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tv   BBC News  BBC News  January 31, 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 is mike embley. our top stories: an unexpected and dramatic challenge to president trump's travel ban. the acting us attorney general tells justice department lawyers not to defend it in court. there is a growing outcry against the immigration clampdown, from the public, politicians, and now former president obama. police in quebec charge a french—canadian student with shooting dead six muslim worshippers at a mosque. and a special bbc investigation into the traffickers selling baby chimpanzees from west africa. the real tragedy of this trade is that to get one infant chimpanzee out of the jungle, all of the adults and its family have to be killed. a dramatic setback for president trump's executive order
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banning people from seven muslim—majority countries coming to the united states. it is already the target of widespread protests in the us and beyond, and now the acting us attorney general has told justice department lawyers not to defend it in court. in a letter, sally yates says she is not convinced it is lawful. sally yates is a barack obama appointee. she was asked to stay on temporarily by president trump, but is due to be replaced within days, depending on senate confirmation by mr trump's pick, jeff sessions. and another very unusual intervention. only 11 days after he left office, former president obama has weighed in to the controversy. his spokesman said american values are at stake, and praised protesters against the executive order. the statement says the former president is heartened by the level of engagement around the country, and says he fundamentally disagrees with the notion of discriminating against individuals because of their faith or religion. and, in the past few hours,
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senior democratic politicians have gathered at a rally outside the supreme court. house minority leader nancy pelosi and senate leader chuck schumer called mr trump's executive order un—american. all of us take an oath of office to protect and defend the constitution of the united states. what the president has done is not in the interest of security. it is reckless. it is reckless and rash. america, for its history, has been a shining beacon, and it has said we welcome you if you are oppressed because of your religion, because of your political beliefs, because of who you are. the lady in the harbour in the city in which i live holds a wonderful
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torch. that torch has stood for the greatness of america, to all americans, and to the citizens of the world. we will not let this evil order extinguish that great torch. iamjoined by i am joined by an academic from ithaca, new york. it is clear from your social media site that you up broadly in favour of what mr trump is trying to do. first of all, on the legal challenges here, what are the legal challenges here, what are the challenges? well, i don't think ultimately the chances are very good. i think that the president, any president, when it comes to matters relating to admitting people to the country, immigration in general, has among the oldest authority that a president can have. soi authority that a president can have.
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so i don't think that ultimately those challenges are going to hold up. barack obama has said that he fundamentally disagrees with discrimination based on religion. any band that does discriminate against people because of their faith would be unconstitutional, wouldn't it? if it actually do is cremated on the basis of faith, that could be unconstitutional. but that doesn't mean that this executive order discriminates on the basis of faith. because there are neutral, non— faith —based bases for this temporary 90—day delay in processing applications from seven countries. namely, these are the seven countries that the obama administration itself identified as posing the greatest risk of foreign fighters, and that was actually in the department of homeland security member in fabric 2016, of foreign fighters entering the us —— february
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2016. so there is a rational basis, one recognised by the prior administration, upon which this administration isn't permanently barring people from those countries, but is saying during a 90 day review period it is no longer going to allow people in under the users. so it isa allow people in under the users. so it is a very limited action. it had a rational basis independent of religion or ethnicity —— under visas. so i don't see how a court ultimately is not going to say the president has the authority to do that. just looking at the figures, just from the moment, in the past a0 yea rs, just from the moment, in the past a0 years, you will know this, there has not been a single fatal terrorist attack in the us by anyone belonging to the seven nationalities targeted by these orders. it would have prevented the nine /11 attackers, they are not on the list, and rudy giuliani himself on tv mr trump asked him for a muslim band. he said that, made it quite explicit in his
