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tv   BBC News  BBC News  July 17, 2021 1:00am-1:31am BST

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this is bbc news. i'm mark lobel. our top stories... europe's flooding disaster — rescue teams in western germany, belgium and the netherlands search for hundreds of people still missing. in the us, president biden slams social media companies for not doing enough to tackle vaccine misinformation. they are killing people. the only pandemic we have is among the unvaccinated. and they are killing people. just three days until most covid restrictions are lifted in england — the uk records more than 50,000 new cases in a single day south africa's president has addressed the nation after days of rioting and looting — he says efforts to overthrow
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democracy have failed using the pretext of a political grievance, those behind these acts have sought to provoke a popular insurrection amongst our people. hello and welcome to the programme. we start in western europe where hundreds of people remain unaccounted for after some of the worst flooding in decades. 120 people are so far known to have died as record rainfall caused rivers to burst their banks. in germany, chancellor angela merkel described the floods there as a catastrophe. torrential rain has also devastated parts of belgium, the netherlands and luxembourg. swollen rivers, including the rhine, the meuse and the arr have filled towns and villages, destroying homes and leaving many stranded.
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in the town of erftstadt in germany, whole houses have been submerged and a landslide has demolished parts of the town. 0ur correspondent, jenny hill, spent the day there. the ground just fell away. this is the town of erftstadt, where overnight houses collapsed as the water gushed in. another shock for a country reeling from the enormity of its loss. it happened so fast, one official said, there was no time for a warning. rescuers rushed in, but this morning, the authorities here said people trapped in their homes were calling them for help, and in many cases they just couldn't reach them. those who did make it out came to shelters like this. we metjohannes here. he and his wife were winched to safety last night. he arrived barefoot and soaking wet. what were you thinking as they winched you up, i asked. "i had to leave my cat behind," he says. johannes has lived here
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more than 70 years. there have been floods, he told us, but not like this. translation: you can run i from fire, but not from water. tens of thousands of people still don't have power. and they're on alert. water levels have dropped in some areas, but few here feel safe. you can see how powerful the water is here still, and what's worrying people in this area is thatjust upstream there's a dam. experts say it's unstable. they're still inspecting it, but people think if that dam breaks the water is heading in this direction. and with every hour, news of more deaths. people are still missing. with mobile networks down, it's hard to know how many made it to safety. they're desperate for help here. this was a caravan park. how to even begin clearing up? we met the owners, still visibly in shock. translation: indescribable. we've been here since 1979.
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we've never seen anything like this. if we don't get any help, we'll have to go on benefits. bankrupt. germany, a country famed for its strength, its security, feels vulnerable now. jenny hill, bbc news, erftstadt. beyond germany, the extreme weather has touched parts of the netherlands, luxembourg, switzerland and belgium. 0ur correspondent anna holligan assesses the scene for us, beginning in belgium. homes engulfed, whole villages submerged. parts of liege annihilated by the elements. rescuers are still navigating areas to the west, in the town of pepinster. the military was drafted in to assist the stranded on land and by air, and for some it's a desperate wait to find out whether their
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loved ones made it. translation: my wife | is looking for her mother who lives in a town nearby. we have no means of communication. we don't know where she is or how she's doing. in nearby verviers, the waters have receded, but they're still stunned by the extent of the destruction. translation: this shop has been open for three years. _ we had to go through renovations. we had to live through covid. we were hoping to get back on ourfeet. and now this. in the netherlands, this was roermond. swathes of the city have disappeared. this region has been declared a disaster zone. these are the remnants of businesses in the spa town of valkenburg. while the emergency services are busy trying to restore power and secure pavements, the people have come together to try to bring some form of order to these devastated streets. while covid kept them isolated
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and apart, this crisis has caused a community to come out in solidarity. we need to stay positive. we can cry all day, but this will not help anything, so better smiling, and keep working! the rain has paused, but the threat, here and in towns and cities across europe, isn't over yet. anna holligan, bbc news, valkenburg. for more on the devastating floods in europe — go to the bbc news website. there are maps to show you the worst—hit areas — and background analysis on why these floods caught everyone by surprise. go to bbc.com/news and follow the links. let's turn away from the flooding now and in the united states there's a resurgence of coronavirus, with infections rising 70 percent in the past week. the centres for disease control
