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tv   Journal  PBS  September 19, 2013 6:30pm-7:01pm PDT

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>> live from berlin, you're watching me "journal -- you are watching the "journal." >> the syrian president says he needs a year to destroy his country's chemical weapons. >> after the murder of an anti- fascists singer, thousands of greeks take to the streets to protest far right extremism. >> iran is praised for releasing political prisoners, including a human rights lawyer.
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>> did germany help syria make chemical weapons? >> a report shows german companies have been exporting chemicals to syria that could be ingredients for producing sarin gas. >> chancellor merkel said the goods were earmarked solely for civilian use. >> the news comes as syria's president says the world will have to wait if it wants the country to dismantle its chemical weapons arsenal. >> bashar al-assad said destroying his country's chemical weapons would be a time-consuming and expensive undertaking. >> if the american administration is ready to pay that money and take responsibility of bringing toxic materials to the united states,
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why don't they do it? >> assad says the attack was carried out by rebels intent on prompting western intervention, but few believe him. they believe he is responsible for the deaths of the hundreds who were killed. >> it is essential for keeping momentum in the diplomatic and political process that the military option is still on the table. >> meanwhile, a debate has begun in germany about how the country might have unwittingly helped syria to produce chemical weapons. from 2002 through 2000 six, german companies sold chemicals that could have been used to make items like toothpaste or weapons -- from 2002 through 2006. chancellor merkel said the
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shipments were authorized after they were assured that they were intended for civilian use. >> all evidence indicated to me indicates they were used for civilian purposes. everything we have seen so far confirms that the export was granted for purely civilian usage. >> the economics ministry is currently checking whether germany continued to ship chemicals to syria after 2006. >> earlier, we spoke to someone from the german institute of international and security affairs. we put it to him that the german government, u.s., and israel must surely have known about any exports that could have been used to make chemical weapons. >> i'm not that sure about that. germany has a long tradition of sending dual use items to countries. german companies aided iraq of its program in the 1970s and the 1980s. it seems to be clear that the economics ministry did know
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about the transactions, but i'm not sure yet whether other parts of the government would realize the potential dangers of these items, namely foreign intelligence service and the chancellor's office. >> does the report damage germany's credibility as an opponent of the assad regime? >> i do not see a german policy with regard to syria, but whatever the case, german credibility with many syrian is, of course, damaged -- german credibility with many serious -- syrians is, of course, damaged. they might want to make us responsible for these actions, which, of course, caused many
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deaths. >> thank you for joining us. >> to business news now, where global markets have been soaring after the fed's surprise decision to keep its monthly stimulus program in place. investors had been preparing for the taper, a winding down of the u.s. central banks' bond-buying scheme. >> the u.s. stimulus program has made stocks more attractive to investors, and they fear a capital flight if investors move money back to the u.s. although the fed has not indicated when it might start tapering off, some economist warned it is merely postponing the inevitable. >> germany's blue chip stock index, the dax, climbed to a new record high during thursday's trading. the fed decision has gone down well. >> the federal reserve meeting resulted in a positive surprise for us. investors are happy that the stimulus program is being
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continued and will still pump $85 billion a month into the market. it is a strong signal that the markets are responding as expected. >> the u.s. continues to print money in the hope consumers will keep spending. economic recovery remains stubborn with unemployment still relatively high at over 7%. but economists are divided over the wisdom of the fed's policy. >> the question is how much longer this can last. the more the quiddity is pumped into the market, the harder it will be to go cold turkey, and then it will really hurt. >> creek's say the fed of this creating another economic bubble, especially in the housing market -- critics say the fed risks creating another economic bubble. >> we have this summary on how the news went down at the frankfurt stock exchange. >> the fed's decision not to
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taper led to fireworks here on the frankfurt floor. the dax went up to a new record high, but later on this session, the gains melted away a little bit because there were many question marks remaining. one is why the fed did not do anything, because the federal reserve had prepared the markets perfectly for this decision that has not been made now. some experts said they are really disappointed about that because it would have been the perfect day to do so. >> let's take a look at the numbers in detail. the blue-chip dax managed to set yet another all-time high, closing at 8694 points. the euro stoxx 50 also finished the day up. meanwhile in the u.s., the dow is down almost 20%, and the euro is trading at $1.3 527.
