tv BBC News at Six BBC News March 13, 2017 6:00pm-6:31pm GMT
want to stress again, that lasts i want to stress again, that lasts into the weekend. the forecast is a lwa ys into the weekend. the forecast is always available. i believe that it would be wrong for scotland to be taken down a path that it has no control over, regardless of the consequences for our economy, for our society, for our place in the world, for our very sense of who we are as a country. the tunnel vision that the snp has shown today is deeply regrettable. it sets scotland on a course for more uncertainty and division. at westminster, mps are debating the brexit bill now, on starting the process of leaving the eu. we'll be following the result of that debate and the response at westminster, and in scotland to the first minister's announcement. also tonight, as famine looms for 20 million people across africa and the middle east, we report from somalia. rail services on some of the busiest lines in england are disrupted
by a 24—hour strike. and passing the baton — the queen starts the relay which will end at the commonwealth games next year. and coming up in the sport on bbc news we look ahead to the last of the fa cup quarterfinals. good evening and welcome to the bbc news at six. nicola sturgeon has announced plans for a second referendum on scottish independence. it's two and half years since the last one, in which scots voted 55 to 45% to remain in the united kingdom. scotland's first minister says she wants the referendum to take place between autumn of next year
and the spring of 2019, to offer people a choice when the terms of the brexit deal are known, but before it's too late to pull out of it. the government has responded that another referendum would be divisive and cause huge economic uncertainty at the worst possible time. the brexit bill is being debated now by mps. tonight we're reporting live from westminster with our political editor, laura kuenssberg. but first, over to our scotland editor sarah smith. sarah, there had been some suggestion that nicola sturgeon might call for a second referendum, but no—one was expecting it today? well, exactly. ever since the morning after the eu referendum, she has been saying another referendum was highly likely. suddenly today, the surprise announcement that she is definitely calling for a second vote on scottish referee —— independence. she says she is making the announcement now because she has
judged there will not be a deal that allows a separate exit deal for scotland. clearly she wouldn't be doing this now if she didn't also think brexit has changed circumstances enough that she could wina circumstances enough that she could win a second referendum. since she was 15, nicola sturgeon has print of an independent scotland. no brexit may provide the chance. she says it means scotland must be given a fresh choice. what scotla nd must be given a fresh choice. what scotland deserves in the light of the material change in circumstances brought about by the brexit vote is the chance to decide our future in a fair, free and democratic way. there should be a referendum, she says, before the uk leads the eu, sometime between the autumn of 2018 and the spring of 2019. opinion polls still don't suggest still more than 50% of the country you want to vote for independence. the economic circumstances are harder than they weren't 2014. do you really believe you could win another referendum? yes, i do. absolutely. i believe
that. it would be wrong for scotland to be taken down a path it has no control over, regardless of the consequences for oui’ control over, regardless of the consequences for our economy, our society, our place in the world, for our very sense of who we are as a country. that would be wrong, and therefore myjudgment country. that would be wrong, and therefore my judgment is country. that would be wrong, and therefore myjudgment is that we should have that choice. a referendum could have been avoided, she says, if the uk government had been prepared to allow a separate brexit dealfor been prepared to allow a separate brexit deal for scotland. we have worked hard, really hard, to try to find agreement. the prime minister and her government have been given every opportunity to compromise. 0ur effort have instead been met with a brick wall of intransigence. in the scottish parliament, a majority of msp is to support another independence referendum. but the snp's independence referendum. but the snp‘s opponents will try to stop it. i think it was a deeply irresponsible action from the first minister. she has given up any
pretence of acting for scotland and is pursuing her own partisan ideals. she has no mandate for a second referendum. she lost a majority at the last scottish referendum. the people of scotland have told her time and again they do not want to be dragged back. nicola sturgeon tells us she is forcing this debate on horse because of brexit, how can creating more division and uncertainty be a good thing? nicola sturgeon has seized the initiative today and ta ken sturgeon has seized the initiative today and taken theresa may by surprise. she did not know the announcement was coming. but nicola sturgeon will need the agreement of the uk government before a second referendum. theresa may could refuse to allow it, or she could insist any vote ta kes to allow it, or she could insist any vote takes place after brexit is complete, after the whole of the uk has left the eu. when the prime minister first has left the eu. when the prime ministerfirst met the has left the eu. when the prime minister first met the first minister first met the first minister here in edinburgh injuly, she said she wanted to reach a uk wide agreement on brexit. that clearly failed. now they will have to get together and try to agree the
