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tv   HAR Dtalk  BBC News  December 24, 2020 4:30am-5:01am GMT

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a brexit deal within striking distance — the signs from london and brussels point to an agreement now on the table, with an announcement expected on thursday morning. british cabinet ministers were summoned for a conference call with the prime minister to discuss what is on the verge of being agreed. president trump issues full pardons to his former campaign manager paul manafort convicted of lying under oath to congress. he has also pardoned longtime fixer roger stone who was convicted of lying under oath to congress. six million more people in england face the toughest level of coronavirus restrictions, as hospital admissions surge to their highest levels since april. from december 26, the government is extending to four restrictions across much of the south and east of england.
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it is about half past four in the morning, time for hardtalk. welcome to hardtalk‘s look back at the highs and lows of 2020. the lows, well, all of us have had to learn to live with the reality of a global pandemic. it has changed all of our lives. plenty of other stuff happened in 2020 but this year will forever be defined by covid—19. this is my home turf, the hardtalk studio. for than half of 2020, i couldn't sit here.
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covid—i9 brought with it lockdown and shut downs around the world and the studio? well, there were suddenly off—limits. 0ur challenge was to ensure covid didn't force hardtalk of air. all we needed was a safe space, some lights, a couple of cameras and a simple laptop. we continue to ask the challenging questions, more necessary now than ever. starting with the pandemic itself. where did this virus come from? how did it spread across the world? it was first discovered in wuhan but i can't say it's originated from wuhan. it can be found in some countries which have very little connection with china. and also can be found in the
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global people who have never been to china so we cannot say it originated from china. there is no doubt that the first case was in china. i'm wondering why you're telling me that it spread all over the world and people who have courted have never been to china, that is clear because it has become a pandemic but the question that matters so much crosstalk where did it start? i think this question is still up for a scientist to decide. i say covid—i9 is demonstrated the enormous fragility of our world. we are on our needs with the microscopic virus and in my opinion, the main reason is because countries were not able to come together and face covid—i9 in a close coordination. let's talk about the president of the united states of america, a man who you know better than i has in the course of nine months, mused about where coronavirus has come from, he has mused about how to treat it including
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thoughts about using disinfectants. he has directed some of his critiques that you personally, saying that you, his chief adviser on the virus has made, quote, a lot of mistakes. do you think that leadership from the very top has been an important problem in the us response? i mean obviously when you have leadership that is consistent on their message, that does make a difference. but we have to work with what we have and what we have is people like myself and my colleagues out there trying to get the correct information to the american public. the damage done by covid isn't just public. the damage done by covid isn'tjust measured in lives lost but also the economic havoc caused. here in the financial heart of the city of london, they are talking about the most dramatic economic contraction in 300 yea rs economic contraction in 300 years and that means businesses going bust and thousands of jobs lost. and the uk isn't
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alone. this is a massive hit to the worldwide economy. this is not a spanish economic crisis, this is a worldwide crisis. it doesn't matter how good your economy was at the beginning of the crisis, where for example in spain were growing above eu average. we were creating jobs, we we re average. we were creating jobs, we were making much—needed reforms but we have all been impacted by this crisis. this is what we call a systemic shock. you and your government put aside hundreds of billions of euros in a national economic recovery plan, many french people are wondering, where on earth this money is coming from? first of all, that is a choice that has been made by all the major member states of the eu because we didn't have any other choice but to support our economy, and i really think it was the right choice. then it was the right choice. then it will be funded by debt, must
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be very clear about that. and that will be the necessity at some stage to reimburse the french that but it will be later. the reality is this is actually going to be as crushing a blow for the emerging markets and the problem for many emerging markets and developing countries, especially in africa, is that they are so dependent on a few commodities, on trade, for recovery that evenif on trade, for recovery that even if they did manage to contain the virus and prevents the extensive damage that is likely given they have few resources to bail out firms and people, there is the problem of what happens after. how does the recovery take place and they simply don't have the resources for a substantial stimulus. not all the covid news was bad. inside research la bs news was bad. inside research labs around the world, scientists work to produce affect it, safe vaccines with unprecedented speed. by the end
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of the year, mass immunisation had begun in the uk and the us while china and russia rolled out their own vaccination programs. success though depends on public confidence. there is a mounting scepticism evidenced in the united states toa evidenced in the united states to a certain extent in the uk and other countries as well, from members of the public who no longer trust the government, the scientists enough to believe that a vaccine will necessarily be safe. the poll suggested maybe 50% of the public might not take it. that is going to kill our effort to eliminate covid—i9. is going to kill our effort to eliminate covid-19. well, if it gets worse, it will kill it. if 50% of the population are not willing to get the vaccine and rehab on that is safe and effective, that would be a disaster, you are silly right. it is not just disaster, you are silly right. it is notjust here, the vaccine hesitancy, the anti— vaccine hesitancy, the anti— vaccine movement is also rife and present in africa, asia, latin america, we have to
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counter that. three words, black lives matter resonated through the united states and across the world in 2020. the movement wasn't new but it gained a new energy, a new urgency after george floyd, a black man died under the knee ofa black man died under the knee of a white police officer in minneapolis last summer. protests spread across the us and then around the world. race and then around the world. race and racism became a massive issue in the us presidential election. right now, we were all shaken by the eight minutes and 46 seconds of the public execution of george floyd and it shook people who had never, to had their ears closed to folks in different directions.
