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tv   BBC News  BBC News  December 21, 2019 11:00am-11:32am GMT

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this is bbc news. the headlines: a "catastrophic fire warning" is issued for parts of eastern australia — including sydney — amid record—breaking temperatures following months of severe drought. these are very difficult and trying
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times. we are now to day 105 of this bushfire emergency across new south wales. the community really needs to stay alert and understand what they are going to do as we are threatened by fires. the government approves the takeover of uk defence and aerospace specialist cobham by an american company. a man who confronted the fishermongers hall attacker with a narwal tusk describes his "deep hurt" that he couldn't save the two people who died. prince philip spends the night in hospital in london, to be treated for what's being descrived as a pre—existing condition. and coming up — dateline london looks at the effect impeachment could have on donald trump's support base — that's in half an hour here on bbc news.
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good morning and welcome to bbc news. emergency services in austrialia have described conditions as "catastrophic" as hundreds of fires burn across the country threatening every major city. firefighters in new south wales issued the highest possible warning, telling some people it's now too late to leave their homes. jon donnison reports. new south wales continues to burn. firefighters are battling more than 100 blazes across the state. for some, it is already too late. scores more homes have been destroyed, many have lost everything. it is horrific, devastating driving around. we feel pretty isolated where we are with the roadblocks. 0ur loved ones can't come and see us. everyone is offering to help, but there is nothing they can do. not for us, now. just stay out, stay safe and we hope that the forests can do theirjob.
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—— just stay out, stay safe and we hope that the firemen can do theirjob. high winds, low humidity, and temperatures in the 40s have worsened conditions. we saw some partsjust north of sydney go upwards of 47 degrees. what we are currently seeing is a strong and vigorous change moving through. behind that, we have seen temperatures drop quite rapidly, but unfortunately, those winds are now pushing the fires in new directions. the authorities have warned people not to travel at christmas, with many drivers getting caught out. i have driven through the blue mountains before when there have been fires. i guess it wasjust the extent, the amount of distance that you drive in the smoke. it is quite surreal. it is like driving through fog, except it is a slightly yellow—orange colour, the fog. the smell is really strong, the smell of burning and itjust keeps going on. and with much of the state, including sydney, blanketed with smoke, doctors are warning that
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people with breathing difficulties need to stay indoors. it is a problem because we have never been exposed to such prolonged smoke before. and because we have never experienced this before, we don't know what the eventual outcome of this will be. and all this comes with us still only in december. australia has not even reached peak fire season. jon donnison, bbc news. our correspondent, shaimaa khalil is in the town of mittagong in new south wales. earlier she explained the scale of the fires. as you can see, catastrophic warnings still continue throughout the day. there were a group of firefighters and their trucks just a few moments before we came on air, and then all of a sudden, they got a call, their sirens were off,
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and then they were off onto the highway. itjust shows how unpredictable it is. they have been speaking to me and they have been patrolling this area around mittagong for the whole day because another village has had a fire at an emergency level throughout the day, and they are really worried about what that would mean for this area. the main thing they are worried about at the moment is the wind. the wind behaviour is so unpredictable that it is not really possible to predict where the next fire is going to hit, where those embers that it is carrying are going to go, and how big it is going to be. the resources are so stretched all over the place, that at some point, it is impossible to put out a fire in its entirety. they are basically working building by building, house by house, and in some cases, it is too late for people to leave their homes. the government has approved the takeover of uk defence and aerospace company cobham. advent international, a us private equity firm, ade its £4bn offer to buy cobham in july. —— made its £4 billion offer
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to buy cobham injuly. shareholders approved the deal last month. the cobham family, though, raised concerns about the security implications of a foreign takeover the deal. earlier i spoke to our business correspondnent katie prescott about the government's decision... as you can see from this review here, most of it has actually been redacted. it's quite hard... it's all blacked out! to get into it, exactly what those national security concerns were. but the ministry of defence and the home office both raised issues, particularly in relation to cobham's air to air refuelling, which is what it is best known for. so refuelling aeroplanes in the air, and they say the raf and the navy are very dependent on this technology, so there are concerns that going forward they perhaps might not have access to it. in response, the government said there are minded to approve this takeover. we had expected this, it's worth saying. but they received assurances from cobham and advent about the relationship with the government going forward. because at the time, i think it was lady cobham saying that, you know, there is wouldn't be worth the paper they were written on. saying that once the deal was done, there wouldn't be any kind of where you could ensure
