welcome to bbc news, broadcasting to viewers in north america and around the globe. i'm mike embley. our top stories: president trump lashes out at the decision to appoint a special counsel to investigate russian influence on his election. well i respect the move but the entire thing has been a witch—hunt, and there is no collusion certainly between myself and my campaign. brazil's president rejects calls for him to resign over allegations of involvement in a huge corruption scandal. a young woman dies as a car hits a crowd of pedestrians in times square. it's not thought to be connected with terrorism. and they're considered one of the most harmful exotic species on earth. so how's peru coping with an infestation of giant african snails? hello.
president trump has said the appointment of a special counsel to oversee the inquiry into russian influence on the election "hurts our country terribly" and he called the decision "the single greatest witch hunt of a politician in american history". but he says he wants to get back to running the country and, at a news conference in washington, said he would respect the appointment. he again denied any collusion with russia. aleem maqbool reports. the president's just not happy with the scrutiny he continues to come under over his links with russia. the entire thing has been a witch hunt. and there is no collusion between certainly myself and my campaign, but i can only speak for myself and the russians, zero. i think it divides the country. i think we have a very divided country because of that and many other things. did you at any time urge former fbi directorjames comey to close or back down the investigation into michael flynn? no. . . no.
next question. the major development of the last 2a hours is the appointment of robert mueller to oversee the russian investigation. he's a man renowned for his independence, having been appointed fbi director by george w bush, and being asked to serve on longer than his term by barack obama. and his appointment has received support from many on both sides of the aisle. probably the best thing that has happened is that the deputy attorney general did appoint bob mueller, a man of impeccable integrity, to act as special counsel in this issue. and that, i think, is of some comfort to all of us in this country. i believe that the professionals in the justice department need to do theirjobs independently, objectively and thoroughly, and i believe the special counsel, which is robert mueller, helps them do that. some of the president's critics,
while happy with the appointment, complain robert mueller has not been given enough power. but what exactly is he investigating? it breaks down into three main areas. russian influence on the election, looking at possible hacking and lea ks. russian collusion with the trump campaign, so meeting and financial ties between the two. and obstruction of the russia inquiry, looking at whether donald trump tried to get the former fbi director to drop key parts of the investigation. well, after the president fired the last man leading the inquiry, it does now feel with this appointment that the russia investigation can now get back on track. bt there are many who feel that donald trump, for whatever reason, is not behaving like a man who wants that. aleem maqbool, bbc news, washington. on friday, president trump embarks on an ambitious foreign trip — four countries in eight days. first stop, saudi arabia, and the bbc‘s chief international correspondent lyse doucet is already in riyadh.
the saudis are feeling very pleased that president trump has chosen riyadh to be the first stop on his very first foreign visit. when we met the saudi foreign minister today he used words like milestone and landmark. he even told me it was a diplomatic coup that the president would be stopping here first. and notjust stopping to meet the leaders of the saudi kingdom. this will be the mother of all welcomes because president trump will also meet all of the leaders of the gulf arab states and the saudis have invited all the members of an arab islamic summit. so they are proudly saying that 37 kings, presidents and prime ministers will all be here in saudi arabia, emphasising the importance the saudi arabia is playing. and right from the very start when president trump came to power in the white house they were among his biggest supporters. making light of the controversy over the travel ban, the muslim ban, saying very much that they believe that president donald trump they is a leader they can do business with. the fight against terrorism, the fight against what they see
as the destabilising behaviour of iran. they see this as a partnership. they are worried that the controversy back home over the mishandling, the alleged mishandling of intelligence will overshadow this visit that they see this as a very good start and, as importantly, the end of what had been a strained relationship under president obama. our chief international correspondent lyse doucet there in saudi arabia. and during president trump's trip lyse and our north america editor jon sopel will be providing coverage at every stop so make sure to join us next week for that. the brazilian president, michel temer, has angrily rejected calls for him to resign over allegations that he approved
the payment of bribes as part of a huge corruption scandal. in a brief television address, mr temer said he had nothing to fear from an investigation which has been authorised by the supreme court. julia carneiro reports from brasilia. president michel temer was emphatic in the presidential palace are saying that he would not quit. this is following building pressure for him to resign after a scandal broke here in the capital. investigators have allegedly obtained audio of a conversation where he is heard encouraging bribes to be paid to a key witness to keep him silent on corruption. this is obstruction ofjustice so it is a serious allegation and, already, there have been several impeachment requests filed in congress against him. two ministers have said they will resign and a supreme courtjustice has authorised an investigation to be opened against him. so president michel temer said he has nothing to fear and investigations will bring out the truth.
