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I'm Nick Miles. And in the early hours of Thursday, the 11th of February, these are our main stories. US Democrats have been setting out their case to the Senate to convict Donald Trump of incitement of insurrection. A well-known Saudi human rights activist who campaigned for women to be allowed to drive has been released from jail. The World Health Organization has recommended the use of the Oxford AstraZeneca covid vaccine, including for the over 65 and for new variants of the virus.
Also in this podcast, we hear from young protesters in Myanmar.
I am scared and terrified, terrified of what the future holds for me and my family and the Oscars.
It's been announced the ceremony is to be an in-person event.
Democrats in the US Senate have been setting out their case to convict Donald Trump for incitement of insurrection. They said the former president had been no innocent bystander and had urged his supporters to fight like hell before they went on to break into Congress and ransack it on January the 6th. Stacey Plaskett is a congresswoman and one of the prosecutors.
He knew who he was calling and the violence they were capable of. And he still gave that marching orders to go to the Capitol and, quote, fight like hell and stop the steel. Make no mistake, the violence was not just foreseeable to President Trump, the violence was what he deliberately encouraged.
Barbara Pletka is our Washington correspondent. And I asked her if the strategy was to show a pattern of behavior from Donald Trump over the course of many weeks.
Yes, very much so. That is their strategy. And they're doing it on two counts, really. One is to show him building up a whole narrative, what they call the big lie about election fraud and the election being stolen. And they use his tweets and his comments broadcast to show that he started even back in July when he wouldn't commit to a peaceful transfer of power, and that he continued with that and used similar phrases again and again and again, which they say was a very deliberate way to send a message to supporters, getting them to rally behind his call that the election was stolen.
And then they also say that he could have foreseen the violence and that he was deliberately responsible for it. And there they they go back again several months and say and show that he knew or they say he knew who his supporters were. He knew that they had been engaged in violence. When they did so, he sometimes praised them. For example, they use an example of when Trump supporters nearly ran a Biden election bus off the road. And later Mr.
Trump tweeted it with music and any way they say he praised it, cultivated it, and eventually channeled it towards the Capitol building, using fiery language in his speech, knowing what his supporters were capable of. And also, they say that the rioters who were coming to the Capitol had telegraphed very clearly what they were planning to do and that Mr. Trump's team would have monitored that and known it. Of course, establishing a pattern of behavior is one thing, but swaying the Republicans that need to be swayed is quite another.
Doesn't necessarily follow, does it? But we are expecting, I hear, some kind of incendiary new video which which may have that impact. The new video is security footage from the Capitol building cameras, and they have been showing that. So you see from the inside of the building what we have seen from the outside, on the outside, you see these rioters smashing through the windows. Then on the inside, you see them coming through the windows.
You also see new footage of this policeman, Officer Goodman, you've probably seen running up the stairs, diverting the rioters away from the Senate chamber as you see various angles of him doing that. You also see pictures of Mr. Pence, Vice President Pence being hurried out of the chamber, evacuated to a safe place because the rioters called him a traitor and had come for him asking where he was.
Barbara Starr in Washington. Well, Democrats at the impeachment trial also highlighted Donald Trump's alleged attempts to overturn the presidential election results in the state of Georgia. Earlier, prosecutors there announced that they were launching a criminal investigation into those claims, which relate to a call Mr. Trump made to Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, pressuring him to find more votes. Here's a clip from that call.
I just want to find eleven thousand seven hundred eighty votes, which is one more than we have because we won the state. And flipping the states is a great testament to our country because a lot of people think it wasn't a mistake. It was much more criminal than that. But it's a big problem in Georgia and it's not a problem that's going away. I mean, you know, it's not a problem that's going away.
So what charges then could Donald Trump face in Georgia was a question I put to our correspondent, Namir Ekpo.
Well, that call might see Trump run afoul of at least three state laws in Georgia. One is a criminal solicitation to commit election fraud that could either be a felony or a misdemeanor, felonies punishable by at least a year in prison. There's also a related conspiracy charge that's a misdemeanor offense as well. But what's interesting is that this particular inquiry has come from a jurisdiction in Georgia. Fulton County encompasses most of Atlanta. And I've been there. And this is a place which is not hospitable to the former presidents or potential.
