hello. my name's tom donkin. a warm welcome to bbc news, broadcasting to viewers in north america and around the globe. our top stories: the american and iraqi army say the islamic state group has blown up mosul‘s historic mosque. one general calls it a crime against all iraq. a queen's speech dominated by brexit and missing some key conservative manifesto pledges. re—drawing the saudi line of succession. king salman replaces his nephew with his son as heir to the throne. and fighting to preserve the future of our planet. scientists in bolivia are storing ice from ancient glaciers before it's too late. the iraqi and us military say islamic state militants have blown
up the great al—nuri mosque in mosul and its famous leaning minaret. the mosque is where abu bakr al—baghdadi made his only public appearance as the leader of is, after announcing a new caliphate three years ago. the us military described it as a crime against the people of mosul and of all iraq. it has denied an allegation by the jihadists that an american air strike was to blame. frankie mccamley reports. an image of the past: the grand al—nuri mosque in mosul, which had stood nearly eight centuries with its famous leaning minaret. from above, drone footage shows it's now flattened one of the old city's most famous historical sites, a shadow of its former self. us—led coalition forces claim
so—called islamic state is responsible: however, is claims us aircraft destroyed the mosque. but, no matter who is telling the truth, this is a hugely symbolic moment. the mosque is where back in 2014 isis leader abu bakr al—baghdadi made his only public appearance shortly after declaring a caliphate. it comes as this exclusive footage filmed by the bbc shows coalition troops within metres of the site. a few hours ago i was there in the evening with counterterrorism forces in iraq, which is the closest we've gone today. just 150 metres away from the mosque, and two hours after we left the place, we heard this bad news that is destroyed the
mosque, or blew it up. attacking the city from all directions, iraqi commanders say they are in the final chapter of the offensive, but with thousands still trapped in the city and more sacred sites destroyed, it's clear the battle for parts of mosul is far from over and nothing is safe. craig whiteside teaches national security affairs at the us naval postgraduate school. he was previously a us army colonel in iraq and he researches and writes on the ideology of the islamic state group. he joins us from california. and all you dojoin us. do you agree with the us military? do you think the military blew up —— the militants blew up this mask? without definitive proof, it would be
difficult to determine, especially not being there, but certainly with the video that's portrayed and some of the clips show it was a demolition as opposed to an airstrike. there's that distinction. but certainly, regardless of the fa ct but certainly, regardless of the fact that the video captured the destruction, i would have been surprised if islamic state finished the battle for mosul with that standing because of its propaganda value. the mosque on the surface of it has some significance to islamic state group. why would they blow it 7 state group. why would they blow it up? because of that significance. it denies the ability of the ministrations, which has been pretty desperate the counter propaganda against islamic state, to establish that the battle for mosul is finally
over, although it took much longer than predicted and claimed by both sides, the us included, that the battle is finally over, and they would have symbolically declared it over at the very place where abu bakr accented his role as the, quote, caliph. so if this is the deathknell for the battle for mosul by islamic state group, what happens then? unfortunately i think there's a lot of life left in the group. certainly past history has shown they are resilient and able to bounce back from other defeats. this is certainly a defeat of a very high magnitude and one of the greatest ones is has sustained, but they've also sustains them in places like ramadi. we lost you at the end, but
we will leave it there for now. craig whiteside, thank you for your thoughts. he teaches us affairs and was a colonel in iraq, speaking to us was a colonel in iraq, speaking to us about islamic state group and the battle for masul. let's take a look at some of the other stories making the news. the united states has urged china to put more pressure on north korea over its nuclear and missile programmes. the secretary of state rex tillerson said beijing had a diplomatic responsibility to act if it wanted to ease tension in the region. police in chile have used tear gas and water cannons to disperse a group of students protesting over education reforms. hundreds marched in the capital, santiago, arguing that president bachelet has not done enough to improve the quality and access to higher education. hundreds of mourners, including portugal's president and prime minister, have attended the funeral of a firefighter killed, battling deadly forest fires that swept the country this week. in castanheira de pera, he was laid to rest, one of the worst affected areas.