but there are several protests planned over the coming days in brazil and his political future seems quite unstable for now. let's take a look at some of the other stories making the news. american planes operating over syria have attacked a convoy carrying pro—government militia. a statement from the coalition says the militia were moving towards a—tanf airbase, near the border with iraq — where western special forces train rebel groups fighting the extremist group, the so—called islamic state. voting opens in just a few hours now in the iran presidential election with the current leader seeking a second term. he negotiate a landmark nuclear deal with western world leaders in 2015. if no—one wins more than 50% of votes cast there will be a run—off next week. a driver ploughed into pedestrians in times square today killing one woman and injuring nearly two dozen others.
the driver has been arrested but authorities say there is no sign of terrorism, instead he is being tested for drugs and alcohol. the bbc‘s nada tawfik was on the scene and has this report. it is a scene that immediately makes new yorkers fear the worst. a car ploughing into pedestrians in crowded times square. eyewitnesses described how the out—of—control car sped the wrong way along seventh ave, travelling three blocks and hitting 23 people before crashing and bursting into flames. one young woman did not survive. reports say a bouncer from a nearby restaurant and a ticket agent were among those who helped police subdue the driver as he tried to flee the scene. authorities believe the incident is not terror related. they have identified the driver as a 26—year—old us citizen from the bronx and a former member of the navy with two prior arrests for drunk driving.
new york police do believe this is an isolated incident but they are reinforcing key sites around the city out of an abundance of caution and more likely to reassure nervous new yorkers. this man is a ticket officer in the area. he described the aftermath. i had them scream, oh, my god, people were running. this will always be a city slightly on edge. but tonight, released this was not what new yorkers feared. after years of economic hardship, greece's parliament has approved new austerity measures, including tax rises and more cuts to pensions. the government hopes the savings will appease international lenders. greece is looking for another instalment of its multi—billion—dollar bailout. outside parliament, thousands of protestors voiced their anger. there were ugly clashes with police. greg dawson reports. if greece's politicians needed a reminder of the anger,
they need to look out of the window. police face down petrol—bombs and other missiles. another show of defiance as another package of austerity measures was approved. the prime minister said this meant further pain for a country worn down by years of spending cuts. translation: nobody is denying, nobody doubts, that this agreement has difficulties. however, it is a decisive milestone. we do not have another bailout we need to complete. we finally have something to look forward to. we enter a phase of stability and recovery that the greek economy has not seen in years. the vote means more tax rises and further cuts to pensions over the next three years.
a 5 billion euro saving to appease foreign creditors of greece. for the last seven years, the country has been trying to dig its way out of economic crisis. progress has been made, but not enough to escape its reliance on outside help. greece faces its next big debt demand in july, and, on monday, eurozone finance ministers will decide if the country has done enough to receive a 7.5 billion euro bailout fund to keep the economy afloat. earlier in the week, hundreds of thousands of greeks joined a 24—hour general strike. government offices were closed, flights grounded and ships stayed docked. alexis tsipras believes these measures are vital for the economic survival of the country, but he and his party were elected on a promise to resist austerity. a promise not forgotten by people now demanding his resignation. north korea has largely cut itself
off from the outside world. and international sanctions imposed over its missile and nuclear tests have brought more isolation. but, surprise surprise, the first—ever passenger ferry between north korea and russia has docked in the russian port of vladivostok. these russian port of vladivostok is home to one of the largest overseas communities of north koreans in the world. and fairjourney has just got a little easier. for the first time ever, the ferry will run between here and north korea's port. it boasts a restaurant, bars and a karaoke room. the ferry will be used by north korean to work in russia, but also by chinese tourists. translation: we will, we set up a tent on the deck in summer. there will be chinese, russian and north korean souvenirs on display. will be chinese, russian and north korean souvenirs on displaym will be chinese, russian and north korean souvenirs on display. it also serves another purpose. the vessel is set to carry essential goods and
other cargo. north korea has long been isolated because of strict economic sanctions imposed by the un. the ferry owners say they will improve relations between the two nations. translation: we don't violate any un sanctions. we transport people. we create better communication between people, between china, north korea and brush up. ithink between china, north korea and brush up. i think it's good. —— russia. between china, north korea and brush up. ithink it's good. —— russia. i think everything will be fine. up. ithink it's good. —— russia. i think everything will be finem up. ithink it's good. —— russia. i think everything will be fine. it is not the first time the ship has set sail. it was running between north korea and japan until 11 years ago. but japan suspended the service after a north korean missile test. the service is expected to carry up to 200 passengers. early booking is advised. 60 tourists from china have already bought their tickets for the next boat. still to come: the greatest show on earth is coming
to an end and we are there as the circus gets ready to close. 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. the polling stations are all prepared for what will be the first truly free elections in romania's history. it was a remarkable climax to what was surely the most extraordinary funeral ever given to a pop singer. it's been a peacefulfuneral demonstration so far, but suddenly these police are teargassing the crowd, we don't yet know why. the pre—launch ritual is well established here, helen was said to be in good spirits butjust 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. the latest headlines for you on bbc news: president trump has said the decision to appoint a special counsel to investigate russian influence on the election is a witch—hunt. brazil's president has angrily rejected calls for him to resign over allegations that he approved the payment of bribes in a huge in a huge corruption scandal. here in britain, the prime minister has published her conservative pa rty‘s manifesto, promising what she called a, mainstream government for mainstream britain. theresa may said a strong economy and a successful brexit were her main priorities. bbc political editor laura kuenssberg has this report. outside...
