tv BBC News BBC News February 20, 2022 9:00am-9:30am GMT
fairly olympia this is bbc news broadcasting in the uk and around the globe. world. our top stories. britain warns that russian is planning the biggest conflict in europe since world war two. prime minister, borisjohnson, says plans for an invasion of ukraine may have already begun. i am afraid to say that the plan that we're seeing points to something that could be really the biggest war in europe since 1945, just in terms of sheer scale. it comes as russia and belarus take part in huge military exercises, just 160 kilometres from ukraine's border. gold for great britain on the final
day of the winter olympics. eve muirhead's women's curlers beat japan 10—3 in beijing. the final medal of the games has gone to finland, in the men's ice hockey. the legal requirement to self—isolate after catching covid in england is expected to be dropped from next week — as part of the government's "living with covid" plan. canadian police say they've cleared the main protest site near the country's parliament — and defend their use of pepper spray and stun grenades. hello and welcome to bbc news. the british government has issued its strongest warning so far about a possible russian invasion of ukraine. speaking to the bbc, the prime minister, borisjohnson, said the operation had — "in some senses" — already begun, and he warned that evidence
from russia and ukraine points to vladimir putin planning what could be the biggest conflict in europe since the second world war. the prime minister also threatened moscow with what he called "the toughest possible" economic sanctions. mrjohnson was speaking from munich, where world leaders are meeting for an annual security conference. here's our political correspondent, damian grammaticas. in eastern ukraine... explosion ..the ukrainian interior minister and journalists accompanying him forced to run for cover. their convoy had come under shell fire close to areas controlled by the russian—backed separatists. ukraine says these are russia's attempts to provoke it to strike back and provide a pretext for war and borisjohnson agrees. meeting western leaders in munich yesterday, he said the attacks are a sign president putin's plan for an invasion is already being put into effect. in munich, in an interview
with the bbc�*s sophie raworth, he warned of what's to come. i'm afraid to say that the plan that we're seeing is for something that could be really the biggest war in europe since 1945, just in terms of sheer scale. i think people need to understand the sheer cost in human life that that could entail, notjust for ukrainians, but also for for russians and for young russians. ukraine's president told the gathering the time for appeasing russia was over. translation: for eight years, ukraine has been a shield. - for eight years, ukraine has been holding back one of the greatest armies in the world, which stands along our borders, not the borders of the european union. but should russia move to destroy ukraine and its democracy, borisjohnson gave his strongest warning yet of sanctions to come. notjust hitting the associates of vladimir putin, but also all companies, organisations of strategic importance to russia.
we're going to stop russian companies raising money on uk markets, and we're even, with our american friends, going to stop them trading in pounds and dollars. that will hit very, very hard. so ukraine waits and watches. mrjohnson warned a lightning russian war might initially overwhelm these defences. but the west, he said, could not tolerate the destruction of a democracy and would, even if it took time, ensure such aggression did not pay off. damian grammaticus, bbc news. well, meanwhile, just north of ukraine, russia and belarus have been holding ten days ofjoint military exercises, which are due to come to an end on sunday. questions are now being asked about whether russia will withdraw its troops and equipment — or leave them stationed on belarusian soil.
the latest estimates by the us government suggests that between 169,000 and 190,000 russian troops and russian separatists are now stationed along ukraine's border, both in russia and neighbouring belarus. our correspondent steve rosenberg is in belarus — and a warning this report contains flash photography. definition of muscle flexing — this. explosion. 100 miles from ukraine's border, russia and belarus are holding joint exercises on an unprecedented scale. nato says it's the biggest deployment of russian troops in belarus since the cold war. at least 10,000 russian soldiers within easy reach of ukraine. but both moscow and minsk deny they're threatening anyone. translation: our country isn't. helping russia to capture ukraine
and russia doesn't want to capture ukraine. we don't need war in belarus or in russia. we've had enough war. we still remember world war ii. russia insists that these exercises are purely defensive. ukraine says this is psychological pressure at the very least, and the and at most, there is concern in kyiv and in the west that if there is a full—scale attack on ukraine, then russian troops in belarus could be part of that. america seems to think so. for months now russia has been building up its military forces in and around ukraine, including in belarus. they are uncoiling and are now poised to strike. meanwhile, in moscow.
