 40,000


years ago, they disappeared completely. We have discovered a --


that we can rule out a rapid extension at the hands of our


species. Instead, these populations lived almost side-by-side for almost


5000 years, giving the possibility for the exchange of ideas and


culture between the populations. So why did the Neanderthals eventually


die out? They are hunting the same animals and collecting the same


resources, wanting to live in the best caves. There will be economic


competition. We walked the earth with Neanderthals for thousands of


years, but in the end, they could not compete with our kind and they


were finished off by a harsh cold spell 40,000 years ago.


Fantastic pictures. The man considered the father


of modern yoga has died in India. He's described as a visionary,


the man who made yoga accessible to beginners through his books,


popularising it in the west. He practiced yoga for eight decades


and could still do a headstand for more than half-an-hour until last


year, when he became seriously ill. He once showed off his skills


for the BBC. Why did you start yoga? I was not in


good health. I was suffering from tuberculosis and it was no medicine


in those days. How many years have you been doing it? 50 years. I


believe and yoga is meant to be a therapy of mind and body. What do


you get out of doing this? You can see that all the parts of the body,


the muscles and joints, all of the nerves, 96,000 kilometres of blood


vessels, they are all exercised by these movements.


Isabel Jones Fielding is an Iyengar yoga teacher and joins me


Thank you very much for being there. I'm wondering about your thoughts


today. I know you have been taught by him and his daughter and


granddaughter. We are deeply sad. It is a great loss. Particularly for


the family, because he was a charismatic individual, and a


father, a grandparent as well as a teacher and Guru. I


father, a grandparent as well as a focus today on his legacy. So I am


thinking about what it is that focus today on his legacy. So I am


has given me and all the thousands and thousands of students across the


world. Let's talk about that legacy. It is hard to think today, with yoga


everywhere and anywhere, that it was once not like this. It once was seen


as very much a fringe activity. Yes. One of the things that BKS Iyengar


has done is the broad yoga to the West in 1950, and enabled people,


old or young, disabled or athletes, to access the system. -- he brought


yoga to the West. Through a transparent method, of very high


quality. It is very clear through his writings and the teaching. He


was also a bit of a trailblazer in terms of teaching women. And again,


that is something that might be surprising. When I'd go to my class,


it is 80% women, and yoga was once just taught to men. It is hard to


imagine. I would never have done yoga had it not been for Iyengar.


And you can imagine, in those early days, how difficult it was to do


things that were against your position and class. Iyengar was a


Brahmin, and he started to teach untouchables. He received quite a


lot of prejudice for teaching women and untouchables. I'll wander, and


there would like your thoughts, has it become a little too exercised? --


I wonder, and I would like your thoughts. Is it still a process of


discipline and spirituality as well? Yes. They think sometimes people who


start at the beginning they approach it from an exercise perspective, and


then it creeps up on you. This system is highly complex and


detailed. You might find yourself focusing on your little toe, or even


the shoulder blade, and how it might move, and this kind of focus that


you bring to your practice is kind of like a meditation in action. So


the level of precision and understanding in the body that is


Iyengar has brought us, and the depth and quality of that, it takes


our minds away from the daily shopping list, let's say, and takes


us into our bodies. And when we are there, we are in the moment. I will


leave it there, exactly, in the moment. Thank you for speaking to


us. My thanks to Iyengar for my yoga practice. That is all from us today.


Good evening. The coldest weather tonight will be across the southern


part of the UK. There is more cloud coming down from the north overnight


through tomorrow. That will bring quite a few showers.


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