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tv   HAR Dtalk  BBC News  August 31, 2018 12:30am-1:00am BST

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i'm ben bland with bbc world news. our top story. a memorial service has been held in arizona, for senatorjohn mccain, who died on saturday from brain cancer. his body is now en route to washington — where he'll lie in state before being laid to rest at the us naval academy this weekend. there's been another anti—immigrant demonstration in the city of chemnitz in eastern germany, after the killing of a german citizen on sunday. police are investigating cases of violence and demonstrators accused of giving the banned hitler salute. and this video is trending on bbc.com. russia's best—known singer, iosif kobzon — sometimes known as the soviet frank sinatra — has died of cancer. kobzon sang for stalin at the age of nine. he was also a controversial figure/ with some labelling him as a ‘propagandist. that's all. stay with bbc world news. now on bbc news it's hardtalk with sarah montague. welcome to hardtalk.
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i'm sarah montague. the pictures are chilling — people in the german city of chemnitz giving nazi salutes. they were among thousands who took to the streets to demonstrate against immigrants after an iraqi and a syrian were arrested following a fatal stabbing. some of the protesters chased down people they believed were immigrants. all this as politicians struggle to agree how to handle the migrant crisis in europe. my guest on hardtalk is the german mep david mcallister, who chairs the european parliament's committee on foreign affairs. have european leaders ignored the threat from the far right for too long? david mcallister, welcome to hardtalk. welcome from brussels.
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did you think that you would ever see people giving nazi salutes on the streets of germany again? the latest events in chemnitz are appalling, they are completely unacceptable. we in germany have the rule of law. the police, and the state prosecutors are responsible for investigating crimes and for defending citizens, but this is certainly not the right of individual citizens or even gangs of right—wing populist activists. and i must say, i am very annoyed, what i had to see in chemnitz for the last two days. how big a problem do you think the extreme right—wing is in germany?
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well, at the last federal elections in germany, for the first time, we had far right populist party enter the german bundestag, join our parliament, they are the strongest opposition force. on the other hand, more than 85% of germans did not vote for radical right—wing parties. we have to take the concerns of our citizens seriously, but we also have to make clear that the alternative fur deutschland is giving very simple answers to very complex questions. and that we will not accept bundestag will become a place of hatred, racism, orxenophobia. but this is what we saw in chemnitz, was not the alternative fur deutschland, the afd, which has become very popular. this was something different, wasn't it? in chemnitz we had a neo—nazi activist organising these demonstrations in the saxon city of chemnitz. they were using the special situation after the murder of a german citizen and two suspects being arrested, but we have to make very clear that to show neo—nazi symbols, to show nazi symbols in germany, to salute with the hitler salute,
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this is all legally forbidden and we call on the police and the state prosecutors to thoroughly go against this. we will not accept this kind of behaviour on german territory. but what about the underlying concerns? it is illegal to give a nazi salute in germany. but what about the underlying concerns of those people who were on the streets? what needs to be done about that? the murder of a family father in chemnitz was appalling. it is a tragedy. this has to be investigated thoroughly and it will be
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investigated by the police and the state prosecutors. two suspects have been arrested, as you pointed out. but we have the rule of law and we must make clear that a crime of individual citizens gives nobody the right to organise a kind of a scapegoat that all migrants in germany are criminal. this is a very dangerous for the cohesion of our society and i think it's really time that even more people stood up and chemnitz said with a note to this kind of neo—nazi propaganda. but the reason that people took to the streets in chemnitz, and when i ask you about it you refer to the afd and the rise in support for that party, are both happening because of immigration in germany. well, the alternative fur deutschland and the other far right parties are single issue parties and are only concentrating on immigration and they still try to exploit the unique situation in 2015 when hundreds
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of thousands of asylum seekers, refugees, and other migrants came to germany. since then the german government and the german parliament have worked very hard to limit the numbers of migrants coming to germany and to better control and organise the migration system. so we're working hard on this. i take the concerns of citizens seriously. what effects mass migration can have on a society and on the economy. but on the other hand, i'm also very clear that i won't accept right—wing populists playing upon people's fears and giving very simplistic answers to very complex questions and the best way to tackle these far right—wing populists in germany, at least, is if you go into a debate with proper and a decent arguments then you can show that they don't have much to offer in the long run. but in the meantime, we will have to accept that the afd
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is entering the regional parliaments, it's in the german bundestag, but i still believe the german bundestag would be a better place without an alternative fur deutschland parliamentary group. is it also, as part of your defence, if you are to challenge the rise of the far right, is it also important for your party to suggest, to accept that it was a mistake to have so many migrants come to germany. more than 1.6 million since 2014. if you remember what happened in 2015, the situation was 1 million people were on the way from the middle and far east and from northern africa, through turkey and the balkans into northern europe. so the whole narrative of the afd that the german government invited the migrants to come to germany isn't true. they were on their way. what we decided in 2015 was to avoid a humanitarian catastrophe in the balkans if we had shut down our borders.