"you may begin," vladimir putin told army chiefs. and they began. the president oversaw drills by russia's strategic nuclear forces, showing off his country's state—of—the—art missiles. a message, perhaps, to russia's rivals, and not a subtle one that for now, at least, the kremlin is in no mood to compromise. steve rosenberg, bbc news, minsk. team gb have ended the winter olympics with a gold medal — thanks to the women's curling team. they beatjapan10—3 in this morning's final in beijing, to repeat the success of britain's gold—winning curling squad at the salt lake city games 20 years ago. and we're joined by our sports reporter katherine downes now.
what a night it was, and it was reasonably comfortable in the end, wasn't it? it reasonably comfortable in the end, wasn't it? . , . ., , ., . wasn't it? it was, much easier watch com ared wasn't it? it was, much easier watch compared to — wasn't it? it was, much easier watch compared to the _ wasn't it? it was, much easier watch compared to the men's _ compared to the men's final yesterday which bruce mouat and the boys lost out to sweden, such a tight match, but eve muirhead and the girls were in control from the start, a very early morning for curling fans in the uk, it started about nine o'clock in beijing this morning, and finally a gold medalist the very last day of the games, and finally a gold medalfor eve muirhead, this is herfourth olympic games, she won bronze in sochi eight years ago, came back in sochi four years ago, came back in sochi four years ago, came back in sochi four years ago but lost in the bronze medal match, agonisingly close to the gold medals —— macro came back in pyeongchang. she was determined to have the gold medalist dream come true and i spoke to her earlier to find out how it feels. how does it feel, finally, for olympics and you've done it. i know, it's been a journey and, yeah, fourth olympics to have this gold medal around my neck is extra
special. you know what, a lot of people say this but it really hasn't sunk in yet. it's the cliche, isn't it, but i can imagine you live in this bubble, it's the aim for you for a four—year period, and then all of a sudden it's here and itjust must be a very surreal reality to be facing. it definitely is. it's a long four years, isn't it, especially for myself after pyeongchang having surgery and then falling short there as well coming fourth, and then a disappointing worlds last year, not even qualifying here for beijing. we went to the qualifier, we topped that, and yeah, i'm absolutely delighted. i'm so proud of my team. they've got me here and they've made me a better curler and a better person. and, yeah, this is a dream come true. just talk to me about the dynamic within the team, because you know, you've been there, done that, four olympic games now. but these girls, they're all olympic debutants and
now olympic champions. i know! that's a pretty special to him, isn't it? it is. and for those girls it is their first olympic games here, and to come out and get a gold medal is so, so special. ijust wish i did that! but do you know what, we have to praise everyone. uk sport, national lottery for ourfunding stirling, and yeah, it's been hard work, there's been ups, there's been downs, but do you know what, when and celebrating in the stands watching that match was bruce mouat and the men's team with the silver medal around their neck. he will be the flag bearer for the closing ceremony, into the ceremony, eve carried it into the stadium for the ceremony, eve carried it into the stadium fi carry it in the closing ceremony, eve carried it into the stadium fi wthe it in the closing ceremony, eve carried it into the stadium fi wthe curling 3 closing ceremony, eve carried it into the stadium fi wthe curling e clos have ceremony, eve carried it into the stadium fi 11 saved .ing 3 clos have ceremony, eve carried it into the stadil gb. 11 saved .ing 3 clos have team gb. loving the woolly hat, by the way! it is very cold! loving the woolly hat, by the way! it is very w downes in beijing.
