genie: you are watching france 24. time for 60 minutes live around the world. i'm genie godula. these are the headlines. the former brunches minister -- budget mr. of france gets three years behind bars -- minister of france gets three years behind bars. he says he will appeal. eastern aleppo continues to crumble as the syrian regime
plows through what once was a rebel stronghold and despite different -- desperate pleas for a humanitarian cease-fire, the chances of the truth are practically -- truce are practically nonexistent. in the wake of wednesday's earthquake in indonesia, more than 100 people were killed. coming up in business, trump's election, political turmoil in italy and lackluster growth. mario draghi has a lot on his mind. what will the ecb do to help the eurozone? and the city of leon shines once again with the festival of lights after being canceled last year in the terror attacks. first our top story live from paris. ♪
genie: syrian troops have taken over 80% of the area back from the rebels who had held it for almost five years. it's the people of aleppo who are suffering the most. 80,000 have fled the city. but in our regional -- let's bring in our regional correspondent in beirut. talk us through what the situation is like on the ground. we are in the fourth week and most of the territory that was taken back was in the last two weeks. they suddenly made very rapid progress. they now control 80% of the territory formerly held by the rebels in eastern aleppo.
that follows consolidation of the old city area which was abandoned by the rebels in the last couple of days. there are still tens of thousands of civilians left in the enclave. they are now used to living under conditions of siege but they are deteriorating further. they have very little supplply f food and water. is shelling on a daily basis. killed in eastern aleppo by government shelling and bombing from warplanes. since yesterday 24 people in western aleppo were killed including four children by mortars being fired out of the rebel held areas.
they are s still fightining bac. how much longer r they will be able to last is unclear. president gavean an interview recently where he set a truce is not an option despite desperate pleas from people on the ground for a humanitarian cease-fire. >> that's right. international calls as well from various governments and the united nations. he said this in an interview to a newspaper which is a syrian daily. when asked about the possibility of a cease-fire he said it was nonexistent. that is building on the message the syrian government has been giving for some time now. unless there is a withdrawal of fighters from eastern aleppo there will be no cease-fire. though the opposition offered a five-day cease-fire just yesterday with the
possibility of evacuating civilians from the city. that is something he has blankly refused to accommodate. francelet's come back to where the country's former budget minister has been sentenced to three years behind bars. he is the main figure in one of the biggest political scandals of recent years. he championed a crackdown on tax evasion during his time in office, but he was also hiding millions in secret accounts at the time. correspondent our at the paris courthouse. this is one of the harshest sentences we have ever eaten against a french politician -- seen against a french politician. >> that's right. handing down the three year jail term the judge said that only a custodial sentence would the enough. committed werees
exceptionally serious and rare. he said they spanned more than 20 years and continued even while he was in office as budget minister. this tax fraud and money laundering had seriously undermined trust between the french public and their politicians and that was one of the reasons he was handing down such a heavy sentence. in past political corruption scandals in france very often the political protagonist have walked away with a suspended jail term or been cleared altogether. this is being seen as a very severe sentence indeed. he is going to appeal. he has left the courtroom today. that's how the judicial system works here in france. the judge was very clear that
for him there was no other interpretation of the facts than that this was a willing concealment, a long-term concealment and a huge sum of money. genie: he wasn't the only person there today. his ex-wife is also involved in this case. was her punishment as harsh? it wasn't. his ex-wife patricia was sentenced to two years behind bars even though the court found that she was also guilty of tax fraud and money laundering and concealed larger sums of money than the budget minister himself. the judge took into account the former budget minister's position of responsibility in handing down that sentence. this case is very complicated. there are members of a bank in court today. the bank has been handed a huge fine. this case brought out a very
acrimonious divorce between the former budget minister and his ex-wife who was sentenced alongside him. of their very acrimonious separation that a lot of these details leaked out to the media and the investigation started. some very embarrassing revelations for the former minister about the state of their divorce. she had actually hired a private detective to look into his affairs and perhaps give her weight in their divorce proceedings. very messy indeed and one that ended with prison sentences for both. genie: thank you. joinedmore analysis i'm skype by a by -- via lawyer and expert in international law. is this sentence meant to be an example to the political class? >> it is meant to be an example
but forpolitical class the public generally. i think that we are seeing a change of scenery when it comes to tax fraud. rare that you would get imprisonment sentences when it comes to tax fraud. things are changing. we have seen that in recent decisions and we are seeing that again in that very exceptional case. i think it's a message to the public at large that tax fraud is not a benign game. that is a serious offense and that people should be punished. how do these three years behind bars compared to what we might see in other countries? >> it depends from country to
country. let's say france was fairly lenient when it comes to tax fraud in the past. if you compare it with germany or the united states or the north of europe, scandinavia, they are very harsh when it comes to tax fraud. we have been lenient and we were not the only ones. other countries were as well. i think this is changing. unitve now a specific within the enforcement authority in charge of tax fraud. aboutk this case brought a change of mind together with other events. the financial crisis has changed things. our states are not rich. they need money and tax fraud is seen as a dangerous offense.