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that they really were honoured. but clearly the government is satisfied. the government is satisfied that they will get things like notice if advent do intend to sell cobham, that contract will be honoured. and it's also worth saying, i spoke to a defence analyst earlier who said, to become a ministry of defence contractor, the rules are so absently rigid that in many ways, it doesn't matter who the owner is because as a supplier, you need to behave in a certain way. eric grove is a visiting fellow at the international institute for strategic studies and says it's not surprising the government has said this won't be a security risk... well, of course, it is an american company, and were so closely integrated with the united states, i mean, the f35‘s carried by our aircraft carriers, in fact, our aircraft carriers will be carrying a us marine corps aircraft as well as raf slash fleet air arm aircraft on the first deployment. so, in fact, having an american company taking over is not really a tremendous security risk because we're so integrated anyway,
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and cobham in fact have more sites in the us than they have in britain. i was going to say, i think, looking at the figures, it's 10,000 people employed by cobham around the world, 1700 of them in the uk. i think its main base is dorset in this country. but in terms of the importance of the technology, how significant is the air to air refuelling capacity? well, very significant indeed. i mean, obviously in—flight refuelling is an important part of any country'saviation capability. but on the other hand, we are so dependent on the americans anywhere that i don't really see this makes a huge amount of difference. i mean, we are very heavily integrated already, probably even more so after we leave the eu and so on. so i'm not too concerned. i can understand why the cobham family are a bit concerned about this, because this was very much a british initiative and so on, in—flight refuelling was very much pioneered by alan cobham and so on. but i don't really see this being a great problem. in fact, as i say, we are so integrated with the united states anyway that this is just, you know, an additional...
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just a slight change in the balance. the man who fought off the attacker at fishermongers hall near london bridge using a narwhal tusk has given a dramatic account of how he was able to stop the knifeman and pin him to the ground. two people died in the attack last month. civil servant darryn frost has described how usman khan was running towards people with knives raised above his head, and wearing what looked like a suicide vest. this report from rich preston. this is the dramatic moment passers—by attempted to stop convicted terrorist usman khan. his attack had begun at fishmongers‘ hall, where he had just killed two people. it was there darryn frost, a civil servant, took on khan, with others attending a prisoner rehabilitation event. describing for the first time what happened, mr frost told the press association that he took
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a narwhal task to defend himself after hearing a commotion from the floor below. he described the moment khan ran at him with knives raised above his head. he went on to recall chasing khan onto london bridge, where a group wrestled him to the ground, stopping him attacking anyone else, or set off what they thought was a suicide vest. talking about jack merritt and saskia jones, who were both killed by khan, mr frost said he will always feel the deep hurt of not being able to save them. he said he hoped speaking out would urge people to unite against terrorism and raise money for the victims‘ families. borisjohnson has arrived in estonia where he'll serve christmas lunch to british troops later, during a visit to a nato mission. the 850 soldiers from the queen's royal hussars at the tapa military base near tallinn represent the uk's largest operational deployment in europe. it might be the first time he's
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going as prime minister, but mrjohnson has been there before as you can see from these pictures. in 2017 he went to the same base while he was foreign secretary, donning a uniform and even rode around in a british tank. the duke of edinburgh has spent the night in hospital in london, after being admitted for treatment for a pre—existing condition. prince philip — who's 98 — travelled there yesterday from the sandringham estate in norfolk. buckingham palace officials said the admission was a "precautionary measure". he's expected to remain there for a few days. the bbc‘s simon jones is at the king edward vii hospital in london where the duke is being treated and has the latest. there's been no update from the palace overnight on the condition of prince philip, and i think that's not surprising, given that he is a very private person, particularly since he's decided to step back from official royal