in england who test positive for covid will no longer have to isolate, as part of plans to "live with the covid". all remaining restrictions in the country are set as gareth barlow reports. we've been living with covid for nearly two years, but for people in england, the prime minister wants that relationship to change. after catching the virus is expected to end. after catching ti house of commons earlier boris earlier this month boris johnson said earlier this month borisjohnson said dropping would be on an based on an encouraging trends. i can tell the house today that it is my intention to return on the first day after the half—time recess to present our strategy for living with covid. provided the current encouraging trends in the data continue, it is my expectation that we will be able to end the last
domestic restrictions, including the legal right to self —— requirements to self—isolate if you test positive, full month early, mr speaker. positive, full month early, mr s - eaker. ., positive, full month early, mr seaker. ., , ., speaker. the move is part of the government's _ speaker. the move is part of the government's living _ speaker. the move is part of the government's living with - speaker. the move is part of the government's living with covid . speaker. the move is part of the - government's living with covid macro plan underpinned by the treatments of vaccines and medical understanding that have been developed during the pandemic. alongside self—isolation ending in england, local authorities will be expected to manage outbreaks using their existing powers. and the vaccination programme will remain open to anyone who has not yet come forward. labour has warned against declaring victory before the war is over. a sentiment echoed by some scientists and charities who note current infections across the uk still hover at around 3 million. according to estimates from the office for national statistics. for people like piers rankin, a cancer patient who's clinically vulnerable, the planned changes once again pose questions as to how to manage and mitigate the risks posed
by the virus. it's scary. we're taking a step into the unknown. i'm a high—risk individual to covid, and my family have to make sacrifices in order to try and keep me safe. and we constantly make risk assessments as the epidemic ebbs and flows. like, for example, how much covid is there going on in my local community, how much covid is going on in my children's schools, how much risk can we bear without sort of essentially shielding again for an indefinite period of time? the proposed changes only affect england, with the other uk nations at various states of easing their own controls as we all continue to learn to live with covid. gareth barlow, bbc news. our political correspondent peter saull is with me now. let's talk about what the prime minister has been saying to the bbc about ukraine, and some very interesting remarks and some pretty ominous warnings from borisjohnson
that the conflict that russia he believes is planning could be the worst since the second world war. some very strong language from boris johnson, he's been at the munich security conference over the weekend, his mind and attention, as with all western leaders, is focused on the prospect of a conflict breaking out in eastern ukraine. he believes, he says, that in many respects the russian plans to invade have already begun with those clashes that we are seeing in the east of ukraine already with russian backed separatists clashing with ukrainian forces, western leaders believe that would be the pretext to an invasion by the russians. but also interesting what borisjohnson has been saying about how the west might respond in terms of sanctions. he said it would be the toughest possible set of sanctions. he also raised the prospect of limiting russia's ability to carry out transactions in both pounds and us dollars. that's the first we have heard of that idea. but clearly that
is a discussion that is being held with the americans right now. the ukrainian president volodymyr zelensky said he thinks sanctions should begin now before a russian attack rather than after the event. i suppose from the uk's perspective it is holding that thread to try to dissuade the russians from carrying it out, but clearly the feeling is, although borisjohnson at pains to stress he doesn't know exactly what vladimir putin is doing, he believes he is acting irrationally and there is an invasion that is now planned, and the way in which that will be carried out according to us and uk intelligence suggests that they will invade from the north and encircle the capital kyiv, which would be a catastrophe in the prime minister's words. he urged vladimir putin to think about the potential of russian lives that would be lost in the event of that happening. let’s lives that would be lost in the event of that happening. let's turn our attention _
