this is bbc news. the headlines at 7pm. theresa may and jeremy corbyn prepare to face questions with less than a week to polling day. it comes on a day that conservative candidate craig mackinlay, and two party workers are charged over expenses claimed during the 2015 campaign. the conservative party continues to believe that these allegations are unfounded, he's innocent until proven gulity and remains our candidate. shows bad judgment from theresa may, why would you let this candidate go ahead with this cloud hanging over him. the prime minister has been defending her decision not to sign a joint letter of protest with eu leaders after president trump pulls out of the paris climate accord. ireland is on the cusp of electing its first gay premier after the ruling fine gael party elects its new leader leo varadkar. police investigating the manchester
bomb attack find a car they say may be "significant" to their inquiries. new figures show the number of nhs patients waiting six months or more for surgery has increased threefold since 2013. good evening and welcome to bbc news. theresa may, and the labour leader, jeremy corbyn, are gearing up for the nearest thing to a head to head debate for the prime minister in this election campaign. they're both appearing on a leaders' special question time tonight. they'll sppear separately before an audience in york, with presenter david dimbleby. my colleague simon mccoy is there. in 90 minutes' time, the first
question will be put to theresa may. she will go first. she has 45 minutes of questions from the audience. of course with a chair, and then after her, jeremy corbyn. they will go head—to—head, but this could prove one of the toughest debates, use the word advisedly, we are likely to see. unlike the other night, with seven of the party leaders shouting, a lot of heat, not much light. tonight, much more difficult. our chief political correspondent is with me now. difficult because sound bites won't do tonight. the audiences tend to ask questions, and they want proper a nswe i’s. ask questions, and they want proper answers. the other thing is they bring their own personal story or experience. two years ago, david cameron was asked about the cuts they had had to their welfare, to their benefits, talking about how difficult that have made their life.
it is quite hard to respond to that. you have to respond in a very human way. the sound bite is not going to make that person feel assured they have had that question answered. unlike when journalists get up at a press c0 nfe re nce unlike when journalists get up at a press conference and asked the question, based at a microphone away straightaway, you can't have the following question if you aren't happy with what they've said. that's not the case tonight. the audience can geta not the case tonight. the audience can get a second chance, david dimbledimby can step in and say you haven't answered that. it makes it difficult for them to wriggle off the hook. i think that is the difference between this and as you say, a seven way debate where they get a minute each to talk. when this was first announced, tonight's programme, it seems an age ago, the tories were storming in the polls. the assumption was not whether they would win, but by how much. it's a very different feel to night. there's a lot for someone to lose, potentially. yeah, and quite close to the election, that the other thing. when these things happen
three, four weeks out, and it might not be as important. this is the timei not be as important. this is the time i a lot of normal people are starting to engage with the election, those who don't follow it like we do, and the undecided ones may make up their minds. maybe something they see tonight will make them decide in a certain way. that is certainly the case, theresa may at the beginning, and massive buoyancy and momentum behind her campaign, poll suggesting she was ahead. that has changed a bit. talking to labour and tory candidates, they don't believe there is then a huge swing in the other direction. as we have seen, the polls are all over the shop. we shouldn't spend too long wondering what may happen next week. they will just both want to perform strongly. one question they perhaps won't want to answer? i think their leadership, the qualities they would bring as prime minister is the trickiest were both of them. theresa may at the beginning of this campaign, it's all
about her, the bus, the strong and sta ble staff, about her, the bus, the strong and stable staff, all of that. then the ma nifesto stable staff, all of that. then the manifesto u—turn, the suggestion people aren't warming to her quite as much, maybe. her having to say whatever it is she will bring over the next few years is difficult. but also forjeremy corbyn. he is com pletely u ntested, also forjeremy corbyn. he is completely untested, he has won the leadership of the labour party twice, but has been on the backbenches his entire career. he's never been a minister, he has to demonstrate he can be the next prime minister. theresa may has done it for a year, he has different things to prove. we live at eight o'clock here, and again at ten o'clock after the debate. explain the importance of what goes on in here. it's very odd ina of what goes on in here. it's very odd in a way, they bring in, each side brings in their own people, ministers and mps who are coming here, speak to journalists and say what they thought whether positive points, but also they will point c as the negatives from the other side. people like borisjohnson,
