tv BBC World News PBS April 1, 2011 5:00am-5:30am EDT
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corporations. what can we do for you? >> and now, "bbc world news." >> beyond dispute in ivory coast intensifies with fierce fighting around the presidential palace. the rebles in libya lose more depround, an envoy from the libyan government reportedly holds secret talks in london. and thousands of military personnel begin a three-day intensive search for those still missing in japan. welcome to "bbc world news." i'm peter dobbie. also in this program -- thousands of north africans migrant to moved to the mainland to ease chronic overcrowding. and prince william keeps his wedding nerves in check by concentrating on work. >> it's quite daunting prospect, but very exciting, and i'm thoroughly looking forward to it.
but there's still a lot of planning to be done in the last four weeks. >> troops supporting the democratically elected president of ivory coast, alassane ouattara, appear poised for a final push to unseat his rival, laurent gbagbo, who's still refusing to give up the presidency. the area controlled by mr. fwab gab has shrunk to a relatively small area near his residence in the main city of abidjan, where reports say a swedish u.n. employee has been shot and killed. mike wooldridge now with the latest. >> in what looks increasingly like the final showdown, intense fighting has been taking place around the residence of the man who refused to cede power since november's election. apparently with only his most loyal forces left to protect him now, laurent gbagbo still appeared to be holding out.
>> special forces controlled by the president cannot resist, all of them are withdrawing, running away. and there are serious gun fires surrounded. >> another abidjan residence said there had been explosions so loud, they made the earth shake. but the last word from a spokesman for laurent gbagbo was that he would not give up. >> when you come to a fight, we're going to put up a fight. the president is not going to step down. he's been elected for five years, and we're going to fight if it come to it. what will will, will come. but we pray that to the glory of god things will be ok. >> french troops from the troops stationed in the ivory coast have been on patrol, and
the military say some 500 foreigners sought refuge in a french military camp. there have been four months of political stalemate since most of the world recognized alassane ouattara as the winner of the election and urged his rival to acknowledge defeat and step down. during that time mr. ouattara has been protected by the u.n., but also blockaded by mr. gbagbo's forces. the situation changed when forces loyal to alassane ouattara in the north of ivory coast launched a swift offensive southwards to put military pressure on mr. gbagbo, where political pressure and mediation had failed to bring results. mike wooldridge, bbc news. >> and mike wooldridge, our world affairs correspondent, is with me now. why is it, given this has been going on since november, why is it that ouattara supporters now feel reinvigorated over the past 10 days or two weeks? >> i think for two reasons
probably, but clearly a strategic decision has been taken by mr. ouattara and those around him that they should turn it into -- if you like a more conventional military campaign, bringing these, as we've just seen, quite well trained soldiers down from the north to try to take territory that has been under mr. gbagbo's control in the south. mr. gbagbo has been losing territory in the course that these forces have come down southwards from the old cease-fire line after an earlier civil war eight, nine years ago. but on top of all that, what they've seen in the last 24, 36 hours is increasingly the disintegration of mr. gbagbo's forces, of the regular army, he could count on, to some extent, until this week and also the police force as well. they've simply been melting away. they notice longer seem to be so willing to fight for him. i'm sure that all of that has goldened both mr. ouattara himself and his forces. >> and the knock-on effect is
huge, not just inside ivory coast, but also there are now serious humanitarian questions with the neighboring countries, countries like liberia, for example. >> absolutely. since the elections, there have been people displaced, concerning the u.n. and aid agencies. a number of those people have crossed out of ivory coast into liberia in particular, camps set up there now. and indeed, there have been people actually trapped in the fighting, this on-off fighting that's been going on over the past four months as well. we don't know what their position is now. all of this is giving rise to much international concern at the moment. although there have been renewed appeals for mr. gbagbo to step down to resolve the issue that way, there have also been appeals from the u.n., from u.s., from france and others that restraint should be shown by the military forces and civilians are protected and specifically that there should not be revenge attacks. there's certainly concern about that. >> mr. gbagbo is literally
quite isolated now. do we know what thinks potential exit strategies are? i must be thinking about that, given that the army and police, as you say, have melted away. >> he's been offered all sorts of exit strategies, particularly by african mediators, by the african union, and also by the regional group over the last four months. at the suggestion from the ouattara camp, those political options are running out. i mean, they clearly see that the military showdown, but i think it's also to keep up the pressure on him. doesn't necessarily rule out that if he were to say the game's up and i want to go, some accommodation would be found. >> mike, thanks very much. the bbc has learned that an envoy from colonel gaddafi's regime in libya has had talks with officials in london. senior aide mohammed ismail was told the leader has to give up power. this follows the flight to britain on wednesday night of the former foreign minister, mr. koussa. and there are more reports that more members. libyan regime may now be defecting.
