tv Newsline PBS February 16, 2015 7:00pm-7:31pm PST
♪ >> hello there. welcome to "newsline". i'm catherine kobayashi. our top story this hour a magnitude 6.9 earthquake has struck off the coast of iwate prefecture in northeastern japan around 8:00 a.m. japan time on tuesday. the japan meteorological agency says it observed a several-centimeter tsunami at ports in the region. major damage hasn't been reported so far. and officials with three nuclear facilities in the region say they also haven't reported any abnormalities. the agency has issued a tsunami advisory off the coast of iwate
prefecture. once again, a magnitude 6.9 earthquake has struck off the coast of iwate prefecture in northeastern japan at around 8:00 a.m. japan time. 8:06 to be exact, on tuesday. tohoku electric power company says hidashi mura and omagaki nuclear power plants have not reported any abnormalities. a nuclear facility for reprocessing spent nuclear fuel in aomori prefecture has not reported any irregularities. the japan meteorological agency has issued a tsunami advisory off the coast of iwate prefecture. it says that it observed 10 centimeters at the ports of miyako and kuji 20 centimeters at around 9:00 a.m. japan time. it also observed a several-centimeter tsunami at kamaishi port around 8:40. major damage hasn't been reported so far. but authorities have issued an evacuation advisory for about
20,000 residents in the area. officials say anyone in those areas should listen to local authorities and disaster management officials for information and instructions. officials at iwate hanamaki airport say they have not found any irregularities. more on this as details come in to us. in other news egyptian government leaders are calling on u.s.-led forces to expand their offensive against the islamic state militants. they want coalition members to broaden the scope of their operations to include libya. foreign ministry officials said in a statement that the international community must take immediate and effective action against the militants. the egyptian military on monday carried out airstrikes in eastern libya. analysts say they were retaliating for the apparent killing of 21 christian egyptian captives. military officials say they destroyed militants' targets including training camps and
arms depots. the country's state-run media quoted a libyan military commander as saying the attack killed 64 extremists. many people in egypt say they're concerned the militants' threat is spreading. >> translator: i'm very shocked. people who were killed in libya are innocent. i support the air strikes. i'll never forgive islamic state militants for what they've done. >> egypt's government has increased the number of security personnel deployed in the capital, cairo. authorities are on high alert for a possible terror attack in the city. extremist groups in egypt have been waging violence across the country to oppose the administration of president abdel fatah al sissi. european officials are looking for ways to deal with the situation in libya. french president francois hollande talked on monday with egypt's presidential over the telephone. they agreed to call a u.n. security council meeting. italian officials said they temporarily closed their embassy
in tripoli and said the ambassador and other staff have left for the time being. foreign minister paolo gentiloni said on a television program italians cannot tolerate the threat of terrorism so close to home. he said libya is only a few hours away by boat. gentiloni says his nation supports a u.n.-led peace deal and added if the talks fail his country is ready to fight in the context of an international mission. italian lawmakers are expected to discuss the situation on thursday during a parliament session. ukrainian government officials and pro-russian separatists say a cease-fire they negotiated on sunday is already falling apart. they're accusing each other of breaking the truce. two seeds have been fighting around the eastern city of dublts vooe. ukrainian forces control the railway hub but militants say they have the city surrounded. they say government forces have
been launching artillery assaults on neighboring towns. officials from ukraine's defense ministry say five soldiers have been killed and 25 wounded since the truce came into effect. both sides had agreed to start withdrawing their heavy weapons on monday. but ukrainian forces say they won't comply unless the separatists stop their attacks. the militants say they'll withdraw their weapons only if government forces do the same. attacks with heavy artillery in the area have killed many residents and destroyed houses and hospitals. removing the weapons is seen as crucial for the cease-fire to hold. now, european union leaders are turning up the pressure he on the people they say are destabilizing ukraine. they've added 19 names to a sanctions list and the targets this time include senior russian defense ministry officials. eu officials have imposed travel bans and frozen the assets of the 19 individuals. they say they'll also apply the
