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tv   BBC News  BBC News  August 14, 2018 4:00am-4:31am BST

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welcome to bbc news. broadcasting to viewers in north america and around the globe. my name is mike embley. our top stories: a scathing war of words between donald trump and his former diversity advisor. he's accused of using racist language, he calls her a lowlife and a loser. as the taliban batter afghan forces in ghazni, hundreds are dead. it's still not clear who controls this key city. the white house denies responsibility for turkeys currencey crisis. president erdogan accuses the us of a "stab in the back". and the machines taught to diagnose dozens of eye diseases as accurately as doctors. we have a special report. hello. in a tweet, president trump is calling her a "vicious lowlife" and a loser, and white house officials are dismissing her book as the work of a "disgruntled
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former employee." but former trump adviser omarosa manigault newman has released what she says is a tape of a phone call from the president, expressing surprise and regret at her dismissal last year. she has already accused donald trump of repeatedly using racist language. our north america editor, jon sopel has the story. omarosa manigault newman had zero policy expertise and absolutely no political experience when she was appointed by donald trump to be one of his senior advisers at the white house. but she had been on the apprentice, the reality tv show that he'd hosted. they were the perfect coupling. i like omarosa. omarosa's a good person. she's also black in a white house that lives up to its name as being, well, very white. donald trump is a con. and with herfiring and book that she's now touting, the reality tv genre has come to the white house. in the book, she accuses the president of being a racist and misogynist.
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he fired back. lowlife, she's a lowlife. but revenge is a dish best served cold, and she has planned this all out. extraordinarily, with a tape of her firing by chief of staff john kelly. that drew gasps in the west wing. the firing took place in the situation room, a place where no recordings are ever allowed. that was yesterday. today, omarosa had a new tape to play, donald trump feigning ignorance about the dismissal. and now donald trump
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has come out swinging: the flippant response would be to say, well, this is all good, harmless fun, but this is the west wing, the nerve centre of the most powerful country on earth. and while dramatists have always sought to depict politics as soap opera, the real thing is coming up with more bizarre plot lines than any script writer would dare imagine. jon sopel, bbc news, washington. let's get some of
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the day's other news. in syria, it's thought president assad is preparing to attack idlib province, the last rebel bastion in the country. meanwhile, the us secretary of state, mike pompeo, has been discussing with saudi arabia's crown prince mohammed bin salman, syria's worsening humanitarian and security situation. a european charity that runs a rescue ship in the mediterranean, has again called on eu governments to let it dock. it wants to allow mi migrants to disembark. italy and malta have blocked their ports to the aquarius since it took the migrants on board on friday. mali's opposition looks set to reject the results of sunday's presidential run—off, because of allegations of fraud. president ibrahim boubacar keita, who won more than 40% in the first round, is widely expected to win the election. hundreds of polling stations failed to open. romania has opened an inquiry into allegations of police violence at a mass anti—corru ption protest that left hundreds injured on friday. police used water cannon, tear gas, pepper spray and batons to disperse the crowd, many of them romanian
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expats from across europe. they want the government to resign. afghan government forces are trying to drive taliban militants out of ghazni, where fighting has been raging for four days. officials say 100 security personnel have been killed, almost 200 taliban fighters. the us military, which is supporting government forces, says the taliban attack has failed. there are fears that civilians trapped in the city are unable to find food. control of ghazni would effectively allow the taliban to cut off southern afghanistan from kabul. zia shahreyar reports. the battle for ghazni has been raging since last thursday. afghan forces have faced constant attacks by surrounding insurgents as they try to reach the city. now supported by american military air strikes and some ground
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forces, they say they have pushed the taliban to the outskirts of the provincial capital. however, this footage, verified by bbc sources, shows there are pockets of resistance in some of the neighbourhoods, where the taliban openly roam around. the afghan government told the bbc that after monday's push it is now in total control of the city. reinforcements have arrived, our top security leaders are already in the city. the taliban have started fleeing from the outskirts of ghazni, so the situation is fully under control. local residents fleeing ghazni described the situation for residents as bleak. many civilians have been killed or injured. food supplies are running low. there is no electricity
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and major communication lines are cut off. one of those injured says bodies have been lying in the streets for days. translation: government forces are unable to transfer dead bodies, some of which are in a very bad state. we desperately need them to be collected and those injured to be ta ken to areas of safety. the international red cross now warns of growing humanitarian concern as much—needed medicine is also running short. the pressure continues on the taliban to enter peace talks with the afghan government, but the group has only increased its deadly assaults across the country. zia shahreyar, bbc news. there's more about afghanistan and the desperate struggle to find food in ghazni on our website. just go to or download the bbc news app. let's get some of the day's other news.
