this is bbc news. the headlines at midday... president trump says he ordered the attack on iran's top military commander to stop a war, not start one. solemeini has been perpetrating acts of terror to destabilise the middle east for the last 20 years. what the us did yesterday should have been done long ago. fears that the bushfires in australia could reach the outskirts of sydney with high winds and temperatures set to soar again. thousands of reserve troops are deployed. the fires that have raged in south eastern australia will be effected, fanned by these winds, making a dangerous situation even more perilous.
labour backbenchers lisa nandy and jess phillips join the contest to become the party's next leader. the 2019 book entitled no—one is too small to make a difference is a collection of speeches by a swedish climate change activist, what's her name? sharon? greta thunberg. when greta became sharon, the climate change campaigner gets in on thejoke and changes her twitter name. and in this week's click, the team takes a look at facial recognition technology, the future of space travel, and super—fast sports cars. that's in half an hour. the iranian president, hassan rouhani, has said america has made a strategic mistake by killing tehran‘s most senior military commander, and warned the us will face difficult days ahead.
the funeral procession for qassem soleimani has been taking place in baghdad after he was killed by a drone strike at the city's airport on thursday night. president trump said he ordered the action to stop a war, not start one, and was not seeking regime change in iran. the foreign office has warned against all travel to iraq, and all but essential travel to iran. david willis reports. american officials say the air strike that killed qassem soleimani was carried out in self defence. they say the man who's been blamed for the deaths of hundreds of americans in the middle east over the years was plotting a major attack on us diplomats and military personnel. at a rally last night in florida, president trump said that threat had now been lifted. qassem soleimani has been killed and his bloody rampage is now forever gone. he was plotting attacks
against americans, but now we've ensured that his atrocities have been stopped for good. they are stopped for good. iran has vowed revenge. and amid heightened tensions, the us is sending reinforcements to the region — 3,750 troops so far, and warning its citizens stationed in iraq to get out as soon as they can. qassem soleimani was one of america's deadliest enemies. but the us has yet to release intelligence information supporting its claim that he was planning a major attack. administration officials insist, however, that hundreds of americans could have died. neither the us nor iran favours outright war, but the trump administration's claim that taking out one of iran's most powerful officials will prevent further bloodshed may soon be put to the test. david willis, bbc news, los angeles.
speaking this morning, the former foreign secretaryjeremy hunt said he believes "the world is safer" when the us involves itself in matters outside its borders, but he was expecting retaliation from iran. it is clear they will have to react and that will have been calculated by the united states. and, you know, this is a very difficult situation for allies of the united states like ourselves, because i happen to be someone who believes that the world a safer when america is involved in what is happening beyond its shores, and the uk cannot afford to be neutral if we want to be a serious global player. but this is a very, very risky situation, and i think the job that we have to do, as one of the us‘s closest allies, is to use our influence to argue for more consistent us policy. because sometimes the us seems torn between a desire
to appear strong and decisive and influential across every region of the world, and the other desire, which is to get its troops home. the shadow foreign secretary emily thornberry says the us needs to exercise caution. i have a long memory. i remember back 17 years to the iraq war, and the pivotal role that the united nations played at that point. i don't understand why britain is not calling for an emergency meeting of the security council. i think we are in very grave circumstances, i think there is a tremendous risk that we could end up in another war, and i think we have to do everything we can to pull donald trump back from this. i think that what he has done is a deliberate and reckless escalation of the conflict with iran, and we are moving from tit—for—tat, we are moving into a completely different scenario now, and i'm very concerned that we could get dragged into this. well, sirjohn sawyers, who was head
of mi6 when president obama was in the white house says iran's reaction may not necessarily be violent. the chances of negotiations now are much less than they were before. the iranians will respond to this carefully and in a calibrated way. they will seek to ensure that us troops are ousted from iraq, they will make the nuclear deal, which we signed five years ago, almost untenable by breaking out further from it. and at some point, they will react against western interests in an asymmetric way. they are not going to kill american troops in the region, but there will be an asymmetric attack of some sort. the iranian president, hassan rouhani, has said america has made a strategic mistake and will face difficult days ahead. let's speak to dr mahjoob zweiri — he's the director of gulf studies at the university of qatar and an expert on iran.
