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tv   BBC News  BBC News  August 13, 2021 9:00pm-9:30pm BST

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travesty this is bbc news, with the latest headlines for viewers in the uk and around the world. fears for kabul — as taliban militants now control a third of all regional capitals in afghanistan — after capturing the country's second city — kandahar. for a majority of the population, they are waiting to see how things will unfold, with a mixture of fear, anger and resignation. fears mount of a major humanitarian crisis, as families flee the escalating conflict to already overcrowded camps. in the uk — a father and his three—year—old daughter are among the victims named by police in the country's worst mass shooting since 2010. much of southern europe continues to bake. bone dry, after one of the hottest summers, ever recorded.
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and in antarctica — a colossal iceberg almost as big as london is being monitored carefully by scientists. the united nations has urged afghanistan's neighbours to keep their borders open, potentially allowing tens of thousands of people fleeing fighting against the taliban, to reach safety. aid agencies are warning of a humanitarian catastrophe, as the militants continue their sweeping advance across the country. the taliban have made rapid gains sincejuly, the red areas show where they had control a month later more and more districts have fallen under their control leaving the map looking like this. latest reports suggest they now control another provincial capital, pali alam, just 45 miles south of the capital kabul, from where our correspondent, yogita limye, has the very latest.. from where our correspondent, yogita limye, has the very latest.
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the biggest taliban victory so far in their rapid march across the country. this is the centre of kandahar city, a political and economic powerhouse. the taliban were born in this province. to show off their gains, the fighters found themselves walking through their provincial governors office. and released this video showing a traffic policeman welcoming them. after days of fierce fighting, afghan forces retreated. here they are seen leaving the city. he worked to educate girls in kandahar, she fled before it was captured. i am sad, i am lost.
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how do you feel about the us and the uk standing in trips to the effective rate their own nationals? you get to be evacuated if you come from a strong family. you get to be evacuated if you come from a strong economy. if you come from a weak country or if you country is not with are not important. hours before kandahar, this was also captured, a major trade centre close to the border with iran. in the weeks leading up to the fall, influential leader had led the battle against the taliban. now he has been captured by the insurgent group. helmand province, where british troops fought some of their fiercest battles, is also under taliban control. 15 provinces falling in seven days have raised questions about the future of the afghan capital kabul. what's happened here injust the span of a week has taken people
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here, the government, and its international partners by surprise. those who have the means are trying to get out of this country. flights from kabul are completely booked. but for a majority of the population, they are waiting to see how things will unfold with a mixture of fear, anger, and resignation. many believe the government has let them down. translation: l have had | to flee from my hometown because the taliban captured it. they killed three of my brothers. afghan forces are not fighting, they are just handing over control. the fighting is less than an hourfrom kabul now, in the neighbouring province. many of the war wounded have been coming to this hospital. this 14—year—old was injured in an explosion. he has lost and eye and had an arm amputated. one of my brothers this was also
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killed in the fighting one year ago. if my mother finds out what happened to me she would have a stroke. more than a thousand have been killed in the past month. in a country engulfed by suffering. brigidier general mark kimmitt served as deputy assistant secretary of defense for middle east policy in president george w bush's white house. i asked him whether he was surprised by the talibans�* rapid gains. i really am, and i think any military observer would be surprised as well. it is not unprecedented throughout history to see this kind of collapse, but with the force that we have trained so well, and we have put so much time and effort into, it is coming as a surprise. and against this backdrop of america and its allies rushing now to evacuate citizens, we have heard from a number of people in the international community, former generals as well, and also from senate majority leader
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mitch mcconnell who called biden because my policy is reckless and is urging president biden to roll back on this and send more troops into afghanistan. is that a view you share? it really is. i went through the experience of iraqi withdrawal in 2011. that was done quite methodically and carefully, but within a couple of years, isis came across the borders, and at that point, the entire iraqi army collapsed, and it wasn't until the americans came back in in 2014, along with shia militia, that isis was not only stopped but pushed back. i think that is something that could be done here, that the introduction of american troops and some combat power, in the assistance of the afghan national security forces, would certainly halt if not reverse these gains. well, america is saying that this isn't an abandonment, but it might be seen that way, and we can see why in afghanistan.
