i'm sharanjit leyl in singapore, the headlines zimbabwe celebrates as the country's president of 37 years, robert mugabe, resigns. today is victory. it's victory in our hearts, it's victory for our children. robert mugabe's surprise resignation announcement was made by letterjust as proceedings to impeach him were getting started. i'm babita sharma in london. also in the programme, the ruling zanu—pf party say emmerson mnangagwa, the man sacked as vice—president, will be sworn in as mugabe's replacement. and in other news, north korea's shipping operations and some chinese firms are targeted in the latest us sanctions against pyongyang. good morning.
it's 9:00am in singapore, 1:00am am in london and 3:00am in zimbabwe, where robert mugabe took the country and the world by surprise when he suddenly resigned after almost four decades in power. without warning, his letter of resignation was read out in parliament, just as impeachment proceedings against him were getting underway. the news sparked wild celebrations with thousands of people pouring onto the streets in the capital, harare. our africa editor, fergal keane, was in parliament when the news broke. it is the night of the free, and night like no other in their lives, a great tension has broken, the epoque of fear, of desperation, of robert mugabe, has ended. how rarely does politics translate into something so truly felt? it is history in the making.
we never thought something like this would happen in zimbabwe. this is what we have been fighting for since independence. one man has been taking us aback, but we are happy it is done now. suddenly we got the news tonight it was over, he had retired, he had resigned and he was gone and suddenly there was just this euphoria and that is all of us. all of us! the sense of surprise here is deep. because at the day's beginning it did not feel as if robert mugabe was going anywhere. parliamentarians, urged on by the crowds, gathered to begin the process of impeaching the president. after a week in which he had refused to quit, his own mps led the legal process. as mps moved into parliament to prepare for the impeachment vote, the decisive political phase of the operation
to remove robert mugabe from power gets under way. will he be gone by the end of the week? i really cannot say. the process of parliament is determining whether or not he will be gone by the end of the week. i would have wanted him to go yesterday. the mps knew that public patience was wearing thin. the expectations of a nation were focused on them. the crowd have new heroes, the general who arrested robert mugabe... and emerson mnangagwa, the political brain behind the coup and president in waiting. by mid afternoon the mps and senators had moved to a hotel to accommodate the specialjoint session of parliament. they were watched by the public in what felt like a rare moment
of true democracy here. people are suffering, this mp said. and then the moment. a letter was handed to the speaker. he read it first himself and then to the world. a letter from the president... he was muffled but the words were momentous. ..notice of resignation. cheering. many who are we ago would have cheered robert mugabe now exalted in his fall. and we are here right at the moment that they heard that robert mugabe has resigned from the presidency. you can hear it, cheering from zanu—pf mps, from opposition mps and from members of the public who have come here to witness what was happening. they did not expect it.
they thought this would be a potentially elongated process of impeachment but it has not happened. he has gone, it is over. a week ago most foreign journalists were banned here. today mps were eager to speak with me. this is a huge moment for your country, what do you feel? this is a revelation. the people, if they speak their mind, they can change what will come. what are you feeling? i am feeling very happy because there is no spilling of blood in zimbabwe. the people love peace. celebrations spilled into the streets. they cheered emerson mnangagwa and mocked robert mugabe. wherever they were met, the soldiers were fated. we moved back up to the city into the rapidly gathering crowds. we have just come from parliament
and we are on the streets and the celebrations have started. many are celebrating the end of the age of mugabe. now it is over. but in theirjoy they also know they must be vigilant. i think people will rejoice tonight, after that we really have to be about the serious business of building our country. we cannot make the mistake of having the same kind of leaders in place to build our country, we cannot afford that. remember the longer road to this moment? the people who endured white minority rule? and then they saw their
independence become tyranny. they found themselves suddenly free. our africa editor fergal keane. after nearly four decades in power, robert mugabe is the only leader many zimbabweans have ever known. our zimbabwe correspondent, shingai nyoka, has been talking to some of the people celebrating in the capital harare. street parties are going on throughout the night as zimbabweans say that they have been reborn. on every street, in every bar, the celebrations continue, relishing the national flag in a renewed sense of patriotism. i witnessed first hand, celebrations at independence, in 1980, there was such an overwhelming sense of hope. now, for the first time in 37 years, i have seen the same glimmer of hope in the eyes of zimbabweans. i visited this bar to see what changes this generation,
known as "born frees", as they were born after 1980, want from a future without robert mugabe? can you imagine, for all the years i have existed on this planet, i have only known one president so for me it is certainly a different thing and it's the best — i will run with it, i will run with emmerson mnangagwa, i do not care. it's ironic that emmerson mnangagwa, one of the symbols of zanu—pf repression, is now seen as the face of that new hope. ijust hope that, as the new president of zimbabwe, he is aware that, unlike mugabe, he's leading a people that has found its voice and if, at any time in his presidency he comes short, we now have both the courage and the will to put the executive to check. because that is what this whole upheaval has been about, that the president must answer to the people. for many years zimbabweans have felt an unspoken shame as the economy crashed and millions of africa's