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has warned of a pandemic of the unvaccinated. the city of los angeles is again requiring people to use face masks while indoors in public settings — after a significant rise in delta variant cases there. the cdc has shown where there are high infection rates in states with low vaccination levels, pointing to nevada, arkansas, missouri and florida in particular. florida itself now accounts for a quarter of new infections in the whole of the us. well, president biden has been speaking to reporters and said this about people spreading covid misinformation on social media platforms. they're killing people. i mean, look, the only pandemic we have is among the unvaccinated. and they're killing people. we can now speak to dr ashwin vasan who's an epidemiologist and president & ceo of fountain house, a community—based mental health and public health charity. thank you forjoining us. let's start with the scale of the
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problem, how damaging is it to trust in scientists and health workers that's brought on by this misinformation online? vaccine misinformation is not new. we've had it since the beginning of vaccines but what we have now is the democratisation in the worst sense of that word of vaccine misinformation. it's like having a stretch of highway where you are having a repeated car crashes, it's not the fault of the authorities for having the highway that's causing the crashes but at some point, the authorities need to step in and ask the question, is there something we can do to regulate the flow of traffic to stem the tide in the same is true in these instances of misinformation. the companies that are building the information highways to spread this information have a responsibility to take a look at what they can do.- responsibility to take a look
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at what they can do. sorry to interrupt. — at what they can do. sorry to interrupt, what _ at what they can do. sorry to interrupt, what kind - at what they can do. sorry to interrupt, what kind of - at what they can do. sorry to i interrupt, what kind of damage are they causing you?- interrupt, what kind of damage are they causing you? well, we know almost — are they causing you? well, we know almost 70% _ are they causing you? well, we know almost 70% of _ are they causing you? well, we know almost 70% of americans i know almost 70% of americans say they have heard at least one vaccine myth, the same amount has been shown that even limited exposure to vaccine misinformation around the covid vaccine can make people less likely to get it and so, you know, this is very damaging and this isn'tjust about reaching some arbitrary vaccine milestone. we are having a resurgence as you rightly said, in states like arkansas with low vaccination rates. they are predicting they are going to be back at peak levels within a few weeks, by august, if they do not stem this time, we are seeing rises in hospitalisation so it is life and death. and there is a responsibility to step in, we are seeing an increase also in attacks and attacks online and in—person to help workers as a result this misinformation.— help workers as a result this misinformation. what kind of messages — misinformation. what kind of messages are _ misinformation. what kind of messages are catching - misinformation. what kind of
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messages are catching on? l misinformation. what kind of. messages are catching on? you know, messages are catching on? you know. the _ messages are catching on? you know, the number _ messages are catching on? you. know, the number one post today on facebook was from a republican representative, marjorie taylor green, who said the government is feeding you lies and misinformation about the vaccine, the disease, it's not happening. and that's leading to people believing that and not taking the necessary precautions, whether they be getting vaccinated or taking the necessary precautions like masking. so it's leading to people making the wrong decision not to get vaccinated, losing trust in institutions. what we need to do is not only hold the social media companies responsible as president biden has rightfully pointed out, but we need to invest in trust brokers who can combat this misinformation in communities and our organisation, we vaccinated nearly 70% of one of the hardest to reach communities which is people living with chronic mental illness because they trust us, they come to us
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despite their fears and worries and get unbiased information and get unbiased information and science —based information. the white house says 12 people, responsible for two thirds of misinformation, that was cited backin misinformation, that was cited back in march but platforms like facebook say they are a force for good so what should they be doing that they are not doing? they be doing that they are not doinu ? ., . ~ , they be doing that they are not doinu? ., ., a doing? you are right. as i said vaccine misinformation - doing? you are right. as i said vaccine misinformation was i vaccine misinformation was always cordoned off in small corners of society, those 12 people have always been the same 12 people but now they have got the highways and the connective tissue to get that information out widely. they are not even following their own rules and terms of taking down posts and screening posts for outright lies and misinformation and so i think they need to do a little bit better on that front but we also need to double down on investment in communities as i mentioned, in trust brokers and institutions.— institutions. thank you for “oininu institutions. thank you for joining us- _
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the uk has recorded more than 50,000 new coronavirus cases in a single day, for the first time since january. it comes as the research suggests one in a hundred people has the virus. on monday, the majority of covid restrictions in england are due to be lifted, but fullyjabbed travellers returning from france will still have to quarantine because of concerns vaccines may not work as well over the beta variant. here's our medical editor, fergus walsh. queueing for art and for a vaccine — exclusive access to tate modern's galleries this evening was on offer to those getting a jab at this iconic london setting. with restrictions lifting in england on monday, and cases soaring, the race between the virus and the vaccine is intensifying. in newham, in east london, just over a third of adults are fully immunised, half the uk level. so council teams are going door to door to encourage people to have the jab.
