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tv   BBC News at Five  BBC News  August 21, 2019 5:00pm-6:00pm BST

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w6 rm minister borisjohnson. a warm greeting and a handshake in the german capital. an important moment for both of them as they seek to find ways out of a highly tense brexit moment as the weeks count down to october the 31st. boris johnson's do or die moment with questions hanging over the risks of a no—deal brexit. talk us through who the prime minister is greeting. the prime minister is currently has just greeted angela merkel. this is quite a historic meeting, the first visit of the british prime minister who wa nts to ta ke of the british prime minister who wants to take britain out of the european union at the end of october, come what may, he said. meeting for the first time the german patch —— german chancellor who is passionate about keeping the
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european union together. no sign of the difference between them as they greet one another, relatively warmly, smiles for the camera before they go inside their chancellery. they are meeting various officials at the moment while the national anthems of both countries are played, before they go into the chancellery for a working dinner which is expected to be very friendly. angela merkel is keen to keep britain at trading partner despite what is going on. that is important because the british prime minister had specifically come to bed then, saying he wants to persuade angela merkel and the rest of the eu states to crack open their withdrawal agreement on brexit and review the irish backstop. that might come to their land. i do not think anyone here or anyone else expects him to persuade angela
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merkel to do that. versavel the eu has been keen to write the negotiations to maintain and stance of unity. —— first of all. the eu has indicated that it is no way it will reopen the withdrawal treaty so no one expects angela merkel to come eight this evening and said he had changed their minds. equally, the demand to take out the irish backstop is likely to be met with stony silence. angela merkel sees the backstop as a red line. she has said maybe we will find a solution... i willjust interlock myself, you can hear behind me are starting the military honours. there isa starting the military honours. there is a full military band behind me and they gave honours to any visiting head of state. three years have passed since theresa may came here the first time round when she
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first started seeking a brexit deal for britain. now it is the turn of borisjohnson. they for britain. now it is the turn of boris johnson. they are just for britain. now it is the turn of borisjohnson. they are just going into the anthem now. music: national anthem. music: german national anthem.
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music continues. while we watch this unfold, i know we will come back to the substantive issues in a moment but i want to pick up on a couple of points about the music and the scene we see before us, we had —— heard the outcry of stop brexit from behind the railings there. we can see some members of the german public. we have also seen the german chancellor and the british prime minister setting for the anthems rather than
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standing, i wonder regarding the health questions surrounding angela merkel can you comment on that? let us merkel can you comment on that? let us talk about the fact they are sitting. a month or so back, angela merkel suffered a shaking episode as she welcomed a visiting dignitary to berlin, standing in the sunshine. she said it had been due to dehydration and she felt fine after some water. then it happened twice more at public events, ever since she has chosen to sit at this particular moment. that has led to all sorts of speculation about her health, whether there is something seriously wrong. some people suggest she is simply rather tired after spending so much time in such a demanding office. others say there isa demanding office. others say there is a serious disease. in germany there is a different attitude to the health of public figures, germans are rather more private, they value
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their privacy more than we do in britain. these are questions which have not received any official explanation. angela merkel sticks to her original explanation, dehydration, she has suffered this later. that is why she has been sitting. she is walking into the chancellery with boris johnson. sitting. she is walking into the chancellery with borisjohnson. the body language between them seems to be fairly friendly and relaxed. despite the differences between them, mostly on the issue of the european union, i think this will be a fairly friendly meeting. mrs merkel is very keen to ensure that germany and britain remain close partners and allies, even if britain crashes out of the eu in a no deal scenario. i have noted in the last few days, she has tried to strike a
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more conciliatory tone. people have been concerned about borisjohnson‘s rhetoric, his do—or—die raid attitude towards brexit. mrs merkel is keen to avoid a situation developing where there is an adversarial narrative developing between britain and the rest of the eu. she has set you up the solution can be fined because she is very concerned about what i no deal would mean politically and economically for europe and of course for germany. jenny, stay with us. i want to bring in a german mep at the moment. your thoughts, today?” think mrs merkel has made it very clear in the beginning that she will not go for an opening of the withdrawal agreement again but she
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is ready to support any idea that she can make practical that the backstop now has to be used but because of deals we can agree in the transition period after ratification of the withdrawal agreement, the backstop never comes to practice. we can give a lot of assurances to that. i think here we have to come with some ideas but to take the backstop totally out with not be accepted by the 27 member countries, including germany. give me your observations on the personal chemistry that exists or otherwise between these two leaders. sometimes that these fraught moments in history, personal relationships and trust between individuals can make a difference, do you think it exists here enemy that could make a difference? look, i have known mrs
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merkel for 30 years, 29 years exactly, she is never impressed by men who want to be especially strong and that would be good advice to borisjohnson not to play and that would be good advice to boris johnson not to play that card. she is very much looking to arguments, she is by profession... therefore i think long talks with blah blah will not help, she wants to come to the point. she wants a good future relationship with united kingdom. if brexit is bad for both of us, this is a heartbreak but not at the place of the integral market. we would like to keep the integrity of the integral market which is more