This is what the potential jurors could be made up of. They overwhelmingly supported Biden in the November election. In terms of any legal immunity, it's not likely or even a pardon, because let's just say Mr. Trump, to be convicted of a state crime in Georgia. Pardons only work at a federal level. And also in Georgia, pardons only granted by the state Board of Pardons and Paroles. So we'll have to see what happens.
Namir Iqbal, the prominent Saudi women's rights activist Luján Ullapool, has been released from prison after almost three years. She was detained after campaigning for women to be able to drive and said that she was tortured and sexually assaulted while she was behind bars.
The election of Joe Biden has seen Saudi Arabia come under renewed pressure about human rights. I asked our chief international correspondent. Is to set what reasons had been given Fallujah analagous detention, the statements that are being published today by human rights organizations like Amnesty International say she shouldn't have spent a single day in prison. The timing of her arrest just shortly before Mohammed bin Salman, the crown prince of Saudi Arabia, the de facto ruler, announced that a long criticized ban on women's driving was lifted, made people put two and two together.
This was too dangerous to show that his actions are allowing women to drive was linked to protests and protests by popular campaigners like Luging Hallatt Lula. So she was thrown into detention and recently was her case was moved to a terrorism court. And she was charged with offenses like conspiring with foreign agencies hostile to the kingdom. But the evidence that we saw was almost laughable, that Sujin had applied to work at the United Nations, that she'd had expenses for going to a women's international conference.
So it raised a lot of questions about why she was in prison at all.
And some people have been saying the timing for this release is interesting. It could have something to do with the fact that Joe Biden is in the White House and he's made no bones about wanting to see an improved human rights record in Saudi Arabia.
Well, when I was in Saudi Arabia in November, when it was clear that Joe Biden would be the next president, Saudi officials were emphatic this was a 75 year long relationship. Saudi Arabia was an important strategic partnership and that you had to separate what presidential candidates say in their campaign and how they will govern. But the reality is that it was rather curious the mathematics of this court judgment, because with time served and with suspended sentence, it perfectly worked out that General Hertling was released.
Now, they will say it's not because of the Biden administration, but the Saudi kingdom. The authorities will certainly be looking for ways to reassure the United States that they are an important partner.
Lyse Doucet, Pakistan's Supreme Court has said that prisoners who are severely mentally ill should not be executed or the panel of judges were issuing a verdict in the case of three detainees who spent years on death row.
Secunda Kamani reports from Islamabad.
Activists have hailed this as a landmark judgment. The Supreme Court's commuted the death sentences of two of the prisoners, including a woman who's been in jail for more than 30 years to life imprisonment. Judges ordered a new mercy petition be prepared in the case of a third inmate, all three as we move to a mental health institute. The court ruled that no prisoner should be executed if they cannot understand the rationale for their punishment. Campaign group the Justice Project Pakistan, which brought the cases to court, said it sets an important legal precedent.
Pakistan has one of the largest death row populations in the world.
Second, Kamani the World Health Organization has recommended using the coronavirus vaccine developed by AstraZeneca and Oxford University.
Experts said that it should be used even in countries where variants are circulating that make the vaccine less effective and was suitable for all adults, including the elderly.
This follows South Africa's suspension of its rollout of the AstraZeneca vaccine after one small study and several European countries had said that they wouldn't initially recommend the jab for over 65. So will the Waco's endorsement assuage concerns? Dr Chris Smith is a virologist at the University of Cambridge.
I think it is pretty much a headline story. The fact that the World Health Organisation have got behind this. It's a very powerful endorsement which will give confidence to many countries around the world. But in terms of our relationship with coronavirus sars-cov-2 going forwards, we are pretty much unanimous that we're not going to get rid of this virus. It's too well adapted to people. That's the first point. Second point is that as Melinda Gates from the Bill Melinda Gates Foundation said right at the beginning of all of this so presciently, if this covid anywhere, effectively, there's covid everywhere.
And we're not really out of the woods until everyone is out of the woods together, because if you sweep the dirt out of your backyard into the street, the wind will blow it back. And that's basically what she's saying. So we have to work out a way of controlling this thing and also minimizing the harm that it can do on us humans. And obviously, the reason we're vaccinating people at the moment is because we have suffered a grim death toll and we know who the people are most at risk.
