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tv   BBC News  BBC News  December 28, 2021 2:00am-2:31am GMT

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welcome to bbc news, i'm david eades. our top stories. america's leading health body halves the isolation period for patients with asymptomatic covid from ten days to five. france gets tougher on covid restrictions — working from home becomes compulsory, as infection rates exceed 100,000 a day. the political stand—off in somalia escalates, as the president and the prime minister engage in a power struggle, after delayed elections. the captain and first officer of a freighter that caused an environmental disaster in mauritius are sentenced to 20 months in prison. and cape town's city hall is bathed in purple light to honour archbishop desmond tutu, as south africa holds a week
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of mourning and commemoration. welcome to our viewers on pbs in america and around the globe. we are going to bring you developments from across the globe as the rapid rise in 0micron cases triggers a slew of different responses. the us health authorities have halved the recommended isolation period for people who test positive for covid—19, but don't exhibit symptoms. the centers for disease control now says that infected but asymptomatic people should stay at home for five days and wear a mask around others for a further five. it comes as new york city made it compulsory for everyone aged 12 and above to be fully vaccinated against covid, in order to access indoor entertainment and sports activities. new york city's mayor
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explained why the measures were being taken now. we have made history in new york city. and we lead the nation with the strongest vaccine mandate anywhere, private sector vaccine mandate, reaching hundreds of thousands of businesses, and we put this mandate into action as 0micron was coming, but we had no idea it would be quite this intense. but we knew, with 0micron coming, with cold weather, it was time to do more. well, thank god we did, because these mandates have been absolutely necessary to keep this city going. the reason this city keeps going, the reason we are open, while some other places are shut down, is because of our focus on vaccination and we use mandates and incentives. we have got to double down, because one thing we can all agree and we have talked to a lot of business leaders about this, covid is bad for humans, it is bad for our health, but it is also bad for business. dr peter chin—hong is an infectious disease specialist and a professor
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of medicine at the university of california san francisco. i asked him for his thoughts on the new isolation rules. i think we don't have a lot of time to wait for the best data. in a large sense it is driven by the workforce, if you think about health care and airlines, they all have a common a common denominator. if you were positive and people were asymptomatic, you had a covid prison sentence for ten days, and i think that was wreaking havoc on all facets of life, frankly. the trouble is, our assumption was you needed ten days to be shot of it. can you explain a little bit about the infection period and how long we might still harbour it? several reasons went
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into this recommendation. first, overall, we are not in the same place as we were in the fall of 2020 when the guidelines were last updated. we have had vaccines since then and more therapeutics, so if you think about that timeline when you are infected and when you are most likely to transmit, if you think about alpha, it was said to be about five days, delta four days, and 0micron is thought to be three days, much of that data comes from the oslo event when scores of people were infected with 0micron. that is the thinking — two days before, three days after. call it five, and you wear a mask for the additionalfive days, we think the probability of transmission then is low. and even if you do get transmission, we have antibodies and increasing oral options that will be available. we are more comfortable with treating covid.
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as a vaccinated person, we know you are very unlikely to get serious disease, hospitalisation and death, very different from november 2020. does it bother you, this new regime? i appreciate there is an economic call for it, a business sense, but as a medical man and a scientist, are you anxious? i am a little anxious, david, because we don't quite have the amount of data we had in the previous version. we know for example, if i call up the old data, you can take up to 11.5 days for everyone to sort of transmit, if they are going to transmit from an initial infection. so i guess the tail end is what makes me nervous. i am nervous about whether or not folks are going to wear masks after those five days, because you are not out of the woods just because you are in society, it doesn't mean you are not capable of transmission.
