this is bbc news. welcome if you're watching here in the uk, on pbs in america or around the globe. my name's mike embley. our top stories: iran launches a ballistic missile attack on a us air base in iraq. the pentagon says the missiles were launched from iran itself, hitting targets inside iraq. iranian tv says it was in revenge for the american killing of general soleimani in a drone attack last week. his funeral has been taking place in his home city. venezuela's leader has been sworn in as speaker of the national assembly amid chaotic scenes. facebook announces a ban on deepfake videos, but the policy stops short of prohibiting all doctored videos. but the policy stops short of prohibiting all doctored videos.
a lot of news on the move. a major news story is breaking this hour, also in iran. state media say a ukrainian airliner carrying 180 people has crashed shortly after taking off from tehran‘s international airport. the reports say the boeing 737 came down due to technical problems. it's unclear whether the incident is linked to the confrontation with the us. details are still coming in. of course, we will bring you more on this when we can give you incoming reliable information. our breaking news this hour: iran has launched a ballistic missile attack on air bases housing us forces in iraq.
tehran says the attack was carried out in revenge for the us assassination of the iranian general, qasem soleimani. oil prices have risen sharply on asian markets in response. that is one response. the pentagon says at least two sites were hit in irbil and al—asad, west of baghdad. it's believed the missiles were launched from iran itself. we think that these are pictures of the attacks under way. iran has said that, "any adverse reaction to the strikes will be met with all out war". president trump has not spoken about the attacks but has tweeted. here it is: "all is well! missiles launched from iran at two military bases located in iraq. assessment of casualties & damages taking place now. so far, so good! we have the most powerful and well equipped military anywhere in the world, by far!
i will be making a statement tomorrow morning." our north america correspondent, peter bowes, joins me now. the sense is this may not be the escalation in hostilities many people had feared just a few hours ago. that is relative a beat tweet, the president saying, so far so good an official saying that may not have been any casualties. it is still relatively early days and we do not have confirmation of that. the arabian foreign ministerjavad zarif was talking about a conclusion in their activities, suggesting that on both sides, this is at least an opportunity to draw a line and not escalate a situation that had been seemingly growing over the last few days, perhaps not having escalate a fully blown conflict or war, which nobody wants. how does it play for president trump? the campaign on a
platform of taking the us out of foreign wars. many want to see 5000 troops out of iran but they want him to look tough as he does. clearly, decisions still have to be made from the president going forward but this could be seen as a positive for the president. approaching and dealing with a situation that appeared to be on the brink of war, dealing with it and pulling back and not letting it escalate, if indeed that is what happens. he can therefore claim to be tough, having threatened to retaliate if iran were to retaliate and it seems it has to appoint, but not to let this situation get out of control. he will continue to claim he is tough but also responsible and that he does not want war. thank you
very much for that. some politicians in washington have been giving their reaction. first, my immediate concern is for the safety of american troops, as well as those who are our partners in the region. my hope and prayer is there haven't been american casualties and we don't yet know that tonight. second, it is clear we have escalated the threat to america's personnel and interest in the region by striking general soleimani, the commander of the irdc. the commander of the irgc. i do not have any mourning for the passing of this individual, responsible for the deaths of hundreds of americans over many years, but i'm questioning whether or not the trump administration has a coherent strategy as to what to do next. i want to know whether the iranians were shooting at our people or at infrastructure. it is clear this isjust another example of iran trying to export terrorism. iran wants to take over iraq — duh! they practically have already.
