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tv   BBC News  BBC News  December 20, 2021 2:00am-2:31am GMT

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welcome to bbc news — i'm david eades. our top stories: we have a special report from myanmar on the mass killings of civilians by the military — which seized power in a coup last february. a victory for the hard left candidate in chile's most polarising election ever. a tough new lockdown in the netherlands, as the new coronavirus variant spreads fast across europe. and tennis star emma radacanu wins the bbc�*s prestigious sports personality of the year. i am really happy with this, of course, and i have watched sports personality of the year growing up so i am humbled tojoin the amazing past winners.
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a bbc investigation has revealed the details of a series of brutal mass killings of civilians by the myanmar military. four villages in kani township in central myanmar were targeted over a period of weeks injuly. the united nations says the military�*s oppression points to crimes against humanity. this report by rebecca henschke contains some distressing images from the start. dog barks, child screams this
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child is grieving over her grandfather's body. it is distressing to see. there are clear signs of torture. in the myanmar military entered their village she fled. her grandfather stayed, believing his age would protect him. more bodies were uncovered, close to where her grandfather was found. 12 in total. somewhere buried in shallow mass graves. the military carried out the mass killings in four villages in kani township, an area that has been a strong hold out against the military regime. in another village, ia people were killed. we blurred their bodies as they are too gruesome to
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show. the man filming finds people he knows. at great risk our team interviewed a number of eyewitnesses. for their safety we are hiding their identity did their stories are all similar. translation: the? all similar. translation: they slit us all similar. translation: they split us into _ all similar. translation: they split us into groups _ all similar. translation: they split us into groups of— all similar. translation: they split us into groups of men - all similar. translation: tie: split us into groups of men and split us into groups of men and women, men were tied up with rope and beaten up. we could not stand to watch it so we kept our heads down crying. we begged them not to, they did not care. they took everything away from us. they asked the women, is your husband among them? if he is, do your last rites. this man managed to escape. rites. this man managed to escae. ~ ,, ~ rites. this man managed to escape-_11 i rites. this man managed to - escape._ 11 others escape. translation: 11 others were arrested _ escape. translation: 11 others were arrested with _ escape. translation: 11 others were arrested with me. - escape. translation: 11 others were arrested with me. they - were arrested with me. they were arrested with me. they were tied up, beaten with rifle
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buts and tortured all day. i put our evidence to the military spokesperson. translation:- military spokesperson. translation: �* ., , translation: i'm not denying that incidents _ translation: i'm not denying that incidents such _ translation: i'm not denying that incidents such as - translation: i'm not denying that incidents such as this - translation: i'm not denying that incidents such as this can l that incidents such as this can happen. it can happen. it can happen. it can happen. it can happen. for us when they treat us as enemies and open fire on us as enemies and open fire on us we have the right to defend ourselves. the united nations and is investigating the mass killings in kani in the hope that future generations, those left behind, will get some kind ofjustice. let's turn to chile now — where gabriel boric, the leftist candidate in the chilean election, has won the presidency, after his far—right rival, jose antonio kast, conceded defeat. this is the scene live in santiago where mr boric is speaking to his
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supporters now. he vowed to expand social rights in the country but with fiscal responsibility. the election itself was said to be the most polarised in the country's history with voters choosing between a left—wing former student activist and a lawyer who admired the dictatorship of augustus pinochet. people here are coming in droves to celebrate the victory of gabriel boric. this is a new era for chile, a new kind of president, a 35—year—old former student leader who is now the leader of his own country and many people feel this is a natural conclusion of the past two years. first protests, huge demands for change in this country that has traditionally been very economically stable yet hugely unequal. and then a push for a new constitution. chileans voted last year
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overwhelmingly to rip up the old dictatorship era constitution and instead drafted a more modern, more representative one. and of course now a new leader. a man who has risen from those demands for change. but his big challenge will be to unite those millions of chileans who voted for the other side. these elections have been deeply polarised. a far—right candidate, jose antonio kast, a man who was likened to brazil's jair bolsonaro, to donald trump, a man who praised the country's dictatorship, that huge divisions in this country. he has of course congratulated gabriel boric, saying that he demands respect and collaboration, and the most important thing is, of course, chile. let's just run through the covid situation in europe. the netherlands has taken the strongest measures that yet to limit the surge in omicron
