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tv   BBC News  BBC News  July 9, 2020 4:00am-4:31am BST

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this is bbc news. welcome if you're watching here in the uk, on pbs in america or around the globe. my name is mike embley. our top stories: yemen's latest battle. after years of civil war and hunger, how does a country fight a pandemic, with little medical care and almost no testing. the number of coronavirus infections in the us passes 3 million with at least 133,000 deaths but the white house is pushing hard to reopen schools. you in australia, melbourne begins a you second lockdown in response to a new spike in covid infections and queensland says it's going to close the border with victoria within the next 2a hours.
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serbian police clash with demonstrators in belgrade during a second night of protests against renewed coronavirus restrictions. it is so often called the world's worst humanitarian crisis, and then it gets worse. in yemen, united nations aid agencies are warning they still have nowhere near the resources needed to fight the looming threat of famine, in a country already ravaged by 5 years of war and disease, now struggling with a surge in coronavirus deaths. with the medical system already devastated, covid—19 is spreading virtually unchecked. nawal a—maghafi has been speaking to those bearing the brunt of yemen's latest crisis. there are no daily briefings about covid—19 in yemen... allahu akbar. all: allahu akbar. ..no accurate statistics, and barely any tests.
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but every day, there are the dead, buried quietly in the early hours of the morning. among the buried on that day in sana'a was mohammed al—kuhlani. a few weeks ago, we spoke to him and his friends as they worryingly followed the pandemic news. translation: if the virus reaches yemen, they won't be able to count the dead. yemenis mix a lot. we need to raise awareness. we need to teach people how to keep safe at home. the disease was already spreading silently throughout homes in yemen, including mohammed's. his family said his death was of a respiratory infection. it had all the hallmarks of coronavirus. now, we've learnt that mohammed's father and several members of the family have lost their lives with the same symptoms. this is his cousin days before he died. none of the deaths
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have been reported as coronavirus—related. six years of war has destroyed half of the country's health system in the conflict between the houthis and a saudi/uae—led coalition, supported by the uk and the us. i met dr ashwag on several milestones during the yemeni conflict, during the famine, cholera and now covid—i9. the suffering only gets worse, she says. translation: i go to people with hand sanitiser and i tell them to stay at home. they tell me, "doctor, don't scare us with the disease. we're dying of hunger anyway, we need to eat. what options do we have?" it's a tragic situation. it is coronavirus or hunger. protective gear is not a priority for a population where two—thirds don't know where their next meal is coming from. and the international
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community, distracted with its own crisis, is turning its back. a un fundraising summit raised only half the amount needed to keep its life—saving programmes running. for months, there have been warnings of coronavirus sweeping silently in yemen. now the pandemic is here and is exacting its deadly toll unchecked. nawal al—maghafi, bbc news. the us vice president has said the country has now recorded at least 3 million coronavirus infections, more than any other country. to put that in international context, it's significantly higher than brazil and russia which have the second and third most cases. cases in the united states have risen by more than 60,000 in one day — a record. the us alone has recorded more infections than both asia and the entire european continent, which were once global centres for the virus. but the trump administration is pushing hard to re—open schools. the president has threatened to withhold funding
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from schools that do not. here's the vice—president at the coronavirus task force briefing. at this point, we have tested more than 39 million americans. among those, more than 3 million americans have tested positive and more than 1.3 million americans have recovered. sadly, more than 133,000 americans have lost their lives, and our sympathies are with all of the impacted families. while we mourn with those who mourn, because of what the american people have done, because of the extraordinary work of our healthcare workers around the country, we are encouraged that the average fatality rate continues to be low and steady. earlier i spoke to our north america correspondent david willis who told me the figures were likely to be much higher. they are likely to be underestimates, mike, and they are chilling figures. they seem to be going to the opposite
