tv BBC World News WHUT May 4, 2012 7:00am-7:30am EDT
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>> hello and welcome to "g.m.t." also coming up in this program -- can the competitive sarksarksark defy the polls and see off his socialist challenger and front-runner, francois hollande? sunday's election? legacy of the fukeshim adisaster. for the first time in four decades, japan will no longer generate any electricity from nuclear power. it's midday here in london, 7:00 a.m. in washington, and it's 7:00 p.m. in beijing, where the u.s. secretary of state, hillary clinton, is due to give a press conference at the end of her visit to china this week. her trip has been overshadowed by the controversy over the blind legal activist, chen guangcheng, who has now apparently been granted permission by the chinese authorities to apply to study abroad.
there have been conflicting reports as to whether mr. chen wanted to leave china ever since his dramatic escape from house arrest last week. we're going to bring you the press conference as soon as she starts speaking. first this report by martin patience in beijing. >> china's police have thrown a ring of security around the hospital. dissent isn't tolerated here, as these people outside the building found out. american officials continue to search for a solution to end this crisis. the deputy u.s. ambassador arrived at the hospital with mobile phones for chen guangcheng, but he wasn't allowed to enter the building. speaking on the phone, the blind activist said he'd been detained. >> let me tell you, i can tell you only one thing. my situation right now is very dangerous. for two days, american officials who have wanted to come and see me have not been
allowed in. >> he had angered china authorities after exposing abuses under the country's one-child policy. after escaping from house arrest, he fought sanctuary at the u.s. embassy. -- he sought sanctuary at the u.s. embassy. earlier this week, a deal was apparently reached by china and the u.s., which guaranteed his safety. mr. chen was brought to this hospital by senior american officials on wednesday. but inside the building, he dramatically changed his mind after hearing from his wife that she'd been beaten whilst he was at the embassy. instead of staying in china aas previously agreed, mr. chen said he wanted to go to america. >> he wants to come to the u.s. >> from his hospital bed, chen has made a flurry of calls. in a dramatic development, his voice was heard at a u.s. congressional hearing in washington. back in beijing, secretary of state hillary clinton is attending annual high-level
talks. but chen's case is overshadowing her visit. >> we have a lot of work ahead of us, but we find more and more opportunities for cooperation. we have developed a very open and honest relationship where we can discuss our differences, and we remain committed to bridging those differences whenever and wherever possible. >> but now the chinese authorities have said chen could apply to study in the u.s. and maybe the face-saving solution to end this diplomatic crisis. martin patience, will be will be news, beijing. >> we are expecting a live press conference. we are showing you the assembled press corps awaiting mrs. clinton, no doubt going to hang on her every word, as we will be, and we'll bring thaw as soon as she starts speaking. but in the meantime, we will
press on with the day's other main news. to france, where campaigning for the presidential election is into its final day. opinion polls suggest the gap between the socialist challenger and front-runner, fran choice hollande, and the incumbent, nicolas sarkozy, is at its narrowest since the campaign began. it's been a bruising campaign, of course, that has seen both candidates criticize each other's personalities as much as their policies. my colleague is in paris following developments. well, mr. sarkozy facing an uphill struggle, isn't he? >> yes, and he only has until midnight tonight on the campaign trail. it ends officially there. french people then have one day to think thinks over, and off they go to the polling stations on sunday. nicolas sarkozy, though, says he can still do it. he's not used to being an underdog. he's more of a bulldog in french politics. but can he really do it? somebody who can answer us, or at least thinks he can answer us, is someone from the opinion
polling agency. what would you bet? >> well, i think it's not ready to do that. normally on sunday night, possibly should be the next president of the country, because after the first round, the difficulty of sarkozy to gather voters, especially on the far right, is very difficult. we still have only 50% of them. >> he moved very fast, but he still hasn't really tempted them, according to polls. >> yes, because most of them are more further, but they also think that he has betrayed them and didn't really achieve to do what he said he was going to do and didn't want to do it. >> it's interesting, isn't it? you know, tell us in your polls, the suspicion is it's less a vote for hollande, but a vote against nicolas sarkozy,
is that what you're finding? >> yes, a lot of people are looking for all new things that is not really better than sarkozy. and i'm sure that on sunday we've seen the bulls, the voters up along, voted along because they don't want sarkozy to be elected, not because they want him, and we have the sarkozy voters. for the moment, it's too hard for the president to really be able to be react. >> you say that according to polls, many french people don't believe things will change, even if francois hollande becomes the next president. the markets seem to be worried about hollande. they're listening to his economic rhetoric. do you think french people aren't, really? even though they say the economy is number one on their minds. >> well, yes, they are convinced about francois
hollande. they know it sent coming from the center, and it will -- i think there's a changing from the right to the left. and so people are no more worried about that. we are no more in 1981 when people were maybe, for some of them, very afraid about the fact that he could be there. >> thank you very much of opinion way polling agency. so, as you say, as much as politics, this is very, very much about personality and right up until the last second. >> both candidates will be hoping that the sun is shining on them as it is indeed on you, katy. greece is also experiencing election fever. political parties there are holding their final rallies before a general election on sunday to replace the caretaker administration that has run the country for the past six
