welcome to bbc news — i'm david eades. our top stories. in cuba, the biggest protests against the communist government in decades — president biden says the protests are a "clarion call for freedom". at least a0 people have been killed in a fire at a iraqi hospital treating coronavirus patients, in the city of nassiriya. dozens of patients are missing. south africa's president appeals for an end to days of violence and looting, sparked by the jailing of his predecessor. the wildfires rage on, the heat intensifies as millions struggle amid record—breaking temperatures in the western us. the best way to describe it, which is the way my friend described it, is that moment when you open the oven
and that gust of heat hits you in the face. hello and welcome. opponents of cuba's communist government say dozens of activists have been arrested after thousands of people joined the biggest protests in decades. some were detained at the demonstrations, others were arrested at their homes. the protests called for democratic freedoms and criticised the handling of the coronavirus pandemic. president miguel diaz—canel has blamed the united states�* embargo for the unrest. he said it was aimed at encouraging dissent and social unrest. our north america editor jon sopel has more. libertad! "libertad", the crowd in havana shouts, orfreedom.
but while many cubans feel this in their hearts, it's extremely rare for protesters to take to the streets to give vent to their anger in this one—party communist state. translation: we are here because of the repression l against the people. they are starving us to death. havana is collapsing. we have no house, nothing, but they have the money to build hotels and they have us starving. and shouting "down with the dictatorship," as many of the protesters did, can come with a heavy price. but a toxic cocktail of economic collapse, a faltering response to the pandemic and lack of civil liberties has emboldened these people. and the response of the president? "blame your over—mighty neighbourjust 90 miles to the north, the united states." translation: there will be a revolutionary response, i so we call upon all the revolutionaries in the country, all the communists, to take to the streets of any of the places where these provocations are
going to take place. for decades, cuba was a flashpoint in the cold war between the us and the soviet union. archive report: the familiar communist brainwashing - technique is displayed - in propaganda books constantly spewed out as required reading. nearly sparking a nuclear confrontation between the superpowers. in this period, hundreds of thousands of cubans fled to the us and to miami. and it was no surprise that last night the exiled community was out in force to support their countrymen, support that's come from the american president, too. i don't think we've seen anything like this protest in a long, long time, if, quite frankly, ever. the united states stands firmly with the people of cuba as they assert their universal rights, and we call on the government of cuba to refrain from violence, and their attempts to silence the voice of the people of cuba. this is being watched incredibly closely by the white house.
sanctions that were intensified in the trump era have not been relaxed byjoe biden. what needs to be weighed is whether this is just a spasmodic outburst or the start of a cuban spring and something much more fundamental. jon sopel, bbc news, washington. jose miguel vivanco is the director of the americas division of human rights watch. he started by giving me more details of the situation on the ground in cuba. the demonstrations continued today. those demonstrations were not as massive as yesterday. the government has been confronting peaceful demonstrators with brutal force. plenty of cubans in arbitrary detention. some of them are victims of injuries. we don't have clear numbers
of those ones in detention or who has been wounded. but the truth of the matter is the reaction of the cuban government has been pretty brutal, to try to effectively control this peaceful demonstration. the message from the protesters is anxiety about coronavirus and simple freedoms, as well as of course the economic hardship which everyone i think recognises is taking place in cuba. but the president points out there has been a us embargo which has even been tightened in the last six months, and that's where the trouble is coming from. well, that is the classic argument of the cuban government, to blame everything to the policy of isolation, coming from washington. the truth of the matter is the cuban people
are suffering as a result of corruption, mismanagement, and essentially lack of democracy and accountability. the cuban people are facing longer and longer lines to wait hours for a little bit of food. the blackouts are more frequent, very long hours. another fact that is unprecedented in cuba is the role of social media. the cuban people are using facebook, twitter, the internet, youtube, to organise themselves, to communicate and also to show their reality in cuba. it's a factor, and i don't
think it has been a subject of review since obama was moving the country in the right direction. as long as you have the policies of embargo against cuba, they are going to be an argument for the cuban government to justify the state of affairs. even repression in cuba, on the embargo coming from the us. a majorfire has broken out at a hospital treating coronavirus patients in the southern iraqi city of nassiriya. we understand the number of patients to have died has already risen to at least a0. it could go higher. health officials say the fire at the al—hussain hospital has now been brought under control and a search operation
