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tv   Newsline  PBS  August 6, 2012 7:00pm-7:30pm PDT

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sinking syria, the former prime minister defects from the assad government and tells others to join opposition forces. syria's former prime minister says hees now a soldier for the revolution. riad habib ha sad is the highest member of the government to defect. the conflict has been going on for 17 months. he has lady to jordan with his
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family. the television says that assad dismissed the prime minister. ha sad said he defected from the killing and terrorist regimes and joined the ranks of the freedom and dignity revolution. he comes from the country's sunni muslim majority. assad an his inner circle belong to the minority. there could be widening cracks in the government. british human rights activists say 20 thousand people have been killed in the fighting across syria. and some of the latest violence happened in damascus, a bomb hit the building housing syria's state television. the blast injured at least three people. tv broadcast images of the scene after the explosion. an employee gave an interview by phone saying the bomb ripped through the walls of the third
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floor where offices and studios are located. government officials said they had taken control of all opposition strongholds in the capital. but monday's blast indicates the situation in damascus remains unstable. hiroshima, nagasaki, the atomic bombings marked a brutal conclusion to a brutal conflict. "newsline" is looking back on the lessons of 1945 from the fight to abolish nuclear weapons to the efforts of younger generations to promote peace. our special coverage continues until friday august 17th. tokyo electric power company executives bowed to pressure and released some of the most important evidence from the early days of japan's nuclear disaster. they unveiled videos that
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document the efforts to deal with the meltdowns and explosions at the fukushima daiichi nuclear plant. they showed the recordings to the media on monday. journalists will be able to watch 150 hours of edited tape from march 2011. it tracks the back and forth conversations between workers at the nuclear plant and personnel at headquarters. pepco released 90 minutes of edited video. [ speaking foreign language ]. the video shows workers struggling to contain the accident after the plant lost all power sources. a series of hydrogen blasts confused them. the executives were confused act
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the government intervention from the crisis. they haven't said if they will release video from after march 16th. earlier "newsline's" gene otani spoke with a person covering the story. >> tell us about the significance of this video. >> tepco's teleconference is the only remaining record of the communications between workers at the plant and the employees at the company headquarters. the video begins at about 6:30 p.m. on march 11th. it goes on to record critical conversation that reflect how decisions were made and how the situation changed from time to time. >> now the accident happened nearly a year and a half ago. why did tepco officials take so long to release this video? >> basically, gene, they didn't want to release them. they hadn't disclosed the videos even existed.
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we found out about the recordings in march through a course of an investigation by a diet appointed panel. we made requests for access of the videos but the officials refused until now. they say the videos are internal records and cited concern about the privacy of the employees. they agreed to release the recordings from five days of march 11th. >> how are people reacting to tepco's reluctance to release all of the video of the accident? >> experts say all records should be under public control. the head of the japanese ngo is calling for the abolition of all nuclear plants. here's what he had to say. >> this is the important historical document record.
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i hope if tepco themselves to decide to open up more and more and more as much as possible transparency and at the same time i ask the japanese government to make pressure to them to release all of the information. >> tepco shareholders are suing the company executives filed a petition for the videos to be preserved as evidence. they fear the utility may release the recordings. these videos will surely be needed for the investigation. the government should take action to preserve all records related to the incident in a public archive. >> following the accident in fukushima many people in japan have come to rethink the country's dependence on nuclear power. the government proposed three options from 100%, 15% and 20 to
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25%. the government is soliciting views on these options to decide future energy policy. >> reporter: government officials heard from people in 11 locations across the country and often heard the same thing. 70% of participants are backing the 0% option which means that utilities would stop producing nuclear power by 2030. >> translator: you need the sort of energy that sacrifices the lives of the people who work at the plant? >> translator: i hope as much as our intelligence as possible can be used for the development of the best technology for generating renewable, natural energy. >> reporter: the accident at the fukushima daiichi nuclear plant was an eye opener for many
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people in japan. the meltdowns and radiation leaks shook many people. tens of thousands of people can't return to their homes near the facility. and crews are trying to prepared for the multi-billion-dollar decommissioning process. these public hearings are wrapping up. the people in japan are still looking to talk about the future of nuclear energy. civic groups have been organizing open debates. >> translator: personally i want japan to use as little nuclear power as possible. >> translator: there should be various points of discussion. but we feel the government has been failing to provide appropriate information. distrust of its activities is growing. >> translator: skepticism is
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growing too. people wonder how the government will reflect public opinion and the new energy policy. one official admits it will be challenging. >> translator: it's difficult to see which kind of opinion is more important. opinions expressed at the hearings or results of opinion polls. >> reporter: the organizer of this debate says citizens want the entire process to be open and understandable. >> some people are criticizing this process as making just excuse. they have to explain to the people how they pick up this scenario. and how they can address people's concerns. so i think in that sense, transparency is the key.
