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tv   BBC News at Six  BBC News  February 4, 2022 6:00pm-6:31pm GMT

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downing street insists that borisjohnson is still in control after criticism from some mps and a string of resignations of close aides. more pressure today, with another mp calling on him to go — and the resignation of a fifth downing street adviser. a cabinet colleague came to his defence. i believe that the best thing for the country is for the prime minister to continue, he is doing a greatjob. we'll bring you all the latest from westminster. also on the programme. music. a spectacle in beijing to mark the opening of the winter olympics — but fewer world leaders attend because of claims of human rights abuses by president xi's government. the desperate race to reach a five—year—old boy who fell down a narrow well in morocco four days ago. the number of children and young people in england needing specialist
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support for mental health issues hits a record high. and the queen marks her platinium jubilee, viewing some quirky cards and gifts — celebrating her 70 years as monarch. and coming up in sport on the bbc news channel: the old rivals meet again but who'll come out on top this time — as scotland face england on the opening weekend of rugby union's six nations? good evening. the conservative backbench mp aaron bell has become the latest to confirm that he has submitted a letter of no confidence in the prime minister. it comes as an embattled borisjohnson saw a fifth adviser resign today from downing street, after the departure of four others yesterday.
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downing street said the resignations were not a sign the prime minister was losing control. as well as being under pressure over lockdown parties in downing street, mrjohnson has come in for particular criticism over a false claim made in the commons that the labour leader sir keir starmer had failed to prosecute the child sex offender jimmy savile when he was director of public prosecutions. one senior tory told mrjohnson to "shape up or ship out". but the cabinet minister michael gove said he believed "the best thing" for the country was for mrjohnson to continue. our political correspondent iain watson reports. are the normal rules of politics being turned on their head? boris johnson delivered and 80 seat majority yet some of his own mps are openly talking about whether he should be leaving downing street good. she is a fighter and a quitter, representing england at boxing.
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today she dealt the prime a blow by resigning from his policy unit. she is a close ally of mirza, the number 10 policy chief who were out yesterday, one borisjohnson�*s closest aides who had worked for him for a decade. both resignations were unforeseen in government and ministers had to put a brave face on the downing street departures. the people going our distinguished public servants but the prime minister wanted change and he said there would be changed and we are seeing that change now. the chief of staff at number 10 dan rosenfield seen on the left, communications directorjack doyle and senior civil servant martin reynolds are also leaving number 10. they were expected to go in response to the initial report from sue gray on lockdown gatherings. the remaining staff in downing street attended another gathering today, a pep talk from the prime minister. i am told he quoted from the lion king saying change is good.
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some sceptical mps suggested either the prime minister himself would need to change or they might need to change the prime minister. we want this to work but i think for myself— we want this to work but i think for myself i _ we want this to work but i think for myself i am — we want this to work but i think for myself i am deeply troubled by what is going _ myself i am deeply troubled by what is going on_ myself i am deeply troubled by what is going on and we all know if a prime — is going on and we all know if a prime minister does not ship up they had to— prime minister does not ship up they had to shape out and that is what this banister took over. another_ this banister took over. another mp aaron bell confirmed he had submitted a letter of no confidence in the prime minister saying the breach of trust makes his position untenable. for some tory mps it is not a matter of if but when they will call for a vote of no—confidence. it takes only 5a to trigger the vote but 180 win. some of the prime minister's long—standing critics are wary because under party rules if they fail to oust borisjohnson he cannot be challenged for another year. in politics as in comedy timing is everything. another factor holding some mps back from pushing borisjohnson out of
