Hello. I'm Debbie Russ with the BBC News. The US President-elect Joe Biden says his transition team has faced obstruction from the political leadership of the Department of Defense, and is not getting enough Information on key national security areas. In his speech, Mr. Biden described this as nothing short of irresponsible. Right now, as our nation is in a period of transition, we need to make sure that nothing is lost in the handout between administrations. My team needs a clear picture of our force posture around the world and our operations to deter our enemies. We need full visibility into the budget planning underway at the Defense Department and other agencies in order to avoid any window of confusion or catch-up that our adversaries may try to exploit. The president-elect accused the Trump administration of causing enormous damage to many national security agencies.
The US House of Representatives has voted to override President Trump's veto of a $740 billion defense bill that was passed by congress earlier this month. The chair of the debate said the 2/3 majority of votes had been achieved. On this vote, the yeas are 322, the nays are 87, 2/3 being in the affirmative, the bill is passed, the objections of the president to contrary notwithstanding. The clerk will notify the Senate of the action of the House. Mr. Trump blocked the legislation complaining that it would limit troop withdrawals from Afghanistan and Europe and lead to the removal of Confederate leaders names from US military bases. A majority of 2/3 in both the Senate and the House of Representatives would be required to reverse Mr. Trump's decision. The Senate will vote on Tuesday. Earlier, the House voted in favor of increasing the aid sent to individuals under the latest coronavirus stimulus package from $600 to 2,000. The initiative was suggested by President Trump, but was opposed by his Republican Party.
The South African President Cyril Ramaphosa has announced much tougher coronavirus restrictions to tackle what he called an alarming and unprecedented rate of COVID-19 infections. The new tier-3 measures include a curfew and the compulsory use of masks in public spaces. From Johannesburg, here's Nomenser Masicho. President Ramaphosa said hospitals in many provinces are already close to capacity, and that health care workers are exhausted. South Africa has now passed 1 million confirmed COVID-19 cases. A new variant of the virus identified earlier this month is thought to be more contagious than the previous version. But Mr. Ramaphosa said the means to combat the virus were the same as before. He said it was about common sense and personal responsibility that everyone needed to play their part. Nomenser Masicho reporting. You're listening to the world news from the BBC.