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direction to those in europe and instead of flattening the curve, the united states appears to be fattening it. more than 3 million coronavirus cases, more than 132,000 deaths as you mentioned. president trump for his part is touting the mortality rate which he says is the lowest in the world but there are still hospitals in texas, arizona and florida that are running at full capacity. the president, of course, very anxious, mike, to open this country up ahead of the november presidential election and he is now calling on schools and colleges to reopen in the autumn. that, despite contrary advice from his own medical experts and the warning from the president of one of america's largest teaching unions that the president is potentially putting students' lives at risk by this. and the president actually threatening schools with loss of funding. that's right, yes, although it's doubtful if he can actually
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carry through on that threat since federal funding accounts apparently for about 10% of schools funding across the country at the president took issue with harvard university which said it would be running the remainder of the year on line. the president called that disappointing and unsatisfactory and he wants to get those colleges back running as soon as possible because it's an emblem, if you like, of the economy reopening and it also provides the opportunity for those children were back at school, for their parents to go back to work and that's something that is crucial of course to reopening this beleaguered economy. just briefly, david, some nervousness i think about the apparent lack of backing at one of the briefings for dr fauci. that's right. dr fauci has taken issue particularly over the past few days with the president's claim
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that the united states has the lowest mortality rate from coronavirus in the world. dr fauci said that was a false narrative and he warned of a false sense of complacency and at the white house briefing this afternoon, the spokeswoman, kayleigh mcenany, was asked if the president still had faith in dr fauci and she declined to give a direct answer to that, mike. australia's second largest city melbourne is back under lockdown, thanks to a recent spike in virus infections. 5 million people have been ordered to stay home except for essentials such as shopping, unavoidable work or caregiving. wednesday was the third day in a row that the state of victoria recorded more than 100 cases. 75 of those infections are linked to this group of public housing towers in melbourne. they have been placed under hard lockdown, which means residents cannot leave the buildings at all. australia's overall covid numbers are comparatively small —
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nearly 9,000 cases. that's fewer than california recorded in one single day this week. but australian authorities say they are determined to stop the spread going any further. abc news reporter, steven schubert spoke to me from melbourne a short time ago. today is the first day of this new stage of lockdown just for melbourne. so unlike when australia was last in lockdown, when the whole country really was all in it together, this time it's just melbourne, and there are police road checks at the outskirts of melbourne stopping people coming in. now, we understand that they are providing some leniency today, for the first day, so if you show up at the road check and you don't have a valid excuse, you are being turned around. but they're saying that window of leniency is closing, and it won't be long until you're issued with fines, and that fine is a$1,600 so it would definitely sting. 0n the towers behind me, on the front there, this is unprecedented in australia. this is a hard lockdown.
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these people haven't been allowed to leave their homes at all since sunday, so hopefully there will be some news for them today. the state government here in victoria is saying that the testing is now complete in the towers, and they will be having some news about the easing of those restrictions fairly soon. seeing some pushback, i think, steven, especially from people in public housing, that they seem to be seeing more of police than health workers or social workers. concern, ithink, about the way this lockdown is being implemented. yes, certainly at the start, mike. i was here on monday, which was the first full day of the lockdown, and the police presence here was enormous. the state government here was talking about how they had 500 police on every shift monitoring the towers here and another site in north melbourne, which is not far away from where i am. now, that works out to one police officer for every six residents. and the police were the first on the scene here, not health workers, not social workers, so there was some criticism for that. and we have to keep in mind too
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that the make—up of the people in these towers are largely immigrant families, people who don't speak english as theirfirst language, people who might have an inherent distrust in police or government authorities due to where they've come from. so yes, some pretty strong criticism when this was set up, but i have to say, the police numbers are much lower here today. whether that's indicative that the lockdown may be easing, we will have to wait until this afternoon australian time to find out. and just very briefly, steven, seeing very strong restrictions being announced by queensland. yes, another australian state, queensland, has announced that they don't want any victorians. they won't be allowing any victorians into their state. we're becoming something of a pariah state here in victoria.