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number 10 is a question of who would move in. next door neighbour rishi sunak distanced himself from downing street gatherings and the controversial comments about keir starmer but his allies say that does not mean he has given the nod to a contest. borisjohnson has written to all tory mps promising to work more closely with them and in a sign he wants to stay at number 10 he declares, they will deliver together. this is the letter sent to mps today, designed to win over those wavering about his leadership, some feeling desperately left out. he saysin feeling desperately left out. he says in this letter he will harness that energy and insight and invite them to take part in the policy—making process. for some who are calculating whether they will get more influence over a relatively weakened prime minister, it may bolster his position. the official line from downing street is the
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prime list is getting on with his job but this shows he has his work cut out to secure his own employment. iain watson reporting there. the winter olympics in beijing are now officially under way, with 3,000 athletes from 91 nations taking part — 50 of them competing for team gb. beijing is the first city to hold both a summer and winter games but they're being staged against a backdrop of covid, and tensions over claims of human rights abuses. 0ur sports correspondent laura scott reports from beijing. after a contentious build—up, the opening to a games that will carve out a new chapter in sporting history. back in the bird's nest, beijing tonight celebrating becoming the first city to host the summer games and winter games. this was a far cry from the summer of 2008. sub—0 tipped accompanying snow and ice which appear to
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crystallise on the stadium floor. covid meant a capacity crowd was not possible. but the selected spectators were captivated by impactful moments. despite the frosty theme, there was a warm greeting from international olympic committee president thomas bach and president xi, keen to promote the theme of one world, one family, with vladimir putin watching on from the stands. there was significance in the absence of other world leaders. china has been frozen out by several countries including the uk and the us who are staging diplomatic boycotts over alleged human rights abuses by china. there are no signs of athlete boycotts with hundreds parading tonight. slalom skier dave ryding and curling skipper eve muirhead leading out members of team gb. some dressed for the weather better
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than others. last of the 91 nations, the unsurprising crowd favourite, team china. amid criticism over its choice of host, the 10c has stressed its neutrality, but the man in charge had this message. this is the mission of the olympic a -- olympic— this is the mission of the olympic a —— olympic games, bringing us together— —— olympic games, bringing us together in— —— olympic games, bringing us together in peaceful competition, always— together in peaceful competition, always building bridges, never erecting — always building bridges, never erecting walls. i appeal to all local— erecting walls. i appeal to all local authorities across the world, - ive local authorities across the world, give peace — local authorities across the world, give peace a chance. finally— give peace a chance. finally time for the games to be declared open. from high—tech drama, to a more simple flame lighting, ending a ceremony that sort to present a
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scene of purity, peace and unity to the world. laura scott, beijing. ahead of the olympics ceremony, china and russia put on a united front when president xi jinping met vladimir putin in beijing. mr putin hailed what he called the "unprecedented" ties between the two countries, as china backed russia's security and foreign policy aims — including demands that the western alliance nato halt expansion. emergency workers in morocco are hopeful they'll soon reach a five—year—old boy who's been trapped for four days in a deep well. the child, who's called rayan, slid more than 30 metres into the shaft, while his father was repairing it. the shaft is narrow — so, rescuers are digging a large hole parallel to it to reach the boy, as helena wilkinson reports. this footage from a camera lowered into the well show rayan covered in earth, with little room to move. he has been trapped like this for three days. above him, a complex rescue
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operation is under way. it has been going on since tuesday night when rayan fell 32 metres down this narrow opening. for the five—year—old's family, the wait is agonising. translation: i ask all moroccans to please pray for him, _ he really needs your prayers. rayan is the son of all moroccans. translation: rayan is very much loved here in the village, - notjust at home. imiss him. an oxygen mask, food and water have been lowered into the well. whether the little boy has drunk or eaten is not known. early attempts to reach him through the well�*s opening failed because of the narrowness of the hole's diameter. since then, rescuers have been working through the night to extract the ground next to the boy. once at his level, they hope to create an opening. after days of digging, there are just metres to go, but there is the risk of a landslide.
