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tv   BBC News  BBC News  August 11, 2021 10:00am-1:01pm BST

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this is bbc news. these are the latest headlines in the uk and around the world. thousands of civilians flee major afghan cities, as the taliban continue to gain ground, but president biden says he doesn't regret withdrawing us troops from the country. afghan leaders have to come together. we lost thousands through death and injury, thousands of american personnel. they've got to fight for themselves. at least 42 people are killed as wildfires erupt across algeria, including 25 soldiers fighting the fires. after the gap between private and state school a—level results grows in england, the government
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insists it's committed to supporting students of all backgrounds. under threat — the seahorse species off the english coast, but there are hopes environmentally friendly moorings could help save the vital seabed. and we'll hear live from lionel messi shortly, as he speaks to the media for the first time after his move to paris saint—germain. hello and welcome if you're watching in the uk or around the world. the us president, joe biden, has called on afghanistan's leaders to "unite and fight", as the taliban claim to have captured nine out of 3a
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provincial capitals. the militants say they've taken the north—eastern city of faizabad. but afghan officials say air strikes and commando attacks have left dozens of taliban militants dead in other parts of the country. the washington post is reporting that us intelligence officials believe kabul could fall within ninety days. at a news conference overnight, president biden said he did not regret his decision to withdraw us troops. we've spent over $1 trillion over 20 years, we trained and equipped with modern equipment, over 300,000 afghan forces. and afghan leaders have to come together. we lost thousands through death and injury, thousands of american personnel. they've got to fight for themselves, fight for their nation. the united states insist we continue
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to keep the commitments we made in providing close air support, making sure that their air force functions and is operable. resupplying their forces with food and equipment and paying all their salaries. but they've got to want to fight. they have outnumbered the taliban and i am getting daily briefings. i think there is still a possibility of a significant new of our equivalent of a secretary of defence, bismillah khan, who is a serious fighter. i think they are beginning to realise they've got to come together politically at the top and we are going to continue to keep our commitment. but i do not regret my decision. let's speak to our south asia regional editor anbarasan ethirajan.
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i want to start with some breaking news because afghanistan's chief of army staff has been removed from his post, according to reports on twitter. can you give us more detail? �* ., twitter. can you give us more detail? �* . ., detail? afghan reporting have said the have detail? afghan reporting have said they have replaced _ detail? afghan reporting have said they have replaced him. _ detail? afghan reporting have said they have replaced him. it- detail? afghan reporting have said they have replaced him. it is- detail? afghan reporting have said they have replaced him. it is after| they have replaced him. it is after a series of setbacks for the afghan army particularly in the northern part of the country when they have lost a number of cities. the person in charge of that was also replaced a couple of days ago. a few hours ago, ashraf ghani was in the biggest city in the north to show support for the troops that have been fighting there. it is thought it will be a significant blow for the afghan government, if that false. it
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was seen as an anti—taliban region where they can form an alliance to drive the taliban away. but the taliban is focusing on that region and they have captured a city overnight that is about 200 kilometres north of kabul. president biden has spent $1 trillion to train the army and they should be able to fight. at the afghan army is down on morale and supplies and there are reports of a lot of desertions. a few hours ago there were reports a lot of soldiers were stuck at an airport in the north and the city has been captured by the taliban and most of the soldiers have gone to the airport and they have surrendered. the taliban have shown a video showing most of them have surrendered, but we have no way of verifying that a video. mit? surrendered, but we have no way of verifying that a video.— verifying that a video. why are the militants focusing _ verifying that a video. why are the militants focusing on _ verifying that a video. why are the militants focusing on these - verifying that a video. why are the l militants focusing on these northern cities? , , ., ,
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cities? this is where any anti-taliban _ cities? this is where any anti-taliban alliance - cities? this is where any anti-taliban alliance will cities? this is where any - anti-taliban alliance will come, anti—taliban alliance will come, they are ethnically diverse. president ashraf ghani was meeting some of the form of war strongmen from the region and he has gone there with hundreds of his own fighters. in afghanistan previously, every region was controlled by warlords, making deals with the taliban and they were very critical. what president ashraf ghani did in recent years is give the authority to a united afghan army, without any regional ethnic particular feelings. he has gone back to the warlords are now asking them if they can fight alongside the afghan army. but they were saying, arming the pro—government militia could have an
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impact on civilians. this will also turn into a long—term civil war. thank you so much for that update. let's cross to kabul and talk to eileen mccarthy from the afghanistan branch of the norwegian refugee council. very good to have you with us on bbc news. i wonder if you can give me your assessment of the numbers that your assessment of the numbers that you thing have been internally displaced in afghanistan? yes. you thing have been internally displaced in afghanistan? yes, thank ou. as we displaced in afghanistan? yes, thank yom as we have _ displaced in afghanistan? yes, thank you. as we have seen _ displaced in afghanistan? yes, thank you. as we have seen the _ displaced in afghanistan? yes, thank you. as we have seen the conflict - you. as we have seen the conflict escalated over the last few weeks, it has put our teams and the people we are here to serve at the centre of the conflict. since the beginning of the conflict. since the beginning of the conflict. since the beginning of the year we have seen 390,000 afghans displaced by conflict. the last three months have seen the highest numbers of displacement since 2016. i think as we are seeing the conflict and the fighting reaching provincial centres where
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population density is even higher, we are expecting those numbers to go up. that is on top of the 3.5 million afghans who were displaced across the country even before the fighting escalated in recent weeks. so right now, we are seeing a lot of internal displacement and in the past few days we are seeing rapidly rising numbers of idps arriving in kabul. we are out in the field trying to see their needs and the scale of people arriving from all across the country is unlike something we have seen before with people who have fled their homes with just the clothes on their back and who are scared about relatives who are still in the areas where they are from. and reallyjust looking for a place of safety. eileen macarthur from the norwegian refugee council, thank you so much for that update. let's cross live now to paris because the argentinian football
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star lionel messi is about to speak to the world's media since signing for paris st german. translation: it is better for lionel messi to understand _ translation: it is better for lionel messi to understand english. - translation: it is better for lionel messi to understand english. i - translation: it is better for lionel messi to understand english. i am l messi to understand english. i am ve ha - messi to understand english. i am very happy to _ messi to understand english. i am very happy to present _ messi to understand english. i am very happy to present lionel messi as a parasite germane player. it is as a parasite germane player. it is a day— as a parasite germane player. it is a day of— as a parasite germane player. it is a day of history for the club, for the football world. it is a fantastic moment for us. everybody knows _ fantastic moment for us. everybody knows he _ fantastic moment for us. everybody knows he is — fantastic moment for us. everybody knows he is the only football player who has _ knows he is the only football player who has won six times, the ballon though _ who has won six times, the ballon though he — who has won six times, the ballon though. he makes football magic, beautiful— though. he makes football magic, beautiful and he is a winner. it will be — beautiful and he is a winner. it will be very exciting for our supporters and the fans worldwide.
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translation: it supporters and the fans worldwide. translation: if is supporters and the fans worldwide. translation:— supporters and the fans worldwide. translation: it is amazing for the well, the translation: it is amazing for the well. the club _ translation: it is amazing for the well, the club the _ translation: it is amazing for the well, the club the fans. _ translation: it is amazing for the well, the club the fans. i _ translation: it is amazing for the j well, the club the fans. i remember the first day — well, the club the fans. i remember the first day we _ well, the club the fans. i remember the first day we started, _ well, the club the fans. i remember the first day we started, the - well, the club the fans. i remember the first day we started, the first. the first day we started, the first day liohei— the first day we started, the first day lionel started at the club. ten years— day lionel started at the club. ten years ago— day lionel started at the club. ten years ago people said, what are they going _ years ago people said, what are they going to _ years ago people said, what are they going to do _ years ago people said, what are they going to do in their club, what are they going — going to do in their club, what are they going to do in their project? we had _ they going to do in their project? we had big ambition, high ambition for the _ we had big ambition, high ambition for the football project and we are very proud — for the football project and we are very proud of where we are today, thanks— very proud of where we are today, thanks to — very proud of where we are today, thanks to everybody. there is no secret, _ thanks to everybody. there is no secret, there has been a great desire — secret, there has been a great desire from both sides to make this happeh _
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desire from both sides to make this happeh i_ desire from both sides to make this happen. i would like to thank liohei. — happen. i would like to thank lionel, your wife, your father and your— lionel, your wife, your father and your team — lionel, your wife, your father and your team for the fantasticjob you have done — your team for the fantasticjob you have done and you made it happen. doh't _ have done and you made it happen. don't forget also my team, our sport director, _ don't forget also my team, our sport director, leo— don't forget also my team, our sport director, leo and a lot of people you don't— director, leo and a lot of people you don't know, but i am very proud of you _ you don't know, but i am very proud of you. honestly, i am talking from my heart. _ of you. honestly, i am talking from my heart. i— of you. honestly, i am talking from my heart, i don't have anything here in my heart, idon't have anything here in my— my heart, i don't have anything here in my speech, but you are doing a fantestic— in my speech, but you are doing a fantasticjob for the club. in doing a fantestic— fantasticjob for the club. in doing a fantasticjob for the supporters and for— a fantasticjob for the supporters and for the history of the club. jeah _ and for the history of the club. jean could, thank you very much, you have been— jean could, thank you very much, you have been here for so long and all the people — have been here for so long and all the people working behind the scenes. — the people working behind the scenes, communication, idon't the people working behind the scenes, communication, i don't want to scenes, communication, idon't want to forget— scenes, communication, i don't want to forget anyone. also, i would like to forget anyone. also, i would like to thank— to forget anyone. also, i would like to thank also our commercial partner _ to thank also our commercial partner i_ to thank also our commercial partner. i am very grateful to them
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who believed in our project from day one. who believed in our project from day one we _ who believed in our project from day one. we told them we are never going to let _ one. we told them we are never going to let them _ one. we told them we are never going to let them down because we know where _ to let them down because we know where we _ to let them down because we know where we are going. today, it is an amazing _ where we are going. today, it is an amazing moment for the history of the cluh _ amazing moment for the history of the club. but still we didn't want anything. — the club. but still we didn't want anything, the hard work will start now _ anything, the hard work will start now 0t— anything, the hard work will start now. of course, the most important thing. _ now. of course, the most important thing. the _ now. of course, the most important thing, the football. we have someone here next— thing, the football. we have someone here next to _ thing, the football. we have someone here next to me, he has won a lot of trophies _ here next to me, he has won a lot of trophies and — here next to me, he has won a lot of trophies and i— here next to me, he has won a lot of trophies and i am sure he will bring us a lot— trophies and i am sure he will bring us a lot of— trophies and i am sure he will bring us a lot of trophies to the club with— us a lot of trophies to the club with his — us a lot of trophies to the club with his team—mates and we have a fantastic— with his team—mates and we have a fantastic squad today. we have the best players also in the world, an amazing — best players also in the world, an amazing coach also and one of the best in— amazing coach also and one of the best in the — amazing coach also and one of the best in the world and for me, he is the best. _ best in the world and for me, he is the best, with his star. i don't want — the best, with his star. idon't want to— the best, with his star. i don't want to take long, i will leave this
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speech— want to take long, i will leave this speech for— want to take long, i will leave this speech for lionel, but i would like to officially welcome you to the parasite — to officially welcome you to the parasite germane family and your family _ parasite germane family and your family i— parasite germane family and your family. i promise i will see your kids— family. i promise i will see your kids are — family. i promise i will see your kids are very happy in paris. they said it _ kids are very happy in paris. they said it is — kids are very happy in paris. they said it is one _ kids are very happy in paris. they said it is one of their favourite cities — said it is one of their favourite cities and _ said it is one of their favourite cities and it is paris. i hope they will be _ cities and it is paris. i hope they will be happy, thank you. translation: good morning. first of all, iwant translation: good morning. first of all. i want to — translation: good morning. first of all, i want to thank— translation: good morning. first of all, i want to thank the _ translation: good morning. first of all, i want to thank the president - all, i want to thank the president for his words. i am very happy. you will know how was my exit from barcelona. it has been a very hard moment after so many years. it was a difficult change after such a long
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time. the moment i arrived here, i felt very happy and i want to begin the training sessions, i wanted to be quick. enjoying my time in paris since the first minute. my family, my people, but really, really my only real is to begin the training sessions. i want to work with the staff and my team—mates and begin this new moment of my life. i really want to thank the president, the whole club for the way they received to me since the first day after the press release in barcelona. they really were quick in their negotiations and it has been quite easy, actually. it was a very tricky situation and they really solved
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problems. it was not easy and they did it well. so thank you for that. i repeat, i am very happy to be here and i have this will to play, i am very impatient. i still want to play, i still want to win, as i wanted at the first moment of my career. at this club, the staff, this club is ready to fight for all the trophies. this is my goal. i want to keep growing, keep winning titles and that is why i come here to this club. i hope we can make it happen. i really want to thank paris, it has been crazy. my arrival, it was a surprise.
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thank you again for the way they received me and i am sure i am going to enjoy the time with this team and we are going to fight for the aim of the club. i really want to begin now and thanks again to the president, leonardo, and thanks tsg and thank you for having me here and i want to begin now. —— psg. thank you. let's go through some questions and answers. good evening. how do you feel playing alongside messi and killie and mbappe. it is really
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crazy and i am happy about that. sharing the day—to—day life with them, with all the squad. really, there are some amazing transfers, there are some amazing transfers, the team is incredible and i really want to train and compete now. because i am going to be playing with the best players, it is very nice. it is an incredible experience to be able to enjoy this. hello, lionel. welcome to paris. when do you think you will be able to play your first minutes in the french championship? actually, i don't know. i was on holidays and it's very new, i spoke yesterday with
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technical staff. maybe i need a preseason myself? i am going to begin to train and work and i hope i can play as soon as i can. i really want to. when i feel the staff thinks i am 0k, want to. when i feel the staff thinks i am ok, then i will be ready and willing to play. good morning, lionel. he said you were very sad about leaving barcelona and the joy about arriving here at paris saint—germain, so what is the strongest feeling, the joy, the sadness? everything that
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happened to me last week has been very strange, it has been hard, it has been quick, it has been emotional. i cannot forget what i lived and experienced in barcelona, but i really feel impatient and happy about this new life, with my family as well. i am very happy. this whole week, i have been going through up and downs. but we are processing all of this, every day, little by little. everyday are processing. hello, lionel. al jazeera. we know that here it is paris and we know the dream of paris
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is driven bigger every day. you have seen the people from paris have been praying for you for three days. some fans were at the airport, the message you sent to the fans in france? i think everybody knows our goal. we want to win all the trophies, all the games. it never change. and now with lionel, we are close to winning, but we want to win more. if i think now we need to work and to win each game, to win the
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trophies. we really need to have discipline and to win every game. as i said, i am very grateful, i am grateful to the people in the street. i was in barcelona when the press talked about that and i have seen things from spain and it was incredible to see them out in the street. i am grateful and i want to thank them. i really want to see them in the city, in the stadium. so it will be an incredible year and we are going to enjoy all of this. good evening. welcome, lionel.
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congratulations. there are a lot of questions around killian mbappe after the arrival of lionel, what about the future of killian mbappe? i think everybody knows the future of killian mbappe, people from paris and the players, it is that he is a competitive player, he wants to win, he wants to win trophies. he said it in public, he wanted a competitive team and i think we have got the most competitive in the world, so there is no excuse for him now, he cannot do anything else but stay. studio: so you have been watching a news conference from the football star, lionel messi, sitting alongside the chairman and ceo of paris saint—germain. a happy man,
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because he said he has presented lionel messi to the world. he makes football magic, he said. beautiful, he is a winner. interesting what lionel messi had to say about his emotional week, wasn't it? he didn't play down the emotional exit from barcelona, very hard moment after so many years playing there. it was a difficult change and let's not forget barcelona was the only club he played for, hejoined forget barcelona was the only club he played for, he joined the club at the age of 13 and has scored 672 goals in 778 games. but he says he feels very happy to have arrived in paris, is enjoying his time there with his family. my goal, he said, is to keep winning titles and that is to keep winning titles and that is why i have joined paris saint—germain. interestingly, he couldn't say when his first match would be. he said he was on holiday when all of this happen, hint that he needs a little of pre—season training and therefore we may not
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see him make his debut at home to strasbourg on saturday. but there you are, lionel messi appearing before the media after signing a two—year deal with paris saint—germain. wildfires in algeria have killed at least 42 people, including 25 members of the military who were fighting the blazes. the fires have caused devastation in several mediterranean countries in recent days, including turkey, greece, lebanon and cyprus. 0ur reporter azadeh moshiri has more. dozens killed and land scorched. algeria's the latest mediterranean country to face disastrous wildfires. more than 100 fires are raging in several provinces east of the capital, claiming the lives of both civilians and soldiers who were deployed to rescue algerians from the flames. while some villages were evacuated, others stayed back using tree branches to calm the flames.
