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This is BBC World News Today, broadcasting in the UK
A triple bomb attack near the holiest Shia shrine
in Damascus kills at least 50 people.
The so called 'Islamic State' group claims responsibility.
There appears to be a military target for the attack but also a
very large number of civilians who are in this neighbourhood and also
affected. There's fresh hope at the Syrian
peace talks in Geneva as the UN envoy plans talks with
both sides for Monday. A village in north eastern Nigeria
is attacked by suspected Boko Haram militants - leaving
at least 50 people dead. One of Canada's most notorious mafia
bosses is shot dead at his home. His son-in-law is
charged with murder. As attempts are made to get peace
talks on Syria under way in Geneva, Syrian state media is reporting that
at least 45 five people have been killed in a triple bomb attack
on the outskirts of the capital Damascus - some reports say
the number of death could be as high The attack was near the highly
important Shia shrine The attack has been largely
condemned as an attempt Our correspondent Rami Ruhighem has
just sent this report. A sight not seen here around for
months. This is south-east of Damascus. The people here are safe
from air strikes, but today not from suicide attacks. We have slight
delifrn accounts but what we know for sure is this street in the
Sayyida Zeinab neighbourhood was the target of the attack. This is the
building which is the closest to the attack. We are told that the ground
floor was a military headquarters and the rest of it housed the
families of the forces who lived on the ground floor. There was fury as
soldiers gathered around the wreckage.
TRANSLATION: We are not afraid to die. They can send all the cars they
want to Sayyida Zeinab, and all of Damascus. But soldiers weren't the
only ones affected. Opposite the army building is a fraught and
vegetable market. Testament to a street that was bustling just before
the blast You can still smell a very strange mixture, I think perhaps of
blood and fruit, on the site of the explosion.
In Geneva the UN was still struggling to kickstart the talks
but on the ground, all over Syria's fragmented landscape, the war raged
on, unaffected. We will hear more on the significance of a see ya
district being targeted in Damascus. Islam zwraict or so-called Islamic
State is a sunny fundamentalist group. It considers Shia in general
at heretics and it has said so many time it is raging war against Shia.
We have seen similar attacks in Iraq. There is a similar factor
which is that many militants, or militias fighting the IS at the
moment are Shia militias, coming from Iraq, from Iran, and they are
Hezbollah militias as well. And many of them actually go to Sayyida
Zeinab shrine in a pilgrimage, even before they start fighting IS. These
are two important factors to bear in mind in this context. Well, to the
talks now and the main Syrian opposition group, the HNC says it
will not negotiate directly with the Syrian government at the talks until
massacres have stopped. Earlier, they did have an initial
informal meeting with the UN's envoy He's due to hold separate talks
on Monday, first with government representatives, and then delegates
from the opposition The US Secretary of State,
John Kerry, has appealed to the parties involved in the talks
to make "concrete progress". While battlefield dynamics can
affect the negotiating leverage, in the end there is no military
solution to the conflict. Without negotiations, the bloodshed will
drag on until the last city is reduced to rubble and virtually
every home, every form of infrastructure and every semblance
of civilisation is destroyed. And that will ensure an increased number
of terrorists, created by and attracted to this fight. This
conflict could easily engulf the region, if left to spiral completely
out of control. That is what the negotiations in Geneva can prevent.
It's being reported that at least 50 people have been killed in an attack
by Islamist militants in the village of Dalori -
close to the city of Maiduguri in north eastern Nigeria.
A military spokesman said that Boko Haram were behind the attack
Pictures from the scene of the attack show burnt buildings
and livestock and it's been reported that the fire could be seen
I got more details from the BBC's Tomi Oladipo in Nairobi.
We heard on Saturday this attack happened. Thesis lambist Milne tants
stormed the village and attacked, opening fire, setting buildings on
fire eye witnesses saying some people were trapped in their houses
as they were set on fire. But the army came into the town and fighting
continued for hours but as we speak, much of the building was in ruins
pretty much most of the buildings burnt down. This is not the first
time we have had a lull in the way Boko Haram operates there. They go
sometimes for weeks or even months almost quite and relying on the
kinds of suicide bombings we have been seeing over the past few weeks.