the fires which broke out in central portugal on saturday have killed 64 people and injured 150 others. buckingham palace says the duke of edinburgh is still in hospital but is in good spirits. prince philip, who's 96, was taken to hospital on tuesday evening, in what the palace described as a precautionary measure. britain's minority government has outlined its policy plans for the next two years. as you might expect, many relate to the challenges surrounding britain's departure from the european union. in the debate which followed the queen's speech on wednesday, the prime minister said the government would try to build a wide consensus as brexit legislation makes its way through both houses of parliament. but the government is likely to face determined opposition on some key areas as our deputy political editor jon pienaar explains. it was a brief visit — very brief,
but long enough for the queen to leave behind a new cause for her country. laws and borders made and managed by britain alone. the setting never seems to change but laws passed and stored here for decades and built to follow the rules of the eu club must go. now a government weakened by the election is reaching out to other parties and across the country before scrapping the law that took britain in an planning a future outside. the law that took britain in an planning a future outsideli the law that took britain in an planning a future outside. i think it will be tough but on the other hand there is a consensus across parties that we are leaving the european union, and they will be discussion about exactly what that means, so discussion about exactly what that means, so what we have to discuss is how we can achieve consensus on the actual rules that engage, and there's a lot of rules to get through. a clutch of eight bills set up through. a clutch of eight bills set up the legal framework for brexit. the repeal bill ends the authority for eu law so parliament can replace
it. the fisheries bill takes back control of the industry and home waters and the agriculture bill does the same for farming. there will be talks with the devolved administrations about who controls what. the international sanctions bill what. the international sanctions b i ll allows what. the international sanctions bill allows britain to oppose all trade sanctions to tacky —— tackle money—laundering and sanctions outside the eu. the nuclear safeguards built insurers britain meets safeguards around nuclear power. and more contentious, a trade bill would establish new trade and customs duties, but trade bills after brexit splits mps and parties, which argues about when to leave the union. it's working pretty dam good just now. why do we want to take it with us? unless it's part of this brexit deal, we must remain within the european single market. that is all nonsense because it's not all
either or. we want a good deal with the european union in the crown is a sta b the european union in the crown is a stab trade deals with the united states and many other trading partners which would massively increased trade, jobs and investment. i know lee is an admitted —— and immigration bill, but how do they go about reconciling the migrant workers some companies say they need and the government target to bring it down to less than 100,000 per year? it's what people voted for in 2016 and politicians are the servants, not the masters of the people. it's not truthful. theresa may knows she can't make it, yet they keep promising it. we have to look after the economy. that's what we have to do. but when the economy goes south, people lose their jobs, economy goes south, people lose theirjobs, and if we need people to help keep our economy growing, we will bring them into the country. brexit negotiations looked tough before the election. now the talks
look tougher still. any final deal could struggle to get approval in parliament. a tough one for the uk could fail altogether. it's a historic moment for britain. as for what lies beyond, just now that anyone's guess. among proposals mentioned in the queens speech that don't require immediate legislation is the government's commitment to review its counter—terrorism strategy. it comes in the wake of recent attacks in london and manchester. there will also be a new commission for countering extremism. but senior police officers are still raising concerns about their budgets and resources, as our security correspondent gordon corera reports. four terrorist attacks in four months have pushed security up the agenda, raising questions about what government can do. after the london bridge attack, just days before the election, the prime minister promised action. but it is time to
say, enough is enough. when it comes to taking on extremism and terrorism, things need to change. but in the queen ‘s speech today, there were no new laws proposed — nothing on deportation or detention without charge. instead, there was a broad commitment to review existing counterterrorism powers, including looking at tougher sentences for terrorism, and creating a new commission to counter extremism of all forms, including online. defining extremism in law has proved a challenge in the past, and the overall approach was welcomed today by the man who reviews terrorism legislation. by and large, looking at the resources and the ability to deploy the powers that the police and security services already has, thatis and security services already has, that is the way forward, as opposed to simply writing a new statute.
