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tv   BBC News  BBC News  August 18, 2018 11:00am-11:31am BST

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this is bbc news, i'm shaun ley. the headlines at 11 o'clock. former united nations secretary general kofi annan dies aged 80 — the un's first black african to hold the position. thousands of troops are trying to rescue people stranded in flood waters as southern india faces its worst monsoon rains in a century. india's prime minister narendra modi is visiting parts of the affected state, as forecasters say more heavy rain is on the way. new plastic tax planned for items such as drinking straws and coffee cups after the british public backs tough action in record numbers. we wa nt we want to see if there are smart, intelligent incentives we can create to encourage the producers of plastic to take responsibility when they are designing the materials that end up on supermarket shelves and ultimately in our own homes. also coming up this hour...... a state funeral takes place in genoa for 18 of the people killed in the motorway bridge collapse.
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and in dateline london in half an hour, we'll be discussing kofi amman as well as discussing donald trump's trade wars with china, potential sanctions on turkey, and anti—semitism in the labour party. hello, good morning, welcome to bbc news. some breaking news. the former un secretary general kofi annan has died. he was from ghana by birth, held the post of secretary general, january 1997 to december 2006. he was the first black african to hold the
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position. he later served as the un special envoy for syria, leading efforts to find a peaceful solution to the conflict. mr annan won the nobel peace prize in 2001, for helping to revitalise the un. he also famously founded the un global health fund and campaign for action against hiv. let's get a statement that has been issued within the last half—hour by the kofi annan foundation. it says, with immense sadness, the family of kofi annan has announced that the former general secretary of the united nations and nobel peace prize laureate died peacefully on saturday 18th of august after a short illness. his wife and their three children were by his side. he was a global statesman and committed internationalist to fought throughout his life for a fairer,
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more peaceful world. during his career and leadership of the united nations he was an ardent champion of peace, sustainable development coming human rights and the rule of law. after stepping down from the united nations, he continued to work tirelessly that work tirelessly in the cause of peace through his chairmanship of the kofi annan foundation and as chair of the elders, the group founded by nelson mandela. he was an inspiration to young and old. he was a son of ghana and deeply engaged in initiatives including the africa progress panel and whenever there was suffering or need he reached out and touch people with his compassion and empathy. he selflessly placed others first, radiating generosity, kindness, warmth and brilliance in everything he did. he will be greatly missed by many throughout the world as to mac and staff at his foundation as well
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as others. that's a statement from the kofi annan foundation. we have also had a statement from the secretary—general antonio guterres, the former portuguese prime minister. he has pursued a statement which i am just going to read now. it says that his predecessor, kofi annan, was a guiding force for good. that's from antonio guterres. i expect we will hear from united nations official steering this morning. the news has only broken in the last few minutes that the secretary general of the united nations, during a period which included the run—up to the iraq invasion by the us—led coalition, has died, aged 80. mr annan suggested that the iraq invasion had been a legal under international law, a position that has always been disputed by the british government. kofi annan was a former head of un
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peacekeeping operations, a role which brought to public prominence although it provoked criticism that he had perhaps not done enough to deal with problems including the abuse of people buy some peacekeepers who were accused of sexual indiscretions while they were on peacekeeping duties. he always maintained that he had investigated allegations of that kind, although accepting that there were failings by the united nations organisation over the years. there was also controversy over the years. there was also c0 ntrove i’sy over over the years. there was also controversy over the oil for food programme, doing much united nations helped to transfer resources to iraq in return for iraqi oil without breaking international sanctions. he was always in charge and made strenuous efforts to try to prevent the iraq invasion, try to find a peaceful way out of the stand—off between the united states and its allies including britain, and the regime of saddam hussein. kofi annan, who has died aged 80.