most literate workforce — young and old — fled the country for menialjobs in foreign lands. i can actually start building a career, i can start investing. i know, by that time i'm 40, maybe i can even own property. so for me it means i finally have a future. i can actually start building towards something and not just surviving. we the youth, we are the future of zimbabwe. without us there would not be any zimbabwe. 0n the streets of harare, i saw a pride that has been long absent and heard many say that tonight zimbabweans have shown africa how to effect peaceful change. shingai nyoka, bbc news, harare. a recent visit to beijing by zimbabwe's military chief has fuelled suspicions that china may have given the green light to the change in leadership. earlier robert kuhn, the author
of how china's leaders think, told me beijing said the timing of the visit was a coincidence. in this context china—africa relations are exceedingly important. china has substantial investments in countries throughout africa, although zimbabwe is not its most strategic partner, it does not get significant strategic resources from zimbabwe, yet it symbolises this transition that china is making from the old sort of revolutionary approach of countries that defied the west, that had a relationship with china, to a much more sophisticated and nuanced approach to international relations. i would be very surprised if china violated its historic non—interference in the internal affairs of other nations as it has said it's absolute certainty in terms of its foreign policy objectives but, with this new nuanced approach, china wants a stable government, it does not want its hundreds and billions of dollars and tens of thousands of workers put at risk. china has responsibility to these people. china is not sorry to see zimbabwe heading towards a new kind of stability, even though it is with an old friend who is leaving, chine is looking
to the future and it is a much different world for china today than it was in the past. robert mugabe leaving office, what does that mean for relations with china? i think china is very well prepared for it. i do not think there was any collusion but china is sophisticated. they know what is going on, they know what's in its own best interest and china is more than adequately prepared for the future to continue its investments and continue activities in zimbabwe as well as throughout africa. let's catch up with some other news, and the us has announced it's imposing new sanctions
on north korea. the us treasury said the measures are designed to stop the funding of the country's nuclear and ballistic missiles programme. they will target north korean shipping operations, and several chinese firms that trade with pyongyang. this is specifically targeting companies and transport systems that are seen by the us administration as supporting north korea. just looking at the details, it involves one individual, 13 companies, and 20 vessels, most of them being north korean cargo ships which are clearly vital in terms of taking goods in and out of north korea. 0ne vital in terms of taking goods in and out of north korea. one of the companies has been involved in supplying workers to chinese companies, to russia, to cambodia, to poland as well. the american
administration is keen that other countries do not hire north american workers —— north korean workers, beaches the majority of their salaries go straight to the north korean government. —— because. it is another way of tightening the screws on north korea. dozens of people have been killed in a suicide bomb attack in nigeria. the bomber struck in a mosque. boko haram militants are known to operate in the area. the taxi service uber has revealed that the personal information of 57 million users and drivers worldwide was stolen by hackers late last year. details including names, phone numbers and email addresses were taken. the company's also admitted it concealed the hack from the victims at the time. the lebanese prime minister saad hariri has arrived back in beirut after he shocked the country by announcing his resignation in saudi arabia two and a half weeks ago. mr hariri travelled back via paris
in time for lebanon's independence celebrations on wednesday. you're watching newsday on the bbc. still to come on the programme, as robert mugabe finally steps down, we look at his transformation from liberation hero to unwanted and unpopular head of state. also had on the programme, —— ahead on the programme, the search for an argentine submarine which has been missing for nearly a week. we will have the latest. benazir bhutto has claimed victory in pakistan's general election, and she has asked pakistan's president to name her as prime minister. jackson has been released
on bail of $3 million after turning himself in to police in santa barbara. it was the biggest demonstration so far of the fast—growing european anti—nuclear movement. the south african government has announced that it's opening the country's remaining whites—only beaches to people of all races. this will lead to a black—majority government in this country, and the destruction of the white civilisation. part of the centuries—old windsor castle, one of the queen's residences, has been consumed by fire for much of the day. 150 firemen have been battling the blaze, which has caused millions of pounds' worth of damage. this is newsday on the bbc. i'm sharanjit leyl in singapore. i'm babita sharma in london. our top stories: crowds
