tv BBC World News PBS July 20, 2010 1:30pm-2:00pm PST
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>> 70 countries take part in a conference, mapping out afghanistan pose a future. the first held in the country itself. the british called it the special relationship, but as the new prime minister visits the u.s., how close are the two leaders? devastating floods in china putting record pressure on the recently completed three gorges dam. welcome to "bbc world news mccloy's " broadcasting to our viewers on pbs in america, and also around the globe. coming up later, as a north korean spy, she blew up an airliner. now, she is a best-selling author. why she is now visiting japan. and the warnings here in britain that this fast-growing activity could live up to its grim name.
an afghan army recruit has again turned on foreigners. this time, two american civilians were shot dead at a training base in northern afghanistan. an afghan soldier and the suspected gunman were also killed. it is the second such incident in as many weeks and comes just as representatives of 70 countries descended on kabul to the skies the country's future. president karzai told the conference that he wants afghan forces to take control of total security for the country by the end of 2013. >> he is the president of a nation at war, buddy has been accused of presiding over incompetency and corruption. now, he is quoted as the man who can turn things around. today, more than 70 nations came to kabul to give him that backing. in return, he promised to take control of security in just four years, repeating a pledge that his troops will take over for
foreign forces in 2014. welcome news for many. >> if the aim of the whole international community here is for the afghan national security forces to be able to take over their own security by 2014, and what he said and the prime minister said and i said is that within five years, by 2015, british combat troops will not be involved in combat operations in afghanistan. >> america and britain want the president to do more to stamp out corruption, but the big theme is putting afghans in charge. >> in the middle of this scrum, president, and also the u.s. secretary of state, hillary clinton, on one of the announcements being made at this conference, this is as much about style as it is about substance, showing the world that they support president karzai and also that they have a plan to bring the troops home. >> but past promises have been broken, so i caught up with the
president to ask what makes this time any different. >> difference is that this time the conference is held in kabul. the maturity that we have achieved, and the growth of our services and the abilities. >> but any pullout depends on the men coming in to land. with four stars across his hat, general petraeus is the new commander with a daunting challenge getting these forces ready. tonight, news that another afghan soldiers has turned his gun on his trainers. two americans died, raising fears the taliban may be infiltrating. bringing british troops home also depends on stopping the taliban. this was the scene for u.k. forces last summer. this year, the fighting is just as harsh. the casualties are also great, and the timeline of events today
may prove to be unrealistic. >> for more on this, we are joined by the director of the center for international studies and diplomacy at london school of oriental and african studies. good to talk to you. what is the potential stumbling block between now and 2014? >> the biggest one is called the taliban. behind that, the very real possibility that 9/11 itself would stay just to bring the americans into afghanistan to the west could be defeated the way the soviets were. the western military still cannot get their head round the question of whether or not the whole thing is a trap. >> there is a contradiction here, though, at the center of what was going on in kabul, and is this -- at the one hand, you have the french prime minister saying they are not ruling out the idea of some sort of engagement of -- with the taliban, on the other hand with the military one of you, jim has been so bad, and military people
are saying the taliban have got to be at least sidelined, probably defeated. >> you have this contradictory strategy, as we had from mcchrystal, which is is all about hearts and minds and peace, and you cannot win a military victory, but the primary objective is to win militarily. there is this contradiction, and that is at the heart of the problem. also, one does not really get into discussion that this is supposed to be the international community, but where are the algerians, the egyptians, the indonesians'? people from the muslim world -- there are not any. this is not lost on the afghans. >> are we in a situation where if this military surge is deemed to be a success, they might turn around and say that we are killing more taliban, said the surge is a success? just a second, we are not killing more people, therefore the surge is a success as well? >> whatever happens for electoral reasons, the surge will be deemed to be a success. in iraq, it largely involved
bribing the insurgents into becoming american militia. huge amounts of money were spent to pay off the insurgents, negotiating and bribing terrorists was a key part in iraq. we may see similar tactics in afghanistan, but it is very short term. in the background, you have the ethnic rivalries in the country in -- and pakistan and india fighting their own proxy war. >> you're talking about the weakening council. they are not targeted by -- as traitors by the insurgents. is that a dynamic that could kick in in afghanistan as well? >> there is this problem. this feeds into the afghan civil war, which came as a key feature of afghan politics in the 1990's, and many people would see a return to that, and of course, these withdrawal dates are not the same for the british, are not and coincidental with the next round of u.s. presidential and u.s.