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in other news. a massive relief operation is under way in southern india to help hundreds of thousands left homeless by the worst floods in the area in 100 years. the south western state of kerala has been most severely hit. at least 171 people have died there in the last ten days. katy austin reports. rain comes to kerala every year. not like this. people are walking miles to safety through what officials say are the worst floods for a century. translation: after 36 years, it is the first time that such flooding is happening here. it is a disaster for the whole population. a third more rainfall than usual has fallen this season, with devastating effects. boats and helicopters are being used to rescue people, including this pregnant woman. hundreds of thousands are now homeless and living in 1,500 emergency relief camps, waiting and hoping while volunteers
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cook for them. men, women and children forced to flee to safety. but the camps are increasingly crowded and some are under threat from rising waters. flooded roads are making it difficult for badly needed humanitarian aid, like food and bed sheets, to reach kerala. india's prime minister narendra modi has now arrived in the region to see an area whose deluged infrastructure and population are struggling to cope. across india, close to 1,000 people have been killed in the current rainy season and there are more downpours to come. katy austin, bbc news. our correspondent yogita limaye is in kerala and gave us this update. while scores of people have lost their lives in flooding, torrential rain has also caused
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other disasters like here behind me, the mud became loose because of continuous rainfall and slipped all the way down onto this which used to be a two storey house. nine people were killed here. there was one family, some relatives and neighbours as well. that is really how difficult this rescue operation is. it's notjust about evacuating people who are stranded in flooded areas. a large part of kerala is also hilly, so it's about taking people who might be at risk in parts like these out of here. thousands of troops have already been pressed into action and more are coming in from other parts of the country. airlift operations are being conducted, people are being rescued by boat, basically any way possible. india's prime minister modi has been in the state assessing the damage and there is a real sense of fear and despair among people here aboutjust when is this nightmare going to stop? yogita limaye. let's return to our
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top story. in the past half hour, it's been confirmed that the former un secretary—general, kofi annan, has died aged 80 years old. mr annan was born the son of a a ghanaian chief and went on to serve two terms at the head of the un from 1997 to 2006. his career at the organisation stretched back to the 1960s. our correspondent imogen foulkes is in geneva for us now. image and camille you confirmed this news for us, of course geneva played every pa rt news for us, of course geneva played every part in his career. that's right, kofi annan dedicated his life to the united nations, he served in various capacities in geneva and in new york. but as un secretary general, the topjob, with new york. but as un secretary general, the top job, with the office in new york, he was a regular, regular visit visitor to geneva. he was very well liked among the geneva united nations community,
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international aid agencies, people who go into disaster zones and tried to relieve the suffering of people. and he was dedicated particularly to humanitarian work of the united nations, dedicated to peace promotion. and after he retired as un secretary general, he died in geneva this morning, he devoted himself to his kofi annan foundation. again it promoted peace and humanitarian issues. you will be greatly, greatly missed here. and humanitarian issues. you will be greatly, greatly missed herelj think he himself said he always treated everyone with respect, whether they were messengers or presidents. i think most people who encountered him would echo that view. his slightly old—fashioned courtesy and style was a bit out of step, perhaps, with some of the politics he had to deal with, particularly in the run—up to the iraq war. i think anyone who met him
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and spent time with him, and i am one of those, because he was united nations secretary when i started my job in geneva, would agree that he was an extremely courteous, decent man, with a sense of humour, and with a strong will as well, he did have to deal with some difficult situations. and he did expresses concern about the intervention in iraq. and as he left office at his final press conference he was asked by the bbc, could he give his opinion. he said quite clearly that in his opinion the incursion into iraq was not legal. if you remember it didn't go through the united nations security council or the un general assembly. it is thing to say, yet he was not afraid to say it. and i think one of the reasons
