this is bbc news. the headlines at 11pm: the army is called in to help tackle a huge fire across saddleworth moor. as temperatures soar, it now spreads across four miles. people have been told to leave their homes. this is not something that's going to end today by any, sort of, stretch of the imagination. this could go on for days, even weeks. a couple from london win a major legal battle, insisting that the law on civil partnerships discriminates against heterosexual couples. drjane barton, the gp who oversaw the practice of prescribing powerful painkillers at a hospital in hampshire where hundreds of patients died, says she had always done her best for her patients. a rescue boat stranded for nearly a week in the mediterranean, with over 200 migrants on board, has finally been allowed to dock in malta. commentator: song to wrap it up, all alone, song! —— son.
and the biggest shock of the world cup so far. the reigning champions, germany, have been knocked out at the group stage, beaten by south korea. good evening and welcome to bbc news. the armed forces have been asked to help firefighters who are battling to contain an extensive blaze sweeping across moors near saddleworth in greater manchester. more than 100 homes have been evacuated. the blaze has been burning since sunday night, and the authorities have declared it a major incident. the smoke can be seen from space in the latest images released by nasa, and the area affected is nearly four miles across. our correspondent, judith moritz, reports from the edge of the moor. firefighters will be tackling the blaze throughout the night. this is the fire front line.
flames and smoke snaking across miles of neverland. as it races across the ground, the fire claims this land, leaving burned heather and twisted wood in its wake. the blaze plays cat and mouse with the firefighters toiling to put it out. each time the wind changes, the fire moves. each time one hotspot goes out, another pops up. the problem with peat is that it burns like tobacco, so it smoulders slowly, so that is why we need the water to get in there. it's fine knocking the fire on the surface, but then it burns underneath, so we need the water to soak into the ground and completely saturate the area. this is not something that's going to end today, by any sort of stretch of the imagination. this could go on for days, even weeks. last night, it looked like a wildfire in the californian bush or australian outback, but this is six miles from oldham.
and as the moon shone over the moors, fire raged below. metres away, homes bought for their tranquil views were suddenly threatened, residents told to spend the night elsewhere. kept looking out the window and went about our usual business, having something to eat etc. then there was a knock at the door just after 8pm from one of the special police officers who said, you're going to have to get out and evacuate. as they were telling you to get out, did you think, my house is at risk? absolutely. the last thing i said to him was, don't let my house burn down! some local schools closed today, unable to keep their classrooms ventilated. i've been here about 20 years and we have never been in a position where we have had to close the school premises because of fire. and there's certainly not been any evacuations in the past, so this is unprecedented, without a doubt. with smoke hanging heavy in the air, face masks were handed out to residents who were also told to keep their doors and windows shut.
the fire service declared a major incident, crews coming from several areas, and now the army called in too. up here on the top of the moor, it's an apocalyptic landscape. all of the heather has been killed off, but the fire continues to burn under the surface, pockets of smoke and steam coming up over ground. and this devastation goes on for miles. the blaze is so significant it can even be seen from space. in this image, captured by a nasa satellite. it's unforgiving, inaccessible terrain. the hoses can't be everywhere and firefighters have to stamp out some elevated hotspots and then keep coming back to re—extinguish fires. the heat was that intense, it was turning the spray to steam, if you like. but it did stop it. it stopped it right on the peak. but, as you can see this morning, it's flaming up again.
but it wasn't that, it'sjust the smoke, the stinging smoke in your eyes. as the country basks in a heatwave, imagine the temperatures the firefighters are coping with. it's exhausting, and it's frustrating, but they won't stop until the fire does. judith moritz, bbc news, near saddleworth. a heterosexual couple who fought a long legal battle for the right to enter into a civil partnership rather than marriage have won their case at the supreme court. the court agreed with rebecca steinfeld and charles keidan that the law restricting civil partnerships to same—sex couples was discriminatory and breached the couple's right to a family life. as our legal affairs correspondent, clive colman, reports, the ruling could lead to a change in the law in england and wales and allow millions of heterosexual couples to choose a civil partnership. rebecca steinfeld and charles keidan, a devoted couple since 2010, now with two young children, who want their relationship recognised in law but don't want to get married.