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cases. it's the first country in europe to embark on a month—long lockdown. non—essentialshops, bars, gyms, hairdressers and other public venues will be closed. all schools will be shut until at least january 9 while other lockdown measures will remain in place for longer as our correspondent anna holligan reports from the hague. virtually silent high streets. it's online and window shopping only this year. last christmas, the dutch thought the pandemic would be over by now. instead, the netherlands has become the first country in europe to shut down in response to the rapidly spreading omicron variant. now, it feels like it's starting all over again, to be isolated and, yeah it feels really bad. because we're used to going to the cafe, to a bar, and with this lockdown, it's impacted me a bit. so, yeah, it's going to be difficult. george is a chef. so, tomorrow, i'm working just to throw away a lot of fresh food, lots of basically, everything
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that we can't sell any more. so, that's...uh. the dutch prime minister described this lockdown as an unavoidable response to omicron. across the border in germany, most travellers from britain are now banned from entering the country to try to halt the transmission of omicron. german nationals and residents will still be allowed to arrive from the uk, but must have a negative test and quarantine for two weeks, regardless of their vaccination status. france has already introduced similar restrictions to try to cut covid cases crossing the channel. in denmark, which has registered more omicron cases than any other european country, apart from britain, theatres, cinemas and amusement parks will be closed for the next month. and in belgium, thousands paraded through the capital, brussels, to demonstrate their discontent with the compulsory covid access passes that must be shown in bars and restaurants.
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for now, the uk is holding back on tightening the measures, but in the face of record—breaking infection rates, the health secretary has refused to rule anything out. anna holligan, bbc news, in the hague. let's get some of the day's other news. police in the philippines say more than 200 people have been killed after a powerful storm struck the philippines on thursday. this super typhoon rai saw some 300,000 people displaced when it hit the country's south—eastern islands. rescue teams have described �*some areas looking like they had been bombed more heavily than in world war ii.�* more than 100 people have reportedly been injured in protests in sudan. that's according the country's health ministry. authorities fired teargas at protesters outside the presidential palace in the capital khartoum, as hundreds of thousands of demonstrators took to the streets across the nation to denounce the military. officialfigures from hong kong show turnout in elections on sunday hit a record low. just over 30% of voters cast their ballots.
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every candidate had been vetted for their loyalty to beijing before being allowed to take part, leading some activists to call for a boycott. president biden's flagship piece of legislation — known as build back better — looks in deep trouble after a key senatorfrom his own democratic party said he wouldn't support it. senatorjoe manchin who represents the conservative state of west virginia told fox news he'd tried to reach a compromise on the bill, priced at $1.7 trillion. ifi if i cannot go home and explain to the people of west virginia i can't vote for it and i cannot vote to continue with this piece of legislation. i just cannot. i've tried everything humanly possible. now this really matters due
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to the finely balanced composition of the senate — meaning president biden cannot afford to lose a single democratic vote. the white house fired back saying the bill is too important to fail and they'll find a way to move forward next year. for more on this i'm joined by political analyst eric ham in washington. very good to see you. the white house went a bit further againstjoe manchin, didn't they? they really let off both barrels. is he brave or duplicitous?— barrels. is he brave or duplicitous? barrels. is he brave or dulicitous? ~ . , ., ., duplicitous? what is going on there? well, _ duplicitous? what is going on there? well, what _ duplicitous? what is going on there? well, what seeing - duplicitous? what is going on| there? well, what seeing now duplicitous? what is going on i there? well, what seeing now is that a senator appears to not be trusted by his own party. we know thatjoe biden has been negotiating in good faith, presumably with joe that when back to try and strike a deal and what we are learning is manchin actually provided details of what he could actually live with just a few
