hello and thank you for joining us on this edition of "newsline." i'm raja pradhan in tokyo. concern is growing over the status of captives held by islamic militants. there's been no word on the condition of the japanese freelance journalist or the jordanian pilot since a deadline set by the militants expired on thursday. they demanded exchanging kenji goto for a death row inmate in jordan. but leaders in amman want islamic state to prove their pilot is alive and release him. the air force pilot, moaz kasasbeh was captured last month after his jet went down during an air raid. jordanian officials immediately started negotiations with the militants to bring him back, but
they couldn't reach a deal. media in the middle east say a rescue operation by u.s.-led coalition forces this month also failed. people in jordan have held rallies seeking the pilot's freedom. >> translator: i would like to ask for the assistance of all the world's people under the name of all jordanian tribes and palestinians for our son, moaz kasasbeh, to be released safely. >> militants purporting to be with islamic state posted a message online this week. they threatened to kill goto and kasasbeh unless an iraqi death row inmate is let go. they sent another message days later saying the pilot would be killed unless the prisoner is freed in exchange for goto. a jordanian court sentenced sajida al rishawi to death for her role in bomb attacks in
amman in 2005. authorities say they are willing to exchange her for their pilot but say they need to confirm he's alive. japanese officials are closely monitoring developments. >> translator: we've been receiving information and cooperation from jordan and many other countries. with such assistance, we will do our utmost to get the hostage freed as soon as possible. and japanese foreign minister fumio kishida told reporters on friday night there have been no major developments. >> translator: we have nothing new to tell you at this point. but we will remain on high alert, and we will do our best to try to resolve this issue. >> kishida also said the government hasn't seen any new messages from the militants. now they have demanded the iraqi inmate be brought to the turkish
border. we have our correspondent, hideki nakayama, standing by in akçakale, a town about 90 kilometers north of raqqah which is a major stronghold of islamic state. >> reporter: here at the checkpoint of the syria/turkish border, there has been a group of japanese and international journalists waiting to see any new development. on the other side of the border, the area is under control of islamic state. i've been seeing some syrian people crossing the border into turkey, many of them told me they've heard about the hostage crisis, and they share the concern over the life of the two hostages, kenji goto and the jordanian pilot. in turkey too, the crisis has been making headlines every day because generally japan and turkey have enjoyed friendly relations. turkish media also have been carrying news about the situation of the syrian town of ayn al arab, or kobani in the
kurdish language. islamic state once had control over the town, but kurdish forces have been pushing back the militants with aerial support of the u.s.-led coalition forces and just regained control over the town. the fighting has been taking place right there on the other side of the border, and so it's a major security issue for the turks. what's happening inside syria has an immediate impact on turkey. hideki nakayama, nhk world, on the turkish/syrian border. >> the crisis has been developing over a period of about ten days. let's now take a look at how it's been unfolding. >> the first video appeared on january 20th, islamic state militants demanded that the japanese government pay $200 million within 72 hours. prime minister shinzo abe was in the middle east at the time. he had announced that japan
would give $200 million to help refugees in iraq, syria and other countries. >> translator: using human lives to make a terrorist threat is an intolerable act of terrorism. i am furious about this. >> the japanese government set up a task force in the jordanian capital amman. its officials approached governments in the region for help. they also contacted local tribal and religious leaders to open a channel to negotiate with the militants. >> translator: we will carefully study any information and convey it to japan. we're working tenaciously to get the two hostages released as soon as possible. >> on january 24th, the second video was posted online. it shows kenji goto holding a photograph of what appeared to
be the decapitated body of the other japanese national. a voice on the video said the militants revised their demands. they now demanded that an iraqi woman on death row in jordan be released. sajida al rishawi was involved in a series of bomb attacks in amman in 2005 that killed more than 50 people. the voice in the video said goto would be freed if she was released. the demand sparked controversy in jordan. many people there wanted the jordanian pilot who is being held captive released first. the pilot had taken part in air raids against islamic state militants and was captured when his plane crashed. a third message appeared online on january 27th. it showed goto holding a photograph of the pilot. a speaker claiming to be him
