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tv   BBC News  BBC News  August 21, 2021 1:00am-1:31am BST

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this is bbc news i'm lewis vaughanjones. our top stories. despair and danger in afghanistan, as thousands at kabul airport beg for safe passage away from the taliban how long have you been here waiting? until morning. five o'clock. and still am waiting to hear in the last three days, i've been trying to go inside. in they will not let you into the hotel? the embassy told me to come here. yes. president biden says the us has told the taliban — any attack on the afghan evacuation mission would be met with force. nearly a week after the earthquake in haiti victims in the some of hardest hit areas are still waiting for help. we have a special report from cuba where we find out what happened to the hundreds
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of people arrested in the first anti—government protests in decades. plus, keeping busy during an unwanted intermission. how the cast of mamma mia found themselves working different jobs during lockdown — now they're ready to go again. hello and welcome to bbc news. we're drawing to the end of a seismic week for the people of afghanistan, and those who have served there during america's 20—year military involvement. evacuation flights are continuing from the international airport at kabul, with nato officials saying that 18—thousand people have now been airlifted out since the taliban took over. many more are trying desperately to escape. our afghanistan correspondent, secunder kermani and camera operator malik mu—dassir,
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have this report from kabul. get back! panic and chaos close to kabul airport. british soldiers guarding a secure compound for those being evacuated. british passport holders in the crowd, desperately trying to get through. this is my british passport. like this uber driver from west london. he's got kids. we've been waiting. how long have you been here waiting? _ i came morning, five o'clock. still, i'm waiting here. in the last three days, i'm trying to go inside... and they won't letl you into the hotel? even though the embassy has
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told you to come here. - yes, he said i had to go here. even more distressing scenes at the main entrance to the compound. british soldiers trying to keep the crowd back. this is a scene of total and utter chaos, many of the people here don't have any permission to board an evacuation flight but they are so desperate that they just turned up here anyway. that's making it extremely difficult for those who have been told to come here by the british embassy to get through. my family, my newborn baby. amongst those trapped by the crowd, this former british army interpreter. his wife gave birth just two weeks ago and he's deeply worried about the baby. maybe i lose my kid and maybe she is not good. she is not good, my wife. you can't stay here. i can't stay here, look at the situation, look at the dirt on the floor here. and, until now, i'm here since morning, i came here, taliban lashed me on the back.
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most of the people here are in a state of total confusion. they don't know how they can, but just want to leave the country before the evacuation flights end. what makes you think you will be able to travel? this woman says she was a player on the national basketball team. i am so scared, because i'm a girl. my life is in danger. what... as the day goes on, some of those who are meant to be here eventually get through, including the family with the young baby. many others are still struggling, though. even more who want to leave but can't will be left behind. so that's the scene on the ground — meanwhile in washington, president biden has been putting a brave face on a difficult situation. the administration's withdrawal has been met by fierce criticism, on both sides of the political aisle. at the white house today, mr biden deflected those concerns, and instead focused on evacuation, for americans, and
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their afghan allies. we are going to do everything that we can to provide safe evacuation for our afghan allies, partners and afghans who might be targeted because of their association with the united states. but let me be clear, any american who wants to come home, we will get you home. for his take onjoe biden�*s speech, here's our north america editorjon sopel. the thing that struck me most about it was the extent to which the most powerful armed forces are almost entirely dependent on the goodwill of the taliban for this process to unfold in the way that the americans want it to. joe biden said that any american that wants to leave afghanistan is able to do so thanks to the cooperation of the afghans, the taliban. that's not the way journalists on the ground or seeing it. and interestingly, the us defence secretary has briefed lawmakers on capitol hill and told them that americans had been beaten
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trying to get to the airport and then there's the position of the translators and joe biden says they must be able to come out as well. think of the optics of it. you are a translator, you've helped the us armed forces attacked the taliban and you have to present your credentials to the taliban to get to the airport. and that is left people feeling incredibly frustrated and vulnerable. joe biden dismisses all of this and says this is a process, the policy is right. of the chaotic way in which the process has unfolded has left tens of thousands of people, afghans who have helped the americans over the past 20 years, feeling very insecure, abandoned and betrayed. here in the uk, the prime minister says he "absolutely" has confidence in the foreign secretary, dominic raab, who's come under fire for his handling of the crisis
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in afghanistan. he failed to call his afghan counterpart to discuss evacuations, after being advised to do so by officials. mr raab said his priority, at the time, had been dealing with security issues, at kabul airport. here's our political correspondent alex forsyth. arriving in a place of safety, this past week has been a scramble to evacuate brits and afghans who worked with them, planes drafted in to get people out, but could more have been done? the foreign secretary, seen heading to downing street yesterday, has been under pressure... are you going to resign, mr raab? no. ..for not calling his afghan counterpart last week about translators who'd helped foreign forces. tonight, the prime minister said... the whole of the government has been working virtually round—the—clock on the phones to do what we can, and to make sure that we get as many people back as possible. so how did events unfold? last friday, dominic raab was advised to call the afghan foreign minister. he was on holiday in crete. he says the call was delegated to a junior minister because he was prioritising