before we respond to this latest attack, we need to get the facts. i've been speaking to bbc persian‘s rana rahimour. she told me that iran's action was carefully measured. sounds like it, and over the last hour they have two very important reactions. one was the iranians foreign minister, in which he treated iran took and concluded proportionate measures in self defence. "concluded" is a very important word. javad zarif is saying what we did was self defence, it is legal and it is concluded. he is hoping that will calm things down. then trump the's reaction confirms that. president trump later tweeted that all is well, so far, so good, we are assessing the situation. at the moment there's a sight of relief
among many americans on social media, they say it looks like both sides are trying to contain their reactions and they hope this won't escalate further. to people who have seen the pictures of the funeral and the millions morning the general on the streets, that will be a puzzle. you have the sense there's an enormous strength of feeling and a call for a big response from the iranian leadership but there isn't? many of those who attended these funerals have been asking for harsh retaliation and revenge and revenge was a word we heard again and again from the people who joined the funeral and iranians authorities. state media is trying to picture this attack is the big revenge. when you look at the headlines of these stories on state news agency and state television, there's a big iranian flag saying, we have taken our big revenge. the question is whether this will satisfy the supreme leader's hardcore supporters,
who were angry and probably asking for more than this because to them qasem soleimani was assassinated by the united states on friday. he was a big figure, they saw him as a hero and the question is, will they be happy with a very contained attack? just for context here, perhaps it scarcely needs saying, iran sees iraq as part of its sphere of influence. iran is the shia superpower in the region, the rock is now dominated by the shia. iran wants america out of the middle east almost entirely, certainly out of iraq. and they have repeated that an foreign ministers i've said yesterday for us, the revenge
is to kick out the americans from the region. they have no business in the region and they have to leave. oil prices have risen sharply as asian markets opened, following the missile attacks. 0ur asia business coresspondent, karishma vaswani is in singapore. we have seen oil prices surging since last week in fact because of the attack on the iranians general and many fears that this could affect global overproduction and it is very sensitive region but, at the same time, i have to say, in the last hour, exactly what you have been talking about on air, what seems to be commentary from both sides indicating that perhaps the escalation is not as intense as we initially thought an hour ago when we saw that immediate knee—jerk reaction in asian markets falling as a result of this news. we saw shows actually creep up, recovering some of the losses and making the assessment that things are not as
bad as they could be at this point in time. having said that, you are still seeing the rush to safe haven assets as many investors are making the calculation that, for now, take the calculation that, for now, take the money out of markets, take a bit of profit from what they have had in the last couple of months, put them in places like gold, the japanese yen and oil prices. all these things seen yen and oil prices. all these things seen as yen and oil prices. all these things seen as safe haven assets. i think that trend will continue over the next couple of days as investors try to work out exactly what is going on on either side. at the same time, we are seeing an impact on the commercial aviation set. already in asia, singapore airlines has announced it is advising its flight in and out of europe to divert over the arabian airspace as well as the aviation authorities are saying it is banning american carriers from flying over this space. keeping in mind, the current tensions and hand,
but also learning lessons from previous times. some respite and the markets as asian investors tried to make sense of this. it is obviously still going to be extremely tense. taylor griffin is editor of the political website, roughly explained, he was also a spokesman in george w bush's administration. thank you for your time. what you make of what has been happening?” think what you are seeing here is a desperate attempt both in tehran and washington to keep the situation escalating. both sides have been pursuing their interests and in president trump's strike on qasem soleimani in iran demanded a response, you saw that in people protesting on the streets. this response, a strike which is quite
large a lot of empty space and a low ability of a large amount of casualties. it may have been a calculated attempt to show a response to answers that political demand in iran for revenge and the killing of qasem soleimani while not prompting the us escalating further. cnn is reporting and others, that there are no iraqi casualties. we have not seen any reports of american casualties either. this may bea american casualties either. this may be a point where they could be a deescalation. people are talking of perhaps of more on iran building. many influential people speaking openly in favourite of a war with iran. was the us eventually coming out of rewrite which many core voters seem to want. do you think either of those is happening? no, i
think primarily the iran hoc, john bolton, has gone. president trump and john bolton clashed in a lot of issues, including iran. president trump he is an aversion to foreign adventurism. similar to barack 0bama. he's not looking use military troops if possible. he does not have an interest in a huge engagement in the middle east but at the same time he would not be walked all over by iran. as faras he would not be walked all over by iran. as far as the iraqi parliament and the iraqi government is trying to expel us troops, the shia faction voted predominantly, it was mostly the shia block voting for that
non—binding resolution but ultimately it is going to be something the prime minister is going to have to decide and i do not think he is interested in having iraq quite helpless with security forces solely responsible for pushing back isis and dealing with the shi'ite militias iran is backing. do you think the consequences of the american assassination of qasem soleimani may not be as far—reaching as many people feel? it is equivalent of iran assassinating the head of the joint chiefs of staff? it is a major, major thing. joint chiefs of staff? it is a major, majorthing. strike on joint chiefs of staff? it is a major, major thing. strike on okra one was no small thing. qasem soleimani is an even larger figure than the us had of thejoint soleimani is an even larger figure than the us had of the joint chief of staff. most people never run know
who qasem soleimani is an in the us most people could not name the chairman of the joint most people could not name the chairman of thejoint chiefs of staff. we cannot underplay the significance of qasem soleimani's significance of qasem soleimani's significance and this strike. it is not necessarily an answer from iran that this is no big deal. it is a big deal but iran understands that pushing the situation further could be detrimental to their interests and the long run and they are not looking for war. we will see. this isa looking for war. we will see. this is a very preliminary assessment a few hours after this has happened but that seems to be where things are heading right now and let's hope thatis are heading right now and let's hope that is indeed the case in this situation and it calms down. it is very vulnerable, it is like a butterfly in japan very vulnerable, it is like a butterfly injapan causing an earthquake on the other side of the world. we do not know what the
effects will be. thank you for your assessment. stay with us on bbc news, still to come: venezuela's leader is sworn in as speaker of the national assembly amid chaotic scenes. the japanese people are in mourning following the death of emperor hirohito. thousands converged on the imperial palace to pay their respects when it was announced he was dead. good grief! after half a century of delighting fans around the world, charlie brown and the rest of the gang are calling it quits. the singer paul simon starts his tour of south africa tomorrow in spite of protests and violence from some black activist groups. they say international artists should continue to boycott south africa until majority rule is established.