their fight for a civil partnership has taken them all the way to the highest court in the land. we saw ourselves as partners in life and we wanted to be partners in law. we felt a civil partnership best reflected the nature of our relationship. why wouldn't the government extend civil partnerships to opposite—sex couples when the institution already exists? but civil partnerships are only available to same—sex couples. rebecca and charles claimed that breaches their human rights. today, the supreme court agreed. it was therefore concluded that the appeal must be allowed... finding that excluding different sex couples from civil partnerships discriminates against them and is incompatible with their right to a family life. after a four—year legal battle, victory. today, we are a step closer to opening civil partnerships to all, a measure that would be fair, popular and good forfamilies
and children across the country. civil partnerships give couples the same legal and financial rights as married couples. today's ruling can't force parliament to change the law, but it does put real pressure on government to open up civil partnerships to those three million cohabiting heterosexual couples who may not want to get married, but who may well want stronger legal rights. charles and rebecca aren't getting the invitations to their civil partnership printed just yet, but they are now confident that it will happen for them — and many like them. clive coleman, bbc news. the former gp who was named in an investigation into the early deaths of hundreds of patients at a hospital in hampshire has said she was a hard—working doctor who was doing her best for patients. drjane barton, who oversaw the practice of prescribing powerful painkillers without medical justification, claimed she was working in a very inadequately—resourced part of the health service. dr barton's statement has been
dismissed by the bereaved families, as our correspondent duncan kennedy reports. these are some of those whose lives were cut short during their stay at the gosport hospital, the result of drugs given without medicaljustification. todayjane barton, the doctor who oversaw the prescription system, appeared for the first time since last week's scathing report. but instead of speaking herself, she left it to her husband. she's always maintained that she was a hard—working, dedicated doctor, doing the best for her patients in a very inadequately resourced part of the health service. we ask that our privacy is respected at this difficult time, and she will be making no further comments. but i did ask one question. jane, do you have any message for the families? robert wilson was one of those
who died in the gosport war memorial hospital. his daughter, tracey, said dr barton's statement today was empty. she had an opportunity today to come out and take responsibility for her actions, but she has chosen once again not to do that. she's portrayed herself as a victim, which i find quite distasteful. she's not a victim. that sense of disappointment was shared by the family of elsie devine, another victim identified by the report. there she is getting on with her life, and here we are, fighting all these government bodies, and... i just can't understand, you know, britishjustice. when relatives gathered for the report's publication, few had any idea of the full scale of what had happened. in fact, last week's inquiry found that a total of 656 patients may have been victims of unnecessary drugs here. but we've now learned that three
more families have come forward to the police since the report was published to say their loved ones too may have met an early death at this hospital. drjane barton wasn't the only one criticised by the inquiry. others are likely to be the subject of interest for any future police investigation. duncan kennedy, bbc news, in gosport. the fire brigades union has criticised the grenfell tower inquiry for putting what it described as absurd questions to the fire—fighter who led the early response to the disaster. at one point, michael dowden broke down in tears as images of the blaze were shown to the hearing. the union's general secretary, matt wrack, said mr dowden happened to be on duty on the night of the fire and the questions should have been directed instead at his superiors. some of britain's biggest pub chains say bars are running out of some brands of beer and cider as a shortage of carbon dioxide
continues to affect the food and drink industry. the gas is used in the production of many drinks and also in pubs to pump beer. thejohn lewis partnership has said profits in the first half of the year will be close to zero. the chain said the annual figure would be substantially lower than last year and that it will be closing five of its waitrose stores in manchester, london and birmingham. one of britain's biggest car manufacturers, nissan, says it's deferring major long—term business decisions while it waits for clarification about the outcome of the brexit negotiations. the firm's chairman said he was in the dark about how brexit would work and the stakes were very high. nissan made half a million cars in the uk last year and exported four—fifths of them. 0ur economics editor, kamal ahmed, has the story. the largest car factory in the uk, 7,000 workers producing half a million cars a year, 80% for export. britain's relationship with the european union is vital
