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tv   BBC World News  PBS  September 10, 2010 12:30am-1:00am PDT

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>> "bbc world news" is presented by kcet, los angeles. funding for this presentation is made possible by -- the freeman foundation of new york, stowe, vermont, and honolulu, newman's own foundation, the john d. and catherine t. macarthur foundation, and union bank. >> union bank has put its financial strength to work for a wide range of companies, from small businesses to major corporations.
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what can we do for you? >> and now, "bbc world news." >> uncertainty over the koran- burning. the u.s. pastor says he has not cancelled as plans, he has just put them on hold. the un general assembly calls for dialogue between serbia and kosovo. it could pave the way for the first direct talks in two years. a california judge rules a ban on homosexuals serving openly in the u.s. military is unconstitutional. controversy in the paris says the world of manga crash lands at the palace of versailles. a warm welcome to bbc news,
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broadcasting to viewers in the u.k. and around the world. the u.s. pastor who has been condemned worldwide for his threat to burn copies of the koran on the anniversary of september 11 says his plan is now on hold. terry jones originally announced he was cancelling the event, but now says it is conditional on holding talks with the imam in charge of a planned islamic cultural center near ground zero. mr. jones said he had agreed to move the center in return for his cancelling the koran- burning. the imam denies it. mr. jones now says he was lied to. >> the day began with the white house up against a church in florida. the conversation is so small, it can fit on a single bus. pastor terry jones runs what is essentially a fringe movement. his plans to burn the koran earned him a personal warning this morning from the president. >> if he is listening, i hope he
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understands that what he is proposing to do is completely contrary to our values as americans, that this country has been built on the notions of religious freedom and religious tolerance. >> demonstrations were held in pakistan and afghanistan. protesters even burned an american flag to show how much they oppose koran-burning. just after 1:00 p.m. in washington, the state department warned americans abroad to be cautious. three hours later, pastor jones himself came out. the koran-burning is off, he says, because an imam in new york has agreed not to build the community center near ground zero. >> the imam has agreed to move the mosque. we have agreed to cancel our event on saturday. on saturday, i will be flying up there to meet with him. >> this is the building the
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pastor is talking about. the trouble is, minutes after he spoke, the imam in new york said he had no contact with the pastor. the developers said the center is not being moved. by this time, the pastor was beginning to look as confused as everyone else. bbc news, washington. >> our correspondent is in new york. earlier, i asked her whether talks between the defense secretary robert gates and the pastor have made any difference. >> just think how much pressure this pastor has come under. the president of the united states and his secretary of state, hillary clinton, have condemned his decision to burn korans. he gets a personal phone call from the u.s. defense secretary. top u.s. generals have warned that american troops may be in
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harm's way as a result of this decision to try and burn the crown -- corp. on -- the korans. he takes this agreement, backs down, but in new york, a spokesman for the developer aranda imam behind the cultural center tell us they did not know anything at all. mass confusion on the eve of the anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. >> we will talk more about that in a moment. have we had any reaction from the white house and the pastor has made this decision? >> president obama is going to be giving a press conference tomorrow. this is the first one he has done in months. you can bet your bottom dollar the press conference is going to be dominated by questions about this. >> you mentioned discussions about the area near ground zero.
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donald trump has offered to buy out a major investor in the realistic partnership that controls the site near ground zero. this move by donald trump, should we read more into this, other than being skeptical that this is a publicity stunt? >> donald trump has said one of the reasons he is doing this is because you want to diffuse the situation. he wants to the support of of having the cultural center -- he wants to not be supportive of having the cultural center near ground zero. we will see what happens, if this is a way out. i think there will focus will be on whether or not pastor terry jones gets his meeting with imam in new york. terry jones said the only way he
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could come to this meeting is saturday, the anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. the imam has not spoken to jones. there has been no sign of that meeting. >> you can see behind me the pictures coming from an area not far from san francisco international airport. this fire just erupted about two hours ago. it was thought there was an explosion at a petrol station. it is around 8:00 local time. there has been speculation it was sparked by a plane crash. there have been some reports by observers, local people, saying they heard a plane stuttering overhead, the engine stuttering, and then hearing a bang. this is one eyewitness in the
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area. the cloud can be seen from miles around in that area. so far, no reports of injuries as yet. in other news, the united nations general assembly has adopted a resolution calling for dialogue between serbia and kosovo after weeks of intense negotiations. the resolution and opens the way for direct talks between the two sides, the first since kosovo became independent. our correspondent is in belgrade and says this is a historic moment. >> this has been a huge move in a significant moment because by withdrawing the original resolution serbia submitted in july, which rejected kosovo poster unilateral secession and called for fresh talks over kosovo's status, and replacing that with a resolution that simply calls for dialogue with
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kosovo, that is an important shift. the reason is because serbia has, in effect, given up its diplomatic fight for kosovo at the un that change of text from the first to the second version followed weeks of intensive negotiations between the european union and serbia. the european union, 22 members have acknowledged kosovo as an independent country. they did not like the fact serbia rejected the unilateral secession of kosovo. they said that serbia did not change position, it could jeopardize its own eu membership application. andia heeded that cfalall change the text. it opens the way for direct negotiations between serbia and kosovo for the first time since independence. >> have we have reaction from
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the kosovo authorities? >> there has been a really positive reaction from the kosovo authorities. they welcome the new resolution. they want to have direct talks with serbia, but they only want to talk to serbia as a sovereign reaching independent state. they will not talk to serbia if the talks involve talks about future status. it seems like the two will not sit -- sit down at the negotiation table, supervised by brussels. they are eyeing the prize of membership in the european union. this will finally move forward. it seems this might be a turning point into one of europe's most intractable conflicts. people are now saying this perhaps marked the beginning of the end of the kosovo problem. >> a california federal judge has ruled the ban on homosexuals serving openly in the u.s. military is unconstitutional. the judge said the law violates
