this is bbc news. the headlines at 2pm: the prime minister has insisted that the conservative position on tax hasn't changed. that's after a senior cabinet minister appeared to go further than commitments outlined in the conservative manifesto. well, our position on tax hasn't changed. we've set that out in the manifesto. what people will know when they go to vote on thursday is that it is the conservative party that always has been, is and always will be, a low tax party. meanwhile, the labour leader jeremy corbyn has been campaigning in lincoln, highlighting his plans for social care. —— for public services and a fairer society ‘s. —— for public services and a fairer society 's. we cannot go on underfunding public services and allowing inequality to grow with young people unable to achieve the best they can. ariana grande makes a surprise visit to fans injured in the terror attack at her gig last week ahead of her benefit concert tomorrow evening.
at least ten people have been reported killed following explosions at a funeral in the afghan capital kabul. hope for ovarian cancer patients as a new drug shows promising results, shrinking tumours. and coming up, a look at istanbul — 3,000 years of history in a city straddling two continents — that's in the travel show at 10:30. —— at 2:30pm. good afternoon and welcome to bbc news. theresa may has insisted that conservative party policy on income tax has not changed. one of her senior cabinet colleagues had suggested that the tax would not go up even for higher earners.
the tory manifesto does not include a promise on income tax, but in a newspaper interview the defence secretary, sir michael fallon, said the only way people could be sure of not paying more tax was to vote conservative. 0ur political correspondent leila nathoo reports. the last push to win over undecided voters and shore up support among the tory base. theresa may forced to clarify the conservative's tax policy this morning after senior cabinet members suggested income tax rises would be off the table. 0ur position on tax hasn't changed. we've set that out in the manifesto. what people will know when they go to vote on thursday is that it is the conservative party that always has been, is and always will be, a low tax party and it is our firm intention to reduce taxes for ordinary working families. her manifesto only ruled out increasing vat, claiming the conservatives' intention
was to reduce taxes for working families, but with no firm promise on income tax, the defence secretary used a newspaper interview to signal high earners would not pay more. and his cabinet colleague gave a similar reassurance last night. you can confirm then what michael fallon told the telegraph — there will be no increase in income tax under this conservative parliament if you win, is that correct? we are a party that has already taken four million of the lowest paid out of tax. no increase in income tax, is that what you are going to pledge now with only one week to go? we will bear down on taxation and we have absolutely no plans to raise income tax. how you doing, you all right? fine now i've met you! jeremy corbyn says only those at the top will pay more tax under labour, but low and middle income earners will be protected. what we're saying is that 95% of people paying no more income tax under any of our plans, 5% will pay more and big companies will pay more.
after the conservatives' wobble in the polls, calming nerves about tax rises is a reliable way to rally core supporters. theresa may and her opponents have just five days left to make sure their messages get through. leila nathoo, bbc news. the liberal democrat candidate simon hughes has unveiled a poster attacking the conservatives' social care plans. simon hughes unveiled the image in westminster. the poster features a picture of theresa may with the caption "#dementiatax. don't bet your house on it." the former ukip leader nigel farage has been on the campaign trail in essex ahead of a visit to thanet, where he lost two years ago. mr farage spent the morning touring the thurrock constituency with ukip candidate tim aker. his trip comes a day after it emerged the conservative candidate for south thanet, craig mackinlay, has been charged with allegedly
overspending in the 2015 general election campaign. mr mackinlay denies any wrongdoing. an 18—year—old man has died after being shot in liverpool. merseyside police say armed officers and the ambulance service were called after the injured teenager was found on or near lodge lane in the toxteth area last night. he was later pronounced deadin last night. he was later pronounced dead in hospital. it follows two gun attacks in merseyside earlier this week. police investigating the manchester suicide bombing have made a 17th arrest. a 24—year—old man was detained in the rusholme area of the city. 11 men are currently in custody. ariana grande, the singer whose concert was targeted by the bomb, has visited some of her injured fans. anisa kadri reports. ariana grande turned
up just as these fans, injured in last month's bomb attack, were getting ready for bed. the star's surprise visit to the royal manchester children's hospital left eight—year—old lily harrison feeling like a rock star, according to her dad. our room is at the end of the ward corridor, and she was working her way up. we were the last to be seen. i think i was as nervous as lily. her hands were shaking. she said she might need to go to the toilet, she didn't know what to do and she was really nervous. and then she came skipping onto our ward. she was brilliant. preparations are under way for tomorrow's concert for those who died at ariana grande's gig. she will perform at the old trafford cricket ground alongside other big names including take that, katy perry and justin bieber. and those at her gig were offered free tickets. lily expressed a wish to go. we didn't force it. we said if you want to go, we will make sure you get tickets.