to this japanese—owned business. we're talking about tens of thousands of jobs, we're talking about hundreds of millions of pounds of investment. that's what i'm talking about. so there's nothing really very blurry about it. we're talking about things that matter for people, that ensure the likelihood of people. that's why we take it very seriously, and we don't want to take any decision in the dark, and we don't want to make any decision that we may regret in the future. nissan is not alone. bmw, airbus and the car parts maker unipart, they've all come out in the last week demanding clarity about those post—brexit plans. and today they were joined byjohn lewis, which said, "we were simply not prepared for no deal." it's actually very difficult for a business like ours to prepare the something when you don't know what that something will be. you could spend a lot of money and find that that was all wasted because it was never... it never materialised. what i am clear about is what we need, and we need frictionless borders,
we really do need frictionless borders, and the cost that will come in from not having that is very significant. in parliament, the prime ministerfaced questions. mr speaker, i'm asking the prime minister how many more firms are telling the prime minister in private what airbus and bmw are now saying very, very publicly? prime minister! we have... we have been meeting with business, we are listening to business. that's why we're very clear on our customs arrangement that we want to ensure not just that we deliver on our commitment in northern ireland but also as frictionless as possible, but also that we can trade around the rest of the world. here at the bank of england, a couple of miles away from the heat and noise of westminster, an upbeat message. yes, the european union needs to do more to prepare for brexit, but when it comes to the uk and financial services, good progress. mark carney said the risk
of disruption to the key financial services sector had receded. first, we're ensuring that the uk banking system could continue to lend to uk households and businesses even in the event of a disorderly cliff edge brexit, however unlikely that maybe. large employers are flexing their muscles. car—makers are leading the charge. with nine months until brexit day, the calls for clarity are becoming louder. kamal ahmed, bbc news. in the united states, one of the country's supreme court judge has announced his retirement, paving the way for president trump to change the political balance at the summit of the country's legal system. judge anthony kennedy has been a key swing vote on the court for nearly three decades, backing issues such as gay rights and abortion. 0ur north america editor jon sopel is in washington. he explained the significance of the move. this is a huge day for us politics,
with the decision byjustice kennedy to stand down. roughly speaking, the supreme court through the last decade has been split, four liberals, four conservatives, and as you say, he has been the swing vote, the swing vote that allowed gay marriage to become law, the swing vote that stop the tightening of the abortion laws and donald trump has vowed that with his departure he will appoint a conservative to that age. he is also saying he is going to get onto it quickly, ahead of any mid—term elections, so expect this process to happen quickly. the president is for eight years, a supreme courtjustice president is for eight years, a supreme court justice is president is for eight years, a supreme courtjustice is for life, and republicans are eyeing the opportunity with this to shift of social policy of america in a more conservative direction for the next generation. the headlines on bbc news: the army is called in to help tackle a huge fire across saddleworth moor. as temperatures soar, it now spreads across four miles. people have been told to leave their homes. a couple from london win
a major legal battle, insisting that the law on civil partnerships discriminates against heterosexual couples. drjane barton, the gp who oversaw the practice of prescribing powerful painkillers at a hospital in hampshire where hundreds of patients died, says she had always done her best for her patients. the leaders of the 28 eu member states are meeting in brussels tomorrow, with migration at the top of the agenda. chancellor merkel of germany will take a central role in those discussions, while her approach to immigration has caused deep political divisions across germany and destabilised her coalition government. 0ur europe editor katya adler is in berlin. tonight, the mood in german government circles is grimly determined, but gloomy, and it is not just about the football. i mean, it has been very easy over the last
couple of weeks to get distracted either migrant rejecting, headline grabbing antics of the new italian government. but migration looms large in the national politics of many countries, and few more so than germany. for angela merkel it is an existential crisis, politically speaking. 0ver existential crisis, politically speaking. over the last four years she has taken in 1.4 million asylum seekers, and now, in open defiance, her own interior minister says he will slam the borders of germany shut if she is unable, after tomorrow's eu summit, to come home with pan—european solutions to stop more migrant arrivals. if the eu after the summit you laterally closes germany's borders, austria's government has told me it will do the same, and so will others. and thatis the same, and so will others. and that is why government sources tell me there is a 70% chance that europe's pride and joy, its open border schengen area, allowing passport free travel, is finished. now of course, it suits angela merkel to sound the alarm bells
