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Page last updated at 05:59 GMT, Monday, 25 July 2011 06:59 UK
Today: Monday 25th July

The man accused of mass murder in Norway has said he wants to explain his motives in public when he appears in court later today. Asian stock markets have fallen in early trading after US politicians failed again to reach a deal to avoid a debt default. And could anything or anyone have saved Amy Winehouse's life?

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Business news with Adam Shaw, on the possibility of a deal to avert a US debt catastrophe, and the benefits of flexible working for families.

The people of Norway are to observe a minute's silence in honour of the 93 people slaughtered over the weekend. The BBC's Chris Morris speaks to Vegard Geroslaven Slan of Norway's Labour party youth league, one of those who escaped the gunman.

Could anything have been done to stop Anders Behring Breivik from bringing so much terrible suffering to the people of Norway? Ian Stephen, a forensic clinical psychologist, has been reading the 1500 page "manifesto" the killer released before the attack.

The exact cause of Amy Winehouse's death is yet to be announced, but her addiction to drink and drugs was plain for all to see. Nicola Stanbridge reports on the brilliant but troubled singer and the help she was receiving in her last few weeks.

MPs are reviewing the business of doorstep selling, insisting that energy companies should pay compensation to customers who are mis-sold gas and electricity contracts at their home. Conservative MP Tim Yeo, chairman of the Energy Select Committee, suggests why the customer should be treated with more care.

Business news with Adam Shaw.

A new drug could offer real hope for those suffering from the muscle-wasting disease Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Professor Katie Bushby of Newcastle University, who is on the research team at the UCL Institute of Child Health, explains the study.

Sports news with Rob Bonnet.

Up to 12 million people are at risk of starving to death in the Horn of Africa, according to the United Nations. Chief executive of Oxfam Barbara Stocking says "the world should be ashamed" that the crisis in Somalia has been allowed to happen.

Norwegian prime minister Jens Stoltenberg has described the grief of his nation after Friday's massacre, saying it felt like "an eternity - hours, days and nights filled with shock and angst and crying". Children's author Michael Morpurgo, who was recently in Norway, reflects on the twin terror attacks.

Paper review.

Thought for the day with Dr Alan Billings, an Anglican priest.

The singer Amy Winehouse, whose death is so far unexplained, appears to have been driven by drink and drugs, but was also driven by an industry that often demands a lot of potentially vulnerable people. Marc Marot, former managing director of Island Records, and Alan McGee, founder of Creation Records, discuss how record companies deal with artists who get into difficulty.

Mass killers often turn the gun on themselves, but Anders Breivik, the gunman in Norway who killed 93 people on Friday, has said he wants to explain his motives when he appears in a courtroom today. Chris Morris reports from Oslo. Norwegian philosopher Lars Gule, who had online contact with someone he believe to have been Anders Breivik, and Matthew Goodwin, author of New British Fascism, reflect on the horrific attacks.

It is hoped that a collection of apparently ancient books fashioned from metals, known as the "lead codices", could change our understanding of early Christianity. Middle East correspondent Kevin Connolly went to see the collection for himself.

The English apple season begins normally in late August and early September, but this year the Discovery variety is ready for picking already. Adrian Barlow, chief executive of the trade association English Apples and Pears, explains why we are "several weeks ahead of normal".

Sports news with Rob Bonnet.

The Chancellor is blaming bleak economic forecasts on the Royal Wedding, as experts predict that the growth of the UK economy has stalled and will fail to hit the 0.8% target. Jonathan Portes, director of the National Institute of Economic and Social Research, and Erik Britton, director of Fathom Consulting, look ahead to the official figures.

The composer Wagner's Ring cycle are being squashed into a mere 90 minutes at the theatre he built in Bayreuth for what his followers regard as an almost sacred body of work. The BBC's Steve Evans went to meet his great grand-daughter, who agreed to the music being shortened in the hope of interesting a new generation of children.

Business news with Adam Shaw.

Last week during a discussion on the economics of marriage, Reverend David Newton of Gilderstone Baptist Church emailed the Today programme arguing that he could put on a wedding for just £100, and that he was willing to do it for anyone listening. He gives his reasons for the offer.

The Muscular Dystrophy Campaign says trials of a new drug may give "real hope" to those suffering from the cruel disease, which specifically attacks boys. Mrs Claire Bosanquet, who has two sons with the disease, reacts to the news.

Too many pupils are wasting exam time answering questions which are either too hard or too easy for them. Michelle Meadows, head of the centre for education, research and policy for the Assessment and Qualifications Alliance (AQA), explains why personalising online tests at GCSE and A-Level could be the answer.


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