>> in libya, opposition forces are continuing to lose ground to colonel gaddafi's troops. nato has ruled out providing them with arms. one consolation was the defection of the foreign minister, moussa koussa, to britain. there are unconfirmed reports several more libyan ministers and diplomats may follow his lead. it's also understood that an envoy from tripoli held talks with british officials in london. it seems the representative may have wanted to explore possible exit strategies for the libyan leader. the foreign office wouldn't confirm the meeting, it said its message remains the same. but colonel gaddafi must give up power. it's also hoped moussa koussa will be able to provide invaluable information about the libyan leader. for over 30 years, he was a key figure in his government. british intelligence will now be trying to find out what role he may have played in the lockerbie bombing and whether he has more information about the death of w.p. fletcher, who was killed by shots fired from
the libyan embassy in 1984. the government has said moussa koussa has not been offered immunity from prosecution, but if he is charged, there's always the risk it will discourage further defections. >> two sets of jobless figures out. one any moment now, we're talking about the eurozone countries, but kicking off with the united states as well. >> absolutely. let's not kid ourselves, this is the last of the heavyweight, sort of bearing down or hanging on the u.s. economy. we're expecting some positive news, just like we saw last month. economists are expecting around a job creation of 203,000 jobs in march. again, it comes off the back of positive numbers in february. in fact, if we got above the 200,000, it would be the third month in a row we've seen that level. it would be the sixth month in a row where we're seeing private payrolls increase, and that is certainly an absolutely good sign, although the unemployment rate still likely to be around the 8.9% at the moment. that's likely not to change.
and an interesting point is if having this sustainable growth, it will mean a lot of people who have taken themselves out of the labor market, they've given up looking while it was kind of dire. if they start seeing it picking up steam, they'll get back into the job hunt, and that will probably, over the next few months, raise the unemployment rate once again above 9%. but as long as we're seeing some solid job creation of around the 200,000 mark every month, then that's a good, sustainable growth for u.s. jobs. >> and what's the picture for the eurozone countries? >> well -- sorry. it will be two speeds. actually, today's really likely -- any time now we're going to get these numbers in the eurozone, but it is very likely to show the evidence against of the disparity we're seeing. here's an example, and i'll use the number 20. german unemployment, the driving force of the eurozone unemployment is 7.1%. that's a 20-year low. spain, they've got 20%
unemployment, and that is likely just it continue around that mark. so the disparity we're seeing in the eurozone will continue. and all of this very interesting when we're expecting the european central bank and the u.s. fed, mind you, to very soon -- probably sooner rather than later -- start raising interest rates. so we'll be keeping our eyes on that. but as soon as the numbers are out, i'll bring them to you and have more in 20 minutes on the "world business report." >> anti-government protesters in syria are calling for rallies. their calls come a day after the president ordered a new judicial committee to look into lifting the country's state of emergency since 1963. the u.s. government is advising its people in syria to consider leaving the country. reports from tonga say the captain of a ferry which sank in 2009 killing 74 people has been found guilty of manslaughter. three other defendants, including the former chief executive of the company that operated the ship, were also convicted. the judgment follows an official inquiry that said the
ferry was not sea worthy. let's get more on libya, live now to eastern libya and my bbc colleague, ben brown. ben, just as far as the rebels are concerned, they've been trying to regroup, but the reality surely is they're still not well enough trained or armed. >> yeah, trying to regroup, peter, trying to advance. but each time they do that, they seem to be pushed back by colonel gaddafi's forces who have, no doubt about it, vast superiority in terms of long-range weaponry, artillery, tanks, missiles, grad rockets, that sort of thing, which the rebels on the whole, although they do have some rockets, they don't really have very much of an answer to those overwhelming forces that gaddafi has. in fact, the american military have been talking about the difference in saying that it's something like 10-1 in terms of superiority that colonel gaddafi's armed forces have.
despite the days of coalition air strikes we've seen, the americans also saying that so far something like 25% of gaddafi's military machine has been destroyed. so only a quarter has been destroyed by the air power. that leaves 75%, which is still doing great damage, it seems, to the rebels, who are not able to make much headway. they've been fighting just down the road from here in and around breya, the town that keeps changing hands. that seems to be the sort of front line between the rebels and colonel gaddafi's forces. the city where we are, which was recaptured by the rebels last weekend, is looking quite vulnerable. if there is to be another advance, certainly people are worried, so worried that most of the civilians who only just came back into this town have now fled again. we've been seeing families piling into their cars and driving off to benghazi just to get out of here in case gaddafi's people come back. >> ben, thanks very much.
