welcome to newsday. the headlines: a new offensive on the syrian city of raqqa. a special report from the front line with us back fighters battling to drive out the so—called islamic state out of their last stronghold. this is as far forward a position... explosion. about as far forward as they have managed to hold. as you can hear, there is sniper fire going on. and thousands attend the funeralfor fire going on. and thousands attend the funeral for the american student jailed by north korea and sent home ina coma jailed by north korea and sent home in a coma before dying just days later. iam later. i am kasia madera in london. coming up i am kasia madera in london. coming up on the programme — know one in the royal family wants to be king up on the programme — know one in the royalfamily wants to be king or queen according to prince harry —— no—one. celebrating the new era of
jazz, visitors head back to the 19205 jazz, visitors head back to the 1920s when music and style defines the era. live from our studios in singapore and london, this is bbc world news. it's newsday. good morning. it is 7am in singapore, midnight in london and 2am in the last stronghold of so—called islamic state, the syrian city of raqqa. is is facing all—out war on severalfronts. city of raqqa. is is facing all—out war on several fronts. across the border in iraqi troops have taken most of the city of mosul but not in time to save the famous mosque. in raqqa us backed fighters at the syrian democratic forces are close to pushing is out. our correspondent gabriel gatehouse is on the
frontline and sent this report. this has been a long and brutal road. we are inside raqqa canal, driving to the centre of the syrian democratic forces, the sdf, a coalition of kurds and arabs. they have only just retake coalition of kurds and arabs. they have onlyjust retake in these streets after fighters had called themselves islamic state. here is is often unseen but all the more dangerous for it. a noise in the sky signals the presence of a drone. what is happening, we havejust driven down these narrow sidestreet and suddenly there is gunfire. everyone is searching in the sky for these is drones. the sdf is advancing on three sides. as they push forward cars emerge flowing white flag. some of these families
have spent years trapped inside a nightmare. there are tens of thousands of people still in raqqa, hostages essentially. is has been killing anyone caught trying to leave. the sdf has made rapid advances towards the centre. they have support from american air strikes and artillery. but now they are within a few hundred metres of the old city. islamic state is hemmed in, almost surrounded, and they are fighting back. sniper. snipers, booby-traps,
suicide bombers. is has weaponised here. they have done this perhaps more successfully than any other group. but these fighters seem immune to terror. this war has been going on for longer than world war two. this is about as far forward a position... gunfire as far forward as they have managed to go but as you can see there is sniper fire going on. welcome to raqqa, the capital of a caliphate under siege. among the kurds, men and women fight alongside one another. even on the front lines there are no distinctions. delilah is 22 years old. she was studying to become a nurse but here she has
found her true calling. returning from the front, fighters described intense all—night battles as islamic state uses its network of tunnels to stage a sneak attacks behind the sdf lines. this is going to bea behind the sdf lines. this is going to be a long, hard fight. if is loses raqqa it will surely mean the end of the caliphate but then what? will the ideology died along with it? probably not. it certainly won't be the end of syria's longwall or the violence it has spawned around the violence it has spawned around the world. —— long war. let's look at some of the other news stories. donald trump says he didn't record his conversations with james comey, former fbi chief. he
co ntroversially comey, former fbi chief. he controversially sacked james comey last month and hinted that their conversations may have been taped. he now says it didn't happen. and the british prime minister theresa may told european leaders in brussels that after brexit no eu citizen who had been in the uk for five years would be asked to leave but only if the eu offers the same dealfor uk but only if the eu offers the same deal for uk citizens but only if the eu offers the same dealfor uk citizens in europe and meanwhile eu leaders have agreed to move closer ahead with defence cooperation and the head of the european council donald tusk called itan european council donald tusk called it an historic step. the leaders agreed to set up a common cooperation, in this historic step, there is deep at integration in defence. —— deeper. the aim is to be ambitious and inclusive, so every eu country is invited to join. tests are being carried out on 600
high—rise buildings in england to see if the exterior is safe from fire. this follows a deadly blaze at a west london tower block in which at least 79 people were killed earlier this month. the philippines, indonesia and malaysia have agreed to share more intelligence in a bid to tackle the financing of militant groupings. foreign and defence ministers of the three nations made the agreement in a bid to prevent so—called islamic state gaining a foothold in asia. now on cricket news and afghanistan has been granted test match status by the international cricket council. this means that the nation willjoin teams like pakistan, india and australia in playing the five—day form of the game. ireland has already been granted test match status by cricket‘s governing body. us officials say they believe north korea has carried out another rocket engine test for the first time since