But it doesn't mean that the group has been destroyed. They are known
to have sleeper cells within major urban centres and they are still
able it carry out attacks like the one we have seen. The fact they have
carried out such an attack on such a scale, shows how great they are - I
mean how great their firepower is and how they are able to regroup and
restrategise and come back again. So a lot for the Nigerian military to
think about in terms of strategy, a lot to think about in terms of
intelligence-gathering, so they can stop this group from coming back
again and wrecking havoc across the north-east of the country, as we
have seen. In the United States
it's the final weekend of campaigning before
the Iowa caucuses on Monday. It's the first chance that voters
get to decide who'll be the presidential candidate for each
of the main parties. Well, just before this crucial vote,
one respected opinion poll suggests that Donald Trump is ahead
in the Republican contest. and Bloomberg Politics gives
Donald Trump a 5 point lead over It puts Trump at 28%
and Cruz at 23%. On the Democratic side,
the poll gives Hillary Clinton a more narrow lead
over Bernie Sanders. Clinton is on 45% while
the Vermont Senator There's a margin of error
of plus or minus 4 Gary O'Donoghue is in
Iowa and joins us live. Of course, this is that one time
that Iowa ends up being on the global stage. Usually it isn't.
That's absolutely right. I mean this is a small state, but it is not a
very populated state, only 3 million people here and they get an enormous
say as the first one in the nation to actually cast some votes in the
nomination. Now, as you pointed out, Donald Trump is leading the
Republican field, the surprise candidacy, really of Donald Trump
and really sweeping a lot of the other candidates before him. Getting
a lot of mainstream votes as well, Donald Trump. It is not just fringes
voting for him. A lot of mainstream Republicans are backing him. Second
place, Senator Ted Cruz from Texas. He is popular among the socially
conservative and evangelicals and there are lots of those among
Republican voters in eye owia. On the Democratic side, Hillary
Clinton, here lead over Bernie Sanders, within the margin of error
there. It is neck-and-neck in that race and a lot of the vote in the
colleges here supporting Bernie Sanders and those colleges are in
session at the moment. That's in the always the case during the Iowa
caucuses, the students aren't always here but they are this time and the
Sanders campaign will be hoping that means that their vote will get
boasted by their presence. So, an awful lot hangs on the vote on
Monday. It will help it, indeed - particularly the Republican side
where there are still 11 candidates, Chris, in the race, it'll help to
narrow that #2350e8d down. Some on 1, 2, 3%, may not last into the next
primary which is in New Hampshire in just over a week's time. -- narrow
that vote down. Well thank you for that.
The White House hopefuls have to get out to meet voters face to face
rather than rely on reaching them through television adverts.
Monday's caucus is the first contest in the long nominating process,
and all candidates are keen to shake as many hands and kiss as many
We sent the BBC's Rajini Vaidyanathan out on the campaign
trail in Iowa to see how many candidates she could see in a day.
It is just ever 9.00 in De Moines in Iowa. The candidates are trying to
get as many votes as they can. I have a list of where they will be. I
will see how many of them I can meet. Wrong car, wrong car. Stop
number 1, candidate Ric Santorum, who is doing a coffee and bagels
meeting. Just over there. Do you think you have a shot in this race?
Of course I do. We are off. What is this place called? We have
been in the car for two hours a and we are now hoping to catch the next
candidate but we are late. You should have the right to exercise
your second amendment rights. Are we allowed to replace restrictions on
that? Only in the most extreme circumstances. That was Chris
Christie, our second candidate of today. Got more to go.
Stop number 3, a Bernie Sanders event. We are talking about making
public colleges and universities tuition-free.
You know you have to drive a short way from our last one. Already met
three candidates and a long queue for the next person we are hoping to
see. It's 5.30pm and we have driven all
across this state searching for candidates. Candidates we are now in
Wilson and off to see one more It's protected the second amendment
rights to bear arms of law-abiding citizens. We travelled 315 miles.