people will come here and talk to journalists, do interviews, trying to shape the response, trying to persuade us and otherjournalists of what we have alljust persuade us and otherjournalists of what we have all just witnessed. it's an odd time, but quite interesting to see what they point up interesting to see what they point up as the other person's weakness. that tells you what they are trying to emphasise on the other side. there is another leaders' special question time on sunday with tim farron and nicola sturgeon. just explain the importance of tonight. although they aren't debating together, they are in front of the same audience. we will gauge a lot from the reactions. that's true. that is the thing. these of a kind of things that do sometimes get people to commit gaffes, or however you want to put it. that's what they'll be trying to avoid, of course. these things have become such high stakes that i think that has put off some politicians were doing them. they know that this time just before the election is crucial. they don't want any gaffes, they wa nt to they don't want any gaffes, they want to get through it. above got to
do more they must rise to the occasion and say to people out there, in sixties', you're going to be choosing one of these people as prime minister. —— in six days' time. this one with the main party leaders is the interesting ones. we are an error at eight o'clock, we'll be here looking forward to what happens. —— we are on air. the question time special with david dimbledimby, and ten o'clock immediately after the programme, we'll be live in here. that is when we'll be live in here. that is when we will have a feel for how it has gone forjeremy corbyn and theresa may. don't need this channel, and we will see you later. and i will mind the shopjust in will see you later. and i will mind the shop just in case! thank you very much. what will tomorrow morning's front pages make of tonight's question time leaders special and all the other top stories. we'll tell you tonight at 10.40. in the papers — our guests joining joining me tonight are kevin schofield, editor of politichome and camilla tominey, deputy political editor of the sunday express. earlier today it was announced that the conservative candidate
in south thanet in kent, craig mackinlay, along with two party workers, have been charged for allegedly filing false expenses during the last election campaign two years ago. the conservatives say they believe the allegations are unfounded. our home affairs correspondent daniel sandford reports. in the 2015 general election, the voters of south thanet were deluged by big name conservative campaigners, desperate to keep the seat from nigel farage. their candidate posed with every member of the front bench that he could find. craig mackinlay. .. the tories won — just. but today, craig mackinlay was charged with filing false expenses for the campaign. so was his agent, nathan gray, and senior campaigner marion little, obe, has been charged with aiding and abetting them. this was the moment this morning when nigel farage heard the news. you arejoking?
my good lord. right, that is big news. 0k. thank you. craig mackinlay has just been charged. once again it is bad judgment from theresa may. why on earth would you allow someone to go ahead as a general election candidate with this cloud that was clearly hanging over him? at the heart of the case is the thousands of pounds the conservatives spent on hotels, like the royal harbour in ramsgate. this was paid for by the national party, but a police investigation as to whether they should have been on craig mackinlay‘s individual election costs has now led to these criminal charges. the conservative party continues to believe that these allegations are unfounded. craig mackinlay is innocent until proven guilty and remains our candidate. in a statement, craig mackinlay said... he will continue to campaign to be re—elected, though just being charged does not disqualify you from becoming an mp. his first court
appearance is in july. daniel sandford, bbc news, ramsgate. the prime minister has been accused by her opponents of a ‘pathetic‘ response to donald trump's decision to take america out of the paris climate treaty. mrs may has refused to back strongly—worded responses from france and germany. the prime minister said she was ‘disappointed' by the president's decision, which he said had been dictated by economic factors. jeremy corbyn says the decision is ‘reckless and dangerous'. our deputy political editor john pienaar has more details. putting america first, it's his slogan. but there is outrage at donald trump's decision to pull out of the international treaty signed in paris and tackle climate change. i was elected to represent the citizens of pittsburgh, not paris. the backlash has been strong, not just on his doorstep. it has gone global. world leaders are united against him and it spilled into britain's general election.