but if we get to the venue or we are on the way there and you don't want to go, we are more than happy to bring you home. it's what she wants. last night, an emotional robbie williams dedicated his classic song angels to the victims. saint ann's square has become the focal point of tributes in the city. manchester city council said this could be the last weekend the flowers remain here. it says it will consider setting up a permanent memorial. the police investigation continues as they try to trace the bomber salman abedi's movements. they have arrested another man on suspicion of violating anti—terror laws. the victims were offered this moment of comfort by superstar ariana grande. it has been shared by more than 100 million of her followers on instagram.
we will return to our general election coverage. let's talk to our correspondent danjohnson, who's with jeremy corbyn in lincoln. he is on the campaign trail. what have we heard so far and what do we expect to hear at the rally? they are very busy behind you. yes, lots of people gathering in this town, hucknall in nottinghamshire, waiting forjeremy corbyn who is due here in the next 20 minutes to address the crowd. he will apparently go for a walk around in the town centre. this is the sort of constituency labour is targeting and needs to win back, the sort of constituency that used to be solid labour territory, a
former nottinghamshire coalfield with lots of former pit village as that would have been staunchly labour in the past but in more recent times, this town has found a new future as a commuter belt for nottingham, and with that has, conservative mp at the last few elections. this seat is tight, jeremy corbyn is targeting it and needs to win it to have success at this election. so far today is message has been focused on social care, message has been focused on social ca re, ca re message has been focused on social care, care for the elderly. he met a group at age uk in lincolnshire to highlight that because he feels that as an area the conservatives have been weak through the selection with that confusion over what their ma nifesto that confusion over what their manifesto pledge was on care for older people, something labour wa nted older people, something labour wanted to keep highlighting. they are promising a national care service for older people and have also promised a 3—way lock on pensions to ensure increases for pensioners. we are not sure if that is the messagejeremy corbyn will bring here or if he will talk about other issues. there is that discussion about the conservatives tax policy making headlines today. we will have to see of labour seek
to capitalise on that. they seem to be positive, the team around corbyn, they think he came through last night's question time special well. there were times he was under pressure, about trident and the ira, where he appeared under pressure, but they think he performed well and has momentum going into this final weekend of campaigning. thank you very much. we will definitely speak to you later. an early and small—scale trial of a new drug to combat ovarian cancer has shown promising results, according to researchers. the drug shrank tumours in almost half of the 15 women in the advanced stages of the disease who took part. here's our health correspondent, sophie hutchinson. marianne heath has advanced ovarian cancer. there are very few drugs to treat this type of cancer and the ones that exist can no longer help her. so she says when she was asked to take part in a trial for a new drug shejumped at the chance. well, i decided to go on the trial because there were no
other way out for me, there were no options presented so it was the trial orjust radiotherapy so i decided to do the trial first. the trial, run by the institute of cancer research and the royal marsden, aims to test the safety of the new drug known as 0nx—0801. it involved just 15 women all with advanced ovarian cancer. the result — tumours shrank significantly in almost half of the women over the course of five weeks. one of the fantastic things about this new drug that's being developed here is that it has so few side—effects compared to traditional chemotherapy. and that's because it specifically targets cancer cells, leaving healthy cells unharmed. this drug attacks the tumour, and you see very encouraging tumour responses, but you don't see the common side—effects like hair loss or sore mouth or diarrhoea or
susceptibility to infections as seen with other chemotherapy. but the scientists are urging caution. they say it was a very small study and it's too early to know whether the success could be replicated in a larger group of patients. they now want to plan the next phase of the trial. sophie hutchinson, bbc news. statins, which are usually prescribed to lower cholesterol, could help reduce the risk of dying from breast cancer by 27 per cent, according to a new study. scientists in china who analysed research involving 200,000 women, found patients who took the drug were less likely to see their cancer return. charities have welcomed the news but say more clinical trials are needed. at least ten people have been reported killed following explosions at a funeral in the afghan capital kabul. it follows a huge bomb on wednesday in which 90 people were killed, and violent clashes yesterday.