in zimbabwe celebrate, after robert mugabe resigns as the country's president. the ruling zanu—pf party says the sacked vice president emmerson mnangagwa will soon be sworn in as the country's new leader. let's get more now on our top story: robert mugabe has been zimbabwe's only leader since independence in 1980. his part in achieving that won him the status of a hero in the anti—colonial struggle. but then, during his long years in power, he presided over decades of political repression and economic chaos. here is our africa correspondent andrew harding. at every roadblock in every corner of this
long—tormented country, you can feel the influence and the damage wrought by robert mugabe, and the fear. today, we went deep into zimba bwe's countryside. 0k, there it is on the left. mugabe's mansion. it is almost feudal, more like a family business than a country. i'm andrew. i'm dennis. we wanted to come in and take a look. they wouldn't let us go in to admire the chandeliers, so we went to visit the neighbours. it was smashed down by police, you say? yes. to be poor in zimbabwe is to be powerless. robert mugabe's wife, grace mugabe, recently decided she wanted this land,
so she sent the police in to destroy dozens of homes. they came here and started demolishing my house. they said you must go away with this process being taken by the first lady. grace mugabe? yes. if she came here, what would you say? i would tear her to pieces, because she has destroyed my life for the past 16 years. tear her to pieces? yes. so how did it all go so wrong? i, robert gabriel mugabe... 37 years ago, robert mugabe was a hero, the man who liberated zimbabwe. but he soon proved to be a brutal, vengeful leader. and, after he had unleashed his supporters on the country's white farmers, the economy collapsed. mugabe rigged elections and terrorised his opponents, to stay in power, and all but a few suffered. this was me shopping in a country ravaged by hyperinflation.
to give you a sense of this country's spiralling economic catastrophe, i've come to a supermarket on the edge of harare. we're using hidden cameras, for our protection. the first thing you see are empty shelves, that should be stacked with bread, but the bakeries have stopped working. robert mugabe shrugged it off, but he was older and weaker than he knew. in the end, his fatal mistake was almost a cliche — to pick his wife as his successor, a woman who know one trusted or liked. the man poised to take over here is emmerson mnangagwa, for decades robert mugabe's right—hand man, his brutal enforcer. the worry is that zimbabwe is busy exchanging one tyrant for another. then again, this has been an earthquake of a week. the fear has lifted. the genie of freedom may be out of the bottle. this is a big moment.
we are so excited that finally we are taking over the country. 37 years of disappointment, falsehood and dictatorship, all of this is coming to an end and we must have a fresh beginning. tonight, robert mugabe leaves behind a country warped by years of stubborn, unnecessary cruelty. but he is gone, and zimbabwe is celebrating. teams from around the world are continuing their search for an argentine submarine that has been missing for nearly a week. the sanjuan last made contact off the argentine coast six days ago, with 44 crew are on board. the search effort has been made difficult by strong winds and rough seas, but conditions are improving. robert farley, a senior lecturer at the university of kentucky, has written on the subject, and hejoins me live. welcome to the programme. first off,
we know that searches particular challenging because submarines by nature are hard to find. can you tell us why? the purpose of submarines, avoiding modern sonar, is to make as little noise as possible. so even if they were trying to make noise within the boat i hammering on things, and doing other things, the structure of the hull is designed to prevent that sound from getting out. and so even if people are listening, sometimes it's very difficult to hear submarines. right, so what hope is there for the 44 crew members on board, then? what could potentially help in the search for them? well, the closer that they can get, the closer that the rescue teams can get, to where the submariners, the more likely it is can locate it using active sonar, which is... especially hypersensitive active sonar, which can map the seabed. a way that the submarine is laying, it
can be difficult to discern which from a rock or anything else, but there are some hypersensitive sonar arrays that can tell when the —— whether it is a submarine or a rock. it is also possible if they get close enough they can do is to get the sounds. you hopeful they will be found? i am always hopeful. the us navy, the argentine navy, the brazilian navy, but the ocean is a very large thing. to have an unambiguous —— we don't have an unambiguous —— we don't have an unambiguous sense of where the submarine sank, so it is a difficult search. it has been a difficult week, but what can you tell us about what conditions are like done that? well, the conditions certainly wouldn't be great. it depends on what the situation with the batteries is, and if they refresh
their ad. if they refresh their air recently, close to the surface, and if the batteries are in good condition, the nearest i have seen is as long as two weeks, which would give us a a few more days to find them. but the shortest i saw was seven days, which would put us in a critical situation right now. and in terms of what you know about submarines, briefly, what you think would have gone wrong? it is really ha rd to would have gone wrong? it is really hard to say. the captain reported an electrical malfunction shortly before they lost communication. it isa before they lost communication. it is a german designed and built submarine, and these submarines have a reputation for extraordinary reliability, even though a very long lifespan. and so, to my knowledge, there has never been a mishap like this ina there has never been a mishap like this in a submarine designed and built by the germans during this period. so we don't have a lot to go on in terms of what may have happened on the ship. thank you for joining us. that's it for this edition of newsday. we are ending the programme with some of the sights and sounds from a historic day in zimbabwe.
