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tv   Newsday  BBC News  January 14, 2022 1:00am-1:31am GMT

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welcome to newsday, reporting live from singapore, i'm karishma vaswani. the headlines. britain's prince andrew loses his royal and military titles — and will no longer be officially known as his royal highness. this comes a day after a judge in new york ruled that the prince must defend an accusation of sexually assaulting virginia guiffre in a civil court case. the uk's prime minister's political future in the balance as new downing street party allegations come to light. britain's security services issue a rare alert — warning of a chinese agent operating at the heart of westminster trying to influence mps we'll have the latest in the saga gripping
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the world of sport — the australian open starts on monday but novak djokovic could still be deported before he plays and — record high temperatures in australia. weather forecasters say it could get even hotter but is it due to climate change? hello and thanks for joining us: buckingham palace has announced that prince andrew is returning his royal and military titles to queen elizabeth. he will no longer be referred to as his royal highness in any official capacity. it comes just a day
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after prince andrew's lawyers failed to persuade a judge in america to dismiss a civil lawsuit, accusing him of sexually abusing a teenager two decades ago. the duke of york has consistently denied the allegations. buckingham palace says he will continue not to carry out any public duties, and will defend the civil court case as a private citizen. here's our royal correspondent, nicholas witchell. it was a day to take stock. for andrew, seen leaving his home near windsor castle this morning, to ponder the situation in which he now finds himself. a situation in which, for him, none of the options is a good one. the days of this, of standing proudly on the balcony of buckingham palace, in military uniform, the days of this, of standing proudly on the balcony of buckingham palace, in military uniform, alongside his family, are over. his family and particularly his elder brother charles and his nephew, william, had to put aside family feeling. the priority now was the
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family's protection from severe reputational damage. just after five o'clock, buckingham palace issued a short statement regarding the duke of york. with the queen's approval and agreement, the duke of york's military affiliations and royal patronages have been returned to the queen. the duke of york will continue not to undertake any public duties and is defending this case as a private citizen. at the same time, the palace let it be known that andrew would no longer be known as his royal highness. so, what does it all mean? it means we will never see andrew like this again, riding as honorary colonel of the grenadier guards at trooping the colour. he has stepped down by mutual agreement, we are told, from that position and from roles in nearly a dozen other regiments. he is also giving up roles in the royal navy and the raf. in military circles, there was considerable relief. the mp, tobias ellwood, is a former army officer. the royal family has an intimate relationship with the regiments, going back in history, many of them
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are honorary colonels and so forth and it is important that the problems that prince andrew has incurred are not bled over into the regiments that he was representing. from sources close to andrew, we were told that he would fight on. the duke will continue to defend himself against these claims, they said. the claims began more than ten years ago now, with the publication of this photograph of andrew with the then 17—year—old virginia roberts and this photograph of him with the convicted sex offenderjeffrey epstein. in his newsnight interview, andrew said he rued the day he became involved with epstein. and that is the bit that, as it were, i kick myself for, on a daily basis, because it was not something that was becoming of a member of the royal family and we try and uphold the highest standards and practices and i let the side down.
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simple as that. two years on from that interview, andrew, duke of york, second son of the queen, ninth in line to the british throne stands alone. nicholas witchell, bbc news. let's take a look at some other stories in the headlines. a german court has sentenced a former syrian colonel to life in prison, for crimes against humanity. anwar raslan was found guilty of murder, rape and torture committed as part of president assad's crackdown on anti—government demonstrations. the landmark case was brought under the principal of universaljurisdiction, which allows courts to prosecute war crimes committed anywhere in the world. for the first time, the us justice department has brought sedition charges in connection with the storming of the capitol building in washington last january. the founder of a far— right militia, the oath keepers, has been charged along with ten others — with the fbi raiding texas properties
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related to the group. the us supreme court has blocked a key part of president biden�*s strategy to combat the pandemic. it rejected the policy of making covid vaccinations or weekly testing compulsory at firms with over a hundred employees. the court was divided along political lines, with the six conservative judges all deciding against the strategy. there are fresh allegations that parties were held in downing street — at a time when indoor mixing between people from different households was banned in england because of covid—i9. the daily telegraph has reported that one such gathering, involving around 30 people drinking and dancing until the early hours, took place the night before prince philip's funeral, in april. number ten has not denied the claims. there've been further calls for the british prime minister, borisjohnson to step down. our political correspondent,