Met four candidates and one former President who is married to a
candidate. It made us realise if we are exhausted, imagine what the
capped dates go through on a daily basis as they work to get the vote.
Let's bring you some other news in brief now:
The Israeli cabinet has voted to create a separate prayer space
for non-Orthodox Jews at the Western Wall in Jerusalem
The contentious decision means a new prayer area will be situated
adjacent to the existing Orthodox compound where men and women
are segregated for prayers, in line with tradition.
Police in Tanzania say they have arrested three men after a British
helicopter pilot was killed while tracking
The pilot, Roger Gower, died on Friday when his helicopter
was shot down during a patrol in the Maswa game reserve
Russian officials say 12 people, including three children,
have died in a huge fire at a textile factory in Moscow.
The victims were migrant workers who had been living and working
A former Mafia boss has been shot dead at his home in the Canadian
in southern Italy, according to Canadian media.
He was once one of Toronto's most powerful mafia leaders.
Zito's son-in-law, Domenico Scopelliti,
has been charged with murder after turning himself in to police.
Rob Lamberti is a veteran crime reporter for the Toronto Sun
snr one could be forgiven, Rob, for not thinking of Canada and the Mafia
and finding the Mafia there. Well, surprise, we probably have the most
powerful Ndrangheta groups outside of Italy, based in Toronto area. How
much trouble do they cause? They are worth millions of dollars. A will
the of the money that's generated in -- a lot of the money generated in
Italy finds its way here because they have found Canada a very safe
place to invest their gains. They are in semi, they are almost in
retirement then when they get to candidate I wouldn't say that. We do
have our problems. We have had at bit of a gang war in Canada, pitting
Sicillian-based organised group in Montreal with Calabrian groups in
Ontario. Things have calmed down and the splice done good work,
especially in cue Beck, where they have made some arrests. Tell us more
about Rocco Zito and what we know about his death? He was born into a
Mafia family in Calabrian in 1928. He tried to sneak into North America
twice, once as a stowaway in a boat, to New York City, but American
officials caught him and sent him back and again he was caught in
Texas when he was trying to sneak in from Mexico when they sent him back.
In 1955 he came to Canada as a legal immigrant and became a citizen
shortly after that. Police started noticing him in about 1960 when he
was fined for $108 Canadian for having an illegal still and they
spotted him at a mob boss's house in nearbyburg ton, Ontario. What he
didn't know in 1962 he became a founding member of a Board of
Directors of organised crime. They sell disputes, carve up territories,
make deals. Sort of what you have seen on television in the God skas
father movies and so on. Police didn't know of this Board until 1968
but by that time Rocco had been developing as a masterful and very
quiet and traditional leader among organised crime groups. He wasn't a
flashy kind of guy. He lived in a very non-disscript neighbourhood in
North for on con a very non-descript bung low. He raised five daughters,
has become a grandfather. He was finally caught in 1987 in a murder
which he was convicted of man slutter. And then later in a theft.
I'm going to have to wind you up a little bit. It is fascinating but
obviously his murder will continue to be invested but, wow, a whole
book to be written there but we have to leave it there, many thanks. OK.
To Probably a movie to be made as well. Stay with us. Still to come.
Awesome in Australia. Tennis world number one, Novak Djokovic beats
Andy Murray to win Melbourne's Grand Slam for a sixth time.
The earthquake brought buildings down in seconds. Tonight the search
for any survivors has an increasing desperation about it, as the hours
pass. The new government is finally in
control of the entirely republic of Uganda. Moscow go the its first
taste as Western fast food as McDonald's opened his first
restaurant but the hundreds of Muscovites that queued up won't find
it cheap. It'll cost half a day's wages for the average Russian.
# This is BBC World News Today.
The headlines: Bomb attacks in Damascus have killed at least 50
people near the country's most important Shia Muslim shrine.
So-called Islamic state have claimed responsibility.
