welcome to bbc news, broadcasting to viewers in north america and around the globe. my name is mike embley. our top stories: president trump warns of a humanitarian crisis and a tragedy as syrian government forces prepare to storm the last rebel—held province. western countries condemn myanmar‘s jailing of journalists, but there is silence from china and the rest of asia. a nation's heritage up in flames. a lack of funding is blamed for the disaster at brazil's national museum. and japan's much—praised efforts to recycle plastics are not exactly what they seem. industrial plastic has value. it can be recycled and turned into new products. but the same cannot be said of household plastic waste. it is dirty, it is difficult, and it has virtually no value. president trump has backed warnings from the un and many aid
organisations that thousands could be killed if the syrian government, with its russian and iranian allies, attack the last major rebel stronghold in syria. mr trump said an attack on idlib would be a grave humanitarian mistake and a tragedy. it is thought president assad's forces are preparing a major offensive. iran's foreign minister said on monday that what he called the remaining terrorists should be cleaned out. the bbc‘s david willis has more. well, mike, and i have to say that president trump is not the first member of his administration to express disquiet over the possibility of an attack on idlib. just last week the secretary of state, mike pompeo, warned that this would represent an escalation of the syrian conflict, an already dangerous conflict, as he put it. well, today, president trump entered the fray on twitter,
saying that "the russians and iranians would be making a grave humanitarian mistake to take part in this potential human tragedy. hundreds of thousands of people could be killed." now, we know that syria has been planning this attack on the idlib area, and indeed there are about three million civilians there, so the death toll could be considerable. the hope is perhaps turkey can weigh in and persuade iran russia and syria to at least attempt to negotiate with the rebels who are holed up there in idlib. and indeed, there is a summit planned in tehran later this week to discuss the situation in idlib. but i mentioned syrian forces there, who are mobilising in that area. also the russians had some manoeuvres in the mediterranean
near that area over the weekend, so it does seem as though the die is cast, for all the protestations of the trump administration, mike. there has been widespread condemnation of the jailing of two reuters journalists in myanmar for seven years. wa lone and kyaw soe oo are accused of violating state secrets while investigating a massacre of rohingya muslims. in a statement, the us ambassador to the united nations, nikki haley, condemned the sentence. the conviction of two journalists for doing theirjob is another terrible stain on the burmese government, she said. we will continue to call for their immediate and unconditional release. the un high commissioner for human rights, michelle bachelet, said the convictions sent a message to all journalists that they cannot operate without fear in myanmar. the bbc‘s nick beake has been following the case closely, and was at the sentencing in yangon. in some countries, they would have been given a prize for their work. not here.
not in aung san suu kyi's myanmar. instead, forjournalists wa lone and kyaw soe oo, who uncovered a massacre by the country's army, the reward is a prison cell. the reporters say they were framed because they were investigating the execution of ten rohingya muslims. the un believes, in all, the myanmar military and buddhist mobs may have killed more than 10,000 rohingyas in rakhine state last year. but the reporters‘ investigation ended today with a seven—yearjail sentence. translation: we performed according to media ethics. we didn't do anything harmful towards our nation. we didn't commit any crime. the fury of the journalists‘ supporters was clear as the pair were driven to prison. now convicted of obtaining secret documents which could have helped enemies of the state.
this verdict is devastating for the two reporters, but also freedom of the press in myanmar. many people are concerned about the direction this country is taking. the verdict and the judgement today has struck a hammer blow to the rule of law in myanmar. many diplomats have been at the trial throughout, and we believe that the judge has ignored the evidence of the case, and has actually also ignored myanmar laws. so extremely disappointed with that. we think it's a bad day for myanmar, and we would call on the journalists to be released as soon as possible. a crushing day, too, for the families of the jailed reporters, who have endured eight months of court hearings. after the journalists‘ arrests, their employer, reuters, published the full story of the rohingya massacre the pair had been working on, prompting a rare admission of guilt from the burmese army. that crime wouldn‘t have been known had it not been for the reporting of wa lone and kyaw soe 0o.