sanctions to nine organizations. the new list includes russia's first deputy defense minister arkady bakhin and deputy defense minister anatoli antonov. the eu says they're threatening ukraine's territorial integrity and sovereignty by supplying arms to the separatists. popular singer and lower house lawmaker losif kobzon is also on the list. he visited eastern ukraine and showed support for the separatists. the eu had held off on imposing new sanctions. officials wanted to see the outcome of last week's cease-fire talks but they decided to go ahead to pressure those backing the separatists to stand by the truce. russia's foreign ministry has threatened to take countermeasures. officials released a statement saying the eu's decision goes against common sense and they will elicit an appropriate response. european leaders have another neighbor on their mind. the greeks. ai uchida joins us now from the
business desk with all the details on the bailout deal. ministers have spent hours negotiating but time is really running out. >> exactly, catherine. the greeks actually have been told that they have until the end of this week to decide their next move. they're asking other euro-using members to meet them halfway. greeks want their help but they say the austerity that creditors are asking for in return is unbearable. well finance ministers met on monday to try to reach a compromise, but they walked away empty-handed. finance ministers from greece and 18 other eurozone countries got together in brussels to discuss the bailout package. they ended four hours of negotiations as far apart as ever. >> disappointment over the fact that there was still no firm common ground on what such an adjustment in the program could look like and how much of the program would actually be carried forward by the new greek government. >> finance ministers from eurozone countries issued an
ultimatum. they said athens has until friday to agree to extend the deal on its current foreign minister yanis varufakis rejected the offer. he demanded european countries dial back on austerity measures and reducing the debt. djisselbloem indicated nations are flexible but only if greek agrees to an extension. he said they would be open to another meeting on friday. varufakis said he's willing to do whatever it takes to reach an agreement but he dismissed the promise of flexibility as being too available. >> we were offering to refrain from effectively implementing our own program, the program that we were elected to implement, for a period of six months. and all we were getting back was a neblous promise of some flexibility that was never specified. >> ablts say if the bailout expires at the end of the month
the consequences could be drastic. they predict the greek state and its banks will run out of funds in march. well investors were disappointed. they were hoping finance ministers would have reached an agreement by now. but with no deal in sight they sold off the euro which sent it down against the dollar. the single currency fell from the 1.14 level to 1.13. traders are buying the yen against the euro and the dollar, and that's because they consider it to be a relatively safer asset in times of uncertainty. dollar/yen is at 118.33-37. on to stocks now. tokyo share prices opened lower on profit taking. on monday the nikkei index had rebounded to its highest level in more than seven years. it is now trading lower by just about .3% from monday's close. the failed talks in brussels are weighing on market sentiment here too. looking at some other markets in the asia pacific region south korea's kospi is in the positive
just by a touch. australia's benchmark index is down a third of a percent. well the people who used to make pcs for sony are staging a comeback, and they say they're ready to take on all challengers. executives at vaio have revived their flagship z series with two new hybrid laptops. the executives launched the models in tokyo. they started a new company last year but kept the name used by sony before it off-loaded its struggling pc arm to a local investment fund. the executives designed the new computers with rotating screens so they can double as tablets. they say users can also draw on the screens with special pens. >> translator: we're making products that show we're back and we're ready to carve out our share of the market. we're challengers. >> vaio executives say they're also planning to launch low-priced smartphones soon and
they're aiming to tie up other firms to sell their products abroad. that's the latest in business for this hour. here's another check on markets. ♪ ♪ ♪ representatives of japanese political parties are debating the prime minister's policy speech. shinzo abe last week reiterated his determination to push through the most sweeping reforms since world war ii. the leader of the large yft
opposition dpj party, okara, criticized the july cabinet decision on a new security policy. the government is preparing legislation to allow the country to exercise its right to collective self-defense. >> translator: the cabinet made the decision without significant support from the public or discussions in the diet. the ministers changed the interpretation of the constitution on a crucial matter on their own judgment. it was a great mistake in the history of constitutional democracy. >> translator: the cabinet decided on the basic policy for security legislation. it does not change basic principles in the interpretation of the constitution. we will continue our efforts to gain public approval of our new policy and proceed with legislations that would allow this country to cope with any kind of emergency situation. >> the secretary-general of abe's liberal democratic party called for more explanation to the public on regulatory