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he was murdered by a police officer while three other police officers observed. that is absolutely wrong and quite frankly, if george floyd looks like me, he would be alive today and that is a real problem. barack obama has said that what he has seen is a far more representative cross section of america out on the streets this time than he has seen streets this time than he has seen before, including he says going all the way back to the civil rights campaigns of the 19605. civil rights campaigns of the 1960s. do you see that broader cross—section of people at work right now? obviously, anyone who looks at the crowds can see the difference. lots of young white people who are involved in an and older ones too, of people who motivated to get out here and do something about these issues. it all started in a sense before the shootings occurred with the election of
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trump. while america's racial wounds reopened, 270 something white men fought a surreal campaignfor white men fought a surreal campaign for the white house, defined by covid and mutual contempt. 1 billion one half dollars from china. not true. spending 10 minutes in office on air force to make. you cannot look at their selection no matter where you stand personally, you cannot look at the selection and feel good about it. you cannot say to your kids in the next generation, this is how they should be waged and this is how they should be won. and you can't be an example for the world if you are such a mess domestically and i believe it isa domestically and i believe it is a mess and i believe it is a problem, and i believe that donald trump and joe biden should make a commitment, and we know it is either going to be the first of the last question in that very first debate, will you accept the election result? and i pray to god the answer is yes. what if it is not? then god help us. if
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there is a fair election, he will absolutely accept defeat andi will absolutely accept defeat and i would encourage him to do that. if the election is stolen then i think we should go to court. would you just accept that there are some potentially dangerous, maybe even some dark days ahead for american democracy? there are if joe biden is elected. if donald trump is re—elected, i think our economy will come back, america will remain strong and will keep having world peace. donald trump has been very transparent and i think he's a great american and world leader. you think joe great american and world leader. you thinkjoe biden in his coming four years will be able to undo all of the perception change that there has been about the united states ? has been about the united states? these things don't change dramatically but certainly the mere fact of biden being present and appointing the people he will appointing the people he will appoint and having the policies he will announce, will give us a window in which to act. we
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need to seize it. the us presidential election intensified a troubling question, just how healthy is democracy? specifically, is the internet and the ever expanding power of digital technology enabling authoritarian leaders to undermine genuine democracy? i think what you're seeing both in the philippines and in the united states is very similar to what is happening in many democracies around the world, including the uk. and as the role of technology. facebook is our internet in the philippines. there are 71 million filipinos. we spent the most time on the internet and on social media globally and i think it is the fifth year running. that is their number on socials. what is happening is this astroturf type manufacturing of consensus, the manipulation of the public on
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mass scale using facebook as happened here in the philippines. you asked about the pop polarity of president duterte, that is partly buoyed bya duterte, that is partly buoyed by a propaganda machine we got clu b by a propaganda machine we got club for exposing 2016. maria, i will have to interrupted because what you are suggesting is because he doesn't work anymore. if you're talking about, quote unquote, manipulated public opinion as you have just done, manipulated public opinion as you havejust done, then manipulated public opinion as you have just done, then you are undermining and delegitimising the notion that the people have a right to choose their governors. if you are saying their opinions are somehow fake or false, then where is democracy? that is exactly what i am saying. democracy is essentially dead and part of what killed it our social media platforms that have become behavioural modification systems. there are governments both authoritarian and genuinely democratic who are now united in a conviction that they need a much greater
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level of surveillance of their populations. is that in your view taking the historical perspective, a power that we should right now be happy to invest in our government? well, i'm not against surveillance per se. i think it is a very important technological tool that can help humanity fight against this epidemic and against this epidemic and against epidemics, and we need to use it. but we need to use it responsibly and carefully so we don't end up losing our freedoms in order to get protection from epidemics. the first time in history, it is becoming feasible to monitor everybody all the time and not just what we do but even what we feel. like we already know that corporations and governments can no that you are now watching this show. and they can, and if you watch bbc hardtalk, they can get from
