welcome to bbc news, broadcasting to viewers in north america and around the globe. my name is mike embley. our top stories: an historic announcement at the white house — president trump agrees to meet the north korean leader, kim jong—un. i told president trump that in our meeting, the north korean leader, kim jong—un said he is meeting, the north korean leader, kimjong—un said he is committed to denuclearisation. south korea's envoy confirmed that pyongyang has agreed to refrain from any further nuclear or missile tests. but president trump makes it clear that sanctions would remain in place until a deal was reached. well it could be an historic, game—changing moment, on a global scale. president trump has agreed to meet the north korean leader, kim jong—un within the next 7 weeks. no sitting american president has ever met with a leader of north korea. the regime in pyongyang has agreed to stop missile testing for as long as talks continue, and to talk about denuclearisation. a south korean delegation met the leader of the north, earlier this week — this was their statement, from the white house, in the past few hours. i told president trump
that in our meeting, of both korean leaders, kim jong—un said he is committed to denuclearisation. kim pledged that north korea will refrain from any further nuclear or missile tests. he understands that the routine joint military exercises between the republic of korea and the united states must continue. and he expressed his eagerness to meet president trump as soon as possible. president trump appreciated the briefing and said he would meet kim jong—un by may, to achieve permanent denuclearization. in south korea, they are used to being not too optimistic. our correspondent in seoul, laura bicker, described how these unprecedented developments have been received by south korea. cautiously but there is an element of, oh, my goodness. i think i tweeted it
when i tweeted the announcement. i said, wow. we thought it would go forward in baby steps but it is going forward in huge leaves. not only has president trump accepted the invitation to meet kim jong—un, but he will meet him in may. the rewards are obvious. it could well be that this is a genuine opportunity to speak to north korea, to try to get rid of nuclear weapons on this peninsula. it's laid right there. no sitting us president has ever met the leader of north korea and it is a first. it is a huge pr. he will believe his maximum policy is working. the people in seoul, the ministers who
have been deftly and diplomatically negotiating these two sides to the table also. the potential risks are also huge. it could also be that kim jong—un sees it as a propaganda win. he is incredibly savvy. those army of beauties, sent to the winter olympics, managing to almost upstage the sporting arena, when it comes to dealing with this kind of diplomatic opportunity, he has had years of practice watching his grandfather and his father who both got to the table and then walked away and continued to build nuclear weapons. when it comes to the risks for president trump and president moonjae—in, it could be that north kore is playing them but right now the rewards outweigh the risks. progress or propaganda? our correspondent in washington, chris buckler. is this a chance for a chance
towards denuclearisation? there will be people in washington asking the question just then, is this progress or propaganda? is this bad case of fall kim jong—un to take the world stage or is this a chance for real denuclearisation? the south korean delegation who went to the white house to date said they believed he is committed to denuclearisation and that is clear and a message that the white house wants to hear however this was not delivered in a letter but an oral statement given to the white house. basically they told president trump this was what was said from north korea so the detail will be very important in potentially what has been discussed between south korea and north korea in what is being reported to donald trump. it makes sense to them to speak to one person who could make a difference and they immediately accepted this invitation to talk,
the suggestion that president trump will meet kimjong—un kim by may is extraordinary considering they were swapping insults and talking about fire and fury. we have gone from times when president trump has been describing little rocket man and the response north korea has been describing him as a lunatic old man. we have gone to a time that these two men are prepared to meet and it is less than 2a hours since we have heard from the secretary of state rex tillerson who was asked specifically if there was a chance of talks between the us and north korea and he said, in terms of direct talks, and you asked about negotiations, we are long way from negotiations. that was less than 25 hours ago now not only do we have a delegation from america meeting the north koreans but potentially
