tv BBC News BBC News January 24, 2018 4:00am-4:31am GMT
welcome to bbc news, broadcasting to viewers in north america and around the globe. i'm mike embley. our top stories: the russia investigation gets closer to the white house as the us attorney general becomes the first member of president trump's cabinet to be questioned. thousands rally in southern brazil for their former president, lula da silva, urging an appeals court to overturn his conviction for corruption. fears of a major eruption in the philippines after fresh activity from mount mayon. and the south african jazz musician and campaigner against apartheid hugh masekela has died at the age of 78. hello. the us attorney—general, the country's top prosecutor, has become the first member of president trump's cabinet to be questioned by the special counsel
investigating allegations of russian interference in the presidential election. it's understood jeff sessions was also questioned about whether the trump team colluded with russia, and then tried to impede the russia inquiry. and the washington post is reporting that special counsel robert mueller is seeking to interview the president, as well. the bbc‘s david willis is following events in washington. you are absolutely right that indeed thejustice department confirming today thatjeff sessions, the attorney general, was interviewed by robert mueller‘s team, investigating alleged collusion between the trump campaign and russia. that interview taking place last week. the interview with the special counsel, robert mueller‘s team, was conducted it's been reported in the presence of jeff sessions‘ lawyer. it makes jeff sessions,
the attorney general, the first member of the trump cabinet to be interviewed by robert mueller‘s team and that team as well as investigating allegations of collusion between the trump campaign and russia is also of course looking into whether the president obstructed justice basically by firing the former fbi director james comey. one of the things thatjeff sessions was involved in was a meeting in the oval office to discuss the firing ofjames comey, apparently, so that's certainly an area of interest to robert mueller and his team. meanwhile, the suggestion here very much that this investigation is moving closer and closer to the white house. unconfirmed reports, as you mentioned, that the special counsel's team may be looking to interview the president at some stage and possibly quite imminently
as part of this investigation. amid all those rumours that have been going on for quite sometime at the white house, that it might try to shut down the russian investigation, the president's spokesperson saying they would be fully cooperative. that's right. and the president himself has said that in the past, although he seemed to backtrack a little recently when he was asked point—blank whether he would sit down for an interview with robert mueller‘s team. he said there was no collusion as far as he was concerned and such an interview would probably be unnecessary. he has described the mueller enquiry as a witch—hunt and a hoax. clearly there will be a call for ground rules to be laid out very carefully in advance, if the president is to sit down with members of robert mueller‘s team. on wednesday, judges in brazil will decide whether or not to uphold
a corruption conviction against former president lula da silva. he's been found guilty of accepting a penthouse apartment as a bribe. but his millions of supporters say the charges against him are politically motivated. our south america correspondent katy watson reports from brazil. jose points out his old house. for more than 20 years, he lived in this favela. but thanks to a housing programme created when lula was president, he moved into a brand new block of flats next door. he's grateful, but pragmatic. translation: his government was good when it comes to housing because lots of people had no means to live well and now they live in their own house. but in general, politicians are pretty dirty. i'm not going tojudge if he is innocent, but if he has really not done anything wrong, he'll prove it. on the other side of sao paulo,
this man is angry. he owns a construction company. he's ashamed of the corruption scandals that have engulfed the politicians and businesspeople of brazil in recent years and feels lula is the symbol of what has gone wrong. translation: brazilians are fed up with the political class in brazil. we can't put up with them anymore. they are all rich millionaires and billionaires. lula started as a trade unionist, fighting corruption. but he has managed to institutionalise corruption. nobody has robbed as much in the history of brazil as during the period of the worker's party. but here, members and supporters of the worker's party are out in force. lula's face and his presence are everywhere. people have come from all over brazil to be here for lula. they are notjust here to support his court battle, but also here to voice support his running for president later this year, a race he is currently leading. "elections without lula are fraudulent" reads this banner.
