15/03/2016 World News Today


15/03/2016

The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.


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This is BBC World News Today with me, Karin Giannone.

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A shoot-out in Brussels between security forces and gunmen

:00:07.:00:14.

allegedly linked to the Paris attacks.

:00:15.:00:16.

One suspect is dead, two others - thought to be armed -

:00:17.:00:18.

People have been saying people have been shot in the street.

:00:19.:00:24.

A heroes' welcome for Russia's fighter crews as they return

:00:25.:00:27.

I'd like to punch him in the face, I tell you.

:00:28.:00:40.

Accusations that Donald Trump is inciting violence on another big

:00:41.:00:42.

day - perhaps the biggest so far - in America's presidential race.

:00:43.:00:45.

The fight to save the African elephant - we're on the trail

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There are another four of these carcasses spread all around

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They arrived too late to catch the poachers who were long gone.

:00:53.:01:22.

Security forces are hunting a number of suspects after shots were fired

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at police during a counter-terrorism raid in the capital,

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According to the country's state broadcaster -

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four officers have been injured, one severely.

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The raid is linked to the Paris attacks that killed 130 people last

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French police were assisting in the raid in Brussels,

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which took place in the southern suburb of Forest.

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Our correspondent Damian Grammaticas reports from there.

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Dozens of armed police units moved into this Southern district of

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Brussels in the middle of the afternoon. They sealed off a whole

:01:53.:01:57.

series of street bringing the entire area to a standstill. There had been

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a police reappeared shortly after lunchtime. As they moved in the

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officers were met with sustained gunfire. People inside the cordoned

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the police had thrown out were told to stay indoors. Unable to move as

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police hunted there suspects. The burst of gunfire came from this

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street and a little down to one side where the police operation has been

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focused. Also there is a school where there were five classes of

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toddlers who were trapped in their being cared for by their teachers

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while their parents were unable to bring them out. Belgian prosecutors

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say this raid is listened -- link to the Paris attacks which killed 130

:02:38.:02:41.

people last November. Much of the planning and preparation of those

:02:42.:02:44.

attacks happened here in Brussels. Belgian police have been searching

:02:45.:02:48.

for two prime suspects linked to the attacks ever since. TRANSLATION: Two

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individuals are apparently holed up in the building. A security cordon

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has been set up by the police. Following this special forces

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arrived and are in position along with Federal police. So, the

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operation is ongoing. Police haven't said the targets of this raid where,

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but it is known that armed French officers were also involved in the

:03:14.:03:14.

operation today. We can get the latest

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from our reporter Anna Holligan What is the latest that police are

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saying? You can see, we are surrounded by residents trying to

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get home. We are just behind the police cordoned. This operation has

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been going on for hours. You might be able to hear a helicopter

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overhead. Police sirens just behind us. There are lots of families

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trying to get back home. We know that the police pursued at least two

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suspects over the rooftops. In the last few minutes we have heard

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reports that one of the suspects has been neutralised. Just in the last

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couple of minutes we have heard on the wires a quote from the

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prosecutors office saying that the person who has been killed, the

:04:06.:04:09.

suspect who has been killed is not Europe's most wanted man Salah

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Abdeslam, one of the main Paris attacks. How close we have Belgian

:04:15.:04:19.

and French police been working together on this investigation?

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Extremely. Earlier we were told there were French police involved in

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these raids. So many of the suspects in the Paris attacks were from or

:04:31.:04:34.

had links with the area of Belgian in question. The majority of people,

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in terms of Perth head of population, most Belgians have

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joined the fight alongside Islamic State in Syria. This is why it has

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been the focus of so much attention. People are being allowed to go back

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to their homes. Suspects, two suspects remain at large and this is

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a very fluid situation this evening. Anna, thank you very much.

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Voters in Florida and four other key states are voting now

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to choose their preferred candidates to run for president.

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Support for the Republican candidate Donald Trump has been getting ever

:05:15.:05:17.

stronger - that's despite accusations that he has incited

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violence with some of his campaign speeches.

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Earlier President Obama intervened - describing some of the rhetoric

:05:22.:05:23.

Our North America Editor Jon Sopel has more.

