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tv   Taiwan Outlook  PBS  October 2, 2013 7:00pm-7:43pm PDT

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0 hello and welcome. you are watching "debate." i am françois picard. we will talk about a man accused of harboring an increasingly authoritarian bent. on monday, turkey's prime minister reach out to opponents with major reforms to promote diversity in this country, allowing civil servants to wear the headscarf, lifting the ban on letters of the alphabet.
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how democratic are these reforms? do they go far enough? we will meet the new erdogan. we'll also checked in with james creedon and his media watch segment. let's say hello to claire pride. >> these are the headlines. italy's prime minister enrico letta wins apart -- wins a vote in parliament. the head of greece's far right golden dawn party is due to appear in court shortly, and it needs to answer charges of organizing a criminal group. russia charges 14 greenpeace activists with piracy. they were arrested last month while protesting against oil drilling in the arctic. first, to italy where four days after silvio berlusconi sparked
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another political crisis by pulling his ministers out of the cabinet, prime minister enrico letta has won a confidence vote in the senate. in the end, the former premier decided to support the government. letta. 235 votes in favor. clyde williams reports. >> a u-turn for silvio berlusconi. after fighting for a no- confidence vote to topple the italian government, the former prime minister told senators he has changed his mind and will vote to save the fragile coalition. >> italy needs a government that can produce structural and institutional reforms that the country needs to modernize. we have decided, not without internal strife, to vote in confidence. [applause] >> a smile from the prime
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minister enrico letta on the left. gestures of support from berlusconi's allies. the rubble senator defied him earlier this week by saying he will vote in favor of the government. berlusconi's rapid turnaround came as more and more members of his party announced they were siding with the government. earlier in the week, five ministers refused berlusconi's demand for them to quit the cabinet. berlusconi's critics say his call to bring down the government was simply an attempt to avoid losing his place in italian politics. an upcoming vote could strip the former prime minister of his senate seat following his tax fraud conviction and four-year prison sentence. >> to greece, where the head of the far right old and on party is in court this wednesday --
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golden dawn party is in court this wednesday. this comes one day after for golden dawn mps denied the charges against them. three were freed pending trial, and one remains in custody. >> back on the streets and as belligerent as ever -- >> we will eat your witnesses for breakfast. we will eat them offer breakfast. you will see. all the charges will be dismissed. >> one was among three lawmakers released from custody on wednesday morning but forbidden to leave the country. a fourth will stay in prison pending trial. the courts indicted them earlier on wednesday on charges of belonging to a criminal organization. they are among 22 associates arrested over the weekend as part of a crackdown on the party following the murder of a greek anti-fascist musician in september. golden dawn was greece's third
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most popular political party until the stabbing. alongside the arrests, magistrates compiled a dossier detailing the various alleged crimes linked to the group, including a tax on immigrants, -- attacks on immigrants. harlan and is debating a new rule that would -- parliament is debating a new rule that would outlaw -- the party leader is also due in front of magistrates on wednesday afternoon to face the charge of belonging to a criminal organization. if convicted, those indicted could face prison terms of at least 10 years each. >> irrational, absurd, and an outrage. that is the reaction from greenpeace after 14 of its activists were charged with piracy by the russian authorities. they could face up to 15 years in prison.