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alex forsyth reports. there's no easy way to clean the current situation and since first thing no sign of the prime minister. a planned public visit was cancelled because one of his family has covid. while he hunkered down here, others spoke up for him after yesterday's apology. he was ashen faced, he was upset, he was truly genuinely heartfelt sorry for the upset and the rage that people are feeling. he gets it. on the airwaves there was a chorus of loyalty. there is no question in my mind borisjohnson was acting in good faith. with hindsight he regrets going out into the garden. he has apologised very, very clearly. j the cabinet have shown theirsupport, including the chancellor, though from him it was quieter. mr speaker, i want to apologise. for many, yesterday's apologyjust didn't cut it. the mood among tories is dim. some critics are keeping their counsel for now, waiting perhaps to hear
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from their constituencies. stamford in lincolnshire is rock—solid tory turf. long—standing members of the conservative association were as one. if he wants to be remembered as a good prime minister then i think he has to consider, is it the time now to resign. i think it would be better if he just resigned, rather than waiting for a vote of confidence. i think he would get a lot more respect. a lot of the long serving - members in the association have very vocally said that it's time for him to go. - scotland's tory leader has already said the same. his call for borisjohnson to resign caused something of a party row. jacob rees—mogg, as anyone, is entitled to their opinions. i don't happen to agree with them. jacob rees—mogg had called him a lightweight and questioned his loyalty, and now he's suggested lockdown rules might have been too tough at the time of the downing street gathering — asking today... whether all those regulations were proportionate or whether it was too hard
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on people...whether it was too hard on people. labour wasn't impressed. here, frustration at the government is far from fading. whether public or private, there is real anger across the conservative party at borisjohnson, but many mps are waiting for the findings of the official investigation before passing finaljudgement. even when that's published in the next week or so, it's likely it will be the political mood that follows that ultimately determines the prime minister's fate. there's a lot riding on sue gray, the civil servant leading the cabinet office enquiry. even the met police said today, they'd wait for her findings before deciding if there's anything to investigate. labour says the prime minister needs to act. he knowingly misled, lied to parliament, which in itself is a resignation offence under the ministerial code, but we're also calling for him to resign because of the damage
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that he's done to public trust and public confidence in health measures at a crucial time. for now, borisjohnson is in downing street, but make no mistake, this matter is far from closed. alex forsyth, bbc news, westminster. britain's security service — mi5 — has issued a highly unusual alert to members of parliament, warning that a woman working for the chinese state has been seeking to influence uk politicians. it said christine ching kui lee was engaged in political interference on behalf of the chinese communist party. here's our security correspondent, gordon corera: a figure at the heart of westminster, with access to politicians from all parties, even a prime minister. but today lawyer christine lee is accused of working secretly on behalf of the chinese state. in a highly unusual move,
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mi5 today issued this alert to parliamentarians. they were warned that miss lee had been working with an arm of the chinese communist party to covertly interfere in uk politics through establishing links with established and aspiring parliamentarians. the fact that this alert has become public today in the way in which it has, is really a very strong illustration of how our intelligence and security agencies have been working together to really spot and identify this type of activity, activity that could potentially do harm to our country and harm to our democracy. there was no one here today at christine lee's london office and she has not yet responded to the claims. the allegation is that she was funnelling money to politicians, claiming it came from within the uk, when in fact it came from china, all in order to secure influence for the chinese communist party. former labour frontbencher barry gardiner received more than £a00,000 from her overfive years. in a statement today,
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he said he had been liasing with mi5 and he stopped receiving funding for parliamentary researchers in 2020, although miss lee's son was working in mr gardiner�*s office until he resigned today. this is really serious. we won't play this down, we are not running scare stories, i am genuinely concerned and shocked that this has been allowed to happen. we need to understand why, we need to do something about it, but also we have to recognise that the chinese government poses a clear and present danger to us and stop messing around. today's alert came after what i'm told is a lengthy and serious investigation by mi5 here, but christine lee is not being prosecuted. this isn't about spying on the traditional sense of stealing secrets, it's about influence and the judgment was that the best way of disrupting her alleged activities was by issuing this very unusual warning. inside british intelligence, concerns about chinese influence have been growing in recent years.