:05:24.:05:35.

If there is one place in America where Donald Trump shouldn't have a

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prayer it is here in Florida. He has upset a lot of Hispanics with his

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rhetoric and he is up against the local Cuban-American senator Marco

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Rubio. But for all the controversy, if you join up the dots, everything

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still points to Donald Trump. He is the most important man in the world

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now. He is scary but he is the only one who can beat Billy -- Hillary

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Clinton. I think anything is better than her. I am very proud of Marco

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Rubio and I identify with Donald Trump. The latest firestorm is the

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violence that has erupted at his rallies. As his supporters skirmish

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with protesters. Seems becoming increasingly tense. Actions that

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should have no place in the Democratic politics. And the charge

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against Mr Trump is that far from condemning, his language has

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condoned, even incited, such behaviour among his supporters. I

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would like to punch them in the face, I tell you. Do you know what

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they used to guys like that in a place like this? They would be

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carried out on a stretcher, folks. I don't know if I would have done

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that, but I would have been boom boom boom, beat them. If you see

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someone getting ready to throw a tomato, knock the clap out of them,

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would you? I promise you, I will pay for the legal fees. Am I allowed to

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rip that whistle out of the mouth and rip. Mike get him out, out, out!

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Yes, his comments have done caused a room, but have they done him farm --

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harm? If anything the lead is increasing. Here in Miami, he

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appears to be the only name in town. The others seem to have given up the

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fight. And for all the discussion of punch-ups, if he wins here

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fight. And for all the discussion of and in Ohio, the talk will have

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instead been about delivering a knockout blow to his opponents.

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Gary O'Donoghue joins us from one of the key states,

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Another significant day in this long campaign?

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We keep running out of superlatives, but today is a huge day. Another

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Tuesday of course. The reason for that is why we have got about five

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states and 360 odd delegates to decide on the republican side, we

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have got two of the big states which we call winner take all. Florida

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hotels 99 delegates, if you win a plurality there you get the lot.

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Here in Ohio if you get a plurality you get all 66. That can build your

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delegate numbers significantly in one go. Having said that there are

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still contests elsewhere, Illinois, Missouri, North Carolina, they all

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have large chunks of delegates to be distributed as well. If Donald Trump

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gets somewhere like Ohio and Florida, then he builds up

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significant lead over the others. If the governor here in Ohio doesn't

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win his home state, he is out. If Marco Rubio doesn't win Florida he

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is likely to be out. There is a lot to play for today and some

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presidential dreams could come to an end after it. So, today has the

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potential to be conclusive in both the republican and democratic races?

:09:04.:09:12.

Yes. The Democratic race, these states are important, Bernie Sanders

:09:13.:09:16.

is hoping to do well in these northern, industrial states like

:09:17.:09:20.

Ohio and Illinois. He seems to have done pretty well amongst the

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demographics in those similar states like Michigan, where he lived to be

:09:25.:09:28.

way behind Hillary Clinton but came through and one that. She still has

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a huge lead over him in terms of delegates. A really insurmountable

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lead when you count things like the so-called superdelegates who can

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choose to vote whichever way they like not depending on what happens

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in this or that state. But he is still in this race and he still has

:09:46.:09:50.

a lot of money to spend. Bernie Sanders supporters will be hoping

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that somewhere along the line Hillary Clinton trips up and he is

:09:55.:09:57.

there to pick up the pieces. Gary, thanks very much. Plenty more on the

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results here on BBC World News. The first group of Russian warplanes

:10:03.:10:07.

have arrived back at Voronezh airbase from Syria -

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a day after President Putin's surprise announcement

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that he was withdrawing his forces. It was, he said,

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Mission Accomplished - Russia's objectives

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largely achieved. But not all Russia's jets will be

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making the journey back. The US Secretary of State John Kerry

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has said he'll travel to Moscow next Our correspondent Steve

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Rosenberg is in Moscow. At the Russian air base in Syria,

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it's the final checks. In the cockpit of a Sukhoi 34

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bomber, preparations for take-off. And then for Russia's air force,

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the long flight home. Led by a command plane,

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the bombers head to Russia. President Putin has ordered

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the majority of Russian forces He says they have

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completed their task. A few hours later, the planes and

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pilots are back on Russian soil. It is quite a homecoming to Russia with

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Love. There is a traditional Russian greeting. And prayers. It is a hero

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's' welcome. Vladimir Putin wants Russians to see the military

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operations in Syria as a total success and that is why the soldiers

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returned to Russia seems to be choreographed to present them as

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heroes. It is a message which is going down well with the Russian

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people. TRANSLATION: We are really glad our troops are coming home.

