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tv   BBC News  BBC News  September 18, 2021 7:00pm-7:31pm BST

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this is bbc news, the headlines at seven: rising global gas prices: ministers say they've been assured there's no "cause for immediate concern" over the supply of gas, after a meeting with industry leaders — as at least four energy companies are expected to go bust next week. we've already seen four supplier failures in recent weeks, partly as a consequence of that and partly as other features of the market. it's really difficult to tell whether there will be any more. that's one of the reasons that government is talking to industry this weekend. holiday firms say they expect a surge in bookings, after travel restrictions in england are relaxed. france is recalling its ambassadors to australia and the united states,
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in protest over a security deal, which includes the uk. us armed forces apologise for their �*tragic mistake' — after killing ten innocent people, including seven children — in a drone strike during their final days in afghanistan. a month after the taliban takeover in afghanistan, schools are reopening, but not for girls. strictly�*s back — but there's controversy — as reports suggest two of the show�*s professional dancers are refusing to get covid jabs. liverpool remain unbeaten in the premier league this season after sadio mane scored his 100th goal and manchester city lose points at home. that's all in sportsday in half an hour, here on bbc news.
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good evening and welcome to bbc news. the business secretary, kwasi kwarteng, says protecting customers during a time of heightened global gas prices is an �*absolute priority�* for the government. ministers have been holding urgent talks with representatives of the energy industry today — and more discussions about the way forward will take place on monday. there are some warnings the increased costs already affecting some businesses, could also mean higher bills for domestic consumers. it�*s understood that four small energy companies are set to go bust next week. strong global demand is one of the reasons prices are at record highs. here�*s our business correspondent, katy austin. gas is a key source of the energy that heats our homes and powers our industries. since the start of the year, wholesale prices have soared, almost doubling in the uk, prompting the government to hold urgent talks with the energy industry today.
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reasons for the increase include lower wind and solar output, high demand, and reduced supply from russia. the conversations from the government this week are how we get to a short—term crisis, and then how we can transform our industry so that it doesn�*t happen again. the unprecedented costs are already taking their toll — four small energy suppliers have gone bust in the past few days with more set to follow as soon as week. steelmakers, which need a lot of energy, are worried. if they�*re at this price now, what is it going to be like in the winter? if it carried on like this, i�*m fearful, notjust for the steel sector but all energy intensive sectors, and then downstream operations because that is what we do. we are at the start of the supply chain — we sell to manufacturers. high energy prices have already forced two large uk fertiliser plants in the north of england to close — one consequence is a shortage of their crucial by—product carbon dioxide and that could hit food and drink businesses.
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because it�*s used to stun some animals before slaughtering and for meat packing, meat processors fear the process could hit production. it�*s used to extend shelf life through packaging, notjust in meat but in all foods. at a time when we�*re struggling because of the haulage shortages in this country to keep the supply chain running, to actually have a shorter shelf life on the products going under shelves is going to cause even more disruption, so this is a really serious problem for us. the online food delivery company ocado says it now has limited stock of some frozen foods because the squeeze on carbon dioxide means it can�*t get enough dry ice. the trade body representing major supermarkets said the disruption could not have come at a worse time with the lorry driver shortage already causing issues. the rising price of gas is mainly being felt by businesses at the moment but it is likely to feed through in terms of higher bills for consumers at a time when the cost of living is already rising.
