welcome to newsday, reporting live from singapore, i'm karishma vaswani. the headlines: new images of the russian military buildup, as the us warns any incursion into ukraine will be met with a tough response. there is no doubt, let there be no doubt at all that if putin makes this choice, russia will pay a heavy price. aid planes finally arrive in tonga, after a volcanic eruption and tsunami left the country in desperate need of supplies. we'll have the latest. two prominent female activists are missing after protesting in kabulfor women's rights in work and education. untouched by climate change, a rare deepwater coral reef
is discovered off the coast of tahiti. and, how zara rutherford became the youngest woman to fly solo around the world. live from our studio in singapore, this is bbc news — it's newsday. hello, and thanks forjoining us. the united states has, with the backing of its european allies, warned russia that if any of the tens of thousands of its soldiers massed at the ukrainian border invade, there will be grave consequences. the us secretary of state antony blinken and his russian counterpart, sergei lavrov, are scheduled to have crucial talks in geneva, later, but moscow denies planning to invade ukraine.
here's our diplomatic correspondent, james landale. it is notjust the russians who are conducting military exercises. these are pictures released by ukraine's defence ministry, showing their forces training close to crimea. it was annexed by russia in 2014 and the kind of incursion that ukraine and its allies are trying to deter once again. i have been absolutely clear with president putin, he has no misunderstanding, if any assembled russian units move across the ukrainian border, that is an invasion. it will be met with severe and co—ordinated economic response. in some of the most intensive american diplomacy for years, the us secretary of state has been touring western capitals. he was in berlin today, rallying support for ukraine and he appealed directly to the people of russia. you deserve to live with security and dignity
but what really risks your security is a pointless war with your neighbours in ukraine. western allies are threatening russia with massive economic sanctions if there is any invasion. behind the scenes there are differences over what those penalties shall be, but the public message is united. translation: we are in - absolutely close coordination with regard to joint sanctions because we have an absolutely joint assessment of the situation, but also of the reactions with the regard to the security of ukraine. this also applies to sanctions. fresh satellite images appear to show how russia has mastered notjust troops near ukraine, but also military equipment. from the north to ukraine's eastern border and to the south in the crimea.
the diplomacy now moves to geneva where he arrived for talks with his russian counterpart on friday. but the discussions at his hotel tomorrow may be difficult because the gap between both sides is so large. the americans want to talk about avoiding war in ukraine but the russians want to talk about their demands for nato to step back and allow moscow to establish a new sphere of influence across eastern europe. in eastern ukraine they know what that might mean. pro—russian separatists have been fighting government forces here since 2014 and the scars are all to see. this woman lives close to the front line. it is a miracle we stayed alive, she says. we could have died many times. she is pro—russian and fears a full—scale war.
russia denies that that is its intentions. that is its intention but it's a training hard close to ukraine. but the question now is whether all these exercises might soon become the real thing. if you want to know more about whether russia is preparing to invade ukraine, just go to our website, where there is more analysis and answers to the main questions about this developing story. let's take a look at some other stories in the headlines. in britain, downing street is facing further criticism about the way it operates, amid allegations that a number of backbench mps have faced intimidation that could amount to blackmail. the prime minister, borisjohnson, has insisted he has seen no evidence to support the allegations, and has advised colleagues who feel threatened to go to the police. the united states has charged four government officials
from belarus with aircraft piracy, over the diversion of a passenger plane in order to arrest a journalist. the incident took place last may, when a ryanair plane travelling from greece to latvia was forced to divert to minsk, after the belarusian authorities said there was a suspected bomb threat. the lower house of austria's parliament has passed a bill to make covid—i9 vaccinations compulsory for adults. the bill, which is now likely to become law, will mean everyone over the age of 18 without a valid exemption must get the jab. the french government has announced plans to ease covid—i9 restrictions from 2nd february. on that date it will end the mandatory wearing of face masks when outdoors and lift capacity restrictions for large events such as sport matches and concerts. during a press conference the prime ministerjustified the move saying it coincidened with the introduction of a covid vaccination
pass which will come into force on monday. the first plane loads of aid have arrived at tonga's main airport after saturday's volcanic eruption and tsunami cut the pacific island nation off from the outside world. more flights and several ships are on their way, bringing urgently—needed drinking water, food and medicines. rupert wingfield hayes reports. for the first time since last saturday's huge eruption, we're finally getting to see what has happened to tonga's main island. along the coast, the damage from the tsunami looks extensive, with many buildings destroyed. in tonga's capital, nuku'alofa, there's a lot of volcanic ash, but the buildings are intact and the clean—up has begun. telephone services are also back, and that means for tongans living abroad, the agonising wait for news is finally over.
