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tv   BBC News  BBC News  December 20, 2020 2:00am-2:31am GMT

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welcome to bbc news. i'm lewis vaughan jones. our top stories: new covid restrictions are now in place in london and surrounding areas — nearly 18 million people are affected. with a very heavy heart i must tell you we cannot continue with christmas as planned. in england, those living in tier 4 areas should not mix with anyone outside their own household at christmas. italy will go into a full national lockdown, to slow the rising number of coronavirus infections there. if president trump plays down the scale of a major cyber attack on us government agencies, and questions whether russia was responsible. and the uk government insists there'll be no brexit trade deal without a substantial shift in position from the eu.
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hello and welcome to the programme. tough new covid restrictions for parts of london and the southeast of england have come into effect. the measures were announced earlier by britain's prime minister boris johnson. millions of people have been told to stay at home, not meet in each others‘ homes and not travel outside their local area. the announcement comes after scientists said a new variant of covid—19 was spreading rapidly in london and the surrounding area. our political editor laura kuennsberg reports. literally i'd sat in my chair in floods of tears. and messaging my family, you know, what are we going to do? leslie nelsen was planning a family christmas round the table in norfolk. the spare beds are made up,
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the presents bought. she's spent the last two in hospital and fears this year might be her last. now her sister can't visit and her sons can't stay. itjust seems so unfair for somebody like me, i am terminally ill, i will not be here next christmas. people can think 0k, that's all right, we will celebrate christmas in the summer. i don't know if i'm going to be here in the summer. my sister is going to be sitting at home by herself hundred miles away. and her presents are under the tree. but rising alarm about the new variant of the virus has left number ten feeling there simply is no choice. christmas plans have to be dropped and a third of the population is back under limited lockdown. it is with a very heavy heart i must tell you we cannot continue with christmas as planned. in england those living in tier 4 areas should not mix with anyone outside their own household at christmas.
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though support bubbles will remain in place for those at particular risk of loneliness or isolation. we have a particularly fast—moving problem with increased numbers in the area going into tier 4. but a generalised increase across the country. on wednesday you told me and our viewers it would be "inhuman" to change the plans. and now that is exactly what you have done. aren't the millions of people whose plans have just been torn up, entitled to feel that you just left this too late? listen, we of course bitterly regret the changes that are necessary but alas, when the facts change, you have to change your approach. professor whitty, if someone is packing a bag right now, listening to and watching this, trying to leave the south—east by midnight tonight, what should they do? my short answer would be please unpack it at this stage. rules will only be relaxed for get—togethers on christmas day in scotland, too, and the next day,
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all of scotland's mainland will be under the tightest limits. travel to other parts of the uk will be banned. it makes me want to cry, as i'm sure listening to it, many of you want to cry. because i know how harsh this sounds. i know how unfair it is. but this virus is unfair. but the new variant of the disease is already in wales so, like the south—east of england, limited lockdown is coming into force. there are hundreds of people in wales who are suffering from this new variation and they are to be found in every single part of wales. and those figures are very likely to be an underestimation of the prevalence of this variation. in northern ireland, from boxing day, there will already be six weeks of tougher restrictions. but conversations are ongoing about changes to christmas plans. and the uk opposition had already called for a national rethink. i'm really frustrated because i raised this with the prime minister on wednesday and he dismissed that and went on to tell people to have a merry little
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christmas. only three days later to rip up their plans. and i think the british public is entitled to more decisive leadership than that. so plans are changing for millions. some rushing for a last—minute late—night trim before hairdressers across the south—east close again. less than a week until the strangest of christmases. the end of the year of bizarre traditions, few would care to repeat. laura kuenssberg, bbc news. in europe, italy has imposed new national restrictions to curb rising coronavirus infection rates over the christmas and new year period. the measures taken by rome come into effect on monday. people will only be allowed to leave their homes only once and are banned from leaving their region. to switzerland. on tuesday it'll start a ‘light‘ lockdown — bars a nd restau ra nts will shut for a month. people are advised to stay at home and not travel during the festive period. austria will go into its third lockdown of the pandemic starting on the 26th of december
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until the 24th of january. shops, restaurants and schools will be allowed to re—open the from the 18th of january. sweden for the first time is now recommending people wearface masks on public transport during peak hours. the number of people allowed to meet in restaurants has also been reduced. in france french president emmanuel macron is said to be stable after falling ill with covid—i9. his doctor says he's suffering from fatigue, coughing and stiffness. mr macron himself posted a video update on twitter, saying he'll continue working on brexit and other issues remotely. so let's get more on the situation in italy where the death toll from covid is the highest of anywhere in europe italy has announced a nationwide lockdown for much of the christmas and new year period, in an effort to slow the country's rising number of coronavirus infections. here's our rome correspondent, mark lowen. paolo maccionni has lived through many vintages. the third generation to run the century—old family restaurant built on the ruins of ancient rome. but christmas 2020 might bring it all to an end.