teams were trying to scoop up lumps of oil as france recognises it faces an ecological crisis. three weeks ago, the authorities confidently assured these areas that oil from the broken tanker erika would head out to sea. it didn't. the world's tallest skyscraper opens later today. the burj dubai has easily overtaken its nearest rivals. this is bbc world news, the latest headlines: iran has launched a ballistic missile attack on a us air base in iraq. the pentagon says the missiles were launched from iran. there's no word yet on casualties. a reminder of the other breaking
story this hour, also in iran. state media say a ukrainian airliner carrying 180 people has crashed shortly after taking off from tehran‘s international airport. the reports say the boeing 737 came down due to technical problems. it's unclear whether the incident is linked to the confrontation with the us. details are still coming in. we'll bring you more on this when we have it. you are seeing on your you are seeing on your screens you are seeing on your screens the specialist website. we are keeping an eye on it. let's get more on that. peter mansoor is a retired us army colonel and currently professor of military history at ohio state university. he told us where the conflict is now, militarily. it is significant that these ballistic missiles were launched from iranian territory,
because any retaliatory action that the trump administration takes is going to be directed onto iranian territory and that will put us into a escalation and cycle of violence that could lead to a full—blown war, so it's going to be interesting to see what president trump decides to do, but he has painted himself into a corner with his tweets, saying that we have 52 target, any iranian strike on our targets would lead to certain retaliation. he has left himself much diplomatic wiggle room. iran would have known that, and nato and the us said that troops and equipment were being redeployed in anticipation of revenge attacks. does this look like the iranians did something very controlled to avoid a massive retaliation? i think they have a couple of calculations. one that if they continue to strike american targets on iraqi soil, the iraqi legislators and government will eventually force you with forces to leave.
that is a major goal of the iranian government. the second population is they are calling trump's bluff they don't think america will go to war with iran, so they are daring him to strike back on their territory. they think they can win this cycle of escalation against him given his political problems at home. that may be what they think, what do you think? it is possible two processes are under way. do you think a war with iran is under way, you think we are headed towards a situation where the us might come out iraq? i think they are underestimating a very... a president who is not very predictable, and he could strike back in much harsher session than they realised. the problem is, given the way congress is currently constituted, i am not sure he will get an authorisation for the use of force, he only has 60 days before the plug is pulled on any kind of military action. in terms of us forces coming out of iraq, i think they will.
maybe not right away, i don't think president trump would allow that, it would be a loss of face, but i can see some sort of negotiated solution whereby us troops come out over the period of one year or 18 months, because the american people want to be out of iraq, quite frankly. let's get some of the day's other news. hackers say they are holding the foreign exchange company travelex, to ransom, apparently launching a cyber attack that forced the firm to turn—off all its computer systems and resort to pen and paper. it was revealed on new year's eve that a bug had infiltrated parts of the company's computer network. a state of emergency has been declared in puerto rico after the island suffered its most powerful earthquake in more than a century. at least one person was killed in a series of earthquakes, including one with a magnitude of 6.4. numerous buildings have been damaged and a powercut has plunged much
of puerto rico into darkness. a judge has angrily threatened to lock up harvey weinstein for using his phone in a new york city court where a jury is being picked for his rape trial. he'd already been admonished byjudge burke at previous court appearances for using a handset. mr weinstein faces five charges and possibly life injail if convicted. the venezuelan opposition leader, juan guaido, has been sworn—in as speaker of the national assembly after a stand—off with the armed forces. troops tried to stop mr guaido and his supporters from entering parliament, but they eventually forced their way into the building. mr guaido is accusing president nicolas maduro of trying to bring about a parliamentary coup. 0livia crellin reports. two parliamentary speakers, sworn in on two separate occasions, just two days apart. 0n the left, juan guaido, the former
head of the national assembly, who last year was recognised as interim president of venezuela by more than 50 countries. 0n the week, luis parra, a corru ption—tainted legislator publicly backed by nicolas maduro's government. just moments before both these declarations, scenes of chaos. it on sunday, luis parra kickstarted this latest political storm in venezuela, when he announced the chamber‘s vote in his favour. while outside, armed forces were preventing his political rival guaido from entering the building. translation: juan guaido knew how we all had to be here and nobody prevented him from entering. here the excuse was simply the order of the day. he didn't have the votes in that way he decided to stay out of the federal legislative palace. juan guaido was not to be deterred, and similar scenes of struggle ensued on tuesday, when he tried once again to force his way past the national guard. translation: we are going to work for venezuela, despite the militarisation of parliament done by the dictatorship, which is trying to physically prevent its session.