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and are you going to wear the right mask? cloth masks are not going to be enough for 0micron we think, and you need something better, at least a well fitted surgical mask if not a n—95 mask. the french government has announced new measures, to deal with a spike in covid infections. working from home will become obligatory again where possible, for at least three days a week — although schools will open on schedule in the first week of january. there are also no plans to impose an evening curfew, but there will be limits on the size of audiences for indoor and outdoor events. the bbc�*s azaday moshiri reports. with the festivities over and memories made, france is now snapping back to the reality of the pandemic. president macron convened a remote cabinet meeting to review the latest data
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on the 0micron variant. and his government's verdict is clear — cases are surging, and more restrictions are needed, at least for the next three weeks. starting on monday, all public gatherings will be limited to 2000 people for indoor events, and 5000 for outdoor ones. all spectators will have to be seated at concerts. food and drink can only be consumed while seated at bars and restaurants. and they will be banned on all public transport as well as cinemas. working from home will be mandatory three days a week, where possible. and masks will be compulsory in outdoor city centres in addition to public transport. france's prime minister said he knows this all sounds like a film without an ending. translation: i know these measures can sometimes i make people feel fed up, but since the start
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of the crisis, the president, like his government, has sought only to protect you. the government is preparing for a huge wave of cases, having already hit a record number in the last few days, registering more than 100,000 positive cases for the very first time, which is why france is offering a third booster shot after three months instead of four. but there is a fear that hospitals could buckle under the pressure, and that more measures will be needed. translation: with the omicron variant, continuing to expand - would not only put pressure on hospitals but especially pressure on all of society, because there will be up to 1.5 million people who would have to self—isolate each day. the government has warned it
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will introduce part that will introduce passes that will make vaccines mandatory for certain activities by january 15th, if parliament approves. but it did stop short of imposing a full lockdown on new year's eve. a silver lining, as france prepares for a fifth wave of the pandemic. meanwhile in the uk, health secretary sajid javid has said there will be no new restrictions introduced in england before the new year. ministers had been under pressure to respond to rising infection levels after the devolved administrations in scotland, wales and northern ireland all implemented measures to stem the spread of the 0micron variant. here's our political correspondent ian watson. with a record number of covid cases recorded on christmas day, there were fears of a rather bleaker new year. scotland, wales and northern ireland have all imposed further restrictions. so there was pressure on the government at westminster to make it clear
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if england would follow. for the time being, it won't. and for the remainder of 2021, the message will be caution, not compulsion. there will be no further measures before the new year. we won't be taking any further measures. of course, people should remain cautious as we approach new year celebrations, and take a lateral flow test, that makes sense. celebrate outside, if you can. have some ventilation indoors, if you can. please remain cautious. many businesses will drink to that. but at this pub in bristol, they say that even existing restrictions have hit them hard. we've already lost a very, very big trading period — already. a really key trading period. next month, it'll have little impact, because it's a quiet time of year anyway. government ministers are still worried about the effect that self—isolation as well as sickness is having on staffing levels in the nhs, which is one of the reasons they haven't completely ruled out new measures in 2022.
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covid is having a significant impact on staffing in our. emergency departments. the most common figure coming back at us is thati departments are reporting 20, 25% of their staff off— because of covid—related reasons at the moment, | and that's a really big deal. for emergency departments. westminster is now on a very divergent path from the administrations in other parts of the uk. but government ministers say they are analysing the data in england, not ignoring it. the prime minister was briefed by his scientific and medical advisers today, and downing street say he saw nothing in the data that would force him to push the red button on further restrictions in england. had he done so, then mps would have been brought back here to vote on them. that's now been ruled out. you can see why borisjohnson might have been quite keen to avoid that. the ayes to the right, 369. earlier this month, 100 of his own mps rebelled against the introduction
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of covid passes, and he may have faced even greater resistance to any new measures before new year. the prime minister is well aware of the sentiment on the conservative backbenches, it was a massive rebellion. without hard data to support any further lockdown measures, the rebellion would only be larger. labour is calling for the government now to publish all relevant data and scientific advice, they say to reassure the public that borisjohnson isn'tjust capitulating to his own party. there's often been a spirit of goodwill during the covid crisis but you can't entirely keep politics out of a pandemic. 0ne further statistic which indicates just how fast the 0micron variant is spreading — the rate of infection per hundred thousand people. and in the uk, it's now 1,095. there's a similar level of infection in spain — although spain has been reporting even higherfigures over the christmas period.
