welcome to bbc news. i'm rich preston. our top stories: russia intensifies its attacks on ukraine's donbas region as its forces advance on the battlefield in the south and east of the country. the outcome of this war depends on ukrainian resilience, on the amount of help its army gets from nato, and president putin's determination to fight on whatever the cost to russia. polls are open in australia's general election, with voters choosing between the incumbent scott morrison and his rival, the labor leader, anthony albanese. the world health organization convenes a meeting to discuss the global rise in monkeypox infections. more than 100 cases are reported across 11 countries outside africa.
with agriculture becoming more high tech and automated, we look at how ethical hackers are helping farmers vulnerable to cyber attacks. double fault for wimbledon, as it's stripped of its ranking points over its decision to ban russian players from this year's championships because of the war in ukraine. welcome to our viewers on pbs in america and around the globe. in ukraine, russian forces have been advancing on the battlefield in the south and east of the country, after suffering weeks of setbacks since their invasion in february. the last few ukrainian defenders of mariupol are finally ending their resistance. now the donbas region is the key focus for russia. it says that what it calls the liberation of luhansk province is nearing completion, and it's intensifying its attacks on
neighbouring donetsk. jeremy bowen sent this report from ukraine. explosions the russians are shelling severodonetsk, as they try to encircle it. more than 100,000 people lived in the city before the invasion. now, it's one of russia's biggest targets. this is russia using the methods it perfected in syria and chechnya. heavy bombardment to try to break the will of its opponents. ukrainian rescue crews can still operate to reach civilians who need to get out. day by day, family by family, russia is grinding forward.
it is a long way to safety, down roads out of severodonetsk that the russians are shelling. they're trying to cut the city off from support, rescue, and reinforcement. children here were born into a war. ukrainians have been fighting russian—backed separatists in donbas since 2014. in moscow, sergei shoigu, the defence minister, held a made—for—tv briefing, designed to back the kremlin�*s message that russia is winning. the minister said their advancing forces would soon take all off luhansk, which is one half of donbas, including severodonetsk. ukrainian combat engineers are trying to slow down
the russian advance, laying charges to blow this bridge on a strategic road. explosion president zelensky started with his good news. translation: the ukrainian i armed forces continue to make progress in liberating the kharkiv region, but the occupiers are trying to further strengthen the pressure in the donbas. it's hell and that's not an overstatement. bombardment of severodonetsk is brutal and meaningless. ukraine's defences in donbas are creaking — they're still not breaking. away from the front lines, life goes on in ukrainian cities. in the end, the outcome of this war depends on ukrainian resilience, on the amount of help its army gets from nato, and president putin's determination to fight on — whatever the cost to russia. jeremy bowen, bbc news, dnipro.
let's get some of the day's other news. finland's leading gas supplier says it's been told deliveries of natural gas from russia will cease from saturday. russia's state—owned gazprom says finland is refusing to comply with moscow's demands that it pay for energy supplies in russian roubles rather than in euros or dollars. a federaljudge in the us state of louisiana has blocked an attempt to lift covid restrictions on immigrants seeking asylum. the checks, known as title 42, were introduced by the trump administration in early 2020. they've been used to deport more than a million migrants since 2020. two us secret service employees have been sent back to america from south korea after reports they were drinking and got into a fight. local police, hotel security, and two other individuals are said to have been involved. both were part of a team preparing for president biden�*s visit. borisjohnson is among the seniorfigures
in the uk government, who are being told that they'll be named in the sue gray report, on lockdown breaches at westminster. those identified have been given until five o'clock on sunday afternoon to respond. many parts of spain could reach the highest temperatures with temperatures up 10—15 degrees. millions of australians are heading to the polls for the country's first election since 2019. it sees prime minister scott morrison go up against one of the country's longest serving politicians, labor leader anthony albanese. these are live pictures from a polling station in sydney. there are tough challenges ahead for whoever�*s successful — the cost of living crisis is squeezing households, and many say climate change is making some parts of australia unliveable. more than 17 million people