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duties. and also, the palace will not want to give a running commentary on his condition over the coming days. what we do know is that he arrived here at the hospital yesterday morning. the palace have refused to confirm, or deny reports, that he was actually flown from sandringham to london by helicopter, but we were told when he did arrive here, he was able to walk into the hospital without any problem. as prince philip was travelling here from sandringham, the queen was travelling in the opposite direction, getting a train to norfolk to begin her christmas break, that she usually spends with prince philip. i think we can read into that that although there is concern about prince philip's condition, he is of course 98 years old, there's not really a sense of alarm at this stage at the palace. now, they haven't said what he's been treated for. they say it's a pre—existing medical condition. we know that recently, he had a hip replacement operation, a few years before that he had surgery on his abdomen,
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he's also had a stent fitted to deal with a blocked artery. but they're not revealing any further details. what the key question now is is whether prince philip is going to be ready to leave this hospital in time to spend christmas with other members of the royal family. the christmas decorations are up here. there is also tight security. that key question, will he be well enough to leave you to spend christmas with the queen? more than 100 flood warnings remain in place in england — with further heavy rain expected across the south of the country. the met office says up to 30mm is forecast in some areas and yellow weather warnings are in place. 0n the final weekend before christmas flooding is causing disruption to travel plans for those intending to take the train — with lines in parts of sussex submerged. and these pictures of from teston bridge near maidstone in kent this morning show the flooding there. joining us now from near guildford in surrey
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is our reporter adrian harms. where are you? i am by the river way, i'm actuallyjust outside guildford. you can probably see from the pictures that it is raining heavily. —— river wey. the pictures that it is raining heavily. —— riverwey. it's the pictures that it is raining heavily. —— river wey. it's gone outside guildford on these fields. it is still raining. it looks like the situation will get worse before it gets any better. there is a lot of water making its way along the river. across the county, how is the picture looking? you still have pretty heavy rain where you are, right? yes, and there is more rain forecast for the rest of the day and overnight. two main rivers. there we re overnight. two main rivers. there were six flood warnings on the river mole. some of those have been dropped to the lower state of flood
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alert, but there is still a flood warning in leatherhead. the environment agency have been working very ha rd environment agency have been working very hard putting up flood defences around the town. currently they seem to be working. the same has been happening in guildford, there are a number flood defences around the town towards the bottom of guildford, around the cinema, and around towards the depot and police station areas of guildford, where flood defences are in place. people will be hoping that with the levels don't go any higher, certainly for the rest of the day, but more rain forecast. how have people been affected by what has fallen so far? yesterday there was a huge amount of travel disruption both in surrey and sussex, as you travel disruption both in surrey and sussex, as you were travel disruption both in surrey and sussex, as you were referring to earlier. in sussex the bulk of rail tunnel was shut because of flooding. in guildford there was a landslide outside of guildford station at saint catherine is tunnel. that
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delayed services going from guildford down to portsmouth on south—western trains, and also on gwr, which is the line that connects reading through guildford and along to gatwick. there was a huge amount of disruption yesterday both on the road and rails. this morning, driving around, roads are still flooded, not as bad as yesterday, but a lot of care is still needed. the disruption will come if we get more flood water and if we get a repeat of the floods that we had in surrey six years ago. no sign of that at the moment, but more rain forecast, and the environment agency are doing their best to make sure those flood barriers are in place. thanks very much forjoining us with that update from the river wey, just outside guildford in surrey. the headlines on bbc news... a "catastrophic fire warning" is issued for parts of eastern australia, including sydney, amid record—breaking temperatures following months of severe drought.
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the government approves the takeover of uk defence and aerospace specialist cobham by an american company. a man who confronted the fishermongers hall attacker with a narwal tusk describes his "deep hurt" that he couldn't save the two people who died. facebook says it has removed hundreds of accounts with ties to a conservative news outlet that uses fake profile photos — generated with the help of artificial intelligence. researchers said the facebook and instagram fake profiles generate thousands of personalities who emphasise support for president trump and opposition to the chinese government. peter bowes is following the story from los angeles. it shows what technology can achieve these days. in terms of generating these days. in terms of generating these images, faces that look like these images, faces that look like the profile shots of ordinary people, but they are fake. they are generated by algorithms. there is absolutely nothing real about them.
