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tv   BBC News  BBC News  April 25, 2017 3:00am-3:31am BST

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this is bbc news. broadcasting to oui’ this is bbc news. broadcasting to our viewers in north america and around the globe. my name is mike embley. our top stories: president trump warns of new sanctions on north korea over its nuclear and missile tests. with both candidates preparing to contest the final round for the french presidency, the national front‘s marine le pen announces she's stepping aside as party leader. a special report from syria, from a former is stronghold, where the militants are losing ground. and why record—breaking peggy whitson is simply feeling out of this world. a very warm welcome to the programme. president trump has called for new un sanctions on north korea over its nuclear and missile programme. hosting ambassadors from the security council, he described north korea as a real threat to the world. the status quo in north korea
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is also unacceptable and the council must be prepared to propose additional and stronger sanctions on north korean nuclear and ballistic missile programmes. this is a real threat to the world. whether we want to talk about it or not, north korea is a big world problem, and it's a problem we have to finally solve. people have put blindfolds on for decades, and now it's time to solve the problem. donald trump, there. i got more details just now from our correspondents steve evans in the south korean capital, and nada tawfik in new york. usually we see white house officials go to the senate to brief them. not 100 senators going across to the white house to have a meeting there with the defence secretary, the secretary of state, amongst others. we've also heard that the us
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house of representatives also was to be briefed on north korea. this comes ahead of us officials fearing that north korea may go ahead with a sixth nuclear test, to mark the anniversary — the 85th anniversary — of the founding of their military. and so us officials, we are seeing through donald trump, are saying that all options, including military options, on the table. they have sent an aircraft carrier to north korean waters. but donald trump has been making a flurry of calls, to the chinese president and the japanese prime minister, and also calling for tougher sanctions. steve, in seoul, we are hearing from the administration that all options are on the table, but donald trump has been saying that it is a problem that needs to be finally solved. what is the understanding there about what he means by that? people here don't know. when he says that all options on the table, some parts
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of the administration are saying not the military one, immediately. there is a lot of strong language from pyongyang. it always comes from pyongyang. but even more from washington, now. but whether there is any change in policy is absolutely not clear. the situation remains that north korea is closer to having an effective nuclear arsenal, though not one capable of reaching the us, at the moment. but there are, on outside estimates, something like 500 artillery pieces within range of seoul. seoul, the greater metropolitan region, is a city of 25 million people, including a us military base. and, obviously, lots of us citizens. previous presidents have decided that attacking north korea could well provoke a serious war, and that risk cannot be taken. what we do not know, with the trump administration,
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is whether he is addressing the problem by saying it is very, very serious — but we knew that — and there is a change of attitude towards military action. the washington post quotes a senator saying about attacking north korea that "it would be terrible, but the war would be over there — it wouldn't be here." if that is the atmosphere in washington, then things really have changed. but we don't know if the president himself and those around him do take that view. nada, from there, where do you think this is heading? well, look. we have seen that the us ambassador to the un, nikki haley, has made comments, today, in interviews saying that they are not looking
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for a fight with kim jong—un. but that if he provokes them, that the military option is still there. but they think if you look, you can see the president trump is really, at the moment, pushing a policy of tougher sanctions, something that his predecessor, president obama did. and it's something that the security council has been pretty united on in the past. china has all but banned their coal imports from north korea. so we are hearing now that tougher sanctions could include an oil embargo, banning north korean airlines, intercepting some of their cargo ships, so that is one track. the other track is just making sure that the sanctions are actually implemented. but i think with president trump, and seeing where the policy in north korea goes, it will be interesting to see how far he sticks with pushing sanctions. as steve said, too, it'll be interesting to see what mood he gets
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from the senators when he has the briefing on wednesday. nada tawfik, steve evans, there. officials in the us state of arkansas have executed the first of two inmates scheduled to be put to death on monday after the supreme court failed to grant a last—minute reprieve. the first to be executed was jackjones, who had been convicted of rape, murder and attempted murder. they're now preparing to carry out the death sentence for marcel williams, who was convicted of kidnap, rape and murder. they are among eight inmates that the state plan to execute in 11 days this month, due to the impending expiration date of the supplies of aid drug used in the executions. —— aid drug used in the executions. —— a drug. france has now entered a period of intense political campaigning between emmanuel macron and marine le pen, the two remaining candidates for the presidency. it's a race that's already transformed the old patterns of french politics — with potentially significant consequences for the future of france and the eu. our europe editor katya
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adler has the latest. emmanuel macron, looking presidential. a bit prematurely, perhaps. there's a lot of glad—handing still to be done, two weeks to go before the final vote. financial markets in brussels may think president macron is a done deal. but she doesn't. marine le pen, macron‘s rivalfor president, his rival for french voters‘ trust. a welcome visitor on market day in this forgotten town. she's the people's president, she says, with welfare policies to match. eu to the back of the queue. madam le pen wants out of the euro. she's anti—big business too. it's exactly these images that marine le pen will be chasing
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throughout her presidential campaign. her intended message — she's a woman of the people. while her political rival, emmanuel macron, is a remote parisian elitist. marine le pen did well in the north and south—east, areas with high unemployment and low wages. emmanuel macron dominated in wealthy areas and large cities like paris and bordeaux, where his probusiness, pro—eu liberal platform resonates. emmanuel macron was in paris, keen to display his statesmanlike credentials, remembering victims of mass killings in armenia. and while his rival hugged and kissed her way through the crowds, mr macron had onlookers behind cordons — only the press allowed near. political gloves are off. for both candidates, this is the fight of their professional life. they need to win voters outside their traditional support base to make it to the top.
