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tv   BBC News  BBC News  December 27, 2020 1:00am-1:31am GMT

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this is bbc news. this is bbc news, the headlines: a very warm welcome if you're cases of the more contagious watching here in the uk variant of covid—19 or around the world. first identified in the uk have i'm rich preston. our top stories: been confirmed in several the new coronavirus variant european countries, including that first emerged in england spain, sweden and france. is spreading across many the variant strain has also european countries been found injapan and canada. and has now been confirmed some eu nations are now rolling out their mass vaccination in canada and japan. programme 24 hours early. us federal agents search us federal agents a house on the outskirts have searched a house on the outskirts of nashville of nashville as part of their investigation as part of their investigation into the christmas day into the christmas day explosion in the city. explosion in the city. local police say they have identified at least one person of interest connected to the motor home vehicle that exploded in the city centre. i'm explosion in the city. confident in the ten that we have i'm confident in the ten that we have that would get to the bottom of this. we will find the russian president, vladimir putin, has paid tribute to the cold war spy out the story of this individual, or individuals. george blake, who has died in moscow, aged 98. blake was a soviet double agent president putin pays who worked for the british tribute to the former mi6 officer and soviet spy, secret service. he escaped to russia george blake, who has died from a london aged 98 in moscow. prison in 1966. and, a fast—food joint, roman—style —
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archaeologists unearth an ancient takeaway restaurant in pompeii. the new variant of coronavirus first detected in the uk, has been found in canada. health authorities in the province of ontario say two cases have been identified in a couple with no known travel history, or high risk contacts. the variant strain has also been found injapan and several european countries. it comes as the rollout of the coronavirus vaccine picks up momentum. the bbc‘s tim allman reports. time is of the essence in the fight against covid—19. here at this nursing home in north—east germany, the vaccination programme has begun,
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a day early. health workers said they weren't prepared to wait for the european union's co—ordinated roll—out, which was due to begin on sunday. clearly, for governments all around the world, it could be a real game—changer. translation: this really is a happy christmas message. at this moment, lorries with the first vaccines are on the road all over europe, all over germany. this vaccine is the crucial key for defeating the pandemic. it's the key for us getting back our lives. but as the vaccine spreads, in vans and lorries across the continent, so, too, it seems does the new variant strain of the virus. it was first identified here in the uk nearly two weeks ago, leading to tough new restrictions for millions of people. but despite some countries effectively closing their borders to travellers from britain, the virus has been found in parts of western europe and further afield.
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japan and canada have confirmed positive tests. the new form of the virus is potentially far more infectious, but at this stage, it doesn't seem to be any more severe or, crucially, any more deadly. the question is, will the new vaccines be effective in combating it? it happens every year, for example, with influenza virus. we change the vaccine for influenza pretty much every year because of the evolution of influenza from year—to—year. the concern would be a similar type thing might happen, then, with this coronavirus. mass vaccinations are due to begin across europe on sunday. and some additional positive news coming out of britain — reports the so—called oxford vaccine may be approved within a matter of days. a little hope and optimism as the new year approaches. tim allman, bbc news. and that vaccine mentioned in tim allman‘s report, developed by oxford university and astrazeneca
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will be rolled out from the 4th of january, that's according to a report in the sunday telegraph. the british government hopes to give the first dose of either the oxford or the pfizer/biontech vaccine to 2 million people over the next two weeks, the newspaper says. the oxford vaccine is expected to be approved by medical regulators in next few days. political commentator jo phillips says the plan is a very wlecome news. we all need a bit of good news and this is encouraging. it should be available from january the fourth and the government wants to million people vaccinated within a fortnight. this is a much easier drug, if you like, because it does not have to be kept at such low temperatures. as far as kept at such low temperatures. as farasi kept at such low temperatures. as far as i know, i think you only need one of these so hopefully, if this comes online as soon asjanuary hopefully, if this comes online as soon as january the fourth, what they will do is going to
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put stadiums, school halls and other centres in to use so they can bea other centres in to use so they can be a mass vaccination is the good news if it comes off. much of the uk has spent the day getting used to tougher coronavirus restrictions. millions of people are now in the highest tier in england, tier 4, and there are — in effect — lockdowns in wales, mainland scotland and northern ireland. here's daniela relph. harsher restrictions have returned and it shows. christmas day done, the centre of southampton is empty as new areas of southern and eastern england now find their lives restricted by even tighter rules. it is very, very quiet, very unusual for this time of year. it would be nice if it would all come to an end and we could all go back to normal. but elsewhere, a familiar look to boxing day. the prime minister want people to think carefully a nd minister want people to think carefully and avoid sales crowds. in leeds, still in t3,
