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This is BBC World News. Our top
stories. Moscow summons the UK
stories. Moscow summons the UK
ambassador to confirm it is
expelling 23 British diplomats as
the row over the nerve agent attack
on a double agent continues.
officials investigate allegations
that they mishandled Facebook data
in an effort to support President
Trump's vision campaign put
thousands flee violence in Syria.
Aid agencies say almost a quarter of
a million people have been driven
from loans this week. And the
campaign to clean up Mount Everest
begins. 1200 kilos of waste that
behind by tourists and climbers is
elevated from the world's highest
mountain. -- is airlifted from.
Welcome to World News Today. Russia
has hit back at the UK in the row
over poisoning of a former double
agent. The British ambassador was
called into the Foreign Ministry in
Moscow and given a list of measures
Moscow intends to take in
retaliation for British actions
against Russia which Russia --
London holds responsible for the
He had been expecting the telephone
call and today it came.
Britain's ambassador was summoned
to the Russian Foreign Ministry.
And in the skyscraper
that Josef Stalin built
as a symbol of a superpower,
the ambassador was told how Moscow
would retaliate to UK sanctions.
A note of defiance when he left.
We will always do what is necessary
to defend ourselves,
our allies and our values
against an attack of this sort.
Which is an attack not only
on the United Kingdom
but upon the international
on which all countries,
all countries including Russia,
depend for their
safety and security. Thank you.
The ambassador headed into work,
to tell embassy staff
about the Russian sanctions.
Moscow says they are a response
to British provocation,
Russia has expelled 23
The UK had expelled 23 Russians over
the nerve agent attack in Salisbury.
The authorities here are shutting
down the British Consulate
in St Petersburg and
the British Council
which promotes UK culture abroad
will now be forced to end
all activity in Russia.
Moscow says the language coming out
of London was a factor in deciding
what sanctions to announce.
TRANSLATION: The British
Prime Minister insults
us and threatens us.
Her foreign and defence
secretaries insult us.
They talk to Russia
as if they are drunk in a pub.
So what the UK got from us today
is the result of this loutishness
and their groundless accusations.
Not so, said Theresa May.
Russia's response does not change
the facts of the matter.
The attempted assassination of two
people on British soil,
for which there was no
other than that the Russian
state was culpable.
Relations between Moscow
and London have not been this
fractured since the Cold War.
The expulsion of 23 British
diplomats, that was expected.
That is traditional tit-for-tat.
But the shutting down
of the consulate and the
activities of the British Council,
that feels like a challenge
to the British Government.
And the Russians have said that
if Britain responds
with more measures against Moscow,
then Russia will respond with
more sanctions against the UK.
The danger now is a spiral
Let's get more now on where this
might be going next.
James Sherr, is Associate Fellow
with the Russia and Eurasia
Programme at the international
affairs policy institute,
Chatham House - and he
joins me from Oxford.
Welcome to the programme. Theresa
May and the British government say
that they will look at their next
steps in the coming days.
Realistically, what options do you
think are open to the British
government? I think the key steps
are the ones she has already
What really matters now is
the extent to which we would give
practical thought to steps already
outlined to increase security and
increase the clearest -- these of
mess of our effort, primarily with
regard to domestic security,
including protecting those people
including Russian citizens, who are
lawfully resident here, and other
domains as well, which must include
financial security and the
privileges that dubious Russian
entities have enjoyed so far, in
making use of all the privileges and
services of the City of London and
the openness of the London property
market. The Kremlin is still waiting
to see whether we actually wavered.
