of the biggest to ever hit the us, but insists that authorities are prepared. more than a million people have been told to evacuate. landfall is expected in north and south carolina in the next 2a to 36 hours. a report has found that more than three and a half thousand children in germany were abused by roman catholic priests over a seventy year period. a church spokesman said they were ashamed by the findings of the study, which was commissioned by the church itself. us open tennis champion naomi osaka has returned to tokyo after her win against serena williams. osaka is the only japanese player to take the title, but her achievement was overshadowed by a dispute between serena williams and the umpire. now on bbc news, it's time for hardtalk. welcome to hardtalk. i'm stephen sackur and today,
i'm at the ambrosetti forum, which is a gathering of italy's political elite on the shores of lake como. there is no doubt who the dominant character is here. all the reporters here are waiting for him, and he happens to be my guest today, matteo salvini, the deputy prime minister and interior minister and arguably the most powerful populist politician in europe today. he rose to power on the back ofan anti—immigrant, anti—eu message — so what does his rise mean for italy and for europe? deputy prime minister matteo salvini, welcome to hardtalk. grazie.
we are meeting at the ambrosetti forum forum, where the italian political elite come to discuss the future of your country. and i've been speaking to people and there's a great deal of fear and suspicion about you and your agenda. some people are calling you dangerous, some people are calling you an extremist. why do you think there is so much suspicion of you? you've chosen to answer me by immediately turning to the issue of immigration. there is no question that immigration was one of the biggest messages that you carried with you through the election campaign, but your message seems to be that italy and its problems could be completely solved were you to stop all immigration and get rid of the immigrants. is it your belief that italy's problems can be solved in that way? you say after stopping immigration.
does that mean that you are determined that no more of these migrant ships will be allowed to land in italy? because over the last few months, we've seen controversy after controversy after these boats, loaded with hundreds of men, women, and children, are forced to sit in the mediterranean because you will not allow them to land on italian soil. but you are breaking the rules that were agreed by the italian government, with all of the other member states of the european union, to run what is called operation sophia, and to have these migrants land in the nearest port, which happens to be italy, and you're now refusing to accept your responsibilities to take these people. but there was a real humanitarian crisis here, minister, and you have blood on your hands because of the policies you've adopted. the unhcr is quite clear. they say the new restrictions that you and your government have put on these migrant boats, the new limited access to italian ports
for refugees and migrants, has led to a far higher death rate at sea. that's your responsibility. the head of italy's medical agency, stefano vella, recently resigned, saying, "as a doctor, i can't tolerate, as a public body, a time when people are treated in this intolerable way on our territory." you have been in office as interior minister for what, i believe, about two, three months. already, you face a criminal investigation from the authorities in sicily who, with regard to your treatment of one particular migrant boat, are now accusing you of kidnap. and you've only been in office a few weeks. this is going to lead to chaos. the wider point here is that you, during the election campaign, told the italian people, you said, "we are going to get rid of, we are going to deport at least 500,000 illegal immigrants."
your message was simple. you said, "the good times for these illegals was over. they'd better get ready and packed their bags." but you know as well as i do that actually, it is going to be impossible for you to deport 600,000 people. italy cannot afford it, italy cannot contravene international conventions, and a lot of the countries these people come from refuse to take them back. italy will not be able to do what you promised. but going back to the point about the way in which the rest of europe sees you. here are some very pointed words from angela merkel on a couple of weeks ago. she says, "i believe the soul of europe is humanity and if we want to retain this soul, then europe can't simply decouple itself on the need and the suffering of others." and those remarks, i suspect, were pointed directly at you and your policies. you couch your determination to end the immigration and get rid
of the illegal immigrants in your country as something that will solve italy's crime problem, solve many of italy's economic problems, but i put it to you that many people believe that you are also motivated by a form of racism. a racism which is perhaps best expressed by your desire to get rid of the roma in italy who are not formal italian citizens. you have called for a new census of all the roma. you said, "unfortu nately, we will have to keep the italian roma because we can't expel them, but the rest must go." but you know what this
the roma in italy, having to register, having to declare themselves to the state, neomi di segni, who is the president of the union of italian jewish communities, who perhaps has a long collective memory of those sorts of things, she says, "salvini is awakening memories of the racist laws of 80 years ago." do you not listen to things like that and perhaps wonder whether you have gone too far? do you admire mussolini? i know you know your history. you've been a student of history. do you admire benito mussolini?
but is it true that on mussolini's... the anniversary of mussolini's birthday last summer, you posted on social media the quote, "so many enemies, so much honour," which of course is an echo of course mussolini's own well—known saying, "many enemies, much honour." did you do that? but it is an interesting intellectualjourney you have made, because as a youth, you were a communist. now you are a member of one of europe's leading far—right political movements. for a long time you are a supporter
of secession for the north of italy, a regionalist, now you claim to be an italian nationalist. it is quite hard to pin down what is the core of your philosophy. what is it that you actually, truly believe in? when it comes to your style of politics, i look at the people you seem to admire most and be closest to around europe and around the world, and it has to be said many of them appear to be authoritarians in their style. of course, i am thinking primarily of vladimir putin in russia, whom you have been to visit, whom you've described as i think one of the most successful and admirable politicians in the world today. you've said, "italy could do with dozens like putin, who truly act in the interests of their citizens". what is it about putin that you so admire? but, hang on.
