but this is bbc news, i'm ben brown, the headlines at eight. james comey, america's sacked fbi director, accuses donald trump's white house of lying when it said the bureau was in disarray and poorly led. the administration then chose to defame me and, more importantly, the fbi. those were lies plain and simple, and i am so sorry that the fbi workforce had to hear them, and i'm so sorry that the american people were told them. president trump's response to that came from his attorney. the president never told mr comey, quote, i need loyalty, i expect loyalty. he never said it in the form, and he never said it in substance. millions across the uk cast their vote in the 2017 general election, the polls due to close in two hours.
new video emerges of the three london terrorists, filmed outside a gym days before their attack. it comes as three more arrests are made. also in the next hour, inside afghanistan — the bbc gains rare access into helmand province, and life under the taliban. and the one place where you never want to be the star attraction, as the museum of failure opens its doors. good evening and welcome to bbc news. in one of the most politically explosive hearings washington has seen, the former director of the fbi has accused white house staff of lying. james comey, who was fired by president trump, was giving evidence to a senate committee
which is trying to establish whether there was russian interference in last year's election, and whether mrtrump‘s campaign team colluded in that effort. when i was appointed fbi director in 2013, i understood that i served at the pleasure of the president. even though i was appointed to a ten—year term, which congress created in order to underscore the importance of the fbi being outside of politics and independent, i understood that i could be fired by a president for any reason or for no reason at all. and on may 9th, when i learned that i had been fired, for that reason, i immediately came home as a private citizen. but then the explanations, the shifting explanations, confused me and increasingly concerned me. they confused me, because the president and i had had multiple conversations about myjob, both before and after he took office,
and he had repeatedly told me i was doing a greatjob and he hoped i would stay. and i had repeatedly assured him that i did intend to stay and serve out the remaining six years of my term. he told me repeatedly that he had talked to lots of people about me, including our current attorney—general, and had learned that i was doing a greatjob, and that i was extremely well liked by the fbi workforce. so it confused me when i saw on television the president saying that he actually fired me because of the russia investigation, and learned again from the media that he was telling privately other parties that my firing had relieved great pressure on the russian investigation. i was also confused by the initial explanation that was offered publicly, that i was fired because of the decisions i had made during the election year. that didn't make sense to me for a whole bunch of reasons, including the time and all the water that had gone under the bridge since those hard decisions
that had to be made. that didn't make any sense to me. and although the law required no reason at all to fire an fbi director, the administration then chose to defame me and, more importantly, the fbi by saying that the organisation was in disarray, that it was poorly led, that the workforce had lost confidence in its leader. those were lies, plain and simple. mr comey also said that he understood that president trump had encouraged him to drop the investigation into the former national security adviser michael flynn. he said he had been surprised by a conversation they had about general flynn, who lost his job for lying about his contacts with russia. director, when the president requested that you, and i quote, "let flynn go"... general flynn had an unreported contact with the russians,
which is an offence, and if press accounts are right, there might have been discrepancies between facts and his fbi testimony. in your estimation, was general flynn at that time in serious legaljeopardy? and in addition to that, do you sense that the president was trying to obstruct justice orjust find a way for mike flynn to save face, given he had already been fired? general flynn, at that point in time, was in legaljeopardy. there was an open fbi criminal investigation of his statements in connection with the russian contacts, and the contacts themselves. and so that was my assessment at the time. i don't think it's for me to say whether the conversation i had with the president was an effort to obstruct. i took it as a very disturbing thing, very concerning, but that is a conclusion i'm sure the special counsel will work towards, to try and understand what the intention was there,
