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tv   BBC News  BBC News  July 29, 2021 2:00am-2:31am BST

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so we thought we would catch up with them to find out more. welcome to bbc news, i'm ben boulos. our top stories: as us covid cases continue to rise, federal workers could be required to have a jab, in a nationwide vaccination push. japan records the highest daily number of coronavirus cases since the beginning of the pandemic. the delta variant, and the olympics, are being blamed for the surge. i'm sarah mulkerrins live in tokyo on day 6 of the olympics, where we have had the first medals of the day in the rowing. golds for croatia, new zealand and ireland. simone biles pulls out of another olympic event, the star of the us gymnastic team explains the issues that
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caused her to withdraw. and, the hill—sides in north wales that are now on a par with, the canals of venice, and the great barrier reef. welcome to our viewers on pbs in america and around the globe. president biden is expected to announce that federal workers will soon be required to confirm they are vaccinated, orface more testing. the numbers of coronavirus cases are rising with the director of the us national public health agency, the cdc, saying cases have increased over 300% nationally since mid—june. president biden has renewed his call for people to get vaccinated.
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so many people, well over 630,000 americans have lost their lives because of covid—19. and the press keeps wanting me not to talk about covid—19 but i'm going to mention this one thing, we still have a lot of people not vaccinated. in the pandemic we have now is a pandemic of the unvaccinated. so, please, please, please, if you are not vaccinated, protect yourself and the children out there. it is important. let's speak to our north america correspondent peter bowes. for federal workers and employees of google, facebook, netflix — is it a case of they have to be vaccinated to go to the workplace but can work remotely if they aren't vaccinated? or is there entire job under question if they are not vaccinated? it question if they are not vaccinated?— question if they are not vaccinated? . . , , vaccinated? it certainly raises the question. _ vaccinated? it certainly raises the question, at _ vaccinated? it certainly raises the question, at the - vaccinated? it certainly raises the question, at the moment| the question, at the moment what these big companies are saying, facebook, google and
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others is that if their employees want to come back to the campus, to the office, to the campus, to the office, to the workspace, they have to be vaccinated but it does leave that question hanging as to if they are not vaccinated for whatever personal reasons, what happens to theirjob. we are in that period of time where things are changing very rapidly, in fact we're getting some companies including google actually putting back the date when they require their employees to come back to the office so the work at home policies are going to continue because of the scenario that the country is facing now with the country is facing now with the delta variant prominent and with the number of cases and infections going up, it seems that the status quo as far as working from home for some of these big companies is going to be with us for a little bit longer so perhaps pushing down the road some of those very crucial and very difficult decisions about employment. find decisions about employment. and when ou decisions about employment. and when you have big tech companies like the ones we've mentioned taking a clear stand on this issue of vaccination
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doesn't make it easier for other smaller firms to doesn't make it easier for other smallerfirms to do doesn't make it easier for other smaller firms to do the same? ~ . ., , , , same? well, it certainly puts pressure _ same? well, it certainly puts pressure on _ same? well, it certainly puts pressure on those _ same? well, it certainly puts pressure on those smaller i pressure on those smaller companies to perhaps do the same to address this issue with their workforce and there are multiple issues coming into play here. a lot of smaller companies of course they have to shed workers during the bulk of the pandemic and now that things are more broadly beginning to improve although thatis beginning to improve although that is in question right now and companies are beginning to operate again, shops, restaurants, that kind of thing, they have actually found it difficult to get people to take the job that they have, so while they are struggling to get employees, employers are now faced with this very difficult decision as to say to people, unless you are vaccinated and you can prove it, you can't come to work in my shop or restaurant, so it might be a situation where they can try to follow the suit of major high—profile companies, but at a real practical level there are many difficult decisions for these private
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companies to make and some people are saying that the federal government, the bidon administration should be taking more of a lead on this to help these smaller companies. peter, really interesting. _ these smaller companies. peter, really interesting. thank- these smaller companies. peter, really interesting. thank you - really interesting. thank you for bringing us up—to—date on that. an infrastructure bill worth about one trillion dollars has cleared a major hurdle in the us senate, after passing a procedural vote. a formal debate can now begin on the programme, one of president biden�*s main priorities. earlier republican and democratic leaders announced they'd agreed on the legislation�*s key elements following months of negotiations. mr biden said the breakthrough showed the world that american democracy could deliver and do big things. let's head to tokyo now, where it's day 6 of the olympic games. we'll have an update on the day's events in a minute, but first, as we were just talking about, coronavirus cases are on the rise in asia and japan is not immune. tokyo is suffering its worst