his supporters say there is no evidence against him and it is just a way to stop him becoming president again. lula is representing nowadays maybe the only political option that the working class have in brazil. translation: i am pretty sure he will not be sent to prison, but if lula is found guilty, he will become a martyr. no one knows which way the judges will vote on wednesday, but, whatever their decision, authorities are preparing for strong reactions on both sides. tens of thousands of people in the philippines have been forced to flee their homes as the country's most active volcano continues to fire huge plumes of ash and lava into the air. the army has been drafted in to help clear the danger area around the mayon volcano, with experts warning that a hazardous eruption
could happen at any time. timelapse footage of the philippines' most active volcano. its latest eruption shooting molten rock high into the air. its ash cloud billowing across the landscape, just a taste, scientists believe, of what is to come. an eruption is now rather imminent, within the next few hours or days and it also means the danger zone around the volcano has been increased from 6km to 8km. over the past few days, more than 50,000 people have evacuated, with soldiers drafted in and trucks ferrying villagers to 46 camps outside the danger zone. but some have risked returning, despite the increasing activity. translation: my house is about 2km inside the danger zone. i know i'm not allowed back because it's dangerous, but i need my livelihood, i have no choice. the volcano is in a largely agricultural region
of the philippines, about 300km south—east of manila. there are no reports of injuries, but schools have been closed and flights cancelled. mayon is a near—perfect cone, popular with tourists, almost 2.5 kilometres tall and highly volatile, with 51 recorded eruptions. officials are closely monitoring this latest activity. they're warning people to wear face masks and goggles as they wait to see what this volcano has in store. andrew plant, bbc news. and the bbc‘s howard johnson gave me this update from manila. mount mayon hasn't been letting off overnight and has been emitting more smoke and lava. it's had huge lava fountains spraying into the sky. residents describe the sound of the rumbles coming from the volcano as that of a jet plane coming in to land. scientists have been watching this carefully,
as you say, over the past week. it has gone up from when it first started erupting more than a week ago to this day — it's gone up on the scale from three to four, on a scale where five is the highest threat level. the fear now is that it could explode in the coming days. a hazardous eruption, scientists are warning. if that happens then we could see the current exclusion zone, which is now nine kilometres, could be extended further. we've had thousands of people evacuated, but also other people coming back. some in this largely agricultural area because they need their livelihoods, as a man was saying in the report, and also some tourists coming just to see it. that's correct. yes, this exclusion zone of nine kilometres was extended yesterday from eight kilometres to build in an extra kilometre's buffer
zone, a no—man‘s land, where they try to stop people from going back to their villages. apparently there's a big cockfight that's going on at the moment and people are interested in going back to see that. there's also the need to go back and tend the land. previously tourists and amateur photographers have had to be warned away, as they've flocked to the site to take pictures. if you look on social media there are lots of images being captured of this volcano, a very popular volcano indeed for filmmakers and photographers. let's take a look at some of the other stories making the news. at least 22 people have been killed and many others wounded by two car bombs that exploded in quick succession in the libyan city of benghazi. the attack hit worshippers leaving a mosque. the second blast also caught emergency teams helping victims of the first. it's not yet clear who was behind the attack.
two children have been killed and i7 injured in a shooting at a school in the us state of kentucky. a suspect, aged 15, has been led away by police. scores of children were seen running out of a building at marshal county high school in the town of benton. it's the second school shooting in the us this week. there have been 50 already in this current school year. the pakistani authorities say they have arrested the main suspect in the rape and killing of six—year—old zainab ansari. the chief minister of punjab province said the suspect, imran ali, had confessed and his dna matched samples from the crime scene in the city of kasur. zainab‘s murder triggered protests across the country, with two people dying in clashes with police. the fed multimillionaire, republican and former investment banker was backed by an 84 boat to 13 to a place janet yellen, the first woman who held what is considered the most powerfuljob in economics.
more than 100 young women have now spoken up in a court in michigan to tell their personal stories of sexual abuse. several of them were members of the us olympic gymnastics team. the molester was the team's doctor. larry nassar sat in court day after day listening as one victim after another took the stand. he is already injail on child pornography charges. he has admitted ten criminal counts and could face life in prison. the bbc‘s rajini vaidyanathan has been following the proceedings. i think there has been a sense of collective empowerment over the last seven days as women have been sharing testimony. what started as something like 98 women who signed up to either submit a written statement or appear before thejudge here, now turned into 158 women who wanted to come forward and tell their stories. the judge has described these women as sister survivors, as it's not every day women feel they can share their stories, of sexual abuse, let alone relive their ordeal while their attacker sits
in court in front of them. united nations peacekeeping troops operating in some of the world's most dangerous conflict zones should be willing and able to use force to defend themselves, according to a new report submitted to the un's secretary—general. here's our africa security correspondent, tomi oladipo. peacekeeping involves playing an impartial role, providing security to help countries move from conflict to peace. the un has more than 100,000 peacekeepers deployed around the world. more than half of their missions are in africa, but these are becoming increasingly dangerous. an internal review by the world body has revealed that the nature of today's threats mean the un flag no longer provides natural protection to peacekeepers. missions in africa are the most vulnerable, with the un in mali having lost 91 people in attacks since 2013, while 29 died in the central african republic
and 26 in sudan's war—torn region of darfur. just last month rebels in the democratic republic of congo targeted peacekeepers in the east of the country. 14 troops were killed and more than 50 injured in the worst attack in the un's recent history. the new report says peacekeepers should be prepared to take the initiative to prevent or fend off attacks, using force, if necessary. it adds that better equipment and training could prevent serious casualties in areas where there is a heightened threat. the document has been prepared for the un secretary general antonio guterres to decide on a way forward. stay with us on bbc news. still to come: we'll be exploring the mysteries of the antarctic from what could be the world's largest wildlife sanctuary. the people of saigon have just heard that, at last, there is to be a ceasefire.