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his hopes for a crucial boost after the worst year they have had dashed with another lockdown. translation: my work is my life. i have been doing it for so many years. it passed from my grandfather to my father to me. if this goes on, we are likely to close. it is terrible. i don't see a future now. not much merriness before a two—week shutdown from christmas eve, though some shops can open for four of the days. there will be strict limits on movement and only two visitors allowed per household. it is an urgent attempt to slow infections, the second wave has torn through italy, crippling the poorer south this time, too. and leaving the country with the highest death toll in europe. visiting the grave today of herfriend, carmen, we met anita pauletto. she was infected on the same day but pulled through. carmen didn't make it.
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translation: she was a gift to me, and i miss her. we cannot lower our guard against this cruel virus. the new measures are horribly tight. i will be on my own at christmas. but this is a matter of life or death. christmas goes to the heart of italian culture — faith, family, food. restricting it is a decision no italian government takes lightly. but by doing so, this country hopes desperately to avoid a next year as agonising as this one. who could have believed that curbing christmas is what might finally bring comfort and joy? mark lowen, bbc news, rome. in the us, the first of millions of doses of moderna's covid—i9 vaccine are being prepared for shipping across the country. on friday night, the us food and drug administration granted the moderna injection emergency approvalfor use. this vaccine can be stored in normal freezers, at minus 20 degrees celsius.
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the authorities hope this will make it easier to support smaller and more rural areas. distribution of moderna vaccine has already begun. moderna has moved vaccine from their manufacturing sites to mckesson. who will serve as the central distributor. at mckesson distribution centers, boxes are being packed and loaded today. trucks will begin rolling out tomorrow from fedex and ups, delivering vaccines and kits to the american people across the united states. in other news, donald trump has dismissed allegations that russia was behind a major cyber espionage attack that penetrated several us government agencies. writing on twitter, he blamed the media for exaggerating the gravity of the situation and said everything was under control. let's get more on this with alex stamos. he's the director of the stanford internet observatory.
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thanks so much for coming onto the programme. let's start with that claimed by the president saying the media has exaggerated the scale of this attack. is that true? no, it is not true. in fact the media has not true. in fact the media has not played up the truth scale. this is possibly the most effective cyber attack in history with the possibility of 18,000 companies having access that would have been taken advantage of by the russian intelligence services. they did not actually go into all those companies and acts as data but the capability that had to do so was the capability that had to do so was incredible and unprecedented. that is quite a significant claim you are making, potentially the biggest in history into the circumstances in the us. in the simplest terms, what exactly
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has happened here? what happened was, the russian intelligence service was able to put a backdoor in a very popular piece of software called solarwinds orion. most consumers have never heard of it that it is quite popular in big companies and government agencies that have to run networks of many thousands of divisors. it allows you to touch all of those devices and manage them centrally. as a result, this was a backdoor piece of software that already had a huge amount of power on the networks. when the people who ran this network would pull an update, just like people update their phones, it brought the russian government into their network. that does not mean the russians actually did anything and that is one of the key things. of the 18,000 companies that could have been affected, how many were
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actually affected ? affected, how many were actually affected? that is a process that might take months 01’ even years because process that might take months or even years because there is nowhere near enough talent around the world to go after 80,000 organisations of this size. a couple of times you have said the russians and that is what the us state department have said as well. donald trump suggesting on twitter it might not be the russians but the chinese. i do not have access to the raw data people are using for retribution but a number of organisations have said they feel strongly this is russian intelligence, including the company who founded the programme and the united states including mike pompeo. —— attribution. this is totally consistent with the kind of activity have seen from the russians in the past and
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absolutely no evidence or make any credible voices that china had anything to do with that stop that has been very clear. thank you for coming on and explaining that. thank you. this is bbc news. our main headline this hour: new covid restrictions have come into effect in london and surrounding areas, nearly 18 million people are affected. president—elect joe biden has chosen congresswoman deb haaland to be the next secretary of interior. the new mexico democrat is a member of the pueblo of laguna tribe. if confirmed by the senate, she would be the first indigenous american to serve as a cabinet secretary. speaking earlier she said her nomination was a profound moment, given that a previous interior secretary once proclaimed that his goal was to "civilize or exterminate" native americans. iam i am proud to stand here. the