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they don't represent real people. they don't represent real people. they have been generated by users in vietnam, say facebook, purporting to be americans. they have removed several hundred of these facebook accounts, as you say, along with instagram sites, and various pages, as well, that carried with their m essa 9 es as well, that carried with their messages which were anti—china, that we re messages which were anti—china, that were pro trump, or generated conversations about family values, 01’ conversations about family values, or elections, or impeachment, a lot of those important issues which are in the news at the moment. peter bowes reporting there. christmas celebrations in the uk often centre on food, drink and family gatherings, but campaigners are warning that the party season can place additional strain on those living with eating disorders. the nhs and the eating disorder charity, beat, have issued new advice for people with conditions such as anorexia and bulimia on how to cope at christmas. stand—up comedian dave chawner discusses his own experiences. when it first started
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for me, i was 17, and i remember back then, i had got exams, i had got essays, i had research, all of the stresses and strains that most teenagers have. but i didn't have a coping mechanism, i didn't have a way of dealing with it, and actually focusing on calories, focusing on exercise, and weighing myself was something that i could control. so, it was something that became really important because when everything felt really unmanageable, those are the things that i could manage. those were the things that i could focus on, and over time, that became an obsession, an addiction, it became a control that it was something that i could focus on when everything else felt like it was completely unmanageable. one of the misconceptions about anorexia is people think that anorexics don't like food, or don't think about food, but that was my every waking thought. because as soon as i say to you, you can't have anything, that is the only thing that you can think about.
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so, i was constantly thinking about food, i was constantly totting up calories in my brain, i was constantly thinking of excuses, 01’ ways i could get out of things. and also something that we see with people with anorexia is they tend to binge and purge a lot. so, i was eating whole sausage rolls and stuff, not even chewing them, just getting them down. i've been speaking to tom quinn who is the director of external affairs at beat, the charity involved in this campaign. he explained how people can prepare and keep themselves busy during the festive period. for many of us, it's a holiday that's focused on food, on eating, and so for people who have an illness that's focused on struggle with eating, it can be a really difficult time. also, it's a time, often, where usual routines and structures perhaps aren't quite in place, so it's really important that both people who are suffering and their families sort of plan ahead for this difficult time. is routine one of the things that helps people who are suffering from conditions like anorexia and bulimia, in terms of managing their condition, not somebody throwing them into unexpected situations? exactly.
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so, what we'd suggest is the family get together beforehand and actually plan out the meals, so that the person suffering knows exactly what's coming. we'd also recommend that any perhaps relatives that are coming along are also sensitively spoken to about actually, let's not make it about the food, let's not make comments about how people look, or what they're eating. actually, as much as possible, let's make it a family time but not focused on the meal. the difficulty, kind of twin difficulties that come from that, i suppose, is number one, the house is often full of a lot more people, secondly, people are in the house for a lot longer than they might otherwise be, and thirdly, there is a tendency to kind of snack, to offer things round, to have food around you all the time at christmas. it's quite hard to kind of take those things out, isn't it, without it becoming an issue in itself? that's true, but we would say, as much as possible, try and keep the food perhaps in one room, clear away once the meal has finished, and focus
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on some other activities that are really nice to do around christmas, board games, christmas walk, perhaps see a movie. there are plenty of things families can do that aren't focused on food. if you, or someone you know has been affected by the issues for details of organisations which offer advice and support. sport and for a full round up. good morning. this weekend's premier league fixtures are missing the leaders, liverpool, who are in doha for the final of the club world cup. the champions of europe will play the champions of south america, flamengo, and our reporter 0lly foster is there for us. liverpool are in town. they are behind that rather wonderful skyline behind that rather wonderful skyline behind me. they have grown into this tournament. at the beginning of the weekjurgen klopp said he wasn't sure why we are here, it is december, it is disrupting our winning momentum. they beat
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monterey wednesday night, the semifinal, the mexicans who won their champions league for central and north america. a very late winner, but it was after that that the monterey fa ns was after that that the monterey fans and the team, i thinkjurgen klopp realise the intensity that other continental champions bring to this tournament, he thought, well, they are taking it seriously. as european champions we have a responsibility to try and take this serious. they've had two whole days. they should be at full strength. they should be at full strength. they put out and iffy team against the mexicans, and they will have to be very, very good against flamingo. and theirfans be very, very good against flamingo. and their fans will have to be very good, as well, because they will be massively outnumbered. a0 , 000 brazilian fans and they are really looking forward to this one. —— flamengo. and the club world cup final is live on bbc one later — kick—off is at half past five. arsenal have arrived at goodison park for the early
