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tv   Russia  BBC News  March 10, 2018 4:30pm-5:01pm GMT

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he was reportedly a 36—year—old former soldier who had been suffering from post—traumatic stress. his hostages were thought to be a clinical worker, a psychiatrist, and an executive director at the centre. an investigation is under way as to how and why this tragedy happened, and how a veteran was driven to kill the people who were trying to help him. tim allman, bbc news. a sad story. let's catch up with the weather. hello, after saturday's occasional rain, more of us tomorrow will see broken cloud and sunshine, a better, brighter picture for much of the uk tomorrow. this is how it looks tonight and we still have rain in scotland edging north. many others will turn drier into tonight, temperatures dropping red skies are clear, more so in southern scotland and northern england, close to
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freezing. a few fog patches in wales, the midlands and east anglia. tomorrow, it is still the northern and western isles in scotland seeing rain at times. much of scotland and northern england will have broken cloud and a fine day. the rest of england and wales will have showers it times, with a freshening south—easterly wind. today we have had quite a big range of temperatures but tomorrow we are closer together. a milder day in scotland, but cooler the further south you are. this is bbc news.
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our latest headlines: specialist military personnel near salisbury are examining a number of ambulances as the investigation continues in to the poisoning of a former russian spy and his daughter. the home secretary, amber rudd, has begun to chair a meeting of the government's cobra committee. no more changes to exams and a reduction in teachers‘ workload. the promise of the education secretary as he attempts to resolve a school recruitment crisis. "a deal with north korea is very much in the making," the words of president trump on twitter as he agrees to a meeting with kimjong—un, but his spokeswoman says the summit won't happen unless washington sees concrete actions by pyongyang. and the nephew of the actress liz hurley is recovering after being repeatedly stabbed in an attack in central london. the cathedral of notre dame in paris attracts around 13 million
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visitors every year and is one of paris's leading landmarks. but for how much longer? parts of the 850—year—old gothic masterpiece are starting to crumble, because of pollution eating away at the stone. hugh schofield reports from paris. because actually the pinnacle has fallen down... outside on the roof above the back of the cathedral, this is the part of notre dame that visitors do not get to see, fallen chunks of stoneware, a flying buttress held together with metal staples. this jewel of gothic architecture is becoming unstable. i think if there is no repairs, the risk is that the stone begins to fall down, and the risk is also that the structure itself of the walls, of the nave
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of the cathedral, for instance, will be in danger. part of the cathedral could fall, and this is a big risk, yes. you get a real sense of the dilapidation of notre dame cathedral when you come here, a private garden just behind the cathedral, off limits to the public, and this section is what they call the cemetery. these pieces are all bits of gothic masonry which are in such bad repair they simply fell off. examples of stones that have been recently damaged... the problem is pollution, combined with cold and rain, together are eating into the limestone — eventually it crumbles away. the only solution is to replace the masonry block by block, but that is a massive job, and the french state can't afford it. that is why the cathedral has launched an international plea for private funds aimed principally at the us. on this very roof, after all, once cavorted the hunchback of disney fame — oh, yes, and the book.
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it is a jewel at the worldwide level, so not begging, but asking for help is the best thing to do, because it is not a french monument, it is not a paris monument, it is a worldwide monument. time, the elements and the petrol engine have exacted a heavy toll on notre dame cathedral. today, the imaginative genius of its medieval craftsmen is being eroded into annihilation. without urgent help, much more will be lost. hugh schofield, bbc news, paris. now on bbc news, russia: rejecting the west. undeeradimir putin, patriotic feeling has surged. to many russians, he is the strongman who stood up to the west. this country once embraced western—style freedoms
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and democracy. now there is increasing talk of russian values and a russian ways. here in the frozen heart of siberia, it feels an extremely long way from europe, in every sense. but politics aside, in some ways, west and east now feel more similar than ever. as vladimir putin stands for a fourth term as president, i have been travelling around the country to see how deep russia's rejection of the west now runs. it stands as silent testimony to a brutal past —
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a time of paranoia and total power. perm—36 is the only part of stalin's gulag that survived. but this was a prison camp right up to the 1980s. it's where soviet russia sent its political opponents. now there is a fight over this history, with those who dig too deep branded enemy agents of the west. viktor shmyrov founded the museum over 20 years ago, recovering the stories of those held prisoner. but perm—36 has now been taken over by the local authorities. viktor‘s organisation was labelled a foreign agent. he says the focus of the museum then started to shift. translation: before there was huge public interest in the history of the gulag.
