Skip to main content

tv   BBC News  BBC News  July 22, 2021 3:00am-3:30am BST

3:00 am
hello. this is bbc news. i am ben boulos with the headlines. flooding in china kills at least 25 people in henan province. commuters have had to force their way out of the subway train. translation: we broke half a windows so air could get i in otherwise we would have choked. america's senior general acknowledges the taliban now controls half the districts in afghanistan as us forces prepared to complete their withdrawal. a shock defeat for the us women's football team as action starts in tokyo ahead of the official opening ceremony on friday. and us life expectancy falls
3:01 am
by 1.5 years due to covid—19. the biggest one—year decline since world war ii. hello and a very warm welcome to our viewers on pbs in america and around the globe. flooding has caused devastation in the central chinese province of henan after the heaviest rainfall it has ever recorded. 2000 people have been moved to safer areas after flooding in an underground commuting system. at least 25 have died. the military has warned that a major dam could collapse at any time and soldiers have been mobilised to try and divert rivers that have burst their banks. chinese scientists say global warming has made china's annual flood
3:02 am
season much more dangerous. 0ur china correspondent, robin brant, sent this report. passengers on an underground train trying to escape the approaching floodwater. instead, though, they found themselves standing still, silent, holding on as the levels rose around them. translation: the water was at shoulder level. . a child and i both nearly gave up. we were worn out. but i used my arm to hang on, and that's why i'm bruised. others in the carriage said air was the problem. translation: we broke half of a window so air could get l in, otherwise we would have choked. at least a dozen people lost their lives as the water overran the tunnels and then the trains. above ground, others faced a terrifying torrent. the muddy, brown waters of the yellow river trying to sweep them away.
3:03 am
this was just one example of an impromptu rescue effort that succeeded. the impact of the floods has been widespread, the city of zhengzhou was the worst hit, at one point it had almost a year's worth of rainfall in just three days. over a million people have been affected. in the last few days, hundreds of thousands of people were evacuated from in or around this city and millions more warned about the impending floods, but the most troubling question that remains amidst the stench of dirty water here is: "how was it that a station on this line, on an underground metro system that's less than ten years old, came to be overwhelmed by rainwater and passengers left to die on the platform?" china has mobilised its army, but not its leader. in a brief statement, president xijinping called for "improvements" to the system for early warnings. measures that are likely to be
3:04 am
needed more as chinese scientists admit these once—in—a—millennia rains could become more frequent as global warming makes for more dangerous weather. robin brant, bbc news, zhengzhou in eastern china. staying with this story, let's see some new pictures that have just come in from zhengzhou, where the flooding has left vehicles stacked on top of one another at the entrance to a road tunnel. this is after major roads, rivers and cars were swept along by the strong current. the united states has reached a deal with germany to allow completion of the controversial $11 billion nord stream 2 gas
3:05 am
pipeline. the project will double russian gas exports to germany. there have been concerns over moscow using the energy is leveraged to exert political control in europe. as part of the deal, germany has committed to take steps including sanctions to prevent that from happening. ways the us involved in whether a gas pipeline in europe goes ahead? david willis explains. in actualfact, ben, the last three american administrations have all expressed their dislike of the nord stream 2 gas pipeline. they believed it potentially gives russia too much leverage, too much control over european energy supplies for the simple reason that it will take gas directly from russia to germany, bypassing ukraine and poland. well, now, in an act of pragmatism, i think you could say, president biden has said that he is willing to waive sanctions that have been imposed on the people, on the german company constructing this pipeline, because it's virtually built. 98% of it has already been constructed, the biden administration believes there's nothing that they can do now to prevent it from coming into use.