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free-speech and fundamental right. we will speak to our correspondent in l.a. welcome. tell us more about what has happened today. >> a u.s. federal court judge agreed with a gay rights group that the policy had a direct effect on the armed service and that it violates the u.s. constitutional right of gay members of the military to freedom of speech. she granted an injunction halting the policy. beent-tell has in effect since 1993. the policy prevents the military from asking about members'
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sexuality. >> i understand that u.s. military personnel can have the privacy of their own homes as a factor, even if it is off base. >> this is a policy that has to do with them serving amongst their fellow members in the armed forces. it has been in place for nearly 20 years now. it was a controversial measure when it came in under president clinton. recently, some senior military figures have called for it to be repealed. times have changed. something they're considering very much is that u.s. forces are stretched overseas. president obama actually agrees. congress is considering repealing the policy. they have ordered a survey done by the department of defense, 400,000 military personnel, to gauge opinions.
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some gay rights groups don't think that congress or the government is acting fast enough. they have challenged it in the court. government lawyers could well appeal against this ruling. they argued during the case that the policy was a method for government to consider, not the courts. the government is moving toward repealing the policy, but we could see government lawyers appealing against the ruling. >> thank you very much. you can get more on our top story, the american pastor who is planning to burn copies of the koran. here is our correspondent. welcome. tell us more. this seems to be a confusing picture being painted it. -- painted. a few hours ago, we were under the impression the burning of the koran would be stopped. now the pastor has said it is merely on hold.
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>> well, he came out and told us that he canceled plans to burn copies of the koran here because he got an agreement from the leaders of the islamic cultural center in new york that they would relocate. it seems he did not even have a conversation with those leaders. they deny that happened. they have no plans to relocate the center. pastor terry jones, we spoke to his close aide. she said he now feels like he has been lied to. instead of canceling a planned event on saturday, it is now on hold. potentially, we are back at square one if he does not travel to new york to meet with the cultural leaders. >> have we had any comment at all from the white house in response to the initial announcement that the koran- burning would be stopped? >> well, not since that
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announcement. i'm sure they felt a huge amount of relief at that time. we know robert gates called terry jones, asking him to reconsider. he has come under a great deal of pressure. there were different religious leaders going to see him. he was visited by fbi agents, who were there to talk about the hundreds of death threats he received. it looked like the entire event was canceled and he was on his way to new york. now, all the spokespeople will say is the plan than to burn copies of the koran is on hold. >> thank you very much. still to come in this hour, the legacy of war. why wreckage from the iraqi insurgency has found its way to a london museum. the catholic church has now settled the final details of its
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plans for the pope's visit to britain next week. leaders are hoping that his presence will revitalize congregations and bring back some of the disaffected. our religious correspondent reports. >> like so many judges, the catholic -- churches, the catholic church is in trouble. the signs are there for all to see. parishes are closing as congregations disappear. the church is losing clergy. alex walker, a former priest, is now married with two doctors. england and wales are producing fewer than 30 priests each year. alex walker claims this pope's policies on issues such as women and homosexuality are driving people away. >> he is trying to roll back to reforms we have had over the last 40 years. i don't see how that is going to
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speak to my children, to their generation, about jesus and about the gospel. >> many catholics say that to regain its strength, the church must knowledge be the use of the society it serves. pope benedict rejects the pick and mix morality of modern life, insisting the church should stick to absolute about abuse, even if it does become a shadow of its former self. >> at the heart of this message is a profound respect for the person, for human nature, and for life lived in the presence of god. it is not a negative message. >> there has been growth. immigration has packed parishes in parts of britain. some hope for the church. bbc news. >> you are watching "bbc news." a reminder of the headlines --
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the was pastor at the center of the koran-burning controversy says he has just put his plans on hold because he felt he had been lied to. the un general assembly has called for dialogue between serbia and kosovo. the move could pave the way for the first direct talks in two years. a california judge ruled that a ban on homosexuals serving openly in the u.s. military is unconstitutional. he says the rule violates free- speech and fundamental rights. in afghanistan, the surge of american troops is at its peak. the final year of deployment, the 101st airborne. >> the 101st airborne are on the move. the regiment served in normandy, vietnam, and now they're
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having to afghanistan. the privates said their goodbyes in fort campbell, ky. they are the last of the surge of 30,000 american troops arriving here. they hope to finish up the taliban and end the war. these new infantrymen say they are not daunted by the fight ahead. >> i realize we're in a hot style environment, but i am still around the same leadership, you know? i trust them. i trust their judgment and the orders. >> the surge can be slow-moving. it has taken private two weeks to get this far. they're watching films and readying themselves for what is to come. how you spend the time? >> thinking, praying, trying to make the best that. i don't have a lot of down time when i am out there. >> others from the regiment are
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already on the front line. this is easy co., a band of brothers. for most of them, it is the second or third tour of duty here. the mission is to drive the taliban from these mountains. we are heading into a village, about 12 miles from the pakistani border. they will not be able to stop the insurgents coming across the border, but they're hoping that with more regular patrol as a result from the extra troops, they can deter them, and having the extra troops will make locals here feel safer. the surge has brought sergeant caldwell to afghanistan for a third time. >> from when i was here the first time back in 2002, the same guys we fought against, now, they have been fighting with the u.s. or coalition forces for almost 10 years now.
