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tv   BBC World News  PBS  June 23, 2011 6:00pm-6:30pm PDT

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>> and now, "bbc world news." >> welcome to "newsday". the headlines. risky plan. military expert offers his assessment on the afghans dirty. >> the decisions are more aggressive and incur more risk than i was originally prepared to accept. more force for more time is without doubt the safer course. >> the plan b. european leaders told grace to press ahead with spending cuts if it wants economic heallp. a warning that japan needs to protect its nuclear plant. >> growing tension with china in disputed areas of the south china at the sea. it is 9:00 a.m. in singapore. >> it is 2:00 a.m. in london.
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broadcasting to viewers on pbs and around the world. this is "newsday". hello and welcome. america's top military officer has admitted that president obama's decision to accelerate the withdrawal of troops from afghanistan is riskier than he originally wanted. first 30,000 troops are to be brought home by september next year. afghan president hamid karzai welcomed the move but the taliban said -- dismissed it as symbolic and vowed to continue fighting. our course on the reports. >> the president said the tide of war is turning and he has -- is hardly posing as a victor. these men and women spearheaded his search and he was almost hesitant telling them of the
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decision unpopular with their generals. >> we have turned a corner where we can begin to bring back some of our troops. we're not doing it precipitously. we're going to do it in a steady way to make sure that the gains that all of you helped to bring about are going to be sustained. >> the white house says the remaining troops can start coming home at a steady pace, it ending their combat role in 2014. many in the pentagon feel the withdrawal of search troops is too quick and too large. in military men, they say they back the decision that is being made. >> the president's decisions are more aggressive and incur more risk than i was prepared to accept. the ultimate decision was a more aggressive formulation, if you will come in terms of the timeline than what we have recommended. >> them military have waited in
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deep in afghanistan. progress has been awkward and they feel they're winning but the president has been brutal, arguing it is about denying terrace the base. not making afghanistan a perfect place. where he leads, others will follow. european countries have also outlined plans to leave afghanistan. france's 4000 troops will withdraw next month. in step with the americans . germany will cut that number. britain's 9.5000 troops that well and operations in four months' time. the foreign secretary said there is no decision on how many will bill this year. >> we will continue to assess the level of british forces based on the conditions on the ground and leading to the point in 2015, by 2015 where we will not have combat troops fighting
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in afghanistan. >> some will not like the idea the president is not waiting for conditions on the ground to change and he has defined -- is defying military advice. this is a slightly uncomfortable day. he is doing what the the majority of americans want my ending the war. with an election around the corner, voters outrank generals. >> european union leaders meeting in brussels have told grace that there is no plan be when it comes to rescuing the country from its debt crisis. they agreed that only through a new round of spending cuts could further eu and international monetary fund loans in order to avoid bankruptcy. the parliament has to pass austerity measures before the country can gain. >> this was a summit in which 27 heads of state had finally hoped to draw line under the great financial crisis but
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threatens the stability of the entire european currency shared by 17 of their members. with greece is away from the vote on the austerity package, even the latest -- paying the latest installments is said to be put on ice. the leaders objective seemed to be putting pressure on athens to deliver. the eu president urged greece not too sure from its reform program. there was one surprise. he made it clear the idea of rolling over some of the commercial loans without incurring a default might still be possible. >> the heads of state agreed that additional funding will be financed to efficient and private sources. they endorsed and -- this approach as regards the pursuit of private sector involvement in
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the form of informal and voluntary rollovers of existing debt while avoiding a selective to fall. >> there was talk of helping greece by releasing e.u. funds to help it grow and create jobs. what of the opposition refused to back the austerity plan? >> we should be prepared for in democracies for the will of our deputies and parliamentary procedures but as i said, i believe there's a strong commitment from the you. there will be a strong commitment from greece at the same time. >> the final communique had yet to be agreed and has to be debated later in the morning but it is believed to clued a strong appeal to the parties -- to include a strong appeal to act together in the national interest. >> nigel cassady reporting. let's get more on the situation
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in misrata. >> that is right. there are fresh attacks on the city of misrata targeting of civilians. colonel gaddafi's forces are on the offensive line parts of libya and many of the rockets are aimed at the port in the city which is a lifeline boat for the rebels and the population at large credit from misrata, andrew harding has more. >> the daily scramble. a volunteer ambulance crew races through misrata. here is why. more rockets have just hit the city center. this doctor hunts for casualties. the residential home destroyed. this time, no one injured. we are all civilians here, he says. but that is clearly the case. >> you have to go now. >> may be right now he will