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he went out on a limb about things like that was because he could see the consequences of conflict on ordinary men, women and children, and this was why, of course, after he left his office as united nations secretary—general, he continued working in peace promotion, he was the un special envoy for syria. i saw him their work tirelessly, well into his 70s, long, long hours, trying to get the different sides to the table, trying to negotiate some kind of peace even if only a short ceasefire here or there. tragically the conflict is still ongoing but not because people like kofi annan, especially because people like kofi annan did not try to bring peace. he did a special edition of hardtalk backin did a special edition of hardtalk back in the spring and said he did not realise retirement would be so
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tiring! he obviously to himself into it. did he ever shake off some of the criticism of his time in charge at the united nations, that things had gone wrong, not least some of the allegations against us peacekeeping operations, perhaps his attem pts peacekeeping operations, perhaps his atte m pts to peacekeeping operations, perhaps his attempts to reform the united nations had not gone as well as he had helped? i think that's absolutely right. i don't think that un secretary general is a job where you get much gratitude! you're going to offend governments and leaders, it is going to be difficult. but he tried hard, and then ban ki—moon, who took over from him, carried tried hard, and then ban ki—moon, who took overfrom him, carried on with the un reform. but kofi anna — kofi annan can be credited with how the united nations peacekeepers are run and what kind of responsibility the un, although of course the prime responsibility for their good behaviour is on the countries that
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donate them. that was kofi annan. you didn't get much credit for it but as i say the job of un secretary—general is huge and pretty tha nkless. secretary—general is huge and pretty thankless. there are plenty of people in the world outside the un who are critical of the organisation. for example we had the united states, under president trump, with his ambassador, nikki haley, being critical of the way that the un spends money and also of its bureaucracy. what was kofi annan‘s defence of the un at a time when so many people were being so challenging, about whether it had outlived its usefulness after 70 yea rs of outlived its usefulness after 70 years of existence? avec kofi annan would remind people, including the united states, because even the most critical voices in the united states of the un are generally say, maybe not to the cameras, but generally say, if it did not exist we would
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have to invent the un. this pretty much a consensus that the world needs a multilateral body. whether every single arm of it functions 50 if it should leak, of course not. nothing ever does. the un security council is based on a power structure we inherited from the end of the second world war —— whether every arm of it functions perfectly, of course not. most members are quite happy with the waiters, one of the members as the united states, wallace russia. these things are difficult. every time you criticised the un secretary general, you think, is it his, or eventually her responsibility, or are the 193 member states to decide the policy and fruit on it, what are they going to do about it? when are they going to do about it? when are they going to say this bit isn't working —— and vote on it. when are they going to say, maybe human rights could work
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better? maybe our delivery of food is inefficient? it is notjust the job of one person, it's a body made up job of one person, it's a body made up of193 job of one person, it's a body made up of 193 member states. imogen foulkes in switzerland, thank you. imogen foulkes broke the story for us imogen foulkes broke the story for us this morning. the headlines. the main story this morning. it only broke within the last half—hour. as we've been reporting — former united nations secretary general kofi annan dies aged 80 — the un's first black african to hold the position. he served two terms at the un. more heavy rain is forecast in southern india, where monsoons have caused the area's worst floods in a century. a state funeral is under way for some of the victims of the genoa bridge collapse. a state funeral for some of the victims of tuesday's bridge disaster in genoa is under way, led by italian president sergio mattarella.
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some families are reportedly staying away from the ceremony because of anger at the government. they blamed the authorities for the tragedy earlier this week. this morning firefighters found the bodies of a couple and their nine—year—old daughter who had been trapped under the wreckage. this brings the total of those who died to 41 after the collapse of the motorway bridge, with several still not accounted for. 0ur correspondent james reynolds has been in genoa — he says the funeral itself is not without controversy. this state funeral is for just under half the victims of the genoa bridge collapse, and it is of course a chance for politicians, family members, relief workers and also members of the public to come together and to pause. it is worth saying that many families have chosen not to take part in this ceremony.