terms for another independence referendum. their predecessors negotiated and signed a deal for the last referendum. it may not be so amicable —— amicable this time around. there is a lot at stake. their example shows what happens to leaders who lose referendums. there are some in scotland to can't wait for another referendum. already preparing for another yes campaign. others positively dread the prospect. opinion polls suggest voters are evenly divided. so both nicola sturgeon and theresa may know that whenever it happens, this is a vote that really could go either way. sarah smith, bbc news, edinburgh. the government and mps have been reacting to the call for a second referendum, and debating the bill to start the process of leaving the eu — which could happen as early as tomorrow. here's our political editor, laura kuenssberg. we'll brexit break up the britain we know? scotland voted to stay in the
eu. brexit is a problem not of scotland's making. the uk thought was to leave. we believe in the union, the precious, precious bond. in the chaotic aftermath, she has made her mind up. a second referendum is clearly an option now. she must decide. instead of playing politics with the future of our country, the scottish government should focus on delivering good government and public services for the people of scotland. politics is not a the people of scotland. politics is nota game. the people of scotland. politics is not a game. but if the scottish government wants to give voters a chance to leave the union with all its complexes three, can the prime minister, attending a commonwealth service today, really deny that? technically it is down to westminster. it's not the government's position. politically,
is it possible? listen to this. nicola sturgeon was talking about independence three hours after the brexit vote was declared on the 24th ofjune. she has been banging on about independent every day since. i'm afraid today's irresponsible actionsjust i'm afraid today's irresponsible actions just demonstrate that nicola sturgeon has a constitutional obsession. you could rule this out right now. you could say the uk government will not allow another second —— another independence referendum to take place? there could be another referendum. there isa could be another referendum. there is a process. but we are obstinately focused on the argument there should not be another referendum. you're saying not yet, but you're not saying not yet, but you're not s . saying not yet, but you're not saying no? there is a process issue. we do not want to be in the process argument. that is not the real arrogant. the clash comesjust the government is straining to face down its commons critics, speed through the door that will allow brighter to begin. the snp may have lost the
argument three years ago. but fervently believes the uk government's position on brexit gives them another chance. the question is whether or not scotland is going to be taken into the abyss with this tory government. i'm glad that we on this side of the house have an alternative. and they believe they can win. there will be two options. either we can continue with our history as a european nation, or we can go onto this empire two, or whatever it is the uk government suggests is an option for scotland. i suggest the scottish people will determine their own future as a european nation. behind closed doors ministers used to say they wouldn't allow another independence vote to go ahead. but the eu referendum, and how scotland voted, has simply changed the whole dynamic. even before today, there was a growing sense it wasn't if but when. mps are right now preparing to
vote to start the legal process of brexit. resistance in the house of lords has been fading. the measures on “— lords has been fading. the measures on —— the measure is on course to go through. but whether here, in edinburgh, cardiff or belfast, in the 263 days since the referendum, so much has already changed. laura kuenssberg, bbc news. westminster. as we've heard, 55% of scotland's voters opted to remain in the uk during the last independence referendum. but has the mood changed? do scottish voters want a second referendum? our scotland correspondent, lorna gordon, has been to fife to find out. across the firth of forth from scotland's capital city of edinburgh lies kirkaldy, its high street is typical of many scottish towns. what then do people think of the possibility of a second independence
referendum? it's too early for a referendum. people are tired. plus the fact nicola sturgeon wants to ta ke the fact nicola sturgeon wants to take us back into the eu. i voted out of the eu. in the last referendum in little over two years ago, a majority of people here voted to remain as part of the united kingdom. in fact, to remain as part of the united kingdom. infact, the to remain as part of the united kingdom. in fact, the result here mirrored exactly the result across scotla nd mirrored exactly the result across scotland as a whole. families and couples were divided in their opinions about what was best for scotland's future. i voted for independence. my personal opinion, i would quite happily have another vote. i would quite happily have another vote. hopefully this time we will vote for independence. her partner originally voted no but has now changed his mind. in the last referendum i voted to stay in the united kingdom. this time i would vote to leave the rest of the united kingdom. quite? hopefully we would