theresa may, like many leaders, sees global warming as a threat to future generations. out campaigning today, she explained she told president trump by phone of her disappointment. she has also defended her decision not tojoin european leaders in signing a statement condemning him. i made the uk's position clear to president trump last week at the g7 meeting, as did the other g7 leaders, and i made the uk's position clear to president trump last night. canada and japan have not signed that letter, neither has the uk, but we all have the same view that we remain committed to the paris agreement. that was more than enough cause forjeremy corbyn, also out in york today, to hit out hard. donald trump's decision to pull the united states out of the paris climate change deal is reckless and dangerous. and to depict the prime minister too weak to stand up
to america's leader. she has instead opted for silence and once again subservience to donald trump. it is a dereliction of both her duty to this country and our duty to our planet. what could you do as a british prime minister to materially change what president trump has done? would i meet and host donald trump in downing street? yes. would i talk to him? yes. would i be polite? absolutely. i would even offer him some yorkshire tea! the paris treaty committed nations to work to cut emissions that cause climate change. it was seen by signatories, then including america as a breakthrough. politicians from china to europe are in step and against the us president. world leaders are speaking out strongly. translation: the decision from the us to withdraw from the un climate accord is very regrettable in diplomatic terms. the paris agreement is a cornerstone among the nations of this world.
this agreement is indispensable. after the announcement of the us administration, we have to look towards the future. the us decision can't and won't stop all those of us who feel obliged to protect this planet. here, the spat translated to wrangling between parties on either side of the divide opened by the us president. unlike almost every other western world leader including theresa may, he sticks to what he promises he would do. it is called democracy. donald trump needs to be condemned in the strongest possible terms for this reckless and frankly economically illiterate decision. the set is nearly ready for the two contenders to head a freshly elected government after next thursday to make their case to the country. climate change is obviously a huge issue, though the environment has never been the top priority of most voters at election time. theresa may and jeremy corbyn‘s rival claims to lead britain will be tested here on the set of the bbc‘s question time
leaders' special programme tonight in front of a live audience. theresa may will be hoping that her credit with voters remains strong, after what has been an occasionally faltering campaign. it isjeremy corbyn‘s opportunity to gain ground. a lot of people make up their minds in the final week of a campaign. a point scored or lost here later tonight might, just might, make a difference. john pienaar, bbc news, york. the headlines on bbc news: the audience gathers in york to put questions to the contenders for ten downing st. theresa may and jeremy corbyn in a question time special. the conservative candidate in south thanet craig mackinlay,
has been charged over expenses claimed during the election two years ago. and leo varadkar has been named the new leader of fine gael — the biggest party in ireland's ruling coalition. he'll take over as prime minister in the coming weeks. in dublin, leo varadkar has been named the new leader of fine gael — the biggest party in ireland's ruling coalition. it means he'll become the country's new prime minister, taking overfrom enda kenny as taoiseach in the coming weeks. leo varadkar is the first gay minister in ireland and the son of an indian immigrant. let's talk to our correspondent in dublin. why did the philadelphia party need a new leader? enda kenny stood down after six years in the job. in the election last year, they lost seats and could only form a minority government, after they had been in power for five years in a coalition
government, and ireland had made a strong economic government, and ireland had made a strong economic recovery government, and ireland had made a strong economic recovery from the disaster of a few years ago. that message couldn't quite be sold by fine gael on the doorsteps in that campaign, so the party needed someone campaign, so the party needed someone else to take it forward. enda kenny stood down several weeks ago, and today the party have elected leo varadkar. his supporters say he will be a modern prime minister for a say he will be a modern prime ministerfor a modern say he will be a modern prime minister for a modern ireland. say he will be a modern prime ministerfora modern ireland. he was the first irish cabinet minister to come out as gay. he is 38, which means he is said to be the country's youngest ever leader, and he's also the son of an indian immigrant. his father came here in the 1970s, along his mother, a nurse. they settled in dublin, where fine gael delete —— leo varadkar brock. he travelled 5000 miles to come here, says his father, and he says his victory means father, and he says his victory m ea ns every father, and he says his victory means every proud parent can dream big dreams for his child. what
direction is he likely to take the country in? well, he's socially liberal, no doubt about that. on the abortion issue, which remains contentious in ireland, it has some of the strictest abortion laws in europe. he has suggested he would be in favour of subluxation, perhaps a referendum next year. but he is seen as being on the economically conservative wing of fine gael. it isa conservative wing of fine gael. it is a centre—right party, during the campaign critics attacked him for cracking down on benefits cheats. his main rival in the election, he suggested leo varadkar would bring the party to the right. leo varadkar went on to say that he was talking about people who get up early in the morning, notjust about people who get up early in the morning, not just about entrepreneurs, about carers who get
