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tv   Life on the Run  BBC News  January 14, 2017 1:30pm-2:01pm GMT

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eventually that should clear as well as we start to see snow transitioning back into rain. milder in western areas, up to 10 degrees but a lot of cloud and low cloud with mist and hill fog patches around. quitea with mist and hill fog patches around. quite a murky day coming up. that is your weather. this is bbc news. the headlines: downing street warns gps in england that they must keep their surgeries open at times which suit patients, orface having theirfunding cut. towns and villages along england's east coast have escaped significant flooding after a change in wind direction prevented a storm surge. more than 5000 homes were evacuated. the commons brexit committee says theresa may must spell out whether she wants the uk to remain in the single market by the middle of next month, before brexit talks can begin. a girl stolen from a hospital in florida when she was just eight hours old is found 18 years after she disappeared. a woman's been charged with kidnapping. now on bbc news, the story of yulia stepanova, the russian athlete who exposed the state—sponsored doping scandal,
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in life on the run. yulia stepanova, russian champion, world—class athlete turned whistle-blower. her contribution to sport and the fight against doping is beyond comparison. nobody has done more for the anti—doping movement. branded a traitor in her motherland.
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she and her husband exposed cheating in russia on a colossal scale. now they live in secret, fearing for their lives. unlikely to ever return home. yulia stepanova. .. the young family seem completely at home in this average american town. this is yulia stepanova and vitaly stepanov, an elite athlete and an anti—doping officer. their shocking revelations exposed the dirty secrets of russian athletics. three damning reports commissioned by the world anti—doping agency. much of them based on the testimony of this couple. it found that many athletes have taken illegal drugs between 2011 and 2015. for years sports competitions have
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been hijacked by the russians. coaches and athletes have been playing on an uneven field. sports fans and spectators have been deceived. it is time that stops. yes, stops. for russia there was humiliation and a ban on hundreds of athletes from the rio 0lympics. but president vladimir putin remains defiant. he believes his sportsmen and women have been victims of double standards and political interference. i travelled to the us to meet them,
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i can't say exactly where. they have spent the last two years staying under the radar. why did they take such extraordinary risks that force them to lead a life on the run? thousands of miles from home, they may never return to russia. yulia stepanova was brought up on the edge of an industrial estate in western russia. to begin with, she did not have time for running. in fact, she did not have much time for a childhood at all. this couple worked in a tyre factory
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and when they were not on the production line they were busy tending to their allotment to feed the family. but when she was 13, yulia defied herfather in came here. athletics became her escape.
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she began to excel at the hundred metres, winning races all over the region. but then she got a chest infection and spent three months in hospital. getting back on form was going to be a problem. her coach, however, had a solution. testosterone. the banned drug helped her cut a remarkable three seconds
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off her personal best. in the russian sports system there is very little space for personality or individuality. it is like the army. very soon russian coaches start to use performance enhancing drugs. if you want to strive in sport you need to be inside the system. there are very few opportunities to go up in russian sports and not to be inside the system. in many ways, russian athletes are part of the system. once she was on the national team, she was sent to see a sports scientist who knew about doping. then a chance encounter
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changed everything. at a race meeting, she met vitaly stepanov, one person in the system who was not prepared to turn a blind eye. he was an idealistic young officer at russia's anti—doping agency, but he got the inside track on his very first date with yulia. when i met yulia and had
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an honest conversation with her i understood that i was an idiot. we were not there to fix it, we were there to follow the goal of russian sports, which is to win medals. the russian anti—doping agency was part of that. a dirty athlete and a crusader for a clean sport, it was an unlikely combination. but two months later they got married. somehow they stuck together despite frequent rows about yulia's doping. he believes in clean sport and is totally committed to it. he sees corruption and he is told,
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that is how it is and you're not going to change it. he realises that he is probably not, but he faces a choice, do i confront this and try to expose it or do ijust go with the tide? he decided to confront it, to swim against the tide. so vitaly wrote to the russian anti—doping agency about the culture. you cannot make a mistake in the 800 metres, it is fatal. it is the fastest tactical race in the programme. meanwhile his doping wife went from strength to strength. at the world championships in south korea, yulia stepanova competed alongside some of the finest runners in the sport. but her performance aroused suspicions. i thought she would not be a threat at all. i led the whole way in the semifinal
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and just at the end i got taken over by two girls, one of whom was yulia. it is the russian showing better form here... i was very shocked to see her in front of me. meadows may have done enough. we will see how the semifinals pan 0 after the event she looked very guilty. i said to my husband that i thought she was cheating, i think she looks very sorry for me. from that moment on she almost could not look me in the eyes. eventually, the authorities caught up. the international athletics
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federation gave her a two—year suspension. after irregularities were detected in her blood samples. she joined vitaly by writing to the world anti—doping agency, but her ten page confession was ignored. she needed more proof. she began secretly taping officials and fellow athletes on her mobile phone. we cannot play the audio from this footage because of ongoing legal appeals. here, the notorious doctor boasts how his drugs have turbo—charged her performance. after the recording
