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I'm Jim Angelil. And in the early hours of Monday, the 5th of April, these are our main stories. Jordan's deputy prime minister has accused the king's half brother, Prince Hamza, of plotting to destabilize the country. Police in Taiwan have detained a maintenance driver whose runaway truck caused the island's deadliest train accident in more than 70 years. He's given an emotional apology on national television. New coronavirus restrictions are being imposed in Maharashtra, India's worst affected state, after the country recorded 93000 infections.
Also in this podcast.
Right now, I can't expect to enter Cuba for having used the word dictatorship because I know they are going to take measures against me, the Cuban musicians whose protest song has riled the communist government.
We begin in Jordan, have the authorities in the kingdom foiled a malicious plot by a former crown prince to destabilize it with foreign support? Or is Prince Hamza, the half brother of King Abdullah, being punished for speaking out against corruption and incompetence?
A day after the prince managed to get a video out to the BBC saying that he'd been placed under house arrest, the Jordanian government said he'd been detained because he was working with unspecified foreign parties to undermine the state.
The crisis has alarmed allies of Jordan, which regarded as a haven of stability in an often turbulent region.
Our chief international correspondent, Lisa said reports in the past 24 hours, dramatic and conflicting reports of political turmoil in the kingdom have stunned observers. Now the government has given more details of why it had suddenly moved to arrest more than a dozen people and confine Prince Hamza to his home in the capital, Amman. The deputy prime minister, Eamon Safadi, called it zero hour. He told a news conference that Jordan's intelligence agencies had intercepted communications between Prince Hamza and foreign parties over the timing of steps to undermine Jordan's security.
It was clear, Mr. Safadi said, they had moved from design and planning into action, a tactic to Hamala.
The investigation deals with activities and movements that were aimed at undermining Jordan's security, aimed at sedition, aimed at striking at Jordan's stability. When the investigation ends, matters will be dealt with. I am confident of the legal transparency and clarity.
Prince Hamza's own account of this crisis in his video shared with the BBC is markedly different.
I am not the person responsible for the breakdown in governance, for the corruption and for the incompetence that has been prevalent in our governing structure for the last 15 to 20 years. I'm not responsible for the lack of faith that people have in their institutions. They are responsible.
The prince mentioned he had been in meetings where there had been criticism of the government or the king, but that he had not been the one to criticize. He lamented that no one was able to express an opinion without being bullied or arrested. This unprecedented public rift within Jordan's ruling family in one of the region's most stable countries has rung alarm bells in many capitals. Neighbors and allies, including other Arab monarchies, have been quick to express full support to King Abdullah and the stability of his kingdom.
It's still not clear which foreign country could have been involved in this alleged plot, but it is clear this crisis is not over yet. In a country already struggling to cope with the hardship caused by the global pandemic.
Lyse Doucet, victims of the recent Islamist militant attack on a town in northern Mozambique, have been giving harrowing accounts of their ordeal after managing to escape. Aid workers say nearly 10000 people have now been evacuated from Parmer, the town besieged by the militants nearly two weeks ago. It's a coastal hub for a multi-billion dollar gas project. But following the audacious assault, the French oil giant total has shut down its operations in the area. Dozens of people are thought to have been killed and large numbers are missing.
Many survivors managed to reach safety in the port city of Pember, around 200 kilometers south of Parmer, from where Vrooman Kesey sent this report. As the victims of the attack in Palmar make their way off the rescue ferry at the Pember Harbor, they break down in tears, grateful to be alive, but still in shock from the horrors they encountered.
A man walks gingerly through the crowd, just tears of his dead father. His brother is still missing. All warning the survivors arrived a steady procession of over a thousand people. Witnesses spoke of bodies on the streets and fleeing through dense forest from the gun wielding insurgents.
I met the Pember Harbor in Mozambique, Kabo Delgado province here today. I've witnessed ambulances coming in and out carrying the injured. I've also witnessed emotional family reunions. And it was also a harrowing moment where a woman spoke of the horror of losing her two sons during the attack.
My son, my son, he was working at the Amarula hotel the day, but it hurts a lot every day.
We saw mothers crying three, four of their children. They don't know where they are. It's too painful. It's too painful.
The little girl is Mangala Survivor.
Francisco McRobbie shows me his cat feet. He says he walked through mangroves in waist high water, fleeing.
The insurgents made clear there were a lot of lost children, hungry mothers, even us, who were also hungry. There was no food, no water. We even drink water, according to the United Nations.