3:06 am
so it's better to leverage its relationship with germany, the biggest ally in europe, of course, and this follows chancellor angela merkel�*s visit to washington, dc, last week at which the subject was raised. so the biden administration, believes it does not really have any other choice, backing this project but with some reservations, it must be said. is there any opposition to this agreement, david? well, particularly from poland and the ukraine, ben, who are bypassed by the nord stream 2 pipeline. they've both issued a statement saying they believe this represents a political, military and energy threat for the ukraine and for central europe, also saying it increases the russian potential to destabilise the security situation in europe. they have called on germany and the united states to address
3:07 am
what they call the security crisis in the region. the united states, for its part, ben, has said it does not much like this pipeline either but it's going along with it. any word from russia on all of this? the russians are saying that this is a benefit both to europe, to germany and to other parts of europe, but that is not likely to be something that the americans agree with. as i say, they believe that this is potentially linking with germany the supply of energy to europe in general more vulnerable to political pressure. david willis there for us.
3:08 am
four companies accused of fuelling the opiate crisis that makes smoke from wild fires burning on the west coast of america has drifted all the way across the continent to cathy hayes over the east coast that make officials in new york issued warnings for pregnant women and the elderly due to poor air quality. cities as far apart as washington and toronto are also affected. the disgraced former hollywood movie producer, harvey weinstein, has appeared in court in los angeles where he pled not guilty to 11 charges of sexual assault. he had been extradited to california, from new york, where he is serving a 23 year prison sentence for rape. america's top general has acknowledged the strategic momentum in afghanistan. the general said the afghan army was consolidating its forces and trying to make sure the militants did not take control of any major population
3:09 am
centres. but he said with the us withdrawal now 95% complete, the taliban control half the districts in the country. a significant amount of territory has been seized over the course of six, eight, ten months thought of being by the taliban. strategic momentum appears to be sorted with the taliban. seth jones is sethjones is a senior vice president and director of the international security programme at the centre for strategic and international studies and joining us now from washington, dc. to have you with us. what does that phrase, strategic momentum meaning on the ground in real terms? strategic momentum meaning on the ground in realterms?- the ground in realterms? well, i mean, the ground in realterms? well, i mean. what — the ground in realterms? well, i mean, what it _ the ground in realterms? well, i mean, what it means - the ground in realterms? well, i mean, what it means is - the ground in realterms? well, i mean, what it means is that i i mean, what it means is that one point, maybe a year ago we had a rough stalemate, now we have in the country the taliban overrunning multiple district and centres right now. and we see the encirclement of a number of cities, some in the north, some districts around kabul itself, the capital. the
3:10 am
taliban are positioning themselves on urban areas of themselves on urban areas of the country which they do not control at this point. 50. the country which they do not control at this point.- control at this point. so, how important — control at this point. so, how important is _ control at this point. so, how important is the _ control at this point. so, how important is the territory - control at this point. so, how| important is the territory they have currently ta ken important is the territory they have currently taken control of? how much of a base does that give them, if they were to try and, as one would imagine, gain control over the majority of the country? gain control over the ma'ority of the country?* of the country? well, i think the numbers _ of the country? well, i think the numbers about - of the country? well, i think the numbers about districts| the numbers about districts that they control right now are a bit misleading. many of the districts are not very populated. in fact, the government has supporters controlling most of the urban areas where the vast majority of the population lives. but what is in danger now is the taliban are in circling cities like kabul, cities in the provinces, and that is the threat right now, that we will start to see urban fighting, which is bound to be bloody.
