tv France 24 Mid- Day News LINKTV December 31, 2013 2:30pm-3:01pm PST
2011. a record amount of pyrotechnics. trademark flashy dubai style. for quite a going while yet. the latest country to welcome in year, he state of dubai. well, to our top story this hour -- good news for france as the year draws to a close. a french catholic priest held hostage in cameroon has been freed. georges vandenbeusch had been held prisoner by the group boko haram. held,er 48 days being georges vandenbeusch is finally free. priest spoke of his weeks in captivity. there was the anger of being
separated, but i told myself a keeping mele were and i was praying that everything would be ok. >> tuesday, his release was confirmed with a statement on the website. paris's was a sign of resolve. >> it shows we should never lose hope for our hostages. in order to ensure their safe release, there are two conditions. government's steadfast determination and its discretion. >> georges vandenbeusch had been working in cameroon since 2011. gunmen -- 15 gunmen erskine to his compound. some of his belongings were
later found in nigeria. france denied reports that it paid ransom for his release. to arrive in due paris wednesday, greeted by his family and the french president area -- and the french president . >> we will have more on that story. i am joined by an analyst who specializes in the middle east and north africa. thank you for being with us. comesood news as the year to an end. the speculation that france paid a ransom, does that take away from that? >> no, i think the speculation will remain in the days following this announcement. obviously there is a little bit of euphoria, and rightly's which follows of the release of hostages in france and elsewhere. in the coming days, i think we will get more information on how this release was secured. i think many people will no doubt be concerned that a ransom
that was the case in mali, in the new territory, with french hostages just a few months back. so, the french government will obviously have to answer some of those questions that are going to be raised by the press and by those who might be saying a ransom was paid. thus far, they have claimed that no ransom was paid and negotiations were undertaken by cameroonian and nigerian officials. we will have to wait and see for now. , they are am nigerian-based group. if indeed it was boko haram ,olding georges vandenbeusch why are they taking their activities across the border in cameroon? >> i think they have been put under extreme pressure by nigerian authorities who are battling the group and the north of the country. you'll probably seen the news
haram has been seen on the back swing over the past few weeks. the nigerian army has reported excesses, killing quite a few militants there. it is no surprise that boko haram and other groups affiliated to it have been using neighboring countries where they are able to operate perhaps under less pressure, less the nigerian army. like cameroon, chad, niger. they also utilize some of the mountains for training. cameroon has worked for them as a backspace, particularly when it comes to taking hostages. i would just like to remind that this is not the first french hostage taken in cameron by this group. a family was taken hostage also by the same group. supper they were also released, were they? -- were also released, weren't they? i was going to ask you about that.
>> i think some of these groups, these jihadist groups, these islamic militant groups throughout west africa, they perceive an interest in carrying out these attacks because the benefits financially when the ransom is paid. exposure, theyf are able to gain publicity, to really set the tone for the region in which they are operating. and obviously entice new recruits by showing them these financial rewards that come with these kidnappings. the ransomissue of is addressed immediately in a coherent way, a cohesive way i -- by the stage, we will see more attacks throughout the region to my carried out by a whole range of groups, not just boko haram. >> thank you very much indeed. the head of south sudan's
warring factions have agreed to hold talks. and riek salva kiir machar have agreed to talks. riek machar is accused of trying to launch a coup. mediators say that moves are afoot to start peace talks in south sudan. and formeralva kiir vice president riek machar have agreed to talks. talks are to begin on tuesday. machar has previously said he was not prepared to sign any such deal, nor to meet the president. ar said there was no cessation of violence and his forces were advancing on the byital am a claim disputed the south sudanese military. several thousand are believed to have been killed in clashes since the timber 15.