it's a relief to finally hear their voices and to finally know how they are back home. my dad had told me that they're fine, no major damages to our homes. so, at the moment, i've got family over in the outer islands of ha'apai. i have heard from them, and they're doing 0k. who i haven't heard from is my father. i'm sure he's out there working hard, doing what he does. we've also learned of a remarkable survival story. this man says he was swept off a small island by the tsunami and was in the water for more than 2a hours before making it to land. help is now arriving. this is an australian c17 transport plane on final approach to tonga this afternoon. the crew quickly unloaded water and emergency supplies, but, because of covid, they were not allowed any contact with locals. tonga's government has decided
that until covid is over, the islanders will have to deal with the clean up from this disaster by themselves. meanwhile, another cleanup is under way stopping the crude oil was spilt from a tanker that was unloading, triggered by the corruption in tonga more than 10,000 kilometres away. —— the eruption in tonga. the former pope, benedict the sixteenth, has expressed shock at the sexual abuse of children by clerics, after a report accused him of failing to take action in four cases back when he was archbishiop of munich, germany. benedict, who was then called josef ratzinger, denies any wrongdoing. victims�* groups have welcomed the report's findings. our berlin correspondent, jenny hill has more details. the world came to know him as pope benedict xvi but back in the late 1970s and early 80s,
he was archbishopjoseph ratzinger. and the report's authors say it was there that he in effect failed to act in four child six abuse cases. they say that he knowingly allowed three brief who had convictions for crimes against children to work in the diocese and he also focused on the case of another cleric who was a known paedophile when he was transferred to the diocese to carry on working as a priest. pope benedict who denies all wrongdoing has said that he knew nothing about the background of that particular man, but the report's authors under minutes of a meeting at which this particular man whose case's transfer was discussed in the former pope said he had never been at that meeting. reports also say that they look to those minutes and it was quite clear from the minutes that he had indeed been there. we have had nothing indirectly from the former pope who was in his 90s but the vatican have issued a statement saying they
are going to examine and analyse the report. it runs for some 1600 pages at least and there is a lot to look through. they also express their regret at the victims, the hundreds of people actually that the report talks about, the hundreds of children who were abused at the hands of within the catholic church in germany. emergency teams in ghana are searching for survivors following a huge explosion that's all but destroyed a village. police have not confirmed the number of casualties but videos showed many victims. mark lobel has more. a community decimated after a truck collided with and drove over a motorbike. the dynamite—laden truck was 140km from the gold mine run by the canada based company kinross gold. both drivers had enough time to escape their vehicles before
an enormous explosion occurred. the police, army and rescue services joined locals to contain the situation. onlookers were struggling to make sense of the widespread destruction. the blast carving out a large crater, beside a road. many were injured and bodies were pulled from the rubble. the blast hit a small residential town near bogoso which has a population of under 10,000 of mostly farmers and miners. ghana's president nana akufo—addo wrote that it was a sad and unfortunate and tragic incident, expressing deep condolences to the families of the deceased. but his promise not to spare any effort to return the situation to normal may take some time with so many broken lives in damaged buildings. police have appealed to nearby towns to open up their classrooms and churches to accommodate surviving victims.