3:11 am
has enough being done in terms of training and supporting the afghan military and the afghan government to enable them to resist this push forward by the taliban and the militants? well, the challenge for the afghan government right now is that it has two major backers, the europeans, the british and americans, argonne in any meaningful way. the taliban have their major backers, pakistan provides direct assistance, the russians, iranians, among many others. it puts the government at a severe disadvantage in the balance of power. the us, though, could continue to provide assistance, including military assistance, to the afghan national army, and it could also provide some error support. at this point, it is unclear whether it will do the latter for any type of air support. do the latter for any type of airsupport. iiii do the iatter for any type of air sunspot— air support. if the taliban continues _ air support. if the taliban continues to _
3:12 am
air support. if the taliban continues to take - air support. if the taliban continues to take more . continues to take more district, more territory, what sort of a risk does that pose to afghanistan's neighbouring to afg hanistan�*s neighbouring countries to afghanistan's neighbouring countries and indeed, countries beyond? countries and indeed, countries be ond? ~ , , beyond? well, the biggest sin . le beyond? well, the biggest single risk from _ beyond? well, the biggest single risk from a - beyond? well, the biggest - single risk from a humanitarian perspective is internally displaced persons and refugees. if you are a neighbour of afghanistan, they have lived through this in the 1980s and 19905, through this in the 1980s and 1990s, where a large scale war pushed refugees into iran, into pakistan, into areas of central asia. i think the additional concern based on the ability to move into europe is that we will start to see growing numbers try to get into europe, in part because there are european countries on the ground. the flood of refugees is the biggest humanitarian concern for the region. qm. concern for the region. 0k, south, thank _ concern for the region. 0k, south, thank you _ concern for the region. 0k, south, thank you for - concern for the region. 0k, south, thank you for the i south, thank you for the moment. sethjones
3:13 am
south, thank you for the moment. seth jones from south, thank you for the moment. sethjones from the centre for strategic and international studies. and thank you for being with us as well. more to come, including this. skateboarding makes its first 0lympic appearance. we meet the 15—year—old about to become a half—pipe star. coming down the ladder now. that's one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind. a catastrophic engine fire is being blamed tonight. for the first crash - in the 30—year history of concorde, the world's only i supersonic airliner. it was one of the most vivid symbols of the violence and hatred that tore apart the state of yugoslavia. but now, a decade later, it's been painstakingly rebuilt and opens again today.
3:14 am
there's been a 50% decrease in| sperm quantity, and an increase in malfunctioning sperm unable to swim amperiy. _ thousands of households across the country are suspiciously quiet this lunchtime as children bury their noses in the final instalment of harry potter. this is bbc news. flooding in china kills at least 25 people and causes millions of dollars in damage following the heaviest rainfall there since records began. america's senior general acknowledges the taliban now controls half the districts in afghanistan as us forces prepared to complete their withdrawal. let's ta ke let's take you to the olympics now where we have seen the star
3:15 am
of the competition injapan ahead of the of the competition injapan ahead of the opening ceremony on friday. it began with women's softball, as dryly a meeting japan in the opening event. an women's football where there has already been an upset. a sports presenter sarah mulkerrins is in tokyo and gave us a round—up of the action as well as a look at the new 0lympic sports added to the agenda. you would have thought that perhaps the us women's national team would have won in their debut game of the olympics here in tokyo. they were taking on sweden and a good european team and it was the swedes who won. 3-0. a and it was the swedes who won. 3—0. a substitute came in with the final one on the night. it was a disjointed performance from the americans. meghan
3:16 am
rapinoe critical after their performance saying they need to do a lot better. they are the world champions, they won the women's world cup in france in 2019. but they were knocked out of the last 0lympics 2019. but they were knocked out of the last olympics by sweden. so sweet and i were really good team to watch out for they played some really good football. it is always good when you can begin talking about the sport and we have a shock. the japanese public would not have wanted a shop in the softball because that was the softball because that was the first official sporting action that we had here in japan and it was the hosts taking on australia and it was an opening win. a very comfortable one forjapan. 8—1 they defeated australia in their opening round match. what their opening round match. what the ioc want to do was protect the ioc want to do was protect the future of the olympics and get exciting young vibrant sports into the games and we have four really good ones to watch out for. the likes of surfing, which will be brilliant to watch. there is
3:17 am
also karate, the home of karate. that is only here for this 0lympics but we also have skate boarding and we also have sport climbing. so definitely there is going to be an awful lot of athletes we suddenly hear about that we will want to know more about. let's hear from one who will be competing in the skate boarding. she is from kimberly in south africa and she is 15 years old. this is her story of herjourney to the olympic games. i am very proud to represent south africa, it is such an honour because i am always dreaming about south africa on a bigger stage. the olympics never crossed my mind. it is quite unreal.