This is this serious story, not the
tit-for-tat, and the exchanges that
are taking place publicly.
think the British government have
been hesitant to fully implement
laws on legislation that they
could've done over the last few
Over the past two years
definitely, and this is part of the
problem. For main reasons the
Russians have seen the UK has
relatively weak and three
unintentionally have reinforced this
in a number of ways, not least of
all by failing to vigorously pursue
a whole raft of unexplained and
macabre murders of Russian citizens
in this country. The Home Secretary
now says that all of this is going
to be investigated. Well, good. Will
this also apply to the financial
sector, which is vital for a country
like Russia, whose system, the
system that President Putin has
constructed is based on a merger of
money and power at the very highest
levels, and a lot of this money
comes from very dubious Celsius and
from some extremely dubious
purposes. So we have on the table
some mechanisms on place that can
adjust this and the Prime Minister
has also said, quite rightly, we
would be looking at those to see
whether these measures need to be
stiffened and consolidated.
The Attorney General in the US
state of Massachusetts,
is to begin an investigation,
into claims that information
from millions of Facebook users,
may have been used by a data
company, during the 2016 US
A former employee of
claims that 50 million
profiles were accessed.
The two companies
deny any wrongdoing.
With me now is our business
correspondent, Joe Lynam.
very complicated. Please bear with
me as I try to explain it. This is
about the protection of personal
data. It started with the creation
of an app by the University of
Cambridge. That harvested lots of
data from Facebook users, 70,000, in
fact, but in addition to that, their
friends as well so you can see how
it gets into millions. That very
personal information was then given
to accompany called Cambridge
Analytica, unfortunate that the name
is confusingly similar and they were
ordered to breach that personal
information because it was in breach
of their rules. In the last 24 hours
Facebook said it did not delete that
so they are now suspending them from
Facebook pending an investigation.
In the meantime, it is said that --
a whistle-blower has come forward
and said 50 million profiles were
harvested from this app and used to
target specific messages in relation
to the 2016 US presidential
election, pro-president Trump and
anti-Hillary Clinton messages. So we
have the Attorney General in the
state of Massachusetts saying that
she's going to watch an
investigation. She said the
residents of that state deserve
answers immediately. On the side of
the Atlantic the Information
Commissioner's office has said it is
investigating the circumstances that
Facebook data may have been
illegally acquired and used for
some big legal and political
consequences, potentially. It puts
Facebook in a potentially difficult
position as well, doesn't it?
said they have suspended the
accounts and able not tolerate abuse
of data. They have flatly denied any
huge data breach which this
whistle-blower has alleged. And they
said users knowingly provided all of
that information when they clicked
that box to agree. And that its
systems had not been breached. Also,
the rules are changed from four
years ago. Before then you could, by
taking that box, allow the app to
use your friends friends. Now it is
just you and your data that can be
provided. Cambridge Analytica has
denied that any of the information
garnered from this app was used on
the 2016 US presidential election
and that it only receives and uses
data that has been obtained legally
Some stories the news
The former FBI deputy
director, Andrew McCabe,
has accused the Trump administration
of acting with political malice
after he was fired, just days before
he was due to retire.
An internal review said that
Mr McCabe leaked information
and misled investigators -
claims he has denied.
President Trump called his sacking
"a great day for democracy".
An engineer left a voice mail two
days before a bridge collapsed in
Miami warning that some cracking had
been found in the structure but he
added that there are no concerns.
Officials say that the voice mail
was not picked up until after the
accident on Thursday, in which six
people were killed.
The government of Monaco has warned
the public to be wary
of money-making scams -
by crooks impersonating top figures
from the principality.
Last September, a local newspaper
reported that a person
resembling Prince Albert II,
Monaco's ruler, tried to con
a journalist into contributing
funds towards a ransom.
Syrian civilians at both ends
of the country have been facing
intense fighting over the last few
days, and the UN says
there is likely to be more to come.
A few miles from the capital
Damascus, regime backed forces have
nearly captured the rebel
held Eastern Ghouta,
and it is thought up
to 50,000 people are trying
to escape the area.
And in the north,
as many as 150 thousand people
are fleeing a military operation
by Turkey, aiming to push out
Kurdish forces in the town of Afrin.
Now, civilians are stripping out of
the city, desperate to escape.