And we have a reasonable way of reducing that. And that's going to be the case in all countries. So while we have a tool that can help us to do that, I think it's very important that we use it. But certainly notwithstanding the fact that, no, this virus is not going away, it is what we're going to be calling endemic is going to circulate for a very long time indeed, if not indefinitely, and maybe not just in us humans.
We know it was a gift to us from animals, if you can call it a gift. And and therefore, that hasn't gone away. It could come back. From that source, but equally, it's also circulating in other animals, including domestic pets, potentially like cats. We know that cats are picking it up and potentially spreading it. So we're going to need a long term solution to this. And vaccines is not going to play a very important role in that.
Dr. Chris Smith, it's been announced that the Oscars ceremony, which has been delayed because of covid-19, will be an in-person event at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, which organizes the show, said that the film awards would air live from a number of different locations while adapting to the requirements of the pandemic. Peter Bowes reports from Los Angeles.
The Motion Picture Academy announced last year that it was moving the annual award show from February to April because of the coronavirus pandemic.
In September, the Emmys went ahead as a virtual affair, as will the Golden Globes later this month. But in a statement, the academy said it was determined to present an Oscars like none other. It would prioritize the public health and safety of all those participating and broadcast live from multiple locations, including the traditional venue, Hollywood's Dolby Theater. While the academy provided few details. It said the revamp would create a show that appealed to its global audience, opening up the possibility that smaller gatherings will be held in cities around the world, eliminating the need for international nominees to travel to Los Angeles, which has been badly hit by the virus.
Peter Bowes. Pablo Escobar was a notorious Colombian drug lord who made billions of dollars from smuggling cocaine. He was shot dead in 1993, but his legacy still lives on, including in a way you probably wouldn't expect, a growing population of hippos. Charlotte Gallagher explains.
In the 1980s and at the height of his power, Pablo Escobar built a zoo at his luxurious estate. It was stuffed with illegally imported animals like elephants, giraffes and antelopes. He also bought for hippos. After his death. The estate was seized and the animals removed, all except those for hippos who were deemed too difficult to catch and reach home. But at the time, no one considered what would happen when the hippos were left free to roam and breed.
There are now 100 of them, with environmentalists predicting the population could pass one and a half thousand by 2035. The hippos have thrived in the tropical Colombian climate and its rich vegetation. Some have remained in the area, while others have escaped into the river. One farmer has been seriously injured, and there are fears other people may be attacked. A group of scientists now believe the hippo population needs to be culled not only to protect humans, but biodiversity and native animals.
That idea is fiercely resisted by many local people who, despite the danger, have grown fond of the hippos and the tourists they attract. The government previously said it wanted to sterilize the animals, but as you'd expect, that's a difficult and expensive procedure. Current attitudes towards Escobar as hippos are like those about the man himself.
Complex Charlotte Galaga. Still to come. The Barbie doll is reinvented and has fresh appeal in the pandemic. Facebook says that it will take tougher measures to tackle racism. That's after a number of very high profile footballers here in the UK suffered abuse on social media. The government has warned tech firms that they could be fined 10 percent of their global turnover unless they take action. Here's our sports editor, Dan Rowan.
With a growing list of Premier League footballers subject to online racial abuse, pressure has been building on the social media giants. The biggest of all finally addressed the criticism. Faci Manzanera, the UK head of content policy at Facebook, which owns Instagram, telling me they were determined to tackle the crisis.
I'm horrified at the type of abuse that people, especially these footballers, have to deal with as a company. We're disappointed to see that sort of behaviour that plays out offline, also playing out on our platform. We know we need to do more.
We absolutely recognise that as part of what it called tougher measures, Facebook's vowing to disable the accounts of those found to have repeatedly sent abusive private messages on Instagram.
Are you only taking these measures now because of the wave of revulsion and criticism that you and other platforms have received?
So we've had ongoing conversations around abuse and hate on the platform for a while, and we've continuously released features and iterated on policies.
But with offenders often hiding behind anonymity, many want the platforms to go further and require a form of identification from anyone opening accounts.
Dan Rather had their president. Biden has approved an executive order to sanction Myanmar's military leaders who directed the coup earlier this month.