event of that happening. let's turn our attention also _ event of that happening. let's turn our attention also to _ event of that happening. let's turn our attention also to covid. - event of that happening. let's turn our attention also to covid. we - event of that happening. let's turn | our attention also to covid. we just saw that report about the government's plans for lifting remaining restrictions in england as part of the living with covid strategy that we are going to get this week. ., �* , , strategy that we are going to get this week. . �* , , ., this week. that's right, it needs to be finalised _ this week. that's right, it needs to be finalised and _ this week. that's right, it needs to be finalised and it _ this week. that's right, it needs to be finalised and it will _ this week. that's right, it needs to be finalised and it will go - this week. that's right, it needs to be finalised and it will go to - this week. that's right, it needs to be finalised and it will go to a - be finalised and it will go to a cabinet meeting first thing tomorrow morning, i'm told. yes, the end to all legal restrictions is a pretty significant moment in england given everything we have lived through over the past couple of years, starting with a stay—at—home order in various different tiered restrictions, lots of different things, the rule of six, for example. this will be a major moment and will be welcomed largely by conservative mps, i'm sure, when the prime minister ultimately unveils it to the house of commons tomorrow. two significant changes in there, particularly on self—isolation, the prime minister has already said that that will end at the end of this month, that that is the expectation that it will no longer be mandatory for you to stay at home if you test positive for covid from march
onwards, and the other big question is on free tests. lots of reports that the government is about to abandon free testing. i'm told that it will not be the case that all tests will no longer be free, they want to be able to use it are still in a targeted manner to protect the most vulnerable people, and indeed in the interview borisjohnson has given to the bbc this morning, he stressed the importance still of protecting the most vulnerable people, but theyjust do not want protecting the most vulnerable people, but they just do not want to be spending the billions of pounds that they have been doing on testing now that it looks like, in terms of the figures we have at the moment, that the deaths are not really out of the ordinary for this time of year. of the ordinary for this time of ear. ., ,., .., year. peter saull, a political correspondent, _ year. peter saull, a political correspondent, thank - year. peter saull, a political correspondent, thank you . year. peter saull, a political. correspondent, thank you very year. peter saull, a political- correspondent, thank you very much indeed. police in the canadian capital, ottawa, have cleared a main protest site near parliament, which had been occupied by demonstrators for over three weeks. they've defended the use of pepper spray and stun grenades, saying officers faced aggressive resistance from protesting truck drivers. more than 170 people have
been arrested and 38 vehicles seized as officers, some on horseback, continued the second day of a huge crackdown which has become one of the country's biggest ever policing operations. aru na iyengar reports. little by little the canadian police are gaining ground on vaccine protesters who have been camped in central ottawa for three weeks. it's a show of force never seen before in this previously tranquil city. police defended the use of pepper spray and stun grenades. at every step they faced a barrage of resistance, shoving and betrayal. shoving and vitriol. we all saw that the protesters were aggressive with the officers, we needed to use horses at one point. as a result we responded this morning by adding helmets and batons to our equipment for the safety of our officers. it's a tough stance beefed up by new emergency powers. police have warned protesters
they will actively identify them and follow up with financial sanctions and criminal charges. the protests started out as a freedom convoy by truck drivers protesting against mandatory covid jabs required to cross into the us. but it has escalated and broadened out to anti—government protests here and in other cities. some feel the crackdown is overdue. the occupation of the main government precinct has angered many ottawans who feel their city has been taken over at the weekend. lots of protesters coming from other cities to party here in ottawa. there have been hot tubs inside our parliament hill, there have been bouncy castles, there have been djs and big screens, there has been late night dance parties. that is not what is happening here tonight. you see a smattering of protesters chanting "freedom," which has been really what the protesters have been chanting the whole time. the canadian anthem gets sung spontaneously. but this is a substantial change.
some truckers have decided to leave. it's about to be over for now. this chapter is ending. but the message i think has gone through too many hearts. through to many hearts. police chiefs have vowed to hold protesters to account, even if it takes months. aruna iyengar, bbc news. more wet and windy weather is set to sweep the uk and across europe later hampering efforts to restore power to homes cut off after storm eunice caused what energy providers believe was the biggest national power outage on record. 155,000 households are still without power in the south and east of england and wales. with more weather warnings in place, the clean up could be slow, as alice key reports. sweeping away in sussex, chopping through trees in the capital, and picking up the pieces in somerset = the pieces in somerset — all part of the clean—up operation following one of the worst storms to hit the uk in decades.