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days ago and so the white house actually believed that they were getting where they wanted to go because they were essentially allowing manchin to craft the legislation in a way that benefited him, that he could live with. and now, at the 11th hour, right before christmas, he dropped a bombshell, letting them know just 20 minutes before he goes on fox news, that he cannot support the legislation and will not simply return the calls. and now what we see as a white house that trusted that they could get their with joe manchin because joe they could get their withjoe manchin becausejoe biden ran on the fact that someone who had served in the senate for nearly four decades he knew these people and these were his people, he said, and he could get a deal and now we see that he cannot. get a deal and now we see that he cannot-— he cannot. and that is embarrassing, - he cannot. and that is embarrassing, apart l he cannot. and that is - embarrassing, apart from anything else. but where does it leave this bill which, of course, is seen as one of, hopefully, one of the big steps of his presidency? the hopefully, one of the big steps of his presidency?— of his presidency? the bill riaht of his presidency? the bill right now _ of his presidency? the bill right now is _ of his presidency? the bill right now is on _ of his presidency? the bill right now is on life - of his presidency? the bill. right now is on life support. we do know that the
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administration is placing a positive spin on things saying they will try to hopefully get something next year and what they could possibly hope to do is actually break this bill up and try to move it in pieces to try to get something through. but now what this does is place even more pressure, not only on joe manchin but on president biden to move on voting rights legislation. we heard just before joe manchin legislation. we heard just beforejoe manchin said that he would not support this legislation, earlier in the week the senate was actually moving to table build back better to try and deliver on voting rights and now they need to try to get something done because their most ardent base, african—american voters, have been clamouring for voting rights legislation and if they cannot get this, this will certainly be a demoralised party heading into the all important 2022 mid—term elections. i important 2022 mid-term elections-_ elections. i think i heard bernie elections. ithinki heard bernie sanders - elections. ithinki heard bernie sanders sailors i elections. i think i heard i bernie sanders sailors have elections. i think i heard - bernie sanders sailors have the vote and put him in a situation
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where he actually has to against president biden �*s package. what does this tell us, eric, about what biden has to work with because it seems whether you are progressive or on the more conservative side, you are not being sucked into the middle, you are holding your ground away from biden. this is the president's party and to have a member of his party refuse a vote as critical as this and not only do all votes matter but a president in his first term and in his first year trying to get something so big and bold and, more importantly, something that an overwhelming majority of americans actually believe is good for the entire country and to have a senator of the president's own party wholesale rejected in the way that he did, not only is that embarrassing but also this is unprecedented. we have not seen anything like this. if we go back to obama's affordable care
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act, many senators, many house members knew that that was, because emission that they were on. they knew that if they voted for that legislation many of them would lose their seats but they knew it was important for the first african—american president in his first term to deliver on what he promised when he ran for office and what we see here is a senator who recognises where the country is and how polarised the nation is and how polarised the nation is and he says, too bad, and he leaves his own president out to dry. leaves his own president out to d . leaves his own president out to dry. something we have never seen before. _ dry. something we have never seen before. i'm _ dry. something we have never seen before. i'm not- dry. something we have never seen before. i'm not even - seen before. i'm not even telling the president, but telling the president, but telling fox news and i suppose that doesn't go down very well at all. thank you very much. stay with us on bbc news. still to come: we'll tell you why people in more than 100 polish towns and cities have taken to the streets in protest. the world of music has been paying tribute to george michael, who's died from suspected heart failure at the age of 53.
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he sold well over 100 million albums in a career spanning more than three decades. the united states' troops have been trying to overthrow the dictatorship of general manuel noriega. the pentagon says it's failed in its principle objective to capture noriega and take him to the united states to face drugs charges. the hammer and sickle was hastily taken away. in its place, the russian flag was hoisted over what is now no longer the soviet union, but the commonwealth of independent states. day broke slowly over lockerbie, _ over the cockpit of pan am's maid of the seas, _ nosedown in the soft earth. you could see what happens when a plane _ eight storeys high, . a football pitch wide, falls from 30,000 feet. christmas has returned to albania after a communist ban lasting more than 20 years. thousands went to midnight mass in the town of shkoder, where there were anti—communist riots ten days ago.