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olivia saldivar -- salazar wins the reports. >> standing in solidarity with environmentalists, protesters in germany took to the country's petrol stations, speaking out against the treatment of greenpeace activists detained in russia. >> i am here because i'm calling for the release of the 30 activists and journalists who demonstrated against gas drilling in the arctic and detained by russian authorities. >> the russian coast guard came aboard a greenpeace boat on september 18 and seized 30 activists, who were there protesting against a gas rig. they were all being held in custody in murmansk. now a russian justice has charged some of those with piracy by an organized group. authorities are expected to charge others among them on thursday. the crime can carry a 15-year sentence in russia. moscow has said that the so- called attack pose a threat to
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the oil rig, yet greenpeace's international director says their treatment was extreme and unnecessary. their lawyer says the charges are unfounded. >> we consider these charges absurd, unsupported, and unlawful, meaning they are not grounded in the law. that is because, under the article itself, it states that the main feature of piracy is the motive of seeking to obtain someone else's property. greenpeace activist had no intention of attaining any of the property. there was no sign of any violence either. >> activists of 18 different nationalities were aboard the ship. now representatives from some of those countries are pressing for their release. >> international disarmament experts have started work in syria under a u.s.-russia deal endorsed by the u.n.. their mission is to find and dismantle the regime's chemical weapons stockpiles. the inspectors have to visit several combat zones in a race
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against time, with the first key deadline just a month away. now a senior member of the rebel free syrian army has called the u.n. resolution unserious scandalous. on a visit to paris, he told a colleague of mine that he is certain the disarmament mission will fail. >> it is a regime which lies. a dishonest regime. last time, they did not hesitate to open fire in order to frustrate their mission. the current mission will fail too. even if the inspectors manage to find some of the chemical weapons, it is a relative success because the regime has been careful to conceal most of their weapons. the others they have transferred to allies like iran or hezbollah. >> 17 countries have agreed to set up special quotas for syrian refugees. among them, the u.s., france,
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and australia. that was announced by the u.n. refugee agency in geneva. now to the u.s. where nonessential federal services remain shut for a second day after lawmakers failed to agree on a new budget. about 800,000 staff have been placed on indefinite leave. barack obama says house republicans are holding the entire economy hostage. the white house announced that the president has canceled art of his upcoming trip to asia because of the political deadlock. earlier, i asked our correspondent in washington if there is any sign of a breakthrough. >> democrat certainly are watching this with quite a lot of calm. we are not necessarily seeing a rebellion in the house of representatives, but some republicans are saying that they would be willing for a claim continuing resolution. that means essentially a temporary budget without anything about president barack obama's health-care reform, any kind of defunding attached to
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that. this would mean that the government would open up again and the shutdown would end. we are not close to any kind of vote on that. we are looking at only 12-15 house republicans who are saying that they would be willing to go that way, but this does show a split within the republican party in the house of representatives. that is quite significant already. why would these house republicans be doing that? they face reelection worries and 2014. what is happening right now is very unpopular in the united states. a majority of americans do not want obama care, as it is called by republicans, linked to any kind of temporary budget, even though obamacare is very, very unpopular right now. still, despite all of this, we are looking at possibly a prolonged government shutdown, possibly as long as one, too, more weeks. that is certainly what experts are looking at right now and what they are predicting here in washington. >> finally, american tom clancy has died at the age of 66.
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he started off as an insurance salesman and became known for the jack ryan series. several novels inspired videogames and hollywood movies, including "the hunt for red october," "patriot games," and "clear and present danger." that is it from the newsroom. for now, it is time to crossover to françois picard for the debate. >> many thanks for that. is the pendulum swinging the other way in turkey? back in june, prime minister recep tayyip erdogan cracked down hard and violently, branding protesters "fringe terrorists." after a decade in power, critics rued what they saw as his authoritarian bent. on monday, erdogan unveiled big reforms, billed as a major not to turkey's diversity. changes to the electoral system, allowing civil servants to where they had start, an increase in language rights, reforms that
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come just as breakthrough talks with kurdish rebels and their imprisoned leader seem to be running out of gas. will erdogan silence critics and pave the way for reconciliation? we will also take the long view on an emerging power that straddles europe and asia, one of that has changed so much since the islamist group atp came to power in 2002. today in the debate -- in the "debate," meet the new erdogan. he has penned an editorial this wednesday, hailing the reforms as a step towards national reconciliation. an editor of the frank -- the french language version of a turkey newspaper. thank you for being with us. we are also pleased to welcome from istanbul and historian who -- and historian who works at a
