Skip to main content

tv   BBC World News  PBS  March 25, 2011 12:30am-1:00am PDT

12:30 am
>> this is "bbc world news." funding for this presentation is made possible by -- the freeman foundation of new york, stowe, vermont, and honolulu, newman's own foundation, the john d. and catherine t. macarthur foundation, and union bank. >> union bank has put its financial strength to work for a wide range of companies, from small businesses to major corporations. what can we do for you? >> and now "bbc world news."
12:31 am
it decision at last, nato agrees to take control of enforcing the no-fly zone over libya. >> all nato allies are fulfilling this resolution, and that is why we have decided to assume responsibility for the no-fly zone. >> the united nations says the libyan government must declare a cease-fire or face of further action. fighting on the ground continues as forces loyal to the libyan leader bombarded mombasa. welcome to "bbc world news" in the u.k. and around the world. also ahead, syria offers reforms after bitter protests erupt into violence. mourners paid their last
12:32 am
respects for elizabeth taylor. after days of disagreement and confusion, nato has agreed to take control over enforcing the no-fly zone over libya. they said the mandates of the alliance would not extend beyond that and there would still be a separate coalition operation. if you hours ago, u.s. secretary of state hillary clinton said airplanes from the united arab emirates would be joining the no-fly zone. >> final preparations for these french pilots as they contemplate another mission over libya. france was at the forefront of the diplomatic flight to get a no flight -- a no-fly zone it installed, and now they're
12:33 am
actively involved in maintaining it. while their mission is clear, who controls the international mission has been less so until now. >> nato allies have decided to enforce the no-fly zone over libya. we are taking action as part of the broad international efforts to protect civilians against the attacks by the khadafy regime. >> that will be music to the years of the u.s. government, which four days has been seeking to reduce the level of american involvement in policing the no- fly zone. news of the agreement brought this response from the secretary of state. >> nato is well-suited to coordinating this international effort and ensuring that all participating nations are working effectively together towards our shared goal. this coalition includes countries beyond nato,
12:34 am
including arab partners, and we expect all of them to be providing important political guidance going forward. >> so maintaining international support for the libyan operation is a key objective for nato, now that it controls the no-fly zone. but with the french president indicating he once scored a nation of the campaign to remain eminently political, even as his country's armed forces remain on patrol off libya, the issue of overall control may still need some resolution. a french warplanes enforcing the no-fly zone has destroyed at an aging libyan single engine jet that was landing. two government tanks were destroyed in air strikes, the other tanks are said to be inside of the city. here is our world affairs editor. >> the way this battle goes
12:35 am
could decide the outcome of the entire confrontation. the rebels have no answer to colonel gaddafi's firepower. that is why they have been so delighted that the coalition has intervened. but will the intervention be enough? the coalition has not managed to destroy all of the tanks, and cannot do anything about the perot government snipers in the towers. the capital has been hit by tank fire. these pictures have come in of the the last few days, though it is impossible to verify them since the government will not allow us to go there. conditions in the hospital are pretty bad. many of the people here have been hit by snipers. some of the worst cases are children. the city matters because it is the last big town in western libya that is still in rebel hands. now the airport where the libyan air force plane was destroyed
12:36 am
today and the main hospital seemed to be controlled by pro- gaddafi forces. the fighting today is thought to have centered on the port. last night for the fifth night, the coalition bombed the capital tripoli. these pictures broadcast this morning on libyan television show military vehicles burning, but the government insists that civilian areas have been hit and that eight incidents have been killed. and the libyan television maintains these pictures showed it injured civilians. today, authorities took journalists to a funeral ceremony for civilians, whom they say were killed in coalition attacks. this, like so many other things, is impossible for us to verify. colonel gaddafi is still promising supporters they will win. a few days ago they must have
12:37 am
wondered if that was true. the coalition's intervention so far has not been nearly as devastating as many people here expect it. -- expected. as another night of bombings begins and there are air strikes on the edges of town, opinion here is starting to shift again. if the coalition cannot prevent colonel gaddafi from taking back the town, then they are starting to hope that he may be able to stay in power here after all. the united nations secretary general has been speaking with our u.s. correspondent, and he talked about additional measures the u.n. resolution would bring. >> he mentioned that if the libyans continue to not comply with the u.n. security council resolution calling for a cease- fire and calling for attacks on civilians to stop, the security