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nowadays that interest has died and the dominant idea now is that the gulag was necessary, for the country and the economy and for discipline and order. he speaks russian. the physical reminders have been preserved, but staff admit there were moves here that seemed to justify all this, even a plan to add the memoirs of prison guards. translation: russia is trying to build a more powerful state, so perhaps there is a policy being dictated from above that says "we don't need to remember all the bad things, let's just remember the good things." these days russia sees threats to its power in unlikely places. this place here is the only gay club in perm, and we have been invited here tonight to meet the local drag queen ruslan, who is performing.
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every weekend, ruslan is transformed. a factory worker by day, by night he becomes whoever he wants. the painstaking makeover takes several hours. the crowd in this basement club are out and proud, but beyond these walls many conceal their sexuality. ruslan accepts his double life as a russian reality. gay pride has become a slur here — gay rights seen as a concept imposed by the west. translation: if gay people aren't forced to talk about it openly or be out in public, we live fine. russia's borders are open. if you want to hold hands with your boyfriend in the street and kiss and have everyone clap, then go for it — buy a ticket and travel.
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but at perm's only lgbt support group, they are too nervous to even put a sign on the door. under vladimir putin it has become a crime to promote homosexuality to the young, and police have raided this group twice to check out their activity. when we came they were discussing famous gay figures from history. on other days, masha provides counselling and support. we met up again at the flat she and nadia share with their pets. masha doesn't mention her sexuality at work. a child psychologist, she worries she would be accused of gay propaganda. nadia tells me everyone has heard of the new law, and both say it has made the climate here much worse. translation: they found an enemy, and that's it. there are a lot of problems here, but if you can blame the gays for everything there is no
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need to sort anything else out. that has always been the way in russia. in some corners, russia looks increasingly conservative. they chant. like many, igor discovered religion when the atheist soviet union fell apart. deep in the countryside, he and his family live what they call a traditional life. the couple say they are children of perestroika. but along with new freedoms, igor says the 19905 brought a cascade of corrupting influences from the west and he regrets that. translation: unfortunately society is moving away from christian values. this is happening slowly but surely. there is a rejection of traditionalfamily relationships, and fewer people are having children. but for our part, we are resisting this. the local church became a cheese
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factory in soviet times. it is now open for worship again. and igor says the congregation has been growing, partly through bigger families. so they are collecting funds to restore the rest of the building, one small piece in russia's orthodox revival. far away in rostov, we found cossacks riding into battle — or at least a reconstructed one. they are another force now enjoying a revival. the cossacks see themselves as born warriors. defenders of russia's borders for centuries. these days their brand of patriotism is on the rise. this battle of the civil war is now being replayed. the whites, the cossacks,
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taking on the red army. it is part of a historical re—enactment, but it's also about patriotic education here. many on this battlefield are young students at cossack cadet schools. vitaly is their headmaster in real life. here he is playing a key cossack commander in the battle. translation: cossacks want to serve their country and theirland. i think this is important, and to raise our children as defenders. the boys tell me they plan to become officers in the russian army one day. they call loving their country the most important thing. so what do they make of the hostility now between russia and the west? translation: i have never even thought about it. for me what happens in my own country is more important. and what about all the new cold war talk? translation: we don't really have
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any negative thoughts about the west. but when conflicts came to eastern ukraine, other cossacks were among those who joined the fight. for them it was about protecting fellow russian speakers, and land that many here treat as their own. from rostov, the border is just a short drive away. we can't take our camera any further down here, but this is a road that leads directly to eastern ukraine, where officially there is a ceasefire now. but in actual fact the fighting still goes on almost every single day. and it is from here that russia has been supporting and supplying that conflict right from the very start. russians who died fighting in ukraine are remembered here as heroes. the kremlin still denies sending serving soldiers,
