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tv   World News Today  BBC News  January 21, 2018 9:00pm-9:31pm GMT

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this is bbc world news today. i'm geeta guru—murthy. our top stories. a new escalation of the war in syria as turkey says its ground forces have crossed the border to target kurdish fighters there. the death toll in the attack on a luxury hotel in kabul increases to 18, after residents had to flee during a 12—hour siege. germany's social democrats vote to open talks with angela merkel‘s conservatives to form another grand coalition. a second day of women's marches around the world, including here in london. we bring you the latest. hello and welcome to world news today. the un security council is due to discuss the worsening crisis in syria, with turkey opening up a new front against kurdish militia in the north of the country. the militia, the ypg,
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are backed by the united states but viewed by turkey as a terrorist organisation. on sunday, turkish troops crossed the border over the border, from where our correspondent, mark lowen, sent this report. as if syria needed more of this. artillery fire from turkey, launching a new ground and air offensive. it's called operation olive branch, though it's anything but a gesture of peace. from the skies, turkish f—16s struck yesterday, their target, the syrian kurdish militia known as the ypg. turkey sees them as terrorists, linked to the outlawed kurdish militants, the pkk, and it wants them pushed back from the border town of afrin. turkey's president has his own troops fighting for their hero, and with elections next year, war rallies his conservative supporters. translation: this is a national struggle, and in this national struggle we will crush anyone who stands against us!
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but the ypg has powerful friends, they are trained and armed by the us. that has infuriated turkey, which says the americans have chosen terrorists over their nato ally. in the hills beside the border, we found a further build—up, as the offensive shows no sign of ending. every few minutes, you hear the thud of an artillery strike. turkey has clearly committed militarily to this operation and has widespread popular support here, but if the turks suffer losses, or civilian casualties grow, that could change. and the risk is clear. this border town was hit by a rocket, said to be from the ypg, killing one, and injuring more. turkey is on dangerous ground, and a long, costly offensive is onlyjust beginning. mark lowen, bbc news on the turkey—syrian border. with me is sebastian usher, our arab affairs editor.
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talking about a long and costly offensive and we heard from the turkish leader that he thinks he can keep this limited. erdogan said the opposite and said it could be relatively brief, but the pain he has said himself, rhetorically, which she reaffirmed today is to crush all of turkey's enemies and thatis crush all of turkey's enemies and that is the kurds both in syria and in turkey so that is a huge game and not just about this region. in turkey so that is a huge game and notjust about this region. it goes further and that is about 50 kilometres east. and we saw the turkish forces carry out an offensive of more limited nature in 2015 to prevent the kurds from bringing that to canton is together into one and they backed off to some extent. at the moment it is difficult to see which forced,
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beside the kurds themselves will stand up to them. ypg are known for battling against the militants, tough opponent. how far could the repercussions spread and how long will it go on? i think mark is correct that this could be a long campaign. the ypg is more battle hardened than it was and it was the force that drove isis out of rack. —— raqqa. they are well ensconced where they are, the kurdish area, where they are, the kurdish area, where they are, the kurdish area, where they got support from the local population. there are other kurdish forces near and other parts of the alliance which they lead that could join them. although turkey, on paper, has overwhelming force, it would be hard to use that to have a quick victory unless they
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essentially bomb are thin to the extent that we saw the russians do when they were attacking the rebels. that would provoke a huge international outcry and already turkey is very isolated. perhaps not dangerously so because it is not as if the russians or the americans are about to start shooting their planes down in the air but with the un security council speaking tomorrow there are bound to be strong words against what has happened and the longer it goes on at the moment, countries calling for restraint, they will up their rhetoricjust countries calling for restraint, they will up their rhetoric just as mr erdogan has upped his rhetoric. how ultimately would the us react? we have heard that they were warned that these aircraft would be launched. the us doesn't have that many options. it backed the ypg, believing they were the most effective force against is on the
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ground. the only practical effective force it could use. but the history of the kurds, when they have served their purpose, after that, the outside forces have abandoned them because they do not have the power ofa because they do not have the power of a state like turkey or iraq. they threaten the whole redrawing of this. so in a sense the kurds are cynical because they know when it comes down to is they would be fighting the battle themselves even though they will have some international support but it does make the us not —— look not very good. it makes them look as though they cannot call the shots or protect their own clients in syria. very different from the way russia has manoeuvred into a position of strength. very complex, thank you forces —— explaining it. authorities in afghanistan say 18 people, including 1a foreigners, are now confirmed dead after gunmen attacked a luxury hotel in kabul. afghan troops fought through the night, over more than 12 hours, to free those trapped inside. the taliban says it carried out the attack. zia shahreyar has the story.