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>> jpmorgan chase is paying regulators in britain and the u.s. 675 million euros, a global settlement for violations that led to a $6.2 billion loss at the bank last year. >> the bank was charged with massive failures and oversight after traders in london booked up huge losses and complicated derivative trades and hid them from the authorities. the bank was able to look sort the losses on its own, but regulators say the failings undermined trust in the u.k.'s financial markets. campaigning has entered the final stretch for germany's elections on sunday. the social democrats are fighting an uphill battle against chancellor angela merkel and her conservative party. >> the spd's candidate and other party leaders showed up at one of berlin's main squares to make a last-minute appeal to voters. polls show that the social democrats are trailing the conservatives by at least 10
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percentage points. our political correspondent is on location at the spd rally and joins us now. do the social democrats still have a feeling that they can win this election? >> they certainly believe they have, judging by what is going on here. it will all come down to a question of mathematics, i think, in the end. if angela merkel is not able to reform the government she has now, she will be looking around for a new coalition partner on monday morning, and that is where the sun -- that is where the social democrats could see their chance. at the moment, the poll numbers suggest they will not be able to reach their preferred coalition with the green party. at the moment, they have a choice between forming a grand coalition with angela merkel's conservatives on the one hand or forming some other kind of left- wing coalition on t oth
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side. at the moment, the social democrats are fighting for every vote because every vote seems like it will count. >> what is the main message the spd is trying to get across to win votes in this crucial final phase of the campaign? >> of course, they are saying they have the right candidate or chancellor in peer steinbrueck. they are presenting themselves as the party of social justice and throwing the spotlight on the growing problem, as they see it, of a growing divide between rich and poor here in germany and many other, as it were, core social democratic themes. they are also attacking, of course, the conservatives. steinbrueck said this evening that angela merkel's government is the german government's largest nongovernmental organization. one thing seems clear -- the spd is certainly not going to be the largest party. stein brought -- steinbrueck is
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almost certainly not going to be germany's next chancellor. >> thank you. with just three days to go before germany's national election, opinion polls show there may be a new party in parliament. >> if it wins, it will do so with one controversial proposal -- to take germany out of the eurozone. >> as european leaders and bankers burned symbolic euros, members of the alternative for germany intervened to stop the blaze. their message is clear -- the way the euro crisis has been handled is destroying germany's hard-earned prosperity. founded just five months ago, the party has many powerful allies, including the warmer head of the federation of german industries -- the former head of the federation of german industries. >> we are the only country in the eu that does not have a party in parliament offering alternative solutions. that, in my opinion, is extremely dangerous.
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>> the afd wants to see crisis- hit members expelled from the eurozone, an end to bailouts and rescue funds, and a limit to the extent of powers transferred to the eu level in brussels. angela merkel says that makes the party reactionary with only one issue. it is unclear how much its message will resonate at ease bundestag elections -- at these bundestag elections, but the party says it is taking the long view. >> we are not just a flash in the pan. there's widespread support among the citizens. we will prepare for european elections, and that is our main concern. >> posters are finding it hard to tell whether the upstart party led by economics professors and business figures is on course or the german parliament, but a believe any success in the afd is likely to hurt the pro-business ftp and their allies most.
