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tv   BBC News  BBC News  January 4, 2017 2:00am-2:31am GMT

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a very warm welcome to bbc news, broadcasting to our viewers in north america and around the globe. my name's gavin grey. our top stories: criticised by their president and their voters — republican party politicians reverse plans to strip an ethics watchdog of its powers. and more trump tweets seem to get results. ford decides to invest in the us — and not mexico. a brexit exit — britain's ambassador to the eu resigns — and urges his staff to speak truth to power. republicans in the us congress have withdrawn a controversial initiative to strip an independent congressional ethics watchdog of its powers. the plan, which outraged democrats, also drew criticism from the president elect,
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donald trump, who said it was not a priority. laura trevelyan reports. the house will come to order. as the brand—new congress convened on thursday, rather than celebrating the republicans‘ dominance of washington, lawmakers were the centre of the debate. it is over their behaviour is policed in the name of avoiding corruption. on monday night, republicans in the house of representatives tried to gut the independence of the office of congressional ethics by bringing it under the control of a house committee, prompting an outcry from democrats and government watchdogs. despite the row, it looked like a done deal. until donald trump took to twitter, saying: so republicans had to decide so republicans had to decide whether they wanted to cross mr trump before he had even taken
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the oath of office. some had staked out their positions before the tweets. i voted against this particular amendment because of the oversight language that i thought was ambiguous and needed further clarification. but others were defiant in their call to strip the ethics oversight body of their powers. i think we should have gone forward and i'm going to push for the full abolishment of the oce because they are based on the wrong principles and no one should have to be subjected to public criticism that is generated by an anonymous accusers. the outgoing administration seized on the opportunity to lecture republicans. republicans in congress had revealed a lot about their priorities when the first action they took was to vote in secret to gut the ethical requirements they're subject to. donald trump mounted a hostile takeover of the republican party to become the presidential nominee. and now he has had to remind lawmakers he was elected on a platform to drain the swamp.
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with an ambitious agenda ahead, the relationship between the new republican congress and the president—elect has got off to a shaky start. laura trevelyan reporting. well, as ever, mr trump was busy tweeting on other issues too — criticising general motors for making cars built in mexico available tax—free in the united states. he said such vehicles should be subject to a big border tax. in response, general motors said that all chevrolet cruze sedan models sold in the us are built in the us, at its plant in ohio, and only its cars aimed at global markets are made in mexico. later, ford announced it was cancelling a new $1.6 billion plant in mexico in favour of further investment in flat rock, michigan. the chief executive said the policies of the incoming administration did factor into the decision. a $700 million investment
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and 700 newjobs and the transformation of this plant into one of them world ‘s newest and high—tech manufacturing officers. in orderfor us to invest high—tech manufacturing officers. in order for us to invest in high—tech manufacturing officers. in orderfor us to invest in flat rock's expansion and to cancel building a new plant in mexico. jonathan dropiewski is mayor of flat rock michigan where ford's major investment will take place and he joins us from there now. the decision came as a surprise to the media. was it a surprise to you? it was a surprise. we have heard some rumblings from various folks at ford. we are a pretty small town. it
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was a welcome surprise to us this morning. what will it mean for the town? for the town, it means exactly what mr fields announced. there will be an additional investment of about $700 million in the ford flat rock assembly facility and an additional 700 newjobs coming to flat rock and oui’ 700 newjobs coming to flat rock and our error of michigan which is the good news. how big is the town and how many people know those who work in ford? pretty much everybody knows somebody who works at ford. we are afforded town. the city of a little under 10,000 located at about 15 miles south of the city of detroit. halfway between detroit and ohio. we have a history that dates back to henry ford himself. one of his original gas stations sit near us.