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despite the evidence. but the war was a breaking point in relations with the west. i tried asking a passing woman about the conflict. she agreed many locals did go to ukraine. "but i don't want to talk," she said, "especially to the bbc." aleksandr, though, did agree to meet. he went to fight in ukraine himself, and helped send many other volunteers. he insists there was a coup in kiev, backed by the west. views that sound radical are now mainstream here. translation: volunteer fighters felt they had to take part in the war, because if they didn't then their towns would be shelled next. ukraine isjust the beginning. we know how things will progress. we remember iraq and afghanistan. it is the west that wants to divide up our country. it's chilling talk, but the signals
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come from the very top. since vladimir putin was last elected six years ago, russia has been painting the west as an enemy — a force that won the cold war and then rubbed russia's face in it. now moscow is pushing back. and yet all of this is happening when russia looks more western than ever — even here, a long way from the capital. foreign brands and tastes are now part of life, even as politics drive east and west apart. that growing gulf worries some here. mariya is the creative force behind this business, one of a cluster of fashionable new places in rostov. she is full of energy and optimism about her brand, with plans to expand sales to the west. but she is deeply pessimistic about the politics of vladimir
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putin, and how his message is pushed by russia's powerful state—run media. translation: instead of talking about problems we have inside the country, they talk about how we are surrounded by enemies who all want the worst for us. it is really scary because it whips everything up, and then people think you need to push back. otherwise we will be overrun and destroyed. mariya tells me the hostility could be reversed, though, and quickly, if the message changed. in the meantime, this is her oasis — the bar she opened recently across the road. she and her friends don't see the west as an enemy. for them it is somewhere to trade with and travel to. for mariya, it also represents the democratic values she thinks russia has lost. translation: we are europeans,
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we have a european mentality. we are also russians, but in europe. i like to think that russians share european values somewhere inside themselves. today's russia, though, is steering a path away from europe, with no sign it plans to turn back. as russia's relations with the west have entered a deep freeze, the climate at home has changed too. the 19905 brought a burst of new freedoms, a move towards western—style democracy. but slowly, controls have been reimposed. ourjourney to explore that brought us next to siberia, and to tv2 in tomsk. three years ago the channel was forced to stop broadcasting.
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since we filmed, even this cat has been removed. tv2 and all of its media affiliates once occupied this entire building here in tomsk. but since the channel has been taken off air, there isjust a handful of people still working here. so we have come along to see what the newsroom is like these days. this place was viktor‘s life for over 20 years. now his independent tv channel is just a lot of expensive equipment gathering dust. officially, tv2 was closed down over a licence dispute. but viktor doesn't buy that. the channel's reports annoyed officials in tomsk. the team saw that as theirjob. but reining in the free press was one of
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vladimir putin's first moves as president. tv2 was one of the last survivors. translation: it's obvious that we were no threat here in tomsk. but the authorities are constantly afraid, afraid of revolution or losing control. they want to control everything, but that is impossible. and they don't trust anyone. back home, viktor and his wife show me how other media have been tamed. when there were protests against closing tv2, viktoria says state—run channels ignored them. "that tells you how free they are," she tells me. "if there is an order not to show something, then they don't." most disturbing for this couple is how quickly the new reality has been accepted. here in the frozen heart of siberia, it feels an extremely
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long way from europe, in every sense. but in fact politically speaking, tomsk was a relatively liberal city in russian terms for many years. but all of that's been changing. on the streets, though, no—one seems too bothered by that. translation: tv2 has a right to exist, of course, but i am a supporter of putin. i will vote for him. translation: i am for putin. everyone is perfectly happy with putin. why do we need anyone else? there is no wars. he managed to agree with everyone. he does everything right. i like it all. for those opposed to president putin, life can be tough. last year, xenia's car was smeared in paint, and all the tyres slashed.
