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This is BBC World News Today with me Kasia Madera.
The Headlines: A damning verdict on the intervention in Libya.
Huge instability and the rise of so-called Islamic State
in North Africa are blamed on the British and
French joint military intervention in the country.
No fighting in Syria, but still no aid being delivered.
We report from the besieged city of Aleppo.
Half the pre-war population of Syria is either refugees outside the
country or displaced within it. Also
coming up: Relief supplies reach five Russian scientists surrounded
by polar bears for nearly two weeks at a remote weather
station in the Arctic. And one billion stars are mapped
in a galactic mission to draw space, giving a huge boost to our knowledge
of what the Milky Way looks like. As reports go, it
couldn't be more damning. It says the British and French joint
military intervention in Libya five It became an 'opportunist policy
of regime change' - and it led to the rise of so-called
Islamic State in North Africa. A committee of British MP's savaged
Former Prime Minister David Cameron over the joint UK-French mission,
which toppled Colonel Libya quickly descended into chaos
and is now a haven for people Today, the country is a chaotic
haven for people traffickers and militants.
A place where militias compete for power.
Where the Islamic State group has a foothold.
Where migrants pour across unprotected borders en route
It is a chaotic picture which, British MPs say, is the result of
David Cameron's decision five years ago to send in warplanes to
support rebels fighting against Colonel Gaddafi.
We were not prepared for the consequences of a
And all the analysis being done here was based
on a frankly limited understanding of what the situation in Libya was.
The aim of the intervention in March 2011 was to
protect people living here in
Benghazi, who were threatened by Gaddafi's forces.
The Foreign Affairs Committee says the case was overstated
As fighting continued over the summer,
the aim of the operation changed from protecting civilians to
The committee said this was an opportunist
That was not under-pinned by a strategy to support
In particular, MPs say more should have
been done to use Tony Blair's contacts to see if a political deal
was possible which could have left Gaddafi in power.
Is it better to allow a dictator who may be
appropriate to the country and to the times in which we are living to
remain in power to ensure stability rather than risk the chaos of an
In September 2011, after the Gaddafi regime
the then-French president visited Libya and told the people they had
Your friends in Britain and in France
will stand with you as you build your democracy and build your
And yet the Foreign Affairs Committee says that
this did not happen and David Cameron was ultimately responsible
for the failure to develop a coherent Libya strategy.
Diplomats and ministers involved in the
decision to intervene said it was backed by MPs and the United
Nations and was responding to a real threat.
It wasn't clear that leaving Gaddafi in place would have
In Iraq we went in with major forces, it did
In Syria we chose not to get involved, that was also
In Libya, we went in in a targeted way in support.
The situation is bad but I wouldn't rule
out that in five years the various parties
will have got together and
The situation on the ground makes such
In Libya, politics still comes second to violence.
Juma El-Gamaty is a member of the Libyan Political Dialogue,
a group that oversaw the UN-backed peace deal which was signed
He previously worked as the official coordinator between the UK
Government and the Libyan National Transitional Council in 2011.
He joins me from our studio in Northampton.
Thank you very much. And absolutely scathing report. Do you agree with
that? I think I agree with one aspect of its, but I disagree with
others. Can I start by saying that as a Libyan I take offence to what
one of your guests said which was maybe it would be better to keep a
dictator for the sake of stability. I think Libyans and Alterman beings
are entitled to dignity, freedom, and the prospect of building a
democratic system where they can enjoy prosperity and development. To
say that dictatorship is better for some people just so that we have
stability for other countries I think is very, very insulting. Are
you saying that Colonel Gaddafi had to go, regardless of whether there
was a post, and exit plan, a pose development plan, Colonel Gaddafi
had to go? I think it is intrinsic and inherent in all human nature
that we will oppose tyranny, we oppose oppression, we will pose
dictatorship, we love freedom and equality and human rights. And
Colonel Gaddafi was against all of these human values which many
countries including Britain enjoy or have enjoyed for hundreds of years
and I think Libyans and other nations in the middle East are
entitled to enjoy these values as well. But going back to the report,
I totally disagree with the assumption that diplomacy with
Colonel Gaddafi would have saved human lives and saved civilians.