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henry ford himself. one of his original gas stations sit near uslj know you are nonpartisan with this but nevertheless, would this suggests that donald trump's tweets are working? there is always two sides to every story and certainly if there is anything that helps bring investment to the city of flat rockin bring investment to the city of flat rock in the state of michigan, it is good news to us. indeed. man jonathan dropiewski fare from flat rock, michigan, thank you. —— mayor. britain's ambassador to the european union has urged his fellow diplomats to challenge what he calls muddled thinking about britain's departure from the eu. in a letter announcing his resignation, ivan rogers urged staff to speak truth to power and challenge ill—founded arguments. our political correspondent, tom bateman has more. this was a lengthy e—mail. it was a 4—page long e—mail
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that he sent to his team in brussels, quite a lot to say. on one level this is a kind of e—mail from a boss to his team saying, it was great working with you, you're a fantastic bunch, but it went on to convey a sense in which he wants his team to continue the work. these are the comments that are likely to be widely interpreted as a glimpse into what his frustrations are in terms of working to continue the work. these are the comments that are likely to be widely interpreted as a glimpse into what his frustrations are in terms of working for his political masters. he says, "i hope you will continue to challenge ill—founded arguments and muddled thinking and will never be afraid to speak the truth to those in power." he goes on to detail what appears to be some of the challenges ahead when it comes to setting up the team to negotiate brexit. theresa may wants this to get under way by the end march. he says the structure of the negotiating team and the allocating of roles and responsibilities to support
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the team needs rapid resolution. he goes on to talk about the negotiating experience in westminster saying that serious multilateral negotiating experience is in short supply in whitehall. that is not the case in the commission and the council, the structures of the eu where he's suggesting there'e far greater negotiating experience. this letter will be interpreted as an explosive intervention into the debate around brexit and what we have tonight are the allies of sir ivan who are saying he is another person who has been pushed to the margins by those who campained for brexit and in the words of one mp, the people that haven't drunk the brexit kool—aid are being pushed out of this process. on the other hand, those who campaigned for brexit say sir ivan wasn't the right man for thejob. it has been a fast day of reaction. behind the darkened windows, at the prime minister's
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side, as she arrived at last month's eu summit, sir ivan rogers tried to keep a low profile. but his warning that it could take the uk ten years to get a new eu trade deal overshadowed what was already a difficult occasion for theresa may. he was criticised for being too pessimistic. though downing street said he was just relaying the views of other eu members. some who've worked with sir ivan believe his departure is a real loss to the government. the only way we're going to deliver a successful, workable brexit is precisely with the expertise of people like ivan rogers, who's now been forced to the margins, forced to the side lines, because of the angry zeal of brexiteers who just won't accept anyone who says anything different to what they so happen to believe in. theresa may is losing someone who knows the corridors of the eu better than most. he worked for a former british commissioner in brussels. david cameron appointed him as ambassador to the eu in 2013 and he was a key member of the former prime minister's team as he tried to get an agreement on a new relationship with the eu before the referendum.
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in an unusually unspoken tweet, the former top civil servant at the treasury, lord macpherson, said: but leading brexit campaigners are delighted he's gone. sir ivan is part of the establishment that, frankly, haven't accepted the referendum result and are hoping that, frankly, it will never happen. i'm sorry to say, but the foreign office is stuffed full of these people, from top to bottom. for decades, they've been taking britain in completely the wrong direction, and i hope sir ivan‘s departure is followed by many, many more. while downing street is determined to betray a positive brexit message sources who know sir ivan and brussels well says his warnings of the difficulties ahead were dismissed because they didn't fit the narrative and they fear it will be difficult to find a replacement who knows enough about how europe works and is acceptable to ministers in london. and whoever takes over as the uk representative to the eu will play a critical role.
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it's important we have someone in the job as sir ivan was doing and no doubt his successor will do as well, who will report back to the british government and through the government to parliament about what the other member states are saying and thinking because in a negotiation, it really pays to know where the other side is coming from. theresa may will trigger article 50 by the end of march and it won't be easy to get someone in place and ready for the start of those crucial brexit negotiations. stay with us on bbc news, still to come: our reporters on the frontline in yemen. the japanese people are mourning, following the death of emperor hirohito. thousands converged on the imperial palace to pay their respect when it was announced he was dead. good grief.