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hello. how are you? the number of first vaccinations across the uk has halved in the past two weeks as demand from young people starts to falter. yet again, the nhs has appealed to adults to come forward for first and second doses. and that can mean overcoming vaccine hesitancy, especially in the young. i think that on social media, people believe very quickly what they read on whatsapp or other online platforms and i think it's trying to change that perception. i think giving human guidance to them, that will show that the benefits outweigh the risks. brothers uresh and diresh are 22 and i9 and are having their first doses. the more people we have vaccinated, it means
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that the cases will reduce and help us in the long term. it is good for people around you, getting vaccinated, - so you are protected, as well, and you're . protecting other people. i'm in icu and my lungs collapsed. that was paul godfrey, 18 months ago. in his early 30s, he was susceptible to infection but never imagined the damage that covid could do. it was the worst experience of my life, obviously. i couldn't believe how this virus had ruined my body so quickly and the fight i would have to fight. a new study has found that one in three younger adults hospitalised with covid suffered complications like kidney, lung and heart damage. although older frail adults are at the greatest risk, it is a reminder that covid can be indiscriminate in who it targets.
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fergus walsh, bbc news. the south african president cyril ramaphosa has been addressing the nation about the recent violence that has rocked the country. the unrest follows the imprisonment of his predecessor, jacob zuma, on charges of contempt of court. so far, more than 200 people have been killed in rioting and looting. president ramaphosa described the violence as an attack on democracy that had failed. it is clear now that the events of the past week were nothing less than a deliberate, a coordinated and a well—planned attack on our democracy. the constitutional order of our country is under threat. the current instability and ongoing incitement to violence constitutes a direct contravention of the constitution of our country and the rule of law.
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these actions are intended to cripple the economy of our country, to cause social instability and severely weaken or even dislodge the democratic state. that was the south african president cyril ramaphosa. thank you for watching. this is bbc news. our top story: emergency services in western germany, belgium and the netherlands search for hundreds of people still missing, and try to rescue those stranded by the floodwaters. so, why is this happening now? it's perhaps no surprise that some politicians in germany say the extreme weather is the result of global warming — they're calling for work on climate protection measures to be accelerated — but how is a hotter climate causing record rainfall? 0ur chief environment correspondent, justin rowlatt explains. the floods in germany are not the only extreme weather event we have seen this summer. there was the dramatic heatwave in canada and the western
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united states last month, and russia, mexico and new zealand have all been experiencing unusually high temperatures. now, the climate science is very clear on this, it has been predicting notjust for years, but for decades, that if we continue to pump huge amounts of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, we will experience increasingly high temperatures, and because warm air holds more moisture, that means heavier rainfall too, and therefore floods. you only have to look at the pictures of these devastating floods to know that we need to do better, and it is not ok for this number of people to die in 2021 from floods. the next obvious question is, is the world doing enough to tackle climate change? again, the answer is very clear. it is not. the un says we need to reduce carbon emissions by 7% every year for the next decade if we're going to stand a reasonable chance of staying within what is reckoned to be
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the safe limit, 1.5 degrees centigrade. now, we did achieve that last year but in the teeth of the pandemic, so the only good outcome from these recent extreme weather events is if it encourages the world to raise its carbon cutting game, when it meets at the landmark climate conference in glasgow in november. justin rowlatt, bbc news. the bbc has heard fresh reports of ethnic cleansing in tigray — in northern ethiopia. tigrayan forces are continuing to extend their control over the region — prompting the ethiopian government to abandon a unilateral ceasefire. more fighting is now expected in the west of tigray — an area close to the border with sudan — from where our africa correspondent andrew harding has this report.