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translation: considerable efforts have been deployed by local- authorities and all participating bodies to accelerate the process and rescue the child, rayan, as soon as possible. the only solution remains to use bulldozers in order to make a hole to extract the child as soon as possible. this is an extremely delicate operation. rescuers, though, are hopeful that soon they will be able to free rayan and return the little boy to his family. helen wilkinson, bbc news. a former member of the house of lords has beenjailed for five—and—a—half years for child sex offences. lord ahmed of rotherham carried out the assaults on two children in the 1970s when he was a teenager. there are now calls for him to be stripped of his title. the 64—year—old was tried under his real name, nazir ahmed. the government's £9 billion move this week to shore up household finances in the face of a sharp rise in energy bills was
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a major intervention — adding up to help of £350 a year for the majority of families. but what difference will that sum make to people struggling with the rise in the cost of living, and will it get to those who need help the most? our business editor simonjack reports. george is one of many for whom a 54% rise in the energy cap will force choices they've never had to make before. i'm going to have to start pulling back on certain things, so i might have to shut down my business or, at least, reduce some of the costs that i have on it. i might have to stop using some of the things i used to help myself mentally like socialising with friends or going to the gym, and also food is going to be difficult to even eat what i wanted. i'm going to have to randomly select stuff that's cheap. the impact is broad and, for some, it is very deep. you could say we're all in the same store, but we're definitely not all in the same boat. at this food bank, energy costs are making for tough
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conversations. increasingly, we are asking everyone, can you afford to heat the food that we give? it's often tinned food. and so often the answer, sadly, is no, so we will adapt what we get. these measures will not stop millions falling into fuel stress — defined as household spending more than 10% of their income on energy. currently, there are 2 million households in that situation. the price cap rise will have seen that rise to 6 million. these measures bring that down to 5 million — one million less, but still more than double the current level. the treasury argue because everyone eligible gets the same amount, it will mean proportionally more to those on lower incomes. and they say they're expanding at the warm home discount to cover 3 million people who will get £150 as a one—off payment, but remember, prices are already rising faster than wages and the government is determined to push through a £6 billion tax hike
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and these measures won't change the harsh reality that households are facing the biggest drop in living standards since comparable records began 32 years ago. the governor of the bank of england angered unions yesterday when he suggested workers shouldn't ask for inflationary pay rises. the uk's biggest energy boss, who employs 30,000 people, says he could see both sides. this is a temporary spike in inflation, and wages rise to meet that spike, then, the people paying those wages have to pass on that cost, and that is when you get into the wage hike inflation spiral. but by the same token, if you are trying to figure out how to pay for your groceries at aldi, then it's not enough to sit and say, well, and not going to do this because it will cause some spiral in the economy, you're worried about paying your bills, you're worried about feeding your family, you're worried about heating your home. he described any government help with bills as welcome and necessary, but knows it won't be sufficient to relieve painful income squeeze.
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the time is 6.15pm. our top story this evening: downing street insists that borisjohnson is still in control after the resignation of a fifth downing street adviser. still to come: the search for sir ernest shackleton's endurance, more than 100 years after she sank. coming up on sportsday on the bbc news channel: a friday night showdown at old trafford — the fourth round of the fa cup kicks off this evening. can middlesborough pull off an upset against manchester united? this sunday the queen will become the first british monarch to celebrate a platinum jubilee, marking a 70—year reign. a series of events to mark the occasion will take place throughout the year. for the queen, sunday — accession day — is always spent in quiet reflection. it is the day her father, george vi, passed away and she acceded immediately to the throne. our royal correspondent nicholas witchell reports.
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the letters, the newest one. she's nearly 96 now, not quite as robust physically as before. a monarch looking back over 70 years and three previous jubilees. simple, but ingenious. they've been decades during which she's given much, but one thing above all. stability in times of war and peace, in times of social calm and social disruption. stability in times of pandemic. and increasingly, across the world, she has become, i think, a world symbol of stability and strength. and according to the archbishop of canterbury, she has provided leadership by example. at the funeral of her husband of 70—something years, she sat alone. that was leadership.
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it was doing the right thing, it was duty. it set an example. from the earliest moments of her reign, doing the right thing has been instinctive. for all the grandeur of her position, she's understood that respect has to be earned. her ultimate quality has been humility. i think the most successful royals nowadays are the humble ones who understand that they're part of something bigger than them. archive: her majesty moves to king edward's chair, - over which a splendid canopy... elizabeth's reign began the moment her father died, but it was at the coronation when she sat on king edward's throne, that she became the anointed sovereign, set on the path of duty for the remainder of her life.