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university. thank you for joining us on the debate. we welcome back johnny cartdep. we will be getting your views in a moment. you can join the conversation on facebook and on twitter. #f24debate. a wide range of reforms. they were long-awaited. let's get the breakdown. >> a raft of long-awaited reforms. though the population is 99% muslim, modern turkey was founded on principles of secularism. while many women wear islamic headscarves in public, they have been banned from wearing them in state institutions. on monday, prime minister recep tayyip erdogan lifted the restriction. >> we are lifting the ban that
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bars women from wearing the headscarf. this is a violation and discriminates against the freedom of religion. >> this as many turks welcomed the move. some feared that it would move the country away from its secular values. >> we are living in a civilized society. everybody should be free to do what they want. >> this is a bad decision. it is tearing apart the foundations of the modern turkish republic. >> erdogan also made key concessions to turkey's kurds. in his speech, which was dubbed the democratization package, he said he would lower the 10% threshold needed for political parties to get into parliament. that makes it easier for kurds to be represented. analysts say his biggest concern is jumpstarting the kurdish peace process. the militant kurdish workers party agree to a cease-fire earlier this year and gradually
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began withdrawing fighters. in return, they demanded greater rights and representation. erdogan is trying to rebuild his public image after widespread criticism of his crackdown on antigovernment protests this summer. >> let's begin in istanbul. how far have these reforms:? -- these reforms gone? >> in my view, they went quite well. it was a good, positive step, long-awaited. if you look at the titles or headlines of this democratization package, you will see, for example, that today the national newspapers were very much focusing on the lifting of the ban on headscarves. in fact, it was effective already, kind of null and void. you would see them in public places as well as government offices. what i see -- it shows a good,
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clear sign, especially since this program is focusing on the kurdish issue -- all positive steps towards reconciliation and towards actually a viable strategy of sorting out this problem, which actually, in turkey, caused over 40,000 lives as well as damaged the turkish economy. this is not limited to only minorities as kurds. it is also allowing minorities to be able to teach in their own native language, as well as the election brought up very new, positive items. >> we will talk about that electoral reform in a moment. let me ask you -- here in france, as you know, we have had moves to tighten restrictions on the headscarf in the name of the
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separation of church and state. in turkey, and we heard in that report women making the point quite forcefully that, in fact, the ban on the headscarf is discriminatory -- when you are in istanbul, how do you see this problem? >> first of all, this is a president that is trying to clean a tarnished image. he is trying to please both sides. both the moderate muslims and the secularists and the more radical muslims. with the headscarf, he wants to please not the secularists. he wants to please come as a french person would think, as a european person would think, he wants to please the people that really vote for him. they are a bit more radical muslims. i do not see this as a great move. >> that divide between islamists
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and secularists in turkey is a better one -- bitter one. how much will this measure sort of stoke that bitterness? >> i think it will take some people back to the streets. i think some people already -- as your guest mentioned, some newspapers are complaining, even if this is a country where most journalists are in jail. you know, they are complaining about this. the people that i met who were in the protests were very upset with some laws, like the ban on alcohol from 10:00 p.m. until 6:00 a.m., the ban on the abortion pill. i think this will, you know -- they know now they have the
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power to demonstrate. i think this will be a reason to start demonstrating again. i don't know to what extent. i'm sure it is not going to be like it was in the summer, but i'm sure there -- they are going to be showing that they are not in favor of this. >> what do you answer to people here in france who have already heard people saying, this is not democratization -- this is islam ization? >> no, this reform about headscarves has nothing to do with the islamization of turkey. city three percent of turkey -- 63% of turkey residents were headscarves already. there are not islamists radicals. they are simply muslims who have a certain religious sensibility. can you imagine a country like turkey where women cannot work in certain services because they
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cannot were headscarves, regardless of their professional competence? there was also public support about this issue. according to a very recent survey, last month, it showed us that more than 60% of the turkish population supports the removal of this restriction about islamic headscarves, including some of the electoral base of the pro-secular party. i don't tnkso, all of this was n 1925. we oav local autonomy. i have to remind you, during the ottoman time, for three centuries, there was a very large place of little for the kurds. mr. erdogan may have been
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advanced in the turkish political class, but he is behind -- >> those are the demands you are having. on twitter, we have one reaction. erdogan turns back the clock. no longer an eu candidate. let me get your reaction to all of this. >> first of all, about the kurdish education, it is a good reform, but i think it is not sufficient. when the demands of the kurdish people are met, then turkey will become a real democracy. it is a very important step. we have to remember that the reason for turkey -- in 1991, the kurdish language was officially banned. in 1993, a kurdish deputy was
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arrested just because she talked in kshranks that has brought abt these current reforms? >> there are some differences between the president and recep tayyip erdogan. i do not see an open clash. >>


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