said he only had 24 hours to live, and the pilot even less time if jordan did not release rishawi. on january 29th, another message was released online. the person speaking again claimed to be goto. he said, if rishawi was not released by sunset on thursday, the militants would execute the pilot. the jordanian government has been trying to obtain his release. the minister in charge of media affairs said his government is prepared to exchange the iraqi prisoner for the pilot as soon as it was confirmed that he's alive. >> we would like to receive that in order to proceed with any talks about the exchange between sajida al rishawi and the jordanian pilot. >> officials in japan and jordan have been working closely on the issue. >> translator: we have been asking the jordanian government to cooperate in this extremely
severe situation. we will continue to do everything we can so that mr. goto will be released soon. >> everyone involved has been working night and day, in a tireless effort to save the lives of the two hostages. the head of nato says iraqi forces fighting islamic state must be made stronger. he says the staff are figuring out how to train them. nato secretary-general jens stoltenberg said iraqi leaders asked for help. he said air strikes by a u.s.-led coalition are important but not enough. aircraft have been attacking militants in syria and iraq. nato is not involved, though its leaders consider islamic state a regional threat. the u.s. and french governments have already committed to train iraqi forces. analysts suggest nato leaders are thinking of taking on that role as a way to show solidarity and spread the burden.
in other news, authorities in southern pakistan are investigating a deadly bombing at a mosque. the explosion killed at least 51 people and wounded at least 70. the bomb went off while shias in the city of shikarpur were holding prayers. local authorities say the blast destroyed the building and they say the casualties include children. the sunni militant group jundullah claimed responsibility. they see shias as infidels. islamic militants in pakistan launched extremists attacks on military, government and shia targets. last month they attacked an army-run school. they killed more than 150 people, mostly students. now on to what's making headlines in business, u.s. economic growth slowed in the october-december period last year, according to initial gdp data. commerce department officials
released the data on friday. the gdp figures showed an annualized expansion of 2.6% from the previous three months. that was lower than market expectation of 3%. the data fell short of the 5% quarter-on-quarter growth in the july-september period last year. but some economists believe fundamentals in the u.s. are strong enough to cushion the blow on growth from weakening overseas economies. toyota motor is rejoining one of the world's top races for the first time in 18 years. executives at the automaker decided on the comeback to the world rally championship in 2017. toyota will enter with a vehicle developed from its compact car, yaris. president akio toyoda said the aim of rejoining the race is to keep creating better cars. >> translator: participants compete with cars based on
vehicles used every day. it's a most appropriate stage for putting drivers and cars through their paces. >> toyota joined the race in the 1970s and won three times before pulling out in 1999. the championship is held throughout the year across various countries. officials at honda motor say a fatal accident in the u.s. state of texas involved one of its models fitted with potentially defective takata airbags. police are investigating if the defect caused the death. the accident killed a man driving a 2002 honda accord earlier this month. his family says, a metal fragment from an inflating airbag struck the man's neck and killed him. honda officials say the vehicle was subject to a recall due to problems with the airbags. a group of u.s. congress members had already linked five deaths to the faulty takata airbags before this latest incident.
the japanese government will raise pension payments for the first time in 16 years, but not enough to offset the increase in consumer prices. officials at the welfare ministry said the change will take place in april. they said pension payments should be raised by 2.3% to keep pace with the increased cost of goods and services. but the ministry has recently implemented a calculation method designed to keep the pension system solvent. it factored in the low birthrate and aging population and calculated payments should go up by 0.9%. after the increase, the national pension payment for an individual will be about 65,000 yen, or $550 a month. that's about $5 less than under the 2.3% scenario. next, let's take a brief look at the market figures.