as ghana, one of africa's largest school producers sufficient another mining related accident. women campaigners in afghanistan have told the bbc that activists parwana ibrahimkhil and tamana paryani were reportedly abducted late on wednesday night. the two activists were at the forefront of a protest held in kabul on sunday for women's�* rights. caroline hawley has the latest. in a video, shared before her apparent arrest. she is inside her home, and the taliban were on the other side of the door. she is pleading with them. she says her sisters are at home and she begs the taliban to come back the following day. but her desperate pleas seem to be in vain. fellow activists say
she was taken by the taliban on wednesday night. and notjust her, another prominent campaigner parwana ibrahimkhil, for women's rights was arrested too, they say, although the taliban deny it. i asked them about the incident and he told me that he will take it up with the intelligence department and the ministry, all of them said that there is no incident like this. both of the women had been at the forefront of a protest last sunday in kabul, demanding that women be allowed to study and work, demonstrating for their rights, demonstrating for their own personal bravery as they did so. as much if i am proud of them, and they're brave, but how long? if the international
community does not stand with them and does not support them, i think i'm just afraid that it will lose momentum. still, week after we seeing women literally risking their lives because women have been killed at these protests and tragically over the past few months have been out to raise their voices to demand their rights that have been taken away from them since the taliban came to control. the taliban have banned these protests and other women who have taken part are in hiding in fear them coming after them too. you're watching newsday on the bbc. still to come on the programme: a discovery deep below the sea. we explore the huge coral reef in pristine condition near tahiti. donald trump is now the 45th president of the united states. he was sworn in before several hundred thousand people on the steps of
capitol hill in washington. it's going to be only america first. america first. demonstrators waiting for mike gatting and his rebel cricket team were attacked with tear gas and set upon by police dogs. anti—apartheid campaigners say they will carry on the protests throughout the tour. they called him the 'butcher of lyon'. klaus altmann is being held on a fraud charge in bolivia. the west germans want to extradite him for crimes committed in wartime france. there, he was the gestapo chief klaus barbie. millions came to bathe as - close as possible to this spot. a tide of humanity- that's believed by officials to have broken all records. this is newsday on the bbc. i'm karishma vaswani
in singapore. our headlines: new images of the russian military build—up, as the us warns any incursion into ukraine will be met with a tough response. aid planes finally arrive in tonga after a volcanic eruption and tsunami left the country in desperate need of supplies. we've heard a lot about the perilous threat to coral reefs around the world because of climate change. but a previously unknown giant coral reef has been discovered off the coast of tahiti in pristine condition. a research mission, led by unesco, made the find at a depth of more than 30 metres, and it's hoped this discovery may mean there are many more coral reefs waiting to be found. as our science correspondent victoria gill reports. "magical." that was one of the words a veteran specialist diver who led this mission used
to describe this view. some of these rose—shaped corals are more than two metres wide, and the whole reef structure stretches three kilometres along the sea bed. its depth and its distance from the coast is thought to be a key reason for its pristine condition. the researchers say it shows no signs of damage from pollution or from warming ocean temperatures, something that poses a major threat to shallower reefs. it looks beautiful, but scientifically how important is this, as a discovery? it might be, to date, one of the largest coral reefs in the world that actually lies at that sort of depth of more than 30 metres. so, from that perspective, that is opening a new insight in science. this could suggest that we have many more large reefs in our ocean, at depths beyond 30 metres, which we simply do not know about. it's often said we know more about the surface of the moon
than we do about the ocean floor. only about a fifth of it has so far been mapped, and coral reefs like this are the sea floor hotspots for marine life. about a quarter of known ocean species can be found around these living ecosystems. the team is now planning more investigative dives to work out what lives here, and crucially, how their newly discovered remarkable habitat can be protected. victoria gill, bbc news. i've been speaking to dr laetitia hedouin, who's in moorea, french polynesia. she was part of the team who made this incredible discovery. i think it was a very unique moment, because right now sometimes we have very bad news about coral reefs or that they are dying. and when you go there you start diving and then you go to there and just in front of you you have coral that i just everywhere and front of you you have coral that ijust everywhere and they are kind of giant, they are
