welcome to bbc news, broadcasting to viewers in north america and around the globe. my name is mike embley. our top stories: a global trade war looms as the us goes ahead with tariffs on imports of steel and aluminium. europe, canada, and mexico say they will hit back. north korea's leadership says denuclearisation could only happen "stage by stage" — a very different approach from the us — but preparations for the summit are said to be still on course. weeks of political stalemate appear to be over — two populist parties reach a new agreement to govern italy. and the mysterious pluto reveals some of its secrets in pictures captured by nasa. hello. a global trade war is looming with the us imposing tariffs on steel and aluminium imports from europe, canada and mexico.
within hours now. the decision has drawn international condemnation and the threat of retaliation from the countries affected, all generally allies of the us. the risk is of an escalating round of tit—for—tat tariffs with serious consequences for free trade worldwide. britain has called the decision "deeply disappointing". france says it's illegal. the trump administration is citing "national security". aleem maqbool reports. ad: now, it's time for action. i am not going to let america and its great companies and workers be taken advantage of any longer. an ad for us steel asking the president to deliver on its election promise to save jobs in the industry but to many, the way he's done that looks like the opening salvo in a trade war between europe and the us that could have far—reaching consequences. from midnight tonight, large tariffs will have to be paid on any steel or aluminium imports coming to the us from the eu.
well, there's overproduction of steel and there's overcapacity throughout the world, and so we have needed to deal with it in a very global manner. you can'tjust deal with it, dealing with one country. surrounded by steelworkers, donald trump actually announced the tariffs for most countries in march, but also exemptions for mexico, canada and the eu. he's today scrapped those exemptions. the workers who poured their souls into building this great nation were betrayed. but that betrayal is now over. donald trump can only do this by claiming it's in the interests of national security, which he has now done, to the dismay of the friends he's now penalising. thank you very much, everybody. thank you. it's very disappointing
that the united states has chosen to apply steel and aluminium tariffs to countries across the european union, allies of the united states and all in the name of national security. and in the case of the united kingdom, where we send steel to the united states that is vital for their businesses and the defence industry, it is patently absurd. let me be clear, these tariffs are totally unacceptable. for 150 years, canada has been the united states' most steadfast ally. and europe is already talking about retaliation. we will announce in the next couple of hours counterbalancing measures. what they can do, we are able to do exactly the same. it's totally unacceptable that a country is imposing unilateral measures when it comes to world trade.
so, how could europe hit back? some all—american industries could be hit, like this us denim factory, with talk of the eu imposing other tariffs on bourbon, motorcycles, and even peanut butter. the truth is a big reason donald trump has introduced these new metal tariffs is to satisfy his supporters. they may not actually have the impact on jobs he says it will, but has risked a dangerous economic escalation with this country's biggest trading partners. at the very micro level, some household goods made of steel or aluminium could become more expensive for the american consumer. if there is retaliation from other countries, then some products could become more expensive elsewhere, but of course of the other end of the scale, there are those who are worried about much bigger, broader economic ramifications worldwide. it doesn't seem to worry donald trump in recent weeks, he said when a country like the usa is losing many billions of dollars on trade, trade wars are good and easy to win. aleem maqbool, bbc news.
the bbc‘s chris bucklerjoins us now from washington. we just heard there from the canadian prime minister who is also going to be looking closely at this latest statement just in from president trump about the north american free trade agreement? you can hear the anger and frustration from the american allies who feel that they are beyond for being u nfa i rly that they are beyond for being unfairly treated and certainly when you look at president trump's statements, it seems to indicate they want to connect this whole idea of putting in place tariffs within this whole idea of renegotiating the north american free trade agreement which is known as nafta. president trump has released a statement this evening in which he has said the united states has been taken advantage of the many decades on trade. those days are over. earlier today this message was conveyed to the canadian prime ministerjustin trudeau and the united states will agree to a fair deal as far as nafta is concerned or there will be no
deal at all. what you are seeing here is the white house flexing its muscles, saying that it will impose these turrets, it will continue to be tough on trade, unless there is a good deal on the table soon after. now, that could potentially cause some problems with america's neighbours mexico and canada because those negotiations are delicate, to say the least, and have been doing on the sometime. in some ways this is the way that president trump like to negotiate, it is brash and belligerent but perhaps it also indicates he wants to continue talking, but using these tariffs on steel and aluminium as average. there are clear political upside to this, this was a campaign promise from mrtrump and this, this was a campaign promise from mr trump and keeps his core voters from mr trump and keeps his core vote rs ha p py from mr trump and keeps his core voters happy that there are real downside of some american businesses. and the ritual concern not least within president trump's own party, the republican party, which has a history of being a free—trade party. there are some who are deeply uncomfortable with this, particular because it could mean