There is some hope for progress at the Syrian peace talks in Geneva, as
both sides agree to meet the UN's envoy for separate discussions.
More than 50 thousand migrants have made the perilous sea crossing
from Turkey to Greece this past January.
That's a 35-fold increase from this time last year.
During the same period, 250 people have
Our correspondent James Reynolds has been aboard a rescue
25 Iraqi migrants wave from their broken boats.
A private company, called MOAS, supports the Greek coastguard.
Winter has not stopped migrants from coming.
But it has made their journey much more dangerous.
A child can survive in these waters for only 15 minutes.
The migrants, their children coming aboard now.
For those who have been at sea for such a long time,
this moment of rescue must surely be one of the great moments
Inside the ship, an Italian medical team treats a man who has collapsed
And are ready to stop being smothered.
This man and his family have escaped Islamic State in Iraq.
At dawn the rescue boat heads to Greece, towing with it
Their first steps in Europe are a little uncertain.
We are hearing from our correspondent in Downing Street in
London that no deal has been reached between the British Prime Minister,
David Cameron, and the European Union President, Donald Tusk, aimed
at pressing the UK's case for curbing the benefits of European
Union migrants can claim. Another 24-hour talks has been agreed.
Now the sport. A fantastic night in Melbourne for
Novak Djokovic. A sixth title for him.
It was another emotional night for Andy Murray in Melbourne,
Runner up for a fourth time at the Australian Open
With fatherhood just days away, he admitted
that he may have been affected by off-court distractions.
The prize that has eluded Andy Murray for so long was perched
tantalisingly close, but Novak Djokovic's grip on that
trophy and Britain's number one has been vice-like.
The first set followed a familiar pattern.
Murray simply outclassed as the Serb took the first set 6-1.
Murray had been late to bed the previous night after watching
brother Jamie win the doubles and in the second set he finally
woke up, matching his nemesis, until at 5-5, once again,
he fell under Djokovic's spell, another crucial break, 2-0.
At least Murray had shown some fight and that continued in the third
where he managed to break Djokovic and level at 3-3.
Murray forced a tie-break but during that, the trophy looked
Novak finished things with an ace, one that seemed to bring tears
The Serb's six Australian Open titles are matched only by the great
Murray, once again, is left dreaming of a first.
It's phenomenal. I'm very proud of it, as is my team. We worked hard to
be in this position and we should enjoy T we should cherish every
moment that we get to experience now, because these are the
tournament we all value. Enjoy it. We want it play well. No doubt I'm
playing the best tennis of my life these last 15 months.
11 titles for Djokovic. Still celebrating her first Slam
is the German Angelique Kerber who sensationally beat Serena
Williams in Saturdays women's final. They end she came to me and said
that she would really like to say that I'm deserved. That's also
something that's still in my heart. I have had the best two weeks of my
life and the best moment of my career last night when I won the
matchpoint and really took the Grand Slam. It was always my dream and my
dream came true. When I was a kid I was always dreaming of this, to win
one day a Grand Slam. I think I had a really crazy week, in the first
round, where I was matchpoint down but the best weeks of my life.
The draws been made for the FA Cup fifth round, Chelsea will play
Manchester City, Oscar scored a first half hatrick as they beat MK
One other line to emerge after that match, John Terry will be leaving
He confirmed that he hasn't been offered a new contract by the club.
The 35 year old, who has spent his entire career
at Stamford Bridge, says he will keep playing but it won't be
Thank you. Let's remind you of our main story on the programme tonight:
A triple bomb attack near the holly Shia shrine in Damascus has killed
at least 50 people. So-calledist Islamic State group have claimed
responsibility and there is fresh hope at the Syrian peace talks in
general ehave as the UN enjoy plans talks about both sides for Monday.
-- Geneva. That's all from the programme R you
can keep up-to-date with all the latest developments, analysis and
news at the BBC website. From me and the rest of the team. Thanks for
watching. Winds will start to pick up
overnight ahead of the arrival of Storm Henry,