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Page last updated at 06:02 GMT, Tuesday, 17 April 2012 07:02 UK
Today: Tuesday 17th April

Scientists say a controversial gas extraction technique, which caused two earth tremors in Lancashire last year, should resume in the UK. The Home Secretary is expected to confirm that the government will not challenge a ruling that blocks the deportation of the radical Muslim cleric Abu Qatada. And also on the programme, should all children have to learn how to programme their computers?

We are no longer providing clips of every part of the programme but you will be able to listen via the BBC iPlayer .

Business news with Simon Jack on news that Spanish bond yields have tipped over 6%, leaving some analysts saying a bailout is looking increasingly likely.


The oldest surviving book in Europe has been bought by the British Library after a multi-million pound fundraising effort. Dr Claire Breay, lead curator of Medieval and Earlier Manuscripts at the British Library, explains why.

Home Secretary Theresa May is expected to provide a statement to MPs on the case of the radical Muslim cleric, Abu Qatada. Home affairs correspondent Danny Shaw has the details. Read more.

Research suggests a new technique to combat early-stage prostate cancer may have far fewer side effects than standard treatments. Health correspondent Adam Brimelow reports. Read more.

Business news with Simon Jack.

A panel of experts has said a controversial method of gas extraction, which triggered two earth tremors near Blackpool last year, should continue under strict conditions. Simon Moore, environment and energy research fellow at thinktank Policy Exchange, reflects on the decision.

The Australian prime minister has announced that they will start pulling out its troops from Afghanistan this year, with the intention of completing a full withdrawal by the end of 2013. Duncan Kennedy reports from Sydney.

Sports news with Jonathan Legard.


The Formula 1 roadshow moves to Bahrain this week for a Grand Prix on Sunday, but according to Amnesty International, the security forces in the Kingdom are still abusing human rights. Middle East correspondent Rupert Wingfield Hayes reports from Bahrain, while Fahad al-Binali, spokesman for Bahrain's Information Affairs Authority, responds.

The paper review.


US poet and singer Patti Smith helped shape the New York punk scene in the 1970s, making her one of the most influential female musicians. She speaks to the Today programme's Nicola Stanbridge about her new single, punk and the evolution of rock and roll.

Thought for the day with Reverend Professor David Wilkinson, Principal of St John's College, Durham University.


Inspectors say one in eight inmates at Durham Prison have developed a drug problem while in jail. Chief Inspector of Prisons Nick Hardwick outlines the findings of the report, while Greg Carroll, a former prison addict who is now a counsellor, describes his experiences.


Scientists say that fracking did cause earthquakes off the coast of Blackpool and will cause more but that they are small enough that with some precautions there are enough problems to stop the industry in the UK. Dr Brian Baptie, head of seismology at the British Geological Survey, goes through the conclusions. Tony Juniper, former director of Friends Of The Earth and Richard Moorman, CEO of Tamboran Resources - a fracking company with permits to operate in Northern Ireland - debate the the safety of the practise of fracking.


Chris Birch woke up after having a stroke and decided that he was gay. His story features in a BBC 3 documentary. He describes his story while Colin Blakemore, Professor of Neuroscience at the University of Oxford, outlines why this might have happened.

Sports news with Jonathan Legard.


The government has faced a barrage of criticism on its plans to limit the amount of tax relief individuals can claim for charitable donations. But feedback from listeners suggests that there is support for the chancellor's proposals. Polly Toynbee, writer, commentator and Guardian columnist, and John Low, chief executive of Charities Aid Foundation, debate the arguments in favour of the policy.

Business news with Simon Jack.

Anders Breivik, the man accused of the mass murder of 77 people in Norway, is due to read a statement at his trial explaining why he went on the killing spree. The BBC's Steve Rosenberg reports.


In the era of the iPad and other technology, is coding, or programming a computer, something which we can leave to a few specialists? Not so, say those who want to see schools teach computer programming to every child, a message to which the government appears sympathetic. Technology correspondent Rory Cellan-Jones reports.


The memoirs of pollster and Labour party strategist Philip Gould is published this week, describing the last months of his struggle with cancer of the oesophagus. His daughter Georgia Gould describes his experiences while Professor Mike Griffin of the Royal Victoria Infirmary in Newcastle, talks about the campaign to get people diagnosed with the illness earlier.

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