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tv   BBC News  BBC News  August 22, 2021 2:00am-2:31am BST

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welcome to bbc news — i'm reged ahmad. our top stories... desperate to escape — us troops fire tear gas in kabul, to try to push back thousands attempting to flee the taliban. translation: we've got a legal visa. - many people who are coming here don't have the right documents, but we've got the visa and they won't let us through. senior taliban figures — including the group's co—founder, mullah baradar — are in the afghan capital for talks about establishing a new government. the former britiah prime minister, tony blair, has launched a scathing attack on the us decision to pull out of afghanistan. the greek government builds a a0 kilometre fence on its border with turkey over concerns there'll be a surge in afghans seeking asylum. and a state of emergency is declared in parts of new york state ahead of the forecast arrival
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of hurricane henri. don't go to kabul airport. that's what americans hoping to leave afghanistan have been advised — unless instructed to do so. the state department said it wanted to avoid creating large crowds — and us defence officials have expressed concern about the possibility of attacks by islamic state militants. a week after the taliban seized power, their co—founder, mullah abdul ghani baradar, is in the capital for talks on forming a new government. our security correspondent, frank gardner reports. crowds, chaos, confusion. the scene at kabul airport grows ever more volatile as thousands of afghans clamour to leave the country.
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gunfire. taliban fighters are guarding the outside of the perimeter, but even some people with valid travel documents are not getting through. translation: we've got a legal visa. - many people who are coming here don't have the right documents, but we've got the visa and they won't let us through. britain's ambassador, sir laurie bristow, has been helping to process applications. he says the evacuation is the biggest challenge he's ever faced. but a pentagon briefing said the taliban had so far not prevented the evacuation. we've had no hostile interactions, no attack and no threat by the taliban. we remain vigilant. we have also not experienced any additional security incidents. elsewhere in kabul, normal life is slowly returning, but banks have been shut and cash machines empty. there have also been reports of hospitals struggling without enough women turning up for work. taliban fighters, so long part
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of a violent insurgency, are in control, seen everywhere on the streets. the group's co—founder and political chief, mullah abdul ghani baradar, has arrived in kabul. he is expected to form part of the new taliban—dominated government. he spent the last few years leading the taliban delegation at peace talks with the us in qatar. the taliban don't yet control the entire country. the panjshir valley, north of kabul, is once more a centre of resistance to their rule. anti—taliban forces claim to have retaken three districts in the north. back at the airport, time is running out for the evacuation. once it ends and the world's attention shifts elsewhere, many fear that life under the taliban is going to get a lot harder. frank gardner, bbc news. our correspondent, secunder
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kermani is in kabul has been speaking to the afghans who hope to be evacuated. he says the situation at the airport still seems extremely tense. well, it's still very chaotic. i was just speaking earlier to one young afghan whose father worked for the american embassy for 20 years, they had been told to go to the airport to be evacuated, tried for two days straight, but were unable to get past the crowd, they have simply given up, they've decided at the situation at the airport is even more dangerous than the prospect of life under taliban rule. we're also getting reports tonight in the us media that there are concerns amongst us defence officials about the possibility of an attack by the islamic state group on the airport. it's sent a panic that many there who are camped out are feeling — it's really fuelled by the fact that international troops will be
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pulled out by the end of this month. that's when the evacuation process, it seems at the moment, at least, will end. and after that, many fear it'll be extremely difficult to fly out of the country. so time, they feel, is really running out for them. president biden�*s government has told us commercial airlines that they could soon be ordered to help transport people who've been evacuated from afghanistan following the taliban takeover. it's understood, if used, the civilian aircraft would not fly into afghanistan, but instead ferry evacuees from air bases in the middle east and germany. so as we've been reporting mullah abdul ghani baradar, has arrived in kabulfor talks on forming a government. but who is he — and why is his arrival so significant? he's among the few dozen original members of the taliban. in his early 50s, he co—founded the taliban group and is one of the best—known. reported to have been
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one of mullah omar's most trusted commanders, he fled to pakistan after the us invasion in 2001 and was arrested in 2010 by security forces in an operation then considered to have dealt a fatal blow to the movement. mullah baradar was released in 2018 and moved to qatar — at the request of the us — to help bolster support for talks with them, acting as the taliban's chief ambassador. at one point, he spoke to president trump on the phone. he's been part of the taliban negotiating team in doha where he oversaw the signing of the withdrawal agreement with the americans. sherjan ahmadzai worked in the government of former afghan president hamid karzai, and is now the director of the centre for afghanistan studies at the university of nebraska omaha. thank you so much for your
