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tv   France 24  LINKTV  March 17, 2021 3:30pm-4:01pm PDT

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♪ >> welcome back. it is 9:00 p.m. in paris. these are the headlines. the european union unveils plans for a covid travel certificate to be a made available with the will of restoring freedom of movement. amid rising tensions with the administration of president biden, the foreign ministry of moscow recalls its ambassador to washington. voting wraps up in the netherlands following a general election, which has been overshadowed by the pandemic. we ask, what are the prime minister's chances of reelection? ♪
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good evening. the e.u. has unveiled plans for a covid travel certificate to made available, which the european commission president says will help to restore freedom of movement. such a vaccine certificate will show whether or not a person has been vaccinated, tested negative or has recovered from covid-19. while southern european countries have welcomed the initiative, which it is hoped will help save the all important holiday season. other member states are less enthusiastic. olivia tells us more. >> getting europe moving again and keeping its borders open safely. that is how the you chief -- the
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you chief presented the vaccine passport or as it is known, the digital green certificate. >> it shows states of whether the person has either been vaccinated or a recent negative test or has recovered from covid and has antibodies. the certificate will make sure that the results, shows the data are mutually recognized in every member state. >> it would be distributed by national authorities or health services. it would contain basic personal information in english and the language of the country of issue as well as a qr code. the document should be free of charge with the e.u. providing support for member states. the digital pass has been
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uploaded by some as a way to get tourism back up and running this summer. it has also raised ethical and logistical questions regarding data protection and equal access to travel. the e.u. was swift to remind europeans their fundamental right to remove freely between member states was not under threat. the digital pass would facilitate travel, eradicating the need for quarantine protocols or further tests. for now, only the astrazeneca, moderna, pfizer and johnson & johnson vaccines would be authorized for the certificate. she underlined with a third wave of covid-19 in our sites, widespread vaccination is the best strategy on the road to return. >> the french government spokesperson hinted the wheels are in motion for more restrictions to be iroduced in france. catherine has this report. >> as new coronavirus cases rise
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sharply, the french government is taking action. >> we decided this morning extra measures will need to be taken in number of regions. over the next hours, will be speaking with local counselors. to discuss the current situation. >> the announcement paves the way for more curbs in the paris region. residents say they are not thrilled with the prospect of another lockdown. >> when you live in paris and have a small apartment, it is more complicated then when you have a house in the countryside. >> there is a feeling of i work up in a hamster box all weekend. >> one day you are told you're being locked down. the next day it is lifted. it is like a yo-yo. >> with more than 400 cases per
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100,000 residents, the health care system in the paris region is in crisis mode. the intensive care units are at capacity, forcing the government to transfer patients to other hospitals around the country, a decision many families have opposed. >> the virus is not under control. there is many patients in intensive care as there was during the peak of the second wave when it was starting to go back down. the time has come for more restrictions because it is not starting to go back down. we are in a phase of acceleration. >> the government has ruled out closing schools. the rest of the new restrictions will be announced to the prime minister on thursday. >> the french health authorities have announced the latest covid-19 numbers. there have been 38,501 more cases in the last 24 hours and 246 deaths. the number of cases is up
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sharply. it is the latest sign the situation is worsening notably in the paris region. icu patient numbers at a four month high right now. the french health authorities have approved the use of a home testing kit for covid-19. these tests are being used in other countries in europe. they will soon be available in france. >> it is faster, more straightforward and less invasive. health authorities have given the green light to use these at home covid tests in france. the test uses a short nasal swab to collect a sample. the user dips into a tube. drops of the solution are analyzed by a plastic device. after 20 minutes,he test will unveil the presence of covid proteins. if positive, it must be combined with a pcr test. >> this test allows you to do
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two essential things. it will allow you to do -- to know which variant you are dealing with. you could then be registered on a contact tracing system to alert others and break the chain of contamination. >> these at home tests are already being used in schools and retirement homes across the u.k.. they can be bought from shops in germany. in austria, a home tests can be found in your local pharmacy. france is next in line. several manufacturers are hoping to get prototypes approved. it is unclear whether they will be made available in pharmacies, shops or how much they will cost. >> let's get more analysis on the overall situation. we can speak to a virologist who is a lecturer in biomedicine at lancaster university in the united kingdom. it certainly looks like the
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situation in the u.k. has gotten better. to what would you attribute that improvement? >> thanks for havi me. i think the major contribution of a relatively good handle on the pandemic is attributed to the vaccines. the number of people who have been vaccinated in relatively shorter time. we have 26 million people who have been vaccinated, which is quite high. 35%. the lockdown has been quite stringent, two months plus. the vaccine with the lockdown has helped us put the number of cases and mortalities down. as it stands, we are relatively in better position. we cannot anticipate if the new variants will come in or the vaccine supply will continue at the same pace. the u.k. government made an
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announcement for one month -- that means we will be running behind the overall vaccine targets we have. relatively good but still a lot to be done. >> apart from the supply issues, the other issue regarding vaccines certainly here in europe is the worry about the astrazeneca jab. in europe, a lot of people concerned about it. many countries have suspended use of the astrazeneca jab. what is the mood in england and what is the medical wisdom in the u.k. with regard to t possible risks? >> in the united kingdom, there are less ccerns around the astrazeneca vaccine. the first reason is it is in house built. it was the vaccine that was administered in at least 11 to
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12 million people in the u.k. it was already being deployed for a larger scale. i would say the regulatory bottle -- wrigley tory body came out in a timely manner to say they have no concerns. all the data does not indicate it is associated with any blood clots or any complication. all these factors have helped to build the overall confidence that has been pretty high. >> all the while, the u.k. making great strides. not getting terribly worried about the astrazeneca vaccine. in europe, the situation is getting worse and there is this concern about the astrazeneca vaccine. it is going to be difficult to get people to buy into the vaccine now that the doubts had been cast over it. why do you think it is that europe is suddenly going into this worsened period?