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after half a century of delighting fans around the world, charlie brown and the rest of the gang are calling it quits. the singer paul simon starts his tour of south africa tomorrow, in spite of protests and violence from some black activist groups. they say international artists should continue to boycott south africa until majority rule is established. teams were trying to scoop up lumps of oil as france recognises it faces an ecological crisis. three weeks ago, the authorities confidently assured these areas that oil from the broken tanker erika would head out to sea. it didn't. the world's tallest skyscraper opens today. the burj dubai has easily overtaken its nearest rivals. this is bbc news. i'm gavin grey. our main headline: republicans in the us congress have ditched plans to reduce the powers of an independent ethics watchdog, after voters and donald trump
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questioned their priorities. let's get more on this now. jesse byrnes is associate editor of the hill newspaper in washington. hejoins us now. thank you he joins us now. thank you for your time today. let me just start by saying, this was meant to be a great new era for the republicans and it has got off to a bad start. it is definitely a rocky start. today was the first day of the new congress. republicans controlling both the house and senate. on the very first day before congress had even gathered into session they called an emergency meeting for this proposal. that sparked a white backlash not only from democrats but the republican incoming president, donald trump. there was told that this committee had sort of rather gone and become a bore and to its own if you believe the critics. ——
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law unto itself. but this was done in an underhanded way, trying to stick it through? they voted monday night, which was a holiday. they brought it into a larger, broader rules package that was being voted on. they did in private behind closed doors. there was not a lot of publicity and it was nearly pushed through without any kind of scrutiny. it was not a surprise to see a huge amount of backlash, of course, before they were even able to ta ke course, before they were even able to take a vote on it, and that backlash amounted to stripping it. there was some speculation over whether this proposal is dead or if they will just postpone whether this proposal is dead or if they willjust postpone it whether this proposal is dead or if they will just postpone it for down they will just postpone it for down the road. at the moment, it is not something they can even touched, because it has been a pr disaster for them. just changing tack, within the last few minutes, donald trump has tweeted again, the intelligence briefing on so—called russian
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hacking was delayed until friday. he then says, perhaps more time needed to build a case. very strange. i don't know if you have seen a tweet. it seems remarkable bit president—elect does not seem to trust the intelligent security agency he is effectively going to have to work with. that's right. there has been some consternation among republicans to see if he would actually come to the side of believing what these intelligence agencies, these 17 intelligence agencies, these 17 intelligence agencies in the us, have actually concluded. this assessment, to the obama administration, has been presented before president obama leaves office, and the thought was to brief the president—elect to have him on the same page as these intelligence officials before he comes into office. obviously, with that week, his weeks of dismissing the intelligence community, it doesn't seem he is moving towards that position, and quite the opposite. he has continued to praise
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russian president vladimir putin, and that is something republican leaders will have to grapple with in the coming months. interesting times ahead. thank you. the turkish parliament has approved a decision to extend by three months the country's state of emergency, which was imposed following the failed military coup attempt in july. the extension comes as turkey reels from a series of deadly attacks, most recently on sunday when a gunman shot dead 39 people. our correspondent mark lowen has been into the nightclub in istanbul where the massacre took place. three days ago, this place was full of joy, of life, of celebration. today, reina nightclub is a crime scene, scarred by terror. we were the only british media allowed in, briefly. —— first british broadcasters. a rare glimpse of where 39 people were killed on new year's eve. imagine the horror as 180 bullets were sprayed here. people jumping into the freezing
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bosphorus to escape. the owners of reina say they will reopen the nightclub. it is a sign of the defiant mood here. yes, people are sombre, yes, they're fearful, but turks have lived with a terror threat for decades, albeit on a smaller scale, and they are determined not to let it defeat them. watch the right—hand side of this footage from the attack. a manjumps over a low fence outside the nightclub to avoid the bullets. then the gunman runs up to the door, shooting his way into reina. that man on the right of the video was nightclub manager ali unal, who had a miraculous escape. translation: i felt bullets explode next to me. i threw myself over the fence but tripped and fell. the bullets went centimetres over my head. when i fell, he must have thought he hit me so he went inside and i heard terrible sounds. the suspect still