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important for a short time than the trade relationship to the united kingdom. there is an argument in westminster that when european leaders really appreciate and understand the determination of the new british prime minister to get out as he has put it, do—or—die raid, by october the 31st, that will concentrate their minds on finding the most —— this damaging ways of coming to an agreement, do you think that will have any forces in argument when boris johnson that will have any forces in argument when borisjohnson makes a case of internode today? that will not impress mrs merkel. i think that it's more to the suspicion that this full trip, the letter from monday, is the only use —— reason to prepare an alibi, he is trying to front a
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withdrawal agreement and the europeans are not ready to follow the democratic wishes of england, to pacify it and therefore a hard sta nce pacify it and therefore a hard stance isjustified. pacify it and therefore a hard stance is justified. mrs pacify it and therefore a hard stance isjustified. mrs merkel will not follow into that trap. thank you for joining not follow into that trap. thank you forjoining us and giving us your insights into the political chemistry there. let us talk to our westminster correspondent. i do not know if you could hear all of that but it sets the stage for what is an important but difficult meeting of antenna. it will be hugely difficult but i think borisjohnson knows that. all descendants we have been getting from downing street suggest they think progress at this meeting and the one with emmanuel macron tomorrow are nonexistent. they do
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not expect any breakthroughs. it is more a chance for borisjohnson and angela merkel to share their views face—to—face about what is going on. what is more important from mr johnson's perspective is making clear to european leaders that parliament will not be able to stop him. some in downing street are worried that europe thinks that later, mps pablo a no—deal brexit so there is not much point in getting round the negotiating table at the moment. downing street will be taking on essage into that meeting that that is not going to happen as far as they are concerned. it is more, kitted the night. mps have been strategising, e—mailing to try and figure out a way to stop no deal but borisjohnson and figure out a way to stop no deal but boris johnson once and figure out a way to stop no deal but borisjohnson once to make clear to european leaders that he is deadly serious. 31st of october, if he has his way, the uk is out. we
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arejust he has his way, the uk is out. we are just watching the scene as the two lea d e rs are just watching the scene as the two leaders make their short state m e nts two leaders make their short statements before they go into dinner, i suppose for borisjohnson it isa dinner, i suppose for borisjohnson it is a moment to sound statesman—like, notjudging from the m essa 9 es statesman—like, notjudging from the messages from mr broad that we had butjokes for angela messages from mr broad that we had but jokes for angela merkel are messages from mr broad that we had butjokes for angela merkel are not welcome. absolutely, it is a serious time. this is angela merkel‘s first meeting with a foreign leader, he will be meeting the key players in europe. you are correct, you will see a serious tone from the prime minister reflecting what he has said in the past few days. arguing that the backstop has to go. he thinks the backstop has to go. he thinks the uk government is in genuine, opening a door of friendship, we are prepared to talk about other ways to ensure there is no hard border but not the withdrawal agreement as it
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stands at the moment. it will be a really difficult meeting today and tomorrow with any —— emmanuel macron because increasingly you are hearing at europe and westminster, everyone is concluding that the most likely outcome now is a no—deal brexit because you'd —— borisjohnson has said he will not blink and the european union will not blink either. unless something changes, something unexpected happens next few weeks, no deal is where we will end up. thank you for that. let us return to our berlin correspondent, jenny hill. we watched the welcoming ceremony, we heard some shouts from beyond the railings of stop exits, you think there are people in germany who think there is a chance that brexit will be stopped? —— stop
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brexit. is that a vain hope of the public? until a few weeks ago i would have said there was still very much the hope, even amongst the political establishment here that some kind of reversal of brexit might be achieved but i think the kind of rhetoric we have seen from downing street in recent weeks, boris johnson's pledged downing street in recent weeks, borisjohnson's pledged to take britain out of the eu can watch me has lead some of those hopes, if thatis has lead some of those hopes, if that is how you view it here, to rest. there is a small demonstration behind me, mainly young people. there is a big excited community here and there are concerns of british people living here what their future british people living here what theirfuture might british people living here what their future might be. british people living here what theirfuture might be. —— there is a big expat community. and the vast majority of germans think brexit is a terrible idea, damaging for europe
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and germany and it will cost britain very dear indeed ultimately. the mid here is one of you reluctance but increasingly, there is an acceptance that boris johnson's increasingly, there is an acceptance that borisjohnson's administration is very much set on leaving. they are trying to take that seriously. there was a point when they were trying to work out if the threat of a no—deal brexit, if borisjohnson's does not get what he wants, is a bluff. not entirely sure about that but they are sure about the damage a no—deal brexit can do and also they are sure how complex and sensitive the situation now is. it is difficult to explain reallyjust how unpopular boris johnson is difficult to explain reallyjust how unpopular borisjohnson is here amongst many many people. if you look at the newspapers here, they are scathing about him. no one doubts his intelligence but