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how is this affecting morale within the afghan army, for instance? well, it is the afghan morale within the army that is causing the entire collapse. they watched their american counterparts and their british counterparts leave one day, leave nothing behind, no trainers, no advisers, no air controllers, and they are saying, look, if these guys are gone, he was there to help us? who is there to help us? throughout history, we have seen armies collapse like this, as i've said. in this case, when the afghan military, the individual soldiers said, why should i bother to fight if there is nothing there for me? well, we just heard from our correspondent gary 0'donoghue talking about the fact that there seems to be very little concern about pushing this in a different direction within america, in terms of getting more troops back into afghanistan. how much does that concern you, and what do you think
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we will see happening in afghanistan as a result? well, i think gary is right. the united states is quite focused inward at this point, but i think when we start seeing the pictures and videos coming out of afghanistanm of our translators being hung, of the women that we have paid for to go to school getting killed, i think there is enough of a blowback inside the beltway right now that we can certainly see that blowback if this gets to be an embarrassment that the average american can't stand. let me take you straight to these live pictures. they're from plymouth here in the uk where people are gathering to remember the people who were killed last night in the uk's worst mass shooting
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in more than a decade. a 22—year—old man killed five people, before turning the gun on himself. jake davison went on a shooting rampage, sparked by a domestic incident. police have released more details. a father and his three—year—old daughter are among the victims. the police watchdog has also announced it will investigate how the gunman came to be in possession of a weapon and certificate for the shotgun. 0ur correspondent, jon kay reports. it took just six minutes for this quiet cul—de—sac in devon to become the scene of britain's worst shooting in a decade. just lucky, really. that's what i'm thinking. it could have been me. bert was on the street at six o'clock last night when the shooting starting and he walked right past his neighbourjake davidson who was carrying a gun. i heard a bang and walked around the corner and he was walking
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towards me with a black rifle and i could smell the gunfire. i swerved around him and i noticed a woman in the corner layed in the doorstep that was shot, and i put pressure on the wound and i comforted her until the police came. when you bumped into him, what did he look like? how did he seem? just vacant. just a vacant stare, like. the incident started at a house in the keyham area of plymouth where davidson shot and killed his 51—year—old mother maxine. he then went on the road and fired at the road and fired again, killing three—year—old sophie martin and her father. the gunman then headed to a nearby park and shooting and injuring another man and woman, and they are both being treated in hospital.
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in the park, he killed 59—year—old stephen washington, before heading to henderson place, where he shot his fifth victim, 66—year—old kate shepherd, who later died in hospital. it was on this road that the gunman shot himself. he was declared dead at the scene at 23 minutes past six. we believe we have an incident that is domestically related and has spilled into the street and has seen several people within plymouth losing their lives in a tragic circumstance. bad, mate. bad. this neighbour who does not want to be named will never forget the sound of the gunfire. it was like... and it was a couple of seconds and again and again and again. how long was there between each of the shots that you heard? about five seconds and another and another. such a young person.
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in this close community, many people know the victims. i feel devastated for the family. paris and billy found out this afternoon that the youngest to be killed was just three. my heart broke. you were in tears. it wasn't nice. devastating. it makes everything worse, being a child. it will be different - here forever now i think. nothing is ever going to be the same, especially when it's over the road. tonight, a community vigil will be held, and counselling has been offered as the city tries to make sense of what's happened. jon kay, bbc news, plymouth. the bbc has condemned russia's expulsion of one if its moscow correspondents, sarah rainsford, describing it as a direct assault on media freedom. the russian authorities say they will not extend her visa, which expires at the end of the month. the bbc director—general, tim davie, said ms rainsford was an exceptional and fearless journalist,
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whose independent and in—depth reporting of russia informed hundreds of millions of people around the world. the spokeswoman for russia's foreign ministry implied on social media that it was a response to the treatment of russian correspondents in britain. stay with us on bbc news, still to come, in antarctica, the colossal iceberg almost as big as london — being monitored from space, by scientists.
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fears for kabul — as taliban militants now control a third of all regional capitals in afghanistan — after capturing the country's second city — kandahar.
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let's get more on that story. the uk prime minister borisjohnson has chaired a meeting of the government's emergency committee, to discuss the worsening situation in the country, and plans to help repatriate british citizens. 0ur defence correspondent, jonathan beale, now looks at the strategy. this was the capital, kabul, this morning. 0n the face of it, business as usual. but the taliban advance is now getting ever closer, with us officials admitting it could fall within weeks. with the us and britain preparing to fly out their own citizens, there is a sense the country will soon be on its own. the last 36 hours has been pretty intense, because of the speed in which the insecurity and the sort of takeovers have happened. there is a little bit of worry now amongst the aid agencies that we are not going to be able to serve the serious humanitarian crisis.