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outbreak since the pandemic began. wednesday saw a record of more than 3,000 cases in tokyo alone. i'm joined now by mariko oi who is in the vibrant shimbashi district in tokyo. how much pressure is this putting on the infrastructure in the country and also how is it affecting the olympics? well, hospitals are definitely getting overwhelmed and we are getting overwhelmed and we are getting a lot of warnings from medical experts but when it comes to the olympics, it is not having much impact. we have heard from the country's prime minister you —— you hit asuka. —— yoshide suga. and also the
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national number has had almost 9500 yesterday, so definitely concerning but it think it is fair to say because as you said i am in the district of shimbashi which is a popular area where office workers come for a drink after work and behind me as all the restaurants and bars. we were here yesterday after 8pm which is when they were asked to close early but some of them remained open and actually staff members coming out and about on the street telling customers that they were open, partly because of money, because the government promised financial support but it has taken way too long for businesses to receive the money to stay afloat and this is the fourth state of emergency and people have been joking fourth state of emergency and people have beenjoking that fourth state of emergency and people have been joking that it is no longer emergency, this hasjust become the is no longer emergency, this has just become the norm and a lot of people if you ask them on the street they would say that you can't exactly tell us to stay at home when it was the government's decision to forge ahead with the olympics despite
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the strong public opposition, many of whom were warning that this could become a super event, so in terms of the number of people out and about, first a state of emergency, it was down by about 30%. now it has only gone down by about 2% so it's almost back to normal. and i suppose the danger with having gone ahead with the olympics is that whether or not the olympics are the prime cause of the rise in cases or whether it is the delta variant or other factors, whether it is the delta variant or otherfactors, people whether it is the delta variant or other factors, people there will inevitably make that connection and say this is exactly what we feared? figs connection and say this is exactly what we feared? as you sa , it's exactly what we feared? as you say, it's complicated. _ exactly what we feared? as you say, it's complicated. i- exactly what we feared? as you say, it's complicated. i think i say, it's complicated. i think it is partly because of the very infectious delta variant but also of course there are people who are blaming the olympics for the surge that we are seeing now. at the same time, when it comes to hospitals, the medical experts have been warning about this
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for quite a while and it's not just about covid—19 patients, it is when they have more covid-i9 it is when they have more covid—19 patients, other patients who need other treatment, they might not be able to get what they need and that has been the warning from medical experts. others would argue that the surge that we are seeing and new cases in terms of the deaths it is not gone up that much which may suggest that at least the elderly population have been vaccinated and therefore the number of deaths is slowing down, but when it comes to younger people in their 20s, 30s, very few of them have managed to receive the vaccine. 0f managed to receive the vaccine. of course there are people who are a lot to receive it but at the same timejapan just the same timejapanjust doesn't have enough the same timejapan just doesn't have enough vaccines to go around just yet and that has always been the concern that once the games are here, that younger generation may start getting covid—19 and while they may not get as serious as the older generation, that is why we are seeing this growing number of covid cases in the country. number of covid cases in the count . a, country. 0k, mariko oi
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therefore _ country. 0k, mariko oi therefore us _ country. ok, mariko oi therefore us in - country. ok, mariko oi i therefore us in shimbashi country. ok, mariko oi - therefore us in shimbashi in tokyo. now as promised, let's look ahead to what's coming up in day 6. japan is starting the day still on top of the medal tally with 13 gold medals, one more than china, with the united states sitting in third place. we can go live now to our sports presenter sarah mulkerrins who's covering all the action in tokyo. sarah, the men's golf is underway, we've got more to come from the pool and we've had some medals in the rowing. yes, good morning here from tokyo. the first metals of the dayjust handed out in the last hour or so and rowing and there has been history for ireland in the last few minutes because the last few minutes because the men's pose lightweight bubble skulls boat has won gold, that spiral and's first ever gold medal in rowing and it was the rowers of paula donovan and fenton mccarthy on that boat, they had so much