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president—elect and vice president—elect and vice president elect are committed toa president elect are committed to a diverse cabinet and i am honoured and humbled to accept the nomination for secretary of the nomination for secretary of the interior. going up in my mother's household made be fierce. my life has not been easy. i have struggled with homelessness and relied on food sta m ps homelessness and relied on food stamps and raise my child as a single mum. these struggles give me perspective so that i can help people to succeed. sarah deer is a native american scholar, advocate and attorney. she's also a citizen of the muscogee creek nation in oklahoma and a professor at the university of kansas. what is your reaction to this significant moment? it would be difficult to overstate but a significant moment this is, especially for native women and i think that a lot of folks have a perception that tribal
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governments are still operating in the past but the nomination ofa in the past but the nomination of a native person brings us into the present and visible. this high visibility appointment, it is just a profound move forward for a lot of us. you have met her, what kind of character issue and what will she bring to the role? she is very warm and thoughtful. they would be the first two words i would use. and i got a chance to visit her office in washington, dc, it felt more like a family room or a living room where she had discussions with people, not just a typical politician. what is in her in tray? what are you expecting from her in terms of policy? i think the bureau is only going to be one part of herjob. she oversees a number
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of sub agencies as well if she is to be confirmed but she will have authority over public land management, national parks and indian tribes and we hope that she would bring to this role and understanding of the planet needs right now, but the size says about the climate and many indigenous people have a profound connection to the environment and she will be consulting with those people if she makes decisions. and what other issue, covid—19? she makes decisions. and what other issue, covid-19? the tragedy right now is that native people are dying are very high rates of covid. very devastating in some communities, losing people every day and one of the sad pa rt every day and one of the sad part about that is that we are losing our language with these deaths, heritage. we have some
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very knowledgeable elders who have passed from this virus and so we are looking for leadership notjust from so we are looking for leadership not just from the interior department but from the federal government altogether in terms of getting those vaccines out into the reservations. thank you for coming on. a uk government source has said there will be no trade deal with the eu unless there's a "substa ntial shift" from brussels in the coming days. saturday was dubbed fish day by negotiators in brussels who are racing against the clock to try to solve one of the most thorny issues left on the table. it's understood a decision might be reached before christmas. but uk sources say it is increasingly likely the uk will leave with no deal. our political correspondent nick eardley has the details. the view in london is that there is going to have to be a decision in the next few days before christmas, and it is a big call for borisjohnson again over whether he signs up to this trade deal. there are two things in particular on which the talks are stuck.
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one is state subsidies. that is the extent to which governments can pour money into domestic industries to try to give them some sort of advantage in competition. both sides are worried about that because they don't want one undercutting the other. the second issue, one that has been an issue since the start of these negotiations, is fishing access, the extent to which eu boats can come into uk waters after the transition period ends. my understanding is there has been some movement between the two sides on fishing. they are coming slightly closer together. but the view in london tonight is that they are still quite far apart and the language coming from a government source tonight is interesting. they say there has not been enoug flexibility, not necessarily the negotiators themselves, but from but from some eu states. the second thing
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they're saying is that if there isn't a substantial shift in the next few days, this is going to end up with no deal. now, when you get to this point in a negotiation there is always some hard negotiating going on. both sides are really pushing this to the wire to try to get exactly what they want. but it's not completely clear to me tonight that there is the political space on either side of the channel or the political will to get this done in the next few days. nigel nelson's the political editor for the newspapers the people and the sunday mirror here in the uk. well, at the moment, ifind it almost inconceivable that we would go out of the middle of covid without a deal. but all the evidence is pointing towards the fact that this is exactly what is going to happen, and it will be an absolute shambles if we do.
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i live down in kent, i am expecting the county to be gridlocked when there are 7000 lorries to be backed up to dover. they have not much longer to get things sorted out. the eu tends to like to take these things to the wire, but we still have these major sticking points. the line seems to be it is actually the eu that still has to budge. that's certainly the line being picked up by some of the papers. what do you make of that? i imagine they both have to budge. this is a compromise thing. the whole point about brexit was that right from the start, brexit was incompatible with the principles of europe. and the kinds of things that were on offer to us, such as the norway—style access to single market, that wasn't brexit, because we would have had to accept free movement of people. that was an absolute eu principle, it was their red line. we could have had a turkey—type deal and joined the customs union, but that would have stopped us making trade deals elsewhere.