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today is a sign that those fears could go right to the heart of westminster and we are told to expect more of these warnings in the future. gordon corera, bbc news. you're watching newsday on the bbc. still to come on the programme. a coastal town in western australia has reported record temperatures of fifty— point— seven celsius — we ask what impact the extreme heat is having on the country. day one of operation desert storm to force the iraqis out of kuwait has seen the most intense air attacks since the second world war. tobacco is america's oldest industry, and it's one of its biggest. but the industry is nervous of this report — this may tend to make people want to stop smoking cigarettes. there is not a street that is unaffected. huge parts of kobe were simply
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demolished as buildings crashed into one another. this woman said she'd been given no help and no advice by the authorities. she stood outside the ruins of her business. tens of thousands of black. children in south africa have taken advantage of laws passed by the country's new— multiracial government and enrolled at - formerly—white schools. tonight sees the 96ioth performance of the long—running play, the mousetrap. when they heard of her death today, the management considered whether to cancel tonight's performance, but agatha christie would've been the last person to want such a thing. this is newsday on the bbc. in singapore. our headlines. buckingham palace says prince andrew has returned his military honours and royal patronages to the queen. and, he will no longer use the title his royal highness. new allegations of parties
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in the british prime minister's residence in april have emerged — downing street has not denied the claims. to australia now, where we've been following the sensational row over novak djokovic's arrival ahead of the australian open. the tennis world number one was granted a medical exemption to play, despite being unvaccinated, and has been included in the draw for the tournament which gets underway on monday. australian immigration minister, alex hawke, still holds ministerial powers to cancel the player's visa but is yet to finalise his decision, leaving a cloud of uncertainty around the saga. our correspondent, phil mercer, is covering the story from melbourne. well, novak djokovic has been drawn to play a fellow serb in the first rounds
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and so if he gets to play, that will take place here in melbourne park on monday or tuesday of next week. but, we're still waiting for confirmation either way from the australian government as to whether or not he will be able to stay in the country. it's well over a week that novak djokovic was detained at melbourne international airport. a lot has happened in the meantime, he was in immigration detention, get the visa cancellation overturned by a court on monday and for the last few days, we've been waiting to hear from australia's immigration minister, alex hawke. will he or won't he cancel novak djokovic's visa. there is a lot of speculation in the mediation australia that that decision could happen today. and so, it is all up in the air at the moment. all up in the airfor sure but if that does happen and it is a big "if" here, what options does
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novak djokovic have? if novak djokovic visa is cancelled once again, it would certainly go back to court. he has huge wealth behind him, his legal team, extremely experienced as we saw on the court case earlier this week. of the immigration minister decides to cancel the visa, almost certainly a court case will follow. of course, times of the essence here. it is friday morning here in melbourne and the australian open on monday. so, whichever way this long—running saga is going to turn, it will have to turn pretty quickly given as we say, the first grand slam of the year starts pretty soon here. and against that weather, i do not envy the players or the spectators. thank you for that. just to say, the final question is what's the perception of how this is all playing out
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and australia and how much of the debate has the steward about the treatment between vaccinated and unvaccinated people? this is a massive story, notjust around novak djokovic, but the fact that this story has erupted in the middle of the surging omicron outbreak right across australia. we are seeing record—breaking case numbers right around most of australia and there was a poll on the new site was a poll on the news site suggesting that the vast majority of australians wanted to see novak djokovic deported. this is a country that is facing great fear and anxiety among the virus in the australians will see novak djokovic as a wealthy celebrity who is trying to bend the rules and him and his supporters see things very differently but safe to say, this is a story that has been very keenly watched here as it is far beyond these inclement shores.
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australia has matched its hottest day on record, after a remote coastal town reported temperatures of 123 degrees fahrenheit — or 50.7 celcius. a temperature that high hasn't been seen in australia for 60 years. the country has experienced heat related disasters in recent years — there were devastating bush fires in 2019 and 2020. but is it due to climate change? i asked professor lesley hughes from mc-quarry university to explain why this is happening. well, the world is in a long—term global warming trend and while average temperatures are often what is recorded, long—term trend also means that the incidence of extreme events like hottest ever records are also
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inevitable and that is so piercing in western what we're seeing in western australia at the moment. for the conditions there now and how are people coping with these sorts of temperatures? we think virtually everyone is inside with a air—conditioning if they have it. if your inside and have air conditioning, you can sit it out because being outside and 50 plus degrees is extremely dangerous to human health. but of course, not everyone can afford air conditioning or have access to air conditioning and an article this morning indicating that the localjail doesn't have air conditioning and so the inmates will be suffering a great deal. so, once again, these sorts of extreme climactic events do bring home the fact that some the most vulnerable people in our society are also the most vulnerable to climate change.