minister, if i may interrupt, vladimir putin represses opposition at home, we know that. in terms of his foreign policy, he has annexed crimea, the british prime minister, as you know, hasjust accused him and his government of signing off, authorising a chemical weapons attack on uk soil, for which sanctions have been imposed by europe and the united states. and yet, you describe him as a politician you admire most in the world today. that really doesn't seem to make much sense. has your party, the league,
received money from russia? we know that marine le pen's party in france received millions of dollars... zero. zero? zero. and yet, your party does have, i believe, a co—operation agreement with united russia, putin's party. where does this leave the european union? in the past you have called it a gulag, you describe the euro as one of the biggest economic and social crimes ever committed against humanity. and yet, italy is a founding
member of the european union, prides itself as one of the central players in the european union. are you proposing that italy should take itself out of the eu? but, i guess the key question is, are you prepared to play by europe's rules? we have discussed migration policy, which you say you are determined to change because you will not accept the way it works at the moment. but when it comes to economics and finance as well, we see that your government has an ambitious economic programme based on slashing taxes to the flat tax that you want, your partners have a universal basic income idea, there is commitment to massive, new public spending on infrastructure. all of this suggests that you are not interested in the eu's basic financial budgetary rules, which tell us that a country like italy is running an unacceptably high debt of something like 130% of gdp, which must come down. your plan looks like it will make it go up, not down. you know, there is fear in brussels
and in berlin and other european capitals about what italy could do to the eurozone and the european economy. to quote one german mp close to angela merkel, eckhardt rehberg, he said "italy is playing with fire and it is now endangering the eurozone. " one interesting challenge facing all of the members of the european union is what to do about brexit. now, there has been a great effort led by michel barnier, who is the chief commission negotiator on brexit, to keep and maintain european unity, and yet you have said recently that
you think the eu, and i am using your words, is trying to swindle the uk out of the brexit that it voted for. what do you mean by that? so i guess the specific question for you is, will italy, the italian government, encourage france and germany to be more flexible and to make real concessions to the uk? if in the future you lead a league government, that is that you are the dominant partner and you perhaps become prime minister, would you at that point consider taking italy out of the european union? ok, so you say no to leaving the eu,
what about the eurozone? can you imagine a day when italy will leave the euro? to finish, we began talking about the ambrosetti forum, you are about to go and address the leading business and political men and women of italy. do you think anything that you have said to me is going to alleviate their fear and their suspicion of you? we have to end there.
but matteo salvini, i thank you very much for being on hardtalk. my pleasure. hello there. this morning is starting off on a chilly note after lengthy clear skies overnight. temperatures dipping close to freezing one or two spots across the east midlands and into the south—east. however, there will be lots of sunshine through the day. a few showers around, mostly across scotland and northern ireland thanks to a weak weather front. you can see we're starting the morning off on a dry note further south. any mist and fog patches tending to clear away quite quickly. more of a breeze though, across the northern half of the country.
scattering of showers for the northern isles into the outer hebrides. showery rain through central eastern scotland into northern ireland. south of here, it's dry with a little cloud here and there, like i mentioned. any early mist should tend to clear away. so, a fine morning to come for many. as we head on into the afternoon, cloud will tend to build as temperatures rise. it will stay rather cloudy across parts of scotland, into northern ireland, further showery bursts of rain here and further showers for the northern isles. after that cool start in england and wales, those temperatures should rise quite nicely to 18 or maybe 20 or 21 degrees in the south—east, closer to the mid—teens, though, further north. the reason for the showers across northern areas close to this area of low pressure and these weather fronts. that area of rain moves away, but it's replaced by another one, a bit more significant with this weather front as we head into friday, and also stronger wind. so i think a wetter end to the week for scotland and northern ireland, and then late in the day, parts of the north and west of england too, followed by sunshine
and showers into the afternoon. it will remain quite cool. much of central and southern and eastern england will be dry, with temperatures of 18 to 20 degrees. onto the weekend, and we start on a fine note, thanks to a ridge of high pressure. much of the country will hold onto the sunshine into the afternoon. cloud building across western areas as this weather front brushes past northern ireland into western scotland. it could bring heavy rain, fairly strong winds here. temperatures 15 to 21 in the south—east. our ridge of high—pressure ebbs away, but it does continue to bring fine weather to the south—east into sunday. this low pressure will bring some unsettled conditions to the north and the west of the country. strong winds at times, a lot of cloud, outbreaks of rain. it will be followed by sunshine and showers into sunday afternoon across scotland and northern ireland, with the main area of rain lying through wales and parts of northern england and the midlands. temperatures midteens in the north, a little bit warmer in fact in the south—east with the sunshine, 22 or 23 celsius. the weekend's quite mixed.
it will turn increasingly windy and unsettled, with rain in the north and the west. the best of the sunshine in the south and east. this is the briefing. i'm sally bundock. the top stories: final warnings from the president, as hurricane florence bears down on america's east coast. we are ready, but this is to be one of the biggest ones to ever hit our country. residents in the path of these devastating storms should comply with all evacuation orders and other emergency instructions. the german catholic church says it's ashamed, after a report found priests abused thousands of children. the rise of video game addiction. how rehab clinics are treating the growing problem. coming up in the business briefing — desperate measures. turkey may push interest rates above 20% to prop up the plunging lira.