tv BBC World News America WHUT May 29, 2012 6:30pm-7:00pm EDT
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>> this is "bbc world news america." women and children shot at close range in syria as western powers bit more details about the massacre in houla. >> we will increase the international pressure on the regime. >> he will be the republican to take on barack obama. tonight, we track mitt romney's journey on the long, contingence -- contentious campaign trail.
welcome to our viewers on pbs in america and around the globe. 10 western nations to the court and needed step of expelling syrian diplomats. the unusual move came in response to more gruesome revelations about the syrian government's massacre of women and children in houla last friday. the u.n. envoy called those killings the tipping point. our diplomatic correspondent starts the coverage. >> syrian shelling of heavily populated areas was only part of the slaughter of civilians which has caused such international outrage. the u.n. says most victims were murdered inside their homes by the president's militias.
tonight, france's president says it is not possible to allow the merc -- allow the regime to massacre its own people. he is not ruling out international military intervention. >> it is not excluded, provided it is carried out under international law, authorized by the u.n. security council resolution. >> at the white house, they are talking down suggestions of armed intervention in syria. >> we do not believe that further militarization of the situation is the right course of action. we believed it would lead to greater chaos and greater carnage. >> one thing seems clear, russia would veto any attempt to intervene in syria. russia would not repeat it standards site at babson chat as in the case of libya. instead saw the coordinated expulsion of syrian diplomats.
this was the ambassador in spain after being told to get out. britain and the united states were among others ordering syrian officials,. >> we will go on trying to increase international pressure on the regime. this is part of that. >> serious top diplomats and others at the embassy in london have been given seven days to leave britain. it is part of concerted worldwide exploration from many capitals designed to send a strong signal to president bashar al-assad. in damascus, the u.n. special envoy burned president -- urged president bashar al-assad to stop the killing. but the president denied having anything to do with the deaths. it didn't look like a meeting of minds. >> we are at a tipping point. the syrian people do not want a future to be one of bloodshed
and division. yet the killings continue and the abuses are with us today. >> if the massacre is a tipping point, it could be to still greater violence. the regime has so far always calculated that its survival depends on overwhelming force, not on dialogue. >> for more on the diplomatic moves to isolate the regime, i spoke to the u.s. state department spokesman. i have to say after the events of the last few days, what happened with the international community looked like little more than a slap on the rest. >> a with a political statement above all else. it was a way of saying to the regime, we reject your political representatives. you have clearly crossed a moral line in conducting the
terrible tragedy. >> it looked like more than 30 children were executed. all of the international community can do is expelled diplomats? >> we are doing a lot more than that. this is frustrating work. boranes -- more remains to be done. we continue to apply the right mix of political pressure and economic pressure and bring it to bear on bashar al-assad. they need to realize they are on the wrong side of history. this is taking a long time, but it is tough diplomatic work. >> so far, that mix of political and economic pressure does not seem to have changed things on the ground in syria. the situation is getting worse. >> we have seen the monitors deployed and provide some what of a positive impact on the ground. you are absolutely right and
that the regime has failed to comply with any of the six aspects of this plan. it is very frustrating. >> what more can the united states do to try to change the situation in syria? if this is not the time for military intervention? >> you are right and that we still believe there is time for diplomatic solution. we never take any option off the table. secretary clinton said that we will assess the kofi annan plan. we will make adjustments based on that. >> how much more time do you need? this has been going on for over a year. willfi annan and's deputy brief the security council tomorrow in new york. we will wait for the outcome of that. we will consult with their partners on the security council. >> thank you very much.