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three teenage boys emerge from the gloom, trudging their way to safety. they have escaped from tigray overnight, over a river stop carrying nothing except stories of spiralling ethnic conflict. translation: some armed soldiers came from home to home and they gave us two days to leave. there is a kind of ethnic cleansing going on in the town, just across the border? on in the town, 'ust across the border? , , , border? yes, yes, we feel bad, it is our country _ border? yes, yes, we feel bad, it is our country and _ border? yes, yes, we feel bad, it is our country and our- border? yes, yes, we feel bad, it is our country and our land. l it is our country and our land. the boys are of fighting age and may soon be needed back in tigray but for now they are safe just across the border in sudan. a grim life in this refugee camp beckons. in the makeshift clinic here, one remarkable refugee is looking after thousands.
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remarkable refugee is looking afterthousands. part remarkable refugee is looking after thousands. part doctor, part chronicler of the typical decent tigray.— decent tigray. people being held in camps, _ decent tigray. people being held in camps, with - decent tigray. people being held in camps, with no - decent tigray. people being held in camps, with no food decent tigray. people being - held in camps, with no food and no water. particularly they are being told that they are going to be punished by hunger. punished by hunger? start? his clinic is overwhelmed, notjust by the flood of new arrivals, a single mother of two here but overwhelmed by the stories. they have killed young men. i heard gunshots, i turned around, _ heard gunshots, i turned around, they were dead. you think the _ around, they were dead. you think the war _ around, they were dead. you think the war is _ around, they were dead. you. think the war is going to go on and on? it think the war is going to go on and on? , ., ., ., ., and on? it is going to go on, for sure- _ and on? it is going to go on, for sure. we _ and on? it is going to go on, for sure. we are _ and on? it is going to go on, for sure. we are not - and on? it is going to go on, for sure. we are not giving l and on? it is going to go on, l for sure. we are not giving our land, _ for sure. we are not giving our land. neven _ for sure. we are not giving our land, never. the blood is going to continue.
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a refugee sings of her yearning for home, for tigray. it sounds like a lament for ethiopia as well, a nation at risk of unravelling. you get a real sense here that this conflict is far from over. sense here that this conflict is farfrom over. the people of tigray have suffered so much in the past few months through famine and conflict that they are now talking about a clean break, full independence from ethiopia. a nation, they see as cruel and crumbling. and if that means they have to keep fighting for it, then so be it. another young man thrashes his way across the river border out of tigray. better to drown, he says, than stay behind and be killed by the militia. the refugee doctor doubts if ethiopia can survive all of this intact. i ethiopia can survive all of this intact.— ethiopia can survive all of this intact. ., �* ., ., , this intact. i don't want to be in the same _ this intact. i don't want to be in the same position - this intact. i don't want to be in the same position with - this intact. i don't want to be i in the same position with these people that have assaulted my
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sisters, killed my brothers and sisters, killed my brothers and sisters, destroyed my place. so the idea of ethiopia is gone. the summer storm season is beginning, adding to the anxieties here. i beginning, adding to the anxieties here.— beginning, adding to the anxieties here. ., , , anxieties here. i cannot sleep at night. _ anxieties here. i cannot sleep at night, thinking _ anxieties here. i cannot sleep at night, thinking what - anxieties here. i cannot sleep at night, thinking what is - at night, thinking what is going _ at night, thinking what is going to happen to the kids. what — going to happen to the kids. what am _ going to happen to the kids. what am i going to do the next day? _ what am i going to do the next day? what am i going to feed them? — day? what am i going to feed them? when i see them, i feel sorry— them? when i see them, i feel sorry for— them? when i see them, i feel sorry for them.— sorry for them. and so thousands _ sorry for them. and so thousands of - sorry for them. and so thousands of lives - sorry for them. and so i thousands of lives remain suspended, communities torn apart. as the war in tigray lurches on. andrew harding, bbc news. that conflict causing so much heart and pain has been going on for eight months now. the diary that ann frank wrote while she was hiding from the nazis in amsterdam during world war two has inspired a slew of plays and movies. now, the cannes film festival is featuring a new interpretation of anne frank's story, an animated movie by the top israeli director ari folman —
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it s been getting strong reviews, but also generating controversy, as tom brook reports from cannes. this secret apartment is going to be our hiding place. much of the new animation is set while anne frank was in hiding in amsterdam but it also moves between pass and the near future with a focus on kitty, anne's imaginary friend from her diary. the new film is being hailed as the first international holocaust movie for children. israeli director ari folman has emphasised frank's humanity to make her engaging to a young audience. she's a teenager with all the cliche of the problems of a teenage girl. she has endless issues with her mother, coming—of—age issues about boys. come down, anne, i'm waiting foryou. she is sometimes funny, sometimes mean. and i want to make herjust this kind of person. folman's film has certainly won praise at cannes but at a reception for israeli cinema, there was the prediction that it would be controversial in israel because the narrative suggests that the plight of refugees
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in contemporary europe has some characteristics in common with the persecution ofjews during the holocaust. he brings the memory of the holocaust and put it in the current context of what is happening in europe with refugees coming from the middle east and the way that they are being treated. the fact that he's putting it like an almost an equal way, that will be a real problematic subject in israel. but ari folman is accustomed to this kind of criticism. nothing can be compared to the holocaust of the jews because i don't think i even can understand it. nothing can be compared from one genocide to another, from one war to another. we take this piece of history and we use it as a tool to teach our audience about what's happening today in the world.