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commentators are quite happy to explain him as a client, charlatan and liar, a poker player, a dangerous individual. he does not get a lot of respect from the press here. i have spoken to a lot of people in the business world and they are also very concerned about his rhetoric. he is viewed here in germany as one of the architects of brexit. brexit itself is not a popular decision itself and the fact he is coming here now and waving the red flag of a no—deal brexit which could do enormous damage to the german economy, does not raise him in the view of many people here. on the subject of new deal it is worth pointing out how difficult that should be for germany. it is difficult to estimate. a lot of economists have tried to estimate. you immediately think of the car industry, car manufacturers
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manufacture parts in britain and other parts of the eu, what happens with a no—deal brexit? but actually there are so many other sectors, i had just been in hamburg where that isa had just been in hamburg where that is a big aviation industry, they built airbuses and manufacture the wings and wheels saw a big concern about what no—deal brexit means. angela merkel is keen to avoid that scenario but not willing to pne price. thank you so much. we will be looking at those statements in the next few minutes. we will return to them as and when the leaders appear. let us speak to sir peter tori who isa let us speak to sir peter tori who is a former ambassador to germany. your observations at this moment? my
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hope rather than expectation, i hope the meeting goes well. between the two of them personally, i do not see why they should not get on, angela merkel is a perfectly seized —— reasonable and sensible politician with a good sense of humour. she could get on quite well with boris johnson but on the substance, it is difficult to see the germans giving any ground. i am afraid expectations here in the chancellery are very low for today's meeting. you are very low —— you have been the top diplomats advising a prime minister, what would you be advising boris johnson on how to handle this working dinner? paradoxically, i think i would say to him he should have gone to dublin first. i think the germans, as we have heard from
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your commentators, anxious for a deal, keen to avoid no deal. it will bend over back for so far as it is possible to help us but the bottom line is they will not leave the irish in the lurch. if we can agree some compromise with dublin on the backstop, the germans will sign up ina backstop, the germans will sign up in a flash. the typical irish advice would be do not start from here. given that starting position, given that he is here, how can he handle himself from now? we have heard in minutes the suggestion that the prime minister will attempt to convince angela merkel that parliament in westminster will not be stopping his determination to exit on the 31st of october, do or die. how can you get that message across in a way that will convince
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the german chancellor. ——?. across in a way that will convince the german chancellor. --?. he is right to try and get that message across. . . right to try and get that message across... and hope somehow that parliament will get in the way of a no—deal brexit. it is by no means clear that parliament can do that. he should be making that clear to the chancellor. depending on how bitter the break—up is... they are very worried about the relationship. in terms of trade, security, defence and intelligence cooperation and all sorts of other areas... i do apologise but i will have to
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interrupt you because unfortunately the line is deteriorating. we will return to this in a few moments. we will go back to berlin acid is angela merkel and boris johnson appear. —— as soon angela merkel and boris johnson appear. —— as soon as angela merkel and boris johnson appear. —— as soon as angela merkel. one thing we are hearing from jeremy corbyn in the last few moments, he has invited the leaders of other political parties and senior lawmakers to discuss old tactics to prevent a no—deal brexit. that meeting will take place on august the 27th. an invitation from jeremy corbyn, leader of the opposition, two other political parties and senior lawmakers to attend a meeting on august the 27th to prevent a no—deal brexit. another breaking story related to ryanair, they have lost their high court bid to stop
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the pilot strike. that is correct. the pilot strike is due to go ahead from midnight tonight. they have been fighting in the high court, ryanair, to been fighting in the high court, rya nair, to block been fighting in the high court, ryanair, to block the pilots in the uk from taking part in the fight —— in the strike. they won a case in dublin today to stop irish pilots taking part in the strike so it will only be its uk pilots who are taking pa rt only be its uk pilots who are taking part in the strike from midnight tonight but ryanair is very bullish, in the last few minutes they have released a statement to say they expect to operate a full schedule of flights from uk airports, they do not anticipate disruption, all passengers scheduled to travel from uk airports should go as usual on thursday and friday and get on board as they planned to do. they say the vast majority of their pilots have volunteered to fly and there should be no disruption. it is uneven, how can they manage that without the
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pilots? we knew that ryanair has a surplus of pilots at the moment because their 737 max aircraft have been grounded so they currently have about 500 to many pilots so clearly they can use this capacity to alleviate problems in the next 48 hours. thank you very much for the update. we will return to berlin as soon as we see angela merkel and borisjohnson, soon as we see angela merkel and boris johnson, and there soon as we see angela merkel and borisjohnson, and there they are. translation: i and dilated to meet the british prime minister boris johnson here in berlin on his first visit, i would like to offer him a very warm welcome indeed. —— i am delighted. very warm welcome. of
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course, we have quite a lot on our plate today, quite a busy schedule, there are a number of points on it and obviously britain's meeting the european union. we have said repeatedly from the german perspective that we regret this debt but it is a fact. —— this step. but we know need to shape the united kingdom leaving the next —— make the european union to maintain close relationships with the pina and the uk because bilateral relations between britain and germany are very close indeed, they are characterised by friendship and i hope and pray they will remain so in the future. we have a lot of points where bci two i and a lot of points where we need to work together. from a german point of view, i negotiated brexit is something we would very much