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explosion. the final moments of a fight that had lasted all night. gunfire. gunfire and explosions, as afghan special forces battle to regain control of the intercontinental hotel. one soldier throws a grenade. he moves away, then the explosion. explosion. the room is soon on fire, evidence of the struggle that had taken place. the afghan national flag waving from the roof, proof that the building has been reta ken. more than 150 people were inside yesterday evening when gunmen burst in and opened - eyewitnesses in and opened fire. eyewitnesses said they were after foreigners. translation: the attackers were knocking on the door of each room, trying to reach their targets.
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they killed ordinary people and officials, they were also targeting foreigners. these images, filmed by local tv, show people escaping by climbing down bed sheets that they'd tied to balconies. this telecoms engineer fell from the sixth floor as he tried to get away. translation: when the sixth floor caught fire this morning, my roommates told me to either burn or escape. i got a bed sheet and tied it to the balcony. i tried to come down, but i was heavy, and my arms were not strong enough. i fell down, and injured my shoulder and leg. this has been probably the deadliest attack on foreign civilians in kabul since the us invasion of afghanistan. we've been told that the attackers spoke local languages, and shouted at afghans to be separated from foreign nationalities. this sustained and complex assault will prompt urgent questions as to how the gunmen got through.
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zia shahreyar, bbc news, kabul. germany has moved a step closer to forming a new government. the centre—left social democratic party has voted to enter into new coalition talks with chancellor merkel‘s conservative bloc. at a party meeting in bonn, the spd's martin schulz had urged many sceptical delegates to press ahead, describing a new coalition as the best way to combat hard right politics in europe. angela merkel welcomed the development. the cdu already cleared the way for coalition talks last week after concluding the exploratory talks, now we are pleased and welcome that the spd did so today at its congress. today, we are preparing for this coalition negotiation. tomorrow, within the cdu we will work together, and then quickly enter into joint discussion with the social democrats. that's what today's decision of the spd allows. jenny hill in berlin says that
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with party leader, martin schulz, convincing the conference to support the idea of a coalition, talks to form a government could begin as soon as tomorrow. his view is that if they can pull this off, if they go into government, in his view it's the responsible thing to do to try and form a government, but that it's possible, in his view, to renew the party within that coalition, but their task is going to be huge. they are very low in the polls, they will have to distinguish themselves from mrs merkel‘s conservatives if they are to try and rebuild their electorate, many of whom, of course, disappeared off to vote afd, the far right party. there is a lot of work to be done, and he's going to have to do something to unite the party, that is if they still want him as leader, because of course he has presided over this real controversy. worth just pointing out, when it comes to coalition talks which will take place later this week, if and when the two sides can get some kind of deal drafted, the party base, all 440,000 members
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of the spd will have to approve it, via postal ballot before any actual coalition government can be formed. so, mrs merkel isn't out of the woods just yet, but i think today you have seen her overcome a significant hurdle. they have taken a step towards, i suppose, delivering the government, the stability she has promised germany all along. let's take a look at some of the other stories making the news. the us senate is resuming its debate on funding the us government. they are sitting for a rare sunday session to try and force the opening of government agencies shut down because of the impasse over military funding and health care. it was said there would be a vote early on monday. six people have been killed during opposition protests in the capital of the democratic republic of congo. police used teargas and live ammunition to disperse
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demonstrators in kinshasa, who were demanding that president joseph kabila give up power. mr kabila's term of office expired more than a year ago. russian foreign minister sergei lavrov has said the west's "unprecedented russiaphobia" was worse than at the height of the cold war. he was speaking in an interview with the russian daily kommersant, after a two—day visit to new york. he said that back during the east—west tensions of the second half of the last century, there was at least "some decorum". stay with us on bbc world news, still to come. not just any visit from the neighbours — a north korean delegation heads south to check on the winter olympic venues. the reaction of american servicemen
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was predictable. i am going home. i am going home. demonstrators waiting for mike gatting and his rebel cricket team we re gatting and his rebel cricket team were attacked with tear gas and set upon by police dogs. anti—apartheid campaigners said they would carry on the protests throughout the tour. they call him the butcher of lyon. he is being held on a fraud charge in bolivia but the west germans want to extradite him for crimes committed in wartime france. there he was the gestapo chief. millions came to bathe as close as possible to this spot, a tide of humanity that was believed by officials to have broken all records. this is bbc world news today. the latest headlines.