national elections. they know they are on to a loser, and they want to signal they will be out by the time the electorate votes again. >> thanks. leaders of britain and the united states will spend three hours in talks in washington today and emerged to describe the relationship between their countries as essential to international security and prosperity. during a meeting, the leaders discussed afghanistan, the middle east, the bp oil spill, and the economy. to get the latest on the talk, i'm joined by our our correspondent in washington. i'm assuming they are pretty much on the same page as far as afghanistan and the middle east, but bp must have been a little bit difficult. >> that is right. this was an interesting first trip to the white house as prime minister by david cameron. interesting to see the welcome. barack obama is sometimes a little bit stiff and formal on these occasions. also addressing each other by first name, jokes about their children, stressing of common interest. whenever a british prime
minister comes to washington, the president's briefing notes right at the top, his mentioned somewhere, that phrase "special relationship" and barack obama do we delivered. >> as prime minister, we can never say it enough. the united states and the united kingdom enjoy a truly special relationship, celebrate a common heritage. we cherish common values, and we speak a common language most of the time. we honor the sacrifices of our brave men and women in uniform who have served together, let together, and even lay at rest together -- bled together, and even lay at rest together. our alliance thrives because it advances our common interests, but is preventing the spread of nuclear weapons or securing mobile nuclear materials, according terrorist attack, or confront a climate change, or promoting the global economic development, when united states and united kingdom stand together, our people and people
around the world are more secure, and they are more prosperous. >> president obama stressing the common ground. the strain has, in the link that has been made by some american lawmakers between the beleaguered oil maker bp and the release last summer of the lockerbie bombing, the man convicted of britain and europe's worst terror attack in 1988. lawmakers are alleging that bp lobbied hard for the release, and david cameron has spent much of the past 24 hours on the defense of trying to explain that this was a decision made not by his government, not by the previous u.k. government of gordon brown, but by the scottish government under the devolve system of politics. david cameron said he was not aware of any role played by bp in the decision to release magrahi on compassionate grounds, and the prime minister made it clear that he personally thought the scottish government had got it wrong. >> i have been absolutely clear
about this right from the start. in our meeting we had what we called a violent agreement, which is this releasing the lockerbie bombing, a mass murderer of 270 people, the largest act of terrorism ever committed in the united kingdom, was completely wrong. he showed his victims no compassion. they were not allowed to die in their beds at home surrounded by their families. in my view, neither should that callous killer have been given that luxury. that was not a decision taken by bp. it was a decision taken by the scottish government. we have to accept that under the laws of my country where power and decisions were involved in scotland, this was a decision for the scott as executive, a decision that they took. >> david cameron knows that americans are concerned, so he said he would ask to look again at all the paperwork to see whether more documents should now be made public, but the prime minister said that at the present time, he did not see any case for having a full public
inquiry into lockerbie. >> thanks very much. officials in china say the three gorges dam on the river yangtze has now with its highest flood water level since it was finished four years ago. weeks of floods and landslides in central and southern china have left several hundred people dead or missing. overnight, the flow of water through the dam was the fastest ever recorded. the level of this giant reservoir rose dramatically. >> this is the force of china's flood season. house after house toppled. rivers tend to, and high in the mountains, and this is the result. cities downstream inundated, people stranded. this year's is the worst flood they have seen since 1847. the old town submerged since
monday, and half a million people affected. we found mr. and mrs. lo trying valiantly to shift the salt and mock -- muck but it is a hopeless task. the water reached right up to the ceiling, and then he says it will take five years for his business to recover from the disaster. these floods have been devastating, but they pose a real challenge to china as a whole because the rain had fallen right across this region four days, and all across this water -- a flow straight down into the yangtze river, which is now under -- and the three gorges dam is now under more stress than it was since it was constructed. the dam is constructive and costly, but it is now preventing
catastrophic floods downstream by catching and storing up to half the floodwaters. it's reservoir is 600 kilometers long. water levels in it have risen four meters in the past day. china's effort to tame the destructive power of the yangtze did not stop the flood happening. more rain has been falling below the dam, too, and in recent days, some 30 million people have been forced from their homes. here and in tulsa other cities, despite the giant schemes china's leaders have adopted to reengineer the nation and the billions spent, they cannot escape the curse of china's summer flood. -- here and in countless other cities. >> still to come, new warnings about the danger of this -- it is tombstoning.