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welcome but we have also said we are also prepared for the no deal, so should this happen, this will or can happen, we are prepared for it but obviously we also think of the life of the many citizens, british citizens, living currently in the european union. we also had today with the situation should be written from one day to the next new longer bea from one day to the next new longer be a member of the european union but a third country. we will then try our utmost in the period following that to negotiate a free—trade agreement, that is the author of the european union. going beyond brexit, we also have a number of issues we need to discuss because the world as we know is in turmoil. in onlya the world as we know is in turmoil. in only a few short days we shall meet on the occasion of the g7 summit in france. i am very much
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also looking forward to hearing from the prime minister how britain assesses the situation with iran but also with libya and north korea. we shall also address hong kong and other issues that we consider to be challenges in the world of today and all of those in the spirit of friendship, in a spirit of trying to bring about an understanding and also in the spirit of shared values and also shared perspectives so yet again, a very warm welcome to you, prime minister, to berlin. thank you very much chancellor angela merkel for that uneasy welcome i have just had. i have not had one like it in my life. —— for that amazing welcome. it is wonderful to be here in my first overseas trip as prime minister. it was obvious we should come here to see you, angela,
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because this is a relationship that is so important for the uk, there are so nearly areas in which we collaborate and work powerfully together, whether it is standing up for the international systems, democracy, human rights act, equalities, germany and the united kingdom are shoulder to shoulder. we worked together to preserve our collective security whether through nato or other institutions, we work together in tackling the challenges of the environments, climate change, the lawson threat to our natural world. as you rightly say, we will be talking about are wide—ranging subjects tonight. we will discuss russia, iran, china, what is going on in hong kong, many other subjects, including of course, the small matter of brexit. which we are
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fated to discuss. ijust want to be absolutely clear, with all our german friends and with the german government, that we in the uk want a deal. we seek ideal. i believe that we can get one, we can do it. i think there is a german phrase for it. but clearly, we cannot accept the current withdrawal agreement, arrangements that either divide the uk orthe arrangements that either divide the uk or the law because into the regulatory and trading arrangements of the eu, the legal order of the eu without the uk having any see on those matters so we do need that
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backstop removed. if we can do that, then i am absolutely certain we can move forward together and i want to make one crucial points, which is that we in the uk are absolutely dedicated to the protection of the rights of the 3.2 million eu nationals in our country who contribute so much to our country and of course in particular are german friends. so that is why i am here tonight, and thank you for that wonderful welcome and i look forward to developing our relationship and our friendship. ben wright from the bbc. question to the prime minister, first, please. mrjohnson, the eu says it will not renegotiate their withdrawal agreement under any circumstances, so are withdrawal agreement under any circumstances, so are you withdrawal agreement under any circumstances, so are you prepared to compromise, or is this trip simply posturing before you blame
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the eu fora simply posturing before you blame the eu for a no—deal brexit? and chancellor merkel, the withdrawal agreement was defeated in parliament three times in britain. it has been buried by borisjohnson. why won't you reopen it in the few weeks that are left, or do you see the brexit crisis now as the uk's problem to solve? crisis now as the uk's problem to solve ? thank you. crisis now as the uk's problem to solve? thank you. thank you very much, ben. of course i think there is ample scope to do a deal, and i've explained i think pretty clearly what needs to happen. we need to remove those elements of the withdrawal agreement simply don't work for the uk. i've spoken of the things that i think are sensible, the protections of the rights of eu nationals, but the backstop, that particular arrangement, which i do think has grave, grave defects for a democratic country, a sovereign democratic country, a sovereign democratic country, a sovereign democratic country like the uk, that plainly has to go. but once we get
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rid of it, if we can change it, then i think there is the real prospect of making progress very rapidly indeed. so that's why i am here. translation: of course we follow with great interest the discussion currently going on in the house of commons, and we know that the backstop has been part and parcel of the debate, has been at the very ce ntre the debate, has been at the very centre of debate. in a way, it is a construct that has been created so as to address the situation that one sees coming when one doesn't find any kind of settlement on how to deal with the relationship between northern ireland and the republic of ireland. this constitutes an external border within the single market, so in a way this is an expression of a problem we have not yet solved. once we see and say, this could be a possible outcome, this could be a possible outcome,
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this could be a possible outcome, this could be a possible arrangement, this backstop as a sort of place holder is no longer necessary. then we know how the future relationship between the european union and the united kingdom will be shaped, particularly northern ireland, obviously, and the member state of the irish republic. so the backstop has always been a fallback position. it is one is able to solve this conundrum, if one finds this solution, we said we will probably find it in the next two years, but we could maybe also find it in the next 30 days. so then we are one step further in the right direction, and we had to obviously put our all into this. but that presupposes, and allow me to say this, that we have absolute clarity on the future relationship of britain and the european union how this is supposed to look like, and as this clarity has become clearer, ifi as this clarity has become clearer, if i may put it that way, we have a lot to discuss tonight.