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who can pull it off? "i plan to abstain," this man told us. "i don't like either candidate." i will vote for macron even if i don't want him as a president, but i want him more than marine le pen. and france's political establishment, including its current president, has urged all voters, to do the same. translation: the far right would deeply divide france. it would stigmatise some of our fellow citizens because of their origins or religion. it would undermine our liberty and republic. aware of her party's divisive reputation, marine le pen had a surprise announcement. she said she was stepping aside as president of the national front to run for president of all of france. emmanuel macron still has a race to win. this is an all—or—nothing campaign
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for both candidates, and in true french style, this promises to be passionate and dramatic. katya adler, bbc news, paris. the battle against the extremist group, the so—called islamic state, is intensifying in syria, as forces move towards the group's stronghold of raqqa. territory which was under is control is being retaken, including dabiq which featured heavily in propaganda videos. our middle east correspondent, quentin sommerville, and camerman fred scott, have been to the town in northern syria. in northern aleppo, the so—called islamic state predicted the end of days. and here, it has come to pass. this is hallowed ground for is. but it's no longer theirs. the tiny village of dabiq was a beacon, drawing in foreign
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fighters from across the globe. dabiq was a great symbol for the islamic state group. it's here the prophet muhammad said that muslims would defeat the romans. this is also the spot where britain's jihadi john murdered the american—led worker peter kassig. is were right about one thing, though: this is a place of reckoning. but it's the place of their defeat, and they've now been driven more than 100 kilometres from here. these days, they don't make much mention of dabiq. nearby, there's the city of al—bab. is are gone, but there's another enemy for the free syrian army, it's the syrian regime. there's a weary truce on these front lines. the regime are only 115 metres away. air strikes are no longer a threat, but the islamic state's roadside bombs and booby—tra ps are everywhere.
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the fsa, they're mostly ethnic turks in this part of syria, fought here to drive out is, but also to stop their blood enemies, the kurds, from taking the city. the rebuilding of al—bab is already under way. in syria, it takes a lot of confidence to replace your windows. but the damage done, here, isn'tjust to buildings. it extends deeper, into syria's ethnic fabric. amid the ruins, this was an is headquarters. we find reminders of the victims, the disappeared, the lost, and the dead. new and rich wells of hatred are being formed. inside these four walls, the country's hopelessness is revealed. rare access to enemies — and sometimes allies — locked up together. in these cells, the prisoners
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agreed to speak to us. some say they're from is. others, no more than boys, fought for the kurds, with american backing. and some, for president assad, helped by russia. translation: because of the joblessness in syria, i have no salary to look after my children. so i had tojoin the fighting. foreign interference, here, has only caused more destruction. people are killing each other. some say they came to fight for is, others to destroy it. translation: the different people in groups here despise each other more and more. war only increases hatred, it never lessens it. all the prisoners, is included, have had regular contact with theirfamilies. these men will likely be exchanged in a prisoner swap. the war with is may be approaching an end, but there will be no rest in syria, and the people who make up this country will likely find themselves pushed
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even further apart. quentin sommerville, bbc news. stay with us on bbc news — still to come: we're live in turkey and australia where commemorations are being held for the thousands killed in the gallipoli campaign of world war i. nothing was too big to withstand the force of the tornado. the extent of the devastation led to calls to build better government housing. internationally, they have already been protests. sweden says it received no warning of the accident. indeed, the russians first denied anything had gone wrong. only when radioactivity levels began to increase outside russia were
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they forced to admit the accident. the mood here is of great celebration. this is the end of a 12 year war. they have ta ken the capital which they have been fighting for for so long. it was seven o'clock in the morning, the day when power began to pass from the minority to the majority. when africa, after 300 years, reclaimed its last white colony. this is bbc news. the latest headlines: president trump warns of new sanctions on north korea over its nuclear and missile tests. with both candidates preparing to contest the final round for the french presidency, the national front‘s marine le pen announces she's stepping aside as party leader. the us defence secretary has warned of a tough year ahead
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in afghanistan, because of the threat posed by the taliban. jim mattis arrived in kabuljust hours after the country's defence minister and the army's chief of staff resigned — a result of friday's taliban attack on a military base. the assault, near mazar—e sharif, killed more than 140 people. our correspondent, justin rowlatt sent this report. this is the route the taliban attackers took. the guards waved them through, believing they were fellow afghan soldiers. we're the first journalists invited onto the army base, the first to see the horror unleashed here. a suicide bomber blew himself up in the dining hall, as hundreds of soldiers ate their lunch. others were mown down as they left friday prayers, the taliban shooting fellow muslims
