welcome to bbc news, broadcasting to viewers in north america and around the globe. my name is nkem ifejika. our top stories: there's mounting international concern — as israel launches a wave of air strikes against what it calls iranian targets in syria. the uk threatens to cut funding for oxfam — following claims the charity covered up a scandal involving aid workers and prostitutes in haiti. and — britain's foreign secretary says myanmar must ensure rohingya muslims return home safely — he's set to meet aung san suu kyi on sunday. the united states and russia say they're concerned about an escalation of cross—border violence between israel and iranian—backed forces in syria.
israeli fighter planes launched bombing raids across the border, following the shooting down of one of its jets. israel says it's been targetting iranian positions on syrian territory used to fly drones over israeli airspace. tom bateman reports from jerusalem. what was left on israeli soil of one of the country's most advanced fighter jets. it crashed after its two pilots ejected, said israel, amid syrian anti—aircraft fire. one pilot was left severely injured. israel said it scrambled the planes in response to this, a drone allegedly sent by iranian forces in syria into israeli airspace. it was destroyed. israel then hit the site it said the drone had come from, before further strikes against what it called iranian targets in syria. i've been warning for some time about the dangers of iran's military entrenchment in syria.
iran seeks to use syrian territory to attack israel for its professed goal of destroying israel. israel is wary about the threat across its northern border, with the syrian regime, backed by iran and its proxies, like these hezbollah fighters, back in control of much territory. syria's conflict has drawn in her neighbours. there have been dozens of israeli air strikes in syria in recent years. in december, israel hit what it said was a newly—built iranian military site. as recently as this week, a suspected chemical weapons factory was targeted. iran has accused israel of lies, claiming it has only military advisers in syria. israel says it doesn't want an escalation in syria, but in a highly volatile atmosphere, where any of the players is capable of miscalculation, there remains open the distinct possibility of precisely that.
tom bateman, bbc news, jerusalem. let's take a look at some of the other stories making the news. turkey says one of its military helicopters has been shot down in the north of syria. it happened near afrin — where turkish forces are fighting kurdish militants. kurdish fighters say they brought the aircraft down, and claim that 16 turkish soldiers were killed. the turkish military said two soldiers on board the aircraft had died. india's prime minister narendra modi is in the palestinian territories — the first such visit by a head of the indian government. he held talks with palestinian president mahmoud abbas as part of a middle east tour. officials in delhi say his trip is intended to help the palestinians develop their health, information technology and education services. thousands of demonstrators have taken part in an anti—racism march in the central italian town of macerata — a week after a far—right extremist drove round the city shooting at africans, wounding six people.
the drive—by attack followed the arrest of a nigerian suspected of murdering and dismembering a local woman. the scandal over what happened in haiti eight years ago is deepening. the uk's international development secretary has warned that oxfam will have funding withdrawn if it fails to comply with authorities over safeguarding issues. haiti's ambassador to the uk, has told the bbc, he believes oxfam did try to cover—up details of the use of prostitutes by some of its aid workers, in the aftermath of the earthquake in 2010. the charity's chief executive admits they could have been more open, but insisted there was no attempt to hide the truth. angus crawford reports. it was an earthquake that devastated haiti, killing more than 200,000 people, affecting millions more. aid agencies from around the world stepped into the chaos. 0xfam, with more than 70 years‘ experience, had hundreds of staff in the field. but an investigation by the times found that in 2011, four staff members were sacked and three others resigned over allegations of misconduct, including paying local women for sex. the n60 says it launched an investigation and kept the charity commission fully informed, something the commission now disputes.
0xfam's leadership denies there's been a cover—up. 0xfam was actually proactive in going to the british public, the department for international development, and the charity commission, to explain that there had been serious misconduct and we'd taken action. more than £30 million of taxpayers‘ money is given to oxfam by the government every year. today, downing street called the allegations truly shocking and demanded a full and urgent investigation. today, fresh claims, some of the disgraced staff gotjobs at other aid agencies because 0xfam failed to warn them about the misconduct. it is clear it's a cover—up case. the fact that those folks were allowed to leave the country without any punishment, without even informing the haitian authorities about that.