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turkey says its forces have entered a kurdish—controlled enclave in northern syria. president erdogan says he hopes the incursion will be brief. afghan authorities say the death toll has increased to 18 in a militant attack on a luxury hotel in kabul. thousands of protesters have taken pa rt thousands of protesters have taken part ina thousands of protesters have taken part in a women's march as part of an international campaign to combat gender inequality. it follows similar marches that took place yesterday in the us — on what was the anniversary of donald trump's inauguration. those marches have entered a second day now, with one of the biggest events is planned to take place in us city of las vegas, rajini vaidyanathan is there for us. the main focus is this event in las vegas. it has not kicked off yet, but as you can see over there, thousands of women have packed into the stadium just outside the centre of las vegas. the focus of the event
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is actually trying to get women to register to vote, because it last year was a rallying cry, this year is all about getting things done and getting more people in positions of power and also encouraging people to run to office. i'm joined by two people who have travelled from afar. emily. thanks to having me. and katie. thanks to having me. you are both sisters who have come from connecticut and california. starting with you, emily, why is it so important to come here? as a mother of two little boys, raising them, we wa nt of two little boys, raising them, we want our attention to good values. i wa nt want our attention to good values. i want little boys that are kind and caring, and my boys are adopted a minority children that is a very specific cause bus about being what is happening in our country right 110w. is happening in our country right now. when i sit down at the dinner table with them i have a hard time helping them seaways that they can
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emulate their president right now. but aside from people's political stances, when i look at the leader ofa stances, when i look at the leader of a country, i want to look at someone of a country, i want to look at someone i can of a country, i want to look at someone i can show of a country, i want to look at someone i can show my children i wa nt someone i can show my children i want represented in my own home. katie, many people who support donald trump say that is his style and even if what emily says might be the case that some people, it is about results and the economy is doing well. i think we need to take a look at that in a couple of years from now and really demand more from our president. i am not convinced that the moment that we are headed down right path. becoming a new mother has meant trying to deepen my own understanding of where we are headed as a country for her future. what do you think needs to change the most? what are you agitating for? i'd like to see more women involved in their local politics. i think the national stage is taking a lot ofair think the national stage is taking a lot of air in the room right now and
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if we have a voice we must use it. it is important to get engaged. i'm here to deepen my own understanding of various perspectives to try and ta ke of various perspectives to try and take that to the polls with me and also take that to my daily and wee kly also take that to my daily and weekly routine at work and at home and in my life in my community in berkeley, california. i need to get more involved. some of the supporters of the women's march in the us. france's president, emmanuel macron, has told the bbc he shares the outrage of african countries about reports donald trump used a vulgar and offensive word to describe them. mr trump was forced to deny being a racist when he was accused of making the comments during an oval office meeting on immigration. he was speaking to andrew marr. let me ask you about another leader, andi let me ask you about another leader, and i wondered what you thought when you got up in the morning and saw what donald trump had said about certain african countries. he denies using it but a lot of people said he
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did. among the african countries out rays we re did. among the african countries out rays were many francophone countries in africa and did you share their outrage? for sure. it is not a word you can use and if we want precisely to build peace and development in these countries and respectful relationships... you cannot use those words. by definition. and a lot of the issues in the middle east and africa is due to a lot of frustrations and due to a lot of and we have —— past humiliations. we have to respect all of these countries. i wonder what you make of him asa countries. i wonder what you make of him as a person, having come across him as a person, having come across him personally? he is not a classical politician. first of all,
