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tv   BBC World News America  PBS  April 4, 2016 2:30pm-3:01pm PDT

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>> this is "bbc world news." >> funding of this presentation is made possible by the freeman foundation, newman's own foundation, giving all profits from newman's own to charity and pursuing the common good, kovler foundation, pursuing solutions for america's neglected needs, national geographic channel and aruba tourism authority. morgan: i have always been fascinated by god. ♪ ♪ morgan: why do people all around the world worship their god so differently? i am setting off on a journey and i want to take you with me. ♪ ♪
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morgan: we all ask ourselves this one fundamental question, who is god? announcer: "the story of god with morgan freeman" on the national geographic channel. >> and now "bbc world news america." anchor: this is "bbc world news america" reporting from washington, i'm katty kay. leaked secret documents show how the rich and powerful hide their millions and protesters come out in iceland after their prime minister is named as one of them. sent back from greece to turkey under europe's new migrant deal, hundreds are forced to make the return journey. it's not clear, though, whether it will actually work. and what do america's neighbors think of the u.s. election, from mexico city to montreal, we find out how they feel about onald trump.
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anchor: welcome to our viewers on public television and around the globe. first came the revelations today, the fallout, the tax affairs of many of the world's richest and most powerful people are under scrutiny after leaked document from the panama-based law firm mossack fonseca show it allegedly helped some of its clients launder money, dodge sanctions and evariety taxes. in iceland, protesters are demanding the prime minister's resignation after details of his family's financial affairs were revealed. he is accused of hiding millions of dollars in investments behind a secretive offshore company. he says no rules were broken and so he won't resign. the bbc's richard has more on what the panama papers teach us. correspondent: it is a unique glimpse of how offshore keep secrets. for 40 years, mossack fonseca
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have helped the rich and powerful hide their wealth. the documents were leaked to the german newspaper and shared with the international consortium of investigative journalists. in the u.k., two newspapers have been analyzing the documents. they show how far mossack fonseca was prepared to go to help some of its clients. >> i wanted to earn enough money so i can create the life i really wanted to and i did. correspondent: mayor ana is a business guru on american television. >> it's all about living the life of your dreams and taking control of your money. correspondent: that's exactly what she wanted to do, to bring back $1.8 million secretly hidden offshore. but she did not want to reveal her identity. the files show mossack fonseca came up with a solution in an email they offered, we may use
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a natural person who will act as the beneficial owner. faking the ownership of a company is a blatant breach of anti-money laundering rules. they offered and she accepted. >> it's highly problematic and undermines the credibility of our anti-money laundering system that is designed to deter tax evasion and money laundering. correspondent: she didn't respond to our questions. mossack fonseca say the allegations are unsupported and false. they have always complied with international protocol to insure companies are not used for elicit purposes. >> we need to shine a spotlight on who owns what and where money is really flowing. correspondent: it is david cameron who introduced the u.k.'s register of company ownership, but his late father is revealed in the files as a client of mossack fonseca. they show ian cameron helped
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set up a company in the bahamas. they wanted to attract investors to put their money in a fund, so they made sure it never paid u.k. tax. mr. cameron and other directors would fly to the bahamas for board meetings so they could say the company was run offshore. but there is more. the mossack fonseca files reveal investors held their stakes through bearer shares. now, they were widely used at the time, but are now banned in many countries because they can be used for money laundering and tax evasion. >> bearer share is a piece of paper saying that you own a share of a company, which means that you can hide your ownership of bearer shares and when it comes to declaring what as he is, what wealth you have, what income you have, it really leaves it just to you and your conscience. correspondent: it was david cameron who banned bearer shares in the u.k. last year. the mossack fonseca leak is likely to lead to further calls
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for transparency. anchor: richard there with more on what's in these documents. i spoke a short time ago with don williamson, the executive director of american university's covert tax policy center. were you surprised when you saw that the documents had been leaked and what was in them? >> not in the least. in the united states in the mid 1980's, we had many americans with offshore accounts and we created a series of laws to allow our citizens to have such accounts, but to have the transparency where those accounts would have to be disclosed to the treasury department and the i.r.s. the fact that people maintain such accounts doesn't shock me at all. perhaps some of the amounts involved and the responsible citizens in government that hold these accounts surprise me, but not the fact that the accounts exist. anchor: for those countries who have not allowed offshore accounts and to what extent do these papers reveal, do you think, illegalities or are we