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translation: there are fires everywhere. we have not seen the government here. we do not have a state. the people are the government. long live the members from the civil protection teams. the flames have burnt the country's famed olive trees, and clouded the streets with smoke. these are becoming worryingly familiar scenes as wildfires continue to burn across several countries. greece's prime minister apologised to the nation for the fires that have been tearing through since latejuly and said climate change has fuelled the wildfires, increasing the risk of hot, dry weather. his minister in charge of civil protection broke down when asked about the country's failings. translation: iwant to say something. - every house that is lost is a tragedy for all of us
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and is a strike to our hearts. but what i know is that a massive battle was raged during recent days. we have all remained without sleep throughout all these days. more high temperatures are expected in the coming weeks, meaning more land and lives could be vulnerable. azadeh moshiri, bbc news. in california, firefighters are continuing to tackle a wildfire which has become the second largest in state history. the dixie fire is one of 11 major wildfires currently burning in california and has already destroyed hundreds of buildings and entire communities. 0ur correspondent barbara plett usher reports. in the remote eastern mountains of california, the dixie fire devours acre after acre of wild land. exhausted firefighters are battling a blaze unlike anything they have seen before. a perfect storm of severe heat, drought and wind, plus the slope of the tinder—dry terrain is driving its rapid spread. this week, scientists directly linked such conditions to climate change.
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climate change doesn't cause wildfires or heatwaves or drought. what it does is make them a lot worse. that's what's happening in california, and the forecast does not look good. so people are learning the hard way how to live with the new normal. the fire has left a ghostly landscape in its wake. days ago, it dixie tore through greenville, an historic gold rush down, forcing its residents to flee for safety. no—one died but homes and businesses were reduced to ash and rubble. evacuation warnings for other communities under threat have been issued in four account counties. some greenville residents took shelter in a nearby town, traumatised by loss and dazed by displacement. it's gone. there's been several times in last week i've wished i could go home, and then i remember i can't go home, there's nothing to go back to. even of the house survived,
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pretty much the rest of the town is gone. there's no power, there's no water, you know, everything is gone. i don't even know... i have no idea what to do, i don't know where to go. i'm kind of lost, and with my personal situation on top of it, i'm just overwhelmed — i'm completely overwhelmed. leaning on the help of neighbours is not as rare as it once may have been. fires have become so frequent and so intense, the traditionalfire season no longer seems to exist. normally, it reaches its worst only later in the year. some of the folks that have been evacuated have been evacuated many times over the past couple of years. we've seen some folks who have come to a shelter — forjust a few days — to return home, to come back again because of those evacuation warnings, so there's a lot of uncertainty for some folks who might not know what the status is of their home or what they're going back to. it may take several weeks to contain dixie with still more months of smoke and fire ravaging the west after that.
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right now, the priority of firefighters is to defend lives and homes to prevent another greenville from happening. barbara plett usher, bbc news, los angeles. a british man working at the uk's embassy in berlin has been arrested on suspicion of spying for russia. prosecutors say the man — who's been identified only as david s — passed on documents to russian intelligence in exchange for cash. he was detained following a joint investigation by the germany and british authorities and will appear before a judge later today. here in the uk, there are calls for reforms to the a—level system after this year's results saw record numbers of students given top grades. the government is considering a range of options for the future grading of results in england. labour says the coronavirus pandemic has widened the gap between private and state schools. simonjones has this report.
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oh, my god! a bumper yearfor top grades, with traditional exams replaced by teacher assessment. i've got three a*s. oh, my god, that's fantastic! hard work rewarded after the most challenging of years — but concerns, too, about how the grades are being awarded. 0verall, more than 44% of pupils received the top a* or a grades, but in private schools that figure was more than 70%. in comprehensives, it wasjust over 39%. labour is asking why private schools did so much better. that might be because they've had access to better learning facilities over the past year, access to remote learning or more resources in school. it may be that some parents have intervened more actively to encourage schools to give their children grades that would enable them to take up university places. the department for education says there has been a rise in top grades
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for students from all backgrounds, and the relative increase of the proportion of top marks compared with last year is no higher in independent schools than in other schools. but the government may now consider changes over concerns about grade inflation. one possible idea is replacing the a*—e system with the numbers 9 to 1. there's also debate about how next year's exams should be run. what we want from a national examination system, most importantly, is that all students are treated fairly and consistently with one another, that they have the same opportunity to demonstrate what they've learned. and that's what an exam system does. the fairest means of assessing people is by continuous assessment, and the only way that can be done properly is if teachers are taught how to assess. the pandemic has meant it's been a year of uncertainty, but how the exams will look in years to come is farfrom clear. simon jones, bbc news.
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0ur chief political correspondent said there is a battle over how to interpret yesterday's data and whether there is a gap between public and private schools. if you listen to the government, they say there is not really a difference between independent schools and state schools, whether they are selective or academies or comprehensives. this isjust a statistical quirk. but labour are saying if you cut the data in a different way, it looks like the increase in a grade and a* grade, was in private schools. the education secretary is saying you could have avoided that system if the government had been more organised with what they replace the exams with this year. the labour allegation is that the education secretary should have known it was a real risk that the exams could be cancelled and he could have put more
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effort into a system that was more standardised so we would not even be having a conversation about can you slice and dice the data in different ways to show different outcomes. looking ahead, the department for education says it wants exams to get back to normal in 2023, we heard gavin williamson yesterday talking about a path to exams, when in your view do we get back to exams as we did before? the view do we get back to exams as we did before?— did before? the consultation has 'ust did before? the consultation has just finished _ did before? the consultation has just finished about _ did before? the consultation has just finished about what - did before? the consultation has just finished about what the - did before? the consultation has i just finished about what the exams in 2022 are going to be like in england, including letting peoples focus on parts of the syllabus in some subjects rather than having to cover everything, getting more advanced warning about what will be in the exam paper and in some subjects, bringing materials into the room with you, for example lists of equations for physics and maths. there is a lot of speculation this morning that the classic a—level system of lettered grades could be replaced by numerical grades. there
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is speculation at the moment but it has not been ruled out by the department for education officials. you would have a different system in place for exams in 2022, the exams themselves would return to normal in 2023, but perhaps still the assessments around the exams, the grading committee marking, how it is compared to previous years of destruction, that may have to be tweaked many years to come because the disruption has been to all years of the schooling, notjust people sitting exams this year who were at home doing their classes on the laptop, it was everyone. and? speculation in the newspapers this morning about the precision of the education secretary, is there anything in it? —— the position. this is not new speculation. they have been talking about this for months. fairly or unfairly his
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reputation among conservative mps, his own colleagues, is pretty low. i'm not sure it could have sunk much lower, unfortunately for him. when will they be a reshuffle of the cabinet? 0ne will they be a reshuffle of the cabinet? one has beenjust around the cornerfor a very long cabinet? one has beenjust around the corner for a very long time, the latest rumour is that it will not be untiljanuary. any big changes to personnel around borisjohnson looks like it is some way off. lots of rumours that he does not like firing people, irrespective of their performance. the governor of new york has resigned after an inquiry found that he sexually harassed multiple women. andrew cuomo, who denies the claims, had faced pressure to quit from senior democrats. his resignation will take effect in 1a days. nada tawfik reports. # cuomo's going down. once a new york hero, today a target of ridicule. andrew cuomo's fall from grace has been a dramatic one.
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for months, the government sought to stay in office following allegations of sexual harassment, but with the threat of impeachment looming, he announced he would step aside. i think, given the circumstances, the best way i can help now is if i step aside and let government get back to governing, and therefore that's what i will do. his fate was sealed by an independent investigation by the state attorney—general�*s office, released last week. it found he engaged in unwanted touching and inappropriate comments to 11 women. one of those, an aide, broke her silence after filing a complaint after accusing him of kissing her and groping her breasts and buttocks. why did you file that criminal complaint with the sheriff's office? it was right thing to do. the governor needs to held accountable. and just so to be clear again, being accountable to you means seeing the governor charged with a crime.
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what he did to me was a crime. he broke the law. prominent democrats, including presidentjoe biden, said his resignation was a good outcome for the state. many new yorkers agreed. i felt it was a long time coming. i feel good that he resigned. i didn't think it would happen. the evidence is way too much, so it's smart to do this, it's the wisest thing he's done in a long time. i'm happy, and i'm happy it's not being dragged out - and they don't have to impeach him and he's hanging on, _ and it became even uglier than it could have been. i i mean, it's ugly enough. just a year ago, andrew cuomo was seen as one of the nation's most popular governors for his handling the covid pandemic, and he was praised for his public support of the #metoo movement. all the while, investigators say he abused the state's highest office and created a toxic workplace. with his upcoming exit, a woman will now lead new york. his deputy, kathy hochul, will become the first female governor in the state's history. the downfall of another powerful
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man in america shows the #metoo movement�*s enduring impact, but it also calls into question, how much is really changed? a court in china has found a canadian businessman, michael spavvor, guilty of espionage and sentenced him to eleven years in prison. mr spavor and fellow canadian, former diplomat michael kovrig were detained in 2018 on what canada says are trumped—up charges in retaliation for the arrest of a hauwei executive in canada. canada's ambassador to china has given his reaction. we condemn in the strongest possible terms this decision rendered after a legal process that lacked both fairness and transparency. our thoughts are with michael and his family during this difficult time. we've maintained from the beginning that michael spavor and michael kovrig are being
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detained arbitrarily and we will continue to call for their immediate release, and we will continue to work tirelessly to secure their freedom. the bbc�*s robin brant, in shanghai, told us more about the case. canada believes that these two men, citizens of its country, are victims of hostage diplomacy. it believes that detention at end of 2018 for a period of over two years now, mr spavor�*s conviction today, the sentencing of 11 years injail and eventually deportation from china, canada believes it is an intimidatory move ordered by the chinese government in response to the detention of the huawei executive meng wanzhou in canada. that happened just before these two men were detained back in 2018. now, she is sitting in her house in vancouver fighting fraud accusations and fighting an extradition request from the united states.
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canada believes these two men are not guilty at all of what it has called trumped up charges and it believes that they have been targeted purely because they are canadian citizens operating here in china. now, china denies that. it says mr spavor is guilty of espionage, of spying, don't quite know the details of the allegations because the trial which was actually carried out in march, was behind closed doors. michael kovrig, as well, is due to face his fate in a few days' time. he faces similar allegations. but china says these are unrelated. it has, though, called meng wanzhou's arrest a political move by the americans which involves the assistance and coordination of canadian authorities. the boyfriend of a british woman who went missing while hiking in the pyrenees last november, has found her body.
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esther dingley who was 37 and from durham had been walking solo in the mountains near the spanish and french border. her partner daniel colegate had spent weeks walking hundreds of miles searching for her since she went missing. graham satchell has this report. this is the last picture of esther dingley, a selfie taken high up in the pyrenees sent to her boyfriend dan in november last year. she'd been hiking on her own when she went missing. esther and dan had spent the last seven years travelling around europe ina campervan. they'd given up a successful business career for the freedom of the road after dan had a life—changing health scare. search teams combed mountain trails for weeks and weeks after esther disappeared. last month, a small piece of her bone was found next to animal remains. now her body and belongings have been discovered by her partner, dan. he's walked hundreds and hundreds of miles looking for signs of her. in a statement, the charity lbt
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global, which is helping the family, said... esther dingley was 37, a confident solo hiker. last year, dan told the bbc she was doing what she absolutely loved to do and had never been happier. graham satchell, bbc news. lamb reared on the salt marshes of south wales has become the first food in the uk to be granted protected status after brexit. other products, already protected under european law such as cornish pasties, are also included in the british scheme. gower salt marsh lamb has received a protected designation of origin under a scheme preventing imitation. let's talk to sheep farmer dan pritchard who runs 1,000 ewes
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and 250 ewe lambs on the salt marshes of the gower peninsular. great to have you with us. i know the area you are from very well. i have been visiting there for years and fortunate to have tasted as lamb. what is so special about it? we graze on salt marshes right next to the farm and because of the tides, traditional grasses don't grow. 0ur lamb is different because the lamps are on a different diet. the flavour goes through into the meat. ~ ., . ., , the flavour goes through into the meat. ~ ., , ., ., the flavour goes through into the meat. ., , ., ., meat. what could this mean for you? the secial meat. what could this mean for you? the special protection. _ meat. what could this mean for you? the special protection. will— meat. what could this mean for you? the special protection. will it - meat. what could this mean for you? the special protection. will it make l the special protection. will it make any difference? we the special protection. will it make any difference?— any difference? we are hoping it well. it
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any difference? we are hoping it well- it sets _ any difference? we are hoping it well. it sets a _ any difference? we are hoping it well. it sets a very _ any difference? we are hoping it well. it sets a very high - any difference? we are hoping itj well. it sets a very high standard for anyone who wants to produce salt marsh lamb. we are hitting the standard currently and that will increase our reputation and we will have more sales. 0ne? do some people try and pass off other lamb as salt marsh lamb? there are always whispers about this. i marsh lamb? there are always whispers about this.— marsh lamb? there are always whispers about this. i should ask ou if it whispers about this. i should ask you if it is _ whispers about this. i should ask you if it is more _ whispers about this. i should ask you if it is more expensive - whispers about this. i should ask l you if it is more expensive because it is more special?— it is more special? yes, we have a remium it is more special? yes, we have a premium on _ it is more special? yes, we have a premium on our — it is more special? yes, we have a premium on our product _ it is more special? yes, we have a premium on our product due - it is more special? yes, we have a premium on our product due to i it is more special? yes, we have a | premium on our product due to the extra work that is needed to get the bmb extra work that is needed to get the lamb of the march and every little helps. it lamb of the march and every little hels. . , , lamb of the march and every little hels, ., , , ., lamb of the march and every little hels. , ., , . lamb of the march and every little hels. , ., ' . , ., helps. it has been a difficult year. i wonder what _ helps. it has been a difficult year. i wonder what it _ helps. it has been a difficult year. i wonder what it has _ helps. it has been a difficult year. i wonder what it has been - helps. it has been a difficult year. i wonder what it has been like. i helps. it has been a difficult year. | i wonder what it has been like. can you give us a sense of that and the new designation if it will really help? it new designation if it will really hel ? . , new designation if it will really hel ? ., , , new designation if it will really
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hel-? , . help? it has been ok, i suppose. we have had different _ help? it has been ok, i suppose. we have had different weather _ help? it has been ok, i suppose. we have had different weather cycles, i have had different weather cycles, we don't complain too much about that. as prices have been high, that is good, but the costs are also going up higher as well. on the whole, it is probably about normal really. 50 whole, it is probably about normal reall . . , whole, it is probably about normal reall. . really. so much focus on the climate and we are — really. so much focus on the climate and we are being _ really. so much focus on the climate and we are being told _ really. so much focus on the climate and we are being told we _ really. so much focus on the climate and we are being told we had - really. so much focus on the climate and we are being told we had to - really. so much focus on the climate and we are being told we had to eat| and we are being told we had to eat less meat to save the climate. what impact that on your business? if meat sales drop, that would not be good for farming meat sales drop, that would not be good forfarming in meat sales drop, that would not be good for farming in general. meat sales drop, that would not be good forfarming in general. you have to adapt to the markets and be the best at whatever you do. ads, have to adapt to the markets and be the best at whatever you do.- the best at whatever you do. a final thou . ht, the best at whatever you do. a final thou~ht, it the best at whatever you do. a final thought, it places _ the best at whatever you do. a final thought, it places on _ the best at whatever you do. a final thought, it places on a _ the best at whatever you do. a final thought, it places on a salt - the best at whatever you do. a final thought, it places on a salt marsh, | thought, it places on a salt marsh, presumably it gets covered by sea. the sheep don't swim, how does it work in practice? we
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the sheep don't swim, how does it work in practice?— work in practice? we get given a tidal book every _ work in practice? we get given a tidal book every year _ work in practice? we get given a tidal book every year and - work in practice? we get given a tidal book every year and it - work in practice? we get given a tidal book every year and it tells | tidal book every year and it tells you the date and the time and the height of the tide and we have to go out a few hours before every high tide and bring them in completely or move them to higher ground. was at the march at half past six this morning pushing them to the higher ground to avoid the high tide. you make it sound _ ground to avoid the high tide. you make it sound easy. good to talk to you. the headlines on bbc news... thousands of civilians flee major afghan cities, as the taliban continue to gain ground — but president biden says he doesn't regret withdrawing us troops from the country. at least 42 people are killed as wildfires erupt across algeria, including 25 soldiers fighting the fires. after the gap between private and
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state school level results grows in england, the government says it is committed to promoting students of all backgrounds. let's get more now on our main story. president biden has told afghan leaders to unite and fight for their country as the taliban continue to make rapid territorial gains. a ninth major city, faizabad, is reported to have fallen to the insurgents. afghan officials say air—strikes have killed dozens of taliban fighters elsewhere in the country. as one of the country's neighbours, pakistan has always been seen as crucial to negotiations and discussions of the future of afghanistan — earlier i spoke to geopolitical analyst shahid raza in islamabad, and asked what resolution pakistan will be hoping for. i think what pakistan really wants from these discussions is to have to have all parties strike a compromise because that is the only practical way to avoid the impending civil war in afghanistan. let me remind you that afghanistan is really at its worst. the coming winter in ten
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to 11 weeks' time, once the winter kicks in, there is going to be a siege of kabul and it is going to go one way or another. after the week ends, there is going to be another fighting season for another eight months. so, in this situation, the time is running out and what pakistan would like to see from the afghan government and the taliban is to sit together and strike a compromise, agree on a transition period, agree on a transition mechanism and strategy for afghanistan. again, the primary interest in afghanistan right now is to avoid a civil war because it will have a direct impact on pakistan. but how likely is that given the advances that we've seen in recent days and weeks from the taliban? the advances of the taliban have not been a surprise for people who follow the taliban or events in afghanistan on a regular basis, such as myself.