a court in the united states has granted rail to the former media tycoon conrad black as he appeals against his convictions of fraud. he was convicted in 2007 of pocketing $6 million from the media empire hollinger international. he served more than two years of a 615-year sentence. no date has been set for the bail hearing to rule on conditions for his release. >> conrad black was jailed in 2007. an international media giant brought down by greed and arrogance. he was found guilty of stealing millions of dollars from the company hollinger international, believed to be unauthorized payments and bogus newspaper deals. during the trial, details emerged of his lavish lifestyle involving parties and extravagant gifts to his wife. he was often described as a millionaire who live like a billionaire. now, the supreme court says his fraud conviction was based on a big piece of u.s. law that was
interpreted too broadly by the prosecution. that ruling paved the way for an appeal, and has been granted bail pending a decision over whether there should be a retrial. black has always maintained his innocence. and all sorts of people, no matter what happens, are going to think that i committed crimes. i invite your viewers and you to think what it is like to be falsely accused and wrongly convicted of anything. it is not very pleasant. >> the supreme court ruling does not affect a separate condition of obstructing justice. black was captured on camera trying to smuggle with 13 boxes of documents from hollinger's toronto offices. the prosecution says that is one reason why he should stay behind bars. in any event, he will not walk free immediately. eight needs to be set for a bail hearing at which a judge will grant conditions of his release -- a date needs to be set for a bail hearing.
>> this is "bbc world news." these are the top stories so far. as afghanistan's president tells an international conference of his hopes of withdrawal of western forces, an afghan army recruits killed two of his american trainers. any british prime minister david cameron on his first trip to washington again states that the lockerbie bombing should not have been released. now to a spy story with a twist. 20 years ago, a north korean spy blow up a south korean airliner killing 100 people. that spot was later pardoned and went on to become a best-selling author. -- that's by was later pardoned. now, she is visiting japan and will meet the families of people abducted by her native north korea. our correspondent in tokyo picks up the story. >> the plane arrived in tokyo before dawn. the passenger hidden behind umbrellas, the north korean spy,
a passenger jet bomber turn best jelling -- best-selling author. she was given to the mountains of japan in a house on by the former prime minister. the government arranged a visit and has situation -- information that japanese citizens adopted by north korea. >> we would like to bring back once more people's attention to the devastation of human rights and infringement of sovereignty, and we hope such efforts will lead to a more prompt settlement of the writ -- issues and rescue victims. >> 115 passengers were killed when the jet blew up in 1987. she bit a cyanide capsule to try to kill herself but was arrested. sentenced to death, she was part and on the grounds she had been brainwashed. later, the former spy met the relatives of the objective women.
