tv BBC World News America PBS August 22, 2014 3:59pm-4:31pm PDT
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solutions for small businesses and major corporations. hat can we do for you? >> and now, "bbc world news america." >> this is "bbc world news america" reporting from washington. a russian convoy rolls into eastern ukraine. i can ev calls it a direct invasion and the u.s. issues a sharp warning to withdraw. taking on the islamic state, the white house warns of its growing strength. but is the u.s. prepared to take the battle into syria? and these monkeys may think they're the king of the rock. but residents say they're getting a little too close for comfort.
welcome to our news on public television in america and around the globe. tonight ukrainian authorities are accusing russia of a direct invasion. after dozens of trucks said to be carrying aid entered the east of the country without permission. the u.s. and nato have both issued sharp statements saying the move is a breach of international commitments and that the trucks should leave immediately. from moscow, we report. >> for more than a week, the russian lawyeries at the center of the latest crisis all specially painted white have been sitting at the border, carrying food, water and generators which russia says are desperately needed in war-torn eastern ukraine. they've been held up by arguments between kiev and moscow. but today the foreign ministry's chief spokesman told me russia's patience had run out. >> kiev has desperately
attempted to derail the very important humanitarian operation. numerous grounds have been invented, bureaucratic procedures have been introduced to delay to the maximum extent the passage of the russian convoy. >> and then, without permission from kiev, the convoy of more than 100 trucks simply drove through the abandoned border post and into rebel-controlled eastern ukraine. the international red cross, who should have been in charge, were left behind in russia. as they meandered through countryside controlled by pro-russian gunmen, there was an international outcry. america called it a violation of ukraine's territorial integrity. the government in kiev was furious but said it would not shoot at the convoy. >> this is a direct invasion done cynically under the cover
of the red cross. these are military vehicles. these are military men with fake documents. who have been trained to drive combat vehicles, tanks and artillery. >> the war in eastern ukraine has been particularly bloody in the last two months. hundreds of civilians have been killed and thousands take shelter each night as the ukrainian army pushes forward on he main rebel-held cities. it's been a start of a week of frantic diplomacy aimed at bringing the fighting to a close. first the german chancellor will travel to kiev and then on tuesday the presidents of russia and ukraine will meet face-to-face in minsk. to achieve peace, they'll have to make compromises. and it's not clear that either of them is prepared to do that yet. >> for more on the rising tensions, i spoke a brief time ago with david kramer, a former
official at the u.s. state department, who's now the president of freedom house. thank you very much indeed for coming in. the words invasion. this is pretty strong stuff. just how much of a an escalation is this? >> it's a major escalation but it's not the first time russia's invaded ukraine it. did so with crimea and it did so in eastern ukraine. this is just the latest manifestation of russia's efforts to stirrup provocations with ukraine and forcing the ukrainians to make very tough decisions. do they try to force the convoy to stop, do they fire on it? and if they don't, will that open up a bigger window for puten to send in more forces? >> still a lot of confusion over the exact nature of this convoy. in your experience, is it an aid convoy or something more sinister? >> well, neither the ukrainian authorities nor the icrc was able to look into it and inspect all the trucks that were involved in the convoy. so we really don't know what's in those trucks. and the fact that it has been
done so mysteriously, under a cloak and dagger by the russians, suggests that the russians are up to no good with this convoy. i think it's the latest outrage by putin and the russians and for the russians to take the position as the deputy foreign minister did in saying that we cannot and will no longer put up with the misery of people living in southeastern ukraine. they've caused this misery. the russians are the ones who have created this whole problem and now they want to use that as the pretext to send in forces. >> nevertheless, there is a humanitarian crisis. and other aid organizations can't get in there because it's too dangerous. who should be tackling this? >> there's no question that there's a crisis there. the water has been shut off, electricity as well. but this is because of the russian-supported rebels and the russian forces. there have been russians who have been sent there to fight against the ukrainian forces and they're the ones who are really causing this whole crisis. what the government in kiev is trying to do is re-establish control over its own territory. what russia's trying to do is to
invade ukraine. >> and what chance does kiev have of achieving that when russia, president vladimir putin, clearly isn't listening to any of the rhetoric? >> it's a daunting task. there's no question about it. i think the president of ukraine has handleded this fairly well up to this point but this is a huge challenge that he faces. does he stop the convoy, does he allow it to go on, to avoid provoking russia into further action? the problem, is every time i think that the ukraine and the west show some inclination to hold off, putin takes advantage and exploits that. he sees a window of opportunity. >> a lot of talks happening, the weekend and both presidents are meeting next week. chances of success, what do you reckon? >> chancellor merkel will be arriving in kiev on saturday. president putin and president pour chenkow are -- poroshenko are supposed to meet on tuesday. i don't think the putin-poroshenko meeting has much hope of a solution.