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currently there are 1,206 cases per hundred thousand people. it's the first time that figure has gone above 1,000 — spain's highest on record. an israeli hospital is giving people a fourth shot of the vaccine, as part of a clinical trial, to determine whether it might stem the further spread of the virus. the trial in tel aviv includes 150 healthcare workers who received their third shot no later than august this year. israel is considering a fourth dose, a second booster, for vulnerable people. the infections have been surging in recent weeks despite the comprehensive vaccination programme. let's get some of the day's other news. geologists in iceland are warning that a series of tremors near the capital reykjavik could signal that a new volcanic eruption is on the way. thousands of mini quakes have been recorded in recent days. experts say the cause is magma moving beneath
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the earth's surface. they're warning tourists to stay away, although it's not clear if and when a quake might happen. two football teams in france have been thrown out of the french cup because of fan violence. lyon and paris fc were punished after crowd trouble forced the abandonment of their french cup match earlier this month. both clubs can appeal against the decision. bush fires are raging in southern chile, burning up more than twelve thousand hectares so far. the largest fire has destroyed homes in the nuble region, leaving behind only metal rooftops. planes and helicopters have been mobilised to try to contain the fires. south africa has begun a week of events to commemorate the life of archbishop desmond tutu. the anti—apartheid leader died on sunday, aged 90. the bells of cape town's st george's cathedral, where he was archbishop for 10 years, will toll for 10 minutes every day at noon until friday.
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table mountain and the city hall in cape town will be lit up in purple every night ahead of his funeral onjanuary 1st. purple to represent the colour of his clerical robes. here are the pictures from earlier today of south african president cyril ramaphosa arriving at the archbishop's residence, to offer condolences to his widow leah and the other family members. 0ur correspondent nomsa maseko is in cape town, outside st george's cathedral. earlier, she described what people have been saying to her about desmond tutu. people are reflecting about archbishop desmond tutu as a man who was small in stature but had a big heart. after all, he was the man who was chosen by nelson mandela
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to head the reconciliation process here back in 1994, when south africa became a democracy. a lot of people speak about the man who played a prominent role in ensuring that south africa does indeed become a democracy. so he wasn'tjust respected here in this country, but all over the world, and also with world leaders having paid their own tribute, speaking about the man, describing desmond tutu as a moral compass not just for south africa, but also for them in their respective countries. as hollywood box—office takings continue to tumble — we examine if this means the end of going out to the cinema? the most ambitious financial and political change ever attempted has got under way with the introduction of the euro. tomorrow in holland they are going to use money that we picked up in belgium today and then we will be in france and again it will be the same money. it has got to be the way to go.