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he was elected by his own people and he was elected by his own people and he is the president of the united states. and that is a great country and a great responsibility. that is where i want to work with him and i think we can build a long and strong relationship. we disagree on many topics. i call him regularly and i am directand topics. i call him regularly and i am direct and frank and sometimes i managed to convince him, and sometimes i fail. president macron speaking to andrew marr. it is worth a look at the website if you want to see that in full. let's catch up with all of the sport. cristiano ronaldo ended a miserable run of form with a late double to help real madrid thump la coruna 7—1. ronaldo had only scored four league goals before sunday's clash with third —from—bottom deportivo. gareth bale and nacho also bagged braces each side of half—time. so real move back above villarreal and into the champions league places. leaders barcelona are playing real betis right now. barca have scored three times in quick succession
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for a 3—0 lead. ivan rakatic, lionel messi scored the second and luis suarez the third. over in italy, dries mertens ended a long goal drought to give napoli a 1—0 victory at atalanta, that saw the serie a leaders move four points clear. second—placed juventus clash with genoa on monday. harry kane struck his 99th premier league goal to save tottenham with a 1—1 draw against southampton. kane's nowjust a goal away from becoming the 27th member of the ‘100 club'. the result moves spurs to within two points of fourth—placed liverpool, who have a game in hand. mauricio pochettino wasn't happy with the loss of two vital points in the push for a champions league place. we must give credit to the opponent but our performance was not great andi but our performance was not great and i am not happy with our
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performance. what in particular? in possession we need to move the ball quicker and create more. i think we made a lot of mistaken decisions and it's impossible to win the game when you make many mistakes. watford have appointed javi gracia as their new manager following the sacking of marco silva. silva became the eighth sacking in this premier league season. watford claimed everton's "unwarra nted approach" for silva as their replacement coach for ronald koeman, was the "catalyst" behind their decision to sack him. the spaniard gracia last managed russian club rubin kazan and has signed an 18—month deal. it's the final of the masters snooker with kyren wilson and mark allen gunning for a maiden title in london. wilson and allen shared the opening eight frames before allen hit the final‘s first century in frame 12. he leads 7—5 at the mid—session interval. the winner is first to 10 frames. tommy fleetwood played with some back—nine brilliance
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to defend his abu dhabi golf title. the european number one finished on 22—under—par, two strokes clear of ross fisher. four—times major winner rory mcilroy finished tied for third alongside matt fitzpatrick. mcilroy said fleetwood's finish was "obscene" as he carded six birdies over the closing nine holes. it was just important that we carried on going forward and it's all well and good having a great year and it was the best year of my life but we want to keep pushing and like i say, i want to know where my potential will take me but i wanted to keep pushing and make sure that we just kept improving and it was important to do that and this week feels like another step along the way. playing some excellent golf at the moment. england captain eoin morgan says their one day cricket win against australia is probably their best as a group yet. england have taken an unassailable 3—0 lead in the series, thanks largely to an unbeaten century from wicketkeeper
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jos buttler in sydney. he was helped by 53 not out from all rounder chris woakes as england posted 302—6 from their 50 overs. australia fell 16 runs short in their reply, with controversy over steve smith being caught out. mark wood picked up two wickets. the final two one—dayers take place in adelaide on friday and perth next sunday. and now to priests on the piste. yep, you heard it right. the 21st annual alpine skiing championships for clergymen took place in poland this weekend. they compete for thejohn paul ii cup. competitors are divided not on their beliefs but on age. they compete on the 800 metre slalom course. the cassocks aren't the most aerodynamic outfits. pretty cool pictures. back to you. it looks fantastic. north korean officials have been inspecting winter olympic venues in south korea. it's the first such trip by a delegation from the north since south korean president moonjae—in,