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we knew this would be very challenging and we are still working very hard to cope with the situation. since then we have moved forward. we now have 2018 and the numbers have gone down. we have worked hard on cooperating better with our partner countries in northern africa, in the middle east, and especially the agreement with turkey was crucial to stop so many illegal or irregular migrants coming through greece to northern europe. we are working hard on this and we will continue to do so. but you know that the hungarian prime minister, for example, viktor 0rban, has said the summer, he told a german newspaper, "if i made a refugee policy like your chancellor, people would chase me out of office the same day". and in a sense, isn't that what is happening in germany, only more slowly? i don't agree. the far right is still a small minority in the political landscape of germany.
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parties, which are in general in favour of open borders and an open multicultural tolerant society, got a huge majority at the last general elections, mr 0rban has these views and we have other views. what we have to do is to understand that the migration challenge can only be solved at a european level, much better than at a national level, what we have to do is to increase our efforts to better protect ourjoint european borders. and we have to do much more to help those countries where the migrants are coming from, especially with africa. 0k. that is why we are very much in favour of a marshall plan for africa. but before we talk about the migration issue outside of germany, within germany's open borders you have a colleague of yours, your party's general secretary, annegret kramp—karrenbauer, suggesting that there should be
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a compulsory national service for all young people and migrants, suggesting that would help integrate them into society and it would also increase acceptance of refugees among the population. do you agree with that? well, first of all we have to differentiate between those coming to germany seeking for asylum who are actually refugees. here we have a humanitarian responsibility to protect them from harm, as long as they can't go back to their own countries. 0n the other hand, we have to open certain channels for economic migrants, for people who want to come to germany to work, and we are still dependent on qualified people coming to match the demands of our very complex labour market. now, the question is, how can you integrate people better into german society who have come from other parts of the world and want to stay in germany? we say it's important that people are educated, that they go to school,
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that they learn our rather complicated language, and that the best way to integrate people is, of course, when they are grown up, that they find work. because if you work you have your own money, you are able to organise your family. so it's education, language, and work. that is important. and in the end, of course, we want migrants to say yes to germany and we want to welcome migrants saying that germany is now our new home country, but we also share values in this country, democracy, the rule of law, religious tolerance, the equality of men and women. these are very important values in germany. you come to germany... you didn't answer my particular question which was about the proposal for a compulsory national service from your colleague.
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is that something that your party, your government should be suggesting or doing? there is a debate in germany from our secretary general, annegret kramp—karrenbauer, if we should have a general year for all german citizens to do something for the whole society. it could be in the military, it could be in social organisations, it could be in other places. this could include those who are not german citizens. once again, i think what we need in germany is a debate. how to better integrate those people who are coming from abroad and also debate what we can do to convince young people that it's worth working one yearfor german society in total. so given what you are saying and the need for migrants, are you disappointed with the way the italians have reacted, the new government, we have the interior minister, matteo salvini, saying italy won't take one more refugee, because his country won't become a holding pen for all of europe. first of all, i have to take every italian government for what it is, we have to respect the political decisions of an italian government. we also have to make clear that we have certain european rules, we have certain european values.