you're watching "bbc world news." still to come -- prince william keeps his wedding nerves in check by concentrating on work. someone keeping a close eye on events in libya is the former military ruler of pakistan. he seized power in a coup in 1999, and his declaration of a state of emergency and clampdowns on the judiciary in 2007 led him to be should notted as a dictator by the west. he's now living in london. he's had a conversation with the bbc's anita annan. >> there are dictatorships going back 35 years. people are learning for change. they want democracy, human rights, they want freedom. absolutely democratically elected, people are running to bring about a change. they want dictatorship.
so what is the issue? what is the issue? the issue is the welfare of the people and the development of the state. if that is not going on, especially economic development is not getting translated into welfare of the people, development of the states, justice to all. there's discontentment in the people. >> sir, am i reading you right in saying that a good dick share theship is good as a bad democracy, just matters that the people have food on their table? a zaw that bother you? >> well, in that case, i know there's a lot of politics involved in trying to scare me and victimize me. i'm not bothered. >> well, let me ask you the direct question. did you know anything about the assassination attempt -- >> i don't want to -- i don't want to -- i don't want to
discuss that. it is now in the courts. let it be decided there. but as far as the assassination attempt, certainly i didn't know. >> general musharraf, thank you very much for being with us. >> thank you. >> this is "bbc world news." i'm peter dobbie. these are the top stories. the battle for control of ivory coast has erupted in the heart of abidjan, the residence of laurent gbagbo. it's under attack from rival troops. as the rebels in libya lose more ground, an envoy from the libyan government is reportedly holding secret talks in london. let's get more on what's going on in and around ivory coast, talking specifically for the next few minutes and momentarily about the refugee crisis. people trying to leave ivory coast. they're crossing the borders into countries such as liberia. live now to the border and
hilde johnson, unicef deputy executive director. hilde has been there to assess the situation of children and families affected by the refugee crisis. hilde johnson, how bad is it? how many people are we talking about? >> we don't have a full view actually at the moment, but there is no doubt that as the rebels are on the other side have moved down, there is an increased influx coming over, and they have yet to be registered. but in total, we are expecting -- we're seeing numbers up to -- up to 150,000. now, should the situation deteriorate further, we're talking about much larger numbers. but there's no doubt we are in the massive humanitarian crisis situation, and it is very much a children's emergency, balls the majority of those coming over are women and children, particularly children. >> we're talking about a long journey here for most people. how are they making the trip? >> they're walking. some are able to get on a
truck, but that's quite few. so i spoke to a number of refugees, and many of them have been walking and marching through the rain forest and getting across rivers, etc. quite a dramatic journey. i spoke to actually someone who had been with a woman who was giving birth in the middle of the rain forest. she died, and they had to take the children over across the border, and they were now without family, and they were trying to help them. these are desperate situations that people are in. we're now in the situation where we have to really beef up our response in terms of speed and scale to be able to respond to the crisis. >> ok, when you talk about beefing up your resources, i assume when we're discussing the host countries, liberia in this case, that is a particularly impoverished country anyway, so how do the villages and the towns coping
with so many people coming through? >> i visited several of the host community villages, and they're completely overwhelmed. they're also seeing assistance coming too slow and too late and inadequate. so here, we need to see more resources, but also more speed in our delivery. there's a major hurdle here, and that is the lodge school challenge to get the assistance on time to the refugee communities and the host communities, which are, as you say, desperately poor. we need to actually improve the roads to be able to get there on time. that's another thing that we're increasing collectively, but we certainly need a much higher response in terms of resources to be able to deliver to all of them that are coming over. >> hilde johnson with unicef on the border between ivory coast and liberia. thanks very much. thousands of u.s. and japanese military personnel are taking part in a three-day intensive search of the northeast of japan for the remainder of the people missing since the
tsunami. helicopters and ships are leading the search of the shorelines and major rivers which remain inactible by foot or road. meanwhile, the evacuation of thousands of residents near the fukushima nuclear plant is to be permanent, as high levels of radiation are found in groundwater near the plant. the prime minister, naoto kan, says he's ready for a long battle to control the stricken plant. mark worthington is in tokyo. earlier he told me there is a real struggle going on at fukushima. >> there is progress going on there, but it's beset by problems. this groundwater seepage that seems to have happened now is just the latest stage in a growing leak, it seems, that was first detected in tunnels outside the reactor building, then in the sea, and now in the groundwater. the problem they face is this -- as they pump in more and more water to keep the reactors cool, that water seems to then be leaking out.
