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tv   BBC News  BBC News  January 13, 2022 10:00am-1:01pm GMT

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tim muffett, bbc news. good morning. welcome to bbc news. i'm victoria derbyshire — live in downing street — here are the headlines for viewers in the uk and around the world. pressure continues to mount on borisjohnson to resign after he admitted attending a downing street drinks party at the height of lockdown. but cabinet ministers rally round him.... but cabinet ministers rally round him. the fact is we have got an investigation that is doing that work to get the details and the facts about exactly what happened throughout that period, actually, not just that one period on may 20th. we are looking at that period of time as has been outlined. and when we have got those facts then we can have that conversation. the prime minister's behaviour has angered people across the uk — including relatives of people
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who died during the pandemic. it wasn't a real apology. saying sorry doesn't really mean anything if your behaviour doesn't change, and it doesn't seem to me like his attitude changed at all will stop. let me know what you think of the pm's defence, and particularly if you voted conservative at the last election, what you want to see happen next. @vicdebryshire on twitter and instagram. i'm martine croxall. also this hour — the lawyer representing virginia giuffre in her civil case alleging sexual assault by prince andrew says she's not interested in a purely financial settlement. a court in germany has given a life sentence to a former syrian colonel for crimes against humanity. and vaccinated uk travellers will be allowed back to france from tomorrow — as the government in paris relaxes restrictions.
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hello, we are live at downing street this morning. borisjohnson has pulled out of a planned visit to a vaccination clinic in the north west of england after a member of his family tested positive for covid. he's cancelled the trip despite official guidance no longer requiring vaccinated contacts of covid cases to self—isolate. it comes as senior conservatives are calling on mrjohnson to quit after he admitted attending that drinks party during lockdown. mrjohnson apologised for the way he handled the event in downing street in the garden here in 2020 saying he understood the public�*s rage over
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it. let's take a look at the latest developments. some of the pm's top team — including the deputy prime minister dominic raab have rallied around the prime minister. but some mps including the scottish tory leader douglas ross have called on him to go — along with william wragg, caroline nokes and sir roger gale. douglas ross said he would write to the 1922 committee — which organises tory leadership contests — to register his lack of confidence in the prime minister. it takes letters from 5a backbench conservative mps to trigger a leadership challenge. senior ministers have urged mps to wait for the outcome of an investigation into alleged parties at number 10 — by the senior civil servant sue gray. we'll have developments throughout the morning hear from downing street — but first here's our political correspondent damian grammaticas. the chill of a westminster morning, and a prime minister in trouble. the question in the cold light of a new day — is his apology enough?
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in the commons yesterday, borisjohnson did finally admit he had been at a party — but said his garden was a workspace. technically, it was within the rules. i believed implicitly that this was a work event. many watching — including bereaved families — didn't believe him. it wasn't an apology, he didn't so sorry, he basically gas lit the entire nation in saying the event that was illegal at the time was a work event and not a party. we all know that's not true. one by one, his cabinet have come forward to back him. the foreign secretary late in the evening said she was behind him 100%, and the chancellor, too — a bit lukewarm — requested patience while an inquiry is under way. a handful of his own mps have lost patience, publicly calling on him to go.
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i know my thoughts are he is damaging as now, he is damaging the entire conservative brand with an unwillingness to accept the stricture that other people have lived by. it has left some tories pitted against one another. the scottish leader douglas ross had called on the pm to resign. last nightjacob rees—mogg, himself in the cabinet, turned on mr ross. douglas ross has always been quite a lightweight figure so i don't think... ooft! hang on, the leader of the scottish conservatives, nd msp, is a lightweight figure? the scottish secretary is a much more substantial and important figure in this. so there is real disquiet among many conservatives while they wait for that inquiry by the civil servant sue gray. the prime minister has admitted he was in the downing street garden and admitted it was a party, therefore she doesn't have to find that, that has already been acknowledged. what she has to find is to work out, you know, who was responsible and who should take blame for it. and, crucially, which occupants of downing street might that be?
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damian grammaticas, bbc news, westminster. let's speak to our political correspondent nick eardley who's in westminster. tell us what some members of the prime minister's top team have been saying this morning. goad prime minister's top team have been saying this morning.— saying this morning. good morning, victoria. it does _ saying this morning. good morning, victoria. it does feel _ saying this morning. good morning, victoria. it does feel like _ saying this morning. good morning, victoria. it does feel like there - saying this morning. good morning, victoria. it does feel like there is i victoria. it does feel like there is a bit of a concerted effort from the cabinet to get out on the airwaves and say we are behind the prime minister, we agree with what he said yesterday, we think he was right to apologise, and we now need to wait for that report from sue gray, the senior civil servant looking into all these allegations of parties. i've got to say, although we are getting that message from the cabinet, wondering around westminster, talking to tory mps, they are not as positive. there are some who think that the prime minister didn't go far enough yesterday, there are some who think that his apology was a bit weak.
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there are some who say that they have furious constituents still getting in touch with them after the prime minister's apology yesterday, still angry about the perception that it was one rule in downing street and one rule for everybody else, so what is going to be really interesting today is to see how that mood develops, whether we get more conservative mps, perhaps those who work in vulnerable seats, who could find themselves struggling to keep their seat at the next election, whether they start to question whether they start to question whether mrjohnson is the right person to lead the party now. but as i say, i think we are also going to get that concerted effort from those around the prime minister to try and shore up his position for the next few days. have a listen to the northern ireland secretary brandon lewis who was the minister put out by the government this morning. is the prime minister said yesterday in hindsight he regrets going out to
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the garden and thanking the staff rather_ the garden and thanking the staff rather than telling them to come back into — rather than telling them to come back into the office. i think he was right— back into the office. i think he was right to _ back into the office. i think he was right to do — back into the office. i think he was right to do that, recognising as he said, _ right to do that, recognising as he said. and — right to do that, recognising as he said, and something i have seen as well, _ said, and something i have seen as well, not _ said, and something i have seen as well, notjust the said, and something i have seen as well, not just the frustration and anger— well, not just the frustration and anger but— well, not just the frustration and anger but also upset people have had around _ anger but also upset people have had around the _ anger but also upset people have had around the view that there has been one thing _ around the view that there has been one thing said to people about what we should _ one thing said to people about what we should all do and what we were doing _ we should all do and what we were doing at_ we should all do and what we were doing at the time and what they perceived — doing at the time and what they perceived happened in numberio doing at the time and what they perceived happened in number 10 and it's also— perceived happened in number 10 and it's also right that we have this investigation taking it forward and once we _ investigation taking it forward and once we have the details of that, the prime — once we have the details of that, the prime minister, as he has said, will come _ the prime minister, as he has said, will come back to parliament and we will come back to parliament and we will publish the findings of the report— will publish the findings of the report and he will take questions from _ report and he will take questions from parliamentarians and beef very clear in _ from parliamentarians and beef very clear in a _ from parliamentarians and beef very clear in a statement to the house of commons, — clear in a statement to the house of commons, as he did yesterday. 30 commons, as he did yesterday. sc that's commons, as he did yesterday. that's the commons, as he did yesterday. sr that's the case for the defence. there are a handful of mps who have said they think mrjohnson should resign now. there are others who think that privately but i'm not quite prepared to say it in public, and there is another group of tory mps who are really worried but are waiting to see that report from the senior civil servant looking into all of this, and speaking to them,
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victoria, there are more than a few who say that if that report is in any way critical of the prime minister or questions his judgment, orfind something minister or questions his judgment, or find something else that is damaging for the number 10 operation, then that could be terminal. . operation, then that could be terminal. , ., ., , ., terminal. there is an ally quoted in the conservative _ terminal. there is an ally quoted in the conservative supporting - the conservative supporting newspaper, the sun newspaper, this morning saying borisjohnson will not resign, he is a fighter and he has "more fight in him that the vast majority of people." i want to ask you about scotland boss my conservatives, douglas ross in particular, the leader of the scottish tories, who said, it is reported he said, he had a conversation with the prime minister yesterday afternoon and came off the phone saying the prime minister doesn't believe he's done anything wrong and he has called for him to go. since then the leader of the house of commons, another senior conservative, has slapped him off. what is going on there? it conservative, has slapped him off. what is going on there?— what is going on there? it feels like some of— what is going on there? it feels like some of the _ what is going on there? it feels like some of the most - what is going on there? it feels | like some of the most significant
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blue on blue, tory on tory infighting we have seen since the big brexit battles in parliament to me. douglas ross is the elected leader of the scottish tories, although he stood unopposed, so may be elected is pushing it slightly, but he is leader of the scottish conservative party. he has backing of the vast majority of scottish tory msps in saying that boris johnson should resign. jacob rees—mogg was on newsnight last night saying he thinks douglas ross is a lightweight figure and that his opinion isn't all that important, which is, you know, aside from wanting to protect the prime minister, which you could maybe understand from some cabinet ministers at this stage when there is that operation savejohnson that seems to be going on. it also creates this almighty schism between edinburgh and london, between different parts of the conservative party. and although it might be sensible forjacob rees—mogg just now to defend the prime minister, i just also say it is worth thinking
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this could have a huge impact on the scottish conservative party, the ones who are making the case against independence in scotland. i would be amazed if you don't hear the snp's saying for weeks and weeks and weeks now that the scottish tories are, according to some in london, lightweights. i've spoken to somebody close to scottish secretary alisterjack this morning. he is backing the prime minister fully. alisterjack this morning. he is backing the prime ministerfully. he is told douglas ross he thinks he was wrong. i'm also told that alisterjack doesn't think douglas rossis alisterjack doesn't think douglas ross is a lightweight. it is a mess, victoria, and it will be fascinating to see how that plays out over the rest of today. to see how that plays out over the rest of today-— rest of today. thank you, nick eardle , rest of today. thank you, nick eardley, political— rest of today. thank you, nick i eardley, political correspondent. rest of today. thank you, nick - eardley, political correspondent. in an hour's time we will speak to the chief secretary to the treasury, simon clarke, he's the chancellor's number two, also rishi sunak�*s right—hand man. rishi sunak tweeted yesterday, the prime minister was right to apologise and i expect his
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request for patients while sue gray carries out her inquiry. we are going to talk right now to jamie mawson. his dad died and he couldn't attend the funeral. thank you for joining us. tell us what happened to your dad. joining us. tell us what happened to our dad. a. , joining us. tell us what happened to ourdad. , ., ., your dad. basically, my dad attended the atletico madrid _ your dad. basically, my dad attended the atletico madrid game _ your dad. basically, my dad attended the atletico madrid game on - your dad. basically, my dad attended the atletico madrid game on the - your dad. basically, my dad attended the atletico madrid game on the 11th| the atletico madrid game on the 11th of march just before the pandemic hit properly. 3000 fans were allowed to travel into the city, into the ground. the week before obviously spain was in full lockdown at the time with madrid the worst affected city. but anyhow, they still allowed 3000 supporters, spanish supporters, to come to the game that night. my dad attended the game that night because he was a huge liverpool fan of around 63 years. four weeks later
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he died of covid. the most heartbreaking thing for us was through all this, and to see boris johnson yesterday with his head stooped low, you know, his body said everything for me yesterday, you know, that he lied. now, we as a family had to say our goodbyes by video link, which was absolutely heartbreaking, and i wouldn't wish that on anybody or any family. we have done that, and i remember speaking to the nurse, and i was crying to the nurse from aintree hospital here in liverpool and i said, look, could you please hold his hand while he passes because we didn't have the opportunity to attend the hospital, we were not allowed in the hospital, and it was just heartbreaking, you know, that we couldn't say our goodbyes to him.
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for me to ask a nurse who was absolutely brilliant at the time, she fully understood, to hold his hand. and then we had the funeral on the 2nd of may and there was only ten of us in attendance. we stop to the rules again. and now to learn and to hear what has come out two weeks later more or less they are having parties with alcohol and food —— we stuck to the rules. they were not socially distancing. we all followed the rules. for me, yesterday i was disgusted, i was sad, emotional, hurt, there was all kinds of mixed emotions going through me yesterday when i seen on the tv and i had to be honest, he didn't even once say properly i'm sorry. he didn't hold his hands up and say, "look, i'm sorry," you
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know, and that to me isjust and say, "look, i'm sorry," you know, and that to me is just not acceptable. know, and that to me is 'ust not acceptabiafi know, and that to me is 'ust not acceptable. know, and that to me is 'ust not accetable. ~ , i. ., acceptable. why did you say that the prime minister _ acceptable. why did you say that the prime minister lied? _ acceptable. why did you say that the prime minister lied? why _ acceptable. why did you say that the prime minister lied? why do - acceptable. why did you say that the prime minister lied? why do you - acceptable. why did you say that the prime minister lied? why do you sayj prime minister lied? why do you say that? ~ �* , , ., that? well, it's proven. over the ast that? well, it's proven. over the past week _ that? well, it's proven. over the past week or _ that? well, it's proven. over the past week or so _ that? well, it's proven. over the past week or so now _ that? well, it's proven. over the past week or so now it _ that? well, it's proven. over the past week or so now it is - that? well, it's proven. over the past week or so now it is proven | past week or so now it is proven that he has lied and he he went on camera to say that there wasn't any parties, but there was. now his own backbenchers have now also come out and they have admitted there was. you know, yesterday, for me, to see his body language, he was stooped low, head down, couldn't face the music, and when keir starmer put it to him repeatedly that he should resign, hejust to him repeatedly that he should resign, he just waved to him repeatedly that he should resign, hejust waved his head. but
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resign, he 'ust waved his head. but he did resign, he just waved his head. but he did apologise, he did say he took responsibility. he did say i know the rage people feel with me and with the government i lead when they think that in downing street itself the rules are not properly being followed by the people who make the rules. his supporters say he was contrite, and that was a full apology. contrite, and that was a full a olo: . ~ ~' ., contrite, and that was a full aolo: .~ ,, ., , apology. well, i think for us families who _ apology. well, i think for us families who have _ apology. well, i think for us families who have suffered l families who have suffered throughout the past 18 months, i don't think that apology was good enough for us. why has he said it now? why didn't he come clean some time ago? he now? why didn't he come clean some time auo? ., , now? why didn't he come clean some time auo? now? why didn't he come clean some time ao? ., now? why didn't he come clean some timeauo? ., , , time ago? he has said it now because itv news revealed _ time ago? he has said it now because itv news revealed the _ time ago? he has said it now because itv news revealed the e-mail- time ago? he has said it now because itv news revealed the e-mail to - time ago? he has said it now because itv news revealed the e-mail to 100| itv news revealed the e—mail to 100 people inviting people to a bring your own booze party because they thought it would be nice to make the most of the lovely weather. we
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certainl most of the lovely weather. - certainly couldn't. me and thousands of other families were still grieving, so we didn't get that opportunity. we were still grieving. we have lost loved ones, saying goodbyes over video links, not being able to go and see them, you know, it has just been an horrendous two years more or less. it hasjust been an horrendous two years more or less.— years more or less. thank you for talkin: to years more or less. thank you for talking to us. _ years more or less. thank you for talking to us, mr— years more or less. thank you for talking to us, mr mawson, - years more or less. thank you for talking to us, mr mawson, we - talking to us, mr mawson, we appreciate your time today. siralistair graham is the former chairman of the committee on standards in public life. he told me what he thought of the prime minister's performance yesterday. well, i thought he cut a rather sad figure and as a number of people who have spoken to you have said, i didn't think that the excuse given that this was technically a work meeting really cut very much ice,
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and i think the position of the prime minister is very vulnerable. do you think the prime minister thinks he's done anything wrong? well, you never know quite with boris. he doesn't like rules. he has a long track record of circling around them rather than meeting rules. so who knows what he thinks deep down whether he did anything wrong. i cannot believe he is convinced by the argument he put yesterday that this was a work meeting when the whole country thinks it clearly was a social event and that was in breach of the regulations. the problem for the prime minister is that he seems to have breached the ministerial code,
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he misled parliament in his view about parties, and admitted yesterday that he spent 25 minutes at what most of us think was a party, and therefore he is in breach of the ministerial code and therefore should resign. you of the ministerial code and therefore should resign. you say he is in breach — therefore should resign. you say he is in breach of— therefore should resign. you say he is in breach of the _ therefore should resign. you say he is in breach of the ministerial- therefore should resign. you say he is in breach of the ministerial code | is in breach of the ministerial code because previously he said i have not broken any covid rules, and previously told the house of commons i have been repeatedly assured that there were no parties and that no covid rules were broken, that's what i have been repeatedly assured. you are saying that now by admitting he was at that event that means he has misled parliament?— misled parliament? that's been his bi est misled parliament? that's been his biggest mistake — misled parliament? that's been his biggest mistake throughout - misled parliament? that's been his biggest mistake throughout their i biggest mistake throughout their whole series of ethical issues, is that he never is honest and open at the time when he should be, that he has breached a rule, or that he didn't meet the full spirit of a rule. if he had done that on this
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issue at the time, people might take a different view. but because he misled parliament and has got this dreadful track record, i think his position is, as many other people have said, untenable.— position is, as many other people have said, untenable. when he said, even if it could _ have said, untenable. when he said, even if it could be _ have said, untenable. when he said, even if it could be said _ have said, untenable. when he said, even if it could be said technically i even if it could be said technically to fall within the guidance, do you think he meant by that it was because it was his own garden and he was allowed to be on his own garden? well, no, i presume it's the argument that the garden was part of the office space, so to speak, without any, though it has got walls around the garden, without any roof to it because of the good weather. itjust to it because of the good weather. it just doesn't cut to it because of the good weather. itjust doesn't cut the ice, does it? peoplejust don't itjust doesn't cut the ice, does it? people just don't believe itjust doesn't cut the ice, does it? peoplejust don't believe him. he is totally lost the trust of people believing his explanations,
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and therefore, his authority is totally diminished and i think his position as leader of the country is terminally undermined. fine position as leader of the country is terminally undermined.— terminally undermined. one li is auoted in terminally undermined. one li is quoted in the _ terminally undermined. one li is quoted in the newspapers - terminally undermined. one li is quoted in the newspapers today | quoted in the newspapers today saying he is a fighter, he has more fight in him than the vast majority of people. if sue gray finds he didn't break the rules, he can carry on. —— ally. didn't break the rules, he can carry on- -- ally-— on. -- ally. yes, and boris has a very good _ on. -- ally. yes, and boris has a very good knack _ on. -- ally. yes, and boris has a very good knack of _ on. -- ally. yes, and boris has a very good knack of surviving - on. -- ally. yes, and boris has a very good knack of surviving the | very good knack of surviving the most disastrous situations. however, i did work with sue gray when i was chairman of the committee on standards. she is a feisty senior civil servant and i think she will tell us the truth as it is. sir alistair graham, former chairman of
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the committee on standards in public life. thank you for your messages. doctor nag while says he is a leader facing big challenges. at the time, he's done a reasonably good job and no harm has been done by this. we need to relax about it and give the man a break. william says if boris johnson sticks to his story that he thought it was a work event, doesn't sue gray effectively have to just take his word for it? if she can't prove otherwise, won't she have to end up clearing him? it all seems a bit preordained to me. and a couple more, people asking questions. christine says if it was a works business meeting, why was boris johnson's wife there and didn't the police notice? i have an e—mail here from lisa who says, i sent boris johnson two letters about the tragic loss of my beloved husband peter and i have yet to receive a reply. the contempt the prime minister and some of his mps have for the grief stricken families who have had their lives torn apart is abhorrent. the
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half—hearted apology borisjohnson gave at pmqs yesterday was devoid of any empathy, and that is shameful. in half an hour or so we are going to talk to somebody who did break the rules and says they absolutely did the wrong thing, they had friends round for drinks in the garden and they were fined 100 quid and that person now wants a refund, but that's in about half an hour. in the meantime, here is more of the day's news with martine croxall. we have breaking news from the clothing retailer next, have who cut sick pay for unvaccinated staff have to self—isolated because of exposure to self—isolated because of exposure to covid, and in some cases for workers who also test positive. ikea did something similar recently as well, didn't they? next also acknowledging that it is an emotive topic but saying they have to balance staff and shareholder needs. employers are facing mass absences of course because of the 0micron variant of covid. it is unclear when next made the change but it seems it
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is quite recent. unvaccinated workers at next who test positive are still being paid in full for the time they need off. currently it pays store sales consultants and stock assistance between £6 55 and £9 21 per hour but unvaccinated workers required to isolate having been identified as a close contact of somebody with covid could now receive as little as £96.35 per week, which is the statutory sick pay minimum unless there are mitigating circumstances. the lawyer representing virginia giuffre, the woman who's accused prince andrew of sexually assaulting her when she was 17, has told the bbc he doesn't think she would accept a purely financial settlement. ajudge in new york has rejected the duke's attempts to dismiss the civil case. prince andrew has always denied the allegations. tim muffett reports. prince andrew now knows that a civil sex assault case against him can go ahead, following a ruling by a judge in new york. the case has been brought by virginia giuffre, who claims prince andrew
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abused her in 2001, when she was 17 — claims the prince has consistently and firmly denied. his lawyers argue that ms giuffre's complaint should be dismissed — they refer to a 2009 deal she signed with convicted sex offenderjeffrey epstein, in which she agreed not to sue other potential defendants. but a new yorkjudge has ruled the case can continue, saying that deal had been ambiguous. the defendant's motion to dismiss the complaint is denied in all respects, judge kaplan said. last night, virginia giuffre's lawyer gave his reaction. she's obviously very pleased that the judge has rejected prince andrew's legal arguments. i think it's very important to virginia giuffre that this matter be resolved in a way that vindicates her. a purely financial settlement is not anything that i think that she's interested in. if he doesn't appeal against this latest ruling,
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prince andrew effectively has three choices. he could default — ignore the court case — but by doing so, there would be a finding against him. he could take part in the case — he will be questioned under oath, and his lawyers could test virginia giuffre's allegations. or he could try and settle out of court — there would be no admission of liability, but he would perhaps pay a large sum of money to virginia giuffre, who might not want to settle. in the short term, a lot of legal arguments are predicted. we'll have arguments over discovery — whether each party has supplied the information that they should. we may well have arguments overjurisdiction — whether virginia giuffre has sufficient connection with america to rely on this piece of legislation because she now lives in australia. in this — the queen's platinum jubilee year — her second son faces some stark choices. tim muffett, bbc news.