Colonel Gaddafi never recognised any form of diplomacy except the
diplomacy of violence and the gun. From the first moment when civilians
started demonstrating peacefully on the streets of Benghazi and Tripoli,
he ordered his security forces to shoot at them at head and chest
level and kill as many as possible. If the international community did
not intervene to protect civilians, we could have had tens and thousands
of people killed. We did have had another massacre are just like what
happened in Bosnia and what happened in Rwanda and then the rest of the
world would have had to live with that for many decades or probably
centuries afterwards. So think it was worth taking the risk to allow
diplomacy with Colonel Gaddafi. This man never understood dormancy. We
all know what happened with the Lockerbie and so many other crimes,
let alone the crimes he committed against his own people in Libya. And
now we have a situation of lawlessness, a chaotic situation. We
have people traffickers and militants. If the situation better?
No, it isn't better. But after any major revelation, which is like an
earthquake, there will always be a transitional period of chaos and
instability and vacuum and this is what I agree with one aspect of the
report and that is the international committee did not have a plan for
the day after and I think they should have stayed with the Libyan
people and engaged with them and helped them to fill the vacuum
straightaway and rebuild the country quickly, especially rebuild the
institutions and especially the institutions to do with security.
Libya under Colonel Gaddafi was totally wiped out of any form of
institutional nation building and that is why we need a lot of help.
Unfortunately, the international community after the revolution just
walked away and left us to our own devices. This is why we are
struggling, but Libya is not a given case. Who can say that in a few
years we will not have stability, peace, and we will start on the road
of nation-building, in Station building and also a democratic
system where we can enjoy high levels of prosperity and
development, just like the decent rest of the world is enjoying at the
moment. We are out of time, but thank you very much for sharing your
thoughts from the Libyan political dialogue with. Thank you.
The United Nations has still not been able to deliver much-needed
humanitarian aid to besieged areas of Syria, in particular
rebel-held eastern Aleppo, despite the continuing truce.
The lull in fighting has revealed the extent of damage
in previously rebel-held areas, such as the Bani Zayid
Our Middle East Editor Jeremy Bowen has just been there.
Now this place is called Bedi Zaid, to the west of Aleppo.
And it has been absolutely pulverised.
I suspect a lot of this must have been
Now rebels, the Army is telling me, held this place until July of this
And then, in what was a huge display of firepower, they were
From the government's point of view, this was an important moment,
because from this area, rebels were able to fire down into
You can only guess what happened to people
who originally lived in these houses.
The remains of the school over there.
I suppose they've swelled the numbers who have lost their
Half the pre-war population of Syria is either refugees
outside the country, or displaced within it.
Now the Middle East is in the process of
It is the result of a century of misrule, disastrous foreign
interventions, stagnation and repression, and this war is part of
all of that. No wonder it is so hard to stop.
The EU is in crisis, but not at risk, as a result of Brexit,
according to the President of the European Commission.
In his State of the Union speech, Jean Claude Juncker,
warned of the dangers of what he called "galloping
populism" in Europe, and condemned attacks
on migrants in the UK, in the wake of the vote
Here's our Europe Editor, Katya Adler.
His annual State of the Union speech is designed to be visionary, full of
But this year the main EU aim is survival.
TRANSLATION: All too often we see splits and
disagreement instead of European union,
leaving the door open for
Mr Juncker said the EU was, to a degree, in a stench of
Think migration, Eurozone wobbles and cross-border terror.
The UK's vote to leave is probably the
But Brexit was given little mention today by Mr
His intended message, we'll be fine without you.
The European Parliament's Brexit negotiator put
Stop the politics of division and choose this opportunity not
to kill Europe as some of you want, but to
When the EU and UK do thrash out their new
relationship, Mr Juncker insisted European principles were not up for
The UK would not get good access to the European single
market, he said, if it imposed entry limits on EU workers.
The two men are famous here for their testy relationship.
If you stick to the dogma of saying that
for tariff-free access, reciprocal tariff-free access
to the single market, we must retain the free
movement of people, then you will inevitably
Jean-Claude Juncker's state of the union speech today
was supposed to mark new, invigorated EU beginnings
Instead it highlighted the EU's biggest headaches.
