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This is BBC World News Today with me Nuala McGovern.
The murder of a former Russian spy in London -
an official report points the finger at the Kremlin.
Alexander Litvinenko was poisoned with a radioactive substance -
Russian president Putin probably ordered the assassination.
Brazil struggles to contain a mosquito-borne virus thought
to cause a rare brain defect in babies.
How US doctors brought this man back to life,
after he was frozen for several hours and believed dead.
He was tipped for a nomination - now he's not even going
Will Smith is the latest start to boycott this year's Oscars.
This is about children that will down, watched the show, and they're
not going to see themselves represented.
Alexander Litvinenko died from poisoning nearly a decade ago
And they are politically explosive. an inquiry into his death
is 'likely' to have sanctioned the former Russian spy's poisoning.
It matches the accusation made by Litvinenko himself,
Our Security Correspondent Gordon Corerra reports.
Today a judge concluded he was killed in an operation
by the Russian security service, the FSB, likely authorised
The FSB operation to kill Mr Litvinenko was probably approved
by Mr Patrushev, then head of the FSB, and also by President
Litvinenko was a former Russian intelligence officer,
who had spoken out about corruption, and then fled with his
Former FSB officer Andrei Lugovoi and Dmitry Kovtun both caught
In the Pine Bar Litvinenko was served a drink from this teapot
which was laced with radioactive polonium.
Police would be able to follow a trail of radioactivity
across London, from restaurants to football stadium,
It took Litvinenko himself three weeks to die.
There were audible gasps here in court when the judge said
responsibility probably lay at the highest levels
And this report argues the motive was that Litvinenko was viewed
Litvinenko was so hated that Russians special forces
Today's report says his accusations that the FSB was behind these
bombings of apartments in Moscow to justify a war
as well as his disclosure about corruption and a personal
animosity with Vladimir Putin all made him a target.
And then there was also the fact that the Russians learned he had
begun working with Britain's intelligence service MI6.
Today, his widow who fought for years for this inquiry told me
the British Government should now expel all Russian spies
in their London embassy, and impose travel bans and sanctions
I believe only these things might help Russian people one day
Today in the Commons the Government said it would consider
The conclusion that the Russian state was probably involved
in the murder of Mr Litvinenko is deeply disturbing.
It goes without saying, that this was a blatant
and unacceptable breach of the most fundamental tenets of international
But the opposition criticised the Government's response.
I am not sure it goes anywhere near enough in answering
the seriousness of the findings in this report.
Indeed it could send a dangerous signal to Russia that our response
Today, two of the most powerful men in Russia were named as likely
responsible for what has been described as an act of nuclear
A murder which a decade on remains a defining issue
Now there's mounting pressure on the government here in Britain
to take further action against Russia.
The Russian Foreign Ministry has once again denied any involvement
in the assassination and said the inquiry had been politicised.
Our Moscow Correspondent Sarah Rainsford looks at where today's
report leaves relations between Britain and Russia?
You wouldn't know Russia's President has just been implicated
People here are more worried about and economic crisis,
That is partly down to the message they are getting
It is reporting the inquiry into Alexander Litvinenko's murder,
as a farce, biassed against Moscow from the start.
Reporters are playing down the conclusion,
that President Putin probably approved the killing.
And in public at least, Russian officials are unflustered.
At the foreign ministry the spokeswoman deflected my
question over the trail of deadly polonium, dismissing the whole
We take it as a step towards to discredit Russia,
and Russian official, Russian leaders, as we understand
it was not a legal process, it was an imitation
Russia has become the master of denial.
Of painting the most serious accusations as part
of an international political campaign against Moscow.
That may work with the audience here at home, but the conclusions
of the Litvinenko inquiry have the potential to plunge
relations with the west to a new low.
Despite calls to extradite the chief suspects to the UK,
they are still here in Russia, today Andrei Lugovoi
He has become a minor celebrity here.
The murder of Alexander Litvinenko had major repercussions
Contacts between security services cut.
But five years on, David Cameron was in Russia, encouraging trade
Then came the conflict in Ukraine and the annex casing of Crimea
The inquiry into Litvinenko's killing was announced.