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professor sirjonathan van—tham is to step down as deputy chief medical officer for england at the end of march, to return to academia. professor van—tham joined the department of health on secondment from nottingham university and played a leading role in the response to the covid pandemic, including working on the vaccine taskforce. the health secretary sajid javid praised his communication skills and described him as a �*national treasure' nhs waiting times in england have reached a record high. six million people were waiting for planned operations and procedures in november. and nearly 13,000 patients waited more than 12 hours for a hospital bed in december — that is the highest figure since records began in 2010. 0ur health correspondent katharine da costa is with me. records being set at a rate of knots, but not the kind of records we want to see.— we want to see. that's right, overall a _ we want to see. that's right, overall a picture _ we want to see. that's right, overall a picture of— we want to see. that's right, j overall a picture of sustained pressure. 6 million people were
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waiting for operations, these might be things like hip and knee operations, cataract removal, hernia, and while not deemed urgent operations, many of these people will be waiting in pain and discomfort, feeling fairly isolated and in distress in some cases. so that's one in nine people in england waiting for operations. and nearly 307,000 people were waiting over a year. a lot of work has been trying to reduce those figures, but that still won in 20 people waiting than 12 months. these figures are for november, so that's even before 0micron hit, so the chances are we are likely to see that rise even further next month's figures. if you look at a&e, the gateway entrance to hospitals, nearly1.9 look at a&e, the gateway entrance to hospitals, nearly 1.9 people attended a&e departments in england in december. 73% were seen within four hours. the target is 95%. now, thatis four hours. the target is 95%. now, that is a new record low, but it is only marginally worse than the
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previous month. and nearly 13,000 were waiting more than 12 hours. 0ften were waiting more than 12 hours. often what happens is people are on trolleys in corridors, they are kind of being moved around a&e departments, waiting rooms, consultation rooms etc, it's not ideal while they are waiting for a bed in a ward. what the problem seems to be is discharging patients. this is where patients are fit enough to leave hospital but they might need social care packages put in place, either in their own homes or to be put into a care home. the figures show 12,500 beds were taken up figures show 12,500 beds were taken up by people who were fit enough to leave in the week up to the 9th of january, up from 10,500 the week before, up 20% in a week, so about one in ten last week and it's now about one in eight, so the figures are getting worse. we have been hearing in the social care sector they are also suffering with staff absences, and so in some cases care homes are not accepting new patients
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and there aren't the packages. although there is this big push to try to discharge patients and free up try to discharge patients and free up beds and improve flow into the hospitals, there is the sort of pinch point. across the nhs staff absences, not much change overall week on week, staying about the same, but it is different regionally. so in london things have been getting a little bit better. they were hit by 0micron a little bit earlier so staff absences are falling a little bit there, but the north west, for example, it is increasing up there, they are a little bit behind london, and things are getting a bit worse. so the overall picture is not a rapid deterioration, but things are gradually getting worse. the nhs is struggling. it is important to remember that when we talk about risks of the nhs being overwhelmed, it is not going to collapse overnight, but what happens is it is slowly deteriorating over time. chances are we are likely to see things get worse before they get
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better. . ~' , ., things get worse before they get better. ., ,, , ., ., ., things get worse before they get better. ., «r , ., ., ., better. thank you, katharine da costa. a court in germany has given a life sentence a to a former syrian colonel for crimes against humanity. anwar raslan was found guilty of mass torture and killings at a prison in damascus. he was detained two years ago in germany, where he'd successfully claimed asylum. jenny hill has the background to the case. those who opposed the syrian president paid a terrible price. bashar al—assad's regime violently crushed street protests in 2011. civilians were rounded up, detained, tortured and killed. it's like hell, really. wassim was incarcerated, interrogated in the notorious al—khatib prison in damascus. they told me directly lay on your stomach and raise your feet in the air, so in the stress position. and i should answer their questions, and whenever the answers
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that he didn't like the answers i gave, he ordered somebody next to me to start to hit me. german lawyers fought hard for this trial, prompted by syrian survivors who fled to germany. they told terrible stories. torturers using special tools, electric shocks, rape. crimes so serious they could be tried outside syria in a german court. this is a landmark case, and of course it's aboutjustice being done, but it's also about gathering a body of evidence for the future and giving a voice to those the assad regime wanted to silence. and jennyjoins us now from koblenz. how significant is this conviction? for the survivors, the
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brought the case, for campaigners, this is an important moment. a criminal court has now formally acknowledge that the regime of syrian president schar al—assad, has committed crimes against manatee, against its own people and we saw that summed up in the figure of one man, this anwar raslan, who was a senior officer working for that regime in 2011, when it was so brutally cracking down on anti—government protesters, detaining them, torturing them, in some cases the death. so with his conviction many survivors, many of the families of those who did not survive, the perhaps a first step towards more justice, survive, the perhaps a first step towards morejustice, and many of them have said to me over the last 24 them have said to me over the last 2a hours, what they really want is to see those further up the chain, those who really directed my perhaps even —— even president assad himself, facejustice at even —— even president assad himself, face justice at sometime in the future. this case was about finding justice against one man, who
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committed heinous crimes, but also about making sure that those crimes were recorded, making sure that witness statements were on the record, so that further action can be taken in the years, perhaps decades, to come. it is very important, survivors say, that that continues, that process. there are other cases pending against other people working allegedly for the regime, notjust here in germany but in other parts of europe.— in other parts of europe. jenny, for the moment. _ in other parts of europe. jenny, for the moment, thank— in other parts of europe. jenny, for the moment, thank you _ in other parts of europe. jenny, for the moment, thank you very - in other parts of europe. jenny, for| the moment, thank you very much. the headlines on bbc news... pressure continues to mount on borisjohnson to resign after he admitted attending a downing street drinks party at the height of lockdown. but cabinet ministers rally round him. the fact is, we've got an investigation that is doing that work to get to the details and the facts about exactly what happened, throughout that period, actually not just that one incident, on may the 20th, but looking at that period of time, as has been outlined, and when we've got those facts, then we can have that conversation.
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nhs waiting times in england reach a record high. six million people were waiting for planned operations and procedures in november. the lawyer representing virginia giuffre in her civil case alleging sexual assault by prince andrew says she's not interested in a purely financial settlement. a court in germany has given a life sentence to a former syrian colonel for crimes against humanity. and vaccinated uk travellers will be allowed back to france from tomorrow — as the government in paris relaxes restrictions. france has said that it will relax restriuctrions on travel from the uk imposed before christmas because of covid. from tomorrow, it will no longer be necessary for people who are vaccinated to declare a compelling reason for entering france. 0ur paris correspondent hugh schofield has an update on the imminent announcement.
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there was a tweet from a junior minister and ijust looked at the french website in the uk and it says there will be an announcement so we haven't had an official announcement but everything indicates that from tomorrow, the 1ath, friday, the restrictions which were imposed a month ago on the 18th of december will be removed. those restrictions, as everyone knows, who is wanting to come to france were draconian. it meant you couldn't come for tourism and you had to declare, had to have a compelling reason to come over here, which meant you basically had to be french or domiciled in france to come across the channel and that played havoc with a lot of people's arrangements for christmas and skiing holidays. it seems that from tomorrow that requirement for a justification to come will be removed. it has already been slightly loosened a week ago. work travel became possible within certain limits. now it seems that all requirements for a justification to travel will be removed from midnight tonight. we await a decree and an official
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announcement, but everything seems to be pointing in that direction. why now? why are they making this decision at this point? i think there has been an awful lot of pressure on the french government because the originaljustification seems to be no longer valid. the originaljustification was that britain had a surge in covid cases linked to 0micron, france didn't, france needed to protect itself, or at least slow down the arrival of 0micron in france. whether or not it worked we don't know but the fact is that 0micron is now here and there is no particular difference in the level of infection between the two countries. so the justification that france needed to put up a barrier to at least slow down the arrival of 0micron is no longer tenable. and as we are more or less on the same level of infection it is silly and we should just go on and travel as we were travelling before.
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let's go to back to victoria in downing street. just reading some of your messages coming in from all over the country about what you thought of the prime minister in prime minister's questions yesterday and what you thought of his defence. he said he believed implicitly it was a work event he was at, in the sunshine, on may the 20th, 2020, during lockdown. charlotte says i want a job where i can drink wine and call it a meeting! a number of conservatives are asking for borisjohnson to resign over what happened back in may 2020, and his admission that he was there for 25 minutes, at that occasion in the downing street garden, and this while thousands of families in the uk said their last goodbyes to loved ones by video link or through the phone.
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fiona lamdin has been speaking to andy rhind—tutt, whose father george died with covid and was buried on the day of the downing street party back in may 2020. # well, the blue of the night... this is 89—year—old george. his family say he was always singing. but during lockdown, when george couldn't see his family, he started to deteriorate. andy wasn't allowed into his father's home, so filmed this through the window. two weeks later, george had died.
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i made a 40 died, and all we could do was _ i made a 40 died, and all we could do was for— i made a 40 died, and all we could do was for the grandchildren to send this over— do was for the grandchildren to send this over the telephone in his last hours _ this over the telephone in his last hours on — this over the telephone in his last hours on that morning. and it was very moving, very sad. the funeral was the _ very moving, very sad. the funeral was the 20th of may. it would have been _ was the 20th of may. it would have been his— was the 20th of may. it would have been his 89th birthday. it was very difficult _ been his 89th birthday. it was very difficult for us, again. with the emotional, as you can imagine, do not be _ emotional, as you can imagine, do not be able — emotional, as you can imagine, do not be able to celebrate his life, and to— not be able to celebrate his life, and to watch his coffin being lowered _ and to watch his coffin being lowered into the grave withjust immediate family. so, to hear the news _ immediate family. so, to hear the news that— immediate family. so, to hear the news that there was a law passed that we _ news that there was a law passed that we all— news that there was a law passed that we all abided by, and on the date that— that we all abided by, and on the date that we my father, there was a party— date that we my father, there was a party in _ date that we my father, there was a party in downing street, and that the prime — party in downing street, and that the prime minister was there, it 'ust the prime minister was there, it just leave — the prime minister was there, it just leave such a bitter taste. do ou just leave such a bitter taste. you think just leave such a bitter taste. drr you think you can trust the prime minister? i you think you can trust the prime minister? ., �* ~' you think you can trust the prime minister? ., �* ,, ,., you think you can trust the prime minister? ., �* ,, ., minister? i don't think so at the moment and —
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minister? i don't think so at the moment and it _ minister? i don't think so at the moment and it raises _ minister? i don't think so at the moment and it raises more - minister? i don't think so at the - moment and it raises more questions than it— moment and it raises more questions than it does— moment and it raises more questions than it does answers, admitting that he was _ than it does answers, admitting that he was at _ than it does answers, admitting that he was at a — than it does answers, admitting that he was at a party, raises lots and lots of— he was at a party, raises lots and lots of queries in my mind, as to what _ lots of queries in my mind, as to what else — lots of queries in my mind, as to what else has happened in the last 18 months, that we are not aware of. at this _ 18 months, that we are not aware of. at this point — 18 months, that we are not aware of. at this point it doesn't look as if the prime minister will resign. where does that leave you? still leaves me _ where does that leave you? still leaves me very _ where does that leave you? still leaves me very bitter and i believe that if— leaves me very bitter and i believe that if you — leaves me very bitter and i believe that if you break the law then you must _ that if you break the law then you must face — that if you break the law then you must face the consequences. at the other end of — must face the consequences. at the other end of the _ must face the consequences. at the other end of the country, _ must face the consequences. at the other end of the country, in - must face the consequences. at the other end of the country, in bolton, j other end of the country, in bolton, superman is also struggling with the prime minister's apology. you know, when they're having parties, i couldn't visit my wife. going to recover, aren't you, sweetheart? yeah. lam. but not at home, with you. his wife, nicola, was 42. this was her being treated for sepsis in march 2020. just trying to tell her that
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i wouldn't be able to see her for quite a while. he didn't see her again till the night before she died. i hadn't seen her for seven weeks because of all these flippin' rules. and i thought i was doing the right thing. i would love to have gone to see my wife, and i know she wanted to see me. and in scotland, anotherfamily who couldn't say a proper goodbye. while borisjohnson was in the garden at downing street in may 2020, 36—year—old graham was in intensive care. his sister lisa is haunted by it. i don't think me or my sister or my mum slept last night after reliving it and thinking about it, and really remembering what exactly it was like at that moment while they were having that party and the genuine fear that we were feeling. 0nly lisa and her mum were allowed in the room as graham passed away — they had to video call
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her dad and sister. i can't describe how wrong it felt, and how disrespectful it felt to...hold a camera up to my brother's face. but i had to do it because it was the only way that my dad or my sister would see him again. my dad couldn't go. my dad watched it on the video link... ..on his own. ready? # i was leaning on a lamp post... # at the corner of the street. this is how george's family will remember him. but they — like many others — feel they haven't had their chance to gather and say their goodbyes. # she were absolutely wonderful, and marvellous and beautiful. - fiona lamdin, bbc news.