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security and capacity at the airport on the direct advice of the director and the director general overseeing the crisis response. on saturday, the taliban reached the outskirts of kabul. the foreign secretary was still on holiday. by now no call was made. the government said that was down to the rapidly deteriorating situation. on sunday, the taliban took kabul. the government said that was down to the rapidly deteriorating situation. on sunday, the taliban took kabul. the prime minister chaired a cobra meeting, and the foreign secretary flew back from holiday. the government says securing the airport was the right priority and meant more than 1600 people could be evacuated. though not everyone. it's not safe for us. this interpreter, who we are not identifying, worked with british forces. he has been told he is eligible
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to come to the uk but hasn't had the paperwork so he's hiding in afghanistan. every second i am checking my e—mails. you know? it's not in my control. i have four kids. i am thinking about my wife. i am thinking my life is quite important for them. with the foreign office under pressure, some tory mps have rallied round. supporters of the foreign secretary have said today he is hard—working, and suggested one phone call would not have made a material difference given the pace of events on the ground. but this has become a focal point for frustration, even anger among those who question the government's readiness for and reaction to what has happened in afghanistan. there has been little coordination of security matters across whitehall itself. our foreign policy is reactive not proactive. it is lacking confidence in its ability to lead and lacking coordination. the prime minister, after meeting some of those the government has brought to safety, said the uk's effort over 20 years
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in afghanistan has changed the lives of millions. his actions now could affect the lives of many more. alex forsyth, bbc news, westminster. it's been nearly a week since a powerful earthquake hit southwest haiti, and there are still some areas that have yet to receive any help whatsoever. more than 2000 people are known to have died. an estimated 135—thousand families have been displaced. our correspondent, james clayton, reports now from the small town of les anglais, where an entire parish is in mourning. to get to the small town of les anglais, you have to take the coastal road. the town is two hours from les cayes, and the road snakes through earthquake—scarred villages and even through a river. this is what's left of the town's church. a mass christening was about to begin just before
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the earthquake struck. the church had been filling up with people. dafica had woken up excited. her daughter was one of the dozens of children to be christened that day. translation: the church already had a lot of people inside, - so i was looking for a good place to sit. i put my bag down and just as i was about to sit down, the earthquake struck. everyone started running but each side of the church was full of people. i was holding my baby. i tried to get out of the front. i was so nearly out and that's when it collapsed on me. dafica suffered injuries to her head, back and legs, but survived. her daughter esther died in her arms. translation: we were inseparable. when we went to the church, we were two, but i came back alone. i will never forget her. this is a town
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still in mourning. 22 people died here in the collapse, including many children. this man shows us belongings laid out in the cemetery across the street, including a christening veil, as yet uncollected. "sometimes i ask myself, does god exist?" he says. "it's too much, it's too much." nearly a week after this earthquake and the true scale of the devastation is still revealing itself, and that's why it's feared that the death toll here could rise further. some help has started to arrived here, desperately needed food and clothes. but this earthquake has turned communities upside down. trauma that may never heal. well, james clayton has now made his way to the capital port—au—prince, where he says aid is in short supply. eight is trickling in but that took two hours and we do not
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see any nongovernmental organisations here, there's only one church handing out eight, once again, should be a hive of activity, but there was nothing today there. there was one un helicopter and there was one middle sized plane and i was it and we spoke to a pilot is that there is a bottleneck here but then we went to the airport today and didn't seem like there is much activity there either and there's a big desperation and frustration here that not more food has come, medical supplies have come, and by the way, it is due to rain here later and lots of people just don't even have basic shelter. it's pretty desperate situation and of people are wondering whether or not any help is going to come at all. why the issues here is that the government is an absolute turmoil and the president was assassinated last month and people do not trust ngo here when a lot of them did not cover themselves with glory there.
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so it's very confusing era and we don't know who should be doing what and the result of that is people on the ground actually need that help and theyjust are not getting it. this is bbc news, the latest headlines. thousands of people continue to mass at kabul�*s airport, in the hope of being flown out of afghanistan. it comes amid reports of executions and torture by the taliban president biden says the us has told the taliban — any attack on the afghan evacuation mission would be met quickly and with force. the united states has imposed sanctions on three more cuban officials. washington said the sanctions were in response to supposed violations of human rights during large anti—government protests last month. hundreds of demonstrators are still detained, following what activists say were summary trials. from havana, will grant reports: the 11th ofjuly was a day unlike any other in modern cuba. furious over shortages of food and medicine, blackouts, inflation in the coronavirus pandemic, thousands of protesters made one
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demand loudest of all. liberty, the chant. freedom. change. the police responded with force, led by elite troops called black parades. among them, an estimated 800 people remained injail. they include her sun, even though he was nowhere near the protest at the time. she claims he has yet to have access to a lawyer meaning with lung cancer, the strain on her is obvious. i asked the police why he was being held and where. they would not tell me. she began to publicly call cuba a dictatorship and was arrested and is now facing charges too. many families see their relatives for trade with no lawyer present.