nearly four years have passed since the accident at the fukushima daiichi nuclear plant. but even as work proceeds on decommissioning the reactors, experts are still trying to grasp all the details of the accident. they've made new discoveries about the radioactive substances released from the reactors. in this edition of "nuclear watch," we'll tell you what they found. >> on march 13th, 2011, a u.s. aircraft carrier deployed off northeastern japan, detected an
increase in the level of radiation in the atmosphere. the crew kept a running record of the data. nhk created this chart with help from a researcher who's been analyzing the information. up until now, people looking into the accident had focused on the four days immediately after the disaster. that's because they thought the bulk of radioactive substances was released from the plant during that period. but the data analyzed by the researcher suggests something different. only a quarter of the radioactive substances drifted during the first four days. the remaining 75% spread over the next two weeks. we analyzed why this happened. when the disaster hit, the nuclear plant lost its external power.
that made electric pumps for injecting water into the reactors useless. so workers used fire engines to spray water into the reactors to keep them from melting down. the fire engines pumped out 30 tons of water every hour. but an in-house investigation by the plant's operator shows only about one ton per hour reached the targets. we conducted an experiment to see if this may have contributed to the massive release of radioactive fallout. nuclear fuel is covered with a metal called zirconium. we heated the metal to a temperature of 1200 degrees celsius, the estimated temperatures inside the reactors when the accident happened. we then poured traces of vapor
onto the metal to simulate water from those fire engines. instead of dropping, the temperatures of the metal quickly began to climb. in two minutes, it surged by 78 degrees. experts suspect this is why large amounts of radioactive substances escaped over an extended time. >> translator: fuel keeps melting slowly as zirconium generates a relatively large amount of heat. the metal remained hot for some time. this means radioactive materials will be released for a longer time. >> reporter: the experiment shows the water that was meant to prevent the meltdowns may have actually sustained them. the expert says the result shows that radioactive substances kept
leaking out and spreading into the atmosphere. >> and we'll explore this story further in our program "nhk documentary" this weekend. dozens of people are missing after a boat carrying migrants capsized in the bay of bengal off the coast of bangladesh. patchari raksawong at our bureau in bangkok has the details. >> it's estimated that tens of thousands of people have risked their lives in recent years to leave bangladesh, and the bay of bengal now appears to be the sea of migrants. the boat overturned on thursday in waters near kutubdia island in bangladesh. the associated press says 39 people have so far been rescued.
the boat, bound for malaysia, was overloaded. >> translator: 30 to 40 people may be missing. the location of the boat isn't known. rescue efforts are under way. >> a unhcr report says that in the 12 months ending june 2014, some 53,000 people departed illegally by sea from the bay of bengal heading for other southeast asian nations and australia. the number of asylum seekers began to show a sharp increase following the 2012 outbreak of intercommunal violence between buddhists and the rohingya minority in myanmar. philippine president benigno aquino has stressed the need to establish peace in mindanao at a service to honor policemen killed in a clash with muslim rebels. the clash occurred on sunday in the southern island of mindanao
where conflict between the government and the country's largest armed group has lost it for more than four decades. the ceremony took place in the capital manila on friday. coffins of 42 of the 44 police commanders killed in the clash were laid out for the memorial service in a police facility. a special action force team exchanged fire with members of the moro islamic liberation front in the province. sunday's clash tests the ongoing process of the peace deal which the philippine government and the rebel group signed last year. since the clash centered discussions on the proposed batesic law to create a new autonomous region in mindanao have bn suspended president aqui is urgingongress members not to give up on the bill. >> translator: we will not allow their sacrifices to be in vain. if their deaths mean we can
achieve the peace we long to achieve, this means we can say that their sacrifices meant something. >> the great majority of the philippine population is catholic. rebel leaders have agreed to disarm in exchange for the establishment of their own autonomous government. some 120,000 people have died during the 45-year conflict in mindanao. india's major religions have coexisted for generations. muslims and christians live alongside the large hindu majority, usually peacefully, but occasionally not. activists claiming to belong to hindu organizations are reportedly misleading muslims and christians into converting to hinduism. from new delhi, here's nhk world's neha gupta. >> reporter: a red dot on the forehead, about 100 people applied the hindu religious mark as they converted from islam. the ceremony took place in the
