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tv   Witness  BBC News  May 20, 2018 12:30pm-1:01pm BST

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more residents have been rescued from their homes in hawaii as molten lava continues to pour from the ground following the eruption of the kilauea volcano. the latest explosion sent an ash cloud 3,000 metres into the air. 0ur correspondent chris buckler has the latest from hawaii. people are being prevented from getting anywhere close to the area where there are fissures. those are volcanic vents, and they create cracks in the ground, and they are getting ever bigger, and lava is shooting out from them. 0ur correspondent chris buckler has the latest from hawaii. last night we saw fountains of lava from those vents. the national guard are preventing people from going into those areas. that means that people have been moved out of their homes, and that has caused all sorts of difficulties. across the road from here, you can see that there is a centre that has been set up. in there, people have got clothes, they are being given food, because there are families who have lost literally everything. not just their houses, but everything inside because it has been destroyed by the lava.
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with those fissures continuing to grow, that is a real concern for other people. last night, the national guard had to helicopter in to remove some people from their homes, because some people had been reluctant to leave. but they are going to be told that they have to leave for their own safety. the other concern is toxic gases. that is a real fear for people, and many people have already been given masks to ensure that they are all right. but the real concern at the centre of this is the volcano itself. that has been another violent eruption, and there are fears of other explosions, which is why people are being prevented from getting anywhere near it. if you listen to the radio, you will hear amazing announcements, like the idea that the volcano could spew boulders the size of cars. that gives you an idea ofjust how dangerous this volcano is becoming. chris butler reporting from hawaii.
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let's look at the weather forecast now. hello there, another warm day. most now. hello there, another warm day. m ost pla ces now. hello there, another warm day. most places enjoying warm weather. there are some rain and drizzle towards the northwest. some brighter and sunnier skies developing. light winds for england and the —— wales. inland temperatures, 22 or 23 degrees. more sunshine to come. 0vernight, perhaps some rain and drizzle. it will be dry for england and where. there will be some mist around. clear skies, but and where. there will be some mist around. clearskies, but nothing and where. there will be some mist around. clear skies, but nothing too cold on monday morning. that mist and fog will burn off. in proving in scotland, the rain will retreat. some late showers, towards other
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parts of england and where. most places will be dry, again it will be warm in the sunshine and light winds. hello again, you are watching bbc news. here are our latest headlines... the royal family has thanked the public after thousands of people lined the streets of windsor to celebrate the marriage of prince harry and meghan markle. a major overhaul of rail timetables begins today, affecting half a million passengers. some commuters say they've been left with fewer trains at rush hour. survivors of terror attacks and relatives of victims sign an open letter calling on the public to help stop future atrocities. officials in cuba say 110 people are now known to have died in a plane crash near havana. three women survived and remain critically ill. now on bbc news, witness.
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hello, and welcome to witness with me, razia iqbal, here at the british library for a special programme looking at the changing nature of royalty during the 20th century. we will hear about the japanese royal wedding which broke more than 2,000 years of tradition. we will remember the african king who fell in love and lost his throne. we will also hearfrom a european king who lost his crown. and we will find out how princess diana used her position to change social attitudes. but first, russia, and one of the defining moments of the 20th century —
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the russian revolution and the overthrow of the last tsar. princess 0lga romanoff is the great niece of tsar nicolas ii. she spoke to witness about his death and eventual reburial. newsreader: following the priests and the nobles, tsar nicolas of imperial russia with his wife and children. one day, all to find death in a bullet—swept cellar. my grandmother, kasenia, was nicolas ii sister. and my father was nicholas ii's eldest nephew. they called him uncle nicky. nicolas adored him and they went on manoeuvres together and did everything together and travelled a lot with the tsar and the tsarina and was very close to the girls, as there was one the same age as him and they used to play together and have rollerblade races and cycle races and pony races up
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and down the palaces. the russian territories were vast and they were incredibly powerful. also nicholas was the head of the church. already there was bolshevik movements and the russian royal family were not as powerful as they were, say, in 1900. on march 15th 1917, tsar nicholas ii, supreme ruler of all the russias, was forced to abdicate in the face of political and economic pressure that lead in the end to total revolution. nicolas and his family were taken to tobolsk where they were held and from tobolsk they went to ekaterinburg which is where they were eventually murdered. i think the communists were worried that he might be put on the throne again or at least might have more influence than what they would like him to have. his memory is revered
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here but during his lifetime, the tsar was accused of being both weak and inconsistent, of stubbornly clinging to power. but the romanoffs are credited with dignity and bravery in the months leading to their execution. the children were 0lga, tatiana, maria and anastasia, and the brother, alexei, along with the empress, alexandra, and nicolas himself, who were all shot. after the fall of the soviet union, we heard on the grapevine that the bodies of nicholas and family had been discovered in a swamp outside ekaterinburg and there was a movement that they would get a decent burial in st petersburg with the rest of their family. in '98, injuly, one of my sons and myself went to st petersburg for the first time for the funeral of nicholas ii and there
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were between 52 and 56 romanoffs. as the cortege approaches the winter palace, the historic home of romanoff autocracy, it slows down in keeping with the russian tradition in which the coffins of the dead are driven past the place that was their last home on earth. we all went on a cortege all the way from the airport to peter and paul fortress and what struck me, amazingly, there were so many people in the street. and all of them were signing the cross and bowing. and then the queen had very kindly sent officers from the scots greys. the honour guard included a piper from the royal scots dragoon guards. tsar nicolas was their commander in chief. there was a very long service. they were all laid out in front of the altar. and it all felt very emotional.