the ukrainians need to evict these forces from their territory. unless putin agrees to relent to, that he's facing pressure in moscow from the nationalist forces who are saying, you have to come to their rescue. i don't see any other way to resolve this situation. >> tough times ahead then. thank you very much indeed for joining me. today the white house said the syrian border would not prevent the united states from attacking inside the country where the islamic state is based. if the u.s. does decide to strike inside syria, should government officials reach out to presidential assad? after all, syrian government forces are also taking on jihadist fighters from the islamic state. reportedly killing 70 in the past two days. our middle east editor has this report. >> kurdish fighters have stated themselves and are pushing back against islamic state. but i.s. won't be beaten without much more fire power. political as well as military.
it won't be hurt badly while it still has a power base in northern syria. and that is why there's talk of doing a deal with president assad. >> i think on practical grounds, we have to possibly consider taking a deep breath and holding our nose and saying that it would seem to us now that the extremely vicious and evil nature of islamic state and its objectives are actually worse than what assad has been doing. and it may be one of those situations in history where my enemy's enemy becomes my friend. >> but the west's main so far failed strategy for ending the syrian war includes the departure of president assad. britain says it won't change its mind about him. >> i've said very often that one of the first things you learn in the middle east is that my enemy's enemy is not necessarily my friend. we may very well find that we're aligned against a common enemy, but that doesn't make us friends
with someone, it doesn't make us able to trust them. it doesn't make us able to work with them. >> sectarian conflict in iraq and across the region makes building a coalition against islamic state much harder. on the edge of baghdad earlier this summer, a police general was at pains to point out that his chief bodyguard was sunni. but most arab sunnis in iraq don't trust the security forces. if the new iraqi government can't get its people to find the government reportedly shi'a who killed iran's 70 sunni worshipers in a mask northeast of baghdad today, the collapse of iraq will continue. in london the iraqi ambassador was trying to reassure a small group of christian demonstrators outside his embassy. he said peace in iraq depended on separating sunnis from islamic state. >> to feel that they are
partners in this government and partners in real partnership, not only signed and declared over the television, but then next day forgotten. >> so you're talking about a real power-sharing agreement with sunnis? >> absolutely. on the ground. >> and if you can't get that? >> we are going to be in a difficult position. very, very difficult position. >> so what happens next? the u.s. has said it will do whatever it takes against i.s. more air strikes are one option. but doing that in syria without the regime's consent would be difficult and dangerous. president assad's armed forces have good intelligence and they're well supplied. but the price would be the end of pressure on him to go. what about neighboring states? syria's ally, iran, is against islamic state. saudi arabia says it is too, but building a coalition against i.s. means getting tangled in difficult, often bloody, regional politics.