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their relatives, their victims are from other parts of the country and they have simply preferred to carry out private burials. but we do know of at least two families who have said that they wanted nothing to do with any official or state ceremonies. 0ne father in particular has said that his son was murdered, and therefore, a state ceremony for that family was not appropriate. this is a chance for people here to stop, but it is not enough for this country to put aside the divisions and the arguments about why the bridge collapsed. once the ceremonies are over, once the politicians have gone, those arguments will re—intensify. an official commission will now look at the causes of the bridge's collapse and the public prosecutor here in genoa will decide whether or not anybody should be held legally responsible for what happened. james reynolds there. let's look at the scenes from inside the church
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where the service is taking place. there has been some applause in the last few minutes, here we are again remembering those people who gave so much to help the rescue operation as well as those who died and those who we re well as those who died and those who were injured and are receiving medical treatment at the moment. perhaps we can just follow the ceremony. says some of the names being read out in genoa this morning. we will return to the service later. the former ukip leader, nigel farage, says he's returning to frontline political engagement. writing in the daily telegraph today, he says he's decided to act as he feels the "political class in westminster" is determined
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to frustrate the 2016 referendum vote to leave the european union. he's taking part in a battle bus tour by the leave means leave group to oppose the prime minister's chequers plan. let's talk to our political correspondent helen catt. how much of a surprise is this — and how significant? nigel farage has always said he would return to front line campaigning if he believed that the government was not respecting the referendum result and he says that since the check is planned scores of people have asked him if he will do that. there's been spec elation about what vehicle he would choose... you mean about bus! literally, the leave means leave was set up by two businessman and they have appointed him as vice—chair. he holds a senior position within that
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group and he will hold rallies to argue against the chequers deal. group and he will hold rallies to argue against the chequers dealm will be interesting to see him back on the trail, some people say he has had more comebacks than frank sinatra after all his retirements as the leader of ukip! although not on this occasion. helen catt, thank you. sport and for a full round up, from the bbc sport centre, here's holly hamilton. hello, all eyes and ben stokes as the england team take on india at trent bridge in the third test. he was cleared of afraid this week. england have made a rapid breakthrough after putting india into bat. victory this time would give england an unassailable 3—0 lead in this five match series. and a london derby in the premier league today, chelsea play arsenal in the late kick—off. a lot of the papers this morning are talking about
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manchester united captain paul pogba and his apparent rift withjose mourinho. but according to the manager, their relationship could not be more positive. we have been together for two years and a couple of weeks. and i have never been so happy with him as i am now. that's the truth. cannot demand more from him,i the truth. cannot demand more from him, icannot the truth. cannot demand more from him, i cannot ask for from the truth. cannot demand more from him, i cannot ask forfrom him. the truth. cannot demand more from him, i cannot ask for from him. and england's women have reached the under 21 world cup semifinals for the first time, beating the netherlands 2—1 in france, england conceded one goal but a great finish by georgia stanway brought them level and thanks to persistence she also scored the winner. england face japan on monday for a place in the final. former world champion carl frampton wants to show the world he's still got it by beating australian luke jackson at windsor park tonight. he's top of the bill
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in his home city with plenty at sta ke in his home city with plenty at stake admitting that the defeat could be career ending. victory would all but guarantee a world title shot and he says he's still ready to take on the best featherweights in the world. i'm looking forward, that's a weight off my shoulders, i have some food and chill out with my team and my family and start really focusing on the fight now. what message do you want to send out to the world? i've got it, i'm still here and everyone to be fearful of may, all the top featherweights, russell, warrington, i've still got it! —— everyone should be fearful of me. of the action on radio five live tonight. deontay wilder will be ringside in belfast to watch tyson fury on the undercard against his italian opponent, and the pair could meet later in the year in new york and las vegas if tyson fury comes through unscathed. some flash
