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tv   Newsline  PBS  March 8, 2016 12:00am-12:31am PST

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annualized, that's minus 1.1%. that is a 0.3 percentage point upgrade from the preliminary figure announced last month. but this still means the economy contracted for the first time in two quarters. in particular, growth in corporate investment was revised up from the initial 1.4%, to 1.5%. and exports also improved to minus 0.8%. but consumer spending worsened slightly to minus 0.9%. housing investment was unchanged from the initial minus 1.2%. separately japan's current account balance, that measures how much money goes in and out of the country, in january the index stayed in the black for the 19th consecutive month. finance ministry officials say the surplus totaled $4.6 billion.
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the trade account was negative. the deficit stood at $3.6 billion. but the amount was narrowed as falling crude oil prices reduced energy imports in value terms. the surplus for the primary income account which measures earnings from overseas investments was about $11.7 billion. now, let's see what's happening on markets. share prices in tokyo opened slightly lower and the benchmark is sliding further on tuesday morning. investors seemed to be shrugging off the upward revision in gdp growth. the nikkei average is trading lower by 1.17%, 16,713. the yen's advance is weighing on market sentiment and some investors are selling export related issues. but energy related shares are in demand on an overnight rally in crude oil prices. speaking of oil, u.s. crude futures jumped more than 6% on monday to touch $38 per barrel. its highest point in two months.
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analysts say the surge was fueled by growing hopes for a deal to cap output among major oil producers. looking at currencies, gains in oil prices are rekindling demand for the euro, and commodity sensitive putting pressure on the dollar/yen. now at 113.01 to 04. let's look at markets across the asia-pacific region. we're seeing most markets in the negative now. australian shares town .10% after a six-day winning run. south korea's kospi down by half a percent. i'll be back next hour with more of your business headlines. for now, here's a look at some other markets.
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japanese police are cracking down on organized crime gangs after a series of violent attacks. the incidents are believed to be related to the crime syndicate. >> reporter: on saturday, a vehicle rammed into the office of a yamaguchi affiliate in western japan. residents in the area were alarmed. prompting police and teachers to accompany children to and from school. >> translator: i'm determined to protect my students. >> reporter: the unrest started
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in august, when several groups left the yamaguchi >> translator: the situation worsened when there was a splinter group last month. >> reporter: vehicles slammed into the buildings, bullets were fired and scuffles broke out. in the past two weeks, there have been at least 19 incidents in 14 prefectures, including tokyo and osaka. innocent people have become the victims of gang violence in the past. one of the worst cases was triggered by the break-up of the yamaguchi gumi more than 30 years ago. when the group's leader was fatally shot. more than 20 people were killed. and many civilians were injured in the violence.
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similar incidents occurred in kyushu following the split of another group. an innocent man was mistakenly shot dead. the hitman thought the victim was a gang member. in response to the latest violence, the national police agency is stepping up efforts and has ordered prefectural branches to set up task forces to tackle the problem. the world health organization is working to better understand the zika virus. the organization has gathered experts and researchers in finland to study links between infection and birth defects. about 100 scientists, experts and health officials from affected countries are meeting in geneva. w.h.o. official said there have been increases of cases of microselfly. it can result in babies with
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abnormally small heads and developmental problems. the experts are also discussing potential treatments and vaccines at the meeting, which run through wednesday. the zika virus is continuing to spread, mainly in central and south america. in addition to microreceive aly, there are also reported links to neurological order to gi-on bar ray syndrome that can cause temporary paralysis. south korean president park geun-hye is putting pressure on north korea to refrain in further aggressive actions. they kicked off the joint military exercises with the united states. >> translator: i hope the exercises will demonstrate our intention to make the north pay for any additional provocative acts. >> it comes after a recent north korean nuclear test and rocket launch widely believed to be a long-range ballistic missile test. the drills put greater emphasis on boosting the wartime capabilities of the two allies.
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they involve about 300,000 south korean and 17,000 u.s. troops. the u.s. military is sending an aircraft carrier, the uss john c. stennis, and f-22 stealth fighter jets. north korea strongly opposes the drills. it's threatened a preemptive attack, possibly using a nuclear weapon. representatives from across china have converged in beijing to attend the national people's congress. they're discussing the government's priorities, and expectations. the tibetan delegates came wearing traditional robes as well lapel pins. internet critics accuse the delegates of imitating the cult of personality in north korea. the annual session of the congress began on saturday. some members of the tibetan delegation are wearing two pins, one features president xi, the other shows xi and four past
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leaders, including the founding father of communist china, mao tse tung. the tibetan delegates want to express their gratitude to the current and former leaders of the country. in the tibetan autonomous region, many residents are buddhists, they see the religious policies of the communist party and central government as repressive. but the members of the delegation are mostly communist party members. analysts say they appear to be emphasizing their loyalty to beijing by displaying the badges. in tu nesh yeah, militants stormed army andhe country's border with libya. it's believed they crossed into tunisia for the attack, which left at least 53 people dead. tunisian authorities say 35 of them were militants. the rest included soldiers and civilians. officials have imposed a curfew in the town, and are searching for other attackers.