it was a cover—up. now the fact that they did such a crime, or there was such a cover—up, now we are wondering how many of those cases are still happening in haiti. we don't know. the haitian authorities want 0xfam to hand over all relevant documents so justice can be served there. the behaviour of a few has stained the charity's past reputation and now threatens its work in the future. angus crawford, bbc news. a double—decker bus has overturned in hong kong, killing 19 people, and injuring 62. police have arrested the driver and charged him with causing death by dangerous driving. sophia tran—thomson has this report. it does contain images some viewers may find distressing. the 12—metre long double—decker was taking spectators and workers home from the sha tin racecourse after the last race of the day. the bus appears to have slid and flipped onto its side and hit a lamppost which cut through it.
the driver has been arrested on counts of causing death and grievous bodily harm by dangerous driving. translation: the driver was ten minutes late, and he lost his temper when he started driving. some people were complaining, and he drove the bus like he was driving a plane. when he turned, the bus crashed. it was very chaotic. he drove so fast, the bus toppled immediately when making a turn so all the people fell down and piled up. norwich —— some passengers managed to climb out of the wreckage on their own, others had to be cut free by the fire brigade. authorities say ten of the injured are in a critical condition fighting for their lives, while a further 20 are in a serious condition. sophia tran—thomson, bbc news. now to colombia, where new migration restrictions have led to long queues on the border with venezuela. the main bridge between the two countries has been opening and closing intermittently since the colombian president announced tighter rules for
venezuelans entering the country. more than 40,000 people have already left crisis—hit venezuela. thousands are expected to either stay — or travel on to other countries in south america. the foreign secretary, boris johnson, has been in bangladesh, where he's visited rohingya refugees, escaping violence in neighbouring myanmar. nearly 700,000 people have been forced to leave their homes, after a military crackdown began six months ago. reeta chakrabarti was with the foreign secretary, as he visited the balu—khali camp. cries of "welcome" to a guest from a people who have been kicked out of their home. we're going to try and get you back home, guys. borisjohnson came to see and hear himself from the victims of this huge man—made disaster. he heard story after story of arson, rape and murder. committed, say the rohingya victims, by the military and buddhist mobs in myanmar. i'm very sorry.
what do you think of what you've heard so far? well, it's overwhelming and obviously these people have seen some pretty horrifying things and you're very conscious when talking particularly to the young people, you don't want to trigger terrible memories for them. it was very clear with the case of the guy who'd only narrowly escaped and who'd almost lost his daughter, who'd been beaten, and had to ransom his daughter back, and who kept breaking down in tears. the people that borisjohnson is meeting here are all in limbo. bangladesh doesn't want
them here permanently but they can't go back to myanmar without guarantees of safety. so what can britain do to help? it's about finding a political solution, finding an answer in myanmar, from burma, creating the conditions for a safe, dignified return for these people. that's what they want. they do want to go back but they don't feel safe. that's the message the foreign secretary is taking to myanmar, where he landed tonight. he admits a safe return for the rohingya presently looks unrealistic. it's a very tough diplomatic battle he has to fight. reeta chakrabarti, bbc news, on the myanmar—bangladesh border. president trump has spoken out about his decision to block the release of a classified democratic party memo over the fbi's russia probe. the memo rebutted claims there was anti—trump bias in the fbi's investigation of russian meddling in the us presidential election. mr trump has tweeted that the document was "very political and long" and would have to be "heavily redacted" before it could be released. our correspondent, david willis, has the latest from washington. last week president trump signed off on the release of a republican memo detailing what it alleged
were surveillance abuses on the part of the fbi involving a former trump campaign aid, a man called carter page, back in 2016. both the fbi and justice department advised against the release of that memo, but president trump did so anyway. then the democrats got their rebuttle memo together and it went to ten pages, significantly longer than the republican memo. the fbi and justice department again advised against it being released but this time the president decided to back their recommendations. now, the president is a republican of course, democrats are crying foul, they say it's a double standard, they say this is all evidence of the fact that they, in their view, president trump has something to hide. meanwhile the president himself, as you mentioned, tweeted today basically saying the democrats knew that large parts of their memo would have to be heavily redacted, thus by submitting it to the white house they set the white house and the president up for claims of lack of transparency.