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madam chancellor, yesterday you spoke of these practical solutions for the northern irish question. how could they look like for you or for your colleagues? and you have also said within the next 30 days that this could be possible. how realistic is this? and prime minister, how do you expect to negotiate with the european union in the case of a no deal? wouldn't you be going back to the very same leaders that you have just rebuffed with a much more difficult negotiating position? and do you see a prospect of a time—limited backstop as viable ? translation: let me underline yet again, andl translation: let me underline yet again, and i think that is something that has worked in the last few years quite well. the commission is negotiating in behalf of the 27 member states, and we have as 27 the aim to have a uniform, consistent
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position vis—a—vis britain and the united kingdom. britain also should tell us in turn what sort of ideas it has, because it is not the core task of the german chancellor to understand the relationship between northern ireland and the republic of ireland so well. i suppose you would know much better all of the revocations of the good friday agreement and the sensitivity, although i have learned a lot about this, that is connected to it. so we would like to hear first proposals put on the table by britain. our aim is to preserve the integrity of the single market, and that is obvious. if somebody wants to leave the single market, we must see to it that the integrity of the single market is ensured. we have shown imagination and creativity in the past as the european union, and i think here, too, we can find ways and means, and i think that needs to be the task. we know that the united kingdom has said that on the 31st of october you wish to leave, we take
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this very seriously and we start from the assumption that you will do this. so we will simply have to do it in fewer months than 12 months if there is to be an orderly brexit.” wa nt to there is to be an orderly brexit.” want to just stress on the point about the border in northern ireland, the united kingdom will under no circumstances implement customs checks or any other type of checks at the border in northern ireland. we think there are ways of protecting the integrity of the eu single market without having checks of that kind at the border, and that is clearly what we need to work on to secure. and on your question about the time limit, i'm not attracted to a time limit. i think there are other flaws with the backstop, i think what we need to do is remove it, remove the whole backstop, and then work, as
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chancellor merkel says, on the alternative arrangements, and there are abundant solutions which are proffered which have already been discussed. i don't think, to be fair, they have so far been very actively proposed over the last three years by the british government, and now is the moment, as you rightly say the onus is on us to produce those solutions, those ideas to show how we can address the issue of the northern irish border, and that is what we want to do. but i may say i am very glad listening to you tonight, angela, to hear that at least the conversations on that matter can now properly begin, and you have said a blistering timetable of 30 days, if i have understood you correctly, and i am more than happy with that. sam coates, sky news. borisjohnson hasjust with that. sam coates, sky news. boris johnson has just asked you whether you will put forward
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specific plans to solve the northern ireland question. are you, and can you spell them out for us now? angela merkel, borisjohnson has made a cast—iron commitment that britain will never restore any hard infrastructure or any other facets ofa infrastructure or any other facets of a hard border. infrastructure or any other facets ofa hard border. can infrastructure or any other facets of a hard border. can you make the same promise today? sam, obviously we do think that there are alternative arrangements that could readily be used to address the problem of frictionless trade on the northern irish border, and you will have heard that before, whether it is trusted trader schemes or electronic pre—clearing, all that type of solution, and this is what all sides will be wanting to discuss. you will have seen and excellent report by greg hands and others in the last couple of days by the kind of alternative arrangements that could be contemplated. translation: two statements, both of
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them incorrect. one statement —— both of them correct. one of them is that britain wishes to leave the european union, and one is that the good friday agreement needs to be preserved. the member state of the european union, the republic of ireland, will to continue to remain a member, and this is part and parcel of our european position, so we have to somehow try and align those positions, which at first glance is not so easy, but we need to do this so as to be able to say that we can find a solution. translation: you have shown a readiness to compromise, but the basic problem, chancellor, is, is it not, that you do not wish to change the withdrawal agreement, and you, prime minister, are not satisfied with only changing this agreement on the future relationship? and so is
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that not the basic problem still unaddressed, is it not only the blame game. and an additional question, with a view to g7, the us president hasjust question, with a view to g7, the us president has just suggested question, with a view to g7, the us president hasjust suggested to re—accept russia as a member, you're for or against this? we do not as yet have a solution, so your question obviously is a justified one, but it cannot be answered today. you will simply have to wait a little bit longer whether we come up a little bit longer whether we come up witha a little bit longer whether we come up with a solution. i see possibilities, for example shaping the future relationship in such a way to address this point in a sustainable manner, and the rest is ha rd sustainable manner, and the rest is hard work. on the second question, whether russia should again participate in the g7 meeting in 2014 there were good reasons for russia being suspended, the russian president spent an official visit in