so what happened today was an injustice, and it‘s an injustice that can‘t be allowed to stand. but, so far, silence from aung san suu kyi‘s government. last week accused by the un of assisting genocide, this week condemned for an attack on a pillar of democracy. after free elections three years ago, there was great hope for myanmar. it is fading fast. nick beake, bbc news, yangon. officials in brazil have blamed a lack of funding for a massive fire that destroyed the country‘s national museum. the fire has destroyed close to 90% of the 20 million or so items in the collection, including the oldest human remains ever found in the americas. it broke out late on sunday evening, after the museum had closed. from rio de janeiro, the bbc‘s katy watson. a cherished institution up in flames, and the nation‘s history destroyed. this museum was home
to 20 million artefacts, but few are expected to have survived this intense blaze. with the fire now out, the extent of the devastation is becoming clear. experts say the loss of brazil‘s most important scientific institution is incalculable. a collection rich with extinct species from the americas, dinosaur skeletons, and this, a i2,000—year—old human skull called luzia. most of that could have been lost. it‘s the patrimony of our country, but also the patrimony of the world. here we had some of the best specimens from south america. so we really will need your help. throughout the day, firefighters, investigators, even some people who worked at the museum had been going into the building, and every so often they come out with an artefact, or anything they can salvage from the rubble. among the onlookers was livia, a museum intern. she is devastated. translation: you'd never think of the louvre in paris catching fire.
this sort of thing happens in brazil, though. 200 years of historyjust gone, in a matter of hours. for some, the sadness turned to anger. they say spending cuts led to the museum‘s neglect. this isn‘tjust brazilian history that‘s gone up in flames. many see this as a metaphor for the country‘s recent economic and political crises. katy watson, bbc news in rio de janeiro. let‘s get some of the day‘s other news: argentinia‘s president has announced a series of measures to try to contain a run on its currency, the peso. mauricio macri promised to cut in half the number of ministries, trying to show investors that argentina is committed to reforming its economy. tens of thousands have turned out for a free concert in the german city of chemnitz against the sometimes—violent anti—immigrant demonstrations organised there by the far—right. many people chanted "nazis out." the event is using the hashtag "there are more of us", a response to the far—right slogan "we are the people." the highest court in the democratic republic of congo has
barred the opposition leader, jean—pierre bemba, from running in the presidential election in december. he was ruled ineligible because of a conviction at the international criminal court for bribing witnesses. nine weeks to go until election day in the us, and the results will decide whether the republicans retain control of congress. all 435 seats in the house of representatives are up for grabs, a third of those in the senate. democrats hope to win back the house, and leading the charge are a new generation of military veterans hoping to serve their country in a different way. laura trevelyan reports. 0k, nice to see you. thank you so much... mikey cheryl is running her campaign with military precision, trying to meet as many voters in this newjersey suburb as possible. it is what you‘d expect of a former navy helicopter pilot, with her eye on winning what has been a republican seat for decades. i always laugh because i tell people, you know, i was a helicopter
aircraft commander, and i never once started a mission saying, "ok, i‘m only taking democrats on this mission," or "i‘m only taking republicans on this mission." mikie sherrell‘s campaign has raised record amounts of money, and in a sign the seat is winnable, the republican incumbent chose to retire. this mother—of—four is running against the tax changes coming new jersey‘s way, and she is for gun control. i‘m qualified in automatic weapons, and i know the danger of them. we do need the federal government to step in and make sure we have good gun legislation across—the—board. afghanistan veteran max rose has knocked on 15,000 doors in neighbouring new york, as he tries to turn this republican seat blue. i‘m actually the first post=9/ii combat vet to run for office in new york city history. it is a message he hopes will resonate on staten island, where president trump is popular. injured in afghanistan by a roadside bomb, max rose was decorated for bravery, and his run is inspired by his soldiers.