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the britain to who elizabeth ascended on the day was a very different country to the one today. yet at the core of britain, then as now, was the monarchy. and the young woman who was crowned on this ancient throne has done her utmost to uphold both, crown and country. you would never have set in 1952 that in 70 years, the monarchy would actually be in many ways more successful and more of a centre of national attention than ever, and the fact that it is a scam i think, down to her. the fact that it is a scam i think, down to her-— the fact that it is a scam i think, down to her. , , ., ., , , down to her. the past year has been difficult for her. _ down to her. the past year has been difficult for her. there _ down to her. the past year has been difficult for her. there has _ down to her. the past year has been difficult for her. there has been - difficult for her. there has been personal sadness and family pain. now, a milestone no other british monarch has achieved. br; now, a milestone no other british monarch has achieved.— now, a milestone no other british monarch has achieved. by most, she is loved. monarch has achieved. by most, she is loved- but — monarch has achieved. by most, she is loved. but almost _ monarch has achieved. by most, she is loved. but almost all— monarch has achieved. by most, she is loved. but almost all the - monarch has achieved. by most, she is loved. but almost all the rest, - is loved. but almost all the rest, she is profoundly respected. —— by
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almost all the rest. and around the world, she has lived a life that has made a difference.— made a difference. nicholas witchell, — made a difference. nicholas witchell, ssc _ made a difference. nicholas witchell, bbc news. - the auschwitz memorial and groups representing the traveller community have reacted with anger to a netflix show with jimmy carr. in the programme the comedian said that a "positive" of the holocaust was that gypsies were murdered. historians estimate that between 220,000 and half a million roma and sinti people were killed by the nazis. netflix has declined to comment. the high court in northern ireland has ruled that post—brexit checks on goods arriving from the rest of the uk must continue, pending the outcome of legal challenges. the ruling comes two days after the dup minister edwin poots suspended the process in protest at the northern ireland protocol, which is designed to allow free movement of trade across the irish border after brexit. the first minister paul givan
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resigned yesterday, saying the agreement had weakened northern ireland's links with the rest of the uk. the number of children and young people in england needing specialist mental health care hit a record high last year. and schools say they're also dealing with many more cases than they did before the pandemic. the government has promised 400 mental health support teams by 2023, and the bbc understands almost half of them are up and running. our education editor branwenjeffreys has been speaking to teenagers in barnsley about their experiences. if you didn't have school, you didn't have much to wake up for, so it's not very good for your mental health in the long term. gracie is still struggling with anxiety. you cry and have, like, a ball in your chest. it's like that, but constantly. so even if you don't cry, even if you don't get that upset, even just having time to think,
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you just couldn't make it go away, just calm down. we were getting used to the habit that we weren't going to school, really. and we weren't doing work. at rock bottom, harley lost his self esteem. it was very uncomfortable. i think some of us had put some weight on because there was nowt to do in the house. how can i help you today? i was sent for a well—being meeting. it just gives you somewhere to basically sort of breathe. this year, their school has set up a mental health support centre. there is day—to—day advice, but they also assess risk. some are referred for counselling or nhs help. likejoe, who became severely depressed. i think it has affected me mentally a lot, because i struggled a lot in the two years that we've had. i felt very isolated. and like, hopeless, almost. alone. we have seen a tripling in numbers at every single level, from the low level intervention all the way up to the nhs intervention. three times as many asking for a mental health support? three times. some of the most vulnerable children have virtually gone missing
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from the school system. is mental health a factor in those kids who are just simply not coming back to school or don't want to? i think it is a significant part. we are probably seeing 2% to 3% of our cohort missing that we would put to mental health concerns. schools might look and sound like they're back to normal, but a small number of secondary pupils have never fully returned to england's schools since the start of the pandemic. and behind those missing children, it is thought, are some of the mental health problems that are a legacy of all of the destruction. sometimes, my legs go a bit wobbly. i get jelly legs. they teach coping skills here too, but across england, record numbers are seeking nhs help. how many of you shake? this school, like many others, is dealing with some serious risks. you'd be constantly having that thought that something similar
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could so easily happen again. forjoe, talking has helped him look to the future. as much as it has been horrible, now it feels like i have got places to go and talk to, and things to cope with. branwen jeffreys, bbc news, barnsley. if you've been affected by any of the issues in that report, you can find help and support on the bbc action line website at bbc.co.uk/actionline. the pandemic has had a major impact on cancer diagnoses, with figures suggesting there were around 50,000 fewer in the uk since covid struck. today the health secretary, sajid javid, promised a new ten year strategy for england, while revealing his own father had died of cancer after a late diagnosis. our health editor hugh pym reports. a scan unveiling a hidden killer. this shows a tumour on the left of a lung and, in the middle of the screen, where the cancer has spread.
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it's been detected at a late stage. survival chances are reduced. richard's a rugby league coach and a nonsmoker. he had a cough at the start of the pandemic, but couldn't get to see a gp. he had video calls and was prescribed antibiotics. it was only nine months later, after having a scan, when he was told he had lung cancer which had spread to several areas in his body. the one thing that i would like people to take away or a piece of advice i would like people to use is don't assume that it's long covid if you've had covid, make sure you go and see the gp. see a gp in person. this lung cancer expert says because people with coughs were told to stay at home, the condition of those with cancer got much worse. what i did see was the type of presentation we used to see 20—25 years ago with people that had got really quite severe disease, they were very distressed with symptoms, and they were admitted as emergencies or only just got to the clinic.