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so at no point were the things on offer compatible with brexit from our point of view, and to get those things changed, that was not compatible with european principles. so in a sense, we have not come a huge way forward there. we do have to compromise. so if there is a free trade deal at the end of it, an awful lot of tory brexiteers will not like it, but even so, that's going to be the price of not having the chaos that will ensue if we go out on world trade organisation terms. if we do go out on world trade organisation terms, how much of a failure do you think it will be? i think it will be total. and i think this is the point where the british people may well turn against the whole concept. there are contingency plans in place, and when you hear the kind of contingency plans, you realise what kind of chaos we are in for. so there are warnings out there of supermarkets not having fresh food on their shelves,
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we will have the gridlock that i have mentioned, with the lorries not being able to get through because they will be stuck at dover for several days. there are questions over whether medicines will get through, that they could take three months to travel across just from europe. so what's going to happen, i think, is that if all those things happen, and that is the awfulness of a no—deal, if those things happen, people will turn around and say hang on, i am not sure i voted for this, and i didn't vote for not being able to buy tomatoes in the supermarket. and boris johnson could be in severe trouble. nigel nelson there. now, it is one of the biggest lotteries in the world, el goodo or the fat one. millions of people in spain take part hoping to wind prizes that will change lives. the draw takes place on tuesday ina pandemic the draw takes place on tuesday in a pandemic doesn't seem to
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have dampened enthusiasm, as tim allman explains. this year, perhaps more than any other year, people could do with a little luck in their lives. hundreds of people queueing up for hours at this kiosk in madrid. it is considered the luckiest kiosk in the country, selling lottery tickets for more than a century. it is a dream for the end of this year. people want to leave misery behind, poverty, idon't people want to leave misery behind, poverty, i don't know. everybody has a different wish. some want a house, some want to help the family, or whatever. el gordo dates back more than 200 years. the prize is bigger, more than 2 billion euros. but there are usually lots and lots of winds. —— 2 million. hence the long queues, although the shadow of coronavirus still hangs over the proceedings.
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translation: well, i have been waiting in line for two hours and the security measures were respected and a lot less at the end, a bit more at the start. the truth is that when those that no police or security personnel to ensure social distancing. like many countries in europe, infection numbers are rising, restrictions are being tightened. but despite it all, el gordo remains a real festive tradition. tim allman, bbc news. now, before we go, let's show you some pictures of a violent confrontation took ice in a zoo in russia. on one side, this pounder, called ru yi, and on the other side, a snowman. zookeepers in moscow used it as a test for the animals, for some reason, placing carrots and branches in its body. ru yi used his formidable martial a rts used his formidable martial arts to destroy the snowman, and then was unable to eat his
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dinner. there we go. right, a quick reminder of the top story now. world health organization says it is in contact with british officials over the emergence of a new variant of coronavirus, thought to be up to 70% more infectious. the british government says the mutation is now the dominant strain in london. it has imposed stringent new lockdown measures on the capital and surrounding areas. it plans to relax covid rules over christmas have largely been reversed. that's about it from me as always. there's plenty more online on the website, bbc .com, and if you are online, then do get in touch with me as well on social media. this is bbc news.
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hello. there's some more rain in the forecast over the next few days. that rain coming on top of what we already had over the last week or so. we've had so much rain that in some places flood warnings are in force. you can check the bbc websites to see if flood warnings are affecting your area. we've got low pressure in charge at the moment, sitting up to the north and feeding showers in from the west. some of these showers continue to be pretty heavy through the day on sunday, really focusing in across western areas. further east through eastern scotland and england, not as many showers. showers will become fewer and further in between for a time during sunday afternoon. at the same time this band of heavy rain will swing into northern ireland and into the far west of scotland.
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it will be quite blustery here as well, with gusts of 40, maybe 50 miles an hour or more in the most exposed spots. temperatures just a touch down on saturday's values for some of us. highs between 8 and 11. during sunday night we will see these heavy showers pushing across northern areas down towards the south. loud and persistent rain will push into southern england, wales, the midlands and east anglia by the end of the night. in the southern parts, temperatures were declining as night wears on, 11 degrees in plymouth by 1:00 in the morning. a bit chillier further north. that sets us up for monday. as this frontal system continues to bring rain across parts of england and wales, some of that rain will get into southern scotland, but to the south of it, we will be feeding in some pretty mild air, whereas further north, some chilly air working its way in. so some temperature contrasts through the day on monday. rain pushing east out of eastern england, i think quite early on on monday, but some continuing across northern england, up into scotland. something a little bit brighter into northern ireland but you can see that temperature contrast, 6 degrees in glasgow, 1a in london, well above the norm for this time of year. as we head deep into the week, another area of low pressure
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will bring more rain for some on wednesday. that will then start to slide away south, high pressure will build in, it will be drierjust in time for christmas, but it will also start to feel quite chilly for all of us. single digit temperatures by thursday and friday, and in most places it will be drier, with some spells of sunshine.
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this is bbc news.
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the headlines: eighteen million people in and around london are entering a new lockdown, to help curb a variant of the coronavirus that spreads very quickly, though it's not thought to be more deadly. the prime minister said he made the decision with a heavy heart so close to christmas. president trump has dismissed allegations that russia was behind a major cyber espionage attack that penetrated several us government agencies as well as organisations around the world. mr trump alleged on twitter that the attack wasn't as bad as reported in what he called the fake news media. a uk government source has warned there won't be a post—brexit trade deal unless there's a "substantial shift" from the eu. a senior brussels source insisted it was in both sides' interests to reach a fair deal. there are less than two weeks until the transition period ends.


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