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tv   Focus on Europe  PBS  August 15, 2016 6:30pm-7:01pm PDT

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♪ >> hello and welcome to "focus on europe." in today's show, we'll be examining why going from spain to portugal means, quite literally, a step back in time. more of that later. my name's damien mcguinness. great you could join us today. one of the big stories in europe and the moment is what's going on in turkey. since the failed coup, president recep tayyip erdogan has been clamping down heavily on dissent. this is creating tensions between critics and supporters of the government. tensions which are now reaching germany. tens of thousands of german-turks have been demonstrating in cologne in support of erdogan's government, and against those who staged the coup. followers of the islamic guelen
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movement are accused of being behind it. they are bad people, says this man, and he wants them thrown out of germany. germany has the largest turkish diaspora in the world. and in the latest turkish elections, more than half of german-turks who voted, supported president erdogan. they are obviously worried by the recent attempt to overthrow the turkish government. there are also many critics of mr erdogan here, especially from the guelen movement, led by islamic preacher fethullah guelen, once an erdogan ally, but now a fierce critic in exile in the u.s. his followers say they are being intimidated. in some cases allegedly with the support and encouragement of some state-backed imams, who preach in germany, but are paid by ankara. >> stuttgart, just after friday prayers. we canvas opinion outside the mosques in the southern german city. the mood is hostile -- people
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are angry with the german media and the gulen movement that allegedly masterminded the failed coup attempt against the turkish president. >> gulen's people are dirty people. terrorists. >> a few days earlier, erdogan supporters attacked a youth organization linked to the gulen movement in the city of gelsenkirchen. and companies owned by gulen supporters were daubed with the letters rte -- erdogan's initials. most of the mosque-goers support the turkish government. >> what happened in gelsenkirchen was a reflex. it was just a reflex and anyone who is at all patriotic reacted in this way. >> they're very dangerous, very bad people. they should all be kicked out. >> are the imams stoking the tensions? this is a quote from a sermon: "a coup attempt was made via the hand of evil -- internally and externally - and a pernicious organization."
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>> what organization is being referred to? >> the gulen movement, of course. everyone associated with it. >> do you think that this kind of preaching is acceptable? >> definitely. when asked the chairman of the mosque association refused to comment. >> switch off your camera or i won't say anything. >> the integration policyrkel'se parliamentary group, cemile giousouf, is herself a muslim and she's familiar with the sermon. >> that's not a religious sermon. it had a very political message. it's all very dangerous. sermons like that serve to widen the rifts between people, to increase the enmity and distrust, rather than playing a reconciliatory role. >> and this is the federation behind the mosque: ditib the turkish islamic union for religious affairs.
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it operates some 900 mosque associations across germany and is politically independent according to its rules. in a written statement, ditib told us that anyone accusing the organization of carrying out political smear campaigns was entangled in "fallacious anti-ditib propaganda" with "the -- ditib's imams are payrolled and sent to germany by turkey's religious authorities. >> in recent years, these associations have fostered a certain type of rhetoric, a certain type of attitude, that is sympathetic to the turkish government and uncritical towards erdogan. people need to open their eyes and realize the work being done is not religious. it's political, at least in part. >> on its homepage ditib now , condemns "rabble-rousing slander and propensity to violence." but we have seen several statements by ditib imams and associations calling for gulen supporters to be denounced and their businesses boycotted.
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and until just recently there was a sign hanging outside this mosque in the western german city of hagen, which read, "out with the traitors to the fatherland" -- a clear reference to gulen supporters. the sign has now been removed. on the telephone, the chairman of the mosque tells us it was a "mistake". but was it really just a slip-up? let's return to the attack on the youth organization in gelsenkirchen. alleged gulen supporters were beaten up there after the failed coup attempt in turkey. eye-witnesses say the deputy imam of the ditib-run mosque was present. this man was also there when the attack took place. for years, he himself was on the ditib board. he says he's disappointed by the man in the picture. >> i would have expected him to say "lads what you are doing , here isn't right, stop."
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but he just stood there and watched like most of the others, some of them were older men or came from other associations, too. they just stood there and watched. they liked what they saw. >> we encounter the deputy imam at the mosque. but he doesn't want to talk to us. could this have been another slip-up -- just bad judgment on the part of the deputy imam? a tape recorded message sent by the mosque's chief imam to his congregation after the attack on the youth organization would seem to contradict that. >> i was very pleased to see that the offices of the parallel organization had been closed down and turkish flags hoisted. may allah reward you. >> the german integration commissioner is calling for a tough response and a ban on the dispatch of turkish imams to germany. >> of course. it is absolutely unacceptable for an imam from turkey to
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praise his community for carrying out acts of violence. i would like to see this imam prohibited from entering germany again, and for us to make it quite clear that this is just not on. i think it's already clear to ditib that it's balancing on a precipice and that it's about to squander the trust invested in it. >> ditib informed us in writing that it would carefully investigate the incidents and respond accordingly. >> next to ukraine, where the fragile ceasefire in the east of the country is looking more tenuous than ever. it's local people that are being hit hardest. the problem for ukraine though is that many people have lost faith the government in kiev: the oligarchs still have control. and corruption is endemic. some believe the answer is nadia savchenko. a former soldier who until recently was held prisoner in moscow. she's battle-hardened. she's determined. and she's seen as a hero by many voters.