there are added costs and pressure is not just there are added costs and pressure is notjust the consumers but also for american manufacturers. this trickle—down, that is a worry for a party that is going into elections within the next few months, the midterm elections are taking place in america and while some of this will play the president trump's base, there are others who will be concerned about the potential effect of it. there has been a statement from one of the leading republicans, the speaker paul ryan who said clearly i disagree with this decision. instead of addressing the real problems in the international trade of these products, today's action target america's allies when we should be working with them to address the unfair trading practices of countries like china. of course those international allies are not happy. we saw very clearly fronts's president emmanuel macron, when he came to visit america there was a good relationship between those two presidents and they worked closely together but there has been a late—night phone call between the two and in, he has been very clear
in saying they believe these tariffs are illegal and there will be a firm and proportionate response. chris, thank you. while president trump was putting up trade barriers with allies, he seems to be still trying to build bridges with north korea. on thursday, he said preparations for a summit next month with kim jong—un are going well. the us secretary of state has been meeting one of the north korean leader's closest aides, but it's clear the two countries still have very different definitions of "denuclearisation". and the north has just announced another summit with russia — a pointed reminder that it still has powerful allies. here's nick bryant. the kim summit dominated the new york tabloids this morning, although this one involved a kardashian rather than a korean. two reality tv stars in a made for instagram moment, pop and political culture are becoming harder to tell apart. this dinner in manhattan last night may have lacked the same star power, but was far more momentous. a smiling us secretary of state, mike pompeo, meeting a north korean general, kim yong—chol,
a one—time spy master and his leader's right—hand man. steak was on the menu, and that summit in singapore. the fact that even this meeting is taking place shows how rapidly and how dramatically relations between america and north korea have changed. less than nine months ago, donald trump was just up the road at the united nations, threatening to totally destroy that country. today's meeting felt like diplomatic speed dating. it was over quicker than expected and that was a sign of great progress, according to the americans, and also an indication of how much both sides want this summit to take place. our two countries face a pivotal moment in our relationship in which it could be nothing short of tragic to let this opportunity go to waste. i believe they are contemplating a path forward where they can make a strategic shift — one that their country has not been prepared to make before.
the north koreans are carrying a personal letter from kim jong—un to donald trump and tomorrow in washington, they will make a remarkable journey, walking through the doors of the white house to deliver it. and just a week after cancelling the summit, the president has now indicated there could be multiple meetings. hopefully, we will have a meeting on the 12th. it's going along very well, but i want it to be meaningful. it doesn't mean it gets all done at one meeting. maybe you have to have a second or third, and maybe we'll have none, but it's in good hands, that i can tell you. whether the two sides even agree on what is meant by denuclearisation is still unclear, but it does look increasingly likely that air force one will soon be on a flight path to singapore. nick bryant, bbc news, new york. earlier, i spoke to drjiyoon kim. she is a senior fellow in the public opinion studies programme at the asan institute for policy studies. i asked her how optimistic people are in south korea about a deal
being done between the united states and north korea. i would say the korean people are cautiously excited and optimistic. first, the history of the summit between the north korea and the united states, although there has been turmoil last week. so we have very high hopes and expectations for the summit onjune i2. and many people seem to believe that something really big and important can happen during the summit, particularly if there is any declaration of ending the war, the korean war at the meeting, at the trilateral meeting. and the united states, that would be a wonderful thing for the korean people. one major potential problem seems
to be that the us and north korea have very different definitions of "denuclearisation". it has been discussed for a long time and it is still up in the air. we saw secretary pompeo after his meeting this morning, many people say that there have been different approaches that this time it seems to be different and the united states, which is not really the normal administration were used to come by trump administration. we are hopeful because of that because something big can happen because those two are both unexpected people. just today, we hear that north korea and russia have agreed to hold a bilateral summit this year. how serious do you think the russians and the north koreans are about that or is itjust the way to annoy the americans and distract them 7 russia was apparently one party of the six party talks before. at this point, i don't think... because russia is not
playing a significant role, they are busy with their own things, this time we are not so much concerned but we are paying attention to china and the role played by china. and president trump was not happy with that. according to his comments. although it depends on how much she believes that comment not. so while we hope that russia can play a good positive role. particularly we have heard the raising of the issue of railways and if everything ends really well then june 12, there should have a lot of economic benefits to both sides. president obama was said to be popular in south korea. how do people feel about president trump? president trump is probably the least popular president among all of the us presidents, to be frank, particularly compared with president obama.