and whether that's an offence. mr comey said he kept records of all his conversations with the president because he didn't trust him to tell the truth. and he said he leaked details to help secure the appointment of a special prosecutor. he said he leaked the memo to a friend of his at columbia university. iasked... the president tweeted on friday, after i got fired, that i'd better hope there's not tapes. i woke up in the middle of the night on monday night, because it didn't dawn on me originally, that there might be corroboration for our conversation, there might be a tape, and myjudgment was i needed to get that out into the public square, and so i asked a friend of mine to share the content of the memo with a reporter. i didn't do it myself for a variety of reasons, but i asked him to because i thought that might prompt the appointment of a special counsel, and so i asked a close friend of mine to do it. and was that mr wittes? no. who was that? a good friend of mine who's a professor at columbia law school. in the last few minutes, mr trump's
personal lawyer has rejected the allegations. marc kasowitz said that president trump never told the fbi director that he had to drop the investigation or that he expected loyalty from him. the president also never
told mr comey, quote, i need loyalty, i expect loyalty. he never said it in form or in substance. of course, the office of the president is entitled to expect loyalty from those who are serving the administration, and from before this president took office to this day, it is overwhelmingly clear that there had been and continues to be those in government who are actively attempting to undermine this administration with selective and illegal leaks of classified information and privileged communications. mr comey has now admitted
that he is one of these leakers. today, comey admitted that he unilaterally and surreptitiously made disclosures to the press of privileged communications with the president. the leaks of this privileged information began no later than march 2017, when friends of mr comey have stated that he disclosed to them the conversations that he had with the president during their january 27th 2017 dinner, and february 14th 2017 white house meeting. today, mr comey admitted that he leaked to friends of his purported memos of those privilege communications, one of which, he testified,
were classified. he also testified that immediately after he was terminated, he authorised his friends to leak the contents authorised his friends to leak the co nte nts of authorised his friends to leak the contents of those memos to the press in order to, quote, contents of those memos to the press in orderto, quote, in contents of those memos to the press in order to, quote, in his words, quote, prompt the appointment of a special counsel. although mr comey testified that he only leaked these memos in response to a tweet, the public record reveals that the new york times was quoting from them the day before the referenced tweet, which belies mr comey‘s excuse for this unauthorised disclosure of privileged information, and appears to be entirely retaliatory. we will leave it to the appropriate authorities to determine whether these leaks should be investigated, along with all of the others that are being investigated.
in sum, it is now established that the president was not being investigated for colluding with or attempting to obstruct any investigation, as the committee pointed out today. these are facts for the country to know,
virtually the only facts that have not been leaked during the course of these events. as he said yesterday, the president feels completely vindicated and is eager to continue moving forward with his agenda, the business of this country, and with this public cloud removed. thank you. so that was the counsel for president trump, marc kasowitz there, disputing key points of the testimony we heard from the former fbi directorjames comey. here, voting is taking place in the general election. polling stations opened at seven this morning,
and you've got until ten o'clock this evening to cast your vote. nearly 47 million people are registered to vote, electing 650 westminster mps. the first results are expected from around 11pm. 0ur political correspondent gary 0'donoghue reports. bright and early, the first of the leaders out this morning was the prime minister, with husband philip, voting in her berkshire constituency. not long after came the man who wants herjob, jeremy corbyn greeting the photographers with a smile and a thumbs up as he made his way into a polling station in north london. how are we doing? welcome to the lake district. just a hint of irony from the lib dem leader tim farron as he braved the elements on the way into the polling station. but he was well out of the way when tempers frayed among the watching photographers. they're having a proper scrap. and up and down the country
