welcome to bbc news, broadcasting to viewers in north america and around the globe. my name is mike embley. our top stories: as he prepares to give evidence to congress, former fbi director, james comey, details "inappropriate" and "very concerning" meetings with president trump. two attacks in tehran claim 12 lives. as gunmen storm iran's parliament, the islamic state group claim responsibility. tributes to the victims of the london bridge attacks by some of the first police officers on the scene. eight people are now known to have died. and rewritting the history of evolution. why a series of new discoveries means humans could go back a lot further than we thought. hello. the former fbi director, james comey, has dropped another bombshell, ahead of his much
anticipated appearance before congress later. his opening statement has been published on line. in it, he says that president trump repeatedly asked for his loyalty. on a separate occasion, mr comey says the president urged him to drop an inquiry into his national security adviser michael flynn, who had just been forced to resign. rajini vaidya nathan reports from washington. he has become more famous than make. this was a time when president trump had nothing but praise forjames comey. but he fired him in may. he sacked him, reportedly calling him a nutjob. sacked him, reportedly calling him a nut job. he is a showboat, a grandstander. the fbi has been in turmoil, everyone knows that. most people know the president's version
of events. now james people know the president's version of events. nowjames comey will go public with his. just like his testimony in march, it all comes back to russia. the fbi, in part of oui’ back to russia. the fbi, in part of our counter intelligence mission, is investigating the russian government's efforts to intervene in the 2016 election. that includes investigating the nature of any links between individuals associated with the donald trump campaign and the russian government. on the eve of his appearance before the senate, james, released a written statement saying the president is being investigated as part of the russia enquiry, referring to statements made by donald trump in the past.“ it is possible, will you let me know, and my under investigation? he saidi know, and my under investigation? he said i am not. -- am i. james comey said i am not. -- am i. james comey said during a dinner injanuary, he was asked by the president for unwavering support. i need and
expect support, said the president. how far expect support, said the president. howfardid he expect support, said the president. how far did he expect the loyalty to go? james comey says he was told to drop the investigation into the former national security adviser, michael flynn. donald trump said he was a good guy and i hope you let this go. we are interested in learning that the president took steps to interfere and obstruct the investigation. james comey says that donald trump told him it was a cloud over him. it is notjust congress looking into the donald trump campaign's ties to russia. there is also an ongoing fbi investigation. in the saga that is washington politics, this is a must see moment, but it is just one act of what is becoming a long and drawnout political drama. bbc news,
washington. josh gerstein is the white house reporter for politico, the on—line current affairs journal based in washington. he focuses on national security, legal affairs, and transparency. he is live for us. we should say that the attorney of the president says the president feels vindicated com pletely says the president feels vindicated completely and totally. that is in relation to the president's state m e nts relation to the president's statements he himself was not under investigation. but it seems to be clear from james comey that donald trump demanded loyalty that was not given and asked him to drop the investigation into michael flynn. where does that take us? it does seem like a very selective statement from the president's attorney, pulling out one perhaps helpful phrase in the prepared statement of james comey and ignoring just about all the other very troubling things brought up, including this general statement that he wanted james comey to lift the cloud hanging over the presidency. there is also the other question with all of the exchanges between james comey and the president, the ultimate firing of
james comey, even though there was no attempt to obstruct it up to that point, the investigation, what was the intention of dismissing him then? his supporters are saying this is just the normal new york conversations of the others say it is unorthodox, possibly illegal and inappropriate, and grounds for impeachment, obstruction of justice. where do you think we are?” impeachment, obstruction of justice. where do you think we are? i think it is certainly inappropriate conversation. i have seen some people try to defend it saying you have a white house with a novice. they are in the realm of most multinational corporations, large cushions, they would be nervous about getting into the territory donald trump got into. —— institutions. whether the result of this leads to his impeachment, i
feel like we have not gotten to that point yet. but it is certainly something that even his allies are as laying is inappropriate at best. just to be clear, this isjust as laying is inappropriate at best. just to be clear, this is just the opening statement. there will be full testimony and questioning earlier on thursday and there will be likely more detail in that testimony is james comey is asked the appropriate questions. —— if. that is right. james comey does not wa nt to that is right. james comey does not want to draw conclusions from what the president's thoughts were. he talks about his own reaction. there are some other conversations james comey alludes to in his statement. he will probably be asked about it, but whether he talks about it is not clear. there have been talks about awkward talks, for example, president trump calling james comey