12:38 am
council could take additional measures. i asked what they were, and he did not give a straight answer. he said it was a matter for the council, not for him. then i asked his assessment of the military campaign so far, and this is what he said. >> i think it it has stopped the aggression of the military campaign by a libyan authorities, and has been able to protect the civilians in bank ossi -- in been gauzy, and other areas. but we will have to see. >> what are your concerns as the campaign goes on? >> first and foremost, protecting the civilian population and preventing any damages to the civilian population and infrastructure. >> is it your personal view
12:39 am
that colonel gaddafi should go? >> by killing his own people, he has lost his legitimacy. whether he has to go or should be replaced by other people, that should be decided and determined by the libyan people. >> another question i put to the u.n. secretary general and did not declare an answer on was whether or not the resolution had been passed and allow the coalition countries to arm the rebels. because the libyan ambassador at the u.n. said tonight that the rebels want western arms because they don't feel that they can defeat colonel gaddafi's forces without them. i asked whether or not the resolution allows arm the rebels, and he said it was not about farming or targeting, but that has been a big debate about whether or not the rebels can be armed by this very broad
12:40 am
sweeping resolution. >> i want to go back in time. why did the united nations refused colonel gaddafi's offer to talk about a potential cease- fire? it was not that long ago. >> i think the united nations wanted at that time for the tax on civilians to be stopped. -- for the attacks on the civilians to be stopped. there will be talks at the u.n. headquarters and the u.n. secretary general told me at the talks will be representatives both from the rebels and also from the libyan government. there is an opportunity for those talks to happen. in yemen, pro-government protestors have been up on the capital streets. the president promised to transfer power peacefully, but gave no indication of the specific timing. he also offered amnesty for military personnel who defected to the opposition.
12:41 am
for their anti-government protests are expected friday. protests in jordan have taken place. several hundred jordanians protested in the main square, demanding the resignation of their prime minister and a wider public freedom. there were attacks by the loyalist supporters, who threw rocks, injuring dozens. the syrian president has ordered the release of all people detained during the recent unrest. the government said it will examine ways to meet the legitimate demands of the people in the city of deraa, or more than 20 people were shot dead. -- where more than 20 people were shot dead. >> shocking scenes on the streets of deraa, at the center of a week of protests. demonstrators shot down by
12:42 am
unseen gunmen. the bbc cannot independently identified these images, but protesters blamed syrian security forces for the killings, which follows this at the central mosque. this protestors says protestorsrun, run, stay on the ground. nobody is lifting a finger. a human rights activists say at least 45 people were killed. these figures cannot be independently verified. at a press conference what the president's advisers, i asked about the attack. >> syrian television has identified the exact problem. the problem is with people who wanted to exaggerate the figures and wanted to exaggerate what happened. i want to refer to one news item on the bbc, cnn, that accused the security forces by
12:43 am
attacking the mosque, and what they were not able show was 10 people near the mosque, nothing around the mosque. >> she denies that security had shot at people and insisted foreign elements were responsible. they came to meet the people's demands, offering better security, more freedoms, and even in its safety measures. some prisoners were already released soon after the press conference, including a prominent author who was detained two days ago. >> i would say that with the syrian government is confronting is that we, in fact, the same challenge that faces so many governments across the region, and that is the
12:44 am
political and economic grievances of their people. >> also, and nationwide demonstrations on friday, following the violence in the south. those demonstrations will be the test of how people will receive the government's concessions. this is "bbc world news." still ahead, the lettuce from our correspondents in tokyo, at the devastated -- the latest from our correspondent in tokyo, with the latest at the devastated nuclear plant at fukushima. the man suspected at shooting at the libyan embassy 25 years ago has denied killing someone. she died as she dealt with protested against colonel khadafy's regime. he insists that he did not fire the fatal shots. >> the rebels have yet to find a
12:45 am
