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tv   BBC News  BBC News  December 31, 2017 12:00am-12:31am GMT

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this is bbc news. i'm ben bland. our top stories: violent clashes flare in iran as demonstrators defy police to protest against the government. but in the capital, tehran, an official show of support for the government draws thousands of people. new year revellers prepare to see in 2018 in style, but in many european capitals, there'll be a tight security operation. an attempt on mount everest. hello and welcome to bbc world news. pockets of violence have broken out across iran during a third day of anti—government protests. demonstrators ignored warnings from officials, who said the gatherings were illegal. two people have reportedly been shot dead.
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at the same time, there have been pro—government rallies in the capital tehran, with thousands of people showing their support. the anti—government protests started in mashhad and spread to several parts of the country. they were about corruption and falling living standards, but they're becoming political, as our correspondent wyre davies reports. three days in and iran's anti—government protests have turned violent. in the northern city of mashhad, demonstrators demanding an end to hardline clerical rule set police motorbikes alight and taunted the security services. from dorud in the west, video showed crowds scattering after two protesters were reportedly shot and killed. what began in provincial cities has now spread to the capital tehran and the main university campus. these are worrying signs
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for the iranian government and the ultraconservative shia clerics, who've ruled over the country since the 1979 revolution. the government response, organising large pro—regime counter demonstrations in support of the supreme leader ayatollah ali khamenei and warning people not to take part in what it called illegal protests. shouting for the clerics to give him a job, this protester typifies the economic anger that many iranians feel. the last time that people protested like this was almost a decade ago and some fear similar violent consequences now. this is a regime that knows how to manage its people and has a monopoly on the use of violence. they effectively demonstrated that in 2009 and i think that most iranians, at least the ones that i have spoken to, in the age of 25—40,
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have not yetjoined these protests. there's been little international reaction, but responding on twitter, donald trump said the iranian government should respect people's rights to express themselves and warned "the world is watching." but dissent in iran is only tolerated to a point, uniformed and plain clothes police have made dozens of arrests across the country, a sign the authorities may already be turning the screw. wyre davies, bbc news. earlier i spoke to alex vatanka, who is a senior fellow at the middle east institute. he gave me his analysis from washington, dc. this is an event that is picking up speed at historic rates. frankly, this is different from 2009. if you wa nt to this is different from 2009. if you
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want to put this in an historical context want to put this in an historical co ntext a nd want to put this in an historical context and think about it, what happened then you had a fight literally within the regime against the then president. you could almost call that a family feud of sorts. this time around you can't say it is afamily this time around you can't say it is a family feud. it is coming from the street level, that is what makes it dangerous. can the regime containers given that the social conditions are what they are and as upsetting as they are too ordinary iranians. this started out as an economic protest about the government ‘s inability to control rising prices, it has clearly turned into a political protest as well. within 24 hours. starting out the slogans were "you can't keep increasing the prices", slogans directly targeting hassan rouhani. and then they went after
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the ayatollah and then is it representative of the average iranian. the protest say not. that is why it is so interesting. let me point something out, if we go back to may of this year, president ratini one in a landslide re—election with 24 million votes —— president rouhani, less than three months later they are chanting "death to rouhani". people are saying you have betrayed us. i wonder what rouhani is thinking right now. it will not be a surprise if the security forces come out and they will crack down and this might just disburse the way it did in 2009. but someone like hassan rouhani who fancied himself as a supreme leader, the iranian people are speaking loudly against him saying he has failed them. what is
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the alternative model that these demonstrators would like to see in place of president rouhani and clerical rule and, crucially, would it do anything to improve their current living conditions? one of the things that is really clear is that your average iranian knows that a revolution comes with the risks. they know what is happening in the neighbourhood. they know what happened in egypt's, libya, syria, they are watching at what is happening in iraq and afghanistan. they do not want that. at the same time, they are fed up with the islamic republic, almost 40 years into its existence, promising reform but not delivering. the iranian people who remember what happened in 1939, remember that in 1979 they did not rise up and ask for an islamic republic and clerical establishment to rule over them, they wanted a democratic system, fundamentally. they did not get that when they