come! ..inside. theresa may says she wants to end political tribes. tell them. getting rid of your nurses. getting rid of your nurses! i have been a nurse for 27 years. we are on our knees. the tory manifesto is meant to be a blueprint for what she now calls the mainstream. yet, with protesters at the gates, the tories were whisked in behind tight lines to make their case. applause. with brexit the backdrop, theresa may's ambitions are plainly far wider than that. i believe that our united kingdom can emerge from this period of national change stronger, fairer and more prosperous than ever before. and i believe we can, and must, take this opportunity to build
a great meritocracy here in britain. let us be in no doubt, it will not be easy. but with discipline and focus, effort and hard work, and, above all, a unity of purpose, stretching across this precious union of nations, from north to south and east to west, i believe we can and must go forward together. but all that depends on getting the mind—bendingly complicated brexit right. if you were looking for detail on how, it wasn't here today. but all of this depends on getting the next five years right. if we fail, the consequences for britain and for the economic security of ordinary working people will be dire. if we succeed, the opportunities ahead of us are great. those are, she says, a long—term solution to caring for the elderly,
more or less matching labour's promise of cash for the nhs, and new grammar schools. but the same broken target for immigration, fewerfree hot meals at primary school, and, for the tories, who've been in charge already for seven years, pushing back a promise to clear the deficit until 2025. at herfinale, a contentious claim to stand for all. for too many people in britain today, life is simply much harder than many seem to think or realise. they're not ideological, they don't buy into grander visions. they aren't fooled by politicians who promise the earth and claim no tough choices are required. they make those choices every day in their own lives and understand politicians who aspire to lead must do the same. with the right brexit deal secured, my mainstream government will deliver for mainstream britain. so, i offer myself
as your prime minister. come with me as i lead britain, strengthen my hand as i fight for britain, and stand with me as i deliverfor britain! and with confidence in ourselves, and a unity of purpose in our country, let us all go forward together! applause. ovation inside... you can't block this! ..but anger outside. tories in a mill in yorkshire. you couldn't make it up. what do you think of the tories coming to yorkshire today? it's a disgrace, laura. they're not welcome. in last six years they are running our industries down. one of the tories biggest claims is jeremy corbyn wants to take this to the 19705. she wants to take a to the 18705. it's absolutely ridiculous. you are sitting on the manifesto that more families and tory voters will have to pay more
for elderly care. many families will lose hot meals for children at school. you are pushing back balancing the books again. and your immigration proposals might cost billions to the economy. when you put that all together, wouldn't some voters be quite entitled to conclude that adds up to quite a bleak picture? not at all. what i'm putting forward is a vision for opportunity and prosperity across the whole of the country for the future. i've been clear there are hard choices that need to be taken. it's making sure we're honest with the public. it's wrapped up as a new kind of sensible conservatism. but is everyone signed up? the entire cabinet has just filed past after the prime minister's speech. nobody will talk to us about whether or not this truly is a new kind of conservatism and whether or not they are all happy about what she just outlined.
her pitch is safety first. but there are dangers in her plans. as the prime minister left, through jeers and protests, her dream of an end to left and right are seen as a long way off. laura kuenssberg, bbc news, halifax. when you think of the world's most dangerous creatures, snails may not necessarily come to mind. but the giant african snail is considered one of the most harmful exotic species on earth. and now in peru there's an infestation, hundreds of them in the northern region of ancash. the bbc‘s tim allman reports. cordoned off, at first sight, this appears to be a crime scene. but things are not what they seem. these are believed to be giant african snails, hundreds of them. brought here by heavy rains and flooding, the creatures can be deadly. harmless in themselves, but they are potential carriers
of disease and infection. one conservation group has them listed in the top 100 most dangerous species. authorities are removing them as quickly as possible. translation: by habit, they like to be in the dirt. so that is where they become contaminated. and from there, they go on to transmit parasites and bacteria. so serious is the problem, government officials have launched an information campaign to warn the public what to do if confronted by a giant african snail. translation: the number of poisonous snails is rising and i'm scared. they're climbing my wall. that's why i'm trying to kill them with salt. with one region already placed on alert for a dengue outbreak,
now they have another thing to worry about. now, it's long been calling itself the greatest show on earth but after 146 years the ringling brothers circus is shutting down. it's entertained millions but in recent years revenues have dropped and there have been legal battles with animal rights groups. a bbc team went to see the closing moments with those who've called the circus home. music plays. ringling brothers circus is older than coca—cola, older than baseball. for us to be coming to a close, it's really sad. riding a cannon out onto arena floor, you know, it is powerful. smiling right before i get into the canon. as soon as i slide down and focus 100%, i think the word i think of the most is "attack."