speaking about a possible next steps, the french president said a military intervention is not ruled out. i was joined in the studio by the former foreign minister of jordan. you're listening to mark turner at the state department. not much of a plan coming out of washington. >> no, you are facing a situation where washington does not intend to do much because of the presidential campaign. the mood in the country does not support that. you also have the russian and chinese position which are not supportive of any type of view. you also have a divided opposition and syria that has not come up with a clear plan for the day after. all of this is leading to what
we see today, a continuation, a prolonging of the problem. >> it does not sound like the timetable for doing anything different is imminent. we have kofi annan as saying that we are at a tipping point. what kind of the tipping point? what happens after the so called tipping point? >> kofi annan had the six-point plan, which has not been implemented by the regime in damascus. in the political process -- to any political process is not going to -- is not something the regime is interested in it. i am afraid we are going to see more of this in the short term. there are indications that the russians and americans are more willing to work with each other for different reasons. we might see some kind of
cooperation that was not there before. we have seen the first sort of example of this yesterday when the un security council issued a statement condemning the massacre, stating that both the russians and chinese supported it for the first time. >> we have the saudis, who are giving some sort of support to the rebels. you have the jordanian government saying we want more of a diplomatic solution. is there a coordinated arab voice? >> the arab states are divided on this issue. the syrian state -- the syrian regime has little chance of being accepted in the region. they differ on how to go about affecting the ousting of mr.
assad. most of the other arab states cannot. i do not think we can expect an arab league decision in that direction. >> frustration around the world. >> this is going to take some time, i am afraid. >> the question of what to do about syria has now become an issue in the american presidential campaign. with a presumptive republican nominee mitt romney accusing president obama of being too timid. he made the comments as he moved to officially clinched the republican nomination. he should reach the winning number of delegates after today's primary votes in texas. our north american editor has been tracking the progress. >> mitt romney has not been handed his job on a plate.
it has been a long fight since last summer for the right to fight president obama for the white house. they are neck and neck in the polls. >> this man is out of ideas, out of excuses, and in november, we will vote him out of office. >> politics is in his blood. his dad was a car company boss who became the governor of michigan. he is a mormon. he became a bishop in his church. he is a billionaire. he was a governor of massachusetts, successful and moderate. he made a play for the presidency four years ago. >> i was not born with a silver spoon in my mouth. >> that could matter in some states like pennsylvania, a
vital to the election chances. the industrial heartland has been hit hard by unemployment. obama is unpopular with the white working-class here. but local union workers do not find mitt romney that appealing. >> that 1%. >> i do not think me and him would be drinking. i do not see a lot of similarities. >> do you think he drinks beer? >> as a mormon, he does not drink any alcohol. >> i do not see him drinking beer. >> these are their purse wadable. the workers coming out of this plant brought the's economic message is aimed at men like these.
>> he said some things that it got my attention. he says a few things i have to wonder about. it is going to be one of those things. >> dispirited this fight has gone on so long because -- this fight has gone on for so long. >> he is not conservative enough. for my taste, anyway. he will probably be better than obama, but for me, no. hard to win states like this. his supporters believe he has a real chance of becoming america's next president. >> it is going to be a very tight race. a quick look at some other news. former friends of the norwegian mass killer anders breivik have
described how he had cosmetic surgery on his nose. they were giving evidence at his trial in oslo. his friends thought it was a vanity project. the man who may be the next egyptian president has been trying to reassure voters worried about the growing power of islamist. the muslim brother had -- brotherhood candidate said he will include a wide range of political sources in his government. the authorities in ukraine have described allegations of racism highlighted in a program as invented. the co-host of next month's european championships for responding after secret filming showed footage of fans giving nazi salutes and taunting black players. for the second time in less than two weeks, at a strong
earthquake has hit northern italy, killing at least 15 people. many more have been injured and a number are still missing. there appear to be trapped under the rubble. >> that moment of realization as another earthquake strikes. it caught them in these tents because the last quake, just nine days ago, force them from their homes. all across this region, buildings already battered where it -- were struck again, damaged heat on damage. the fears that when this warehouse came crashing down, people were trapped in the rubble. others had narrow escapes. >> i was inside. thankfully, the roof beam stayed up, but it was terrible. >> people here were just beginning the routine of their
day when the earthquake struck at 9:00 in the morning. >> there was a huge bang. i was shaving and i ran out quickly, i was not completely dressed. i came to my other house. i am a little bit worried to go and. -- go in. the emergency workers are well aware how badly traumatized people were by the first quake. some had only just found the courage to venture back to their homes. the prime minister has promised to do all he can to help this twice stricken region. >> i would like to assure everyone that the italian state will do everything it must do in the shortest possible time to guarantee the return to normal life in this area. >> even after two major
earthquakes in the past nine days, the feeling is the earth still has not settled. there was a major aftershocks a few hours ago and going into the night, everybody will be braced of the possibility of more aftershocks. >> you are watching "bbc world news america." bulldozer policy in the middle east. israel is accused of ethnic cleansing as it knocks down palestinian homes it says were built illegally. as china's economy continues to thrive, so does the building boom. cities such as beijing are attracting the world top architects. some believe china is sacrificing too much of its heritage. from beijing, this report. >> china's cities are constantly changing.