other party leaders were doing exactly the same. the snp's nicola sturgeon, and paul nuttall from the uk independence party. but it's not just about them. 47 million of us are registered at this election, one that's been overshadowed by the terrorist attacks in manchester and london. those attacks have meant a bigger police presence than usual. everyone conscious that the threat level is still severe. this westminster polling station is just one of 40,000 the length and breadth of the uk where you're electing your 650 representatives to the house of commons, just a couple of hundred yards down the road from here. those new mps will be here next tuesday, and on monday week the queen will open parliament and set out the new government's plans. some peculiar places have been pressed into action as polling stations. this one is in a launderette in oxford. here's one in a windmill in hove. and this pub was playing host to voters in exeter. last orders for casting a ballot are at 10pm tonight, with the first results due in
before midnight. gary 0'donoghue, bbc news. and if you'd like to see all the results as they come in, you canjoin david dimbleby and the team tonight on bbc one and the bbc news channel for election 2017. it starts at 9:55. new images have emerged of the moment armed police shot dead the three london bridge attackers, firing within seconds of arriving at the scene. police have made three more arrests. separate pictures, obtained by the times, appear to show the three perpetrators meeting outside a gym in east london. these pictures were taken five days before their assault on london bridge and borough market. the names of their victims, those who died, are continuing to emerge. police have confirmed the identities of five. the remaining three have been named by their loved ones. as for those who survived but were injured, nhs england has
released an update on their status following the attack. as we know, 48 people were taken to hospital at the time. of those, 29 people are still being treated. ten people still remain in a critical condition. in total, 17 people have been arrested by police investigating the attack — five remain in custody. as our home affairs correspondent tom symonds reports, police have also been looking at cctv footage of the attackers five days before the their assault. five days before their rampage, the three attackers meet, khuram butt, rachid redouane and youssef zaghba. redouane puts his phone on the ground while they walk away for a conversation, perhaps worried it will somehow be used to record what he has said. they seem in good spirits — there is no sign they are about to kill and maim innocent people. the camera is outside a gym where one of the three, khuram butt, worked out. the gym is closed — renovations
and, today, massive media attention. but outside we met fahad khan, khuram butt‘s cousin—in—law. he argued with khuram butt about his religious views and his desire to put them into practice abroad. he wanted to go to syria to fight. because of the family pressure, or it might be intervention by the authorities, who seized his passport or whatever, he couldn't go there. he identified from a picture another man regularly seen at the gym. this is sajeel shahid. he was once accused of being a leading member of the bannedd islamist group al—muhajiroun, although he has denied it in the past. you are the leader of al—muhajiroun, aren't you? no, i wasn't. 0n the wall here is a statement that says sajeel shahid is not employed at the gym and does not own the business. that might be strictly true, but a number of people have told us that he is directly connected with this place. more cctv images today showed the final seconds of the attack in borough market. the killers had just set
upon theirfinal victim, when a police armed—response team arrived. they had seconds to assess the situation. they opened fire, and it was over. i don't think anything more could have been done given the circumstances. they have responded to an incident which has lasted eight minutes, they have responded and neutralised the threat as firearms officers within six seconds, and i think that is exceptional to the individuals and the training they've received. among the many stories from that night, one stands out — the british transport police officer who stepped in alone to try to stop the attack. in a statement today he said, i want to say to the families that lost their loved ones i am sorry i could not do more and i want you to know i did everything i could. he started off engaging with one of the terrorists and ended up literally fighting with all three of them. it is an astonishing story when you hear it. the victims have all now been identified —
eight people from five countries killed in an attack on the people of an international city. tom symonds, bbc news. the headlines on bbc news. sacked fbi directorjames comey accuses donald trump's white house of lying when it said the bureau was in disarray. mr trump accused him of not telling the truth. voting is taking place across the uk in the 2017 general election, polls are due to close at ten o'clock so night. video emerges of the three london terrorists filmed outside a gym days before their attack. three more arrests have been made. all the very latest sports news now with 0lly, evening!