months. so there's speculation that voters who were denied a referendum on an international bailout earlier this year may now punish parties that supported the austerity measures demanded by the international community. at least 13 people were killed in the southern russian republic. a sued bomber attacked a police check point, then a nearby van ex-ploacheded after emergency services arrived. here in britain, a large-scale exercise is underway to test military capability ahead of the london olympics. a helicopter task force is on board the royal navy's largest warship to prepare for their role in defending london against a possible terror attack during the games. the taliban say they carried out a suicide bombing which killed 20 people at a police check point in northwestern pakistan. five of the dead were members of the tribal police, one of whom was given an award last
year for fighting the militants. there are reports that the bomber was a teenager aged between 14 and 16. from the pakistan capital, islamabad, orla guerin reports. >> the blast was powerful enough to reduce shops and restaurants to rubble. the suicide bomber struck near a crowded market in the early morning. many of the dead were civilians. the taliban said the main target was a tribal police officer who won a presidential award for fighting against them. his bravery and dedication cost him his life. survivors were rushed to hospital for treatment. among them, this young boy. the tribal region has been a battleground for years. the army has hit hard, pounding taliban strongholds near the
afghan border and losing many troops in the process. the militants, linked to al qaeda, have been hunted from the air, targeted by attack helicopters. but many senior leaders managed to flee across the forous border. several times they've declared victory, insisting the area has been cleared, but the taliban keeps proving them wrong. the bombing was the third attack in just two days. twin blasts on thursday killed five people. the dead were tribal elders and security personnel. local officials have condemned the latest attack and said the fight against terror will continue to its logical end. orla guerin, bbc news, islamabad. >> still to come here on
"g.m.t." -- caught on camera. a hungry lioness at an oregon zoo tries her hardest to reach a small child who seems to be oblivious to what's going on behind him. britain has criticized argentina for broadcasting a political television advertisement that was filmed on the falklands island without permission. the commercial was produced by the argentine presidency and shows the country's hockey captain training in the falklands. >> filmed in dreary early-morning light, this advert, aired on argentine tv, is about an athlete's nostalgia. fernando have a well known argentine hockey player. here, he's running in fort stanley. he does his exercises outside the globe tavern. with no one around, he uses the granite steps of a british first world war memorial before
dashing apart the penguin news. those on the island are not sure when the filming took place. they say it took place in secret. the advert has angered the islanders, not least because of its message in the runup to the london olympics. the slogan here is compete on english soil, we train on argentine soil. this national sentiment is in line with recent comments from argentina's president. she views that 30-year anniversary of the falklands war to accuse britain of colonialism. she wants her country's flag to fly above the island, known to argentines. but among some argentines, the propaganda video has gone down well. >> i think it's right. we are defending something that is ours with the wetlands we have. we know we are inferior to the big powers, and we have to use what we have in reach to get something done.
>> it's fabulous artistically, and as an argentine, it brings the spirit out in me. yes, it's argentine soil. it really is rousing. >> you're watching "g.m.t.," and these are our top headlines. china says the prominent dissident, chen guangcheng, can apply to constituted a broad. it's a move that could end a diplomatic crisis with the united states. and final campaign rallies are underway in france ahead of sunday's presidential elections. opinion polls show that nicolas sarkozy and francois hollande as close as they've ever been. now i've been joined in the studio by rachel, bringing us the business news. one of the top stories you're looking at, rachel, is facebook and that initial public offering, i.p.o., what he wants
the latest thinking on that? >> so this book is 8 years old, 900 million users worldwide, and thee decided now is the time to float on the markets. everybody's talking about t. the big question is will people want to invest in it? one of the things is the founder, mark zuckerberg. he's almost 60% control of boasting rights. as recently as last month, he agreed to buy the photo sharing site for a pillion dollars, and told the board about it afterwards. so earlier, i spoke to stewart mills and asked how he thinks mr. zuckerberg will answer to shareholders. >> when the board and shareholders start coming in and saying, look, we own this company as well, how that dynamic changes, how he can cope with the ability of having to answer to a lot more people than just himself is going to be the really interesting thing. the instragram example is quite worrying. to be able to go out and buy a billion dollar company without really saying anything to
anybody until after you've done the deal, as a shareholder, i'd be quite concerned about that. >> well, we'll see how concerned shareholders will be when the company votes on the 18th of may. >> all right, and french presidential elections, of course. markets, economies, all the rest of it, watching events there very, very closely. france, a huge economy. but unlike a change of direction, who wins? >> yeah, both candidates are facing the conflicting issues of the rising public anger at the continued cuts and the need to reduce the government's deficit. you know, as always, jobs, a huge election issue to be referred to there, and some saying that it's even more relevant now that we're seeing record levels of unemployment right across the eurozone. a lot of people are wondering, would either candidate really shake things up economically and try and reverse that trend, especially for france? earlier i spoke to thomas mickelson, and he's the professor of economics and decision sciences, and he doesn't think so.