3:18 am
parents don't support their children skateboarding because they feel there is no future in skateboarding, and skateboarding is finally a part of the olympics. i feel like it gives options and parents will finally support their kids on theirjourney. whenever my brother wasn't home, i would take his skateboard and skate around the house. i didn't think of it as a job, but with the olympics coming in and sponsorships and all that, it is starting to feel pretty much like a job, which is crazy. but it is nice, it is fun to do what you love every day. i would like to do that
3:19 am
for the rest of my life. when i was a kid, i always used to dream about this and now it is actually happening, it feels unreal, and i don't want to do anything that will mess that up. and, being a teenager with all of the parties, experimenting, and all of that, i feel i don't want to waste my time on that now. i would love to inspire more girls to start skating, and i want to be able to achieve something big, which i can contribute to the community in south africa, which will help more people out there, you know. i guess that is it.
3:20 am
that is the very latest from tokyo. life expectancy in united states last year suffered its biggest drop in the second —— since the second world war. the second -- since the second world war-— world war. data showed the averaue world war. data showed the average lifespan _ world war. data showed the l average lifespan dropped from almost 79 years in 29 teen to just over 77 years in 2020. but among black and hispanic americans it was twice as bad, popping by three years. i've been speaking to stephen wolfe, co—author of a study on how covid—19 widened the life expectancy gap. i asked him he was surprised about the latest figures. {iii he was surprised about the latest figures.— latest figures. of course we anticipated _ latest figures. of course we l anticipated a deed increase in life expectancy around the world, given the large loss of life from covid. but we were not prepared for the size of the decrease in life expectancy that we saw in the united states. the country has had more covid—19 deaths than any other country and among the highest per capita death rate but, still, this drop in life
3:21 am
expectancy is something that this country has not seen since world war ii.— world war ii. when you have something — world war ii. when you have something like _ world war ii. when you have something like a _ world war ii. when you have something like a pandemic l something like a pandemic which, untilyou something like a pandemic which, until you start having interventions such as vaccination programmes and so on, can sweep through the entire population regardless of background or difference. why do we see this discrepancy between different ethnic groups and countries in the terms of impact on life expectancy that covid—19 has had? the impact on life expectancy that covid-19 has had? the disparity in health outcomes _ covid-19 has had? the disparity in health outcomes for covid-19 in health outcomes for covid—19 is just a new example of a very old problem in the united states. for generations, people of colour had a higher death rate, shorter life expectancy, higher rate of disease. reflecting systemic racism and other structural factors in our society that systematically keep people of colour from the conditions they need for good health. so we expect to a worse
3:22 am
outcome for covid—19 and this is a population that has higher exposure to the virus in this country access to healthcare, greater comorbidities that increase complications and greater economic vulnerability. still, the size of this decrease in life expectancy was just stunning. three years in the black population and nearly four years in our study in the hispanic population. so what ou're hispanic population. so what you're saying, it _ hispanic population. so what you're saying, it is not - hispanic population. so what you're saying, it is not a - hispanic population. so what| you're saying, it is not a case that it you're saying, it is not a case thatitis you're saying, it is not a case that it is a genetic link that causes this great drop in life expectancy, it is things like access to healthcare. so something can be done about it if more funding is provided to the areas where there is community predominantly lives. exactly. there is no biological reason for why skin colour should increase your death rate from a virus. race is a social construct and these disparities are produced by our society. that was stephen wolfe. here in the uk the mayor of liverpool says that she and many others
3:23 am
are bordered by the decision of unesco to strip liveable of its status as a world heritage site. un's cultural body awarded liveable the title in 2004 but the world heritage committee says that develop once on the city's waterfront have resulted in irreversible lice that make irreversible loss. liverpool. a city with ambitions to rebuild and regenerate, ambitions that has led to it being stripped of its unesco world heritage status after a secret ballot. the city of liverpool is deleted. the title brought prestige and helped to attract international tourism. liverpool was chosen because of its history as a trading centre and the splendour of its waterside buildings. it has been removed, as unesco believes new developments have led to a serious deterioration of landmark areas. liverpool playing the victim here is not the fault of unesco. wayne showed a delegation around the city when they
3:24 am
visited in 2011. this is devastating for liverpool. it is an embarrassment for liverpool. we have lost the status symbol of being up there with the taj mahal and the pyramids and the great wall of china. unesco say a major problem is the new stadium which will start to be built later this month in the disused dock. the council say that the new ground is more important than the world heritage title. i would say it is definitely, because at the moment the dock is completely decaying and does not serve any social value to the community around it. we want to open it up. that is what we thought unesco were about as well, putting heritage in the heart of our community for people to learn about it. but this decision even affect ice cream vans. are you going to repaint the van? it would cost me a lot of money. i don't think unesco will come after you. i hope not. liverpool city council says it will try to appeal the decision but according to unesco, there is one less place of wonder in the world.