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took office last may. sophia tran—thomson reports. a warning it contains some flash photography. the symbolic torch is already doing the rounds in south korea, but with less than three weeks until the opening ceremony of pyeongchang's winter olympics, there has been plenty of speculation that the north wouldn't be taking part. on sunday, a sigh of relief for organisers and athletes as a north korean delegation crossed the border under heavy police guard. the officials, led by a north korean girl band star, will spend two days inspecting the venues and preparing cultural performances. boarding a train in seoul, the representatives avoided answering questions about why they previously postponed the visit. regardless, the trip is somewhat of a breakthrough, after a year of escalating tension over the north‘s nuclear missile programme and a milestone announcement from the ioc in switzerland on saturday, confirming that the two nations
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will march together at the opening ceremony and compete under a unified korean flag. the north will send 22 athletes to the winter games and compete in three sports and five disciplines. translation: north korea's participation in the winter olympics will present the most dramatic scene in the history of the olympics. it can be a chance to show the value and power of sport, when players from two koreas march together and compete as a unified team. seoul and the organisers hope that the games, which they are calling the peace olympics, could ease tensions with their northern neighbour, who they have never officially made peace with, since the korean war ended with armistice in 1953. don't forget you can get in touch with me and some of the team on twitter. i'm @geetagurumurthy. goodbye. good evening. it has been a day of
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big changes in the atmosphere and change is not always easy. we have swapped out this very cold air for some much, much milder airfrom the south west, a sharp contrast between the air masses which has brought problems with snow in some places and significant snow at that. and in other places with mild air pushing in some heavy rain which has caused issues with flooding across the south—west and parts of wales. during the night the milder air will sweep across the country but not before we see the icy stretches across north—east england and by the time we get to tomorrow morning we will be waking up to temperatures between three and 9 degrees. showers into scotland but notice that most of them are falling as rain and there are temperatures of 4 degrees in inverness, six in glass go, higher than all day. in northern ireland, mostly dry, and that is the
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sort of weather we have across england and wales —— six in glass go. there are some showers in the west. one area of heavy rain continuing to affect parts of the south coast of england but that won't last long and it should scoot off to the south quite quickly through the morning and then essentially on monday a decent day. fairly breezy and windy across the far north where there will be some showers and scatters across the west. other spells of sunshine and temperatures of six or 11 degrees. very different to how it felt during the day. moving out of monday into tuesday, low pressure in charge of the scene with south—westerly winds pumping very mild air across all areas at this stage, so tuesday, on balance, the milder stay of the week for many but we will see some outbreaks of rain especially up to the north and west, parts of wales and some patchy rain elsewhere. the best of the brightness is in shelter on the eastern high ground. nine in
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aberdeen, but 12 or 13 in cardiff and london. a bit of a change on wednesday has heavy rain comes in. working south and east, still mild in the south—east but a bit chilly coming into the north—west but nothing like as cold as it has been but there will be a slightly cool appeal to the weather on thursday with frequent heavy showers. —— a cooler feel. a this is bbc world news, the headlines. the un security council will meet on monday to discuss the worsening crisis in syria — after turkish forces crossed the border to drive out kurdish militants. the turkish president has said he hopes the offensive will be brief. afghan officials say at least 18 people are now known to have died in a taliban attack on the intercontinental hotel in kabul late on saturday. most of the casualties were foreigners, several of whom worked for the afghan airline, kam air. the german chancellor, angela merkel, has welcomed the decision of the centre—left social democratic party to enter into formal talks about renewing a coalition. mrs merkel said discussions would
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start soon but would be complicated. the us senate is holding an unusual sunday session as members try to end a stalemate over the budget that has closed down the federal government. senators have so far been unable to reach a deal on spending
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