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the prospects of a bargain drew some people out. i always go to the south on boxing day for the bargains andl the south on boxing day for the bargains and i don't like doing it online so i want to support the shops and enjoying it so far butjust a shame we cannot go for a coffee or a glass of wine. a lot quieter than we are expecting, a bit. but we got what we needed and it was nice and the staff looked not as festive as well, so, definitely a different feeling. there is one activity the heartiest despite restrictions. open water swimming, here in somerset, has been a lockdown comfort for many. addictive, something for your mental health and keep your balance and reset from a busyjob, just perfect. across the uk, harsher rules are now in force. mainland scotland has moved into its toughest level of restrictions and northern ireland along with wales, is now in full lockdown.
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in the us, the willingness of americans to take the coronavirus vaccine has jumped since the first two were authorised by the fda, and health care workers and nursing home residents began to receive the shots. fresh surveys suggest attitudes have shifted, and a clear majority are now eager to be vaccinated, although resistance has not entirely vanished. mohamed younis is editor in chief at gallup, the international polling company. he joins us from washington. thank you very much and good evening to you in washington, dc. out are these numbers changing what do these latest polls show? well, as the pole endedin polls show? well, as the pole ended in november, 63% of americans are now willing to ta ke americans are now willing to take a vaccine at no cost approved by the fda. we saw with the astrazeneca trials fly down where one of the participants had an adverse reaction, back in september, that number dropped down to 50%
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of americans so at this point most are willing to take the vaccine at no cost and it is a backup eventually to where we started injuly backup eventually to where we started in july with 66% backup eventually to where we started injuly with 66% of americans. although there are interesting political differences. what drove some of the original scepticism towards the original scepticism towards the vaccine? i think the timing of the poll was important and important to keep in mind that entity in addition to the trial slow down, we asked about confidence in vaccine across the world and what we find is that in higher income countries, they tend to have higher scepticism about the safety of vaccines so i think that coupled with a few state m e nts that coupled with a few statements made by both the local parties, both president trump and kamala harris really impacted peoples perception of the safety of the vaccine. what about particular demographic groups, any showing interesting changes? absolutely. with younger and the elderly, most likely to say they are willing to ta ke
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likely to say they are willing to take the vaccine. those 18-44 rs 68%, to take the vaccine. those 18—44 rs 68%, above the national average and those 65 and older, 74% say they are willing to take the vaccine and men are slightly more likely, 66%, then women, at 60% but the interesting differences along political lines with 75% of democrats today say they will be willing to take the vaccine was 50% of republicans will say the same. and what about the impact of high—profile people getting the vaccine, joe biden, his wife et cetera? our poll predates those events but it is important particularly on the right where we see less willingness to take the vaccine that vice—president and, for example, took a publicly and improvement if you are rooting for confidence in the vaccine to be had in the democratic side as well with only 25% of people not willing to do so — — vice president mike pence. what has been proven is the polling
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injuly with has been proven is the polling in july with a has been proven is the polling injuly with a covert has been proven is the polling in july with a covert vaccine is that the public is paying close attention to news and reporting about the vaccine —— covid and it is impacting their perceptions about the safety and willingness to take it. briefly, do you think the numbers will shift in favour of the vaccine? i think that they most likely will for one reason and we know that most americans get their information from sources they tend to agree with ida logically and also from social media and those they trust and no, friends and family. as more americans see friends and family and frontline workers taking the vaccine, it is only likely to increase trust in that but we cannot bejudging increase trust in that but we cannot be judging that and we will see in the data to come. thank you for being with us. officers investigating after a parked rv exploded in downtown nashville on friday say they're following hundreds of leads. the motorhome broadcast a warning minutes before it