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hasn't been caught. new pictures of the suspect have been released, he is still on the run. so—called islamic state called him their brave soldier. the turkish authorities have given no more information about him. special forces were involved specialforces were involved in special forces were involved in a raid in part of istanbul tonight. no arrests were made. they have been others detained, including two foreigners at istanbul airport. it is not clear what went if any they are thought to have had with the attack. those tired of terror when to the scene of the massacre today. a quiet commemoration. tributes were laid and thoughts gathered about how their country can rebuild and how their country can rebuild and how the next generation can regain a sense of safety. i don't want to cry anymore while i am watching the news, you know? it makes me really sad. and i don't want my daughter
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to grow up in this kind of environment, you know? with this news on in the background and everything. i want her to be happy. and so a nervous wait to see if those who protect this country are really closing in on the man who brought horror to new year's eve. mark lowen, bbc news, istanbul. a special annotated edition of adolf hitler's mein kampf has seen strong sales since its launch a year ago. about 85,000 copies of the anti—semitic nazi manifesto have been sold. the decision to republish has been criticised byjewish groups. greg dawson reports. controversial, reviled, and for the past 12 months, back on the shelves in german bookstores. mein kampf, meaning my struggle, set out hitler's anti—semitic ideas before
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he eventually put them into practice. but this new addition, shorn of any nazi insignia, it is intended not as a celebration but a sober reflection on a notorious ma nifesto. sober reflection on a notorious manifesto. its publishers say it has been annotated to highlight hitler's propaganda and mistakes. what we do is to provide a research based commentated critical addition for the first time so that people who are the first time so that people who a re interested the first time so that people who are interested in dealing with the book on a really rational level for the first time can do this. the book was first published in 1925, eight yea rs before was first published in 1925, eight years before hitler came to power. after the nazis were defeated in 1945, allied forces handed the copyright to the state of bavaria which banned further publications. that copyright expired last year to allow this new addition to go on sale. chanting ata time chanting at a time when the far right is seen to have gained new momentum in
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germany, some groups insist the updated version is irresponsible. however, a large tug of the sales figures is down to interest from libraries, schools and academics. the publishers say instead of giving hitler's propaganda a platform, this book helps undermine it. greg dawson, bbc news. in other news: it's being reported that the convicted mass murderer charles manson has been taken to hospital. media reports say that manson, who is in his eighties, has been moved to a hospital about an hour away from california's corcoran state prison where he is being held. an unnamed source told the la times that manson is seriously ill. he's serving a life sentence for his role in the infamous murders of seven people including one unborn child in 1969. a court in france has handed suspended terms to chelsea passengers for abusing a passenger on the paris metro. they have been ordered to pay the victim10,000
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euros in compensation. they had been filmed pushing a black man out of a carriage and shouting, we are racist, before a champions league game in 2015 —— to chelsea fans. in yemen, there's been more fighting, with 11 civilians, including 5 members of one family, reported to have been killed in clashes between pro—government forces and rebels. the conflict pits houthi rebels backed by iran against a coalition led by saudi arabia, which launched an air campaign nearly two years ago. nawal al—mag—hafi has been to the country, and reports on the danger for civilians caught in the middle. this is where the battle to retake the capital begins. the mountains ahead are all that stands between the army and the capture of sana'a. their commander is taking us higher into the frontline positions. he tells me the terrain makes it a naturalfortress for the houthi rebels, and his men are always exposed to death. it is the first time
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an international broadcaster has visited these areas. they are just 70 kilometres from the capital, but, the closer they push into the mountains, the harder the fight becomes. translation: every day we make some progress. we attack and we retake land. people are lost, but at least the land is liberated. the rebels are retreating on a daily basis. but both sides have reached a stalemate. despite arms brought in from the saudi coalition, these fighters from the national army haven't made any major gains. and as they fight for ground, the situation in yemen has deteriorated drastically. as the frontline shifts, landmines have been left behind. the army says the houthi rebels have planted tens and thousands of them
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in military and civilian areas. the scale of the problem makes yemen one of the worst affected countries in the world. despite a lack of training, the army says they have disposed of over 1,300 mines in the past year alone. locals say all of their farmland was mined. this is one of the areas the houthis had control of. the national army and the people pushed them out and as they were doing so the houthis planted landmines all over the fields. this man and his family fled once the fighting started. they thought it was safe to return home. translation: my wife was praying here in the room and my son and daughter were sitting with her. they had lunch, and my son asked my wife to pass him a blanket. as she did so, there was a huge explosion.