eight years ago, north korea admitted it had taken 13 japanese citizens. five of them were allowed to return home. the rest were said to have died. they were used to train spies during 1970's and 1980's. among them, this woman kidnapped in 1977 while walking home from school, age 13. her parents are due to meet kim,. >> i'm not sure whether this could lead to a solution, but at least i wish to hear about the kind of life back in the country. >> information about the daughter they last saw half a lifetime ago. critics of the decision to allow her into japan say anything a woman now staying in the house behind these trees may know will be decades out of date. >> the actor lindsay lohan has
started a 90-day jail term for violating her probation in the case dating back to 2007. the star had been convicted for drunk driving and ordered to attend a substance abuse program, but she missed seven classes, breaking the terms of growth. she is unlikely to serve the full sentence due to the overcrowding in prisons and the non-mile and nature of her crown. schools across the uk brick of for the long summer holidays, but there are new warnings about the danger of it tombstoning. it involves jumping off a cliff or sea wall into deep water. figures show the number incidence has doubled in the last four years. >> excitement. adrenaline. adventure. tombstoning means different
things to different people. for nick, it means life in a wheelchair. >> i did not think people realize. i think people think you just jump in and the water is going to be fine, and it is not. i jumped off the same place lots of times before, but we went down there a different time of day, and the tide level was different. i would just like them before they jump just to have that one thought in the head. >> for years, safety campaigners have warned against the dangers of tombstoning, and yet, it seems increasing numbers are doing it. in the u.k., the southwest is a hot spot. this footage was shot by holidaymaker. this is an iconic part of the jurassic coastline. this man survived but was lucky to do so, having fallen unconscious below the water. >> the problem is not confined to cliffs or rocky coastlines. there are not any here, but
there is this -- a breakwater and structures like that can prove just as tempting to jump from. >> darren lewis manages lifeguards on the east coast of england, but he does not expect tombstoning to stop anytime soon. >> de arrive from internet sites, so it has raised the appeal for people to do this -- they are right from internet sites. presents the opportunity for people to film what they are doing and be seen by a wider audience. >> and then, there is this -- exploring the shoreline and jumping into the water, but in a managed environment. it has been suggested that its increase in popularity could be encouraging
people to try tombstoning, but owens sr., an instructor, finds that hard to believe. >> tombstoning is simply jumping from hike into water. people do not know what they are jumping into, and when people
are drunk, they do it. when people are pressured by their peers, they do it. this is completely different. it is a guided session where an instructor takes you down to the water and teaches you the best way to jump into the water. >> we live on an island. jumping into the sea will always be possible. those who do so are being asked to stop and think -- is it really worth it? >> the french international footballer has been put under formal criminal investigation over accusations that he paid for sex with an underage women. his accusers said she was 17 at the time of the alleged incident last year. under french law, paid sex with someone under the age of 18 is
regarded as intercourse with a minor. he has denied any wrongdoing. here is our paris correspondent. >> this has not been the most successful summer for french football. after the abject performance of the national squad of the world
cup in south africa, there comes another scandal. this time, the biggest star of that team, frank ribery has turned up in a police station in handcuffs. the allegation is that in 2009, he paid for sex with an underage prostitutes he met at a paris nightclub. the woman in question is now 18, but in april, she sold a story to a tabloid magazine in which she claimed she had slept with ribery trying to thousand nine while still a minor. today, they're brought in to " -- in for questioning under the orders of an investigating magistrate. everybody has since been released and are now under formal investigation. he spoke to his lawyer who confirms her client did have sex, but she denies he knew she was 17.
she told him she was 20. in france, paying for sex with underage prostitutes carries a maximum sentence of three years in prison and a $60,000 fine. the question for the judge is whether the footballer could, indeed should, have known how young she was. so far, the french football association have kept their distance, but after a summer of such miserable headlines, this might well test the patience of the new french manager. >> customs officials of mexico city airport say they have arrested a man who arrived on a commercial flight from peru with 18 baby monkeys hidden under his clothing. authorities at the airport became suspicious when they noticed a mysterious bulge under his t-shirt and conducted a body search. the south american monkeys, an internationally protected species, are 15 centimeters long and were tied in socks and strapped to his body. two had died during the journey. authorities in russia have launched an animal cruelty investigation after a terrified
young he was harnessed to a paris jail in a stunt to promote a beach resort. an amateur video posted on youtube shows a man attaching parasail harnesses to the trampling animal. the animal was pulled skywards by a vote -- a bow. glided above the bay for half an hour. the donkey survived but was reportedly shocked at stores. -- after words. time for a recap of our top story so far today here on bbc. an afghan army recruit has again turned on foreigners. this time two american civilians shot dead at a training base in northern afghanistan. an afghan soldier and the suspected gunman were also killed. it is the second such incident in as many weeks and comes just as representatives of 70 countries to send it on kabul to discuss the country's future. you can find that story and much more and all our top stories on the website, bbc.com/news.
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