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repeat that at the same place. we have to go now. >> the fear is catching. this man asks us not to film in case it helps colonel gaddafi to in his rockets better next time. -- to name his rockets better next time. bailey strikes on the city and its -- a daily strikes on the city. look what is inside them. tiny ball bearings designed for maximum casualties. fresh shrapnel marks cover of this family home. halima flinches at the slightest sound. her pregnant mother was injured when the rocket hit. gaddafi is killing children, she said, and destroying our homes. so many women have been left without husbands. from the front lines outside
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misrata and into the heart of this besieged city, the rockets keep coming, smashing into residential neighborhoods like this one and prompting two fundamental questions. why is colonel gaddafi targeting civilians and why can they do not stop him? on the front lines, a rare glimpse of the forces besieging the city. another explosion. they are on the move. gadhafi's forces quick to hide their heavy weapons from nato. the fiercest fighting remains at the front. increasingly, the casualties include many non-combatants. >> no one is safe now. even us here, you can get a rocket in anywhere. the civilians are frightened and the kids and women because of this random shooting. >> you feel that is a war crime? >> of course. of course it is. >> nighttime and while families
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wonder where it is safe to sleep, the ambulance is on the move again. >> the price of oil has fallen sharply after the international energy agency said it would sell 16 million barrels of its emergency oil stock. it is the third time they have released on to market some of the crude oil it keeps in reserve. the extra supplies are needed to plug the gaps caused by the disruption to oil supplies from libya. a senior official from that japanese nuclear industrial safety agency says japan needs to investigate the impact of salamis. the official made the comments at a u.n. meeting aimed at improving nuclear safety after the disaster at the nuclear power plant. japan has admitted the country was ill-prepared for the tsunami which struck in march. dr. scott valentine said
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emergency plans cannot prepare for all scenarios. >> there are lessons to be learned from the crisis. one of the problems however that exists in these types of situations where the dynamic nature of the situation requires a ramp up response is that it is really difficult to prepare contingency plans and as a result of that, although there are some lessons that can be gained from the mistakes made in fukushima, i also think it will be increasingly difficult to prepare contingency measures to cover virtually anything that will happen in the future with regard to nuclear problems. >> at least some of the participants and at this meeting have approved the idea of conducting stress tests on the nuclear reactors. will these be helpful in averting a crisis like fukushima? >> from an engineering
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perspective i think yes. most engineers would agree it is helpful to have as much information as possible about how reactors will respond in such circumstances, but i think we need to keep in mind that one of the reasons for the incident in chernobyl was that the engineers who were preparing were initiating just such tests on those reactors. "newsday".atching in the worldwer has changed over the centuries. the many faces of her majesty. we take a look at a new exhibition marking the 60 years of the queen's reign. the pictures show that smoke and
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ash are spewing out of the volcano in southern chile. they were filmed by a airforce plane that got close to the peak. flights are being disrupted as jonathan joseph reports. >> the destructive -- as disruptive as it is spectacular. these pictures film from an air force plane shows the volcano range is still erupting. the volcanic ash being pumped into the air is still grounding planes across south america. the volcanologists on board are hoping to learn more about the eruptions which started on the fourth of june. passengers of one of latin america's largest airlines face delays. the company says that services in argentina have seen the most destruction. in parts of argentine patagonia, a state of emergency is being declared. the air is thick with volcanic ash and it has made the streets
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look dirty and gray. the province has allocated $50 million for the cleanup. the volcanic ash is clogging new zealand's air space with thousands stuck at airports. the clouds of ash are reported to be thinning out. volcanoes are notoriously hard to predict so there are limited hopes that the interruptions may be coming to an end. jonathan joseph, bbc news. >> the crew out of a merchant ship held captive for year that released by somali pirates have been welcomed home in karachi. this was the reaction as four of the group reunited with relatives and more than -- [inaudible] raise the money through private donations a dutch politician has hailed his acquittal on hate charges as they victory for freedom of speech. -- as a victory for freedom of
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speech. tthihis is "newsday". our main headlines. president obama announces he will withdraw one-third of troops. a top officer said the plan is riskier than he wanted. >> following disaster at the fukushima power plant in march. an official said the country must prepare for even bigger salamis. -- tsunami is. wen jiabao hens to your. this is a visit aimed at promoting communication and cooperation. joining me now from beijing is our correspondent. can you tell us how much the premiere's visit has to do with boosting trade and deflecting concerns over the european debt crisis we have been hearing so much about? >> i think it is to do with both
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those topics. proceedings will be dominated by the european debt crisis. china has expressed concern over it. the economic health of europe will have a knock on effect here on china. in april it did say that it might buy more european debt and that is something that china has done in the past to stabilize the economic situation in the eurozone. also your right in pointing out there will be a series of deals that -- in the trip to hungary and the u.k. and germany over the next few days. >> this week we saw a chinese authorities releasing dissident artist ai wei wei and that looked like it was an effort to deflect criticism of hiuman rights. will the topic be broached? >> it certainly looks that way. it does not look like a coincidence. we have seen that where