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pressure coming into them in these games, the world's fastest boat and they qualified as favourite. they were approached by the german boat all the way but they crossed the line in the gold medal position. you may rememberfrom rio 2016 that paula o'donovan along with his brother won silver and they did go viral for the post rowing interviews so a lot of fun there and excitement in ireland for that gold medal. disappointment in great britain in the women's pair, everybody was looking at helen glover and polly swan, helen glover and polly swan, helen remember returning from her time away from the sport having won gold in 2012 and 2016, they finished down in fourth as new zealand won that race and then croatia won the men's pair and that is interesting because it was the brothers in that that had won gold in rio in a different class of boats and they managed to win gold here today so the
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action certainly gearing up for day six, we're also going to have action the pool later, all eyes on kayla braxton, potentially the air apparent to michael phelps who will be going in his first individual final, the blue ribbon event, and as you state the golf under way, the home hopes here definitely with hideki matsuyama with his masters when backin matsuyama with his masters when back in april. and elsewhere in the world you are going to be looking at the likes ofjustin thomas for the american hopes and rory mcilroy potentially as well for ireland. find and rory mcilroy potentially as well for ireland.— well for ireland. and we would have been _ well for ireland. and we would have been keep _ well for ireland. and we would have been keep an _ well for ireland. and we would have been keep an eye - well for ireland. and we would have been keep an eye on - well for ireland. and we would - have been keep an eye on simone biles today but she is no longer in the running. who else should we be watching out for on the gymnastics front? it is remarkable. _ on the gymnastics front? it is remarkable, isn't _ on the gymnastics front? it is remarkable, isn't it. - on the gymnastics front? it 3 remarkable, isn't it. simone biles is essentially head and shoulders above most of the
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rest of the competition so i'm not sure if anybody was expecting to be thinking of anybody else. remember biles had the opportunity to win gold for the first time in the event going back to back since 1968 but she is not going to be there so look out for the resilient rebecca andrade, she had high hopes for the rio games and it didn't quite work out for her there. all kinds of changes to her training in the coronavirus pandemic, she has had to train in portugal so people will be looking at her, and it will be present�*s first ever gold medal in gymnastics for the women if that was to happen. the americans will be looking at sunisa lee. those of the two names to look out for
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there. . ~ the two names to look out for there. ., ,, , ., president biden says he was honoured to meet the exiled belarusian opposition leader, svetla na tikhanovskaya, at the white house. she said the visit would prove inspirational to her opposition movement which is trying to oust president lukashenko from power after what they claim was a rigged election last year. mark lobel has more and his report contains flashing images. this was the state's response to protesters disputing what they called a rigged election backin they called a rigged election back in august. few here believe the country's longtime president alexander lukashenko when he claimed he had won re—election with 80% of the vote, and neither did governments in the eu, uk, canada and the us. and this is the woman who says she won this election, svetlana tikhanovskaya. she met president bidon at the white house on wednesday. this president bidon at the white house on wednesday. this is a
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very significant _ house on wednesday. this is a very significant meeting, - house on wednesday. this is a very significant meeting, a - very significant meeting, a message to the whole world that the greatest country in the world is with us and this meeting is like success of all of the balor versions that are fighting at the moment. == fighting at the moment. -- belarusians. _ fighting at the moment. -- belarusians. but _ fighting at the moment. —— belarusians. but it is not being taken by the man dubbed europe's last dictator. president bidon tweeted he was honoured to meet the exiled opposition leader adding that the united states stands with the united states stands with the people of belarus in their quest for democracy and universal human rights. it’s universal human rights. it's like inspiration _ universal human rights. it�*s like inspiration for our people to move forward, not to give up, although people are not giving up, forsure, up, although people are not giving up, for sure, but it is one more signal that we have
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strong allies beside us. but desite strong allies beside us. but despite sanctions on his regime and internationalflight despite sanctions on his regime and international flight bands, alexander lukashenko has dug in with russian support. we alexander lukashenko has dug in with russian support.— with russian support. we talk about multiple _ with russian support. we talk about multiple points - with russian support. we talk about multiple points of - about multiple points of pressure on the regime for the regime to stop violence, release prisoners and start dialogue, and you know, i'm sure that belarus can be an example of non—violent transition of power. example of non-violent transition of power. she told the president _ transition of power. she told the president the _ transition of power. she told the president the us - transition of power. she told the president the us could l transition of power. she told l the president the us could be an invaluable future partner to an invaluable future partner to an independent belarus, but for that to become a reality, the situation on the ground would have to look vastly different to this, with no immediate sign it will. mark lobel, bbc news. stay with us on bbc news, still to come: the slate landscape in north wales, that's been awarded unesco world heritage status.