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jumping to conclusions? >> the fact that citizens hold bank accounts in and of itself is not an illegal act. where the problems begin is if you don't disclose that. as i mentioned earlier, we have forms that you would attach to your u.s. income tax return due on april 18 to disclose the existence of those accounts. there is a whole separate regime of separate filings with the international criminal affairs division of the treasury department of this country. anchor: when you saw that the firm mossack fonseca was based in panama, did a larm bells go off in your head? >> again, not really. panama historically has been a jurisdiction where one would form foreign companies. frankly, the price to form such companies might be a bit less than some of the other jurisdictions, but the fact it was panama and the fact that there were large amounts of money and the fact that these foreign accounts existed and the fact there were foreign organizations owned by citizens of other countries didn't surprise me in the least. anchor: what percentage in your
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experience dealing with these affairs of what was revealed today would you think would constitute illegal money laundering or tax evasion? >> oh, that really be a guess on my part. again, for u.s. citizens, we have to when the accounts are disclosed in may -- anchor: none at all or possibly quite a lot. >> yes. [laughter] >> it's not going to be none. we know that. i don't think it's going to be all, at least not from the american side. anchor: so we've got these documents. is this the tip of the iceberg, are there lots of similar firms with potentially dubious -- >> yes, no question in my mind. not only in panama but in other countries. the key with panama, the united states does not have a treaty or exchange of agreement with panama. one could have an account in panama and no way for the united states to learn of the existence of the account absent
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the voluntary revealing of the accounts on the u.s. income tax returns. anchor: thank you for coming in. you can bet the tax authorities will be looking at those panama papers for a long time to come. a quick look at other news around the world. ashes between forces and separatists have left at least six people dead on the third day of fighting. each side has accused the other of carrying out further shelling despite a unilateral cease-fire. dozens of people have been killed since the flare-up began. two governors here in the u.s. took a major step in raising their state's hourly minimum wage levels to $15. in los angeles, governor jerry brown was cheered by union workers as he signed the bill into law that will lift the wages by 2022. in new york, andrew como took the same step which will go into effect by 2019. that would make the wages the highest in the nation.
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two have been flown so senegal for resettlement. they were the first of a new group of a dozen prisoners scheduled tore transferred. the white house thanked the government for the willingness to support the continuing efforts to close the facility. air fans has backed down in a row with female air crew of whether they should have to wear head scarves, long jackets trousers when arriving on flights to iran. the airline has agreed they can refuse to work that route all together. flights to iran are resuming this month after international sanctions were lifted. the first boats carrying migrants deported from greece under an e.u. deal aimed at easing mass migration into europe have arrived in turkey. police in greece say of those deported today, the majority were believed to be economic migrants from pakistan. many questions still surround whether the agreement will actually work. our correspondent watched the
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boats as they arrived in western turkey. correspondent: out of europe and into the unknown, they began the journey they never thought they would make, the first group of migrants sent back from greece to turkey, the guinea pigs of an e.u. deal that nobody is sure will actually work. around 200 arrived back today, mainly pakistanis, a tiny fraction of the more than a million people who went the other way in the past year crossing these waters to europe. this just a symbolic start as the e.u. closes its doors. and here they come, the e.u.'s test case, the first migrants to arrive back here in turkey. as far as they're concerned, they failed, the hopes of a new life in europe have come to an end. the big question is whether they will try once again at some point, still determined to make that trip. as the migrants were taken off to be processed, patience wore thin.
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some struggled, a reminder. challenges they overcame to make it to europe in the first place. the local governor said fingerprints would be taken, medical checks made and syrians would be sent to refugee camps. they'll take the place of other syrians directly resettled in the e.u., the first ones arriving in germany today. the pakistanis and others were driven to deportation centers. this one has a capacity of 750. turkey will aim to send them back to their countries of origin, but worries persist about whether this deal is fair and how the migrants will be treated here. some locals voicing their opposition. hopes in the
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european country. correspondent: among others, there was the apinger of bringing more migrants here, locals signing petitions against a camp. >> we can't accept them here even though we pity them. we want to care for them. i want them somewhere far from view where they can be comfortable. it would be better if they lived in a different place. correspondent: across the port, 55 pakistanis were held, caught by the coast guard this morning trying to get to greece. it was an illustration of why this deal may simply not work because fleeing war and deposit, the desperate are still ready to take the risk. anchor: so many people who seemed determined to get to europe whatever the risks and whatever the deals. for more on the latest effort to cope with the migrant crisis, i spoke a short time ago with nato's secretary-general. he had just been meeting president obama at the white house today. secretary-general, do you think that the deal which has started to be implemented in europe between greece and turkey on the migrant crisis will help make nato members more secure? >> yes, i think so because the alternative is continued chaos.