It's the first use of sanctions since Mr Biden took office and paves the way for the US to restrict the military leaders as well as businesses linked to them. As we heard in our last edition, tens of thousands of activists have been protesting in Myanmar for a fifth consecutive day, calling for the release of the leaders of the democratically elected National League for Democracy, including Aung San Suu Kyi. A number of student activists have contacted the BBC. Here are two of them.
Hi, this is Chrissy, a 20 year old student from Myanmar on the first day of slavery. My aunt brought me the news that the military has taken over the power. At first I couldn't believe it. I turned to check my phone only to see that there are no networks now or Internet connection or whatsoever. And it slowly started to sink in that this is actually happening. As a 20 year old student, I have dreams, dreams that I'm not yet ready to give up.
That will have to anyway if this continues to happen. I am scared and terrified, terrified of what the future holds for me and my family. Every night, my family and I would bang pots and pans along with every other citizens, in hopes that we would be able to overcome this without any tragedy. It seems my wish wasn't fulfilled because a peaceful protester has been shot. I really hope that the world will hear our voices and will not turn their back on us and help us.
Hello, my name is Arthur and Kurt and I'm one of the generation set to find that I no longer feel safe because the shoot, one of our protest in Naypyitaw and someone living in Myanmar and totally standing against the military of people are now protesting so hard to get our democracy back. And now we are losing our right and getting abused by the military.
And so much for your attention to voices now from Myanmar now and Crecy, who contacted the BBC 10 years ago. Egypt's President Hosni Mubarak was forced to step down after 18 days of demonstrations at Tahrir Square in Cairo. It was a seismic moment in the Middle East and helped encourage other uprisings in Syria, Yemen, Libya and Bahrain.
There was hope that people power would deliver better and freer lives in Arab countries.
It didn't happen in Egypt. The military soon seized power. Our Middle East editor, Jeremy Bowen, who was in Tahrir Square when news of President Mubarak's forced resignation was announced, examines how events have unfolded in the decades since.
The night Hosni Mubarak was ousted as president of Egypt, the news broke on the radio and roared across Tahrir Square, the center of Cairo. Is it it's a free country. It changed everything, but not in the way that the protesters had been hoping.
Mohammed Suleiman, now a political analyst in Washington, was a 19 year old protester in Cairo in 2011.
I was crying. I was crying for hours and hours, of course, tears of joy. I was born in 1991, so I only knew one person in my life and that was President Mubarak. And having him stepping down because of protests, because of millions in the streets, that was historic.
There haven't been many tears of joy in the Middle East since 2011.
The hard men struck back, hundreds of thousands have died, millions have lost their homes, jihadist extremists rose out of the wreckage they day in Egypt.
The military seized power in 2013, overthrowing an elected Muslim Brotherhood government. General Abdul Fattah al-Sisi became president, he has jailed tens of thousands in Egypt, even mocking the regime can mean prison.
On a social media livestream, Mona Safe screamed as security forces took her sister, Sanat, who is still in prison.
So is their brother, Alaa Abdel Fattah, who spent years in the regime's jails. The family are prominent human rights campaigners.
Their mother, Leila Soueif, says her family's beatings and imprisonment are not as bad as the fate of thousands of Egyptians.
Worse than under Mubarak, much worse than that Mubarak.
The scale is completely different. There were killings outside the mall, but the scale now is much, much larger.
Is there something that the West should be doing now? I know that Western politicians are selling their people the line that they have to back the regime in Egypt because this is the only way to achieve stability. Now, this is their alibi. It's not true. People should hold the government accountable for what it's doing, for how it's working, for the benefit of arms and energy companies rather than people born in Egypt.
There are many reasons to fear arrest. These protesters took the risk just before the pandemic after videos urging action from Mohammed Ali, an activist exiled in Spain.
People will go protest, but there will be chaos. People will be hungry anyway. The country is heading to a bankruptcy. What will bring people out of their houses is poverty and hunger.
Of course they will come out.
Discontent smolders across the Middle East with street protests already this year in Lebanon and in Tunisia, the only Arab country to emerge from 2011 with a new democracy. Young people drove the Rising's a decade ago angry about unemployment, corruption and repression.
History shows that repression works until desperation overcomes fear. And then it doesn't.