it was just absolutely brutal, nonstop. devastation everywhere, as you can see. ., , y see. hopefully we will never get it aaain. see. hopefully we will never get it again- many _ see. hopefully we will never get it again. many communities - see. hopefully we will never get it again. many communities are - see. hopefully we will never get it again. many communities are still| again. many communities are still without power— again. many communities are still without power including _ again. many communities are still without power including this - again. many communities are still. without power including this holiday park. having to turn families away during half term. we park. having to turn families away during half term.— park. having to turn families away during half term. we have all had a rou:h during half term. we have all had a rough couole _ during half term. we have all had a rough couole of _ during half term. we have all had a rough couple of years _ during half term. we have all had a rough couple of years and - during half term. we have all had a rough couple of years and it - during half term. we have all had a rough couple of years and it is - during half term. we have all had a rough couple of years and it is the l rough couple of years and it is the first opportunity for people to come and stay in their caravan or come on holiday for the year so it couldn't have been a worse start to the season. in have been a worse start to the season. ,., , ., , , season. in newport these houses were badly damaged — season. in newport these houses were badly damaged by _ season. in newport these houses were badly damaged by flying _ season. in newport these houses were badly damaged by flying debris. - season. in newport these houses were badly damaged by flying debris. we i badly damaged by flying debris. - have probably a third of our roof missing whereas the other two properties next door, they were not so lucky and have taken substantial damage. and their properties are probably going to be condemned. and they've had to, sort of, everyone has had to relocate
as a result of what's happening. in london, rapper dave's upcoming 02 arena concerts have been postponed, after part of the venue's roof was ripped off. but there's more bad weather on the way. met office warnings are in place for heavy rain and gusts of up to 70 miles an hour predicted in the next two days. in the next few days. on the trains, delays and cancellations are set to continue. passengers at preston shared their frustration. it was absolutely awful, carnage. we got on at the first stop, we got a seat and everything, but it was standing for a lot of people all the way down. people lost their lives in these winds and because we stood up on a train, we were just grateful to get home. the worst of storm eunice might be over, but insurers say that clean—up costs could rise above £300 million, so its impact could be felt for a long time to come. alice key, bbc news. a passenger who was missing
after a blaze swept through a ferry sailing from greece to italy has been found alive, leaving another 11 people unaccounted for. all the missing people are thought to be lorry drivers from bulgaria, greece, turkey and lithuania. 280 passengers and crew were evacuated from the euroferry olympia after a fire broke out on friday. gail maclellan reports. firefighters battling to get the blaze under the euroferry olympia was travelling a routine nine—hourjourney from a routine nine—hour journey from igoumenitsa a routine nine—hourjourney from igoumenitsa in greece to brindisi in italy when the fire broke out early on friday. in the dark, passengers were woken and told to get into life rafts, but some passengers are still missing. their relatives face an agonising wait for information. translation: i agonising wait for information. translation:— agonising wait for information. translation: , ., ., ., translation: i spoke to another driver that was _ translation: i spoke to another driver that was also _ translation: i spoke to another driver that was also in _ translation: i spoke to another driver that was also in the - translation: i spoke to another driver that was also in the hold i translation: i spoke to another driver that was also in the hold in | driver that was also in the hold in the cars. i asked him driver that was also in the hold in the cars. iasked him if driver that was also in the hold in the cars. i asked him if he had news of my father. he said they had seen him but after they took us out of
the ship the passengers gathered together and we were looking for your father but couldn't find him anywhere, do not only him but three others as well.— others as well. some relatives have criticised the _ others as well. some relatives have criticised the conditions _ others as well. some relatives have criticised the conditions on - others as well. some relatives have criticised the conditions on board i criticised the conditions on board for lorry drivers. translation: he was afraid of coronavirus, he had health_ was afraid of coronavirus, he had health issues, and because he was afraid _ health issues, and because he was afraid of— health issues, and because he was afraid of catching the virus due to the over— afraid of catching the virus due to the over crowding the often preferred to sleep in the truck, especially if it was not a long trio — especially if it was not a long tri -. , ., especially if it was not a long tri . _ , ., , especially if it was not a long tri -. , . , ., ., trip. tugs are trying to tow the ferry closer — trip. tugs are trying to tow the ferry closer to _ trip. tugs are trying to tow the ferry closer to the _ trip. tugs are trying to tow the ferry closer to the shore. - trip. tugs are trying to tow the | ferry closer to the shore. fierce temperatures on board are hindering any further rescue attempts. officially 241 passengers and 51 crew were on board. on friday, two people were rescued and are now in hospital. most of the passengers have been taken to hotels on corfu. and inquiry into the incident is under way and greek authorities say they will have more information on they will have more information on the cause of the fire once the ship is targeted to a safe place. gail