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we have seen the biggest humanitarian refugee crisis, the migrant crisis in europe since the second world war. i welcome the effort to try to manage to handle the situation and nato provides support to ships in the aegean sea which e helping the turkish, greek coast guard and the e.u. border agency to deal with the situation. anchor: you have talked at length about this being a humanitarian crisis, but how much does your migrant problem also represent a security crisis? >> this is first and foremost a humanitarian crisis. hundreds of thousands, millions of people fleeing from war, from turmoil, from violence and also from poverty. therefore, i welcome all efforts in trying to manage this humanitarian crisis in a brt way. anchor: that is your position and in nato, you also lived in brussels, you see -- >> that's true, we have seen
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that they can get into europe in many different ways. some are actually born and raised in europe. so i think we had to understand that the migrant crisis is first and foremost a humanitarian crisis. we have to step up all of our efforts with border control, police, with different kinds of cooperation between nato allies and other european countries to make sure that we do whatever we can to avoid new terrorist tacks. anchor: it has been said many times you won't solve the refugee crisis in europe unless what is happening in syria. you have been quite critical of russia's role in syria. now that russia has said it is pulling back, will the situation improve. are you less critical of moscow? >> what you have seen is a substantial russian military buildup and now some of those forces are withdrawing. the important thing is that we have seen progress when it comes to the work to find a political negotiated solution.
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it's not easy, it's going to take time. that's the only viable solution to the crisis. anchor: is russia being helpful in that political process? >> russia is at least now a part of this political process and that is important. anchor: i want to ask you about the comments by donald trump, the republican frontrunner in the presidential race here. he has said that nato is on so lead and he wouldn't mind if it was broken up. what do you make of that? >> i will not comment on the u.s. election campaign and it's up to the u.s., the american people to decide. what i can do is to tell what nato is doing and nato is responding to a more dangerous world. that is important for the united states and it's important for canada and europe. we are doing that by standing together in the fight against terror. we do it by implementing the biggest reinforcement of collective defense of europe since the end of the cold war and we are doing it, for
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instance, in afghanistan where we have our biggest military operation ever as a response to an attack on the united states 9/11. hundreds of thousands of europeans have fought there together with americans. anchor: it doesn't sound like you agree with mr. trump? >> i will not be part of the u.s. election campaign. it's up to the american people to decide. i can tell what nato is doing. anchor: thank you very much. nato secretary-general who will not be drawn into american politics. and nato is not the only thing that donald trump has been sounding off on. still to come here on "bbc world news america," comedians in mexico and canada are being kept busy by the republican frontrunner. tonight we discover that not everybody is laughing. for two years, iraq's second city mosul has been under the control of islamic state militants. life is brutal and very secretive. our correspondent has traveled
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close to the front line to meet people who are escaping from i.s.
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anchor: since the start of his presidential campaign, donald
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trump has had no problem telling the rest of the world what he thinks of them, whether it's trade policies or immigration, mr. trump doesn't hold back from insulting other nations. what do america's neighbors make of him? in a moment, we'll hear from jayne o'brien in canada, but we start with the bbc's katie watson who is in mexico where mr. trump's promise to build a wall on the border has made people very angry. >> immigration, the only thing that drives donald trump crazy besides yellow number five hair color. correspondent: laughing in the face of adversity, that's the strategy of this news program, this is mexico's answer to "the daily show." >> it's always the same. it's like kanye west and the kardashians, you know it's stupid. let's just move on. it's not getting funny anymore because as a comedian, you want the fresh kick and with trump, it's just the same jokes every time, you know.