some 100,000 people have been forced to flee their homes. >> the french foreign minister has kicked up a chore of the inek -- a tour of the region west africa. servings committed to along the human mandated force until order is restored. there is been further violence between shiite and sunni muslims. the operation triggered an immediate backlash. hasthe prime minister pledged to withdraw troops from the mainly sunni anbar province. >> the remains of the raman the adi camp, shown on
iraqi tv. access to the major highway, which was blocked for year, finally able to reopen. clashes on monday between iraqi police and armed men left a dozen dead and a number of sunni protesters injured. the shiite prime minister has and withinltimatum, foreclosure, political fallout. 44 lawmakers submitted resignations. monday's fighting spread to the nearby city of falluja, where took vehicles. elsewhere, iraqi military hunting down al qaeda fighters in a bid to stem the violence. -- sunnisters
protesters in the thousands denounce the government. theyhiite government, claim, imposes discriminatory policies against them. >> and norway and denmark, awaiting the removal of dangerous chemical weapons from syria. bad weather has hampered the operation, meaning a key deadline has been missed. ambitiousow to the timetable to rid syria of chemical weapons by next june. theircloser to achieving goal of removing chemical agents from syria. this norwegian frigate is one of those two transport syria's chemical arsenal to a specially equipped american vessel to be destroyed. but bad weather means the december 31 deadline for their removal will not be met. >> there is a delay, yes. of course there is a clear determination by all parties to achieve success and complete
removal and disruption of the chemical weapons program. >> this operation was to be the first major milestone on the road to rid syria of chemical weapons. last august, these scenes of a sarin after attack -- gas attack blamed on the assad regime brought the united states to the brink of a military strike on syria. an agreement brokered by russia saw damascus agree to international monitoring and the destruction of some 100,000 tons of chemical agents. >> it is assad regime's responsibility to transport the safelyls to the ports, to facilitate their removal. we expect them to meet that obligation. that is the next and this recess. the deadlines were ambitious. the organization has been charged with the complete
destruction of syria's chemical arsenal by the end of june. >> the french president runs while lawns has been giving his annual new year speech -- françois hollande has been giving his annual new year's speech. theaddress focused on economy. >> we are justified in asking to make efforts, and i know what represent. taxes have become heavy, too heavy, and accounts of accumulating over several years. 13 -- in 2013, unemployment has remained at a high level, even though it has improved over the last few months. the choicesnt of i've made for the country.
>> and michael's schumacher's condition has improved anchor mentally. he is not out of ainge are. schumacher who turns 45 on friday, underwent a second operation overnight to relieve pressure on his brain. he is still in a medically induced,. this is his doctor speaking. control overtter the situation. michael schumacher is not out of danger, but we have a bit more time for our medical ross is. -- our medical process. the next few hours will be crucial. >> now, is it already 2014 where you are? around the world, countries have been reading the new year. dubai in trademark flashy fashion. they are still going over in dubai. 400,000 -- that should get them in the books. the last time the record was set
was in 2011. that was 77,000. tens of thousands of muscovites in red square in the russian capital. you see that they were also treated to us secular fireworks display as the new year our did. there you can see. pyrotechnics exploding over the dome of the kremlin. and serious security checks this year area -- this year. -- against suspicion of terrorist attacks. we will bring you more pictures like that throughout the night on "france 24." a reminder of the headlines at this hour. add in vandenbeusch free cameron. he was held in -- several weeks.
france has denied paying a ransom. nouri al-maliki says he is withdrawing troops from anbar province after dozens of lawmakers threatened to quit. syria has missed the key deadline for the strutting its chemical weapons. ships from scandinavia failed to ache away chemical weapons, forced to turn back. time now to get the latest business news. mark carlson is with us in the studio. we're about to get a new member of the eurozone? ofindeed. the 18th member the eurozone is latvia. the latvian economy is relatively tall with a population of around 2 million people. but latvia's membership is still seen as a vote of confidence for the eurozone. there is much speculation that the single currency area could fall apart. not everyone is no enthusiastic -- is so enthusiastic. mark
brown explains. sightn set to be a common in latvia. they become the 18th member of the single currency, but latvians are scared the transition will be accompanied by inflation. some quote you know other countries that switched before us, -- >> you know other countries that switched before us, prices went up. they could go up. , two, and that is bad. >> two out of three latvians are joining, meaning the government is struggling to sell its decision, insisting being part of the euro will boost the economy. best.ryone has done their we can be confident latvia is really prepared for the production of the euro. >> at the heart of the european entry is a cause for celebration, a sign that the
single currency is still attractive. >> this is a major event. lafayette, but for the -- not only for latvia, but for the european union itself. downturn, 2008re saw gdp shrink by a fifth. now latvia's growth is forecast in 2014, higher than any of the current eurozone members. onto the stock markets next. 2013 was a stellar year for global stocks. it was the story we were looking at yesterday. let's look at how wall street shares are doing this session. we see stocks extend their gains, as consumer confidence in december. also house prices rose. that is boosting hopes that the housing market is recovering states.the knighted
we are seeing a reflection of that in equities. the very last session of 2013. here in europe, the ftse ended with short gains. it was a short session for the london and harris indices. frankfurt's doubled back on that monday, and that is why we are not including that index in this graphic as we usually do. next up, a street fight heating up in france. a company will rebel against a new rule that limits how quickly they can pick up passengers. chauffeurs will have to wait 15 minutes after an online booking before starting the ride. this follows intense lobbying why taxidrivers who say they do of thed an extension same taxi licenses they do. >> it is completely artificial. why should we have this handicap?