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the taliban has been preparing for this advance for 20 years, so now that the biodynamics are neutralised, the national army does not have the benefit of air strikes, the battlefield is more even for the taliban so they had been cultivating their influence in various provincial capitals, and that is what you have seen. it's not really an advance in a sense that they are marching from one area of afghanistan to another area of afghanistan, that is not what is happening. they have cultivated their influence in their areas, those areas are where the taliban have established their strongholds over a decade ago and they were preparing for a situation like this. it was not a surprise. the interesting perspective is that the afghan government has not really taken any initiative to sit down with the taliban promoted by pakistan or other countries to have a meaningful
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outcome. the taliban have been stating clearly that if they can talk to the americans they can talk to the campbell government and want to the campbell government and want to resolve the issue without a civil war. they want to resolve the issue with as little bloodshed as possible. they do not want to find a military solution. the taliban are also under pressure. they are fighting their own. it is very difficult because the narrative for the taliban has changed because they are no longer fighting the taliban has changed because they are no longerfighting a the taliban has changed because they are no longer fighting a foreign occupation force. that is not what is going to happen. it is difficult and complex from the taliban perspective as well. pakistan wants to see progress from the afghan government, the government is unwilling to sit down and have a one—on—one conversation with the taliban. from the pakistan perspective, this is a decision of the campbell government and once they take that decision that they
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want to have face—to—face and meaningful negotiations with the taliban to find a practical solution, to find it practical solution, to find it practical solution for the transition period and after the transition period. after a successful games in tokyo, the world's attention will soon turn to beijing, as the country gets ready to host next year's winter olympics. chinese officials had been confident they could have crowds for all events but the current outbreak of the delta variant has cast doubt on the plans. 0ur china correspondent stephen mcdonell reports. in the mountains around the chinese capital, thousands of workers are busy. next to the space—age ski—jumping centre, they're making the most of the summer months for construction. justin downs is a canadian winter sports specialist who has been advising games organisers. there is no question beijing will be ready for the venues, for the competitions. in fact, all of the competition venues are already ready and they've already hosted test events, so like you see going on around us here isjust the supporting infrastructure.
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before the sliding centre is iced overfor the bobsleigh runs they are putting the finishing touches. a high—speed train connection with the city is already operating. around it, hotels, temporary stands for spectators, food and beverage sites are all being built. here at the olympic village there is still work to be done to have everything ready in time for the games. beijing has been fortunate, though, in that it has been able to study tokyo to work out the logistics in a time of coronavirus. despite the pandemic, chinese officials had also been planning to have spectators at the coming 0lympics. that was before a delta variant outbreak reintroduced the coronavirus to china.
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they say they are still hopeful to bring it under control on time. and most people here seem pretty optimistic about what the beijing games will bring. this area already has the feeling of a full—blown winter sports place. the hope is that after the olympics there will be an explosion in china and an interest in skiing and the like and that these facilities will be used quite a lot. one of the things that the beijing olympics is going to find hard to shake is the political element. there are allegations of serious human rights abuses in this country and some are calling for a boycott of the games. well, here we are at the top of the mountain. not bad, eh? the ruins of the great wall of china
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overlook the olympic sites. but with the coronavirus lingering, how many people will be able to take this all in? boats at a uk beauty spot in dorset are being encouraged not to drop their anchors, but to use new "eco—moorings" instead. the moorings at studland bay are saferfor sea horses — which can have their habitat damaged by traditional anchors. john maguire reports. these underwater meadows of seagrass provide a vital habitat teeming with wildlife, and it's where you can find the spiny seahorse. it's a protected species, and studland bay is a marine conservation zone. but boats visiting this popular area of the dorset coast can create problems.
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we've counted up to a50 boats here in one day. it's the noise, the anchors, the general movement of everything seems to affect the seahorses. they're very prone to stress and so if you can sort of reduce that stress, then they're quite happy, relaxed seahorses. if they have a lot of stress, then they move back out to sea. the wildlife presenter steve backshall has dived here, and says boat anchors and mooring chains can damage the sea bed. they completely destroy all the substrate around it, which means that all the seagrass dies, and it gets rid of that binding substrate, which then washes away as sand. and so you just end up with these big, barren circles around all the moorings. and within that, nothing can live — and particularly not seahorses. so here's a solution. the seahorse trust is installing this environmentally friendly design. instead of a chain, the mooring is attached to a fixed point in the sea bed via a large elasticated rope that stretches
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with the tide and minimises damage. and, if beneficial, it will mean seafarers and seahorses can co—exist successfully. now it's time for a look at the weather: hello again. yesterday, 25.3 celsius was the temperature recorded in parts of warwickshire. today, somewhere in the south—east could see similar. we've got sunny spells and feeling pleasantly warm in that sunshine. but in the north and west, a weather front is bringing rain and also some breezy conditions. and here it is here, all attached to this area of low pressure in the atlantic. high pressure just clinging on by the skin of its teeth as we push further south. so all this rain in western areas is going to continue to journey eastwards through the course of the day with cloud building ahead of it. eventually, it will clear western scotland and northern ireland so it will brighten up for
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you, but you can see the extent of the rain all the way down towards the isles of scilly. ahead of it, the cloud building. you can see the odd shower, some sunshine hanging on across the far south—east. and it is in the far south—east we could hit 23 or 2a or maybe 25 today. whereas under the cloud and rain, temperatures will be that bit lower. through this evening and overnight, our weatherfront is to push southwards and eastwards as a weakening band of cloud and rain. behind it, under clear skies, there will be some patchy mist and fog forming and temperatures a bit lower in the north compared to last night. in sheltered glens, they could fall as low as three or 4 degrees. breezy, though, in western areas, pulling in some showers across western scotland and northern ireland. so here is our weak weather front tomorrow. and here is the low pressure coming closer to us, taking further outbreaks of rain with it. many of us starting off on a dry note, there will still be the remnants of the cloud and some spots of rain in the south east and that will break up and it will brighten up, but the rain comes in from the west accompanied by brisk winds, touching gale force gusts across the western isles. temperatures, 15 to about 2k, but,
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again, we could just see 25 somewhere in the south—east. on friday, our low pressure is right across us, so some further showers, brisk winds across the board and we still do have the remnants of a weather front in southern areas, producing some cloud and, again, the odd spot of rain. in between these two areas, we are looking at some dry conditions and some sunshine. but temperatures down a touch, 15 to about 23 degrees will be the order of the day, north to south. then, as we head into the weekend, there's a wee bit of uncertainty about the forecast. we think on saturday there will be rain in the south, dry in the north and the opposite on sunday.
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this is bbc news, i'mjoanna gosling. the headlines at 11. a british man working at the uk's embassy in berlin is arrested on suspicion of spying for russia. thousands of civilians flee major afghan cities, as the taliban continue to gain ground while president biden says he doesn't regret withdrawing us troops from the country. afghan leaders have to come together. we lost thousands lost in death and injury, thousands of american personnel. they've got to fight for themselves. after the gap between private and state school a—level results grows in england, the government insists it's committed to supporting students of all backgrounds. at least 42 people are killed
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as wildfires erupt across algeria, including 25 soldiers fighting the fires. and lionel messi — one of the world's greatest footballers — speaks about his hopes and dreams for paris saint—germain afterjoining the french club from barcelona. translation: i still want to play, i still want to win, keep playing, keep winning titles, and that is why i have come here to this club. good morning and welcome to bbc news. a british man working at the uk's embassy in berlin has been arrested on suspicion of spying for russia. prosecutors say the man, who's been
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identified only as david s, passed on documents to russian intelligence in exchange for cash. he was detained following a joint investigation by the germany and british authorities and will appear before a judge later today. 0ur correspondent matt colejoins me now. matt what do we know so far? we have heard from federal prosecutors in germany that the arrest took place yesterday in potsdam, the eastern city near berlin. they believe that the secrets that have been passed on at least one occasion in exchange for cash may have been passed as early as november 2020. the amount of money exchanged is not known, but the man, who according to the german authorities is known as david s, thatis authorities is known as david s, that is all they have given us as his name, they have searched both his name, they have searched both his workplace and his home as well.
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at some point today it is expected he will appear in front of a federal judge in germany. has he will appear in front of a federal judge in germany.— he will appear in front of a federal judge in germany. has there been any reaction from — judge in germany. has there been any reaction from the _ judge in germany. has there been any reaction from the authorities - judge in germany. has there been any reaction from the authorities here? i reaction from the authorities here? we have heard a couple of bits from different bodies here, not least the met police. the counter terrorism command, which falls under the met police, it is working with the german authorities. i have not been able to establish at this stage whether it was the british ends of operators or in germany that this investigation was originated, but both sets of officials are working together. the met police in their statement have added that the arrested man is 57. in their statement they refer to him being arrested on suspicion of committing offences related to being engaged in intelligence agency activity. they make it clear this is being investigated under german law and at the moment the german authorities have primacy, is the way they put
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it, in this investigation. the home office is also made a short statement, simply to say that this is an individual who was contracted to work for the government, they were arrested yesterday by the german authorities, but they then say it would not be appropriate to comment further because there is this ongoing police investigation. thank you, matt. the us president, joe biden, has called on afghanistan's leaders to "unite and fight", as the taliban claim to have captured nine out of 3a provincial capitals. the militants say they've taken the north—eastern city of faizabad. but afghan officials say air strikes and commando attacks have left dozens of taliban militants dead in other parts of the country. the washington post is reporting that us intelligence officials believe kabul could fall within 90 days. at a news conference overnight, president biden said he did not regret his decision to withdraw us troops. we spent over $1 trillion over 20 years. we trained and equipped with modern
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equipment over 300,000 afghan forces and afghan leaders have to come together. we lost thousands, lost in death and injury, thousands of american personnel. they've got to fight for themselves, fight for their nation. the united states insists we continue to keep the commitments we made in providing close air support, making sure that their air force functions and is operable, resupplying their forces with food and equipment and pay all their salaries. but they've got to want to fight. they have outnumbered the taliban and i'm getting daily briefings, i think there is still a possibility
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there is a new, significant equivalent of our sectarian defence in afghanistan, bismillah khan is a serious fighter. i think they are beginning to realise they've got to come together politically at the top but we are going to continue to keep our commitments, but i do not regret my decision. there are reports this morning that the afghan army's chief of staff has been sacked and now the afghan president ashraf ghani has flown to the besieged northern city of mazar—i—sharif to rally resistance to the taliban offensive. 0ur south asia regional editor anbarasan ethirajan has the latest. the afghan media's reporting that general wali mohammad ahmadzai has been replaced by general hebatullah alizai _ this comes after a series of setbacks by the afghan army, particularly in the northern part where they have lost several cities to the taliban.
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in fact, an army corps in charge of the northern region, the person in charge of that was also replaced a couple of days ago. and a few hours ago, the afghan president, ashraf ghani, he was in mazar—i—sharif city, which is in the north, the biggest city in the north, to show support for the troops who have been fighting there. that's a major city. if that falls, that will be a significant blow for the afghan government. and usually the northern part of afghanistan was seen as a traditional anti—taliban region where they can form an alliance to drive taliban away, but now the taliban simply focus exactly on that region and one of the cities they captured was puli khumri overnight. that'sjust about 200 kilometres north of kabul. as president biden was saying, we spent $1 trillion, trained the army, so they should be able to fight. but the issue is the afghan army's down on morale, supplies,
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and there are reports of lots of desertions. a few hours ago, we heard reports that some of the soldiers were stuck in kunduz airport, which is a city in the north. and the city has been captured by taliban. most of the forces have gone into the airport, and they have surrendered and the taliban have issued a video showing some of them surrendering. but we have no way of independently verifying that video. at least 4,000 civilians have been injured over the past ten days, with thousands displaced and hundreds of national projects destroyed. eileen mccarthy is from the afghanistan branch of the norwegian refugee council. she's in kabul where many people from the surrounding countryside are coming to seek refuge from the fighting. since the beginning of the year, we've seen nearly 390,000 afghans displaced by conflict, and the last three months have seen some of the highest numbers of displacement since 2016. and i think as we are seeing the conflict and the fighting reaching provincial centres where population density is even higher, we are expecting those numbers to go up. and i think that is on top of the 3.5 million afghans who were displaced across the country even
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before the fighting escalated in recent weeks. so right now we are seeing a lot of internal displacement, and in the past few days, we seeing rapidly rising numbers of idpis arriving in kabul and our teams are out in the field in cabo today to try to understand the needs and really describe to me that this was the worst situation that they have seen in kabul ever. the scale of people who are arriving from provinces all over the country is really unlike something that we've seen before, with people who have fled their homes with just the clothes on their back. who are scared about relatives who are still in the areas where they are from and reallyjust looking for a place for safety. there are calls for reforms to the a—level system after this year's results saw record numbers
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of students given top grades. the government is considering a range of options for the future grading of results in england. labour says the coronavirus pandemic has widened the gap between private and state schools. simonjones has this report. oh, my god! a bumper yearfor top grades, with traditional exams replaced by teacher assessment. i've got three a*s. oh, my god, that's fantastic! hard work rewarded after the most challenging of years, but concerns, too, about how the grades are being awarded. 0verall, more than 44% of pupils received the top a* or a grades, but in private schools that figure was more than 70%. in comprehensives, it wasjust over 39%. labour is asking why private schools did so much better. that might be because they've had access to better learning facilities over the past year, access to remote learning or more resources in school. it may be that some parents have intervened more actively to encourage schools to give their children grades that would enable them to take up university places. the department for education says
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there has been a rise in top grades for students from all backgrounds, and the relative increase of the proportion of top marks compared with last year is no higher in independent schools than in other schools. but the government may now consider changes over concerns about grade inflation. one possible idea is replacing the a*—e system with the numbers 9 to 1. there's also debate about how next year's exams should be run. what we want from a national examination system, most importantly, is that all students are treated fairly and consistently with one another, that they have the same opportunity to demonstrate what they've learned. and that's what an exam system does. the fairest means of assessing people is by continuous assessment, and the only way that can be done properly is if teachers are taught how to assess. the pandemic has meant it's been a year of uncertainty, but how the exams will look in years to come is farfrom clear. simon jones, bbc news.