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premier league kick—off, with freddie ljungberg in charge for the last time before new manager mikel arteta takes over — he'll be watching from the stands today. he's vowed to make major changes at the club, which he feels has lost its way since he left in 2016. he retired as a player and went to manchester city as assistant coach — this is his firstjob as manager and he's very clear on the path he wants to take. we have to try to engage everybody. i have to try to convince the players what i want to do, how i want to do it. they have to start accepting a different process, a different way of thinking. and i want to get all this staff and everybody at the club with the same mindset, you know? we have to build a culture that has to sustain the rest. if we don't have the right culture, there are difficult moments, the tree is going to shake. so myjob is to convince everybody this is how we're going to live. and if you're going to be part of this organisation, this is how it's going to be, and in
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this way. that's one of seven games this afternoon. before that, we have breaking news in the last couple of minutes, carlo ancelotti has been named the new manager at everton. he has been appointed there on a four and a half year deal. he will be at goodison park for saturday's lunchtime kick—off. more on that story on the bbc sport website. scottish premiership leaders celtic host aberdeen today. rangers are just two points behind celtic, after they beat hibernian 3—0 — but hibs will be facing increased pressure to do something about the behaviour of their fans, after more crowd trouble. jermain defoe sealed the win with rangers' third goal, but things turned ugly when hibs' ryan porteous was sent off
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for a reckless challenge on borna barasic. objects including a glass bottle were thrown at barasic as he lay on the ground and a melee in the dugouts led to hibs assistant managerjohn potter and rangers coach tom culshaw being sent to the stands. the england cricket squad has been struck by flu — but the fit players are doing well in theirwarm—up game ahead of the first test against south africa, which starts on boxing day. 0llie pope made 132, as england declared on a56—7. in reply, south africa a are a0—1. neither pope's century norjoe denly‘s yesterday will go on their first—class records, after this three—day match was downgraded, to allow england to use more than 11 players because of the illness in the camp. that's all the sport for now. now for the weather with alina jenkins.
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some parts of england and wales have had almost a month's some parts of england and wales have had almost a months worth of rain injusta had almost a months worth of rain injust a few had almost a months worth of rain in just a few days and with the ground already saturated and more rain in the forecast the flood warnings are continuing to rise. in excess warnings are continuing to rise. in excess of 100 in england, two in wales, all of the details are on our website. let's take a look at the bigger picture for saturday. heavy showers this morning, longer spells of rain now clearing away north and east woods, more persistent rain arriving in parts of wales, central and southern england, late on this afternoon. before then for most, it's an afternoon of sunny spells with a scattering of showers. the fog has been slow to lift across parts of northern ireland, quite a great day here, and the rain starts to settle into south—west england and south wales later this afternoon. temperatures typically 6—9 across the northern half of the uk winds for most are fairly light, but they will start to strengthen across parts of south wales, south—west england
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and along the channel coasts through this evening and later tonight, as this rain starts to push in. some gusty winds particularly around the channel islands and channel coasts. and that rain eventually stretches its way north and eastwards over night, and becomes a little more patchy with time. elsewhere, a mixture of variable cloud, clear spells, one or two showers but also some mist and fog across parts of northern england, scotland and northern ireland. could see a touch of frost across the far north of scotland. most will stay frost free and actually further south, temperatures will hold up to around six or seven. tomorrow, more cloud and rain just clear away from eastern coasts at first, then once it does, some spells of sunshine for most of us. still some showers in the forecast, particularly across northern england and parts of wales and south—west england, but for most, it will be a mainly dry day and temperatures on a par with today, so we're looking at highs typically 6—11. as we go into christmas week, for monday and christmas eve, it will be a mixture of sunny spells but still some showers, particularly the further west you are, and quite blustery, as well, with a noticeable west
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or south westerly wind. as we go into christmas day, we start to see this ridge of high pressure starting to build, so christmas day itself should be mainly dry. there will be some spells of sunshine but we could see a frost in places and also some mist and fog patches. for christmas week, a showery start, dry for a time around christmas day, but later in the week turning wet and windy again. goodbye.
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hello and welcome to dateline london. i'm carrie gracie. this week... it's almost christmas — a moment to examine religion and politics across the globe, starting with the citizenship bill


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