whoo! this is a good day for zimbabwe. this is a new era for our nation. 37 years with one president — it doesn't make any sense. so at this time it begins. it is the start of a new era for us as a nation. we will begin to see, what is a zimbabwe without robert mugabe? cheering he was too old to rule. we are very happy that zimbabwe now — this is our independence. cheering. i cannot believe he is gone!
we have heavy rain, gales, even some snow, all in the forecast for the next few days. the coldest air is still waiting in the wings. we have several areas of low pressure all pushing up from the south—west, bringing these weather fronts, and in turn bringing rain. so, having seen the rain ease off overnight, it will be turning wetter by the morning. mild to the south. some cold air perhaps beginning to arrive in the north of the uk. let's head into the morning, for the rush hour, and for much of southern england, it might be dry. midlands and east anglia as well. windy by the morning, a very mild side to the day, too. then back into the rain across wales, especially wet to the north—west of wales, with rain for the north of england, the north—west in particular. this rain in ireland could become heavy and begin to arrive
in the south—west and south of scotland. then we've got a slice of drier weather before we're back into rain in the far north of scotland. this main area of rain could be as much as 100mm of rain falling by the end of the day over the hills, south—west scotland, cumbria, and north—west wales. and ahead of that, across much of england and wales, it will be windy. strong to gale—force winds, could be some rain and cold air across the north of scotland. this rain still around in the evening, with strong winds. some squally rain sweeping eastwards across england and wales. poor day in the rain, and cold air across scotland. squally rain sweeping east. then in the cold air, snow falling overnight in scotland, particularly northern parts of scotland. further south, much milder, but still windy. the winds ease down on thursday, and this snow continues for a while, even to some lower levels in northern scotland, too, before easing down through the day. we're seeing some bands of showers pushing southwards, with some sunshine in between. still pretty mild, actually,
across the south and south—east, 13 or 1a degrees. colder for scotland and northern ireland and the north of england, too. now, heading into friday, a lot of uncertainty about the position of this area of low pressure. this is probably the last of those low—pressure centres moving up from the south—west. the rain more likely across southern england for a while on friday. and this could be the last of the milder air, if you like, because colder air that's in the north and north—west will come sweeping its way southwards just in time for the weekend. now, you may well be dry for much of the weekend. there will be some sunshine, too, but there will be showers, particularly in the north—west of the uk, and those showers notjust of rain but possibly of hail, sleet, and snow. you're with bbc news. our top story: robert mugabe has resigned as president of zimbabwe after 37 years in power. mr mugabe announced he was standing down, just as impeachment proceedings against him were getting started. 0n hearing the news crowds of people celebrated in the streets. the country's ruling party, zanu—pf, says that emmerson mnangagwa — whose sacking as vice—president led
to the army's takeover — will be sworn in as president in the coming days. and the story of emmerson mnangagwa, or ‘the crocodile who snapped back,‘ is trending at bbc.com. the profile of zimbabwe's probable next leader says it's been an open secret for years that he wanted to succeed mugabe as president. that's all from me for now. stay with bbc news. plenty more analysis on that story on the bbc news website. stay with us. on the bbc news website. stay with us. more to come here on bbc news. and the top story here in the uk. chancellor philip hammond