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toppled the shah. they got the clerics to rule over them. they had been patiently hoping that the clerics would one day, closer to the people and start reflecting what average iranians want. that is not happening. just look at syria, look at what the iranians are doing in terms of regime activity, exporting their ideology, spending billions of dollars doing so, while forgetting your average man and woman back in iran. that is what is wanting them today and we are watching it on our tv screens. alex vatanka speaking to the earlier from the middle east institute in washington dc. people around the world are getting ready to mark the end of this year and the arrival of 2018. many cities will be celebrating new year's eve with open—air concerts, street parties and fireworks. but in europe, after a series of islamist attacks over the past 12 months against civilian targets, particular attention is being given to public safety. david campa nale reports. live music, wine tasting, festive decorations,
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and good food, all the vital ingredient in romania for a great party. but the tune in other european capitals as they prepare is so far more sombre. france has seen over 230 people killed in attacks by islamist militants over the past three years. the paris police chief says his force is prepared for the terrorist threat, which he assessed as high. over 10,000 police and emergency service workers are to be deployed in the capital, with a large force concentrating along the champs—elysee. large areas of central rome will ban cars from parking for 48 hours and the main tourist sites will have special protection. celebrations at berlin's brandenburg gate are expected to attract1 million party—goers, but the authorities in germany face an additional challenge — two years ago hundreds of women were robbed and sexually assaulted on new year's eve in cologne
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and other cities by groups of men, many said to be from migrant backgrounds. this year berlin police say women who feel threatened will be able to go to a special security area. translation: there is no women's zone as such, it's a red cross security point that was always there that has taken the additional duty. if any woman is harassed at the event they can go there to a staff of trained psychologists, but it is not a women's zone. but the idea has also been criticised by those saying large events should be organised so that assaults don't happen in the first place. translation: what is not normal is that women, especially young women, are attacked in public places, especially celebrations. but that is it. others say they intend to party regardless. i feel pretty safe. i am not scared.
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i think the thing is fear, that scares people. you can't let that ruin your life. yes. david campanale, bbc news. the ousted catalan president carles puigdemont has demanded madrid reinstate his regional government. on friday, the spanish prime minister, mariano rajoy, dismissed the idea that mr puigdemont could lead a new catalan government from abroad. mr puigdemont has recorded a new year message from brussels, where he's in self—imposed exile. he said he's still president of catalonia and that his government must be restored. he declared independence from spain after a referendum in october, but madrid then sacked him and his team, some of whom have been arrested and jailed. translation: we are a democratically mature people, who have won the right to constitute a republic of free men and women. the ballot box has spoken, democracy has spoken,
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everyone has been able to express themselves. so what is prime minister rajoy waiting for, to accept the results? let's take a look at some of the other stories making the news. police in ukraine have freed 11 people that were held hostage in a post office in kharkiv. a standoff had been going on since the early afternoon, when a man entered the building wearing an explosive belt and threatened to detonate it. the suspect has been arrested. the black lives matter activist erica garner has died aged 27. she had suffered a heart attack last week. ms garner came to prominence three years ago after her father eric garner died after being choked by a police officer as he was being arrested for a minor offence. authorities in mumbai have demolished dozens of illegal structures across the city, a day after a huge fire killed 14 people. the times of india newspaper reports that more than 100 unauthorised restaurants and pubs were brought down by bulldozers. it follows outrage over friday's fire at the kamala mills compound in the city, which reportedly started in a restaurant.
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mountain climbers will no longer be able to tackle nepal's peaks on solo expeditions. the himalayan country has imposed the ban, which includes mount everest, to try and cut the number of people killed or injured while climbing. the new rules also ban double amputees and climbers who are blind from attempting nepal's mountain pea ks without a valid medical certificate. earlier i spoke to anbarasan ethirajan, south asia editor for the bbc world service about the change of rules. the government wanted to have more control over more than 400 mountains it has opened to the public to all the mountain is around the world to see what exactly what was happening. during the earthquake in 2015, many of the solo trekkers, many people go for a week—long trek into the