it won't be easy. now iraq's own sectarian conflict's emerging with the syrian war, the challenge facing anyone who wants peace becomes twice as big. syria's war has been impossible to stop. no one yet has a proper strategy to end the war in iraq either. >> for more on i violence in iraq and the fight against the islamic state, i spoke a brief time ago with the former u.s. state department spokesman. thank you very much for coming in. there is now a lot of open talk about going into syria. after all these years, how likely is military action by the u.s.? >> i think the statements by chairman of joint chiefs yesterday and reiterated by the white house today gives you a strong hint that the united states recognizes that if you're trying to neutralize the threat
posed by the islamic state, you can't do it on one side of the border without effective action on the other side of the border. and perhaps they're gaining confidence that the combination of support for the new iraqi government, coupled with military action, is beginning to be effective on the iraqi side and seeing which of those ingredients may well work on the syrian side. >> what about the suggestion that to be effective you have to work with president assad? let me ask it another way. is it possible to take action without working with him? >> i think it has the challenge upside down. it's not that the islamic state is the threat in the middle east. it is a manifestation of a challenge in the middle east. just as, you know, what has given the islamic state room to maneuver an oxygen in iraq was an ineffective and exclusive government in baghdad, like wise, what has given the rise of
the islamic state can be directly traced to the actions of the assad government. so if you're supporting, if you believe the solution in syria is a moderate islamic opposition, then -- and you choose -- you decide that military action can be effective in that theater as well, then you can fight a two-front war. you can support the opposition and where they have a line of conflict against the regime find, if they have a conflict against isis, fine. >> what about partners in all this? we've heard jeremy bow want say how difficult the coalition is because of the conflicting interest. is it a fact that america might just have to go it alone? >> i don't think so. i think what you have, what's absent in the middle east right now is really a consensus inside the region. just as the united states has said, and others, that the key solution in iraq is a better government, a more inclusive
government, likewise, you know, the key to syria is getting over the current obstacles and having the region say this is what we're going to do, this is how we need to do it, and then the united states confine to support that kind of initiative. the arab league consensus that perhaps we saw, for example in 2011 in libya, has never materialized in syria. that's what's missing and that's what we need to see and then the outside world, the united states, the west, can find a way to support a regional initiative. >> thank you very much indeed for joining me. >> thanks. >> staying in the middle east, hamas militants have killed 18 people accused of helping israel locate targets for air strikes. 11 men were shot outside a police station in gaza city. the others were near a mosque. the killings came after an israeli air strike left three senior hamas leaders dead on thursday. you may find some of these pictures disturbing. >> when the gaza city street
just after friday prayers, a group of men are led to their deaths. bound and hooded, they're made to kneel as a crowd looks on. they're shot dead. hamas, which supplied these pictures, say they were collaborators. it was a bloody day in gaza. as well as the men killed here, 11 were earlier put to death by firing squad. accused of the same crime. >> because they are spying. they helped to kill people. the jews don't know that there is resistance here. the collaborators tell them. >> the sign on the wall reads, they gave information and places of resistance, they caused many martyrs. hamas said the men were sentenced by an emergency court. but human rights groups say these were extra judicial killings. two women were among the dead. the death came a day after israel dealt its heaviest blow to the militants. an air strike here in the south of gaza killed three of its top military commanders. the brutality and the swiftness
of today's killings are an indication of the severity of the blow struck by israel against hamas, with the killing of its three military commanders. the militants expect that palestinians here in gaza colluded with israel to bring about those deaths. today's shootings are an attempt to disable any network of informants but also send a message to deter others from collaborating with israel's intelligence services. hamas is an armed movement, but it's been years since it turned its weapons with such force against its own people. even so, it warns what more killings will follow. >> nige has recorded two new cases of ebola, bringing its total number of concerned infections to 14. meanwhile, sierra leone has said that anyone hiding suspected ebola victims can be september to jail for up to two years. and senegal has closed its borders to travelers from sierra leone, liberia and guinea.
you're watching "bbc world news america." still to come, the protests over the death of an unarmed teenager in ferguson stretch far beyond missouri. we go to new york for the view from there. forecasts of more heavy rains in western japan have raised the risk of further landslides in hiroshima. they are still trying to locate dozens of people who went missing there earlier this week when the hills around the city collapsed. so far 40 people have been confirmed dead. nearly 3,000 police and military personnel have been searching for additional victims. >> in the last 12 hours, the news from hire shima has -- hire shima has continued to get worse. workers thought only a handful of people were under these mudslides. now they think the number is closer to 50. it seems like whole families were buried as they slept.
for the rescuers, it's hard to know where to start digging amidst all of this. many houses have been completely obliterated. time is rapidly running out. >> we have to be extremely careful here as we are looking at the potential secondary disaster due to weather conditions. so, yes, we can say rescue and search operations are going through a difficult patch right now. >> harrowing stories have also begun to emerge of what happened here on wednesday morning. this is the spot where a father handed his 3-year-old son to a fireman only to see both swept away and killed seconds later by a fresh landslide. everyone here talks of the astonishing speed with which this all happened. and of the extraordinary amount of rain that caused it. nearly 10 inches in just four hours. japan is an extremely mountainous country and landslides here are not uncommon. but the japanese government's own figures are very clear.