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wildfires in algeria have killed at least 42 people, including 25 members of the military who were fighting the blazes. the fires have caused devastation in several mediterranean countries in recent days, including turkey, greece, lebanon and cyprus. 0ur reporter azadeh moshiri has more. dozens killed and land scorched. algeria's the latest mediterranean country to face disastrous wildfires. more than 100 fires are raging in several provinces east of the capital, claiming the lives of both civilians and soldiers who were deployed to rescue algerians from the flames. while some villages were evacuated, others stayed back using tree branches to calm the flames. translation: there are fires everywhere. we have not seen the government here. we do not have a state. the people are the government. long live the members from the civil protection teams.
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the flames have burnt the country's famed olive trees, and clouded the streets with smoke. these are becoming worryingly familiar scenes as wildfires continue to burn across several countries. greece's prime minister apologised to the nation for the fires that have been tearing through since late july and said climate change has fuelled the wildfires, increasing the risk of hot, dry weather. his minister in charge of civil protection broke down when asked about the country's failings. translation: iwant to say something. - every house that is lost is a tragedy for all of us and is a strike to our hearts. but what i know is that a massive battle was raged during recent days. we have all remained without sleep throughout all these days. more high temperatures are expected in the coming weeks, meaning more land and lives
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could be vulnerable. azadeh moshiri, bbc news. in california, firefighters are continuing to tackle a wildfire which has become the second largest in state history. the dixie fire is one of 11 major wildfires currently burning in california and has already destroyed hundreds of buildings and entire communities. 0ur correspondent barbara plett usher reports. in the remote eastern mountains of california, the dixie fire devours acre after acre of wild land. exhausted firefighters are battling a blaze unlike any they've seen before. a perfect storm of severe heat, drought and wind, plus the slope of the tinder dry terrain is driving its rapid spread. this week, scientists directly linked such conditions to climate change. climate change doesn't cause wildfires or heatwaves or drought. what it does is make them a lot worse. that's what's happening in california and the forecast
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does not look good. so people are learning the hard way how to live with the new normal. the fire has left a ghostly landscape in its wake. days ago, dixie tore through greenville, an historic gold rush town, forcing its residents to flee for safety. no one died but homes and businesses were reduced to ash and rubble. evacuation warnings for other communities under threat have been issued in four counties. some greenville residents took shelter in a nearby town, traumatised by loss, and dazed by displacement. it's gone. there are several times in the last week when i have wished i could go home. and then i remember i can't go home, there is nothing to go back to. even if the house survived, pretty much the rest of town is gone.
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there is no water, there is no, you know, everything is gone. and i don't even know, i have no idea what to do, where to go, i'm kind of lost. and in my personal situation, on top of it, i'm overwhelmed, i'm completely overwhelmed. leaning on the help of neighbours is not as rare as it once might have been. fires have become so frequent and so intense, the traditionalfire season no longer seems to exist. normally, it reaches its worst only later in the year. some of the folks that have been evacuated have been evacuated many times over the past couple of years. we've seen some folks who have come to a shelter forjust a few days to return home, to come back again, because of those evacuation warnings. so there's a lot of uncertainty for some folks who might not know what the status is of their home, or what they're going to. it may take weeks to contain dixie, with still more months of smoke and fire ravaging the west after that. right now, the priority of firefighters is to defend lives and homes, to prevent another greenville from happening. barbara plett—usher, bbc news, los angeles. the headlines on bbc news...
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a british man working at the uk embassy in berlin is arrested on suspicion of spying for russia. after the gap between private and state school a—level results grows in england, the government insists it is committed to supporting students of all backgrounds. and lionel messi, one of the world's greatest footballers, speaks about his hopes and dreams for paris saint—germain afterjoining the club from barcelona. the argentine football superstar lionel messi has said he hopes to keep winning at his first press conference as a player at paris st germain. the 34—year—old signed a two—year deal with the french club following an emotional departure from barcelona, the club hejoined when he was thirteen. translation: first of all i want to
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thank the president for his words. i am very happy. you all know how was my exit from barcelona. it has been a very hard moment after so many years. it was a difficult change after so many time. but the moment i arrived here i felt very happy and i want to begin the training sessions. i really want it to be quick. i am really enjoying my time in paris since the first minute. the boyfriend of a british woman who went missing while hiking in the pyrenees last november has found her body. esther dingley who was 37 and from durham had been walking solo in the mountains near the spanish and french border. her partner daniel colegate had spent weeks walking hundreds of miles searching for her since she went missing. graham satchell has this report.
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this is the last picture of esther dingley, a selfie taken high up in the pyrenees sent to her boyfriend dan in november last year. she'd been hiking on her own when she went missing. esther and dan had spent the last seven years travelling around europe ina campervan. they'd given up a successful business career for the freedom of the road after dan had a life—changing health scare. search teams combed mountain trails for weeks and weeks after esther disappeared. last month, a small piece of her bone was found next to animal remains. now her body and belongings have been discovered by her partner, dan. he's walked hundreds and hundreds of miles looking for signs of her. in a statement, the charity lbt global, which is helping the family, said...
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esther dingley was 37, a confident solo hiker. last year, dan told the bbc she was doing what she absolutely loved to do and had never been happier. graham satchell, bbc news. the governor of new york has resigned after an inquiry found that he sexually harassed multiple women. andrew cuomo, who denies the claims, had faced pressure to quit from senior democrats. his resignation will take effect in 1a days. nada tawfik reports. # cuomo's going down. once a new york hero, today a target of ridicule. andrew cuomo's fall from grace has been a dramatic one. for months, the governor sought to stay in office following allegations of sexual harassment, but with the threat of impeachment looming, he announced that he would step aside. i think that, given the circumstances, the best way i can help now is if i step aside and let government get back
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to governing, and therefore that's what i'll do. his fate was sealed by an independent investigation by the state attorney general�*s office, released last week. it found he engaged in unwanted touching and inappropriate comments to 11 women. one of those women, an aide, broke her silence after filing a criminal complaint accusing him of kissing her and groping her breast and buttocks. why did you file that criminal complaint with the sheriff's office? it was the right thing to do. the governor needs to held accountable. and just so to be clear again, being accountable to you means seeing the governor charged with a crime? what he did to me was a crime. he broke the law. prominent democrats, including presidentjoe biden, said his resignation was a good outcome for the state. many new yorkers agreed. i felt this was a long time coming. i feel good that he resigned. i didn't think it would happen.
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the evidence is way too much, so it's smart to do this — it's the wisest thing he's done in a long time. i'm happy, and i'm happy that it's not dragged out and they don't have to impeach him and he's hanging on, and it became even uglier than it could have been. i mean, it's ugly enough. just a year ago, andrew cuomo was seen as one of the nation's most popular governors for his handling the covid pandemic, and he was praised for his public support of the #metoo movement. all the while, investigators say he abused the state's highest office and created a toxic workplace. with his upcoming exit, a woman will now lead new york. his deputy, kathy hochul, will become the first female governor in the state's history. the downfall of another powerful man in america shows the #metoo movement�*s enduring impact, but it also calls into question, how much is really changed? nada tawfik, bbc news, washington. people living in cities will typically have to pay eight times the average
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earnings to buy a home. the analysis from halifax found a 10% surge in house prices has offset a 2% rise in average earnings. winchester was named the least affordable city, with properties now 1a times annual income for residents. while londonderry in northern ireland was the most affordable location, with homes costing less than five times earnings. after a successful games in tokyo, the world's attention will soon turn to beijing as the country gets ready to host next year's winter olympics. chinese officials had been confident they could have crowds for all events but the current outbreak of the delta variant has cast doubt on the plans. 0ur china correspondent stephen mcdonell reports. in the mountains around the chinese capital, thousands of workers are busy. next to the space—age ski—jumping centre, they're making the most of the summer months for construction. justin downs is a canadian winter sports specialist who has been advising games organisers. there is no question beijing will be
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ready for the venues, for the competitions. in fact, all of the competition venues are already ready and they've already hosted test events, so like you see going on around us here isjust the supporting infrastructure. before the sliding centre is iced overfor the bobsleigh runs they are putting the finishing touches. a high—speed train connection with the city is already operating. around it, hotels, temporary stands for spectators, food and beverage sites are all being built. here at the olympic village there is still work to be done to have everything ready in time for the games. beijing has been fortunate, though, in that it has been able to study tokyo to work out the logistics in a time of coronavirus.
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despite the pandemic, chinese officials had also been planning to have spectators at the coming 0lympics. that was before a delta variant outbreak reintroduced the coronavirus to china. they say they are still hopeful to bring it under control on time. and most people here seem pretty optimistic about what the beijing games will bring. this area already has the feeling of a full—blown winter sports place. the hope is that after the olympics there will be an explosion in china and an interest in skiing and the like and that these facilities will be used quite a lot. one of the things that the beijing olympics is going to find hard
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to shake is the political element. there are allegations of serious human rights abuses in this country and some are calling for a boycott of the games. well, here we are at the top of the mountain. not bad, eh? the ruins of the great wall of china overlook the olympic sites. but with the coronavirus lingering, how many people will be able to take this all in? two royal air force police dogs are being honoured today with the animal equivalent of an 0be. english spaniel alfie and labrador aj — who are now both retired — have been awarded the pdsa order of merit for their careers in the raf, sniffing out explosives and completing 15—hundred hours of searches between them. now time for a look at the weather with carol.
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a weather front coming in from the west is pushing in rain as it does so. a lot of cloud building in the afternoon and turning the sunshine hazy. as the rain cleared from northern ireland the sun will come out and later the rain clears western scotland. temperatures widely 15 to 21, locally it could be 25 in the south—east. this evening and overnight the weather front sinc south and more or less a band of cloud with spots of rain in it. there will be patchy and misty fog forming, a cooler night in the north than last night, and that leads us into tomorrow. we start off with a lot of dry weather, a fair bit of sunshine. this weather front in the south still producing spots of rain, but that will break up during the day, and more rain coming in from the west, some of which will be heavy and thundery. top temperatures tomorrow, 15—24.
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school a—level results grows in england, the government considers it is committed to supporting students from all backgrounds. at least 42 people are killed as wildfires erupt across algeria, including 25 soldiers fighting the fires. lionel messi, one of the well�*s greatest
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footballers, speaks about his hopes and dreams for paris saintjermaine afterjoining the french club from barcelona. sport and for a full round up, from the bbc sport centre, here's chetan. lionel messi has been talking to the world after 21 years and 35 trophies at barcelona. he decided to leave the because the club couldn't afford a new deal. the 34—year—old admits it has been an emotional week but admits he is looking forward to the challenge ahead. translation: �* , ., , ,, challenge ahead. translation: �* , ., , ,, ., , translation: i'm very happy to be here. translation: i'm very happy to be here- eager— translation: i'm very happy to be here- eager to _ translation: i'm very happy to be here. eager to get _ translation: i'm very happy to be here. eager to get going. _ translation: i'm very happy to be here. eager to get going. i - translation: i'm very happy to be here. eager to get going. i still - here. eager to get going. i still want to play. and still want to win just as much as when i started my
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career. with these players and the staff, i think the club is ready to fight for all of the trophies. i want to keep growing and winning titles, and that is why i have come to this club. titles, and that is why i have come to this club-— to this club. let's get more on the move from — to this club. let's get more on the move from our— to this club. let's get more on the move from our senior _ to this club. let's get more on the move from our senior sports - to this club. let's get more on the| move from our senior sports news reporter, laura scott, who is at paris. a, reporter, laura scott, who is at paris. �* ., ,, , reporter, laura scott, who is at paris. �* ., ., paris. a huge day for psg, and there is a real buzz — paris. a huge day for psg, and there is a real buzz for— paris. a huge day for psg, and there is a real buzz for the _ paris. a huge day for psg, and there is a real buzz for the french - is a real buzz for the french capital— is a real buzz for the french capital this morning about the arrival— capital this morning about the arrival of— capital this morning about the arrival of a lionel messi. he came over— arrival of a lionel messi. he came over from — arrival of a lionel messi. he came over from barcelona last night and several— over from barcelona last night and several hundred fans arrived outside the stadium this morning to try and catch— the stadium this morning to try and catch a _ the stadium this morning to try and catch a glimpse of their new signing _ catch a glimpse of their new signing i— catch a glimpse of their new signing. i spoke to some of them outside _ signing. i spoke to some of them outside the stadium today, and they said they— outside the stadium today, and they said they had to be here to show their— said they had to be here to show their love — said they had to be here to show their love and respect for lionel messi, — their love and respect for lionel messi, and said it isjust a historic— messi, and said it isjust a historic day for the club to have signed — historic day for the club to have signed one of if not the greatest player— signed one of if not the greatest player of— signed one of if not the greatest player of all—time. what a difference a few days a lucrative contract — difference a few days a lucrative contract work around £30 million a year makes — contract work around £30 million a year makes. this is a huge deal for
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french— year makes. this is a huge deal for french football. psg now have one of the strongest front lines ever assembled. this is a new era for lionel— assembled. this is a new era for lionel messi and his family. certainly— lionel messi and his family. certainly not an adventure they were expecting _ certainly not an adventure they were expecting last week. the deal has been _ expecting last week. the deal has been done — expecting last week. the deal has been done very quickly indeed. the french— been done very quickly indeed. the french fans — been done very quickly indeed. the french fans weren't expecting this either _ french fans weren't expecting this either. fans of p56 are excited for what _ either. fans of p56 are excited for what the _ either. fans of p56 are excited for what the future could bring with lionel— what the future could bring with lionel messi now a part of it. the premier league is fully behind players taking a knee when the top flight in england resumes this weekend. a small minority of supporters booed the action when england played earlier in the summer but the clubs united in taking a stand against racism again this season, the league's chief executive expects fans to respect the gesture. i think taking the knee is a really powerful, unifying symbol. it's what the players want to do and we are happy to support them in doing that. i don't understand why anyone would want to object to that. my hope and expectation is that the vast majority of supporters will support it. we will wait and see this
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weekend. we are not too concerned about any negative reaction because we believe it is the right thing to do. britain's harriet dart has been knocked out in the second round of the montreal 0pen. she put in a strong performance, taking the second seed bianca andreescu to three sets — the canadian needed over two hours to come through the match. that's all the sport for now. i'll have more for you in the next hour. for now, back to you, joanna. boats at a beauty spot in dorset are being encouraged not to drop their anchors, but to use new "eco—moorings" instead. the ten moorings being installed at studland bay are safer for the creatures living below the water's surface — like seahorses — which can
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have their habitat damaged by traditional anchors. john maguire reports. these underwater meadows of seagrass provide a vital habitat teeming with wildlife, and it's where you can find the spiny seahorse. it's a protected species, and studland bay is a marine conservation zone. but boats visiting this popular area of the dorset coast can create problems. we've counted up to a50 boats here in one day. it's the noise, the anchors, the general movement of everything seems to affect the seahorses. they're very prone to stress, and so if you can sort of reduce that stress, then they're quite happy, relaxed seahorses. if they have a lot of stress, then they move back out to sea. the wildlife presenter steve backshall has dived here, and says boat anchors and mooring chains can damage the sea bed. they completely destroy all the substrate around it, which means that all the seagrass dies, and it gets rid
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of that binding substrate, which then washes away as sand. and so you just end up with these big, barren circles around all the moorings. and within that, nothing can live — and particularly not seahorses. so here's a solution. the seahorse trust is installing this environmentally friendly design. instead of a chain, the mooring is attached to a fixed point in the sea bed via a large elasticated rope that stretches with the tide and minimises damage. and, if beneficial, it will mean seafarers and seahorses can co—exist successfully. that wasjohn that was john maguire that wasjohn maguire reporting. with me now is mark parry, development officer, 0cean conservation trust who also spotted and filmed the very rare long snouted seahorse among the seagrass near plymouth. tell us more about the long snout to the sea horse. how common they are
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in uk waters?— in uk waters? good morning, and thank ou in uk waters? good morning, and thank you for— in uk waters? good morning, and thank you for having _ in uk waters? good morning, and thank you for having me - in uk waters? good morning, and thank you for having me on - in uk waters? good morning, and thank you for having me on this . thank you for having me on this morning — thank you for having me on this morning. we have two species of sea horse _ morning. we have two species of sea horse around — morning. we have two species of sea horse around the uk. we have the lon- horse around the uk. we have the long snout— horse around the uk. we have the long snout it and shorts noted. and where _ long snout it and shorts noted. and where they— long snout it and shorts noted. and where they like to reside is in sheltered, shallow coves in seagrass beds, _ sheltered, shallow coves in seagrass beds, which is the perfect area for them _ beds, which is the perfect area for them to— beds, which is the perfect area for them to live. but it's also areas that— them to live. but it's also areas that are — them to live. but it's also areas that are visiting yachtsman like to spend _ that are visiting yachtsman like to spend the — that are visiting yachtsman like to spend the day. so there is frequently some conflict between nature _ frequently some conflict between nature, cancellation and the boating community. nature, cancellation and the boating communi . ., ., nature, cancellation and the boating community-— community. how do they fit into the ecos stem community. how do they fit into the ecosystem of _ community. how do they fit into the ecosystem of our _ community. how do they fit into the ecosystem of our waters? _ community. how do they fit into the ecosystem of our waters? they - community. how do they fit into the ecosystem of our waters? they are l ecosystem of our waters? they are one of our— ecosystem of our waters? they are one of our rarest _ ecosystem of our waters? they are one of our rarest breeds _ ecosystem of our waters? they are one of our rarest breeds of - ecosystem of our waters? they are one of our rarest breeds of sea - one of our rarest breeds of sea horses— one of our rarest breeds of sea horses for— one of our rarest breeds of sea horses for certain. i think a lot of people _ horses for certain. i think a lot of people are — horses for certain. i think a lot of people are surprised to see that we find them _ people are surprised to see that we find them around our coasts, but they— find them around our coasts, but they are — find them around our coasts, but they are this beautiful ornate, very rare species.