willing plan to take the town. it is five days since coalition bombing has begun, and have only made small advances. but these are still early days, and they have seized some weapons and hardware. one of the people they seized was omar, who worked at the libyan embassy in london when somebody was shot and killed. he is now in the hands of the rebels. today he agreed to talk to the media, insisting he was not in the embassy at the time of the shooting. >> i tell you that i am ready today, as far as this matter and any other matter is concerned. >> fletcher was killed in 1984, policing a demonstration outside of the embassy. shots were fired from inside the building and the officer died. a long siege followed, but in
12:46 am
the end, the libyans were about to return home. to this day, nobody has been brought to justice and the case remains open. for years, and more has been associated with this case, and now he is in the hands of the rebels, he could help confirm their suspicions about who shot and killed fletcher. he is also a reminder that for many years bibby has been a pariah state and that the struggle here has a different vision for the country. nato has agreed to take control of in flushing -- of enforcing the no-fly zone over libya, ending days of this agreement and confusion. the detonations has would be to declare a cease-fire or face further action.
12:47 am
i have been learning more about france's concern over the middle that operation and forcing the to be a no fly zone. >> i think the french had it to concerns. they have always had discomfort putting the political part of a nato under american command. they see nato as american-lead, and there was some sensitivity there with political reasons. the second was they feared a metal operation would be more difficult for the arabs to swallow, that they would want something more independent. we don't know that qatar and the uae felt that way, and that is why they're giving command a 42 nato. rigid command control to nato. >> do you think anybody will be concerned that the uae will be
12:48 am
sending some forces to enforce the no-fly zone? doing this to protect civilians in libya, yet also taking action and bahrain against anti- government protesters there? >> there is some sensitivity about what is happening in the broader middle east. what are we intervening in libya, but to some extent turning a blind eye to bahrain or syria or other places? the other issue that this nato command structure raises is, what is the actual operation and how will it be divided between the no-fly zone, which nato has said it will take up, and the coalition operation, which is actually more aggressive,: after the libyan army, going after fixed assets? is this part of the operation does not succeed in getting gaddafi to stand out, what then? will there be a consensus to continue to go after assets in a
12:49 am
way that does not constitute civilian protection? then we could see some rifts opened within the nato coalition. >> what the map of the french defense minister statement earlier thursday that there is a political aim for this action in libya, and that is to create dialogue in libya? the u.k. and u.s. have said they want gaddafi to step down. dialogue could mean he stays, it could mean anything, it could mean a power-sharing government. >> we did not have a clear sense among nato allies as to what the mission is here. there is a consensus on a narrow definition, which is enforce the no-fly zone and try to stop gaddafi's forces from attacking civilians. what happens after that is anybody's guess. i think the united states has said it would like to see gaddafi go, but clearly if the no-fly zone and the attack on its forces did not topple the government, which could be in
12:50 am
somewhat of a political no-man's land in which we need a negotiation between representatives of the opposition and representatives of the government. i think the united states and others at that point may have to swallow hard and live with some kind of political compact that may leave khaddafi or a successor government and control of at least some of the country. japan's police agency says the death toll is now more than 10,000. the agency said nearly 17,005 other people are still listed as missing. -- 17,500 people still listed as missing. what did they say at the news conference? >> the issue that many people are talking about, the issue of the safety of the workers at the stricken fukushima nuclear plant, two of whom came in contact with high levels of
12:51 am
radiation and have been hospitalized. that was one level of the address, making it very clear that the company that is organizing efforts to bring the reactors under control, that they have been ordered to revise their safety measures. that is addressing a lot of concern about the safety of the workers, as the efforts go on at the reactor, because it emerged that yesterday that those who were injured to not leave after the sounding of the radiation alarm, and radiation they came in contact with, they were not wearing rubber boots, which would have protected them. that is one of the things he was addressing, but he also went on to talk about those living within 20, 30 kilometers of the plant, those who had been advised to stay indoors. he said they are not getting the supplies they need or the help they need if they wished to leave the area. he said they would be stepping up on both of those fronts.