Tens of thousands of people have been displaced, while the official figure of those killed in Hama is still not yet known. They fled to the Fonzi Peninsula, the site of the natural gas project and a Doctors Without Borders base.
We could not help everybody. I mean, the need is huge there for Dr. Sergio Cabral, who treated the wounded after the attack. The situation in Palmar and the surrounding areas is a humanitarian disaster.
Its population is really in need of medical care, protection and evacuation and food. It's not a way for human beings to be in thataway abandoned there alone in need of help and support. And they are not having the support they need.
I'm at a local community sports complex that's been converted into a makeshift shelter for survivors of the deadly attack in Hama. Now, these are some of the victims who have come here seeking shelter and refuge following the horrors that they encountered at the hands of the insurgents. For aid worker Julia Watanabe, the mental scars of what happened in Parmer will linger long after the physical wounds have healed.
We identified faces, traumatic cases to the specialist, the psychologists specialist, and also sent them to the hospital because some people want to buy himself, because they don't want to know. They don't want to leave. You know, they don't feel like not only the people that made their way into the boat are the lucky ones.
Thousands remain scattered in the forests surrounding palmar. Many will not survive. For Mozambique, this is not only a humanitarian crisis, but potentially an economic catastrophe. 60 billion dollars were earmarked for investment in the gas rich Karbo Delgado Province, the single biggest investment on the continent of Africa. That's all been thrown into jeopardy as extremism threatens to derail this country's fragile future.
Rachmani and Kaisei reporting from Mozambique. A maintenance driver in Taiwan whose runaway truck caused the island's worst train accident in decades has been detained by police. Li Keqiang was taken into custody after delivering an emotional apology to media gathered outside his house. Paddy Maguire reports.
Reading a statement to news crews, Mr Lee's voice cracked as he said he was deeply remorseful for the accident, which left at least 50 people dead. He said he would cooperate with investigators probing the reasons for the crash on Friday. He was then led away by police. Mr Lee had already been questioned by prosecutors over the weekend and released on bail. Local media are reporting he was detained again because he was deemed a flight risk and had a previous conviction.
Paddy Maguire. Now to India and its battle against the coronavirus. Following a sharp spike in infections, the state of Maharashtra is imposing new restrictions from Monday.
Our South Asia editor, Ambrosetti Rajan, reports from Delhi.
India has been struggling to contain the third wave of the coronavirus despite the ongoing mass vaccination drive. More than 93000 new infections were recorded across the country in the last 24 hours, the highest daily number anywhere in the world. Maharastra is India's worst affected state. A local government hopes night curfews and weekend lockdowns will help to put a brake on the spiraling infections. But the authorities do not want to impose a total lockdown as it could have a negative impact on the economy of a state whose capital, Mumbai, is also India's financial powerhouse.
Armbrust Natarajan in Delhi. In his Easter message, Pope Francis has urged the international community to end delays in the distribution of coronavirus vaccines, especially for the poorest nations.
To the to of for everyone, especially the most vulnerable requires assistance and has the right to have the necessary care. This is even more evident in these times when all of us are called to combat the pandemic and vaccines are an essential tool in this fight. In a spirit of vaccine internationalism, I urge the entire international community, in a spirit of global responsibility, to commit to overcoming delays in this distribution of vaccines and to facilitate their distribution, especially in the poorest countries, he pupillary.
For the second year running, there were no large crowds in St. Peter's Square. To hear his Easter address, Mark Lowen in Rome told me more.
It felt really like a consolation, more than a celebration. It was a small, socially distanced mask wearing congregation who attended Mass and watched the leader of the world's Catholics try to give comfort to those whose faith has been shaken by this dreadful 14 months or so. And he focused very much on the pandemic, of course, and called the resurrection a symbol of hope for the victims, those who had lost loved ones jobs. Also, he spoke of young people who had lost time in the classroom or with friends, and he talked of vaccines as the panacea and that they would, in his words, spread healing through the world.
And of course, that's not a moment too soon. This country is Italy is in the grip of a third wave and deaths of more than one hundred thousand. Now, there are still about 20 or 30000 cases a day. So it was a completely empty St. Peter's Square outside the basilica from where he was speaking, which is a square that usually would be packed with tens of thousands of people at this time.
And a very strong message to the world's leaders calling on them to do more to end these delays that we've seen in vaccine distribution.