gerry adams‘ 34—year leadership of sinn fein came to an on saturday, as mary lou mcdonald formally took over as party president. in her first speech as leader, she told delegates in dublin, it was time for the party to embrace fresh thinking and bold ideas. she also said she wants to secure, and win, a referendum on irish unity. our ireland correspondent chris page, has been at the conference. are the issues that mary lou mcdonald touched on in her speech, international issues, the middle east, catalonia, climate change will
stop she said it would be important in the years to come. also, more specific to politics here on the complex northern ireland. she paid tribute to her former leaders. complex northern ireland. she paid tribute to herformer leaders. she put the emphasis on achieving at some point in the future united ireland. she is prepared engage with unionist is, she said, to try to persuade them but many unionists still feel extremely suspicious of sinn fein given the legacy of the past and in terms of building relationships with them, that will be an uphill struggle fault mary lou mcdonald. —— for mary lou mcdonald. however, maybe sinn fein will be able to go to new places and literally and be able to build new relationships in a way that was more difficult for past generations of leaders with direct experience with the conflict in northern ireland.
now to some action at the winter olympics — as sweden‘s charlotte kalla won the first gold medal of the games with victory in the women‘s skiathlon. after friday‘s opening ceremony, the action in pyeongchang got under way this saturday. the swede beat defending marit bjorgen by 7.8 seconds. it‘s a third olympic gold, after wins in diffrerent events in 2010 and 2014. but, bjorgen, the norwegian still became the most decorated female winter olympian of all time after that silver — now 11 medals in total. i was quite nervous today and the olympics is something i have focused on for a long, long time. itjust feels very great during the season but i know everyone wants to be in shape at the olympics. it was really exciting and fun to compete today. carlijn achtereekte made her olympic debut a golden one, leading a dutch podium sweep in the women‘s 3,000—metre speed skating. two time champion, ireen wust was second with antoinette dejong
third. germany‘s laura dahlmeier put on a superb skiing performance and then went onto shoot a perfect ten from ten to win olympic gold in the women‘s 7.5km biathlon sprint — norway‘s marte olsbu finished second and veronika vitkova of the czech republic was in third. and you can of course stay right up to date with all of the competition on our website. just log on to bbc.com/news there‘s mounting international concern after israel launched a wave of air strikes against what it called "iranian targets" in syria. the uk has threatened to cut funding for oxfam following claims the charity covered up a scandal involving aid workers and prostitutes in haiti. a small boy who fell into a fast—flowing river
in northern ireland and was swept four miles downstream has died. the youngster, who was five, fell into the braid river near ballymena in county antrim. he was eventually pulled out and later airlifted to hospital, where he died. declan harvey reports. sirens wail the boy was in the water for around 90 minutes, being dragged almost four miles downstream, rescuers frantically following and trying to catch up. as rescue teams worked their way along the riverfrom one bridge to the next through ballymena, many locals lined the riverbank. it‘s thought the child originally fell into the river braid near the ecos centre, and was finally lifted from the water at the galgorm castle golf course. the air ambulance which had been circling overhead landed quickly, later taking the boy to the royal belfast hospital for sick children. the northern ireland ambulance service said the thoughts and prayers of all those involved in the rescue were with the young boy and his family.
jeremy corbyn has set out plans to transfer utilities such as water, energy and the postal service back into public ownership. the labour leader said the uk should be following what he called "a global tide" of nationalisation. we need to put britain at the forefront of the wave of international change in favour of public, democratic ownership and control of our services and utilities. from india to canada, across the world, people are waking up to the fact that privatisation has failed and taking back control of their public services. in south africa in 1996, the racist white minority leaders had been replaced by the country‘s first democratic government led by nelson mandela. but after so many years of brutality and abuse, the past threatened the future peace of the new ‘rainbow nation‘. the truth and reconciliation commission aimed to help south africans bear the burden of their history. judge sisi khampepe shared
her memories of serving on the commission with our witness team. we are charged to unearth the truth about our dark past, to lay the ghosts of that past so that they will not return to haunt us. i was a member of the truth commission and also a member of the amnesty committee. south africans face a collective test today. the reaction to these hearings will show whether they are able to expose the sins of apartheid, yet free themselves of the desire for revenge against those who propped up the system. the tlc act allowed amnesty, only if the perpetrator confessed to having committed the crime. i did terrible things. i did terrible things to members of the anc. i grew up in soweto,
which was rampant with security police. you people. let's get out now, very quickly, 0k? the army presence increased on streets that looked like battlegrounds. it felt like hell. parents washed smoke from their children‘s eyes. being in a city required a special permit if you were a black person. absolutely no freedom of movement. i had also suffered as an activist by being shot in the leg by the police while attending the funeral of a fellow student. it was at a graveyard where the police again started shooting. you have got two minutes to disburse! i survived. others were killed on the spot.