but if he brings a good successful summit result to the korean peninsula and the peace, i am pretty sure then that the korean people will love him. he was popular before he flipped with the letter, with the summit last week, but this is the moment where we resume popularity for him. he is not considered to be a sincere person but for that exact reason a lot of people are hopeful. weeks of political stalemate in italy seem to be over with the anti—establishment 5—star movement and the right—wing league announcing they have reached a new agreement to govern the country. james reynolds is in rome and explains the latest developments. four days ago, the populists walked out in anger, calling for early elections after the president vetoed their choice of a eurosceptic finance minister. they then followed a political opera in several dozen acts. that is now over.
the country knows where it stands — there will be no early election, there will be no unofficial referendum on the eu row, the populists decided to back down in order to get into government. they have switched the name of their finance minister — the new minister has not talked about leaving the euro — that is a relief to italy's pro—euro president, who has got what he wanted, and it will also be a relief to brussels, but conflict between the populists who will now be in government and brussels may not be over. this new government is making promises. it wants to spend more and cut taxes, which may put it into conflict with the eu spending rules. and the new interior minister, the league's leader, wants a tough new policy on migration which may provoke argument. james reynolds for us there. the spanish prime minister mariano rajoy is on the verge of being voted out of office after a small basque nationalist party said it would back the move by the opposition socialists. their five votes should be enough to topple mr rajoy on friday after more than six years in office.
if the socialist—led opposition win, snap elections are expected to be called. stay with us on bbc news. still to come: all hail stormzy — the british grime star triumphs at this year's ivor novello awards. the queen and her husband and their royal procession. the moment of crowning in accordance with the order of service, by a signal given with great guns of the tower shall be shot. tributes have been paid around the world to muhammed ali who has died at the age of 7a. outspoken but rarely outfought,
he transcended the sport of boxing of which he was three times world champion. ali was a fighter and he fought all the way to the end. even through his illness. yes, he did. uefa imposes an indefinite ban on english clubs playing in europe. today is the 20th anniversary of the release of the beatles' sergeant pepper's lonely hearts club band, a record described as the album of the century. this is bbc news. the latest headlines: a global trade war is looming — with the us imposing tariffs on steel and aluminium imports from key allies in europe and north america in just a few hours time. more now on mr trump's import tariffs on steel and aluminium. peter petri is interim dean and carl shapiro professor
of international finance in the brandeis international business school. this was a campaign promise, so it will please the president's core voters. but professor shapiro pointed out there are downsides to the tariffs, even within the us. absolutely true. we have gone back and forth on threatening and not threatening then threatening again. this is now beginning to feel like a real trade warlooming. the second great trade war since the 1930s. at that time, the volume of international trade fell to about one third in about four years after the united states imposed high tariffs and other countries retaliated. we are not there yet. we may never get there. this may be another fake policy by the us administration but the parallels are increasingly scary. and the downsides, even within the united states, notjust from retaliation
by other countries, retaliatory tariffs, but also from the tariffs themselves that america imposes. that is correct. in the oil industry in the us, a tremendous amount of production depends on steel imported from mexico and parts from canada and on steel exports to canada against which there may be retaliation. there is a great deal of interdependence in modern production systems and this will have widespread effect in the united states and across the world. and i think one needs to add here that the united states today is 20%, maybe a little bit more than that, of the world economy and we seem to be declaring trade war on the other 80%. that is likely to force the rest of the world to finally unify against us and retaliate. it is a moment that is kind of sad for us in the united states to watch after 70 years of trying to keep the world trading system stable.
if it is possible to put this briefly in a nutshell, what we mean by a trade war? well, we mean increased tariffs, certainly by the united states, on critical product. retaliation from other countries, and certainly from europe and canada, they have already announced this. lists of products against which they themselves will raise tariffs to be from china which is also being threatened. altogether, these countries can make a very large impact on us exports and on the production system within the united states did it on prices, on employment levels... if we go through with this it is very scary. i would like to emphasise again that we are not there yet and we have seen this movie several times over the last few months. we may back off. i hope so. the dwarf planet pluto has long been a mystery to scientists.
but now experts say they've found important new evidence about the planet's surface which in places resembles sand dunes familiar to us on earth. they've been using images captured by nasa's new horizons spacecraft. here's our science editor david shukman. until recently the distant world of pluto was a total mystery but a nasa spacecraft captured these stunning pictures three years ago. and since then scientists have been trying to make sense of sights they'd never expected. everyone thought that somewhere so cold would be frozen solid, but amazingly there are signs of movement at the surface. and the latest discovery is about the texture of the landscape. these are fields of dunes that look surprisingly like the ones we have on earth. this is important from a scientific perspective because it gives us new insights about pluto but it's also really exciting just to be able to look at this world and recognise that it's notjust a frozen icy blob in the outer reaches of the solar system.
