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tv   World News Today  BBC News  January 12, 2019 9:00pm-9:30pm GMT

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this is bbc world news today. our top stories... the saudi teenager who fled her country in fear for her life arrives in canada where she's been granted asylum. after a gas explosion in central paris that left three dead, fears that other buildings in the area could now collapse. more snow expected in central europe as authorities struggle to cope with some of the worst conditions in 30 years. hello and welcome to world news today. a saudi teenager whose efforts to escape her family gained worldwide attention has arrived in canada where she's been granted asylum. last week rahaf mohammed al-qanun barricaded herself in a hotel room at bangkok airport, to resist deportation.
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the 18—year—old said she feared she'd be killed by her relatives because she had renounced islam. in the past few hours she arrived at toronto airport and was greeted by canada's foreign minister. nada tawfik reports from toronto. rahaf al-qanun arrived with a smile as she took the first steps into her new life. how does it feel to be in canada? she was escorted out by the canadian foreign minister, chrystia freeland, who was on hand to welcome her and pass on flowers from one her supporters. after chronicling her ordeal on social media, she chose this moment, now safely in toronto, to let another speak on her behalf. she wanted canadians to see that she's here, that she's well, and that she's very, very happy to be in her new home. although she did comment to me about the cold. it's been a whirlwind journey for rahaf al-qanun. it's extraordinary that just a few days ago she was an unknown teenager
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and now she has commanded the attention of the world's media and reignited a debate about the treatment of women in saudi arabia. rahaf al-qanun had been trying to reach australia by way of thailand when her passport was confiscated and she was told she would be deported. the 18—year—old barricaded herself in an airport hotel room and sent out fevered messages on twitter that she feared her family would kill her for renouncing islam. i'm not leaving my room until i see unchr — i want asylum. within a day, the campaign #saverahaf went viral, piling on international pressure. thai immigration police, who initially said her case was a family problem, instead placed her in the care of the united nations' refugee agency which deemed her a legitimate refugee. saudi arabia and canada have been on bad terms ever since ottawa criticised riyadh's arrest of women's rights activists in a tweet months ago. the resettlement of rahaf al-qanun
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will likely exacerbate the already tense relations between the countries. nada twafik, bbc news, toronto. joining us now is canadian is the human rights activist yasmine mohammed. mac wrote thank you for coming on. you have had contact with rahaf in last week, tell us about that. right now is a happy day, she is relieved to be in canada. it was touch and go, we were not sure if she was going to be saved at all and then where she would end up going. we are pleased that she is here in canada and she is absolutely over the moon and very grateful for all of the help from thousands of strangers. do you know what will happen to her in the coming days?” am sure she will be protected and it's going to be... this is a new
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ground for us now. although this is a very positive case, and we are very happy that she is here, because it is so high profile, she could be in some danger still. she will be quite protected. you have talked about helping women who have had to leave strict muslim families behind. from your experience, what challenges lie ahead for rahaf? well, really she is going from one planet to another. in saudi arabia she was wearing a macabre, she would cover herself completely in black head to toe —— a niqab. she would not be able to leave home without her male guardian‘s position, not be able to go to school or work or get able to go to school or work or get a bank account, go to doctor, nothing without her male guard
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allowing her to. in canada she will have all of these new freedoms and it will take a while to get used to that. i know that for myself, even though i was born and raised in canada, when i left islam and my family disowned me and i was on my own with my daughter, the smallest things become such huge hurdles. i wasn't used to making decisions for myself and suddenly i had to make all of the decisions on my own. at the same time, small things that people take for granted like being able to ride a bicycle or go swimming, they were huge for me because they were things i never thought i would be able to do.“ because they were things i never thought i would be able to do. is it the case that after the euphoria of escaping, so to speak, then come the real difficulties? absolutely. especially for somebody coming from a country where they were essentially a bird in a gilded cage.