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george harrison, the former beatle, is recovering in hospital after being stabbed at his oxfordshire home. a 33—year—old man from liverpool is being interviewed by police on suspicion of attempted murder. i think it was good. just good? - no, fantastic. that's better. j this is bbc news, the latest headlines. america's leading health body halves the isolation period for patients with asymptomatic covid,
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from ten days to five. france gets tougher on covid restrictions, with working from home becoming compulsory, as infection rates exceed 100,000 a day. there's a growing political standoff in somalia between the president and prime minister. president mohamed abdullahi farmaajo says he has suspended the prime minister, accusing him of corruption over a land grab case. the prime minister, mohamed hussein roble says the president is attempting an informal coup. bella shegow has sent this report from mogadishu. the power struggle between the two leaders took a new turn today when early this morning vehicles from the presidential palace blocked roads close to the prime minister's residence, forcing the prime minister to get to his office on foot. mr roble then accused the president of sabotaging the elections. translation: i would
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like to make it clear i to the somali people that the somali federal government will be in charge during the transition period, and i therefore give order to also my national forces to work under the command of the office of the prime minister from today. and the former president, mohamed abdullahi farmaajo, is no more of the presidential candidate, so therefore he should stand aside. today's move comes just three months after the president, mohamed abdullahi farmaajo, and the prime minister agreed to end a bitter feud sparked by the disappearance of a female intelligence officer injune. the fear now is that today's development will only deepen the political crisis and could trigger clashes between the forces loyal to the two men, such as the ones in mogadishu in april, when president mohamed abdullahi farmaajo unilaterally extended his four—year term by two years. bella shegow,
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bbc news, mogadishu. the captain and first officer of a freighter that caused an environmental disaster in mauritius have been sentenced to 20 months in prison. both men were found guilty last week of endangering safe navigation. these were once clear waters, pristine beaches, but all of this was contaminated by thick, black oil, leaking from this ship, the mv wakashio, a japanese owned vessel that was sailing from singapore to brazil, when it ran aground injuly, 2020. the freighter spilt more than 1000 tonnes of fuel, releasing a toxic tide that damaged wildlife, corals and mangroves. it is one of the worst environmental disasters that mauritius has ever seen. during the trial, the ship's captain, sunil kumar nandeshwar, admitted to having a few drinks during a birthday party on board the vessel and to having given instructions to approach mauritian waters, to gain access to mobile phone
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networks, so that the crew could contact their families. he had left the first officer at the helm. both men were found guilty of endangering safe navigation and sentenced to 20 months in prison. translation: it is a very harsh sentence, considering _ the offence that was committed. it is extremely rare that a court does not take into consideration the rules of remission for a guilty plea. the two men have been in police custody since august, 2020, meaning, that with time served, they can now return home to india and sri lanka respectively. the ship's insurers have agreed to pay compensation of $2500 each to hundreds of fishermen and fishmongers for the loss of earnings caused by the spill. sylvia lennan—spence, bbc news. as we reach the end of the year, hollywood is counting its box office losses as the pandemic continues to prevent large sections of the audience
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returning to the cinema. in the us takings are set to reach $4.4 billion by the end of the year — which sounds like no mean feat, but that's down 61% on 2019, the last year where covid—19 wasn't a factor. globally, box office receipts this year were around 20 billion, again not be laughed at, but that's half of what the studios made in 2019. so far only one film this year has grossed more than1 billion dollars across the world — spider man: no way home — that's compared to nine films in 2019. so is fear of covid stopping audiences setting out to the local mutliplex, or has the rise of streaming and on demand changed the way we consume movies for ever? paul dergarabedian is a senior media analyst at comscore and joins me now from hollywood. that is quite a drop off from
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the box office monsters, isn't it? ., the box office monsters, isn't it? . ., , , the box office monsters, isn't it? ., ., , , it? yeah, it really is, david. an incredible _ it? yeah, it really is, david. an incredible year _ it? yeah, it really is, david. an incredible year and - it? yeah, it really is, david. an incredible year and a - it? yeah, it really is, david. | an incredible year and a half, almost two years, really, for the movie theatres in particular. movie theatres shutting down potentially in march 2020, and since then, it's been a real roller—coaster ride at the box office. like you said, the takings seem impressive at 20 billion globally expected, 4.4 billion in north america, which is around half, and in the coast of north america, less than half of what we earned in 2019, but it is double what we earned in 2020 on both counts, so kind of a good news bad news scenario.— of a good news bad news scenario. ., , scenario. considering where we were a year _ scenario. considering where we were a year ago. _ scenario. considering where we were a year ago, we _ scenario. considering where we were a year ago, we are - scenario. considering where we were a year ago, we are in - scenario. considering where we were a year ago, we are in a i were a year ago, we are in a pretty good spot, especially with spider—man doing $1