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time. ijust wonder about his vision for any kind of government in afghanistan. thank you very much. i believe his vision is what the taliban movement is about. i don't think he is going to ask for his own personal vision, the taliban movement, they have a supreme leader that will be very effective in making a decision with who will be the next leader or what he thinks. i'm sure he's done many consultations with his own fellow members of the taliban movement, which is why he is there to to have these discussions.— there to to have these discussions. ~ . , . discussions. what can we expect the taliban _ discussions. what can we expect the taliban government - discussions. what can we expect the taliban government to - discussions. what can we expect the taliban government to look. the taliban government to look like? we think it's going to be in emirates, but are we going to seek governmental leaders? are we going to see government ministries, rather in the same way that we might see in other countries?— countries? the cabinets might be the same. _
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countries? the cabinets might be the same. however, - countries? the cabinets might be the same. however, the i countries? the cabinets might l be the same. however, the seat of power might be different. there are speculations and discussions from taliban leaders that they might not come within emirates, but tonight like a round that controls the whole government itself. it would be somebody who would be dealing with the administration of the government. let's remind ourselves that the international community has not agreed with and and right being established in afghanistan, nor did the people except that because they have tasted elections and democracy systems, they know what the election means and how it works in a democratic society. and i do think that that's taliban does understand that, they can push for and rats, but there will be some resistance from main circles, including those people whom they want to bring into their inclusive governments. into their inclusive covernments. ., ., governments. how united are the taliban as a _ governments. how united are the taliban as a group _ governments. how united are the taliban as a group fan? _ governments. how united are the taliban as a group fan? do - governments. how united are the taliban as a group fan? do you i taliban as a group fan? do you have extremes, different factions within the group? 0r factions within the group? or do they tend to have a very shared sense of what the
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country should look like? welcome on the surface, it looks good, but there is quite a difference between them. there are commanders who fought the afghan forces before a week ago who were killed and wounded. their view of this government is that they won this war and they have the right to mandate to rule however they want however, political leadership might be inclined to accommodate and different political sections and different political views. there are divisions. we have yet to see those divisions hire how deep they are, after consultations emerged from the meaningful consultations emerge. meaningful consultations emerue. , , , , emerge. just very briefly, there are _ emerge. just very briefly, there are four— emerge. just very briefly, there are four essays - emerge. just very briefly, . there are four essays holding out against the taliban. they are still fighting, there is still resistance. who is the resistance at the moment in afghanistan?— resistance at the moment in afghanistan? resistance at the moment in afuhanistan? ~ ., afghanistan? about them at the resistances _ afghanistan? about them at the resistances led _ afghanistan? about them at the resistances led by _ afghanistan? about them at the resistances led by the _ afghanistan? about them at the resistances led by the vice - resistances led by the vice president of afghanistan in the valley. however, iwould
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president of afghanistan in the valley. however, i would like to comment on that from the international community does not have appetite for another conflict at this time, and need to the afghans. so i think they will probably end up at the sort of accommodation that will give them more rights to what they want at the moment, and thatis they want at the moment, and that is why the president has consultations with them yesterday. there are talks going on. so we have yet to know what kind information they would agree and then what will happen next week.— would agree and then what will happen next week. thank you so much for your— happen next week. thank you so much for your time. _ of christ, a lot of history with the situation in afghanistan. —— of course, a lot of history... the former british prime minister, tony blair, has launched a scathing attack on the us decision to pull out of afghanistan. in an article on his own website, mr blair said the uk has a "moral obligation" to stay until "all those who need to be, are evacuated." here's our political correspondent, chris mason. he says that it's tragic and it's unnecessary and it's dangerous what is happening, and he says there is this moral obligation
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for uk to stay as long as necessary to get everyone out to has a right to come to the uk because they worked with british forces, but he's making a bigger argument here. he says, in this is a 2700 word article that has gone up on his website, this is a fight that's what he calls radical islam, a political ideology that perverts the religion and the taliban are symptomatic of that, and he says that the west has to show commitment, and if that is a long—term commitment, so be it. he compares it to the long—term challenge that the west faced in taking on communism. of course, the challenge for western governments, democracies, you have to have public will to maintain military presence, and that is the challenge western leaders face. chris mason there. let's get some of the day's other news israel has carried out air strikes in gaza in response to what it calls riots instigated by the hamas organisation. the israeli army said its aircraft hit four hamas weapons and storage manufacturing sites. palestinian media spoke of explosions near a power station and close to a refugee camp in central gaza.