the bbc‘s secunder kermani is in afghan capital. -- is in —— is in the afghan capital, kabul 's. the blast took place at a cemetery where a young man killed in clashes with police was being buried. he was the son of a prominent local politician who had been taking place in a protest against the deteriorating security situation in afghanistan following that large suicide attack in kabul earlier this week in which 90 people we re earlier this week in which 90 people were killed. the taliban have denied responsibility for both that attack and today's violence. pictures on social media today, though, show a number of dead bodies at the scene. we spoke to health officials who say they received four bodies that hospitals already and six injured people, but they expect that number to rise. the numbers of people
killed in terrorist incidents in afghanistan is increasing. last year saw the highest ever recorded number of civilian casualties. the headlines on bbc news: the prime minister has insisted the conservative position on tax hasn't changed, after a senior cabinet minister appeared to go further than commitments outlined in the conservative manifesto. meanwhile, labour leaderjeremy corbyn has been campaigning in lincolnshire, highlighting his plans for public services and a fairer society. ariana grande has made a surprise visit to fans injured in the terror attack at her gig in manchester last week ahead of her benefit concert tomorrow evening. the consumer group which? is calling on british airways to create an automatic compensation system for passengers who are affected by serious flight—delays and cancellations. it comes a week after a major it failure caused hundreds of the airline's flights to be grounded. here's our business correspondent joe lynam. the images of the week from ba.
passengers waiting for flights, some of which ended up being cancelled. the compensation bill could exceed £100 million for the airline. ba says it will treat customers fairly and refund legitimate expenses, but consumer advocates say that is not enough. in a letter to the chief executive, which? says compensation should be automatic for passengers out of pocket. they should not have to apply directly to airlines for a refund. it says an automated system would save time and money for ba as well as prevent companies from making profit from misery of others. people are entitled to money but they are not given it automatically. passengers are often not realising what they are entitled to. the airlines can easily pay compensation because they know what flight you were on and what you are entitled to and we think that should be the rules.
in other sectors, in energy and water, you are automatically paid compensation if you do not receive servers. you do not receive services. in response, ba said it had put additional resources into its call centres to process claims quickly as possible. one group that is not out of pocket are investors in ba's parent company iag. its shares were up this week despite the woe endured by customers. germline, bbc news. let's get more now on the general election, and with less than a week until the country heads to the ballot box, reality check‘s chris morris has been taking a look at how reliable are the polls. throughout this campaign, opinion polls and analysis have been hitting the front pages. questions have been raised about how reliable the polling numbers are. in the last few days we have had
polls. the conservative lead over labour has been anywhere between 3% and 14% in recent days so have polls lost their mojo? there have been problems in the past, most notably in the general election in 2015 when all the polls said there would be a hung parliament but the conservatives won an outright majority. so what is going on? let's ask a man who really should know. there is a persistent issue that the polling industry has been constantly trying to deal with which is how do we avoid overestimating labour and underestimating the conservatives. that is a problem that arose in 2015 and that the industry has been further trying to avoid. after 2015, the british polling council held an inquiry which determined that polling failed because the sample were not truly representative of the british population. they overestimated the number of young people that would vote. pollsters have now changed their message, including weighting their methods, including weighting
results by educational background, interest in politics and, crucially, the likelihood of people voting. the numbers are really hard to interpret, even for the experts. different polling bodies have different methods. people who are likely to vote in the election or interested are more likely to participate in polls. the problem is that you failed to identify adequately who isn't going to make it to the polls. if you get that wrong and you overestimate the level of turnout amongst the group in our society that is particularly likely to vote for one party rather than another, then your poll can be wrong. at the beginning of the election all the polls pointed towards an overwhelming conservative victory, consistently 20 points ahead of labour. but during the course of the campaign, the gap has narrowed. look at the line on our polling tracker. it shows how things have been moving. in the last few weeks, labour have risen dramatically but are still below the tories.