england have reached the under—20s world cup final in south korea. they came from behind injeonju to beat italy 3—1. they had taken the lead afterjust a couple of minutes through thejuventus midfielder riccardo 0rsolini. england didn't equalise until midway through the second half. dominic solanke, who's on his way to liverpool from chelsea, scored his first of the match. everton's ademola lookman then put england in front inside the last 15 minutes, before solanke put the game to bed with a couple of minutes left on the clock. it's the first england football team to reach a world cup final since the senior men in 1966. and they will face venezuela in the final on sunday, despite a terrible refereeing decision that went against them. the official initially turned down a uruguay penalty appeal, but even though a video replay seemed to confirm that the player had dived, the referee changed his decision and uruguay took the lead from the spot. justice was done, venezuela equalised with a brilliant free kick from samuel sosa in injury time. the match was decided on penalties, venezuela winning 4—3. leicester city have given
craig shakespeare a three—year contract to stay on as manager. he was given the job until the end of the season back in february, following the sacking of claudio ranieri. he won eight of his 16 games in charge, leading leicester to the champions league quarterfinals and saving them from the threat of relegation. zlatan ibrahimovic isn't expected to be offered a new contract at manchester united. his one—year deal runs out at the end of the month, and though there was an option for a second year, the 35—year—old swede may not play agin this side of christmas after rupturing knee ligaments in april. the premier league will publish its list of retained players tomorrow morning, when ibrahimovich's release is due to be confirmed. there's been a big upset in the champions trophy. sri lanka beat the defending champions india by seven wickets in a thriller at the oval. india were put in to bat, and put on a show. a century from shikhar dhawan helped them to a total of 321,
a total they thought couldn't be reached, but sri lanka won with an over to spare, their joint—highest successful run chase in one—dayers. both teams can progress to the semifinals if they win their next games. jelena 0stapenko has become the first unseeded player to reach the women's french 0pen final since 1983. 0stapenko celebrated her 20th birthday with a three—set win against switzerland's timea bacsinszky, who was also celebrating her 28th birthday. 0stapenko is also the first latvian to reach a grand slam final. 0stapenko will face third seed simona halep in saturday's final after she won her semifinal in three sets against czech karolina pliskova. halep has never won a grand slam title but did reach the final in paris three years ago. if she wins, she'll become world
number one for the first time. it's all change again for the lions in new zealand. warren gatland always said that every member of his squad would get a start in the first three matches. alun wynjones will skipper the team to face the canterbury crusaders, who are unbeaten this season. after yesterday's defeat to auckland blues, gatland said there wasn't much difference between the super rugby sides and the all blacks, but the new zealand coach steve hansen, who has named his squad for the test series, took exception to that. 0h, oh, look, ithink oh, look, i think he was probably just trying to jape, a bit of humour, you know, after struggling before that. i don't think there's any comparison to super rugby and test rug by, any comparison to super rugby and test rugby, but he was just trying to make a light comment, possibly, i don't know. sir ben ainsley‘s america's cup
challenge is all but over. they are saying right now in bermuda, up against new zealand in the semifinal, and it looks like new zealand are about to win that semifinal 5—2 and knock sir ben ainslie's land rover team out of the america's cup. they trailed 3—1 at the start of the day, they lost the opening race to go 4—1 down, pulled it back to 4—2, ben ainslie's crew, but the kiwis are about 45 seconds to one minute ahead in the final leg of the latest race, they are about to cross the finishing line right now, which means that sir ben ainslie's challenge is over. new zealand will go on to phase either sweden orjapan, who are drawing 3-3, sweden orjapan, who are drawing 3—3, in their sunny final, and the winners of that will go through to face winners of that will go through to fa ce tea m winners of that will go through to face team usa, the holders of the
america's cup. it will be new zealand facing japan or sweden to go on to face the usa, but the big news is that sir ben ainslie, all his yea rs of is that sir ben ainslie, all his years of preparation down on the south coast to get this far in bermuda, well, that tree is over. they are about to finish over 30 seconds down in that final race, they will lose the semifinal 5—2. that's all sport for now. perhaps ale it'll be more from us later, i know it is a busy news day! we hope to see you again, 0lly thank you very much indeed! it's almost three years since british combat troops withdrew from afghanistan, after more than a decade fighting the taliban. 456 british soldiers were killed, most of them in helmand province. since the withdrawal, helmand and many other parts of the country have fallen back into the hands of the taliban. auliya atrafi from the bbc‘s afghan service has been given rare access to the taliban's effective capital, musa qala. we just entered taliban territory.
