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tv   Newsline  PBS  May 15, 2015 7:00pm-7:31pm PDT

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hello and welcome to nhk "newsline". i'm ross mihara in tokyo. taiwanese officials say they are checking food from japan much more closely. the japanese agricultural minister says they had no scientific grounds. taiwanese authorities banned food from parts of japan in 2011 because of the fukushima nuclear accident. but produce from those areas showed up a couple of months ago. that prompted consumer groups to call for tighter restrictions. all food imports from japan now have to carry certificates of origin. some have to be checked for radiation.
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japanese agriculture minister called the new rules extremely regrettable. >> translator: taiwan acted unilaterally without any scientific grounds. >> he said he'll urge the taiwanese to retract their new restrictions. he said he may file a complaint with the world trade organization unless they act. chinese authorities have punished another citizen who called for more democracy. prosecutors indicted a prominent human rights lawyer they'd been holding for more than a year. they charged him with provoking trouble. the man got detained last may. he just attended a meeting about the pro-democracy protest students led in tiananmen square back in 1989. beijing prosecutors announced his indictment online.
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his lawyer says he expressed private views in line with right to freedom of speech. the lawyer called the indictment unreasonable and said he'll try to prove his innocence in court. he was a leader of the pro-democracy protest in 1989. he helped people who got detained unjustly. he is the latest pro-democracy chinese activist to fall foul of the authorities. last month a court in beijing sentenced a prominent columnist to seven years in prison. officials claimed she leaked state secrets. india's prime minister modi has held talks in beijing with the chinese premier. modi is on first official visit to china since taking office a year ago. the leaders agreed to establish a new framework for dialogue between the world's most populous economies. modi and lee held a joint news conference after talks at the great hall of the people on friday. india and china have a combined
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population of 2.6 billion people. the chinese premier said greater cooperation would benefit the entire region. >> translator: china and india are accelerating their modernization. together we will be a double engine of growth for asia. >> the two sides have several sensitive issues to resolve such as a disputed himalayan border. he called on china to look beyond their disagreements. >> i stress the need for china to reconsider its approach on some of the issues that hold us back from realizing full potential of our partnership. i suggest that china should take a strategic and long-term view of our relations.
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i found that chinese literacy responsive. >> translator: both sides have enough political wisdom to manage and control the differences. we will not let the differences affect the development of our overall relationship. >> modi and lee presided at the signing of 24 agreements to promote cooperation in a range of fields from high speed railways to a yoga college. modi started his three-day visit thursday in the home province of president xi jingping. they visited tourist spots together, keen to display their warm personal relationship. boosting business ties with china is at the top of modi's agenda. he's been trying to fulfill his pledge to revitalize the indian economy since taking office last
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year. nhk world's ab she can duel ya has more from new delhi. >> reporter: modi has been encouraging foreign firms to invest in manufacturing and launched his campaign last september. >> translator: the whole world is ready to come to asia but they don't know where to go. they want a place with democracy good demographics, and big demand. that place is india. >> reporter: china is india's biggest trading partner, but the relationship is lopsided. india runs a trade deficit with china worth $48 billion. encouraging chinese firms to manufacture in india should rebalance the situation, but it isn't an easy sell. india has a reputation as a relatively difficult place to do
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business. it ranked 134th on the world bank's business environment index compared with china at 96. experts say india needs to do a better job of selling itself to the chinese. >> the challenge for indian diplomacy is to convince china and make china to participate in the made in india policies, so that is a challenge that indian diplomacy faces. to convince that this is a commercial venture that china is going to enter into. not a political deal for something on the territorial dispute. >> reporter: china and india also have security issues to resolve. their shared borders in himalayas is especially sensitive and triggered military
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clashes in 1962. india is also alarmed by china's increasing presence in the indian ocean. with infrastructure projects in bangladesh and pakistan the so-called string of pearls. this is modi's first official visit to china as prime minister. but he and xi have held talks several times before. experts say both sides seem determined to build a relationship of trust. >> i think the communication between the two leaders, at that crucial moment is very important for de-escalation for -- so that they avoid total destruction on both sides. as you also know, china and india are nuclear countries. any miscalculation will have drastic impact on both of the
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peoples and so the strategic communication is very important for india and china. >> reporter: india and china have different political systems and even came to blows in the past. but india's prime minister seems ready to put past differences aside in favor of a more business-like friendship. abhishek dhulia nhk world, india. >> our reporter in beijing spoke to an expert about what china aims to gain with modi's visit. >> reporter: china is placing a strong emphasis on boosting investment in india. due to its one child policy, china is struggling with increasing wages and dwindling working population. i. india's chief abundant labor
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to companies struggling to maintain their competitive edge. their investment will help advance industrialization in india which in turn would boost the consumer market there. >> translator: china should strive to expand investment in india. that perception is shared by both countries. doing so would not only strengthen infrastructure development in india, but also serve as a means of advancing china's new silk road initiative. india is home to a massive market and brings tremendous opportunities to china. >> reporter: india's location means it is important to china's so-called strategy which aims to build land and sea routes between asia and europe. and with india expected to become a major stakeholder in the china proposed asia infrastructure investment bank beijing hopes to secure india's cooperation.