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it had a feel of holiness and sanctity. it was, you know, it wasjust nice to have them safely buried. princess 0lga romanoff. while the romanoffs ruled russia for over 300 years, the japanese royal family is said to be the world's oldest hereditary monarchy, tracing a direct line back more than 2500 years. but in 1959, the crown prince married for love, meeting his fiancee, the daughter of a wealthy flour miller, on a tennis court. crown prince akihito has married a commoner, michiko shoda, so breaking japanese tradition of more than 2600 years. the marriage ceremony, lasting only 15 minutes, took place in kashiko—dokoro, a wooden shrine within the walls of the imperial palace. there was no hint of any western influence in the wedding ritual. in sumptuous robes such as members of the imperial family
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have worn for centuries, the crown prince and his bride were made man and wife. burdened by no fewer than 12 kimonos, it took princess michiko three hours to dress. the total weight was 33 lbs. cheers accompany them all the way as they begin their drive through tokyo. shiegeo suzuki at his home injapan. in the 1950s, the marriage between a white woman and an african prince caused uproar. seretse khama was a future king of botswana. ruth williams was a secretary from britain. both countries opposed the union. seretse was exiled and forced to renounce his throne. ruth's sister, muriel williams sanderson, introduced the couple. i'd never met an african until i went to the london missionary society conference in '46 and i was then 24. i went up to dinner and at the table was seretse khama.
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seretse was the inheritor as chief of the tribe, like a king. we became very good friends and i used to go up every saturday night. my sister ruth didn't have anything to do on a saturday night so i asked her if she would like to come up with me. we met through my sister and indirectly through the london missionary society. they used to have weekend sort of thing is for african students. they clicked from the word go. you get this attraction, it's impossible to describe but it's just there. we discovered we liked the same type of music, always jazz. people like ella fitzgerald. it was amazing how they had so much in common with such different backgrounds. in those days, the racial situation in london was not very good. whites and blacks did not go out together, especially a white girl and a black man. we were very much in love. we knew we were going to upset our immediate families but then,
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at the same time, we didn't want to live apart. i think she was very brave, and so was he. his father had died when he was very young and he was brought up by his uncle, tshekedi. he was very much against the marriage and he thought it would be letting the tribe down and you couldn't have a chief with a white bride. they wanted to be married in the anglican church. unfortunately, tshekedi wrote to the london missionary society asking them to stop the wedding. and they contacted the bishop of london, and he telephoned the vicar the morning of the marriage to say he wasn't to marry them. so that was the saturday. on monday morning seretse went to a registry office, bought a special licence and then the wednesday morning at nine o'clock they arranged to get married. we were stubborn. other people were equally stubborn in their attitude by trying to prevent us. it was discussed in parliament.