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you can see from that report how raw the emotion still are relatives who lost loved ones with covid. let's talk to kieron mcardle from warwickshire. in march of last year, he was fined £100 for having three friends in his garden on his birthday — he paid the money as did his mates. hello to you. hello, victoria, thank you for having me on. if hello to you. hello, victoria, thank you for having me on.— you for having me on. if only you had said it _ you for having me on. if only you had said it was _ you for having me on. if only you had said it was a _ you for having me on. if only you had said it was a work _ you for having me on. if only you had said it was a work event. - you for having me on. if only you had said it was a work event. we j had said it was a work event. we could have _ had said it was a work event. - could have been discussing work options for the next few days. but we accepted what we did was wrong and face the consequences and took the penalty and held our hands up and paid the fine, and didn't do it again. and paid the fine, and didn't do it aaain. ~ .
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and paid the fine, and didn't do it aain.. ., ., ,, and paid the fine, and didn't do it auainr ., ., ,, again. what happened, then, you invited some _ again. what happened, then, you invited some people _ again. what happened, then, you invited some people round, - again. what happened, then, you invited some people round, and l again. what happened, then, you i invited some people round, and who knocked at the door? i litre invited some people round, and who knocked at the door?— knocked at the door? i live alone, and my friends — knocked at the door? i live alone, and my friends took _ knocked at the door? i live alone, and my friends took it _ knocked at the door? i live alone, and my friends took it upon - and my friends took it upon themselves to say we will just and my friends took it upon themselves to say we willjust go and see him for an hour, and then we will make our way home, then two police officers arrived at the front door, asked me if i had anyone in the house shouldn't be there, i said no, and i said i have got three trains in the back garden socially distance and they are about to leave, so they came to the garden, cautioned us, read as our rights, and paid —— we were fined £100 and given seven days to pay for it and we had no problems at all paying that fine, we accept that what we did was wrong and we would face the
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consequences. hagar did was wrong and we would face the consequences-— consequences. how do you feel now knowin: consequences. how do you feel now knowing that — consequences. how do you feel now knowing that the _ consequences. how do you feel now knowing that the prime _ consequences. how do you feel now knowing that the prime minister- consequences. how do you feel now| knowing that the prime minister was in his back garden for 25 minutes with 30-40 in his back garden for 25 minutes with 30—40 people, possibly sipping wine in the sunshine during lockdown? i wine in the sunshine during lockdown?— wine in the sunshine during lockdown? ., �* , ., , lockdown? i don't believe it was 25 minutes. that _ lockdown? i don't believe it was 25 minutes. that is _ lockdown? i don't believe it was 25 minutes. that is just _ lockdown? i don't believe it was 25 minutes. that isjust a _ lockdown? i don't believe it was 25 minutes. that isjust a throwaway. | lockdown? i don't believe it was 25| minutes. that isjust a throwaway. i minutes. that is just a throwaway. i believe one rule for them and one rule for us. the british public is being treated with contempt and being treated with contempt and being made. . the regulations they put in place, they made the rules, and then deliberately broke them. and they are wriggling around, trying to find a way out. they broke the rules, and they need to apologise, hold their hands up and say that we broke the rules, we are sorry, and they should be treated the same. they should be fined, and pay their fines and apologise. lanthem
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pay their fines and apologise. when ou heard pay their fines and apologise. when you heard the _ pay their fines and apologise. when you heard the prime _ pay their fines and apologise. when you heard the prime minister say "i believed implicitly it was a work event", what was your immediate reaction? i event", what was your immediate reaction? . . . event", what was your immediate reaction? , , ., ., ., reaction? i 'ust started laughing at that. i reaction? ijust started laughing at that- i knew _ reaction? ijust started laughing at that. i knew that _ reaction? ijust started laughing at that. i knew that he _ reaction? ijust started laughing at that. i knew that he would - reaction? ijust started laughing at that. i knew that he would come . reaction? ijust started laughing at i that. i knew that he would come out with some form of excuse. but when he said he believed it was a work meeting and i should have told everyone to go back inside, should have gone i would have, he is the leader of the country, breaking the rules that we had put in place, and treating the british public with contempt. everyone back inside back to your offices or back home. if he believed it was a work event, it is outrageous. it is taking us for fools, unfortunately. i have no issue with paying fines, i hold my hands up that what i did was wrong and paid the fine, and if that money could be returned and given to charity, i don't think it will be
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returned, but the prime minister's colleagues at the party should hold up colleagues at the party should hold up their hands and pay their fines, that they put in place. so up their hands and pay their fines, that they put in place.— that they put in place. so they should all— that they put in place. so they should all pay _ that they put in place. so they should all pay £100 _ that they put in place. so they should all pay £100 of - that they put in place. so they should all pay £100 of a - that they put in place. so they should all pay £100 of a fine l that they put in place. so they i should all pay £100 of a fine like you did. it. should all pay £100 of a fine like ou did. ., �* , ., you did. it, don't try and wriggle our wa you did. it, don't try and wriggle your way out _ you did. it, don't try and wriggle your way out of— you did. it, don't try and wriggle your way out of it. _ you did. it, don't try and wriggle your way out of it. you - you did. it, don't try and wriggle your way out of it. you knew - you did. it, don't try and wriggle. your way out of it. you knew what your way out of it. you knew what you did was wrong, bring your own bottle? it is not a work meeting. the e—mail that was sent out, essentially a social gathering and bring your own booze. so they did wrong, pay your fine, bring your own booze. so they did wrong, pay yourfine, and admit to your responsibilities and your actions. d0 your responsibilities and your actions. , ., ., your responsibilities and your actions. ., ., , actions. do you want your money back? i would _ actions. do you want your money back? i would like _ actions. do you want your money back? i would like it _ actions. do you want your money back? i would like it returned - actions. do you want your money back? i would like it returned so| actions. do you want your money| back? i would like it returned so i could donate _ back? i would like it returned so i could donate it _ back? i would like it returned so i could donate it to _ back? i would like it returned so i could donate it to the _ back? i would like it returned so i could donate it to the charity - back? i would like it returned so i could donate it to the charity of i back? i would like it returned so i l could donate it to the charity of my choice. if the cabinet members had paid theirfine, it is a level
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playing field, everyone has paid a fine for breaking the rules. but if they are not paying a fine then something is wrong. we are all the same. if you broke the law, pay the fine. if it is offered to be returned fair enough, but it is one rule for them and one rule for us and we are being treated with contempt by this government. thank ou for contempt by this government. thank you for talking _ contempt by this government. thank you for talking to _ contempt by this government. thank you for talking to us, _ contempt by this government. thank you for talking to us, kieron. - contempt by this government. thank you for talking to us, kieron. thank you. in half an hour, we will talk to a government representative, conservative mp simon clarke, also chief secretary to the, the number two to the chancellor, that in about half an hour. we'll have more from downing street later — but let's hand you back to martine croxall in the studio. the world number one men's tennis player, novak djokovic, has been included in the draw for the australian open —
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despite it still being unclear whether he'll be deported. the serbian is at the centre of a dispute about whether he was medically exempt from receiving a covid vaccine. all eyes are on australian immigration minister, alex hawke, who's yet to make a decision on the case. the prime minister scott morrison also declined to comment on the saga in a press conference — the bbc�*s shaimaa khalil is watching it all in melbourne. it's been a strange day in melbourne. more drama, more attention, more anticipation. no decision yet on what happens with novak djokovic's visa status. the draw for the australian open 2022 did take place after a last—minute delay, and he was in it as top seed. he is due to play fellow serbian player miomir kecmanovic. that is of course unless the australian government has other ideas. the immigration minister, alex hawke, is yet to make a decision about whether or not he's going to use his executive powers to deport the number one player. we know that he's looking at details, more details provided by his team.
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we know that novak djokovic himself admitted to providing false information on his travel declaration visa, blamed it on his agent, said it was a human error, but also admitted that he knew he had covid on december the 18th but did an interview with the french publication l'equipe anyway, violating covid—19 isolation rules. it is unclear how all of this is going to play out within the decision that the government is going to make. the prime minister, scott morrison, did a press conference today. he was asked directly about how long this is going to take, why has it dragged on like this, and he didn't have an answer. but the longer this takes, the closer we get to the tournament, the clearer it becomes that the government is in a real bind about how to deal with all of this. remember, they are also under a lot of pressure because of the covid situation here in australia, which is worsening. there is a surge of cases. hospital and testing clinics are under a lot of pressure.
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we understand, for example, from the tournament organisers here in melbourne park, that the capacity is going to be capped at 15% in a lot of matches to limit the numbers and try and stop or control the spread of covid—19, especially with the 0micron variant. so all of this is happening in the background. the future of novak djokovic in this tournament still hangs in the balance. england's rivers are filled with a "chemical cocktail" of sewage, agricultural waste and plastic, according to a cross party group of mps — and it's putting both public health and nature at risk. a new report released today finds that not a single river in england is free from pollution. the environmental audit committee wants to see tougher monitoring and enforcement. a warning that our environment correspondentjonah fisher's report includes some pretty gruesome pictures. i don't know what that is. it looks a bit like poo, doesn't it? ashley smith is searching for sewage. these particles coming out.
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this is shill brook in 0xfordshire. a stream that receives the outflow from two water treatment plants. with this camera, we have seen basically chopped up, untreated sewage coming out. ashley comes here often to monitor the water quality. his videos, evidence of an ecosystem being steadily poisoned. yes, that is visible. but, in sewage, you can imagine everything that goes into your drains at home, through your shower, sink and toilet, all of the chemicals that you see in the supermarket, all of that goes into this. when it is untreated, it is not even effective in any way. we have done some river flow monitoring here, some invertebrate sampling and, and in this area here we found virtually nothing in the invertebrate department, apart from some bloodworms,
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which will live in virtually anything. dreadful. for the last year, parliament's environmental audit committee has been putting together a report into the state of england's rivers, and it is published today. the mps' report blames pretty much everyone for what it calls the mess of england's rivers. water companies, farmers, inadequate testing and monitoring, years of complacency by policymakers, and also you and i, for all of the things that we threw down the toilet every day, that go on to block the sewers. it is a very complex system that we have, but in essence, for the last 60 years, we have not, as a nation, invested in our water treatment assets to the same extent as we have invested in what happens above ground. it is underground, unseen, people don't know that it is there, until there is a problem, by which time it is too late.
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so in this sewage has been fully treated in the sewage works,... the role of water companies is also scrutinised. with mps saying that they have to invest more and become more transparent about when they allow raw sewage to flow into rivers. were we wrong to expect private water companies to put the quality of water ahead of profits? i don't believe that at all. it is not a question of public or private. it is about doing a good job, getting the incentives right and the regulation right and having the right people with the right equipment and right investment. we regard all discharges of untreated sewage as unacceptable. but it is going to take a long time to get that problem completely solved. it will also take money and political will. but at least the pollution of our rivers is no longer a dirty secret. jonah fisher, bbc news, 0xfordshire. we can bring you a nocturnal trip
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by pope francis to a music store. yes — here is the pontiff going into a record shop in rome to see the old friends who run it. he used to visit the store when he was a cardinal. he went back to bless the store. the head of the catholic church loves classical music and tango and left with a gift of a cd. now it's time for a look at the weather with carol kirkwood. hello again. we have had a frosty start to the day across some parts of england in particular, and also a foggy start. most of the fog across parts of england and south wales is now lifting. but as we go through the rest of the week, although it is going to be dry and settled with some sunshine, frost and fog will be prevalent in the mornings. some of the fog will be slow to lift. so where the fog does lift today we are looking at some sunshine across england and wales, although there will be more cloud across the pennines and also across northern ireland than yesterday. quite a cloudy day away from the east of scotland, thick enough for some drizzle in the west, and here too breezy, but pretty windy across shetland. as we head on through the evening and overnight, if anything,
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a weather front is going to sink southwards across scotland, bringing in some rain. clear skies, or clearer skies across northern ireland, england and wales means temperatures will fall away and once again we will see some fog reform. so we are looking at a widespread frost tonight, and with temperatures falling to as low as —4, —5 in sheltered parts of england, not just frost but freezing fog, so something to bear in mind if you are travelling early on. high pressure is still in charge of our weather on friday. this is the weather front across scotland bringing in some spots of rain. and really that means first thing in the morning with not much wind around there is nothing to stir up this fog and move it along, so it will last for quite a while. for some it will last for much of the day, and if you are stuck in an area with fog or low cloud it will of course suppress the temperatures. here is our weatherfront bringing some spots of rain across the north of scotland. here it won't be as windy as it has been in the last few days.
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and these are our temperatures, four in norwich, maybe nine as we push into glasgow. as we head on into the weekend, our high pressure does eventually move away, isobars are well spaced out, again not much in the way of wind to move things along. so we start off on a foggy note. again, quite widespread fog. it will slowly lift but some of it only into low cloud. there will be some sunshine around but it is going to be fairly limited and we will see a few showers coming in across north—west england, south—west england and also south wales later on in the day. temperatures down a touch. as we head on into sunday, there will be some patchy rain around. it should brighten up later on in the east, and on monday, again, some of us will see some sunshine.
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good morning, welcome to bbc news. i'm victoria derbyshire live in downing street. here are the headlines: borisjohnson cancels a planned trip after a family member tests positive for covid — as calls for him to resign over that downing street party continue. but cabinet ministers rally round him. the fact is we have got an investigation that is doing that work to get the details and the facts about exactly what happened throughout that period, actually, not just that one incident on may 20th. we are looking at that period of time as has been outlined. and when we have got those facts then we can have that conversation. the prime minister's behaviour has angered people across the uk — including relatives of people who died during the pandemic.
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it wasn't a real apology. saying sorry doesn't really mean anything if your behaviour doesn't change, and it doesn't seem to me like his attitude changed at all. let me know what you think of the pm's defence, and particularly if you voted conservative at the last election. .@vicdebryshire on twitter and instagam and i'm martine croxall. also this hour... nhs waiting times in england reach a record high. six million people were waiting for planned operations and procedures in november. vaccinated uk travellers will be allowed back to france from tomorrow — as the government in paris relaxes restrictions. the lawyer representing virginia giuffre in her civil case alleging sexual assault by prince andrew says she's not interested in a purely financial settlement. a warning that the care system for older and disabled people
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across the uk is under grim and relentless pressure due to staff shortages. hello, good morning. borisjohnson has this morning pulled out of a planned visit to a vaccination clinic in lancashire — after a family member tested positive for coronavirus. he's cancelled the trip, despite official guidance no longer requiring vaccinated contacts of coronavirus cases to self—isolate. of coronavirus cases all that comes as some senior conservatives are calling on borisjohnson to quit after he admitted attending a drinks party during lockdown in may 2020. mrjohnson apologised for the way
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he handled the event in the downing street garden — saying he understood the public�*s rage over it. some of the pm's top team, including the deputy prime minister dominic raab have rallied around the prime minister, but some mps, including the scottish tory leader douglas ross, have called on him to go, along with william wragg, caroline nokes and sir roger gale. douglas ross said he would write to the 1922 committee — which organises tory leadership contests — to register his lack of confidence in the prime minister. it takes letters from 54 conservative mps to trigger a leadership challenge. senior ministers have urged mps to wait for the outcome of that investigation into all alleged parties at number 10 by the senior civil servant sue gray. here's our political correspondent damian grammaticas. the chill of a westminster morning, and a prime minister in trouble. the question in the cold light of a new day — is his apology enough? in the commons yesterday, borisjohnson did finally admit
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he had been at a party — but said his garden was a workspace. technically, it was within the rules. i believed implicitly that this was a work event. many watching — including bereaved families — didn't believe him. it wasn't an apology. he didn't say sorry. he basically gaslit the entire nation by saying that he thought that the event that was actually illegal at the time was a work event, and not a party. we all know that's not true. one by one, his cabinet have come forward to back him. the foreign secretary late in the evening said she was behind him 100%, and the chancellor, too — a bit lukewarm — requested patience while an inquiry is under way. but a handful of his own mps have lost patience — publicly calling on him to go. i know my thoughts are, is that he's damaging us now. he's damaging the entire
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conservative brand with an unwillingness to accept the strictures that other people have lived by. and it's left some tories pitted against one another — their scottish leader, douglas ross, had called on the pm to resign. last night, jacob rees—mogg — himself in the cabinet — turned on mr ross. douglas ross has always been quite a lightweight figure... _ 0of! ..so i don't think that his... sorry. hang on _ and he's been... so the leader of the scottish conservatives and msp and an mp is a lightweight? ithink... i think the scottish - secretary's a much more substantial and important... we're talking about 31 scottish msps. ..figure in this. well... so there's real disquiet among many conservatives, while they wait for that inquiry by the civil servant sue gray. the prime minister has admitted that he was in the downing street garden, he's admitted it was a party, and therefore she doesn't have to find that — that's already been acknowledged. what she has to find is to work out,
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you know, who was responsible and who should take blame for it. and, crucially, which occupants of downing street might that be? damian grammaticas, bbc news, westminster. here's a message from fay who says that if you have to invite people to come then it is not going to work, it's normal. if you are encouraging people to bring booze and make the most of the weather that is not work. please stop gas lighting the electorate. catherine says please can you report more on russia, and afghanistan, and other stories. and another message that says the pm has another message that says the pm has a lot to make up for following his apology but believes that he can make up for it and move the country forward. let's speak to our political correspondent nick eardley. in terms of those that are supporting the pro—minister, what are people saying? {lister
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supporting the pro-minister, what are people saying?— supporting the pro-minister, what are people saying? over the last 12 hours we have _ are people saying? over the last 12 hours we have had _ are people saying? over the last 12 hours we have had a _ are people saying? over the last 12 hours we have had a steady - are people saying? over the last 12 hours we have had a steady stream are people saying? over the last 12 i hours we have had a steady stream of cabinet ministers being wheeled out to basically say the prime minister got it right, he was on the right page with his apology, that it was now right away to says in her report. there are many who are still really nervous about how this leaves the party. i spoke to one former cabinet minister as they left last night who said just after the pro—minister spoke at pmqs that they got 45 angry e—mails from constituents within half an hour. that is the extent of some of the anger that some tory mps are feeling. we are seeing a handful
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of tory mps putting their heads above the parapet and saying that they think the prime minister should resign. numberten they think the prime minister should resign. number ten should be keeping an eye on whether anyone else should do the same. there is also something thatis do the same. there is also something that is worth pointing out which is a lot of tory mps are staying quiet at the moment. as one top tory said to me, that is a bit ominous for the prime minister. they are not quite backing him, they almost waiting to see what reaction they get over the weekend in local constituencies, from the local parties, and they are waiting to see what happens from that report from the civil servant looking into all of this. so boris johnson may have bought himself a bit of time for now, that could change if this report is critical in any way, and one former ally of borisjohnson said to me yesterday that if sue gray is critical or if you find something else or suggest the prime minister broke the rules then that could be terminal. can!
