tv BBC World News America PBS May 22, 2012 5:30pm-6:00pm EDT
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america." >> this is "bbc world news america." reporting from washington, i am jane o'brien. on the eve of historic elections in egypt, we are on the ground to hear what the voters want from their next leader. >> what do you want from your next president? what is most important? >> i need one to has vision. >> sold into the sex trade. a bbc investigation reveals a trafficking route stretching from mexico to the u.s. >> and the launch of the spacex rocket. >> and a blast off for a new way of doing business in space. the first commercial flight of its kind ushers in an era of private enterprise.
welcome to our viewers on pbs in america and around the globe. it only is taking a quick look in the history books to see what egypt is buzzing with excitement tonight. for the first time in more than 5000 years, the country has the chance to choose its leader in a direct election. it is not clear what the new powers the new president will have, because the constitution is still up in the air, but one thing is certain. he will have to address the many problems that have worsened since the fall of hosni mubarak. we have a report from cairo. >> this is the square that made history in egypt and around the world, and type your square. -- tahir square. there are the historic presidential elections. >> if he makes any wrong,
anything wrong. >> the victims, the innocent victims. >> known -- so tahrir square will come back. >> yes. >> everywhere you go, you see the billboards. we have come to this working- class neighborhood in the center of cairo to try to find out. this man backs the canada calls himself a liberal. he says he is shocked. >> ahmed. >> the former prime minister? why? >> many thanks.
-- many things. >> you are not sure who to vote for? >> -- 9 >> what is most important? >> i need one who has a vision. >> these are also the numbers in egypt. chris is the stock exchange in cairo. the measure of the country's economic activity. for many egyptians, that is what matters in the election. the economy has taken a nosedive. this is down. this trader tells me political events is what influences the market now. if the election runs smoothly, it will have a big impact on the economy. the first truly open polls will determine what happens next in
the future. bbc news, cairo. >> for more on these historic elections, i spoke with the director of research, he joins us from cairo. thank you very much for joining us. how significant is this election? not just for egypt but for the region as a whole? >> these are the first competitive elections in egyptian history, and also one of the first in the arab world, and what is so interesting about being here in cairo is no one quite knows who is going to win, and that is quite new for this area, where the outcome of an election was determined in advance. they knew the outcome of an election. what is interesting is you will make it to the second round of the rocks, and it runs the gamut.
no one knows. >> doesn't matter who the candidates are, or is it just the fact that for the fourth time, they are voting freely? >> we will have to keep a close eye. whether they win the elections in one way or another, and there is one can it in particular that seems to be quite close to the military council, so that is certainly one thing to watch, but there is a choice. you have is lomb's, liberals, people close to the old regime, people you are more prone revolutionary, so egyptians do have a choice here, and this president is really going to be able to set the tone for how these proceed. we should not overstate the
importance, because at the end of the day, there is still and military that is quite to play a very important role behind-the- scenes and is on to try to interfere and assert its will over the process. there is a potential confrontation between the next president and the military council, and, of course, we have the parliament, so we have many moving parts. >> so how much power will the president actually have? >> that is the funny thing. the egyptians are going to vote tomorrow, and they really do not know what the job description is, because there is not a constitution yet. fat is going to be up in the air. and that is a big debate we are seeing in egypt right now. should it be a mixed presidential system, the parliament. should it be more powerful, or should it be more of the presidential system, where the president has control over not
all made foreign policy but something in the domestic sphere, and that is what people will have to find out. it will also depend on which presidential candidate wins, because some have advocated different roles for themselves, so, again, that is what makes it so fluid and so interesting, is that we do not know what the role of the president will be. it may depend on him, how much charisma he has, how effective he is in reaching out to the egyptian people to say, "this is what my role should be, and i want you to support me in that." >> thank you. >> thank you for having me. >> and, of course, we will have complete coverage for those elections in egypt, so stay tuned to the bbc. trouble in the global economy, today, it was the time for japan
to feel the pinch from the fitch credit -- fitch credit rating, which took them down one. and there is the biggest economic shock waves coming from greece. our correspondent reports. >> thousands of years of history and prestige, but where does greece go from here? looking to the future is as uncertain as ever. there is a sense of waiting for something to turn up, but as to what that something is, no one is daring to guess. in u.k. and around europe, they will be asking again, how did in greece get into this mess? concerns about the greek economy, which is relatively small, why is it causing such shock waves? and it had to be bailed out. it will have to pay a crippling near 30% interest rate, and they will have to go back to the markets. by comparison, the u.k. costs,
like some other economies, are below 2%, and the economy has been shrinking in a lengthy recession. output will have fallen over five years. so why is the economy stuck in reverse? i asked the head of a leading greek business organization. >> people prefer to keep euros theyuro's -- have in the sake of a wallet, and business is about taking a calculated risk for the future. it is not possible to calculate any risk at this time, so investment is at a total standstill. >> and it is the uncertainty that is a damaging. 12 runs a cafe says that customers are spending less because of austerity measures. he wants them to come up with a