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churchill said they were a very brave couple, even though he did not approve of the marriage. the british government sent out a team to look at the suitability of seretse to be the chief. coming in from bechuanaland, seretse khama, the 27—year—old chief designate of the bamangwato tribe. he had been summoned to britain to discuss the future rulership of the tribe, affected by his marriage to former london typist ruth williams. they had a lot of protests from south africa. they said, we don't approve of a coloured couple being in such a prominent position. so the british government exiled seretse even though the committee that went out there couldn't find anything wrong with the marriage. had we not had the aggro it would have been better, but i thinkjust the fact that people were trying to separate us, even after we were married they were still trying to separate us, somebody described it one time as trying to split the atom. it was news all over the world.
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i just couldn't believe it was me and my family and ruth and that we were living through this. it's six years since the british government forbade seretse to return to his homeland. now he has renounced the chieftaincy for ever and at last the ban is lifted. when seretse was setting up the political party, he travelled all over botswana. one of these times the car broke down so of course ruth had been in the waaf, she had three months training in car maintenance. so she got out and fixed the car. he said, "well, i certainly married the right woman!" muriel williams sanderson, who died in 2015. remember, you can watch witness every month on the bbc news channel or you can catch up on all our films along with more than a thousand radio programmes in our online archive. just go to in 1987 the world was in fear of a deadly new disease which seemed to target gay men.
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news headlines created hysteria which suggested hiv and aids could be picked up from casual contact. but it tookjust one photograph with the world's most famous woman, diana, princess of wales, to change that. john 0'reilly was a nurse at britain's first purpose—built aids ward. for everybody affected by hiv and aids around the world, it was a major coup. it was amazing. officially the princess was simply opening britain's first purpose—built aids ward but perhaps more significantly she demonstrated to staff and patients her confidence that aids cannot be contracted by casual contact. people were frightened, really frightened, because we didn't really know what it was to begin with. there was a lot of aids—phobia, a lot of homophobia. the media were unkind,
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particularly the tabloid press. i hated all that kind of misinformation and hysteria. the headlines were scaremongering, ignorant, misleading the general public. as far as i'm concerned, the gay plague was the homophobia, not the virus. i didn't tell anybody what i did, i didn't even tell fellow nurses or doctors what i did. ijust said i was a nurse at the middlesex hospital. we couldn't attract staff because people were frightened. the unit has created other pressures in the hospital. staff treating people with aids are subject to unusual strain. obviously we have to be careful with blood and body fluids because that's the way that it is transmitted. obviously if we are dealing with those things then we will wear gloves and aprons if necessary but we're not going out of our way to wear space suits and the rest because it is totally unnecessary. my first impressions
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of princess diana was that she was warm, sophisticated, elegant and smart. and i warmed to her instantly. she took our consultant down a peg or two, who really sort of condescendingly said, you know, do you know what this is, and he was holding up an x—ray of the chest. and she just very politely said, "i'm patron of the british heart and lung foundation, of course i know what an x—ray is." i thought, good on you, i like that. anticipation always surrounds what the princess of wales will wear for an engagement but it's rarely been keener than yesterday. just one question dominated the whole day — would she or wouldn't she wear gloves? princess diana demonstrated that she cared because she took everybody‘s hand. this was diana, the princess of wales, coming in gloveless and shaking our patients‘ hands as well as ours. you know, that was very moving.
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the ward can take 12 patients. today, though, the beds were empty. the patients were hiding from the media, unhappy at the way they have covered the aids epidemic in the past. finally, one did agree to a picture of the prioncess shaking his hand to prove you can't catch aids through casual contact. i don't think it took a lot of convincing for him, because he was dying. for a royal who was allowed to go in and shake a patient‘s hand, somebody at the bus stop or in the supermarket or in the supermarket could do the same. that really educated people. john 0'reilly. and finally to bulgaria where the monarchy was abolished by communism after the second world war. unlike the russian romanoffs in 1918, this time most of the royal family was spared but were banished from the country. the king at the time, simeon ii, was just nine years old, crowned after the sudden death of his father.