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the border to new south wales, which is immediately to the north of victoria, is closed for the first time since the spanish flu. so we can't travel anywhere outside of the state here, and if you're in melbourne, you can't travel anywhere out of melbourne. so that is quite a historic decision. stay with us on bbc news. still to come: six kids, lots of homework, butjust one phone. how a new project in the uk is helping get digital devices to those in need. central london has been rocked by a series of terrorist attacks. police say there have been many casualties, and there is growing speculation that al-qaeda was responsible. germany will be the hosts of the 2006 football world cup. they've pipped the favourites, south africa, by a single vote. in south africa, the possibility of losing hadn't even been contemplated, and celebration parties were cancelled. a man entered the palace through a downstairs window and made his way to the queen's private bedroom. then he asked herfor
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a cigarette, and on the pretext of arranging for some to be brought, she summoned a footman on duty, who took the man away. one child, one teacher, one book, and one pen can change the world. education is the only solution. this is bbc world news. the latest headlines: after years of civil war, yemen faces a crippling fight against the covid pandemic, with little medical care and almost no testing. the number of virus cases in the number of virus cases in the united states is passed 3 million, with more than 130,000 fatalities. the government is
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pushing hard to reopen schools. brazil's president is saying he is confident he will survive the virus because he is taking the antimalarial drug hydroxychloroquine, a treatment that has no proven success in tackling covid—19. he has spent months downplaying the severity of the pandemic as thousands have died in his country. he tested positive this week. 0ur south america correspondent katy watson reports from sao paulo. social distancing — no, thanks. masks — preferably not. jair bolsonaro is a leader who has never much cared for health guidelines, dismissing them every step of the way. but, when it comes to unproven drugs to tackle the virus, it's the only horse he has backed. 0n the day he got covid—19, jair bolsonaro posted this video of him taking the antimalarial hydroxychloroquine. he said he was feeling much better than over the weekend, so it must be working. so it's an honour to
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give that to you... like his friend up north, jair bolsonaro doesn't care if the drug isn't recommended for covid—19, nor that there could be serious health risks for people who take it when they don't need it. it works for him, he says, so he promotes it. and pharmacies here have felt the impact. ever since the president first touted the drug's benefits, medication more often used in brazil to fight malaria in the amazon, or for those skin conditions like lupus, demand has soared. authorities had to introduce a prescription for the drugs to try and control them. translation: we had lots of people looking for it. many just wanted to stock up at home. but we don't allow that. even so, there was such a big demand for it. the price of the drug has gone up, too. there has been a huge boom. while jair bolsonaro is made sure the drugs can be offered to patients with even the mildest symptoms, many health professionals say it is a dangerous path to go down.
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they're telling me people come to the emergency room asking for the drug, before we even examine the person. and this is how this message has penetrated. it's another virus, it's an information virus, that has penetrated and synchronised millions of people to believe that there is a silver bullet, when we all know there is not. the newspapers say it all — jair bolsonaro minimised the pandemic, encouraged social contact, and is now ill. throughout this crisis, he has fought against measures that others have introduced to keep people safe. he has watered down a law on wearing face masks, and even ill, he is pushing to open the economy as soon as possible. sick or not, he is singing the same tune — for now. in the middle of a pandemic, the health ministry has been sidelined. two health ministers, both doctors, have gone, because they backed global health recommendations. the man now in charge temporarily is an army general
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whose biggest move so far has been to get the military to boost production of hydroxychloroquine. but those who back the president repeat his mantra that people need to work, and that the collateral damage of the virus cannot become bigger than the disease itself. a lot of people talk about science, science, science. but science means medicine, medical science. it means social science as well. so we have to have all those things together, because a solution that's perfect for europe, maybe it's not the best solution for brazil. maybe we need to find a solution in the middle term, between them. the problem is, brazil's president is coming up with his own solutions, that few people believe in. the country is in the middle of a crisis, and it feels like little is being done. katy watson, bbc news, in sao paulo. elsewhere in latin america, mexico has seen a huge surge, close to 7,000 new cases, a new daily record. there are fears across
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the continent that healthcare systems are on the brink of collapse. freya cole starts this report in peru's capital city. rallying outside their workplace, these nurses in peru say their life is at risk. they‘ re demanding better protection from the virus which has so far claimed more than 10,000 lives across the country. translation: many of my colleagues have become ill, and there is no special monitoring of their cases. the families of these nurses have also fallen ill. there is no protective equipment, no food vouchers, no transportation for medical staff. elsewhere in peru's capital city, police used water cannons to disperse crowds. they too fear local hospitals are on the brink of collapse. cases are skyrocketing in mexico. injust 2a hours,
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almost 7,000 people contracted the virus. it's a new daily record, and hospitals aren't coping. translation: the doctors who are treating patients are also getting ill. we've been waiting for hours, but many of the doctors can't work because they have symptoms. this is a snapshot of one field unit in huanuco, in central peru. patients are crowded in, relying on oxygen to breathe. nurses in bolivia also have grave concerns. the virus is on the rise, and they say there's nowhere near enough protection. translation: we need the authorities to come to the hospital with tests for all of us workers, because we don't know who is infected and who isn't. some of my colleagues already have symptoms. in colombia, strict lockdowns are taking place along the caribbean coast.
