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tv   BBC News  BBC News  August 22, 2021 1:00pm-1:31pm BST

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good afternoon. the former prime minister tony blair, who sent troops into afghanistan 20 years ago, has described the us withdrawal as "tragic, dangerous and unnecessary". mr blair said the decision to end what us presidentjoe biden has called "forever wars" was wrong, calling the slogan "imbecilic". on the ground, the evacuation of us and uk citizens and afghans who helped the fight against the taliban continues. the government says more than 1,700 people have been airlifted out by the raf in the last 2a hours.
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here's our political correspondent ione wells. days after president biden said there has been no criticism from allies over his withdrawal of troops, in comes a scathing attack from the us's original ally back in 2001. ~ �* ., ., , ., , 2001. we've now got this group in charue of 2001. we've now got this group in charge of afghanistan. _ 2001. we've now got this group in charge of afghanistan. they - 2001. we've now got this group in charge of afghanistan. they will i charge of afghanistan. they will give protection and football to al-qaeda. you've got isis already trying to operate at the same time. —— protection and succour. you know, you look around the world and the only people really cheering this decision are the people hostile to western interests.— western interests. tony blair himself has _ western interests. tony blair himself has come _ western interests. tony blair himself has come under- western interests. tony blair- himself has come under criticism for his role in afghanistan. the himself has come under criticism for his role in afghanistan.— his role in afghanistan. the world understands _ his role in afghanistan. the world understands that _ his role in afghanistan. the world understands that whilst _ his role in afghanistan. the world understands that whilst of - understands that whilst of course there are dangers in acting, the dangers of inaction are far greater. now, does he have any regrets, and
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what would he say to families who lost loved ones? we what would he say to families who lost loved ones?— what would he say to families who lost loved ones? we went in there for very good _ lost loved ones? we went in there for very good reasons _ lost loved ones? we went in there for very good reasons and - lost loved ones? we went in there for very good reasons and we - for very good reasons and we achieved a lot thanks to those british and american and other armed forces over the last 20 years. what i would say to them is, the sacrifice was not in vain, those 20 years, by the way, matter. it is not 'ust years, by the way, matter. it is not just former — years, by the way, matter. it is not just former prime _ years, by the way, matter. it is not just former prime ministers - years, by the way, matter. it is not just former prime ministers who i years, by the way, matter. it is not i just former prime ministers who have had a pop at the us president, his own predecessor, donald trump, who signed the original withdrawal deal with the taliban, levelled this attack at him to a rally of supporters. attack at him to a rally of supp°ftefs-_ attack at him to a rally of su orters. , .,, .,, supporters. this was the most astonishing — supporters. this was the most astonishing display _ supporters. this was the most astonishing display of - supporters. this was the most astonishing display of gross i astonishing display of gross incompetence by a nation's leader perhaps at any time that anybody has ever seen. ~ ., ever seen. meanwhile, the race auainst ever seen. meanwhile, the race against time — ever seen. meanwhile, the race against time to _ ever seen. meanwhile, the race against time to get _ ever seen. meanwhile, the race against time to get people - ever seen. meanwhile, the race against time to get people out. against time to get people out before the us deadline to withdraw troops by the end of the month continues. but armed forces minister james heappey says efforts to evacuate britons and eligible afghans from kabul are improving. the taliban appear to be marshalling people into separate queues for the
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us evacuation and for the uk evacuation, and that is making a big difference to the size of the crowds outside the uk gate and allowing us to process people much more quickly. but while downing street say the current prime minister is not criticising the us, pressure continues to build onjoe biden to extend his withdrawal deadline as fears grow that not everyone will get out from the airport in time. ione, what has been the reaction been to mr blair's comments? well, it has been a mixed reaction, some supportive of him but some also critical of him, particularly from the left of his party, you have had people likejohn mcdonnell saying that tony blair has some front criticising biden when he led the uk into conflicts that led to mass civilian loss of life, and also that when they're led troops in into 2001, he implied that this would be something that would be short lived. the uk government have not really responded to tony blair today, but they have been emphasising over the
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last 2a hours that the prime minister has not criticised the us, that that co—operation is still very important and that there is still a good relationship between boris johnson and president biden. but on blair's point about this not being over, and the need for us to stay in afghanistan until everybody is evacuated, interesting to note that the defence secretary ben wallace also wrote in the mail on sunday today, repeating that he believes not everyone will be able to be evacuated in time, but also, that the us would have the uk's. 0r evacuated in time, but also, that the us would have the uk's. or if they decided to stay longer, potentially adding to some of that pressure facing president biden right now to extend that 31st august deadline for withdrawing troops, something that means something beyond richard that airport which is currently being used to evacuate eligible afghans and british citizens would not really be able to be used because the us are currently operating that airport.— operating that airport. thank you very much- _ residents on the us east coast have