up entrepreneurs, about carers who get up early to look after parents, for people who are in the public sector. he positions himself as a centrist. he positions himself as a centrist. he would see himself in the same vein as the french president, a young, dynamic centrist leader. that is the direction he says he'll be taking the country in. it's beyond the bounds of possibility there could be a general election here later this year, as the coalition which fine gael lead isjust a minority government currently. there could be another poll later this year. or set could be another poll later this year. orset in could be another poll later this year. or set in the early next year. the fine gael parliamentary party have put their faith the fine gael parliamentary party have put theirfaith in leo varadkar, they think he'll be the best man at the polls and the best man to get them a bigger majority in parliament. thank you very much for the moment. our corporate respondent in dublin. -- the moment. our corporate respondent in dublin. —— our correspondent. police in manchester have sent a bomb disposal unit into a street near the university campus after finding a car they say could prove to be a significant development in the investigation
into the manchester bombing. detectives are still trying to trace the movements of salman abedi before he carried out the attack at manchester arena, killing 22 people. today prince william visited the city to meet some of the injured and the police officers who were first on the scene. our home affairs correspondent june kelly reports. a significant development in this terrorist investigation. it could be, say the police. this afternoon, the bomb squad were back in an area of south manchester which has become a key location for detectives. salman abedi is said to have been here. parked close to these trees is a white nissan micra, left here. today, the car became a focus for police. a cordon and went up, and people, including a lot of students, had to leave their homes. this morning, police came rushing in, evacuating us from the house, telling us there was a bomb scare. it was overwhelming. i have exams in two days. i have left everything in there. it is affecting my studies in a way.
in the last couple of weeks, residents here have grown used to the police tape and offices outside of their doors. detectives are trying to plot salman abedi's last days as he finalised his plan to kill and injure scores of concertgoers. new images of him have been released, as he moved around his home town, often with his blue suitcase, knowing that he was soon going to die. there is still a feeling of fullness in the city as it welcomes high—profile visitors. —— a feeling of rawness. today, the duke of cambridge met a police officer, michael buckley, who was off duty and tended to the injure —— injured while he tried to find his own daughter. william said it was horrendous, and away from the cameras, he made a private visit to see some of the injured. manchester is now preparing for this weekend's benefit concert, where there will be stringent security.
the appeal is firstly to not drive here. use the facilities that we have put on for free. secondly, do not bring a bag. if you can avoid it, do not bring a bag as it will slow procedures down. a massive security challenge for police on sunday and a poignant return for many concertgoers. and a reminder this afternoon of all that has been lost, with the announcement that the inquest on the victims will open one week today. june kelly, bbc news, manchester. leading surgeons say the number of patients waiting more than six months for treatment in england has nearly tripled over the last four years. the royal college of surgeons is warning that growing numbers of patients will have to wait for long periods in pain and discomfort. our health editor, hugh pym reports. john has been waiting since last year for a back operation. hisjob requires a lot of driving and he sometimes has to stay off work.
seven weeks ago, he told us how stressful it was. i go to bed, i'm in pain, i wake up, i'm in pain. but he still hasn't had the operation, and when we caught up with him today, he told us even his consultant was amazed it hadn't happened yet. he said i am now on the urgent list but i was on the urgent list before so i take that with a pinch of salt. the day that i get the notice for my operation, i'll be so happy. but at the moment, i have to wait. the target for waiting times for routine surgery in england is 18 weeks, but recently, nhs england said that would be downgraded because of other urgent health service priorities. the royal college of surgeons argues this will mean increasing numbers of patients enduring long delays. the college, using nhs england data says around 126,000 people had waited more than 26 weeks for nonurgent treatment in march, up 180% on march 2013, a time when waiting time targets were being hit. the biggest increases were for dermatology, ear, nose and throat
and urology patients. the nhs is under mounting pressure. there are increasing numbers of emergency cases to be dealt with. many hospitals are struggling to find enough beds for patients needing nonurgent surgery. nhs england said the number of patients waiting more than a year for treatment had fallen, and spending on routine surgery was going up. but the royal college of surgeons argues more money is needed and none of the political parties had set out clear plans to deal with rising waiting times. now, how's your spelling? you might think it's pretty good but are you as sharp as the top performers in america's spelling bee competition? the contest has tv viewers in america gripped as they battle with obscure combinations of letters.