it is a scar which is a constant reminder of where i come from. i knew the harshness of the system first hand. yet, as a member of the amnesty committee, i had to decide that these people had to be granted amnesty — not because they were apologetic, but merely because they disclosed the truth. that was really difficult. did you then shoot him? yes, that is correct. people would cryjust by listening to the explanation that was given of how people were tortured. people were killed. what kind of man uses a method like this one to other human beings? there were occasions where people who applied for amnesty did say sorry. those were few and far between. but it was extraordinarily difficult
for me when people did not even care to apologise. translation: there was no other way other than to eliminate these people. these hearings provide a forum for those who have been treated in the past as if they were rubbish. archbishop desmond tutu was the star of the truth commission. without his leadership, the commission would not have been able to attain its objective. i believe that the process ensured that people were not vengeful, that there was proper public acknowledgement and recognition of those who had suffered. we are asking from you to please do forgive us.
we are still going through a process of coming out of our grief. but here we have the lovely people who are generous, their generosity is always amazing. i wake up every morning and i am grateful that, after all, i am a south african. sport, of course, endeavours to rise above politics and so it was in 1991, that two table tennis players — one from south korea and one from the north — were paired together to lead a team that won the world championship. they led the first ever unified korean sporting team. the women became firm friends but had to separate when the team disbanded. hyunjung—hwa recounts their moment of glory and how she misses her friend from the north. what a story!
don‘t forget, you can get in touch with me and some of the team on twitter. occasionally tweets interesting stuff. ——i occasionally tweet interesting stuff. i‘m @nkemifejika. coming up, dateline london. first, the weather with stav danos. it reflects under will be a brighter day than we had on saturday, all of the cloud and rain, but it will be a cold one, colder than saturday, the guffaws is through the morning and then sunshine sunshine and military hours with snow even falling down the lower levels as well. this is the deep area of low pressure bringing strong winds overnight. sunday morning, gales will be easing from eastern areas. a blustery day with wintry showers piling into the north and west. gales easing away from the east. still, a blustery day. feeling cold. plenty of sunshine around in southern and central and eastern areas. the afternoon, wintry showers reaching the midlands, perhaps into the south—east of england as well, certainly very windy in the north of scotland. snowfall accumulations mounting up. a cold day.
sunday night, much of the same. further wintry showers, longer spells of snow in the north and west. a cold night. subzero temperatures. spots of snow in the north and west of the country. a cold night. sub—zero values in central and northern areas. the risk of ice first thing monday morning. monday is not looking too bad. sunshine around. more than sunday. wintry showers in the north and west. wind picking up ahead of the next weather front moving in the atlantic. another chilly day. temperatures, around 5—8 degrees. monday night into tuesday, this weather front pushing east across the country, encountering cold air, so some snow on its leading edge. central and southern scotland could see quite a lot of snow. eventually, clearing through as we go through tuesday with skies brightening up behind. but we will see further wintry showers moving into scotland and northern ireland. those temperatures again, chilly, 4—6. a brief ridge of high pressure calming things down towards wednesday.
the next weather front moves in off the atlantic. a repeat performance. it bumps into the cold air, disruptive snow in the north of the country. 10—20 centimetres of snow in the higher ground of scotland. perhaps snow at lower levels as well. with rain, a messy day on wednesday. perhaps something a little less cold in the south. still on the chilly side. heading through the rest of the week, thursday and friday, much of the same, on the chilly side. this is bbc news — the headlines. tensions between israel and syria have intensified, after israeli fighter planes launched bombing raids across the border, following the shooting down of one of its jets. israel says it‘s been targeting iranian positions on syrian territory used to fly drones over israeli airspace. the us and russia have expressed concern over the attacks while the un has called for an immediate de—escalation.