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cheering. the us space agency, nasa, has ordered an investigation after confirmation today that astronauts were cleared to fly while drunk. the last foot patrol in south armagh, once an everyday part of the soldier's lot, drudgery and danger. now no more, after almost four decades. if one is on one's own in a private house, not doing any harm to anyone, i don't see why all these people should wander in and say you're doing something wrong. six rare white lion . cubs are on the prowl at worcestershire park and they've been metl with a roar of approval from visitors. - they are lovely and sweet, yeah, cute.
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this is bbc news, the latest headlines: as us covid cases continue to rise, the push to get the nation vaccinated means federal workers could be required to have the jab, or face more testing. japan records the highest daily number of cases since the beginning of the pandemic. the delta variant, and the olympics, are being blamed for the surge. the availability of covid—19 vaccines varies widely from country to country. in recent months, the shortage in many parts of the world has sparked the a rise in vaccine tourism, with many people heading to the united states to getjabbed. our taipei correspondent, cindy sui returned to her home country, the us, to visit family, and get the vaccine. these tourists from many countries have come to the united states to get vaccinated against covid—19.
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notjust for brazil orfor the us it is for the world. everyone wants the world to to normal. besides latin america, many travellers have come from asia including this 84—year—old grandmother who just got off a flight from vietnam. her granddaughter tells me that even at her age she cannot get vaccinated in her country. i tell you, in my country there are not enough vaccines. not enough for everybody. around 50% of us residents are fully vaccinated but rates are much lower elsewhere including around 20% in south america, 10% in asia and just 1.5% in africa. just the san francisco airport alone has vaccinated around 1000 passengers arriving from over 50 countries since may and the demand is growing. the shortage of vaccines and the slow vaccination rate in many places around the world including taiwan and other parts of asia have driven a trend in vaccine tourism.
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the united states is making it easy by offering free vaccines to anyone in its territory without requiring residency. we have a surplus supply and being able to make that available for others is a good thing and it really helps everyone. it helps other countries to vaccinate their population faster, it helps to reduce the barriers of international travel that currently exist and ultimately everybody wins when we offer a programme like this. taiwanese people like this woman who prefer the two shot vaccines have simply walked into us pharmacies and filled out a consent form to get the jabs. she has spent $18,000 just on plane tickets and hotel lodging for one month but she says it is worth it. i have a seven—year—old daughter and my parents are over 70 years old. i need to protect myself then i can protect my family. i feel so happy right now. i feel like a super woman.
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in nairobi, there's been an emotional ceremony for hundreds of members of kenya's shona community. they were awarded national identity cards and certificates after existing as stateless people for generations. vivienne nunis reports from nairobi after yea rs in after years in the shadows, a day to celebrate with their first ever id documents, these members of the shona community finally have proof that they are kenyan. ifeel very happy. i am very happy. are kenyan. i feelvery happy. i am very happy-— i am very happy. the shona community _ i am very happy. the shona community arrived - i am very happy. the shona community arrived in - i am very happy. the shona community arrived in kenya i am very happy. the shona i community arrived in kenya in the 1960s as christian missionaries from rhodesia, now zimbabwe. when can you gained independence in 1963, citizenship could be acquired
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but few were aware of the option and, for many, the opportunity was lost for good. since then, generations of the shona community have lived with our birth certificates or identity cards. it has made schooling, healthcare and other basic services hard to reach. but after years of the community putting for change, the government chose to act. did your children attend school? they did but it was challenging because we had to register them under somebody else's name but now we are going to register them under our own name, my own name and i oui’ own name, my own name and i am our own name, my own name and i am proud of that. for our own name, my own name and i am proud of that.— am proud of that. for the members _ am proud of that. for the members of _ am proud of that. for the members of the - am proud of that. for the members of the shona i am proud of that. for the - members of the shona community here it is a day of immense jov- here it is a day of immense joy. many tell me they are looking forward to starting their lives again, this time as kenyan citizens. but there are more than 10,000 people across this country who still like official identity documents. they are still waiting to be recognised by the only country they have ever called home.