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then that could be terminal. can i ask ou then that could be terminal. can i ask you about _ then that could be terminal. can i ask you about the _ then that could be terminal. can i ask you about the member - then that could be terminal. can i ask you about the member of - then that could be terminal. can i ask you about the member of boris johnson's family who has tested positive on the fact he has cancelled this visit to lancashire? then i want to ask you about covid isolation and the cabinet meeting to move it from seven to five days. fin move it from seven to five days. on the move it from seven to five days. 0“! the pm's family member we have move it from seven to five days. (m the pm's family member we have not got much more detail beyond that. he was supposed to be able to go to a vaccine centre today and that has not happened. strictly under the rules is a close contact of someone with covid he could go if he was doing daily negative lateral flows. that is the guidance in england. you would need to do that for seven days. there is one thing worth pointing out that someone was flagging to me earlier within those guidelines it does say you should try and minimise your contact. i wonder if there is just a bit of nervousness about the aesthetics of being in a vaccine centre with loads of people who are unvaccinated and getting the vaccine if you have been
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a close contact of someone who is positive. i don't know, that is filling in the gaps for ourselves there but it does i supposed to some people look a bit convenientjohnson isn't having to answer some of the big questions being asked to lead a —— being asked today. we will be hearing from the health secretary in our, no confirmation about what that is about but there was a meeting last night between the senior ministers to discuss covid policy. they have made their decisions and thatis they have made their decisions and that is what we will get from mr javid. my expectation is that will be a change to isolation rooms in england. at the moment you have to self—isolate for seven days if you test positive, you can get out on the seventh day you have provided lateral flows for two days in a row, for day six on day seven. it looks
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like that will be reduced to five. the detail will matter about when that starts in when it ends. some people saying it might be more complicated than simply saying you get out after five days. but when we see the health secretary stand on its feet in the next hour or so we would expect to change that policy. thank you very much, nick. 0f would expect to change that policy. thank you very much, nick. of course we will bring you sajid javid's comments as he gets to his feet in the commons. we will also be speaking to the conservative mp who is chief secretary to the treasury simon clark, he has been put up by the government to talk about boris johnson what he said in the commons yesterday. let's hand you back to martine croxall in the studio. nhs waiting times in england have reached a record high. six million people were waiting for planned operations and procedures in november. and nearly 13,000 patients waited more than 12 hours for a hospital bed in december — that is the highest figure
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since records began in 2010. 0ur health correspondent katharine da costa gave me this update. 6 million people were waiting for operations, these might be things like hip and knee operations, cataract removal, hernia, and while not deemed urgent operations, many of these people will be waiting in pain and discomfort, feeling fairly isolated and in distress in some cases. so that's one in nine people in england waiting for operations. and nearly 307,000 people were waiting over a year. a lot of work has been trying to reduce those figures, but that still won in 20 people waiting than 12 months. these figures are for november, so that's even before 0micron hit, so the chances are we are likely to see that rise even further next month's figures. if you look at a&e, the gateway entrance to hospitals, nearly 1.9 people attended a&e departments in england in december. 73% were seen within four hours. the target is 95%.
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now, that is a new record low, but it is only marginally worse than the previous month. and nearly 13,000 were waiting more than 12 hours. often what happens is people are on trolleys in corridors, they are kind of being moved around a&e departments, waiting rooms, consultation rooms etc, it's not ideal while they are waiting for a bed in a ward. what the problem seems to be is discharging patients. this is where patients are fit enough to leave hospital but they might need social care packages put in place, either in their own homes or to be put into a care home. the figures show 12,500 beds were taken up by people who were fit enough to leave in the week up to the 9th of january, up from 10,500 the week before, up 20% in a week, so about one in ten last week and it's now about one in eight, so the figures are getting worse. we have been hearing in the social
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care sector they are also suffering with staff absences, and so in some cases care homes are not accepting new patients and there aren't the packages. although there is this big push to try to discharge patients and free up beds and improve flow into the hospitals, there is the sort of pinch point. across the nhs staff absences, not much change overall week on week, staying about the same, but it is different regionally. so in london things have been getting a little bit better. they were hit by 0micron a little bit earlier so staff absences are falling a little bit there, but the north west, for example, it is increasing up there, they are a little bit behind london, and things are getting a bit worse. so the overall picture is not a rapid deterioration, but things are gradually getting worse. the nhs is struggling. it is important to remember that when we talk about risks of the nhs being overwhelmed, it is not going to collapse
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overnight, but what happens is it is slowly deteriorating over time. chances are we are likely to see things get worse before they get better. thank you, katharine da costa. and a reminder that you can find information about waiting times in your area, on the bbc website by going to bbc.co.uk, professor sirjonathan van—tam is to step down as deputy chief medical officer for england at the end of march, to return to academia. professor van—tam joined the department of health on secondment from nottingham university and played a leading role in the response to the covid pandemic, including working on the vaccine taskforce. health secretary sajid javid praised his communication skills and described him as a national treasure. there's a warning that the care system for older and disabled people is under relentless pressure in the uk. the national care forum — which represents not—for—profit care providers — said existing staff
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shortages had been compounded by absences caused by the 0micron variant and delays in getting the results of pcr tests. the government said it had provided more than £460 million to help recruit and retain care staff. here's our social affairs editor, alison holt. i'm here to do a pcr test on a lady that has tested positive on a lft. katie is a care coordinator for a home—care company in norfolk. like many providers supporting older and disabled people, they went into this latest wave of covid with staff shortages. it's katie, i'vejust come to do your pcr. difficulty getting enough tests, and slow pcr results are adding to the company's problems. so we've got our last five boxes of lateral flow tests — are you able to access any more? i'm not able to get any at all from the council. even though the demand for care is huge, they're having to turn away new clients. we've closed our books and we've got about 70, 75 clients when we could be running at a capacity of 100 on a normal day—to—day basis.
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so what is it that's holding you back from doing that? the staffing level. so if we had good, experienced staff with us, then we'd be able to take on more packages of care. care providers running more than 5,000 services across the uk and employing nearly 100,000 staff responded to questions from an organisation representing them. of those working in home care, two thirds say they're no longer able to take new clients. and in care homes, nearly half say they've closed to new residents. staff vacancies were high before 0micron amongst those who responded — now they have about 14% of their staff off sick or self—isolating. the levels of staff absence that we're talking about right now are incredibly hard to sustain. you're putting enormous pressure on the people who are already there, and what we don't need is for them to sort of cave under the pressure of that. and once 0micron peaks and moves on, perhaps we'll lose some
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of those immediate absences, but we'll have that growing level of vacancies, and that's what we have to address. council teams are also under huge pressure as they try to ensure everyone eligible for care gets support. the government has said it's put significant extra money into the care system, and into recruiting more care staff. alison holt, bbc news. france is to ease covid restrictions for travellers from britain. from friday, fully vaccinated people coming from the uk will no longer have to prove that they have an essential reason for the journey or self—isolate on arrival. let's talk to our transport correspondent katy austin. we had to have a compelling reason up we had to have a compelling reason up until now but no more.— up until now but no more. exactly, and a compelling _ up until now but no more. exactly, and a compelling reason _ up until now but no more. exactly, and a compelling reason did - up until now but no more. exactly, and a compelling reason did not i and a compelling reason did not include holiday lodges include visiting family or friends. so yes, since the 18th of december if you are travelling to france from the uk you had to have a compelling reason, you had to have a compelling reason, you have to self—isolate upon arrival, that is because france was
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trying to curb the spread of the 0micron variant. from tomorrow those rules will no longer apply if you are fully vaccinated, if you are not then they will still apply. when the rules were tightened in december that came just rules were tightened in december that camejust in rules were tightened in december that came just in time to affect the travel plans of many thousands of people might have been travelling for christmas, for work or to see friends and family they hadn't seen for a very long time so it affected a lot of people and the travel industry. travel and tourism businesses were very upset about it. it was very bad timing for them just when i had been some optimism in the air. so today, a positive reaction from the likes of eurostar, brittany ferries, some airlines have already reported a spike in airlines, for example ski holidays which are still very big at this time of year. so they are saying it is finally a bit
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more positive news. loath? they are saying it is finally a bit more positive news.— they are saying it is finally a bit more positive news. why are they decidin: more positive news. why are they deciding to _ more positive news. why are they deciding to do _ more positive news. why are they deciding to do this _ more positive news. why are they deciding to do this now? - more positive news. why are they deciding to do this now? it's - more positive news. why are they deciding to do this now? it's not l deciding to do this now? it's not clear specifically _ deciding to do this now? it's not clear specifically at _ deciding to do this now? it's not clear specifically at the - deciding to do this now? it's not clear specifically at the moment| deciding to do this now? it's not. clear specifically at the moment but we do know that france has its own issues with 0micron spreading and a bit like in the uk, the uk recently relaxed its travel rules as well for fully vaccinated travellers coming into the uk saying it was because they were essentially not effective any more because 0micron had already spread so widely. qt any more because omicron had already spread so widely-— spread so widely. at austin, thank ou ve spread so widely. at austin, thank you very much- _ katie austin, thank you very much. the lawyer representing virginia giuffre, the woman who's accused prince andrew of sexually assaulting her when she was 17, has told the bbc he doesn't think she would accept a purely financial settlement. ajudge in new york has rejected the duke's attempts to dismiss the civil case. prince andrew has always denied the allegations. tim muffett has more. prince andrew now knows that a civil sex assault case against him can go ahead, following a ruling by a judge in new york. the case has been brought by virginia giuffre,
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who claims prince andrew abused her in 2001, when she was 17 — claims the prince has consistently and firmly denied. his lawyers argue that ms giuffre's complaint should be dismissed — they refer to a 2009 deal she signed with convicted sex offenderjeffrey epstein, in which she agreed not to sue other potential defendants. but a new yorkjudge has ruled the case can continue, saying that deal had been ambiguous. last night, virginia giuffre's lawyer gave his reaction. she's obviously very pleased that the judge has rejected prince andrew's legal arguments. i think it's very important to virginia giuffre that this matter be resolved in a way that vindicates her. a purely financial settlement is not anything that i think that she's interested in. if he doesn't appeal against this latest ruling,
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prince andrew effectively has three choices. he could default — ignore the court case — but by doing so, there would be a finding against him. he could take part in the case — he will be questioned under oath, and his lawyers could test virginia giuffre's allegations. or he could try and settle out of court — there would be no admission of liability, but he would perhaps pay a large sum of money to virginia giuffre, who might not want to settle. in the short term, a lot of legal arguments are predicted. we'll have arguments over discovery — whether each party has supplied the information that they should. we may well have arguments overjurisdiction — whether virginia giuffre has sufficient connection with america to rely on this piece of legislation because she now lives in australia. in this — the queen's platinum jubilee year — her second son faces some stark choices. tim muffett, bbc news.
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the world number one men's tennis player, novak djokovic, has been included in the draw for the australian open, despite it still being unclear whether he'll be deported. the serbian is at the centre of a dispute about whether he was medically exempt from receiving a covid vaccine. all eyes are on australian immigration minister, alex hawke, who's yet to make a decision on the case. the prime minister scott morrison also declined to comment on the saga in a press conference — the bbc�*s shaimaa khalil is watching it all in melbourne. it's been a strange day in melbourne. more drama, more tension, more anticipation. no decision yet on what happens with novak djokovic's visa status. the draw for the australian open 2022 did take place after a last—minute delay, and he was in it as top seed. he is due to play fellow serbian player miomir kecmanovic. that is of course unless the australian government has other ideas. the immigration minister, alex hawke, is yet to make
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a decision about whether or not he's going to use his executive powers to deport the number one player. we know that he's looking at details, more details provided by his team. we know that novak djokovic himself admitted to providing false information on his travel declaration visa, blamed it on his agent, said it was a human error, but also admitted that he knew he had covid on december the 18th but did an interview with the french publication l'equipe anyway, violating covid—19 isolation rules. it is unclear how all of this is going to play out within the decision that the government is going to make. the prime minister, scott morrison, did a press conference today. he was asked directly about how long this is going to take, why has it dragged on like this, and he didn't have an answer. but the longer this takes, the closer we get to the tournament, the clearer it becomes that the government is in a real bind about how to deal with all of this.
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remember, they are also under a lot of pressure because of the covid situation here in australia, which is worsening. there is a surge of cases. hospital and testing clinics are under a lot of pressure. we understand, for example, from the tournament organisers here in melbourne park, that the capacity is going to be capped at 50% in a lot of matches to limit the numbers and try and stop or control the spread of covid—19, especially with the 0micron variant. so all of this is happening in the background. the future of novak djokovic in this tournament still hangs in the balance. a court in germany has given a life sentence to a former syrian colonel for crimes against humanity. anwar raslan was found guilty of mass torture and killings at a prison in damascus. he was detained two years ago in germany, where he'd successfully claimed asylum. jenny hill has the background to the case.
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those who opposed the syrian president paid a terrible price. bashar al—assad's regime violently crushed street protests in 2011. civilians were rounded up, detained, tortured and killed. it's like hell, really. wassim was incarcerated, interrogated in the notorious al—khatib prison in damascus. they told me directly lay on your stomach and raise your feet in the air, so in the stress position. and i should answer their questions, and whenever the answers he didn't like the answers i gave, he ordered somebody next to me to start to hit me. german lawyers fought hard for this trial, prompted by syrian survivors who fled to germany. they told terrible stories. torturers using special tools, electric shocks, rape. crimes so serious they could be tried outside syria in a german court.
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this is a landmark case, and of course it's aboutjustice being done, but it's also about gathering a body of evidence for the future and giving a voice to those the assad regime wanted to silence. let's get more now on our top story — and members of the cabinet have been voicing their support for borisjohnson, after a number of senior conservatives called for him to step down as prime minister. let's go back to my colleague victoria derbyshire who's at downing street. thank you very much. simon clarke is the chief secretary to the treasury and joins me now. member of the cabinet — and number two to chancellor rishi sunak. thank you for talking to us and good morning. bereaved relatives asking why borisjohnson is gas lighting
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them by pretending he thought it was a workbench. —— a work event. the a workbench. -- a work event. the prime minister _ a workbench. —— a work event. the prime minister gave a a workbench. —— a work event. ti9 prime minister gave a very a workbench. —— a work event. ti9: prime minister gave a very fulsome apology to the commons yesterday accepting the upset this whole situation has caused. i think i was absolutely the right thing for him to do. i think taking that responsibility was really welcome. look, we were going to have a independent report led by highly respected civil servant sue gray that will bring out the full facts of what has happened and the full context so the prime minister can then come back, as he is permitted to do, to the house of commons and make a further statement to mps and face questions. i think it is absolutely the right thing to happen and it will allow us all to move forward in full possession of all the facts. i think relatives will welcome that because it is that clarity that is going to be so important in determining how we can all move forward. what
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important in determining how we can all move forward.— all move forward. what relatives will welcome _ all move forward. what relatives will welcome is _ all move forward. what relatives will welcome is an _ all move forward. what relatives will welcome is an answer- all move forward. what relatives will welcome is an answer to - all move forward. what relatives will welcome is an answer to the question why he is gas lighting them by saying that he thought he was at work event. the by saying that he thought he was at work event. by saying that he thought he was at work event-— work event. the prime minister is absolutely not — work event. the prime minister is absolutely not doing _ work event. the prime minister is absolutely not doing that. - work event. the prime minister is absolutely not doing that. he - work event. the prime minister is| absolutely not doing that. he gave work event. the prime minister is i absolutely not doing that. he gave a very sincere and full apology yesterday for what has happened. he has been clear that he would not have done what he did in retrospect. he was out in the garden for less than half an hour thanking the staff who had been working day in and day out helping to lead the country during the pandemic over several months, the most incredible hard work. he accepts that he ought not to have done that and he would have behaved differently thinking again but it is also important that we define what this was and what it wasn't. to that point, that is why we need to grow�*s report because officially i went there, you wonder and it is so important we get that full context before the house of
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commons meets again to christopher minister about it. can commons meets again to christopher minister about it.— minister about it. can you be honest with our viewers _ minister about it. can you be honest with our viewers and _ minister about it. can you be honest with our viewers and tell _ minister about it. can you be honest with our viewers and tell us - minister about it. can you be honest with our viewers and tell us what i with our viewers and tell us what was your immediate gut reaction when you heard borisjohnson say that he believed implicitly it was a work event and please do be honest? i event and please do be honest? i always am. my response was that this was the right thing for him to say. you believed him? i was the right thing for him to say. you believed him?— you believed him? i absolutely believed him. _ you believed him? i absolutely believed him. there _ you believed him? i absolutely believed him. there is - you believed him? i absolutely believed him. there is no - you believed him? i absolutely- believed him. there is no question in my mind that borisjohnson was acting in good faith to thank the people who had been helping to guide the country through the crisis, working incredibly hard. he accepts that he oughtn't have done that but it was done in good faith. there is no possible malice or intention to do anything other than give a heartfelt thank you and he would have been working incredibly hard on our behalf and that is what he did.