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france. there seems to be a slight movement as regards the translation of the minsk process into reality. if we were to come forward in the implementation may be, the situation may change, but as the situation is today, i would say there is not yet sufficient progress for saying the reasons we had in 2014 are obsolete. so this is why we, and that means europe, but also france and germany in particular, will put our all into talking to the new president of the ukraine, and talking to mr putin and trying to make progress. and then we will look at the progress and see whether we have gone far enough. just on your point about the seeming impossibility of the negotiations. i have in my life watch a lot of european negotiations, and believe me it looks at first as though it is irresistible force and immovable
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object, and what in my experience happens is that people find a way through. and i think that if we approach this with sufficient patience and optimism, as i say, we can get this done. it is in the final furlong, can get this done. it is in the finalfurlong, generally, when the horses change places and the winning deal appears. on your second, very good, point about russia and the g7, iam aware good, point about russia and the g7, i am aware of because of the moves to reintegrate russia into the g7, andi to reintegrate russia into the g7, and ijust to reintegrate russia into the g7, and i just have to reintegrate russia into the g7, and ijust have to say that, given what happened in salisbury in wiltshire, given the use of chemical weapons on british soil, given the continuing instability, civil war, the war in ukraine, given rush‘s locations —— russia's provocations,
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not just locations —— russia's provocations, notjust in the ukraine but also other places, i am very much with chancellor merkel in saying that the case has very much to be made out for russia to return to the g7. this is yet another example, if i may say so ofan is yet another example, if i may say so of an area where the uk and germany have a common position. thank you very much, we need to go to work now. studio: so, we watch angela merkel and boris johnson studio: so, we watch angela merkel and borisjohnson leave the stage with a handshake after a news conference where both of them performed with some confidence and clarity, i thought, performed with some confidence and clarity, ithought, we performed with some confidence and clarity, i thought, we will put that isa clarity, i thought, we will put that is a question to adam fleming in brussels. what did you think?” wouldn't use the word clarity. i am confused about what the two leaders have just talked about or committed to. what i think has happened is
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that angela merkel has said it is the uk'sjob that angela merkel has said it is the uk's job to that angela merkel has said it is the uk'sjob to put that angela merkel has said it is the uk's job to put forward alternative to the backstop. that is the eu's position, they have said, we have given you our solution to the irish border, the back—up plan is the backstop, and if the uk wants changes to it, they have to present them. that was the criticism we got yesterday in reaction to boris johnson's letter about the backstop that he sent to donald tusk on monday. then it seemed that boris johnson took up the gauntlet and said, yes, you're quite right, chancellor merkel, it is britain's job to propose solutions to the backstop, an alternative, and we will do that in the next 30 days. so it sounds like between now and i have just checked on my phone calendar, the 19th of september, borisjohnson hasjust calendar, the 19th of september, borisjohnson has just committed to come forward with a pretty detailed plan for come forward with a pretty detailed planforan come forward with a pretty detailed plan for an alternative way of keeping the irish border open in all circumstances that in his mind could potentially replace the backstop. the problem with that is that the eu is utterly convinced that there may be alternative to the backstop in the future, in a couple of years,
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but they don't exist now. so it is very ha rd to but they don't exist now. so it is very hard to see what alternatives borisjohnson could present very hard to see what alternatives boris johnson could present that would convince the eu that they don't need the backstop after all. and then he talked about that report that was produced by conservative mps, an independent group you have done their own independent thinking on that, the eu wasn't impressed by that report when it was presented. and angela merkel has said what she has had many times before. she thinks the solution to this is in the future relationship with the uk, and actually the only way you can avoid the need for the backstop in northern ireland is for a very close trading relationship between the uk and the eu, that would potentially involve a customs union and lots of alignment with the eu rules and regulations of the single market. borisjohnson doesn't regulations of the single market. boris johnson doesn't want that, he wa nts a boris johnson doesn't want that, he wants a much more scaled—down, classic free trade agreement, and if you put that to the eu, they say, that means you would need the backstop in northern ireland to come m, backstop in northern ireland to come in, because that is the sort of situation where you would need to have a border. so a little bit
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confusing, lots to look forward to in the next 30 days. used a confused! thank you, adam. president trump has cancelled a state visit to denmark after its prime minister dismissed his proposal to buy greenland is absurd. the president tweeted that denmark isa the president tweeted that denmark is a very special country with incredible people, but based on the prime minister's comments that she would have no interest in discussing the purchase of greenland, he said he would be postponing the meeting for another time. let's speak now to rasmus jarlov, a danish mp and the spokesperson on greenland for the conservative people's party. what are your responses to this decision by president trump to cancel the visit? it was surprising that he brought up the issue of buying greenland because there is nobody in denmark or greenland that wa nts to nobody in denmark or greenland that wants to sell it, it came out of nowhere, and then he asked for an