they didn‘t think about their own personal self—interest. theyjust tried to get the job done. and that‘s what i want to see more of in washington, dc. that motivation resonates with emily cherniack, who helps republicans and democrats with a service background run for office. when they served this country in their formidable years of, you know, 18 to 28, they learned to be about something bigger than themselves. if we had more leaders who were doing what‘s best for the country over what‘s best for themselves, i think it would fundamentally transform our democracy. it is not surprising that democrats are pinning their hopes on veterans to flip suburban seats like this one in new york, and win back the house of representatives. americans have more confidence in the military than in any other us government institution, and nearly one third of the democratic candidates running in competitive seats this november have served in the military. and mikie sherrill is one of five female veterans contesting the democrats‘ top target seats.
we thought that if we were navy helicopter pilots, orfederal prosecutors, we were moving forward and we were creating a better world for our children. and to see us lose ground, i think, was so upsetting to so many women. the military retains the respect of americans at a time of fierce partisanship. if democrats‘ dreams of a blue wave materialise in november, veterans will be leading the charge. laura trevelyan, bbc news, washington. stay with us on bbc news. still to come: put your pedal to the metal. the championship race where engines are not allowed. she received the nobel peace prize for her work with the poor and the dying in india‘s slums. the head of the catholic church said mother teresa was a wonderful example of how to help people in need. we have to identify the bodies then arrange the coffins and take them back home.
parents are waiting and wives are waiting, so... hostages appeared, some carried, some running, trying to escape the nightmare behind them. britain lost a princess today, described by all to whom she reached out as irreplaceable. an early—morning car crash in a paris underpass ended a life with more than its share of pain and courage, warmth and compassion. this is bbc news. the latest headlines: president trump has warned the syrian government and its russian and iranian allies they will be making a grave humanitarian mistake if they attack the last rebel—held region, idlib. there has been widespread
condemnation from the un and western countries of the jailing in myanmar of two reuters journalists who were investigating a massacre of rohingya muslims. the sports giant nike has said its latest advertising campaign will feature the football player colin kaepernick, who‘s led protests against police brutality towards african—america ns. kaepernick was a quarterback with the san francisco 49ers for six years, but stirred controversy in 2016 when he knelt during the playing of the us national anthem before matches. caroline rigby reports. believe in something, even if it means sacrificing everything. the words of former nfl quarterback colin kaepernick. part of an advertising campaign for the sports brand nike. colin kaepernick was at the san francisco 49ers when he began kneeling during the national
anthem in the 2016 nfl season. a protest against racial injustice and police recovered the. what he saw as state oppression against african americans and people of colour. his actions sparked a wider movement and national debate. criticised by some, including president tromp, for being disrespectful to both the american flag and the military. now a free agent, he is suing the nfl, alleging ten owners colluded to prevent him from signing for on other teams to beat being chosen as the face of nike‘s latest advertising venture is likely to be welcomed by many, but raises eyebrows too. in a statement, the company said... it also features a range of other stars, including the tennis player serena williams. nike has a long
history of supporting the people who wear their brand and hopefully this will send a message out to the rest of the world that they should no longer be afraid to speak out and speak up against something that is injust onjust. news speak up against something that is in just on just. news of colin kaepernick‘s involvement comes just days before the first game of the new nfl season, where pre— match protest could yet again flareup. this protest yet again more proof that politics seems to be in the frontline of the american and political divide. two malaysia women have been caned for attempting to six with one another. they were arrested when they were found in a car together in northern state. the sentence will be carried out behind closed doors in the region ‘s high court. human rights groups have called it cruel and unjust. plastic waste has become a massive problem around the world, and japan is no exception. however, people there spend a lot of time sorting their household plastic so it can be recycled.
but what actually happens to it when it leaves their homes? rupert wingfield—hayes has been finding out. the world is drowning in plastic. here injapan, they say recycling is the answer. but is that true? this is kawamura—san‘s kitchen and i would say kawamura—san is, i‘d say, a garbage warrior. she‘s going to give me a lesson on how i should be separating my garbage properly. this is yokohama city‘s instructions on how to separate your garbage. you can see, it‘s quite elaborate. there are one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten different types of garbage separation, but this is the one we care about, plastic containers and packaging. so she‘s going to show me how to do it. it is an arduous task to clean and separate every piece, but the result is that 84% ofjapan‘s household plastics end up in a recycling bin.