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>> to greece now where the murder of an anti-fascist rapper is highlighting violent tendencies of the golden dawn party. the man who has apparently confessed to the killing claims to be a member of the ultranationalist group. >> that's right. as greece continues to struggle with the fallout of the financial crisis, golden dawn has gained a surprising level of support. its rhetoric is stridently anti- foreigner, and it has been blamed for numerous attacks. >> emotions are running high in suburban athens, not far from where an anti-fascist wrapper was stabbed and killed -- anti- fascist rapper was stabbed and killed. the man who claimed responsibility was a member of the golden dawn party. prime minister samaras has had enough. >> this government is determined not to allow the descendents of not sees -- descendents of nazis
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to poison our lives and undermine the foundations of the country that gave birth to democracy. >> golden dawn denies any connection to the killing, but the angry people at this demonstration do not believe it. >> we have to stop them from spreading in our neighborhoods, in our schools, and at our jobs. we must unite to throw them out. >> the killing is another warning for us. only a united movement, including anti-fascists and others, can stop a motorist golden dawn. it is acting with the blessing of the government. >> the party's popularity has grown during greece's financial crisis. the party uses not the symbolism, and leaders have praised it off hitler -- hearty leaders have praised adolf hitler -- party leaders have praised adolf hitler. >> up next, the next installment
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in our series, "germany and the world." >> we focus on berlin's relations with washington. that and more up next.
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>> hello again. in the run-up to the general election, all this week, we have been looking at german foreign policy. today we focus on german-u.s. relations. >> there has been a long history between the countries, but in addition to trade, there's a strong sense of gratitude following world war ii and the cold war. >> let's take a closer look at what the next four years could hold. >> german-american relations are usually a routine of smiles, handshakes, and other friendly gestures.
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most german politicians are keen to praise their country's close ties with the united states. >> it's a partnership that we value. >> american presidents are always welcome here. >> it shows how important the u.s. is for europe and germany. >> only germany's (he fundamentally takes issue with the u.s., often accusing washington of war -- only germany's left party. often accusing washington of warmongering. the spy scandal unleashed by u.s. intelligence leaker edward snowden has mixed up the election campaign, and parties have had to adopt a clearer stance. the spd is so outraged at the massive data surveillance by the u.s. national security agency
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that it has questioned the wisdom of going forward with the free trade negotiations. >> i would freeze the talks until the u.s. says whether the german government and european institutions are being bugged and spied on. >> chancellor merkel's conservatives have toughened their language as well but stopped short of confrontation. >> just because we favor data protection does not mean we should call off read -- free trade negotiations. >> no matter who occupies the chancellor's office, berlin is almost certain to pursue friendly ties with washington. the u.s. and germany have too many shared interests. u.s. leaders should have no reason to fear any major change of course. >> joining us now with more from washington is jackson james with the american institute for contemporary german studies. how closely is washington following this election in germany?
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>> not very. i think that basically, there's an assumption that merkel is probably going to get a third term, and the question is more not on what happens necessarily on sunday, but maybe the ramifications for any kind of coalition coming out of the september 22 elections for transatlantic relations. >> as we just saw, the nsa spying story has generated a lot of criticism of u.s. policy in germany in recent months. do politicians in washington expect that to continue up acting u.s.-germany relations after this election? >> i tell you what -- politicians in this country expect that to affect their own relations right here in washington, d.c. we are not done with that issue over here. looking at the way the germans have been upset about this or, for that matter, brazil or any other country you want to pick, it is probably less of immediate importance than straightening out what our own situation is
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with the nsa right here and our own country. >> thank you very much. later in this program, we will be looking at the role foreign policy is playing in this year's election. if you want to find out more about german elections, check out our website, dw.de/ germanelections. captain ashton has condemned the killing of a u.s. customs officer in kosovo -- catherine ashton. >> the shooting happened at a checkpoint on the border with serbia. two vehicles came under fire from unknown attackers during a shift change. the checkpoint is part of an eu monitoring program to ensure the rule of law in kosovo. the former serbian province declared independence three years ago, but it is not recognized by serbia or by serbs living in kosovo. >> germany's largest airline has
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been on its biggest ever shopping spree. >> left onto -- left anza -- lufthansa is splashing out nearly 50 million euros upgrading its new fleet with delivery set for 2016. the company said the new planes will make its fleet more fuel efficient and quieter and improve passenger comfort. >> to mexico now where hurricane man u well has made landfall in the pacific coast state -- hurricane manuel has made landfall days after causing devastation in acapulco. >> 15 people are missing after heavy rain overwhelmed a remote village north of acapulco. the chaos caused by two tropical storms over the weekend continues with many roadways washed away. residents of flood hit acapulco have been queuing to receive food and water from members of the navy.
