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tv   Our World  BBC News  December 27, 2021 9:30pm-10:01pm GMT

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is all from me for now. this is bbc news. the headlines: no new covid restrictions are to be introduced in england before the new year, despite a record number of cases on christmas day. the government says people should remain cautious and ministers are watching the situation carefully. a sharp rise in the the number of coronavirus cases in scotland, the highest yet — as new restrictions in bars and restaurants have come into force. france has become the latest european country to tighten restrictions in the face of rapidly rising cases. employees are being told to work from home at least three days a week where possible. cape town's city hall has been bathed in purple light to honour archbishop desmond tutu, south africa's anti—apartheid leader, who died on sunday. an official state funeral will take place in the city on the 1st of january. millions of households in the uk are expected to face a dramatic rise in energy bills next year.
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now on bbc news, our world — a mother's choice: birth in the balkans. amira is fighting for the right to have a home birth. women in the balkan region are routinely exposed to brutal treatment in hospital during pregnancy and childbirth, and they are demanding change. the united nations has uncovered the scale of the abuse. violence against women in childbirth is so normalised that it is not yet considered violence against women. to protect herself, amira has hired a foreign midwife, who's taking a risk to help her
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deliver the baby at home. if the police came and said "who are you? what are you doing?", hopefully reasonableness will prevail. can amira reclaim one of her life's most important moments? sarajevo, bosnia and herzegovina. amira cerimagic is a doctor and an activist for productive rights. she's preparing for the arrival of her fourth child. she wants to have a home birth, but in bosnia and herzegovina, that's not an option.
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the health system here only allows births in hospitals. bosnia and herzegovina is one of europe's poorest countries. its health care system was destroyed by the bosnian war in the �*90s. 30% of medical staff were lost. and today, the system remains underfunded and understaffed. but although hospital births are safe in this country, hundreds of women say they've experienced mistreatment and violence in state maternity wards. amira is one of them.
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a home birth can be as safe as a hospital birth for women like amira who have straightforward pregnancies and who are having their second or subsequent child.
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through activism and working as a doctor, amira knows the health system well. but although she feels empowered by the idea of a home birth, her husband elmir still has some doubts. in a home birth that takes place within a health system, a midwife is present throughout the labour. but while in many other
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european countries midwives are trained to work independently, here, they can't make clinical decisions without the approval of a doctor. in countries where home births are allowed, only around i% or 2% of women choose them. but in some places, the pandemic has made them more popular. in neighbouring croatia, home births are up by almost a third. but for amira, having her baby at home is her best chance
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of avoiding another traumatic birth. the family's getting the living room ready. earlier in her pregnancy, amira wrote to a hospital
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to register her wishes to have a home birth and to ask for a midwife to assist her. with no support from the state,
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amira is worried she won't be able to find a midwife. but she knows there are women who've arranged home births outside the health system. dzenita is one of them.
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amira may be planning this birth in secret, but she's not alone. she's one of thousands of women in many countries across the balkan region who have come together demanding an end to abusive pregnancy care. it started in 2018 when, in neighbouring croatia, mp ivana nincevic—lesandric made a speech in parliament.
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after that, i came home and i told my husband what happened to me and i googled it because ijust, at that moment, i wanted to see is there any chance that this happened to someone else? and then i saw that it's something that is normal — it's happening to everyone in 2018. ivana nincevic— lesandric stood up and used the word "uterus", "pain" and "painful procedure" in croatian parliament. daniela drandic from the croatian campaigning organisation parents in action had begun to collect testimonies from women experiencing violence in hospitals.
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when we think of maternity services, we think of happy mothers and beautiful little babies. but what we weren't thinking about was many of the human rights violations that were happening behind those closed doors. unfortunately, this is something that is quite normal in croatia and throughout the region, and it's something that ivana put on the table. she shone a very striking light on it.
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i mean, what would i and all of these women should say about our "awkward" situation? we have a person here coming to you and telling you what she experienced and i'm telling it to you because i want things to change. on the back of ivana's speech, women started using the hashtag #breakthesilence to expose abusive treatment during gynaecological procedures. 45 minutes of stitching with no anaesthesia. i don't want to have more children ever again. the nurses in the labour room called me a "cow", an "awful mother", an "idiot". they performed a surgical- miscarriage with no anaesthesia and without informing me. they forced me to have another caesarean section. they told me i would kill my
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baby if i did not agree to an induction. the doctor asked me why i had screwed. i felt — and feel — abused. we really started asking each other, you know, i is this type of behaviour- or this type of care acceptable on other wards in a hospital? and the resounding conclusion from ithat was that it wasn't acceptable. i the health minister of croatia changed in 2020, and although there haven't been any law changes criminalising this type of violence, the social media movement has broken down taboos. violence against women in childbirth is so normalised that it is not yet considered violence against women. in 2019, the united nations special rapporteur for violence against women, dubravka simonovic, investigated the extent of this type of violence, and spoke
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about herfindings in the general assembly. new social movements like break the silence have shed light on the patterns of mistreatment and violence that women suffer, demonstrating that mistreatment and violence during childbirth is widespread and ingrained in health systems all over the world. to protect herself from being mistreated in hospital, amira's found a british midwife
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to help with the birth. as well as paying paul's fees, she's rented an apartment for him for three weeks. hello, welcome. hi, amira. please enter. finally, thank you. yes. but this is about so much more than money. we meet in person, yes. for amira, it's about regaining
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control of the process of birth. how are you feeling today? how's baby and how are you? i'm feeling, every night, when i go to bed, i think "this is it" and i was glad paul is in bosnia. i'm here foryou. i'm your midwife. that means i'm on yourjourney — it is yourjourney — and ijust come with you on thatjourney. later that day, paul follows amira home to meet herfamily. i'm quite relaxed about following the woman's choice, wherever she is. because home births are unregulated by law, paul is also taking a risk. people might challenge our authority, why we're here, why we're providing for home birth. if the police came and said, "who are you? "what are you doing?", and take your laptop, your phone and even take you to an interview at the police station, then hopefully reasonableness will prevail. although home births can be
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both rewarding and safe, emergencies can happen. despite all the preparations, amira has a one in ten chance of having to go to hospital during labour. but with no guarantee of an ambulance, it would be paul and elmir�*sjob to get her there. yeah, we can turn the water on, like, for the shower, and undo the shower and put the hose and bring it to here. 0k, 0k, iunderstand. i understand. paul is doing a practice run of the birth with elmir. so, inside is only amira? the husband can get in if you... no, no, idon't want to do this. sometimes — sometimes the woman just needs to lean back and she needs the man behind her, sometimes. 0k. so...