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the business secretary kwasi kwarteng says britain can meet demand for gas and that the government does not expect supply emergencies this winter but when it comes to prices there are global factors at play. katy austin, bbc news. let�*s speak to our political correspondent nick eardley who�*s with me... the business sector says protecting customers — the business sector says protecting customers to parity bit what is the government doing? the conversations i've had today — government doing? the conversations i've had today haven't _ government doing? the conversations i've had today haven't thrown - government doing? the conversations i've had today haven't thrown up - i�*ve had today haven�*t thrown up affects. i think that is in part because the government are still trying to figure out how many problems are skewed throughout. the business secretary has been meeting with industry leaders today. after that meeting the message from government is very much supply is not a cause for immediate concern, that there are a diverse range of sources bringing energy into the uk and that supply is not going to be
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interrupted. that said, i think there are some concerns over the impact on business and there are talks going on within the environment and the department which covers food about some suppliers waddling about food packaging being short. there are a few weeks ahead when i think there will be a lot of attention paid to exactly how this pans out. in relation to many of our viewers as to how this will impact in their pockets or not, the answer is yes. there is the energy price cap which ministers hope means many will be speared higher bills at the moment because of this worldwide cap on energy increase, that does not cover everyone and some people feel the impact on those likely to be supply and demand issues which could
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lead to some prices potentially going up. the labour party is arguing the governmentjust doesn�*t prepare for this and there is not enough of a back—up plan and this will have a real impact on peoples pockets at a time when the cost of living is going up. we see national insurance rise and an uplift in universal credit coming to an end so some people will potentially feel a bit of a squeeze because of this with a message from government is don�*t panic and there is enough energy to get through the winter. robert buckley is an energy analyst at cornwall insight and joins us from just outside thetford in norfolk. thank you forjoining us. how serious a problem is this for the uk energy supplies? serious a problem is this for the uk energy sunplies?— serious a problem is this for the uk energy supplies? good evening. it is a very serious _ energy supplies? good evening. it is a very serious problem _
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energy supplies? good evening. it is a very serious problem for— energy supplies? good evening. it is a very serious problem for the - energy supplies? good evening. it is a very serious problem for the uk i a very serious problem for the uk energy supplies. we have been looking at the markets for 20 or 30 years and sadly this is the biggest crisis since we had a liberalised market way back in the last millennium.— market way back in the last millennium. what is it that is causina millennium. what is it that is causing this? _ millennium. what is it that is causing this? what _ millennium. what is it that is causing this? what is - millennium. what is it that is causing this? what is driving | millennium. what is it that is - causing this? what is driving these high prices?— high prices? think people keep talkin: high prices? think people keep talking about _ high prices? think people keep talking about a _ high prices? think people keep talking about a perfect - high prices? think people keep talking about a perfect storm l high prices? think people keep| talking about a perfect storm of increasing demand and supply of gas from china and russia and lower production from wind and solar than perhaps we might have been expecting. so a real combination of factors. the big asian and european problem with an overlay of issues specific to great britain. it sounds as if we're — specific to great britain. it sounds as if we're not _ specific to great britain. it sounds as if we're not really _ specific to great britain. it sounds as if we're not really going - specific to great britain. it sounds as if we're not really going to - specific to great britain. it sounds as if we're not really going to feel| as if we�*re not really going to feel the impact, potentially, yet. we know there are reports that for small energy firms could go bust next week. how likely is that we will see more of them fall by the
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wayside? will see more of them fall by the wa side? ., . , will see more of them fall by the wa side? ., ., , ., wayside? unfortunately i would ex - ect wayside? unfortunately i would exneet them — wayside? unfortunately i would expect them to _ wayside? unfortunately i would expect them to be _ wayside? unfortunately i would expect them to be more - wayside? unfortunately i would expect them to be more than i wayside? unfortunately i would i expect them to be more than the wayside? unfortunately i would - expect them to be more than the four already. there are lots of rumours unfortunately about this. it really is a very difficult market for small suppliers, particularly in the domestic market where the fraser cap that limits the amount they can pay and actually that caps set some pretty perverse incentives to people about not treading with these energy suppliers because people on the other side of the market think they will go bust. so we are living in a world of a self—fulfilling prophecy where a default tariff gap is closing as many problems as it sells. ~ ., , closing as many problems as it sells. ~ . , ., sells. what is the solution here? what can be _ sells. what is the solution here? what can be done? _ sells. what is the solution here? what can be done? from - sells. what is the solution here? what can be done? from what . sells. what is the solution here? - what can be done? from what you're what can be done? from what you�*re saying, it�*s a fairly dire situation, how do we get out of it? i think we have to hope, i am so sure that the secretary of state and the industry leaders are working through contingencies that they can. it is reassuring to be that this
