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tv   BBC News  BBC News  July 21, 2020 3:00am-3:30am BST

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welcome to bbc news. i'm mike embley. our top stories: we start with the global race to find a vaccine to halt the pandemic. here in the uk, scientists at oxford university say the vaccine they're developing appears to be safe and does trigger an immune response. the uk government has already ordered 100 million doses of it. here's the bbc‘s fergus walsh. 3131197. so much is riding on this. could the oxford vaccine help end the coronavirus pandemic? more than 9,000 volunteers have received the jab in the uk — among them these frontline nhs staff in newcastle.
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i've seen what covid can do. the sort of severity of some of the cases has been quite upsetting at times, so i really wanted to try and help get rid of this disease. unfortunately, me dad fell ill with covid, and was admitted here for eight days. and i think, once it's been that close to home, it makes more of a difference. you feel like you want to do your bit. vaccines work by training the immune system to recognise and remember the enemy — in this case coronavirus. the oxford vaccine stimulates the creation of specialist y—shaped proteins known as neutralising antibodies. in the event of future exposure, these should latch onto the coronavirus and prevent infection. it also stimulates the creation of t—cells, another key part of the immune system. these should sweep up after the antibodies
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and destroy any cells that have become infected. in the first 1,000 volunteers, the vaccine was safe, and two doses gave a better immune response than one. the oxford team says it is a really important milestone. we're really pleased with the results that are published today in the lancet, because we're seeing both neutralising antibody responses and t—cell responses that we are optimistic may be associated with protection. but we still need to conduct those trials to prove that that's the case in humans. but we don't know if the vaccine will work in the real world, and protect people from infection. trials have begun in south africa and brazil, both virus hotspots, so the answer there may come sooner than in the uk. so this is very good and is very promising to start with. however, we have seen vaccines
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reaching this point and also failing, so we need to be a little bit careful, and not quite popping the prosecco just yet. i can fit you both in at 12:45pm. perfect. these over—70s in southampton are all signing up to receive the vaccine. older people are more vulnerable to covid—19, and our immune system weakens as we age, so whether the vaccine protects them is another key question that needs answering. how do you feel? i feel fine. good. fergus walsh, bbc news. well, a little earlier i spoke to harald schmidt, who's a professor in the department of medical ethics and health policy at the perelman school of medicine, university of pennsylvania. i asked what he hoped to hear from the drug companies executives at the congressional hearing. a really key important thing as we move to this next stage is we have a sense
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about how vaccines will be allocated. so as important as having a safe and effective vaccine is, and that will be a little while, we need these large studies with 30,000 participants, that is really only half the story, the other half is who gets it when we all can. because the reality is we will need to ration vaccines, and notjust once. so this is a key difference we have two other pandemics. manufacturing vaccines isn't done as quickly as manufacturing and packaging band—aids, for example. the compound needs to be made a special facilities and they need to be distributed and so on. most experts expect that for months, supply will not be able to meet demand, and that will be one piece where it will be very interesting to hear what the executives will have to say. secondly, the situation is to do with the fact that we are hearing from several executives, right, so we have a plural of vaccines, very likely, and that raises a whole other question in terms of rationing, because they are likely different in that effectiveness, for example across age groups, so each
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time there will be a lag between supply and demand and rationing will be necessary. plus those who receive the earlier, less effective vaccine, let's presume that, will also want a more effective one. so those things all need to be clarified. how do you think that rationing might be done? demand is clearly going to be huge. some of these vaccines, one might require 100 times more of it to be as effective as another. so the first thing to note is really that in the united states we currently don't have a clear idea about how this will work. so think about it, we started vaccine development in january and six months on we have a vaccine development term and promising vaccine counters, but no national plan that would set out how we allocate vaccines when all can have them. so historically i don't think there is a good example where things and do well when science progresses faster than spacecraft speed and ethics is walking, to stay in that metaphor. we as well as other countries need a national vaccine allocation plan and soon. another unique aspect of
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covid—19 in the us, which is the economic impact and the vastly different impact across racial groups. so i suggested that in places, in response to that, we should be allocating vaccines in a way, among the general population, that we give priority to worse populations, economically worse populations. the reason is these groups are more dependent on income, less able to physically distance at home and at work and on the way to work and are more likely to spread the infection, and more likely to be in the minorities. so is really important in the us context that vaccine rationing recognises the impact covid—19 has had on minorities. for example, on average, twice as many black americans died compared to whites so far. in some cities, up to 6—fold. so allocating vaccines as though that didn't happen would really just exacerbate past disadvantage, which is really due to structural racism. the british foreign secretary has suspended the uk's extradition treaty with its former colony, hong kong, immediately and indefinitely. the announcement includes an arms embargo, and is
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a response to china's imposition of a new security law on hong kong. dominic raab called that a clear and serious violation of thejoint declaration between china and the uk. syrian state media is saying air defences have intercepted a number of israeli missiles over damascus. the syrian military says most targeted the suburbs of southern damascus which israel has hit in the past. seven syrian soldiers are reported wounded. there was no immediate israeli comment. budget negotiations between leaders of the 27 eu member states have gone into a fourth night in brussels. their summit was initially scheduled to last two days. they are attempting to settle a trillion—euro budget covering the next 7 years alongside a 750—billion—euro covid recovery fund. president trump has threatened to send federal law enforcement personnel to more american cities. federal officers have already been deployed in portland as anti—racism protests continue. there have been 52 nights of demonstrations there against police violence, in the wake of george floyd's killing.