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been urged to prepare for one of the most powerful storms in years. hurricane henri has strengthened from a tropical storm, triggering a state of emergency to be declared in parts of new york state. lebo diseko reports. it was meant to be a celebration of new york's triumph over the worst of the pandemic. at this star—studded concert, it was mother nature who stole the show. thousands of people were told to leave for their own safety. were told to leave for their own safe . ., , were told to leave for their own safe . were told to leave for their own safe. . safety. please pay close attention to the following _ safety. please pay close attention to the following safety _ safety. please pay close attention to the following safety message. | to the following safety message. due to the following safety message. due to approaching severe weather, all persons should move quickly and calmly to the nearest exit. flash floodin: calmly to the nearest exit. flash flooding has _ calmly to the nearest exit. flash flooding has already _ calmly to the nearest exit. flash flooding has already hit, - calmly to the nearest exit. flash flooding has already hit, with . calmly to the nearest exit. flash flooding has already hit, with up to six inches of rain and winds of up to 75mph expected. the new york state governor is urging people to move to higher ground. idea? state governor is urging people to move to higher ground. new yorkers, lease take move to higher ground. new yorkers,
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please take this _ move to higher ground. new yorkers, please take this storm _ move to higher ground. new yorkers, please take this storm seriously. - please take this storm seriously. i know _ please take this storm seriously. i know it _ please take this storm seriously. i know it is — please take this storm seriously. i know it is short notice. think superstorm sandy. that was a category — superstorm sandy. that was a category one, this is a category one _ category one, this is a category one ik— category one, this is a category one. �* , . category one, this is a category one. ~ , ., ., _ category one, this is a category one. a state of emergency has been declared in — one. a state of emergency has been declared in parts _ one. a state of emergency has been declared in parts of _ one. a state of emergency has been declared in parts of new— one. a state of emergency has been declared in parts of new rock - one. a state of emergency has been declared in parts of new rock and i declared in parts of new rock and around 6 million people in long island, connecticut and massachusetts are under a hurricane warning, trying to ready themselves for an event which on this part of the us coastline is very rare. 0n the us coastline is very rare. on saturday, the hurricane left a trail of destruction in new mexico, at least eight people dying, including a mother and six of her children. translation: i turned around to go into the house and that is when the roof came off and they were all down there, my wife and my six children. although this storm has weakened and is predicted to ease by tomorrow, the potential for more flooding and further destruction continues.
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lebo diseko, bbc news. antibody tests are to be widely offered to the uk public for the first time in a new programme that aims to find out more about how much natural protection people have after getting coronavirus. thousands of tests will be available from tuesday for anyone over 18 if they test positive for covid. charlotte gallagherjoins me now. tell us more, charlotte. this is so that scientists _ tell us more, charlotte. this is so that scientists can _ tell us more, charlotte. this is so that scientists can monitor- tell us more, charlotte. this is so that scientists can monitor the - that scientists can monitor the levels of antibodies in people who have tested positive for covid, and anyone who tests positive with a pcr test from tuesday will be eligible to be tested, and you actually get two of these finger prick tests. the first one has to be done as soon as possible. the second is done 28 days later, and that will allow scientists to see the levels of antibodies that have been built up in the body. it is not the first time these tests have been used during the pandemic, but they have been mainly for studies in hospitals
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and smaller scale studies, so, this is the first time they have been rolled out to the general public, and the data will enable scientists to see how the vaccination programme is going, and also how the body is responding to the new variants set. obviously, the data for those just is not there yet at the moment. and this will be across the uk, right across the uk, from tuesday. the health secretary, matt hancock, says these tests are quick and easy, and they will allow scientists to see they will allow scientists to see the level of protection. —— the health secretary, sajid javid. they will give an insight on how the vaccination programme is going as well. . ~ vaccination programme is going as well. ., ~ , ., vaccination programme is going as well. . ~' , ., , vaccination programme is going as well. ., ~ , . the former liverpool and england footballer terry mcdermott has revealed he has been diagnosed with dementia. the 69—year—old announced on liverpool's website that he is in the early stages. he said he just wants to "get on with it" and that battling is his "second nature" — but he described the number of ex—players being diagnosed with dementia or alzheimer's as "frightening".