mclennan, bbc news. ethiopia's set to generate the first electricity from its controversial dam on the river nile this weekend. the $4 billion project is africa's biggest hydroelectric scheme. it's designed to double ethiopia's electricity capacity and transform its economy. but the project's caused friction with its neighbours downstream — as water is diverted from the nile before it reaches sudan and egypt. fire has swept through a neighbourhood, south of the chilean capital, santiago, destroying dozens of homes and businesses. emergency crews battled to gain control of the flames for over seven hours in the san fernando district. an investigation has been launched into the cause of the blaze. there've been no reports of fatalities. police in somalia say at least ten people have been killed in a suicide attack in the central
town of beledweyne. the islamist group, al shabaab, said it targeted a restaurant popular with politicians. one of those killed was a candidate in parliamentary elections. you're watching bbc news. time for the weather with darren bett. today's weather will not help the clear up operation following storm eunice, we have yellow warnings from the met office for heavy rain in north—west england and widespread strong winds as well. the wind is really pick up through the day as this area of low pressure sweeps to the north of scotland, driving this weather front down across the uk. that's been bringing some heavy rain already, in fact over 80 millimetres of rain in the lake district. heavy rain will clear from southern scotland and northern ireland, pushed further into england and wales, not too much rain in the south, and following that wetter weather we will see increasing numbers of showers arriving in scotland and northern ireland and
those will turn wintry in the hills. at the same time the winds are strengthening widely, gusts of 50, 60 mph, stronger around the western coasts of england and wales and as it turns more showery and brightens up it turns more showery and brightens up in scotland and northern ireland, so it gets colder. still miles across england and wales but wet and windy and we could see a short sharp burst of squally winds sweeping the rain away this evening. some snow across northern areas, wetter weather moves down from the north and we see winds strengthening further around parts of northern ireland, south—west scotland through the irish sea, gusts of 70, may be 80 mph and it will be colder tonight thanit 80 mph and it will be colder tonight than it was last night. we have a weather system bringing the wetter weather system bringing the wetter weather down from the north and by the morning most of it will fall as rain. that will sweep through, the winds turn more to a north—westerly direction on monday but it will still be windy for most of the day. wetter weather first thing will sweep away southwards and then we are going to brighten up, and we find sunshine coming through but they will be a scattering of showers
around as well. the wind is pretty strong even into the afternoon, could just 50 or 60 mph across it will be colder tonight than it was last night. we have a weather system bringing the wetter weather down from the north and by the morning most of it will fall as rain. that will sweep through, the winds turn more to a north—westerly direction on monday but it will still be windy for most of the day. wetter weather first thing will sweep away southwards and then we are going to brighten up, and we find sunshine coming through but there will be a scattering of showers around as well. the wind is pretty strong even into the afternoon, could just 50 or 60 mph across england bit they are tending to slowly ease down. given the strength of the winter temperatures around 8—12 and it will feel a in the wind. things come down on approaching from the north—west. that will bring some rain it is another weather system approaching from the north—west. that will bring some rain into north—western parts of. but there is another weather system approaching from the north—west. that will bring some rain into north—western parts of the uk overnight on some blustery winds. the rain band will across england and wales on tuesday, the rain becoming light and patchy and then showers too, wintry over western parts around 11 as it turns colder, top temperature around 11 or 12 celsius.
prime minister, borisjohnson, says plans for an invasion of ukraine may have already begun. i'm afraid to say that the pan with seeing is something that could be really the biggest war in europe since 1945, just in terms of sheer scale. it's as russia and belarus take part in huge military exercises, just 160 kilometres from ukraine's border. great britain finally gets the gold on the last day of the winter olympics. eve muirhead's women's curlers beat japan 10—3 in beijing. the final medal of the games has gone to finland, in the men's ice hockey. the legal requirement to self—isolate after catching covid in england is expected to be dropped from next week — as part of the government's "living with covid" plan. canadian police say they've cleared the main protest site near the country's parliament
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