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tv   The Briefing  BBC News  November 20, 2019 5:00am-5:31am GMT

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this is the briefing. i'm samantha simmonds. our top story: the leaders of britain's two biggest parties clash on brexit and austerity in a live televised debate. but with just three weeks before the election, there's no knockout blow. washington gears up for a key day in the impeachment inquiry, with gordon sondland, us ambassador to the european union, set to take the stand. and is it game overfor hong kong's university stand—off? amid the debris, only a few dispirited protesters remain. and in the business briefing, we take a look at the amazon's deforestation, as brazil's environment minister is set to meet business and local leaders later today.
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a warm welcome to the programme, briefing you on all you need to know in global news, business and sport. and you can be part of the conversation. as another company cuts its ties with prince andrew's pitch at palace, and the two main party leaders are asked if he is fit for purpose, we want to know if you think prince andrew should step down from royal duties? get in touch — just use the hashtag #bbcthebriefing. the leaders of britain's two main political parties have clashed repeatedly over brexit and austerity in the first televised debate of the campaign for next month's general election.
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the conservative prime minister, borisjohnson, promised to get a brexit deal through parliament within weeks and to leave the eu by the end of january, but the audience laughed at him when he said it was important to tell the truth about brexit. the opposition labour party leader, jeremy corbyn, accused mrjohnson of preparing to sell out the national health service to us drugs companies. iain watson reports. this election has produced a first: never before has a sitting prime minister taking on the leader of the opposition position head to head in a debate with no other parties present. but the topics they debated we re present. but the topics they debated were less surprising. it all began with brexit, as borisjohnson, pushing his rival time and again to say how he would vote in the referendum labour is promising. are you going to campaign for leave or remain? i want to ring people together, therefore they will be a referendum in which that decision will be made by the british people
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and our government will abide by that decision. butjeremy corbyn moved swiftly to steer the debate onto his territory, claiming that a post—brexit us trade deal could harm the health service. a document here of us/ uk negotiations, summary of specific negotiations... full market access for us products to our national health service. you're going to sell out health service. you're going to sell our national health service to the united states and big pharma. com pletely united states and big pharma. completely untrue. there are no circumstances whatever that this government or any conservative government or any conservative government will put the nhs on the table in any trade negotiation. borisjohnson table in any trade negotiation. boris johnson wanted table in any trade negotiation. borisjohnson wanted to get back to brexit, although this has been consistently denied he claimed labour would do a deal with the snp that would deliver not one referendum but to. of course jeremy corbyn and the labour party are going to do a deal, and they probably already have done a deal, with nicola sturgeon and the snp to
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form a corbyn/ sturgeon sturgeon coalition and the price of nicola sturgeon's support, she's made it absolutely clear, would be a second referendum on the union. i think referendum on the union. ithinkl referendum on the union. i think i ought to be able to reply to this nonsense. absolute nonsense, the idea that we would be in coalition with the snp. there isn't going to be a coalition with labour and anyone else, there have been no deal is done and there won't be. both leaders try to play to their strengths but tried it difficult —— found it difficult to land a knockout blow. their questions moved from the policy to the more personal. does the truth matter in this election? laughter anti—semitism, an absolute evil and scourge anti—semitism, an absolute evil and scourge within our society. racism in any form is a scourge in our society. immediately after the debate, the politicians were out in force trying to convince us that their guy one and a snap poll of voters suggested it was more like a score draw. this
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campaign hasn't probably ignited, but some sparks flew between the party leaders, but it will take a lot more than one debate to convince the undecided who they should be backing on december the 12th. iain watson, bbc news, salford. the impeachment inquiry into donald trump is due to hear in public from one of its most controversial witnesses — the us ambassador to the eu, gordon sondland. the ambassador, whose companies donated a million dollars to donald trump's inaugural committee, has become a central figure in the events surrounding allegations that president trump put pressure on ukraine to investigate the president's domestic political rivals in return for military aid and a visit to the white house for ukraine's president. the bbc‘s gary o'donoghue has this report. as america's man in brussels, gordon sondland had no formal responsibility for ukraine, which is not in the european union. but democrats say the president used him asa