it is not logical. is why the competition watchdog, which is completely independent, does not favor one opening over another, handed down a clear judgment against this ruling. >> ok, we have one more story to tell you. you see the french government has issued a decree allowing home-improvement stores to stay open on sundays. this after heated debate here in france in recent months on sunday opening hours. retailers have been going for an overhaul of the rules that regulate sunday trading. have wanted to keep the current rules. there are strings attached to be government decree, our. it will only last until july 2015 when the government reviews the rules. from then on, we will have to wait and he what happens. but that i will wrap up the business roundup for now. happy new year to all of you. new year to you as
well. hope you make it a good one. we will have new news for you. we's find out which stocks have been picking and sharing over the last a. -- the last day. >> hello and welcome to today's web news. we look at some of the stories making online headlines. coming up on today's show. after petrograd bombings. -- although grad bombings. and the cost of the damage done "diehard" films. russian web users in shock inlowing the deadly bombings
ograd. as you can see from this footage, an explosion hit the trolley bus on monday morning. the attacks brought panic to the southwestern russian city, meaning another beside bombing began circulating on social networks. tosengers have been advised avoid public transport. been payingrs have tribute to a hero. the 29-year-old was killed in sunday's bombing as he tried to stop a female suicide bomber from entering the train station. the press has named one of the suicide bombers as suicide bom- year-old young woman. web users have identified another user. she has set the record straight, saying that she was alive and withand had nothing to do
the bombings before deleting all of her photos. this telephone call from a panicked nurse is one of .housands of documents just one year on from the terrible sandy hook shooting, the documentation was made public of the massive investigation. state urgencyt department explains the move. more disturbing elements of the investigation urgency department explains the move. more disturbing elements of the numeroustion -- reports and photos from the crime scene. documents provided very clear that sure of what happened on the day of the shooting when the killer arrived in the car, when he entered the holding, and 26
people were gunned down and killed, some of them hiding in a classroom. the shooter, adam lanza, a former student at the school, is at the center of the investigation. he killed himself before he could explain his a actions -- his actions. drawings and press cuttings his personal show a fascination violence. police photographs show his substantial collection of weapons. violence. police photographs show his substantial collection of weapons. these documents fueled the on gun control in the u.s. believed to have been written in the eighth century bc, homer's odyssey has been translated into many different languages with
different copies distributed worthwhile. it is ranked number six among the most popular stories of all time. a must for bookworms. series alsotter ranked in the little red book. in the harry potter universe, the ministry of magic is the government that oversees the wizard thing world. zarding world. a welcome page tells us that the national magical holiday will be held on july 12, 2014 and the wizard community should make alternative accommodations for christmas. the transport network will be closed out during the holidays. the miserable men instagram
account shows what men get up to at the shopping malls. there are some 380 photographs of men looking none too excited about the whole thing. the page has photos.000 it is enough to bring a compassionate smile to the face of any man who has ever been dragged out shopping. with a kick here and mass x was sure there asked -- with a kick here and kick here and mass x ws sure there asked -- with a kick there,d mass explosion action euros a way of destroying everything. the die hard series is no exception. we have a detailed account in this video entitled "what is the damage?"
12/31/13 12/31/13 [captioning made possible by democracy now!] >> from pacifica, this is democracy now! >> the government has decided to declare the muslim brotherhood a terrorist group and its organization a terrorist organization as defined in article 86 of the penal law. >> egypt escalates its crackdown on the muslim brotherhood and other critical voices arresting