david eades explains. can you please repeat the word? from 11 entrants, a 12 hourfinal, it all came down to this one word. she knows what it means. that is correct! and with victory, how do you spell dumbstruck? you'd be forgiven for thinking it mattered less to this 12—year—old. more to her father. spelling bee less to this 12—year—old. more to herfather. spelling bee is an institution in the us, and a monopoly for indian americans. this was the 13th time in a row and indian—american took the trophy. so how hard could it be? if you haven't seen how hard could it be? if you haven't seen it, how would you ever guess it? tche.... yes, yes, you got tche. . .. yes, yes, you got that right, too. he was the show man this
year, but copy doesn't always mean correct. and gradually, these bright young orthographic pedants were defeated. and when there was this stumble... the game was up. so the trophy, and the $40,000 first prize goes to this girl. it leaves the rest of us trailing in the wake of junior genius. here is one more for you. spell inadequate. and you might be wondering, i'm sure you know, but let me help you anyway, what their wedding word was again. it's french, a fabric used for crisis —— what the winning word was. now the weather with jay wynne. good evening. a bit of a mixed bag through the day today. a front working its way ever eastwards,
a few showers and thunderstorms, some spells of rain in wales, but some places manage to see some sunshine. here in oxfordshire. heading into the weekend, it looks like there should be some good opportunities for getting out and about. there will be some spells of sunshine, but maybe not for all. there will be some scattered showers dotted around as well. here is the satellite sequence, which shows a big low, this swirl of cloud, the north atlantic pushing this weather front across the uk. fresh air is creeping its way in from the west. thunderstorms and heavy showers should ease away from the south—east of england, but they might just work their way up the eastern coast, and maybe a few showers overnight drifting their way through parts of northern england and the midlands. still quite warm and humid in the south—eastern corner, 15, 16 degrees in london. but a fresher in 11 or 12 further west. into the morning, a few showers lining themselves up towards the bristol channel, but a lot of dry and bright weather in wales and the south—west of england first thing. a bit more cloud further east, and still maybe one or two early showers affecting the north—east of england. they are drifting their way up to the north—east of scotland. much drierfurther west, although a few showers getting going in the northern isles,
western scotland, central and eastern areas rather dry. but it will be quite grey for eastern scotland, with some fairly extensive low cloud and mist. through the day, it will brighten up for the north—east of england. a few showers will crop up in wales and the south—west, but a lot of dry weather here. most of the showers will be in scotland and northern ireland. 17 or 18 degrees here. fresher than it has been in the south—east, down to 21 or 22 degrees. still pleasant enough. three evening, there will be one or two showers dropping their way across england and wales, but a lot of dry weather as well. most of the showers will be across scotland and northern ireland. a lot of dry and bright weather, particularly for central and eastern areas. still a few showers to be had in scotland, northern ireland, the odd one for western parts of england and wales, the top temperature by this stage at roundabout 18 to 20 degrees. early next week, it will turn pretty wet and pretty windy. we have this area of low pressure heading our way, lots of isobars wrapped around that low, so that means it'll be quite windy. we're looking at gales, maybe something a bit stronger than that around the coast and the hills.
and there'll be some fairly extensive rain as well. through the next few days, sunshine and showers will take you through the weekend, then it starts to turn wet and windy on monday. hello and welcome to the election wrap — our guide to all the election news of the day. the conservatives' election expenses scandal returns — craig mackinlay, who beat nigel farage in south thanet last time round, is charged with overspending in his 2015 campaign. she'll be there this time — and so will he. theresa may and jeremy corbyn slug it out tonight in a bbc question time leaders' special. those two might not be going head—to—head tonight, but our guests tonight will — anne mcelvoy from the economist, and political reporter for the guardian, jessica elgot. now, it's gone this way and that in recent elections, but who will take the marginal swing seat of enfield north this time? and talking the talk, and walking the walk — we're on the campaign trail with cbbc‘s hacker t dog — is his bark worse than his bite?
here i am, hacker the dog, at downing street. that's in london, that. but look who's here, cocker — it's my first constituent. yeah, it's larry the cat! and talking the talk, and walking the walk — we're on the campaign trail with cbbc‘s hacker t dog — is his bark worse than his bite? we should have invited him here to join us! let's bring you up to date with the latest developments from the election campaign. police charge the conservative candidate for south thanet,