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photography coming up. during the way in yesterday deontay wilder was engaging in some apparently friendly exchanges of tyson fury‘s father but in the end and got a bit heated. deontay wilder says the deal has been done with a fight expected to ta ke been done with a fight expected to take place in the united states towards the end of the year. not much time off for dina asher—smith, one week after winning three gold medals from the european athletics championships she runs again at the diamond league event in birmingham this weekend. 0ne diamond league event in birmingham this weekend. one of those gold medals came at the 200 metres in berlin which she is going to run in birmingham. she may be exhausted but she is always ready to perform. i'm very tired! i'm very very tired. i haven't hit that but at the same time, i'm a competitor, like my family and my physios, everyone jokes with me that even if i am drained, even if i have one like i am still, come on, let's go. that's
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just me. i would never hide from a good race. and the birmingham grand prix is live on bbc one from quarter past one. that's all the sport for now, now the weather. it's a weekend of mixed fortunes, the sunshine generally in short supply with a lot of cloud around. some of us will see some rain, others will stay dry. for most, it's going to feel quite humid. let's look at the bigger picture for the weekend. this front will continue to bring outbreaks for a time across parts of northern ireland through the central belt of scotland. working its way north. this is the remnants of what was subtropical storm ernesto. that will pep up the rain overnight. for much of england and wales this afternoon, it should be mainly dry. although a lot of cloud. the odd spot of rain for parts of wales and south—west england. for the far north of scotland, sunny spells and a few showers, sunshine getting into eastern parts of scotland too. it's the western isles of scotland which will continue to see some stronger gusts, gale force for a time. also quite gusty winds among western and channel coasts this afternoon,
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slowly easing down. the best of the sunshine is the further east you are. temperatures reaching 23 or 2a celsius. temperatures reaching 23 or 2a celsius. but a cooler feel for the far north of scotland despite some sunshine here. should be mainly dry for the cricket through the day. maybe the odd spot of rain, but that cloud should try to thin and break through the afternoon to get some spells of sunshine. this evening and overnight, we see a more persistent spell of rain arriving into northern ireland and extending into parts of north wales, northern england, southern and central parts of scotland. to the north of this, it stays dry with clearer skies. further south, mainly dry, but a lot of cloud and a very warm and muggy night here. through sunday, our area of rain slowly starts to fizzle out through the day. come the afternoon, most places are largely dry. again, quite a lot of cloud, but it will be trying to thin and break, some bright sunny spells attempting to get through. across much of england and wales, it's another very humid feeling day. cooler and fresher for the far north of scotland, but some sunshine here. as we go into the new working week, fronts are pushing their way
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eastwards but leaving a legacy of cloud, and this front will continue to generate showery outbreaks of rain across parts of scotland and northern ireland. some of those showers are likely to extend into parts of northern england. further south, it's mainly dry. again, quite a bit of cloud but we should see bright and sunny spells through the afternoon. we're still holding onto that warmth and humidity, particularly across england and wales, temperatures here getting up to 25 celsius. bye bye. welcome to dateline, the programme that brings together some of the uk's leading journalists with correspondents writing for the folks back home with the dateline, "london". this week: donald trump's trade wars rumble on as china tries to sue for peace, whilst turkey is threatened with more sanctions if it doesn't yield. and why the leader of the british labour party is finding allegations of anti—semitism hard to shake off. with me: ned temko is a political commentator and former editor of the jewish chronicle. thomas kielinger is a biographer
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and writes for germany's die welt. maria margaronis, a writer and broadcaster of greek descent, is london correspondent for the nation. the us journalist stryker mcguire writes for bloomberg markets. first, though, news which has broken this weekend — the death of kofi annan, who was un secretary—generalfor ten yea rs. a ghanaian by birth, he was the first man from sub—sa ha ran africa to head the organisation. having joined the un in 1962, kofi annan rose through the ranks, ending up in charge of peacekeeping operations. his two five—year terms running the un included the american—led invasion of iraq. thomas, i suppose that is probably the cause he was most frustrated by an something he ultimately felt had been an illegal act. he was not the only one frustrated by it and who thought it was an illegal act. everybody in britain has come to rue the day this was designed and run.
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kofi annan was a respected leader and his indefatigable work
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