is being carried out. tanya dendrinos reports. a roaring inferno and a sea of desperate voices. fire crews battling the flames raging against the night sky. dozens have died, many are injured, and others still unaccounted for. what makes this scene all the more devastating is the fact it's at a coronavirus hospital in a country already ravaged by war, with a health system under significant strain. medical teams did their best to treat victims as the search operation continued in the burnt—out wards. the blaze was likely caused by an explosion of an oxygen tank, and it comesjust months after a similar incident in a hospital in baghdad which claimed more than 80 lives. south africa has deployed its military to two of the country's provinces, following deadly riots that
erupted after former president jacob zuma handed himself in, to begin a is—month jail sentence. mr zuma was convicted of contempt of court, afterfailing to attend an inquiry into corruption during his presidency. the bbc�*s southern africa correspondent nomsa maseko has the latest. south african police were clearly overwhelmed. they had their hands full, trying to stop mobs who started looting shopping centres. nothing was spared. every shop was looted here. the military was then deployed. with more boots on the ground, the government hopes the protests and looting will come to an end. the jailing of south africa's former president, jacob zuma, resulted in violent protest action, followed by looting incidents in two provinces — mr zuma's home province
of kwazulu—natal and gauteng, the country's economic hub. more than 200 people have been arrested. police are investigating the deaths of six others. south africa's president, cyril ramaphosa, addressed the nation. he said criminal activity would not be tolerated. i have today authorised the deployment of the defence force personnel in support of the operations of the south african police service. the nationaljoint operation and intelligence structure known as natjoints has intensified deployments in all the affected areas in kwazulu—natal and in gauteng. beyond the looting of businesses, which has a negative impact on the economy, the violent protests have now caused a delay in the vaccination
roll—out for covid—i9. centres are closed, citing security concerns. it remains unclear when they'll open, as protesters vow to continue their protest action untiljacob zuma is released from prison. nomsa maseko, bbc news, pietermaritzburg. i'm joined from new york by benjamin fogel, journalist and writer, contributing editor to jacobin magazine and the website africa's a country, which provides analysis on african politics, economics and culture. thanks very much forjoining us. we have such a list here, the looting and violence is going on day by day at the moment. obviously the damage being inflicted through the covid pandemic. and the sense of corruption on top of which are the splits within the anc. is there one part of this you
can tackle that might improve the state of play of the rest of the country?— of the country? well, it's a very complicated _ of the country? well, it's aj very complicated situation. what you effectively have is a set of social discontent in south africa which is related to sky what again —— to skyrocketing unemployment, over 40%, skyrocketing unemployment, over a0%, austerity and cuts to social grants, full of social tensions. it only needed something to like the match, and in this case it was the campaign by pro—zuma forces to unleash social discontent. so while the country have to deal with the fact part of the ruling party is prepared to launch an insurrection to release a former president, there a wider of social discontent, deep social issues, economic inequality and an
increasingly unviable part of south african society. not being catered to doing this covid crisis.— being catered to doing this covid crisis. that is a pretty bleak assessment. - covid crisis. that is a pretty bleak assessment. what i covid crisis. that is a pretty| bleak assessment. what can covid crisis. that is a pretty - bleak assessment. what can be done? ~ . . , bleak assessment. what can be done? ~ . ., , , done? what really terrifies me, south africa _ done? what really terrifies me, south africa with _ done? what really terrifies me, south africa with our _ done? what really terrifies me, south africa with our history - south africa with our history of violence, ethnic and racial divisions, and our recent history of xenophobia, these protests could easily take on these trends and become even more dangerous than they are now. especially if vigilantes roam the neighbourhoods, as seems to be happening. they have to be dealt with in terms of a police response. i hope the military are prepared for what they have been sent to do. i don't know enough about what they are capable of doing. in my view, taking away from dealing with the zuma issue, and he has been lightly prosecuted and in jail right
now, awaiting more prosecutions accusations. —— he has been rightly prosecuted. more generally, there has to be some state intervention. a country with 76% youth unemployment is not sustainable. there has to be expanded social grants, a basic income grant. in be expanded social grants, a basic income grant.- basic income grant. in which case, benjamin, _ basic income grant. in which case, benjamin, that - basic income grant. in which case, benjamin, that makesj basic income grant. in which - case, benjamin, that makes me wonder whether, case, benjamin, that makes me wonderwhether, really, case, benjamin, that makes me wonder whether, really, the emphasis has to be on shoring up emphasis has to be on shoring up the economic crisis that cyril ramaphosa sees in front of him rather than issues of corrupt politicians and the patron edge that comes with it, and that sense of pig that the trough, which i think has been a familiar sense for many south africans as to just what goes on in the country?— on in the country? well, i think you _ on in the country? well, i think you can't _ on in the country? well, i think you can't separate l on in the country? well, i - think you can't separate these issues. it's not cyril dealing