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was aired on german tv, wada was galvanized into action. the agency said it did not have the legal powers to investigate the allegations before this point. since then they have commissioned the report sent to russian doping. —— three reports. for those security the couple left their homeland and now live in the us, leading a hand to mouth existence. for safety reasons we agreed that we would not film in their place, they are worried about their security. i can tell you that it is in
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a low—cost housing block in a not very nice part of town, it is very basic. training alone is farfrom ideal for an elite athlete. she had hoped to compete under a neutralflag at the rio 0lympics, but the ioc refused because of her doping past. world sporting agencies have been lukewarm in their support. some people would prefer that we did not exist and that we did not share what we know. there are corrupt people in those organisations and their goals are not to promote 0lympic values, their goal is to steal money. the classic sports structure
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and system does not want whistle—blowers coming for word because it brings bad news about sport, and that is contrary to what they want and it ultimately hurts the brand. in russia, the whistle—blower got a cold reception. the kremlin called her ajudas and the press attacked heras a money grabbing traitor. 0nline, some even called for her execution. russian history is full of stories of betrayal. there is a famous one about a schoolboy who informed on his own father to josef stalin's police. some are calling yulia stepanova a modern—day example, the stepanovs said the doping programme was approved at the very top. this is backed up by lab tests,
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forensic reports, and interviews with other insiders. despite denials of state involvement, this official laboratory covered up and destroyed hundreds of samples. it lost its accreditation, and has been out of action for more than a year. this moscow lawyer represents several athletes accused of doping. his clients dismiss the evidence, and call yulia stepanova a cheating hypocrite. she's not a hero, because there's nothing brave in it. i think the main motive for her, as for any other athlete
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who is involved in doping, is a financial motive. but a journalist who has been investigating doping for decades, and exposed the cyclist lance armstrong, believes people have misunderstood and undervalued her, in russia and in the wider world. yulia stepanova did this in return for no motive. some people have said that she's a doper. but those people are showing a lack of empathy for where she has come from and what she has done. if they bothered to look closely at her story, they would have nothing but unqualified admiration for her. nobody has done more for the anti—doping movement. no whistle—blower comes within a million miles. it is an acknowledgement through gritted teeth.
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president putin says his revamped anti—doping programme will be in place early in 2017. the parliament has passed a new law which could send drug—pushing coaches to jail. many doping control officers have been sacked, and other reforms are promised. and yet the pair who forced the nation to confront this deep—rooted corruption are still seen as enemies of the state. we betrayed the russian doping system, and i am completely fine with it. yulia hopes to compete in the world championships in london next summer. i have never been in new york, and i have never eaten the snake. in a country she does not know,
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with a language she does not speak, her life has been turned upside—down. but she has few regrets about the turbulence she has brought to world athletics. she has exposed an ugly truth that had gone unspoken for years. no matter what her detractors say, yulia stepanova will surely be known as one of the greatest whistle—blowers in the history of sport. good afternoon. we have had a lot of snow in recent days, particularly in scotland. your pictures have been flooding in. we have had around 18
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centimetres of snow on the ground in aviemore this morning. showers working to the east at the moment, mainly falling as rain. not quite as cold as it has been through the afternoon. still feels better if you are out and about, despite the sunshine many of us will have. across wales in south—west england, these areas will continue to see the showers feeding in. the showers clear away from eastern england. this evening, the temperatures will drop quickly. some icy stretches will likely develop. temperatures in northern ireland around six celsius this afternoon. scotland has some showers coming in in the far north—west. 0therwise drive. it will be drive for both matches at swansea and leicester, but cold. 0vernight
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tonight, things will turn icy for a while. this band of rain will push through, turning to snow for a time in scotland and across northern and eastern areas of england. several centimetres of snow could build in for a time overnight. that will turn back to rain because of milder air coming in off the atlantic. it will be slow to reach east anglia and south—east england. there is a risk of several centimetres of snow in the morning before that transition back to rain. potentialfor localised disruption. temperatures could get up to 10 celsius in western areas, but staying cold, only two celsius in norwich. in the
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north—west, things will get much milder, with winds coming from the atlantic, bringing cloud and weather systems through, so expect rain. there is more about what the week ahead has installed where you live on the bbc website. —— has in store. this is bbc news, i'm maxine mawhinney. the headlines at two: downing street warns gps in england they must open for longer to meet patient demand or risk losing funding. jeremy corbyn warns the social care system was at serious risk of breakdown and, if labour wins the next election, failing private care homes will be taken into public ownership. i don't keep talking about the national health service because it's in labour's comfort zone. i talk about the nhs because it's in a danger zone at the present time.
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the east coast of england escapes significant flooding after a tidal storm surge passed overnight. a group of mps says theresa may must spell out whether she wants the uk to remain in the single market by the middle of next month before talks can begin. also in the next hour: a girl stolen from hospital when she was just eight hours old is found 18 years after she disappeared.
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