20/08/2014 World News Today


20/08/2014

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

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international condemnation as an American journalist is beheaded by

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

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

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

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

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neighbours and offer them nothing but an endless slavery to their

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

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Southern Israel. Airstrikes and rocket attacks restart; talks

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

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modern humans and Neanderthals coexisted ten times longer than

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

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

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

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Hello and welcome. International leaders have expressed their horror

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and disgust over the beheading of American journalist James Foley by

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

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spoken to the family offering his condolences - and described the

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

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

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

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

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

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

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Correspondent Ian Pannell in Washington. It does not show the

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

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

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

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

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State released a horrific video appearing to show James Foley being

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

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

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aggression against the Islamic State. The film is addressed to

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

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

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Islamic State fighters has halted their advance. Iraqi and Kurdish

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troops are taking back some territory. The group formerly known

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

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intelligence officials have just said they have verified this video.

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

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rampaged across cities and villages, killing innocent, unarmed civilians

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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tenable, as US officials said fighter jets and drones have

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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courageous to the end. The parents of James Foley.

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British intelligence services are working to identify the man seen

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

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

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'shocking and depraved'. Our Political Correspondent Ben Wright

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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arrest and prosecute those who take part in this extremism and

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

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

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

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

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

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increasing. We know that a significant number of British

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

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combat nonviolent extremism and to prevent it from becoming violent in

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

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

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

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

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

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

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with communities across the UK to support families and parents in

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

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

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

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

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transporting arms from other countries to Kurdish fighters, known

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

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

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

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

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

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Islamic Middle East. Nothing the Government can say can counteract

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

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Government rattles with the problem of British Edison 's travelling

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

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

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

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

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nightmare scenario for British security forces. We can tell that

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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public. There are not that many foreign American fighters inside

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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There is the thing about adventure and Brotherhood and potentially

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

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

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

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

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caliphate, being involved in something really historical.

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

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

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

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

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

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that very few Muslim Americans have become involved in violent

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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says this was an assassination attempt. Today, Palestinian

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militants fired rockets into southern Israel. The Iron Dome

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

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

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offsite is across Gaza used to launch and store missiles.

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Hardliners in the Israeli cabinet now want a wider operation against

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Hamas. We have to fight it. And it takes

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

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

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

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

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

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the Palestinians their rights and freedom and open the borders and

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lift the siege and implement the past agreements, make the

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

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

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

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And they face greater uncertainty with the renewed violence.

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

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There've been clashes between police and protesters

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The demonstrators were angry about their neighbourhood being

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quarantined due to the Ebola outbreak.

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Police fired tear gas and eyewitnesses say residents

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Heavy fighting continues to be reported in rebel-held areas

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

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More than 2,000 civilians and combatants have been killed

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

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It's reported that a Russian aid convoy into Eastern

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In Pakistan, thousands of opposition supporters have marched on

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

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

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

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Iran's reformist President Hassan Rouhani has

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

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

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

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

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Critics say he also tolerated student publications that questioned

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Islamic teachings and promoted sedition and riots.

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With me is Amir Paivar from BBC Persian Television.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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expelled from university, readmit assessors forced into retirement

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under President Ahmadinejad. But also, what triggered this

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impeachment was that his ministry started investigations into a list

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of 3000 PHD and postgraduate students, who allegedly had received

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state scholarships to study overseas without going through the process of

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

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

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more internal political intrigue going on here than just a straight

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

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

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whereby those loyal to Ahmadinejad are clearly picking up a fight

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against President Rouhani. This started with campaigns against

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

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

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

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

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

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

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Rouhani once. Wonder if this impeachment could have happened

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

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

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

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

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

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

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Iranians. A new study suggests that modern

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

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previously thought. It was thought Neanderthals died out

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around 500 years But it turns out that

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

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years and even interbred. Our Science correspondent

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Pallab Ghosh reports. Tens of thousands of years ago,

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

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

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

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

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

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

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thousands of years earlier than people had previously thought.

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

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

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

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

:20:53.:21:00.

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

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

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

:21:13.:21:15.

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

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

:21:22.:21:26.

culture between the populations. So why did the Neanderthals eventually

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

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

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competition. We walked the earth with Neanderthals for thousands of

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

:21:43.:21:47.

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

:21:48.:21:52.

Fantastic pictures. The man considered the father

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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vessels, they are all exercised by these movements.

:23:01.:23:03.

Isabel Jones Fielding is an Iyengar yoga teacher and joins me

:23:04.:23:06.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

:24:26.:24:32.

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

:24:33.:24:38.

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

:24:39.:24:43.

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

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

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

:24:58.:25:03.

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

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

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

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

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

:25:35.:25:43.

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

:25:44.:25:48.

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

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

:25:54.:25:59.

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

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

:26:06.:26:13.

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

:26:14.:26:17.

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

:26:18.:26:21.

the level of precision and understanding in the body that is

:26:22.:26:25.

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

:26:26.:26:31.

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

:26:32.:26:36.

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

:26:37.:26:42.

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

:26:43.:26:47.

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

:26:48.:26:57.

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

:26:58.:27:02.

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

:27:03.:27:07.

through tomorrow. That will bring quite a few showers.

:27:08.:27:09.

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