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but is she able to help lead the country politically? we've been to meet her to find out. >> a platform truck lifts nadiya savchenko to a mural with her portrait. artists in zaporizhia in southeastern ukraine painted it, adding the opening lines of the national anthem. the fervent patriot enjoys this appearance. as so often, she sings the national anthem. we'll hear her sing it again later ♪ >> savchenko is a first lieutenant, the first woman in ukraine to complete training as a helicopter gunner. she saw action in iraq. here is some footage from ukraine's military television. when armed revolt against kiev broke out in eastern ukraine, savchenko volunteered for combat duty. moscow-backed separatists captured her, and she was brought before a russian court.
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international observers called it a show trial with fabricated charges. she was sentenced to 22-years in prison. at home, nadiya savchenko became a hero. this may, she was unexpectedly released. her return to kiev stirred emotions. she announced that she wanted to go into politics. she even set her sights on the presidency. >> to be able to change the powers of the presidency and the structures of the country, to make laws useful to the people, and to battle corruption, one would have to become a dictator holding all the power. and later return the power to the people. >> savchenko's flirtation with the idea of absolute power breaks taboos -- even in ukraine. relations between savchenko and
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president petro poroshenko were reserved from the beginning, even as he honored her with the title "heroine of ukraine". her popularity could threaten his own position. this picture by a ukrainian photographer hangs in savchenko's office. it echoes delacroix's famous painting "liberty leading the people". >> no, that's not me. they took a picture with a girl who looks similar to me. with the same t-shirt, the same trousers, and the same combat boots that i had on. >> savchenko sometimes seems to play with her role. she's often been compared to joan of arc and stylized as a legendary savior of the nation. at her first appearance before the ukrainian parliament, she appealed to patriotic feelings. ♪
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>> some observers say she has the qualities to set new moral standards in politics -- but hardly to become president. >> she clearly has good intentions, but she's not familiar with the political process. her declarations are often confused and unclear. they muddy ukrainian politics instead of leading them in a clear direction. >> wherever she appears, people come to her with their worries and problems. this man is complaining about arbitrary police action. savchenko promises to look into it. then, it is off to the next appointment. savchenko has called for more prisoner exchanges in the war in eastern ukraine. to this end, she wants to talk with the separatists, a controversial stance in ukraine. >> politicians and pr managers are starting to cast aspersions on me, saying i did this and that wrong.
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and people are starting to believe them and to criticize me. but that's fine. i'm absolutely relaxed about it. i'm sure they'll also throw rocks at me in the future. >> that sounds like a sense of foreboding. the defiant pilot knows her popularity could suddenly change into mistrust and rejection. in politics, especially ukrainian politics, that's common enough. >> whenever i'm in spain, i always get quite confused about when the shops open and close. that's because a lot of shopkeepers pull down the shutters during the day to go for an afternoon siesta. nowadays, big international firms tend to ditch the siesta, so that they're not out of step with people abroad. but in western spain people feel like they are permanently out of synch with their neighbors just over the other side of the border in portugal. >> in spain, the clocks tick differently, as juan rivera knows only too well. rivera is a watchmaker in the
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galician town of tui, on the portuguese border. >> it's ten to two, and the sun hasn't even reached its zenitzh here. from the sun's position you'd think it was about 11:00 a.m. >> spain runs on central european time, despite lying far to the west. that means the sun is two to three hours behind the clock. many think spain should switch to the same time zone as britain or portugal, which are an hour behind central european time. that situation annoys watchmaker rivera. here in the far west of spain, the discrepancy between the official time and solar time is particularly great, and he needs to remember the one-hour time pneighboring portugal if he is o avoid arriving late for business appointments there.