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they definitely know how we fight and are more prepared. >> these recruits are keen for the fight. they're calling themselves the new band of brothers. it is the blend of leadership and trust in each other that will study them for the battle ahead. bbc news, southern afghanistan. >> in the latest violence in somalia, a suicide bomber detonated a car bomb at a heavily protected gate of the airport in the capital. at least two peacekeepers are believed to have died. reports suggest similar post of president was at the airport when the attack took place. the head of germany's central bank says thilo sarrazin agree to quit the board. there has been up all over his remarks about muslims and jews. the bundesbank says it has reached an agreement with him,
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who asked to step down. he will leave his post at the end of the month. a car selvage from the 2007 bombing of an historic baghdad street market is going on display at the imperial war museum in london. the museum said the vehicle is testimony to the impact of modern war on civilians and will be the focus for a series of open conversations about the conflict in iraq. our correspondent has been to see the exhibition. >> baghdad, the fifth of march, 2007. a devastating bomb attack on a busy market. at least 38 people were killed. among the collateral damage was this, a car, to mangled to identify. jeremy deller acquired the record -- wreckage and took it across america. it will stay in london until april of next year, surrounded by some of the most powerful
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military hardware for created, making the point that using this stuff does have consequences. although an artist, he insists the wreckage is not art work. it is what it is, a damaged car. he also says it is because he is an artist that it is now here. >> i suspect it would not happen without an artist's involvement. artists are lucky. they are allowed to experiment with things. they operate in a space where they can do things other people are not necessarily allowed to do. they can take risks. they can do things that, frankly, are slightly irresponsible and absurd. >> a major general feels the artists can look, question, and comment. it plays a vital part in reporting. >> it is the unseen from the camera's. of you, thinks the artist can
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get that -- camera's point of view, in is the artist can get that the camera cannot. >> the museum continues to commission contemporary work. the museum sees this metacarpus as providing a counterpoint to the other exhibit. this could of been done years ago, but they never thought of that, until an artist became involved. >> an exhibition at the palace of versailles on the outskirts of paris is raising eyebrows and surprising visitors. giant plastic cartoon characters have invaded the velvet-lined rooms as part of an installation by a japanese artist, takashi murakami. not everyone is happy about the culture clash. >> unmistakably, the palace of versailles.
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look again and you will see an unexpected visitor. this is japanese artist takashi sculptor. he seems at home in the court of louis 14th. >> it seems to be an alien. the theater is a very interesting place for this figure. it is nice. >> inside the palace, plastic manga-like sculptures and stone bust. busts -- stone busts and centerpieces. >> to exhibit my work in such a
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wonderful place is something i really appreciate. it is more than i could have hoped for. >> not everyone is a fan. there have been protests with traditionalists as saying louis the 14th would be turned -- turning in his grave. some tourists are not impressed. >> i did not come here to see this. if i wanted to see this, i would go to pompidou. that is where it should be. >> may be the king himself, who have the appetite for the flamboyant, would have approved. >> in the last couple of hours, we have had reports of a fire in california near the san francisco international airport. a number of homes or plays. -- are ablaze. no injuries reported as yet. it is thought the fire stemmed from an explosion at a petrol station in the area. no injuries reported so far.
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firefighters are tackling the blaze. >> hello and welcome. >> see the news unfold. get the top stories from around the globe and click to play video reports. go to to experience the in-depth, expert reporting of "bbc world news" online. >> funding was made possible by -- the freeman foundation of new york, stowe, vermont, and honolulu, newman's own foundation, the john d. and catherine t. macarthur foundation, and union bank.
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