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this is bbc news. the latest headlines: a bbc investigation has revealed the details of a series of brutal mass killings of civilians by the myanmar military. —— by the myanmar military. voters in chile have elected the country's youngest ever president. gabriel boric, a left wing former student activist, is 35. britain's health secretary sajid javid has said he can't rule out more covid restrictions being imposed in england before christmas. many scientists have said it would be better for the government to act sooner rather than later because, without intervention, there could soon be at least 3,000 hospital admissions every day with the omicron variant. our medical editor fergus walsh has the latest. # driving home for christmas... this christmas, the hot ticket for many is not to see a football match, but to get a boosterjab. wembley stadium had 10,000
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vaccines available today and many were keen to get them before heading home to see family. i would prefer to have it done before christmas. i've got an elderly grandfather who's 90 years old, so i want to be able to see him. i'm getting booster vaccinations and my family members have already got their vaccinations, but i think it's best to be as contained as possible. so, it's the booster versus the variant. omicron infections are thought to be doubling every 2—3 days. the epidemic is growing so fast, the health secretary could not rule out fresh restrictions before christmas. there are no guarantees in this pandemic, i don't think. at this point, we just have to keep everything under review. he urged people across the country to be cautious in the days ahead. if i'm going to see my mum, for example, who's elderly, like most very old people, she's more vulnerable than younger people. you know, iwill take a test and yeah, i might, you know, just have not
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the usual amount of hugs i get from my mum. you just take a little bit of caution and i think that's a sensible response. but the most important thing that anyone can do right now is to get boosted. ministers have been given a stark warning by sage, the scientific advisory group on emergencies, that without further intervention, the scale of hospital admissions due to omicron would almost certainly lead to unsustainable pressure on the nhs. the scenarios for curbing omicron are an echo of lockdown controls from earlier this year, including closing indoor hospitality and limits on mixing of households. you don't have time to dither. this thing is coming at us like an express train. there is no evidence yet, to be clear, in suggesting it's less serious, and if we wait, we could be in a real crisis. and that is the dilemma for ministers — do they wait until the threat from omicron becomes clear and hope to avoid lockdown measures, or act now
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as a precaution and risk the wrath of many in their own party and beyond westminster? fergus walsh, bbc news. lunging times for the government, in more ways than one. —— challenging. britain's foreign secretary liz truss will take responsibility for the uk's post—brexit negotiations with the eu following the abrupt resignation of lord frost. lord frost said he was unhappy with the direction of borisjohnson's government and urged the prime minister not to impose what he called the "coercive" covid measures seen in some other countries. our political correspondent damian grammaticas looks at the challenges for the prime minister in the coming days. lord frost? lord frost. i'm from the bbc. can i ask you a few questions, please? no. can i ask why you've resigned from the government, lord frost? do you believe that boris is still fit to lead? he wasn't answering today
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but lord frost's resignation came at a terrible time for the prime minister. on borisjohnson's behalf, he'd been at the forefront of the ongoing battles with brussels and was admired by many tory mps, who today said they shared lord frost's concerns, including his dislike of new covid restrictions. many of the things that he worries about, i and many of my colleagues worry about. we want to see the conservative party as a low tax party going forward and we don't want our civil liberties to be restricted. mrjohnson has moved fast to hand lord frost's negotiating responsibilities to liz truss, the foreign secretary, also popular in tory ranks for the trade negotiations she's done since brexit. but recent revelations have damaged mrjohnson, like this video of his staff joking leaked to itv news. today, another leak to the guardian — the downing street garden in may 2020, with bottles of wine. rules at the time said only two could meet outside socially.
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number 10 says this was a work meeting. three, two, one! and the shock by—election loss in north shropshire. to pass new measures, mrjohnson will have to recall parliament. if the government felt that further action had to be taken, of course we would present that to parliament and it would be for parliament to decide. noes to the left, 126. but this week, 100 tories already voted against the latest measures, so a new vote could see even more rebels. he's got over 100 conservative mps who are holding him to ransom, are saying they won't even vote for the most mild restrictions that we voted on in parliament this week, and so the government is paralysed because of the conservative party's political problems and because of the prime minister's weakness. and that's a very worrying situation for the country to find itself in. so the prime minister faces hard choices and political headaches deciding what to do, even as the omicron wave builds. damian grammaticas, bbc news. beyond covid issues now.