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correspondent: for many mexicans on the street, their view of america has changed. >> i didn't think so many people would be supporting this crazy idea, so i don't know. >> the government has somehow forgotten some part of society in the country and that part of the society is getting angry. >> we're going to do the wall, and by the way, who is going to pay for the wall? mexico is going to pay for the wall. correspondent: trumps comments have angered many, not least mexico's former leaders. >> he will never change. this is a danger for the world. what we mexicans are small, but are picassos, so he shouldn't be playing around with us. correspondent: for historians, it's a reminder of the difficult past between the two countries and it brings out america's worst traits. > i mean, i cannot be more
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offended by the words of that ignorant bigot. is truly playing into the most obscure and darkest places of the american soul. correspondent: trump's rise has been amusing for some and surprising for many, but for mexicans, the feeling here is one of concern. many people have spoken to say that whether or not he wins the republican nomination in the end, the relationship between the two countries is already damaged. >> one of the things that donald trump is really pushing is that since he is a businessman and a wall street man, he knows how to create squobs and knows what people want. yeah, but does anybody remember 2008, the stock market crash, america almost becoming guatemala? correspondent: people still think it's better to laugh than cry. atie watson, "bbc news."
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correspondent: it's open mic and a laugh a minute at this comedy club in montreal. the audience likes political jokes you would think. mention donald trump and nobody cracks a smile? >> what did you think about trump's views on islam, it's scary, isn't it. correspondent: was there ever a point when donald trump made you laugh? >> of course, obviously. he says a lot of ridiculous things, did he ever make me laugh? i have to think. i mean, he makes me cink and he makes -- cringe and he makes me uncomfortable. it's great fodder for comics. in my opinion, it has gone too far. you want to see it end. you don't know if he is getting into power. would you vote for donald trump if he ran for prime minister? >> absolutely not. correspondent: asking random strangers what they think of trump, we decided to do the
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same. we're doing a piece on donald trump. can you tell me quickly what you think of him? >> i hope he doesn't get elected. correspondent: why? >> no one wants a racist bigot for president, do they? >> donald trump should learn to think and then speak. i think it's frightening that he encourages hatred. >> he wants to build walls on the frontier, i don't think we that. anywhere with correspondent: montreal is canada's second largest city and most people speak french. the rest of ke canada is closely linked to the u.s. politically residents lean left in case you haven't guessed. there is no shortage of people in montreal who are worried about donald trump says, but what do they think will actually happen if he becomes the republican nominee and possibly president? jimmy has been in business in politics for four decades. even if trump doesn't get
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further in the race, he says the damage may already be done. >> we have had a terrible two weeks in terms of bombings around the world. we don't need to raise the rhetoric, we need to lower it down. i think that's one of the biggest mandates or the biggest responsibilities of the next leader of the united states which is the leader of the free world. correspondent: do canadians have any advice for americans? come to canada, of course, before donald trump builds his walls. jayne o'brien, "bbc news," montreal. anchor: and it goes without saying there there is an enormous amount of interest in this election around the world and a lot of criticism of donald trump himself. i'm not sure that he and his campaign care about that one little bit. that brings this program to a close. you can of course find much more of the day's news. it's all there on our website. if you would like to reach me and the bbc team, you can can findousen twitter. our facebook page gives you a
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look at what we're working on at any time. more on "bbc world news america," thanks for watching, ee you back here tomorrow. >> make sense of international news at >> funding of this presentation is made possible by the freeman foundation, newman's own foundation, giving all profits from newman's own to charity and pursuing the common good, kovler foundation, pursuing solutions for america's neglected needs, national geographic channel and aruba tourism authority. >> planning a vacation escape that is relaxing, inviting, and exciting is a lot easier than you think. you can find it here in aruba. families, couples, and friends
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can all find their escape on the island with warm sunny days, cool tradewinds, and the crystal blue caribbean sea. nonstop flights are available from most major airports. more information for your vacation planning is available at >> "bbc world news" was presented by kcet los angeles.
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captioning sponsored by newshour productions, llc >> ifill: good evening, i'm gwen ifill. judy woodruff is away. on the newshour tonight: inside the panama papers-- how one of the largest data leaks in history allegedly shows world leaders using offshore companies to hide their wealth. also ahead, the battle for wisconsin: both party's frontrunners face hurdles, as candidates make a final push before tomorrow's primary. and, with the falling price of oil, one of america's most reliable allies against isis is going broke. >> often people say that peshmergas are fighting on behalf of the international community and the free world. if that is the case then there has to be more assistance. >> ifill: all that and more on


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