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that all kinds of things about your political views, artistic taste, even about your personality. but this is still limited. they don't know yet what you are actually feeling as you're watching us but once you have under the skin surveillance, you can know that. if you wear a bionic bracelet that constantly monitors your body temperature, your heart rate, your blood pressure and other biometric data, it can know if you have a fever but also know if you are angry or if you're joyful or if you're bored. to go under the skin collect biometric data, analyse it and understand people better than they understand themselves, this i believe is maybe the most important event of the 21st century. the moments when a system of knows me better than i know myself. if 2020 but american democracy
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under enormous strain it also asked questions of the world's most powerful of authoritarian governments. can repression eliminates dissent? vladimir putin's most high—profile opponent in russia was poisoned. ‘s narrow escape from death surely a chilling signal to all opponents of vladimir putin. in china, xijingping took a tough line against the pro—democracy movement in hong kong, imposing new security laws in the territory. if you come to hong kong right now you see that life goes on as always, and nobody is inferior, nobody is fleeing the country, quite the contrary,... i think you may be mistaken, i think people are fleeing the country. they have every confidence, confidence in the government. as you know, nathan law, one of the leaders of the movement for
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democracy and fundamental reform in hong kong has fled the country, because in his words, he says what we are seeing is the start of a bloodied cultural revolution, and he cannot continue his political activities in your territory. i think it is a political ploy. he is free to go and free to come back, there is no law against him as such and nobody persecuting him, or prosecuting him, but he would like to make use of what he is doing is a political ploy. the secret police agency just started to operate in hong kong, and we still don't know how far they will go, how many political activists they will arrest maybe one day they could use the national security law to arrest or the leading figures in hong kong, sol think this is not something that we fantasise, the threat does exist. the respected
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institution which does polling in russia month on month, at the moment, they say that their polls show he has about 60% support amongst the russian people. do you accept that? it's tricky to do polls in any authoritarian state. is like trying to make polls in nazi germany, everybody loves hitler, if you are saying no, you will be killed the next day. right now as we're talking, number of us are in jail, and possibly facing criminal charges, there is no official charges yet but there we re official charges yet but there were two searches of his apartment and the cops were talking to him because this is about him organising our rights. no, idon't about him organising our rights. no, i don't approve vladimir putin when they make a poll. give me a yes or no
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answer. do you believe you can answer. do you believe you can a peace deal with vladimir putin that gives you back all of your territories, including crimea? so if you fail, and your term as president, will you walk away, and seedier people do you know what? i failed, away, and seedier people do you know what? ifailed, i can no longer represent you.
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three years ago, i went to venezuela to see for myself one confrontation between an authoritarian government and a determined opposition. this yeari determined opposition. this year i was able to talk freely to one of my interviewees whomake previous words we were shouted from a prison cell. i spent four years in a military prison, then i spent a year and military prison, then i spent a yearand a military prison, then i spent a year and a half under house arrest, and then i spent another year and a half in the spanish embassy while i was under asylum. i never wanted to leave venezuela but the circumstances at the moment led me to take the decision which i did not want to take for many yea rs, to did not want to take for many years, to go out and work towards the freedom of venezuela from exile, it's
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something that many venezuelans have been forced to do. you are in madrid, nicholas madero is still in the presidential palace. your capacity to engineer change is now lower thanit engineer change is now lower than it has ever been before. have you lost her? no, i have never lost hope. and as i said before, we fall down and we rise up again because this is about our lives, and they will not beat us because we will not surrender, and i can assure you that, and that's not me saying this, it's millions of people that are committed to this fight until the end. this year will forever be remembered for covid—19, but in truth, it has been very farfrom covid—19, but in truth, it has been very far from the worst pandemic the world has ever seen, and thanks to the rollout of vaccines, hopefully next year we will put it behind us. but perhaps we should see the coronavirus as part of a wider wake—up call. 0ur relationship
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with the natural world is increasingly fragile, and unstable, and you can see it in our ecosystems and in climate change, and the consequences will be with us long after the virus has been teamed. the figures suggest that there are around 170,000 chimpanzees in the wild today, and at the turn of the 20th century it is believed there were more than 1 million. do you think we humans have completely failed chimpanzees, and so many other species? we are certainly failing them, but in the same way we are failing our own future generations, of human beings. we have been for a long time stealing the future of our children, grandchildren, we're still stealing it today, we have terribly harmed this planet, this has led to the climate crisis, which if we don't get together around the world and do something about it