we didn't have to travel far. all we had to do was get off the main road and we were in. we passed through sangin, where so many british soldiers fought and died. we are heading for musa qala. 0ur taliban minder always with us. the bustling market looks like any in afghanistan, but there are some tell—tale signs we are in taliban territory. the men are all wearing traditional clothes, their beards grown long. the women are nowhere to be seen. we leave the market and head for the local high school. it's religious studies, and only boys get an education. 0ur taliban minder insists there are other lessons
and that girls can go to school, just not here. the taliban used to burn schools down. now they are running them, funded by the central government. translation: the government inspectors do their supervision, the taliban don't have any problem with them. in the playground, the main attraction seems to be our cameras. most of these children have never seen anything like them. it's a reminderjust how isolated these communities are. but it's notjust schools that the taliban are running. this is the local hospital. it is also funded by the government but lacks supplies. there's no female doctor or child specialist. you can't even have a chest x—ray here. and now the surgeon is leaving too, because he hasn't been paid in the last six months. the next day,
we meet the taliban's spokesman. they remain a deeply controversial organisation in afghanistan, responsible for many deaths. but they claim their approach to governance has changed. translation: the taliban has a separate committee for education, health and local government. we don't only have military setups but also administrative systems. the taliban have captured huge territories in helmand, and now they have to govern them. the next challenge is how much theyjoin the modern world and how much they will reject it. auliya atrafi, bbc news, afghanistan. the qatari foreign minister has said that the dispute between qatar and several arab states, most notably saudi arabia, threatens the stability of the whole region. qatar is seeking russian help to resolve its escalating crisis
with other gulf states over its alleged connections with terrorism. moscow says the qatari foreign minister is expected there for meetings at the weekend. our diplomatic correspondent james robbins reports from the qatari capital, doha. the harshness of the language by qatar's critics has been stepped up, neighbouring united arab emirates, for instance, saying that this country, qatar, is now the main source of terrorism and of the financing of religious extremism in the region. now, that's extraordinary and it indicates how far cooperation within the so—called gulf cooperation council, of which both the uae and qatar are members, has broken down. the qataris, on their side, continue to deny any accusations, allegations, that they've been involved in financing, exporting religious extremism and terrorism. they say they're victims of a plot to smear this country, including internet hacks, because, they say, others in the gulf cooperation council
simply don't accept that qatar wants to pursue an individual, independent foreign policy, which of course includes being much closer to iran than others in the gulf would like. it also includes being home to the aljazeera global news television channel, which many in the region, many of the other more—or—less autocratic rulers in this region, detest because they think it shines too strong a light on politics in the region, encourages dissent, but also because they believe it also fosters terrorism. now, aljazeera is still operating, of course, but the uae is making clear that it hopes the station will be either severely reigned in or actually closed down. so there are a lot of very big divides in this crisis. the qataris say they're not going to capitulate, they're not going to surrender their sovereignty, and on other side it's clear that its critics feel they have a golden moment, if you like, to try and bring overwhelming pressure to bear
on this country to get it to fall into line. failure is something we often shy away from, but that could be slowly changing. a museum of failure hasjust opened in sweden — it's filled with products that have flopped. the aim is to show that failure is good. our correspondent richard galpin was at the opening. the doors of the world's first museum of failure being opened here in the swedish city of helsingborg. it's the brainchild of this man, samuel west. he's a psychologist on a mission to show people here and around the world that failure should be celebrated — because it's part of the process leading to successful innovation. and amongst those studying the weird and wonderful
things on display here, there seems to be genuine enthusiasm about the whole concept. what's your impression of what you've seen? i love it, i think it's fantastic. i mean, the focus of failure, which we normally try to hide under a carpet or sweep under the carpet, to actually expose the failures as the only way to true innovation i think is fantastic. before the opening party, i was given an exclusive tour of this unique museum by its director, samuel west. it's obviously a lot of exhibits here, about 70 in total? 70 different products and services. do you recognise that? that's google glass, isn't it, and that was a bad failure. a bad failure because they didn't take privacy issues seriously enough. quite a big miss, wasn't it, and loads more here. another food innovation for you. another big brand as well.