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>> translator: india is expected to become an influential member of aiib as well as its key investee. this shows the two nations share many common interests. their cooperation would greatly boost the influence of newly emerging nations in the global economy, even under the current international order. >> reporter: but india is also strengthening security coordination with the united states and japan due to its willingness of china's growing presence in the indian ocean. the two leaders are expected to address such concerns and bilateral issues and move towards stronger economic ties. nauki makita, nhk world, beijing. islamic state militants have consolidated their control
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over a key city in western iraq. they captured the main government compound in ramadi. members of the islamic state began fighting iraqi government forces last month in anbar province and control wide swaths and trying to get into the center of the capital ramadi. local authorities say militants launched an offensive thursday and friday using artillery and car bombs. they say the militants took control then raised their black flag over government buildings. government forces are fighting back. >> translator: we'll fight iss lambic state militants in anbar as long as it takes. we'll kick them out of anbar. >> government forces reached a key northern city of tikrit last month with help from air strikes in the u.s. led coalition. losing the center of ramadi is a blow to the government and coalition.
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authorities in burundi say a coup attempt has failed. some military officers announce they were trying to take power earlier this week. the country had been in turmoil as citizens were protesting the president's indecision to seek a third term. the constitution only allows him to serve two. senior army officers announced wednesday they were attempting a coup while the president was in tanzania. their supporters and opponents engaged in gun fights. local media now report three coup leaders under arrest. a government spokesperson says the president has returned to his palace in the capital. citizens are still protesting his decision to run again, staff with the u.n. high commissioner for refugees say more than 100,000 have fled to congo, rwanda and tanzania. refugee boats from myanmar and bangladesh continue to drift towards the shores of southeast asia. many of the people on board are
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minority ru hinge ga muslims from myanmar hoping to reach malay is a. the governor said on friday that 450 people on board were heading for malaysia but changed their destination to indonesia. >> reporter: they're now in international waters. they cannot land on malaysian shores. the malaysian authorities are strictly monitoring them using navy warships on patrol. they are now changing their direction. >> meanwhile, indonesian rescue officials said a boat carrying 800 people believed to be roh hinge gas has drifted ashore in
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the province on friday. they are denied citizenship in myanmar and faced anti-muslim violence in the buddhist dominated country. some pay smugglers to take them to malaysia. in the past few days in indonesia and malaysia, 1600 people have drifted ashore. u.n. secretary general ban ki-moon called on governments to offer help. >> the secretary general urges governments to ensure the obligations of rescue at sea is upheld and prohibition is maintained. >> myanmar's information minister said on friday some boat people are claiming to be rohingas to get help. 25,000 people tried to flee myanmar and bangladesh in the first three months of this year, nearly double the same period last year. drones are becoming a more common sight in the skies over japan, but there are no laws concerning their use. the indictment of a man for landing a drone on the roof of the prime minister's office has stepped up pressure to regulate
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them. nhk world's kurando tago has details. >> reporter: japanese security officials from around the country gather in tokyo. >> translator: we must respond to the diversifying forms of threats and establish strong security so we can meet public expectations. >> reporter: a man was arrested on suspicion of flying a drone onto the roof of the prime minister's office last month. he says he had meant to land the aircraft in the courtyard, but he gave up as darkness fell. 40-year-old yamamoto admitted to putting radioactive sand in the drone. he said he was protesting the government's nuclear power policy. yamamoto said he collected the sand in the restricted zone near the crippled fukushima plant. on thursday a 15-year-old boy
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tried to fly a drone near the diet building. police warned him not to fly it since it could harm pedestrians. ♪ he's believed to have flown the drone during an event on saturday. the device went down in the middle of a procession as worshippers looked on. no one was injured. the national police agency has instructed officers to enhance monitoring of important facilities, including nuclear power plants and airports. the agency is also studying possible ways to intercept drones using special equipment that is already in use in some countries. lawmakers are also scrambling to enact legislation. current laws don't restrict drone operations. japan's main governing party has drafted a bill that imposes prison terms and fines for
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people who fly drones over a key facility without permission. the facilities include a diet building, prime minister's office supreme court, imperial palace, and embassies. violators would face prisoner terms up to one year or fines up to $4,000. police and other authorities would be allowed to order people flying drones within 300 meters of restricted areas to move away. disobeying such orders could invoke prison terms of up to one year or fines up to about $4,000. the ldp says it will seek to support other parties to enact the legislation during the current diet session. drones can be useful tools for tasks such as disaster response but these recent incidents have raised questions about the downside of drones. and the measures that could be required to control them.