As you can see this war
has displaced people. We are hungry
and we have been walking for three
days. Thank God we have arrived
We cannot sleep, we
cannot eat, people are afraid. We
cannot sleep because of planes and
Further south on the
outskirts of Damascus it is Russian
backed government was not fighting
rebels. Eastern Ghouta is Syria's
last rebel stronghold. Thousands are
leaving before it is too late.
Wanted to leave three
months ago but the rebels did not
allow us, they start us.
shelter to the North East of
Damascus is overwhelmed. Mohammed
and his family fled as the Russian
backed forces approached.
People were hungry,
they had been in good health and
then they became thin. The rebels
have a lot of money.
70% of Eastern
Ghouta has been retaken by President
According to the
information we have individual units
have laid down their arms and left
Eastern Ghouta but they are waiting
for the command from the Western
As a Syrian conflict is
into its eighth year, the end cannot
come soon enough for thousands of
ordinary civilians, who have lost so
much already. Stay with us, still to
come, clean clean-up in the clouds.
A new campaign is launched on Mount
Everest to remove some 100 tonnes of
rubbish, human waste and old
equipment left behind on the world's
Moscow summons the UK ambassador
to confirm it's expelling
23 British diplomats,
as the row over the nerve agent
attack on a double agent continues.
US officials investigate allegations
a company mishandled Facebook
users' data in an effort to support
President Trump's election
Pregnant women exposed to a chemical
found in common everyday items may
find their sons' fertility and that
of future generations
has been harmed - that's
according to a study.
Researchers found that male
mice prenatally exposed
to the chemical DEHP,
found in consumer products ranging
from toys to medical devices,
had less testosterone and fewer
sperm than mice that weren't.
Their male offspring also
experienced similar abnormalities.
I'm now joined by the lead
author of the study,
Radwa Barakat, who's in Chicago.
Thank you for joining us here on BBC
World News. Can you explain what
this chemical is and where it is
Thank you for meeting with
me. This chemical is called DEHP. It
is used in ducks like and cosmetic
products. -- in products like. If it
enters our body it disrupts our home
on balance. So there are reason for
such phenomena is considerable, but
we focused on DEHP as one of those
making the deposits. The main study
focused on prenatal exposure to DEHP
in mice, and we found the fertility
affected in the next generation of
the mice sweep round that the next
generation of male mice has
remarkably less testosterone in
their blood. And the most
interesting part was that the male
mice bought this next-generation had
shown also similarly abnormalities
and lower fertility than the normal
mice so it is really important.
Obviously, that might cause concern
for pregnant women. What can they do
to protect themselves and their
We need to support
a policy calling for a reduction of
this chemical. This is so important
for the public to try to reduce its
exposure to this chemical and
We will leave it
there. Thank you very much. Sports
news now, and James Pearce has the
It's been a busy day of sport,
but we're going to start
at Twickenham and a brilliant
victory for Ireland over England
in the Six Nations which gives
them the Grand Slam.
The 24-15 win was the perfect end
to the Irish campaign,
winning their third Grand Slam
on St Patrick's Day.
Catherine Rory Best was one of two
players who remain from the Irish
Grand Slam triumph in 2009. It was a
winning streak that started with
last year for flag win over England.
And it was 70 yesterday week since
their first grand slam in the old
I don't think I could
be much prouder of the group in the
way that they committed themselves.
Some of the work in the 22, in that
eight minutes at the start of the
second half, it was almost to the
pump and they managed to fight their
way through that period. That was
the point, really. At 21-5, if they
suddenly get momentum, there were
times when they had huge momentum,
England, they are a super site.
