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tv   BBC News  BBC News  July 2, 2020 4:00am-4:31am BST

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this is bbc news — welcome if you're watching here in the uk, on pbs in america or around the globe. i'm mike embley. our top stories: after hundreds of arrests in hong kong, in protests against china's new security laws, up to three million residents could be granted new rights to live and work in the uk. putin poised to keep power — for a very long time. early official results in russia show apparently overwhelming approval for keeping the president in place. the white house claims the intelligence reports that russia paid bounties to the taliban to kill american troops are unverified, even a hoax. the united states strikes a deal to buy almost the worlds and tire supply of a drug that
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helps people recover from covid—19. and fees for the brazilian wildlife as the number of forest fires in the amazon rise over the past year. hello. if anyone in hong kong was wondering what china's new national security law would mean, they didn't have long to wait. protesters took to the streets on the first day of it coming into force, and hundreds of arrests soon followed. most were for public order offences. some were arrested under the new law which carries a possible life sentence for crimes such as calling for independence from mainland china. john sudworth reports. 23 years after china took control of hong kong, it was an anniversary marked with tear gas and arrests.
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familiar scenes, but the stakes for protesters are now so much higher, with the new national security law in force. for hong kong's pro—beijing leaders, though, this was a day to celebrate, with a flag—raising ceremony and a champagne toast with chinese officers. for beijing, this is all about sovereignty, with china denying that the new law breaches its promise to britain to uphold hong kong's freedoms. but the uk government clearly disagrees, and it is now pushing ahead with its plan to offer up to 3 million hong kongers eligible for british national overseas passports, or bnos, a route to citizenship. we will grant bnos five years‘ limited leave to remain, with a right to work or study. after these five years, they'll be able to apply for settled status. and, after a further 12 months with settled status,
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they will be able to apply for citizenship. senior chinese officials, though, had already made it clear they've no time for what they see as foreign meddling. translation: we are making a law concerning a region of china to safeguard its national security. it's none of your business. hong kong's protesters, though, are certain that something fundamental is being lost. i'm angry at the disrespect for human rights that this national security legislation brings. i think, very obviously, the purpose of the law is to change hong kong from rule of law to rule of fear. this photo shows the first man arrested for advocating independence from china. and new police banners were on display, warning that such slogans could constitute secession or subversion — new offences punishable with up to life in prison. john sudworth,
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bbc news, beijing. in response, the us house of representatives has unanimously approved legislation seeking tough sanctions against chinese and hong kong officials involved in human rights abuses — the so—called hong kong autonomy act. house speaker nancy pelosi said the new security law signalled the death of the one country, two systems principle. when beijing announced its intention to pass the so—called national security law, so—called, we were concerned. it was frightening. it is nothing short of an all—out effort to negate the rights of the people of hong kong, in violation of the agreements made under the one country, two systems. we were concerned of what it might be, and it exceeds even those horrors. the law is a brutal, sweeping crackdown against the people of hong kong, intended to destroy the freedoms they were promised.
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preliminary results suggest that voters will overwhelmingly approve vladimir putin's move to change the russian constitution — which would allow him potentially to stay in the kremlin until 2036. first returns suggest his referendum has won a three—to—one majority backing. but his rivals say it's just a blatant power grab. our moscow correspondent, steve rosenberg has the story: in russian polling stations right now, rule number one — put on face masks and gloves. rule number two — if you're vladimir putin, ignore rule number one. the president called this vote to change russia's constitution, to make the country stronger, he says. to protect russia's history and its heroes. to guard its natural resources. to keep the animals happy. but critics say the smiles are a smokescreen for
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the kremlin‘s main objective. putin himself, and his people, they pretend that the major change is about this, about strengthening russia. but the main purpose is to allow mr putin to stay and to occupy the position as a president forever. two terms — it means forever. for the barabanov family, that's a worrying prospect. in a polling station that looks more like a clinic, they voted no to the new constitution, but with little hope of winning. after all, campaigning against the amendments had been banned. and the vote itself lacks independent observers. russia is going the wrong direction. this direction is to dictatorship. i think it's a sad day. there will be less political freedom. that's very bad for us.
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i think, for putin, he's not acting in our best interests, and he needs to step down. critics of the vote say that what is happening here is nothing more than a show, and here's one example. even before polling began, copies of the new constitution were printed and published and available in the shops. it says here on the cover, "valid when the official results are announced." in other words, what that result was going to be was never in doubt. some russians believe that putin forever is a good thing. when an experienced politician is staying in power, especially in a country as difficult as russia, i think it doesn't hurt if he is supported by the people, and that is exactly the case. the president said he would never change the constitution to stay in power. well, never say never. so you could see more of this, only next time, it'll be the new constitution.