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democrats say the president used him as a key conduit to lean on ukraine's new president to investigate president trump's democratic opponent, joe biden, and his son in return for military aid and a white house visit. when he first testified to congress behind closed doors, mr sondland denied there'd been any so—called quick brown, that is any linkage between the aid and the president's wish to have the bidens investigated, but that account was contradicted both in private and later in public. ambassador sondland also told me that he now recognised that he had made a mistake by earlier telling ukrainian officials that only a white house meeting with president zele ns ky white house meeting with president zelensky was dependent on a public announcement of the investigations. in fact ambassador sondland said everything was dependent on such and announcement, including security assistance. the evidence provided by ambassador taylor has already fall gordon sondland to revise his statements made to the committee made under
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oath. he now recalls a conversation with a key aid to ukraine's president. however, ambassador taylor has also told the committee that gordon sondland and the president had a phone call in july sondland and the president had a phone call injuly after which mr sondland told an aide at the president only cared about the investigations. i know nothing about that. first time i've heard it. the one thing i've seen that sondland said is that he did speak to me for a brief moment, and i said, "no quid pro quo under any circumstances", and that's true, but i've never heard of this. trump should be impeached. it was here in oregon that gordon sondland made his millions from the hotel business, just like donald trump, but he flipped his allegiance to and from the president several
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times during the election campaign, eventually donating $1 million. the white house may be wondering whether he is about to flip again. gary o'donoghue, bbc news, washington. according to amnesty international, 106 people are confirmed dead in iran in five days of protests, but the human rights group believes the real number is much higher. the unrest is a reaction to friday's sharp rise in petrol prices. banks and other buildings have been set ablaze, and security personnel killed. video appears to show security forces shooting at demonstrators. gareth barlow reports. the unrest following the government's announcement on friday that petrol prices would rise by 50% continues. days of widespread protests responded to with widespread force. we're especially alarmed that the use of ammunition has allegedly caused a significant number of deaths across the country. we urge the iranian authorities and the security forces to avoid
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the use of force to disperse peaceful assemblies. amid a government—imposed internet blackout, the bbc has managed to obtain this footage, which appears to show security forces firing directly on protesters from behind a wall and from behind a tree. demonstrations have taken place nationwide with security personnel using lethal force. some iranians have told the bbc the authorities have refused to release victims‘ bodies. what began as a protest against a rise in fuel prices has developed into a far more serious and deadly situation. iran's supreme leader has blamed enemies and declared victory over the protesters. the government does have support. demonstrators chanting "death to the us" have taken to the streets. the country's economy is blighted by american sanctions. washington now says it's working with ordinary iranians to get around
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the government's internet blackout. we have been able to get into the hands of the iranian people circumvention tools that allow them to communicate with each other when the regime tries to censor them, and so this work has been going on for well over 1.5 years. with reports of the authorities using snipers against protesters, the unrest is the most serious in years. the country's economy is severely strained. inflation is soaring and unemployment is around 15%. what began as an economic crisis has escalated into a deadly suppression of public anger. gareth barlow, bbc news. stay with us on bbc news, still to come: badly burnt, but alive. a koala bear is rescued from the bushfires sweeping australia's east coast, but hundreds more are feared killed.
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benazir bhutto has claimed victory in pakistan's general election and she's asked pakistan's president to name her as prime minister. jackson's been released on bail of $3 million after turning himself in to police in santa barbara. it was the biggest demonstration so far of the fast—growing european anti—nuclear movement. the south african government has announced that it's opening the country's remaining whites—only beaches to people of all races. this will lead to a black majority government in this country and the destruction of the white civilisation. part of the centuries—old windsor castle, one of the queen's residences, has been consumed by fire for much of the day. 150 firemen have been battling the blaze, which has caused millions of pounds worth of damage.
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you're watching the briefing. our headlines: the leaders of britain's two main political parties have clashed over brexit and austerity in the first televised debate of the election campaign. washington's bracing for a key day in the impeachment inquiry with gordon sondland, us ambassador to the european union, set to take the stand. twitter has issued a warning to britain's conservative party after it rebranded one of its twitter accounts to look like an election fact—checking agency during the first tv debate of the election campaign. the account was renamed "factcheckuk" with no clear mention of its party connections. technology correspondent dave lee says the conservative party's actions haven't impressed twitter.