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they are this beautiful ornate, very rare species-— rare species. obviously, you've mentioned _ rare species. obviously, you've mentioned is _ rare species. obviously, you've mentioned is the _ rare species. obviously, you've mentioned is the impact - rare species. obviously, you've mentioned is the impact of - rare species. obviously, you've mentioned is the impact of the | mentioned is the impact of the anchors, we were seeing that in our report, but how important is it to protect them in our waters with as many ways as can be found to do that? this many ways as can be found to do that? �* , , , many ways as can be found to do that? a , ., , ., that? as i say, they are very rare animals and _ that? as i say, they are very rare animals and they _ that? as i say, they are very rare animals and they are _ that? as i say, they are very rare animals and they are found - that? as i say, they are very rare animals and they are found in - animals and they are found in several— animals and they are found in several hotspots around the south coast _ several hotspots around the south coast so — several hotspots around the south coast so i— several hotspots around the south coast. so i know that there is a considerable number in studland bay, a considerable number around the isle a considerable number around the isle of— a considerable number around the isle of wight. recently, we are finding — isle of wight. recently, we are finding populations down on the devon— finding populations down on the devon coast. but at such a rare animal, _ devon coast. but at such a rare animal, and — devon coast. but at such a rare animal, and the fact that it is highly— animal, and the fact that it is highly protected under the wildlife and countryside act, we have a responsibility to also protect its habitat~ — responsibility to also protect its habitat. it's predominant loss is through— habitat. it's predominant loss is through loss of habitat, so these types _ through loss of habitat, so these types of— through loss of habitat, so these types of initiative that look to safeguard where the animal lives
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will have — safeguard where the animal lives will have a knock on effect to the number — will have a knock on effect to the number of — will have a knock on effect to the number of these beautiful creatures that we _ number of these beautiful creatures that we do— number of these beautiful creatures that we do see around our coasts. when _ that we do see around our coasts. when you — that we do see around our coasts. when you say we see, they are rare. we are not seeing them habitually when we go to the beach. is it something that anyone can spot if they look hard enough?— they look hard enough? that's an interesting _ they look hard enough? that's an interesting question. _ they look hard enough? that's an interesting question. i've - they look hard enough? that's an interesting question. i've been i interesting question. i've been studying — interesting question. i've been studying sea grasses now for seven years. _ studying sea grasses now for seven years. and — studying sea grasses now for seven years, and periodically we have an anecdotal— years, and periodically we have an anecdotal spot from a fisher or a sailor— anecdotal spot from a fisher or a sailor in— anecdotal spot from a fisher or a sailor in areas around the south—west. not until we are out on a routine _ south—west. not until we are out on a routine dive a couple of months a-o a routine dive a couple of months ago did _ a routine dive a couple of months ago did we — a routine dive a couple of months ago did we manage to capture some quite rare _ ago did we manage to capture some quite rare footage of a beautiful lon- quite rare footage of a beautiful long snout it sea horse. many of these _ long snout it sea horse. many of these reports are just sort of hearsay _ these reports are just sort of hearsay. but when we published this picture. _ hearsay. but when we published this picture, there were quite a few members — picture, there were quite a few
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members of the public that also had surprisingly seen them around the south _ surprisingly seen them around the south coast. some gentlemen got in contact _ south coast. some gentlemen got in contact to— south coast. some gentlemen got in contact to say that he brought one up contact to say that he brought one up on _ contact to say that he brought one up on a _ contact to say that he brought one up on a crabbing line. and immediately realise what it was so put it _ immediately realise what it was so put it back — immediately realise what it was so put it back. i think it's stories like _ put it back. i think it's stories like this— put it back. i think it's stories like this that get people talking about— like this that get people talking about these animals and talking about— about these animals and talking about habitat, and it's surprising how many— about habitat, and it's surprising how many members of the public actually— how many members of the public actually do see these, and they are not diving — actually do see these, and they are not diving while they are doing it. because — not diving while they are doing it. because they feel like almost mythical creatures.— because they feel like almost mythical creatures. they are very stran . e mythical creatures. they are very strange animals, _ mythical creatures. they are very strange animals, aren't - mythical creatures. they are very strange animals, aren't they? - mythical creatures. they are very| strange animals, aren't they? the mail carries — strange animals, aren't they? the mail carries the young and births. and they— mail carries the young and births. and they are sort of not the standard _ and they are sort of not the standard fish that you would expect to see _ standard fish that you would expect to see around our coasts, and
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they've — to see around our coasts, and they've also got this prehensile tail which they use very similar to some _ tail which they use very similar to some primates to hold on stuff. so they are _ some primates to hold on stuff. so they are quite poor swimmers, they have got— they are quite poor swimmers, they have got a _ they are quite poor swimmers, they have got a lot of stuff stacked against — have got a lot of stuff stacked against them over the course of revolution, there are really safeguarding their habitat and creating space for these animals is really— creating space for these animals is really important to their long—term success _ really important to their long—term success so — really important to their long-term success. ,, ., really important to their long-term success. ., , , really important to their long-term success. . , , success. so we are 'ust seeing some ictures, success. so we are 'ust seeing some pictures. actually. _ success. so we are just seeing some pictures, actually, which _ success. so we are just seeing some pictures, actually, which show- pictures, actually, which show exactly what you are describing, detail coiled around the seagrass as the sea horse clings on to avoid being washed away. so the ego moorings —— eco—moorings, how much of a difference would you expect them to make to the population of sea horses in that area?— sea horses in that area? because advanced moorings _ sea horses in that area? because advanced moorings systems, - sea horses in that area? because i advanced moorings systems, and sea horses in that area? because - advanced moorings systems, and that is in association with the world yachting — is in association with the world yachting association, because they are an _ yachting association, because they are an advanced design to allow
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nature _ are an advanced design to allow nature and boaters to coexist. so we would _ nature and boaters to coexist. so we would expect each one of these installations to reduce the amount of scour, _ installations to reduce the amount of scour, or— installations to reduce the amount of scour, or the dead zone, around the central— of scour, or the dead zone, around the central lowering by as much as 80 square — the central lowering by as much as 80 square metres of habitat. and with more — 80 square metres of habitat. and with more habitat and less disruption, then a previous speaker in your— disruption, then a previous speaker in your report said that a calm sea has the _ in your report said that a calm sea has the ability to mate, to feed, to have _ has the ability to mate, to feed, to have long — has the ability to mate, to feed, to have long term, healthier parts of its life—cycle. so by lessening disruption, but by also not removing any human— disruption, but by also not removing any human activity, so that it is possible — any human activity, so that it is possible to _ any human activity, so that it is possible to coexist, we would expect these _
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possible to coexist, we would expect these animals to hopefully become more _ these animals to hopefully become more abundant and healthier within that habitat. so this is a really positive — that habitat. so this is a really positive project.— that habitat. so this is a really positive project. positive pro'ect. presumably it won't 'ust positive project. presumably it won't just impact _ positive project. presumably it won't just impact on _ positive project. presumably it won'tjust impact on the - positive project. presumably it won'tjust impact on the sea i positive project. presumably it - won'tjust impact on the sea horses, but other sea life there, too? adore but other sea life there, too? are sea . rass but other sea life there, too? are seagrass beds are habitat for many of our— seagrass beds are habitat for many of our commercial fish, so it sort of our commercial fish, so it sort of works— of our commercial fish, so it sort of works the _ of our commercial fish, so it sort of works the same way that if we have _ of works the same way that if we have juvenile fish living within the seagrass— have juvenile fish living within the seagrass bed they've got less stress, — seagrass bed they've got less stress, they got food available to them, _ stress, they got food available to them, then that has a knock on effect _ them, then that has a knock on effect to— them, then that has a knock on effect to the health of the animal further— effect to the health of the animal further into its life. of course, some — further into its life. of course, some of— further into its life. of course, some of those animals, some of those species. _ some of those animals, some of those species. we _ some of those animals, some of those species, we rely upon for commercial fisheries. _ species, we rely upon for commercial fisheries. so— species, we rely upon for commercial fisheries, so it sea grasses are hugely— fisheries, so it sea grasses are hugely important for our really bare sea animals that we find around the uk, but _ sea animals that we find around the uk, but also for our commercial species — uk, but also for our commercial species as— uk, but also for our commercial species as well.— uk, but also for our commercial species as well. really interesting to talk to you- _ species as well. really interesting to talk to you. thank _ species as well. really interesting to talk to you. thank you - species as well. really interesting to talk to you. thank you very - species as well. really interesting i to talk to you. thank you very much. no worries. the haulage industry says urgent
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measures are needed to tackle the chronic shortage of hgv drivers which is causing supply issues across the economy. business presenter nina wahurst has spent the morning at a freight company in bradford to find out how its coping. you might have noticed some shortages of stock on supermarket shelves. and that's partly because of a lack of hgv drivers. come and have a look at this lorry, which is bound for the south of england, and it will go on its way towards malta. it's being sent out that way, and what happens is the journey is worked in legs. but some companies like this one in bradford where they have about 32 vehicles but at the moment are missing about a quarter of drivers, and it's for a combination of reasons. first of all, this lack of around 100,000 drivers is partly because brexit, so drivers leaving for their country of origin and then not coming back or struggling at the borders and deciding the job's just not for them, but also because of the covid, similarly, drivers going back to their country of origin and then
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finding it difficult or not wanting to come back. but also, it's an ageing workforce. the average age of an hgv driver is 55 and just 1% is under 25, so as they retire they're not necessarily coming through. and part of the reason for that is that there is a huge backlog of people trying to get their hands on hgv licences. on average, around 40,000 of them are given out every year. last year, just 15,000 were. so you can see why there is a combination of factors leading to this gap in the workforce. let's talk to leslie, who's struggling to fill that gap. lovely to see you. so roughly a quarter, then, of your workforce is limited. and what can you do about it? what do you think needs to be done? what absolutely needs to be done is, we need the government to put the drivers on that critical shortage list so that those drivers who left the uk through the pandemic or due to brexit are allowed to come back in, and currently they are not allowed to come back in to the uk. if they could come in,
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even short—term to get a short term visa, that would help us. and in the interim, we can then start to train drivers and attract more people to the industry. but what we also need is the government to work with us to improve facilities for drivers, improve parking. we're 11,000 parking spaces short. we need improved motorway services with washing facilities, better food, and so it makes it a more attractive life. and also, we do want the media to promote our industry, because every time there is an industry on the road it seems to be sensationalised because it's a large truck, and our vehicles and our drivers are amongst the safest on the road. they've had vocational licences, our trucks are the most modern, it really is an exciting industry to be in, so please government, can we have some help? so you feel like perceptions need to change? yeah, perceptions absolutely do need to change. because it is an exciting industry. dealing with all other kind of manufacturers, providers, medical, schools.
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if you think, absolutely everything that you eat, drink, consume comes on the back of a lorry _ at the moment, it feels like this combination of reasons is creating a bottleneck that can be broken, you know, as the licences are distributed, as more people come into the industry. but are things going to get worse before they get better? well, they absolutely could get worse before they get better. we're coming to the holiday period so we've got drivers who want to go on holiday, we've got drivers who are sick, we've got drivers who carried forward to their holiday from last year during the pandemic, and so things could get better before they get worse if the government doesn't step in and help us. 0k, and the government have told us that they have slightly extended the hours that drivers can work in order to help with the bottleneck. but leslie and some others say that, actually, that is just not safe to keep extending the hours. they also say they're encouraging the dwp to help recruit new drivers, but as things stand, as leslie was saying, things could get worse before they get better. you might be noticing more empty shelves.
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the headlines on bbc news... a british man working at the uk's embassy in berlin is arrested on suspicion of spying for russia. thousands of civilians flee major afghan cities, as the taliban continue to gain ground while president biden says he doesn't regret withdrawing us troops from the country. at least 42 people are killed as wildfires erupt across algeria, including 25 soldiers fighting the fires. libya has been in chaos since 2011, when colonel gaddafi was toppled by a popular uprising aided by a bombing campaign led by nato. since then, two rival governments have split the country into west and east. foreign involvement has had a big impact, with the two sides backed by key international powers, including russia and turkey. bbc arabic and bbc russia have spent months researching
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the role of mercenaries from russia's wagner group, and have been able — exclusively — to identify russian fighters supporting one side of the war. bbc arabic�*s nader ibrahim reports. caught in a civil war for over a decade, libya was already a deadly conflict. but recently, it's become even more complex. we had heard reports of russian mercenaries fighting against the un backed government. and now we've got unique evidence of their involvement. the bbc has obtained a tablet that a fighter left behind. it belonged to wagner, a shadowy russian mercenary group. so i've gone through the tablet. it's amazing the amount of information i've managed to find on it. have been doing in libya. clearly, this tablet was not meant to end up in our hands. from what we have seen, we can confirm that wagner have been operating in libya for over two years. we set out to investigate further.