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do you think the could be climatic factors? >>hat is an important question. when we look onto the global data, the blood clot with the astrazeneca vaccine, it is a 0.005%, which is really negligible. when you look into a specific country, that is something that is worrying. if you look into the german perspective, out of 1.6 miion who have been vaccinated with the astrazeneca vaccine, they were expecting only one case of blood clot but they observed seven. three of those died. their stance is justifiable. what we need to look into, the broader perspective in the benefit of the vaccine onto the larger population. if i would 2 be at the decisive situation where i have to decide about the vaccine, i would rather take precautionary measures.
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but certainly, the pads that have been put in place is for a reason. until those are sorted, i do not think the european countries will put that on hold. >> thank you for that analysis. according to surveys, roughly 50% of american men who identify as republicans said they had no plans to get vaccinated against covid-19 but that might change because the former u.s. president, donald trump, encouraged his supporters to get a vaccine. here is what he told fox news. >> i would recommend it. i would recommend it to a lot of people that do not want to get it and a lot of those people voted for me. we have our freedoms. we have to live by that. i agree with that also. it is a great vaccine.
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it is a safe vaccine. it is something that works. >> the former u.s. president speaking to fox news. now to a brewing war of words between moscow and washington after the u.s. president joe biden accused his russian opposite number of being a killer. president biden warned president putin he will pay a price for trying to influence the u.s. elections in november. this follows a u.s. intelligence report that accused moscow of trying to swing the election in trump's favor. >> joe biden once said vladimir putin had no soul. he maintains his view on the russian leader. >> you think he is a killer? >> i do. >> what price must he pay? >> the price he is going to pay, you will see shortly. >> the comments by the u.s. president in an interview with abc news came on the heels of a new u.s. intelligence report.
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the document pointed to putin's role in russia's efforts to try to influence last year's elections. >> we assess that russian president putin authorized a range of russian government organizations conducted influence operations aimed at denigrating president biden's candidacy, supporting former president trump, unrmining public confidence in the electoral process and exacerbating sociopolitical divisions. >> moscow rejects the findings as baseless. >> russia has nothing to do with any campaigns against any candidates. in this regard, we say this report is wrong. there is no foundation rainy evidence. >> since taking office, biden has said he will take a tough or stands on a pressure than his predecessor. >> the days of the united states rolling over in the face of russia's aggressive actions,
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interfering with our elections, cyber attacks, poisoning its citizens are over. >> biden's latest comments added to speculation the u.s. would hit russia with fresh sanctions soon. this after it imposed penalties on cointreau senior russian officials over the poisoning and imprisonment of alexei navalny. >> voting in the netherlands has just wrapped up in the last quarter of an hour following a general election that has been overshadowed the coronavirus pandemic. the conservative party of the caretaker prime minister has been leading in the polls. that lead has shrunk in recent weeks. he will have the first shot at forming the next ruling coalition. let's get more from amsterdam. just tell us, what are we hearing so far with regards to the outcome? >> the first results have just come in.
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as expected, he did increase his seats from 33 to 35 in the 150 seat parliament. a vote of confidence for his handling of the crisis over the last year. the big shocker is the huge wind by the liberal democrats. they have gone from 19 to 27 seats, getting their best record ever and making them the second-biggest party in the netherlands. with those last 10 years, that spot has gone to the anti-immigrant party. he has dropped three seats. the christian democrats have dropped. it is up to the liberal democrats to help form a coalition. they have a woman who is heading them. there were a record 37 parties running. 17 parties have gained a seat in parliament. that is a huge record. four new parties will be joining the chamber. the big news is the winning of d
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66. they ran a campaign for new leadership should this is the first year we have seen a lot of female leaders in dutch politics. the last election, there was one female party leader. this year, there were 10. >> some surprises that the outcome -- at the outcome. just remind us what their main issues were -- what the main issues were. i am guessing it was the pandemic most of the way. >> the pandemic of course cost -- casting a huge shadow over the campaign and how people could reach out to their voters. one in five said it would play a decisive role. there have been other issues as well. health care in genal. the role of prevention. education has been big here. children have been out of school. how to make sure they catch up. the economy is a big concern. and also housing.