solution. >> getting their act together, and every time you think you are over the hurdle, another one comes along. >> greece will struggle to relieve its debt burden. their debt burden has become the european debt problem, because the markets are so closely interlinked. many banks are still dealing with the bad debt caused by the economic downturn, and there are fears that problems increase could cause damage across the system, and u.k. banks are tied up in this money trail which leads to greece. speculation continues about the great future in europe. and the old currency, the drachma, it is a souvenir, but could it yet be the future? bbc news, athens. >> in other news, an emergency landing of a u.s. airways flight in may after reports of a
passenger behaving suspiciously. it was on its way to charlotte, n.c., and was met by security officials. a female passenger who was not an american citizen was removed from the plane. and gunman have opened fire in karachi, killing at least 10 people and wounding 20 others. the demonstrators were marching in support of opposition calls. and the american ambassador in afghanistan says he is stepping down and retiring from the u.s. foreign service. crocker had also run embassies in pakistan, kuwait, lebanon, and syria. he returned to kabul after coming out of an earlier retirement, the personal request of president obama. exploited. every year, thousands of women are smuggled from mexico to the united states and forced to become sex workers.
central to the trade is a small town in mexico, where virtually everyone is either involved in this form of modern slavery or knows about it. we have an exclusive bbc investigation. >> to me, what i hear the word, i think of the young people who are naïve. and you are drawn into these romantic relationships by sex traffickers. >> [speaking foreign language] >> she was forced to work as a prostitute here in new york for 18 months. she was abducted from the streets of mexico city by an
infamous gang of sex traffickers. we come here to mexico to find out how she was trafficked and taken to new york city. we are going to follow the journey that the traffickers compel her and so many other women to make. one of the safest states in mexico, largely untouched by the drug war, but this is the epicenter of the sex trafficking trade. i met a woman who works for a charity that helps victims of trafficking. she explained how pimps from one particular town target women. >> they showed them houses that now is people here cannot afford, so the women not only fall in love with them, but they also see the opportunity of having a better life, but obviously, they cannot imagine that they will end up suffering sexual exploitation. >> when they wake up the second
morning, there is such a sense of shame that they do not go back to their families. >> we went to see it for ourselves, a town thriving on sex trafficking. risque billboards mind the roads. traffickers live in mansions like this, which locals say were built on the profits of prostitution. so we have just left there. it did not seem safe to film their openly. we have been told that in a town of just 10,000 people, virtually everyone is involved in the human trafficking trade war has knowledge of what is going on. >> [speaking foreign language] >> the whole town knows that they are all accomplices, and she said, and they were kidnapped.
so why do not the authorities prosecute the traffickers? because of corruption, we are told. the federal government is trying to tackle the problem. making arrests is not easy. >> [speaking foreign language] >> they are so well organized, says this mexican official. the traffickers have a network of informants and other towns and they control who is entering the town. >> heard trafficker smuggled her here to queens in new york, threatening to hurt her family if she ran away. she was delivered by a car service to men who call numbers on these cards, wanting to pay for sex. >> they aren't treated as a cheap take-out food, solicited as the river. -- as delivery.
the prices are advertised, and they are used and run away. the woman is picked up and driven around of the course of typically a 10-hour shifts. >> been up daily by her peers, she finally ran barefoot into the street, covered in bruises. >> -- beaten up daily by her pimp. >> [speaking foreign language] >> i wanted to escape his beatings. >> after all she suffered, she has this morning for other women. >> [speaking foreign language] >> do not trust a man, she says. just do not believe the pretty things that he will tell you. >> [speaking foreign language] >> bbc news, mexico. >> and you can find that much more about our bbc in-depth investigation into trafficking
on our website. there you will find facts and figures as well as profiles of some of the vulnerable women who ended up at the mercy of the trafficking business. go to bbc news.com -- bbc.com/news. you are watching "bbc world news america." still to come on the program, we will have more on the latest leg of a relay. the former army chief of sri lanka says he did not commit any war crimes during the tamil tigers conflict. he was released from prison yesterday. we have a report from colombo. >> three years on, this state in sri lanka's still celebrates its war victory with a huge pageantry of military muscle and firepower. gori is heaped upon the
president, who reigns supreme. three of his brothers in top posts. one man has missed these parades for the past three years. he was then a general, army chief for the final phase of the war. after the war, if all unraveled. he accused the powerful president of not giving him to credit for the victory. he stood against him in the election, lost, and was locked up for two years. only now, with a presidential pardon, has he been freed. the former general was greeted with supporters, who see him as a true world -- war hero, but with britain and other countries saying there may have been war crimes in sri lanka, it is possible that he will be under just as much scrutiny as the civilian leaders to send him to jail. >> these people are guilty.