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there have been protests in more than 100 polish towns and cities against a controversial bill that both the us and the european union say would restrict media freedom. many fear that the government will use the legislation, which was unexpectedly passed by parliament on friday, to silence critics. mark lobel reports. protesting outside the presidential palace to protect press freedom. a message echoed across dozens of polish cities after rules were surprisingly rushed through parliament on friday to restrict foreign ownership of media channels. these pictures were broadcast on tvn2a, a polish tv channel not run by the state, but owned by the us media company discovery, which is at the centre of the controversy. a news channel critical of the government, it's feared it could be silenced under the proposals. translation: it is not only about tvn, it's -
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about the future of free speech in poland, and that means it's about the future of our democracy. demonstrators are calling for this man, polish president andrzej duda, to veto the law — something he has hinted he would do in the past. otherwise, protesters fear it would lead to poland's free media being bought off or destroyed, and worse. translation: next will come internet censorship _ and attempts to extinguish all independent sources of information. but we will not allow that to happen and return to those times when we had to listen to a broken signal of radio through europe. —— radio free europe. but the nato member states' government, run by the right—wing populist law and justice party, insist the new laws are needed to protect against russian and chinese influence over polish media. others say it's part of the eu members' authoritarian agenda, —— others say it's part of the eu member's authoritarian with washington saying the bill
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would undermine freedom of expression, weaken media freedom and erode foreign investors' confidence — concerns shared by the european commission. according to tvn2a, over 1.5 million poles have signed a petition against the changes that could cost the channel its very existence. the decision of what happens next now rests with the president. mark lobel, bbc news. the tennis player emma raducanu has been voted bbc sports personality of the year. the 19—year—old, who, at her first attempt, won the us open in september is the first female tennis player to win the trophy since virginia wade in 1977. the first british player, of course. though she couldn't attend in person as she's isolating in abu dhabi after testing positive for covid—19, but raducanu said winning the public vote capped a remarkable year.
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it did indeed. you can reach me on twitter. i'm @bbcdavideades. this is bbc news. hello there. there are some significant changes on the way over the week ahead. as we get closer to christmas, it's going to be low pressure that's going to be shaping our weather, bringing with it some cloud and rain from the atlantic and lifting the temperatures as well. now, there's still the chance of some snow, and this looks more likely to be in scotland for a while. we start monday, though, with the coldest weather in scotland with the clearer skies and a frost. there's more cloud pushing into other areas, and the mist and fog will continue to lift. and as the cloud base lifts, the cloud thins and the skies should be a bit brighter. best of the sunshine probably northern and western areas of scotland. and there'll be more cloud in north west england and wales than we had on sunday, so we're not going to reach the 15 degrees that we had in pembrokeshire — i think 6—8 degrees is going
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to be nearer the mark. high pressure is still close to the uk, hence the quietness of the weather. it is starting to recede but underneath the high pressure, we'll probably have clearer skies as we move into tuesday morning. so, probably a bit more blue on the chart — a greater chance of having some frost across england and wales, for example. that's where we should see, hopefully, a bit more sunshine, perhaps, on tuesday during the day. more cloud, though, continues to affect northern ireland, and in scotland, it's probably going to turn more cloudy more widely. in the north of the country, there could be a bit of light rain or drizzle as well. now, the winds are still light but it's quite a cold day, i think on tuesday — probably only a degrees through the central belt of scotland as that cloud increases, and seven in the south east of england. now, we really set things up for the middle part of the week as that big area of low pressure is filling the atlantic. pressure is falling, these bands of rain are spiralling around that area of low pressure. we start cold and frosty on wednesday. southern and eastern areas likely to stay dry and bright
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but in the west, it's clouding over more quickly. it's getting wetter as well. that wetter weather is pushing into that colder air and we're likely to find some snow for a while, particularly in scotland, especially over the hills. there's still a lot to play for from wednesday onwards with that low in the atlantic trying to push in this milder air in from the south—west but there's still that block of colder air in the north. that colder air looks further north now, so most of the country should be turning milder later in the week with the chance of some rain at times.
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this is bbc news, the headlines: the united nations is investigating the mass killings of civilians by the myanmar military — ten months after they took power in a coup. we have a special report on the mass graves after four villages in central myanmar were targeted over a period of weeks in july. the leftist candidate in the chilean election, gabriel boric, has won the presidency, after his far—right rival, jose antonio kast, conceded defeat in the country's most polarising election ever. chile has seen widespread protests in the past two years, with economic instability and growing inequality. a tough new month—long lockdown has begun in the netherlands, as the new coronavirus variant spreads rapidly across europe. non—essentialshops, bars, gyms, hairdressers and other public venues will be closed. all schools will be shut until at least january ninth while other measures will remain in place for longer. now on bbc news, it's time for political thinking
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with nick robinson.


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