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this is ain zara, ten kilometres away from the centre of the libyan capital, tripoli. this man fought these heavily armed russian fighters for nine weeks. translation: they are mercenaries. they only care about making money. this is what they do. it is their job. they kill people. they commit crimes for money. they are a criminal organisation. in criminal organisation. in international law, mercenaries are already unlawful combatants. but we have found evidence suggesting that wagner may have committed war crimes. i met one man who says he witnessed his family being killed by the mercenaries in september, 2019. they were all civilians. 0ur eyewitness did not want to be identified, but he told us that he caught a glimpse of one of the
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killers. translation: ., ., ., ~ , translation: one of them took his wea on. translation: one of them took his weapon- when _ translation: one of them took his weapon. when he _ translation: one of them took his weapon. when he started _ translation: one of them took his weapon. when he started shooting l translation: one of them took his weapon. when he started shooting i | weapon. when he started shooting i fell on my side and pretended to be dead. we can name him. he operates in the wagner group. here is a picture from his social media. it simply says, plan number one, find and kill everyone. it highlights the group is micro—involvement in some of the world's biggest conflicts. in this area, and ukraine, where he is accused of killing prisoners of war in 2014. wagner mercenaries almost never talk to the media, but two
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former members agreed to talk to us anonymously. translation: ., ., . ., translation: there are no clear rules. translation: there are no clear rules- there _ translation: there are no clear rules. there are _ translation: there are no clear rules. there are no _ translation: there are no clear rules. there are no documents i rules. there are no documents regulating relationships with the local population. it regulating relationships with the local population.— regulating relationships with the local population. if they work force to din local population. if they work force to dig trenches, _ local population. if they work force to dig trenches, then _ local population. if they work force to dig trenches, then the - local population. if they work force to dig trenches, then the prisonerl to dig trenches, then the prisoner has a _ to dig trenches, then the prisoner has a value — to dig trenches, then the prisoner has a value as a slave. if that is not required, then the result is obvious — not required, then the result is obvious. no one wants an extra mouth to feed _ obvious. no one wants an extra mouth to feed the _ obvious. no one wants an extra mouth to feed. «a obvious. no one wants an extra mouth to feed. , . ., to feed. the links between wagner and the kremlin _ to feed. the links between wagner and the kremlin reach _ to feed. the links between wagner and the kremlin reach to _ to feed. the links between wagner and the kremlin reach to the i to feed. the links between wagner and the kremlin reach to the very i and the kremlin reach to the very top. the man who is reported to run the group has been seen with vladimir putin. there's currently a un ceasefire in libya. 0ne vladimir putin. there's currently a un ceasefire in libya. one of the conditions was that all mercenaries should leave the country, but our evidence shows that wagner is still in libya, in violation with un deal.
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research for the bbc by two recruitment websites suggests a large increase injobs being advertised with the option to work from home this year. however, they remain a relatively small proportion of all vacancies posted. the agencies reed and cv library say 12 percent of posts are now offering more flexibilty, compared to 5 percent of posts which stipulated this before the pandemic. earlier we heard from anna whitehouse — founder of the parenting blog mother pukka and campaigner for flexible working — who said the new hybrid working model is the future of work. it's really down to any employers listening — it's really down to any employers listening right now. it's no more complicated. in a nutshell, the equality— complicated. in a nutshell, the equality and human rights commission hasm _ equality and human rights commission hasm why— equality and human rights commission has... why would you not want that
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on your— has... why would you not want that on youriob — has... why would you not want that on yourjob ad? being a diverse and inclusive _ on yourjob ad? being a diverse and inclusive employer. tv and radio services for more than a million people will remain off air indefinitely after a transmitter fire. the blaze at the bilsdale mast yesterday disrupted freeview, dab and fm radio signals across north yorkshire, teesside and part of county durham. 0perator arqiva said it would bring in temporary equipment but could not say when services would be restored. if you've ever spent a couple of nights under canvas, you'll know the relief of getting back into your own bed. that's a feeling max woosey has not experienced in well over a year. the 11—year—old, from devon, has just spent his 500th night in the outdoors to raise money for charity. andrew plant went to see how he was marking the occasion. hi, i'm max. this is my home. as you can see, i've got all my teddies. he hasn't slept indoors since march last year. after 499 nights in a tent...
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..max is treating himself tonight — building his very own log cabin instead. so you've done 499 nights in a tent, but your 500th is under wood. is that going to be weird? i'm in this and...i've built this pretty well. but you know what? we've got a little tarp, so if it does rain, then i won't get soaked. i thought, for my 500th night, it'd be a bit more crazy, a bit more fun. max was inspired by his next—door neighbour, who was dying of cancer. rick gave him a tent and told him to have an adventure. max decided to raise money for the hospice that looked after him instead. he just had to persuade his parents first. well, i said a straight no to begin with. there was still frost on the ground, so it was just an outright no. and then he asked again the next day, and again it was no. and then after i think three or four days, we said, well,
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ok, you can do a night. and then he said that he wanted to set up a fundraiser. how did you react to that? he said that he would like to raise money for the north devon hospice. and i actually said to him, "that's a really nice idea, but i don't think anybody will really be bothered that you're sleeping outside. " does he remind you? he reminds me about that every single time his total goes up. and go up it has — every single day. he's now raised well over half a million pounds. max is now on tent number ten, and it's not all been in his back garden. he's pitched up at downing street for tea with the pm, spent a night at london zoo... horn beeps ..even been given a military escort to school. i'm freezing cold... he's slept out in snow, braved plenty of wet and windy weather... the winds picking up. ..and not once been tempted to tiptoe back upstairs. really gusty!
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so tonight it will be a different view to fall asleep to — no tent overhead, just tree branches instead. do you ever think you'll stop sleeping outside? i definitely could. just don't want to. so it's lights out one more time for max — for the 500th night and counting. andrew plant, bbc news. now it's time for a look at the weather with carol. yesterday, 25.3 celsius was the temperature recorded. today, some in the south—east could see similar. any north—west, some breezy conditions. all attached to this area of low pressure in the atlantic. high pressurejust killing on by the skin of its teeth. —— high
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pressure just on by the skin of its teeth. —— high pressurejust clinging on by the skin of its teeth. —— high pressure just clinging on on by the skin of its teeth. —— high pressurejust clinging on by on by the skin of its teeth. —— high pressure just clinging on by the skin of its teeth. cloud building ahead of it. eventually, it will clear in western scotland and northern ireland so it will brighten up northern ireland so it will brighten up for you. but you can see the extent of the rain, all the way down to the isles of scilly. ahead of it, the cloud building, you see the odd shower, some hanging on across the path of these. it could hit maybe 25 today. underthe path of these. it could hit maybe 25 today. under the cloud and rain, temperatures will be that bit lower. through this evening and overnight, that weather front continues to push southwards and eastwards as a weakening cloud of rain. some patchy mist and fog forming. temperatures lower in the north compared to last night. in sheltered glens, as low as three orfour celsius. night. in sheltered glens, as low as three or four celsius. blowing night. in sheltered glens, as low as three orfour celsius. blowing in some showers across western scotland and northern ireland. he is a week whether front. and northern ireland. he is a week whetherfront. here is the and northern ireland. he is a week whether front. here is the low pressure coming closer to us, taking further outbreaks of rain with it. many were starting off on a dry note. there will still be the
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remnants of the cloud and spots of rain in the south—east. that will break up and brighten up. the rain comes in from the west accompanied by brisk winds. gale force gusts across the western isles. again, we could just see 25 somewhere in the south—east. 0n could just see 25 somewhere in the south—east. on friday, are low pressure is right across us so some further showers, pressure is right across us so some furthershowers, brisk pressure is right across us so some further showers, brisk winds across the board, and we still do have the remnants of our weather front in southern areas producing some cloud and the odd spot of rain. in between these two areas, we are looking at some dry conditions and some sunshine. temperatures down a touch. 15-23 c will sunshine. temperatures down a touch. 15—23 c will be the order of the day. as we head into the weekend, there is a little bit of uncertainty about the forecast. we think of rain in the south, dry in the north, and the opposite on sunday.
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this is bbc news, i'mjoanna gosling the headlines at midday a british man working at the uk's embassy in berlin is arrested on suspicion of spying for russia. thousands of civilians flee major afghan cities, as the taliban continue to gain ground, while president biden says he doesn't regret withdrawing us troops from the country. afghan leaders have to come together. we lost thousands lost in death and injury, thousands of american personnel. they've got to fight for themselves. "i thought he was going to kill me." a police officer gives evidence to an inquest into the streatham attack, in which convicted terrorist sudesh amman stabbed two people before being shot dead. after the gap between private and state school a—level results
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grows in england, the government insists it's committed to supporting students of all backgrounds. at least 42 people are killed as wildfires erupt across algeria, including 25 soldiers fighting the fires. and lionel messi, one of the world's greatest footballers, speaks about his hopes and dreams for paris saint—germain afterjoining the french club from barcelona. translation: i still want to play, | i still want to win, keep playing, | keep winning titles, and that is why i have come here to this club. good afternoon and welcome to bbc news. a british man working at the uk's embassy in berlin has been arrested on suspicion of spying for russia.
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prosecutors say the man, who's been identified only as david s, passed on documents to russian intelligence in exchange for cash. he was detained following a joint investigation by the germany and british authorities and will appear before a judge later today. 0ur correspondent matt cole gave this update. we have heard from federal prosecutors in germany that the arrest took place yesterday in potsdam, the eastern city near berlin. they believe that the secrets that have been passed on, on at least one occasion, in exchange for cash may have been passed on as early as november 2020. the amount of money exchanged is not known, but the man, who according to the german authorities is known as david s, that is all they have given us as his name, they have searched both his workplace and his home as well. at some point today it is expected he will appear in front
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of a federaljudge in germany. has there been any reaction from the authorities here? we have heard a couple of bits from different bodies here, not least the met police. the counter terrorism command, which falls under the met police, it is working with the german authorities. i have not been able to establish at this stage whether it was the british end of operations or in germany that this investigation was originated, but both sets of officials are working together. the met police in their statement have added that the arrested man is 57. in their statement they refer to him as being arrested on suspicion of committing offences related to being engaged in intelligence agency activity. they make it clear this is being investigated under german law and at the moment the german authorities have primacy, which is the way they put it, in this investigation. the home office has also
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made a short statement, simply to say that this is an individual who was contracted to work for the government, they were arrested yesterday by the german authorities, but they then say it would not be appropriate to comment further because there is this ongoing police investigation. the us president, joe biden, has called on afghanistan's leaders to "unite and fight", as the taliban claim to have captured nine out of 34 provincial capitals. the militants say they've taken the north—eastern city of faizabad. but afghan officials say air strikes and commando attacks have left dozens of taliban militants dead in other parts of the country. the washington post is reporting that us intelligence officials believe kabul could fall within ninety days. at a news conference overnight, president biden said he did not regret his decision to withdraw us troops. we spent over $1 trillion over 20 years. we trained and equipped with modern
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equipment over 300,000 afghan forces and afghan leaders have to come together. we lost thousands, lost in death and injury, thousands of american personnel. they've got to fight for themselves, fight for their nation. the united states insists we continue to keep the commitments we made in providing close air support, making sure that their air force functions and is operable, resupplying their forces with food and equipment and paying all their salaries. but they've got to want to fight. they have outnumbered the taliban and i'm getting daily briefings, i think there is still a possibility there is a new, significant
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equivalent of our sectarian defence in afghanistan, bismillah khan is a serious fighter. i think they are beginning to realise they've got to come together politically at the top but we are going to continue to keep our commitments, but i do not regret my decision. the afghan president ashraf ghani has flown to the besieged northern city of mazar—i—sharif to rally resistance to the taliban offensive. and there are reports this morning that the afghan army's chief of staff has been sacked. 0ur south asia regional editor anbarasan ethirajan has the latest the afghan media's reporting that general wali mohammad ahmadzai has been replaced by general hebatullah alizai. this comes after a series of setbacks by the afghan army, particularly in the northern part where they have lost several cities to the taliban. in fact, an army corps in charge of the northern region, the person in charge
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of that was also replaced a couple of days ago. and a few hours ago, the afghan president, ashraf ghani, he was in mazar—i—sharif city, which is in the north, the biggest city in the north, to show support for the troops who have been fighting there. that's a major city. if that falls, that will be a significant blow for the afghan government. and usually the northern part of afghanistan was seen as a traditional anti—taliban region where they can form an alliance to drive taliban away, but now the taliban simply focus exactly on that region and one of the cities they captured was puli khumri overnight. that's just about 200 kilometres north of kabul. as president biden was saying, we spent $1 trillion, trained the army, so they should be able to fight. but the issue is the afghan army's down on morale, supplies, and there are reports of lots of desertions. a few hours ago, we heard reports that some of the soldiers
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who are now stuck in kunduz airport, which is a city in the north. and the city has been captured by taliban. most of the forces have gone into the airport, and they have surrendered and the taliban have issued a video showing some of them surrendering. but we have no way of independently verifying that video. at least 4,000 civilians have been injured over the past ten days, with thousands displaced and hundreds of national projects destroyed. eileen mccarthy is from the afghanistan branch of the norwegian refugee council. she's in kabul where many people from the surrounding countryside are coming to seek refuge from the fighting. since the beginning of the year, we've seen nearly 390,000 afghans displaced by conflict, and the last three months have seen some of the highest numbers of displacement since 2016. and i think as we are seeing the conflict and the fighting reaching provincial centres where population density is even higher, we are expecting those numbers to go up. and i think that is on top of the 3.5 million afghans who were displaced across the country even before the fighting escalated in recent weeks.
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so right now we are seeing a lot of internal displacement, and in the past few days, we are seeing rapidly rising numbers of idps arriving in kabul and our teams are out in the field in kabul today to try to understand the needs and really describe to me that this was the worst situation that they have seen in kabul ever. the scale of people who are arriving from provinces all over the country is really unlike something that we've seen before, with people who have fled their homes with just the clothes on their back who are scared about relatives who are still in the areas where they are from and reallyjust looking for a place for safety. an armed surveillance officer has described how he shot the streatham attacker sudesh amman as he ran towards him holding a knife. amman stabbed two people on a busy high street in february 2020, ten days after being released from a prison sentence for terrorism offences. 0ur correspondent helena wilkinson is at the royal courts of justice.
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what has been said in court this morning? what has been said in court this mornin: ? ~ . , what has been said in court this mornin: ? ~ ., ,. what has been said in court this mornina? what has been said in court this morninu? ~ ., morning? well, as you say, we have been hearing — morning? well, as you say, we have been hearing from _ morning? well, as you say, we have been hearing from that _ morning? well, as you say, we have been hearing from that surveillance | been hearing from that surveillance officer. he has been describing those moments when he came face—to—face with the stratum attacker. he has been telling the jury attacker. he has been telling the jury that he was part of a nine man surveillance team, they had been following sudesh amman that day on the 2nd of february last year, that he had been staying at a hostel in streatham, the reason for that was that he had been released from prison ten days earlier and was on licence. the officer described how they followed him when he left the hostel on foot and by car as well and the officer then said that at some point over the radio he heard a colleague say, he is starving people. the officer told the jury, i immediately drew my glock pistol, i knew that would be the best weapon to instantly incapacitate sudesh
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amman. the officer then told the jury amman. the officer then told the jury he then approached and went towards the incident and he said to them, almost as soon as i looked up i saw sudesh amman running towards me, he had a large butcher's knife, at least eight inches long in his left hand and held it up in front of him. the officer then went on to say, i thought he was going to stab me and kill me, or certainly seriously injure me. the officer then said he took his pistol in both hands, he fired a shot at the man, it didn't have any effect at all. he then said he chased him and he said he and his colleague then locked eyes with sudesh amman. they both fired a number of other shots and sudesh amman fell to the ground and his colleague kicked the knife out of his hands. thejury are continuing to hear further evidence here today. this afternoon we are going to hear from another
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surveillance officer who will give evidence. but this morning that dramatic evidence from the surveillance officer, telling the jury, describing in his words how he came face—to—face with the attacker and fear for his life. there are calls for reforms to the a—level system after this year's results saw record numbers of students given top grades. the government is considering a range of options for the future grading of results in england. labour says the coronavirus pandemic has widened the gap between private and state schools. simonjones has this report. i've got three a*s. oh, my god, that's fantastic! hard work rewarded after the most challenging of years — but concerns, too, about how the grades are being awarded. 0verall, more than 44% of pupils received the top a* or a grades, but in private schools that figure
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was more than 70%. in comprehensives, it wasjust over 39%. labour is asking why private schools did so much better. that might be because they've had access to better learning facilities over the past year, access to remote learning or more resources in school. it may be that some parents have intervened more actively to encourage schools to give their children grades that would enable them to take up university places. the department for education says there has been a rise in top grades for students from all backgrounds, and the relative increase of the proportion of top marks compared with last year is no higher in independent schools than in other schools. but the government may now consider changes over concerns about grade inflation. one possible idea is replacing the a*—e system with the numbers 9 to 1. there's also debate about how next year's exams should be run. what we want from a national examination system, most importantly, is that all students are treated fairly and
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consistently with one another, that they have the same opportunity to demonstrate what they've learned. and that's what an exam system does. the fairest means of assessing people is by continuous assessment, and the only way that can be done properly is if teachers are taught how to assess. the pandemic has meant it's been a year of uncertainty, but how the exams will look in years to come is farfrom clear. simon jones, bbc news. the first school pupils in scotland are set to return from their summer break today, in the week most covid restrictions were lifted. pupils will be back in classrooms in angus for the first time since the move beyond level zero. the majority of schools across the country will return on wednesday and thursday next week. people living in cities in the uk will typically have to pay eight times the average earnings to buy a home. the analysis from halifax found a 10% surge in house prices has offset a 2% rise in average earnings.