with the corrupt politicians, it's the national prosecuting authority, an independent body. we should make sure the independent and capable prosecution has capacity to deal with this. in my view, you can't separate corruption from wider issues. i write about this and research it quite deeply. corruption is tied to inequality in power and public life. part of the crisis is that even state responses which have been set aside to help the working class in south africa has been subject to patron edge and looting. b, has been sub'ect to patron edge and looting.— has been sub'ect to patron edge and looting. a very complex and intangible. _ and looting. a very complex and intangible, intransigent - intangible, intransigent problem. thank you very much indeed. stay with us on bbc news, still to come. millions struggle with soaring
temperatures, as wildfires rage across the western us. after months of talks and missed deadlines, a deal has been struck to keep greece within the euro zone. the immediate prospect of greece going bust in the worst crisis to hit the euro zone has been averted. emergency services across central europe are stepping up their efforts to contain the worst floods this century. nearly 100 people have been killed. broadway is traditionally called the great white way by americans, but tonight, it's completely blacked out. it's a timely reminder to all americans of the problems that the energy crisis has brought to them. leaders meet in paris- fora summit on pollution, inflation and third world debt. this morning, theyjoinedl the revolution celebrations for a show of military might on the champs—elysees. . wildlife officials in australia have been coping with a penguin problem. fairy penguins have
been staggering ashore and collapsing after gorging themselves on their favourite food, pilchards. some had eaten so much, they could barely stand. this is bbc world news, the latest headlines. opponents of cuba's communist authorities say dozens of activists have been arrested since sunday's anti—government demonstrations on the island. at least a0 people have been killed in a fire at a iraqi hospital treating coronavirus patients, in the city of nassiriya. dozens of patients are missing. 30 million people across the western united states and canada have been enduring another blistering heatwave. las vegas has matched its record ofjust over 47 degrees,
around 116 degrees fahrenheit. in death valley in california, the temperature was expected to reach 52 degrees celsius, 125 fahrenheit. and the extreme heat is having some devastating consequences. wildfires have been burning across six western us states. our correspondent sophie long reports from los angeles. wildfires in northern california grow in size and intensity, destroying homes in multiple communities as increasing winds complicate already—dangerous firefighting conditions. this fire is raging out of control in southern oregon, as millions of people across the western us are hit by another round of scorching temperatures. i'm on the west side... more than 60,000 acres are currently burning. california is no stranger to wildfires, but scientists
say they're becoming more frequent and more intense as global temperatures rise. the national weather service recorded temperatures of 130 degrees in california's death valley, some of the highest ever recorded on the planet. people in desert communities are being warned how quickly they can dehydrate or overheat. not realising how quickly you can run into trouble with dehydration and heat exhaustion or the body overheating. but even those following advice in palm springs are struggling. it's too hot. i'm drinking as much water as i can. i'm drinking my weight in water every day. i think the best way to - describe it, which is actually the way my friend described it, is that moment when you openj the oven and that gust of heat hits you in the face. _ the extreme heat has led to the deaths of dozens of people across the western united states in recent weeks.
it's also putting a massive strain on the region's power grid. californians are now being told to reduce their water usage by 15%. it's not compulsory, but it underscores the harsh reality that millions of people living in cities like los angeles are now facing. as the record—breaking temperatures continue, people can only do their best to stay cool. sophie long, bbc news, los angeles. france is to make it compulsory for all health staff to be vaccinated against covid 19. announcing the new rules, president emmanuel macron said workers in retirement homes and other healthcare settings would have until september to get themselves vaccinated. just over half of france's population — 35.5 million people — have had at least one jab. dutch prime minister mark rutte has apologised for what he called
"an error ofjudgement" in scrapping most coronavirus restrictions in the country. authorities eased measures three weeks ago, which led to a spike in cases. curbs on bars, restaurants and nightclubs were reimposed on friday. the aftermath of england's last—gasp defeat to italy in the euros final at wembley has been dominated not so much by the performance itself, as by the racist abuse aimed at three players who missed their penalties at the end of the match. the manager gareth southgate described the highly offensive language as "unforgivable". the prime minister said those responsible should crawl back under the rock they came from. one of the players targeted, marcus rashford, said he will "never apologise for who i am". our sports editor dan roan reports. it had all started so well. having waited more than half a century for their first major final, england took the lead afterjust two minutes. but then suffered the cruelty of an all—too—familiar fate against italy. losing once again on penalties.