the reaction of american servicemen was predictable. i'm going home. 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. but 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 is believed by officials to have broken all records. this is bbc news.
the latest headline: the us attorney general, jeff sessions, has become the first member of president trump's cabinet to be questioned by the special counsel investigating alleged russian interference. let's stay with that story. ilya shapiro is a constitutional affairs expert at the kato institute think tank in washington. he says a lot of the leaks about the mueller investigation are pure guesswork. it's still speculation upon speculation, we're getting asymmetric leaks if you will. the fact he's talking to sessions doesn't mean that much because sessions is actually recused from the russia probe, so unless he wants to know what sessions talked about with ambassador kislyak of russia in a large group meeting way back when, i don't know how that's significant, but really
we don't know. it's probably the obstruction or the cover—up is really what's more being investigated than anything that originally happened during the election. it would be remiss, though, wouldn't it, when 17 intelligence agencies have confirmed russia did interfere not to talk to attorney general sessions given he was a campaign adviser, he wasn't very forthcoming about those meetings with russian ambassador kislyak and he must have been privy to conversations about firing james comey. people will want to talk to him about possible obstruction of justice. sure, they're going to probe all of these issues, after all the special counsel's office is spending millions of dollars to justify their own existence but at the end of the day it's hard to know whether... sure, the russians tried to influence or create chaos in america is more than them favouring one side or another, it's not like they prevented hillary clinton from campaigning in wisconsin or anything like that.
so at the end of the day this is all avoidable, it's about the firing of james comey or the processing of the national security clearance for the short lived national security adviser general michael flynn and things like that ultimately will be the focus of the report. but again, we just don't know, we're getting this through leaks. he testified and so forth but we don't know exactly what's going in the report. it's been almost year since mueller was appointed so time will tell. a research mission to the depths of the antarctic‘s waters has revealed unique ecosystems so rare that scientists say they deserve special protection. campaigners hope this will help build the case for the creation of the world's largest wildlife sanctuary. the proposal would ban all fishing in a large part of the weddell sea and around the antarctic peninsula. our environment correspondent claire marshall travelled to the area on board a greenpeace ship and sent this exclusive report. antarctica, the most remote continent in the world,
encased in glacial ice thousands of feet thick. it's still largely unexplored and we know even less about the icy seas that ring it. now machines are making it possible for us to catch a glimpse. a mini—submarine is taking marine biologist dr sussane lockhard down into the antarctic deep. above is a land of frigid ice, below is a thriving mass of life. that's really pretty. no light penetrates this deep. plants can't grow, these are all animals. then it was my turn to go down with pilotjohn. we dropped much deeper. more than 1,000 feet down we find a wall of life. sponges and corals, sea stars, feather stars, all thriving in complete darkness.
a robot arm captures samples. some of these species have never been filmed before. they're threatened by an increase in fishing in the region. too soon, we have to leave. so there's a storm apparently brewing on the surface, so the ship have asked us to come up. 22, do you have a visual, over? we surface very close to some icebergs. we might have to nudge some ice out of the way as well, over. that will be a massive chunk of ice hitting our little sub. at last, the diver gets a hook on our sub. but then the crane breaks, we're stranded for an hour. it feels good to finally be down.
ah, that's nice. yeah, yeah. not very many people have tried to do what we're trying to do here. we gathered evidence of a unique ecosystem that deserves protection. it's really exciting, a really dense sea bed full of life, huge diversity. and also organisms living together creating a 3—d structure, so more organisms can move and these can be very vulnerable to disturbance and they need special protection. no—one can deny that this region needs protecting, but what is the best way to do it? is a line on a map really going to make much difference, and who is going to police anything out here? the proposal to protect all these creatures and their world will be heard by the antarctic nations in october. claire marshall, bbc news, the antarctic peninsula. one of south africa's
best—loved musicians, the jazz trumpeter hugh masekela, has died at the age of 78. he fled the country in 1960 and became a prominent campaigner against apartheid, the system of white—minority rule. his song bring him back home, calling for the release of nelson mandela, became an international anthem for the anti—apartheid movement. today, president zuma said hugh masekela had kept the torch of freedom alive, as pumza fihlani reports. the trumpet has fallen silent. the passing of hugh masekela has shocked many across the country and around the world. bra hugh, as he was affectionately known, has been described as the epitome of a life lived in full. he was a family man, a world—renowned artist, a philanthropist and a political activist. the 78—year—old was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2008 and had
put up a fierce fight until then. but last october he was forced to cancel all of his concerts and focus on his health. fellow musician and friend yvonne chaka chaka says africa has lost its greatest treasure. i think uncle hugh was a living legend. he may be gone but his music will always be there. the world has lost a great icon. the world has lost a leader. the world has lost a comedian, because he was hilarious. where there was uncle hugh there was just laughter all the time. i don't know what to say. i'm just heartbroken, i'm upset. i try to remember all the good things he did. whether you are a king, a diplomat, young, a leader or a street person, we're all equal in hugh's face.