march. the engines can be used in rockets, putting satellites in orbit. the us fears they are being used to develop an intercontinental ballistic missile. the test a p pa re ntly ballistic missile. the test apparently took place days after the death of the american student otto warmbier who return home in a coma following a year in captivity in north korea. on thursday thousands of family north korea. on thursday thousands offamily and north korea. on thursday thousands of family and friends gathered for his funeral in his hometown of wyoming ohio. our correspondent is there. for many who knew him his casket is the first they have seen of otto warmbier since he went to north korea. he was arrested the early last year, jailed and finally sent home to his parents in a coma. two died just days later. in march 2016 otto warmbier was seen pleading for his freedom in a north korean courtroom. instead he was sentenced
to 15 years hard labour in prison. he had been accused of crimes against the country for allegedly taking a sign at the hotel he was staying out. he decided while travelling in china to take what was supposed to be a quick trip across the border with a tour group. this footage was taken in the days before his arrest playing with local children in the snow. danny craven from staffordshire was in the same toa group from staffordshire was in the same to a group and had shared a room with otto warmbier in north korea. he has left an indelible mark on me. he has left an indelible mark on me. he was such a lovely lad. and for such a lovely young lad who went on the adventure of a lifetime and his life is over. it is hard for me to believe. i find it life is over. it is hard for me to believe. ifind it very life is over. it is hard for me to believe. i find it very surreal and very upsetting. i have spoken to a lot of people who went on the tour and they were absolutely devastated. north korean officials say otto warmbier had been in a coma for more than a year. the americans say there
is no evidence of botulism. look at otto, beautiful otto. he went over a beautiful wonderful boy and you see how he came back. as this funeral ta kes pla ce how he came back. as this funeral takes place there are now fears for three other american national is also being detained in north korea. well, as people from his hometown say there final goodbyes to otto warmbier there are people across this country who are asking how north korea is now going to pay the price for what many see as the murder of an american citizen. papua new guinea will go to the polls in a general election starting this weekend. the country has one of the world's most diverse electorates. 7 million people spread across hundreds of islands who speak more than 800 languages. previous selections have been marred by violence. this time leaders of seven christian churches in papua new
guinea are calling for a peaceful process. i spoke with the correspondent for abc news in port moresby and asked what the factors are behind the violence. there are numerous reasons behind it. it is partly historical and largely cultural. that is because papua new guinea has always had a real reliance on tribalism. lots of isolation between different ethnic groups, even within a small geographic area. that frequently leads to conflict and it has done so historically. and now in a new democratic context, democracy is only 42 years old in png, it leads to election violence when supporters of one candidate or one clan clash with supporters of others. there is a lot of election petitions when people are not happy with the result. often one way people resolve differences in the highlands, a volatile region, is through the use of violence. in fact this tribal fighting has been comparable to
those seen in conflict zones. we know there are a light of other election issues, it is a country in need of infrastructure. the economy has been great either. what have been the issues in this election? hyping the economy is a major issue in this election. papua new guinea had 1a or 15 years, one and a half decades of continuous growth, strong growth in the construction phase of its liquefied natural gas plant. that all fell away when the commodity prices dropped, particularly when the oil price dropped. papua new guinea is a resource export with gold and copper. it is a very vulnerable economy to shocks like that in the world commodity prices. and its revenue has basically collapsed. that means it has had to make cuts to things like health, which has put the government under pressure. it had a fairly ambitious agenda to deliver things like free healthcare and free education. it claims it has delivered those but the evidence on
the ground is pretty thin. schools are still charging fees. hospitals and health clinics are charging fees to see a doctor and nurse. these are all issues for voters. the main issue for voters is services and development. most of the country's population, 85%, live in undeveloped areas and access to government services is limited. every election the same issue comes up and that is, why don't we get services and have some kind of care from the government? every political candidate is promising to deliver those services but in a time of such low revenue, at a time when the government is struggling to pay its bills, it is going to be hard for any newly elected leader to deliver on those promises. now, britain's prince harry suggested no one in the royalfamily wa nts to suggested no one in the royalfamily wants to be king or queen in an interview with an american magazine. he said that the royals were acting for the greater good of the people.