3:25 am
the perseverance rover is making preparations correct its first sample of martian rock. the rover will extract they call the size of a finger which will be packaged in a sealed tube and eventually returned to earth. scientists hope to discover if mars has ever hosted life. perseverance has travelled over one kilometre since its touchdown on the planet in february. and before we go we have some rather extraordinary footage from a friendly football match in bolivia. the teams were lined up bolivia. the teams were lined up when safety. these are small well when's the pickup dust and debris as they roll over land. it may look like a tornado but technically it is not. the wind goesin technically it is not. the wind goes in an up would motion in a dust devil as opposed to a
3:26 am
downward motion in a tornado. you can reach me on the team on social media. z for the you can reach me on the team on social media. zfor the moment. i will see you soon. we're still in the middle of this heatwave, or actually just past it. some thunderstorms on the way too in the coming days, which should break the heat. but it certainly has been hot in northern ireland. it was wednesday's hot spot in county tyrone — 31.3 degrees — a provisional record for northern ireland, only beating saturday's value byjust 0.1 degree. 0n the satellite picture, we can see some clouds to the west of our neighbourhood. that is a developing area of low pressure, and it will be nearing us over the next few days, pushing the high pressure away, and this is going to bring some slow—moving thunderstorms. we will talk about that in just a second. i still have to mention the met office warning
3:27 am
of extreme heat for the south—west of the uk and for northern ireland lasting into friday, and this is to highlight also the high temperatures overnight, notjust by day. in fact, you can see how warm it is still through the middle of the night on thursday — it will have been around 18—20 celsius across some parts of the country. through the night, into the early hours of the morning, it is clear skies, may be a bit of cloud first thing across northern and eastern scotland, perhaps the north—east of england. that should mostly clear through the afternoon, but the temperatures will be skyrocketing, in fact hot enough for some local downpours and thunderstorms to develop across some central parts of the country. notice the wind is mostly an easterly, a very light easterly, so it's pushing the heat further towards the east, so that means the highest temperatures, again, on thursday could well be in northern ireland — we could well beat another record, that remains to be seen. possibly up to 32 but for most of us it will be in the mid to high 20s. here's friday, still
3:28 am
a very warm day. wouldn't necessarily class it as a very hot day, but warm enough. temperatures into the mid—or high 20s. notice some blue, some rain here, some thunderstorms brewing just to the south—west of us. this is an area of low pressure that will drag in fresher atlantic air, and push the hot air towards more eastern parts of europe. these could be very slow—moving thunderstorms, and slow moving thunderstorms can bring an awful lot of rainfall in a short space of time, and that's to come this weekend — saturday and sunday — especially across the southern half of the uk. something to bear in mind.
3:29 am
3:30 am
hello and welcome to bbc news. these are our top stories. flooding in china kills at least 25 people in henan province, following the heaviest since records began. flooding in china has caused millions of dollars in damage following the heaviest rainfall since records began. climate scientists say extreme weather events are becoming more likely and severe. america's most senior general has acknowledged the taliban have "strategic momentum" in afghanistan. they now control half the districts in the country. the general said the us withdrawal was now 95% complete, but insisted a taliban takeover it was not a foregone conclusion. the sporting action continues in tokyo with a shock defeat for the us women's football team. ahead of friday's official 0lympic opening ceremony, former prime minister shinzo abe has decided not to attend the event due to the state of emergency.

54 Views

info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on