No start date and a lack of clarity surrounding Brexit
on the one hand, and on the other a real fear inside the EU Parliament
that voters out there across Europe no longer
But perhaps that's also part of a bigger process.
The problem is the loss of trust of ordinary citizens.
Ordinary citizens working hard and playing by the
Look to the election campaign in the United
Brussels bureaucrats, bankers, politicians from
traditional parties, growing numbers distrust what they see as a
EU needs reform to appear more relevant, but there is
little agreement in these corridors as to how.
After last June's vote here in the UK to leave the EU a lot
of attention has been focused on the people that have
migrated to Britain for other parts of Europe.
Poles In The UK is the first book to document the various ways
in which Polish people, and those with Polish heritage,
have contributed to the UK over the last 1,000 years.
The co-author Brin Best joins us now from our studio in Leeds.
Thank you very much for joining us. We've seen how the Polish community
has rallied together, following the death recently. It was an organised
vigil for the death of this man. Of course, your book, you started your
book a long time before this spate of attacks on the Polish community.
What was your thinking about writing about Polish people in the UK? Well,
it is lovely to be with you this evening. Thank you so much ground
fighting me on the programme. It is incredibly devastating, really, and
heartbreaking for so many Polish friends who have witnessed what's
been happening in this country over the last few weeks and months, and
particularly for myself, who really my own friendships and partnerships
with Polish people, they date way back to childhood, when in fact my
first ice cream man in Manchester, when I was eight, was a wonderful,
kind man who actually was a soldier but I did not realise at the time
but he had actually fought alongside people like my grandpa in the Second
World War in order to help as all enjoy the freedoms that we have
today. This is just one of the many reasons why myself and I co-authored
Maria decided to actually try to tell this untold story of the
thousand years of friendship and cooperation in terms of what Polish
people have done for the UK in all sorts of ways. And as a community,
they very much rallied together. Now, we have two Polish police
officers who are helping British police officers within the
community, a community that has been greatly affected. In terms of the
book, of course, this is something that you reflect on, the strength of
the Polish community in this country. Very much so. The book,
which is available at all good book shops, is very much a celebration of
what Polish people have done and are continuing to do in the UK, but also
it is about partnerships. It is about the way in which Polish people
work alongside British people to improve the economy, to promote
different aspects of culture, to share experiences and to share and
celebrate the shared history between the two nations and through the
book, we have a whole range of chapters that deal with different
aspects of this. We talk about the NHS and about teachers. We actually
interview over 50 people who are making all sorts of contributions,
and this idea of a strong Polish community working alongside British
people to create a difference in order to move things forward and
create partnerships, and achieved success in all sorts of areas is
absolutely a key theme in the book. Just expend to us, what is the aim
with this book? I know you hope that a copy will reach every school in
the United Kingdom. Absolutely. We have just launched the book and we
have had an enormous amount of interest all around the world. Our
primary goal is to tell a story that has not really been ever told
before. No one has ever actually written a book about this 4000
period of Polish contributors to the UK, and we'll be working through our
charity, the British colonial foundation, which has published the
book alongside Maria and also Anna Collins, a very important person in
the project, and we are moving forward in order to promote among
schools in this area. -- the British Polonial foundation. And also the
Polish Saturday schools, in order to promote education in this area and
also help children to be their links, perhaps children who have
more tenuous links to Poland, even though they may be
second-generation, and also to inform children of the importance of
the shared history. Sorry to cut you off, that we wish you the best of
luck. We are out of time, but good luck. The book is out now. Thank you
very much for joining us. Now a look at some of
the day's other news. Three of the world's leading human
rights organisations are calling on President Obama to pardon
the American whistle-blower, A former US intelligence analyst,
Mr Snowden lives in exile in Moscow and is wanted in America for leaking
vast amounts of classified President Obama looks set to lift
all economic sanctions with Myanmar following the transfer of power
to a civilian government. The announcement came
as Aung San Suu Kyi - whose party took power
in Myanmar earlier this year - met the president at the White
House. How would you feel if you were stuck
in a remote, frozen Russian weather station, and unable to leave,
because you were surrounded by That's what five Russian
scientists have had to deal with for more than two weeks