Yeah, and and also to distribute vaccines fairly to the poorest countries. So he called on governments to do equitable distribution of covid vaccines to the poorest countries, as well as not just the richer West. And he also spoke about the world's hotspots from Myanmar to Mozambique to Yemen to Iraq. So it was a tour of the world's hotspots, but very much with the Koven pandemic at the core of the message.
Mark Lowen in Italy, a group of well-known Cuban musicians have released a song which has deeply angered the communist run government. The song includes lyrics which say it's over about the six decade long socialist revolution and blasts the dire economic situation on the island. The Cuban government has described the artists as mercenaries and has released its own pro revolutionary song in response, albeit with limited success. Will grant reports from Havana.
From the soft picking of the guitar, this doesn't immediately sound like a song which would worry the Cuban government, but it's the latest release by some of the biggest names in Cuban music.
And it's shaken the island's communist authorities to their core called patria ever, meaning fatherland and life. The title is a twist on Fidel Castro's best known slogan, Patrizio on Workday's Fatherland or Death. The musicians involved include some based outside the island, like the multi Grammy winning reggaeton group Henton A and several still residing in Cuba from the dissident San Isidro movement. In the video, they appear dressed in black, their rap lyrics sharply critical of the Cuban revolution and its decades of repression of critical voices.
You're five nine, I'm double two, they say, using a domino reference to accuse the leadership of keeping Cuba stuck in 1959, the year the revolution came to power, while claiming they and their legions of young fans are the island's future. The song comes as the Culture Ministry is embroiled in a bitter dispute with Cuba's artists over the lack of freedom of expression.
I mean, I'm willing to work with anyone, so I think I spent too long trying to pick a path through this game.
There were those who tried to force me to play from the Cuban government, the government in Miami to people in Miami. But in the end, I've chosen the only role which really matters to me, which is that of the Cuban people and what's happening there.
Alexandra Delgado is a founding member of Henty Dishonor, having remained publicly apolitical for many years as his career took off. He limited the group's music to party songs.
Like this one, lacrosse hadero with Marc Anthony, which has had over one point three million views on YouTube, Delgado says the time was right to decide which side of the political divide between Havana and Miami he was on. But he's well aware that by taking an anti-government position, he won't be allowed to perform in perhaps even to visit Cuba for the foreseeable future.
No, no, I won't be able to because the word dictatorship is not one which the Cuban government tolerates right now. I can't expect to enter Cuba for having used the word dictatorship because I know they are going to take measures against me. You feel fear? I still have family on the island.
A day after Patria ever was released, Cuban state media went to great lengths, ones rarely seen, in fact, to denounce the song, the artists and the entire project on state television. A long segment was aired in which a journalist, Lassard or Manuel Alonso, claimed that the very title, Patria Aveda actually came from a speech by Fidel Castro in 1999. In short, the Cuban government says hinted a SONA and the others are mercenaries in the pay of Miami, being used to criticize the very homelands that made them popular in the first place.
And I know it's rare to see the Cuban government get so worried about a song, especially one mainly originating from Miami. But that is perhaps the point about Patriot Uvda.
These artists are Cuban through and through their wildly popular in Latin America and make very successful music.
Not report by Will Grant in Cuba. Still to come.
In a remarkable comeback, a Japanese swimmer who was diagnosed with leukemia two years ago has qualified for the Tokyo Olympics.
A state of emergency has been declared in Florida over fears that toxic wastewater could flood into the Tampa Bay area.
Officials in the US state are worried about an environmental catastrophe.
And REBELO reports for more than a week now, an abandoned mine filled with toxic waste water has been slowly leaking, threatening nearby farms and homes. Engineers trying to plug the hole with rocks and to reinforce the reservoir have so far failed. And the county's director of public safety, Jacob Zuma, says there is now a real threat to the local community.
A portion of the containment wall at the leak site shifted laterally, signifying that structural collapse could occur at any time.
If that happened, more than two billion litres of water could leave the pool within seconds, flooding the surrounding region with its mix of nitrogen and phosphorus and salt water. Ryan Callahan, a reporter for the Miami Herald, says that to ease pressure on the reservoir, wastewater is now being released into environmentally sensitive waterways.
So the state of emergency allows the state to send in more resources. So some of what they're trying to do, it gives the site some more access to heavy equipment that they're trying to use to block the leak and also more pumps to send additional water out into Tampa Bay.
He says the reservoir fell into disrepair after its private owners and government officials disagreed on maintenance costs.
