tv BBC World News America PBS December 15, 2020 5:30pm-6:01pm PST
the freeman foundation. by judy and peter blum kovler foundati; pursuing solutions for america's neglected needs. and by contributions to this pbs station from viewyos like you. than and this is bbc world news america. europe imposes some of the toughest restrictions yet ahead of the christmas holids deeratee covid infections. nine months on, we returned to worn find the struggling with a humanitarian crisis. dave kent is planning a christmas surprise for his four-legged friend.
♪ katty: welcome to world news america on pbs and around the globe. spare a thought for europe' leaders, faced with the unenviable task that -- telling their peoplet t there are draconian new measures to people home and stop them from socializing. italy h imposed new travel restrictions ahead of the holidays. poland is urging people to stay-at-home until january. it is from there that we have thlatest from our europe correspondent. reporter: the dutch had been ivdreaming of a rely relaxed christmas. photos of people coming into city centers andnf antion rate that is double the dutch governments worst-case scenario has meant there is a sense of
inevitability about the christmas crackdown. ironically, it mns the dutch will be celebrating under what constitutes the country's toughestockdown yet. >> i am sad that has to be done, but it is important. >> i thiis necessary. yeah. reporter: today, all nonessential stores are closed along with things lik museums, cinemas, theaters, and ament parks. restaurants, cafes, canneeis cohops can keep on serving takeaway only. some businesses feel they are being unjustly targeted without enough state support to keep them afloat. natraditl german christmas markets are not as busy this year. most have already been canceled and a hard lockdown is coming to force as the number of deaths and infections has been surging.
after weeks of national lockdown, travel strict shins in france are being eas today. families can get together over the festive break. the infection rate remains stubbornly high and nationwide curfew will be in place from 8:00 in the evening and will be lifted on christmas eve, but not on new year's eve. italy is currently seeing the highest number ofsi deathe the end of march. the prime minister has told italians toxpect a more sober christmas. rhessures people that father christmas is exempt from all global travel restrictions. been reluctant to adopt measures by neighboring nations with the number of covid related
deathsro appaching 16,000, infections rising, a full-blown lockdown comes in later than many had hoped. round tlet's bounce continent because germans are also preparing for a holiday season under lock down. strict new measures have been put in place. what can germans do or not do over the holiday? >> usually, this time of year would be the last days of shopping. the shops are pretty full.
the last few presents before christmas we will go from that partial lockdown you mentioned to pretty much a cwnplete lockdo the situation has been that most ledger activities have been closed. not really enough to stop social ntext. this is a big blow for parents. life is pretty much going to come to a s indstilln german towns and cities. katty: what does it mean in terms of christmas itself? can families of different
households get together or not? reporter: it depends on the region. havgeneral rule is you c one household plus for other people. and those four people have got tose be in your camily. the german chancellor angela merk has said she is advising people not to travel. you are going to travel or seear partic elderly relatives, it would be a good idea to do a form of self-isolation for a officials are really warning people to keep it as small as possible. and you talk to germans, most people are deciding, do i go to family or not? lots of people will be spending christmas on their ownn order to keep things safe. the general idea is to stop everything over christmas. that will make the economic hit less severe. and hopefully get things moving ain january or february. katty: how much oe osition is th these restrictions?
reporter: if you look at the polls, most germans support angela merkel's stance. she has a science background anyway, and she has been very clear. sshe always said the measures have not been enough. it is because regional leaders with health policiein low numbers, they have actually come out with a position against. it is difficult because of germany's federal system. it's difficult for angtoa merkel keep the country together. she's managed to get everyone on a side. most voters agree with the measures because it is clear there is a problem. there are peopl' that aren' happy and businesses that will be hit hard. yisome businesses are that this is not enough. >> very different from the situation in the u.s.
let's go to the u.k. now because the british government is facing a backlash after putting london into t strictest covid strictions. systemvaries a bit liketed rule germany's by region and it does not seem to have made anyone very happy. we are joined life fro westminster. we were just hearing about the system in germany which is also regionly based. it is regionally based in thek. t a seems to have caused quite a lot of problems -- and has seemed to causems lot of probor the government. reporter: you have different tears in different nations. there are different systems in england, scotland, wales, and northern ireland as of midnight tonight, london and some of the areas around it are going to the highest set of restrictions. athey slightly uncomfortable
with that and think the system isn't working at the moment. but i've got to say, the vast majority agree with that decision for the simple reason that in every part of london and parts surrounding the capital city, there has been an increase lockdown was lifted.es since the thk there is an acceptance that action was needed pretty quickly. katty: what does this mean for your christmas? reporter: i will not be going back to scotland. but there is a debate or if three households could mix. we have some of the main medical journals in the u.k. saying that decision is wrong and cost lives.