reforms. >> translator: regulatory reforms in the areas of health care, employment agriculture, and energy are the most pressing challenges. however, some people do not seem to fully understand what those reforms are for. drastic regulatory reforms would encourage dynamic entrepreneurship in the private sector and lead to various new business models. that's a key factor in my economic growth strategy. >> the leader of the japan innovation party, kenji eda, questioned the government's energy policy. >> translator: prime minister abe says the government will reduce dependence on nuclear power as much as possible but he says nuclear plays an important baseload power source. isn't that contradictory? >> translator: nuclear power requires low running costs and it's relatively reliable. it doesn't emit any greenhouse
gases. so we consider it an important base load power source on the condition we can secure the safety of its operations. >> the prime minister said the government will examine and approve emergency response plans including evacuation of residents for possible accidents at nuclear power plants. all commercial reactors in the country are off line. nuclear regulators are screening safety measures for 21 reactors that utilities want to operate. china's president xi jinping has traveled to an area of the country where the economy is struggling. he visited the communist party's revolutionary base in the inner province of xan xi and he apparently expressed his intention to correct economic inequality. china's state-run central
television featured on monday evening his tour. xi's four-day visit comes just a few days before the lunar new year. he visited a village we are was sent at the age of 15 from beijing to work for seven years during the cultural revolution. the news program said he contributed to boosting agricultural productivity as a community leader there. xi also visited the 1945 venue of the communist party congress. it's where maoism was established as the party's guiding philosophy. xi also said he often used to go there and was spiritually strengthened each time. he reportedly assembled senior party members from economically lagging areas to discuss ways to improve people's living standards. xi traditionally takes a trip just before the new year to convey a political message. members of china's communist party are trying to demonstrate their commitment to tackling corruption. ahead of next month's annual congress. they've expelled a top official
for taking bribes. members of the party's disciplinary panel announced they stripped sudong of his party membership. they say he will file criminal charges. he's a former member of the country's top advisory party. he also served as chief of the inland province of xianxi. the panel accuses sue of overriding government decisions and accepting huge bribes in selection of officials. president xi jinping has been leading a campaign against fraud. he pledged to go after both tigers and flies, meaning he'll prosecute corrupt officials regardless of their positions. local media called su one of the four big tigers. asia's largest joint military drill has been going on for the past week in-highland. the u.s. thailand first held the cobra gold exercise in 1982. today the annual drill involves 24 countries.
but this year ties between the thai host and the u.s. military are strained. nhk world's dhra dhirakaosai reports. >> reporter: 2015's cobra hold is focusing on humanitarian assistance and disaster relief operations. military personnel from the united states and japan have joined thai forces for the exercise in central thailand. it's one of only two types of exercises open to the media this year. about 10,000 troops from 24 countries are taking part. they include china and india which are participating only in humanitarian activities. in one non-combat exercise chinese soldiers teamed up with their u.s. and thai counterparts to build schools 37. however, military drills have all been closed to the media and fewer u.s. soldiers are taking part than in the past.
this year there are 3,600, down 700 from last year. at the opening ceremony the u.s. representative suggested some of the changes are in response to last year's military coup in thailand. >> we can't deny that this period is a challenging one. for us all. and has necessitatesed a modified cobra gold exercise this year as thailand manages its return to elected civilian-led government. >> reporter: relations have cooled between washington and bangkok since the military took over. after the coup the u.s. government froze $4.7 million in security-related aid to thailand. and for a while there was talk that cobra gold could be moved or canceled. two weeks before the event was set to start relations took a turn for the worse. a visiting u.s. envoy criticized thailand's military leaders. >> we are concerned about the
significant restraints on freedoms. it's unfortunate, but our relationship with thailand has been challenged by the military coup that removed a democratically elected government. >> reporter: bangkok accused washington of interfering in its internal affairs and a planned joint press conference on cobra gold was abruptly canceled. a security adviser to thailand's military regime is putting things in a positive light. >> cobra gold has gone through many coups and it is not affected and you need to refocus and you need to highlight whatever is appropriate for the security environment and this year it happened to be the focus is on humanitarian assistance is much more appropriate. we are trying to work hard to get out of that situation and return to normalcy. it is expected that next year at this time cobra gold next year at this time.