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you shouldn't have done it and he has taken response ability for that. sue gray nowjust needs the time and space to bring out exactly what happened in the full context of the prime minister can be held to account in house of commons as is obviously the right place for that to happen. i believe his total sincerity in making that apology. he recognises as we all do that this country has been through an incredibly difficult period and there are very strong feelings that this whole thing evokes. can you point as to the guidance, the documentation, the government tweet that said it was ok to go out into a garden with 30 to 40 people who were socialising and drinking to thank them, whether it was for 25 minutes, five minutes? obviously, eo - le minutes, five minutes? obviously, people were _ minutes, five minutes? obviously, people were in _ minutes, five minutes? obviously, people were in downing _ minutes, five minutes? obviously, people were in downing street - people were in downing street working through the height of the pandemic. there was no choice for them. that is the nature of running
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them. that is the nature of running the country. unless people were in the country. unless people were in the office, working alongside the prime minister to provide the necessary leadership. the work is so vital to the running of the country that he stepped outside to thank them. that's what he was clear about in a statement. i wasn't there. the important thing is we get the context that the report will provide, and that is so essential to their process because it will allow their process because it will allow the house of commons to ask the prime minister questions on an informed basis, and that is what is now needed and it is a short space of time to wait for this independent report to be brought forward so the prime minister can come back to the department. that is a reasonable position for the prime minister to adopt in the end. he will be held accountable based on all the facts, but in the meantime he has apologised and taken responsibility for the wider principles that are at
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stake, which is this ought not to have happened. i stake, which is this ought not to have happened-— stake, which is this ought not to have ha ened. ~ ,:, have happened. i feel like you might be as have happened. i feel like you might be gas lighting _ have happened. i feel like you might be gas lighting is _ have happened. i feel like you might be gas lighting is now, _ have happened. i feel like you might be gas lighting is now, because - have happened. i feel like you might be gas lighting is now, because an i be gas lighting is now, because an eventin be gas lighting is now, because an event in may 2020 with drinks 30 to 40 people in a sunny garden, itjust wasn't a thing. everyone knew that wasn't a thing. everyone knew that wasn't within the rules. you knew, i knew, the prime minister knew. find knew, the prime minister knew. and that is why he _ knew, the prime minister knew. fific that is why he had apologised. knew, the prime minister knew. a"ic that is why he had apologised. he accepts it ought not to have happened. he stepped out into the garden to thank his team. he apologised to the house of commons very fully and forthrightly yesterday. there is now an independent report in process and that deserves... if he accepts that... i don't see what else he could have done other than apologised and says the report is in commission. he will come back when it is concluded. i think that is absolutely the right thing for him to have done. he absolutely the right thing for him to have done.— absolutely the right thing for him to have done. ::, :, :, :,
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to have done. he could have avoided sa in: that to have done. he could have avoided saying that he _ to have done. he could have avoided saying that he thought _ to have done. he could have avoided saying that he thought it _ to have done. he could have avoided saying that he thought it was - to have done. he could have avoided saying that he thought it was a - to have done. he could have avoided saying that he thought it was a work| saying that he thought it was a work event. i saying that he thought it was a work event. ~ . saying that he thought it was a work event. ~ , ,:, :, :, event. i think it is important for him to set _ event. i think it is important for him to set pp — event. i think it is important for him to set up a _ event. i think it is important for him to set up a context - event. i think it is important for him to set up a context which i event. i think it is important forj him to set up a context which is event. i think it is important for i him to set up a context which is in place, and that is what he did. he has taken that responsibility and there is no question that we all understand the immensely strong feelings. this has been the most difficult a possible two years in this country and everyone has made enormous sacrifices. we are all acutely conscious of that. the prime minister is, too. that is why obviously he is so contrite about what has happened and why he will come back to that to face the question is very shortly about it. and why did you think he has come up with that explanation only now? well, that's because these are the findings that have emerged so far. it is important that we get the report to provide a full picture, and she has got the license to
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report without fear or favour here as to what has come about. and the prime minister has responded. he will respond intent of those full findings as soon as they are here. again, be honest, he has come up with this explanation now because itv news got hold of the e—mail inviting up to 100 people to a bring your own booze event in the downing street garden because, quote, we thought it would be nice to make up the lovely weather. —— make the most of the lovely weather. he the lovely weather. -- make the most of the lovely weather.— of the lovely weather. he was out there for less _ of the lovely weather. he was out there for less then _ of the lovely weather. he was out there for less then half _ of the lovely weather. he was out there for less then half an - of the lovely weather. he was out there for less then half an hour. l there for less then half an hour. that is the fact he set out yesterday. it is important we get their full report so we can understand what happened. that is the value, the whole point of this report and it will only need a very short space of time for us to have those findings and then to have an
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informal conversation and for the prime minister to make a statement to the commons. {l3h prime minister to make a statement to the commons.— to the commons. ok. when do you exect to the commons. ok. when do you expect that — to the commons. ok. when do you expect that report _ to the commons. ok. when do you expect that report to _ to the commons. ok. when do you expect that report to be _ to the commons. ok. when do you expect that report to be published | expect that report to be published and will it be published in full? will we all get to see it? the findings will absolutely be made public and i don't know the exact timetable. but i understand it will be very shortly, yes. this is not going to be a long, drawn—out affair. there is a clear question of fact that needs to be determined and sue is in the process of conducting that and i know this will be done as quickly as possible. is that and i know this will be done as quickly as possible.— quickly as possible. is your boss, the chancellor, _ quickly as possible. is your boss, the chancellor, 10096 _ quickly as possible. is your boss, the chancellor, 100% behind - quickly as possible. is your boss, the chancellor, 100% behind his| the chancellor, 100% behind his boss, borisjohnson? the chancellor, 100% behind his boss, boris johnson?— boss, boris johnson? yes, absolutely. _ boss, boris johnson? yes, absolutely, and _ boss, boris johnson? yes, absolutely, and the - boss, boris johnson? yes, - absolutely, and the chancellor is clear in his statement yesterday. he thinks it was right, as i do, that their prime and if they should apologise and take responsibility for what happened in downing street, but also that this enquiry needs to
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be completed before we move forward, and our positions are absolutely as one on that, but we are also clear that this is a prime minister who has been leading this country through this pandemic, providing us with a world leading vaccination programme, making brave decisions not once but twice to keep our company is open as possible. he is also a man who has honoured brexit and make sure that we have got a clear programme of levelling up opportunity across this country. thank you thank you for talking to us. ~ :. thank you thank you for talking to us, ~ ., :, thank you thank you for talking to us. ~ :, :, :, :, :, thank you thank you for talking to us. we are going to have a word now with the financial— us. we are going to have a word now with the financial times _ us. we are going to have a word now with the financial times whitehall. with the financial times whitehall editor. we havejust heard with the financial times whitehall editor. we have just heard from simon clark that the defence sounds like it will be put to sue gray, i
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was just thanking like it will be put to sue gray, i wasjust thanking them. like it will be put to sue gray, i was just thanking them. that was it. we were working incredibly hard. is going to cut it with her? i we were working incredibly hard. is going to cut it with her?— going to cut it with her? i think sue gray has — going to cut it with her? i think sue gray has been _ going to cut it with her? i think sue gray has been built - going to cut it with her? i think sue gray has been built up - going to cut it with her? i think sue gray has been built up to l sue gray has been built up to very high expectations over this report. she is not going to be thejudge of whether rules were broken. she is being asked by the primary to set up the fact of what happened. we know a lot of the facts already because he went to the house of commons yesterday to set out exactly what they are. and i think what sue gray will be looking at as well as who was there in terms of the prime minister and ministers, was there in terms of the prime ministerand ministers, but was there in terms of the prime minister and ministers, but also this issue of culture, how this was allowed to happen, particularly focused on the civil service. i think that it's going to be a real issue because a lot of this is about the prime minister and his role, but a lot of people in downing street, martin reynolds the private secretary, i going to be very culpable in this report. so it is not going to be a very clear thing. everyone is saying we have to wait for the report, but i don't know what she will tell us what we don't
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already know. it what she will tell us what we don't already know— already know. it will give us some context. already know. it will give us some context- it — already know. it will give us some context. it will _ already know. it will give us some context. it will give _ already know. it will give us some context. it will give us _ already know. it will give us some context. it will give us context - context. it will give us context about what — context. it will give us context about what exactly _ context. it will give us context about what exactly happened l context. it will give us context. about what exactly happened in context. it will give us context - about what exactly happened in terms of the times. what we don't know is who is responsible because the prime minister said in the house of commons yesterday that he went for 25 minutes and didn't know it was a social gathering. we didn't see the e—mail invitation, he didn't see the e—mail invitation, he didn't see the e—mail invitation, he didn't see the e—mail invitation but he still went there. there is also the possibility as well that more evidence may emerge. there is a lot of whispers around about potential photos or videos and what have you. if that comes out that makes borisjohnson's comes out that makes boris johnson's position very difficult.— position very difficult. if sue gray la s out position very difficult. if sue gray lays out the _ position very difficult. if sue gray lays out the facts _ position very difficult. if sue gray lays out the facts and _ position very difficult. if sue gray lays out the facts and boris - position very difficult. if sue gray i lays out the facts and boris johnson interpreted that to mean that he didn't break the rules, is that it? sue gray all she can do is set out the facts. h sue gray all she can do is set out the facts. . sue gray all she can do is set out the facts. , :_ , .,
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sue gray all she can do is set out the facts. , ,:, , :, , ., ~ the facts. if she says that he broke the facts. if she says that he broke the ministerial— the facts. if she says that he broke the ministerial code, _ the facts. if she says that he broke the ministerial code, he _ the facts. if she says that he broke the ministerial code, he will- the facts. if she says that he broke the ministerial code, he will have i the ministerial code, he will have to referred to the independent arbiter on the ministerial code and he was the person who looked into the row about the redecoration of the row about the redecoration of the downing street flat. that is another whole other investigation. the police as well. there is a possibility they may investigate. if they intervene before the investigation, she would have to pass. so we are looking in terms of days whether this comes to a head, but it could go to weeks and months if it has to be investigated and the met police. what matters here is the call to parliamentary opinion because at the moment mps and ministers are saying we are going to wait what a sue gray says. that is a crucial point and if the report comes out and it doesn't matter what the prime minister said, but it has more evidence, that is when letters of no confidence could go into mr johnson or cabinet ministers could withdraw their support because at the moment the cabinet has rallied
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around the prime minister apart from rishi sunak, who took quite a long time. it is not actually what sue gray does, it is what mps, conservative mps think about it. it conservative mps think about it. it doesn't matter what voters think? i talked to a lot of mps over the past 48 hours —— matt 204i talked to a lot of mps over the past 48 hours —— matt 204! was who says the inboxesj loosed, and that place into their calculation about whether they want to keep mrjohnson in situ. the general view is, how is that apology going to go down? we have to wait and see and no doubt they will go back to their constituencies on friday, here what voters are saying and if they say i am fed up, i don't buy this, i don't buy the apology, that could influence things when the report comes back, which is expected next week at the earliest, though she is not rushing this and even though people in downing street would like
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to get it out quickly, she is going to get it out quickly, she is going to take the time she thinks necessary. i5 to take the time she thinks necessary-— to take the time she thinks necessary. to take the time she thinks necessa . , , :, :, : :, : necessary. is it your reading comic from our necessary. is it your reading comic from your contacts _ necessary. is it your reading comic from your contacts you _ necessary. is it your reading comic from your contacts you talking - necessary. is it your reading comic from your contacts you talking to l from your contacts you talking to people that number ten thinks they are going to be ok when the report is published? ii are going to be ok when the report is published?— is published? if you look at the prime minister's _ is published? if you look at the prime minister's statement - is published? if you look at the prime minister's statement in l is published? if you look at the i prime minister's statement in the house of commons, it was carefully worded. you could hear the lawyers hands on it. i think the view in downing street is that there is a problem here and after this whole business i have been told there is lots talk about a general refresh of the team behind that black dot in terms of who does strategy, who is leading things, because it was already fractured but it has been even more fractured by this episode. they feel fundamentally that the reason conservative mps for boris johnson as leader is because he is popular with the country and he wins elections. if that falls away, then he has done. and for the moment
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there is no obvious replacement. if he was to resign, he would start a whole leadership contest. rishi sunak or liz truss all getting involved in a big, messy leadership contest. if there was an heir apparent there, things will be more difficult. so i think the way to see the report, he has already apologised and if that land is well with mps then he is safe, at least until may when we have the local elections. it until may when we have the local elections. . until may when we have the local elections. , " �* , :, elections. it is 11:43am. let's hand ou back elections. it is 11:43am. let's hand you back to — elections. it is 11:43am. let's hand you back to the — elections. it is 11:43am. let's hand you back to the studio. _ elections. it is 11:43am. let's hand you back to the studio. more - elections. it is 11:43am. let's hand you back to the studio. more now| elections. it is 11:43am. let's hand i you back to the studio. more now on the care system, which is under relentless pressure because of the 0micron variant and delays in getting the results of pcr test.
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joining us now is louise file york, manager of the croft, a dementia care home in amersham. we understand why you are choosing to break your mask, to protect your residence. tell us about the challenges you have been facing of late. about the challenges you have been facing of late-— about the challenges you have been facing of late. good morning. we are under immense _ facing of late. good morning. we are under immense pressure. _ facing of late. good morning. we are under immense pressure. it's - facing of late. good morning. we are under immense pressure. it's not. under immense pressure. it's not play, it is continuous and has been for two years and i think 0micron is just exasperating now what we have been experiencing. we have got staff shortages, guidance to follow, to make sure we are keeping people safe. so ijust can't tell you how difficult it is right now for people working into their homes. also. difficult it is right now for people working into their homes. also, you have to respond _ working into their homes. also, you have to respond a _ working into their homes. also, you have to respond a lot _ working into their homes. also, you have to respond a lot during - working into their homes. also, you have to respond a lot during the - have to respond a lot during the pandemic to ever—changing guidelines. pandemic to ever-changing guidelines.—
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pandemic to ever-changing guidelines. how difficult it is happening? _ guidelines. how difficult it is happening? thankfully, - guidelines. how difficult it is happening? thankfully, the| guidelines. how difficult it is - happening? thankfully, the national care forum had been a great resource for care homes. they have done an absolutely fabulous job of breaking things down. i personally think they are my go to on government guidance and work from that. but i think what happens is, it comes out, it is quite confusing and the hours that are spent changing and making sure we put things into practice, getting that comes out of the family's, breaking bad news to families over what the guidance as change too, it is time consuming and takes it away from what we need to do. so it is very difficult. from what we need to do. so it is very difficult-— from what we need to do. so it is very difficult. how does it have an im act on very difficult. how does it have an impact on the _ very difficult. how does it have an impact on the people _ very difficult. how does it have an impact on the people you - very difficult. how does it have an impact on the people you are - impact on the people you are caring for? , :, �* , for? they don't get it this time back, do they? _ for? they don't get it this time back, do they? they _ for? they don't get it this time back, do they? they have - for? they don't get it this time | back, do they? they have been for? they don't get it this time - back, do they? they have been very good. they are resilient, they understand, we talk to them all the
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time. we make allowances for their families to see them via video link. they are essential caregivers so they are ok, but of course it is very upsetting to them when they are used to seeing someone every day and they can go to the shops. it has had a huge impact on them and they are not getting this time back. 0bviously, not getting this time back. obviously, as we report this story repeatedly, itjust exposes the difficulties, the challenges how hard it is to be a carer, particularly at the relatively low rates of pay. how difficult does that then make it to bring more people into this profession? yes. people into this profession? yes, very difficult- _ people into this profession? yes, very difficult. i _ people into this profession? yes, very difficult. i think— people into this profession? yes, very difficult. i think the - very difficult. i think the government have to provide more finances to the local authorities and in turn the nonprofit companies
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to allow them to pay their staff more and increase the retention. they have the opportunity to progress in the company with qualifications. again, it is a very difficult time and there are not enough people out there that want to come into care. let enough people out there that want to come into care-— come into care. let me quickly tell ou what come into care. let me quickly tell you what the _ come into care. let me quickly tell you what the government - come into care. let me quickly tell you what the government is - come into care. let me quickly tell| you what the government is saying. the department of health and social care says they are working hard, and to strengthen the workforce we have provided money for recruitment and retention. £2.4 billion available for social care, as well as £60 million to keep people in care homes safe overjanuary. it sounds like a huge amount of money, but what difference how at money made? hat a difference how at money made? not a lot, i'm difference how at money made? not a lot. l'm afraid- — difference how at money made? not a lot, i'm afraid. if— difference how at money made? not a lot, i'm afraid. if there _ difference how at money made? not a lot, i'm afraid. if there is _
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difference how at money made? not a lot, i'm afraid. if there is a _ difference how at money made? not a lot, i'm afraid. if there is a lot - lot, i'm afraid. if there is a lot of care homes, a lot of people who need care, working in care, and there is not enough money to entice people to come in. that isn't enough to increase staff wages over a substantial amount of time. from the croft dementia _ substantial amount of time. from the croft dementia care _ substantial amount of time. from the croft dementia care home _ substantial amount of time. from the croft dementia care home in - croft dementia care home in amersham. england's rivers are filled with a "chemical cocktail" of sewage, agricultural waste and plastic, according to a cross party group of mps, and it's putting both public health and nature at risk. a new report released today finds that not a single river in england is free from pollution. the environmental audit committee wants to see tougher monitoring and enforcement. a warning that our environment correspondent, jonah fisher's report includes some pretty gruesome pictures. i don't know what that is. it looks a bit like poo, doesn't it? ashley smith is searching for sewage. these particles coming out. this is shill brook in 0xfordshire. a stream that receives the outflow from two water treatment plants.