Deserved grand slam champions. They
are well coached, well led team,
discipline, tough, they stick to
what they know, and real credit to
Wales finish second, just
three points scored in the fall of
the second half, 14-13 between Wales
and France. Italy ended the
tournament with a wooden spoon,
finishing bottom of the group after
losing 29-27 to Scotland. Despite
leaving for much of the match they
conceded a last-minute penalty and
suffered a seven successive defeat
in all competitions. So this is how
the final table looks. Ireland had
already wrapped up the title. They
sit pretty at the top. Confirmation
of Wales in second. If you are in
England supporter, look away now.
They set about Italy in both place.
-- they sit above Italy in fourth
Mohamed Salah scored four goals
as Liverpool thrashed Watford 5-0
to move up to third in the Premier
Salah has now scored an incredible
36 goals this season
in all competitions.
He also set up Roberto Firmino for
Liverpool's other goal at Anfield.
The day's earlier matches all
impacted the lower end of the table.
West Brom remain rooted
to the bottom following
defeat to Bournemouth.
Stoke remain a place above them
after defeat to Everton.
But Palace move out of the bottom
a much-needed win at Huddersfield.
Christian Eriksen scored twice
as Tottenham reached
the semifinals of the FA Cup
for a second successive season.
They beat Swansea 3-0
at the Liberty Stadium.
First-half goals from Eriksen
and Erik Lamela put
Mauricio Pochettino's side a step
closer to what would be
a ninth win in the competition.
Manchester United currently lead
Brighton 1-0 in the day's other FA
Cup tie. That's all the sport. A new
campaign to clean up Mount Everest
has started with 1200 kg of waste
taken to the Nepalese capital,
Kathmandu. The aim is to lift 100
tonnes of waste from the world's
highest mountain and surrounding
region which is visited by more than
100,000 people last year. A private
airline said it would continue to
transport recyclable waste like
bottles and metal throughout the
year. I'm joined by British
mountaineer, who has been to Everest
from multiple exhibitions and has
climbed all of the world's peaks
over 8000 metres, Alan Hinkes. He
joins me from the Lake District in
England. Is it really that littered?
Not really, most climbers take only
photos, and leave only footprints.
But lots of trek actually go. Most
of the climbers who go there are
environmentally aware. But there is
quite a lot of rubbish on the way to
base camp. Not vast amounts but
there is some. The Nepalese Sherpa
is in that area are very
environmentally aware, so they clean
1200 kg is a lot. I don't
drop litter in my local park, I
would not think about doing it in
this incredible mountain range.
Unfortunately, there has not been a
proper disposal system there like we
have in first world countries so
they are getting to grips with it
now. There are lodges on the trek up
to Everest base camp, it is eight
days from the airstrip from where
they are flying this rubbish and on
that eight-day trek, trekkers will
drink bottles of beer and soft
drinks and eat things in wrapping,
and all that rubbish has to be taken
up. And at the moment a lot of it is
just piled up.
Do you find it quite
heartening that the Nepalese and the
Sherpas take this so seriously?
Sherpas are lovely people. All
Nepalese are lovely people. It is a
brilliant place, as nice as the Lake
District, where I am now! It is a
lovely country and I would recommend
anyone to go there, the Nepalese are
lovely people, and Kathmandu is a
fabulous region, worth visiting, it
A slight change of
subject, a Polish climbing
expedition gave up climbing the
mountain, K2, amid difficulty caused
by bad weather. Why is K2 so tough?
It is more difficult than Everest,
it is steeper terrain, worse
weather, more avalanches. It is
known as The Savage Mountain. It is
the only one of the big mountains
that has never been climbed in
winter. It is so remote, in northern
Pakistan on the border with China.
This was one of the strongest ever
expeditions led by a friend of mine.
I have been on expeditions with him
in the past, and if they can't do
it, it does not bode well, we don't
know who's going to be able to do
Thank you for your company, Alan
K. Finally, from Las Vegas to
Australia, more than 250 iconic
landmarks across the globe are
turning a shade of green this
weekend to celebrate St Patrick's
Day. What else? Violin's National
Day is celebrated in more countries
than any other festival. This is
Dublin, hosting the biggest parade.