so what happens to it next? so these ladies are pulling out anything that can‘t be recycled, things like this, cigarette lighters, batteries, bits of metal scrap. everything else, all the other plastic that stays on this conveyor belt will go and be bailed out and sent to recycling. now the shocker — 70% of this material will be exported. last year, a million tons of japanese plastic went to china. this year, china banned all imports. now japan‘s plastic recyclers are desperately hunting for alternatives. so this used to go to china, now it‘s going to go to malaysia. some plastics are recycled injapan. large industrial ones, like these car bumpers. they‘re chopped up and fed into a shredder. so those car bumpers, which are cut up, shredded,
melted and then turned into this, this is the end product, these are pellets, which can then be made into new products. what we‘ve seen here is that industrial plastic has value. it can be recycled and turned into new products, but the same cannot be said of household plastic waste. it is dirty, it is difficult and it has virtually no value. that‘s why it was being shipped wholesale to china, and that‘s why now it ends up either being landfilled or burned, and course why so much of it ends up in the ocean. a british company has unveiled a new robotic surgery system, which is expected to operate on patients next year. the robotic arms are controlled by a surgeon using a console. our medical correspondent fergus walsh reports. imagine this operating on you.
it‘s the latest in surgical robot technology. all controlled by human hand at a console with the aid of a 3d monitor. the aim is to make laparoscopic, or keyhole, surgery technically easier for surgeons, allowing greater precision, and so giving better outcomes for patients. it‘s considerably easier. all you can do with a conventional laparoscopic instrument is you can move it in and out, and you can rotate it. and so what the robot enables you to do is to play with this in a much more wide range of movement. the versius robot has been designed and built in cambridge. these robot arms have joints like a human‘s, at the shoulder, elbow and wrist. they‘re smaller and more flexible than current robotic systems, which makes them more versatile, so they should be able to do many more types of keyhole surgery. none of this would have been
possible without da vinci, the first surgical robot, introduced to the uk in 2001. there are now more than 70 of them here, mostly doing prostate, bladder and gynaecological surgery. the british versius system is much, smaller than this american rival and is aiming to do more. so we want to do operations in the upper abdomen, such as gall bladder operations, operations in the stomach, certainly operations in the bowel for bowel cancer. we want to operate in the chest. so the aim is to replicate keyhole surgery, but with all the advantages of the small instruments, the wristed instruments, that will make it better and easier for the surgeon. the field of robot surgery is about to get crowded, with several new systems being developed. the most eagerly awaited is verb from tech giant google. it aims to connect all its robots to the internet so they can learn
from each other. so, when keyhole surgery came in, it really revolutionised surgery, because it was able to deliver a really complex procedures in a much less invasive way. this is where many surgeons learn how to do keyhole procedures, at london‘s university college hospital. training to do this with the aid of a robot will be increasingly common, and eventually machines may be programmed to do some parts of an operation independently. as we develop that human—robot interface, there are going to be certain parts of an operation, simple parts, that may be able to be automated. if you think about stitching or closing the wound, these may be able to be done with a robot. the cost of the versius robot hasn‘t been revealed, but the company aims to make it cheaperfor the nhs to run than its american rival. the first operation on a patient will be early next year. fergus walsh, bbc news, cambridge. it‘s been another extraordinary summer of sport, but spectators
at a race in the south of england will have you believe they have left the best till last. this was a championship with a difference, as the bbc‘s tim allman reports. this isn‘t le mans, or indianapolis or monza, this is black bush, the british pedal car championship, where engines are not allowed. the 13 teams competing against each other, going as fast as their legs can carry them. people get into it, a bit like f1 in a way, so the other kart is two laps ahead, so you get the fastest guy in, it is really good fun, really good banter as well, which is always good. it is a test of speed and endurance.