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there is a huge housing crisis in the netherlands with a shortage of 300,000 homes and how and where to build e homes. what we can see from these results, other issues came into play like immigration. that was a big issue in the background. not something at the forefront of people's mind. immigration, identity and discrimination as well. these were issues that d 66 tried to profile itself on. >> thank you for bringing us up to speed. let's get a check of the top business stories. as the e.u. struggles to contain the pandemic, you are looking at the state of france's restaurant industry. it has had a serious dose of pain. >> it has been one year this week since fran -- since france anti-lockdown. the specter of a third lockdown looms.
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the restaurant industry has been among the hardest hit. french restaurants have bee open for take-out or delivery only since october. although the government has outlined a three month long plan , there is no firm date for them to begin reopening. we are joined by the general manager for western europe at the fork, which is an online restaurant reservation platform. the french government in the past year has spent millions of euros to support the restaurant industry. notably with its paid for low scheme for employees. has that been enough? >> to see the future in a better way.
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the restaurant loans -- [indiscernible] most of the restaurants have been able to help -- have been able to benefit from this help. we know how difficult it is. [indiscernible] >> how are restaurant owners feeling about this ongoing uncertainty? what steps are they taking to ensure when they can open, their restaurants will be as safe as possible? >> basically, the way they will
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welcome the customers. the protocol by the government. to adapt what the consumer is looking for. we see as well a new way of welcoming the customer. restaurants are adapting a lot. >> thanks much for speaking to us this evening. the u.s. federal reserve has sharply raised its forecast for economic growth this year, projecting gdp will expand 6.5% in 2021 compared with 4.2%.
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the american central bank attributed to the upbeat outlook to vaccines and fiscal stimulus but said it would keep its own interest rates to record lows. chairman jerome powell saying some 10 million americans need to get back to work and warning the pandemic and economic damage would not disappear overnight. >> indicators of economic activity and employment have turned up recently. although the sectors of the economy most adversely affected by the search of the virus and by greater social distancing remain weak. >> that promise of support for as long as is needed has boosted wall street. the dow jones, s&p 500 and nasdaq rallying to close slightly higher. the dow jones up .6%. the investors convinced easy lending conditions will not end anytime soon. disney shares have risen after
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it announced it would be reopening theme parks in california at the end of april. stocks in london and paris ending lawyer. astrazeneca shares were down 1.3% in london despite backing from the world health organization. the u.s. senate has unanimously approved the appointment of katherine tai as u.s. trade representative. she is the first woman of color to hold that position and will face a busy agenda. the bite in the administration has indicated it wants to patch up trade relations with the e.u. . it is maintaining a firm line on china. the trade war between the largest economies will be addressed at bilateral talks in alaska on thursday. the european union has outlined its vision for a vaccine passport chain the tourism industry is crossing its fingers for the summer holiday season. it is a crucial part of the
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economy. >> for people on the spanish island of gran canaria, and approved covid pass would be the light at the end of a long tunnel. >> [speaking foreign language] >> over a year into the coronavirus pandemic, the european union has seen tourism all but collapsed after travel restrictions went into force. the sector is worth 10% of the e.u.'s collective gdp. 90% of those is this is, small and medium enterprise. for southern nations, more
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reliance on tourism as a percentage of the gdp, has been catastrophic. spain reacted with an 11 billion euro aid package. many hope the covid pass would come into force. industry professionals believe more is needed on all fronts. >> [speaking foreign language] >> even mass vaccinations carry their own element of doubt. uncertainty still prevailing over whether those inoculated can still transmit the virus or not. >> iceland is one step ahead of the game. it has been opening borders to all visitors who have been vaccinated. travelers that can show proof of vaccination will not have to provide a negative result or
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phase quarantine. tourism numbers tumbled 75% last year, causing the economy to contract a 6.6%. the policy applies only to vaccines certified by the european medicines agency. that excludes chinese and russian vaccines. it adds a level of complexity to what is already a very contentious issue. >> are business editor kate moody. thank you for bringing us up to speed. that is it for me. i will be back in four minutes from now. don't go away. ♪
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03/17/21 03/17/21 [captioning made possible by democracy now!] now! amy: from new york, this is democracy now! >> predominantly from majority black and brown communities in the city. amy: the capital of mississippi is beginning its fifth week without safe drinking water. most of jackson, which is about 80% black, remains under an order to boil water.


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