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>> reporter: the japanese government planned to decide on the energy policy by the end of the month but with support growing for the 0% nuclear power option it is considering postponing that deadline. >> a final note on the story, yoshiko noda reacted to the public hearings instructing his public ministers to find out what challenges lie ahead should japan choose the 0% option and be nuclear free by 2030. the earthquake and tsunami tested the rescue teams but also challenged relief crews from india. now some of the people they helped have joined an event to express their gratitude. >> reporter: japan and india are
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marking the 60th anniversary for diplomatic ties this year. as part of the celebration the indian embassy in tokyo held an event to highlight the relief work. the indian government sent 46 people to help the risk effort in onagawa city miyagi prefecture. 10% of the citizens were lost in the disaster. the team's four interpreters documented the relief effort. on monday they showed photos of the group at work. they said the team pulled seven bodies from the rubble with their bare hands, offering a moment of silence in front of each body. >> india team used their bare hands to remove the people.
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it's not that they didn't have the machinery. the idea was to show respect. >> reporter: the immediate aftermath was a time of trial for those. the interpreters produced a translated copy of the bock. the mare of onagawa attended the event. he expressed gratitude on behalf of the citizens. >> translator: we lost so much in the disaster. but we also forged priceless friendships and ties. these are invaluable to us and they give us the strength to move on and look to the future.
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>> reporter: the mayor said the city has begun to rebuild itself. he expressed optimism that the local fishing industry would resume and he promised to keep the indian people informed on ga what's progress. people who work in japan's tourism industry are always looking to lure visitors to this country. many taylor trips to specific groups. one business in osaka are trying to attract travellers who are part of the muslim population. agents say the market can't ignored. but for religious reasons it has to be accommodated in certain ways. >> reporter: this is the idea for muslim tours started. it's a travel agency in osaka
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with a staff of about 20. this tour guide is in charge of the new tours. islam as very strict precepts. muslims are not allowed to each certain foods such as pork, or drink alcohol. devout muslims pray three times a day or more. by meeting this need he has turned a challenge into a business opportunity. >> translator: the muslim population is large and muslims are an unexplored market. this kind of tourism has much greater potential and ordinary group tours. >> reporter: the biggest hurdle is meals. he asked an islamic specialists to help find restaurants that
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don't serve pork and checked sauces to make sure they don't contain alcohol. the tour begins. it's the end of a year of preparations. 19 tourists from malaysia have landed. >> i'm worried about what i will eat here but i'm interested in japanese culture. >> reporter: the party first visits a shrine in nara prefecture. the four-day trip around western japan costs over $1,000. that's twice the regular price since the group is accompanied by a muslim interpreter and religious adviser. even sew the package sold out quickly. then group heads for kyoto
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without stopping at the buddhist temples. >> we tried to make an interesting tour that doesn't include most buddhist sites since muslims reject the worship of idols. >> reporter: at the all-important meal time, the table ware is new and single use to eliminate contact with alcohol which could be used as a sterilizer in dish washing. kyoto cuisine is known for suddenle seasoning. so he handed out sauces and spices from home. >> very nice. very nice. >> reporter: the tour group arrives at the hotel. later, with special compasses, the organizers check and mark the direction of mecca.
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the visitors pray on mats in their room. >> in japan, it's difficult for muslim to come, very satisfied with the work together for the a halal tours. >> reporter: he he has received 500 bookings or inquiries. the muslim friendly package may soon be a travel agency standard. new york state authorities have accused a major british bank of massive involvement for money laundering for iranian financial institutions. they said on monday the new york branch of standard and chartered
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had hidden 60,000 illegal transactions with iranian banks between 2001 and 2010. they are set to total $250 billion. the officials say the back tishts violate u.s. anti-money laundering laws. the bank could lose its license in the state of new york. the charges come as u.s. steps up pressure on iran to abandon nuclear ambitions. londoners hailing a taxi may be riding a nissan and not the traditional black cab. executives say their new london taxi will be on the streets in early 2014. >> nissan is proud to unveil the next chapter in the history of london's iconic vehicles.