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the turkish president has lashed out at the united states, blaming it for the latest plunge in the value of its currency, the lira. the us has imposed sanctions over a us preacher imprisoned in turkey, and recep tayyip erdogan has said his nato ally is seeking to "stab the country in the back". the white house denies it is to blame for turkey's woes. mark lowen reports from istanbul. in his 37 years of work, hakim akcay has never seen it this bad. he imports all his stock from abroad and, as the turkish lira plunges, he's making huge losses. from selling a0 pairs a day, he's down to two, as the currency fall hits his turkish customers‘ pockets as well. translation: banks used to beg me to give me loans. now i'm begging to get them. i'm cancelling my next orders to try and sell what i have here now and in three months i'll see if i have to close down. turkey is now in a full—blown currency crisis, its lira crashing last friday by 18% and still falling. for long, there were warnings its economy was overheating,
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fuelled by credit and construction. but the collapse was sparked when donald trump hit turkey with sanctions and tariffs over its continued detention of an american pastor. president erdogan is stoking conspiracy theories among his nationalist base, with talk of foreign plots. rejecting an interest rate rise that could help, he instead hit out at the us. translation: on the one hand, you're a strategic partner, on the other, you shoot yourself in the foot. on the one hand, you were a partner with us in afghanistan when everybody else was leaving. you were a partner with us in somalia, you're a partner in nato. on the other hand, you stab your ally in the back. is this acceptable? his supporters are rallying behind him. this business group showing off the lira they bought today. the government is framing it as a matter of national survival. "everyone knows this is an economic attack on our country," he says, "trump and america will be destroyed and turkey will stand tall."
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the lira crash matters beyond turkey, because other banks, currencies and markets elsewhere in the world have fallen amid fears of contagion. and with president erdogan warning that the row with the us risks pushing turkey to seek alternative partners, an unprecedented rift has opened between two nato allies. tourists are making hay while the sun shines, as the luxury suddenly becomes affordable. if more holidaymakers are tempted here, it's a small solace amid turkey's economic woes. when i was here, it took me by surprise that i get so much lira for my euros, but it's great. we can afford even better restaurants than we did already actually. we liked the middle standard and now tomorrow we will really make a reservation for a really nice turkish restaurant.
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but no such joy for hakim, closing early, and not knowing where his currency will end up tomorrow. turkey's diplomatic fights and its economic decisions may be made above him, but it's he and 80 million others here who are paying the price. mark lowen, bbc news, istanbul. the chinese government has been obliged to deny that it's operating a network of extra—judicial detention centres, to hold ethnic uighurs. the united nations has heard evidence that up to a million uighurs, who are mostly muslim, may be detained in the xinjiang region in the west. it's very rare for china to address security and humanitarian issues, publicly. here's our china correspondent, stephen mcdonell. the chinese government is making no apologies for the way it is running xinjiang. it has told the un that there has been a major crackdown there in order to rein in violent islamic extremism and those who would separate xinjiang
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from the rest of china. critics of the policy, though, say that a lot of ordinary uighurs are being caught up in this very same crackdown. however, the chinese government again says this is not being targeted at any ethnic group and is not designed in any way to stop people from practising their normal religious beliefs. a court in new mexico has heard that a young boy, whose body was found at a compound in the desert, died in a ritual ceremony to cast out demonic spirits. prosecutors say the three—year—old had been trained to use guns to defend the camp. eleven other children and five adults were also found living in squalor in a trailer half—buried in the sand. a large quantity of guns and ammunition were also discovered. five people, including the boy's father have been charged with child abuse. argentina's former president cristina fernandez de kirchner,
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has rejected allegations that she received any bribes during her time in office. appearing before a judge leading an investigation into corruption, she said political rivals were trying to stop her contesting next year's presidential elections. more than a dozen people have been arrested in argentina since notebooks were found detailing what appear to be illicit political payments from 2003 to 2015. stay with us on bbc news. still to come: will same—sex marriage be legalised in cuba? we look at a debate on what was once a taboo topic. the big crowds became bigger as the time of the funeral approached. as the lines of fans became longer, the police prepared for a hugejob of crowd control. idi amin, uganda's brutal former
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dictator, has died at the age of 80. he's been buried in saudi arabia, where he lived in exile since being overthrown in 1979. two billion people around the world have seen the last total eclipse of the sun to take place in this millennium. it began itsjourney off the coast of canada, ending three hours later, when the sun set over the bay of bengal. glad to have you with us on bbc
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news. the latest headlines: a scathing war of words between donald trump and his former diversity advisor — she accused him of using racist language, and he calls her a lowlife and a loser. the taliban continues to batter afghan forces in ghazni. hundreds are dead, but it's still not clear who controls this key city. thousands of people in yemen have attended a mass funeral for the 29 children killed in an airstrike by the saudi—led coalition last week. the attack happened on a bus, in a crowded market in saada province. the united nations says more than 10,000 civilians have died since the conflict began in 2015. orla guerin reports. coffin after coffin borne aloft, the unbearable weight of the lightest bodies, little boys killed on their school bus. these are the victims of what saudi arabia has called a legitimate airstrike against houthi rebel fighters. but it was youth and innocence
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being buried here today. even for yemenis, enured to bloodshed and suffering, this is a devastating loss. and on the streets of the rebel stronghold of saada, grief and rage against the saudis and their western allies. "your brutality has been exposed to the world," said the rebel leader, mohammed al—houthi, "and this crime will not be forgotten." but the outcry in yemen is not echoed by the british government. our silence on this is deadly for yemeni civilians. it basically suggests to the saudi and emirati—led coalition that they can continue doing whatever they want with total impunity. at the moment, so farfrom the uk government all we've had is a solitary tweet, a tweet from a minister of state saying that we express concern about the deaths of 29 children. that's a disgrace.