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absolutely, leslie. and that is the condition for people. i know there's also been an impact on wildlife and animals in that area. that is right. we're seeing impacts on heat waves over the past decades as well. particularly birds and flying foxes are very vulnerable and even those birds that normally live in really hot and arid climates can suffer mass mortality. when conditions get to be so extreme. especially if they don't have access to supplies of water. heat waves and other sorts of climactic extremes are driving a lot of ecosystem changes, notjust in western australia but places like our great barrier reef which has seen unprecedented bleaching events over the past couple of years. the trial of a prominent sri lankan muslim lawyer,
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hejazz hizbullah, who has been under detention since april 2020, is due to begin later this month. he's facing charges of inciting muslim children against the christian community. but muslim leaders complain they are being discriminated against amid a rising nationalism amongst the country's majority ethnic sinhalese. the bbc�*s anbarasan ethirajan reports from colombo. a family in distress. she has been desperate to get her husband hejazz hizbullah out ofjail. mr hizbullah, a prominent civil rights lawyer, has been imprisoned for 20 months. the government accuses him of hate speech and causing communal disharmony by inciting young muslim children against the christian community. the trial is due to begin injanuary. his wife firmly rejects the charges. he was very outspoken, he was very active in defending muslim rights and minority rights in general. it is a message for anyone who wants to speak about or against racism,
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against discrimination. activists allege the arrest of mr hizbullah is part of the ongoing harassment of the minority communities in recent years. the 2019 easter sunday bombings were a watershed moment. more than 260 people were killed when islamists carried out a series of suicide bombings. since then, activists say some political parties have been whipping up anti—muslim sentiment. for the government, it is a trump card that they keep using to keep their workspace up to 6.9 million. saying that is a threat to the country from islamic extremists. muslim properties and places of worship have come under attack in recent years by the majority ethnic sinhalese mobs. the government wants to ban
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the burqa and otherface coverings in public, citing security concerns. saying it was a sign of religious extremism. rights groups say though anti—muslim sentiment is not new in sri lanka, recent government policies and proposals have been openly hostile towards the minority community. they point out that instead of taking action against those who spread hate speech, the government actually rewards them. he is a buddhist monk known for his anti—muslim comments and is now heading a government legal reform community. legal reform commitee. community leaders say this appointment itself is a slap in the face of what are facing. more than 500 christians groups have been operating in this country with the aim of creating religious problems. where are islamic groups were ardent is leading were ardent in leading the youth of this country. i am talking about issues which have been overlooked by those in responsible positions.
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the government strongly rejects allegations that it is unfairly treating the muslim community. there is no institutionalised, systematic system of policyl of discrimination against any. community but i admit the fact that there are big problems faced by all communities. l including the sinhalese. sri lanka's economy is going through a turbulent period. there is a growing discontent against the spiralling cost of living. muslims don't want to be made a scapegoat to deflect the attention. now — let me make you smile before we go. the emotional reunion of two brothers who were separated by the partition of india — 7a years ago. muhammad siddique and habib, last saw each other in 1947, when british rule ended in india and it was divided into two independent nation states — india and pakistan. incredible — heart warming
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scenes as they met in kartarpur in pakistan. for some of us it's going to be a very foggy start to friday, if you're planning to travel through the morning, take it steady particularly across parts of wales, central and southern england. but for most of us, it should be a sunny start to the day. brought by this area of high pressure which is been hanging around for quite a while. windless conditions too but quite a contrast for the uk and in fact, the breeze is just about coming off the atlantic, across scotland so frost free here and frost free generally for northern ireland too. the frost will be across southern half of england and wales and minus four degrees in a few spots here, it's also where the fog is going to be forming in the centre of this high pressure here and some of that fog will linger into the afternoon but as i say for most
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of us, it is a sunny day. the problem of the high pressure and the windless conditions in london in the southeast will be the pollution. it sometimes happens when you get these very stable conditions with the light winds and the pollutants get trapped in the atmosphere. but for friday, be for london in the southeast. it is a bright day for many of us of us of fresh air and temperatures around five or seven degrees. more of fresh air and temperatures around five or 7 degrees. more of a breeze on saturday which means that some of these pollutants will be blown away, so not quite so bad in the sight of these. and the weather most of the we are going to start off on a foggy note once again and particularly across central and southern parts of england and wales. more of a south—westerly breeze here i think in scotland and northern ireland, so a bit more cloud here and in fact, there's a weather front approaching in a bit of a nuance in a weather heading for the north of the country and a week whether front which will bring
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some spots of rain into sunday for scotland and then eventually some spots of rain on sunday morning in the north of england as this weather front topples around this area of high—pressure that we have in the south. temperatures of ten degrees in london, for some it will be around eight or so. let us summarise all of that. watch out for the fog and on friday morning, quite nasty in places but then after that, the weather isn't looking too bad at all. very stable, weather to come in the coming days.
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