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caught on cctv, hooded men then entered her building in the dead of night, and sealed up herflat. taking me back to the scene, xenia is sure she was targeted as an activist for alexei navalny. mr putin's greatest critic has since been barred from running for president. but xenia thinks the attack here was a warning. translation: it was clearly to frighten us and to put other supporters off, so that others think twice before going to a rally for navalny, if this is how it can end. undeterred, xenia still runs navalny‘s office here in tomsk. she was eight when vladimir putin came to power. now 26, she thinks it is well past time for a change. so her team are helping train monitors for the election. xenia calls it a fake vote in any
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case, and as president putin's last term brought war and sanctions, she is worried what the next might hold. translation: i want russia to continue as part of western civilisation, and not closed off behind a wall. yes, we want to be seen as equals. we want to protect our interests, but we don't want to be seen as north korea. we don't want to be isolated. that seems to be the direction the country is heading in, though. we travelled north to st petersburg to investigate claims that russia's information war is now targeting the west, too. from here, the kremlin has been accused of using the internet to manipulate opinion at home and abroad. and this building has become notorious as russia's
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troll factory. it's mostly empty now — the sign says it is up for rent. but an criminal indictment in the united states claims staff here operated as an online army deployed to sow discord and influence voters, far away in america. ljudmila shows me the blog of a fake character she helped create. she leaked information from inside the troll factory that exposed how it worked. her own focus was on russian content, but she tells me the trolls operated in shifts, ordered to produce up to 80 posts on social media, every single day. translation: it was a huge machine. i would say thousands of posts appearing on every news story, right before my eyes. if a troll spoke about america or ukraine, it had to be negative. if it was putin or russia's military, it was positive. bloggers got written
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instructions of what to present and the conclusions that people should draw. ljudmila thinks that very few trolls are driven by patriotism. she tells me it is about the money, and if a new boss instructed them to criticise putin, they would. and it seems the trolls are still operating. we have been told that the troll factory has moved here to this premises. i am coming to see if any of these people in the smoking shelter opposite actually work there, and what they can tell me. the man tells me he has seen here and he doesn't like what they do. inside, i managed to speak to the director of one firm named in the us indictment, but he would not comment on camera on its work. 2000 kilometres away, perm has weathered all the twists and turns since the ussr fell apart. this former gulag town was also home
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to soviet military factories for decades, and closed to foreigners. then it tried a transformation. perm was to become a capital of culture, notjust for russia but for the world. it all began with investment in public art. this giant structure is a reminder of the cultural revolution here in perm. a hugely ambitious project to open the city up to the world, and to rebrand it through art as a modern and progressive place. but that experiment ended abruptly, and there are now signs that perm,
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like russia, is moving in the opposite direction. the contemporary arts museum has survived, but its founder and the mastermind of perm's modernisation was sacked. the shows he curated were political and deliberately provocative. his replacement says they were dynamic times, when perm felt like a russian new york. now she has to accept limits on what she can do here. translation: the fact that the museum is vulnerable makes us self censor. because the most important thing for us is to maintain our institution. we don't lower the bar and damage our artistic repetition. we just lower the temperature. that is the compromise. in perm, as across this country, the political tide has turned. vladimir putin's vision now is of a russia that's strong and assertive, rejecting the west as hostile and subversive is all part of that. on ourjourney, we found many russians who don't share that view — but no—one who expects change here any time soon. after saturday's occasional rain
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more of us after saturday's occasional rain more of us tomorrow after saturday's occasional rain more of us tomorrow will see broken cloud and sunshine, better, brighter picture for much of the uk tomorrow, here is how it looks going through the ceiling into tonight, we've still got rain and hill snow in scotla nd still got rain and hill snow in scotland edging its way north, many of us will be turning dry into tonight, temperatures dipping away we re tonight, temperatures dipping away were skies clear, southern scotland, northern ireland northern england close to freezing. fog patches wales, midlands and east anglia in tomorrow morning. into tomorrow it's still the northern and western isles and scotland seen rain at times, much of scotland, northern ireland and northern england will have broken cloud, sunny spells and a fine day. the rest of england and wales, some showers from time to time, it could be quite heavy with the freshening south—easterly wind. today we had quite a big range of temperatures, tomorrow were all a
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bit closer together, more mild in scotla nd bit closer together, more mild in scotland and a bit cooler the further south you are. this is bbc news. i'm carrie gracie. the headlines at 5:00. specialist military personnel are moving a number in salisbury, as the investigation continues into the poisoning of a former russian spy and his daughter. home secretary amber rudd is chairing a meeting of the government's cobra committee. sergei and yulia skripal remain in a critical condition in hospital. no more changes to exams, and a reduction in teachers' workload. the education secretary
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promises to make changes, as he attempts to resolve the school recruitment crisis. talks between the eu, japan and us on president trump's tariffs on steel and aluminium have broken up with no exemption agreed. president trump says a deal with north korea is "very much in the making" as he agrees to a meeting with


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