the us president meeting the north korean leader in a matter of a couple of months. we should stress that the sanctions so far will stay in place and the militaryjoint exercises between the us and south korea, every year they infuriate pyongyang, they will go ahead as well. that is a key thing. the white house will feel that this has been a win—win situation. they get north korea around the table to talk, potentially, the military exercises continue, missiles testing will not take place and there is a possibility for denuclearisation but the key thing is what north korea have actually said. this has been communicated to the white house and there is nothing written down at this particular stage. it is a message that has been passed on but the white house will see it as a coup. from what the south korean have said, it is the pressure from president trump,
the pressure from america that has led to this remarkable step that potentially we have conversation directly between the two leaders and, of course, what south korea says is a commitment to denuclearisation. let's go to patrick cronin, a senior advisor and senior director of the asia—pacific security program at the center for a new american security. it does seem the next ordinary turnaround, after months of missile firing, bloodcurdling threats from both sides. a moratorium on tests before. this diplomatic breakthrough could become a security breakthrough. structu rally, educationally, militarily. we are at
daggers drawn. nonetheless, this is a major diplomatic breakthrough. negotiating down and there is real momentum, converting a post— olympic arms negotiation that could lead to an armistice. north korea has agreed to return to international safeguards. everything depends on verification. there must be some kind of process agreed?” verification. there must be some kind of process agreed? i think that's absolutely right. that is the next big challenge but we will know relatively soon by the may summit between trump and kim whether kim is serious about police talking about verification because unless we can
convert this rhetorical moratorium into a verified pause, this will really be very much officiated by the next action of kim jong—un. it's important to get into the verification process. what has made the difference? it's premature to know the intentions of kim jong—un but one has to credit both presidents were being plain good cop bad cop but donald trump played stead fast. kim jong—un, bad cop but donald trump played stead fast. kimjong—un, he's bad cop but donald trump played stead fast. kim jong—un, he's 3a of age, he felt his elite talking about currency float. he wanted to pre—empt that. he wanted to unravel the sanctions and keep the weapons
oi’ the sanctions and keep the weapons or whether he is willing to de— nuclear rise. it sounds like we be talking you again. our correspondent stephen mcdonnell has been covering the story from beijing for us. he says this is good news for china. china will welcome this development. beijing has been calling for washington and pyongyang to sit down and talk to one another. they have a different position from moon jae—in, urging both sides to begin discussions. we heard about the pressure being applied on a north korea i think beijing would say, shall pressure has been applied on them but no one has done this more than us. we voted for these at the united nations and we are by far and away the biggest trading partner
with pyongyang so once chided decided to turn the screws, once textile, coal, seafood, is not coming in here, that is heard in the north korean economy and say they really have applied pressure on north korea, their traditional ally, to come to the bargaining table. the interesting thing is we have also heard talks about these discussions between donald trump and kim jong—un kim. i do not think that if it happens i do not think that donald trump will go to pyongyang. we could date take place? they could organise a demilitarised zone, the other obvious option would be china. it could be seen and it is that —— and it could be seen and as an honest broker. they have organised the six party talk process. people remember this went on the years, rounds and rounds of talks in indian north korea it seemed it had agreed, to give up its nuclear weapons
programme, and then all of a sudden it pulled out so china has seen north korea pullout of these sort of talks before and, of course, they will be under no illusion of these just being a first step but nevertheless it will be definitely welcomed here in beijing. much more to come, more on that historic announcement. the first time, serving american president will sit down with the of north korea. the numbers of dead and wounded defied belief. this the worst terrorist atrocity on european soil in modern times. in less than 2a hours then the soviet union lost an elderly sick leader and replaced him with a dynamic figure 20 years his junior. we heard these gunshots in the gym.
then he came out through a fire exit and started firing at our huts. god, we were all petrified. james earl ray, aged 41, sentenced to 99 years and due for parole when he's 90, travelled from memphis jail to nashville state prison in an eight—car convoy. paul, what's it feel like to be married at last? it feels fine, thank you. what are you going to do now? is it going to change your life much do you think? i don't know really. i've never been married before. this is bbc news. the latest headlines: president trump has agreed to hold a historic meeting with the north korean leader, kim jong—un. the talks are due to take place before may. south korea confirms the north has agreed to refrain from any further nuclear or missile tests.