i think we are seeing that with that sentencing that he is getting. perception in some countries was that tax fraud was was stronger in some countries than it was in france for a very long time and this is changing. this appealng as process is underway he will not be behind bars. is there any way this appeal could reduce his sentence? it's not rare that we see reducing of sentences. we will see where that goes. it is difficult to predict. that because of who he was, the fact that he was the minister in charge of fighting tax fraud it will be
difficult for a court of appeals to reduce the sentence. genie: thank you for taking the time to speak to us. now to indonesia where the death toll is over 100 killed from the earthquake on wednesday. an lefts more have homeless and those still alive are desperate for basic needs like food and water. more on the rescue operations that are underway. >> climbing through the rubble of hundreds. this is rescue operations got underway after they were halted at night by heavy rain. in this footage, little was left of this town after a powerful earthquake struck on wednesday. local residents in the confusion after the natural disaster
observed the damage. others searched for their loved ones amid the unbroken line of corpses on the road. elsewhere this hospitatal had rn out of space. survivors were treated wherever staff could find room. the red cross was quick to respond and deployed emergency teams and announced accounts for donations. this is not the first time the country has been hit by a quake. 2004 and earthquake caused a scene of the -- a tsunami. genie: the city of lyon is shining -- with its incredible festival of light. alex hearst reports. after a long year of absence, it's back. light that is.
cascading through downtown lyon for three days. the cathedral is being virtually constructed and deconstructed. stone after stone. it's really magnificent. we are pleased. i'm used to the classic look it has during the day and now i have the impression of tina different place. the elements of nature. telling a visual story on the side of a monument, that's pretty fabulous. >> its original. using walls as canvas. the techniques keep progressing. in total there are 40 some
lights to be found in the streets and plazas waiting to be happened upon and discovered. open to everyone beginning tonight. let's take a look at today's top stories. ministerformer budget gets three years behind bars in one of the biggest political standards in recent years. he championed a crackdown on tax evasion during his time in office while also hiding away millions in recent accounts. eastern aleppo continues to despite desperate pleas for a humanitarian cease-fire. the syrian president calls a chance of a truce practically nonexistent. italy's prime minister officially resigns but not without hinting he wants to lead his party back into an early
election battle. time for our business news with stephen carroll. the european central bank is meeting today and they have a lot to talk about. met,e last time the bank donald trump was elected president. renzi is resigning. the euro has weakened significantly against the dollar. will decide whether to extend the bond buying program beyond march of next year. the ecb is currently spending 80 billion a month in order to boost the economy. investors are banking on an extension of at least three months. we should have a decision in the next half hour. i think the risk of failure is really high going into this meeting because ecb really have to address all angles of
optimism if they really wanted to impress the market. extend that?g to be 80 billion that they are going to continue after it expires? what technical changes are really going to happen? aspect -- ifrtant we hear anything of tapering you will see the market taking a completely different turn altogether. we can see a lot more intense selloff on the market. genie: how are the markets trading? >> investors waiting to see what happens. things looking pretty stable for now. across theore games main market. italian shares trading up again today. that is being led by the banks.