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don everly, who together with his brother phil had multiple uk hits in the 19505 and �*60s, has died at the age of 8a. don, seen here on the right, was part of the duo the everly brothers, who had six uk number one singles including cathy's clown, walk right back and all i have to do is dream. he and his brother split in the 19705 as their musical tastes changed. phil died in 2014. the pair didn't speak for many years. don everly, who has died at the age of 8a. that's it for now. you can see more on today's stories on the bbc news channel and the bbc website. the next news on bbc one is at 6.35 this evening. have a lovely afternoon.
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hello. you're watching the bbc news channel. iam i am victoria derbyshire, the ten... time is 1:10pm. the military alliance, nato, says at least 20 people have died in chaotic scenes at kabul international airport this week, where large crowds of desperate afghans have been attempting to escape taliban rule. the ministry of defence says seven were killed yesterday alone. let's speak to our correspondent, danjohnson who's monitoring developments from delhi. tell us about the latest situation. conditions on the ground do seem to be a bit kolmar this morning outside the airport. the streets are said to be less crowded and the taliban is
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reported to be helping marshall the crowd and form people into os which is said to be a making the evacuation effort more efficient. meeting that people can be processed and get through to the airport. to illustrate just how stretched some of the armed forces have become here, the us department of defence hasjust here, the us department of defence has just announced that it is activating what it calls the civil reserve air fleet. this essentially means that the us military, the air force, will take over 18 civilian airliners to help with the evacuation effort. they will not fly directly into kabul airport, but what they will do is once people have been flown away from kabul by military plane and dropped off at the nearest safe oatar has been used along with others being used. there was actually a time where oatar set our facilities are full we cannot
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take any more. to speed that up the civilian airliners will fly to those error bases —— those airbases. so that should help move people more quickly. stop them. the military planes can be used to getting as many people as quickly as possible out of kabul away from that airport. certainly it is a sign of how amen's the evacuation effort is. how much it is taking up in terms of aircraft and resources. how logistically difficult it is. or how intent the us airforces on difficult it is. or how intent the us air forces on getting as many people as possible.— us air forces on getting as many people as possible. thank you very much. the former uk prime minister, tony blair, has said president biden's policy — which led to the withdrawal of troops from afghanistan — was "imbecilic". he says the decision to leave represents a tragic, dangerous and unnecessary abandonment of the country. mr blair, who as labour pm,
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sent british troops into afghanistan two decades ago, has urged the government to use its role as chair of the g—7 group of nations to co—ordinate international efforts to help the afghan people. the west has to understand that when we do something like this, the signal it sends out is one of inconsistency. it is one that says, "if the going gets tough, we are out." you cannot... in the world that we have today, you have got to sometimes commit for the long—term. and you've got to do that because you made a strategic assessment of your interests and because yes, even if it becomes unpopular from time to time in public opinion, yourjob as leader is to go out and explain why it is necessary despite that, to hold firm. because when you don't hold firm, then those people who are opposed to you, whether these islamist groups or russia, china, iran, all of whom will move into the vacuum that we've created, those people who are not on our side and do not wish us well, are going to gain by it.
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realistically could britain have done anything else, given that the us said, "we are going? "look, we are not going to support you." britain didn't really have another choice, did it? well, we could not... we cannot stay there without the american support. i don't know enough about the internal conversations. but my view is that we should have been, and maybe we were, so i'm not criticising anyone. but we should have been arguing very strongly that this was the wrong thing to do. whether you like it or not, this is part of your legacy. what would you say to the soldiers who we have heard from this week that have been horrifically injured in afghanistan and the widows of soldiers who have died and they are saying, well, there was no point to this, was there? they went to fight a war that was completely pointless and it is going back to how it was. our troops were fantastic in afghanistan and a lot of them made the ultimate sacrifice
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and a lot of them were injured. it is important that they know that this was not it wood a hopeless endeavour or a bad cause. it was a good cause. we went there because we had a state of afghanistan turned into a state that was run by an extremist, islamist group that were harbouring people who were carrying out attacks, like the 9/11 attack, and who were providing support for terrorist groups around the world. we went in there for very good reasons and we achieved a lot, thanks to those british and american and other armed forces over the last 20 years. what i would say to them is the sacrifice was not in vain. those 20 years matter. what we achieved in afghanistan, it matters today. i spoke yesterday to an afghan general who himself was fighting the taliban just literally days ago. and he said, you know, "do not forget we made huge progress "during those 20 years. "my generation has grown up knowing something different from the taliban "and we are determined at some stage and in some way "to
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get our country back." i think it is really important that people realise the story of afghanistan, the story of taliban taking over, it is not over. it is tragic and i think it is unnecessary, i think we made a serious mistake in doing it in this way, but it is not over yet. the headlines on bbc news... the military alliance nato says at least 20 people have died this week in chaotic scenes at kabul airport — as thousands as thousands try to flee afghanistan. as you've been hearing... former prime minister tony blair has called the us withdrawal from afghanistan tragic and unnecessary — and says the policy is �*imbecilic�*. and the singer don everly — one half of the duo the everly brothers with his late brother phil — has has died at the age of 8a.