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president trump has claimed he was never told by the us secret services about intelligence reports that russia paid afghan taliban militants to kill american soldiers. us media have reported that according to the us intelligence, russian bounties resulted in the deaths of several us servicemen. we never heard about it, because intelligence never found it to be of that level where it would rise to that... when you bring something in to a president, and i see many, many things, and i'm sure i don't see many things that they don't think rose to the occasion — this didn't rise to the occasion. and from what i hear, and i hear it pretty good, the intelligence people didn't even — many of them didn't believe it happened at all. i think it's a hoax. i think it's a hoax by the newspapers and the democrats.
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our north america correspondent david willis has been giving me his reaction to this. well, the white house has been scrambling to deal with this ever since last friday, mike, when the new york times first published these allegations. the new york times has since followed up with more details, more flesh on the bone, if you like. well, today, the national security advisor, robert o'brien, has said that the president wasn't briefed on this particular piece of intelligence because it was uncorroborated at the time. he said that the information was included in the president's daily intelligence briefing, but the career cia officer who was giving that briefing decided not to include it in the mention that — the report that she gave to the president for the simple reason that it was unverified intelligence, and mr o'brien said he supported that decision. now, president trump has described all this as a hoax, made up by the fake news media.
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but the fact is, mike, that it is well—known that the president doesn't, perhaps, pay the closest attention to his daily intelligence briefing, and prefers, on many occasions, to rely on an oral summation and on information he gets from the conservative news media. now, today the white house spokeswoman, kayleigh mcenany, said that the president does indeed read his daily briefings. she attacked the new york times for the leak of this, publishing the leak of this information, and she said the president is the most informed person on planet earth when it comes to the threats we face, and i quote. it is a difficult one for the president to defend himself on, though, because the commander—in—chief above all else is supposed to have the back of the american soldier. this might trouble many people, even some of his die—hard supporters. it might indeed, and also troubling is the fact that this is a briefing, daily briefing, made up of hundreds of pieces
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of raw intelligence which is passed on to the president every morning in written form, and indeed, in president trump's case, in oralform, in a tradition that goes back to harry truman. now, the president, the commander—in—chief, is not the only person who has access to this information. the vice president, senior members of the cabinet, get access to it as well. hence joe biden, the presumptive democratic presidential contender this november, has accused president trump of a dereliction of duty, and he said that when he was in the white house as vice president, both he and barack obama would read the daily intelligence briefing from cover to cover. so we have a lot of democrats piling in on the president. and this is becoming increasingly embarrassing for the white house, given the fact that the former national security adviser, john bolton, has said that he briefed the president in person on this very piece of intelligence about russian bounties as far back as march of last year.
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a new york court has lifted the temporary restraining order against the publication of a book by president trump's niece, according to the washington post, new york times and associated press. that seems to enable the publisher to continue printing and distributing the insider account by mary trump. the restraining order on her seems to be still in place, opening her to possibly being sued for breach of a non—disclosure agreement. at least 2a people have been killed in an armed attack on a drugs rehabilitation centre in mexico. the incident happened in the city of irapuato in the central state of guanajuato. mexican gangs often target clinics where they believe members of rival factions are hiding. the state is a major carmaking hub and has become one of the principal flashpoints of violence in mexico. it's one of the worst attacks since president andres manuel lopez obrador took office 19 months ago, pledging to reduce record levels of violence. but killings
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are at a record high. stay with us on bbc news, still to come: described as a "conservation disaster" as hundreds of elephants are found dead in botswana. china marked its first day of rule in hong kong with a series of spectacular celebrations. a huge firework display was held in the former colony. the chinese president, jiang zemin, said unification was the start of a new era for hong kong. the world's first clone has been produced of an adult mammal. scientists in scotland have produced a sheep called dolly that was cloned in a laboratory using a cell from another sheep. for the first time in 20 years, russian and american spacecraft have docked in orbit at the start of a new era of cooperation in space.
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challenger powered past the bishop rock lighthouse at almost 50 knots, shattering a record that had stood for 3h years. and there was no hiding the sheer elation of richard branson and his crew. this is bbc world news, the latest headlines: police in hong kong have made several arrests under china's new national security laws, on the first day they came into force. preliminary results suggest russians have overwhelmingly backed plans to allow vladimir putin to run for more presidential terms. the us has struck a deal to buy almost the entire global supply of a drug known to help people recover faster from covid—i9.