this amazing form of rose shape, which is a very beautiful. it looks like hearts underwater. so you cannot see the end. i was very impressed and i was impressed by the beauty, i was impressed by how healthy the colony was. so it was a very unique moment this first time and that kind of launched the expedition. yes, indeed, launched the expedition. yes, indeed. we — launched the expedition. yes, indeed, we are _ launched the expedition. yes, indeed, we are looking - launched the expedition. yes, indeed, we are looking at - launched the expedition. yes, indeed, we are looking at some of those beautiful pictures, that unique moment you have described, on our screens right now. and they can certainly still hear that enthusiasm and that impression the moment left on you. we often talk about the fact that coral reefs are threatened by climate change, but this discovery, does it give us hope, in a way? it then ave a give us hope, in a way? it then gave a little — give us hope, in a way? it then gave a little hope. _ give us hope, in a way? it then gave a little hope. the - give us hope, in a way? it then gave a little hope. the fact - give us hope, in a way? it then gave a little hope. the fact is l gave a little hope. the fact is that this coral reef, i guess, this part of the coral reef, we think, as been protected from
bleaching and climate change because of the depth. because the bleaching is really a reaction to a high temperature, but also to high light, because this coral metre is further down, you don't have the stress from the light and density. evenif from the light and density. even if they have been stressed, it was not enough to induce bleaching or coral mortality. and really when you dive underneath you cannot find any mortality of coral. so that really means that even in french lanitza, bacchin 2019, there was a massive bleaching event, we don't find any sign of mortality —— bacchin 2019. one of the good news was that one of the key species of that, it is the species that you can also find in the lagoon. so you have a connection from this species and at that depth we
were also able to watch coral spawning. meaning that this colony a very healthy, they can reproduce, and they can bring baby coral to the surface to the shallow part that could be more degraded. you the shallow part that could be more degraded.— the shallow part that could be more degraded. you know, 'ust briefl , more degraded. you know, 'ust brieﬂy. on �* more degraded. you know, 'ust briefly, on that i more degraded. you know, 'ust briefly, on that depth, �* more degraded. you know, 'ust briefly, on that depth, on k more degraded. you know, just briefly, on that depth, on the i briefly, on that depth, on the issue of depth, doctor, how difficult is it to find more of these coral reefs because of that depth?— that depth? well, the difficulty _ that depth? well, the difficulty and - that depth? well, the difficulty and the - that depth? well, the | difficulty and the reason that depth? well, the - difficulty and the reason why we do not have a lot of knowledge right now, it is due to the diving for them, it is like a classical dive with a tank, and that ho metres he would stay ten metres. —— ten minutes. you don't have time to do a long exploration come you don't have time to do scientific protocols. this is the main reason we don't really know coral reefs below 30 metres. but right now we have new technology and that is the technology that the team shared, so we can stay longer
at the depth. so i think we need this new technology, it opens doors for new discoveries and eventually there is a coral reef like that, that we still don't know. there is the possibility to explore more. dr laetitia hedouin there without remarkable discovery in the deep depths of the ocean. o nto onto another story for you now. a tearful adele has taken to social media to announce the postponement of her entire las vegas residency. the pop star was due to play the first of 2a planned shows at caesars palace's on friday and forecast to make more than £500,000 per performance. adele apologised to fans and promised the shows would be rescheduled. i'm so sorry, but... may show ain't ready. we've tried absolutely everything that we
can to put it together in time and for it to be good enough for you, and for it to be good enough foryou, but and for it to be good enough for you, but we've been absolutely destroyed by delivery delays and covid. at my crew, of my team down with covid. and it's been impossible to finish the show. and i can't give you what they have right now. and i'm gutted. a 19—year—old has become the youngest woman to fly solo around the world. zara rutherford has landed in belgium at the end of herjourney, which began in august last year. she flew across more than 50 countries on her own, as jessica parker reports. a smooth landing after a long journey. it takes time to fly around the world in a 300—kilo microlight. what was your scariest moment? i got pretty close to a thunderstorm in singapore, so suddenly there was a lightning strike and i think that was pretty scary, but otherwise the mental challenges were definitely mostly over siberia because i would be flying for hundreds of kilometres