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ra haf would have essentially a bird in a gilded cage. rahaf would have been treated like a dependent, like a little... you know, like a child or a pet puppy or something, someone that was not able to make any decisions for herself at all. and she was completely protected and completely taken care of but, at the same time, she was not an independent human being. you are absolutely correct. this will ta ke are absolutely correct. this will take some adjustment for her to start to trust her own instincts. but she is up for the challenge. she is an amazing young woman and already a hero to millions of young women and she has the support of all of us behind her and i have no doubt she will be nothing but successful. really interesting to get your perspective. thank you very much. the french president has paid tribute to two french firefighters killed in a gas explosion in paris, calling them heros and saying
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they gave their all to save lives. the blast also killed a spanish woman on holiday and left dozens injured, ten of those critically. the firefighters were investigating a gas leak at a bakery when the blast ripped through the building. our paris correspondent, lucy williamson reports. on the site of a local bakery, around the corner from the folies bergere, residents faced a charred and empty shell. the force of the gas explosion was felt in districts several miles away. the blast shattered windows, blew out doors, and sent locals and tourists into the street, straight from their beds. translation: when i walked past the entrance i heard a huge explosion. i was hit by the debris. i'm dry now and i've washed off a bit but there was a lot of blood on my neck and head, too. 200 firefighters were called in to help those trapped by the blast. among those whose lives they saved was a colleague, buried for almost two hours
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beneath the rubble. but two other firefighters died. translation: at 8:30 this morning firefighters were on a call for a gas leak at 6 rue de trevise — during their intervention a dramatic explosion happened. helicopters waited near the opera house to evacuate the wounded, some of whom are still in a serious condition. the explosion is being treated as accidental but there is a risk of further fires and emergency work will continue all weekend. this smart and lively part of paris, packed with bars and theatres, looks very different tonight. lucy williamson, bbc news, paris. the texas democratjulian castro has formally declared he wants to run for president of the united states. the announcement makes him the first hispanic in what looks set to be a crowded field of candidates vying for the position to challenge president donald trump in the november 2020 election. he's long been viewed as a rising star in the democratic party and will seek to position himself as a political outsider with liberal credentials. here's how he made his announcement.
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when my grandmother got here almost a hundred years ago, i'm sure that she never could have imagined thatjust two generations later, one of her grandsons would be serving as a member of the united states congress and the other would be standing with you here today to say these words. i am a candidate for president of the united states of america. so who isjulian castro and what do we know about him? the 44—year—old is the grandson of an immigrant. his grandmother was born in mexico and he's used his family's personal story to criticise trump's border policy. he was the mayor of san antonio for five years from 2009 to 2014 and then went on to serve as secretary of housing and urban development underformer president barack obama. castro is the second
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candidate to formally launch a presidential campaign. former us representative john delaney has been running for more than a year. and us senator elizabeth warren has formed an exploratory committee and has started holding campaign events. while more than a dozen others are exploring the possibility. david willis is our correspondent in washington. we have referred to his liberal credentials but what else do we know aboutjulian credentials but what else do we know about julian castro's politics? you mentioned he is a rising star and thatis mentioned he is a rising star and that is certainly the case as far as the democratic party is concerned. a former mayor of san antonio in texas, he gave a speech at the democratic national convention four yea rs democratic national convention four years ago and was the youngest member of barack obama's cabinet. more than anything, he is looking to
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become america's first hispanic president. it is a real american dream story if you like. mr castro said today that his grandmother, victoria, who came to the us from mexico nearly a century ago, would have been amazed to know that one of her grandchildren would end up a member of the us congress and the other would end up running for president. it is still so far away, the presidential election, and yet the presidential election, and yet the numbers are quickly increasing in the democratic party. they are and mr castro will face quite a lot of competition for all his appeal and charisma. senators elizabeth warren, bernie sanders, kamala harris have all intimated they will be mounting a run for the democratic nomination and ditto the businessman michael bloomberg and former vice