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with this camera, we have seen basically chopped up, untreated sewage coming out. ashley comes here often to monitor the water quality. his videos, evidence of an ecosystem being steadily poisoned. yes, that is visible. but, in sewage, you can imagine everything that goes into your drains at home, through your shower, sink and toilet, all of the chemicals that you see in the supermarket, all of that goes into this. when it is untreated, it is not even effective in any way. we have done some river flow monitoring here, some invertebrate sampling and, and in this area here we found virtually nothing in the invertebrate department, apart from some bloodworms, which will live in virtually anything. it's dreadful. for the last year, parliament's environmental audit committee has been putting together a report into the state of england's rivers, and it is published today.
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the mps' report blames pretty much everyone for what it calls the mess of england's rivers. water companies, farmers, inadequate testing and monitoring, years of complacency by policymakers, and also you and i, for all of the things that we threw down the toilet every day, that go on to block the sewers. it is a very complex system that we have, but in essence, for the last 60 years, we have not, as a nation, invested in our water treatment assets to the same extent as we have invested in what happens above ground. it is underground, unseen, people don't know that it is there, until there is a problem, by which time it is too late. so in this sewage has been fully treated in the sewage works... the role of water companies is also scrutinised. with mps saying that they have to invest more and become more transparent about when they allow raw sewage to flow into rivers. were we wrong to expect private
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water companies to put the quality of water ahead of profits? i don't believe that at all. it is not a question of public or private. it is about doing a good job, getting the incentives right and the regulation right and having the right people with the right equipment and right investment. we regard all discharges of untreated sewage as unacceptable. but it is going to take a long time to get that problem completely solved. it will also take money and political will. but at least the pollution of our rivers is no longer a dirty secret. jonah fisher, bbc news, 0xfordshire. an asteroid around a kilometre wide is expected to fly past earth in a week or so. it will pass within 1.2 million miles of the planet so there's no immediate danger to us. but experts at nasa say it will be the closest an asteroid will come for the next 200 years. joining me now is astrophysicist dr imogen whittam from the university of oxford.
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welcome. it hasn't got a very snappy name, this asteroid. perhaps it needs a nickname.— name, this asteroid. perhaps it needs a nickname. describe it to us. good morning- _ needs a nickname. describe it to us. good morning. this _ needs a nickname. describe it to us. good morning. this asteroid - needs a nickname. describe it to us. good morning. this asteroid is - needs a nickname. describe it to us. good morning. this asteroid is a - good morning. this asteroid is a lump of rock about a kilometre across and its name is in very snappy at all. it is a string of numbers, which involves 1994, they go in which we first detected this asteroid. so we have known about this asteroid for a long time and scientist have been very carefully tracking its path through space, so we know exactly where this asteroid is going to go, which its closest approach to earth will be about 1.2 million miles, which to put in context, that is about five times the distance between the earth and the distance between the earth and the moon. so that is close in astronomical distance scales but actually there is absolute nothing
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to worry about. it is actually there is absolute nothing to worry about.— to worry about. it is hardly of the don't look— to worry about. it is hardly of the don't look up — to worry about. it is hardly of the don't look up film _ to worry about. it is hardly of the don't look up film proportions, i to worry about. it is hardly of the | don't look up film proportions, is it? it is travelling pretty fast. why are you interested in it? it is travellin: why are you interested in it? it is travelling over _ why are you interested in it? it 3 travelling over 40,000 mph and as eight natural human interest, partly because of things in the media, but we are interested in objects i guess because if an asteroid of this site, about one kilometre, were to collide with earth, that could have devastating impact. and astride of this side would be capable of destroying an entire city, so if it fell in a populated region, this could potentially kill millions of people and have long—term effects on the climate. so it is really important that we track asteroids like this so that we know exactly where they are and where they are likely to go. and the good news is there are no potentially hazardous
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asteroids that are going to pass anywhere near earth for at least the next 100 years. you anywhere near earth for at least the next 100 years-— next 100 years. you are smiling, so we are all reassured. _ next 100 years. you are smiling, so we are all reassured. how - next 100 years. you are smiling, so we are all reassured. how much - next 100 years. you are smiling, so| we are all reassured. how much can you about it at that speed and at that distance from earth? brute you about it at that speed and at that distance from earth? we can learn quite _ that distance from earth? we can learn quite a _ that distance from earth? we can learn quite a bit _ that distance from earth? we can learn quite a bit about _ that distance from earth? we can learn quite a bit about it - that distance from earth? we can learn quite a bit about it by - learn quite a bit about it by observing it with telescopes here on earth. we can learn about its composition and the elements it is likely to be made up of and we can learn about where it is likely to go and where it came from. so we can make some kind of guesses as to its origin. make some kind of guesses as to its oriuin. ~ :, ,:, ~' make some kind of guesses as to its oriuin. ~ :, ,, , origin. where do you think it is come from _ origin. where do you think it is come from and _ origin. where do you think it is come from and what _ origin. where do you think it is come from and what is - origin. where do you think it is come from and what is its - origin. where do you think it is - come from and what is its trajectory telling you? taste come from and what is its tra'ectory telling you?— telling you? we think this is leftover from _ telling you? we think this is leftover from when - telling you? we think this is leftover from when the - telling you? we think this is. leftover from when the whole telling you? we think this is - leftover from when the whole solar system formed, which are formed from a big cloud of gas and dust which eventually cooled and condensed and formed what we see today. some bits were leftover and didn't end up becoming part of the planet, and these are the asteroids that we see
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around. 0thers these are the asteroids that we see around. others are caused when objects break up, for example, if we have two asteroids are collide, they may break up into smaller bits. so thatis may break up into smaller bits. so that is where we think this one came from. :. ~ that is where we think this one came from. :, ,, ,:, that is where we think this one came from. :, ~' y:. , that is where we think this one came from. :, ,, y:, , : from. thank you very much. thank ou. ronnie spector, the lead singer of the 1960s girl—group the ronettes, has died. the rock and roll star rose to fame with hits such as �*be my baby', �*baby i love you' and �*walking in the rain'. a statement from her family said she passed at the age of 78 "after a brief battle with cancer". now it's time for a look at the weather with carol kirkwood. hello again. we have had a frosty start to the day across some parts of england in particular, and also a foggy start. most of the fog across parts of england and south wales is now lifting. but as we go through the rest of the week, although it is going to be dry
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and settled with some sunshine, frost and fog will be prevalent in the mornings. some of the fog will be slow to lift. so where the fog does lift today we are looking at some sunshine across england and wales, although there will be more cloud across the pennines and also across northern ireland than yesterday. quite a cloudy day away from the east of scotland, thick enough for some drizzle in the west, and here too breezy, but pretty windy across shetland. as we head on through the evening and overnight, if anything, a weather front is going to sink southwards across scotland, bringing in some rain. clear skies, or clearer skies across northern ireland, england and wales means temperatures will fall away and once again we will see some fog reform. so we are looking at a widespread frost tonight, and with temperatures falling to as low as —4, —5 in sheltered parts of england, not just frost but freezing fog, so something to bear in mind if you are travelling early on. high pressure is still in charge of our weather on friday. this is the weather front across scotland bringing in some spots of rain. and really that means first thing in the morning with not much wind around there is nothing to stir up
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this fog and move it along, so it will last for quite a while. for some it will last for much of the day, and if you are stuck in an area with fog or low cloud it will of course suppress the temperatures. here is our weatherfront bringing some spots of rain across the north of scotland. here it won't be as windy as it has been in the last few days. and these are our temperatures, four in norwich, maybe nine as we push into glasgow. as we head on into the weekend, our high pressure does eventually move away, isobars are well spaced out, again not much in the way of wind to move things along. so we start off on a foggy note. again, quite widespread fog. it will slowly lift but some of it only into low cloud. there will be some sunshine around but it is going to be fairly limited and we will see a few showers coming in across north—west england, south—west england and also south wales later on in the day. temperatures down a touch. as we head on into sunday, there will be some patchy rain around. it should brighten up later on in the east, and on monday, again,
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some of us will see some sunshine.
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there are very strong feelings that this whole thing evokes. this is bbc news the headlines: borisjohnson cancels a planned trip after a family member tests positive for coronavirus — as calls for him to resign over that downing street party continue. but cabinet ministers rally round him. there is no question in my mind that borisjohnson was acting in good faith, to thank the people that had been working incredibly hard to guide the country through the crisis. the prime minister's behaviour has angered people across the uk — including relatives of people who died during the pandemic. it wasn't a real apology. saying sorry doesn't really mean anything if your behaviour doesn't change, and it doesn't seem to me like his attitude changed at all.
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nhs waiting times in england reach a record high. six million people were waiting for planned operations and procedures in november. we will be live in the house of commons where the health secretary sajid javid is expected to give a statement on coronavirus in england. vaccinated uk travellers will be allowed back to france from tomorrow — as the government in paris relaxes restrictions. and a warning that the care system for older and disabled people across the uk is under grim and relentless pressure due to staff shortages. more on the reaction to boris johnson's statement and apology yesterday for the party that took place in downing street in 2020.
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victoria derbyshire is live downing street this morning. thank you. what has happened today? this morning the pm pulled out of a planned visit to a vaccination clinic — after a family member tested positive for coronavirus. he's cancelled the trip, despite official guidance no longer requiring vaccinated contacts of coronavirus cases to self—isolate. it comes as some senior conservatives are calling on borisjohnson to resign after he admitted attending a drinks party during lockdown. mrjohnson apologised for the way he handled the event in downing street — saying he understood the public�*s "rage" over it.
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and we had mr saying that he was only there for 30 minutes and he was just thanking people who are working really hard during the pandemic. some of the pm's top team — including the deputy prime minister dominic raab have rallied around too. but some mps including the scottish tory leader douglas ross have called on him to go, along with william wragg, caroline nokes and sir roger gale. douglas ross said he would write to the 1922 committee — which organises tory leadership contests — to register his lack of confidence in the prime minister it takes letters from 54 backbench conservative mps to trigger a leadership challenge. here's our political correspondent damian grammaticas. the chill of a westminster morning, and a prime minister in trouble.
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the question in the cold light of a new day — is his apology enough? in the commons yesterday, borisjohnson did finally admit he had been at a party — but said his garden was a workspace. technically, it was within the rules. i believed implicitly that this was a work event. many watching — including bereaved families — didn't believe him. it wasn't an apology. he didn't say sorry. he basically gaslit the entire nation by saying that he thought that the event that was actually illegal at the time was a work event, and not a party. we all know that's not true. one by one, his cabinet have come forward to back him. the foreign secretary late in the evening said she was behind him 100%, and the chancellor, too — a bit lukewarm — requested patience while an inquiry is under way. but a handful of his own mps have lost patience — publicly calling on him to go.
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i know my thoughts are, is that he's damaging us now. he's damaging the entire conservative brand with an unwillingness to accept the strictures that other people have lived by. and it's left some tories pitted against one another — their scottish leader, douglas ross, had called on the pm to resign. last night, jacob rees—mogg — himself in the cabinet — turned on mr ross. douglas ross has always been quite a lightweight figure... _ 0of! ..so i don't think that his... sorry, hang on... and he's been... so the leader of the scottish conservatives and msp and an mp is a lightweight? ithink... i think the scottish - secretary's a much more substantial and important... we're talking about 31 scottish msps. so there's real disquiet among many conservatives, while they wait for that inquiry by the civil servant sue gray. the prime minister has admitted that he was in the downing street garden, he's admitted it was a party, and therefore she doesn't have to find that — that's already been acknowledged. what she has to find is to work out, you know, who was responsible and who should take blame for it.
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and, crucially, which occupants of downing street might that be? damian grammaticas, bbc news, westminster. simon clarke is the chief secretary to the treasury — member of the cabinet — and number two to chancellor rishi sunak. but is borisjohnson gaslightling those who have lost a loved ones? the prime minister is absolutely not doing that. he gave a very sincere apology yesterday and a very full apology yesterday and a very full apology for what has happened. he has been clear that in retrospect he would have not done what he did. it is also important to set out what he did do and he was clear, he was out in the garden for less than half an hour, thanking staff who had been working day in and day out helping to lead the country through the pandemic over several months of the most incredible hard work. he accepts he ought not to have done that and would have behaved differently thinking again but it is
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also important to be clear about what this event was and what it wasn't. to that point, that is why we need sue gray's report. 0bviously, we need sue gray's report. obviously, i wasn't there, you weren't there, it is so important we get that full context before the house of commons meets again to quiz the prime minister about it. can house of commons meets again to quiz the prime minister about it.— the prime minister about it. can you be honest with _ the prime minister about it. can you be honest with our _ the prime minister about it. can you be honest with our viewers - the prime minister about it. can you be honest with our viewers and - the prime minister about it. can you be honest with our viewers and tell| be honest with our viewers and tell us what was your immediate gut reaction when you heard boris johnson say, "i believed chris lynn was a work event."? and please do be honest. ma; was a work event."? and please do be honest. g , , :,, :, was a work event."? and please do be honest. g , :, honest. my response was that it was the riaht honest. my response was that it was the right thing _ honest. my response was that it was the right thing for— honest. my response was that it was the right thing for him _ honest. my response was that it was the right thing for him to _ honest. my response was that it was the right thing for him to say. - honest. my response was that it was the right thing for him to say. you i the right thing for him to say. you believed him?! _ the right thing for him to say. you believed him?! i _ the right thing for him to say. you believed him?! i absolutely - the right thing for him to say. you i believed him?! i absolutely believed him. there believed him?! i absolutely believed him- there is _ believed him?! i absolutely believed him. there is no _ believed him?! i absolutely believed him. there is no question _ believed him?! i absolutely believed him. there is no question in - believed him?! i absolutely believed him. there is no question in my - believed him?! i absolutely believed| him. there is no question in my mind that borisjohnson was acting in good faith to thank the people who had been helping guide the country through the crisis, working incredibly hard. he accepts that he shouldn't have done that but it was donein shouldn't have done that but it was done in good faith. there was no
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possible malice or intention to do anything other than to give a heartfelt thank you to people who had been working incredibly hard. 0n had been working incredibly hard. on all our behalf. that is what he did. he shouldn't have done it. he totally takes responsibility for that and so great nowjust needs the time and space to bring out exactly what happened in the full context so that the prime minister can be held to account in the house of commons as is obviously the right place for that to happen. i believe in his total sincerity in making that apology. he recognises, as we all do, that this country has been through an incredibly difficult time and there are very strong feelings that this whole thing evokes. can ou oint that this whole thing evokes. can you point us _ that this whole thing evokes. can you point us to the guidance, the documentation, the government tweets, that said it was ok to go
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out into the garden with 30 or 40 people and socialise with them where for 20 minutes or an hour orfive minutes? for 20 minutes or an hour or five minutes? ~ :. for 20 minutes or an hour or five minutes? ~ :, ::, for 20 minutes or an hour or five minutes?— minutes? what i can say is that --eole in minutes? what i can say is that people in downing _ minutes? what i can say is that people in downing street - minutes? what i can say is that i people in downing street working through the height of the pandemic, there was no choice for them, that is the nature of running the country. those people were in the office, working alongside the prime minister to provide the necessary leadership that the country needed. it is a pretty exceptional office building in safari that the work is so vital to the running of the country. —— insofar as the work is so vital to the running of the country. the important thing is that we get the context that sue gray's report will provide.— report will provide. let's go live telecom and — report will provide. let's go live telecom and is _ report will provide. let's go live telecom and is now _ report will provide. let's go live telecom and is now where - report will provide. let's go live telecom and is now where the i report will provide. let's go live - telecom and is now where the health secretary is on his feet. —— live to the commons. to secretary is on his feet. -- live to the commons-— secretary is on his feet. -- live to the commons. to use words that i
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think he might _ the commons. to use words that i think he might particularly - the commons. to use words that i think he might particularly like, i the commons. to use words that i | think he might particularly like, we are grateful that we have had him on loan for so many years. he was a top signing and he has blown the whistle on time. i'm sure the whole house would want tojoin me in wishing jonathan van—tam, professor sir jonathan van—tam, professor sir jonathan van—tam, professor sir jonathan van—tam all the very best. with permission i would like to make a statement on the covid—19 pandemic. we started this year as the freest country in europe thanks to the decisions that we make to open up in the summer and the defences that we have built. but we must not lose sight of the fact that this virus is still with us. there are still likely to be difficult weeks ahead. according to the 0ns data published yesterday there are encouraging signs that infections are falling in london and the east of england. but we are still currently seeing infections rising other parts of the country and the data does not as of yet reflect the impact of people returning to work
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and school. so we must proceed with caution. 0micron's far greater transmissibility still has the potential to lead to significant numbers of people in hospital. there is already almost 17,000 covid—19 patients in hospital in england and due to the lag between infections and hospitalisations the nhs will remain under significant pressure over the next few weeks. it is encouraging however that during this wave we have not seen an increase in covid—19 intensive care patients. and there are already early signs that the rate of hospitalisation is starting to slow. we know that 0micron is less severe but no one should be under any illusions, it is severe for anyone who ends up in hospital and that is far more likely if you have not had the jab. in many
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major cities in the usa where the level of booster vaccinations are comparatively lower than the uk, pressure in intensive care are approaching the levels of last winter. in chicago, they have already exceeded the peak from last january. so we must remain vigilant and keep fortifying the pharmaceutical defences that we have built, some of the strongest in the world. today i would like to update the house on how we are making these pharmaceutical defences even stronger and how we the nhs and this country what it needs to withstand this 0micron way. our primary defence is of course the vaccination programme 79% of eligible adults have now had the booster. including 91%, over 91% of over 50s. we know they are more vulnerable to the virus. per capita, we are the most
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boosted large country in the world. data from the uk hsa which was published on friday shows that around three months when those age 65 and over received a booster, there protection from hospitalisation remains around 90%. these vaccines don'tjust protect ourselves, our loved ones, but they protect the country prospect progress too. the reason why we have been able to start the year with much greater freedom than last year with children back at school, shops opening their doors, this chamber bustling with activity? is because that so many people have made the positive choice to get vaccinated. there are a small minority of people who could get the jab if they wanted to but they have chosen not to. let us be clear the reasons that those
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people have also been able to enjoy... people have also been able to en'o g. people have also been able to en'o :, , :, enjoy... sa'id javid in house of commons.— enjoy... sajid javid in house of commons. this _ enjoy... sajid javid in house of commons. this is _ enjoy... sajid javid in house of commons. this is where - enjoy... sajid javid in house of commons. this is where we i enjoy... sajid javid in house ofl commons. this is where we say goodbye to our viewers on bbc two. you are watching bbc news. if rare goodbye to our viewers on bbc two. you are watching bbc news. if we are to maintain this _ you are watching bbc news. if we are to maintain this collective _ to maintain this collective protection that we have built we need everybody to choose responsibly and take the simple step that we will secure, help secure greater freedom for us all. people working in health and care look after some of the most vulnerable in our society. so they do carry a unique responsibility. last month this house approved our plans that anyone working in health or wider social care activities that are regulated by the cqc will need to be vaccinated against covid—19. if their roles involve direct contact with patients. unless of course they are medically exempt. this includes
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nhs hospitals, the independent sector, gp and dental practices, regardless of whether they are working in the public or private sectors. uptake in the past few months has been very promising. since the government consulted on this policy in september the proportion of nhs trust health care workers vaccinated with at least a first dose has increased from 92% to 94%. we remain committed to putting these measures into force on the 1st of april. mr deputy speaker, our next of defence is testing and rendering more tests than any other country in europe. we raised the distribution of free lateral flow tests from 120 million in november to 300 million in december to meet the demands of the 0micron way. we are expecting to make around 400 million tests available over the