it isa it is a moment seared on the nation's psyche, the funeral of a princess killed in her prime. her 12—year—old son on unforgiving display. 20 years on prince harry is critical of those who put in there. and he has voiced his considerable discomfort in an american magazine, the injuring diana fascination is global. —— enduring. i think he has spent so much time hiding away from himself and his demons, and now he has faced them and toa demons, and now he has faced them and to a large extent conquered them he feels confident to be optimistic, truthful and say how he feels. with
more than three heirs, harry is suggesting that while the windsors are selflessly focused on the greater good, none of them is desperate to be sovereign. this interview will irritate republicans who seek an elected head of state and upset some monarchists who believe in return for a privileged palace life like the one harry enjoys here royals should step up harry enjoys here royals should step up to the mark without a fuss. harry enjoys here royals should step up to the mark without a fusslj don't up to the mark without a fuss.” don't think it is such a good idea to be quite so open. he has done a lot for mental health in bringing out his own true feelings. i think it has got to a point now where enough is enough. harry is desperately seeking the increasingly unattainable, a relatively ordinary life. inspired by his mother's
exa m ples life. inspired by his mother's examples the personal prince insists he is not completely cut off. older worlds like prince phillip who left hospital this morning know all about balancing the private and public. there are a grandson and grandfather who know about service, duty and occasional eyebrow raising public utterances. your watching newsday on the bbc. still to come on the programme: he is a famous dog whisperer in the us. but we find that his thoughts on the current state of play in american politics. also coming up, we're going to take a look at an exhibition to celebrate all that was good about the jazz age. members of the neo—nazi resistance movement stormed the world trade center up with pistols and shotguns.
we wa nt center up with pistols and shotguns. we want to show the world is that we are the rightful claimants of certain parts of this country.” ta ke certain parts of this country.” take pride in the words ich bin ein berliner. he said not a single word in open court. it was left open to his lawyer to explain his guilt in the murder ofjon lennon. the government has now being advised that the great increase in lung cancer is mainly due to smoking tobacco. it was closing point for checkpoint charlie, which has stood on the borderfor allied determination to defend the city. welcome back. i'm sharanjit leyl in
singapore. i'm kasia madera in london. our top stories this hour: a new offensive is under way to take raqqa, the capital of the islamic state caliphate, in syria. thousands attend the funeral for otto warmbier — who was held for 15 months in a north korean prison before being returned to the us in a coma. let's look at some of the front pages. we start with the china daily, which is following xijinping on its fact—finding tour around the country, as his party looks for ways to lift families out of poverty. the philippine starfocuses to lift families out of poverty. the philippine star focuses on the fight against islamic extremists in the country. they have joined against islamic extremists in the country. they havejoined militiamen as they dry that rebels and urge christian and muslim solidarity. and celebrations at royal ascot on the sports page of the gulf news. the
daughter of dubai's rullo seen in this striking hat as she is presented with a trophy after her horse won on ladies day. that brings you up to date. —— dubai's ruler. and here is a story from online. just look at theirs. this is a dance challenge, and this has groups of friends literally dancing up the wall. it started with party—goers in australia posting their moves on social media, and since then, my goodness, many have posted their own versions from france, 11 on, the united states, to namejust a versions from france, 11 on, the united states, to name just a few. don't try this at home! it looks absolutely terrifying. —— france, lebanon. how can donald trump
improve his image? by getting a dog, of course, that is the advice of milan. he has a hit tv show. i spoke to the mexican born dog behaviour is ona trip to the mexican born dog behaviour is on a trip to singapore. he is known the world over as dog whisperer. but many don't know that he came to the us from exeter when he came to the us from exeter when he was just 21. we asked him what it was like to live in america as ruled by donald trump. i think it is an age, we need to be careful in how we choose our words and how is by people. —— mexico. we need more inspiration and motivation from our leaders, who bring the pack together, rather grating separation. a good pack leader make sure that
everybody feels important. you know? the middle class is the middle of the pack. and in the wealthy are going to take the lead positions. but that does not mean that the bottom of the pack can't take the lead at position at a time. i did. i understand the leadership responsibility that a leader has, and the responsibility mistrust. i am running a company. i know what it is. he is running a country. he needs to make sure that we have greater relationships. that is one of the things that i teach my clients. make sure you lead with confidence. not really go. not with envy or selfishness. it is not about you, it is about the pack. a dog in the white house, that is what donald trump needs in the white house? eveready needs a dog. a golden retriever. that will turn his energy down and make if you more... i get that everyone is very successful and