get the chance to stay in europe and i feel we have get the chance to stay in europe and ifeel we have been get the chance to stay in europe and i feel we have been lied to somewhat in the past. there are others travelling in the opposite direction. in the first referendum i voted for freedom. i am a nationalist. and i voted for brexit. but this referendum, i'm going to vote to stay with the uk. immigration. on both sides there are those fearful for the future. if we go independent, we don't know what's around the corner. it is better the devil you know. i would around the corner. it is better the devilyou know. i would vote around the corner. it is better the devil you know. i would vote for independence. but i would be very wary. i think it's leaving both united kingdom potentially europe, you have to ask some serious questions. polling suggests this will be close. nicola sturgeon holds the title is turning in herfavour. lorna gordon, bbc news, kirkaldy. we can talk to sarah smith
again in edinburgh. let's talk about timing — why did nicola sturgeon decide tojump now and call for a second independence referendum? now that we are on the verge of the triggering of article 50, she says she had judged there is not going to bea she had judged there is not going to be a special dealfor she had judged there is not going to be a special deal for scotland in the blighted negotiations, because that would have to be written into the article 50 lectern. she's had no indication that will happen. she says she has been trying to compromise all along. she was met with intransigence from the uk government. almost as though it is theresa may who has forced into the position of calling for this referendum. it wasn't her first choice. she would have preferred a special brexit deal. it's very important to nicola sturgeon. she doesn't look as though she is being opportunistic. cynically grabbing brexit as an excuse for another referendum. instead today was very much about trying to the scottish people that it is her duty to offer
them another referendum, to offer them another referendum, to offer them the option of an independent scotla nd them the option of an independent scotland staying in the european union. that's where the timing is absolutely critical. that's why she insists another referendum must happen before brexit, before the uk leaves the eu, so there is the option of scotland to stay inside the european union. that wouldn't happen if the vote was held after march 2019. but of course that is probably when the uk government would want to have the vote because they want want brexit negotiations and a referendum happening at the same time. and to laura at westminster. what's likely to be the government's next move? well, for nicola sturgeon and supporters of independence, a moment for opportunity and excitement. for number ten, they've already had a banging headache and now they've got a big cracking migraine on top. the timing of this was earlier than expected. nicola sturgeon jumped timing of this was earlier than expected. nicola sturgeonjumped out before number ten thought she was going to but they have prepared as a
series of counter moves. when you listen to ministers now, it's very clear they don't feel they can refuse this outright. but they are determined to try to make the argument and say there could be a referendum but they fervently don't believe there should be one. i think we can expect an almighty row over the timing of this as sarah was suggesting. the snp believes it should be be for we leave the eu. the uk government believes it should be afterwards. government sources have suggested to me that voters in scotland would be asking to make a choice blind without seeing what's the deal would look like. that's contested by the snp. ultimately, in the end, it would be politically extremely difficult for the uk government to refuse this request. just down the road from here, mps and the house of lords preparing to sit along into the night as they grind through the final bits of getting the
legislation in place to push the button on brexit. theresa may is looking at two enormous political fights on our hands. seven months m, fights on our hands. seven months in, if she was under any illusion thisjob would be in, if she was under any illusion this job would be easy, day by day, there is a question that for number ten, it is getting harder. both, thank you very much. our top story this evening. nicola sturgeon calls for a second referendum on scottish independence as soon as autumn next year. and still to come. the commonwealth games baton begins its relay through 71 countries en route to australia. coming up in the sport on bbc news, chris froome says sorry for team sky's handling of questions about his record on doping but backs under—pressure boss, sir dave brailsford. aid agencies are warning that time is running out to save more
than 20 million people who are facing famine across africa and the middle east. the united nations says the crisis in nigeria, south sudan, yemen and somalia threatens to be the worst in 60 years. in somalia, conflict has made the effect of a two year drought even worse. it's left nearly three million people without enough water, food and vulnerable to disease. our correspondent andrew harding is in baidoa in the country's south—west, you may find some of the pictures in his report distressing. this is baidoa, a town besieged by two unforgiving enemies. the soldiers are here to guard against al—shabab, the militant islamists controlling the countryside in this corner of somalia. but it's the second enemy, drought, that is now far more dangerous. nine—year old ali has just been carried into the local hospital. he is unconscious.