more than 300 laps around this go—kart track adding up to a distance of 160 kilometres. the teams will strop drivers, each one usually completing 15 to 20 minutes at a time. apollo racing took the honours, which means they‘re now only ten points behind championship leaders wind racers. oh, it is amazing really, because we started with a win and then wind racers got up to speed, and we haven‘t been close ever since, and this weekend is the first time we have been closest to championship win all season so it is great to be back. the title decider takes place next month, about 200 kilometres further north. they will be allowed to drive a normal car to the venue. tim allman, bbc news. just before we go, we should tell
you india is close to be complete in what will be the world ‘s tallest statue. a 182—metre high tribute to independence hero sardar vallabhbhai patel. the figure, in gujarat state, has cost $430 million. it will be inaugurated on 310ctober. just again, president trump warns of a humanitarian crisis and a tragedy as syrian government forces prepare to storm the last rebel—held province. ina in a tweety said hundreds of thousands could he killed. there are reports that syrian government forces are preparing a huge offensive. —— in a tweet, he said hundreds. hello there.
yesterday we had quite a mixture of weather. some warm, humid sunshine across parts of eastern england, but further west, we had this weather front bringing cloudy skies and outbreaks of rain. i‘m showing you this weather picture from yesterday because that front is going to be with us for much of today as well. it‘s barely moving at all, so it‘s going to be quite cloudy over the next few hours across a good part of england and wales too, with the cloud thick enough for an occasional spot of drizzle, perhaps misty over the hills for a time as well. but for the most part across england and wales, it‘s going to be a mild night. you can see the yellows here. temperatures way up into the double figures.
whereas further north and west, we‘ve got the cooler air for scotland and northern ireland. and across sheltered parts of northern scotland, it could well be cold enough for a touch of frost for early risers tuesday morning. tuesday, though, will dawn on a bright note for most parts of scotland with some morning sunshine. should be a bright enough start too for northern ireland. different story for most of england and wales, where it‘s going to be a great start to the day and the cloud will be thick enough for a few spots of rain or drizzle, perhaps across parts of north—west england, the midlands and eastern parts of wales too. for one or two, a damp start to the morning, but as we go through the day, that weather front will tend to ease and the cloud will thin a little bit, so we‘ll get a few brighter spells coming through. there will be a bit of sunshine for east anglia and south—east england. perhaps not quite as much as we had on monday. we‘ll still have some sunshine for scotland and northern ireland, although the cloud will tend to bubble up a bit here a little bit as we head into the afternoon. it‘s going to be another quite quiet day really weatherwise on wednesday. a lot of dry weather with some bright or sunny spells coming and going. but a change in the weather to the north—west where we see a weather front moving.
that‘s going to be bringing more general rain into western scotland and northern ireland. that rain heavy at times. things cooler there across the far north—west of scotland. further changes towards the end of the week as the jet stream gets more wriggly, more amplified. we‘re on the downward stretch, the downward limb of the jet stream, and that means we‘ll have an area of low pressure form as we head towards the end of the week. here is the low. now, uncertainty about the exact position. it might actually be a little bit further westwards, which will bring more general rain in across the uk. either way, i think we‘re looking at an unsettled end to the week. rain at times probably best sums up the forecast on thursday, particularly across the northern half of the country, but nowhere is immune from seeing some wet weather. it will be quite breezy and cool, and some of the rain could turn heavy and thundery at times, too. temperatures ranging from 13 in eastern scotland to 18 degrees in london. i suspect it will stay pretty unsettled on friday and into the weekend with rain or showers in the forecast. that‘s your weather. this is bbc news. the headlines: president trump has warned the syrian government and its allies that they will be making a grave humanitarian mistake if they attack the last rebel—held region of the country, idlib. the syrian government forces are thought to be preparing to launch a huge offensive, supported by iran and russia. there has been condemnation
of the myanmar authorities after two journalists from the reuters news agency were sentenced to seven years in prison for breaking state secrecy laws. the american ambassador to myanmar said the case was deeply troubling. the eu has called for the two men‘s immediate release. officials at brazil‘s national museum say almost 90% of its collection was destroyed in a devastating fire on sunday. president michel temer announced that the government was seeking money from banks, the un and other institutions to help rebuild it. staff had long complained of deep funding cuts. chris evans, one of the bbc‘s highest—paid presenters, has announced he is leaving bbc radio 2 at the end of the year.