without any agenda they are both very busy. it is weird for them to have a weekday conversation with no item to resolve. thank you very much, josh. thank you. gunmen and suicide bombers have attacked iran's parliament and the shrine of its revolutionary leader, ayatollah khomeini, leaving 12 people dead and many more injured. the group calling itself islamic state said it was responsible for one of the worst terror attacks iran has suffered in decades. our diplomatic correspondent, james landale, reports. gunfire. it is the middle of the morning, and iran's parliament is under attack as never before. four gunmen, some reportedly dressed as women, have burst in, armed with grenades and explosive vests. security forces surround the parliamentary complex, as those inside, including children, try to escape. incredibly, as the attack continues, some mps in the chamber carry on with their parliamentary business. the group that calls itself
islamic state claims the gunmen are theirs. is is fighting iranian backed militias in syria and iraq, but this is the first time the sunni jihadis have struck in the heart of shia iran. as the attack progresses, is posts a video supposedly from inside. one gunman says, "hold on", in english, another shouts in arabic, "we're staying forever." afterfive hours, the attackers are dead, leaving 11 people killed and many more injured. and there's more. a second, almost simultaneous attack a few miles away, another suicide bomb, at the shrine of the ayatollah khomeini, the founder of the iranian republic. there can be few more symbolic targets. one man is dead and others wounded. iran's powerful revolutionary guard has accused saudi arabia and the us of being involved and promised
revenge, deepening even further the long—standing tensions between shia iran and sunni arab states. james landale, bbc news. dalia dassa kaye is the director of the centre for middle east public policy and a senior political scientist at the rand corporation. she's in santa monica for us now. thank you very much for your time. this comes at a difficult time in the region, of course. yes absolutely. a tense time in the region. it comes in the context of a serious risk in the arab world and the gulf between the saudis and qataris with support from the iranians and growing tensions between the iranians and saudis, with the aftermath of donald trump's trip to saudi arabia in recent weeks. growing tensions between the two and growing concerns in iran it is being targeted by saudis and
others in the region with backing from the us. a difficult time in terms of iran's domestic politics as well. absolutely. first of all, i think this is going to be viewed as a huge security failing domestically within iran, having an attack like this occur on its territory. islamic state is fighting in syria and iraq and possibly in yemen indirectly, but this is the first time they attacked within iran itself. with hassan rouhani's re— election, aspirations for economic development and turning the agenda in that direction, i think this attack will surge it back. audio problems. we are not clear how, but there will be internal tension in the aftermath of this. how will this play out? in
particular, what part will be donald trump administration play? they have been siding with the saudis very openly. that is part of the regional escalation. some elements in the region are reportedly feeling emboldened by the donald trump administrations dining with the saudi—led bloc. but there are mixed signals from the administration. there were statements in response to this attack from the white house which were quite different. the white house is pretty much blaming the iranians for the attack by sponsoring terrorism themselves. the state department gave a mutual statement, condolences to the irani people, underscoring that terrorism isa people, underscoring that terrorism is a threat to everyone in the world. there is a lot of ambiguity about what direction the us is heading. that, ithink, increases tensions, because there is so much
uncertainty about what the us will do in the future. thank you very much. thank you. eight people are now known to have died in the london bridge attack on saturday night. police searching for a frenchman who went missing during the attack have found a body in the river thames. xavier thomas who was 45 had been in london with his girlfriend for the weekend. and within the last hour: three men have been arrested in connection with the london bridge terror attack. ed thomas has this report. in the most darkest moments... returning to london bridge. the police officers who were the first to face the london attackers, and comfort the injured, here to lay flowers and remember those who died, in a city grateful for the bravery of officers like pc green. it is really important to have that support from the public and, you know, obviously, our thoughts are more so with the casualties and everything that happened here. and today, police searching for xavier thomas from france say
they recovered a body from the thames. he was on holiday in london and his girlfriend. she's now in hospital seriously injured. and confirmed dead today, ignacio echeverria from spain, last seenjumping off his bike to help a woman being stabbed. also named, australian, sara zelenak. she was 21 and working as an au pair. her family said she was a beautiful daughter and sister. in france, the family of sebastien belanger confirmed he was also killed. it brings the total number of deaths to eight. while police continue to look for evidence, today, this family home in ilford was raided, as offices pieced together more about the killers. khuram butt, a known islamist extremist, rachid redouane, a moroccan libyan who once lived in dublin, and italian moroccan youssef zaghba. police in italy suspected he wanted to join so—called islamic state and say they told british intelligence agencies. today, his mother spoke anonymously.