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campaign rhetoric. mr trump said to ruijude —— campaign rhetoric. mr trump said to rui jude —— rudy campaign rhetoric. mr trump said to ruijude —— rudy giuliani, get yourself a panel of lawyers, find yourself a panel of lawyers, find yourself accommodation of words to make this legal. the motivation is quite clear. well, i don't know if thatis quite clear. well, i don't know if that is actually, the motivation is clear as to what is actually done. rudy giuliani said that when this first issue came up, that was the discussion. but i don't think you said when that was an if it was when it first came up, that was over a year ago. so this does not apply to the muslim world in general, it applies to seven countries. and in terms of whether people from those countries had conducted past attacks, that is not the point of the security measures that are taking in immigration. it is meant to prevent foreign fighters in a new environment, one that didn't exist ten yea rs environment, one that didn't exist ten years ago, being infiltrated into the us, much as they have been infiltrated into europe. and isis's stated goal is to infiltrate people. that is not something that existed several years ago. so i think it is apples and oranges to sayjust
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because no one from these countries has previously attacked that there isn't a real threat. and if you are saying that is a victory by donald trump, why would the state, would the department of homeland security, in 2006, when president obama was in office, why would they have identified these seven countries as representing a —— unique threats to the nation. so i don't agree with that. getting back to your entry to me, i never set that. getting back to your entry to me, i neverset on that. getting back to your entry to me, i never set on the website i was broadly in favour of this. what i said is that a lot of the excuses and claims being made in the media are not accurate. i think there are problems with this order. i think it could have been handled better. i think in some ways it could have been more narrow. but that doesn't mean that the lies being peddled, that this is a muslim ban, that this isa that this is a muslim ban, that this is a travel ban, that it is the end of immigration, a lot of people are saying, it is a 90—day pause for seven countries who have previously
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been identified as a unique risk and threat to the united states, while they review the security procedures to prevent future attacks. so i don't think that is unreasonable, andi don't think that is unreasonable, and i don't think it constitutes unconstitutional discrimination. fairenough, unconstitutional discrimination. fair enough, very good to talk to you. thank you very much. mr trump's executive order has led to demonstrations outside the us, including here in london. an estimated 10,000 people gathered outside downing street, and there were similar, smaller protests across the uk. more than 1.5 million people have signed a petition calling for the uk to not extend an official state visit to donald trump. there has been plenty of outcry against mr trump's travel ban across the middle east. in iraq, for example, the parliament has called for a ban on americans, and in lebanon there has been despair among refugees fleeing the war in neighbouring syria. last year, the us admitted some12,000 syrians. 0ur middle east correspondent alex forsyth has spent the day with some of those affected. baby crying.
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a desperate sound, but all too familiar at the un's refugee reception in beirut. this is where hundreds of thousands of those who have fled syria come for aid and advice. this morning, along with the usual queues and quiet resignation, there was added frustration, now syrian refugees have been banned from the us. for two years, yasser mohamad has wanted to find a new country in which he can settle, but said today, even if given the chance, he would never go to america. translation: i don't want to go to a racist country that discriminates against arabs and muslims. for others, it is another hope fading, like wahida ismail, desperate to leave lebanon and get medical help for her child, who has cancer. "as a syrian, ijust wanted to be treated like any other human being," she told me, welcomed in a country that keeps my rights and protects my children."
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only a fraction of syrian refugees would have been eligible for resettlement in the united states, those deemed to be the most vulnerable. yet still, here, news of president trump's executive order has increased the sense of hopelessness. many feel another door is now closed to them. elsewhere there is anger, as cases emerge of legitimate residents being stopped from returning to america, like ali diwan. from iraq, he has lived near la for three years. but he is stuck in jordan, after leaving the us for work. yesterday he missed his six—year—old daughter's birthday. translation: today i went to buy a new ticket, but companies advised me not to travel. travellers are still trapped in airports, since yesterday. as the confusion is played out across the middle east, the scale of those affected is still unclear. world—renowned clarinet player kinan azmeh is in lebanon for a concert. born in syria, living in new york,
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one of many unsure if he will be able to return. i haven't been able to go back to damascus for a few years. and now this other home, and all my friends, you know, and family, also in the us, now that's also been blocked. the consequences of america's immigration changes are echoing around the region, in many places leaving behind questions and growing discord. alex forsyth, bbc news, beirut. canadian police have charged a french—canadian student over the shooting dead of six muslim worshippers at a mosque in quebec. a number of others people were injured in the attack, and five remain in a critical condition. alexandre bissonnette made a brief appearance in court, in handcuffs. he faces six counts of murder and five of attempted murder. from quebec city, aleem maqbool reports. it is a quiet, suburban corner of quebec city that was the site of this bloodshed.
