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31/03/2017

Morning news and current affairs. Including Yesterday in Parliament, Sports Desk, Weather and Thought for the Day.

3 hours

Last on

Fri 31 Mar 2017 06:00

Today's running order

0650

Scientists in Hungary are questioning the existence of dark energy, the term that was first used in the 1990s to explain the force that remains in the universe after matter. Dr Karen Masters is an astronomer working at the Institute of cosmology and gravitation at the University of Portsmouth.

0710

Later this morning European Commission President Donald Tusk will release the draft guidelines that will form the basis and set the tone for EU negotiations with the UK. Sven Mikser is the foreign minister of Estonia.

0712

The Times is reporting this morning that the armed forces face a £10 billion shortfall because of escalating costs for new ships and jets. The paper is reporting that in looking for a billion a year in savings they will be cutting back the Royal Marines. Chris Parry is a former NATO commander and a former director general in the Ministry of Defence.

0720

A new national conservation project launches today - Back from the Brink - trying to save some of the UK's most endangered creatures from extinction. Ros Kerslake is chief executive of the Heritage Lottery Fund.

0730

The Head of NHS England says waiting times will be longer for routine operations, such as hip and knee replacements,  as a "trade off" for improvements in A&E performance and better treatment in other areas. Today’s Zoe Conway reports. Niall Dickson is the chief executive of the NHS Confederation.

0740

A family GP who has acted in The Archers for over thirty years can finally be open with his patients about his moonlighting after he retired this week. Dr Graham Blockey has played Robert Snell in the Radio 4 soap for over 30 years.

0750

The focus will be on NATO spending when the defence secretary Michael Fallon meets with his US counterpart Jim Mattis today. Britain and the US are among five of the 28 members of the alliance that meet the 2% target. Michael Fallon is the defence secretary.

0810

Today the head of the NHS in England is to spell out how the service is to complete an ambitious plan, to transform the way it treats millions of patients. Simon Stevens is chief executive of NHS England.

0830

Later this morning European Commission President Donald Tusk will release the draft guidelines that will form the basis and set the tone for EU negotiations with the UK. The BBC’s Chris Morris reports from Malta.

0840

A lawyer for one of President Trump's former aides, Michael Flynn, says he has offered to give testimony about Russian meddling in the US election, reportedly in exchange for protection from prosecution. The BBC’s North America editor Jon Sopel reports.

0845

The US Navy has accused Iran of harassing and threatening its warships as they enter the Gulf and warned that such incidents could result in military confrontation. The BBC’s defence correspondent Jonathan Beale reports from the first US carrier to pass through the Strait of Hormuz since Donald Trump has been President.

0850

Evelyn Waugh’s Decline and Fall has been called one of the “greatest comic novels of all time” and has now, for the first time, been dramatised for TV. The first episode airs tonight on BBC 1. David Suchet plays the headmaster Dr Fagan.

0855

The Government yesterday released a white paper on their so-called “Great Repeal Bill” which will see EU legislation transferred into UK law. However, the bills official title will lack the word “great” as value-laden words are not allowed in titles of legislation. Why was it given the adjective in the first place? Michael Cockrell is a broadcaster and documentary-maker and Polly McKenzie is a former Special Advisor to Nick Clegg.

 

All subject to change.

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