well let's get more on this now. drjim walsh is an expert in international security and senior research associate at the massachusetts institute of technology's security studies programme. he is also one of the few americans to travel to north korea on the nuclear issue. how do you see all those? well, honestly, somehow i have managed to be both elated and horrified at the same time. obviously it is great if the parties are talking. if they are talking, the chances of a shooting war decline, whether that is a war that happens by accident or by design. on the other hand, it doesn't really feel like this has been well thought out. it sort of sounds like it has been decided out
of the blue, without a lot of preparation. and so if it goes poorly it might be a situation where, six months from now, we're actually in a more dangerous situation. so i am happy they are talking, but my gosh, i hope they know what they are. because while it is possible the rest of the world is being played as north korea has done before, what are the chances of something meaningful coming from this? it is a great question, it is the question. and unfortunately i can't answer it, and frankly no one can't answer it, and frankly no one can answer that question. north korea is the most opaque country in the world, but dividing their intentions is impossible. but i do think we have two test that proposition. we had to engage with talks with them to see if they are serious. but if we sort of... what i worry about the sort of a sudden impulsive decision to talk with them, without any preparation. and without having thought it through, and then are not going well, and
thenit and then are not going well, and then it falls apart and both sides come back with hardened positions, and mrtrump saying, come back with hardened positions, and mr trump saying, well, look, come back with hardened positions, and mrtrump saying, well, look, i tried diplomacy and it didn't work and i'm really angry, and now i'm going to make another impulse of decision. so i think homework is important here, planning, seriousness. so there is a real opportunity, but i am nervous. i am thrilled and i'm nervous. what do you think north korea wants? i suppose we have to assume that sanctions are really biting, don't we? this is a regime which doesn't ca re we? this is a regime which doesn't care about its own people but cares about survival, and yet it is a regime that wants to separate south korea from its ally, the united states. how will that factor? well, you have really put your finger on both possibilities here, and they are very different possibilities. pa rt are very different possibilities. part of the sanctions causing this. you know, we don't have a lot of evidence that suggest that the sanctions have really altered the regime's thinking, and certainly
they have not inhibited the nuclear missile programmes. and maybe it is the president's rhetoric, his seeming willingness to engage in the notion of fighting a war on the korean peninsula, maybe that has focused minds that the north koreans. but we just don't know. and as you rightly point out, part of the north korean playbook here is to create division between the us and south korea, and frankly, south korea and president moon, who has played this very skilfully, in my view, they are really the ones who are taking a leadership role here. but there is the question, has the us become irrelevant? and you know, that could be a good thing. but until we know what north korea's intentions are, that is to say, are they serious or is this tactical, meant to undermine sanctions, undermine the us — south korean relationship, we don't know. but i do think, again, i am always in favour of talking. hold your friends
close, your enemies closer. if for only the reason that it reduces the chance that people sort of stumble into war. so again, i welcome that. but i do think we have two... we have to handle this carefully, because the north koreans may... they say they are going to denuclearise, but the question is, under what conditions? what has to happen for them to agree to that? because they have said that before, so is this realistic? and u nfortu nately, so is this realistic? and unfortunately, you know, we arejust not going to know that until we sit around the table. and that is why you sit around the table. thank you so much for your time. some other top news today: president trump has fired what it is feared could be the opening shot in a new global trade war. he announced 25% tariffs on imports of steel, and 10% on aluminium. two of the biggest importers into the us, mexico and canada, were exempted, at least for now. the tariffs will come into force in 15 days. nick bryant has been
watching the announcement. history is often written with a presidential pen, and with steelworkers who helped put him in the white house at his shoulder, donald trump added his name to a signature campaign promise — "putting american first" by imposing tariffs on foreign steel and aluminium. applause. the american steel and aluminium industry has been ravaged by aggressive foreign trade practices. it's really an assault on our country. the workers who poured their souls into building this great nation were betrayed. but that betrayal is now over. defending america's industrial heartland has prompted his most protectionist move yet, one that strikes a blow against globalisation, the integrated system of worldwide
commerce, from which these rust belt communities feel excluded. american steel... a promise made, a promise kept. wait till you see what i'm going to do for steel. now it's time for action. it is the glut of steel produced in china that has angered the president, but that accounts forjust 2% of us steel imports. bigger importers such as canada and mexico are initially exempted. it is not clear whether britain will be punished. european union countries could be hard—hit. president trump has recently said, and i quote, "trade wars are good, and easy to win." but the truth is quite the opposite. trade war are bad, and easy to lose. harley—davidson, the quintessential middle america brand, and for that very reason a likely target for eu retaliation. trump supporters in key battleground states
like wisconsin could be caught in the crossfire. a trade war won't benefit anybody. i generally believe in free trade, and i don't think he's serious about it, regardless. i think he's just trying to scare people into getting some concessions, which is how he rolls. it is too late to save these old steel mills in pennsylvania. and many senior republicans fear that this act of economic nationalism could also be an act of national self—harm. nick bryant, bbc news, washington. british counter—terrorism officers are working to find the origin of the nerve agent used sunday against a former russian spy and his 33—year—old daughter. the two are still critically ill in hospital. suggestions that moscow may have been involved in the attack have sparked anger in russia, as our moscow correspondent steve rosenberg reports. moscow feels a world away from the drama of salisbury. relaxed russians are out enjoying a public holiday, determined not to allow a spy scandal to spoil their day. people here are short on sympathy for sergei skripal.
translation: the fewer secrets you sell, the longer you'll live. translation: don't betray your motherland. then you'll have no problems. translation: when he was in prison in russia, he was healthy. he goes to britain and gets poisoned. he should have stayed here. it is a similar message from russian tv. the kremlin—controlled media have been mocking boris johnson and making fun of britain. if you're a professional traitor, he says, my advice — don't move to england. something's not right there — the climate, perhaps. but too many bad things go on there. people are hanged, poisoned, helicopter crashes, or they fall out of windows. undeeradimir putin, the kremlin has sent a very clear message to the russian people that their country is a besieged fortress, threatened by enemies abroad and traitors at home.