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a gunman burst into the islamic cultural centre during evening prayers, spraying the worshippers with bullets. police say the victims were all men aged between 35 and 60, including, according to locals, a university professor, and the owner of this butcher's shop, close to where the attack took place. translation: quebec is the most secure city. for me, it's beautiful. so, to have an attack like this here... police said one man was detained close to the scene, but he is now thought to have been just a witness. the suspected gunman fled in his car across a bridge in the centre of this city, but pulled over and called police to turn himself in. he waited, and appears to have been detained without a struggle. he has now been named as alexandre bissonnette, in his late 20s. well, the police haven't talked about a motive as yet. but, even though this is known to be a peaceful place,
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with very little crime, that same mosque here in quebec city has been targeted with islamophobia before. injune, during during the muslim holy month of ramadan, a pig's head was left on the doorstep, but mosque leaders say there were no threats of late. prime ministerjustin trudeau called the killing a terrorist attack on muslims. to the more than one million canadians who profess the muslim faith, i want to say directly, we are with you. 36 million hearts are breaking with yours. and know that we value you. in recent days, the prime minister stood up against some of the anti—islamic rhetoric coming from the us, saying canada would continue to welcome those fleeing persecution, no matter their faith. aleem maqbool, bbc news, quebec city. jessica murphy is a news editor with bbc news in canada. she joins us from quebec.
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what more is emerging on this? at the moment there really isn't that much to learn about alexandre bissonnette. as you know, there are 11 charges, six first—degree murder, five attempted murder. we know that he isa five attempted murder. we know that he is a 26—year—old quebecois. he is studying in quebec city. he did not enter a plea when he appeared recently in court and began, police so recently in court and began, police so farare recently in court and began, police so far are offering no motives. mr alexandre bissonnette himself not speaking at his court hearing. that said, there are some hints, suggestions, perhaps, as to why he may have... allegedly may have attacked this mosque, reports that on facebook, for example, he liked french national front leader marine le pen, donald trump on facebook as well. and that is not a lot of
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information about him, it has even now sparked an early discussion about right—wing politics here in quebec. jessica, we have some problems with the sound quality that. we will leave it for a moment. thanks very much. stay with us on bbc news. the shuttle challenger exploded soon after liftoff. there were seven astronauts on board, one of them a woman school teacher. all of them are believed to have been killed. by the evening tahrir square, the heart of official cairo, was in the hands of the demonstrators. they were using the word "revolution". the earthquake singled out buildings, and brought them down in seconds. tonight, the search for any survivors has an increasing desperation about it as the hours pass. the new government is firmly in control of the entire republic of uganda. moscow got its first taste
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of western fast food, as mcdonald's opened its biggest restaurant, in pushkin square. but the hundreds of muscovites who queued up today won't find it cheap, with a big mac costing half a day's wages for the average russian. this is bbc news. i'm mike embley. our main headline: in a challenge to president trump's travel ban, attorney general has told justice department lawyers not to defend the measures in court. let's stay with that story. live now to the bbc‘s david willis in washington. david, this is almost an unprecedented situation. you have a barack obama appointees saying we're not going to defend this, we don't think it's lawful, he is due to be replaced byjeff sessions and that
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confirmation for him will become a referendum on this order?m confirmation for him will become a referendum on this order? it will. what this also highlights is the lack of experience of the trump administration people, basically in bringing this executive order to life. because have they waited just a few days until senatorjeff sessions is warning as attorney general they wouldn't have had this embarrassing headline with sally yates, the existing attorney general, a barack obama appointees saying that she will not be instructing the justice department to fight any challenges to the executive order in court because she's not convinced that it is lawful. when you bear in mind we've had diplomats coming out and expressing their concern about this executive order and you've had people from the departments that will actually be responsible for implementing these measures, saying they weren't aware of them in