i lived in guinea, i lived in liberia, i lived senegal... at the height of white oppression in south africa, for many black musicians, jazz became the soundtrack of the resistance. masekela was forced into exile as political and racial tensions intensified. but once he had returned, he was determined to make a difference. i had sourced so much from africa, and i need to pay it back, and the only way to pay it back i think is by making the people see how wonderful they are and how excellent they are. hugh masekela described himself as a troublesome child and spoke openly about the many times music saved this life, even later on at the height of a drug addiction. this picture marks one of the moments it all began when a missionary who was stationed here in south africa, father trevor huddleston, gave him his first trumpet. with that, the music legend was born. he was an unlikely ally at the height of racial oppression
here in south africa. masekela continued to use his voice over the years to speak truth to power. pumza fihlani, bbc news, johannesberg. the musician and campaigner hugh masekela, who's died at the age of 78. and, sad to report, another cultural star is gone. the american fantasy and science fiction author ursula k le guin has died aged 88. she's probably best known for her earthsea fantasy series for young adults and for her novel the left hand of darkness, set in a world where gender doesn't exist. on twitter, the actress juliet stephenson calling the earthsea quartet a work of genius. stephen king called her one of the greats. much more on all the news, national and international, any time on the bbc website. hello there.
wednesday is going to bring some fairly disturbed weather across the country, courtesy of what the irish weather service have named storm georgina. across the uk it will bring gales and heavy rain, which could cause travel disruption. your local bbc radio station will keep you up—to—date with that. here's the storm drifting across the north—west of scotland. notice all the white lines, the isobars on the chart. that shows we will have pretty strong and gusty wind, showers feeding in around the low across scotland during the first part of the morning and these, to give you an idea of the wind gusts we're expecting, 50, 60, 70 miles an hour in exposed spots. gusty winds and showers into northern ireland. as we drift down across england and wales, a band of heavy rain, and intense downpour accompanying particularly squally and gusty winds. that rain band with the gusty winds will only track slowly eastwards as we head on through the day. let's run wednesday's weather through. windy wherever you are, a band of rain sinking south and east across england and wales with gusty wind.
behind the rain band, bright skies. spells of sunshine. showers chasing along into western areas, they could be wintry showers over high ground in the north because you will get into some slightly chillier air. 6—10 degrees by the end of the afternoon, actually one of those days where the temperature drops away as the day goes on. into wednesday night, it will be a cooler night generally, a fresh feel and still some still showers flinging in from the west and temperatures by dawn on thursday will be between two and seven degrees. thursday itself, actually not a bad day for many. spells of sunshine around. still some showers drifting in from the west. a little area of low pressure drifting across the country, acting as a focus for those showers moving eastwards. as far as the temperatures go on thursday, still that slightly fresher feel, 5—9 degrees. although actually for the time of year, that's not too bad. that area of low pressure responsible for showers should drift
away on thursday night and then we try to bring in this bulge of high—pressure, this little ridge toppling in from the west. if the timing is right it could give some frost to start friday morning, but it should bring a decent day. spells of sunshine. a bit of rain into the far north—west later perhaps and temperatures of 4—9 degrees. what about the weekend? well, actually after a slightly chillier couple of days to end the week, those temperature should start to climb again. there'll be a lot of cloud, some rain particularly in the north—west but hopefully some sunshine too. this is bbc news. the headlines. the us attorney general, jeff sessions, has become the first member of president trump's cabinet to be questioned by the special counsel investigating allegations of russian interference in the presidential election. us media is reporting that the special counsel, robert mueller, is also seeking to interview the president. judges in brazil will decide later whether or not to uphold a corruption conviction against the former president lula da silva. he's been found guilty of accepting
a penthouse apartment as a bribe. thousands of his supporters have held rallies, saying the charges against him are politically motivated. tens of thousands of people in the philippines have been forced to flee their homes as the country's most active volcano continues to fire huge plumes of ash and lava into the air. the army has been drafted in to help clear the danger area around the mayon volcano. now on bbc news, hardtalk.
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