muslim area, about 60% of local residents converted, but many say they were deceived and didn't know they were changing religion. this couple says they took part in the ceremony after a hindu man told them it was to celebrate qualifying for government benefits. >> translator: he said we'd received food rations, and that prime minister narendra modi's government would provide housing. >> reporter: poor people seem to be the target. collecting, separating, and reselling scrap is common around here. the work pays about $2 a day. hindu activists apparently approach poor people and exploit their desire to escape poverty. local police have stepped up patrols to protect vulnerable people from the hindu conversion
activists. this video shows the teaching of hindu values to village elders. the activists claim that many muslim and christian families living in india were originally hindu and forced generations ago to change their religion. >> translator: hinduism is the best of all religions. even if you're ancestors converted to other faiths, we are telling you to accept hinduism. >> reporter: the issue has focused attention on the government of hindu nationalist, prime minister narendra modi. opposition parties criticized modi's silence and delayed parliamentary debate on economic reform. >> translator: the prime minister must respond to our questions in order for the present situation to calm down. >> reporter: leaders of india's minority religions, including
islam, have voiced concern. >> the prime minister also, he is our minister also. the silence of modi appealing to muslims, unsafe. >> reporter: this is a country of different religion and ethnicities. minorities are closely watching how the newly elected federal government responds to moves against india's diverse religious culture. neha gupta, nhk world, new delhi. >> that wraps up our bulletin. i'm patchari raksawong in bangkok. japanese space buffs are planning a giant leap for pop culture. they hope to recreate a scene from their favorite anime show "on the moon." the team got inspiration from a series called "neon genesis." a character hurls a spear that
pierces the lunar surface. members want to launch a device that can do the same. the group is appealing for funds online. they hope to raise more than $850,000, and they already have backing from a real-life astronaut. >> translator: this is an amazing endeavor. technology has advanced so much that space feels closer than ever. >> team members plan to build an unmanned lander that shoots out a tiny spear. they hope to load that device on a private american rocket, due to blast off this year or next. they say they'll transmit pictures back to earth. a well-known japanese artist has been honored for creating one of the most popular manga series in the 1980s. katsuhiro otomo is the person behind the cartoon "akira." the prestigious award was announced at the international comics festival in central france. the prize was accepted on his behalf by a member of his
publishing firm. the 60-year-old otomo made his debut in 1973. his series akira depicts life in post ack apocalyptic tokyo. otomo is the first japanese to ever be givethe lifetime achievement award. >> translator: to have a major prize-winner from japan is proof that we are capable of increasing mutual understanding between different cultures. >> mondu says such understanding is needed more than ever, following the recent attack on the french weekly, "charlie hebdo". otomo said in a statement he was surprised at winning the prize, and it'll encourage him to produce better comics. and next, here's the three-day outlook on the world's weather.
>> garrison keillor: maxine kumin lives on a farm in new hampshire where she breeds arabian and quarter horses writing poetry, four novels, more than 20 children's books. she says, "i don't want to write poems that aren't necessary. i want to write poems that matter." >> this is a little one called after love. afterward, the compromise. bodies resume their boundaries. these legs, for instance, mine. your arms take you back in. spoons of our fingers, lips admit their ownership. the bedding yawns, a door blows aimlessly ajar and overhead, a plane singsongs coming down. nothing is changed, except there was a moment when the wolf, the mongering wolf who stands outside the self lay lightly down, and slept. ( applause ) thank you.
. >> she seemed destined for stardom from the moment born . her parents were eddie fisher and debbie reynolds. by the time of 21 she was starring in one of the biggest block busters of all time: star wars. her other films include the blues brothers hannah and her sisters and when harry met sally. also an accomplished author, her debut novel the semi ought ought buy grafng cal was a "new york times" best seller and recording one woman play wishful drinking earned her a grammy nomination. also have been the darker moments strug wells drug addiction and ongoing battle with bipolar disorder but her wit and humor have carried her through it all. hello i'm ernie manouse coming up on innerviews our conversation with actress novelist and screen writer princess leia herself carrie fisher.