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>> it emits half the co 2 of the current taxi models. the new vehicle sports a sunroof. nissan adjusted the design to suit london streets. an all-electric version will roll out in 2014. the automaker won a commission to replace new york taxis with them as well. they will begin operating next year. japanese craftsmen are making a statement with a product that can rarely be seen -- or rather barely be seen. their attention to tiny detail is improving the lives of consumers around the world. >> this is a typical roller ball pen used all around the world. inside the tip there is a spring that is 1 millimeter across. the expansion and contraction of this delicate piece of metal moves the ball and controls the
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flow of ink. the spring technology is used in many products such as mobile phones and economy conductor inspection equipment. this type of spring is said to be the smallest in the world. what does it look like magnified 400 times. it's 0.06 millimeters in diameter. thinner than a human hair. a company called fine parts manufactures this spring. 13 engineers work here. the company ships 70 million springs around the world every month. >> we improved the technology to make smaller springs. it has taken us years to build up these production skills. it's more like a sense. >> reporter: this is the machine that produces the springs. there is an important component that determines their size.
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the springs are shaped by winding piano wire at the end of this arbor. it also determines the diameter of the springs. one of the key factors enabling this company to manufacture such tiny springs is their processing technology to produce such small arbors. engineers make them one by one. mr. hashimoto has been making them for 13 years. because the parts are almost invisible to the naked eye they are magnified 40 times. a lot of skill is needed to round off the end of the arbors. judging the amount needed to be shaved off with their eyes. in order to produce the exact
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size they want they round the ends, adjusting the amount of strength they put in each move by thousa be thousandths of a millimeter. there is no machine that can do the same job. >> it's extremely fine work. the smaller the springs are the more likely the whole end is to be cut off. i have the imagine of the ideal shape in my mind and i try to get as close to it as possible. i final lie managed to acquire this skill after failure upon failure. >> reporter: human senses are vitale in producing these parts. engineers continue to push the ability of their senses even further in order to advance technology in the manufacturing of tiny components.
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>> hard work paying off in a big way. we have been following a storm near okinawa bringing heavy rain and strong winds to residents there. rachel ferguson tells us more in her world weather forecast. >> it hasn't changed much since yesterday. we have a severe tropical storm. and it is in the same place as yesterday. that is not good news. it means the heavy rain is coming over the same place for the last 24 hours or so. so it's still sitting here in the east china sea bringing heavy rain to okinawa and southern japanese islands have experienced 430 millimeters of rain in 24 hours. although the system is not moving very quickly it is strengthening gradually. we will expect it to become a strong typhoon before making landfall and that should be wednesday morning into afternoon local time. in the next 24 hours. you could see some very
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short-time heavy rain about 50 millimeters of rain an hour possible in parts of the southern japanese islands. waves up to 6 meters here and you'll feel the storm surge on the eastern coast of china. taiwan with strong gale force winds and 25 to 35 millimeters of rain. and after taiwan was battered last week, it's going to be unwelcome rain even though it won't as heavy as all of this we are seeing pushing in to the shanghai region over the next 48 hours. parts of japan starting to clear out now as the low pressure system pulls away. it should be more settled today. but down to the south we have this low just sitting in the south china sea and pulling in heavy rain across indo-china enhancing the southwest monsoon.
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we could see totals coming up above 150 millimeters in the next 48 hours. northern vietnam, laos and southern china will see a high risk of flooding and landslides today. temperatures, heating up in seoul, a 35 degree day. 33 in tokyo. and in the south we have 35 in bangkok and 27 in manila with thunderstorms moving through. let's go to the other tropical system ernesto. the tropical storm warnings in honduras and a hurricane warning for the yucatan peninsula. it is likely to make landfall tuesday morning early, local time. after making landfall you will see it downgrade to the tropical storm but over the gulf it could become a hurricane before making
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a second landfall in mexico here. gusts up to 120 kilometers an hour. this is an intensifying system and we are going to see much of eastern and central america up to 200 millimeters -- and locally you could see 300 millimeters of rain from the system. not much in the way of rainfall in the u.s. and canada today. there is monsoonal moisture in new mexico again. that could lead to problems with flash flooding. but we're drying out toward the northeast of the u.s. unfortunately the storms continue the southeast. let's get the temperatures then. a roasting hot day in the south. 36 in houston. and one quick look at olympic weather. showers today and not much sunshine through thursday but the temperature will be coming up to a grand 24 degrees. here's your extended forecast.
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and that concludes this edition of "newsline" i'm catherine kobayashi in tokyo. thanks for joining us.
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