police and the security service here at m15 police and the security service here at mis have not so far been pushing for new legislation. there is little sense that broad new powers in themselves would have been enough to detect or disrupt the recent attacks. the real debate, though, may be up around resources in the face of what they say is an unprecedented threat. armed police stood guard at westminster today, spotters on the roof. the demands of protecting the public and investigating attacks has, it said, left the counterterrorism network stretched. the metropolitan police commissioner today said it meant officers had been pulled from other duties. we are shifting resources and people across the met. this has impacted other investigations. we've had to slow down some, and that's just a necessity. the legacy of the last four months and concern over
further attacks will make tackling terrorism and extremism one of the defining issues in the coming parliament, whether or not new laws are on the agenda. stay with us on bbc news. still to come: scientists in bolivia fight to preserve the future of our planet by storing ice from ancient glaciers before it's too late. members of the neo—nazi movement stormed the centre. we have the rightful claimants of this country. i take pride rightful claimants of this country. itake pride in rightful claimants of this country. i take pride in the words. slightly chudleigh, chaplain, he said nota
single word to the plea of murdering john lennon. a great increase in lung cancer is due mainly to smoking tobacco. closing time for check point charlie which were 29 airs has stood on the border as a marker determination to defend the city. this is bbc news. the latest headlines: the american and iraqi army say the islamic state group has blown up mosul‘s historic mosque — one general calls it a crime against all iraq. and the uk government sets out a range of measures in the queen's speech, which it hopes to bring into law over the next two years. brexit is at the top of the agenda. king salman of saudi arabia has changed the kingdom's line of succession, replacing
his nephew with his son as heir to the throne. mohammed bin salman has been making major changes to the country's economic and energy policies. he's also overseen saudi arabia's ongoing war in yemen. our world affairs editor, john simpson, takes a look at the significance of this reshuffle. prince muhamed's promotion was announced on saudi tv this morning. it wasn't a huge surprise. he has been groomed for the position for the last couple of years. in saudi arabia, politics is the royal family, and the young pushy prince mohammed on the left did the polite thing and showed respect to his much older cousin, prince mohammed bin naye, who he is replacing. whom he is replacing. it is presumed now that prince mohammed bin salman will become king at some point. he is trying to liberalise aspects of saudi life,
but critics say he is increasing the repression in the country. last year he approved the execution of a leading shi'ite cleric, which led to demonstrations in shi'ite—dominated iran, and greater tension in saudi arabia between the shi'ites and the majority sunni muslims. prince mohammed is prepared to do things on the spur of the moment. two years ago he launched a war on the saudi rebels in yemen, telling the king it would be over quickly. it is still going on. that has deepened the angry rivalry with iran, which supports the rebels. the fears of open confrontation are growing and prince mohammed has been behind the effort to isolate the gulf state of qatar for being a bit too independent and for getting too close to iran. he is not in a position yet to go to war with iran.
what he will do is just have wars by proxy and also try to enlist either israel or the united states in a potential volatile situation with iraq. situation with iran. prince mohammed has an enthusiastic friend in president trump. by all accounts he sees himself as a younger version of donald trump, a businessman who runs a hugely wealthy countries. of donald trump, a businessman who runs a hugely wealthy country. he is someone who has cultivated the american trump administration intensely and personally with visits. the americans seem to like what he is proposing. for now his biggest problem is the war he started in yemen. it is expensive, it has attracted strong accusations of war crimes and all his weaponry from britain and elsewhere isn't enough to win. his firstjob will be to stop the war. police in the united states have described the stabbing of an officer
at a michigan airport as an "act of terrorism." the attack took place at bishop international airport in flint, michigan on wednesday. an airport officer was stabbed in the neck with a 12—inch knife. he's said to be in a stable condition after undergoing surgery. a canadian man was overpowered and is now being questioned by police. he was cooperative and has talked to us he was cooperative and has talked to us about what his motivations were and suffice to say he has a hatred for the united states and a variety of other things which in part motivated him to come to the airport today to conduct this act of violence. the first funeral for one of those killed in the grenfell tower fire has taken place. mohammad al—ha—jali was a twenty three year old syrian refugee.
in a statement his family said he loved london and loved the people he met in the city. meanwhile, in parliament theresa may apologised for failures by government, in responding to the tragedy. elaine dunkley reports. they came to say farewell. mohammed alhajali was buried in a country where he came to seek refuge. he was a loving and caring person, always showing support and solidarity with his friends and family stuck back in syria. he never forgot to tell us how much he loved us. his very last words to us were how much he missed us. mohammed lived on the 14th floor of grenfell tower with his brother, 0mar.
as fire crews tried to evacuate the building, they became separated. his brother spoke to us days after his death. i called him and said, where are you, and he said i am in the flat. i said, why didn't you come outside, he said, no one brought me outside. he said, why did you leave me? muhamed was studying civil engineering. he had a dream of returning to his country, a dream which ended on that horrific night in grenfell tower. he was living in a war zone. this is terrible. you have the brutality of assad and the terror of isis and he came here seeking safety. he thought he was safe. he ended up in a very tragic event. it will take us a long time to go through this ordeal. as well as funerals, the families will also have to endure inquests.