12:52 am
>> we know about radiation levels in various food substances, mainly vegetables are around fukushima, but what about the radiation levels in the water supply hundreds of kilometers away? has that subsided somewhat? >> the immediate advice in tokyo not to give tap water to infants, that collapsed yesterday when readings were found to once again have fallen within the safety limit. but there are other areas outside of tokyo were the reading still indicate a level of radiation which may be harmful to those under the age of one. because this seems to be flux wedding, although the immediate advice may not be to avoid -- because this is fluctuating, although there is not immediate advice to avoid tap water, many people are still avoiding it. we saw yesterday but many people taking up the city government's offer for those with young
12:53 am
babies to have a supply of water to be able to pick it bought from municipal offices. there is a great deal of concern, and it must be said there is still quite a shortage of bottled water in the shops. should we see those levels rise again, it will not be long before there is quite a lot more widespread worry about the water supply. >> thank you, mark worthington. the funeral for elizabeth taylor has taken place in los angeles, just a day after she died of heart failure. the service took place at the forest lawn cemetery, where many of her fellow celebrities are laid to rest. our correspondent said it was a very private affair. >> as someone who lived in the spotlight and seem to enjoy and relish the spotlight, this was a very low-key event. it took many people in los angeles by surprise that it happened just a day after she
12:54 am
died, but forest lawn cemetery is the final resting place for nyrities, including michael jackson, barry did their two years ago, a good friend of elizabeth taylor. no indication of that is a reason why she chose to be buried there, but the event took place. the main road where forest lawn is, there was a bit long driveway, that was blocked off. there were more security, privacy precautions within the grounds itself, a tent put up an five stretch limousines brought family members to the funeral. the cars actually pulled under the tent city cannot see anybody getting out. giving her level of celebrity, there were news helicopters hovering overhead try to capture any shot of anybody they could. they did not. it was extremely private, and it only lasted one hour. than any special tributes being planned for elizabeth taylor? >> the last 24 hours has seen
12:55 am
this enormous outpouring of admiration and love rather than grief for elizabeth taylor from around the world. a huge number of tributes from public figures and members of the public as well who were fans. in terms of a memorial service, there has been talk of that. there has not been consummation of that as yet, but given the funeral was so quick and private, certainly a lot of people are hoping there will be some kind of way that fans and other celebrities will be able to pay tribute to elizabeth taylor. the fuel was so quick because when she got married in 1959, one of her eight marriages, she converted to days and, and jewish custom requires burial within 48 hours of death. at least 25 people have been killed and to earthquakes in northeastern burma. the earth? shook buildings as far away as the thai capital -- that
12:56 am
earthquakes shook buildings as far away as the thai capital of bangkok. they're asking for a u.n. soldiers to be able to use all necessary means to be sure that power is transferred to the man widely recognized as the winner of last november's presidential election. the main story on "bbc world news," after many days of disagreement and confusion, nato has agreed to take over the responsibility of enforcing the no-fly zone over libya. they said the mandate of the alliance would not extend beyond that and there would still be what he called a separate coalition operation. the united nations human rights committee says hundreds of people have disappeared in libya in what may amount to crimes against humanity. there is lots more on our website at
12:57 am
>> hello and welcome. >> see the news unfold. get the top stories from around the globe and click to play video reports. go to to experience the in-depth, expert reporting of "bbc world news" online. >> funding was made possible by -- the freeman foundation of new york, stowe, vermont, and honolulu, newman's own foundation, the john d. and catherine t. macarthur foundation, and union bank. >> union bank has put its global expertise to work for a wide range of companies. what can we do for you?
12:58 am
>> "bbc world news" was presented by kcet, los angeles.
12:59 am


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on