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and this is what makes us so unique in the european union. i completely understand that mediterranean countries, like italy, like malta, like greece, like spain, are sharing more of the burden than other countries. and that's why the system in europe must be that other countries show more solidarity with our south european partners. that is the whole debate we are having that in good and bad times you have to show solidarity among the member states, but one thing is also clear. there is an obligation to save those people, to rescue those people, when they are risking their lives in the mediterranean. but when you see what is happening, whether it's an chemnitz or in italy, or indeed the brexit vote which we will come onto a minute, can you say that eu policy on migration is working? we must improve our eu migration policy. of course things must be better, must get better, but the solution for the migration challenge must be found at a european level. and that's why we have to strengthen european external borders. i believe in some years‘ time we'll have a european border guard and a european coastguard, because we must understand, if you want to keep and maintain the concept of a borderless europe within the schengen area, our external borders are now ourjoint external borders. i believe in the concept
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of a borderless europe. i love being able to travel from germany to the netherlands or france without having to show my passport. but you are losing the argument at the moment, aren't you? i mean, you look at what is happening as a result of migration policy, people. . .that argument is being lost. no, it isn't being lost. we have to convince people that the migration challenge can only be solved at the european level, that we have to limit the numbers of people coming, we have to control and steer the whole process better. that means that, apart from strengthening our european border protection, we have to support transit countries, we have to support the countries of the region. and we have to fight and break the business model of the traffickers and smugglers who are putting people on boats, getting a lot of money, and then they can decide who can come to europe or not. that means we will have to invest much more than we have done in the last years and decades, for instance, in africa. 0urfuture in europe is closely linked to the future of the african continent, that is why we need an africa policy at eye—level
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with the african states, which better co—ordinates our foreign policy, ourforeign trade policy, our development aid policy and our neighbourhood policy in the europe union. i want to turn to brexit, of course, which was partly driven by immigration concerns. we are in a situation now where the uk leaves the eu in the end of march next year, and, as the foreign secretaryjeremy hunt said, "i think the risk of a no—deal brexit has been increasing recently. is he right? well, i'm actually still optimistic that we will find a solution which guarantees an orderly withdrawal of the uk well, i'm actually still optimistic that we will find a solution which guarantees an orderly withdrawal of the uk from the european union. a no—deal brexit would be the worst scenario possible. but, of course, both sides have to prepare for this possible outcome. but it will be definitely better
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that we find a solution, that we get it done in an orderly manner, and this should be done latest end of october, beginning of november, because we still need time to get and agreement in the european parliament, the uk parliament and in the national governments until the end of march. indeed, both the foreign secretary and the international trade secretary liam fox, have said the intransigence of the commission is pushing us towards no deal. do you have some sympathy with the british position? i deeply regret that the uk is leaving the european union and i wish the referendum would have had a different outcome, but i have to accept that "leave" obviously means "leave". now, if you leave the european union, if you decide to leave the european union, that is your choice, and we also accept the red lines the british government has drawn: no to the single market, no to a customs union but, given that we now have a certain framework where we can operate — and we want to get this orderly brexit deal done — and in the end this means that both sides will have to show
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a compromise, but one thing is clear, a country that leaves the european union and the single market can't be in a better position than a country which is a member. this is nothing to do with being nasty, this has nothing to do with — as i often hear in london — there people in brussels interested in punishing the uk — no, it is our interest to get the deal done just as much as the uk side and that's why we should concentrate on the work we still have to do. 80% of the british withdrawal agreement have now been probably concluded but it leaves 20%, we'r still not there yet and that's why the next two and half months will be crucial. also on the table from the british government is a deal struck, drawn up at chequers, called the chequers agreement, which involves the idea of having a common rule book between the uk and the eu on certain areas — just in goods and in agri—foods. do you think a deal, some negotiations compromises can be made around that paper?
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first of all, we welcome that the uk government finally positioned itself with a white paper and all these british proposals have been thoroughly analysed in brussels and in the capitals of the member state. in the end, what we will get is a corporation, a partnership with our neighbour, the united kingdom, which will consist of four pillars: a comprehensive free—trade agreement, a closer co—operation on defence and security and foreign affairs, a closer co—operation on judicial and police matters, and other thematic corporations including research and education. these are the four pillars. this will be the frame of our future relationship and we will have time during the transitional period to get the details right, but now we have to get the details of the british withdrawal in order... ok, but in order to get something in place, not to crash out some
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deal, you're going to need an awful lot more by october, including something along the lines or perhaps of the chequers deal, the idea of a common rulebook on goods. do you think a deal can be struck along those lines? well, we still have two and a half months to go and, obviously, this is a very crucial phase in which we're in, and i still believe — and i'm not going into detail if this could be a solution or not — but, having spoken to leading negotiators of the european union side in the last few days, i still get a feeling that in brussels there is a willingness in the end to find a decent compromise, like you always do in politics. i want to turn to the question of iran, which you have spoken very passionately about in the past. before the united states pulled out of the iran nuclear deal, you said it would send the wrong message and it would jeopardise security of the entire region. we are now in a situation where,
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yes, the united states has pulled out but also iran's supreme leader ayatollah ali khamenei has cast doubt on the idea that europe could save the nuclear accord in any way at all. is he right? is there nothing that you can do now to keep that nuclear deal alive? first of all, i would once again like to criticise president trump's decision to leave the nuclear deal with iran because this deal does not only belong to the united states, it was a hard piece of work ofjoint also european diplomacy and the high representatives and the foreign ministers of germany, france and the uk, among others, invested a lot of time in finding the solution. and, of course, this agreement wasn't ideal in the end, it was a compromise, and there are many things we should criticise with regard to iran, especially the destabilising role in the region and the unacceptable threats towards the existence of israeljust to name two.