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soon, will lead to the end of life on this planet as we know it and that includes asked. it's our disrespect of nature, of the natural world and of animals that has led to this pandemic, this covid—19 pandemic, this covid—19 pandemic, and it led to climate change. let's face it, as best we know at the moment, this whole pandemic is a result of the fact that we were abusing the fact that we were abusing the natural world, perhaps trafficking animals from different parts of that world alive, into markets where we we re alive, into markets where we were mixing them in an unnatural situation, and this disease has crossed into humans which is something we have feared for a long time. how far do you take this thought? it strikes me the danger is that a lot of people watching this programme around the world will have lost their jobs, programme around the world will have lost theirjobs, will find their own families in an economic crisis, and it's fine for this guy he was obsessed with nature to talk about seizing the positives, but frankly, the negatives are
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overwhelming, and i need myjob back, i need the economy to kick start again, i need, frankly, the old ways to come back, so don't tell me that they can't come back. i am with you all the way until you got too old ways. i am saying here is an opportunity to generate new ways, new jobs, is an opportunity to generate new ways, newjobs, new economies, here is an opportunity to say we can create a more sustainable existence for ourselves and the species on this planet, we have the knowledge and technology, and we have been forced into an opportunity to think about taking that, and here, we have an opportunity to put in play all of those jobs, to generate those economies, retrain people so those economies, retrain people so that they can experience a similar quality to life they had before, but one which is not a result of damaging the very world that they want to prosper in. let's be honest, many of us will be glad to see the back of 2020, but let's and
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with a positive thought. this year has taught us valuable lessons about the importance of preparedness, priorities, and strategic planning. maybe next year we can take a better path, happy new year. hello there. wednesday brought another wet day, particularly to england and wales. and at one point, we had over 50 flood warnings in force. now, i'm sure as the rain eases off, the number of flood warnings through christmas eve will gradually begin to drop away, but still the potential for a few problems. there is the rain bearing cloud, then, we had across england and wales, but my attention right now is being drawn to this area of cloud just running in across the north
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of scotland, because this is going to bring some of you snow. yes, there could be a few centimetres lying on the ground in places, along with the risk of icy stretches as we head into the first part of christmas eve. a few showers also running down north sea coast, the irish seacoast, as our main band of rain continues to edge out—of—the—way. it will be cold, mind you, a cold start to christmas eve, a widespread frost certainly for scotland, northern england, probably northern ireland, and perhaps into the north midlands and north wales as well. now, it will be a cold day for christmas eve, these chilly northerly winds diving their way southwards and bringing showers down north sea coasts. they will continue to fall as snow in land across parts of scotland, perhaps over the north york moors, might even see an odd flake mixed in with these showers across eastern england at times. but away from the east coast where it will be windy and cold, should be plenty of sunshine, but those temperatures way lower than they have been for a number of days now, 3—4 in scotland, may be 11—5 for parts of eastern england.
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and as we head into christmas day, there will be a widespread and sharp frost, so certainly a chilly start to the big day. that might be quite a nice sunrise to start the day. best of the sunshine across england and wales, but cloud will quickly building across the north west, and ultimately, we will see some rain move its way into northwest scotland, where it will be turning milder, as south—westerly winds eventually pushing in, highs of 9 in stornoway. best of the sunshine, then, hanging on across parts of southern and eastern england, but cold, 11—5 degrees celsius. beyond that, boxing day, and sunday, the second half of the weekend, we've got this area of rain pushing southwards across the country. given that the ground is saturated, that rain is likely to lead to further localised flooding with wintry showers following the main band of rain through. it's notjust rain that could cause issues, it's also going to become very windy, gusts could reach 50—70 mph, maybe even stronger than that. so there is the potential for some disruptive winds as well this weekend, and beyond that into monday, still windy for northern ireland. further east, a mixture of rain, sleet and maybe some snow.
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a very warm welcome to bbc news, our top stories: this is bbc news with the latest headlines for viewers in the uk and around the world. my name is mike embley. a brexit deal within striking distance — the signs from london and brussels point to an agreement now on the table. president trump issues full pardons to his former campaign manager paul manafort convicted of lying during the russia investigation. he has also pardoned longtime fixer roger stone who was convicted of lying under oath to congress. and the designer stella mccartney leads tributes to stella tennant who has passed away suddenly at the age of 50. we will hear why she had such an impact on the industry. chinese investigators are investigating alibaba for allegations of monopoly practices. some children are a little bit worried about becoming christmas. and father
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christmas is reassuring

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