translation: he was closely followed when he was in italy, but he wasn't at all in the uk it seems. i was very happy with the work the italian police did. from what i read, it seems in the uk they knew nothing, they weren't pursuing anything. this investigation now reaches towards morocco, italy and ireland, but the focus has always been here, east london, and those unanswered questions of how all three men met and planned their attack. men known to british security services who went on to kill. police insist there was no intelligence an attack was being planned. and we pray for those in our hospitals nearby... this afternoon, prayers from all faiths on london bridge.
a message from a city to those who caused so much pain. ed thomas, bbc news, east london. let's take a look at some of the other stories making the news. south korea's military says north korea has fired a number of missiles off its east coast. it's believed the tests, fired from the coastal city of wonsan, were of land—to—ship missiles. they are the latest in a series of tests pyongyang has carried out in defiance of un sanctions. myanmar is mounting a big search operation for a missing military transport plane that's said to have disappeared over the andaman sea. reports say it was carrying 122 passengers and crew, most of them soldiers and their families. four workers at a nuclear research facility injapan have been accidentally exposed to dangerous levels of radiation. the accident occurred when workers were checking on the storage of radioactive materials, when a bag containing radioactive dust split open. it held plutonium, it is understood.
stay with us on bbc news. still to come. fresh air bnb. the swiss hotel with the ultimate room with a view. the day the british liberated the falklands and by tonight british troops had begun the task of disarming the enemy. in the heart of we st disarming the enemy. in the heart of west german capital, crowd to see the man with great hopes for the liberation of europe. the screen is
of the crowd testament to his popularity and their faith in of the crowd testament to his popularity and theirfaith in his innocence. as long as they pay to go and see me, i will get out there and kick them down the hill. what does it feel to be the first man to go across the channel? it is pretty neat. this is bbc news. the latest headlines: former fbi directorjames comey has said donald trump asked him to drop an investigation into a top white house official‘s links with russia. two attacks in tehran claim 12 lives — as gunmen storm iran's parliament the islamic state group claim responsibility. a teenager has been killed during opposition protests against the government of president nicolas maduro in venezuela. witnesses said the seventeen year old was hit in the chest by a tear gas canister fired by a policeman at point blank range. the country is in the midst
of a severe economic crisis and widespread demonstrations are being held on an almost daily basis, as sarah corker reports. for more than two months, violent demonstrations have overwhelmed the venezuelan capital, caracas. protesters angry with the government of president nicolas maduro and demanding early elections to remove him. they blamed him for the country ‘s desperate economic crisis, despite vast oil reserves, venezuela's economy has collapsed. she/ in we are afraid of losing an eye due to gas, a bomb but we are more frightened this depression will last longer. —— translation:. more frightened this depression will last longer. -- translation:. these youngsters are heroes, the present and future. a 17-year-old boy was killed in some of the clashes,
taking the toll to 66. hundreds more injured, thousands arrested. foreign companies have boycotted the country. pirelli is holding production in venezuela indefinitely, general motors said it was leaving the country and earlier this week colgate—palmolive announced it will no longer produce dishwashing liquid and detergent due to lack raw material. and united airlines cut down flights due to a lack of demand. president nicolas maduro brand the protesters insurgents and terrorists. while the us ambassador to the un had stern words for president nicolas maduro. the venezuelan government is in the
midst of destroying human rights and democracy in venezuela. it is conducting a campaign of violence and intimidation against unarmed demonstrators, this does is, civil society and frilly elect did opposition. freely elect did. —— businesses. with venezuelans facing shortages of food and medicine, these demonstrations show little sign of abating. fossils discovered in north africa have cast new light on how modern humans evolved. they reveal that homo sapiens existed a hundred thousand years earlier than previously thought. and they were present all across africa — notjust the east — which was previously thought to be the cradle of humanity. pallab ghosh reports this is the face of one of the very first of our kind, and more casts of bone fragments of the earliest known homo sapiens. the discovery of these fossils were presented at a news conference in paris.
they have completely changed the theory of how modern humans evolved. the common wisdom that there is probably some kind of beginning human in sub—saharan africa a million years ago, what our works have shown is that we have to push back in time much further the age of the origin of our species. human remains found in kenya and tanzania, suggested that east africa was a cradle from which the species emerged 200,000 years ago. the discovery of 300,000 year old human remains in morocco show humans began to emerge much earlier. and notjust there, stone tools found across the continent suggest homo sapiens were all over africa at the time. this is a skull of the earliest known human of our species.