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paul has worked on five different continents, enabling hundreds of women to have home births. i have one question. in all this process, who is the boss in this process — you or somebody else? the woman is always the boss, she's the decision—maker, but i will give very strong, very clear advice if anything is a worry. yeah, but i know her and she always push to the limits and i want to know if you recognise some bad signs? yeah, for sure. if i saw any concern with mother or baby, i'm very clear — very, very clear — about it. so, you will decide in moment when will we go in the hospital? yes, if you needed to transfer,
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i would say "you need to transfer now". however, it's still amira's choice, because the woman makes the decision. chuckles. ok, but i ask if you recognise the bad sign? i would recognise the bad signs, yes. 0k. and i'm always giving you the information. i'm very honest and i might seem very gentle but i'm actually very strong when it's very important. so. 0k there? i understand. crying. shh! laughter.
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amira was able to give birth in the way she wanted, and now,
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she's campaigning for change in the health system. she's hired lawyers and is taking the government to court to make it easier for others to choose home birth. for amira, this is only the beginning.
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we approached the institutions amira requested a midwife from. they sent us the following statements. we also approached the ministry of health of bosnia and herzegovina, but they didn't reply.
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hello there. this december has already been a mild december. however, it's going to get exceptionally mild towards the middle of this week, as we'll see in a moment. for monday, though, skies like these were pretty typical across england and wales, some cloud, mist and rain. further north in scotland and northern ireland, at least the weather at times was a little bit brighter. but towards the middle part of the week, that's when we'll see a big change in the weather. the winds strengthening, coming from a long way south and pushing much milder air across the whole of the country. now, on this chart, the deeper the red, the more extreme the heats for december, and you can see we're right at the top of the scale here. in terms of actual temperatures, it's not exactly t—shirt weather, but 17 degrees in norwich
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when it should be eight. 17 isn't that far away from the uk — a temperature record for the uk which stands at 18.7 at the moment. now, back to tuesday's weather. we start off with cloud and rain, low pressure in charge. it will tend to turn a little bit lighter and patchier through the afternoon. actually turning a bit brighter for wales and western areas of england, but scotland and northern ireland, some mist and fog patches to start the day, yes, but at least you've got prospects of seeing some bright or sunny spells for a time. now, tuesday night, skies clear for a time and that will allow temperatures to drop away pretty quickly. again, there'll be some frost in scotland, some mist and fog patches as well, and this milder air pushes in from the west. it could bring in this band of rain and it will probably turn quite murky over the hills as well across wales and western areas of england. into the middle part of the week, as we've seen, these south—westerly winds are going to be pumping that mild air across the whole of the country, so some very high temperatures for december. we start off with rain,
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though, and that rain�*s going to be quite heavy. it will tend to become more combined to western areas as the day goes by, but still heavy for western england and for wales. eastern areas might see a few glimmers of brightness, but on the whole, it's pretty cloudy. now, ten in glasgow is mild, so is 13 in belfast, but up to 16 in london — that's very, very mild for december. those temperatures continue to tick upwards as we head into thursday. again, some rain around, heavy for wales, particularly over the hills and for western parts of england, the rain arriving in northern ireland later in the day, but it's the temperatures that take centre stage. we're up to 13 in belfast, 13 or newcastle, but 17 celsius on the charts there for norwich. remember, the december all—time temperature record is 18.7. it could turn quite windy thursday night as that area of low pressure clears through. friday, which is new year's eve, more, probably, mist and fog patches to start the day, but a quieter day weather—wise. i think some of the fog could linger, yes, but you've
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got a better chance of at least seeing some glimmers of sunshine coming through across central and eastern areas before cloud returns in the west, bringing more rain as we end the day. those temperatures coming down and odd degree or two, but still very mild —11—15 celsius. heading into saturday, which is new year's day, well, probably quite cloudy across western areas with a bit of drizzle driven in by these south—westerly winds. some heavier rain moving across northern ireland into western scotland. eastern areas, that's where the best chance of a few breaks are likely to be, and still very mild — temperatures 13—16 celsius. so, 2022 starts off where 2021 left off — that is with very mild weather to take us into the new year.
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tonight at 10pm — no new coronavirus restrictions in england before the new year, despite a record number of cases on christmas day. the health secretary urges people to remain cautious, and celebrate new year's eve outside, if possible. we'll watch the situation very carefully, and should in the future we need to act, of course we won't hesitate to do so. but tighter restrictions are now in force in wales, northern ireland and in scotland, which has seen a record rise in numbers. emergency talks between the government and the uk's energy industry, amid warnings that bills could go up by 50% next year, unless the government intervenes. england's hopes of an ashes comeback are fading rapidly, in a dramatic second day of the third test in melbourne. and missing for almost a week — a happy ending for the search
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and rescue dog, who got lost herself, in norfolk, as she's

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