yougov have used all their data to forecast what will happen in each seat, which has led to the most eye—opening prediction of all, a hung parliament. that is out of step with other forecasts. which will be the most accurate? someone is likely to look smart, others will end up with egg on their faces. a huge police and security operation is being deployed across cardiff, as the city prepares for the champions league final. more than 170,000 football fans are due to visit the welsh capital
this weekend for the match between real madrid and juventus. south wales police say 6000 police officers will be deployed in the city. 0ur correspondent 0lly foster is outside the stadium. it has been described as history. what is the atmosphere like? you wouldn't believe we are five and a half hours from kick—off. you mentioned 170,000 fans. this is why there is such a big police operation, as well as those terrible events in manchester almost a fortnight ago. all those bands but capacity this evening will only be 66000 and each of the teams, juventus, the italian champions, and real madrid the spanish champions, their official allocation is only 18,000 each, but it isjust about being in cardiff, and you mentioned history, real madrid are kings of this european competition. they have already won at 11 times and reigning champions. they haven't won back—to—back champions league title since they went an amazing run at the beginning of the competition in the beginning of the competition in the 1950s, but they have the likes
of ronaldo, karim benzema upfront, we would love to say they had gareth bale from the start, a homecoming for the welsh hero of course, but he has been out of the team for the last six weeks, so it is likely he will be starting on the bench for real madrid. they are the favourites here this evening. i was reading somewhere, i think it wasjuventus fan, saying real, he described them as being formidable opponents, but certainly not unbeatable. who are the favourites, how are the two teams looking? you would edge with real madrid because of all their attacking threats, because of their pedigree in this competition. but juventus have been absolutely fantastic this season, and their success has been based on their defence. we have been very popular with juventus fans because juventus have their very own bbc, barzagli,
bonucci and chiellini, who have shut out allcomers this season. home and away in the quarterfinals they didn't let ina away in the quarterfinals they didn't let in a goal, just the one in the quarterfinals don't —— in the semifinals, so if juventus in the quarterfinals don't —— in the semifinals, so ifjuventus become champions this evening they will have to have those three and whatever defensive line—up they have, working at their best. for sentiment‘s sake, they have 39—year—old goalkeeper in gianluigi buffon who has won everything in the game except this trophy. he is hugely popular in the game. i spoke to him last night at the preconference news ‘— to him last night at the preconference news —— pre—match news conference and said, being polite, you are getting towards that end of your career, and despite winning and being in majorfinals, does that put extra emphasis on new winning this one, your last chance? he says he has a moral imperative not to think like that. he will approach this match as he does with everyone, he says he still feels like a young boy. so many plots, it would be a
brilliant story, who wins this evening here in cardiff, fantastic for the city of course, and remember it could go to penalties. no, not penalties! thank you very much. as 0lly foster said, five hours to go yet. let's return to the election. in northern ireland, next week's vote will make it the fourth time voters have gone to the polls in 13 months. butjust how much does identity shape the vote? 0ur ireland correspondent chris bucklerjoins me now from belfast. background is important for all sorts of people whenever they go to the polls. it informs their politics in many different ways, but it is particularly true in northern ireland, perhaps more so than any other part of the uk, partly because so many are split between being british unionists and irish nationalists, and that trickles down into communities and concerns and culture. to understand politics and how
people vote in northern ireland, you have to understand just how important identity is. that is expressed in a whole range of ways like music, dancing, all kinds of culture. most people here regard themselves as coming from one of two traditions. they see themselves as either british or irish. those roots run very deep. the reality is that traditions like this, they are important both politically and personally. it does indeed, chris. being part of a band allows me to stand up for what i believe in and make sure our heritage and tradition never goes away. and heritage and tradition are important for all communities. most protestants tend to vote for unionist candidates, and catholics for irish nationalists. but that is not always the case. in reality, there are cross community candidates but even that phrase, "cross community," gives you an idea that there are two separate communities according to a lot of people, and that is