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blew up, injuring three people. no deaths have been confirmed but authorities are examining tissue found at the blast site which they believe could be human remains. tanya dendrinos has the details. this is the scene that's left nashville reeling, an explosion early on christmas morning, leaving widespread destruction and so many unanswered questions. the most pressing, of course, who is responsible and why? i am confident in the team we have that we will get to the bottom of this, that we will find of the story of this individual, or individuals, we don't know right now, but this ultimate scrooge who, on christmas morning, instead of spreading joy and cheer, decided to spread devastation and destruction. the multi—agency response is being led by the fbi, investigators working around—the—clock to piece together exactly what unfolded. we've mentioned, we have over 500
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investigative leads. we're following up on every one of those, so there area number of individuals that we're looking at. so, at this point, we're not prepared to identify any single individual. while officers wouldn't be drawn on the persons of interest, they did scour this home for the hunt for clues on saturday. there's also a message reassurance for residents, left on edge after the shocking incident. nashville is safe. we feel and know that we have no known threats at this time against our city. we have been in communication and feel pretty good about that. still, it's clear no one in this city will rest until whoever is responsible is brought to justice. tanya dendrinos, bbc news. we can now speak to freddie o'connell, a nashville council member who represents the area affected by the explosion. thank you for making the time for us. what is the picture
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likely national at the moment? is still a lot of confusion, and a lot of unanswered questions and you heard from that report, authorities here, investigators, not going even so far as to officially declare a person of interest. they are obviously following up leads. plenty of local reports have suggested that they have wa rra nts to suggested that they have warrants to search places and meanwhile, the question was quietly a residential corridor as well so authorities have established a hotline. currently at city hall, just a couple of blocks the site. if i we re couple of blocks the site. if i were to walk a block south, there is a multi— block radius in downtown nashville that federal authorities are not allowing anyone to enter. residents, property owners, business owners and employees cannot enter this radius around the block site. it is half,
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waking up christmas morning, displaced from homes and not able to return to check water to check pipes bursting because we have very cool temperatures in nashville. many side effects, even connecting tour this call tonight prove difficult because the bombing occurred right near a telecom provider so we have widespread telecommunications outages in nashville and surrounding areas right now. i was going to ask about that because that included knocking out emergency services communications and are they back up and running? everything is coming back online slowly and in nashville particularly, the communications centre has been off—line so we do have a online programme hub where authorities have guided people to use and this was asked to be used and
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the airport was closed down as well because the communications issues. the impact of this, we are all relieved they have not been any confirmed fatalities or life—threatening injuries but there is still a considerable impact on peoples ability to even think about how to report issues around the community. it is having a significant impact in the here and now, more than 20 for hours later. finally, it has been a tough yearfor later. finally, it has been a tough year for nashville, a tornado, coronavirus, 400 to palatability is and what is the mood like at the moment in nashville? i think there are many people hoping that 2021 will be a better year and if we can just close the book on 2020, we can start to see light at the end of the novel. again, as you have reported on the programme, national residents have begun receiving the whip vaccine and we do have providers and first responders
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— just receiving the vaccine, and that is a good thing. again, some sense of relief that this is not something that seems to have done much more than property damage right now. i think people are looking for every bit of silver lining they canfind in every bit of silver lining they can find in what has been a very, very difficult years. thank you for making the time for us. we appreciate that. the us president—elect, joe biden, has warned that there will be devastating consequences if president trump continues to delay signing a covid—i9 economic relief bill into law. if the bill is not signed by the end of saturday, millions of americans will go without unemployment benefits. the bill, which was overwhelmingly passed by congress, was the product of months of difficult negotiations and compromises. one compromise was the payment of $600 to americans earning less than $75,000 a year. mr trump says he wants americans to receive $2,000 but republicans in congress have refused to agree to the change. you are watching bbc news. the headlines:
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the new coronavirus variant that first emerged in england is spreading across many european countries and has now been confirmed in canada and japan. us federal agents search a house on the outskirts of nashville as part of their investigation into the christmas day explosion in the city. the uk's new trade deal with the eu marks a moment of national renewal, according to boris johnson's chief brexit negotiator. lord frost says it's one of the biggest and broadest agreements ever. parliament is being recalled on wednesday to debate and vote on the document, which runs to more than 1,000 pages. pro—brexit lawyers will be scrutinising its contents over the next few days. now, at least two security personnel have been killed in a series of explosions in the afghan capital, kabul. officials say there were four blasts within the space of three hours. they damaged houses, shops and vehicles nearby. kabul has witnessed several bomb and rocket attacks