but really we are seeing a dynamic world still changing, still forming today. so a major surprise is that pluto was much more active than previously thought. its atmosphere is so incredibly thin compared to earth and its winds are so weak that features like dunes shouldn't be possible. and with a temperature of —230 you'd think everything would be totally frozen. but it turns out there's just enough warmth from the sun to lift tiny grains of frozen methane and they're so light that the winds, however weak, can actually move them. and that's how the dunes are formed. on earth, dunes like these in the kalahari desert take shape when the wind blows the grains of sand. and scientists have found dunes forming in very different conditions on mars, venus and now pluto. this could help them know what to look for when exploring worlds that are even further away.
it makes you think that there is a lot beyond pluto. not just within our solar system but beyond our solar system we found lots and lots, thousands of planets around other stars. we can't see their surfaces yet but eventually we will be able to, and what will we see? 50 years ago pluto was described as being silent and barren. now we know that even on the edge of the solar system there is a startling level of activity. the new horizons spacecraft that nasa sent to pluto is now on its way to another world that's even more distant. after years in space it will be woken from hibernation next week and it's on course to come up with yet more discoveries early next year. david shukman, bbc news. the prestigious ivor novello awards have been taking place in london. they recognise excellence in british and irish songwriting. ed sheeran was the biggest winner — being named song—writer of the year for a second time. but this year's awards had a distinctly political tone to them as the bbc‘s tim allman explains.
stormzy is notjust a rapper, he is a phenomenon. his debut, gang signs and prayer had picked up a brit award and now the album has been named album of the year at the ivor novellos. he has been a fierce critic of the uk government, particularly the handling similar sentiments expressed by fellow rapper dave. his single question time won the best contemporary song. i would say that i am pleased. among the other winners, elbow who received the award for best song, musically and lyrically, for
magnificent (she says). a group of our peers decided that our song was the best song. how can you not be affected by that? how can you not be touched? it is the most beautiful statue. two more statu ettes going to ed sheeran. one for songwriter of the year. it doesn't all have to be about politics. and you can get in touch with me and most of the team on twitter, i'm @bbcmikeembley. hello there.
the thunderstorms from yesterday took a while to get going but once they did, they did bring a lot of rain and lightning. storms initiated around sussex before spreading across central and southern england, the south midlands and on towards wales and the south—west. bursts of lightning, torrential downpours that brought flooding and reports of a few problems around bristol. some of the worst of it was in west sussex. it was just not cricket. lakes where the boundary should be. the met office amber warning in effect until 6 this morning. we could still have one oi’ two more issues. liveliest of the showers working across wales. heavy downpours over the next few hours. a lot of murky weather and low cloud, mist and fog patches, notjust around the coastline
but across some of our hills. mild and muggy night, grey and gloomy, really, to start friday morning. friday looks something like this. low cloud, mist and fog taking a long time to burn away and thin out. and then as we head into the afternoon, we will see heavy showers breaking out. this time they will be further north. in the firing line, scotland, northern ireland, north—west england and parts of wales. we could see around 30 millimetres of rain also falling in the space of an hour. over a two or three hour period, if you are unlucky there will be a few communities who could see some flooding problems again where we could get 50 or 60 millimetres of rain, enough to cause the flooding problems we saw on thursday. muggy day temperature wise. highs into the low to mid 20s. onto the weekend's forecast, so the thunderstorms will be around. they will head north on the weather will tend to become a little more settled and drier in the south. here is the weather picture. saturday beginning on a gloomy note for many of us, particularly across the north—east.
gloomier start generally in scotland but during the afternoon we see thunderstorms breaking out. scotland and northern ireland, parts of northern england has seen the worst of those. localised flooding a possibility. further south, more in the way of sunshine, starting to feel a little bit warmer giving that the sunshine will be stronger with less cloud around. that trend continues into sunday, the second half of the weekend is probably the better half weatherwise. showers not far away from south—west england, still a couple showers across scotland but for most of us, sunday will be a dry day with sunshine slowly breaking through in the afternoon. warm as well in the south with highs reaching 25 celsius in london. this is bbc news. the headlines: key allies of the united states are saying they will retaliate against president trump's decision to impose tariffs on steel and aluminium imports. the european union, canada and mexico are all proposing duties on american goods in response. there's a risk of a global trade war with an escalating round of tit—for—tat tariffs worldwide. the top aide to north korea's leader is to present a letter
from kim jong—un to president trump at the white house on friday as preparations for next month's summit go on. but it's clear the us and pyongyang have very different definitions of "denuclearisation". it's been announced that kim jong—un will also visit moscow for a summit this year. for the second time in eight days, italy's president has asked giuseppe conte to be the next prime minister. he will now try to assemble a government of two populist parties — five star and the league. his previous attempt was vetoed because the man nominated to be economy minister was seen as so anti the euro.