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these carefully targeted actions are designed to disrupt the use of afghanistan as a terrorist base of operations. america and its allies, including britain, went in soon after the attacks on the us on 9/11. the initial goal — to prevent afghanistan from being a safe haven for al-qaeda. but subsequent efforts over the past 20 years to create a more stable country now largely appear to have been futile. the prime minister admitting there is no military solution. what we certainly can do is work with all our partners in the region and around the world who share an interest with others in preventing afghanistan from once again becoming a breeding ground for terror. afghanistan's location is of strategic importance. to the north, there are the former soviet states, such as turkmenistan, uzbekistan and tajikistan, all of whom still have
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close ties to russia. to the west is iran, which has already seen an influx of afghan refugees. afghanistan's largest border is with pakistan, which in the past has been accused by the west of providing shelter and support to the taliban. and further to the east is china, which has growing security and economic interests in the region. so what happens next to afghanistan really matters. when the soviet union troops left in 1989, the victorious mujahideen started fighting each other, so the countries in the region then poured fuel on the fire of the afghan civil war, and the fear now is because you've got lots of enmity between the countries in the region, it's a danger that could happen again. the us and britain leave a country in limbo. the question now is notjust what it was all for, but can they really afford to stand by as afghanistan once again descends into civil war? jonathan beale, bbc news.
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a heatwave is sweeping through much of southern europe and wildfires are still raging across the region. the italian island of sicily, registered 48.8 degrees celsius on wednesday, which, if verified, would be the continent's highest temperature ever recorded. to put that in context, the average maximum temperatures for this time of year in sicily are normally around 35 degrees. 0ur correspondent mark lowen is there. they climb to the coolest place around, the peak of an active volcano. when mighty mount etna is a relief from the heat, you know it's an extreme. legend has it the ancient god of fire worked beneath etna. for the tourists here, he still feels close. we booked the holidays like half a year ago so we did not know anything about the heat. would you have come if you had known how hot it was be?
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no. bad. it was totally hot in the last couple of days. but we came with her and we enjoyed it a lot because there are approximately 15 degrees less than next to the area of the sea. italy is sweltering, sicily hitting 48.8 degrees this week, believed to be the highest temperature ever recorded in europe. and it is fuelling wildfires. 500 have torn through the country, killing four people, firefighters here battling for hours. the heatwave has been triggered by an anti—cyclone, an area of high pressure across southern europe and north africa. the fires and the scorching temperatures are likely to pass in the coming days. but this is not
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a temporary phenomenon. 0ur climate is heating and human activity is a majorfactor behind it. sicily and many other areas could see more, and worse than this, in the years to come. they have got the right idea. in a sizzling sicily, there are few other places to go. the heat, oh my gosh, it's so hot. tigerfrom london comes here every year and she's never known it like this. it may be climate change. i'm quite scared about that's the reason why because it'sl never really been as hot. i've been coming for three years and it's never been like this. - scary. are you worried about the fires? yes, i think they are terrifying. for the sun—seekers, it is fun. after the lockdowns, italy is thirsty for tourists, and they will need quenching, too. mark lowen, bbc news, sicily. the british antarctic survey says it doesn't know when scientists can return to one of its research stations. it's because of the danger posed by a giant iceberg that's almost
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the size of greater london. jonathan amos reports. it was the briefest and gentlest of icy kisses. a colossal iceberg, a74, weighing billions of tonnes, scrapes past a region of the antarctic, known as the brunt ice shelf. it was the moment the british antarctic survey had been anticipating for months. the expectation was the berg would knock into and dislodge another vast and unstable piece of ice that's sitting in front of the survey�*s halley research station. the fact that nothing was dislodged this time will be a frustration for the british antarctic survey. until the unstable ice in front of halley comes away, the base must close every winter, on safety grounds, and this impacts the world—leading science that can be done at this important location. it's at halley, for example, that they discovered and continue to monitor the hole in the ozone layer. icebergs the size of a74 are impressive, but they are not necessarily an indicator
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of climate change. the antarctic balances the amount of snow falling on the interior of the continent by routinely discharging blocks of ice at its margins. we don't have that long of a record of carving from satellite imagery in antarctica, so it is quite hard to tell if the frequency of carving events is increasing. but, i mean, we do know that ice fronts in parts of the antarctic peninsula are further back than some of their historical locations. the survey will continue to track a74 and the behaviour of the brunt ice shelf. it is entirely possible the big berg's gentle embrace delivered some unseen damage. if that's the case, the expected breakaway of unstable ice could yet happen in the days ahead. jonathan amos, bbc news.