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>> the time difference makes no sense here at the border. galicia is geographically in line with portugal. we have to have the same time. it's nonsense for us here. >> but spain and portugal haven't always been in different time zones. joaquin alvarez is 92. as a young man living under the franco dictatorship, he remembers his country changing to central european time. that was in order to be in the same time zone as nazi germany. it was a purely political decision. >> the orders came from on high and you had to obey them. you were put under a lot of pressure back then, if you opposed anything. it wasn't like today when you
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can talk about anything. so people were forced to adopt this time. and that was that. >> watchmaker rivera thinks it's high time for that decision from the franco era to be reversed. why should people still be setting their watches according to a whim of the fascists? it remains light hours after rivera shuts up shop in the evening. that's why he goes to bed late, like most spanish people. but he has to get up in the dark. the watchmaker believes the spanish are suffering from sleep deprivation because of the time zone problem. he envies the portuguese. they also dabbled with central european time, but they decided to switch back 20 years ago. >> they changed the time zone because it's better for them that way. the portuguese are more
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confident than we are. more traditional. they're better in that respect. >> so is it time to follow in their footsteps? if the majority of spanish politicians have their way, spaniards could soon be turning back their clocks. no doubt, that would please their neighbors in portugal. >> if the spaniards change their clocks to our time, it must mean that portuguese time is advantageous. >> but rivera isn't holding his breath. he knows change is often slow in coming. >> only a few projects actually get implemented. and perhaps this will be one of them. but because it isn't actually costing anyone any money, they'll probably leave it as it is. >> but the watchmaker knows that 76 years after the introduction
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of central european time, he and his countrymen will continue to lead their lives largely in accordance with the sun -- no matter what time zone they're in. >> cross a border, and then suddenly found yourself in a different time zone. but then that's the case in many parts of the world. drop me a line and let me know your experiences of this where you live. >> now the last time i was in armenia, the conflict in syria had just begun. and we talked to many refugees who had fled to armenia, ethnic armenians who had lived in syria for generations after having fled the armenian genocide a hundred years ago. today though, with the conflict in syria worse than ever, their ancestors are fleeing again. this time back to the armenian homeland. but some are finding themselves in yet another long-running
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conflict, between armenia and its neighbor azerbaijan over the disputed region of nagorno-karabakh. and some are even enlisted to fight. >> a rickety barrier in the mountains marks the boundary between armenia and nagorno-karabakh. the two flags hang here in harmony. but under international law, we are now in azerbaijan, which lost 17% of its territory when nagorno-karabach's armenian population declared itself independent in the early 1990s. azerbaijan still wants the enclave back. this destruction in the village of talish is new. early in the morning on april 2, azeri heavy artillery shelled the village, and residents fled. armenian forces later chased the azeris away, but the 500 villagers have not returned. the farmer seriosha takes a look at his ruined farm every day. the first shells of the april attack landed here.
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two grad missiles hit his house. >> i was sleeping here. my wife and son, too. >> seriosha says the attack came without warning. his family and his neighbors fled in the cars that had escaped destruction. this was the second time that talish had been attacked. in the last full-scale war, in 1992, azeri troops burned his house to the ground, says seriosha. 3,000 armenians fled the area at that time. seriosha points to the hills around talish. in 1992, he says, azeri raiders sneaked into them at night and killed the sleeping residents. he doesn't know whether his neighbors will return now, but he intends to live here again once his house is restored. >> i don't want to leave this soil. i was born here, like my father and grandfather. over there is our cemetery.
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>> talish is surrounded on three sides by azerbaijan. since the attack, a defensive wall has gone up. but there are people moving to the area for the first time. we're going to visit some refugees from syria. a foundation reportedly financed the construction of new houses in the village of ishkhanadzor for armenians whose families once fled to syria to escape turkish genocide and who have now fled the syrian civil war. they've been offered a house and low rent on fields. the agricultural co-op provides farm equipment. waik, from lebanon, and george, from aleppo in syria, want to start a new life here, waik's son interprets. they both volunteered for the nagorno-karabakh defense army and fought against the azeris. arsen, the mayor, is happy to see newcomers, like radsh, who lost his farm and threshing machine in syria and now has to start all over.
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>> yes, many peope are coming now. >> they've fled the war in syria for an embattled conflict zone in the caucasus. here, at the mayor's house, they say fighting for their own land gives them an edge over invaders. all l l ree say they had relatis who were victims of the armenian genocide. do they believe in a peaceful solution to the conflict with their muslim neighbors, with azerbaijan and its backer turkey? >> no. our wounds are still open after all the blood they spilled in the genocide. our wounds have not yet healed. >> the frontline is quiet. a ceasefire was agreed some weeks ago. but the calm is tense. both sides are still buying modern weapons from russia.