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course of this month, that is four times the pre—omicron plan. mr deputy speaker, our third line of defences antivirals and treatments, where we have built the most advanced programme in europe. we have now secured almost 5 million courses of oral antivirus which is leading the whole continent in the number that we have procured per person. we are already making these cutting—edge antivirus and treatments available directly to patients. last month we contacted 1.3 million of those at the highest risk from covid—19. people such as those who might be certainly suffering with cancer or people with down syndrome. we sent them a pcr test kit that they can keep at home. if they test positive they will then be able to access either an antibody
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or antiviral which can be sent to those patients, to their home, or they can access it through a clinician at one of the 96 covid medicine delivery units that now exist across england. we are also making antiviral treatments available more widely. any of our constituents who are aged over 50 or between 18 and 49 with an underlying health condition, if they get covid—19 symptoms and test positive, they are all eligible. they can sign up they are all eligible. they can sign up for this trial if our constituents are interested by visiting the website. the more people that sign up to more widely we can deploy these treatments. mr deputy speaker, with these three defences, the most boosted, the most
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tested, the most antivirals, it is no wonder that we are the freest country in europe. this country is leading the world and learning to live with covid. just as we strengthen these defences to keep people out of hospital, we are also taking measures to ensure that the health service has what it needs. as part of this work we have looked at every available route to secure the maximum capacity possible across the nhs. we have been working with the latest technology to create virtual wards where patients can be monitored by clinicians remotely from their own home. we are bringing on extra beds. we are putting in place new nightingale search hubs within hospital grounds to provide extra resilience should we need it. and we are making use of the
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independent sector. this week we announced a new three month agreements which will allow nhs trusts to send a wider range of patients, for example, those in need of cancer care to the independent sector for treatment. these measures taken together, these are insurance policies, helping us to plan for the worst one we hope for the best. like any insurance policy we hope that we don't need to use it but it is the role of any responsible government to prepare for all reasonable outcomes so that we can keep this country safe and protect the progress that we have made. finally, mr deputy speaker, i have always said to the house that any curbs on our freedoms must be an absolute last resort and that we shouldn't keep them in place for a day longer than absolutely necessary. with this in mind, we have been reviewing the isolation period for positive cases
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to make sure that the measures we have in place maximise activity in the economy and education, for example, but also minimise the risk of infectious people leaving isolation. uk hsa data shows that around two thirds of positive cases are no longer infectious by the end of day five. we want to use the testing capacity that we have built up testing capacity that we have built up to help these people leave isolation safely. after reviewing all of the evidence, we have made the decision to reduce the minimum self isolation period for five full daysin self isolation period for five full days in england. from monday, people can test twice before they leave isolation at the start of day six. these two tests are critical to his balance and proportion of plans and
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they are —— i urge everyone to keep doing these tests. mr deputy speaker, we have now entered the third year of this country's fight against covid—19. thanks to an incredible national endeavour we are now better protected than ever before. but this virus is not going away. there will be more variance. and no one can be sure what threat they might pose. but we can be sure that our pharmaceutical defences, vaccines, testings and antivirus are the best ways to protect our health and freedoms as we learn to live with covid. i commend this statement to the house. i with covid. i commend this statement to the house-— to the house. i think they secretary of state for — to the house. i think they secretary of state for advanced _ to the house. i think they secretary of state for advanced sight - to the house. i think they secretary of state for advanced sight of - to the house. i think they secretary of state for advanced sight of his i of state for advanced sight of his statement and i also paid tribute to
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professor— statement and i also paid tribute to professorjonathan van—tam who has provided _ professorjonathan van—tam who has provided outstanding public service through— provided outstanding public service through the pandemic. it wasn't a government resignation we were looking _ government resignation we were looking for but the timing brought to mind _ looking for but the timing brought to mind the now infamous and deleted tweet from _ to mind the now infamous and deleted tweet from the uk civil service. "can— tweet from the uk civil service. "can you — tweet from the uk civil service. "can you imagine having to work with these _ "can you imagine having to work with these truth _ "can you imagine having to work with these truth twisters?" he already has a _ these truth twisters?" he already has a knighthood but working with the promise that he must have the patience _ the promise that he must have the patience of— the promise that he must have the patience of a saint. in behalf of the whole — patience of a saint. in behalf of the whole labour party we thank him for his— the whole labour party we thank him for his service rushing well for the future _ for his service rushing well for the future he — for his service rushing well for the future. he is truly a national treasure _ future. he is truly a national treasure. we welcome the announcement the secretary of state has made _ announcement the secretary of state has made in the reduction of the covid _ has made in the reduction of the covid isolation period to five days on condition that negative tests are produced _ on condition that negative tests are produced. let's hope he sorts out testing _ produced. let's hope he sorts out testing he — produced. let's hope he sorts out testing. he told us there were no issues _ testing. he told us there were no issues with— testing. he told us there were no issues with supply before christmas but nhs _ issues with supply before christmas but nhs staff during christmas were not able _ but nhs staff during christmas were not able to access test because the factory— not able to access test because the factory said shut up shop for christmas. worker shortages are one
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of the _ christmas. worker shortages are one of the biggest challenges for the nhs and the wider economy. this measure — nhs and the wider economy. this measure will help people get back to work fast _ measure will help people get back to work fast and safely. great news for the prime _ work fast and safely. great news for the prime minister who through a terribly— the prime minister who through a terribly unfortunate timing is isolating today. how good of the secretary — isolating today. how good of the secretary of state to help the prime minister— secretary of state to help the prime minister get back to work in time for prime — minister get back to work in time for prime minister's questions tomorrow. the leader of the opposition looks forward to meeting him -- _ opposition looks forward to meeting him —— speaking term. days does he think— him —— speaking term. days does he think the _ him —— speaking term. days does he think the nhs is lost and the economy has lost because they couldn't— economy has lost because they couldn't read the policy being used in the _ couldn't read the policy being used in the united states? the secretary of state _ in the united states? the secretary of state has been briefing that it is the _ of state has been briefing that it is the health security agency's fort~ _ is the health security agency's fort~ how— is the health security agency's fort. how brave of him to blame officials — fort. how brave of him to blame officials. but the cdc advice to the biden— officials. but the cdc advice to the biden administration is open access. didn't_ biden administration is open access. didn't he _ biden administration is open access.
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didn't he read it? does nobody take responsibility in this covenant any more _ responsibility in this covenant any more do — responsibility in this covenant any more do theyjust blame the staff? we are _ more do theyjust blame the staff? we are not— more do theyjust blame the staff? we are not out of the woods with covid-19 — we are not out of the woods with covid—19 yet. we hope the omicron variant— covid—19 yet. we hope the omicron variant has— covid—19 yet. we hope the omicron variant has passed its peak in london — variant has passed its peak in london but we know it is yet to peak across _ london but we know it is yet to peak across vast _ london but we know it is yet to peak across vast swathes of england and the nhs _ across vast swathes of england and the nhs services are under enormous pressure _ the nhs services are under enormous pressure. today we learned that nhs waiting _ pressure. today we learned that nhs waiting lists were at a historic 6 million — waiting lists were at a historic 6 million before the omicron wave arrived — million before the omicron wave arrived. 24—hour is an ana isn't just— arrived. 24—hour is an ana isn't just a _ arrived. 24—hour is an ana isn't just a television programme it is the grim — just a television programme it is the grim experience of patients many cases _ the grim experience of patients many cases. week after week we see more evidence _ cases. week after week we see more evidence of— cases. week after week we see more evidence of unacceptable delays for patients _ evidence of unacceptable delays for patients and now we know they are lowering _ patients and now we know they are lowering standards and normalising lon- lowering standards and normalising long waiting periods in the nhs. an hourjust _ long waiting periods in the nhs. an hourjust to— long waiting periods in the nhs. an hourjust to be transferred from an ambulance — hourjust to be transferred from an ambulance into hospital, assuming you can _ ambulance into hospital, assuming you can get an ambulance and haven't been told _ you can get an ambulance and haven't been told to— you can get an ambulance and haven't been told to phone a friend call a cab if— been told to phone a friend call a cab if you — been told to phone a friend call a cab if you are suffering from a suspected stroke or heart attack as
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has happened in at least one trust in the _ has happened in at least one trust in the north—east of england. does the secretary of state really believe _ the secretary of state really believe these weights are acceptable or is it _ believe these weights are acceptable or is itjust— believe these weights are acceptable or is it just a believe these weights are acceptable or is itjust a case of this government that when they break the rules they— government that when they break the rules they change the rules? mr deputy— rules they change the rules? mr deputy speaker, he wants to blame pandemic— deputy speaker, he wants to blame pandemic pressures alone but we went into the _ pandemic pressures alone but we went into the pandemic with nhs waiting lists already at a record high of 4.5 million, staff shortages at 100.000 _ 4.5 million, staff shortages at 100,000 in social care vacancies at 112 thousand. health care services are paying — 112 thousand. health care services are paying a heavy price in the country — are paying a heavy price in the country is _ are paying a heavy price in the country is paying a greater price would _ country is paying a greater price would lock down because of tory policies — would lock down because of tory policies that have left the nhs without — policies that have left the nhs without the capacity and resilience to withstand the annual pressures of winter— to withstand the annual pressures of winter let _ to withstand the annual pressures of winter let alone the unique pressures of the pandemic. where is the work— pressures of the pandemic. where is the work for— pressures of the pandemic. where is the work for strategy for the recovery? where is the recovery plan? _ recovery? where is the recovery plan? where is the sign of this
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government has any understanding of their responsibility, the response ability— their responsibility, the response ability they bear for the crisis? let alone — ability they bear for the crisis? let alone a plan to fix it for the future — let alone a plan to fix it for the future. finally, mr deputy speaker, can i future. finally, mr deputy speaker, can i ask— future. finally, mr deputy speaker, can i ask what on earth the secretary— can i ask what on earth the secretary of state thought he was doing _ secretary of state thought he was doing yesterday when he leapt to the pro—minister's defence? his first duty is— pro—minister's defence? his first duty is to — pro—minister's defence? his first duty is to public health. he also has a _ duty is to public health. he also has a duty— duty is to public health. he also has a duty to the health and social care workforce and of doctors and nurses _ care workforce and of doctors and nurses had — care workforce and of doctors and nurses had brought their own blues to work— nurses had brought their own blues to work they would have been fired. the prime _ to work they would have been fired. the prime minister has undermined trust and _ the prime minister has undermined trust and confidence as a crucial point _ trust and confidence as a crucial point of— trust and confidence as a crucial point of the pandemic. who is he to ask others— point of the pandemic. who is he to ask others to do the right thing when _ ask others to do the right thing when he — ask others to do the right thing when he doesn't practice what he preaches? — when he doesn't practice what he preaches? in conclusion, the secretary— preaches? in conclusion, the secretary of state has a duty to inoculate — secretary of state has a duty to inoculate the government's pandemic response _ inoculate the government's pandemic response from a toxic radioactive prime _ response from a toxic radioactive prime minister. the public have concluded — prime minister. the public have concluded the pro—minister is unfit for office —
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concluded the pro—minister is unfit for office. the secretary of state needs _ for office. the secretary of state needs to — for office. the secretary of state needs to be careful in his defence that they— needs to be careful in his defence that they do not draw the same conclusion— that they do not draw the same conclusion about him. first that they do not draw the same conclusion about him.— that they do not draw the same conclusion about him. first i notice that the right _ conclusion about him. first i notice that the right honourable _ conclusion about him. first i notice. that the right honourable gentleman did mention the huge increase since you last stood at that dispatch box in booster vaccinations in this country. hejust heard me in booster vaccinations in this country. he just heard me say that he knows we are the most boosted country in europe, the most in any large country. he knows how much that has helped. not one word of thanks from the right honourable gentleman to the nhs, the volunteers, the military and everybody who helped do that. not one word of thanks from the honourable gentleman. it will be noted by the british public. i did notice... if you want to return to the dispatch box i will sit down.
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all right. i don't know that is in order but what i did from a sedentary position is the prime minister is not fit to lick the boots of nhs staff in this country. we won't have that again.- boots of nhs staff in this country. we won't have that again. again, he had a opportunity — we won't have that again. again, he had a opportunity to _ we won't have that again. again, he had a opportunity to thank— we won't have that again. again, he had a opportunity to thank the - we won't have that again. again, he had a opportunity to thank the nhsl had a opportunity to thank the nhs for the enormous work they have been doing not only throughout the pandemic but in december, especially for everything they have done to boost so many people but not one word of thanks from him. what we did hearfrom the right word of thanks from him. what we did hear from the right honourable gentleman and i was pleased to hear that he welcome the new self isolation policy. he has asked about whether there was enough test available. he might have heard me say earlier we have quadrupled the test available this month, more than four times the original tree omicron plan. i was confused though
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response on that because he seemed to be suggesting that we should subcontract our covid policy to the us cdc. if i heard him correctly he was suggesting thatjust because another country in this case the us had changed their policy we should automatically follow suit. we have just taken back control from the eu. we have just left the european medical agency and he hearsjust months later suggesting we subcontract our policy to another state. this tells you all you need to know about the labour party's approach to this. in suggesting that we take the same approach as the us, he should know of all people that the us might have a five day isolation period but they have no testing. they have no testing. i don't know if he had me earlier but let me remind him the uk hsa data
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shows that approximately 30% of people at the end of day five are still infectious. that is why we are two tests. the right honourable gentleman was suggesting we should have the same policy as the us. which requires no testing and for everyone to leave isolation on day five regardless if they have tested or not. i think the right honourable gentleman has to decide does he want these decisions made here in the uk based on expert uk advice at some of the best advisers that exist anywhere across the world or does he want to subcontract it again to another state? want to subcontract it again to anotherstate? finally, he want to subcontract it again to another state? finally, he talks anotherstate? finally, he talks about the nhs capacity, he will know that it has sadly been necessary because of the omicron emergency for the nhs to make changes. of course that has had an impact on electives. the most urgent electives like cancer care will be protected. he
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heard me talk about the deal that had been done early at least for the next three months in the independent sector and i hope he supports that. i hope he supports the measure is the nhs are taking to increase capacity. i welcome today's announcement. we have one of the best vaccine programmes in the year and as a result of that we can look forward to a time of living with covid with justified confidence. the select committee last week as a secretary of state knows... a fairly fiery exchange between savage added and the shadow health secretary, with both of them thanking the professor for his service to the government. —— savage added. savage added talking about the various strategies that the government as employed to get on its back on its feet again,
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but saying they will only have to self—isolate for five days instead of the current seven. you can be free on day six if you have two negative test. pointing to the other problems in the health service, not least nhs waiting times in england, which is where we are going next, they have reached a record high. nhs waiting times in england have reached a record high. six million people were waiting for planned operations and procedures in november. and nearly 13,000 patients waited more than 12 hours for a hospital bed in december — that is the highest figure since records began in 2010. while they are not deemed to be urgent operations, many of those people will be waiting in pain, discomfort, feeling fairly isolated and in distress in some cases. so that it one in nine people in england waiting for operations. nearly three 7000 people were
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waiting over one year. a lot of work has been in trying to reduce those figures, but that is still one in 20 people waiting more than 12 months and these figures are for november. that is even before omicron hit, so the chances are we're likely to see that rise further. if you look at amd, the gateway entrance into hospitals, nearly1.9 amd, the gateway entrance into hospitals, nearly 1.9 million people attended a&e departments in england in december. 73% were seen within four hours. the target is 95%. that is a new record low, but it is only marginally worse than the previous month. nearly 13,000 were waiting more than 12 hours, and often what happens is people are on trolleys, in corridors. they get moved around departments, waiting rooms, consultation rooms. it is not ideal while they are waiting for a bed in a ward. the problem seems to be is
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discharging patients. this is where patients are fit enough to leave hospital, but they might need social care packages put in place, either in their own homes are put into a care home. the figures show that 2500 beds were taken by people who are fit enough to leave in the week up are fit enough to leave in the week up to the 9th of january. that is up from ten and a half thousand a week before, 20% in a week. so that... it is now one in eight. the figures are getting wise. we have been hearing that the social care sector are suffering from staff absences, and care homes in some cases and accepting you patients. there is a big push to discharge patients, free up big push to discharge patients, free up beds, improved flow into the hospitals, there is a sticking point and across the nhs staff absences. not much change overall, staying about the same, but it is different regionally. in london things have
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been getting a little bit better. they were hit by omicron a bit earlier, so absences are falling there. at the north—west is increasing, they are a little bit behind london and things are getting worse. the overall picture is not a rapid deterioration but things are gradually getting worse. the nhs is struggling to stop it is important to remember that when we talk about the risks of the nhs being overwhelmed, it is not going to collapse overnight but what happens it is slowly deteriorating over time and chances are we're likely to see things get worse before they get better. france is to ease covid restrictions for travellers from britain. from friday, fully vaccinated people coming from the uk will no longer have to prove that they have an essential reason for the journey or self isolate on arrival. our paris correspondent hugh schofield has an update on the imminent announcement. there has been a tweet from a junior
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minister and ijust looked at the embassy website in the uk and it is confirming that there is going to be an announcement and we haven't had an announcement and we haven't had an official announcement but everything is indicating that from tomorrow, the 14th, friday, the restrictions which were imposed a month ago on the 18th of december will be removed full stop those restrictions were draconian. it meant you couldn't come for tourism and you had to declare a compelling reason to come here, which meant you had to be french or a domicile to france to come across a channel and that played havoc with a lot of people's arrangements over christmas, skiing holidays. it seems from tomorrow that requirement for a justification to come will be removed. it has already been sightly loosened a week ago, work travel became possible within certain limits. now it seems that all
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requirements for a justification to travel will be removed from midnight tonight. we await a decree and official announcement, but it is pointing in the direction. loath? official announcement, but it is pointing in the direction.- official announcement, but it is pointing in the direction. why i are they making _ pointing in the direction. why i are they making this _ pointing in the direction. why i are they making this decision - pointing in the direction. why i are they making this decision at - pointing in the direction. why i are they making this decision at this i they making this decision at this point? they making this decision at this oint? . :. they making this decision at this oint? , :, :, :, , ,, :, point? there is a lot of pressure on the french — point? there is a lot of pressure on the french government _ point? there is a lot of pressure on the french government because i point? there is a lot of pressure on the french government because he| the french government because he originaljustification the french government because he original justification seems to the french government because he originaljustification seems to be no longer valid. it was that britain had a surge in omicron, france didn't. france needed to protect itself and slow down the arrival of omicron in france. whether or not it were, we don't know, but the fact is omicron is now here and there is no particular difference in the level of infection between the two countries. thejustification of infection between the two countries. the justification that france needed to put up a barrier to at least slow down the arrival of omicron is no longer tenable. it is
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silly and we should just go on and travel as we were travelling before. the lawyer representing virginia giuffre, the woman who's accused prince andrew of sexually assaulting her when she was 17, has told the bbc he doesn't think she would accept a purely financial settlement. ajudge in new york has rejected the duke's attempts to dismiss the civil case. prince andrew has always denied the allegations. tim muffett has more. prince andrew now knows that a civil sex assault case against him can go ahead, following a ruling by a judge in new york. the case has been brought by virginia giuffre, who claims prince andrew abused her in 2001, when she was 17 — claims the prince has consistently and firmly denied. his lawyers argue that ms giuffre's complaint should be dismissed — they refer to a 2009 deal she signed with convicted sex offenderjeffrey epstein, in which she agreed not to sue other potential defendants.