today the death of five victims explained and recorded, the coroner visibly shaken by the words of this family. he said he couldn't imagine the agony. there was this apology from the prime minister. the support on the ground forfamilies in the initial hours was not good enough. people were left without belongings, without roofs over their heads, without basic information about what they should do and where they could seek help. that was a failure of the state, local and national, to help people when they needed it most. as prime minister i apologise for that failure. for those displaced by the fire there was also a promise that 68 flats purchased in this new development in kensington will be used as social housing. at last, for those who have lost so much, an apology and action. if global warming is happening and the vast majority of scientists say it is, the consequences
could be severe. one problem will be the huge amount of information that may be lost if ancient glaciers melt away. a team of climate experts are trying to preserve ice samples and their latest project is a huge glacier on a mountain near the bolivian capital, la paz. tim allman has more. the bolivian plateau, one of the highest altitudes on earth but even here rising temperatures are having an effect. slowly but surely the fear is this a glacier will melt away. the impact could be devastating in so many ways. translation: we want to be here with the scientists of this back if assent international project which isa assent international project which is a contribution to the future of
humanity and the future of our planet. a planet we have to defend from here, from bolivia, one of the most beautiful places in the world. a team of international scientists with the help of local guides claimed illimani, to remove dozens of blocks of eyes. translation: we wa nt to of blocks of eyes. translation: we want to keep this kind of sample because it is an encyclopaedia of the climate and environment. you are cutting through into the world ‘s history. the surface shows today's information and when you go deeper you can find old samples. 18,000 yea rs old you can find old samples. 18,000 years old can be found here in the andes. the ice will be moved to a storage based in antarctica. samples never really been taken from mont blanc in the alps and future trips to russia and nepal are planned.
evenif to russia and nepal are planned. even if the glaciers cannot be preserved, the information they contain can be. people around the world have been celebrating the longest or shortest day of the year. depending on where you are. stonehenge was a popular site. in the southern hemisphere, people made the most of the slightly cooler winter solstice breaking the ice in antarctica and burying it all ora swim in ice in antarctica and burying it all or a swim in hobart, tasmania, australia. braver than me although with the summer weather in london, you might be tempted! you can stay in touch with me on twitter. from me
and the team, goodbye. hello, there. we saw the peak of the hit wave on wednesday afternoon, with temperatures across southern britain soaring into the low to mid—30s celsius. it was 35 degrees recorded at heathrow, which was the warmest day of the year, so far, but also the warmestjune day since 1976. wales also saw its hottest day with 31 degrees recorded in cardiff. further north, though, it is a little bit cooler, and we see a thundery breakdown developing, particularly across northern england and west scotland as we head into wednesday evening. that he will continue to retreat back into the near continent as cooler and fresher conditions push in off the atlantic, with a fair old breeze. this introduction of cooler air into the heat will spark off further thunderstorms through the overnight period. mainly in the northern half of the uk, tending to ease towards thursday morning. we'll have a lot of mist and murk developing across western coastal areas. it will be a touch fresher, here, but still a warm and muggy start first thing on thursday. it means will be a warm and humid start in the south—east, but we will likely see a line of showers and thunderstorms move through the midlands
and in towards the south—east during the morning period, and then clearing away. and then another ripple of showers and thunderstorms pushing in towards northern england and eastern england in the afternoon. so quite a messy picture. there will be some sunshine in the north and west — much cooler and fresher here. cooler and fresher in the south—east, 25 or 26 degrees. mid—20s instead of mid—30s. you will notice that difference. late on thursday, things will turn more unsettled across scotland and northern ireland, that's because this vigorous area of low pressure arrives. this sets the scene for things becoming more unsettled from friday onwards, with cooler and fresher air pushing in off the atlantic. so we'll have some sunshine in the south and east on friday. further north, a band of rain moving through, and some of it will be quite heavy. the scotland and northern ireland, a breezy and windy day as that low pressure sweeps through. it will feel cooler and fresher, as well, with temperatures in the mid to upper teens celsius, here. we could make 25 degrees in the south east. into saturday, a breezy day, as you can see with these wind arrows. a few showers will develop, mainly across the north and west. top temperatures 20—23 celsius in the south—east,
so still feeling cool and fresher. sunday, winds will come down from the north—westerly direction, so it will be a touch cooler still across scotland. further south—east, we could make 21 or 22 degrees. so the main message is it's turning cool over the next few days. certainly over the weekend, it will feel cooler. it will be breezy with a mixture of sunshine and showers. this is bbc news. the headlines: the iraqi and us military say islamic state militants have blown up the great al—nuri mosque in mosul. one general called it a crime against all iraq. the mosque is where abu bakr al—baghdadi made his only public appearance as the leader of is after proclaiming a new caliphate three years ago. britain's minority government has set out a range of measures in the queen's speech that it hopes to bring into law over the next two years, with brexit at the top of the agenda. the prime minister said
her government could tackle the challenges the country faces, while the opposition said the government was in chaos. king salman of saudi arabia has changed the kingdom's line of succession, replacing his nephew with his son as heir to the throne. mohammed bin salman has been making major changes to the country's and economic and energy policies. he's also overseen saudi arabia's ongoing war in yemen. now on bbc news, it's time for wednesday in parliament.