Jeremy Bowen reporting since the dawn of the pandemic, Tanzania has downplayed the threat posed by coronavirus president John Magufuli and his ministers have questioned the efficacy of testing for covid claim.
Prayer is the best way to protect people and encourage the use of herbal remedies and vegetable smoothies, rather than drawing up a comprehensive plan to vaccinate the population.
Well, now the government is accusing officials at a university of breaching health protocols by stating that, in fact, the disease is spreading fast. More from our Africa editor, Will Ross.
It seems that the government of Tanzania wants to control the entire narrative on what's going on with the coronavirus. And it has stated several times that people must not veer away from the government line. And you can kind of repeat what the government's saying with don't express your own opinions and what this university, the Open University of Tanzania, said was that it was really warning its students that there's a problem and it said the situation is getting worse and our lectures are going to go online.
They're all going to be virtual and gave more sort of health advice because it was saying the cases are going up. And the government reacted really by rebuking the vice chancellor and advising people to ignore his advice and saying that he had breached health protocols. So an extraordinary situation with the government really coming down hard on an institution that seems to be just trying to help its students.
Well, I gather it's quite difficult to assess how bad the pandemic is in Tanzania. Er, isn't it?
Well, it's very difficult for the main reason is because no official data has been given out since the end of April last year, the government suddenly stopped giving out any information, then shortly after that declared that the country was free of covid and there were sort of celebrations going on. But we have just in the last few hours, had quite a strong statement from the American embassy saying that it has understood that the cases have gone up sharply since January. So that, again, is something that the government is not saying and it's advising the US embassy is advising people that they need to be careful because the health facilities could become overwhelmed very quickly in a health crisis.
Well, Ross, a British mathematician, Kate Yates of Bath University, has worked out that all the coronavirus particles in the world could easily fit inside a single drink. Can more details from Simon Ponsford.
Kit Yates was asked for an unconventional calculation. What's the total volume of all the coronavirus particles that humanity is harbouring at any one time? He's figured out there are roughly two quintillion or two billion billion. Dr Yates, based that on a back of the envelope approximation, using reasonable assumptions of the number of people infected and peak viral load, two quintillion certainly sounds like a lot. But if you pack the particles together, their total volume would amount to what he called just a few mouthfuls of what would undoubtedly be the worst beverage in history.
Simon Ponsford. Now, if you have children, do they play with dolls?
Obviously, for many, Barbie is already a favorite toy, but it would seem her popularity has risen further in lockdown.
The toy maker Mattel says global sales were up 16 percent, resulting in nearly one and a half billion dollars spent on the doll last year.
Is it just lockdown that Barbie has to thank then or something else?
Frederik Tut is a global toy industry expert at NPD, the Research and Analysis Group.
She's really reinvented herself and I think she's more relevant today for today's girls than she's been in many, many years. Barbie shape changed. So she was not just made as a tall, blonde girl. She was made as a small girl, as a very tall person, very skinny, normal body shape or even large. And that was not if they continued the reinvention by also changing the hair color and also the skin color.
Barbie is a very traditional toy, if I can put it that way, and she's up against the modern tech toys. And yet these figures would suggest that she's obviously her popularity is holding and growing. Why do you think that is?
Well, she's become aspirational again, and fashion dolls have never been so popular. We see those trends come and go, you know, across the years. But what Barbie do so in 2020. And she tacked onto the unboxing trends. I'm sure you're familiar with the videos that the kids keep watching on YouTube were children or adults and books, toys. And Barbie tacked on to that also in 2022 with a new line called Barbie Reveal. So what you had to do is put Barbie in water and then she would reveal who she was, what she what's her color, what skin color she had.
And so you didn't know before you bought what you were going to get? That's right.
Which is completely the opposite of what was before you would actually buy Barbie because she was the blonde, tall girl or the petite freezy one or the effort. Not this one you didn't know. So you had all this anticipation and excitement actually revealing which Barbie you were buying.
Frederick Frederik was speaking to the BBC's Sasha Twyning.
And that's all from us for now. But there will be an updated version of the Global News podcast later on. If you want to comment on this podcast or the topics we've covered in it, you can send us an email. The address is Global Podcast at BBC DOT Code UK. Did a studio manager was Mike Adler, the producer, Allison Davis, and the editor is Karen Martin.
I'm Nick Miles. And until next time, goodbye.