Now it its damning conclusion is out Russia's ambassador has been
But some argue Russia's role in Syria makes it risky
Since it began air strikes there, Moscow has become central
I personally do not think we should be concerned about deepening the row
as such, the Russians themselves ought to have some consideration
for that, and whether it is the, there is any sense in having
a bigger bust up than the one we are having already.
Tonight the Kremlin was sounding defiant.
President Putin's spokesman call the murder inquiry a joke,
and insisted that Moscow will not accept its findings.
A car bomb has exploded in the capital of Somalia, Mogadishu. It
was in the city's popular live goat destination beach. Explosions and
gunfire have been heard nearby. We will bring you more on that
developing story as we get it. Brazil says thousands of babies have
been born with abnormally small The health system is struggling
to cope with the outbreak linked to the Zika virus -
which is spread by mosquitoes. The rare brain defect affects
the babies' physical The disease has spread across Brazil
- with close to 4,000 It is now showing up in other
South American countries. The Zika virus appears to have the
ability to cause birth defects, when the baby is born to other infected
pregnancy. Camilla Costa from BBC
Brazil is in Sao Paulo. It is difficult to
are still being investigated point, how widespread the cases are.
The Zika virus is quite detect right now, we still don't
have specific tests to detect detect right now, we still don't
mothers. Silas the bit about detect right now, we still don't
they have told you? There is a lot of anxiety, when
they have told you? There is a lot news, the mothers feel sad
they have told you? There is a lot do about the
they have told you? There is a lot cannot predict
they have told you? There is a lot know what exactly awaits them. What
is the government saying they will do, in particular to help these
mothers? State governments are actually trying to increase the
number of centres they have, which are prepared to give orientation to
those mothers, and to start a rehabilitation sessions with those
babies. This is one thing you can do to help stimulate some areas of the
baby's brains. The budget for city governments to tackle the mosquito
that transmits the Zika virus, to prevent another epidemic next year.
We are hearing them may have been a couple of cases in Colombia? Is that
something the government is talking about, prevention to normal people
as well as attacking the mosquito? Definitely. The mosquito has been
constant in Brazil and most countries in Latin America for
decades, since we are tropical countries, something we have dealt
with for a long time. It is a mosquito that transmits at least
seven diseases, quite urgent to tackle the situation. Just as the
Zika virus came, and may have caused those cases of malformation, other
cases could come. In Britain David Cameron has said a referendum on
membership of the good, sinister, if they deal can be negotiated with the
rest of the EE members by the end of next month. In Davos, the
Netherlands' Prime Minister said the deadline is doable. He spake to Abba
economics editor, who asked him what the EU's most pressing issue is
right now? Clearly the refugee crisis is the most pressing issue.
We need to bring numbers down through Turkey and Egypt, coming to
Europe. This is not sustainable. The main issue. At the same time even to
drive growth, improve the common market, particularly in digital
services, capital union, energy. There is enormous room for
improvement. 1.25 euros trillion in extra GDP to get. For Britain, one
of the major issues is the renegotiation, that the Prime
Minister is attempting. When you look at what the Prime Minister is
putting on a table, DEC the chance for radial by February? Yes, I am
relatively optimistic we can get a deal, and we could get a deal in
February. There is still work to be done. He has put on the table wishes
in various domains. For me, I think it is crucial become to an agreement
on the 28th, for all 28. So you make maximum use of the UK referendum to
improve your for everybody, particularly in the areas of growth,
how to deal with countries in the Eurozone and outside the Eurozone.
It is doable, but still work to be done. Lex ability necessary? Yes,
that everybody will acknowledge we have Europe that has different
speeds. Already there, the Eurozone, Schengen, some countries having
country specific opt outs. It is not new in itself. For me, the nation of
ever closer union, this was putting in the past, it is history. Ever
closer union, not of the People's of the European Union, but I know for
him, it is important, so we have to deal with it.
Now to a remarkable story about a man called Justin Smith
The 26-year-old was walking home from a local bar when he fell
in the snow and was knocked unconscious.