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the air strikes followed a protest on the border during which palestinian sources said israeli troops shot and wounded more than 20 palestinians. as funeral�*s are held in haiti for the victims of last week's devastating earthquake, tensions are rising over a lack of aid reaching remote areas, hardest hit by the disaster. humanitatian organistations say the poorest country in the americas is in urgent need of medical, food and sanitation assistance, while many haitians who lost their homes said they were unsure how to even start rebuilding, while the british government has rejected a call to issue ten—thousand temporary visas to eu workers — to tackle an estimated shortage of 75,000 lorry drivers in the wake of brexit. logistics uk — the trade body which represents freight businesses — says supermarkets are facing serious supply problems. but ministers say employers should invest in the domestic workforce rather than rely on foreign labour. the trial of the r&b singer r kelly, who's accused
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of sexually abusing several women, has heard claims by his former tour manager, that he bribed a government worker to obtain a fake id to marry the singer aaliyah, who was underage. she was 15 at the time. kelly is also accused of bribery, and denies all the charges. with so many people now hoping to escape afghanistan, turkey has warned of a new wave of migration, and called on european countries to take responsibility. greece has also built a new 40—kilometre fence and surveillance system along its border with turkey. the greek government says it won't wait passively, for the possible impact of a refugee crisis, following the taliban takeover. the freelance journalist daphne tolis is in athens. she have us some more detail about the wall. the 40—kilometre steel fence has been completed. the defence minister and the citizens protection minister were both yesterday,
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friday, there. they visited the wall, the border there. they said that greek borders will remain secure and impenetrable and that border forces are on alert for any possible wave of afghan refugees trying to cross into europe through greece. it is widely supported, i would say, especially after last year, the events of february 2020, when thousands of refugees and migrants attempted to cross in large numbers from turkey's land border, the same border that divides greece and turkey, after turkish president erdogan said that the borders were open. so people tried to come through greece to move further to the european union, and following those events, that is what actually sped up the completion of this border, which was already announced that it would happen, but this made it faster
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to happen, to reinforce the existing border and to make an even more reinforced steel fence across this zone, which is actually one of the deadliest land borders for asylum seekers, migrants, refugees crossing into europe. this is bbc news, our main headline — the united states has asked its citizens to avoid going to kabul airport where thousands of people continue to gather in an attempt to flee afghanistan. well let's stay with that story now. khorshied nusratty is an afghan american who is a former journalist that worked in the country and a women's advocate. shejoins me now. thank you so much for your time. we see now the taliban about a week now since they have taken over kabul, but they have of course
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been taking over area after area in afghanistan. what are some of the stories we are hearing about how women are being treated?— hearing about how women are being treated? well, thank you for havin: being treated? well, thank you for having me. _ being treated? well, thank you for having me. i— being treated? well, thank you for having me. i am _ being treated? well, thank you for having me. i am hearing - being treated? well, thank you for having me. i am hearing a l for having me. i am hearing a lot of different stories from contacts on the ground. first and foremost, so many afghan women, especially those who are journalists, who had a very public role are in fear for their lives. and many have been basically taking refuge in their homes because they don't know what's going to happen. already, many schools, girls are being separated from boys and girls are being told not to come back to school in certain rural areas of afghanistan, so that separation has already taken place. women are being told to go out and buy the burqa. they normally would wear a head job, burqa. they normally would wear a headjob, but burqa. they normally would wear a head job, but they are being told that they need to wear the all—encompassing burqa. there has also been some really disturbing stories about young