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portland's mayor has accused federal forces of abusive tactics. this from our correspondent sophie long. another night of conflict on the streets of portland. tear gas is fired at demonstrators to drive them away from the courthouse. there have been protests against police brutality and racism here every day for nearly two months, and they are becoming increasingly volatile. some say that is due to the presence and tactics of federal officers. it's picking back up, ‘cause we've got the feds out here. they're tear gassing people, they're snatching people up, they're beating people in the streets. local leaders say this is an abuse of federal power. but president trump says they are helping portland, not hurting it. portland was totally out of control. the democrats, the liberal democrats running the place, had no idea what they were doing. they were ripping down, for 51 days, ripping down that city, destroying
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the city, looting it. the level of corruption and what was going on there is incredible. and then the governor comes out, "0h, we don't need any help. " how about chicago? i read the numbers were...many people killed over the weekend. we're looking at chicago, too. we're looking at new york. look at what's going on. all run by democrats, all run by very liberal democrats, all run really by radical left. 0regon‘s attorney general has filed a lawsuit against the federal government, accusing it of illegally detaining protesters. every american needs to be concerned about what's happening here in portland. you know, these federal agencies are operating with no transparency and against the will ofjust about every leader in our state, and i assume it will be the same in other states where they show up. but portland is currently the poster child for this administration. they are using us, sort of throwing mud on the wall to see if this is an issue that
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might stick for the president. there is little indication the federal tactics are working. more people are now demonstrating, including a group of mothers who say they will come out until no protester needs protecting. and i thought they were just — they were going to leave us alone, because we weren't throwing anything at them. but that's not what happened. so we were gassed. they shot... it's like a very loud sound, and they also shoot these things that burst on the ground. i'm not exactly — i'm not familiar with military garb or language, but it was terrifying. we're not there to hurt them. we're there to protest human rights violations. like, as americans, aren't we allowed? isn't that a protected right? the acting secretary of homeland security says the crackdown will continue, and if they see the same threat in other cities, they will order the same response.
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sophie long, bbc news. donald trump has now declared that "many people say" it is a patriotic duty to wear a mask if they can't socially distance. in recent months, the president has made wildly divergent statements on the importance of masks in containing covid—19. there's been much criticism from the democrats and some scientific advisers. he now says he "believes" in masks, but claims that they "also cause problems." amber heard has told the high court in london her former husband johnny depp threatened to kill her many times. she's begun giving three days of evidence as part of the actor's libel action against the owners of the sun newspaper. johnny depp is suing over the allegation that he was a wife—beater, which he strongly denies. david sillito reports. amber heard, here in the white blouse, arriving in court for the beginning of her account of her relationship withjohnny depp, who was himself arriving in court through a different entrance.
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the case brought byjohnny depp is a libel action against the publishers of the sun newspaper over an article that described him as a wife—beater. did he give it to you? the couple first met on the set of the film the rum diary. during their relationship, she says, he repeatedly assaulted her — punching, slapping, kicking, head—butting, choking. she says she feared for her life. but in court, she was also asked about a recording of an argument. was this evidence that she had hitjohnny depp? i did not punch you.
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she said she was being sarcastic. if she had hit him, it was only to stop him choking after he had passed out. she was also questioned about this red mark. it was visible at a court appearance in 2016 but officers who saw her at the time of the alleged incident said they saw no mark. it was put to her in court. the questioning continued. in court she was questioned about an arrest for alleged domestic violence in a previous relationship. she said there was no assault, no charges were brought. she was also questioned about a medical report that talked of substance abuse and mental health problems. all untrue, she said. johnny depp strenuously
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denies all the allegations but amber heard says she thinks he doesn't remember what he did and has been convinced by others that she is making things up, to which she says, "i am not." david sillito, bbc news. still to come on bbc news, the —to still to come on bbc news, the — to spend their cash. cuba's state run stores start accepting us dollars as the government runs out of currency. nasa: can see you coming down the ladder now. one small step for man... 0ne giant leap for mankind. a catastrophic engine fire is being blamed tonight for the first crash in the 30—year history of concorde, the world's only supersonic airliner. it was one of the most vivid symbols of the violence and hatred that tore apart the state of yugoslavia. but now, a decade later, it's been painstakingly rebuilt and opens again today.