go! in between cities, we travel and live on a train. we're sort of like professional gypsies. you know, it is such a unique lifestyle. i think that's one of the most nostalgic elements of this show coming to a close, is that this lifestyle is coming to an end as well. there's a culture that we are losing. that is 146 years deep. we're just devastated. the performers, they're pretty much all out of work. and, hopefully, something else will happen, something else will come up. where it's something similar. you know? but if not, you always have these amazing memories. and i'mjust glad i could be a part of it.
i think we're feeling very bittersweet, bitter because we don't want the show to end, we want to do this forever, and sweet because we got to do it at all. just finally, the japanese cabinet has approved a bill to allow emperor akihito to step down. draft legislation will be sent for parliamentary approval. the emperor is 83 and he said last year he feared that his age would prevent him carrying out his duties. it would be the first time a japanese monarch has stepped down in two centuries. much more on all of that any time on the bbc news website. thank you for watching. and you can get in touch with me and most of the team on twitter, i'm @bbcmikeembley. hello there.
well, the rain arrived earlier than forecast across the south—east of england during thursday afternoon and it's continued to move slowly northwards. but brought a very wet night for the south—east of england, east anglia, the east midlands, and getting in towards the north—east of england by the time we reach friday morning. further west, though, it's clearer skies. any showers died away. and a touch of frost in one or two places. but less cold in the south—east because of cloud cover. so, first thing friday, then, it's a lovely bright start across many northern and western areas. showers never too far away, though, for the north and west of northern ireland and the outer hebrides has an area of low pressure there. but the bulk of scotland and northern ireland will be bright. a chilly start, but bright. lots of sunshine. same too as well for the far north—west of england and wales
and the far south—west of england. maybe just one or two showers pushing in towards cornwall and the west of devon. but, further east, midlands eastwards, a cloudy start. damp, outbreaks of rain, especially for east anglia and lincolnshire up in towards the north—east. and notice this area of low pressure slowly sliding north along the coast. you can see the isobars are a little bit tighter packed here. so you can see quite a breeze in norfolk and lincolnshire. that area of low pressure continues to move northwards. elsewhere, a day of sunshine and showers and gradually drying up across the south—east towards the end of the day. top temperatures, around the mid—teens. so nothing too special. quite cool across the north—east, though, with low cloud, mist and harr. into saturday, it looks like conditions will improve. elsewhere, a sunshine—and—showers day. some of the showers could be heavy and maybe thundery in places. in the sunshine, pleasantly warm. cooler when showers arrive. temperatures in the mid—to—upper teens celsius. and the reason for the conditions are settling down and improving even further into sunday, this area of high pressure really exerts its force across much of the country. so we start to import
wind from the south. always a warmer direction, particularly for this time of year. going north as it does around this time of the year. it will allow temperatures to rise. in the sunshine it will feel warm. especially in the south. a bit of cloud, breeze, rain, getting into northern ireland because of this area of low pressure edging in. but it will affect north—western parts of the uk as head on in towards monday. so, here, breezy, outbreaks of rain in towards western scotland in particular. but the bulk of england and wales closer to the area of high pressure, a warm day, with temperatures potentially the low—to—mid 20s celsius. into tuesday, we start to see winds swinging from the west, feeding in plenty of showers on the wind from the west. a slightly cooler day. pleasant in the south—east with some sunshine. this is bbc news.
the headlines: president trump has said the appointment of a special counsel to investigate russian influence on the election "hurts our country terribly" and called the inquiry a witch—hunt. but he says he wants to get back to running the country, and would respect the appointment. he again denied any collusion with russia. the brazilian president has said he won't resign over allegations that he was involved in bribing a possible witness to a huge corruption scandal. michel temer said he would prove his innocence and warned that his efforts to pull the economy out of recession were at risk. a driver has ploughed into pedestrians in times square killing one woman and injuring nearly two dozen others. the driver has been arrested but the authorities say there is no indication that the incident was an act of terrorism. they're testing the suspect for drugs and alcohol. now on bbc news, panorama.
litter is a big problem. £2 billion spent on cleaning up litter and waste last year. the public wants to see something done about litter. an increasing number of fines are being issued on behalf of councils. it's causing real anger. all i want to do is pick up the poo that you say i'm responsible for. look at this poor old man. you alright, mate? look, and they're abusing him, you scumbag. many of the fines are being handed out by private companies, who often split the takings with the local authority. there are millions to be made. so is this really about preventing litter, or increasing profits?