up by threehe ftse quarters of a percent. more: there has been trouble for volkswagen in south korea. they have taken dramatic steps against the carmaker. 80 models were banned from sale earlier this year. now the country's fair trade commission has slapped a fine of almost 30 million euro's on cw for false advertising. the scandal is continuing to affect volkswagen sales. brian quinn reports. south korea's fair trade commission cracking down on the country's volkswagen unit with the largest fine ever imposed in a false advertising case. their ad repeated concrete phases. before its use of sophisticated emission test cheating software was revealed in late 2015
volkswagen ads in south korea touted the vehicle's fuel efficiency and compliance with european emission standards. that campaign saw sales balloon on the peninsula from 4000 cars to 62,000. driver whokorean purchased a new volkswagen in 2013 is no longer a satisfied customer. >> i suffered mentally from other people's opinion of my purchase. used car prices have also sharply dropped causing monetary damage. >> the fine is equal to about 29 million euro's. it is the maximum penalty allowed under law. the trade commission is also pursuing criminal charges against five current and former vw korea officials. in august they banned 80 volkswagen models from sale in the country and levied a 14 million euro fine for forged
documentation related to the scandal. the fallout is taking a toll. korean vw sales were down 33% for the first half of 2016. volkswagen is currently facing legal action in several countries over the affair. genie: now to a major deal in the oil industry. russia's state-owned a stakeany will pay for in other companies. it is part of an effort to raise funds as good suffered 32-year recession caused by a drop in oil prices. ap already owns an almost 20% stake. russia will retain a controlling stake. genie: everyone knows donald trump loves to tweet. now the boss of twitter itself is stepping in. >> there has been a lot of focus on how donald trump has been using twitter since he was elected.
the twitter ceo and founder was asked at a conference how he felt about trump governing through 140 character messages. his answer was "it's complicated." he's not sure what it means to have a direct line to the president-elect's thoughts. if he feels responsible for trump being elected president. he replied that america is responsible for trump being elected president. genie: thank you, stephen carroll. time for the press review. ♪ we are taking a look at the papers today. we will start in the united states where donald trump has just been named time magazine's person of the year. >> it is a controversial pick. time magazine chooses the person who for better or worse test on the most to influence the events of the year. victory came as a huge
surprise and he has emerged as a hugely divisive figure. time is certainly aware of how divisive he is. take a look at the cover. donald trump, president of the divided states of america. genie: he is not the first controversial person to be chosen for this honor. >> that's right. if it was about being nice or person holy than time's of the year would be a dull run of moral philosophers, religious leaders and blameless teachers. controversial figures have been named person of the year in the past including adolf hitler and joseph stalin. syria let's move now to and the situation in aleppo. the army has now almost completely overtaken aleppo. rebels to plead for
a humanitarian cease-fire. >> that's right. this is a photo on the front page of the independent. you can see that many neighborhoods have been reduced in thele, particularly cities east which has been living under constant fire from russian and syrian warplanes. let's take a look at another photo from the guardian. we see residents of aleppo fleeing the city. residents have called for a five day truce to allow the evacuation of civilians. they have been joined by the u.s., britain, france, italy and canada. genie: those have been feed out by russia and china -- vetoed by russia and china. >> that's right. here we see members of the un security council sitting around a table with a pool of blood in the middle.
we see someone desperately reaching out for help but the people sitting at the table are just looking away. you can see one of them putting probably because he is vetoing the cease-fire. notu.n. was blamed for doing enough to protect citizens and aleppo and in particular standing up against russia which has been accused of war crimes by western powers. genie: many of the papers in france are focusing on this massive peak of pollution we have. >> that's right. you can see the famous golden dome but you cannot see much apart from that. cloaked interally smog. this is having an impact on public health. the headline says smoking kills. genie: what's being done to
reduce pollution? the government has implemented a series of measures to tackle the problem. cities in other france have banned the circulation with the even numbered or odd-numbered plates depending on the day. it has helped bring down pollution levels in the past but it is not a long-term solution. they say car pollution is not the only source of pollution we should worry about and the government should work on trying to upgrade public transport in major cities across the country. genie: something completely different about giraffes. how would a giraffe where a necktie? >> it has prompted a huge debate online with internet users wondering whether giraffes would go to work with a tie at the top
or bottom of their next. it's a question that will perhaps remain unanswered. the guardian reports that giraffes are under threat of silent extinction. the population has declined by 40% in three decades. is time that we stuck our neck out for the giraffe before it's too late. look: thank you for that at the papers today. you can get a closer look at the press review on our website. christmas is coming and in the next french connection you will find out all about the traditions of france. stay tuned. 8úxú