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screening can help early diagnosis, but for many cancers, there are problems with delayed treatment. a key target is that patients should start cancer treatment within 62 days of being referred by a gp. but performance in england has declined since the middle of 2020. in november, 67.5% started their treatment within that time. that means nearly a third had to wait longer than two months. the health secretary, visiting a new nhs cancer therapy centre, acknowledged the scale of the challenge. sadly, we've seen, i think, around 50,000 fewer people diagnosed with cancer because of the pandemic and we do need to go a lot further, a lot faster. we need a new national war on cancer. cancer charities welcomed the initiative, but said there was a long way to go. at the moment, cancer survival is too poor in this country and the government must come forward with a plan and new money
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to make improvements. all of the uk's nations are trying to outwit cancer. talk of a new plan for england is just the latest attempt to do that. hugh pym, bbc news. the government's latest figures show coronavirus cases in the uk remain stable, withjust over 84,000 new cases recorded in the latest 24—hour period. on average, nearly 88,000 infections have been reported per day in the last week. there are more than 16,500 people in hospital with covid. 254 deaths have been reported — that's of people who died within 28 days of a positive test, though some will have died of other causes. on average in the past week, 252 deaths were announced every day. on vaccinations, more than 37 million people have now had a boosterjab, which means 65.1% of those aged 12 and over have now had three vaccine doses.
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a farmer has been cleared of dangerous driving and criminal damage after he used a forklift to pick up a car that was on his land and blocking his property. robert hooper moved the car onto the road. he said he'd been assaulted by a passenger from the car and felt "frightened and threatened". mr hooper also argued in durham crown court that an "englishman's home is his castle". over 100 years ago, the antarctic explorer sir ernest shackleton and his team made a daring escape from their ship, the endurance, as it sank in freezing waters. the endurance is believed to be nearly two miles below sea level, but it's never been found. this weekend, an expedition is setting off in the hope of solving the mystery and finding the wreck. our science editor rebecca morelle has been to meet them. the final moments of the endurance. this 100—year—old footage,
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restored and released by the bfi, shows sir ernest shackleton's famous ship as it was lost to the antarctic ice. there's the endurance. now a new expedition is attempting to locate the ship. the endurance is the... the most unreachable wreck in the world, and the big challenge is the ice. it's opening, its clenching. it's a really vicious, lethal environment. this was shackleton's third expedition to antarctica. endurance set off from south georgia in december 1914, but it was a bad yearfor sea ice and by mid january, the ship had become frozen fast. it drifted for months with the crew on board, but eventually, an order was given to abandon the ship after it became crushed by the weight of the ice. endurance finally sank on the 21st of november 1915. its exact location, though, was recorded, and this is where the search will begin.
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the agulhas ii is the icebreaker taking on that challenge. underwater robots kitted out with sonar and cameras will hunt for the wreck 3000 metres down. the hope is it's well preserved by the icy water. shackleton's expedition diary was saved before the endurance sank. "she went today. 5pm. she went down by the head. the stern, the cause of all the trouble, was the last to go underwater. i cannot write about it." you can read about how it was creaking. they talk to her and talk about her as a personality. there's this real kind of sense of how crushed they were when the ship was crushed and sank as well. the endurance crew travelled for hundreds of miles to get to safety. miraculously, they all survived. but the ship that had been their home is still silently waiting to be discovered. rebecca morelle, bbc news.
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time for a look at the weather. here's ben rich. not quite antarctic called here! but it has been pretty chilly today, some of us has seen some snow, which is featured on the weekend weather menu particularly across parts of scotland, some ice as well but for most it is all about rain, and some brisk winds. the wintry showers we had today will tend to fade through the evening, one or two continuing overnight. much of england and wales will be dry but northern ireland and scotland, cloud working from the west, outbreaks of rain, briefly some snow in scotland, many will see a touch frost. the weekend weather make it as this front which you can follow all the way across the atlantic. a ready source of moisture, lots of rain to come. the front divide in the cold air which will cling on towards the north, from the milder air which will attempt to stage something of a comeback in the south. that front will bring outbreaks of rain

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