Henry Balo epilepsy affects about 50 million people around the world, but these electrical malfunctions in the brain often go undiagnosed or misdiagnosed despite being relatively easy and inexpensive to treat. Now, though, a new project aims to change that, particularly in poorer countries where access to neurologists is limited or non-existent. It's essentially a way for families to record epileptic seizures and send them to a specialist for diagnosis or further investigation.
It's called Recreate Neuro, and it's been developed in partnership with the Royal Hospital for Children in Glasgow in Scotland. Professor Samia Zuberi is a consultant paediatric neurologist there, and he's been telling James Menendez more about it.
We've established this system, which allows people with epilepsy to upload securely videos that have been taken at home of seizures or other neurological events that people consider might be seizures. So what this allows is families to send these securely to their doctors who can then view them, classify them, and then communicate very rapidly back to the families as to whether we have to do any more investigations and met the people to hospital. Or we can simply reassure patients that these movements are absolutely normal.
How much can you tell from a video of a seizure? You can tell a great deal. In the past, diagnosing seizures has been very much based on taking a history. The story from the person who's had the event or a witness. Because of that, there's been very high levels of misdiagnosis between 25 to 50 percent in various studies. So many people with epilepsy are not diagnosed correctly. And also many people without epilepsy are unfortunately diagnosed as having epilepsy and put on medication.
Are there benefits for poor families as well? Because it can be very alarming, can't it, when someone has a seizure, particularly if it's a very violent seizure?
What happens in a seizure? Is it there's an abnormal burst of electrical activity in the brain and it can cause all sorts of different behaviour. So it could cause you to fall down your whole body to jerk potentially risking injury. And there are situations when a seizure can cause death, the risk of premature death in people with epilepsy three times that of the general population. Unfortunately, although there are 50 million people in the world with epilepsy, still 40 million people are in low and middle income countries where they do not get access to treatment.
About 80 percent of people in low and middle income countries do not get any treatment. But epilepsy can be treated with very cheap medication, costing just five dollars a year.
And you can control seizures in more than 70 percent of people. But unfortunately, because there is very poor access to neurologists, specialists around the world, there is a significant treatment gap between the way epilepsy treated in some more wealthy countries compared to low and middle income countries. And we hope applications like the one we developed can actually support rapid diagnosis for people with epilepsy all around the world.
Professor Samir Zuberi, a consultant paediatric neurologist at the Royal Hospital for Children in Glasgow in Scotland, and the procedure again is called V Create Neuro Jackson.
In a stunning comeback, a Japanese swimmer who was diagnosed with leukemia two years ago has qualified for the Tokyo Olympics.
Upon hearing the announcement that she'd come first in her 100 meter butterfly trial, 20 year old Rikako Ikki burst into tears. She had been tipped as one of Japan's top medal hopefuls before her diagnosis. I heard more from our Asia Pacific regional editor, Selahattin Rikako.
UK is the kind of athlete you really see once in a lifetime. I mean, this is a very young woman who really excelled as a junior athlete. I mean, she still holds some of the world records from when she was a junior swimmer. And then, you know, she went to the Olympics in 2016 when she was just 16 years old. Twenty eighteen was really her golden years. She was the first swimmer to win six golds in a single Asian Games.
It was such an achievement. So back then, it looked like she had her whole future ahead of her.
But then she was diagnosed with leukemia a couple of years ago. So a complete turnaround in her fortunes. Absolutely.
I mean, this is something that really shocked all of Japan because she's so beloved there. And she describes the treatment that she went through, was making her feel like she wanted to die. She said she just couldn't do anything. She couldn't eat. She couldn't even really watch television. She was in so much pain. And then something happened. She turned a corner and she started to feel a little bit better. And she describes being sick now as really a turning point in her life because it's made her feel that it's even a miracle that she's alive.
It's a miracle that she's here.
But she'd only been hoping that she'd be able to compete in the Olympics in Paris in 2024. So the fact that she's able to compete in Tokyo this year is just quite incredible and a real achievement for her.
It is incredible. I mean, this race she swam in today in the Olympic trials in Japan was amazing. I mean, she gets into the pool, the race starts. She's quite far behind at first. And really she's in second place for quite a bit of the latter half of the race. And then something happened. She just surges ahead. And after she realized she won, she broke down in tears in the swimming pool. And in fact, it was quite difficult for her to get out of the pool and then to participate in a post swim interview.
She was sobbing. She was really overcome because, as you said, she didn't think she would ever qualify for this Olympic Games. I mean, she only finished treatment for leukemia a year ago. It really is an incredible achievement.