but it's not from hunger. not yet. after three years of failed rains, clean water is hard to find. the doctors here believe they are battling a sudden outbreak of cholera. inside, weak from diarrhoea, dozens of new cases. many families have walked miles get help. it's a cruel, opening salvo of disease before famine marches into town. we are feeling this situation is getting very bad. out of control? yes. due to the disease outbreak, this is totally different. and can you deal with that? with our capacity, no. for now, there's an orderly queue at baidoa's well. a nurse has volunteered to oversee the rationing. but every day more people are coming into town
from the parched countryside. the famine is going fast, very fast. there isn't enough wheat. there isn't enough water. and the problem is very big. like any town under siege, this one is digging in and praying that reinforcements arrive soon. as things stand, they only have enough supplies here to help one in ten of those who needed. and there's little doubt things are going to get a lot worse. new arrivals seeking shade on the edge of town. during the last famine in 2011, many left it too late before moving to seek help. so maybe this counts as progress. but it's hard to get the timing right in such a gruelling climate. this woman buried herfour—year—old daughter and five—year—old son on thejourney here, probably cholera again. and what happens if the aid supplies run out? those helping say the main lesson of 2011 is to sound the alarm early. what we want to do different is we want to say there
is a famine that is coming. we are sure it is going to come, and especially if the april rains fail. so what we are saying is get us help now, get us the resources we need now and we will save the children that need to be saved. and look how easy it can be. after 15 minutes of treatment in hospital, nine—year—old ali opens his eyes and asks his father for water. in a besieged town, one life saved, many more to go. sse has become the latest of the "big six" energy suppliers to raise its prices. it said average electricity prices would rise byjust under 15% by the end of april, although gas prices will remain unchanged. it will mean an increase of £73 for the average dual fuel bill. thousands of rail passengers in england have faced a day of disruption following a 24 hour
strike on some of the busiest lines in england. the dispute, over the role of conductors and driver—only trains, has affected services in and out of liverpool, leeds and manchester. our transport correspondent richard westcott is at leeds station. what's the situation there? well, it is quite quiet here, interestingly. if you still need to make the journey on merseyrail or northern rail service, get your skates on because the last trains are going around seven. northern rail only managed to run 40% of its services today, had even bigger problems, and they had a shutdown over lunchtime, so they are quite quiet. quite a lot of people have either driven in or stayed away. there isn't an obvious end to this dispute insight. the joys of the monday morning commute. ‘welcome to the leeds train.‘
passengers across northern england today hit by the same strike that has caused months of misery for commuters in the south. northern are only running about 40% of their trains today. this is the eight o'clock train from keighley into leeds, a busy commuter service. it's really filling up now. it's been pretty busy. i mean, i usually get the train from ilkley, but there's no way i'd have got home, i finish work at half five and the last train is at half five so it's a bit annoying. a couple of stops later and now it's really filling up. it's been 0k, to be honest, it tends to get really busy at the last stop before leeds so, in the morning, it's always pretty packed, usually. were you worried about it, what the strike was going to do to the service? a bit. if there is no train, i can't get to work or i have to take the bus and it would take, like, an hourand a half. it's a 24—hour strike with around 2,000 rail workers walking out today across three companies, northern, merseyrail and southern. three strikes, same issue —
the introduction of driver—only controlled trains... ‘please take all your belongings with you.’ ..where the driver takes over all of the safety critical jobs, jobs like closing the doors. which is currently done by the guard. we fundamentally believe that services operated on a driver—only, driver—controlled operation, are fundamentally less safe. and every train in the uk should retain a second safety—critical person on board. we put safety at the heart of everything we do. the independent rail regulator has actually indicated that this is as safe as conductor operation of the doors. this isn't about who opens and closes the doors, this is about giving our customers what they want. southern rail put on 90% of its trains today. the strike less effective because more of its services can run with just a driver. but merseyrail had to stop trains completely over lunch. and, together with northern,
would hardly run anything tonight. for many, it meant an early dash home. just panicking to get back before the last train at quarter past. if you've got a hospital appointment, it does panic you a little bit. 'this train terminates here.‘ commuters across the north might just have to find other ways into work over the coming months. the countdown to the 2018 commonwealth games has begun with the queen launching the baton relay at buckingham palace. the baton will be carried across 71 countries and more than 200,000 miles before it reaches australia's gold coast. our royal correspondent nicholas witchell was at the launch. it's said to be the third—largest multisport event in the world. the commonwealth games, bringing together countries which, between them, represent roughly one third of the world's population. the venue for next year's games will be australia's gold coast.