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winchester was named the least affordable city with properties now 14 times annual income for residents, while londonderry in northern ireland was the most affordable location, with homes costing less than five times earnings. the headlines on bbc news... a british man working at the uk's embassy in berlin is arrested on suspicion of spying for russia. thousands of civilians flee major afghan cities as the taliban continue to gain ground, while president biden says he does not regret withdrawing us troops from the country. and lionel messi, one of the world's greatest footballers speaks about his hopes and dreams for paris saint—germain after joining the french club from barcelona. sport and for a full round up, from the bbc sport centre, here's chetan. in the last couple of hours, lionel messi has been talking to the world for the first time as a paris st germain player.
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after 21 years and 35 trophies at barcelona, he decided to leave because the club couldn't afford a new deal under la liga's financial fair play rules. the 34—year—old admits it's been an emotional week, but says he's looking forward to the challenge ahead i'm very happy to be here, i want to get going and i still want to play and i still want to win as much as i did when i started my career. with the players and the staff i think this club is ready to fight for all of the trophies. i want to keep growing and winning titles and that is why i have come to this club. the premier league is fully behind players taking a knee when the top flight in england resumes this weekend. a small minority of supporters booed the action when england played earlier in the summer but the clubs united in taking a stand
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against racism again this season, the league's chief executive expects fans to respect the gesture. i think taking the knee is a really powerful, unifying symbol, so if the players want to do it we are happy in supporting them do that. i really do not understand why anybody would want to object to that or boo it. i hope and expectation is the vast majority of supporters will support it. we will wait and see this weekend. 0bviously it. we will wait and see this weekend. obviously it has been going on for a year without supporters in the ground, but we are not concerned about any negative reaction because we believe it is the right thing to do. britain's harriet dart has been knocked out in the second round of the montreal 0pen. she put in a strong performance, taking the second seed bianca andreescu to three sets, and the canadian needed over two hours to come through the match. that's all the sport for now. i'll have more for you in the next hour.
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wildfires in algeria have killed at least 42 people, including 25 members of the military who were fighting the blazes. the fires have caused devastation in several mediterranean countries in recent days, including turkey, greece, lebanon and cyprus. 0ur reporter azadeh moshiri has more. dozens killed and land scorched. algeria's the latest mediterranean country to face disastrous wildfires. more than 100 fires are raging in several provinces east of the capital, claiming the lives of both civilians and soldiers who were deployed to rescue algerians from the flames. while some villages were evacuated, others stayed back using tree branches to calm the flames. translation: there are fires everywhere. we have not seen the government here. we do not have a state. the people are the government. long live the members from the civil protection teams. the flames have burnt
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the country's famed olive trees, and clouded the streets with smoke. these are becoming worryingly familiar scenes as wildfires continue to burn across several countries. greece's prime minister apologised to the nation for the fires that have been tearing through since late july and said climate change has fuelled the wildfires, increasing the risk of hot, dry weather. his minister in charge of civil protection broke down when asked about the country's failings. translation: iwant to say something. i every house that is lost is a tragedy for all of us and is a strike to our hearts. but what i know is that a massive battle was raged during recent days. we have all remained without sleep throughout all these days. more high temperatures are expected in the coming weeks, meaning more land and lives
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could be vulnerable. azadeh moshiri, bbc news. in california, firefighters are continuing to tackle a wildfire which has become the second largest in state history. the dixie fire is one of 11 major wildfires currently burning in california and has already destroyed hundreds of buildings and entire communities. 0ur correspondent barbara plett usher reports. in the remote eastern mountains of california, the dixie fire devours acre after acre of wild land. exhausted firefighters are battling a blaze unlike any they've seen before. a perfect storm of severe heat, drought and wind, plus the slope of the tinder dry terrain is driving its rapid spread. this week, scientists directly linked such conditions to climate change. climate change doesn't cause wildfires or heatwaves or drought. what it does is make them a lot worse. that's what's happening in california and the forecast does not look good.
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so people are learning the hard way how to live with the new normal. the fire has left a ghostly landscape in its wake. days ago, dixie tore through greenville, a historic gold rush town, forcing its residents to flee for safety. no one died but homes and businesses were reduced to ash and rubble. evacuation warnings for other communities under threat have been issued in four counties. some greenville residents took shelter in a nearby town, traumatised by loss, and dazed by displacement. it's gone. several times in the last week i have wished i could go home. then i remember i can't go home, there is nothing to go back to. even if the house survived, pretty much the rest of town is gone. there is no water, there is no, you know, everything is gone. and i don't even know, i have no idea what to do,
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where to go, i'm kind of lost. and in my personal situation, on top of it, i'm overwhelmed, i'm completely overwhelmed. leaning on the help of neighbours is not as rare as it once might have been. fires have become so frequent and so intense, the traditionalfire season no longer seems to exist. normally, it reaches its worst only later in the year. some of the folks that have been evacuated have been evacuated many times over the past couple of years. we've seen some folks who have come to a shelter forjust a few days to return home, to come back again, because of those evacuation warnings. so there's a lot of uncertainty for some folks who might not know what the statuses of their home, or what they're going to. it may take weeks to contain dixie, with still more months of smoke and fire ravaging the west after that. right now, the priority of firefighters is to defend lives and homes, to prevent another greenville from happening. barbara plett—usher, bbc news, los angeles. research for the bbc by two recruitment websites suggests a large increase injobs
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being advertised with the option to work from home this year. however, they remain a relatively small proportion of all vacancies posted. the agencies reed and cv library say 12% of posts are now offering more flexibilty, compared to 5% of posts which stipulated this before the pandemic. so what does this mean for the future of office working? the research comes as it's being reported that google is planning to cut the pay of staff who work remotely. earlier we heard from anna whitehouse, founder of the parenting blog mother pukka and campaigner for flexible working, who said the new hybrid working model is the future of work. i think we pin this a lot to mothers' shoulders, but it is for anyone with caring responsibilities, anyone with caring responsibilities, anyone living with disabilities. it is really down to any employers to say right now, are you willing to be a diverse and inclusive employer? it
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is no more complicated. the equality and human rights commission has said flexible working is the primary way to close the gender pay gap. why would you not one on yourjob ad, being a diverse and inclusive employer? let's speak now to max mackin,— chief executive of black fox solutions and reactive recruitment in belfast. he employs 29 office based staff and brought them back in full last 0ctober. welcome, thank you forjoining us. what was your reason for doing that? it really was just we look at the amount of business we were doing, we knew it had slackened off considerably and we just felt that the skills that have been allocated to do the job we do was better off if we were in the office working side by side. if we were in the office working side by side-— if we were in the office working sideb side. ~ ., , , ., side by side. was that purely down to different — side by side. was that purely down to different ways _ side by side. was that purely down to different ways of _ side by side. was that purely down to different ways of working i side by side. was that purely down to different ways of working rather| to different ways of working rather than the fact we were in a pandemic? yes, our generalform of employment is to employ trainees and train them up. somebody working remotely did
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not have the mentorship of the person sitting next to them or across from them. with social distancing everything is done quite friendly, but we thought the people who work for us work better when we were in the office and we bounced off each other better, we came up with better ideas, we came up with better ways of doing the job that we do. i better ways of doing the “ob that we do. ., �* 4' ., better ways of doing the “ob that we do. q ~' ., ,. better ways of doing the “ob that we do. .,�* ~ ., ., do. i don't know if you could hear anna whitehouse, _ do. i don't know if you could hear anna whitehouse, a _ do. i don't know if you could hear anna whitehouse, a parenting i do. i don't know if you could hear i anna whitehouse, a parenting blog, who was making the point about how much it has helped people with disabilities and people with caring responsibilities to be able to have a work and life balance which means they can work and do what they need to do at home. she says any employer who wants to be a diverse and inclusive employer should be embracing this.— inclusive employer should be embracing this. inclusive employer should be embracin: this. . ., ., ., embracing this. what do you say to her? it is funny _ embracing this. what do you say to her? it is funny she _ embracing this. what do you say to her? it is funny she should - embracing this. what do you say to her? it is funny she should say i her? it is funny she should say that, i suffered from polio and i can't walk and i have a mobility problem and i prefer to be in the office. i prefer the day—to—day
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spontaneity that comes with it. if a business can work from home and if a business can work from home and if a business can work from home and if a business can have its staff working from home and still maintain the profitability that he needs to exist, that is important. but it will only suit a business if it can meet its needs and if it can make profits to survive. a lot of people move to working from home, i don't think they will, i think people like the social interaction of going to work and meeting their workmates. it takes them outside of the social grouping they normally have with family and friends. but also from a career perspective, younger people will benefit more and they will learn quicker and better in an office environment. but again, i have no pit problem with people working from home or business is working from home or business is working from home or business is working from home, but i don't think it suits everyone. it seems to be like the flavour of the moment and everybody is trying to push it, but i am not sure it is for everyone.
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did any of your employees say they wanted to continue working from home? ,, , , , ., home? surprisingly not, in fact uuite the home? surprisingly not, in fact quite the opposite. _ home? surprisingly not, in fact quite the opposite. one i home? surprisingly not, in fact quite the opposite. one guy i home? surprisingly not, in fact quite the opposite. one guy in | quite the opposite. one guy in particular had said that he had started off in the mornings getting up started off in the mornings getting up and having breakfast and start working and within a two month period he said he didn't even bother getting out of bed. he would just pick up his phone and continue working in bed. he said for his mental health he needed to get out and have structure and have interaction with other people and his performance to drop considerably. he said his concentration levels meant he was not able to function and perform the tasks he needed to when he could do them. again, some people turn round and say i work very well from him and say i work very well from him and if you can do that and manage your time properly, by all means do so. what i am saying is it is just not an open and shut case that everybody should work from home. it would not suit everybody. you would
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not mind if somebody _ would not suit everybody. you would not mind if somebody in _ would not suit everybody. you would not mind if somebody in your- would not suit everybody. you would i not mind if somebody in your company wanted to work from home, you would allow that? ' :: :: ' wanted to work from home, you would allow that? ' :: :: , ., , wanted to work from home, you would allow that? ' :: :: , . , ., , wanted to work from home, you would allow that? ' i: i: , ., , ., , ., allow that? 100%. there has to be an aareement allow that? 100%. there has to be an agreement where _ allow that? 10096. there has to be an agreement where you _ allow that? 10096. there has to be an agreement where you turn _ allow that? 10096. there has to be an agreement where you turn around i allow that? 10096. there has to be an | agreement where you turn around and say are you able to manage the job at the level that you are currently doing in the office, able to work without the distractions from a nine to five or 94 or 24? if you can do that, by all means do it. it was more people off the tubes and the roads and the commute is easier. but at the same time me personally, when ifirst at the same time me personally, when i first started at the same time me personally, when ifirst started in at the same time me personally, when i first started in work, when at the same time me personally, when ifirst started in work, when i firstjoined the industry many years ago, ifelt it firstjoined the industry many years ago, i felt it very beneficial having more senior people to speak to on a very regular basis, have the water cooler moment of, can you help me with this? you don't get that at home. it is a little bit more artificial than you would if you just reached across the desk to the person in front of you. it is
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just reached across the desk to the person in front of you.— person in front of you. it is an interesting — person in front of you. it is an interesting point _ person in front of you. it is an interesting point about i person in front of you. it is an interesting point about the i person in front of you. it is an i interesting point about the senior people being in the workplace, as you describe. the dragons den panellist touker suleyman says an ugly new class divide is being created. some people have to go to a factory to make a living. he says it is great for white collar workers, but not so much for others who actually have to be there. what you say about that? that actually have to be there. what you say about that?— say about that? that is right. there are loads of — say about that? that is right. there are loads of people, _ say about that? that is right. there are loads of people, given - say about that? that is right. there are loads of people, given the i say about that? that is right. there are loads of people, given the job l are loads of people, given the job they have, they can't do it from home. people in factories, warehouses, engineering science, they have to be on site, nurses, hospital workers, they all have to be on site to do theirjob. what i would say is the downside to working from home is it will put small businesses out of business, people who relied on people to get their
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coffee from, their sandwiches, though small businesses will cease to exist within the city centre. there is a bigger question to pose. but then again, if you are coping and if the company can make profits, and if the company can make profits, and you enjoy it and you enjoy being at home... if you are a mother and you have got children or your father needs help, and you can still do yourjob, i see no problem why you can't do that. but it has to suit the business and how the business moves forward and you have to have the right kind of work discipline to do thejob from the right kind of work discipline to do the job from home. if you have that, i see no problem with it. you are a recruitment _ that, i see no problem with it. you are a recruitment company, so what about the people who are looking for recruitment through you? what are they looking for now? how flexible are they about having people at home? it are they about having people at home? , . , , _ home? it is really busy. the recruitment _
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home? it is really busy. the recruitment industry i home? it is really busy. the recruitment industry is i home? it is really busy. the i recruitment industry is wanting to bring in staff. people are trying to recruit in businesses, so companies are being flexible. you can imagine if you work somewhere for five years and you work from home, then you had to apply for a newjob and work with a whole bunch of new people, new disciplines, new structure and a new culture, but you still had to work from home, that is quite difficult. a lot of companies will say for new recruits they want to spend at least part of their week in the business so they can understand how their culture works and what the job entails and maybe get to know some of the people they are working with. now it's time for a look at the weather with carol. a weather front coming in from the west is pushing in rain as it does so. a lot of dry weather in eastern
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areas, but the cloud building through the afternoon and turning that sunshine and hazy. for some, it will be thick enough for the odd drop of drizzle. as the rain clears from northern ireland the sun will come out and later the rain clears western scotland. temperatures widely 15 to 21, locally it could be 25 in the south—east. this evening and overnight, the weather front sinks south and more or less a band of cloud with spots of rain in it. there will be patchy mist and fog forming, a cooler night in the north than last night, and that leads us into tomorrow. we start off with a lot of dry weather, a fair bit of sunshine. this weather front in the south still producing spots of rain, but that will break up during the day, and more rain coming in from the west, some of which will be heavy and thundery. accompanied by brisk winds. top temperatures tomorrow, 15—24. hello, this is bbc news with joanna gosling. the headlines...
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a british man working at the uk's embassy in berlin is arrested on suspicion of spying for russia. thousands of civilians flee major afghan cities, as the taliban continue to gain ground — while president biden says he doesn't regret withdrawing us troops from the country. after the gap between private and state school a—level results grows in england — the government insists it's committed to supporting students of all backgrounds. at least 42 people are killed as wildfires erupt across algeria, including 25 soldiers fighting the fires. and lionel messi — one of the world's greatest footballers — speaks about his hopes and dreams for paris saint—germain afterjoining the french club from barcelona. the boyfriend of a british woman who went missing while hiking in the pyrenees last november has found her body. esther dingley who was 37
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and from durham had been walking solo in the mountains near the spanish and french border. her partner, daniel colegate, had spent weeks walking hundreds of miles searching for her since she went missing. graham satchell has this report. this is the last picture of esther dingley, a selfie taken high up in the pyrenees sent to her boyfriend dan in november last year. she'd been hiking on her own when she went missing. esther and dan had spent the last seven years travelling around europe ina campervan. they'd given up a successful business career for the freedom of the road after dan had a life—changing health scare. search teams combed mountain trails for weeks and weeks after esther disappeared. last month, a small piece of her bone was found next to animal remains. now her body and belongings have been discovered by her partner, dan. he's walked hundreds and hundreds of miles looking for signs of her. in a statement, the charity lbt global, which is helping the family, said...