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not compare, not try to make it parallel but how do we use it? there is a sense of urgency surrounding ari folman's film. to get it out to audiences as quickly as possible at a time when reports of anti—semitism are increasing and the holocaust continues to be denied. industry experts here at the cannes film festival think that movie's prospects are good. i see huge potential for that film all over the world. every family will want their children to see this film because it will open their eyes to something that they need to know about. do you think it is entertainment that will engage children? yes. and i think it could be a major oscar contender as well. and in cannes, ari folman appears to have also succeeded in reminding audiences through cinema of a young jewish girl's tremendous zest for life. up until a year ago everyone was in love with me. everyone? tom brook, bbc news, cannes. a reminder of our top story, more than 120 people have died in flooding in western europe,
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these pictures from a town in germany show this year scale of the destruction caused by flooding and mudslides. goodbye. hello, if you place has got close to 29 degrees on friday, slightly over the weekend we will get above 30 for the first time this summer. mostly with hot sunshine and it is all because of high pressure which is taking up residence right on top of the uk. but notice there is a frontal system to the north, that will provide more cloud, especially across the north—west of scotland. some cloud to start the day across the irish sea coast, england, north wales, quite a lot of cloud for northern ireland and a little bit across the south of england. that will clear quite quickly but some of the scout for northern ireland and a little bit across the south of england. that will clear quite quickly but some of the scalp further for north—west scotland, 17 degrees burst in
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aberdeen, highs of 25. the cloud in northern ireland retreating to the coast, 26 inland through the afternoon, murky for some irish sea coast of north—west england and north wales, but inland, temperatures in a few places up to 29 or 30 degrees. always cooler around the coasts with sea breezes. at silverstone, for the british grand prix, it looks hot through saturday and more especially for race day on sunday, lots of sunshine. strong sunshine, very high uv levels for many, especially in the south and west of the uk. make sure you protect yourself if you are out and about for any length of time. heading through saturday night, we see long clear spells, especially down towards england and wales, northern ireland and scotland have more cloud, some of that filtering across the irish sea towards north wales and north—west england, pretty mild and warm night in places, 15 or 16 degrees. sunday, the further south you are, expect sunshine again, further north, generally
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more cloud in the mix, and some patchy rain across the north of scotland. temperatures a little bit lower across the northern half of the uk, further south, another very warm or hot day, one or two places in the london area could get up to 30 or even 31 degrees. into the start of next week, our area of high pressure will still be with us but tending to slide further west, that will allow something of a northerly wind, knocking the edge off the temperatures, turning less hot, the odd shower in the south on monday and some rain later in the week.
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this is bbc news.
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the headlines. rescue teams in germany, belgium and the netherlands search for hundreds of people still missing after some of the worst flooding in western europe in decades. record rainfall caused rivers to burst their banks. more than 120 people lost their lives — most of them in germany. with cases rising 70% in the past week he want of a pandemic of the unvaccinated. facebook hit back saying 2 billion people access to authoritative information on its site. in a speech to the nation the south african president has said the deadly unrest that's swept the country was clearly planned and instigated. cyril ramaphosa said the violence was a failed attack on democracy but that the effects would last for months to come businesses are warning of looming staff shortages due to growing numbers of workers having to self—isolate,

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