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presidentjoe biden. it is expected to bea presidentjoe biden. it is expected to be a very crowded field. i suppose the dilemma for the democrat is whether they go for a mainstream candidate or a fresh face, somebody from the outside. that would be julian castro. i remember from campaigns passed and i am sure you do, having covered them, that it is such a long time that stars rise and fall, people lose momentum and run out of money. it really is a marathon for these guys. absolutely and there are two years to go now. you are right, it is very costly business to run for president in the united states, millions of dollars have to be generated and you know what will impact the early runners is the prospect of running out of money. that is something that people like mr castro have to guard against and he will have to go out and
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appealfor cash to and he will have to go out and appeal for cash to keep going and he will have to go out and appealfor cash to keep going in and he will have to go out and appeal for cash to keep going in the campaign. david willis in washington, good to speak to you, thank you. let's take a look at some of the other stories making the news. protesters have marched through central london demanding a general election and an end to austerity. hundreds of demonstrators were wearing yellow vests, copying the ‘yellow vest‘ protests in france. their action comes ahead of a crucial week in the commons, when mps are widely expected to reject theresa may's withdrawal deal with the eu. british police have arrested a man in connection with incidents in westminster earlier this week. pro—brexit activist james goddard, seen here wearing a red jacket, was detained by officers this morning near a london underground station on suspicion of a public order offence. he has since been released on bail. the political standoff in the democratic republic of congo has deepened, with the runner—up for president, martin fayulu, filing a petition at the constitutional court
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challenging the results. another opposition leader has been declared the winner. mr fayulu has accused him of striking a power—sharing deal with the outgoing president, joseph kabila. meanwhile a coalition of parties loyal to mr kabila has been declared to have won a majority of seats in parliament. gaius kowene from bbc africa explains what martin fayulu wants to achieve through this petition in the constitutional court. he is asking for a manual vote recount and he is also asking for results to be published, polling station by polling station, so that he can compare what the electoral commission has with the data that his own observers from his own political party collected and sent to his headquarters here. and after that, the court will have a maximum of seven days to look into his petition and also to look into all the evidence that he provided. right after that, the court will announce its final decision to say whether fayulu is right
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and whether all the votes should be recounted or simply cancelled. whether fayulu does not have enough evidence, and everything should continue normal and just confirm provisional results, that was announced last thursday. joseph kabila's coalition also won almost half of all the seats in the national assembly. stay with us on bbc world news, still to come we'll have all the latest sports news from the bbc sport centre. day one of operation desert storm to force the iraqis out of kuwait has seen the most intense air attack since the second world war. tobacco is america's oldest industry and it is one of its biggest. but the industry is nervous of this report. this may tend to make people want to stop smoking cigarettes. there is not a street that is unaffected. huge parts of kobe were simply
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demolished as buildings crashed into one another. this woman said she had been given no help and no advice by the authorities. she stood outside the ruins of her business. tens of thousands of black children in south africa have taken advantage of laws passed by the country's new multiracial government and enrolled at formerly white schools. tonight sees the 9610th performance of her long—running play the mousetrap. when they heard of her death today, the management considered whether to cancel tonight's performance but agatha christie would have been the last person to want such a thing. this is bbc world news today. the latest headlines... the saudi teenager who fled to thailand in fear for her life has arrived in canada where she's been granted asylum. three people have been killed in a powerful gas
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explosion in central paris. parts of germany, austria and sweden are suffering exceptional amounts of snow which have already killed seven people in the past week. a number of ski resorts and mountain villages have been evacuated in austria. bethany bell reports now from annaberg in the austrian alps. the little town of annaberg is blanketed in white. like many mountain regions in germany and austria, it is experiencing unusually heavy falls of snow. these sensors are there to protect houses from avalanches. the authorities are struggling to remove the snow. these volunteer firefighters are working to clear the roof of annaberg's primary school. stefan obermeister from the lower austrian fire brigade says they need to ensure the building is safe enough for children to enter.