are enrolled to vote, which is compulsory for over 18s. our correspondent shaimaa khalil is on bondi beach. these surfers have been really up these surfers have been really up early. you can't see them now, but they have been up for hours, and so have the swimmers. actually, some of them came to line up in their swimsuits. they are of course, not the only ones up early, voters have been lining up to cast their ballots. and it is getting really, really busy right now. but before we talk about the politics, let me get you closer to the action here. this is the famous democracy sausage station, if you will. this is what voters get before or after they have cast their ballots. it's a big, big tradition here. you can get it pretty much whatever you want. but one voter told me it's much, much sweeter once you have voted and cast your ballot, because you feel you
have done something. as you have done something. as you have said, there are many, many issues in this election. the two most prominent ones have been the economy and climate change. now, the government, scott morrison and his coalition, the liberal and nationals, have been urging voters to stick with them. they have been arguing they are the better economy managers, if you will, even though australians are really feeling the bite of the rising cost of living and, of course, the rising interest rates that will affect homebuyers and will affect those with mortgages. the opposition have said it is now time for a change. they have had time, but australians are now worse. the other issue that many have been talking to me about here is climate change. even though it's one of the country's most crucial issues, australia having lived through really big climate disasters, whether it is the catastrophic bushfires or the floods, it has almost been absent from the campaign, because it is
politically very divisive. both major parties have steered clear, but the independent candidates are becoming the biggest story of the election, if you will. they have made that an integral part, a central part of their policy, of their campaigning, and they are hoping to be a real threat to save seats like this one for the governing coalition. shaimaa khalil there. the united states has told the uk and the european union to "lower the temperature" in their dispute over the post—brexit trading rules in northern ireland. senior state department official, derek chollet, warned that the row risked undermining western unity over ukraine. the uk has threatened to unilaterally override elements of the northern ireland protocol it agreed as part of the brexit deal — a move strongly opposed by the eu. we really want to see this resolved. the last thing we believe that we need collectively is a big fight between the uk and the eu, at a moment where we need to be showing a message of unity. so we hope that this issue is resolved, we hope that both sides refrain from unilateral
acts and that they find a way to lower the temperature and resolve this issue. more cases of monkeypox have been reported around the world, with two new cases in australia from travellers who recently returned from europe and several cases also found across north america and canada. the uk has a total of 20 cases, while portugal has five and spain has identified seven. i'm joined now by dr syra madad, an infectious disease epidemiologist in new york city. thank you very much for being with us. goodesy. first of all, what is your reaction to what seems to be a rapid rise in cases? it seems to be a rapid rise in cases? , . ., , , cases? it is certainly very concerning _ cases? it is certainly very concerning as _ cases? it is certainly very concerning as we - cases? it is certainly very concerning as we are - cases? it is certainly very i concerning as we are seeing that there are nearly a dozen countries that are reporting cases of monkey piles where monkeypox is not endemic. we know monkeypox is not a new virus, it has been around for decades. there are thousands of cases every year in the drc,
the democratic republic of the congo, it is unusual is there springing up into multiple nonacademic countries and there is pretty explosive growth of these cases all of a sudden. so we're very early on in this epidemic. i don't think this is going to be a pandemic situation like over 19, we need to be cognizant and visualise and do really vigorous public health measures in contact tracing together is under control. ., ., , , . control. you mentioned public health measures, _ control. you mentioned public health measures, covid - control. you mentioned publicj health measures, covid barely in the rearview mirror, people will be worried about the potential implications, what are some of the measures we should be introducing?- are some of the measures we should be introducing? yes, we have the monkeypox, _ should be introducing? yes, we have the monkeypox, it - should be introducing? yes, we have the monkeypox, it is - should be introducing? yes, we have the monkeypox, it is a - have the monkeypox, it is a rare viral disease, when we talk about transmission, it is through close contact, bodily fluids, saliva, bedding, a person may have been affected has contaminated, so when we talk about prevention it is important that people understand that it is a rare virus, but obviously we have