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countryside, the mountainside, without any communication gadget or anything. many people were killed during the earthquake. it took months for the authorities to establish what really happened. that is why the government is now saying we wa nt is why the government is now saying we want to ensure safety, reduce accidents. you take someone with you ora accidents. you take someone with you or a local guide who was more familiar with the touraine, the mountains around that area, so we can ensure safety of these mountaineers. so far it sounds fairly sensible, common sense, but the other element of this, which has proved more controversial, about not allowing people who are double amputee is all people who are blind or heavily impaired visually, but they have now left back from that because of the backlash. for the last few weeks there have been discussions on social media among the mount keira community and in nepal when the government initially announced that we are planning to ban people with a serious disability like double amputees. when i spoke
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to the officials early in the day they had to modify it following representations from disability groups and mt t —— mountaineers and the travel agents, because it brings a lot of money. now they're saying people with serious disability can also do the client, but without a proper medical certificate they cannot go up in the mountains. basically, they want some doctor to certify that these people qualified to double up in the mountain. ok. i suppose the risk for the nepalese authorities is that they cannot afford to do deter people from doing this kind too much because the country is so dependent on the money the tourists bring. tourism is one of the biggest revenue audit —— owners for nepal. various international company is, they come with a crew, it improves the economy
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of that area around mount everest. there are many villages. people who depend on the income given by the mountaineers. they hire a huge crew to ta ke mountaineers. they hire a huge crew to take people on horseback, the equipment, on donkey back. the government is very equipment, on donkey back. the government is very aware equipment, on donkey back. the government is very aware that any negative publicity will affect the tourism industry. that is why it is cautious at the same time about the safety. when the embassy said you don't even know how many people are missing in the earthquake, that is why they want to have some control. stay with us on bbc world news, still to come: the arctic blast hitting america's east coast is likely to continue into the new year, with some of the lowest temperatures seen in decades. the most ambitious financial and political change ever attempted has got under way with the introduction of the euro. tomorrow in holland,
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we will use money we picked up in belgium today, and then we will be in france and again it will be the same money. it has just got to be the way to go. george harrison, the former beatle, is recovering in hospital after being stabbed at his 0xfordshire home. a 33—year—old man from liverpool is being interviewed by police on suspicion of attempted murder. i think it was good. you... just good? no, fantastic! that's better. this is bbc news.
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the latest headlines: police in iran have been in skirmishes with demonstrators in a third day of anti—government protests. will use you demonstrations took place in a number of cities despite warnings from the government. a mississippi sheriff says the united states has a "national problem" with how it treats mental health patients in the justice system. greg pollan was speaking after an investigation by the bbc and propublica into the case of tyler haire. haire, who had a long history of mental health problems, was injailfor almost four years without trial while waiting to be assessed. he is now serving a seven—year sentence for stabbing his father's girlfriend. this is his story: we have some good memories of tyler. he was very loving. but we had problems with tyler when he was probably six months old. he started medication when he was four.
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he had generalised anxiety, delusional, suffered mood swings. i remember telling him goodbye, and i loved him, and hugging him. and that was the last time that i saw him until he was injail. this call is from a correctional facility. do you remember what happened in the morning you got arrested? no, ma'am. all i remember is going to get water, actually looking for some kool—aid i was left by my mother. after that, it's blurry. iremembercoming out of the bedroom and giving him a glass of water.
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that's all i remember about that. nothing else. i received a phone call from the county sheriff's office, and he tells me tyler has stabbed someone with a ten inch butcher knife. all i can keep replaying in my mind was, how, why? tyler haire was ordered at the beginning of this case to have a mental evaluation conducted, and it took four years. the roadblock was that there was never a bed for him, to put it literally. there was never a time that he worked his way to the top of the list, where he was the next person scheduled to be evaluated. the problem is across the street with our legislature.
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they don't properly fund that forensic unit, don't provide enough psychiatrists, enough personnel. i think that at some point, some court is going to force us to spend more money, and it'll be a federal court. imagine putting a 16—year—old child that is already mentally disabled into that little cell forfour straight years. i can't even imagine the things that went through his mind. when incarcerated, the seriously mentally ill should be seen by health care professionals, and their needs tended to. that story was a collaboration between the bbc and propublica.