we have the labour party saying it should be rethought and it ould be a lot stricter over christs. i don't think the rules are going to change. they have been different parts of the u.k. trying to figure out what they will do given the riing number of cases. i don't think they will change the rules. i think there will be stricter advice urging people not to travel. katty: do you think that there is a risk that because there is a rule that says you can meet up th other households, people will do it even though they know hing toot a sensible do?the rules could be giving pee almost a false sense of security. reporter: it's interesting because i have ard anecdotally th arguments. one that many people will do it because they can and it has bghn a really tear and if you get the chance to see them --
your grand and granddad, they will take it. others say they are not going to because it is not very sensible. i think the government is balancing that tonight ahead of announcements tomorrow. i think they realize a lot of people are still thinking about traveling and formi bubbles with quite vulnerable people. so they will launch an information blitz saying don't travel if you don't have too, stay local and think carefully making because the virus is u.k..ty avily in the katty: it is interesting watching the countries ind euroe ow strict the regulations are. bottom line, protect your grandparents. worldwide, there are now more nfthan 73 million med cases.
evenouries like south korea that have been successful cracking down on the disease, numbers are rising. the country recently recorded a single day high of 950 infections. authorities have introduced new restrictions including a ban on gatherings of 50 people. in brazil which hasor the's second-highest death, officials plan to vaccinate more than 50 million people in the first half of next year itas been almost nine months since the first covid-19 case was confirmed in yemen. ev now, the true extent of the outbreak has been hard to pin down. accoing to researchers, the countrhas reporte just over 2000 cases. most observers think the real number is much higher.our specis more. reme viewers may find images in
this report disting. :report a wedding in yemen's capital city. it is late may,nd coronavirus is sneaking in the country. there are i deasthis veryor neighbhood. but with no official statistics om the authorities, the people aren't aware of the danger. no one is using anyrotection. this is the story of a country that tried to hide the coronavirus from its own people. days after the wedding, we discovered more people are falling victim to the vus, including hassan's grandmother. >> they say it is a corona case and there is no hope. we never thought she would die like that. reporter: was there any awareness? >> barely any. andnm it is the govent's responsibility reporterhi in divided country, northern yemen is
controlled by the rebel who tease. the first case was reported in april. at the time, the doctor was given the task of testing and contact tracing cases. >> they did not knoorhow many case deaths. they didn't announce any numbers. >> videos were already surfang on social media. this one is from outside a hospal. other videos show armed men and soldiers rounding up t hse suspected ing covid, taking them to isolation centers. this made the sick too scared to ask for help. >> people felt stigmatized and treated like criminals, not sice
le. there were even shootings in some cases. >> many people died at home and many bodies were dumped on the streets. this is the man in charge of the response to covid. i ask him who is responsible for those kept in the dark about the virus. >> it not true. the hospitals were open. althe medtaff was available. we don't have a problem with showing the numbers. the issue is simple. we don't want to creat sate of fear among the yemeni people. reason to be scared. have good the public health system in the north is broken and dependent on the virus swept through the
entire country for months. but unti today, no one knows how many people fell ill with covid or how many people dd. katty: dealing with a war that has been going on for sixemears and a pa as well. u.s. presidentlect joe bid traveled to the state of georgia today. he was there to campaign for senate democratic candidates that face reelection. the electoral college confirmed his election victory. riin 42 days after ans went to the polls. president trump is still refusing to accept those results. but for the first republican leader in the u.s. senate did acknowledge joe biden's win. >> today, i want to congratulate president-elect joe he is no stranger to the senate.
he has devoted himself to public service for many years. i also want to congratulate the colleague from california, senator harris. all americans can takeride that our nation has a female vice president elect for the very first time. i look forward to finishing out the next 36 days strong with presidt trump. our nation needs us to add another bipartisan chapter to this record of achievement. katt senate majority leader mitch mcconnell. he w nothing only official to break his silence. brazil's president has sent his congratulations and best wishes. and russian president vladimir putinra has sent a latory telegram sayinhe was ready for llaboration on issues like global security.