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Surprised but happy. Thanks to our soldiers, so-called Islamic State is

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doing worse, the Syrian army is doing better. That is victory. There

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will be more planes coming home, more parties. But Moscow isn't

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pulling all its troops out of Syria and Russia has warned it will

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continue to launch air strikes against what it calls terrorist

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targets. In Geneva today, the UN's special

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envoy Staffan de Mistura called Russia's withdrawal

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a significant development. He is chairing talks with Syria's

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main opposition groups today as part of wider talks with the Syrian

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government and world powers It is five years to the day

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since protests in Syria began, during what was poetically called

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the Arab Spring. Life has changed beyond recognition

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for most of the people Joining us live from the Syrian

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capital Damascus is BBC Arabic's First of all, where does the Russian

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withdrawal leaves President Assad? It seems that there is some kind of

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a rift between the Russians and Syrian government on what the end

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calls should be exactly. With perhaps in Damascus, here to take

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advantage, of the wrapped radically altered battlefield dynamics since

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the Russian intervention and press on on the offences in several areas

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where is the Russians seem to be pressing for stopping with the gains

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they have made. Perhaps only restricting orphans of action to

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Islamic State and perhaps trying to give momentum to peace talks to

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Syria. It would be give momentum to peace talks to

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a reading of Russian give momentum to peace talks to

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the surprise announcement yesterday, they are still active in Syria.

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the surprise announcement yesterday, maintain two bases, a naval base and

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an air base and they will protect them and that means we will also

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protect the core areas of the resume. If the gains made by the

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regime are somehow reversed. This is not abandoning but it is a signal,

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it appears, that the Russians aren't intent on more offensive action

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against the groups, they want Geneva to go ahead and they want the Syrian

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government possibly to be more prepared for concessions in Geneva.

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What sort of fighting have we seen going on today in Syria? Today I

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think the Palmyra developments have taken centre stage. They were not

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surprised. Palmyra is held by Islamic State. It lies in the middle

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of Syria in the desert area and the Russians have been bombing that area

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for a while now. Perhaps a preview to some kind of ground offensive to

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the Syrian regime, we're not sure yet, but that does mean the main

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development. There has been problems reported by pro-regime media outlets

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along that front. Five years since the very first protests that led to

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the Civil War, have we seen protests today in Syria? There have been

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resurgent protests and it is very difficult to read exactly what is

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going on. It happened after the truce. Once the truth came into

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effect, areas held by the opposition have seen a resurgent protests and

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people restating the original aim of the uprising in 2011, specifically

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the downfall of the regime and a completely new chapter in Syria.

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That has taken place in several opposition held areas. Also

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interestingly, up north there have been protests against the general

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who was an Al-Qaeda affiliate. Also activists who want to see the end of

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the regime and the institutions. They have also been pressing against

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the Al-Qaeda affiliate there. In one incident they manage to drive them

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out of their areas, probably partly because they want the truce to be

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expanded to their areas and the truce... Also the accumulation and

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frustration between some of the people living there. We are out of

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time, thank you very much. Sorry to interrupt you there.

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Today is a grim milestone for Syria as the country enters its sixth

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12 million people - half of the country's

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pre-war population - have been displaced.

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No-one can agree on the number of people killed or injured,

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but everyone agrees they are in the hundreds of thousands.

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So, what's it like growing up in this environment

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We've asked some of Syria's children to explain how the war

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It is very scary. The first time I listened.

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Some of Syria's children five years on. In other news...

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The Norwegian right-wing extremist Anders Breivik who murdered 77

:20:49.:20:50.

people in gun and bomb attacks in 2011 is suing the government

:20:51.:20:53.

for what he says is his unacceptable treatment in prison.