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there not happy to say the least. they put out a statement about what the tory party has done with that account, saying that it was misleading and that it wouldn't be tolerated in future. they said they would take decisive corrective action if the tory party or, indeed, any other account tries to pull a stunt like this in future. twitter‘s pretty clear about this kind of thing. it has a policy about pretending or implying that you're something that you're not on the platform, and i have to say this is a company that's had to battle this type of technique of changing the identity of an account as something that foreign governments would do to interfere in elections, so to see it coming from a british political party has really angered twitter, at least that's the sense i'm getting from the company today. the us senate has passed a bill to limit armss sales to the hong kong police, as the stand off between police
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and protestors at hong kong's polytechnic university enters its fourth day. only a few pro—democracy protestors are still inside. they face an increasingly desperate situation — supplies of water and food are running out. at the height of the campus occupation there were hundreds on campus — but their number has dwindled. isabella stager is the deputy asia editor at quartz news and shejoins me now from hong kong. welcome and thanks for being with us. welcome and thanks for being with us. what is the latest from inside the campus? there's really not many people left. many overnight came out surrounded and some try to make a dash for it and were put down by police and arrested and medics surrendered and walked out. like you said, the food situation is getting desperate and people don't want to be named but the food situation is dire, so when they come out they are being arrested and the police have remained cordoning off the area around. are police simply waiting to wait them out? we haven't had any
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more of the confrontational scenes like a few days ago, with teargas and molotov just being like a few days ago, with teargas and molotovjust being thrown, they are waiting now for the people to come out. at this point what are the protesters being holed up for days saying they want to achieve by continuing their stand—off? saying they want to achieve by continuing their stand-off? many don't want to come out because the police say anybody who comes out, regardless of whether you are a social worker or someone trapped in there, or you are helping in the kitchen and you are doing that, then you are charged with writing and then they say you get ten years in jailand then they say you get ten years in jail and that's a reasonable charge. just helping out and not being involved in the riotous acts doesn't matter. —— rioting. they feel it is unfair. there's a new police chief over the past few days, what has been the response from him? is the sense he's taking a harder line now? it seems like the police chief is taking a harder line, and he even changed the police force slogan and
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remove the words to serve with care and pride to honour with duty and loyalty only. they have been around the city and they used a stun grenade in the centre of the city on monday night. they have adopted a more hardline approach. they say that would have meant the protesters wouldn't have spread over the last few months. they are seeing a use of force as a way of ending the protests. talk about the us senate comments in the last few hours that will have an impact on trade relationships if hong kong doesn't uphold democracy and human rights? yes, it's seen as the first major breakthrough in a month long stalemate where the hong kong government has not really acted to solve the problem in a political way. people have been pressing the us to pass this bill and china has predictably, of course, said its happy with the us decision. it has summoned the ambassador and it has
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called it interfering in the internal affairs. called it interfering in the internalaffairs. president called it interfering in the internal affairs. president trump has to sign into enacted into law, but he's facing bipartisan pressure to pass it. this is seen as a victory for the protesters, who want strong international action to break out of this impasse. isabella stager, thanks for your analysis live from hong kong. thank you. land mines kill or injure an average of four afghans every day. now an all—female squad of mine clearance experts are close to announcing they have cleared the central bamyan province of explosives. the bbc‘s auliya atrafi has been to bamyan to find out more. it is mission critical for these women, walking in a battlefield in search of a hidden enemy. they are the country's first ever team of female de—miners, unearthing the remnants of the four decades of conflict.
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for some, it is a personalfight. translation: a man had gone to the mountain on the day of eid. he said he would be back soon, but he never came back. from that day, i decided — i wish there was some equipment or opportunity so i could clear up the mines. this was a battlefront between the russians and then—mujahideen. now, it's a pasture, littered with cluster bombs, landmines and bombshells. within the first two hours of walking here, the girls found an unexploded shell here, and a cluster bomb left two metres to my left. it is a dangerous undertaking, dealing with these highly sensitive explosives. the only way to secure them is to get rid of them. just underneath the
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minefield, life goes on. these people take the brunt of this hidden menace. four afghans fall victim to unexploded ordnance on a daily basis. this couple lost two of their sons to a landmine explosion six months ago. the mother is too traumatised to talk. the father tells us the boys had gone to collect firewood. translation: one was the son of my neighbour. his head, hands and feet — he was totally burnt and unrecognisable. my sons, too. a new beginning for this ancient place. home to the famous buddhas of bamyan, destroyed by the taliban,
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this province is soon to be announced mine—free. war is still going on in afghanistan, and so is the use of landmines. a tough and difficult prospect for afghans to sort through. some breaking news now from afghanistan and we are just learning the two us service members crash there. of the crashes under investigation however according to preliminary reports they do not indicate it was caused by enemy fire. time now for all the latest the bbc sport's desk. hello, i'm chetan pathak with wednesday's sport briefing. we start with tottenham who have sacked mauricio pochettino after five years in charge at the premier league club. he was appointed in may, 2014 and led spurs to the champions league
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final only last season. but they've made a disappointing start to this campaign and are currently 14th in the league, 20 points behind the leaders liverpool. wales sealed their place at next year's european championship finals with 2—0 win against hungary in their final qualifier. they were surprise semi—finalists in 2016 and thanks to a couple of goals from juventus midfielder aaron ramsey, they'll be at euro 2020. canada are the first country into the quarter finals of the davis cup after they beat the united states on tuesday — something they failed to do in their previous 15 attempts. vasek pospisil, who stunned fabio fognini on monday and is ranked 150th, gave them a perfect start with a hard fought win over reilly opelka 7—6, 7—6. denis shapovalov then won the second match to seal their quarter—final place.