expressed in a lot of ways. for example, sport. there are different teams supported by both communities and indeed, also different sports played by protestants and catholics, but at the same time, there is an awful lot that is shared right across what some people see as a divide, paddy. definitely. i believe in the north of ireland that both cultures should be respected equally. no one is greater than the other. i do believe as well that the nhs and education, especially the recent cuts should be looked at in more detail. that is a political theme in common between the two. beyond that, looking at culture, you can see all things in common, between ulster scots dancers and irish dancers, between flute bands and irish traditional musicians. society has a lot that it shares. but sometimes it can be difficult for politicians to see across what is seen as a traditional divide. the peace process, political
progress, has changed northern ireland and there is a lot of signs of this in belfast since the good friday agreement, but you are the political correspondent and know very well there is still a big divide between unionists and republicans, and actually vote like this is a battle for who comes out on top. it is. a striking thing over the last few months in northern ireland since devolved government has fallen is a tribal aspect of politics has come to the fore. even in the last five or ten years with stormont being there there was some debate about health and education but these bread—and—butter issues, politicians had responsibilities to people, it may not have been predominant in people's minds when they went to the polling booth but it was, there was a debate about that. this campaign is about getting out the vote on the unionist and
nationalist sides. talk of border poll, constitutional change, brexit, is going back to what we had 15 or 20 years ago. let's pick up the point of brexit. some argue it could have a bigger impact here than any pa rt have a bigger impact here than any part of the uk, which is practical but also comes to the idea that potentially you could have a referendum on united ireland at some stage. it has to be said that as far—off at this stage, the government have ruled it out, the secretary of state said there was no prospect of that and we were not close to the conditions. sinn fein are pushing it hard, though. and brexit has reinvigorated nationalism and givena brexit has reinvigorated nationalism and given a sense there is something to fight for. over the last ten years the support for a united ireland and polls fell to record lows with unionists at record highs and suddenly unionists in northern ireland and scotland look more precarious in their position. you mentioned there is no devolved government in northern ireland at
the moment. but it's a big issue. stormont is currently sitting there pretty much idle. there will be talks after this election, every election here is divisive and nasty. can the big parties, the dup and sinn fein, get together after so many insults from across that divide? it is becoming more difficult because as this campaign goes on it is becoming more tribal, we had a debate from south belfast, televised on the bbc on thursday night. it was very bitter, not just candidates, their pasts and parents passed is being dragged up in terms of the troubles. having said that both the dup in sinn fein have not given themselves hostages to fortune in terms of going into those talks. sinn fein have a red line and they will not go back into government while arlene foster as minister and the dup say that is not acceptable, but looking at their manifestos there are not too many things they say which are not going to be negotiated at some level in these talks. thanks very much, sam
mcbride, political correspondent of the belfast newsletter. some mention this is one vote, we have only had one vote a few months ago. the big issue then comes to the politicians who have to come up with a deal before the end ofjune. if not, guess what, they will come back to the polls again, or alternatively westminster might have to take over the running of northern ireland at least for a time. we will find out how that goes, chris buck, thank you. a scientist has called for european beavers to be re—introduced across the uk to help prevent floods and tackle soil loss. tests by professor richard brazier from exeter university show beavers have had a beneficial impact on wildlife and water quality. 0ur environment analyst, roger harrabin, has more details. this site is a scientific experiment on reintroducing beavers. in six years, a pair of sharp—toothed beavers has re—engineered this woodland into a wetland. they have felled willow trees to lie horizontally because they like to chew the bark off the vertical sprouts. their stick dams have recreated
the sort of landscape that existed before beavers were hunted to extinction. this is another of the ponds that has been created by beavers, and right here demonstrates just how much they can re—engineer the landscape. so where i am, it looks like there is just grass growing out of the ground — wrong. this is a beaver stick dam, right underneath me. the place has been shaped by rodents‘ teeth. the way that they have manipulated this site has just been dramatic. we have had a range of different species coming in, particularly bats, amphibians, lots of wetland plants, it has just been incredible. in scotland, where beavers have been brought back, some landowners have angrily complained that they have damaged farmland, trees and watercourses. the nfu fear unintended consequences of beaver reintroduction. the scientists working here have said that the beavers have notjust