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the big problem is that the snow is very heavy so we have about 3.5 metres on the roofs. and that's the big problem. because if the weather is changing and the snow gets heavier, the big problem is that the roofs crash down and so it is very dangerous for the people who are living here. cars have been buried under several metres of snow. and it is a constant struggle to keep paths and roads clear. in neighbouring germany, the army is helping to clear away snow. several areas have been declared disaster zones. and there is more snow on the way. the risk of avalanches remains very high. bethany bell, bbc news, annaberg in the austrian alps. south africa's governing party, the anc, has putjobs at the centre
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of its election camapaign, as it launched its manifesto in durban. thousands of supporters turned out to hear party leader and president cyril ramaphosa outline his promises to transform the economy. nomsa maseko reports from durban. a show of force by tens of thousands of anc supporters as president cyril ramaphosa launched the party's election manifesto. it has been a while since south africa's governing party pulled such a massive crowd. especially in kwazulu—natal, which is former presidentjacob zuma's home province, who was ousted in 2017 after nine years at the helm. this is an annual event which sets the tone for the anc‘s plans for the year but this time it is even more significant. south africa marks 25 years
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since the first democratic elections and millions will be going back to the polls. most credible opinion polls suggest the anc will secure enough votes to form the next government. that is despite declining support and small economic growth. the party's president, cyril ramaphosa, said the anc would do all it can to regain the confidence of all south africans. today at the african national congress, we launch our 2019 election manifesto. we do so at a crucial moment in the history of our nation. after a period of doubt and uncertainty, we have arrived at a moment of hope and renewal. the new leadership has vowed to raise millions of dollars
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in foreign direct investment to drive job creation, particularly among the youth and women. there are more unemployed, you know. so cyril ramaphosa will take all the problems of south africa and will cover all of them. to fight poverty, unemployment, especially for women and the youth. another critical electioneering point will be the party's land reform policy. and with the amendment of the constitution to expropriate land without compensation passed, the anc believes it is keeping its promises. nomsa maseko, bbc news, durban. catherine downs has all the sport. hello and thanks for joining us on sport today. premier league leaders liverpool made sure of a seven—point lead at the top of the table after a 1—0 win over brighton.
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mo salah scored the only goal from the penalty spot in the second half. it's a return to victory forjurgen klopp's men after back—to—back defeats in the league and fa cup. we could have done, like always, better but i'm completely fine because the target is to win here. it is so difficult, especially when everybody expects that we win here, it makes it not easy. it is a nice situation for the opponent, you think, if we get something, it is a big surprise and we have to perform and deliver and we did that. and in a way that is more than deserved to win the game. these are the rest of the results. elsewhere, arsenal were beaten by west ham — slowing their chase of a top four finish. there were important games at the bottom of the table too. fulham lost to burnley. cardiff and huddersfield played out a goalless draw that doesn't help either side. southampton‘s 2—1win over leicester city takes them out of the relegation zone. and watford came from behind to beat crystal palace 2—1. iran's quest to end a 15—year title drought since last winning the asian cup are on track.