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should be physical supply disruption but we have a pricing mechanism that is very sensitive to small changes in demand and supply and there is a great perception that this has got a way to go yet, unfortunately. we have heard about the potential impact on businesses, some businesses already affected, but how badly will consumers be had by this? or might the domestic default tariff 0r might the domestic default tariff gap will go up by the order of 10% from the 1st of october. it is likely the — from the 1st of october. it is likely the cap _ from the 1st of october. it is likely the cap will _ from the 1st of october. it is likely the cap will go - from the 1st of october. it is likely the cap will go up - likely the cap will go up significantly again from the 1st of april. it is going up, the real price increases are concentrated in the very short—term in the price cap looks at prices over a slight long horizon so those that have been hit hardest at the moment are business customers and i have seen you cover a number of those issues.— a number of those issues. thank you ve much a number of those issues. thank you very much for— a number of those issues. thank you very much for your _ a number of those issues. thank you very much for your analysis - a number of those issues. thank you very much for your analysis there. i
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travel companies say that holiday bookings have surged since yesterday�*s announcement, that foreign travel rules are being relaxed in england. the travel �*traffic light system�* is being replaced with a single �*red list�*. fully vaccinated people will no longer need a pre—departure test before returning from non—red list countries. professor lawrence young is from the university of warwick. he says the new testing regime raises concerns about how new variants will be detected, with the new requirement for fewer tests. that�*s right, this is inevitably going to result in people bringing back more infections from abroad. given the high levels of infection we already have in the country, perhaps that is not much of an issue. the key issue has to be the importation of variants — we know that previous waves of infection have been driven by travellers returning to the uk. look at what we are facing
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with the delta variant that originated in india. we mustn�*t let our guard down, it is really important we keep genomic surveillance going, because we know that some of these variants can affect the efficacy of vaccination. and that is the risk we are running, actually. let�*s take a look at the latest coronavirus figures, and there were 30,141; new infections recorded, in the latest 24—hour period. that means in the last week, there was an average of 29,561 new cases per day. 8068 people were in hospital, across the uk, according to the latest figures, with 164 deaths — that�*s of people who died within 28 days of a positive covid—19 test. the average number of deaths per day in the last week is now 143. 89.3% of people aged 16 or over have had theirfirst jab, while 81.6% are now double vaccinated.
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there are warnings that anger in france over a new security pact signed by britain, the us and australia, could cause a rift within the nato alliance. president macron has taken the unprecedented step, of recalling his ambassadors to australia and america for talks, in the escalating row. the new defence agreement, scuppered a multi—billion pound dealfor the french, to supply australia with submarines. from paris, hugh schofield has more. for the americans, the australians and the british, it�*s a new alliance to ensure stability in the pacific and thwart the strategic ambitions of china. but australia�*s decision to buy nuclear submarines from the us has left the french feeling stunned and humiliated. their contract with australia has been simply binned. 0rdered back home by president macron, the french ambassador to canberra was as polite as he could be about the reasons for france�*s anger.
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i think this has been a huge mistake. a very, very bad handling of the partnership because it was not a contract. it was a partnership. partnerships are supposed to be based on trust. i am with the president of france and that makes me feel better. they laugh. just a few months ago, it was all smiles at the g7 summit in cornwall between presidents biden and macron, and all talk of cooperation and shared challenges. but behind the scenes, the french are convinced that the three english—speaking nations were hatching the plan to cut them out. the fallout is potentially very great. this puts a big rift down the middle of the nato alliance, pushes france towars doing more with other european countries, puts britain very much in the camp of the americans in dealing with the indo pacific, but britain needs a functioning nato alliance. my worry is that this does deep damage to nato going well beyond the diplomatic row over an arms deal. noticeably, here at the french
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foreign ministry, the one ambassador who has not been recalled is the one to london. one reason being put about is that the french regard of the british role in the new pact as being that of a junior partner, but it does also suggest a willingness to keep lines of communication open. the souring of relations is in stark contrast to when president macron visited an australian submarine in 2018. with an election coming early next year, he has, perhaps, to act tough, but his angry reaction has broad support. for most people, it�*s not the government that�*s been humiliated, but france, and it�*s a row that could have major implications for future international security. hugh schofield, bbc news, paris. the headlines on bbc news: rising global gas prices — ministers say they�*ve been assured there�*s no "cause for immediate
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concern" over the supply of gas, after a meeting with industry leaders — as at least 4 energy companies are expected to go bust next week. of gas, after a meeting with industry leaders — holiday firms say they expect a surge in bookings, after travel restrictions in england are relaxed. france is recalling its ambassadors to australia and the united states, in protest over a security deal, which includes the uk. relatives of the family of ten afghan civilians, killed in an american drone strike in kabul last month, say the attack amounted to a war crime. us officials have admitted the air strike, which killed seven children, was a mistake. jeremy bowen has more from kabul. this is all that remains of the toyota corolla that the americans tracked for hours, as they convinced
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themselves — entirely incorrectly — that it was packed with explosives. five of the seven dead children were playing in the car when it was hit. its owner, zemari ahmadi — who they believed, wrongly, was an islamic state bomber — had just driven it home from his work with an american aid organisation. the survivors have moved out. after their terrible loss, they want compensation and resettlement in a safe country. today my message for the usa and all people around the world is the usa made a big mistake and we lost ten members of our family. this was america�*s last act of war before it pulled out of afghanistan, and the decision to fire the missile smacks of panic. and what a legacy. it isn�*t necessarily the parting shot of the americans, because they still have the capacity to hit targets from the air. the us relies increasingly on drones. across the road, the neighbours are still traumatised by what they heard and saw. america�*s latest deadly blunder shows how dangerous its drone strategy can be for civilians.