what do you think the impact of this assassination is going to be? i think the confrontation which started between washington and tehran after the american withdrawal from the deal is likely to increase. there is no doubt that what happened yesterday isn't evidence that the two countries, washington and tehran, have a lot of mistrust and doubts between both countries. i think the decision made by trump to assassinate qassem suleimani increased the chance of war between two countries. it is likely to see more war of words between both sides, however, ido more war of words between both sides, however, i do believe that the iranians reaction will be calculated. and what sort of response would you expect in that case? there are three measures i
think iran will take into consideration as a response. one, they want to make sure that the united states is hurt and i think that will lead, maybe, doing number of casualties as a result of that consequence and response. the other measure i think they will take into consideration, they want to create tension within the domestic policy the united states in the year of elections. they want to be, i would say, a scared environment within the region and pushing different players to intervene to deal with the tension. i think those three measurements are likely to be considered by the iranianss is a response. but it is not necessarily going to happen today or tomorrow, it is likely to happen gradually and
maybe it happens in different times and in different locations. and how much of the targeting of the us interests will also try to make the most of political split within the us, given there is selection? what can they do? when you say create political chaos of planes that, what do you mean? there is already a division within the american politics. yesterday it was evidenced when the democrats insulted the decision made by trump and accused him of not respecting the constitution. let's not forget that president trump had promised, you know, when he became president, that he doesn't want to see americans killed abroad again. criticising, in that context, barack obama. any action or response from the iranians
side, which may lead to killing americans, this will affect the public view in the united states and may actually weaken the president himself. because he made the promise that he would not see any americans killed abroad. there are risks, though... yoma it is an important promised by the president. there are surely risks to iran, people are suffering, and they? absolutely. that is why it will be calculated andi that is why it will be calculated and i would say the consequence of that. a sickly, they don't want to rule and see a real war with the americans. however, they are facing severe pressure from within side. because killing qassem suleimani, he is the person who is leading the
middle east intervention, all of what is happening in the middle east from the iranians side is from qassem suleimani and his people. he is the man. who will be filling that? they need to assure their own people they are strong and united and they can still make this intervention as qassem suleimani used to do. that is the reason they have no choice but to respond. the same time, they have to be worried about the consequence. let's not forget, the idea of survival as a regime is dominating their strategical thinking and i think that will also affect their final decision about the response as well. you said the response could be regional, in the middle east there are many options because there are so many interests in the region. what about a global response? is something we could feel here in the
uk, europe? it is unlikely. iran tried to, i would say, reintroduce itself to the muslim community as a good player. if you remember what they had done in the context of war, even qassem suleimani was fighting daesh in iraq. they tried to be the good guys and working to see the world more say. that is why i think they will focus on the region and one or two places, iraq and lebanon. and i remember what happened to the marines in the 1980s when basically what happened in lebanon was the americans were forced to leave lebanon at the time. the emergency services fighting
to contain bushfires in south eastern australia are warning that worse conditions are yet to come. firefighters have been withdrawn from some areas where large fires had generated their own thunderstorms. officials say sydney has recorded its highest ever temperature of 48.9 celsius. shaimaa khalil, has spent the day in ulladulla in new south wales, one of the areas under threat. the wind picked up quite strongly here in the town of ulladulla and that brought a huge plume of smoke over. you could also feel ash in the air as well. some people in this holiday park have abandoned their cabins and told me they are also responding to messages from the police and fire services. others are still hosing the cabins, the trees around them, just to be prepared. people tell me they feel relatively safe here but they are still quite anxious, they do not know what is going to happen next. that has really been the challenge.