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we should be out there condemning this. britain backs the saudi—led coalition, which intervened in yemen three years ago to restore the internationally recognised government to power. there are uk personnel in the coalition‘s command and control centre. the ministry of defence says it's a very small number, and they have a purely advisory role. but britain is one of the major arms suppliers to saudi arabia and campaigners say the value of arms sales to the saudis has increased by almost 500% since the conflict began. over the past three years, that trade has earned britain around £4.6 billion. the saudi—led coalition has promised to investigate the carnage on the school bus, which amounts to investigating itself. experts say don't expect the probe to produce any changes. and don't expect london and washington to lean on riyadh.
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britain and even the us has a limited ability to put pressure on the saudi authorities, in public at least, because at the moment riyadh is extremely touchy, the middle east as a whole is unstable, and these are very important contracts for us and particularly british firms at a time when the aviation industry is under a lot of pressure in the uk. for this man, all that matters is that three of his sons are gone — brothers killed side by side, and now buried that way. he was saying his goodbyes. we asked the government for an interview. no minister was available. orla guerin, bbc news. artificial intelligence could diagnose eye disease as accurately as some
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of the world's leading experts. researchers at the moorfields eye hospital in london have trained a machine to read complex eye scans and detect more than 50 types of disease. doctors say the technology could prevent irreversible sight loss. our medical correspondent fergus walsh reports. on the brink of going blind, elaine's sight was saved by doctors at moorfields hospital. this scan showed she needed urgent treatment. there's a growth of abnormal blood vessels under the retina... now, artificial intelligence — machines — have learned how to interpret these complex images. a computer looked at 1000 patient scans using a set of rules, an algorithm, and was able to detect over 50 eye conditions and did not miss a single urgent case. this is a jaw—dropping result and i think most eye specialists will gasp, because we have shown that this algorithm is as good as some of the world's leading experts in interpreting these scans. using artificial intelligence
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to diagnose eye disease could be a game changer. that's because at present, doctors are swamped by the number of scans they have to read and some patients go blind before they get treated. i can see the leaves, the detail isn't sharp... 200 people a day in the uk, like elaine, develop the blinding form of age—related macular degeneration. she only has vision in her right eye and welcomes the advent of artificial intelligence in healthcare. it's extraordinary. it's absolutely brilliant. people will be empowered, because their sight will be saved through this artificial intelligence, this algorithm, and they won't be disabled by not having sight at all. google's london headquarters is home to its artificial
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intelligence company deepmind. they developed the algorithm to read eye scans and are researching ai's use in other health conditions. we're looking at eye disease but we're also looking at how you would plan radiotherapy treatment, because it can take a specialist up to eight hours to plan a treatment currently for complex cancers, and also whether we can use artificial intelligence to identify breast cancers more effectively and potentially earlier through mammography screening. artificial intelligence is set to have a profound impact in health care, speeding up diagnosis and freeing up clinicians to spend more time with patients. but not everyone will be happy with a tech giant like google having access to their health data. so the people at deepmind will need to ensure that patient confidentiality and data protection are embedded in everything they do.