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chelsea's appeal against the transfer ban imposed by fifa will be held at the court of arbitration for sport on wednesday. the europa league champions were sanctioned in february for breaking rules around the international transfer and registration of players under 18. the club are currently unable to make signings until february and failed to overturn the decision when presenting their case to fifa's appeals committee in april. new zealand and england begin their two—match test series on wednesday. england haven't claimed a series victory in new zealand since 2008. mount maunganui will be the backdrop as chris silverwood's tenure as england head coach begins. new zealand have lost only one of their last 15 tests on home soil. great britain begin their davis cup finals campaign on wednesday against the netherlands. former world number one andy murray says he needs to be cautious about the intense schedule
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after having hip surgery injanuary. they play the netherlands on wednesday and kazakhstan on thursday. as you'd expect on social media, plenty of people have been having their say on mauricio pochettino's departure from tottenham. here's a flavour of what's being said. spurs midfielder dele alli says: former england captain and spurs striker gary lineker has said: and former spurs midfielder jermainejenas posted this: plenty more on that on our website — that's bbc.com/sport. but from me, chetan pathak, and the rest of the sport team, that's your wednesday sport briefing.
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southern australia is bracing for catastrophic fire danger as temperatures of around a0 degrees celcius and strong winds are expected later. hundreds of koalas are feared dead as bushfires spread across across the east coast, ravaging their main habitat, but some people are doing what they can to save the vulnerable marsupials. andy moore reports. other animals can run from the flames. a koala cannot. this slow—moving marsupial is trapped. you need rescuing. the woman behind the voice takes her shirt off her back and rescues the animal, taking care to avoid getting hurt herself. this gateway is closed. can you get water from my car? and then she gives him firstaid, dousing him in water to try and treat his burns. put him in the blanket and bring him out of the hot stuff. this animal was lucky. it was taken off to a local animal
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hospital for treatment. but it is believed that hundreds have died in the bushfires. this is a young koala recovering well after being rescued. it was found curled up and badly dehydrated. but it is hoped it would eventually be able to return to its home in the wild. stay with me on bbc. we will be back with the business briefing shortly. we will be looking at the deforestation of the amazon as the brazil finance deforestation of the amazon as the brazilfinance minister deforestation of the amazon as the brazil finance minister is deforestation of the amazon as the brazilfinance minister is due deforestation of the amazon as the brazil finance minister is due to meet leaders later today. how bad is it and what can we do to help? our talking point today. as another company cuts its ties with prince andrew's pitch@palace and the two main party leaders are asked if he is fit for purpose — we want to know if you think prince andrew should step down from royal duties? get in touch — just use the hashtag #bbcthebriefing.
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stay with us here on bbc news, so much more to come. hello, wednesday is not going to start quite as cold as tuesday, further west there will be a little bit of rain around thanks to a weather front, but much of the country there will be quite a bit of cloud around to start, we should see sunshine appearing through the midlands, and into parts of wales as the day wears on. shower perhaps down the coast, most of the rain will be with us, it's quite wet as the rain continues to affect cornwall. template is here, 10—11 degrees, but for most a very chilly day in fact, highs of 6—9 celsius. as we head through wednesday night, it stays dry for most again, variable cloud, perhaps the odd shower across the east coast,
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but this weather front will bring further wet weather into western areas, particularly into southwest cornwall, the weather totals really starting to mount up here. a chilly night across the north, milder further south. thursday is a similar story, again variable cloud, some sunshine, could see a bit more cloud across the board than we can see on wednesday, and again rain will continue across the south—west parts of wales, up into northern ireland too. temperatures here double figures, single figures elsewhere. some subtle changes for friday, we see this weather front little bit further northwards and eastwards across the uk but again it is going to be fairly similar winds, coming in from the south or south—east, turning a little bit milder in the south. a band of cloud and rain will be spreading northwards, northern england, northern ireland and into scotland, and we will see a rush of heavier showers push ing into the south, and the south—west towards the channel islands. 10s and 11s in the south, 8s and 9s the north, so it will be slowly climbing as we reach the end of the week.
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low pressure is going to be always nearby into the weekend and indeed into next week, we can see this weather front spread northwards into the weekend, and a new low pressure pushes into western areas on sunday and into the following week, so that will bring more unsettled conditions to our shores. fairly tightly—packed isoba rs, you'll notice, quite windy but look at the orange colours, indicating it is going to be mild or even milder in fact. as we head into the weekend to next week we could be looking at temperatures 12—13 degrees into the south, you'll also notice that will be quite unsettled, windy, and wet at times.
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this is the business briefing. i'm samantha simmonds. we take a look at the amazon's deforestation, as brazil's environment minister is set to meet business and local leaders later today. and the national carrier of fiji looks to a greener future, as the country faces the threat of rising sea levels. and on the markets. they are down, due to fears that trade talks between beijing and washington could be derailed after us president donald trump threatened fresh tariffs.

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