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remdezivir has been shown to shorten hospital stays for the most seriously ill by about four days. there is concern that the move will undermine international co—operation on covid. other countries have taken part in trials of remdesivir. it was originally an anti—viral against ebola. geraldine, from north london is more than 1000 covid—i9 more than 1000 covid—19 patients who took part in a trial of remdesivir. this is her receiving the drug in april, and she made a rapid recovery and is shocked that the drug has been bought up by the drug has been bought up by the us. i wanted to be part of something that could potentially help everyone and i feel that now, a small percentage of the world ‘s population really will receive any benefit from it in the near future. really disappointing. remdesivir takes months to manufacture so there was
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already a shortage. the deal means that the american pharmaceutical company gilead 01’ pharmaceutical company gilead or reserve nearly all production in the us for us patients. it is a global problem with millions of patients affected worldwide. those patients need access to prove n those patients need access to proven treatments. for one country to dominate the access to every single treatment is beyond unfortunate. there are 110w beyond unfortunate. there are now two drugs which are proven to be effective against covid—19, remdesivir and the steroid dexamethasone. remdesivir costs £1900 per course of treatment. where dexamethasone costs just £5. remdesivir cut the duration of symptoms from 15 to 11 days but is not proven to reduce the risk of dying, whereas dexamethasone cut the risk of dying by one third in the most seriously ill patients. the nhs says it has enough remdesivir
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for patients are currently needed but how long that will last is unclear. but there are ample supplies of dexamethasone, which is now the standard treatment for seriously ill covid—19 patients. dr ashwin vasan is a primary care physician and public health expert at columbia medical centre. i asked him how much of a problem this is, since other drug companies outside the us do hold licences to produce generic copies of remdesivir. that is true and you know, it is clear that we have the largest outbreak. we have the largest outbreak. we have the largest number of cases. there are no signs of it slowing. so it's disappointing but not altogether surprising that the us has behaved in this way. you know, it is sad because patients from ten countries, including the uk participated in the clinical trial of remdesivir and the idea that access to that treatment, which
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many people risk their lives to trial, may not be available to them is truly a comment both on them is truly a comment both on the protectionist and isolationist tendencies of my government but also of a really fundamentally broken global pattern and pharmaceutical system. if the trump administration is prepared to do this, what does it tell us about their likely responsive and effective vaccine was lush — does become available and the chances of a global response to future pandemic with yellow i am terribly worried about the distribution of any potential covid—19 vaccine that could be available potentially at the beginning of next year. we need desperately to have a global framework for procurement of distribution to ensure that in the midst of a raging global pandemic that we are ensuring that all countries are getting access to this vital
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preventative which is incredibly true, especially if we do not plan to close national borders. the idea that somehow one country could somehow one country could somehow get vaccinated and protect itself from incoming virus is just not the case. none of us are truly safe until all of us are truly safe and we have a lot to learn for example from the hiv pandemic when it was not until we had established things like the globalfund established things like the global fund and other procurement mechanisms and regulatory mechanisms that we we re regulatory mechanisms that we were actually able to get antiviral therapy achieve the developed world and other countries you needed it. i'm very worried that when a vaccine is available that we will not have the systems and the efficiency to get it out where it is needed and that will cause unnecessary delays and lingering epidemic. just on remdesivir, how long may it be until supplies of the drug can be produced by other companies outside the us? i am certainly
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encouraged that gilead has issued voluntary licenses for production outside the us. i'm hopeful that countries like the uk and others in europe and elsewhere will employ compulsory licences, should they run out of supply. but i am worried. the united states has bought up the next three months of global supply and it does not appear that generic companies are close to having enough supply to meet their need for the rest of the world so need for the rest of the world so i'm hopeful that gilead will reconsider its purchasing decisions or to him itself in the fall when they are ready with the next tranche of medicines and that we are able to have a little bit more of an equitable system. let's get some of the day's other news: the new zealand health minister, david clark, has resigned after recent controversies in his handling of the covid—19 crisis. he was criticised after breaching strict quarantine rules for travellers returning from overseas and also for ignoring lockdown
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measures by taking his family to the beach. the united states has registered more than 52,000 new covid—19 cases in the past 2a hours — a new one—day record. daily figures from the johns hopkins university show 706 fatalities, bringing the nationwide death toll to 128,000 — that is the lagest figure in the world. hospitalisations are increasing again in several cities, including houston, texas, and phoenix, arizona. police have arrested dozens of people in seattle as they cleared an area taken over by protesters three weeks ago. the city's mayor ordered the move. the protests in seattle began — as in other us cities — in response to the death of george floyd in minneapolis in may. a statue of the civil war general stonewalljackson has been taken down in richmond, virginia. the city's mayor has authorised the removal of all confederate monuments, in response to a long campaign, and specifically the anger triggered by the killing of george floyd. richmond was the capital of the confederacy.