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globally, the united nations refugee agency estimates there are 11.5 million people similarly living in limbo. it is calling on countries to end state listeners by 202a. it is an ambitious goal but it can be reached there is sure to be celebrations for a day many believed would never come. what do the great barrier reef, the canals in venice, and the galapagos islands, have in common with the slate landscapes of north west wales? the answer is unesco world heritage site status. the area including six sites in snowdonia is now one of 32 uk sites on the prestigious list. our wales correspondent tomos morgan reports. adopted. cheering 20 years in the making, and recognition is finally here. the slate landscape that dominates parts of snowdonia is now on a prestigious
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unesco world heritage list that includes the great wall of china and machu picchu. the pioneerfor this bid was dr david gwyn. i felt there was something very wonderful here, almost magical and i am naturally delighted to hear now that after 20 years our ambitions have been realised. few of us can resist the sight of men digging a hole. it's said wales roofed the world in the 19th century, and in its heyday, the industry here employed close to 20,000. so why does welsh slate have such a good name world wide? firstly, it is the best slate in the world. it's one of the more denser slates, it's been proven on roofs for well over 200, 300 years. for former quarryman pred hughes, the area has always been special. this place could have gone to rack and ruin, been forgotten about, more decay than there already is. so maybe this is a pathway
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to get it back up on its feet and have the recognition. it is just a fantastic piece of news. just as the taj mahal has for india and the pyramids for egypt, the hope is that the recognition for this slate mines here in north wales will also bring an economic boost to the area. for the locals here in blaenau ffestiniog, it is tourism, a key employer here, that will hopefully benefit from the announcement today. in order to get the tourists to stay in blaenau we need investment putting in to blaenau to get businesses, to help businesses get up and running. for 1800 years, slate has been mined in this silvery, striking and rugged landscape. and now the stone that's roofed buildings across the globe from westminster hall to melbourne to rio has got an accolade sought world over. you can reach me on twitter,
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i'm @benmboulos. hello. wednesday brought us another day of some sunny spells, but some really heavy downpours and frequent thunderstorms with lightning and hail, too. this was the picture in telford during wednesday afternoon. now, the outlook is for the unsettled theme to continue, so i think thursday will bring another day of sunshine and showers. it'll be quite cool and breezy. but the showers won't be as heavy or as frequent as they have been over recent days. that's down to the fact that this area of low pressure that's bringing all of this showery weather is just drifting its way off towards the north and north—east. we have got another area of low pressure developing in the south west, and that'll be more of a player through thursday night into friday. so, for much of northern ireland, scotland and northern england, quite a cloudy start to the day with some showery rain. further south across england and much of wales, largely dry with some sunshine around. there will be some brightness developing in the north
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during the afternoon, but down towards the south west, expect some rain to arrive later in the day. the breeze picking up here, too. it will be quite a blustery feeling sort of day and not particularly warm for this time of year. but temperatures generally somewhere between 18—22 degrees for most of us. not too bad down towards the south east, a drier day here than we have seen recently. now, into thursday night, the showers in the north will gradually ease away, but our tension turns to the south west of england where this area of really heavy rain will move its way in and look at those wind gusts around about a0 to 50 mph, unseasonably strong gusts of wind through the english channel, through the bristol channel as well. so, it's going to be very blustery in the south first thing friday morning and a pretty wet start to the day, too. whereas further north, it's looking mostly dry to start the friday and quite a bit of dry weather for friday across parts of scotland, northern ireland and northern england just a few showers around. further south across england and wales, we've got that initially heavy rain and brisk winds which gradually clears towards the east through the day, and then a return to some sunshine and scattered showers around, too. temperatures cooler
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in recent days, around 17—20 degrees on friday. and then heading towards the weekend, low pressure still not far away, but it is starting to move off towards the east. we've got a northerly air flow coming down and higher pressure out in the atlantic is trying to nudge its way in. so, between weather systems as we head through the course of the weekend. perhaps one or two showers around, but quite a bit of dry weather through saturday and sunday, too. some sunny spells and temperatures on the cool side for this time of year. bye— bye.
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this is bbc news. i'm ben boulos. the headlines: president biden is expected to announce that federal workers will soon be required to confirm they are vaccinated, or face more testing, as us covid cases continue to rise. the vavcination push comes after national infection rates increased over 300% in under a month. japan has recorded the highest daily number of coronavirus cases since the beginning of the pandemic. the surge is bing blamed on the delta variant and the olympics. authorities in tokyo say the city's state of emergency is not working, as bars are still packed well after midnight. day 6 of the tokyo 2020 olympics is well underway. all eyes injapan will be on the golf competition, and the masters champion, hideki matsuyama, who'll be representing the host nation. there are also medals up for grabs in rowing and swimming. all week, the giant
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companies of the tech world have been reporting their staggering level of profits.

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