these fires are just so unpredictable and nobody knows where they're going to hit next and how hard that going to be. in south australia, two people have died on kangaroo island, a popular holiday spot not farfrom adelaide. the south australian premier steven marshall said about a quarter of the total area has been destroyed. the island houses an important national park and is home to many unique wildlife species. i'm joined now via webcam from nethy bridge near aviemore by sarah legge — professor of wildlife conservation at the australian national university in canberra. thank you forjoining us. just tell us about kangaroo island and what is the scale of the damage there? kangaroo island's one of australia's largest islands, the third largest after tasmania and melbourne. it is after tasmania and melbourne. it is a bit ofa after tasmania and melbourne. it is a bit of a wildlife paradise. some of the feral animals that plagued mainland australia haven't reached
there. the native species there is very high —— mike the number of native species is very high. a quarter of the island is a national park and that is been burned. a lot of native wildlife on kangaroo island will be under a lot of pressure. and there has been emergency warnings, there has been a loss of life. how important an area is this in terms of the natural resources that are now under threat? the impact of these fires on the natural resources and wildlife of kangaroo island is immense and a couple of threatened species are probably brought to be bring as a consequence of this. for example, there is a very small marsupial carnivore that lives on kangaroo island and is already very rare and
these fires may bring it to the brink. what is happening there is quite symptomatically what is happening right along the east and south—east coasts and part of south—east coasts and part of south—east australia. it is a massive catastrophe. there is an economic cost to the people living there and have made their living from tourism. they will be hoping for it to stop. it is hard to imagine the economic costs and there is so much tourism office that in australia and that is based the natural values and the experiences you can have their and these fires will impact not just you can have their and these fires will impact notjust that in the immediate term, but we expect these events to recur in increasing frequency. and i guess at this stage, it is hard for me to imagine the effect it will have on our
economy and natural resources. thank you for your time today. the backbench labour mp, lisa nandy, has become the latest person to join the party's leadership contest. her announcement came just hours afterjess phillips launched her campaign. with me now is our political correspondentjohn owen. john, labour has suffered this massive defeat and the question is, which direction doesn't go in? what we know about these two backbenchers and where they could take the party if they are even able to formally stand and get the backing of unions and members? to fairly high-profile figures who have announced their candidacy to succeed jeremy corbyn in the last 24—hour is also an they are lisa nandy, the mp for wigan, and jess phillips, mp for birmingham yardley and the joint foreign secretary emily formby and clive lewis to make a total of four
candidates in the race. in terms of the pitch that they make to the labour electorate to decide who the leader will be, i thinkjess phillips, who has been something of a critic ofjeremy corbyn, a vocal critic ofjeremy corbyn over the yea rs, critic ofjeremy corbyn over the years, will be angling as somebody who can provide a fresh break from the current leadership, the new blood that the party needs to rebuild. she is an independent minded mp and a forceful campaigner so she will try to make a pitch in that way. lisa nandy will be making her pitch as trying to rebuild in its heartlands, particular in the north of england where labour seriously underperformed last general election resulting in some pretty widespread losses to the conservative party. she is pitching herself as somebody who already represents one of those communities and is therefore able to best sell labour‘s message to that side of the
electorate. speaking on the bbc earlier today, she also called for the party to heal its divisions and to come together. the last few years have been riven by division and they have been a very difficult few years for every single activist, counsellor and member of parliament in the party. but i am someone who comes, traditionally, from the left of the party. i worked with child refugees and homeless teenagers before i came into parliament. i worked for a member of parliament who was on the left of the party, a housing caseworker. i see the strength in all of our traditions across the party, no one person has the monopoly on wisdom. john, we are expecting rebecca long bailey, somebody seen as a corbyn continuity candidate and keir starmer the shadow brexit secretary to also put their names in the ring. the odd thing about this contest is that those two are widely considered the frontrunners are not yet
confirmed they will be entering the race. there we strongly anticipate they both will, they are both popular with the membership and both will announce their candidacy formally. and labour will be announcing the formal mechanism and it is quite, gated, isn't it? a lot of people say they want istanbul need to get backing from enough members and unions to go forward and whether the hard left have rigged it in order to favour their own people, that will beef closely watched. there is a threshold that each member needs to make and also they need to get support from affiliate including trade unions, as you say, it's likely, gated mechanism. and on monday, the nec, the ruling body of the labour party, will be meeting to flesh out the rules and timetable for this lead —— leadership
election. councils are calling for increased powers to fine fly—tippers after figures showed incidents increased by 50% in england over the last six years. more than a million cases of illegal dumping were recorded last year, which cost councils £58 million to clean up. the local government association, which represents councils in england and wales, says tougher sentences are needed to tackle the offence. i think that we need to be able to work with government on the guidelines. councils invest a lot of time and money investigating fly—tipping, which we need to remind people — it is illegal, is bad for our environment and it is also potentially proposing a public health risk. but we have seen that the fines that have been coming out of the courts — and there have only been two of the maximum £50,000 sentences which have been handed down by courts, and only 5% of those fines over the last six years were above £1000.