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invitation to denmark, he got one from our country, and then he declined the invitation. so it is a bit unusual. unusual as a polite word. do you feel angry?” bit unusual. unusual as a polite word. do you feel angry? i wouldn't say angry. we are a little bit insulted, but it is a strange situation that most of us don't know whether to laugh, most of us choose to laugh because it is a funny situation, and i think i don't know how he came up with this idea of whether he could buy greenland or not, it has been part of our country for centuries, and if there is an insult in it, the biggest insult is that he would assume that we would be willing to sell part of our country like it wouldn't matter to us. it is like denmark suggesting to buy alaska or another part of the us. it is not going to happen, and i don't know how president trump would have reacted to such a proposal, but i know that we would not have been
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insulted if he had turned it down. soa insulted if he had turned it down. so a couple of things. that is obviously responding to his willingness to buy rather than to his cancellation or postponement of the state visit. but going back a step, what do you think the motivation is on the us side for this? why has greenland become such a strategic target? it always has been. greenland is right between russia and the united states. they have a military base up there with radar that can see if russia is sending missiles towards the united states, and that is a very important pa rt states, and that is a very important part of the us defence, so it has a lwa ys part of the us defence, so it has always been important to the us, and we have allowed them to have some troops up there and radar capacity, and there is no problem with that, we have smooth cooperation with the united states, and we would like to continue that, but we don't want to sell it. maybe he has observed that
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the chinese are showing more interest in the arctic region and also in greenland specifically. recently they were considering whether to move in and build airports in greenland, and make big investments, and maybe that has caused more attention from the american side, that is possible. i'm afraid we're going to have to leave it there, but thank you so much for joining us. police have confirmed that a body found by teams searching the river stour in kent is lucas dobson. the six—year old had been missing since saturday. kent police said the boy's family have been informed. the man accused of murdering pc andrew harper has appeared in court via video—link from prison. the thames valley police officer died last thursday near the village of sulhamstead in berkshire, while investigating a burglary. duncan kennedy has this update from reading crown court. i'm sorry, we don't have that report
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from duncan. let's move on to hs two. the rail project could be halted by an independent review despite more than £7 billion being spent on it already. the study, set up by the government, will examine whether building the line from london to birmingham —— and then to the north of england would provide value for money. business groups, including the cbi, have insisted there's a stong economic case for it to go ahead. liberal democrat mp tim farron recently wrote to the prime minister, calling on him to embrace the hs2 project not cancel it. are you concerned by the review announced today? yes, deeply. my senseisif announced today? yes, deeply. my sense is if the kind of money we have seen spent on hs2 was being spent on a london specific project, there would be no questions asked, it is just this amount of money spent on infrastructure improvement outside the m25 and in the north of england seems to raise eyebrows. i think it would send a very strong message that the government, the new
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government, has no confidence in the north and isn't prepared to take a risk in order to advance the economy of the north of england. if it was to backtrack on hs2. of the north of england. if it was to backtrack on h52. do you think thatis to backtrack on h52. do you think that is really fair? they could take a view that they would spend the same money, and invest in infrastructure for the north, but do it on something which was not seeing costs balloon. first of all, i am somebody who has asked questions about hs2, and i have often thought for example that it is rather a southern at‘s idea of what is good for the north, getting to london a bit quicker. so i know it is not the a nswer to bit quicker. so i know it is not the answer to all of the north's challenges, but that increased capacity is huge, or would be a huge boost to the economy of the north of england. the key thing here is the government hasn't fully committed to hs two because it doesn't fully understand the value of it, and the problem is that it is called high speed 2, and yet speed has got very little to do with the case of hs2,
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it is actually all about capacity. the west coast mainline that i use every week to get from my constituency down to london is the most overused line in western europe. what hs2 is actually about is massively increasing capacity so that the northern towns and cities can interact with one another alongside new hs3, which is equally as important. it is not about making sure we can all commute to london a bit quicker. you will know that the review is looking at whether to amend the project, alter it, keep it as it is or scrap it altogether. so i have been hearing all afternoon that if you go a bit slower, it is a lot cheaper, so seeing as you have said it is not about speed, it is about capacity, would one option that you be happy with to go a bit slower and save a bit of the money so that we are not spending £86 billion on this? any government project that is not permanently under review to make sure it is meeting its targets financially and in an engineering sense is
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absolutely open to question, and that should always be the case. what i worried about is that this is a new additional review, surely paving the way for some kind of significant backtracking, and i go back to my earlier point. if this was a spend on this site on infrastructure in london, crossrail or something else, there would be far fewer questions asked. my cynical senses that this isa asked. my cynical senses that this is a large amount of money considering it is the north. it is the kind of money that regularly gets spent inside the m25, and if we are serious about rebalancing the economy and making the north of england genuinely that powerhouse that will generate significant employment in and of itself, not just as far as it relates to london, then we need to be prepared to pay then we need to be prepared to pay the price, the investment that will bring wealth to the north. tim farron, we have to leave it there, thank you. more than 200,000 children in england are homeless, and many are living in converted office blocks, and some in former shipping containers, the children's commissioner has found.