seen more of it in the community, there is community transmission so be cautious, so the precautions of the same things we take with covid, wearing a mask, making sure we are washing our hands, being cognizant if we're sick, especially if we have swollen lymph nodes and have rushes, a health alert went up by the cdc here in the united states today as well as here in new york city to let providers no there are obviously cases that are being investigated and to let the general public know that if you are sick, if you think you have signs and symptoms, go ahead and seek your healthcare provider to get more advice. you mentioned community transmissibility. are there particular situations or circumstances in which there is virus tends to transmit and spread more quickly?- virus tends to transmit and spread more quickly? yes, so we're still _ spread more quickly? yes, so we're still learning, _ spread more quickly? yes, so we're still learning, the - spread more quickly? yes, so we're still learning, the early| we're still learning, the early stages of this epidemic, as they have mentioned, but close contact certainly is something thatis contact certainly is something that is known. what we're seeing in this particular you know, is that there is a large population of young men, men that have sex with men, where
we have seen these cases. but that doesn't necessarily mean it is only in a population. we are seeing other individuals, regardless of sex and gender, are also getting infected, so it is important we don't marginalise or stigmatise any communities and people are empowered to seek healthcare services. it is important to understand that this is happening in the community, cases are rising, so it is important to be vigilant and educated on what is happening and what to do to protect yourself. and what to do to protect yourself-— and what to do to protect ourself. �* . ., , and what to do to protect ourself. �* _, , ., yourself. and when it comes to that other _ yourself. and when it comes to that other element _ yourself. and when it comes to that other element of - that other element of protection vaccines, we have heard of some people getting the smallpox vaccine, how does that work, why is that effective?— that work, why is that effective? , ., effective? so the smallpox vaccine provides _ effective? so the smallpox vaccine provides cross - vaccine provides cross protection against monkeypox, about 85% effective, so the vaccination strategy has been very effective, there is a silver lining in this, is that once you are symptomatic you are able to become infectious and spread the virus, so
contract tracing and the ring vaccination, we are able to put a lid on this epidemic, but really it is early detection, case reporting, contact tracing, public health measures, and trust in the community is really, really important. what is important as we have the tools, we have the vaccinations, we have some good antiviral medication, so we are not starting from ground zero, we have the tools. it is really important that people understand that we have the resources, it isjust understand that we have the resources, it is just making sure you are seeking help and being vigilant and being cognizant of what is happening. 0k, dr cognizant of what is happening. ok, dr syra madad, it is really good to have your expertise, thank you for sharing with stay with us on bbc news. dtill to come: dancing onto the red carpet — we take a look at how the cannes film festival is going, as it comes to the end of its first week on the french riviera. this morning, an indian air force plane carrying mr gandhi's body landed in delhi. the president of india
walked to the plane to solemnly witness mr gandhi's final return from the political battlefield. ireland has voted overwhelmingly in favour of gay marriage. in doing so, it has become the first country in the world to approve the change in a national referendum. it was a remarkable climax to what was surely the most extraordinary funeral ever given to a pop singer. it's been a peaceful funeral demonstration so far- but suddenly, the police - are tear—gassing the crowd. we don't yet know why. the pre—launch ritual is well—established here. helen was said to be in good spirits, but just a little apprehensive. in the last hour, east timor has become the world's newest nation. it was a bloody birth for a poor country and the challenges ahead are daunting but for now, at least, it is time to celebrate.
hello. this is bbc news. the latest headlines: russia intensifies its attacks on ukraine's donbas region as its forces advance on the battlefield in the south and east of the country. polls are open in australia's general election, with voters choosing between the incumbent scott morrison and his rival, the labor leader, anthony albanese. agriculture is becoming increasingly high—tech and automated, with robots which can pick crops, and driverless tractors. but it also makes the sector vulnerable to cyber attacks, affecting the ability of farmers to bring in harvests. now, the bbc�*s rural affairs correspondent claire marshall has discovered that at least one top agricultural firm is turning to so—called "ethical hackers" for help. an autonomous robot roams the dry earth. this isn't science fiction, it's harvest time in gloucestershire.