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women being kidnapped and then smuggled out of the country. one that i've heard of it is about a young girl who was smuggled out and a cough and and then taken over the border and then taken over the border and given to a taliban soldier as a wife. so there are all sorts of stories coming out of afghanistan right now, and it's quite disturbing. we afghanistan right now, and it's quite disturbing.— afghanistan right now, and it's quite disturbing. we have heard the taliban _ quite disturbing. we have heard the taliban leadership - quite disturbing. we have heard the taliban leadership say - quite disturbing. we have heard the taliban leadership say that. the taliban leadership say that everyone's rights would be protected, that women's rights would you be protected within chari ally, although, it's not clear what that means. they want women tojoin clear what that means. they want women to join government. so what is happening here? —— sharia lie. are they being sincere or had they lost control of fighters who are essentially doing what they want? �* , ., essentially doing what they want? �*, ., ., want? it's hard to tell right now because _ want? it's hard to tell right now because they - want? it's hard to tell right now because they really i now because they really haven't, i think consolidated their grip and their ruling is not clear. there rules that
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make i think they are playing a game. they are very good with propaganda right now, and they are trying to give out a softer, kinder image of the taliban, but their philosophies have not changed. and there are restrictions on women will remain the same time and they have been very vague about that. so i think that it's too soon to tell how everything will unfurl, but as more and more afghans start revolting against their regime, i think we are going to see some more extreme examples of violence in the country and renewed oppression against afghan women and girls. mil oppression against afghan women and uirls. �* �* , oppression against afghan women and uirls. �* �*, ., and girls. all right, it's a very difficult _ and girls. all right, it's a very difficult thing i and girls. all right, it's a very difficult thing to i and girls. all right, it's a i very difficult thing to watch unfold. thank you so much for your time. thank you. well the taliban is currently on a media offensive to present themselves as a viable, legitimate government. but does their rhetoric match what's happening on the ground? the bbc monitoring team takes a look at what afghan people
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are seeing on their tv screens.
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we have obviously reduced music shows and the pop types of variety shows that tend to be provocative with the taliban.
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what i can assure you is we will— what i can assure you is we will continue, whether in the country— will continue, whether in the country are outside the country, and i think it's very important _ country, and i think it's very important for us. media has been — important for us. media has been a _ important for us. media has been a beacon of hope for many afghans, — been a beacon of hope for many afghans, and that role will become _ afghans, and that role will become more important going forward — become more important going forward. its become more important going forward. �* , , ., become more important going forward. m , ., ., ~ ., forward. a sense of what afghan eo - le forward. a sense of what afghan peeple there _ forward. a sense of what afghan people there had _ forward. a sense of what afghan people there had been _ forward. a sense of what afghan people there had been seeing i forward. a sense of what afghan | people there had been seeing on their tvs. people there had been seeing on theirtvs. let's people there had been seeing on their tvs. let's get some other news now. hurricane grace has torn through eastern mexico after making landfall for a second time, and has killed at least eight people. the deaths and the worst damage
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were in veracruz state, where the storm came ashore early on saturday. the hurricane weakened to a tropical storm as it moved inland north of mexico city, but high winds and downpours were reported to be causing more flooding. a state of emergency has been declared in parts of new york state ahead of the forecast arrival of hurricane henri. new york's governor, andrew cuomo said he had spoken to president biden who agreed to the declaration, which will release funds before the hurricane makes landfall on sunday. mr cuomo said heavy rain, flooding and power cuts should be expected. earlier i spoke to nicholas isabella who is a storm chaser from long island in new york. i asked him what he's been seeing on the ground. i am seeing this storm currently moving north towards long island and the northeast coast right now. i'm watching closely to try to pinpoint the exact landfall location. i am also noticing people really preparing for the storm which is really important. it's been over 30 years
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since new york has seen a storm like this before, so i'm glad to see a lot of people are evacuating and making other preparations and taking it seriously. what sort of damage are you already seeing? are you seeing storm surges, things like that just as it approaches? yes, all day today, i noticed the waves on the south shore of new york getting bigger and bigger and bigger and coming closer to the boardwalk and to the neighbouring communities along the south shore of long island. these areas are right on the water, and they are the most prone to storm surges when the storm arrives. so once this storm hits, what kind of damage could we see? the biggest threat with the storm is going to be a storm surge, so ocean water, breaching into the streets of long island. you can expect up to four to six feet of water, so a lot of people that live in this area, their homes could get flooded out. the other issue is the strong winds that are accompanying the storm as well. a lot of trees and power could be out.