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you can watch the full documentary on the bbc news website. just log on to it's not every day you can take photos of a frozen water fountain like this one in new york. but across vast parts of the us, forecasters are predicting chilly temperatures over the new year's celebrations, as an arctic blast hits. to show you just how cold it is, these are thresher sharks which have washed up frozen along cape cod, in the the us state of massachusetts. thermometers could reach the lowest temperatures in nearly a century over the next few days and stay there into the first days of 2018. earlier i spoke to michael david about how this arctic weather is affecting daily life. right now i am
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in pittsburgh but it is probably in the negative, negative teams. snow is needy about an inch or two in the past 24 hours, not too bad. it is freezing. you taken the opportunity to get iconic photos stop us —— iconic photos at. the kayak photo was when i was on holidays and when we have the five feet of snow is over the past couple of days since christmas eve. my cousins are from florida and they got a kayak for christmas so they took a picture of themselves in their stunning pool, nice weather, bathing suit sun shining. a sister and nice weather, bathing suit sun shining. a sisterand i nice weather, bathing suit sun shining. a sister and i said let's get the kayak and put it in the front yard in the snow and show us what kind of christmas we are having. that is the story behind that. we were in the yard taking photos and having fun in the snow.|j am feeling you don't feel the cold
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that much, you are in a t—shirt? yes. we were going to be invading suits but we knew it was too cold for that. we took the photos, and bared the cold. we are used to it. how prepared were people for this? it is —— isa how prepared were people for this? it is —— is a sort of thing have seen it is —— is a sort of thing have seen before? they are usually prepared further snow. —— for the. but we were not prepared for that snow that we had, five feet in the past couple of days. it is still snowing up there. the city is shutting down, plouffe ‘s trucks we re shutting down, plouffe ‘s trucks were getting stuck in the snow, a declaration of emergency here and it is still snowing. all we could do was just hang out in the house, just enjoy family and wait with those not. —— snow stop. enjoy family and wait with those not. -- snow stop. there is a certain amount of disruption,
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driving restrictions and people trying to stock up on essentials. yes, the night before when they knew the storm is coming all of the bread was gone, milk was gone, bottled water was born. just got prepared to. they know how to prepare for storms like that. now staying with the unusually cold weather in north america, a giant panda which was born and raised in captivity before being released into the wild, has been recaptured in south west china. tao tao was bred artificially to increase china's population of pandas. nichola carroll has the story. recaptured in the wild. one of china's most famous giant pandas has been found again. a rare glimpse of conservation effort to save the endangered species in the mountains of china. his tracker collar scanned and id checked, tao tao is found to be in good health, weighing in at 115 kilograms. translation: his fur and subcutaneous fat
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is all quite good. we didn't find any external parasites. he is very clean and very pretty. there's not much abrasion on his teeth. tao tao was born in captivity in 2010. but he was raised by his mother without human contact in the hope it would improve his chances of survival and improve his fighting skills. his good physical condition indicates he is living a healthy and independent life in the wild. tao tao will continue to be monitored. but there doesn't seem to be any doubt that this giant panda is living well in the wild. nicola carroll, bbc news. don't forget you can get in touch with me and some of the team on twitter — i'm @benmbland. this is bbc news. thank you for watching. 2017 is finishing on a flourish in
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the guise of stormed dylan. looking at the olympic, it didn't exist but since then this area of low pressure has formed and it it has deepened as it has been racing towards the british isles. this nasty hook of cloud is characteristic of a very deep error of low pressure and that will bring severe gales for the northern half of the uk and a high chance of disruption as we get into new year's eve. the met office have issued an amber wind warning for the chong wins at will affect northern ireland and scotland as we go through new year's eve morning. wind gust of 70— 80 mph. aside from that, many will start off with rain, mild in the south and a bit of mt stirling scotland but it is the wind that take centre stage. initially the strong as wind was with us in northern ireland before swinging a
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cross into scotland. we could see pic gust of around 80 mph, enough to blow down trees, cause transport disruption and any trees down could bring power lines down as well. we could even see the strong winds filtering and funnelling through central belt of scotland. we could have some dairy rough weather in the morning stock across england and wales, any areas starting well, sunshine with a bit of rain left overin sunshine with a bit of rain left over in the south—west, really quite quickly. those strong winds very slow to ease down, slowly easing from the second half of the afternoon. lottery showers continuing to be blown across the uk with these gusty winds across all areas and in the showers they will be heavy, some thundery and quite a range of temperatures between six and 12 degrees. as we count down to the night celebrations, we will see further showers blown in on those strong winds. not as cold as it might have been. averages around
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four and seven degrees at midnight. 0r new year's day, another band in the south, causing problems with localised flooding and the weather being a problem. another area of low pressure bringing gusty winds to scotla nd pressure bringing gusty winds to scotland and northern ireland as well as long, as well as rain. have more unsettled weather coming on tuesday as we return to work. wet weather pushing in and are quite windy day, coolness across the south—east but mild across the south—west. looking at the week ahead. strong wind, further bursts of heavy rain with fairly big changes day by day without temperatures. that is your latest weather. this is bbc news. the headlines: a wave of anti—government protests has continued for a third day in iran. several demonstrations have turned violent and it's thought at least two people have been shot in the western town of dorud. the black lives matter activist
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erica garner has died from a heart attack, aged just 27. she became prominent three years ago after her father eric garner died after being choked by a police officer as he was being arrested for a minor offence. nepal has banned solo climbers from scaling its mountains, including mount everest. it says the ban will make mountaineering safer and reduce the number of accidents. the catalan leader carles puigdemont has recorded a new year message from self—imposed exile. he said he was still president of catalonia and the madrid government should reinstate his regional administration.
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