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local councils say budget cuts mean they're often forced to house families in temporary accommodation. the government says it has invested £1.2 billion in tackling all forms of homelessness. darren armstrong was homeless and living on the streets from the age of 14 years old. during his time in temporary accomodation he was offered converted shipping containers and pods, that he rejected. let's speak to him now. on the subject of what is appropriate temporary accommodation, what do you think works? from personal experience of being homeless, i know for a fact that when people are valued, when society puts a value on people, people then feel the value in themselves and they will want to change their life. ican they will want to change their life. i can only speak from people who are released from prison, addicts, etc. i can't speak about families, because i have never had that experience. but these guys are being
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released from prison, and the last thing they want to be doing, they might as well live on the streets as far as they are concerned, because a shipping container, for example, i was offered ten of these things. i have turned those down straightaway, because i want to help these guys, get them into a place where they are motivated, they feel valued, and i know it sounds a bit fluffy, but loved. so i turned that down, and i'm looking at buying a bed—and—brea kfast which will set i'm looking at buying a bed—and—breakfast which will set my charity back £310,000. why would i do that? but i know for a fact if i prepare that place, they will want to come back, they will get a good meal, get their hair cut, get a nice warm bed, where they actually feel valued. let's put some money where these people are living, show them that we actually care about putting some money in. can i put something to you. it is interesting to hear
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your perspective, and i was talking earlier this afternoon to the chief executive of brighton housing trust, and he said that it is about the way that they are converted, because he said that in brighton they converted shipping containers, made them very habitable, they had insulation and we re habitable, they had insulation and were good accommodation, they had kitchens and bedrooms and gave people their own independent doorway ina way people their own independent doorway in a way that was impossible to do in any other context. that is his opinion, but if people are saying, people are offering people temporary accommodation, then it should be just that, temporary. people are being told you will be here for two weeks, but they are still there six months later, that is a bit naughty in my opinion. so is it your view that local government should be attempting to put everybody, whether it is people out of rough sleeping, families with no full—time accommodation, that they should be trying to get them into
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bed—and—brea kfasts like the trying to get them into bed—and—breakfasts like the one that you have been buying for your charity? let's be honest here. why are the government not working with people who have been successful at rehabilitating homeless people and getting them on the straight and narrow? for example, if you are going to open a bed—and—breakfast and put lots of ex offenders and drug addicts in there, and it isn't managed, things are going to fall apart very quickly. you need to have key workers in there, people who are going to give them something to do that will give them some value. put something on their cv, get them busy on the day, get them into the gym, make them feel that we care. don't just chuck them all in a room and forget about them, that isn't going to work. darren, thank you so much for joining to work. darren, thank you so much forjoining us. a team of explorers have visited the wreck of the titanic for the first time in nearly 15 years. it is nearly 4000 metres down at the bottom of the atlantic, and some
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parts of it are in surprisingly good condition, but others apparently are deteriorating more quickly than expected. here is one of the scientists on board. there are many factors that affect the deterioration of the titanic, the deterioration of the titanic, the waterfalls causes serious damage, both in the course of the ship wreckage itself and in the time since, and there are microbes on the ship wreck that are eating away the iron of the wreck itself, creating these rust structures that you see on the titanic, which is a much wea ker on the titanic, which is a much weaker form of the on the titanic, which is a much weakerform of the metal, so that on the titanic, which is a much weaker form of the metal, so that is literally being eaten away. who knew? now he is chris fawkes with the weather. hello again, we have seen some big whether contrasts across the country
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today, northern ireland and scotland we re very today, northern ireland and scotland were very cloudy, with fairly persistent outbreaks of rain. over the next few days, for many of us, the next few days, for many of us, the weather will get quite a bit warmer, and for some it will become quite hot as we head into the weekend. overnight tonight, the rain band that has been in scotland and northern ireland sinks southwards and becomes a slow moving across northern england and north wales, so they will be fairly persistent outbreaks of rain, dry weather to the south. to the north—west, drive for a the south. to the north—west, drive fora time, the south. to the north—west, drive for a time, but showers working into north—west scotland. tomorrow, our weather front changes direction and pushes back northwards, so rain quickly moves into northern ireland after a bright start to the day in scotland, rain moving back in through the afternoon, and underneath the rain band about 17 celsius also, but with some sunshine in the south, it will start to turn warmer. that is your whether.
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the high—speed rail link is due to connect london, the midlands and northern england, with billions already spent. but the project is reportedly vastly over—budget, and today the transport secretary refused to rule out scrapping it entirely. just because you've spent a lot of money on something should not mean that you just carry on ploughing more and more money into it. we'll be considering how likely it is that the original plans for hs2 will now fully be realised. also this evening... borisjohnson in berlin tells the german chancellor the uk

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