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we had a similar storm last year, and over 100,000 people were without power, so i am expecting the same today. you mentioned this, but it is unusual to see a storm like this hit this part of the us coast. absolutely. it's very uncommon, so a storm like this, a lot of people might not be used to it, or sometimes they may not take it seriously, but this is a very serious storm. like i said, it hasn't happened in over 30 years. how prepared is this part of the us then if it is so unusual to see such a powerful storm on its way? the best thing that people can do to prepare is leave, evacuate, go west into a safer area. you can't really control what mother nature does, so that's the best thing you can do. is it possible that we will see this storm lose its speed and lose its power? because sometimes we see that with these sorts of hurricanes. we think there's going to be a lot of damage, but actually, it tends to lose a lot of its power. that's definitely
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a possibility. the water temperatures off of new york and new england are very cold. right now, the hurricane is located in warm water, so as it moves north, it is anticipated to weaken a little bit, but the affects will still be the same, especially with the coastal flooding. of christ and our top story is all about how many people are trying to flee afghanistan, thousands at cobble airports. well, we have images that have been released after an afghan mother was assisted off a us air force plane, after she delivered a baby on board. the mother went into labour and began experiencing complications during an evacuation flight from a base in the middle east. upon landing at ramstein air base in germany, a medical crew boarded the aircraft and helped deliver the baby in the cargo bay. and i'm pleased to let you know the mother and her baby girl are doing well. a positive story coming out of the lot of sorrow in
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afghanistan. don't forget, all of our top stories are on the website. see you soon. hello again. saturday was always going to be the slightly dodgy day of the weekend in terms of weather, and we have a lot of cloud. most of us saw some fairly heavy rain as well. that was the grey skies that we had in wales, for a time, with the rain coming down. a bit misty over the hills, as well. since then, the rain band has been progressing its way northwards and eastwards, and it will continue to do so over the next few hours, as well. that said, i reckon it will stay pretty wet across parts of eastern scotland, down the eastern side of england for the next few hours, with some heavy rain coming in across northern england, east midlands, east anglia. we've still got some more rain to come, as well across parts of the south east. but all the while, it will turn a little bit drier across western areas. 13—15 celsius as you start the day. there will be some mist and fog patches to watch out for.
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eastern scotland, probably over the pennines, eastern areas of england, as well. now, sunday morning, we'll probably have some fairly thick cloud running in across parts of east anglia, south east england, still with some patches of rain expected here. into the afternoon, the skies brighten up and there will be some showers. some of them quite heavy for central and eastern scotland, central and eastern england. dry with sunshine for south—west england and wales, northern ireland and western areas of scotland. then, into next week, it looks like high pressure is going to be with us, and it's going to be bringing the air from scandinavia. so no heatwave in the forecast, but it will be a pleasant spell of weather. it's going to be largely dry with some sunshine to look forward to. so that settling down process really gets under way on monday, with most of us having a dry day with some sunny spells. in the sunshine, it's august, it's going to feel warm in that sunshine with temperatures widely climbing into the low 20s, peeking around 22 celsius in glasgow, birmingham, and cardiff, as well. into tuesday's forecast, and again it's another largely fine day.
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you could find a view mist and fog patches for the early risers, but otherwise looking fine with spells of sunshine. the wind is coming onshore around parts of east anglia and kent, keeping temperatures here on the coastal strip probably around 19—20 celsius. the highest temperatures across western areas. 2a perhaps in glasgow. that really would feel pleasantly warm. and as we look at the forecast through the rest of the week, you can see the weather does stay dry. temperatures stay in the low 20s. there may be a tendency though for it to turn a bit cloudier across the north and east of scotland and eastern england towards the end of the week.
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this is bbc news, the headlines crowds continue to gather
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outside kabul airport, amid reports of chaotic scenes — as the us advises its citizens not to travel there until they are asked, because of security threats outside the gates. pentagon officials described the situation around the airport gates as fluid and dynamic. greece says it's completed a forty—kilometre fence on its border with turkey, amid fears of a fresh surge of migrants from afghanistan. greece was on the front line of the migrant crisis in twenty fifteen when more than a million people crossed from turkey into the eu. hurricane henri is making its way towards the us, prompting the authorities in new york to declare a state of emergency. it's expected to hit the country's northeastern coast later on sunday, and could be the first hurricane to reach new england in thirty years. now on bbc news. dateline london with shaun ley.

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