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others have resorted to looting. we now turn to the middle east -- egyptian security forces have raided a town on the outskirts of cairo known to be an islamist stronghold. state media reported that an egyptian police officer was shot dead and 15 people arrested in the operation. >> thursday's a salt -- assault was the second major operation by the army and police against the militant stronghold. last month, heavily armed supporters of ousted president mohamed morsi killed 15 police officers and mutilated their bodies. we stay in egypt now where the military backed government has been stepping up its oppression of muslim brotherhood strongholds. >> their efforts have gone unchecked by the entry's court system. the military might not be in power now were it not for judiciary support. let's take a closer look at the role the courts have laid since
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egypt's revolution began. >> cairo, september 2013, the egyptian military is in charge. former president mohamed morsi sits behind bars awaiting trial. the muslim brotherhood leader is charged with inciting violence. dozens of egyptian journalists they scramble charges like this man charged with defamation, espionage, and endangering national security. critics say the accusations are politically motivated, but they remain unchallenged. >> the justice system did not just play and assisting role during this process of transition. no, it in effect dominated and steered the process. >> in january 2011, demonstrators demanded an end to the mubarak regime and reforms to the justice system. egypt's supreme court system responded with a decree the court system take precedence.
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in june 2012, the court declared parliamentary elections held six months earlier to be invalid. the newly elected parliament was dissolved. in defiance, mohamed morsi took the presidential oath. the night before, he had sworn a symbolic oath of office in front of tens of thousands of supporters. in december 2012, the power struggle between the courts and president morsi escalated as judges resisted new legislation proposed by morsi to limit the courts' powers and hand them over to the executive branch. morsi had to cave in. in june 2013, the constitutional court stymied the new muslim brotherhood government by declaring the upper house of parliament illegitimate. furthermore, the court pronounced morsi's hard-won constitution to be inadmissible. a month later, in july 2013, the
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military finally ousted the muslim brotherhood from government, installing the head of the constitutional court as interim president. opposition demonstrations were brutally suppressed. >> the military makes the political decisions. the court finds justification for these decisions or creates a legal basis for them. >> the trials of hosni mubarak and the leaders of the muslim brotherhood began on the same day. members of the muslim brotherhood were not allowed to attend, officially for their own safety. the party leader and his fellow defendants had to stay in prison. mubarak, meanwhile, was released on bail and flown out of jail in a helicopter. >> now to iran, wherein a surprise move, the government has freed 11 high profile political prisoners. many observers have raised the move. >> it comes just ahead of the united nation -- united nations
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assembly meeting next week. >> good news from tehran from the european parliament's subcommittee on human rights. >> a human rights lawyer has been released from prison, so that is encouraging. >> and iran, he has not only promoted women's rights but also opposed the death penalty, which was too much for the regime of resident ahmad and a jot. in 2011, she was sentenced to 11 years in prison and band is working -- band -- banned from working as a lawyer. her work was recognized by the european armament, who awarded her a prize for freedom of thought. she shared the prize with a dissident iranian film director.
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the release of the 11 political prisoners is a sign that the new iranian president is serious about relaxing his predecessor's hard-line policies. two journalists are among those released. the move barely made a ripple in conservative press. she looks forward to returning to her work as a lawyer and fighting injustice and iran again, but above all, she will be able to accompany her son on his first day of school, something she said would help her forget the suffering of recent years. >> that's all from us for now. >> thanks so much for being with us. captioned by the national captioning institute --www.ncicap.org-- --www.ncicap.org--
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