because she wants to shock eu leaders in the dealmaking rather than bickering, but the bottom line here is that migrant arrivals to europe are down this year, but political conflict is raging. a charity—run ship carrying 200 migrants has docked in malta, after previously being blocked from italian ports. malta's prime minister has said that the migrants will be distributed between malta and five other european countries, and that the ship itself, will be impounded. the lifeline picked up migrants off the libyan coast last thursday. today's hot weather has caused widespread train cancellations across scotland, with no trains running in and out of glasgow central station's high level. scotrail says high temperatures are to blame for multiple points failures. other services have also been cancelled, suspended or delayed as network rail engineers work in the problem. the duke of cambridge has spoken of his hopes for lasting peace
in the middle east after meeting the palestinian president, mahmoud abbas, in the israeli—occupied west bank. prince william also met refugees at a camp near ramallah. 0ur royal correspondent nicholas witchell is travelling with him. the transition from israel into the occupied palestinian territories, marked by high concrete walls and, for william, a switch into a palestinian vehicle. in the main city of ramallah, he was welcomed by the president of the palestinian authority, mahmoud abbas, at a ceremony akin to a full state welcome. except, of course, this isn't a state. it is palestinian territory, still occupied by israel. william went on to a refugee camp — not tents, but permanent buildings, including a small health centre. it was established in 1949 for palestinians who had fled or been expelled from their land when israel was created. nearly 70 years later,
the two communities are still trying to coexist in close proximity. and here is that a problem in microcosm. i'm in the palestinian camp. the houses over there are inhabited by israelis. some of them are flying israeli flags. in the middle distance is an israeli watchtower, and in between is this narrow buffer zone, where there are frequent clashes. in the centre of ramallah, there was a cultural festival. as he has done throughout this visit, william focused particularly on young people. and tonight, in eastjerusalem, he spoke about their hopes to put the past behind them, and he had this to say to the palestinians. my message tonight is that you have not been forgotten. it has been a very powerful experience to meet you and other palestinians living in the west bank, and to hear your stories. i hope that, through my being here, and understanding the challenges you face, the links of friendship and mutual respect
between the palestinian and british people will grow stronger. for a senior royal, the language was unusually direct. this visit appears to have made a deep impression. nicholas witchell, bbc news, jerusalem. in zimbabwe, seven months after he succeeded robert mugabe, president emmerson mnangagwa has blamed an attempt to kill him on supporters of mr mugabe's wife. on saturday, mr mnangagwa narrowly avoided an explosion at a political rally, which he was attending ahead of elections next month. the attack took place in the city of bulawayo, in which two people were killed. the president been speaking to our africa editor fergal keane. he looms over the capital and the country, but emmerson mnangagwa is lucky to be alive. how are you, sir? good to see you. we met in his harare officejust four days after this.
an explosion, a few feet from him, that killed two and injured dozens. were you frightened ? no, not my character. no, i didn't get frightened by these things. you know, i'm a soldier by background. i've heard those sounds for over 50 years, in the struggle. emmerson mnangagwa came to power after a bitter struggle with grace mugabe and her supporters in the so—called g40 faction. he believes it is people from that group who tried to kill him. my hunch, without evidence, is that the people we re aggrieved by the new dispensation of the g40. that is a logical and reasonable conclusion one may make. he didn't accuse mrs mugabe of being involved, but bristled when i asked him about her. do you trust grace mugabe
and the people around her, the people who supported her? i'm not so sure what you mean by trusting a person who has insulted me left, right and centre. on what basis would i trust somebody who was used by a cabal to say things which she had no business at all? emmerson mnangagwa was a close comrade of robert mugabe through the war against white rule, the invasions of white farms, and the brutal crackdown on the opposition. but, since the military paved his way to power, he is opening up zimbabwe, appealing for international investment, pledging free elections. you were in cabinet when opposition leaders were being beaten and being tortured. you were part of all that. why should people believe that you've changed ? what they should believe is what i'm doing, the actions what i'm doing, not the perceptions which they have. to supporters and enemies,