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in recent weeks targeting security forces, politicians, journalists and activists. the chair of the afghanistan independent human rights commission, shahrzad akbar gave us a sense of life under daily violence in kabul. kabul has been really violent recently. and not only kabul, across afghanistan, there has been a wave of targeted killings. and these targeted killings usually target journalists, activists, human rights defenders — so, names, places people are familiar with, people who are not very powerful or have a lot of security and protection but people who are familiar to afghans because they stand up for rights and freedoms — and they're being targeted mercilessly. last week, we lost a prominent civil activist who had worked on elections for a long time. we lost a woman activist and her brother. both of them were killed as they were leaving their house. and in kabul, almost every morning starts with news of explosions and
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attacks on vehicles. the impact is just this widespread fear. civil activists, journalists are either leaving their provinces and/or, if they can, trying to leave afghanistan. the impact is widespread because these people speak for the society. and when they decide to leave or they decide to self—censor, then you have less of a debate about the peace process and also about the future of afghanistan. so the impact is really — we can feel the impact on the civic space as a whole, notjust on the individual activists and their families. the former mi6 officer george blake — who became one of the cold war‘s most infamous double agents — has died, according to russian media reports. he was 98. as a soviet spy, blake handed over information that betrayed at least 40 british agents in eastern europe. steve rosenberg reports. he had a russian home, a russian wife, even a russian
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name — georgi ivanovich. but george blake was a british intelligence officer who became one of the most notorious double agents of the cold war. he spied for the soviets for nearly a decade. blake had spent three years in captivity in north korea and, by the time he returned to britain in 1953, he was a committed communist. posted to berlin by mi6, he became a kgb mole. he would take the train to the soviet sector, hand over data on western intelligence operations and western agents, and then drink champagne with his kgb handler. i don't know. maybe 500, 600? agents, you betrayed 500, 600 agents? maybe. blake convinced himself that what he was doing was morally right. i looked upon it like a sort of voluntaryjob. you know, like people...
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oxfam? something like that. he was eventuallyjailed in britain for 42 years. he then was able to escape and smuggled to east germany and spent the rest of his life in moscow cocking a snook at the brits who had not succeeded in keeping him. in 2012, he told a russian tv channel that he hadn't changed sides because of blackmail or torture. he had offered his services voluntarily. in a message of condolence, president putin described him as courageous, an outstanding professional, adding that his memory it would remain in russian hearts for ever. russia gave him medals and much praise but, to britain, he is the cold war traitor who escaped justice. steve rosenberg, bbc news, moscow. roger hermiston is an author and journalist and wrote a book about george blake called ‘the greatest traitor: the secret lives of agent george blake'.
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he had this assessment. well, he's clearly one of the greatest traitors of the cold war. i mean, he had quite a lot of competition, when you think about the cambridge spy ring of philby, burgess, blunt and mcclane in the 1950s. but between about 1953, when he came back from korea, to 1960, when he was eventually unmasked, basically, in his own words, he would photograph with his little minox camera virtually every document that came across his desk both in london and in berlin, where he was based. so, the quantity of material he gave to the soviets was extraordinary. but the quality is encapsulated in one of the biggest spy operations of the cold war called the berlin tunnel — which was a big eavesdropping operation conducted by the british and americans to dig a tunnel under the soviet sector in berlin and to eavesdrop on all the telephone conversations of the soviet high command. and blake was on the committee
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that organised this in london when he was with mi6, and then a few days after the first paper was drawn up, he went and sat on a bus with his soviet controller and handed over the plans. so, this multi—million pound technical operation was betrayed, even really before the first soil had been dug. one more story for you. we tend to think of the fast food restaurant as a twentieth century invention, but it seems the ancient romans were fond of a takeaway, too. archaeologists in pompeii have made the extraordinary discovery of a hot food and drinks shop from around 2,000 years ago. it's due to open to the modern public next year, but don't expect to be served any food! rachel stanton reports. at first glance, this may look like a building site, but it is so much more than that. archaeologists have been hard at work in pompeii.