as the economy has boomed, the skylines absorbed. beijing is at the cutting edge of architecture. this is the capital. a futuristic office building symbolizing the new. in the last 10 years, more than half of beijing's old neighborhoods have been demolished. to make way for office buildings, shopping malls, and apartments. this is the battleground for china's development. in the last decade, the cities have been transformed people are saying more must be done to protect the country's past. this is the latest slated for demolition. he spent the last decade documenting the destruction of old beijing. >> beijing is losing siits soul.
it was a city of history and we now have no culture left. >> there are pockets of preservation. this traditional beijing alleyway is now a major tourist draw. >> i like it here. we do not have anything like it in my hometown. >> hard cash also -- often trump's heritage. for beijing, it is about finding a balance between the old and new. >> conflict is a fact of life in the occupy west bank in areas where israel maintains a presence. the influence it stretches from concerts -- security matters to building controls. there has been a big increase in
the number of palestinian homes demolished by israeli forces. our correspondent has this report. >> this is what palestinians have called ethnic cleansing. demolitions and evictions carried out by israel in the west bank. in this tiny village, in january of this year. are you not scared that gobbled you for this?ichs israel says they have failed to get permits to build. this is the remote palestinian village. life is pretty basic. with palms cut into the rock face. the families here are threaten ed with eviction spirits the israeli army wants the area for a firing zone.
he tells me he was born in this case. he said the israeli bulldozers will have to bury him alive. some have already lost their livelihood. this was a palestinian restaurant near bethlehem. a few days after israeli forces flattened this, the owner showed me what was left. >> 12 years. >> finished. the israeli government says he did not have a permit to build here. >> people build restaurants without proper authorization and. they get a warning and democracy takes its time.
>> israel said it also demolishes some illegal buildings put up by jews. while it is impossible for them to build on land like this, jewish settlements like this one continued to grow. just about every other country, apart from israel, says that is illegal under international law. the israeli settlement construction and demolition of palestinian homes is happening on land where the palestinian and israeli leaders should have said they want to build a future state of palestine. a state that many believe is becoming increasingly unlikely. >> they normally hang around urban parks for they perform heart dropping tricks. extreme unicycling has gained ground with a particular devoted group of fanatics in canada. he told us how the sport caught
his eye. ♪ >> we are here in montreal. i am an extremely unicycle is. -- unicyclist. ♪ i started 10 years ago. we were doing circus activities in the elementary school. a couple of years later, i started to get into it any more extreme way. i discovered that i was not the only one doing it. i started to look on the internet and found videos and that is how i got into it. ♪
it started and the circus about 100 years ago. people were dry -- were jumping over obstacles. i do it more street riding. being creative with what is around us and the city. -- in the city. mostly on the internet, there is a big forum. we exchanged tips. most of the people are on that website. it has taken me to new zealand, then to san francisco, los angeles, now i am flying to italy.
in madison, wisconsin, i match the current world record. since i matched the world record, it has been beaten again by the same guy. in the future, i would like to compete. we can still invent tracks, we can be creative. the feeling you get is really different from a bicycle. you are only touching the ground with one and that is a great feeling. >> amazing, but also slightly crazy. that brings the program to a close.
i will see you back here tomorrow. internationalof news at bbc.com/news. >> funding was made possible by the freeman foundation of new york, stowe, vermont, and honolulu. newman's own foundation. and union bank. >> at union bank, our relationship managers work hard to know your business, offering specialized solutions and capital to help you meet your growth objectives. we offer expertise and tailored solutions for small businesses and major corporations. what can we do for you?
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