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advance, they were taken by surprise, you have to conclude that there are... these are signs that there are... these are signs that the administration perhaps is taking a while to bed itself into put it mildly. talking of those hundreds of american diplomats who have expressed their unhappiness with the order, saying it won't achieve its aims and will likely be counter—productive. they were using a protected dissent channel where they can express dissent, but sean spicer said if they don't like it they can leave. a characteristically robust approach on behalf of the trump administration, if you don't like it, there's the door. but you're right, this is a private channel for dissent and apparently a large number of american diplomats had basically said that they thought these measures could prove counter—productive to the fight against terrorism. they could antagonise america's allies and potentially eradicate any prospect
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of getting the cooperation that is needed from people from the countries involved. you have this gathering storm if you like. meanwhile, donald trump himself continuing to insist these measures are continuing to insist these measures a re necessary to continuing to insist these measures are necessary to protect the country and keep it safe from the threat of terrorism. david, just across the newswi res terrorism. david, just across the newswires we are hearing donald trump has fired the us attorney general, sally yates, named the us attorney general from the district of virginia as acting attorney general. clearly that gets rid of his legal problem but not his political problems? provided of course the new person at the top is willing to do what he wants them to do. it is a very interesting way of governing. particularly in keeping with the donald trump approach, which seems to be to get rid of opposition no matter where it might come from. we're hearing a lot of
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opposition from democrats and of course later today, tuesday in the united states, jeff sessions, who is after a ll united states, jeff sessions, who is after all the main pic for attorney general by donald trump, is likely to resume the process of being confirmed in that position when he goes before the senate committee, one of the senate committees tomorrow. so the process in some confusion and this executive order really is causing confusion all over the place. briefly, a white house press briefing has been known as eccentric for the brief while the president has been in office, his spokesman using the attack on muslims in quebec tonight to justify administration policies targeting muslims. yes. they make the point as well, don't they, that this is a very small number of people who were detained over the weekend and they
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continue to insist it is the media stirring this up. this is a familiar refrain, referring over the last ten days or so that the media is up to mischief and it is highlighting things that really don't deserve to be highlighted. the point mr spicer is making about those american diplomats, many of whom have had long years of service to the united states overseas, i think we'll go down really rather badly. david, thank you very much for that. encase you've just joined thank you very much for that. encase you'vejustjoined us, we should reca ptu re you'vejustjoined us, we should recapture the acting attorney generalfor the us, sally yates, a barack obama appointee, standing in temporarily while donald trump found a replacement, she has said the justice department will not defend his executive order because she wasn't sure it was lawful. we have now heard donald trump has fired sally yates and has appointed diana bore wednesday, the us attorney for
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the eastern district of virginia as the eastern district of virginia as the new acting attorney general. we we re the new acting attorney general. we were expecting the next attorney general to bejeff sessions, he was expected to be confirmed, but it was looking likely to be a tricky hearing because it would be a very big and heated discussion on the executive order. much more on all this to come. a global network of traffickers selling baby chimpanzees has been exposed in a bbc news investigation. the tiny animals are seized from the wild in west africa and sold as pets in places as far away as the gulf states and china. according to the united nations, at least a00 animals have been a baby chimpanzee. captured from a jungle in west africa. orphaned after poachers killed its family and now looking for reassurance. during a year—long investigation, we were sent these videos by dealers offering to sell the tiny animals.
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our research led us to ivory coast and a secret animal—trafficking network. a dealer called ibrahima traore sent us a video of a crate specially made for wildlife smuggling. animals that you can trade hiding a chimpanzee down below. he then met a colleague of ours who was pretending to be a buyer and using a hidden camera. ibrahima spelled out his prices in dollars. our undercover colleague went to see the animal for himself. our colleague took pictures. his cover story was that he needed proof for a client in indonesia. at this point, the police moved in. ibrahima traore was arrested.