in spite of it, we will do the session in accordance with our constitution. this time, there was a different outcome. scenes like this are not uncommon in crisis in venezuela, which has been seeing double for a while. as well as two claimants to the presidency and parliamentary speaker, venezuela has two parliament. the national assembly, the literal and symbolic site of venezuela's recent power struggles here isjust that, symbolic, after president maduro effectively sidelined it in 2017. even as guaido and his supporters triumphantly sung the country's national anthem and swore their leader in, there was another attempt to hamper this assembly is the lawmakers were plunged into darkness. those left most in the dark, however, are the country's citizens who fear that as their country squabbles, their lives worsen.
this could be another significant development. facebook says it will remove so—called deepfakes from its platform — videos that are modified by artificial intelligence to look real. the company says these videos distort reality and present a significant challenge for the tech industry. critics say the move doesn't go far enough in removing all misleading content. reminding you of the other breaking news, also in iran. state media in iran saying a ukrainian airline carrying 180 people has taken off —— has crashed shortly after takeoff. reports say it was a boeing 737 and it came down due to technical problems. it is unclear also of course, whether the incident is
linked to the confrontation with the united states. more as soon as we have it. thank you very much were watching. well, the winds have been a real feature of the weather across northern parts of the uk, particularly scotland. still pretty blustery out there but not as windy as it has been. how about wednesday for most of us? well, there is both sunshine and rain in the forecast. so here is the big picture across our neck of the woods. there is a big storm just south of iceland, pushing still some clouds in our direction, and it looks as though it's going to be pretty cloudy across southern parts of the uk during the course of wednesday, but this is also where we have the milder air, so two areas of weather, really, across the uk on wednesday. the milder, cloudier weather in the south, and the more brisk weather with that fresher atlantic air across northern parts of the uk.
and this is what it looks like through the early hours of the morning — even some snow showers there, across the hills of scotland, giving a little covering here and there. clearer spells across this central swathe of the uk, and then to the south we have got the cloudier, milder weather. you can see 12 degrees — that is the starting temperature in london early on wednesday. and wednesday's forecast itself, so kind of three areas of weather. so we've got the cloudy and eventually wet weather reaching south—western parts of the uk. the bit in the middle here, in fact, from belfast,
say, to liverpool, to around about yorkshire, some sunshine. and then we've got the stronger winds, some blustery showers there around western and north—western scotland, and that is how pretty much things continue as we go through the course of wednesday evening, but the rain in the south turns heavier, and it looks as though it will be raining all the way towards east anglia. now, thursday is giving us a bit of a headache in terms of what the weather is going to bring. it certainly looks like there will be some rain around. a real mix of weather. you can see that wet weather earlier in the morning, even some snow falling across the pennines and southern scotland. there could be some strong winds around as well but, at this stage, it looks as though probably the wintriest of the weather will be out in the channel and, actually, some of us may end up having some sunshine around on thursday. still mild in that southern south—eastern part of the country,
this is bbc news, the headlines: iran has launched a ballistic missile attack on air bases housing us forces in iraq. the pentagon says at least two sites were hit in irbil and al—asad, west of baghdad. it says the missiles were launched from iran itself. iranian state tv says the attack was launched in revenge for the us assassination of general soleimani. the burial ceremony has been taking place of the iranian general, qasem soleimani, who was killed in the us drone strike last week. during the ceremony on tuesday more than 50 people were killed and hundreds injured during a crush in his home city of kerman. and another breaking story from iran, state media say a ukrainian airliner carrying 180 people has crashed shortly after taking off from tehran's international airport. the reports say the boeing 737 came down due to technical problems. it's unclear whether the incident is linked to the confrontation with the us. details are still coming in.