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at least 350 elephants have died in botswana, but why is still a mystery. you may find some of the images coming up, pretty upsetting. the cluster of deaths was first reported in early may this year, in the north of botswana, around the 0kavango delta. by mid june, the number had more than doubled. scientists have described this incident as "completely unprecedented" and a disaster for africa's declining elephant population. botswana's government has ruled out poaching, noting the tusks were not removed. the two most likely causes are poison of some form either laid by people or something that is occurring naturally, such as anthrax which is in the soil. or a disease, a pathogen. either is very concerning, but from a conservation perspective and a public health perspective as there are significant populations
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of people living nearby. in a world of covid—19 were everyone is focused on the fact that diseases can pass from animals and people and can have catastrophic consequences for the global economy, but the conservation situation it is quite complicated in the current administration have gone to great lengths to try and demonstrate to rule people in botswana that they do not put the lives of elephants before the lives of people. they're trying to encourage people to think that the government is looking after them and not solely focusing on wildlife. the problem with that, for me, is that this is not necessarily about a wildlife situation, this is potentially a public health situation and catastrophic for the economy as well. the number of fires in brazil's amazon rainforest has hit a 13—year high for the month ofjune, according to new government data. deforestation levels are also higher this year. conservationists are gravely concerned about the ecosystem, all the more so, while the country is distracted by the coronavirus pandemic.
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freya cole reports. these slow and destructive burn. the amazon rainforest is riddled with fires, and technological disaster, eclipsed by the coronavirus pandemic. —— and ecological. brazil has now reported 60,000 deaths linked to covid—19 and at the same time as witnessing widespread loss of one of the world ‘s most important ecosystems. translation: deforestation in 2020 will be larger than it was in 2019 quite according to data from brazil's government funded space agency, the im pe, there we re space agency, the im pe, there were 22118 buyers in the amazon on this june. that were 22118 buyers in the amazon on thisjune. that is a 20% rise compared to the same time last year. and for the first five months of 2020,
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deforestation is up 34%. translation: the clearing of land already represents a serious health problem. if we have land clearing and covid—19 together, this could bring catastrophic consequences for the residents of the region. the dry season will soon be upon the amazon. fires will increase. this smoke will get worse. it heightens the threat to some of brazil's poorest communities whose livelihoods rely on their health and the health of the rainforest. nasa has released time that footage of the sun, condensed into one hour, they captured 425 million images of the outer layer since february 2010. it reveals the rise and fall in solar activity, eruptions and the transit of mercury and venus across the face of the star.
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more on the news, national and international, any time on the bbc website and on the twitter feed. thank you for watching. hello. our weather is set to serve up some pretty mixed fare in the days ahead. the general theme is that things are unsettled and there will be spells of rain affecting all areas at some stage and it will be pretty windy and our temperatures are looking distinctly lacklustre. if anything, perhaps thursday, one of the quieter days of the three or four ahead. this is the area of low pressure that will come barreling in on friday. thursday, we have a couple of weather fronts working their way south across the uk. cloud and rain to start the day in southern scotland, northern ireland. drifting into northern england.
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through the afternoon we then start to see the front breaking up and the rain turning increasingly into showers. a little bit of warmth in the atmosphere, those showers can really get going through the afternoon across the midlands and eastern england and some heavy and thundery downpours to come. not all areas seeing them, but pretty punchy where they do break out. here are thursday's top temperatures. 12 across northern scotland despite more in the way of sunshine here. in the south, we could get up to 20 degrees but the temperatures of course will plummet if you get caught in a heavy shower. thursday evening, we will see many of those showers dying away, any stray showers from scotland clearing as well but then we look to the west into the early hours of friday for that big area of low pressure starting to show its hand, rain by the end of the night into southwest scotland and northern ireland. overnight lows, about 11 to 1a just about covering it. wind strengthening already first thing on friday. it will be a windy day across the board. a set of weather fronts will mean some fairly persistent rain across the northern half of the uk, just a chance the southeast of england may stay dry throughout despite building cloud here. some of this rain for wales, northern england and northern ireland and scotland is going to be heavy and it will get significant totals by the time the day is out.
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top temperatures, typically in the mid to high teens. feeling cooler in the rain. 21 with a bit of brightness in the southeast. and here is the weekend. low pressure still doing its business sending a series of weather fronts our way. the positioning of those at the moment is quite difficult to pin down but a rough rule of thumb at the moment, it looks like like the wettest of the weather on saturday will be across the southern half of the uk and shifting further north for sunday. it stays unsettled and rather cool even on into next week.
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this is bbc news. the headlines: amid protests in hong kong against the new security laws imposed by china, it's been announced that up to three million residents could be granted rights to live and work in the uk. nearly 400 people were arrested, most for public order offences, some face potentially, a life sentence for calling for independence. early official results suggest that voters apparently will overwhelmingly approve vladimir putin's move to change the russian constitution and allow him to stay in power until 2036. first returns suggest a three—to—one majority. his critics see it as a blatant power grab. the white house has claimed that president trump was never told by the us secret service about intelligence reports that russia paid taliban militants in afghanistan a bounty for killing american soldiers. senior congressional leaders are to be briefed by the directors of intelligence agencies.


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