the queen won't be there herself but a message from her as head of the commonwealth will. she placed the message in a baton which will now be carried to all the countries of the commonwealth to arrive on the gold coast in april of next year. the baton relay was started by the australian track cyclist, anna meares, joined by britain's victoria pendleton. and, then, to add another australian touch, it was transferred to a combi, the campervan used by so many generations of surfers and others, which trundled off down the mall at the start of its 140,000 milejourney. four years ago, it was sir chris hoy who did the honours, launching the baton relay to the city of glasgow 2014 venue. the route over the next 13 months will be pretty much the same, taking the baton to every commonwealth nation and territory. so, it will travel across much of africa... to the indian subcontinent, where, four years ago, it was taken by steam train in sri lanks...
and to tiny islands in the pacific. a reminder of the scale of the commonwealth and of the cultural and historic links which bind its 52 member nations. in april next year, in australia, the commonwealth's sporting rivalries will be resumed, but in the context of a sporting event which, like the commonwealth, prides itself on showing respect and mutual understanding. and if a city fancies hosting such an event in 2022, there might be a vacancy. durban is said to be pulling out. time for a look at the weather. here's nick miller. it has been a glorious day in london. it is quite warm with those having the sunshine today. 16.6 celsius in northern ireland for the warmest day of the year so far in northern ireland and could be 18 celsius somewhere in south—east england tomorrow in some sunny
spells. a lot of cloud around overnight which means the temperatures are not going down very far. we have a weak weather system working across scotland, northern ireland, and northern england at the end of the night with increasingly like an patchy rain. notice how the temperatures are staying up. tomorrow, a lot of cloud to begin with across wales and england, damp and drizzly over the hills. brightening up in scotland but northern scotland, lots of showers, strong winds, maybe in excess of 70 miles an hour which could impact travel. into the afternoon, plenty of cloud in south—west england and south wales. central and south east england, sunny. it may be the warmest day of the year so far though. northern ireland, some rain in dumfries & galloway. all of these showers and gusty winds in northern scotla nd showers and gusty winds in northern scotland still around going into
tomorrow evening. tomorrow night, sunlight and patchy rain further south through england and wales and this weather system has some cloud on it stuck in south england, south wales. still some showers in northern scotland, the lions share of the sunshine on wednesday in northern and eastern england. the weather working south, not much rain left on it. friday onwards, the weather systems are gathering so there will be a change by the end of there will be a change by the end of the week. it will be cooler, windier and wetter for many of us. a reminder of our main story. nicola sturgeon has called for a second referendum on scottish independence, possibly as soon as autumn next year. that's all from the bbc news at six, so it's goodbye from me, and on bbc one we nowjoin the bbc‘s news teams where you are. music
it has been a tournament of upsets so far. but can they provide more? spurs lead! theo walcott! a disastrous start for middlesbrough. manchester city already in front. makes amends with an absolute beauty! olivier giroud, 2—0. makes amends with an absolute beauty! olivier giroud, 2-0. 3-0. sanchez, brilliantly placed.
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