>> reporter: on another front thailand's leaders have been building closer ties with their chinese counterparts. during a recent visit, china's defense minister agreed to boost military cooperation. some experts believe the chinese are trying to edge out the americans and build closer strategic ties with thailand, but a former cia officer who was stationed in bangkok says he disagrees. >> the thai government relationship at the working level of the chinese is still gestating and it is more formal than substantive and i'm not sure if any toning down of u.s. activity here would necessarily mean the chinese would step into the role. i think the thai military is very much trying to play even on both sides. >> reporter: the multilateral exercises are proceeding amid what the u.s. calls a challenging period with thailand. the two allies are trying to get
through this rough patch and heal ties, but it remains to be seen how successful they will be if thailand's return to democracy is delayed further. dhra dhirakaosal, nhk world, thailand. it is time now for a check of the weather. firefighters in southern chile are battling widespread forest fires. mai shoji gives us all the details in world weather. >> due to the dryness across parts of southern areas of chile we're looking at some wildfires that have been raging since past week. we have some images coming out from this area. forest fires continue to rage in southern chile this past week putting the region under a red alert. local officials have reported that over 9,500 hectares of vegetation have been torched. 22 wildfires remain active while 63 have been contained. but over 1,700 personnel and 31
helicopters from the country's national forest corporation have deployed. they are still fighting this. and unfortunately we don't really see any kind of cloud coverage across areas where we really want that interprets ip taigs. instead where we have the flooding rain that continues across the northern locations including brazil. we're not going to be expecting any precipitation for the foreseeable future. that could hinder the recovery process. now, here across the eastern u.s. we have been talking about the series of winter storms that has been battling new england states in the mid-atlantic. now we are seeing some winter across the deep south. we have some images coming out from little rock arkansas. the southeastern u.s. received a dosage of wirptd on monday. this is coming out from little rock, arkansas where slick roads forced many drivers to stay home and off the streets as seen in this video. over 25 now power outages were reported in the area on monday. and this came just days after the mercury actually climbed. up to spring-like temperatures.
22 degrees across parts of arkansas. it's a huge drop because now you're seeing weiss and storm warnings across places like mid tennessee. and this is what's responsible for this. the freezing line just around there, so any precipitation above that in the north we're likely to see some snow. we're likely to see freezing rain just below that. and then icy conditions once again on top of what we already saw from the pictures coming out from arkansas. already slick roads. we're likely to see an additional of 5.5 centimeters of thick layer once again as this system pulls that cold frigid air. again we see more snow coming all the way into the mid-atlantic and into new england in the states and that includes boston where it's already the snowiest february and january on record. and the number keeps on growing because february's not done yet. well, new york and d.c. included, snow will be continuing all the way through
your latter half of the workweek. minus 9 degrees i should say for thursday. but that's despite this sunshine and. little rock, a little bit of a warm-up on your wednesday, but still very cold out there. below the average range. we're looking at some snowfall across the eastern areas of the four corners. about 15 centimeters. 10 centimeters of snowfall in the northern rockies. but just to the left of that jet stream it's looking quite summery out there. in los angeles, for example, at 24 degrees. and biting cold chill will still continue on your tuesday. out here across japan now, we had some snow flurries across the metropolitan area but this snow will change to rain due to this system putting on the southerly moisture flow. snow will be seen in the higher elevations of the region and snow will be covering much of northern areas as well as the
korean peninsula up to 15 centimeters also possible in northeastern china. down below due to the ridge of that high pressure system we're looking at thunderstorms to continue in southern areas of china. these are your temperatures. hong kong at 22 degrees with partly sunny skies. out here across the tropics bangkok looking at 33. chilly day for us in tokyo. drop from 13 yesterday. i'll leave you now for your extended forecast. ♪ ♪
new details coming in. the japan meteorological agency has lifted the tsunami advisory off the coast of iwate prefecture. now, just a reminder to our viewers. just coming in a magnitude 6.9 earthquake has struck off the coast of iwate prefecture in northeastern japan at 8:00 a.m. japan time on tuesday. the japan meteorological agency said it served a several-centimeter tsunami at ports in the region. no major damage has been reported. the agency issued a tsunami advisory off the coast of iwate prefecture but it has since been lifted. we'll bring you more details of this story as they come in. and we'll be back at the top of the hour. do join us again then.
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