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but there's also an agreement that could lead to peace. five occupied areas in nagorno-karabach would hold a plebiscite to determine which country to belong to. the question is how the opposing sides will use this opportunity. >> for many europeans, this is now holiday season. but the news over the last few months means that some of the usual tourist hotspots are deserted. particularly in turkey, where terror attacks and political unrest are putting tourists off. so many people are looking for more unusual destinations, such as the eastern european country of albania, which is by no means the drab post-communist state many in the west imagine >> just kilometers from the greek island of corfu lies the coastal resort of saranda in albania. in the communist era, the town was out of bounds to foreign visitors. but the tourism sector has flourished over recent years.
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saranda isn't just popular with albanians and kosovans. several times a day, ferries dock, carrying daytrippers from corfu. at the moment, the beach resort is particularly popular with tourists from scandinavia and the united states. >> it's the first time. we have been to greece several times, turkey, and spain. this is the first time in albania. it is a new experience. >> ms. spent time here enjoying the cafes, restaurants, and the beach. >> and because saranda wants visitors to stay for more than a day, there are now ambitious plans, to build an airport, for example. >> we would like tourists to fly to saranda and make it their base. they can visit greece from here. corfu, for example. because albania is a lot cheaper for foreign visitors.
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that's our strategic plan for tourism in saranda. >> but these plans have encouraged unscrupulous speculators. buildings have sprung up like mushrooms, often constructed without planning permission. the desire to make a quick buck from mass tourism has pushed the town to its limits. >> there are problems. there's no denying that. 12,000 people used to live in saranda. now there are more than 55,000. the destruction of the townscape through this unregulated construction has damaged the town's reputation. >> and albania has another key problem it'll need to get under control quickly, if it doesn't want to put off holidaymakers, the lack of concern for the environment. illegal trash dumps litter the countryside. but the urgency of the problem
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is now being recognized. more is being invested in waste management across the country. >> tests that we've just conducted show that our seawater is clean again. a sewage work has finally gone into operation, which transports the contaminated water into the hinterland where it is treated and purified. the last thing that the tourism planners want to see is further destruction of albania's natural environment, its prime attraction. >> looks idyllic. well that's it for this week's show. thanks for watching. remember you can always reach me on twitter, email, or facebook. but for now its good-bye for me. and look forward to seeing you next time. ♪
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steves: while dedicating a month of your life to walk the camino may be admirable, it doesn't work for everyone. but any traveler can use this route as a sightseeing spine and as an opportunity to appreciate some of the joys and lessons that come with being a pilgrim. just 5 miles before the spanish border stands the french basque town of st. jean-pied-de-port. traditionally, santiago-bound pilgrims would gather here to cross the pyrenees and continue their march through spain. visitors to this popular town are a mix of tourists and pilgrims. at the camino office, pilgrims check in before their long journey to santiago. they pick up a kind of pilgrim's passport. they'll get it stamped at each stop
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to prove they walked the whole way and earned their compostela certificate. walking the entire 500-mile-long route takes about five weeks. that's about 15 miles a day, with an occasional day of rest. the route is well-marked with yellow arrows and scallop shells. the scallop shell is the symbol of both st. james and the camino. common on the galician coast, the shells were worn by medieval pilgrims as a badge of honor to prove they made it. the traditional gear has barely changed -- a gourd for drinking water, just the right walking stick, and a scallop shell dangling from each backpack. the slow pace and need for frequent rest breaks provide plenty of opportunity for reflection, religious and otherwise. for some, leaving behind a stone symbolizes unloading a personal burden.
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the first person to make this journey was st. james himself. after the death and resurrection of christ, the apostles traveled far and wide to spread the christian message. supposedly, st. james went on a missionary trip from the holy land all the way to this remote corner of northwest spain. according to legend, in the year 813, st. james' remains were discovered in the town that would soon bear his name. people began walking there to pay homage to his relics. after a 12th-century pope decreed that the pilgrimage could earn forgiveness for your sins, the popularity of the camino de santiago soared. the camino also served a political purpose. it's no coincidence that the discovery of st. james' remains happened when muslim moors controlled most of spain. the whole phenomenon of the camino helped fuel the european passion to retake spain and push the moors back into africa. but by about 1500,
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with the dawn of the renaissance and the reformation, interest in the camino died almost completely. then, in the 1960s, a handful of priests re-established the tradition. the route has since enjoyed a huge resurgence, with 100,000 pilgrims trekking the santiago each year.
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hello there, and welcome to nhk "newsline." it is tuesday, august 16th, i'm catherine kobayashi in tokyo. the japanese government has been publicly protests incursions of chinese vessels into its territorial waters. now it's released a video showing such intrusions in the east china sea. the footage was taken by japan's coast guard earlier this month. it show a japanese patrol ship ordering chinese government vessels to leave japanese waters. it also shows the chinese fleet near the senkaku islands. japan controls the islands. the government maintains the islands are an inherent part of japan's territory.


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