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the international spotlight has been on a lancashire market town today as senior political figures attended the g7 speakers conference. speaker of the house of commons, sir lindsay hoyle chose to host the event in his home town of chorley from where bbc north west tonight�*s mike stevens reports. astley hall welcomes speaker nancy pelosi! after a night of lancashire hot pot, butter pie and chorley cakes, the delegates arrived on good form. # we all need somebody to lean on.# speakers from all over the world gathered at astley hall to discuss the important issues of the day. hello, nancy!
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and the locals came out to greet them. we are chorley—ites. it's just fantastic and everybody has been wonderful. it's really good for the town. i work at a local school as well - and we've got representatives coming from copper primary, which is really good. i to think nancy pelosi is in chorley. i usually go to washington, dc to see people like that! she�*s come here to see you! not quite me! and the us delegation were equally as impressed. hi, how are you? i�*m ok, i�*m very happy to be here to see the pride that chorley takes in its speaker and the pride that he takes in his constituency. how important are events like this for relationships between the two countries? i think it�*s very important. of course we have a special relationship between the uk and the us but this makes it even more specific and personal. and it's that great bonding that is coming back together. that's why i wanted it in chorley. i want to showcase chorley.
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and what a showcase it was. here they are, here they come. oh, my goodness. there is one on the side as well. mike stevens, bbc north west tonight, in chorley. the us has closed one of its border crossings with mexico after 12,000 migrants crossed into a texas city in the space of a week. officials in the city of del rio said they were finding it increasingly difficult to provide food for the rapidly growing number of undocumented arrivals, mostly from haiti, who now make up a third of the city�*s population. simonjones reports. a makeshift camp that has grown
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at staggering speed, leading to what has been described as a humanitarian crisis. the bridge providing the only shelter from the scorching sun to thousands of migrants, mostly from haiti, seeking a new life in the us. the city�*s mayor says it simply cannot cope. we now have one third of the population of the city of del rio, texas, in a confined space under the city of del rio international bridge. so, that said, i had thought that the alarm was set on monday. this is setting the nuclear bomb alarm that this is no longer sustainable, acceptable. the number of haitians crossing the south—west border into the united states has been rising for months. many have travelled from south america. they had fled there after the devastating earthquake of 2010. but there are now calls for urgent action to prevent the situation become completely unmanageable. the department of defense... well as the director of homeland security... they are in charge of the people that are under that bridge, most of whom are from haiti.
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and they have told us that the people who are under that bridge right now are going to be relocated by the united states department of defense. some are going to arizona, others are going to california. others may be going to laredo, we were told. but there's one thing we know for a fact and that is that there is nothing but _ uncertainty and indecision by the biden administration about exactly what they are going to do. there has been no response yet from the president. he is under pressure to reverse a decision to cancel deportation flights to haiti after another earthquake there this year. but hundreds more migrants are believed to be on their way to texas, posing a major political and humanitarian challenge. simon jones, bbc news.
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in afghanistan, un agencies have urged the taliban to re—open girls schools. secondary schools for boys have reopened, more than a month after the taliban seized power. all male teachers have been ordered back to work. but the taliban have said nothing about reopening secondary schools for girls. the save the children charity say education is a lifeline especially for girls. having stood for more than 60 years, the dorman long tower has been a symbol of teesside�*s industrial heritage for decades. it�*ll be demolished tomorrow — despite a long campaign to save it. ian reeve reports. the posters may be up, but teesside�*s dorman long tower is coming down. just a week after being listed by conservation body historic england, it has been d—listed — this former coal store, part of southbank�*s coke ovens and the former redcar steelworks, found not to be of any great architectural interest and in a state of some disrepair. for tees valley�*s mayor, who controls the site, relief.