He was found hours later in freezing conditions and paramedics concluded
Justin was then taken to hospital where doctors thought his life
I started shaking his head, no, you can't leave me.
I have never even heard anything like this, amazing. Something I have
not heard of, can't thank everyone enough.
Dr James Wu was one of the doctors involved in the procedure to revive
He says this procedure is not actually new to health care
professionals. It is an older technology, it is a
heart and lung machine, and can be used outside the body, for different
purposes. Most recently, it has been used for the flu epidemic, causing
severe lung problems, what we call ARDS. It is done great job in terms
of saving those patients who would be dead. The technology has
involved, with better Jew being and cannulas, we can drain blood out of
the patient and put it back in. -- better Jew being. We are moving to
the forefront of recess at a science. Cardiac arrest,
hypothermia, and other uses. What is PE? Pulmonary images. -- embolism. A
police officer said he was dead for many hours, what with the chances
for revival? Truly incredible. When we saw him at the hospital, he had
no vital signs. No pulse. No electrical activities. This is what
they saw, when he was there. The chances of a patient surviving from
those set of conditions is extremely low. But there were two things going
for Justin, one was hypothermia, a lot of the metabolism of his brain
and other bodily functions were kept to a minimum. Did not need to use a
lot of energy or oxygen. Another thing was he was 25 years old, young
patients can survive a great deal of trauma, and still do OK. As a
doctor, what did this procedure mean to you? To bring someone phrasing
back to life? Furious for your personal take? He was not completely
frozen. Once you are truly completely frozen, your body and
cells were crystallised. His lowest temperature was 18 degrees, the
blood was still flowing, albeit very sluggishly. Again, under those
circumstances, looking at getting the heart function back, and the
organs, and then the brain, we were not sure about. Remarkably it came
back almost completely. Incredible job done by this doctor.
He was tipped by some for an Oscar nomination -
now he's not even going to the ceremony.
Will Smith, who had the leading role in film Concussion,
is the latest star to boycott this year's Academy Awards over
That was sparked by all 20 of the main acting
Let's hear what he's said on US TV in the last few hours.
This is so deeply not about me. This is about children that are going to
sit there on, they are going to watch this show. And they are not
going to see themselves represented. We heard your wife says she was not
going to be attending, nor will she be watching? Will you be attending
the Oscars? No, it would be awkward for me to show up with Charlize! We
have discussed it, we are part of this community at this current time,
we're uncomfortable to stand there and say this is OK. I asked Neal
Smith, our entertainment reporter, how significant this boycott is?
He's by far the biggest Hollywood start to turn his back on the Oscars
this year. His worldwide fame will really bring even more attention to
this issue than there has been already. It is odd, the film he may
have been nominated for was called Concussion. I imagine the academy
are feeling something similar foot of it seems to grow and grow. The
awards are not until the end of February, at about one month ago. Do
you think it will continue to gather steam, or get more names? Already
some big hitters? Absolutely, Spike Lee, various other people. A lot of
pressure on the house, Chris Rock. People saying he should be pulling
out. -- host. Not dealing with this slightly tainted ceremony. The
Justin Kemp will be the next week, the Academy will have a board
meeting. Standard board meeting. Now, I think people will look at
this, and for something concrete to come out of it. If something
concrete does come out of it, they may be able to nip this in the bud.
Can you tell us what the Academy has said a fire in response to people
speaking out? Everyone from Whoopi Goldberg to Idris Elba. They said
more must be done to broaden Goldberg to Idris Elba. They said
Now they need to see something more concrete. Talking about radical
changes, possibly more acting nominees. A limit of ten films every
year, as opposed to the sliding scale between 5-10. Talking about
some quite seismic changes. What do the Academy say so far about why
there were no people of colour in the nominations? The Academy
president has said she's very disappointed, that unfortunately you
can only nominate what is out there. There were far stronger candidates
last year, in terms of critical support, groundswell of popular
opinion. Selma, for instance, some thought they were robbed. No
high-profile candidates this year. It's possible that there is a huge
ninth planet on the outer edge of our solar system -
and it may be ten times But for now from me and the rest
of the team goodbye.