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The case is being held in a special court prison where he's serving

:20:56.:20:59.

Two Australian journalists are on their way back home

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They had been investigating corruption allegations

:21:05.:21:07.

against the country's Prime Minister.

:21:08.:21:10.

They had attempted to question Najib Razak as he entered a mosque

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on why hundreds of millions of dollars had been deposited

:21:14.:21:16.

The Pope has formally approved Mother Teresa's

:21:17.:21:21.

The Albanian nun dedicated most her adult life to working

:21:22.:21:24.

with the poor in the Indian city of Kolkata.

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A ceremony for her canonisation will take place in September.

:21:29.:21:37.

Prince William has unveiled plans for a crackdown

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He called the agreement signed at Buckingham Palace a "game changer

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in the race against extinction." Every year between 30 and 40,000

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African elephants are killed for their ivory.

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With under half a million left, their numbers are being decimated

:21:54.:21:57.

by Asia's seemingly insatiable appetite for ivory.

:21:58.:22:00.

Poachers and rangers are now in armed conflict in a number

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of African countries - with the Democratic Republic

:22:04.:22:05.

Our Africa correspondent Alastair Leithead has sent this

:22:06.:22:09.

It's tough terrain in Garamba National Park,

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where less than 100 Rangers are trying to protect the last

:22:20.:22:22.

of the elephants across thousands of square miles of grassland.

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We joined one of their foot patrols to a place where

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The grass is so high, the only way to see a carcasses

:22:33.:22:43.

Well, this elephant was clearly killed by a poacher.

:22:44.:22:52.

Its ivory tusks were hacked off, it has been dead about three weeks.

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There are another four of these caucuses spread all around

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They arrived too late to catch the poachers,

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30-40,000 elephants are being killed in Africa every year.

:23:04.:23:08.

And with only around 400,000 left, it is not going to be long this rate

:23:09.:23:12.

And with so few boots on the ground, those responsible often get away

:23:13.:23:18.

We followed their footprints, one of the Rangers told me.

:23:19.:23:32.

There are perhaps 1300 elephants left here.

:23:33.:23:35.

Garamba was one of Africa's first national parks.

:23:36.:23:40.

Originally set up to protect the northern white rhino.

:23:41.:23:45.

But that has already been wiped out by poachers.

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Now they're fighting to save the elephants that are left,

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in a place surrounded by Civil War, and heavily armed militia.

:23:58.:24:06.

And that is why African Parks, the group managing Garamba,

:24:07.:24:09.

But the weapons are old, few hit even a close target.

:24:10.:24:18.

Training Rangers takes a lot of time and money.

:24:19.:24:21.

And the men they are up against are hardened fighters.

:24:22.:24:25.

This really does feel you're fighting a war against poachers.

:24:26.:24:28.

I think the Garamba is today at the forefront of conservation

:24:29.:24:33.

I don't think many other places have so much contact and so many threats

:24:34.:24:42.

This local man was arrested after a tip-off, and ivory recovered.

:24:43.:24:52.

Over time it reaches the market in Asia, it goes for at least 750.

:24:53.:24:58.

Then reports came in of another attack.

:24:59.:25:06.

And there are the carcasses just down there by the river.

:25:07.:25:09.

And the six we have just spotted, a bit further up the river

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from there, it is hard to make out from up here,

:25:15.:25:16.

but you could see that their faces had been cut off.

:25:17.:25:19.

They need hundreds more Rangers to protect Garamba.

:25:20.:25:23.

On the front line of the poaching war, the elephants

:25:24.:25:26.

Alistair Leithead, BBC News, in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

:25:27.:25:38.

Let's update you on the main story. The raid in Brussels is thought to

:25:39.:25:45.

be linked to the Paris attacks which killed 130 people last November. We

:25:46.:25:49.

hear from police that the main operation at the apartment is over.

:25:50.:25:53.

One suspect has been killed but a wider search is underway in the same

:25:54.:25:58.

area possibly involving a second specific location. No further

:25:59.:26:01.

details. Thank you for being with us.

:26:02.:26:10.

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