with just nothing human, and then i realised that if the engine were to stop, i would have a really big problem. both parents are pilots. zara faced serious weather delays along the way but she also saw the sites. —— sights. i am in nome, alaska, right now. and now i am in greenland. flying from indonesia to sri lanka. i have arrived in singapore. from korea to taiwan. i am still in greece. i'm in russia! it's pretty cold. zara wants to encourage more girls and women into aviation. her dream is to become an astronaut. the sky isn't even the limit! jessica parker, bbc news, in belgium. amazing. they really can't remember what i was doing at 19. but certainly not that. before we go, i want to tell you about this story. twin baby elephants have been born in a rare event in northern kenya. the unnamed calves were discovered by guides this week in the samburu national reserve — the first twin birth to be
recorded since 2006. local conservation charity, save the elephants, says twins account for only 1% of elephant births, as the mother usually doesn't have enough milk to feed both calves. african elephants have the longest gestation period of any mammal, carrying their young for nearly 22 months. hello again. thursday was a fairly chilly day, temperatures about two or three degrees below average forjanuary, but for many of us, we had sparkling blue skies for most of the day. and what a beautiful weather watcher picture this is from buttermere in cumbria. slightly less beautiful were the skies in east anglia. we had a shower stream coming down the north sea. and for norfolk and, to a degree, suffolk, quite a few showers here, but they are fading away. right now, as the winds start to change direction to more of a northwesterly, that shoves the showers over towards belgium and the netherlands. otherwise we've got clear skies for many areas. and it's a cold one for sure, temperatures at their lowest about —6, —7. southern wales, central, southern england the coldest spots. might be very cold and frosty, but it should be bright with plenty of sunshine to
start the day for most of us. even this cloudier zone in the west will be prone to a few breaks during the morning, so you could see a few glimpses of sunshine for a time. cloud tends to thicken through the afternoon. could threaten an odd patch of light rain or drizzle for the western isles and highlands. eight to nine degrees in the west. otherwise, temperatures at 6s and 7s. now, friday night is where we keep those clear skies. again, temperatures will fall away to give us some patches of frost. it is going to be patchy rather than extensive, so not as overall cold across england and wales. and the thickest cloud across northwest scotland, temperatures about eight overnight in stornoway. this weekend, the tendency is for the weather to turn a little bit cloudier. there will be a lot of drier weather to come. some sunny spells, but we could have a bit of frost and fog to contend with as well. essentially, as we go through the weekend, high pressure's still there. we're starting to get this milder air recirculating back around the high and particularly moving into northern areas of the uk, where we'll see the highest temperatures, particularly for northern scotland. saturday, mist and fog could be an issue first thing in the morning. otherwise, we've got some patchy of frost, but then we'll have some sunshine to compensate across central and eastern areas.
in the west, it continues to turn milder, but that's because we've got extensive cloud, thick enough to bring some rain to western scotland, where temperatures reach 11 celsius. second half of the weekend, again, we could go into sunday with some fog patches around. some of it could be quite dense, a few frost patches as well. overall, a little bit more in the way of cloud for most areas, with some mist and hill fog patches around the coasts, a bit of drizzle for western scotland, where it'll continue to be particularly mild. that's your weather.
so actually we've got less covid rules but we have some covid rules but we have some covid rules but we have some covid rules which is a good summary but with plan b exists or not because it's a plan b and england still exist but some bits will disappear next week, but has been quite a dramatic week with a primitive's fortunes have ebbed and flowed and have relatively flowed compared to where they were ebbing before, it has all been quite up and down. it has been quite up and down. it has been really _ been quite up and down. it has been really up-and-down - been quite up and down. it has been really up-and-down and l been really up—and—down and downing street is in a precarious position, no doubt about that. fetches my normal metaphor of choice, the django tower is very wobbly. may be a bit of scaffolding for ministers who have been publicly willing to defend him. some of them, not very many but