the sort of extreme weather event that caused the landslides in hire shima on wednesday are becoming -- here shima on wednesday are becoming more and more common. not surprisingly, the landslides they cause are becoming more eadly too. >> after nights of violent unrest, there is now a tentative calm in ferguson, missouri. the protests were sparked by the death of michael brown, an unarmed black teenager who was shot by police. it's opened up a larger debate across the bust race and the relationship between citizens and the authorities. >> the protests have been peaceful, the police calm. nothing close to the violence seen in missouri, but there is anger here in new york city too. not only about the killing of michael brown in ferguson, but
also over the death of another unarmed black man. this video of eric gardener turned a local tragedy into a national debate over the criminalization of race. here a police officer uses what appears to be an illegal choke-hold on gardener while trying to arrest him for selling untaxed cigarettes. a distressed gardener struggled and says repeatedly, i cannot breathe. >> the first time i seen that video, i knew for a fact my father died on that sidewalk. >> erica snipe says that even if her father did resist arrest, the police who are supposed to serve and protect are fully responsible for his death. >> i was screaming, crying like nobody helped him. why they pushed his face into the ground, why did they, you know, hop on top of him like that? i was just so distraught. >> eric gardener's death was ruled a homicide by the city's chief medical examiner. things were supposed to be
different under the new mayor, as an unashamedly liberal candidate, he promised to change police tactics which critics claim have exacerbated racial intelligences -- tensions in new york neighbors. but as mayor, his actions have only helped to divide rather than unite. >> he's been credited with dramatically reducing the controversial use of the stop and frisk street stops. but that hasn't satisfied communities who say they are still unfairly targeted. they argue that there's a fundamental problem with the police department's approach. and point to the fact that a disproportionate number of young black and hispanic men arrested for low-level crimes. at the same time, the police feel they have a mayor who is unwilling to defend them. sergeant mullens, who is the president of the one of the police unions, said that is creating a toxic environment. >> the police right now feel very beaten down. they don't feel they have the support of city hall.
they're wavering whether they have the support of the department. they don't feel they have the support of the public. and worse yet is that the criminal knows that the mayor and the public is not on the police side. >> a mainly rally in new york on saturday -- major rally in new york on saturday will bring together the families of eric gardener and mike brown. to the protest is expected to be peaceful. but the question is, with such mistrust between minorities and the police, will a real solution be reached before either's reaking point? >> the ongoing debate over race in america. now, to jibralter where one of the greatest tourist attractions is also becoming a bit of a nuisance. the monkeys are cute but some say that they're becoming a bit too cheeky for their own good. locals argue they've started invading their space. so now jibralter is planning to banish some of them.
>> they live on top of the rock. they know the locals. and amuse the tourists. >> he's looking for food. >> but in search of a meal, i go bralter's monkeys are venturing into town. great if you're visiting. >> we didn't think we'd see a monkey perched on the ledge in the middle of the street. >> but the monkeys have a taste for what humans can provide. >> very clever. just like humans, you can offer them a banana or a mars bar. they'll go for the mars bar. at the time a lot of resources are being put into providing sort of more open spaces for the monkeys so they can forge in the upper rock and prevent them from
going down. there's also a large effort in trying to push them from the town, up into the nature reserve. >> and they're also working to control their numbers. 30 monksy willing exported -- monkeys will be exported to to a safari park abroad. >> they're thought to have traveled here on ships several centuries ago and they've become an important national symbol. they tried to control their numbers several years ago but that's not seen as part of the solution now. just some of these guys and girls will soon have a new home. the monkeys are an asset. hat sometimes, some of them, are also now nuisance neighbors too. >> reporting under douress there. that brings today's show -- duress there. that brings today's show to a close. for all of us here at "world
news america," thank you very much for watching and please ave a very good weekend. >> make sense of international news. at bbc.com/news. >> funding of this presentation is made possible by the freeman foundation, newman's own foundation, giving all profits to charity and pursuing the common good for over 30 years, nd union bank. >> at union bank our relationship managers work hard to understand the industry you operate in. working to nurture new ventures