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the government insists the trials were fair and will not comment on individual cases. today, order has been restored in cuba by an ominous and constant security presence. after the pressure building for months finally erupted here, something fundamental appears to have shifted in cu ban society. a combination of fear and respect for the authorities perhaps irreparably weakened and it may prove to be beyond the political skills of the post castro generation of leaders to fully cloth it back. one of the top leaders spent years in the us jail on spying charges. he blames the upper on the six decades long us economic embargo and denies cuba mistreats its detainees. and what i can tell you for sure because you saw yourself in the war has seen it, you will see, you will not see in cuba we see every day in columbia and other places, war and beating people and killing people. the biden administration has talked of giving support
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to the cuban people but putting it to the state department that its refusal to lift the embargo makes a mockery of the policy. this was an embargol for the cuban people, this is the cuban people - themselves making demands of their government - that was driven by a large part, exhaustion with _ the governments and the ability to meet their needs. the site of disenfranchised young men demanding an end to communism was this governments worst nightmare. and the crackdown alienated people further. and unless things improve soon, the authorities here know there'll be more calls change ahead. (pres)here in the uk an inquestjury has found here in the uk in inquestjury has found that the stabbing of two people in south london last year
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by a convicted terrorist, may have been prevented. sudesh amman, who was 20, was freed just days before the attack in streatham, and the jury concluded he could have been sent back to prison, after buying items he used to make a fake suicide belt. amman was eventually shot dead by armed police. here's our home affairs correspondent, daniel sandford. he died before they establish that the suicide belt was fake. police had extreme concerns about the attacker both in regards as extreme as mindset and what he could do if released from prison and that why he was in the right place
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at the right time to stop this becoming a murderous attack. but could it be prevented? he was arrested aged 19 and images found on his computer saw him being jailed. the rules at the time said he had to be released have a way to a sentence. those since changed for terrorism offenders because of his case. in belmarsh prison, if anything, he became more radical, mixing with the manchester bomber, brother. the failed parsons queen, and another who led a plot to blow up another who led a plot to blow up planes of the intelligence system recorded that he wanted to kill the queen, become a suicide bomber and join isis. a pledge of allegiance to the leader of the islamic state group was found in his cell. a senior counterterrorism officer wrote to the prison governor asking if he could delay release but he could not so
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once released he was followed everywhere by arm surveillance officers and they watched as he bought aluminium foil, parcel tape and drinks bottles, items then you could be used to make a fake suicide beltjust like the one he was wearing on the day of the attack. the jury said an opportunity to prevent the attack was missed that night as he could have been recalled to prison because its risks to the public had changed. on the day of the attack he was being tracked through south london by a nine man team of armed surveillance officers. when he went into the store on the high road and officer was only a few metres behind. he stole a knife and ran out of the shop stabbing but not killing two people as he ran along. chased by a pair of surveillance officers, their guns drawn. he turned on then they feared for their lives and opened fire. the jury concluded
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it was a lawful killing. the jury concluded it was a lawful killing. let's look at some of the day's other news. on the one—year anniversary of the poisoning of russian opposition leader alexei navalny, western nations and russia are taking actions against one other. the us and britain have imposed further santions on russian individuals, both for the attack and russia's chemical weapons programme. for their part, russian authorities have now raided more than 500 navalny supporters whose names were leaked online. the head of the us agency for international development has warned that food aid in ethiopia's tigray region will run out this week. samantha power has accused the government in addis ababa of obstructing aid convoys to the area, where a regional conflict is raging. ethiopia insists it's allowing aid into the area, but it must stop weapons from reaching the rebels. china has formally revised its laws to allow couples
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to have up to three children. the plan is to reverse falling birth rates. china abandoned its one—child perfamily policy five years ago. these new measures will include scrapping financial penalties for parents who have more than two children, and offering families more support at work and with childcare. india's taj mahal will re—open for night viewings on saturday for the first time in more than a year. the vast white marble mausoleum in the city of agra is a huge tourist attraction, and viewing it by moonlight is a particular draw. but viewings after dark were cancled in march of last year. from broadway to the west end, and many places in between, theatre productions are gearing back up. but it's been a long year—and—a—half for performers. many of them had to find a way to fill their time, and pay their bills. david sillito,has been speaking to one group of people, who found themselves facing an unexpected career change.the cast of the west end musical, mamma mia.