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the eye research results, published in the journal nature medicine, are so promising that artificial intelligence looks likely to play a key role in the nhs within just a few years. fergus walsh, bbc news. vienna has been named the world's best city to live in. the home of the viennese waltz and the wiener schnitzel scored an almost perfect 99.1% — overtaking last year's winner — melbourne in australia. the economist intelligence unit said improvements in security had moved the austrian capital into the top spot. the world's least liveable cities were dhaka and damsacus. a0 years ago, gay people in cuba faced the risk of being sent to work camps or prison. now a country with a notoriously homophobic past has started moves to legalise same sex marriage, thanks to a clause in the new constitution — as will grant reports from havana. hot off the presses — cuba's new constitution. ordinary cubans are only now
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digesting the completely rewritten magna carta. it introduces changes recognising private property and recognising marriage as between two people. paquito and miguel are two people who have been together for 15 years. on an island renowned for the homophobic attitudes of its past, this change, they say, is long overdue. translation: i took a long time to come out of the closet because i had no points of reference around me. there was no information about it. back then, it was a problem and a stigma. translation: we are trying to say there isn't a single type of family. the nuclear family isn't the only one that exist. that is what we are fighting for. cuban society hasn't always been this understanding towards gay men and women.
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in the worst years of the 1970s homosexual people were sent to exile, work camps or even prison. today most people seem to be ready to rectify the mistakes of the past. except for one institution, which won't budge on gay rights: the church. in this methodist church in havana, the congregation is deeply committed. when it comes to the question of same—sex marriage, the message is not one of tolerance. translation: we have distributed material which talks about the original design of the family — that is the family as it has always been known. we are going to fight with all of our strength to make sure this measure is not included in the constitution. still, it is expected same—sex marriage will be approved. the main support of the lesbian and the gay community have on the island is mariela castro, the daughter of raul castro, and the influential head of the homosexual rights commission. at a recent gay pride march
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in havana, symbolic weddings were undertaken by sympathetic members of the church. by the time the next pride comes around, this couple hoped they might be able to get married for real. will grant, bbc news, havana. finally, the swiss mountaineer dani arnold has set a new record — climbing the notoriously tough north face of the grandes jorasses in the western alps. he reached the top — more than 4,200 metres — in two hours, four minutes of free climbing. so he was negotiating a granite face of 1,200 metres without ropes or extra oxygen. he now holds the speed record for climbing two of the three large north faces in the alps. much more on the website. thank you for watching. hello.
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it doesn't look like the widespread, hot, sunny weather will return soon, but there will be some warmth in the forecast, particularly across england and wales throughout this week. something a little bit cooler, though, at the end of the week. we start this morning on a warm note across central, southern and eastern parts of the country, but always more cloud across the west. but, even so, still double—figure values here as well. so, for tuesday itself, always more cloud across the north and west of the country, that's because of a brisk westerly wind feeding in this moist air off the atlantic. so the best of the dry and bright weather will be in the south and east. we could see the odd heavy shower in the afternoon. to the north and the west, more of a breeze, 17—20 degrees. to the south and east, 24—25,
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and it will be fairly humid again as well. on into tuesday evening, it will be a dry one for england and wales, eastern scotland. more cloud, though, in the north—west. the reason for more cloud in the north—west, as i mentioned, we've got our weather coming from the atlantic. into wednesday, this area of low pressure will make inroads to create an unsettled day across the north—west corner. more cloud, outbreaks of rain for north—west scotland and northern ireland, perhaps north—west england, and into north—west wales, and with the best of the dry and bright weather in the south and the east corner. the wind arrows are on because it will be a blustery day wherever you are, and certainly in the north—west with the cloud and the rain. that will impact the temperatures, 15—22 degrees. we could make 25, 26, even 27 in the south—east. but then it changes as we head into thursday. that area of low pressure pushes its way south—eastwards. it pushes the cold front across the country as well.
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it could be quite a wet morning across england and wales, as that band of rain makes its way southwards and eastwards, tending to fizzle out as it does so. but eventually it will clear away, and then behind it will leave cooler and fresher conditions with sunshine and some showers. most of these in the north—west. temperatures ranging between 14—21 degrees — so it will be noticeably cooler across—the—board. and then we see another area of low pressure move in on friday, particularly across the north—west of the country. so, the week is starting on a warm note in england and wales. as low pressure moves through, it will send some cooler and fresher air right across the board. this is bbc news. the headlines: president trump has bitterly attacked his former diversity adviser, omarosa manigault newman, who has accused him of repeatedly using racist language. he's called her a vicious lowlife, who he only kept her on because she flattered him. she has released a tape of what she says is a phone call from the president,
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expressing surprise and regret at her dismissal last year. still conflicting reports about the situation in the afghan city of ghazni. nato officials describe a four—day taliban assault on the city as a "failed attack". bbc sources on the ground say there's still fighting going on and nearly 100 soldiers have died. the turkish lira has kept on plunging in value. the white house is denying that new american tariffs on turkish metals have caused the currency crisis. president erdogan has accused the us of stabbing turkey, a nato ally, in the back.
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