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but these issues should be dealt with outside ofjcpoa and not within, and that's. .. it is too late though, isn't it... ..why we, as europeans, said we are interested in maintaining...| beg your pardon? we have seen companies though pulling out of iran — british airways, klm france, the energy giant, total, alliance, the danish tanker, maersk. these are all companies that are pulling out. there is nothing that you can do to keep the deal alive and that seems to be being recognised by iran as the supreme leader said, "keep contact with the europeans but you should give up hope on them over economic issues or the nuclear deal." well, a lot of these major companies you mentioned are in a difficult position, because they had to decide to continue their economic corporation, their business in the us or in iran and, of course, many of them will decide then to go on to the safe side and turn towards the united states. we have to accept this decision —
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it's absolutely understandable. but what the european union can do is to help those small and medium—sized companies who invested in iran, and we encouraged them to invest in iran, and now are facing some economic problems. so i think the european union should concentrate on the small to medium—sized businesses from europe operating in iran so we can at least continue our economic co—operation there, but that the large companies are leaving, that was in the end to be expected. do you think europe has less power now than it has had in decades? the european union is still the strongest economic power in the world. we have the largest single market, with now 500 million people. but what we have to understand in europe is that only together we are strong. 0nly together we have eyesight with the united states,
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with russia or with china, and that is why we have to be strong on external affairs, with one position but, on the other hand, we have to invest in the necessary reforms to make our european union more effective, less bureaucratic, and more competitive, and, of course, the transatlantic relations remains enormously important for us, even though at the moment, under this president, we do have some different views on important political matters. david mcallister, thank you for coming on hardtalk. hello.
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well, friday is not looking too bad at all across most of the uk. for the next couple of days will probably bring a little bit of cloud, a little bit of rain, not an awful lot. it is in fact going to be mostly dry for a lot of us and crucially, the temperatures will be rising. so while meteorological summer is coming to an end and friday is the last day of meteorological summer, and the 1st of september, it is autumn, technically, according to meteorologists. this is the forecast for the early hours of friday, a lot of clear weather out there, temperatures will be around 12 degrees at 5am on friday, a bit chilly in newcastle and edinburgh. we are talking about six, there will be a hint of autumn first thing on friday morning. some sunshine around and a beautiful start to the day. there is a weather front approaching, you can see thatjust to the west of our neighbourhood.
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that will encroach on to northern ireland and maybe the isles of scilly later in the day, bringing a few spots of rain but nothing more than that. for most of us it is a dry day. i wouldn't rule out a shower in the south—east, so just a brief few spots of rain, that's pretty much it. temperatures will be typically around 20 degrees or so. friday is not a bad day. saturday, there is a weather front just stuck to the north—west of us. that means a little bit of cloud and rainfall. scotland, maybe the irish sea. we are not talking about an awful lot. if you squint you can see a little bit here just off lancashire and cumbria and south—western parts of scotland, maybe central parts of scotland, getting a few spots of light rain, possibly northern ireland. that's pretty much it. if anything, it will just be thicker cloud. central and eastern areas looking fine. if you've got plans on saturday, much of england is looking dry, and warming up as well, temperatures in the low 20s. saturday into sunday,
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we start to see warmer air coming out of france. this is high pressure here, low pressure there. when we get this sort of setup, this kind of pattern, anything that comes from the west is going to get stuck, and then it sort of slides off to the north—west. so this is where we could see a little bit of rain during the course of sunday, but by the time we get to the afternoon i think the weather fronts will be stuck in the north—west, whereas many central, eastern and southern areas will remain dry. the winds will be light across the uk. that means those temperatures on saturday, or sunday rather, are going to be climbing. on sunday we could be talking about 25 degrees in the south—east. into the low 20s even further north. that's it from me. bye— bye. i'm rico hizon in singapore, the headlines: senatorjohn mccain's body arrives at andrews air force base in maryland. he's set to lie in state in washington ahead of his funeral on saturday.
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after two days of violence — more far—right protests stoke fears in eastern germany. migrants say racism is on the rise. i'm ben bland in london. also in the programme. new hope for children with a severe muscle wasting condition... as gene editing successfully corrects the condition in dogs. and a filipino football superstar.
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