this machine guided by artificial intelligence could replace human asparagus pickers. i think this is the future. the uk requires over 30,000 seasonal workers every year, during the season, to harvest the crop, and they can't get that quantity of people any more, so we are developing this to kind of supplement that workforce. now a robot like this could help solve labour shortages, but it raises a whole new set of problems. more and more farm tech is linked to the internet, and the threat from malicious hackers is growing. this is agricultural giant john deere's latest tractor — no human in the driving seat. highly sophisticated, but the company is now working with so—called ethical hackers, who have found vulnerabilities in the organisation's wider operating software. we made contact with one of them, who asked to remain anonymous. he believes a targeted attack on the industry could cause serious damage to food supply systems. so, you could literally stop a harvest in its tracks by getting into all the
relevant systems and tractors? theoretically, yes, and that's what we're trying to prevent. if you can't move your tractor during that time, or if you can't take the crop out of the ground, you can imagine what would happen, it stops the whole thing, everything stops. that's worse case scenario, but that is possible. john deere says the weaknesses identified by the hacker so far could not be practically exploited by cyber criminals, and do not pose a threat to customers or their machines. it said the company's top priority is and always will be to protect our customers, their machines and their data. however, experts warn this is bigger than one company. state—sponsored cyber attacks are a growing threat. hacking into one tractor, yes, you, you could do some damage like that. hacking into fleet of tractors you can do more damage. hacking into a whole organisation and supply chain can really disrupt, actually
destabilise economies. meanwhile, out in the field, even everyday farm machinery uses systems that are vulnerable. unless defences evolve as quickly as the technology, those who produce our food are increasingly at the mercy of cyber criminals. claire marshall, bbc news. to tennis now — and wimbledon has been stripped of its ranking points from the sport's governing bodies. it comes after its decision to ban russian and belarusian players from competing at this summer's championships because of the war in ukraine. players will now receive no ranking points for taking part in wimbledon. bbc sport's lizzie greenwood—hughes has more on the story. the background is the all england lawn tennis association the lta decided to ban russian and belarusian athletes from wimbledon in response to what is happening in ukraine. they decided to do that. it didn't go down particularly
well with the atp or the wta, the men's and women's tour, and itf which look afterjuniors, and they said in their statement that they didn't really want to have to do this but they said they saw no option but to remove atp ranking points from wimbledon for 2022. the event to you and i would be exactly the same, it will still have the big names except the russians including world number two daniil medvedev, but the players wouldn't gain any ranking points, so it is more like an exhibition event, not affiliated to the world tours. it hasn't gone down well with wimbledon, they say they are deeply disappointed and they called it disproportionate in the context of the exceptional and extreme circumstances and damaging to players competing on the tour. the atp, the men's world tour, felt they had no choice
but to bring in some sort of sanction because they didn't agree with the decision by the lawn tennis association to ban all russian athletes and those from belarus from all uk grass court tournaments. this doesn't affect queens, nottingham, birmingham, the other grass court tournaments in the uk, it's just wimbledon. the 12—day cannes film festival, one of the biggest events in the movie industry calendar, is coming to the end of its first week. the organisers have been hoping to see a return to normal after covid—19 forced the cancellation of the festival in 2020 and its postponement last year. tom brook reports from the french riviera. i am very happy to report there is a festive atmosphere in cannes this year, very normal, quite different to the past, very little talk of covid—19. one of the biggest events this week was the arrival in the building behind me of tom cruise, who came here to promote his new hollywood film, top gun maverick, i was very impressed by the film—making, some of the content leaves
a bit to be desired but it made a big impact, it got a standing ovation. i can't quite believe it. the festival people gave him an honorary palme d'or, the highest award of the festival. that was for his body of work over the past a0 years. but cannes isn'tjust about hollywood stars, it is also about serious international cinema. one of the finest films i saw was called tchaikovsky's wife, made by a russian dissident film—maker, about the contortions people in tchaikovsky's life made to deny he was a gay man. and some very sobering films in cannes, the war in ukraine continues to be an ongoing feature of the festival. this morning, i saw a documentary shot in a rather tragic way by a lithuanian film—maker who was killed, allegedly by russian