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kurando tago, nhk world, tokyo. a samurai movie theme pa rk in tokyo once drew large crowds but numbers tapered off as few of those type of films were produced. now park managers are bringing back the visitors after making their attractions more modern and interactive. >> reporter: this film set theme park in kyoto opened in 1975. the theme park boasts an outdoor set that looks like a period street. a major film company uses the set to film samurai dramas. people once flocked here to watch the dramas being filmed. at its peak, the park attracted more than 2 million visitors a year.
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but fewer samurai dramas are made now and the number of visitors have plummeted. attendance bottomed out at under 700,000. there was even talk of closing the park down. but the operator decided to try something new to make the park a place for experiencing not just observing. the actors who put on a sword fight show now also teach visitors how to handle a sword and move like a real sword fighter. this man is not an actor. but these chores are transformed by makeup and costume.
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the park gives people the chance to feel like a film star. >> translator: i feel like a star. what should i do if i'm asked for my autograph? >> reporter: the park is also throwing a spotlight on ninja. the idea is to attract foreigners who are fans of the stealthy spies. >> whoa! >> ninja, i watch the ninja show, it's beautiful. i really want to watch it again if i can. >> reporter: park officials made another change to appeal to visitors. they began to allow picture taking in areas where photography was once forbidden.
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>> reporter: visitors are encouraged to take lots of photos and post them on the internet. the goal is to spread the word about the park. the changes are working. park attendance is actually starting to go up. >> translator: things are definitely different from the way they were ten years ago. we have to recognize the changes and keep ahead of the curve. >> the park found success by recognizing the need to change and introducing bold reforms. it's a model that other struggling tourist attractions might be wise to follow.
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buddhist monks in western japan are looking back centuries to the founding of their town as they plan for the future. they're celebrating the 1200th anniversary of koyasan in wakayama prefecture. as they welcome the flood of visitors, they're also trying to preserve tradition. nhk world's kimberly gale reports. >> reporter: it's a ritual that's been carried out in koyasan for centuries. monks gather by the light of temple lanterns to chant mantras. it's how swiss-born monk kurt genso spends part of his day. >> thank you for taking time for me today. >> you're welcome. >> reporter: he's also an ambassador for the town where buddhist tradition lives on.
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so for the past few weeks, he's been busier than usual welcoming an influx of people celebrating koyasan's 12,000th anniversary. >> they want to have an experience like the other people, they come for a spirit adventure. kayasn on some think fate it is true. >> reporter: monks are honoring after his death he founded koyasan. the area houses the headquarters of the sect and is considered one of the most sacred places in japan. during this 50-day celebration, people can catch a glimpse of rarely seen relics and crowds snake through a temple to see a statue of a healing buddha that has been kept hidden. foreign tourists have always
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visited koyasan, drawn to the dozens of monasteries tucked inside dense cedar forests. more started visiting after 2004 when the town had been seen as a historical site. the town has been adapting to welcome even more. there's a slick website in various languages, english signs and wi-fi. the number of foreign tourists has risen five-fold to nearly 55,000 annually over the past decade. >> it's been very relaxing and calming and just felt really good while we've been here. so just the overall place has been incredible. >> feels like magic. feels like i'm in one of those movies especially when yesterday was the tombs. it was amazing, really amazing. >> reporter: they come to mingle with the monks and do what they do. sleep inside temple lodging or shukubo.
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eat traditional fare, strictly vegetarian meals called shojin-riori. take time to focus by practicing meditation guided by a master. and participate in fire ceremonies held each morning for morning prayers. >> this place really engages the senses from sort of the smell of the temple incense to the sound of the monks chanting to the mountain air. >> reporter: genso says welcoming the world with those experiences helps preserve the sanctity of koyasan.
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>> i often say you came as a tourist, but you go home like a pilgrim because it touches your heart, touches your heart. you change. you become peaceful. >> reporter: and that change and peace are things he hopes will continue to be shared here for centuries to come. kimberly gale, nhk world, koyasan. here is the weekend weather forecast.
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that's all we have for now on "newsline." i'm ross mihara in tokyo. thank you for watching and have a good day.
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>> 2015 is the un's international year of soils designed to raise awareness of the importance of the ground we walk on. and, as if that weren't reason enough to be focusing on all
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things earthy, then it just so happens to be global soil week as well, with experts of more than 70 countries meeting here in berlin. hello and a very warm welcome to global 3000, where we have the following stories coming up. parched earth -- concern over worldwide threats to soil quality sun, skis and snow -- meet the people skiing for a new afghanistan

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