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dead as they worshipped. once inside here, theyjust opened fire, and if you look around here, you can see the walls are pocked with gunshot fire. and outside, one of the vehicles the taliban used. there are suspicions the attackers had inside help, something the base commander denied. translation: investigators from kabul have been here. they confirmed there are no indication that there has been any infiltration of the base. butjust hours after our interview, he was suspended. eight army personnel are under investigation, and today, both the afghan defence minister and the army chief of staff resigned. there could scarcely have been a worse day for the us defence secretary, james mattis, to visit the country. he met the afghan president to
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discuss us strategy in afghanistan. i'd say that we're under no illusions about the challenges associated with this mission. 2017's going to be another tough year for the valiant afghan security forces and the international troops who have stood and will continue to stand shoulder to shoulder with afghanistan against terrorism. but as they begin to clear up the wreckage, the americans were still making no promises on what the afghans really want — additional us troops to assist afghan forces. and in the last few hours, us secretary of defence james mattis has left kabul. the secretary held talks with general nicholson, the top american commander in the country and the head of nato's operation resolute mission, as part of donald trump's review of us policy in afghanistan. in a press conference with the afghan president,
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general mattis confirmed the new administration had agreed to retain over eight thousand us troops until 2017. let's take a look at some of the other stories making the news. in venezuela, two more protestors have been shot dead during rival demonstrations both for and against the government. so far, 23 people have been reported killed in a month of protests against the maduro government. the protestors have been holding sit—ins and blocked streets to demand elections and the release of jailed activists. the first ever vaccine against malaria is to be introduced in three african countries — ghana, kenya and malawi. three—quarters of a million infants are to be immunised over a two—year period, starting next year. the announcement by the world health organization follows trials which suggest the vaccine can prevent four—in—ten cases of the disease which kills nearly half a million people a year. eyewitnesses in chile's capital santiago say buildings have been shaken by a magnitude 7.1 earthquake.
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the us geological survey says it took place 30 kilometres west of the coastal city of valparaiso at a depth of ten kilometres below the seabed. no injuries or damage have been reported. the american astronaut peggy whitson has broken the record for the number of days spent in space by an american. president trump telephoned her to congratulate her on beating the previous record of 534 days. greg dawson reports. white house? this is mission control. like so many long-distance calls, it got off to a slightly awkward start. do you see me? after awkward start. do you see me? after a few pauses to work out the delay... we have you loud and clear. the president was on prescription as he congratulated doctor peggy whitson. today, commander peggy whitson, you have broken the record for the most total time spent in space by an american astronaut. 534 days, and counting. earlier this
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month, doctor peggy whitson was made commander of the international space station for the second time in her career. she made her maiden spaceflight 15 years earlier. what could she teach the self—confessed germ phobic president about the practicalities of space? water is such a precious resource up here that we also are cleaning up owuor in and making it drinkable. it's really not as bad it as sounds. that's good, i'm glad to hear that. better the —— that's good, i'm glad to hear that. better the — — better you that's good, i'm glad to hear that. better the —— better you than me —— oururine. better the —— better you than me —— our urine. donald trump was keen to find out when space travel to mars will be possible. hearing it would be at least a couple of decades away, he gave an ambitious response. we want to try and do it during my first term, or at worst, my second term. doctor whitson is due to
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return in september, and should not be too surprised if she gets a surprise to the oval office to distract the president from the rigourous dayjob. distract the president from the rigourous day job. i have been dealing with politicians all day, these people are so much more impressive, you have no idea. it's the 25th of april — anzac day, and services are being held in turkey and across asia to commemorate the date that forces from the australian and new zealand army corps landed at gallipoli in the ottoman empire in 1915. 11,000 anzac soldiers died during the eight—month campaign in world war one. let's cross live now to our sydney correspondent phil mercer. there have been hundreds of marches and parades across australia and new zealand, commemorating that horrible day in 1915 when the australian and new zealand army corps launched the