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the discovery of an l—shaped thermopolium — a sort of ancient fast—food counter from thousands of years ago — is welcome news. partially unearthed in 2019, work was extended to preserve the site. translation: the possibilities are now extraordinary because it's the first time we're excavating an entire thermopolium, and we can carry out different types of analysis, thanks to new technologies. the containers are being analysed and cleaned by an interdisciplinary team. brightly—coloured paintings of animals are still intact after all these years — with upside—down ducks, a chicken and a dog on display. and terracotta jars also led to a surprise. fragments of duck bone and remains of pork, goat, fish and snails were recovered. the discovery could lead to information on cooking and eating habits from the time of the eruption of vesuvius in 79ad.
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translation: now we can start the analysis of the material insid the containers to know their content. what type of food was sold, and what passers—by in pompeii could buy. truly extraordinary evidence of the mediterranean diet. human bones were also found, belonging to those caught up in the volcanic eruption. there was someone inside the room. a victim, whose bones were found in the excavation. unfortunately, the skeleton is not intact, because the thermopolium had already been partially looted in the past. the site is set to open to the public from easter, 2021. with this year having been like no other due to the coronavirus pandemic, the unearthing of this site offers some light relief, as well as vital clues to the past. rachel stanton, bbc news. great stuff. and that's it from me for now. much more on our website, of course.
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you can reach me on twitter — i'm @richpreston. we would love to hear from you. take care. hello. after a night of wind and rain, sunday won't be as windy. there will be showers around but also sunshine, too. but right now, it's still very wet and very windy out there for some of us. from this area of low pressure, storm bella as named by the met office to raise awareness of the impacts from the wind and rain, but not just that. in areas that have seen the back of the rain and the strongest winds overnight, the colder air moving in — and for some of us in scotland and northern ireland, icy, and a few wintry showers around to start the day. damaging winds from storm bella could cause some disruption, particularly into parts of england and wales and there will be more heavy rain in areas already seeing some flooding. so, that's not going to help. the greatest chance of disruption from the wind will be in the areas
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where the met office has an amber warning in force, the potential of some gusts up to 80 mph or so, slowly easing as we go on through sunday morning. once this overnight rain will have cleared away, clearing around mid—morning from the east of kent. you can see it's a colder start the day, particularly across scotland and northern ireland, where it will icy in places, potentially parts of northern england. we have these wintry showers moving in. some snow, mainly on hills, but perhaps not exclusively on hills. it's the west that sees most of sunday's showers. it is sunnier and drier the further east you . it is still windy. these are wind gusts, but we're talking around 30—40 mph, just a little higher around some coasts in the west. and it is going to be a colder day, temperatures in scotland just hovering close to freezing during the day, and a longer spell of snow pushing across parts of scotland, northern ireland, northern england, north wales overnight sunday into monday — notjust on hills, that snow. a few centimetres to lower levels in some spots, too. and even where you don't get that, it could be icy,
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frosty, as monday starts. so, a cold start to monday. the area of low pressure right across us. so if you are close to that, you can expect some cloud. and around that, there will be some bands of rain, sleet, and snow around on monday morning. so, there could be some problems from that. it could well be the further away you are from that low pressure system in scotland and northern ireland by the afternoon, the greater chance for you to see a bit of sunshine. but it's cold, and it's a cold week to come. but a reminderfrom storm bella — damaging winds potential and also further flooding. there are weather and flood warnings. keep up—to—date online. 00:28:44,730 --> 2147483051:51:07,080 thank you for making the time 2147483051:51:07,080 --> 4294966103:13:29,430 for us. we appreciate that.
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