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half a century later, simeon saxe—coburg—gotha returned to bulgaria to run the country not as king but as prime minister. the monarchy strikes back. after more than 50 years in exile, former king simeon‘s vote was much more than symbolic. i really didn't think we would have such a landslide. it was really quite a surprise. it was also a tremendous decision, would i live up to it, was i capable. simeon was just a boy when he was crowned king in 1943. at the age of six he led a country which was a reluctant ally of nazi germany during the second world war. then in september '44 the soviet troops marched in. there was a coup d'etat, and after that came the period where my uncle and other regents plus a number of other
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people were executed. we left from this house, as a matter of fact, from this door. we boarded a so—called royal train and what worried my mother was that they noticed that there were russian soldiers. they suddenly thought of the very worst, that we would be taken somewhere and done in, but it didn't happen, obviously, since i can answer your questions here today. we never thought that this would last 50 years. suddenly, the way west was opened. this did not look like a planned move from the communist authorities but rather another panic response by a government giving way to the parliament of the streets. watching the news of the fall of the wall, literally this is where i started thinking, well, there might be
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a chance that eventually we will see bulgaria again. simeon returned from exile to huge crowds in 1996. from one part of the road to the centre was literally a sea of people. most bulgarians think a decade of democracy after the fall of communism has given them far too little reward. now the ex—king must decide how to lead his people again. i self—demoted myself to be prime minister rather than stay with the hypothetical title of king to be able to be more useful. to me, it was something which was against everything i had been taught over the years, that the king would not meddle in direct politics so that was one thing that cost me personally a lot of sleepless nights. to my father's generation,
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for centuries people have only married within these families. my generation, people started marrying persons who were out of the royal families but this in itself showed the monarchy is not something stale, stuck back in history. my view is, having worn both hats, i could not say that there is one single system which is the best, but certainly monarchy is something much more flexible. the politician, which i have been, works with sort of four years term or five years term. the king is actually with a generation. so you think with 25 years ahead roughly. i think the more people get a little bit upset with their politicians,
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the more monarchy has a function. i think it's a pretty fair system. i'm not doing publicity of my own trade but i really think it. simeon saxe—coburg—gotha, formally king simeon ii, speaking to witness from the vrana palace in bulgaria. that's all from this special edition of witness here at the british library. we will be back again next month with more extraordinary moments in history and the remarkable people who witnessed them. for now, from me and the entire witness team, goodbye. hello there.
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a few changes in the weather today. the mist, fog and low cloud across eastern england, that's been burning up. sunshine developing more widely and blue skies, like here in shropshire. but for scotland and northern ireland, we've got much more cloud around. it is even producing a bit of rain and drizzle. now, this cloud was actually off to the northwest yesterday, but it has moved into scotland and northern ireland, which is why we have been seeing some damp weather here and there, but it is very patchy. the rain retreating more towards the northwest corner of the uk. so improving in scotland, but the best of sunshine across england and well. that mist and low cloud, well, there could be a few patches of it around coastal areas. perhaps running through western parts of the english channel. a touch cooler around the coast. inland temperatures, 22, maybe even 23 degrees. lots of sunshine, strong and warm sunshine too. more cloud, though, through the irish sea into cumbria, certainly across northern ireland. even a few bits and pieces of rain left over in the afternoon.
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most of the rain in scotland, towards the northwest, getting warm in the moray firth and brightening up in eastern scotland on the whole. overnight, we could see that cloud thickening again. a bit more rain coming back into scotland, back into northern ireland. england and wales likely to be dry. the mist and low cloud off the north sea pushing into eastern areas of england. misty and murky by the morning. otherwise clear skies and temperatures about six to 10 degrees as we start the new week. we start the new week with this weather front bringing the rain in the northwest. it is going to move away over the coming few days, getting pushed away by that area of high pressure. a lot of dry weather and some sunshine. the morning mist, fog and low cloud, burning off again in eastern england. sunny skies develop widely. improving in scotland as the rain pushes up towards the northwest. rain mainly for the western side of northern ireland. so pretty warm in the sunshine. temperatures will continue to climb. we could introduce one or two heavy thundery showers across southern areas of england and wales. it is a risk again on tuesday. it is just a risk. a lot of places still dry.
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plenty of sunshine around. the weather continuing to improve in scotland in northern ireland with the cloud breaking up and those temperatures lifting into the high teens at the very least. otherwise 23 or 2a in the sunshine. the rest of the week, while we have the chance of one or two heavy thundershowers, particularly on thursday across the south, most places will be dry and warm with some sunshine. good afternoon. the royal family have thanked those who travelled to windsor yesterday for the wedding of prince harry and meghan markle. thousands of people lined the streets to see the couple on their big day, and many more were watching on television — over 13 million on bbc one alone. the wedding celebrations ended with a black tie dinner and fireworks display at frogmore house, near windsor castle. jessica parker is in windsor now.
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