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the port capital, barranquilla, has reported more deaths than the capital city, but local doctors fear many people are dying at home, the silent victims of a virus which remains out of control. freya cole, bbc news. in serbia, there now won't be a return to full lockdown this weekend despite the daily surge in covid—related cases. the president has changed his mind in response to a second day of anti—government protests against the reintroduction of lockdown. paul hawkins has the story. more anger on the streets of the capital, belgrade. for a second night, there were clashes between police and protesters. translation: our government is simply looking after its own interest. the people are just collateral damage. translation: stupidity, illiteracy, arrogance, thievery, aggression.
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serbia went back five centuries under president vucic. feelings here are still running high, even though the president changed his mind earlier in the day and said there would be no full lockdown this weekend. translation: the crisis staff think that there is room to do something else, and that is why they will probably make a decision tomorrow to tighten the measures, but without imposing a curfew. i want to tell the citizens of serbia that i am against it, and that i believe that the only solution is to impose a ban on movement. i'm asking people to stay at home to stop the spread of the virus, because today is our second—worst day in terms of the number of infected we have had. that brings the total number of infections to 17,000 in serbia, with 330 deaths, in a population of 7 million. the president's critics
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and the opposition blame him. they say the initial lockdown was lifted too quickly at the start of may, to hold parliamentary elections which were won by his party. translation: irresponsible behaviour of the regime towards human health is the reason for the spread of the coronavirus, all with the aim of holding false elections. we demand that a new, depoliticised crisis staff who people will trust, is appointed. we demand that police commanders be held accountable for the police brutality used on citizens who are protesting against another curfew. so no full lockdown for now, but whether it appeases the protesters remains to be seen. let's get some of the day's other news: one of the central figures in the impeachment proceedings against president trump is retiring from the army. lieutenant colonel alexander vindman was a white house national security official who testified about mr trump's phone call with ukraine's president.
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his lawyer says his client has been the victim of a campaign of bullying, intimidation, and retaliation by the president. the presidents of the united states and mexico have signed a joint declaration, just days after their new trade deal took effect. that deal includes a third nation, canada, whose leader was not present. justin trudeau stayed home, managing his country's coronavirus response. the prime minister of the ivory coast, amadou gon coulibaly, has died at the age of 61. the country's president confirmed mr gon coulibaly was taken ill whilst chairing a cabinet meeting earlier this week and died in hospital. he was due to stand as the governing rdr party's candidate in 0ctober‘s presidential elections. for many children in lockdown, going to school has meant going online. but in the uk, around 700,000 students have missed out on schoolwork because they don't own a computer or even have internet access. a new programme is trying to change that by getting donated computer equipment to those who need it most, as fiona lamdin reports. homeschooling.