the relationship between the kremlin and the new administration expected to be frosty. and mexico's presidentse als congratutions, though his criticsay that message was too long in coming. interesting to watch world leaders respond to this ongoing election. still to come on tonight's program, a newain of covid could be blamed for the spike in cases in southea england leading health officials to question if it is a greater threat than a previous version theov deputynor of kabul has been killed by a car bomb in the afghan capital. it is the latest in a series of attacks targeng government officials.
reporter:nother sadly, dear i ie the word normal day afghanistan. having to live with suicide bombings, major wan the it is these targeted assa shot dead in broad daylight or bombs being plac c on the side s. it is the most chilling threat in the country. nobody takes responsibility for them. the culprits are rarely arrested. everyone, at least among the elites, that includes journalists, activists, academics, security officials. nobody knowsn w they will be next. they leave home in the morning and are not sure if they will come home at night. tty: scientists in the have confirmed there is a new
strain of covid-19 present in the southeast of england. there is no suggestion that it will be severe or that the vaccines won't work ainst it, but they are finding out what they can. reporter: the new variant of coronavirus was first identified in september and has since been associated with a rapid rise in cases but it is unclear if it is the mutation driving that spread. coronavirus is no different. it usually doesn't alter their behavior. ats potentially significant about this new variant is that some othe changes are in the surface spike protein which coronavirus uses to dock onto humans cells. it could potentially make it more infectious. laboratory analysis will be required to work out if that is the case.
>> we haven't seen any association with increased mortality. we do worry tt the risk of transmission might have gone up. it is absolutely vital to be as vigilant if not more vigilant than we have been to reduce the spread of this. reporter: vaccines against covid-19 train the immune systeo ecognize coronavirus. there is no evidence they will be any less effective. we need a new flu vaccine every year because that virus changes a lot. covi modified if needed. be >> the new vaccines are like emails that you sent to the immune system. and th are very easy to tweak. if we know that it has changed slightly, we will edit the email . it will be ready six to eight weeks time after that.
reporter: scientists should know in a week or so how significant the new riant is and if it poses any increased threat to humans health. katty: we did not need anymore of that news. the pandemic has thrown up very kent who is visually impaired. and for his guide dog chad, relying on touch is not someing that chad has been trained for. as a difficult year draws to a close, daveou is optimistic what lies ahead. and he has a special christmas surpriseor chad. dave: i'm dave kent and i was born with a vision impairment. this is my guide dog. his name is chad. we were in toronto, canada, when
covid was reallblowing up. and we arrived back just in time . i arved back on the 23rd, the day of lockdown. i knew that covid was going to present problems both for myself for other vision impaired people. but i did not expect what the sevety of the problems were. chad h social distancing.f he is trained to guide and has no concept of a queue. it can be quite funny but can upset people as well. while i have not been going out as much, when times are tough, i have this beautiful animal to soak up my tears or we have a game in the gden and play.
he is my world. he is everything. hi lo. ♪ dave: t i was involved withhe community projects that produced and celebrated the relationship with chad and myself. also to give people -- for many of us, it has been an awful year. i know i will be spending christmas at home with just a couple of friendsn my social bubble, eating a lot of lovely food. and i want chad to have some nice gravy in his dinner. he looks forward to that for christmas. katty: vy sweet. i love chad.
the national cathedral in ngwashington has been pa tribute to the 300,000 americans that have lost their lives to covid-19. starting at 5:00 local, the bells began totaling 300 times in total. thdean said now more than ever, we protect each other be narrator: funding for this presentation of this program is provided by... language specialists teaching spanish, french and more. raymond james. the freeman foundation. by judy and peter blum kler foundation; pursuing solutions for america's neglected need and by contributions to this pbs station from viewers like you. thank you.
nat the height of the conflict. into vietnam he became a single parent of two young children. we moved a lot.le we in rest areas. we slept in our car. i didn't realize that we were actually homeless. it makes your world really small. if we happened to stay in a motel that happened to have a tv, it was real special. we loved nova. especially when it would be about space. we would talk for hours about the universe.tc ng nova, i felt big, like, my mind was big, my ideas were big. the trajectory of life changed. i could see a world outside of our poverty and i felt lg e things were go get better. ♪ pbs opened up a world i didn't know existed.
♪ judy: good evening. i am judy woodruff. on "the newshour," the rollout coinues. hospitals begin vaccinations as the number of infections and deaths from covid-19 continue to spike. balance of power. the campaigns intensify ahead of georgia's runoff election with control of the senate up for grabs. and, invisible scars. lack of available treatment and a cultural reluctance to seek help exacerbate the crisis of childhoodraa in rural montana. >>ti there's aa around not solving problems on your own. we see it with respect t