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in march last year, gunmen opened fire on tourists at a museum in the nation's capital. 22 people died. since then, the country has stepped up anti-terrorism measures. the nation's leaders believe the islamic state militant group is trying to expand its presence beyond neighboring libya where analysts estimate about 5,000 of the group's fighters have been trained. malaysia's influential former leader, muhammad, is stepping up pressure on prime minister najib. he's been critical over the connections to a multimillion dollar financial scandal and demanding that najib step down. here's the report from kuala lumpur. >> reporter: allegations that najib received more than $160
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million shortly before the general election have rocked malaysian politics since they emerged a month ago. tens of thousands of malaysians protested last year in kuala lumpur and elsewhere calling for najib to step down. malays malaysia's prime minister for 22 years, muhammad has become a fierce critic of his one-time protege. >> i couldn't believe he used my name to become popular. something that i don't agree with. and already it has caused a lot of problems for this country. >> reporter: in january, the attorney general appointed by najib cleared him of any criminal offense and accepted the explanation that the money was personal donations from the saudi royal family. he said najib is steam rolling anyone who questions him.
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>> this will prevent any purpose from being heard at all. if you make a police report on what he's doing, you will be arrested. >> reporter: last week he and about 60 politicians signed a statement opposing the prime minister. they included some of mahitir's closest enemies and the jail opposition leader ibrahim. >> we hope, of course, that it is possible for us to bring a case against him in court. >> reporter: the festering scandal has added to the sense of crisis in malaysia. economic growth has slowed amid the slump in oil prices. the currency lost value last year.
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muhamad is joining hands in the political landscape shift. among public frustration, pressure is on najib to step down. nhk world, kuala lumpur. we take you to pakistan now where a suicide bomber attacked a court facility in the northwest. killing at least ten people and wounding nearly 30 others. >> translator: when i heard the blast, i rushed to the scene. i saw five or six policemen lying on the ground. women and children were screaming. >> the explosion went off during the monday morning rush hour. the bomber attempted to force his way into the judicial complex. he blew himself up when police tried to stop him. a faction of the pakistani taliban has claimed responsibility. the group called it revenge for the execution of kadre, put to death last week for assassinating a provincial
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governor who sought to reform the country's blasphemy law. he was vetted as a hero by islamists. they clogged one of the main roads out of the capital islamabad. it happened near the volatile tribal area, one of the seven semi autonomous regions bordering afghanistan, and considered a safe haven for militants. travelers in india face packed trains and frequent delays on a daily basis. some work to provide distractions for those stressed-out commuters. and it's music to some people's ears. >> reporter: russia and india. conditions can be a stressful start to the day. ♪
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bands like this one have been entertaining passengers for more than six decades. they play folk songs about respecting others and giving thanks to the gods. >> translator: listening to the music in the morning and praying to god, i feel my day will go well. >> reporter: this man has been a commuter train singer for 30 years. he performs folk songs every morning with his 12-member band.
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after about an hour of singing, he heads off to work. are his job is selling home appliances. he calls singing a motivation. >> translator: singing in the train gives me energy. and replenishes my spirit. >> reporter: the bands are threatened by changing times. commuters are more focused on their smartphones these days. hoping to get young people's attention, this band has started a new project with familiar melodies. these melodies come from indian movies. but the lyrics from popular folk
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son songs. they perform the new songs. >> translator: let's all make this commuting time meaningful. let's protect the culture of these spiritual folk songs. >> translator: the songs must reach the hearts of the listeners. i want to make music that the passengers will like. i'm proud to be doing this.
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>> reporter: the bands have long appealed to the hearts of train passengers. adapting to the times will help make sure the traditions remain relevant for years to come. nhk world, new delhi. the head of the international atomic energy agency is calling for global cooperation in decommissioning the fukushima daiichi nuclear power plant. nearly five years ago, a massive earthquake and tsunami led to meltdowns at three of the plant's reactors, causing the worst nuclear disaster in the country's history. the director general of the iaea gave a speech in vienna. he pointed out that not all the technology needed to clean up the plant exists. and highlighted the importance of enhancing safety as the use
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of nuclear power is expected to grow around the world. >> i am confident that the legacy of fukushima daiichi will be a sharper focus on nuclear safety everywhere. >> amano later said that the full impact of the fukushima accident is still unknown. he said the iaea continues to monitor the situation, and in the past has sent experts to japan to assess the impact on marine life. this week, our series journey from disaster is looking at the region and its people five years on. many victims were forced to relocate to temporary shelters, with the promise that their next move would be to a permanent home. but as we'll see in our next story, for some, the dream of a more stable life is being postponed, adding to their sense of insecurity. >> security guards in sendai in this temporary housing complex, only 25 units are occupied here.