in the Russian Arctic. The scientists are all reported
to be well, and have just received relief supplies,
including flares to Well, a BBC team filming
a wildlife documentary called experience in Svalbard in Norway -
here's what happened to them: A bear breaking in is worse
than teenagers at a house party. The difference between a polar bear
and a house party is Polar bears being described as
teenagers in that clip. Well, in that clip was producer
Sophie Lansfear and she joins Sophie, that wasn't the first time
you saw that particular bear - The first time, I was on a night
watch and I thought I'd let the cameraman get some sleep, so I was
staying up all night, looking out for bears because this pair had been
hanging around the cabin. You would think, being the world's largest
carnivore that you would spot it. And constantly looking out the
window all the time and the reindeer started running and I was looking
around and then suddenly all of a sudden when I was off guard I looked
up to the window and there was this big white face and the polar bear
was looking at me through the window. That must have been
absolutely extraordinary. We know that they are dangerous. They have
killed before. What is your advice to those Russian scientists? What do
you do when they come towards you after your supplies? I would say
that every bear is very different. They all have different
personalities. First of all, got to watch without bear and work out what
their behaviour is because a lot of bears are scared and then the ones
that aren't, usually aren't for a reason and so to work out why that
is, are the injured, are the hungry, what sort of state the Bury Saint.
If it is very thin, then it is a lot more dangerous than desperate and
that is when you tend to get attacked. So if they were happy
bears and well fed then I would say that maybe it was not too much of a
risk to them, but it is not a position I would like to be in with
that many bears surrounding me. Indeed. In terms of these attacks,
are they on the increase? Is there a reason behind that? I think it's
hard to say that they are on the increase, but what is inevitable is
that we are seeing year-on-year a trend of decreasing sea ice which
means they are losing their habitat, so where the Bears would prefer to
be out hunting seals all year round, they now can't, so more hours
stranded on the shore. And that brings them into the communities
that are on short and in direct conflict with them. So I think with
climate change and with the loss of sea ice, it is going to be a problem
in the future. Well, Sophie, thank you very much for sharing your
experiences. She was part of the team filming the hunt. Thank you
very much. Now, it will be one of the most
extraordinary maps ever made. The most accurate guide of the night
sky, charting the whereabouts and brightness of more
than a billion stars in our galaxy. It's being compiled
by the European Space Agency, as our Science Correspondent
Pallab Ghosh explains. Our galaxy, the Milky Way. If you
were flying through it in a spacecraft, this is what you would
actually see. This is a 3-D map of stars created from real data just
released by the European Space Agency. This is the first step
towards a complete revolution in our knowledge of the structure, the
origin, the abolition and what the universe is made of. I am in the
library of the Royal astronomical Society and it is full of books
about where the stars and the galaxy are. Yet, new results from the diet
space telescope will mean that many of them will have to be rewritten.
The me show you why. This is our world, the earth. It is one of eight
planets that make up the solar system. With our star, the sun, at
its centre. But the sun is just one of billions of stars in our galaxy,
called the Milky Way, which looks like this and astronomers think that
we are here on one of the spiral arms. But all of this is based on
guesswork. The observation of just a few hundred stars. Over the past two
years, Diana has been scanning the skies and mapped the position of
more than a billion stars. So very soon, we will have more accurate
pictures of what the Milky Way is really like and where we are. This
may well be completely different to what astronomers currently think.
The telescope has collected so much data that the European Space Agency
has invited schools all across the world to help them. By sifting
through the information and letting them know if they discover anything
interesting. Looks like we have done it. They have discovered a star that
has exploded at the end of its life. We discovered a supernova, using the
data we have been looking at from stars and what we got was a
supernova and what we got was a cloud. You will discover a supernova
everyday. Yes, that is true. It is given because you do not see those
kind of things every day and it feels really proud to say that I
discovered a supernova at the age of 14. Astronomers also hope to
discover completely new objects in our galaxy that are currently book
beyond our imagination. There has been a damning verdict on
the intervention in Libya, huge instability and the rise of the
so-called Islamic State are blamed on the British and French joint
military intervention in the country. We have lots more on our
website so you can get in touch on social media, but that is all.
Hello. Another really warm, really am again