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can i borrow your phone, please, mum? yeah. thank you. this family in swindon, like thousands, having to learn without a computer. it takes forever, and it stresses you out, and then ijust end up giving up and not doing it. do you feel like you're falling behind? yeah, a lot. because i'm not getting as much help as i should be. i just can't, like, focus properly. and it — sometimes it crashes. i'm finding it very, very stressful, and to be honest, sometimes i find it too much, so ijust don't do any work at all. and it's a similar story for 14—year—old charlie, who is in foster care. he is doing his gcses next year. i'm worrying a lot about going back to school, having detentions after detentions for not doing the work. but what we've seen is an exaggeration due to covid. nick runs 31 schools, and has 2,500 students who don't have a computer at home. across the uk, hundreds of thousands of young people are disadvantaged digitally. they're disadvantaged emotionally, financially, socially.
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but the it divide has grown bigger as a result of covid. but now, people are donating the computers, laptops and tablets they no longer need. is that a dinosaur? the holgate family were also struggling — six children, all sharing mum's phone. but a donated tablet has helped. what difference has it made having another device in the house? we've been able to do our — like, loads of homework. and we've been sharing — like, sharing better. whereas before, i think they were falling behind a little bit, but now they're on track. daddy! the government says it is committed to reopening schools in september, but many families are worried that by then, the gap will be too big. fiona lamdin, bbc news. if you have got access to it,
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there is much more for you anytime on the bbc website and on our twitter feeds. thank you so much for watching. hello again. there were two very different types of weather across the uk during wednesday. it's a similar setup as we go into thursday. in the south, we've got lots of low cloud. this was borth on cardigan bay during wednesday afternoon. to the north of that, we've got a showery regime, much more sunshine around. and the divider is this area of low pressure. so keeping all parts unsettled, but it's been bringing in heavy and persistent rain during the course of wednesday night. and that heaviest rain — yes, it will be clearing out of the way, but it leaves a legacy of those weather fronts — some misty, low cloud. it's pretty humid, as well, with that weather front across the southern half of the country. a tad chilly under clearer skies further north. but lots of misty, low cloud,
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hill and coastal fog to clear first thing. 0r certainly the rain clears, but that misty, low cloud is likely to hang around for much of the day. so dull and overcast, damp and dreary, and very little changes. of course, it won't be raining all day. there'll be some drier slots, as we had during the day on wednesday, and it's still quite warm — 19—20 degrees, generally speaking. we might see some of the brighter skies filter into the north of england later. just the odd shower for northern ireland, with some sunny spells. sunny spells across scotland. but given the light winds, when the showers develop, they could become heavy and thundery and slow—moving. so quite a lot of rain falling in a shortish space of time from those thunderstorms. but equally, either side of them, plenty of sunshine. and those will translate into clearer skies as we go through thursday night, as those thunderstorms rumble out. and that clearer weather is gradually filtering southwards. so not quite as humid through the night ahead, more comfortable for sleeping. more sunshine, therefore, on offer as we go into friday. but a brisker wind, and that wind comes down from the north—west, and it will make it feel
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cooler, and notably so in the south, although there'll be more sunshine to compensate. but equally, as you can see, lots of showers. they'll be heavy, as well, running southwards on that north—westerly breeze. they do tend to dampen down in activity towards the west later. why? because we've got the azores high moving in, and that's with us for the weekend, just with the risk or the chance of more rain coming into the north—west of the uk come sunday. so for many, we're lifting our temperatures a little, as well, with more sunshine and lighter winds across the south. in the north, still predominantly dry, butjust potentially some rain in the north—west later.
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this is bbc news. the headlines: the united nations has warned that its aid agencies don't have the resources they need to fight the looming threat of famine in yemen, ravaged by five years of conflict and disease, and now struggling with the oronavirus spreading virtually unchecked. coronavirus infections in the united states have passed three million — significantly more than any other country. cases have risen by more than 60,000 in one day. there have been at least 133,000 american deaths from covid—19, but the trump administration is pushing hard to re—open schools. the president has threatened to withdraw funding from schools which do not. five million people in australia's second—largest city, melbourne, have been ordered to stay home for six weeks because of a major spike in coronavirus infection. queensland is closing its borders to residents of victoria or anyone who has recently been to the state.

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