that is why there is little sympathy here for sergei skripal. and, if moscow did target sergei skripal... most russian people — not me, of course, but most russian people would take pride in it. because there is a very black—and—white worldview. it's us against them. putin has brought this back in a big way. today, the president delivered a special address. no mention of spies. he congratulated russian women on international women's day. moscow knows it is under suspicion, but the kremlin is acting as if it is business as usual. steve rosenberg, bbc news, moscow. organisers of demonstrations in spain for international women's day say five million have taken part. women were asked to stop working for the day to protest against unequal pay, sexism, and violence against women. put simply, the idea was to show what happens when women stop doing what they normally do.
the international red cross has postponed an aid convoy are due to travel to eastern ghouta, in syria. the fighting has intensified in the region as government forces advance on it. it is estimated 400,000 people are trapped there. a second winter storm in a week looks as though it will keep on dumping heavy snow on new england, forcing schools to close and leaving hundreds of thousands without power. up to a foot of snow and fierce gust of wind, up to 55 mph, are expected from eastern new york through northern maine. the national weather service has issued a number of warnings. that may news again: president trump has agreed to meet north korean leader kim jong—un within the next seven weeks. no sitting american
president has ever sat down with the leader of north korea. pyongyang has also agreed to stop missile testing for as long as talks continue and talk about denuclearisation. several a nalysts talk about denuclearisation. several analysts tell as north korea has agreed to some of these things before, the key will be whether a verification process can be agreed. much more on the bbc news website. thank you for watching. good morning. it's been a bit of a rollercoaster start to spring. this weekend, we could see some of the warmest air of the year so far. but, whilst we finished yesterday with some clear skies around, those clear skies overnight will lead to a frosty start to friday morning. so a cold start, but a bright start across many areas. we've got some rain and snow flurries across the highlands of scotland, and any early brightness will be hazy sunshine towards the channel islands, devon and cornwall. and that cloud will drift its way northwards, turning the sunshine hazy through the morning across other southern areas. best of the sunshine, really, through the day — northern england, southern scotland
and northern ireland. parts of southern scotland will see good sunny spells at times, but one or two further showers to come here. a pleasant day, though, once you're in the sunshine. but by the end of the afternoon, those temperatures could reach ten or 11 degrees. we will see rain spread across devon, cornwall, and other southern counties of england. that's going to work its way northwards as we go through friday evening, pushing through wales, into the midlands, and parts of east anglia as well. and it's all linked into this warm front. now, on it, we'll see some heavy pulses of rain through the night and into saturday morning. but it's what follows in its wake which many of you will notice. some very mild air working its way to all but northern scotland by the end of the day. now, it means it's going to be a fairly mild weekend, compared to what we've been used to of late, but you'll have to cater for at least a little bit of rain at some points. now, the wettest weather to start saturday will stretch from east anglia, northern england,
north wales, into northern ireland. as that hits colder air across scotland, on the hills we will see a spell of snow, before it turns back to rain as the milder air pushes its way back in. england and wales will see some sunny spells for a time, another batch of showers working through. but the big story, note the temperatures — 15, maybe 16 degrees, with a little bit of brightness through the middle part of the day, across parts of the east midlands and east anglia especially. now, through saturday night and into sunday, that area of rain and hill snow clears its way northwards, takes the milder air into scotland as well. so it's a frost—free night forjust about all as we go into sunday morning. maybe one or two spots in the east could see a temporary frost, but a little bit of morning sunshine. but sunday at the moment not shaping up to be too bad a day. we're likely to see some breezy conditions in the west, with some showers around. just got to watch this area of rain pushing into the near continent. looks like it will stay in the north sea, but it could be a bit further west. so east anglia and the south—east, check your forecast for sunday nearer the time, because there
could be some rain very close by. some of the brightest weather will be in scotland. a frosty night to come here, to take us into monday, but low pressure to start the week means many of you will start the week with showers. bye for now. this is bbc news — the headlines: president trump has agreed to meet the north korean leader, kim jong—un, within the next 7 weeks. speaking at the white house, a south korean envoy, just returned from pyongyang, confirmed the meeting would happen, before may. south korea's envoy also conformed that pyongyang has agreed to halt all nuclear and missile tests. chun eiu—yong, who has met donald trump and kim jong—un in the past week — praised mr trump's uncompromising stance for adding to the pressure on north korea to work towards peace on the korean peninsula. mr trump, who has previously said there is no point in talking to kimjong—un, said the development was "great progress" —