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but a new yorkjudge has ruled the case can continue, saying that deal had been ambiguous. the defendant's motion to dismiss the complaint is denied in all respects, judge kaplan said. last night, virginia giuffre's lawyer gave his reaction. she's obviously very pleased that the judge has rejected prince andrew's legal arguments. i think it's very important to virginia giuffre that this matter be resolved in a way that vindicates her. a purely financial settlement is not anything that i think that she's interested in. if he doesn't appeal against this latest ruling, prince andrew effectively has three choices. he could default — ignore the court case — but by doing so, there would be a finding against him. he could take part in the case — he will be questioned under oath, and his lawyers could test virginia giuffre's allegations. or he could try and settle out of court — there would be no admission of liability, but he would perhaps pay a large sum
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of money to virginia giuffre, who might not want to settle. in the short term, a lot of legal arguments are predicted. we'll have arguments over discovery — whether each party has supplied the information that they should. we may well have arguments overjurisdiction — whether virginia giuffre has sufficient connection with america to rely on this piece of legislation because she now lives in australia. in this — the queen's platinum jubilee year — her second son faces some stark choices. tim muffett, bbc news. there's a warning that the care system for older and disabled people is under relentless pressure in the uk. the national care forum — which represents not—for—profit care providers — said existing staff shortages had been compounded by absences caused by the omicron variant and delays in getting the results of pcr tests. the government said it had provided more than £460 million to help recruit and retain care staff.
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here's our social affairs editor, alison holt. i'm here to do a pcr test on a lady that has tested positive on a lft. katie is a care coordinator for a home—care company in norfolk. like many providers supporting older and disabled people, they went into this latest wave of covid with staff shortages. it's katie, i'vejust come to do your pcr. difficulty getting enough tests, and slow pcr results are adding to the company's problems. so we've got our last five boxes of lateral flow tests — are you able to access any more? i'm not able to get any at all from the council. even though the demand for care is huge, they're having to turn away new clients. we've closed our books and we've got about 70, 75 clients when we could be running at a capacity of 100 on a normal day—to—day basis. so what is it that's holding you back from doing that? the staffing level. so if we had good, experienced staff
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with us, then we'd be able to take on more packages of care. care providers running more than 5,000 services across the uk and employing nearly 100,000 staff responded to questions from an organisation representing them. of those working in home care, two thirds say they're no longer able to take new clients. and in care homes, nearly half say they've closed to new residents. staff vacancies were high before omicron amongst those who responded — now they have about 14% of their staff off sick or self—isolating. the levels of staff absence that we're talking about right now are incredibly hard to sustain. you're putting enormous pressure on the people who are already there, and what we don't need is for them to sort of cave under the pressure of that. and once omicron peaks and moves on, perhaps we'll lose some of those immediate absences, but we'll have that growing level of vacancies, and that's what we have to address.
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council teams are also under huge pressure as they try to ensure everyone eligible for care gets support. the government has said it's put significant extra money into the care system, and into recruiting more care staff. alison holt, bbc news. the world number one men's tennis player, novak djokovic, has been included in the draw for the australian open, despite it still being unclear whether he'll be deported. the serbian is at the centre of a dispute about whether he was medically exempt from receiving a covid vaccine. all eyes are on australian immigration minister, alex hawke, who's yet to make a decision on the case. the prime minister scott morrison also declined to comment on the saga in a press conference — the bbc�*s shaimaa khalil is watching it all in melbourne it's been a strange day in melbourne. more drama, more tension, more anticipation. no decision yet on what happens with novak djokovic's visa status. the draw for the australian open 2022 did take place after a last—minute delay, and he was in it as top seed. he is due to play fellow serbian player miomir kecmanovic.
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that is of course unless the australian government has other ideas. the immigration minister, alex hawke, is yet to make a decision about whether or not he's going to use his executive powers to deport the number one player. we know that he's looking at details, more details provided by his team. we know that novak djokovic himself admitted to providing false information on his travel declaration visa, blamed it on his agent, said it was a human error, but also admitted that he knew he had covid on december the 18th but did an interview with the french publication l'equipe anyway, violating covid—19 isolation rules. it is unclear how all of this is going to play out within the decision that the government is going to make. the prime minister, scott morrison, did a press conference today. he was asked directly about how long this is going to take, why has it dragged on like this,
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and he didn't have an answer. but the longer this takes, the closer we get to the tournament, the clearer it becomes that the government is in a real bind about how to deal with all of this. remember, they are also under a lot of pressure because of the covid situation here in australia, which is worsening. there is a surge of cases. hospital and testing clinics are under a lot of pressure. we understand, for example, from the tournament organisers here in melbourne park, that the capacity is going to be capped at 15% in a lot of matches to limit the numbers and try and stop or control the spread of covid—19, especially with the omicron variant. so all of this is happening in the background. the future of novak djokovic in this tournament still hangs in the balance. the headlines on bbc news... borisjohnson cancels a planned trip after a family member tests positive for coronavirus — as calls for him to resign over that downing street party continue.
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the isolation period for people who test positive for covid is being cut to five full days in england from monday, nhs waiting times in england reach a record high. six million people were waiting for planned operations and procedures in november. england's rivers are filled with a "chemical cocktail" of sewage, agricultural waste and plastic, according to a cross party group of mps — and it's putting both public health and nature at risk. a new report released today finds that not a single river in england is free from pollution. the environmental audit committee wants to see tougher monitoring and enforcement. a warning that our environment correspondent, jonah fisher's report includes some pretty gruesome pictures. i don't know what that is. it looks a bit like poo, doesn't it? ashley smith is searching for sewage. these particles coming out. this is shill brook in oxfordshire. a stream that receives the outflow from two water treatment plants.
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with this camera, we have seen basically chopped up, untreated sewage coming out. ashley comes here often to monitor the water quality. his videos, evidence of an ecosystem being steadily poisoned. yes, that is visible. but, in sewage, you can imagine everything that goes into your drains at home, through your shower, sink and toilet, all of the chemicals that you see in the supermarket, all of that goes into this. when it is untreated, it is not even effective in any way. we have done some river flow monitoring here, some invertebrate sampling and, and in this area here we found virtually nothing in the invertebrate department, apart from some bloodworms, which will live in virtually anything. it's dreadful. for the last year, parliament's environmental audit committee has been putting together a report into the state of england's rivers, and it is published today.
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the mps' report blames pretty much everyone for what it calls the mess of england's rivers. water companies, farmers, inadequate testing and monitoring, years of complacency by policymakers, and also you and i, for all of the things that we threw down the toilet every day, that go on to block the sewers. it is a very complex system that we have, but in essence, for the last 60 years, we have not, as a nation, invested in our water treatment assets to the same extent as we have invested in what happens above ground. it is underground, unseen, people don't know that it is there, until there is a problem, by which time it is too late. so when this sewage has been fully treated in the sewage works... the role of water companies is also scrutinised. with mps saying that they have to invest more and become more transparent about when they allow raw sewage to flow into rivers.
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were we wrong to expect private water companies to put the quality of water ahead of profits? i don't believe that at all. it is not a question of public or private. it is about doing a good job, getting the incentives right and the regulation right and having the right people with the right equipment and right investment. we regard all discharges of untreated sewage as unacceptable. but it is going to take a long time to get that problem completely solved. it will also take money and political will. but at least the pollution of our rivers is no longer a dirty secret. jonah fisher, bbc news, 0xfordshire. as one of the oldest gothic cathedrals in the world is rebuilt after a devastatnig fire, visitors can now view notre dame virtually. it's a welcome distraction to a simmering row amongst many public figures in france who accuse designers of planning to turn the cathedral�*s insides into a woke disneyland,
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as mark lobel reports. after the fire, where great coronations and weddings occurred, the reconstruction. this tree felled for the spire to be restored faithfully within an inch of its former life. but look inside notre dame, as president macron did on the fire's second anniversary, and that's where things are beginning to heat up again. the archbishop of paris has plans for art installations to replace altars, classical sculptures to replace conventional boxes, and a biblical themed discovery trail to bring the cathedral into the 21st century, are being cast by some critics as a politically correct disneyland. but for the nostalgic, there is always the option of burying their heads in the sands of time through a virtual reality headset. how notre dame looked
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throughout history. it is quite impressive. i would say that you are a bit anxious at the start, and then you completely forget about the fact that you are in an enclosed space, as the environment is absolutely magnificent. you had better not be afraid of heights, however. it gives quite an unusual feeling. the cathedral has been closed for three years, sojust imagine. that means 40 million frustrated visitors. if we open in 2024, we are going to wait for another three years, so this is the occasion for believers and tourist to be able to say, well, we have had a chance to see it another way. as millions wait for the curtain to be drawn back on the new notre dame some comfort then from an immersive expedition before its real—life resurrection. for the past year, rugby league legend kevin sinfield has been pushing himself to the limits to raise millions
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of pounds for those living with motor neurone disease, following the diagnosis of his friend and former leeds rhinos teammate rob burrow. kevin has now been awarded an obe for services to sport and charity. graham satchell was with him when he went to receive the honour. kevin sinfield and his wife, jayne, at windsor castle as he prepares to receive his obe. huge honour, massively humbled by the whole experience. i think, to be here, absolutely, with the mnd community behind me, has been magnificent. it's also my wife's birthday, so i can't steal the limelight too much, and i can't thank people enough — the support has been brilliant. i were just trying to be a mate, and the response has been incredible. in the last two years, kevin sinfield has undertaken two epic, gruelling challenges.
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the first — seven marathons in seven days. and then going the extra mile — running between leicester and leeds — it was 101 miles in 24 hours. in many ways, we've had the easy bit of running. i know it sounds daft, that, but, like, the work that's gone on has been incredible. wejust had to run. and i understand that, you know, from my years in rugby league that we're given a platform, but it's... that's enabled us to try and tap into galvanising a community to get behind something that's so special to all of us — which is rob. and i think, whilst he has been so inspirational like he has, it's really easy to get off your backside and run. this is a sensational try — there aren't many in super league that can do that! rob burrow — a rugby league legend and kev�*s long—term team—mate on the pitch. rob was diagnosed with mdn in 2019. ever since, the two best friends have been raising awareness, raising money —
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now more than £5 million. the big thing for us is, we provided hope for a lot of people and, you know, whilst rob is willing to fight and show the courage he has, we'll continue to be good mates, the best we can. mr kevin sinfield, for services to rugby league football, and to charitable fundraising. kevin received his award from prince william, the duke of cambridge. the two men spoke about kev�*s last challenge, and what kept him going. the last six hours, i'd say, were horrendous. my legs had pretty much stopped working and so mentally being able to understand that i had over a marathon to run, but my legs weren't working, which... i don't mind being in a fight and doing it tough at times, but to have six hours of it was...was a decent stint. once again, that's the beauty of friendship. and to be able to see rob at the finish line with his beautiful family and my own family there,
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once again, that's the beauty of friendship. and to be able to see rob at the finish line with his beautiful family and my own family there, was, like i said, memories for life and... and to be able to do something special along the way, which helps so many people and provides hope is what it's been all about. kev is already planning his next — and what he says is his final challenge. it'd probably make you laugh but it didn't take me too long to get on to what was next. nobody knows yet. my wife knows — she thinks i'm crazy, again — but she understands that there's so many people out there that need help. time for a quick message from kev�*s best friend. i could not think of anyone more deserving of the award. you have the heart of the nation for the achievements over the last couple of years and your unbelievably successful career. you have been an angel on my shoulder since forever and you have been heroic in your record—breaking
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attempts to raise the hopes through the fundraising. you are a special human being and i can't thank you enough for your help and support. next stop a knighthood — which i can't believe you have not received already! thank you. what do you think? it's great to see him. saw him just before christmas and we did a lot laughing, smiling, and it looks like he's growing a bit of moustache there, so we'll get a bit of stick next time i see him. but it's lovely, i think... you understand the reason behind it all. and it's friendship, and i've already mentioned, while he is willing to fight and show the courage and bravery like he has and open up the front door to the nation on such a difficult time for everybody, we'll do what we've got to do, as well. kevin sinfield obe — an honour that celebrates the power of friendship... ..and a day both he and jayne will remember forever. graham satchell, bbc news, windsor castle. now it's time for a look
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at the weather with carol. a cold start for many across england and wales. mild across northern scotland. quite breezy. next few days, high pressure will keep things largely settled. frost and fog will continue. some will be quite dense in places. for the rest of the day, it will be dry. plenty of sunshine. more cloud, stronger breeze across the north of scotland, but we could see 12 degrees. foremost, around six to 8 degrees. as we head through tonight, fog will return, quite extensive and dense in places. further north, milder, breezy with variable cloud. four to 7 degrees, but quite a widespread hard frost in places through england and wales.
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high pressure still with us on friday. this weather front across the north of the country. that will bring thicker cloud and outbreaks of rain to northern scotland. quite breezy. furthersouth, rain to northern scotland. quite breezy. further south, a chilly start, frost and fog. plenty of sunshine but whether fog start, frost and fog. plenty of sunshine but whetherfog does linger, it will stay pretty cold. not much above freezing. where you get sunshine, temperatures will be four to eight or nine celsius. still quite mild across and far north of scotland. subtle changes had we head into the start of the weekend. high pressure eases away, and allows lower pressure systems to push on from the atlantic. winds will be lighting up in england and wales and start again with frost and fog. scotland and northern ireland, breezy. temperatures for most around four to 8 degrees. there will be quite a bit of clout but also glimmers of brightness. into sunday,
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we see this weather front move its way south—eastward. more isobars, a breezy day. we shouldn't have any problems with fog on sunday. that weather front spread south—eastwards, with rain, and sunshine makes a return and further showers in the north and west of scotland. a breezy day generally. temperatures not too bad with the sunshine. seven to 11 celsius.
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party during lockdown. others hold theirfire, until the outcome of a senior civil servant's inquiry, while labour says the facts, are already clear. he accepts he shouldn't have done that looking back. it was done in good faith. there is no possible malice or intention to do anything other than to give a heartfelt thank you to people who have been working incredibly hard. do they really think this behaviour is excusable? are they really going to defend him? are they really going to stand by him? because in the end, it's notjust the prime minister that voters will conclude is unfit to govern, it's conservative mps who stand by him. we'll have the very latest live from westminster. also this lunchtime...
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the number of people on hospital waiting lists

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