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they are through to the last 16 of this year's competition after a 2—0 victory over vietnam on saturday. they took the lead in the 38th minute through sardar azmoun, who came out of international retirement for this tournament. his side were barely troubled by vietnam but did have their keeper to thank for this save early in the second half to keep out an equaliser. iran could have scored four or five more but for some poor finishing in abu dhabi. in the end, azmoun made it two in the 69th minute to send the iranians top of group d with six points. iraq are also through to the last 16 after they beat yemen 3—0. the iraqis were 2—0 up at half—time and alaa abbas made it 3—0 with his first international goal in injury time. it means that the final group match between bitter rivals iran and iraq will decide who tops the group. hosts saudi arabia took a step towards securing their knockout place with a 2—0 win over lebanon
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in group e. after losing their home test series to india for the first time this week, australia responded with a morale—boosting 34—run victory over the indians in the first one—day international in sydney. peter handscomb topscored with 73 off 61 balls as the aussies made 288 for five off their 50 overs. and india were restricted to 254 for nine. ms dhoni though became only the fifth indian batsman to reach 10,000 runs in odis. the second of the three match series is in adelaide on tuesday. andy murray's long—time rival rafael nadal says the briton‘s impending retirement was a decision he had to take because he is "suffering". murray made an emotional admission on friday that the forthcoming australian open could be his last tournament after struggling with a hip injury for the past 18 months. murray hopes to play on until wimbledon in june, a tournament where he won two of his three grand slams, but says he isn't sure he can play with the pain for that long.
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and the tributs have been pouring in from his long—term rivals, including the world number one, novak djokovic. he is a great champion, he's a friend of mine that i grew up with, ever since we were 11, 12 years old, we have known each other, and we've been rivals and played some epic matches all over the world so, you know, it's kind of sad to know that he might play his last australian open, but i do wish him all the best. i know he's father of two children, so, you know, there is a lot of things in life, i'm sure, to be gratefulfor. a sad time for british tennis. that's all the sport for now. thank you. that is bbc world news today. goodbye for now. hello. the weather has been quite
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cloudy across most of the uk, breaks in the cloud few and far between and we have seen some heavy rain particularly across western areas of scotland. that was the scene in argyll and bute this afternoon. this heavy rain will push southwards overnight into northern england, northern ireland by the end of the night. some rain in eastern england, eating into the north sea with time. quite a blustery night, a brisk north—westerly wind but mild with temperatures between eight and 10 celsius. looking at sunday, a couple of weather fronts will push southwards. the first is a weak cold front that will move across england and wales and the second one into northern scotland will briggs of heavy rain and that it marks the boundary between so much colder air pushing into the very far north. england and wales have a bit of patchy rain moving southwards through the day followed by some blustery showers in north—western areas and those showers and strong
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winds also affect scotland but some sunshine here with the far north seeing the show was emerging to give a lengthy spells of rain. a blustery day nationwide. those are strong winds will be with us all day. the temperatures, some big contrast, england and wales will state mild, 11-12d england and wales will state mild, 11—12d on sunday afternoon. cooler weather further north, cold for the northern isles and in shetland temperatures just 2 degrees, and likely to be a few sleet or snow showers moving in in the afternoon. much of the week ahead stays on the mild side for many of us. it will turn noticeably colder as we head towards their state nationwide. i will show you more on that in a moment. on monday, a chilly start with frost particularly in scotland and north—east england, some bright spells but fairly quickly westerly winds moving to western areas which will tend to be where we have the highest temperatures of eight or nine celsius. chile are in eastern scotla nd nine celsius. chile are in eastern scotland with temperatures in aberdeenjust three
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scotland with temperatures in aberdeen just three degrees. trasch chilly. in the middle of the week, more of a push from arctic air coming into the uk and ultimately that will replace the milder westerly winds we have. a sharp drop in temperatures, particularly getting to thursday with temperatures a little below normal for the time of year. at least it should be a bit sunnier. that is the latest weather. this is bbc world news. the headlines... the saudi teenager whose efforts to escape her family gained worldwide attention has arrived in canada where she's been granted asylum. the country's foreign minister described ra haf mohammed al-qunun as a very brave new canadian. in, paris three have died and many are injured after a massive gas explosion in a bakery. two firefighters died after being called to investigate a gas leak, a spanish tourist was also killed. a former mayor from texas has become the latest to declare he'll seek the democratic nomination to run in next year's us presidential election. julian castro served in the obama administration and is a third
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generation mexican immigrant. his grandfather emigrated to the us from mexico. another metre of snow is expected in central europe on sunday, which is already struggling with some of the worst
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