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esther dingley was 37, a confident solo hiker. last year, dan told the bbc she was doing what she absolutely loved to do and had never been happier. graham satchell, bbc news. libya has been in chaos since 2011, when colonel gaddafi was toppled by a popular uprising aided by a bombing campaign led by nato. since then, two rival governments have split the country into west and east. foreign involvement has had a big impact, with the two sides backed by key international powers — including russia and turkey. bbc arabic and bbc russia have spent months researching the role of mercenaries from russia's wagner group, and have been able — exclusively — to identify russian fighters supporting one side of the war. bbc arabic�*s nader ibrahim reports. caught in a civil war
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for over a decade, libya was already a deadly conflict. but recently, it's become even more complex. we had heard reports of russian mercenaries fighting against the un—backed government. and now we've got unique evidence of their involvement. the bbc has obtained a tablet that a fighter left behind. it belonged to wagner, a shadowy russian mercenary group. so i've gone through the tablet. it's amazing the amount of information i've managed to find on it. in front of me here, i've got raw data of what wagner have been doing in libya. clearly, this tablet was not meant to end up in our hands. from what we have seen, we can confirm that wagner have been operating in libya for over two years. we set out to investigate further. this is ain zara, ten kilometres away from the centre of the libyan capital, tripoli. this man fought these heavily armed
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russian fighters for nine weeks. translation: they are mercenaries. | they only care about making money. | this is what they do. it is theirjob. they kill people. they commit crimes for money. they are a criminal organisation. in international law, mercenaries are already unlawful combatants. but we have found evidence suggesting that wagner may have committed war crimes. i met one man who says he witnessed his family being killed by the mercenaries in september, 2019. they were all civilians. 0ur eyewitness did not want to be identified, but he told us that he caught a glimpse of one of the killers. translation: one of| them took his weapon. when he started shooting i fell
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on my side and pretended to be dead. we can name him. he operates in the wagner group. here is a picture from his social media account. it simply says, plan number one, find and kill everyone. in syria, and ukraine, where he is accused of killing prisoners of war in 2014. wagner mercenaries almost never talk to the media, but two former members agreed to talk to us anonymously. translation: there are no clear rules. i there are no documents regulating relations
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with the local population. if a workforce to dig trenches, then the prisoner has a value as a slave. if that's not required, then the result is obvious. no—one wants an extra mouth to feed. the links between wagner and the kremlin reach to the very top. the man who is reported to run the group has been seen with president vladimir putin. there's currently a un ceasefire in libya. one of the conditions was that all mercenaries should leave the country, but our evidence shows that wagner is still in libya, in violation of the un deal. more than 8,000 people in northern germany have been urged to get a coronavirus jab again — after police say a red cross nurse may have deliberately injected them with a saline solution instead of a vaccine. it's thought this happened
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in march and april when the majority of people getting vaccinated were elderly. tv and radio services for more than a million people will remain off air indefinitely after a transmitter fire. the blaze at the bilsdale mast yesterday disrupted freeview, dab and fm radio signals across north yorkshire, teesside and part of county durham. 0perator arqiva said it would bring in temporary equipment but could not say when services would be restored. the haulage industry says urgent measures are needed to tackle the chronic shortage of hgv drivers which is causing supply issues across the economy. business presenter nina wahurst has spent the morning at a freight company in bradford to find out how it's coping you might have noticed some shortages of stock on supermarket shelves. and that's partly because of a lack of hgv drivers. come and have a look at this lorry, which is bound for the south of england, and it will go on its way towards malta.
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what happens is, thejourney is worked in legs. but some companies like this one in bradford where they have about 32 vehicles but at the moment are missing about a quarter of drivers, and it's for a combination of reasons. first of all, this lack of around 100,000 drivers is partly because of brexit, so drivers leaving for their country of origin and then not coming back or struggling at the borders and deciding the job's just not for them, but also because of the covid — similarly, drivers going back to their country of origin and then finding it difficult or not wanting to come back. but also, it's an ageing workforce. the average age of an hgv driver is 55 and just 1% is under 25, so as they retire they're not necessarily coming through. and part of the reason for that is that there is a huge backlog of people trying to get their hands on hgv licences. on average, around 40,000 of them are given out every year. last year, just 15,000 were. so you can see why there is a combination of factors leading to this gap in the workforce. let's talk to leslie, who's struggling to fill that gap. lovely to see you. so roughly a quarter, then, of your workforce is limited. and what can you do about it?
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what do you think needs to be done? what absolutely needs to be done is, we need the government to put the drivers on that critical shortage list so that those drivers who left the uk through the pandemic or due to brexit are allowed to come back in, and currently they're not allowed to come back in to the uk. if they could come in, even short—term to get a short term visa, that would help us. and in the interim, we can then start to train drivers and attract more people to the industry. but what we also need is the government to work with us to improve facilities for drivers, improve parking. we're11,000 parking spaces short. we need improved motorway services with washing facilities, better food, and so it makes it a more attractive life. and also, we do want the media to promote our industry, because every time there's an industry on the road it seems to be sensationalised because it's a large truck,
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and our vehicles and our drivers are amongst the safest on the road. they've had vocational licences, our trucks are the most modern, it really is an exciting industry to be in, so please, government, can we have some help? so you feel like perceptions need to change? yeah, perceptions absolutely do need to change. because it is an exciting industry. dealing with all other kind of manufacturers — providers, medical, schools. if you think, absolutely everything that you eat, drink, consume comes on the back of a lorry _ at the moment, it feels like this combination of reasons is creating a bottleneck that can be broken, you know, as the licences are distributed, as more people come into the industry. but are things going to get worse before they get better? well, they absolutely could get worse before they get better. we're coming to the holiday period so we've got drivers who want to go on holiday, we've got drivers who are sick, we've got drivers who carried forward to their holiday from last year during the pandemic, and so things could get better before they get worse
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if the government doesn't step in and help us. 0k, and the government have told us that they have slightly extended the hours that drivers can work in order to help with the bottleneck. but leslie and some others say that, actually, that is just not safe to keep extending the hours. they also say they're encouraging the dwp to help recruit new drivers, but as things stand, as leslie was saying, things could get worse before they get better. you might be noticing more empty shelves. the headlines on bbc news... a british man working at the uk's embassy in berlin is arrested on suspicion of spying for russia. thousands of civilians flee major afghan cities, as the taliban continue to gain ground while president biden says he doesn't regret withdrawing us troops from the country. and a police officer who shot dead a terrorist on a south london street describes to an inquest how he feared for his life. boats at a beauty spot in dorset are being encouraged not
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to drop their anchors, but to use new "eco—moorings" instead. the ten moorings being installed at studland bay are safer for the creatures living below the water's surface, like seahorses, which can have their habitat damaged by traditional anchors. john maguire has spent the morning in poole. this is how it works — the divers going out today will drill these screw anchors into the sea bed. they're about seven feet long, so it'll go seven feet down into the sea bed. attached then to these dense rubber straps here that are known as rodes. they are kept vertical under the water by these floats, so that's the big difference. you don't have the chain dragging on the sea bed and scouring the bottom of the sea. another rubberised rope, then, of course up to the buoy here. so a boat pulls up alongside, attaches to here, and that's its mooring position. you can understand, then, i think, how it will hopefully make a real difference. let's talk to neil and to michael.
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good morning to both of you. neil, tell us a little bit more about the seagrass meadows. obviously, an important ecosystem. why? yeah, incredible ecosystem. they're very much like the equivalent of our amazonian rainforest. they not only diffuse waves, they actually absorb carbon, they're home to a huge myriad of species. we have mainly the spiny sea horse at studland, but also occasionally the short snouted. but we also have in total six protected species on the site. it's now a marine conservation zone because of the lobbying we've done. and the ecology of the bay and the seagrass bed is so important. we've got things like bass and mackerel and cuttlefish and a whole host of species — english oysters. six protected species. so important to make sure that things are safe down there. michael, from your perspective, how's this working? you're about half way through the ones you wanted to install, i think. we're about halfway through the installation of the original ten.
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so ten is the first step for us. we first met neil about a year ago. the year's gone incredibly quickly, neil. there's been a lot of work involved in getting this far. but we really believe that if we can raise awareness of the need for eco—moorings and the impact that traditional moorings have on the sea bed, we expect the take—up of these over over the next few years to be really considerable. more expensive, though? they are more expensive but if we want to act responsibly and we want to continue boating, which is what we're all about, in a way that doesn't impact on the sea bed and on the biodiversity then some things come at a slightly higher price, and we think that's the responsible thing to do. ok, both. thank you very much indeed. all the best for today, installing more of these eco—moorings. they are also looking forfunding for them, sponsorship to try to expand the project, the pilot project. and it's also something that is being monitored by the university of southampton, which is doing the science side, just to make sure
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that they are really making a difference to what is a very important and a much cherished ecosystem beneath the waves. if you've ever spent a couple of nights under canvas, you'll know the relief of getting back into your own bed. that's a feeling max woosey has not experienced in more than a year. the 11—year—old, from devon, has just spent his 500th night in the great outdoors to raise money for charity. andrew plant went to see how he was marking the occasion. hi, i'm max. this is my home. as you can see, i've got all my teddies. he hasn't slept indoors since march last year. after 499 nights in a tent... ..max is treating himself tonight — building his very own log cabin instead. so you've done 499 nights in a tent, but your 500th is under wood. is that going to be weird?
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no, tonight... i'm in this and...i've built this pretty well. but you know what? we've got a little tarp, so if it does rain, then i won't get soaked. i thought, for my 500th night, it'd be a bit more crazy, a bit more fun. max was inspired by his next—door neighbour, who was dying of cancer. rick gave him a tent and told him to have an adventure. max decided to raise money for the hospice that looked after him instead. he just had to persuade his parents first. well, i said a straight no to begin with. there was still frost on the ground, so it was just an outright no. and then he asked again the next day, and again it was no. and then after i think three or four days, we said, "well, 0k, you can do a night." and then he said that he wanted to set up a fundraiser. how did you react to that? he said that he would like to raise
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money for the north devon hospice. and i actually said to him, "that's a really nice idea, but i don't think anybody will really be bothered that you're sleeping outside. " does he remind you? he reminds me about that every single time his total goes up. and go up it has — every single day. he's now raised well over half a million pounds. max is now on tent number ten, and it's not all been in his back garden. he's pitched up at downing street for tea with the pm, spent a night at london zoo... horn beeps ..even been given a military escort to school. i'm freezing cold... he's slept out in snow, braved plenty of wet and windy weather... the winds picking up. ..and not once been tempted to tiptoe back upstairs. really gusty! so tonight it will be a different view to fall asleep to — no tent overhead, just tree branches instead. do you ever think you'll stop sleeping outside? i definitely could. just don't want to. so it's lights out one more time for max — for the 500th night and counting. andrew plant, bbc news.
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matt damon is perhaps best—known for his role in the action—packed bourne movies. his latest film sees him take on different type of role — a desperate father trying to prove his daughter is innocent of a murder. 0ur entertainment correspondent colin paterson spoke to him to find out more about stillwater. you're in marseilles for a vacation? to visit my daughter. you're the father of the girl, the american student? i yes, ma'am. matt damon, welcome to bbc breakfast. the film is stillwater. you play bill baker. this man is no jason bourne. tell us about him. yeah, right. the movie, the setup of the movie looks like it could go in that direction. but he's kind of... he's a guy with absolutely none
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of the requisite skills that he needs to complete the mission he's on, which is to go to marseilles to support his daughter and hopefully exonerate her for a crime that she's innocent of. alison came here for college and that's where she met this girl, lena. one night she found lena dead and called the police. i loved her! i know you did. but everybody thinks that i killed her. what action hero do you think would be bill baker's favourite movie star? which kind of genres do you think he would like? he's a very kind of straightforward guy. you know, he'd probably say, you know, "i don't even like going to movies," you know what i mean? like, i don't think he reflects deeply when he goes to the movies. i'm trying to get my little girl out ofjail. that's all i give a damn about. you sound very american right now. good. iam. yeah, and you're also a stranger here. you just have to trust me. this is also a film about a man and his relationship with his daughter. this is our chance, matt, to get matt damon's parenting tips. you have four daughters ranging from ten to 23.
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what do you wish you'd known at the start? oh, ok. good, because that's a different question. what do i wish i'd known at the start? there are days i crawl into bed at the end of the day and i go, "man, did i mess that up!" ifeel like it's an impossiblejob and a totally necessaryjob and one i'm always trying to do better, one i feel like i never get 100% right, you know, and you never know what life's going to throw at you. so you can't predict which way it'll go. like, you have to kind of give up to the ride and just come at it. in my opinion, ijust try to come at it with as much love and patience as i can. and sometimes it's hard. sometimes you don't have the most patience and you wish you could restart the day. but i'd say don't be too hard on yourself. the one that all parents have — when you suddenly have to improvise and try and entertain, when you're in a line or a queue and you're stuck there.
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what's the game you play with your kids in that scenario? when they were little, i used to have this little thing that was like these two eyeballs, and i'd have it in my pocket and you could put it around your hand. and if you made a fist, it looked like a little character. and so i gave him a little voice, and it was just a ridiculous attempt to distract them when you could see it heading south and you knew, say, you're in a queue or something like that, and you're like, "i got another five minutes here". i'd pull this guy out and just try to wing it. what was the character's name? the argentine football superstar lionel messi has said he hopes to keep winning at his first press conference as a player at paris st germain. the 34—year—old signed a two year deal with the french club following an emotional departure from barcelona, the club hejoined when he was thirteen. translation: first of all, i want to thank the president for his words. . i'm very happy. you will know that was my
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exit from barcelona. it's been a very hard moment. after so many years, it was a difficult change. after so much time. but the moment i arrived here, i felt very happy and i really want to begin the training sessions. i really want it to be quick. i'm really enjoying my time in paris since the first minute. two royal air force police dogs are being honoured today with the animal equivalent of an 0be. english spaniel alfie and labrador aj — who are now both retired — have been awarded the pdsa 0rder of merit for their careers in the raf, sniffing out explosives and completing 1,500 hours of searches between them. the annual bristol international balloon fiesta is under way.
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this morning saw balloons ascend simultaneously from different locations throughout the city that were voted for by the public. the festival runs until sunday. now it's time for a look at the weather with louise lear. the best of the sunshine further east. a beautiful morning for a round of golf. further west, there has been some clout and some rain around. just as stunning, yes, but some of that rain has been heavy at times across parts of north—west scotland. you can see quite clearly from the radar where i'm talking about. turning quite showery as it moves its way through north—west england and wales, with the best of any bright weather continuing the further east. it will continue to cloud over this afternoon, but we will cling onto some sunshine across eastern and south—eastern england. without sunshine, we will also see some worked with temperatures
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peaking into the mid 20s. underneath the cloud in the rain, a little bit cooler. western scotland and northern ireland closing the day out with some sunshine, and those clear skies to the evening will allow those cabbages to pull into single figures. asa as a weather front seats south and east, a band of cloud prevent those cabbages falling more than the mid teens in the london area. a little bit of cloud and drizzle first thing in the morning. this low pressure will bring some change as we go through thursday afternoon. yes, some cloud around through central and southern england for a time, but staying largely dry. clouding orderfrom the north—west as we go to the day with showery outbreaks of rain into northern ireland, western scotland and north—west england. temperatures peaking at 16 celsius. as you move towards friday, it likely that low pressure will to the far north,
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continuing to spill in some showers on those exposed west coast. largely fine and dry. top temperatures of 22 celsius. as we move into the weekend, it looks likely that that no area of low pressure could influence the story for a time, and it will be some showers. hopefully high pressure will then start to build in from the west and quieten things down. it is certainly not a bad weekend for most of us. what we like to call a good deal of usable weather out there to get out and enjoy. a good deal of dry weather around. you just need to look out for that rain in the far north and west through the first—half of the weekend.
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there are calls for the reform of a levels after a record number of entries were awarded the top grades. almost 45% of entries were awarded a or a*, fuelling concerns about so—called grade inflation. labour says it's also worried about inequality. well worried about inequality. done by the way to all of who well done by the way to all of those who got the results they want, but the gap now is getting bigger and bigger. we'll bring you the latest on the debate. also this lunchtime... us presidentjoe biden says he doesn't regret pulling out troops from afghanistan, despite taliban militants taking over more of the country. prosecutors in germany say a british man who worked at the uk embassy in berlin has been arrested on suspicion of spying for russia.
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wildfires are continuing to burn in algeria in north africa,

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