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he's facing charges related to wildlife trafficking along with his uncle, mohammed. the police then ordered everyone onto the ground. and they found the chimpanzee, a young male. so the police have just made all of these arrests. it's pretty edgy here, the atmosphere, and it's all about this, a baby chimpanzee taken from the jungle. the real tragedy of this trade is that to get one infant chimpanzee out of the jungle, all of the adults in its family have to be killed. that's as many as ten adults slaughtered just to get one chimp here ready for trade. we'd been advised not to touch the chimpanzee until a vet had checked him. so, for a few agonising
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moments, he was all alone. before being handed over to wildlife officials. the detective in charge said trafficking threatened the survival of chimpanzees. the baby chimp is now in safe hands. he's been given a name, nemli junior. and the traffickers trying to sell him are awaiting trial. david shukman, bbc news, in ivory coast. that's it for now. thank you so much for watching. hello.
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in a week when our weather's turning wetter and windier, let's celebrate a bit of sunshine and the best of that again on monday was in scotland. contrast scenes like this with the view on the south coast of england and for tuesday we're going to narrow these differences. it's this sort of weather that's going to win out as this weather system works very slowly from west to east across the uk. not a huge amount of sunshine on offer but plenty of cloud and most of us will see rain at some stage. quite a wet start to the day in northern ireland although here something a bit drier and brighter for the afternoon. down the eastern side of england where you start dry eventually we'll get to see some outbreaks of rain moving in here. a lot of the rain will be light but some heavy bursts in scotland, especially in the southern iplands and grampians. maybe some highest routes could be a little bit slippy as we see some sleet and snow and rain falling onto frozen ground but conditions will gradually improve. a lot of the cloud is low cloud so there's hill fog around too. eastern england starting dry,
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many of us here, but cloudy and feeling quite cool in that breeze. where we've got milder air already into south—west england, starting to move through more of wales as well, eventually into northern ireland. but it is a messy picture for tuesday as we take outbreaks of rain gradually further east. again the heavy bursts into scotland and drier and brighter weather for northern ireland into the afternoon. again all the while taking something a little bit milder into the uk from the south—west. 11 in belfast. but it is going to feel qute cool in eastern scotland and eastern england with the cloud, outbreaks of rain and the breeze. more rain to come in parts of england and wales especially on tuesday night and into wednesday morning. clearer spells into scotland and northern ireland. so some spots getting cold enough for a touch of frost and a few fog patches. england and wales, though, with all this cloud around, temperatures holding up. on wednesday the weather system still dragging its heels, especially into england and eventually the rain pulling away from the east quite late in the day.
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a bit of a brighter interlude between the two weather systems before another one comes into northern ireland to parts of wales and the south—west of england later on wednesday. and again, some of us getting into double figure temperatures. on thursday, it looks like a windy affair, some bright and sunny spells around but bands of showers, some may be heavy with the risk of hail and thunder spreading north—east across the country. and the winds looked like picking up further towards the end of the week and into the weekend. still a lot of uncertainty about the detail but look at this, there's the growing sense some of us will be facing some quite stormy weather by the end of the week and into the weekend. we will, of course, keep you updated. some news just some newsjust in. donald trump has fired sally eight, the acting attorney general. she was unconvinced the travel restrictions we re unconvinced the travel restrictions were legal. a white house statement has accused her of betraying the justice department. the restrictions, banning travellers from seven countries from entering the us, have prompted protests worldwide. canadian police have a charged
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french—canadian student over the shooting dead of six muslim worshippers at a mosque in quebec. alexandre bissonnette faces six counts of first—degree murder and five of attempted murder. five people remain in a critical condition following the attack on sunday. british mps are to conduct an inquiry into fake news on social media. they will consider what it defines as stories of uncertain provenance and accuracy, examining where they come from, how they spread, and their impact on democracy. now it is time for a look back at the day in westminster.
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