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prominent dissidents have been released before chinese officials had on tourism -- head on tourism. the issue of human rights will still be raised in europe. in china, authorities have launched one of the harshest crackdown against the dissidents in recent years. let's not forget that while ai wei wei was released, another dissident is still in jail. >> thanks for that. hillary clinton said america is committed to the defense of the militarphilippines. she made the comments at a press conference alongside visiting foreign minister -- the visiting foreign minister. >> we're concerned that recent incidents in the south china sea could undermine peace and
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stability in the region. we areurge all sides to exercise self restraint and we will continue to consult closely with all countries involved including our treaty allies, the philippines. >> our mallet correspondent said the philippines is looking to the u.s. for assistance. >> it is undeniably a period of huge attention. the philippines say that some jury, there have been nine incursions of various sorts -- since february, there have been nine incursions of various sorts. we're seeing it now as well. china has said it does not want the u.s. to get involved and this is a bilateral issue. the philippines obviously has very close ties with america and wants to get american involved -- involvement in this. they see this as an international issue and the philippines have said
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strategically we are a small country and we realistically, we will do our best to defend what we think is hours but we would like help for this. >> part of our -- we have been speaking to an indian exporter. and reflect on how these nations are surpassing the economic power of the west. i am in the heart of the docklands are, the hub of britain's trade at the height of its empire. we talked to a novelist about his 19th century novel about empire. what does he think about the power of asia and then and now?
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>> hi, nice to see you. >> when you think about what must have been here, what comes to your mind? >> it would have been very noisy. very chaotic. very dirty. and asians were the motor of it. in terms of the trade, in terms of generating that trade. >> was that in the back of your mind when you wanted to do a historical novel about the power of asia? >> it was not at the back of my mind at all. as anilogy's started exploration of the dispersal of indians. indentured workers. i realized that it could not separate that from the opium trade. because the opium trade was so much in the background before those movements. and yes, having written so much
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of it, i realize that in fact, india and china were the motors of the global economy in the 18th and set -- 19th centuries. there were not getting rich off it. all the cream was coming here. >> we were talking about the past and we're standing, we're looking at the future as well, .e're looking at hsbc >> where did that start, you know? >> is the rise of india and china going to shift once more? >> i do think so. even though in the 17th -- 18th and 19th centuries, india and china were trading enormous amounts. all the cream of the trade came here to london. what has shifted out most of all is the profits of that trade now
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remain in india and china. that has been the big difference. >> is there a sense that although people are relishing what is happening in these, there is a major threat to the hegemony of the west. >> i would say i do not see that people in the west are i see a lot of resentment and fear. and yes, of course they are deeply threatened because the hegemony is eroding. i think it would do anything to maintain that hegemony. really, why did they force opium upon china? it was done in a very sort of carefully thought out way. essentially to undermine chinese institutions and they succeeded. what will they do this time around? i do not know. i think they would go to great lengths to preserve their hegemony. >> speaking to the indian author there.
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kasia madera madera, you have you have details. >> it is difficult to believe we're talking about queen elizabeth ii and the duke of edinburgh. they have been the subject of thousands of portraits and here is one more. our will correspondent has been taking a look. -- royal correspondent has been taking a look. >> through the nearly 60 years of her reign, she has become the most visually depicted person in history. her image captured in photographs and paintings which have often caused a stir. >> this is the portrait of the queen. this is said to have been given pride of place over a similar portrait of her majesty. >> now many of the most memorable images of the queen have been brought together in an exhibition of the scottish national gallery in edinburgh.
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here are many of the celebrated images. beaton's coronation day photograph and a portrait in 1969. in complete contrast, the sex whichs' record cover caused widespread events. -- defen offense. the images begin within his photograph in 1952 when elizabeth returned to britain knowing that she was not clean. >> i found that this is a tender moment. in terms of conveying any intensity of her predicament. >> other memorable images include these from the pop artist andy warhol in 1983 and from the 1990's, a news photograph of the queen surrounded by flowers laid in memory of the princess of wales.
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>> the images of nearly 60 years are brought up to date with this. the latest photographic portrait of the queen and the duke of edinburgh taken at windsor castle a few weeks ago. >> from edinburgh, that exhibition will move to belfast and cardiff and next may for the diamond jubilee to the national portrait gallery in london. >> you are watching "newsday". >> we have time for a reminder of the news. the top u.s. military officer at michael mullen has admitted that president obama's decision to accelerate the american withdrawal from afghanistan is riskier than he originally wanted. he told members of congress that afghanistan was working. much more on our stories on our website. for months in london and singapore, goodbye for now.
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