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britney spears�* father is to step down from his legal role of overseeing the pop star's finances — but not immediately. last month, miss spears launched a bid to remove jamie spears as conservator, claiming the agreement controlling her life and career was abusive. barbara plett usher reports. this has been quite a year for britney spears. she finally began to speak out about the arrangement that controls her life. the target of that anger was herfather, jamie, the man who became her conservator, after she apparently suffered a breakdown 13 years ago. it is a sort of guardian role, to handle all of her affairs. during recent court hearings, the singer accused him of using her money for himself, and of abusing his power. speaking directly to the judge, she said she wanted more control of her finances and her body. she even alleged that the conservatorship was forcing her
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to use birth control, when she wanted to have a baby. mr spears has also become a focus of anger for fans in the free britney movement. he says the attacks are unjustified, and that there are no grounds for removing him, but that he is now willing to step down to avoid a public battle with his daughter. when the time is right. the singer still can't spend her vast fortune as she pleases. it is likely her father will eventually be replaced by a professional accountant, but her fans and her lawyer are hailing what they see as a vindication of her position and an important step towards setting her free. let's get a bit more on this with grace mitford, an entertainment journalist who writes for vice news. i think it is important to understand that it is a conditional sort of step—down. he wants his lawyers fees paid, or his lawyer
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wants her fees lawyers fees paid, or his lawyer wants herfees paid, and he wants to, you know, pass on to a new conservatory, so it is not the end, but it does feel like more movement than we have had in the last few years. for me, one of the things i think gets lost in the story is that britain was 24 when this all started, and, you know, the statistics speak for themselves, the record sold, the tickets moved, she said it herself, she wasn'tjust good, she was great. she's an artist really he was properly cut down in her prime, and, as a fan, it me very upset to think about what could have been, without all this interference. before we go, let me take you back to these live pictures. they're from plymouth here in the uk where people are gathering
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to remember the people who were killed last night in the uk's worst mass shooting in a decade. we continue to cover that story and much more right here on bbc news so stay with us. today actually hasn't been too bad for many of us, especially if you live in northern and eastern england, lots of sunshine around, quite warm, too. tomorrow, i think we've got more cloud on the way, and some fleeting outbreaks of rain, mostly across western parts of the country, so the weather this weekend is going to be a little hit and miss. this is what it looks like on the satellite picture. shower clouds in scotland, here is the thick cloud we had in the south early on, you can see it cleared up, and actually it is pretty clear through this evening across northern areas, but the next area
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of weather is approaching us, it is a low pressure, and its weather front should reach ireland here during the early hours of saturday morning. ahead of it, we've got a lot of cloud, mist and murk around coastal areas, a little bit of drizzle. with the mild air, temperatures aren't going to drop low overnight, 15 degrees first thing on saturday. here is that shield of cloud, spreading northwards, but it will never reach central scotland. it looks as though even glasgow and edinburgh are going to get away with a relatively bright day, but notice outbreaks of rain across the irish sea, the north west of england, certainly merseyside. south of that, i think the clouds are going to break up from cornwall to kent, particularly central, southern england, so there could be some decent spells of sunshine during the afternoon on saturday, whereas around some of these western coasts, and in northern ireland, it may well stay cloudy all through the day. here's sunday's weather forecast, and the low pressure and its weather front still on top of us, so that means, inevitably, cloud and some outbreaks of rain, never really particularly heavy or prolonged. sunshine developing across southern areas on sunday, i think that's where the best of the weather will be. for example, around the coasts of sussex, into kent, and also in scotland, there will be some sunny spells, but plenty of showers in the far north of scotland.
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the temperatures this weekend, only 15 in stornoway, around 22 also in the south. it's going be quite cool in the north, because we have these cool northerly winds, which will start sunday, but also certainly spread on monday, right across the country. that's where our air is coming from, all the way from the north atlantic and the norwegian sea, so fairly fresh conditions across the northern half of the uk, maybe only 15 in aberdeen, but around 20 or so in the south. a lot of cloud, with some sunny spells.
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this is bbc world news —
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the headlines: taliban fighters have captured afghanistan's second city, kandahar, in a crushing blow for the kabul government. it follows the fall of several key cities on thursday, in the most dramatic string of victories yet. international aid agencies are warning of a humanitarian catastrophe, with a quarter of a million people already displaced. the un estimates 80% of those forced to flee are women and children. in the uk — a three—year—old girl and herfather are among the victims named by police in the country's worst mass shooting since 2010. on thursday, a 22——year—old man killed five people before turning the gun on himself. emergency services in italy are continuing to fight wildfires that are burning in parts of the south and centre of the country, amid an enduring heatwave that's set an unofficial european temperature record.

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