>> both mr. sarkozy and mr. hollande promised to balance the budget in the nearest future. france hasn't had one since 1974. so both candidates are basically agreed that the country has to rein in its public finances and also get to a more stable path in the future. the problem is how to get there and who's going to pay for it. >> hard to get there and who's going to pay for it, questions a lot of eurozone questions will answer. >> rachel, thank you so much indeed for bringing us those critical business stories. now, if we can, for the first time in more than 40 years, japan will no longer generate any of its electricity from nuclear power. before the disaster at fukushima last year, japan had 54 nuclear reactors, supplied nearly a third of the country's energy needs. the last one is being switched off on saturday for routine
maintenance, but local communities have refused to approve its restarting. here's our correspond, roland buerk. >> once it was a symbol of japan's belief in a nuclear future. the biggest nuclear power station in the world. we were taken through the heavy, water-tight doors, into the maze of corridors inside, right to the control room for the reactors, built to power tokyo. once by one, all japan's nuclear power stations have been shut down, and now the output is zero. this is the very heart of their power station. that music is a warning that the air lock is open. over here, that water, that's the pool where the spent nuclear fuel, still
radioactive, of course, is being stored. next to it, that circular structure, that's the top of the reactor itself. now, before the disaster at fukushima, japan relied on nuclear power for nearly a third of its electricity. the nearby town now faces a choice between fear and economic collapse. the power station is the biggest employer, but like other local communities, they're reluctant to allow it to be restarted, wary of another fukushima. but the lights must be kept on in tokyo, a glistens metropolis that consumes vast amount of power. to prevent blackouts, imports of gas and other fossil fuels have risen dramatically. never before have they been so busy. but it comes at a heavy price, more expensive electricity. they're constructing huge new
sea walls, big enough, they say, to withstand any possible tsunami. but the japanese were told that fukushima was safe and convincing people now will not be easy. roland buerk, bbc news, japan. >> a new study has suggested that a lack of sun and long hours spent studying could be to blame for a huge rise in short sightedness among young adults in asia. the report, published in the lancet, found up to 90% of school kids are suffering from short sightedness, or myopia. that compares with an average of 20% to 30% in the u.k. the research also suggests that up to 20% of sufferers could eventually lose some of their vision or even go blind. so, interesting statistic there. now, as we've been telling you,
hillary clinton, u.s. secretary of state, and the treasury secretary of the united states, timothy geithner, have been in beijing, and they are just about to start their joint press conference in beijing. let's go over live and see if they've begun speaking. >> thank you. >> start talking, we can tell you that you are looking there at live pictures, hillary clinton, timothy geithner, joint news conference, at the conclusion of their annual strategic and economic dialogue between the united states and china, which, of course, has been overshadowed by that controversy over the blind legal activist, chen guangcheng . mrs. clinton has been holding talks behind the scenes with chinese officials, discussing that, as well as the regular items on their agenda, which, of course, are very extensive. listening to some questions there.
>> first let me start by saying from the beginning, all of our efforts with mr. chen have been guided by his choices and our values. i'm pleased that today our ambassador has spoken with him again. our embassy staff and our doctor had a chance to meet with him. and he confirmed that he and his family now want to go to the united states so he can pursue his study. in that regard, we are also encouraged by the official statement issued today by the chinese government confirming that he can apply to travel abroad for this purpose. over the course of the day, progress has been made to help them have the future that he wants. and we will be staying in touch with him as this process moves
forward. let me also add, this is not just about well-known activists. it's about the human rights and aspirations of more than a billion people here in china and billions more around the world, and it's about the future of this great nation and all nations. we will continue engaging with the chinese government at the highest levels, and putting these concerns at the heart of so i think we have then very clear and very committed to honoring both his choices and our values. >> next question.
president obama and i have said many times, and as we repeated again over the last two days, the united states welcomes a strong, prosperous, and successful china. we want to see china not only deliver its economic prosperity for its large population, but also play a key role in world affairs, and our people gain far more from cooperation than from competition, so we are committed to pursuing a positive, cooperative, comprehensive relationship. and i want to underscore the importance of events like this annual strategic and economic dialogue. we use it to maximize mutual
understanding and areas of cooperation, while also speaking frankly to one another about those areas about which we have disagreements. now, given all that we are doing together bihat radio rally, regionally and globally, we need this kind of open, regular mechanism for strengthening our partnership and managing those areas where there are tensions and differences. i said something earlier today that i would repeat for you, because together, the united states and china are trying. >> make sense of international news at bbc.com/news. >> funding was made possible by the freeman foundation of new
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