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one-fifth the number when the facility was at its peak. >> translator: i'm going around, checking the windows and making sure that none of the locks are broken. >> local governments mostly built their temporary housing on land that was leased. those contracts are now running out. so they've begun merging the sites. this woman has lived in these cramped conditions for five years, and now suffers from chronic back pain. promised a new permanent apartment, which was supposed to be ready this spring. but now she's been asked to move to another temporary housing complex. officials say this is due to construction delays. >> translator: i'm shocked. i was looking forward to finally settling down. it's very difficult to face moving to another temporary place instead.
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>> she dreads being separated from her neighbors here. she says they've helped each other make it through tough times. >> translator: it's not the same going somewhere just for a short time. it's hard for the people coming in, and for those already there. >> town planning specialist says repeated relocations are extremely stressful on disaster survivors, both physically and psychologically. for the elderly, it's especially hard. >> translator: moving from one temporary home to another has no benefit. it only increases the likelihood of a person becoming isolated and developing health issues. >> with many land leases about to expire this year, the same situation will affect more and more people. yet another problem is looming in this region, which has already endured so much.
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a japanese astronaut has been doing some crucial training for his first space mission. he practiced for potential emergencies aboard the international space station. he was joined by fellow crew members from the u.s. and russia. they've been training in texas at the johnson space center. there, they boarded a full sized model of the space station for training. they practiced dealing with air leaks, fires and other dangers. >> translator: got it. my body remembers the procedures. >> onishi's mission is said to last four and a half months. he's going to perform experiments. he and his crew mates will lift off in june from kazakhstan.
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it's time for a check of the weather. a powerful storm is sweeping across central europe. we've been keeping a close eye on this. people in northern italy are now dealing with heavy rain and severe flooding. our meteorologist, robert speta, joins us with more. >> yes. what we have been seeing is these storm systems, talking about them for some time, riding along the jet stream one after another. one now pulling away over here towards the balkan peninsula. we have another low sweeping through northern areas of italy. you'll look at the precipitation, the heavy snow farther off to the north. one other big thing with this, you can even see it with the cloud cover. look at the way the winds are moving. over the adriatic sea, the strong southerly winds continuing to come in. we have video coming out of venice, because of this. we have been looking at some flooding across the city. this is actually called the aqua
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alta, or high water. the high tide has been peaking with the strong winds coming in from the south. overall, the sea level has raised about 120 centimeters above the main maximum tide level. so about 28% of the city has been flooded. now, the good news is that this is not a completely unusual situation. a lot of the buildings here are built to withstand this. but definitely a severe inconvenience. you can see even from the images there. as far as the forecast is concerned, yes, farther inland we're looking at precipitation. so there is still a threat of some additional flooding away from the coastline. even some of that snow into the higher elevations back off to the north. i also want to keep in mind, look at the precipitation work in across the iberian peninsula. cooler air dipping in from the north, temperatures down in spain and france. also with the low coming in, we're going to be looking at snow mixing in that across areas
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of scotland, extending down to the south by the time wednesday comes around. on tuesday, london with a high of 70. partly cloudy skies there for you. paris partly cloudy skies as well, a high of 8. even towards berlin, you're going to be looking at only a high of 7. let's look over towards the east. talking about what's going on across parts of the gulf. extending over toward southeastern iran. what we've been looking at is the trough of low pressure, moving from west to east. the problem with this, it's been bringing some persistent rainfall, especially as we go into the latter part of this week. wednesday night into thursday. we're going to be seeing the rain really start to pick up. the problem with that, it's going to be bringing heavy amount of dryer surfaces. there's the chance of flash flooding. something to watch out if you're across this area. which is typically dry this time of year. you can see in dubai, thunderstorms on your thursday. rain showers from wednesday all the way out there towards friday. especially in your afternoon
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hours you'll be looking at the precipitation coming down. here across eastern asia, if you're in japan, earlier i was talking about the fog threat in the tokyo area, delaying some of the trains and even airlines coming in. that has burnt off. we're looking at a clear sky now. temperatures are on the rise. enjoy it while it does last, because back there towards the west, we have this trough right in here, our stationary boundary that will be moving across the basin and shifting to the east on wednesday into thursday. most of japan seeing precipitation. as far as today, it is beautiful weather out there. 21 for your high on tuesday, in tokyo, partly cloudy skies. here's your extended outlook.
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that concludes this edition of "newsline." i'm catherine kobayashi in tokyo. thanks for staying with us.
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>> "euromaxx highlights." here is your host. >> hello, and welcome to "euromaxx highlights," the best bits of the week. first up -- an exhibition in london documenting 100 years of fashion photography. birthday boy. french star chef paul: turns 90 -- paul bocuse turns 90. and, roman numeral and spirit a visit to the ancient city of herculaneum in italy. the biggest movie awards ceremonies are fast approaching. first up, the baftas in

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