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he plays "somewhere over the rainbow". it always begins with an overture. a little musical welcome from 93—year—old david dennis to his daily carer, stephen beckett. hey, david, how are you doing? i saw a sign, a care agency was looking for staff. i thought i want to contribute, i want to do something, i can'tjust sit around. # here i go again. # my, my, how can i resist you? people at the care agency, they all gave me five minutes. # waterloo, promised to love... it is a bit of a change from what stephen was doing
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just over a year and a half ago, performing in london's west end as one of the three dads in mamma mia. and stephen's co—stars... richard trinder has been painting and decorating. dad number three has been out on the road. my name is neil, this is gilbert. i normally play harry in the west end version of mamma mia, but now i'm delivering parcels. i'm doing this for something to do as well, i mean, you need to pay the bills and things but to get out of the house, that was the main thing. lockdown is tough, i mean, i'm on my own, i'm not interacting with people, i'm just delivering parcels and getting out each day. here it comes. don't forget to smile. when the theatre closed in march of last year, much of the cast thought they would be back here in a few weeks, a few months at most. 16 months later, they are finally back in the theatre and reflecting back on, like millions of us,
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a year in which life was completely transformed. and it also means it's been farewell to mr dennis. # yes, i was broken hearted... and steven's unexpected pandemic career. how are you going to look back on this year? i'm going to look back on it with gratitude. you know, a lot of people in lockdown, especially in that first wave of lockdown, we were the only people that our clients saw four weeks and weeks, sometimes months on end. this is the last day, are you going to miss him? yes. but he's got my number and i think i've got his somewhere, so we can keep in touch, anyway. he's a good fellow. it's what keeps us going. care, music, friendship. a reminder of our top story.thousands of people continue to mass at kabul�*s airport, in the hope of being flown out of afghanistan. it comes amid reports of executions and torture by the taliban you can reach me on twitter — i'm @ l vaughanjones.
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hello again. for most of us, it's been another cloudy day, and that cloudy theme is one thing that we've noticed a lot actually this month. it's been a particularly dull month so far. but like yesterday, there were a few gaps opening out in the cloud. inverness sitting in one of these, so a bit of sunshine here, but the gaps have been fairly few and far between. the main driver of today's weather, low pressure to our west. we've had this weather front moving into western areas bringing outbreaks of rain, particularly for northern ireland, but we've also seen some rain at times in southwest england and wales as well — bringing these rather dull looking skies into pembrokeshire. the rain's been quite heavy here for a time as well. now, overnight tonight, that rain is going to quite erratically push its way northwards and eastwards.
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it's coming along in pulses. there will be some heavy rain, then it will turn a little bit lighter and drizzly. some mist and fog patches around the hills and the coast as well. it's quite murky for some, and a mild night, temperatures no lower than 16 in both liverpool and for hull as well. now, the weekend is going to start off wet with these weather fronts slowly progressing eastwards. sunday, the better of the two days of the weekend, in that, the rain will ease to a mixture of sunshine and showers. saturday's forecast then, we've got the rain with us. and the rain is probably going to be heaviest, really, across wales, northern england, perhaps the midlands as well. many of us will see some pulses of rain through the day, perhaps northern scotland one of the drier areas, and later in the afternoon, wales and parts of northern ireland and southwest england brighten up with some sunshine. but there will be some heavy showers following in here. temperatures generally high teens, might reach about 22 celsius across eastern most
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areas of england, but for most, temperatures a bit below par. now, for sunday, as i say, this is going to be the better of the two days of the weekend. cloud will tend to thin and break up with some sunny spells coming out. there will be some heavy showers around, though, maybe a few thunderstorms. these are likely to affect parts of central and eastern scotland, central and eastern england, drier southwest england, wales, northern ireland, western scotland, for the most part with some sunny spells. but, there is a big change in the weather on the way for next week, as this high pressure builds in. winds coming down from scandinavia, so no heat wave on the way, the hottest air stays in southern europe and around about the mediterranean, but that said, next week is still looking fine. and in the august sunshine that we'll have quite a bit of next week, it's going to be a pleasantly warm with temperature generally for most areas reaching the low 20s, perhaps something a bit cloudier towards
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this is bbc news, the headlines: thousands of people continue to mass at kabul�*s airport, in the hope of being flown out of the afghanistan. nato says so far, more than 18,000 have been airlifted out this week. it comes amid reports of executions and torture by the taliban. president biden says the us has made clear to the taliban that any attack on the afghan evacuation mission would be met quickly and with force. mr biden said he was in constant contact with the taliban. there's been anger in haiti over the slow delivery of aid to areas affected by saturday's earthquake. damage to roads is hampering access. more than 2,000 people died in the quake. it also injured more than 12,000 people and the casualty toll is expected to rise as rescue efforts continue.


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