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billion of business. and obviously the success of streaming, partly a covid success in a strange sort of way, that brings in its own revenues which don't count in the box office sense, but does it signal a change forever? will we get back to those packed cinemas? i think we are going to get back to the packed cinemas, it will take a little longer than we expected. considering the proliferation of streaming, how great to have it at home, that is wonderful for people who don't want to go out, but the fact spider—man did as well and it did, venom, some of the other big blockbusters like that, generally those films which have youth appeal have done very well. the films that openedin very well. the films that opened in theatres first did better, they actually performed better, they actually performed better in theatres, because that was the only place you could see them. and then when
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they hit the small screen, they are more coveted and desired, films have a greater prestige when they go into the movie theatre first. but definitely theatre first. but definitely the industry has learning how all the new dynamics are coming to bear in terms of the box office and streaming. you make an interesting point about the youth element, they are happy to go to the movies and still take it on—board. perhaps different generations are that much more anxious, and that will be a hard nut to crack. i think that is really the case. if you look at the big franchise films that have done well, the super girl films against the more adult oriented films, like west side story for example, which many hoped would do much better because it is a great movie. but if the demographic, the mature demographic, the mature demographic is still reticent to go to the movie theatre, thatis
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to go to the movie theatre, that is going to be a problem, i don't think forever, but right now the big blockbusters will help the theatres to weather the storm and get through this tough period and get on theirfeet through this tough period and get on their feet for next year. ifi if i have one microfilm to see this year, what should it be? spider—man. you have to be part of the conversation, david! you have to be part of the conversation, david! is all about exceptionally high temperatures. this chart shows the temperature compared with the average. as these deep red colours spread northwards across the chart, that shows that temperatures will be significantly higher than we'd expect them to be at this time of year. daytime highs of 16—17 degrees, some very mild nights. there will be some rain at times as well, and during tuesday, it's this area of low pressure responsible for bringing some wet weather. and on the southern flank of that low, also some quite windy weather. so, as our area of low pressure slides eastwards, we will see outbreaks of rain through the morning across parts of england and wales. a lot of mist and murk and low cloud around as well.
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should brighten up from the west. northern ireland and scotland certainly turning brighter by the afternoon. 0nce any early fog has lifted, there should be quite a lot of sunshine around. relatively light winds in the north, but down towards the south, particularly for western and southern coasts, we're likely to see gusts of 40—50, maybe 55 mph. and still quite a split in temperatures for the time being. 5—6 degrees in northern scotland, 12—13 in southern england. then as we head through tuesday night into the early part of wednesday, a drier, quieter interlude before another band of rain swings its way in from the west. a little bit chilly again across northern parts of scotland, very mild down towards wales and the south west of england. and for wednesday, that band of rain associated with the frontal system will continue to journey its way north—eastwards, so we will see some wet weather for a time on wednesday. clearing many areas quite quickly. that rain lingering, though, for a good part of the afternoon in northern scotland. behind it, there will be some spells of sunshine, some areas of cloud, too. but some increasingly mild conditions, 15—16 degrees in the south,
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13 there for belfast, ten in glasgow. the milder air is journeying northwards. it will continue to do so on thursday. quite a cloudy day for many, some mist and murk, some rain especially in the west. best chance of any sunshine in eastern parts, but highs of 16 or maybe 17 degrees. but even northern scotland will be up into double digits by this stage. another quite windy day in prospect. for friday, new year's eve, a lot of cloud around, some rain, especially in the west. best of any sunshine in the east, and still milder than it should be for the end of december. highs of 11—16 degrees.
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this is bbc news, the headlines... the us health authorities have halved the recommended isolation period for people who test positive for covid—19, without exhibiting symptoms. the centers for disease control now says that infected but asymptomatic people should stay home for five days and wear a mask around others for a further five. france has become the latest european country to tighten covid restrictions, in the face of rapidly rising cases. the government has stopped short of imposing a curfew despite daily infection rates exceeding one hundred thousand . employees have been told to work from home for three days a week, where possible. there have been heightened tensions in somalia — as a political stand—off between its two leading politicians continues to ecalate. following a delayed election, president mohamed abdullahi farmajo suspended the prime minister — but mohamed hussein roble has refused to step aside. now on bbc�*s
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time for weather world. sarah keith—lucas and nick miller report on how


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