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sport and for a full round up, from the bbc sport centre. here's austin. good afternoon, victoria. we start with the sad news that the former liverpool and england midfielder terry mcdermott has been diagnosed with dementia. the 69—year—old made more than 300 appearances for liverpool between 1974 and 1982. he announced he's in the early stages of dementia following tests. it comes just days after the former manchester united and scotland legend denis law confirmed he's also been diagnosed with the condition. he said... he goes on to say, "the number of ex—players being diagnosed with dementia or alzheimer's is frightening."
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last month, it was announced that professional footballers in england will be limited to ten — so—called — "higherforce headers" a week in training. dawn astle's father, the former west brom and england strikerjeff astle, died in 2002. a neuro—pathologist said the death was due to a brain condition caused by heading footballs. she wants more to be done to help former professionals. this is not just this is notjust about my dad or terry or dennis. it is about the whole generation of footballers that played before him. that played with him. and just as importantly the generation of players who are playing now because if football does not start to put its finger out about this and stop sweeping it under the carpet, the future generations of footballers will be a ticking time bomb because this will not go away. after a summer of speculation
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about his future at tottenham, harry kane is back in their squad for today's trip to wolves in the premier league. the england captain has been named on the bench for nuno espirto santo's return to his former club. kane's wanted by manchester city before the transfer window closes in a fortnight, who are understood to be willing to break their 100 million pound british transfer record to sign him. meanwhile, manchester united's new signing raphael varane is also on the bench, so could make his debut today away to southampton. varanejoined from real madrid last week on a four year deal. jadon sancho still awaits his first start for the club, he's also a substitute. kickoff in both those games is 2pm. one game's already under way in the scottish premiership and hibernian currently have a 2—1 lead against dundee. dundee taking the lead early on through jason cummings, before martin boyle equalised from the penalty spot.
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there are three other matches today — they all kick—off at 3pm. now scottish fans could be in for an exciting day at carnoustie, as the women's open draws to a close. local amateur louise duncan, at just 21—year—old, is in contention going into today's final round. anna nordqvist posted a round of 65 to move to nine under par and share the lead with nanna koerstz madsen. there are 19 players within four shots of the lead and one of them is the amateur duncan, who will begin todayjust two shots off the pace. england's georgia hall is three off the lead. she is a 2018 champion. the chief executive of the ecb, tom harrison, says the inaugural season of the hundred boosted the profile of women's cricket across the world. more than 17,000 fans saw
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the oval invincibles beat the southern brave in yesterday's final at lord's, a record for a women's domestic match anywhere in the world, before southern brave beat birmingham pheonix in the men's final. i think it has always got to start somewhere. i think it has been a great step forward and also the regional programme that is in place alongside it. it is really exciting to see that it is just going to keep on going and hopefully the success of this tournament will help this get bigger and bigger. the tournament _ get bigger and bigger. the tournament looks to have been a really big success. victoria, that is all your support for now. i will have more for you in the next hour. let's get the latest on what is happening in kabul. were going to talk now on the phone with the
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defence and security editor. kim, are you at the airport right now? i have just got back to my airport. i've been at the airport for most of the day. we have been told here by the day. we have been told here by the armed forces in this or that it is slightly, there. is the armed forces in this or that it is slightly, there.— is slightly, there. is that right? it is. especially _ is slightly, there. is that right? it is. especially compared - is slightly, there. is that right? it is. especially compared to i it is. especially compared to yesterday which was a horrible day. we saw four people all women crushed to death in front of us. after that, todayis to death in front of us. after that, today is certainly a lot better. there are fewer crowds and at the moment, there have been well marshalled. the problem is the situation here as you know changes by the day. by the hour. what will happen later on we don't know. nights have been volatile and violent as well. we have to see what
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will happen. certainly during the course of the day, which has been quieter than it has been for the last 48 hours or so.— quieter than it has been for the last 48 hours or so. who is doing the marshalling _ last 48 hours or so. who is doing the marshalling outside - last 48 hours or so. who is doing the marshalling outside the i last 48 hours or so. who is doing i the marshalling outside the airport? the main focal point is the space outside the british base outside the hotel. that has become ultimately the choke point because to go through to the control point of other countries which are evacuating people, the americans and germans, they have to pass through this route and because there... you have had a huge number of people congregating outside the gates of this hotel. and thatis outside the gates of this hotel. and that is where the crush had taken place. that have —— that is where