they say they are ready to answer for allegations. >> the government of sri lanka's still uses its war victory to court popularity. it says the country is now liberated, but for many in the international community, the best way to reconciliation has yet to be definitively answered. bbc news, colombo. >> to britain now, where the london 2012 olympic torch relay continues to attract large crowds along the route. for many, it is a chance to enjoy the buildup to the games, but it is also about people carrying the flame. we are where the talks have stopped for the night. >> welcome to a very loud, very boisterous area, because they
have arrived here. they are using this as an excuse to have a big party, the celebration continuing into the night. it is really a remarkable day. the opportunity to come out. the weather was spectacular. they're celebrating the arrival of the olympic flame. there was a man from bristols, and others, and they join me now. a lot going on behind us. it is free. thousands of people are still here. what did you think of today? >> well, today is a tremendous day, and the weather has been great. it was very early in the relay, so we are all anticipating the rest of the journey, and the music is great. the atmosphere is great.
there are families around, and it is celebrated. you can really feel that. >> it is a pretty high standard. >> it is, it is the first major city in the southwest, and then there really goes up north. so yes, it cannot get much better than this. >> how much of an inspiration is it to them? >> this one is here in england. there is already a lot of excitement. many of the young, they want to hear stories. i am hoping that it will inspire them for their own story. i think we will all have our own story after the game. this is allowing them to understand a little bit about what the olympics are really about. >> business interests around the olympics, how is that going?
>> that is going very well. a lot of businesses in the southwest england region. supply, say, what goes around the basketball arena, or another venue. >> how does this compare? >> i was involved in the sydney games. i liken the games to be is in britain and london. i know there was beijing and athens. i think culturally, the brits and the aussie is -- causings -- aussies are very similar. >> do you think london is going to manage to put on a great show? >> it will definitely be a new mark. what i have seen already, it is
incredible. it really will be. not to be missed. >> going to the olympic part of it -- park and being part of the atmosphere. i think the people of bristol and throughout the country -- >> thank you very much. many people here. it really is at once in a lifetime ahmet. and as you can see, celebrations are going to continue right into the evening. >> thank you very much. the olympic atmosphere there. now, it is a new way of doing business in orbit. the first-ever commercial supply ship is heading to the international space station following a successful launch tuesday. the next test for the space mission comes later this week, when the rocket will attempt to
dock with the space station. our bbc science correspondent has this report. >> three, two, one, zero. >> the launch that was privately built, to go to the international space station. this is designed to be a safer and cheaper than the space shuttle. in 2004, it was difficult, but with the kind of hard work and determination and ingenuity for which nasa and this nation are known, we are now back on the brink of a new future. >> the rocket was built in los angeles with this private company, spacex, and they are building a fleet of rockets to eventually send a cargo and astronauts to the space station. on friday, the unmanned
spacecraft docked with the space station. you can see from the simulation that it is a tricky process, where astronauts inside grab it, using a robotic arm. they then guided into the porch. for many, it will be a historic moment. the steps that spacex has taken with this flight is the for step towards the commercialization of human space flight, and that will be as significant as the jet industry and its relationship to the wright brothers by birthright. >> with private companies involved, cost will fall, and space travel will become more commonplace. bbc news. >> and that brings today's show to a close, but remember, you can find constant updates on our website. i am jane o'brien. for all of us here at "bbc world
news america," thanks for watching. >> make sense of international news at bbc.com/news. >> funding was made possible by the freeman foundation of new york, stowe, vermont, and honolulu. newman's own foundation. and union bank. >> this is kim -- about to feel one of his >> we are guiding you to the opportunities of international commerce. we put our extended global network to work, for a wide range of companies, from small businesses to major corporations. what can we do for you?