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the tower could be in the way of a new wind turbine factory, promisingjobs. we have to prioritise giving people opportunities and jobs, and 2,000 jobs are not to be sniffed at. those people who say that this is a piece of heritage, my argument would be that teesside�*s heritage is in the structures that built the world — one world trade center, the shard, the sydney harbour bridge. those are the things we should be taking pride in. signing off the d—listing of the dorman long tower was the first act of the new culture secretary, nadine dorries. the race is now on to prepare the 1950s tower for demolition early tomorrow morning. three other structures will also come down, but the dorman long tower will be most missed. the former bridge builder a famous name, building amongst other things the sydney harbour bridge. archive: a steamer puts out to sea, while on the roadway a stream - of road traffic glides by, and all around is a web of steel spun by the industry of men. the industry of men on teesside, of course, iron, steel and chemicals defined the area. for some, then, demolition seems like a severing of the link with the glorious industrial past —
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certainly so for lisa and ian, taking a last look today. it�*s a receptacle of so many memories for so many people. here through generations, looking back at their forebears who have worked here, and i don�*t know if we can throw all of that away. we're very proud of it at teesside. you go to a boro match and proudly say we built the world. 0ther thanjust singing songs about it, i think we actually need to — i think we deserve at least part of it's keeping. the tower would have cost £9 million to maintain, so demolition beckons — blown up and brought down early tomorrow morning, ending its life not with a whimper but with a bang. the bbc has refused to comment on reports
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that two of this year�*s strictly come dancing professional dancers, haven�*t been vaccinated against the coronavirus, and that celebrity contestants are reluctant to be paired with them. the broadcaster says the production of the —latest series, which begins tonight on bbc one, has followed strict government guidelines, to ensure the safety of everyone on the show. a short time ago our correspondent aruna iyengar explained how the vaccination status of the two had come to light. it is hugely anticipated and popular. 13 million people tuned in to the last final in december when bill bailey won. now there has been reports in the sun that two of the dancers have refused to be vaccinated. the press officer i spoke to from strictly completely denied that that was the story at all and said basically, they would not confirm or deny that and they really wouldn�*t be able to comment on anybody�*s covid vaccination status. what they did confirm — one participant has tested positive on the show, so they haven�*t confirmed if it is a dancer or
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a participant, contestant. they say the show is following all the covid guidelines, all the participants are being regularly tested. the launch programme which is being shown tonight was recorded last saturday and the positive case was discovered the next day. the first live show will be on the 25th of september, so at this stage it doesn�*t mean the positive tested person will necessarily have to drop out. no partners have been swapped as a result of this and, about the sun newspaper story, they have said it is not a legal requirement to be double jabbed and the programme is following all covid protocols. now it�*s time for a look at the weather with chris another warm day around eastern england where temperatures reached 25 degrees loaned the london area ——
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around the london area. some threatening skies and that we confront here has started to form shows in wales and across the midlands. those storms will push not as we go through the night. a short—lived but intense area of rain will work eastwards towards northern ireland. the best of the weather towards north england working to scotland with a few cracks of thunder and still dry across the east midlands and east anglia in south—east england and becoming drier late at night across western counties of northern ireland. tomorrow an unsettled weather picture with areas of rain pushing across wales, the midlands into scotland. later in the day we will see the rain to an increasingly heavy and thundery as it works into eastern england and becomes particularly slow moving in some areas could see around 30 millimetres or a0 millimetres of rain so the risk of some flooding across eastern england. the weather becoming drier and sunnier across
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many western areas. the week ahead as by and large a quiet start to the new week with sunny spells alone. however later in the week low pressure takes over and the weather will turn wet and windy. it will feel a bit more like art. monday, weather fronts dotted around, one in the south—west and one in the south—east but generally pressure will rise for the time. any rain limited to east anglia in south—east england. a few showers but for many parts of the country a dry picture were temperatures in the high teens to low pictures. 20s. any mist and fog patches tending to left but it will get windier across scotland and northern ireland and a few isolated showers are pushing on towards the afternoon. temperatures still high teens to low 20s but the real change in the weather takes place towards the middle of the week as we start seeing areas of low pressure moving on towards the end of the week those
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of low pressure deep in bringing some heavy rain and strong winds similar to gales on away.


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