Celia Hatton, the annual boat race between the universities of Oxford and Cambridge is one of the best loved events in the British sporting calendar. It was canceled last year because of the coronavirus pandemic, but organizers were determined that it would go ahead this year.
There were fears if held on the River Thames in London, as tradition dictates, thousands of people were turned out to watch the men's and women's races. So the crews relocated to the town of Ealey in eastern England, where no spectators were allowed. Callum McKenzie has this report.
At the start of the varsity race, with Oxford nearest the camera, a mile and a half stretch of the River Ouse between Ely and little more.
Not since the Second World War has the men's boat race been held away from the River Thames, but with restrictions on crowds because of the pandemic and concerns about the state of Hammersmith Bridge, organisers moved the event back to the river. Great news for the first time in 77 years.
The red flag dropped Oxford in the dark blue on the West Bank. Familiar London landmarks were replaced by the rolling fans of the Cambridge countryside, a largely straight course instead of the Thames. Usual twists and turns sandwiched between a country road and a railway track. Matthew Holland, who helped steer Cambridge to wins in 2017 and 2019, said the river is unique.
The wind from the fans is cold and relentless, and the banks and the reeds provide some shelter. But it's not consistent. So the danger is that a cox becomes engrossed in the race, gets caught by a gust of wind which could blow his bloating. The other crew or potentially the banks. And that could have fatal consequences for the race.
Organizers hope to return to London next year. But as with many other events, the pandemic has helped create another unique piece of sporting history.
Callum McKenzie and Cambridge won the double beating Oxford in both the men's and women's boat races by narrow margins in the US. Ballet dancers practising in the middle of Central Park in New York in rain, wind or shine have been mesmerizing passers by every Sunday afternoon. It began at the start of the pandemic when a group of dedicated dancers unable to appear in live indoor venues, made it their mission to dance in the park. From New York, Tom Brook reports.
At his home in New York, James T. Lane stretches on Sunday mornings, he's been dancing since he was seven. He's preparing for his weekly ritual during the pandemic, traveling to Central Park to dance safely outdoors with fellow dancers.
Dance brings great reward.
He maintains what this past year has put us all through. You know, in terms of emotions, you know, what a wonderful way to express yourself and kind of like a constructive way that's good for you mind, body and spirit. So it's absolutely everything.
First, first developing. This Central Park ballet class with its live music has attracted both professionals and some novices. It's been organized by veteran ballet teacher Kate Wild. She believes her class has been very important for its participants.
They just look forward to it. Some of these people, this is their hour out of their apartment. They've just been cooped up for a year and they just plan their whole week to come out here. Now, with the sun out, it's beautiful. We were dancing in the blizzards. We have danced in really cold weather. The leaves were slippery, but we just piled through it. They're just resilient. I think dancers are just resilient, trying.
Passers by are startled when they come across the ballet performers. It's a welcome but strange sight to see ballet in the middle of Central Park.
We've never seen anybody doing ballet out in a park before. I think it's great. I think it's a wonderful idea even to do it like in an open space and be able to share with other people to be able to to show the arts. I think it's amazing.
I didn't know this is happening. I'm just here by chance that I'm actually a dancer in New York City Ballet. So it's kind of fun to see everyone dancing and get moving. Many of these dancers are extremely talented, but the aim of the class maintains James T. Layne isn't necessarily to perfect their artistry.
It's not about that today. It's about gathering together with community. It's about someone leading us through exercises that we know and love and just really having a good time. That's what it's about.
Get those ramps moving across.
Historically, adversity often leads to great artistic expression. Such has been the case with dancers in the midst of this pandemic. The New York City Ballet let four of its performers dance where only they could during covid Times here in New York at outdoor spaces to deliver an emotional homage to the city. Our covered world has brought about some creative work. James T. Lane again.
We are in the trenches right now practicing and refining and keeping up with our craft.
So as the creative inspiration happens, after, you know, as we come out of this isolation, the art, it will bloom and and change lives.
The Central Park weekly ballet classes are one more example of New Yorkers responding to challenges during the pandemic with a form of artistry that both participants and the public really enjoy in class today.
That report from New York by the BBC's Tom Brook. And that's all from us for now. But there will be an updated version of the Global News podcast later if you want to comment on this podcast. The topics covered in it, you can send us an email. The address is Global Podcast at BBC Dakotah UK. The studio manager is Holly Palmer. The producer is Leah McAffrey, the editor is Karen Martin and Janet Jahlil.
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