forces, in april. his fiancee smuggled out the footage and they assembled the film together. it is a grim portrait of a community living amid devastation. it's strange when you come to cannes, you watch a film like that, then you come out here, beautiful mediterranean sunshine, cappuccinos, baguettes, and you are in a different world. it is certainly a lively, inspirational atmosphere. and i have to say, as an assignment, as a journalist, i treasure coming here. don't you, tom. —— don't envy. fans of star wars will recognise the fastest hunk ofjunk in the galaxy, the millennium falcon. but what they might not know — it was the last ship to be built at pembroke dock in south—west wales. now an exhibition will tell the story of how han solo's beloved spaceship was built back in 1979. aled scourfield reports. it was a project so secret
it was codenamed the magic roundabout, but it was also the worst—kept secret in pembroke dock. jeff was part of the team that built the falcon. wasn't allowed to say anything. when i went home to my wife, my two boys were nine and 11, not to say anything outside the house, no? they went to school the following morning and told the whole school, didn't they? the engineers normally work in the petrochemical industry, but in spring 1979 they were building the fastest hunk ofjunk in the galaxy, otherwise known as millennium falcon. it was painstakingly moved to elstree studios for the filming of the empire strikes back, and the scenes of the frozen planet hoth. now the exhibition tells of the last ship built at the
dockyard. like the general plan at perm broke dock, there has been a fair secrecy about the exhibition. but some of us have been lucky enough to have a sneak peek. can i see your identification? to see the people involved still— to see the people involved still live _ to see the people involved still live here, and they are so proud _ still live here, and they are so proud of being involved, it's got— so proud of being involved, it's got to be told in the right— it's got to be told in the right way. the exhibition will open to the public on monday and tell the story of a spaceship built in pembroke dock making it to a galaxy far, far away. aled scourfield reporting there. if you want to keep up with all the stories we're covering, just head to our website — you'll find a live page dedicated to the war in ukraine. and the latest news and backgrounds on the elections in australia. you'll find it all at bbc.com/news — or you can download the bbc news app.
you can reach me on twitter — i'm @ rich preston. please do get in touch. from me and the rest of us in london, thank you and goodbye. the weekend not looking too bad, some sunshine around, feeling pleasantly warm, but we have scattered showers in the forecast too. in fact, it will end up fairly cloudy in northern ireland and western scotland later on saturday. the clouds have been clearing overnight and into the early hours of saturday morning. in fact, it's largely clear across the uk. some murk on the coast in the south—west, just a few showers in the western isles
and may be central scotland. other than that, mostly sunny from the word go. temperatures between nine and 11 degrees. saturday morning, largely bright and sunny across england and wales. northern ireland and western scotland will cloud over with some rain. at apm, the best of the weather across england and wales, with temperatures around 21, just the chance of a shower, an outside chance. most of the cloud in northern ireland, south—western and western scotland, outbreaks of rain as well. although the north we'll have sunny spells, maybe aberdeenshire getting some sunshine, and around 17 degrees. through the afternoon, it'll turn progressively wetter in the western isles. further south, it stays dry in england and wales. one sunday, a weather front blushing north—western parts of the uk, the south and the south—east under the influence of high pressure sitting around holland and germany.
and some warmth being spread in our direction, so temperatures will rise only a bit on sunday across the south and south—east. north—western and western areas will remain cool. we still have the atlantic breeze, showers, may be 15—16 at best. whereas in london and the south—east, temperatures around 23. next week stays relatively settled in the extreme south—east, but for many areas, a case of sunshine and showers.
this is bbc news. the headlines: russia is intensifying its attacks on ukraine's donbas region, as its forces advance on the battlefield in the south and east of the country, after suffering weeks of setbacks since their invasion in february. the last few ukrainian defenders of mariupol are finally ending their resistance. polls are open in australia's general election, with the opposition labor party hoping to end nine years of conservative rule. voters will choose between the incumbent scott morrison and his rival, the labor leader, anthony albanese. whoever wins has tough challenges ahead, including the cost of living and climate change. the world health organization has convened a meeting to discuss the global rise in monkeypox infections. more than 100 cases have been reported across 11 countries outside africa, where