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there's been a 50% decrease in sperm quantity and an increase in malfunctioning sperm unable to swim properly. seven, six, five, four.... thousands of households across the country are suspiciously quiet this lunchtime as children bury their noses in the final instalment of harry potter. welcome back. very glad to have you with us on bbc news. the latest headlines: scientists at oxford university say the coronavirus vaccine they‘ re developing appears to be safe and triggers an immune response. president trump warns he might send federal law enforcement officers to more us cities but local leaders criticise his crackdown on protests. the former soviet republic
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of belarus is often called europe's last dictatorship. it's been ruled for more than 25 years by one man — alexander lu kashenko. he faces an election in the next few weeks. and opposition to his rule is growing, fuelled by his response to coronavirus. 0ur europe correspondent gene mackenzie reports from the capital, minsk. snatched while they protest, peacefully. it is indiscriminate. police take anyone they can get hold of. dozens of police officers have just got out and started grabbing people off the streets, pulling them out of the protest and throwing them into the van there. "disgrace," they chant. after decades of living under this regime, people are weary. with elections approaching, hopes rest on this one woman's shoulders. svetla na ti kha novs kaya is reluctantly running for president after her husband
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and the other main candidates were jailed and disqualified. i had to sacrifice something for my husband and now, for my country as well. do you think you can win? we don't believe in honest elections. but i still believe that our president will understand that his time is over. people don't want him any more. not a single election since president lukashenko took power in 1994 has been judged free or fair but it is his response to coronavirus that has tipped people over the edge. the president has dismissed the virus as a psychosis and refused to lock down. this year's victory day was celebrated as usual and people feel he has gambled with their lives. this doctor is risking his career to talk to us.
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reporting here is difficult. soon it becomes clear we are being tracked. what was that? that's plain—clothes, the same guys who usually throw protesters into the vans. this visible defiance of the government has not been seen for more than a decade. after an hour of arrests, police cover their faces. they are determined to clear the streets. if you see a military car, you need to run. nothing more, just run. this man willjoin hundreds already in jail. some have spent weeks now in punishment cells without trial. suddenly, our cameraman is taken. he is bundled into this van. he is one of the 15journalists
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to be detained tonight. last night we watched people who were protesting against your government be taken off the streets and detained. is that freedom of speech? these young belarussians have been afraid their entire lives, but not any more. now they are ready to fight for change. theyjust don't know yet how ferociously the regime is prepared to fight back. jean mackenzie, bbc news, minsk. the egyptian parliament has voted to authorise deployment of its military abroad to defend national security and — in the words of the official motion — to fight
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criminals and foreign terrorists "on a western it's an apparent reference to neighbouring libya, where egypt has been supporting the militia leader khalifa haftar against the libyan government, which is recognised by the un and backed by turkey. cuba is in the midst of a currency shortage, making it difficult for the communist government to find the cash its needs to import crucial international food and supplies. authorities have responded by allowing new dollar stores to open up. as alanna petroff reports, cubans are being encouraged to start using their stashed away american cash to buy much—needed groceries and get more money flowing through the economy. cuban cu ban customers start cuban customers start moving into the stores, ready with the us dollars to buy loads of groceries. bottled items, canned goods, bags of flour. if you have the money and you can find the items, you'd better buy them now. cuba hasjust begun allowing people to start
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using the us dollars to buy everyday items that are in short supply. translation: it's another opportunity. another way for us cu ba ns to opportunity. another way for us cubans to make purchases. it's another possibility and up to now i think it is working well. some cubans have family members that send them american money from abroad. this week they can use the money legitimately. it hasn't been this way since another difficult time in the 19905. translation: it is not a currency that we have easy access to, but they don't see it's wrong to use it. cuba's communist government controls these are stores and has tight control over the economy. as tourism has created in the midst of the pandemic, the country is running out of international cash and securing fresh imports to stock stores is tough without international currency. the cu ban
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is tough without international currency. the cuban peso isn't excepted outside the country. locals say there is not as much a righty as they wanted, but the stores that accept us dollars are less crowded. translation: there were fewer people in shops that take us dollars. it's more comfortable. from what i've heard there will be less pressure on shops. if you have money that is being sent from overseas and you go to the stores you buy what you need without the big crowds. cuba and the us have been old foe ‘s for decades. the trump administration has been tightening a trade embargo on the country and making it more difficult for cuba's economy. he moved to start using american currency in cuba isn't ideal, but these aren't ideal times —— the move to. alanna petroff, bbc news. the pandemic has had many knock—on effects — even on endangered mountain gorillas in the democratic republic of the congo. reged ahmad has this report.