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the mine planted in his home killed his wife, 22—year—old son and a eight—year—old daughter. "it hurts to remember what happened", he says. "we just want to forget." the houthis strongly deny use of landmines in civilian areas. they say they only target military vehicles and accuses the coalition of planting their own mines. regardless of who is responsible, the prospect of a solution remains in the distance, and the yemeni people, stuck in the middle, continue to pay the price. plenty more on the yemen conflict on our website. stay with us for the headlines. this is bbc news. hi there.
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our temperatures are seesawing around at the moment. one day relatively mild, the next cold and it's the turn of the north of the uk to have a slab of cold air working in behind. the weather front over the next few hours, tightly packed isobars affecting shetland. gusty winds of up to 50 mph. but the winds will gradually ease. the cold air will be wafting in across scotland and a good part of northern england as we start the day. that's where the lowest temperatures will be. there could be the odd pocket of frost in sheltered parts of the highlands of scotland. this is wednesday morning. across england and wales we have cloud, but easing through the day for many areas. the weak front will bring patchy outbreaks of rain southwards across wales, the midlands and into parts of eastern england. it is patchy and some areas will get almost nothing. to the north of this front, across northern england and to a degree northern ireland and scotland, the cloud will break up. the best of the sunshine in scotland. here, a few wintry showers across shetland and clipping the coast of aberdeenshire, with strong winds still around. the winds will fall
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lighter through the day. showers will be blown down the north sea, but, thanks to the direction of the wind, most showers will stay offshore, coming across eastern parts of norfolk. the mildest air to the south—west. it will turn colder across northern england, northern ireland and scotland, and overnight, as the cloudy skies continue to clear away, bringing clearer skies. a sharp frost this coming night. temperatures in the towns and cities getting well below freezing. in the countryside, we could see those getting down to —6, —7. so it will be a freezing cold start to thursday, with a sharp frost, maybe icy patches. through the day there will be barely a cloud in the sky for many. despite the sunshine, it will feel cold, with temperatures fairly widely between 2—5 celsius. it's all change towards the end of the week. this atlantic system will gradually sink southwards on friday. there is a little wad of less cold air coming southwards along, with a band of cloud and rain, brisk winds too.
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temperatures will be lifting. on friday, through the afternoon, reaching a high of about 10 celsius towards the south—west, maybe 11 for belfast. 8—9 typicalfor parts of england and wales. this weekend it will stay cloudy. rain at times, especially in the north—west. also some brighter spells. the latest headlines from bbc news. i'm gavin grey. republicans in the us congress have withdrawn a controversial initiative to strip an independent ethics watchdog of its powers. the plan, which outraged democrats and other critics, also drew criticism from voters and from the president elect, donald trump, who said it was not a priority. the ford motor company is cancelling plans to build a new $1.6 billion factory in mexico, and will instead invest some of that money in a factory in the us to build new electric and autonomous vehicles. ford said it hoped president trump's tax policies would be beneficial to the company.
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britain's former ambassador to the european union has urged his fellow diplomats to challenge what he calls muddled thinking about brexit. in a letter announcing his unexpected resignation on tuesday, ivan rogers told his staff to continue to speak truth to power — and challenge ill—founded arguments. let's have a look at the morning's papers. the financial times front page looks at the abrupt resignation of britain's ambassador to the eu, sir ivan rogers, and says tensions
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