he is known as the crocodile, a nickname rooted in the long—ago war against white rule. but when he gets his prey... the crocodile is also a very patient and ruthless animal. do those characteristics describe you, do you think? i am as soft as wool. i am a very soft person in life, my brother. you should understand that i'm a family person, i'm a christian, and so on. i would suspect you're as hard as nails. because you've read so much bad publicity by my enemies, which has sunk into you. i don't blame you. but, as you go on and as you relate, you'll discover that were wrong. then, if you are man enough, you'll come and say, "ah, comrade mnangagwa, i was wrong about you. you're such a nice man." fergal keane, bbc news, harare. there is no sign of a let—up in the heatwave. northern ireland has experienced its hottest day injune
in decades, and it is likely to get hotter still across parts of the uk. emma vardy has this report from bangor, in northern ireland. you would be forgiven for swanning around on northern ireland's hottest june day for 22 years, or to put it another way... boiling! baking. it's piping today. glorious. it's about 15, 16 degrees. this is nice, it's perfect. and a quick breakfrom the dayjob to enjoy it. i'll get an hour in the water now, a bit of a shiver after getting out, even today, and then back to work. i'll take the kayak out there. it's not often it comes like this, so i'll have to make the most of it, and enjoy it while it's here. northern ireland has been making the most of its share of the uk's heatwave, because weather like this here is rarely seen for so long. meanwhile, health warnings have continued to be issued around the uk as the heatwave has intensified. in leeds, a 17—year—old swimmer
drowned after getting into difficulties in the river aire. his body was recovered this morning. scotland basked in its warmestjune day for two decades, while temperatures were above 30 degrees again in wales. yesterday, this was the hottest place in the uk. the seaside resorts of weston—super—mare welcomed many visitors, while in birmingham, suncream was handed out to people who are homeless. the heat brought difficult conditions on farms in staffordshire, where it has been a struggle to keep livestock cool. while even bigger beasts were given some respite at belfast zoo, and even the pigs wore sunscreen. the heat is a nice challenge for us, because obviously in northern ireland, we get a lot of rain, a lot of cold days. but, when we get weather like we've had the past few weeks, the keepers have to ensure the animals are as comfortable as possible.
for many, it is is a rare treat to have temperatures this high, and northern ireland savoured the moment. emma vardy bbc news, bangor. a quick update on our main story about the fires and greater manchester. we have just heard from the ministry of defence that around 100 soldiers and a chinook helicopter have been sent to tackle the fires. now it's time for a look at the weather with tomas schaefernacker. if you like the heat, it is good news. we are not expecting things to cool off any time soon. if you don't like the hot weather, the bad news is we are not expecting any rainfall for a long time yet. 32 degrees was the highest in the recorded in northern wales on wednesday, making it the hottest day of the year so far. but not everywhere was it sunny. for a time along the north sea coast we have a lot of mist and murk in the morning started off pretty cloudy. that is what we will see again through tonight and into
thursday. cloud will once again drifted inland, the eastern counties, lincolnshire, maybe as far west as parts of the midlands the south—east. the further north and west you are, the clearer the skies will be. we will be waking up to clear blue skies and in the sun heats up the land and it will be another hot one. on thursday the highest temperatures are expected across scotland and northern ireland. let's zoom into this area a little bit more, because probably glasgow could either contender for the highest temperature on thursday. if you squint, see these little blobs? those are showers potentially developing across the highlands, because the air will be so hot that we could see storms developing, local ones with local downpours. 0ther local ones with local downpours. other than that, a gloriously sunny day across the uk. not much change in the friday, the high—pressure pretty much stuck across this part of the world. to the south of the high pressure there is a bit of a breeze, meaning the north sea coasts will remain on the poolside at
times, murky that threat lapping on and off the coastline. temperatures once again will be highest across western and northern areas, 26 in glasgow on friday, not far off 30 degrees in london. temperatures rising a bit across the south. through the weekend the warm air moves as far north as the arctic circle, engulfing southern and central parts of scandinavia, where we are feeling the warmth as well. saturday starts off on a sunny note. lots of sunshine around and those temperatures typically in the high 20s. notice they are starting to creep back down across the north—west of the country. back to 23, for example, in belfast. if you don't like the heat, it looks like things will cool off. however, it stays hot in the south. hello. this is bbc news.