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people have died. the marshalling is being done here by british troops. beyond that by the americans. but the first line if you like being held are being held by uk forces. the taliban have criticised the chaos around the airport. could this have been organised better? weill. have been organised better? well, the tell of then _ have been organised better? well, the tell of then is _ have been organised better? well, the tell of then is supposed - have been organised better? .11 the tell of then is supposed to be helping the process to get under way. —— the taliban. there have been... how sincere the taliban are in this smooth system taking place
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is debatable. they seem to be operating a kind of tap on, tap off system, how much pressure they want to put on western troops. you can suddenly see a surge of people coming and then it will dry up for a while. the other point worth considering is that the taliban don't control all of the checkpoints. some of them are in the hands of other islamist groups. there are people who have been turned away from those checkpoints. people are disappeared at the checkpoint. the taliban and the islamists have got their own particular agenda albeit the taliban at least want to see western forces out and are not directly carrying out and are not directly carrying out any acts against them. as you
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know president _ out any acts against them. as you know president biden's _ out any acts against them. as you know president biden's deadline i out any acts against them. as you | know president biden's deadline is supposed to be august the 31st, that is a week this tuesday. but he has conceded on a couple of occasions that if all americans are not out by then, then he would cross that bridge as we come to it, as he put it. realistically, do you think it is possible to get all of those who are relevant to the states out of afghanistan by august the 31st? i would have thought not. i was actually going to the city itself and extract people. there are people eligible to go to the us and the uk and other countries who are outside kabul. and what you do with them? how do you find them? it is a huge problem. at the moment, certainly people are claiming that those who
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thought that they would be eligible for flights to the us have thought that they would be eligible forflights to the us have been found that they are being turned away. so at what point with the usa that we have taken all who we could and that is the end of the matter? one clear fact is that if the us decides that they are pulling out then every other nation including then every other nation including the uk will not be able to stay here once the americans leave.- once the americans leave. which is why maybe — once the americans leave. which is why maybe the _ once the americans leave. which is why maybe the defence _ once the americans leave. which is why maybe the defence secretary l why maybe the defence secretary writing and another british newspaper today and some conservative backbench mps are suggesting that the uk needs to put pressure on the us to stay longer. well, i think the internal, as you may agree, there are internal partials within the us. trying to
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get president biden to extend the deadline. i'm not sure what affect uk pressure will have. the uk itself is finding it difficult to get all the people it wants out to come here to the hotel. part of the problem is that... is twofold. a lot of people are genuinely in dangerfrom that... is twofold. a lot of people are genuinely in danger from the taliban. because they are in danger from the taliban, they are very, very wary about going through checkpoints being run by islamists. so they are staying away, especially a lot of young women. and the second point is that a lot of people have come through who have not got the right papers and they have contributed to the huge crowds that we see, which means the people who have got the right documentation cannot come through. it is going to be very, very difficult for any
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country to get out all the people that are eligible to get on the flight. this is a huge problem. thank you very much for talking to us. . ~' thank you very much for talking to us. . ~ , ., thank you very much for talking to us. . ~ ,, it is thank you very much for talking to us._ it is coming - thank you very much for talking to us._ it is coming up i thank you very much for talking to us._ it is coming up to l us. thank you. it is coming up to 1:30m us. thank you. it is coming up to 1:30pm now- _ us. thank you. it is coming up to 1:30pm now. it— us. thank you. it is coming up to 1:30pm now. it is— us. thank you. it is coming up to 1:30pm now. it is time for- us. thank you. it is coming up to 1:30pm now. it is time for the i 1:30pm now. it is time for the weather. here susan powell. hello, high pressure is making a return to the uk for the week i had. last week we talked about lumi days. now are returning to skies like these in the days ahead. this is as high pressure comes to set up. we do still have some cloud in the east. it is going to deliver some heavier showers for a time across the eastern half of the uk. into the early hours of monday, the lobo roll—off towards the continent and the high pressure will start its build and for monday morning, a fine start. a little bit misty and murky in one or two areas. ouite start. a little bit misty and murky in one or two areas. quite a bit of moisture on the ground after the
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weekend. but the sunshine should burn that off. there will be a little bit of patchy cloud roaming around on monday, a little bit of breeze down the north sea coast. i could feel cooler here. the out shower across the mountains across scotland's. but overall it will be dry and it will feel warm.

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