a tournament that had lit up the summer, ending in tears. as the team left their hotel this morning, the manager left to reflect on what might have been. the fact that we've had, you know, the first signs of consistency, semifinal, final, has to be a step in the right direction. it's not ultimately where we wanted to get and when you are so close that is even more painful. you know, it feels like your stomach has been ripped out this morning. but the game's aftermath was soured still further. the three players who missed from the spot, marcus rashford, jadon sancho and bukayo saka, all subjected to racist online abuse. for some of them to be abused is unforgivable, really. we've got to make sure that we're there and aligned with their clubs and making sure that we look after those boys, absolutely. this morning, the fa president, the duke of cambridge, said he was sickened by what he called abhorrent behaviour —
"it must stop now," he added. borisjohnson said he hoped those responsible would crawl back under the rock from which they emerged. but labour leader sir keir starmer claimed the prime minister failed to show leadership by not initially condemning fans who booed england's taking of the knee before warm—up matches. downing street insist he always supported the players' right to protest and did subsequently criticise the booing, asking fans to cheer. tonight, england defender tyrone mings accused home secretary priti patel of stoking the fire. she had described taking the knee as gesture politics last month. today, a mural dedicated to marcus rashford was defaced. the police are investigating what they called racially motivated vandalism. tonight, rashford apologised for his penalty miss but said he would never apologise for who he was. it's unacceptable. as long as they are performing and scoring and getting results, then of course, we are all england, we are all behind you.
but the minute that doesn't happen, the abuse comes out. the euros are over and the hurt continues for england, but as they head home, the sense is that these players are going in the right direction. rather than the day of celebration english football had hoped for, this was a reminder that while the team proved a unifying and uplifting force, the issues of hooliganism and racism have not gone away. but after a historic campaign they will never forget, southgate and his players can plan for the world cup next year with renewed belief that finally they are contenders again. italy's national team have been given a heroes' welcome in rome, after their euro 2020 victory on sunday evening. after a night of celebration, they were invited to a reception by the italian president, followed by
a triumphant open top bus tour of the capital. our correspondent mark lowen sent this report from rome. for this football passionate nation, they are savouring every moment. the partying went on late into the night, i got home at four am this morning and there were still parties right across the city and i'm sure right across the country. it will go on for several days. the italian team had an honour guard with the prime minister and president of italy, there have been anthems, tanks given to them. now is the time for italy to enjoy this moment of glory. —— thanks given to them. after the failure to qualify for the last world cup and after this year of covid agony, now is the time to just enjoy the moment, and that is absolutely what italians are doing.
absolutely what italians are doinu . absolutely what italians are doinu. , ., doing. the 'oys of winning the euros, doing. the joys of winning the euros, something _ doing. the joys of winning the euros, something england - doing. the joys of winning the i euros, something england have never experienced. that is bbc news, thanks for watching. we had some pretty impressive downpours across different parts of the country on monday. the radar picture shows one of these bands of heavy rain working into north east england, particularly north yorkshire, and then we have this second band of rain across the west london area. now in kew, in west london, we picked up 46mm of rain from the shower band. that was pretty much smack bang on a whole month's worth of rain and the majority fell in just the space of two hours. if you were wondering what that looks like, it looks like this. three miles down the road in twickenham, roads flooded, and reports of flooding elsewhere as well. over the next few hours, those showers we've seen by day will continue to very gradually fade away. most of us will eventually become drier overnight with an odd patch of rain
lingering into the east. temperatures around 12 to 1a celsius, feeling a little on the muggy side as well, particularly across parts of eastern england. for tuesday, much more dry weather and sunshine with fewer showers, and for most of us a dry morning. the early morning cloud breaking, sunny spells developing widely, and should be a lot of that sunshine. but into the afternoon, we're likely to see some showers develop. this line of showers forming across parts of northwest england, the midlands and perhaps another affecting wales down towards parts of dorset too. now, those showers could be fairly heavy at times, but away from those shower bands, there should be a lot of dry weather to take us through the rest of the afternoon. temperatures pushing into the low 20s quite widely. it will feel warm in the sunshine. now, wednesday, we see a little weather front working into the far northwest of the uk. that's bringing some thicker cloud. might get a few patches of rain just skirting into the north and west of scotland.
but otherwise, probably a bit more cloud around, but still some bright or sunny spells developing. the best of those towards the east of high ground and those temperatures still into the low 20s. it'll be another day that feels pleasantly warm where the sunshine breaks through the cloud. beyond that, end of the week, the weekend and next week, this area of high pressure is going to dominate our weather picture, and that means we've got a lengthy spell of dry and sunny weather. temperatures on these charts pushing into the high 20s. well, it wouldn't be surprising to see temperatures into the low 30s in some places next week.
the headlines: the cuban opposition says dozens of activists have been arrested since sunday — when thousands of people joined the biggest protests in decades against the island's communist government. many were detained at the demonstrations, others were picked up from their homes. president diaz—canel has blamed the united states for the unrest. at least a0 people have been killed in a fire at a iraqi hospital treating coronavirus patients, in the city of nassiriya. health officials say the fire is now being brought under control but dozens of patients are said to be missing. south africa's governing anc party has warned that continuing violent demonstrations will have a devastating economic impact on the country. troops have been deployed to protect property, as protestors set buildings on fire and looted shops. the violence was triggered by the jailing of the former president, jacob zuma. face masks will no longer be compulsory