and this is a modern human. you can see the faces are practically the same aside from the slightly pronounced brow region. another difference. the earliest human has a slightly smaller brain. scans of the skull published in thejournal, nature, show that we did not emerge rapidly, but over hundreds of thousands of years. it took longer to make homo sapiens in evolutionary terms than we thought. it was complex. different parts of africa probably evolved differently. some evolved in southern africa, some in east africa. there was no single place where homo sapiens became us. the search is on to find perhaps even older remains. the past of humanity has now been rewritten. pallab ghosh, bbc news.
now if breathtaking scenery, fresh alpine air and unparalleled peace and quiet sounds appealing, you may be interested in a new hotel opening tomorrow in switzerland. the accommodation is a piece of conceptual art, aiming to redefine luxury. but there is a catch — as andy beatt reports. it is a room with a view, but not much else. forjust over $300, guests can book into the zero star hotel and enjoy unobstructed views of flower meadows and majestic mountains. what it lacks in creature comforts, it hopes to make up for in alfresco charm. and it is proving popular. translation: we have had requests from all over the world. the beds are almost 80% booked up.
people are coming from america, africa, australia, the uk, iraq — everybody, young and old. intrepid travellers receive a drink on arrival, organic breakfast, and the services of a butler, typically a farmer in rubber boots. less appealing perhaps is the three—minute walk to the bathroom, in an alpine hut that also serves as a backup in bad weather. it's notjust a place to stay. the creators say their room aims to explode traditional approaches to hospitality, challenging our ties to the property market. and while local hoteliers are not great fans of the project, some 1300 people already are, already paying out for a night out under the stars. andy beatt, bbc news. do you remember green heinz source,
coca cola black... probably not. a new museum of failures is celebrating flop products, including a donald trump game and ask promising beauty through electric shock. we can all learn from mistakes. briefly the man u ‘s colin comey said donald trump pressured him to drop enquiries into links with russia. the president demanded his loyalty and asked him to demand lifts the cloud of the russian investigation. more on that and all the news on our website. thank you for watching. most of us saw sunshine yesterday.
today it will be hard to come by. it will be cloudy for most. the cloud is thick enough to bring rain for some of us. the relatively clear weather working out of the north sea replaced by this lump of cloud. the low spinning around there sending south—westerlies across the uk. the cloud will be thick enough for us to get wet weather. the wettest of it is in wales and north—west england. low cloud and mist and fog. a mild start to the day. 13—14 degrees. something like that. cooler in the north of scotland. at least some morning sunshine. gusty to start the day across wales and south—west england. gusts come in at a0 miles an hour. the same in east anglia and east england.
dry weather. the occasional spit of rain just about possible. that working in across england. misty in the pennines. it will get across northern ireland first thing in the morning. edging across scotland. the north will stay dry with some early morning sunshine. going on through the rest of the day, uncertainty about the northward spread of this rain. it could get further north that we are showing, perhaps threatening northern scotland into the afternoon. returning to northern ireland later in the day. some showers in wales and south—west england and moving into the midlands. south—east england, trying to get bright late in the day. thursday night, showers pushing across the uk. the weather turning lighter. still coming in from the south—west to pick another mild start for friday. a better kind of day on friday. fewer showers. more in the way of sunshine. showers limited to scotland into the afternoon. with sunshine and lighter winds, it will feel warmer. 19 in belfast. not bad at all. 22 in london.
pleasant in the lighter winds. a finer evening to follow. showers continuing to affect parts of scotland. the weekend. rain lurking behind. that is tying in with another area of low pressure bringing wet and fairly windy weather to start the weekend across many areas of the uk. brace ourselves for a soggy start to the weekend. not all of it is bad news. the rain will clear through. it will be a drier day. highs of 23 in london. and that's your weather. this is bbc news. the headlines: james comey, the former fbi director, says president trump pressured him to drop an inquiry into links with russia. ahead of a senate hearing, mr comey issued a statement which said the president demanded his loyalty and asked him to lay off investigating the former national security advisor. in tehran, gunmen and suicide bombers have attacked iran's parliament and at the shrine
of its revolutionary leader, leaving 12 people dead and many more injured. the group calling itself islamic state said it was responsible for one of the worst terror attacks iran has suffered in decades. eight people are now known to have died in the london bridge attack on saturday night. police searching for a frenchman who went missing during the attack have found a body in the river thames. xavier thomas, who was a5, had been in london with his girlfriend for the weekend. now on bbc news, hardtalk.