he wants to make sure that his kids goes to good schools... but that will bring some soft energy into the white house. —— everyone needs. ido i do not you have a dog, kasia madera, but i do, and i got some great tips on how to calm him down. i don't, but if i need to come down to music. and i know that a lot of people love jazz. in the 1920s in america is known for that music as well as for its fashion and nightlife. a new exhibition is opening in new york to bring that era to life. we went to have a look. the jazz age is a term that ascot fitzgerald used about the age because jazz was popular. we feel
thatjazzis because jazz was popular. we feel that jazz is both because jazz was popular. we feel thatjazz is both a metaphor and a natural fact. —— f thatjazz is both a metaphor and a naturalfact. —— f scott thatjazz is both a metaphor and a natural fact. —— f scott fitzgerald. women get the right to vote. they drop their corsets. there are new fashions, new ways of life. it is a lot less demure. and part of it has to do with the jazz nightclubs that we re to do with the jazz nightclubs that were being frequented by whites, peter gooley after they got introduced to them by going to paris. we have a few objects in the exhibition that reflectjazz. —— particularly after. we have a bracelet with diamonds and sapphires of jazz players. we bracelet with diamonds and sapphires ofjazz players. we have a wonderful painting by an artist which shows not only woman smoking a cigarette, a woman with a long necklace they can move around while you dance, and
cocktails and glasses of wine, as well as musicians. the empire state building, a giant of steel and stone, dominates the skyline.” think architecture is the most significant american division of the 19205. significant american division of the 1920s. we have a number of pieces that are of skyscraper form. everything from ceramic vases that have a set shape through to a silverplated tea set. we even have a tiffa ny silverplated tea set. we even have a tiffany necklace that has the shape of skyscrapers and diamonds. it is a mixture of different styles and different influences that were so important in this country, where we have immigration as a major source of stylistic impetus. i would like to say it is imported objects, immigration, and american travel, that created a broad panoply of
culture. nothing like the jazz age. you have in watching newsday. coming up, we will be having a special report on the kazakhstan and looking at how the kazakhstan and looking at how the central asian country's relationship with china is really taking off. we have that in a few minutes. and we will leave you with a particular type of protest. these schoolboys in devon, in the south of england, have been forced to resort to some rather extreme measures. there has been a heat wave in the country this week. and they were not allowed to wear shorts at this particular school. they were told that they had to wear long trousers. so what did they do? well, as you do, all of the boys in the school dressed up in the skirts that they borrowed from their female classmates. fantastic stuff. you have been watching newsday.
it is certainly freshened up right across the uk. just a reminder of the heatwave we had on wednesday. the peak was 35 degrees celsius across the south—east. come thursday, a very tender greed drop as these fresh atlantic conditions are setting in. but some spectacular weather as well. this is a picture ofa weather as well. this is a picture of a thunderstorm taken by a weather watcher intent. —— in kent. those atla ntic watcher intent. —— in kent. those atlantic has been rolling in, bringing much cooler conditions. this is the system. this will be responsible for bringing windy weather back into the weekend. s in kent. ranking into parts of northern ireland, is western and south—western scotland. the south and east, it will be a dry into the night. still quite warm for the morning. 1a or 15 celsius. —— in
kent. at this stage in belfast, glasto, maybe edinburgh, not too much rain. some heavier pulse is possible a little further south into the lake district, lancashire maybe, but for most of the central and southern areas, a dry start today. some sunshine poking through and temperatures around 15 or 16 degrees. this here, this band of weather, this cold front or cool front, that brings fresh atlantic conditions end, it is producing southwards in the morning and into the afternoon. so navy cross parts of the midlands and wales, there will be spots of rain, and as it moves south, it is good to brighten up moves south, it is good to brighten up in belfast and glasto. sunshine in the afternoon. a fair bit of cloud in london, 23. it is worth pointing out the wind in northern scotland. —— glasgow. unusualfor this time of year, with showers around, as well. on saturday and
sunday as well, a bit of a mixed day. sunny spells, passing showers, and even those fresh atlantic conditions setting in. many of us will have temperatures up to 20 degrees. londonjust will have temperatures up to 20 degrees. london just scraping will have temperatures up to 20 degrees. londonjust scraping into the low 20s. compared to the rest of europe, it has been hot in paris. cilla to london. balanda is well. in rome, it is still on the hot size. —— similarto. the rome, it is still on the hot size. —— similar to. the next two days, fresh and breezy. rain at times, but also some sunshine from time to time. goodbye.
iam i am kasia madera with bbc world news our top stories: a new offensive to take back raqqa from so—called islamic state is under way. us backed fighters of the syrian democratic forces push into the city, the last remaining stronghold of is, which the group maintain is the centre of the caliphate. thousands attend the funeral of american student otto warmbier, who was held for 15 month ina warmbier, who was held for 15 month in a north korean prison. he was returned to the us in a coma and died days later. this story is trending on bbc .com — prince harry suggested none of his family wants to bea suggested none of his family wants to be a future king or queen. in an interview with american magazine newsweek he said the royals were acting for the greater good of the people. that is all from me, stay with us here on bbc world news. goodbye. now it is time for hardtalk. welcome to hardtalk.