but they can't stop pumping in water, because should they do so, the reactors will overheat. until they can find a way of effectively balancing that situation, any progress that they do make does seem to be very slow indeed. >> and as for this three-day intensive search that started today, that's a very unpleasant task for everyone involved and everyone who was touched by the events 2 1/2 weeks ago. >> absolutely. all this time on, we know now that more than 11,500 people are confirmed to have died, but there's still more than 16,000 who are unaccounted for. it's believed many of them may have been swept out to sea, but all along the coastline, there's the possibility that there are large numbers of bodies that up to now have been undiscovered, and that's why this operation is quite so large. more than 100 ships, dozens of aircraft from both the japanese and u.s. militaries, they're going to spend three days going
up and down the coast, trying to recover all of the remains that they can. it's an exercise that's both vital to the recovery and reconstruction operation here, but is also also hugely important to all those who currently have loved ones that they only know are missing. it's crucial to note this -- they won't be going within 30 kilometers of the fukushima nuclear plant. the latest developments there meaning even the search and recovery teams will be staying away. >> mark worthington in tokyo there. the unrest in north africa has seen thousands of migrants from tunisia and libya going to lampidusa. however, their arrival in such big numbers has caused a humanitarian crisis. a massive operation which began yesterday is to be finished today. from rome, duncan kennedy. >> another sea crossing for these migrants, but this time in boats fit for the job. heading to a place with shelter, food, and running
water. after traveling in rick they, unsafe vessels to get to lampedusa, they spent days living in the open in what aid agencies call appalling overcrowding and terrible sanitation. this migrant says there's no toilet or shower here, we're all sick from sleeping outside. around 6,000 migrants from tunisia and libya have poured into an island with only 5,000 residents. it soon became a humanitarian and political crisis for the italian government. one where the pressure is now being relieved. "we're all going to the mainland,," this says my may not. it will be gone by morning. condemnation of the government's slow response brought silvio berlusconi to lampedusa on wednesday. at least here the prime minister was greeted by
cheering locals as he promised to move the migrants out. but it's want going to be an easy promise to keep. mr. berlusconi says he'll have all the migrants off lampedusa by the end of today. but the relentless stream of people escaping north africa is continuing. putting pressure on the p.m. to commit to an open-ended policy of evacuation. most of these migrants will eventually sent back to tunisia under italy's strict immigration policies. but expect the arrivals to carry on for as long as the uncertainty in the arab world continues. duncan kennedy, bbc news, in rome. >> guess what cricket fans will be doing tomorrow. here's kathy with the sports news. this is the only bit of silverware he doesn't have? >> probably is. he hasn't won the world cup title, so i think what they're looking for is, looking for his 100th century, and that would be fantastic in his home city in mumbai.
sri lanka has arrived. obviously they have been playing in their own country in sri lanka, but they are training without the timer, the star of the sri lanka team who is injured at the moment and hasn't been training today, but i'm sure that's hopefully so they can play tomorrow. >> and we're also talking about the first big golf tournament. >> yes, the first major of the masters is back starting augusta, so everyone is just trying to hone their skills at the moment. this is lee westwood, the world's number two, the englishman could go to the world number one spot if he wins or comes second this week, and that's phil mickelson, who is looking to do that again next week. >> thanks very much. prince william has admitted he's suffering from a few nerves ahead of his weding to kate middleton, but says he's very excited about the prospect of the big date. four weeks to go before the big day. the prince says there's still a lot to do. he's also pleased that he kept his stag party a secret from
the world's media. >> it's a day job for prince william. here he is just flight lieutenant wales. this is a training exercise. his real rescue have ranged from a suspected heart attack on an oil rig to an engine walker. the work now a welcome distraction from wedding nerves. >> i was telling somebody the other day, my knees are tapping. it's quite daunting, but very exciting, i'm still looking forward to it. there's still a lot of planning to be done. >> there was a touch of smugness about the very secret stag. >> it was a military operation, and my brother and i are very proud of how it went. >> and sins his engagement, he's been the butt of many much teasing from colleagues. >> whenever he washes it, we always -- we've got a pillow we
put on his bed. >> prince william's work has given him something pretty unusual by royal standards, a relatively normal. >> hello and welcome. >> see the news unfold, get the top stories from around the globe and click-to-play video reports. go to bbc.com/news 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.