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offensive at gallipoli, more than 100 years ago. this is arguably the most sombre day in the calendars of australia and new zealand, and for the very first time, during the national march in canberra, it will be led by indigenous soldiers. thousands of aboriginal soldiers have served australia in various conflicts over the past 100 years, many of them have complained that their service and sacrifice has gone unnoticed by australia. many others complained that they still faced discrimination when they got home. finally recognition for those aboriginal soldiers. tens of thousands of people turning out, often in income and whether, to mark this sombre occasion —— inclement
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weather. thousands of australian and new zealand soldiers died, there we re new zealand soldiers died, there were also awful casualties among other nations, including turkish forces. over the years, australia, new zealand and turkish officials have come together in many instances to commemorate this day. the australian prime minister, malcolm turnbull, has made a surprise visit to australian military personnel stationed in the middle east. he has been to a meeting with senior figures in the iraqi and us administrations as well. malcolm turnbull taking the anzac message and spirit all the way to the middle east. let's not forget, it is not just australia and new zealand marking anzac day, there are services taking place in many other areas. that will take place in many other countries. it is more than a decade since the last anzac veteran died, is the feeling that this ceremony will carry on? as a
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backpacker in australia i had the privilege of meeting a gallipoli vetera n. privilege of meeting a gallipoli veteran. he was in his late 80s. he had some amazing to tell. he, like all the others, are now long gone. this is not a dayjust about the anza cs this is not a dayjust about the a nza cs of this is not a dayjust about the anzacs of 1915, it is also an opportunity to remember the sacrifice and service of men and women who have fought in other campaigns and who are stationed in other parts of the world. thank you very much. and you can get in touch with me and most of the team on twitter, i'm @bbcmikeembley. hello. we may be hurtling towards the end of april, but the weather feels like it has plunged
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us back into winter. a very chilly feel over the next couple of days. a frosty start to tuesday. plenty of wintry showers around, and this cold air has come all the way from the arctic. it has worked its way southwards across the british isles, brought in our direction by pretty strong northerly winds. notice the tightly squeezed isobars across the north and north—east of scotland, particularly. gales here, at times, and in areas exposed to that northerly wind, we start off tuesday with lots of showers. northern half of scotland seeing a mixture of rain, sleet, hail and snow. most of the snow over high ground, but even to low levels there could be snow for a time. some icy stretches, as well, in some of those showers across north—east england. also some showers feeding into northern ireland. but for south—west scotland, down the spine of england, we start the day with fewer showers, more in the way of dry weather and sunshine.
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chilly, though — three degrees in birmingham and coventry, and some showers feeding into cornwall and devon. and as we go on through the day, the showers will gradually become more widespread across the country, so just about anywhere you could catch one. the odd rumble of thunder, some rain, some sleet, some hail, some snow, mostly over the hills. 7—13 degrees on the thermometer, but on the strength of the winds, take aberdeen, for example, it will feel freezing even in the middle of the afternoon. another cold night to come, tuesday night into wednesday. the showers, though, becoming mostly confined to eastern areas. again, some of them will be wintry. these are the temperatures to expect if you live in the middle of our big towns and cities. out in the countryside, we are looking at lows of minus six or minus seven, a widespread frost. but some subtle changes into wednesday. this ridge of high pressure begins to build its way in from the west, and that will cut off the worst, if you like, of that biting northerly wind, so maybe not as chilly on wednesday. still some showers, but most of these across eastern areas. some sunshine, as well, but thicker cloud starting to roll into northern ireland
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and western scotland. a few spots of rain. it will mostly be rain, because temperatures will be creeping upwards. 10 degrees in stornoway. and that is the story for the end of the week, the cold air slowly but surely being eroded by some milder air pushing in from the atlantic. so we can expect those temperatures to begin to creep upwards through thursday and friday. there will be fewer showers, often a lot of cloud, but those temperatures returning to something closer to what we would expect at this time of year. this is bbc world news, the headlines. president trump has called for new un sanctions on north korea over its nuclear and missile programme. hosting ambassadors from the security council, he said north korea was a real threat to the world. france has entered a period of intense political campaigning between emmanuel macron and marine le pen — the two remaining candidates for the presidency. marine le pen has announced she's stepping aside as party leader of the national front.
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the battle against the extremist group, the so—called islamic state, is intensifying in syria as forces move towards the stronghold of raqqa. territory under is control is being retaken, including dabiq which featured heavily in is propaganda videos. the astronaut peggy whitson has broken the record for the number of days spent in space by an american — beating the previous record of 534 days. she's also the first woman to command the international space station on two missions. let's take a brief look now at some of the front pages of the morning papers.
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