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these are some of the world's last endangered mountain gorillas, living in the democratic republic of congo's national park. and these are the rangers who help protect them. but thatjob has now become so much harder. with the economic impact of covid—19, poverty has led to a spike in poaching. over the past few weeks, we have been registering an increase in the presence of snares in the mountain gorilla sector. rangers had to work fast to rescue this three—year—old baby gorilla when its hand was caught in one of those illegal snares. it's dangerous work. the formidable mother had to be sedated and the male silverback distracted so the baby could ultimately be saved. this increase in poaching has come at a time when rangers are already scarce. they've had to to reduce their presence in the park
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in order to protect these endangered apes from catching the coronavirus. the scientific advice that we've been receiving has consistently indicated that we have to be extremely cautious because of the risk of disease transmission, which could wipe out the entire population of mountain gorillas. working as a park ranger here carries other dangers, too. in april, 12 were killed in an attack by suspected militiamen. the virunga national park, a unesco world heritage site, has been closed since march to reduce the spread of covid—19. but the lack of tourists and jobs has caused locals to turn to the forest to survive, making the task of saving some of the last mountain gorillas in the world even more challenging. still with the animal kingdom,
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and a slightly happier note. a mexico zoo has released footage of its newest — certainly cutest arrival — a baby hippo, now 8 days old. tamba, who's 22 years old, gave birth on july 13th and the pair have been inseparable since — enjoying long soaks in the water at zacango zoo. keepers are confident the calf is healthy but with the baby bonding so close to its mother, they have been unable to determine its gender. a reminder of our top story. scientists at oxford university say more tests are needed for a covid nineteen vaccine they're working on before they can be confident it will work. initial trials suggest it is safe and produces an immune response. the world health organization has described the vaccine as the leading contender among more than a hundred under intensive study to defeat covid—19. there is much more for you on all the news on the bbc website and on our twitter feeds. all the news on the bbc website and on our twitterfeeds. that is it for now. thanks so much for watching.
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hello. this week started off on a fairly dry settled note for most places, but we will see weather fronts approaching from the atlantic, bringing some outbreaks of rain in through this week. now, tuesday will start on quite a chilly note. we will see the cloud building through the day and that will bring some rain later on to parts of northern ireland and scotland courtesy of this weather front approaching here. further south, high pressure holding onto things so it's a dry picture of it to sit across the book of england and wales. under clear skies, quite a chilly start. temperatures in the mid—single figures for many of us first thing tuesday morning, a few early mist patches. in fact temperatures could be as low as around 3—4 degrees in the coldest rural spots. after that fresh start, there will be some long spells of sunshine through the morning. later in the afternoon, cloud will tend to build so that sunshine at times a bit hazy, cloudier skies later on in the afternoon. some rain working into
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the northern parts of northern ireland, the western isles as well. 1—2 showers around for the north—east of scotland too. now, temperatures across scotland and northern ireland between about 14—18 degrees. england and wales typically around 18—21 celsius, a little below par for the time of year. heading into tuesday evening and overnight into wednesday, we will continue to see this weather front in the north bringing rain, quite heavy at times, to northern ireland and parts of scotland as well. for england and wales, it's going to be dry, but with the cloudier skies, it won't be quite as chilly as it has been over the past couple nights. into wednesday, outbreaks of rain continue at times for northern ireland and for scotland. later in the day, a few of those showers could just push into parts of northern england and north wales as well, but further south across england and wales, we should have a dry day and with some sunshine, it will be a little bit warmer. so temperatures up to about 23 degrees down towards the south—east. we're typically looking at the mid to high teens further north across the uk. looking towards the latter part of the week, and this waving weather front will push its way gradually southwards and eastwards, bumping into higher pressure across the near continent. it will be fizzling out, but we could still see some
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outbreaks of rain thursday particularly across western parts of england and wales too. they'll be followed by some fresher, brighter conditions of sunshine and scattered showers across parts of scotland, and temperatures will range between about 16—22 degrees on thursday. then things continue on a fairly unsettled and a showery theme as we look through friday and into the weekend for many of us, as well. that's it for now. bye— bye.
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this is bbc news. the headlines: early results from two more coronavirus vaccine trials have produced an immune response without any serious side effects. one was carried out at oxford university, the other at china's academy of military medical sciences. further work's needed to assess how long lasting any immunity would be. president trump has threatened to send federal law enforcement personnel to more american cities to tackle anti—racism demonstrations, which he claims are the work of anarchists. democrats, civic leaders and civil liberties groups have called the officers' actions in portland deeply disturbing and unacceptable. the actress amber heard has told the high court in london that her former husband johnny depp threatened to kill her many times. she's giving evidence as part of the actor's libel action against the sun newspaper for calling him a wife—beater. he denies the allegation. in the latest evidence of growing tension between britain and china, the uk has suspended its extradition treaty with hong kong.

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