so if councils are to tackle this, they do need the powers to ensure that the courts are fining and covering the costs for taking that action. and any information as to why the incidents have increased by so much? i don't think you can pin it down to any one particular thing. councils now offer far more kerb—side collection facilities. it tends to be businesses who are trying to avoid paying the costs of disposal, and we would also like to work with manufacturers to see if things like mattresses, for example, could be returned to the original manufacturer to stop those being dumped. and in terms of the impact on everyone's street and local environment, it is pretty dreadful, isn't it? it certainly is. the rural areas tend to be the areas particularly badly affected. private landowners or public lands, people will find
quiet places to dump. sometimes they are quite large loads. councils are using a number of measures to try to tackle this where there are areas that are being dumped on quite frequently. they are putting cameras in place to try to detect these people. but it is time—consuming and costly for councils to do that. and do we know how much is being spent at the moment on detection and how much would it need to increase to be effective? it is about getting the right level of fines through the prosecutions and the courts. as i said, there have only been two examples of the maximum £50,000 fine and the vast majority of fines are very small, only 5% over £1000, and that doesn't cost cover the cost of the investigations. so we want to work with government to ensure those guidelines are firmed up and councils can
recover their costs. sir rod stewart has been charged by police after allegedly punching a security guard in the chest in florida on new year's eve. the 74—year—old rock star, his friends and his son sean, who is 39, had been attempting to get into a private party at the breakers palm beach hotel, according to a police document released in the us. the report added that sir rod "apologised for his behaviour in the incident". he has been issued a notice to appear at court on the fifth of february. the climate change campaigner greta thunberg has changed her name to "sharon" on twitter, in honour of a celebrity game show contestant who appeared to have no idea who she was. the casualty actress amanda henderson was appearing on celebrity mastermind when she was asked to name the famous activist. the 2019 book entitled no—one is too small to make a difference is a collection of speeches made by a swedish climate change activist, what's her name? sharon?
greta thunberg. well, this was how the climate change activist responded last night, clearly seeing the funny side of the story. she's since changed her name back for her 3.9 million followers on twitter to the more predictable greta thunberg. a portrait of the queen and her three heirs to the throne has been released to mark the start of the new decade. the photograph, which was taken the week before christmas, shows the prince of wales, the duke of cambridge and prince george standing alongside her majesty at buckingham palace. it is the second official portrait of the four generations of royals together. now it's time for a look at the weather. a real early january we can a real earlyjanuary we can for a real early january we can for you and the weatherjust sits there and you go out and get on with whatever you go out and get on with whatever you need to do. a lot of dry weather
around. any variations on that theme? yes, there are weather fronts close by to there are weather fronts close by to the north and north—west of scotland. you will lose the sunshine over the course of the afternoon in the shetland isles, but elsewhere there is a lot of dry weather. if you see any rain at all, it will be eight little bit. elsewhere, for to about seven or eight covers it. that is how we stop the new day on sunday. not a great deal of difference. perhaps a little bit more southerly in the breeze. subtle boost towards double figures, that front is still there across the north and north—west of scotland. one or two spot of sunshine if you are lucky.
hello, this is bbc news. the headlines... the foreign office warns against all non—essential travel to iran as president trump says he ordered the attack on iran's top military commander to stop a war, not start one. solemeini has been perpetrating acts of terror to destabilise the middle east for the last 20 years. what the us did yesterday should have been done long ago. huge dust storms have begun sweeping across parts of south eastern australia — where bushfires have caused thousands of people to flee their homes. temperature records have been broken in canberra and sydney, which experienced 48.9 celsius. labour backbenchers lisa nandy and jess phillips join the contest to become the party's next leader. sport and for a full round up, from the bbc sport centre, england will be looking to their bowlers in cape town, as they hope to stay in contention
against south africa, in the second test. they got off to a great start — taking three wickets before lunch... stuart broad with two of those, and james anderson with the other. south africa currently on 119—3 after bowling england out for 269 this morning. england 1—0 down in this four match series. you can follow the action with the cricket social via the bbc sport website. there's a feast of football in store this afternoon — as the fa cup third round gets under way. 20 matches in total, and several are about to kick off. this, the time of year where smaller teams can get the better of a bigger side — perhaps one from the premier league. manchester city, the holders, will be hoping that doesn't happen to them. they're preparing for the visit of league two side port vale this evening. vale enjoyed a comfortable win over cheltenham in the last round, but they won't recognise the etihad stadium because the last time these two sides met was more than 20 years ago. a year later, port vale's most famous fan — robbie williams —
had a hit album sing when you're winning. but he's now feeling too optimistic about that today. vale will be able to go up there have a great night, a great day ahead. miracles do happen, but maybe this is expecting a miracle a bit too far. who knows, you know? pep might put out hisjunior squad. please, pep. it's a sentimental day for many players today — particularly for peterborough midfielder george boyd who played in the 2014 fa cup final for hull when they lost to arsenal. and this lunchtime he's returning to face his former club burnley where he made more than a hundred appearances. it's a reunion he's looking forward to despite the gulf between the premier league team and his league one side. yeah, it would be nice.