r rororr: the news s enen brbre the news.. the latelaststevevopment i ithth scandadathth e eosos the cocoununt t rty. ngngijij h hding the bururu.u. heheedednd anti-gangngndnd rrrrtion campaigigalalg with bo xilaiil. in february, w wg was suddenly dismissed as mayor. four days later, he went to a u.s. consulate and stayed overnight. when he left, police started questioning him. once actions got party leaders interested in bo xilai. bo was a party chief in chongqing. a member of the bureau and rising star. they started looking into what they called serious violations of the discipline. then suspended him.
police had arrested bo's wife, gu kailai, on charges of murdering a british businessman, neil heywood. she was sentenced to death with a two-year suspension. wang tried to cover up gu's involvement in the murder. now, party officials have to decide what to do with bo. to put the biggest political scandal in years behind them. reporting for nhk world, beijing. china is hinting at possible counter measures against the japanese government's plan to purchase the senkaku islands in the east china sea. japanese officials said the government reached a broad agreement to buy the islands from the owner to establish effective control in the peaceful manner. chinese foreign ministry spokesperson hong lei reiterated the islands belong to china. >> translator: japan it moving to internationalize the islands. this infringes the chinese sovereignty and hurts the
chinese people's feelings. >> hong said china will take necessary measures to defend its sovereignty. hundreds of soldiers tie with insurgents. a spokesperson for the afghan defense minister said officials acted after a six-month reevaluation of the troops. 45 members of the u.s. troops have been killed so far by afghan soldiers and police. the commander of the joint command james terry said the afghan military should tough en the screening of recruits.
afghanistan is in the race to strengthen the military and troops planning to hold over authority for local security forces by the end of 2014. workers at the oldest nuclear plant in france got a scare when steam started leaking from the facility. but the operator said no radioactivity got out. the leak occurred at the complex in eastern france near the german border. the release took place during regular maintenance in a separate building from the one housing the reactor. a spokesperson for the company said hydrogen peroxide mixed with water and caused a chemical reaction. officials from the plant's union say two workers were slightly burned. a small fire broke out at the 34-year-old plant in april. president francois hollande has
pledged to close the facility during his term. the meeting of the asia pacific cooperation forum will soon end. a joint statement is expected to include an agreement to refrain from protectionist measures. foreign and trade ministers from the 21 economies will include export limits on agricultural products as food prices soar worldwide. thursday the ministers continue to discuss challenges they face to boost growth across the region. they aim to iron out their differences on reducing tariffs on solar panels. the japanese ministers have offered to narrow down applicable products. this is to gain the understanding of china and other countries that are cautious about tariff cuts across the board. on the sidelines of the apec meeting, officials from nine
countries, u.s. and australia, gather to talk about a transpacific partnership, free trade agreement. the ministers agreed to step up efforts to conclude a trade pact. the aim to remove tariff barriers without exception to literalize trade and investment in the transpacific zone. ministers have confirmed canada and mexico will join the talks. japan announced last year it would start consultations with negotiating countries but did not join the meeting this time as domestic opinion on the issue is still divided. while the new iphone is not expected until next week. a joint event in new york with collaborator, microsoft, new nokia operate on microsoft windows phone 8 software.
one has a high performance camera. the new phones have a special charging pad. and on the same day, motorolla unveiled the smartphone model since acquired by google. the phone display is 40% larger than apple's iphones. and it can play videos on one of the phones for up to 13 hours without recharging the battery. policy makers and the european central bank are set to discuss a new government bond purchase program on thursday. they aim to stablize the bond markets and lower the borrowing costs for european nations with mounting debts. the ecb pro posed certain conditions for buying state bond. individual euro zone nations need to contribute fund for bond buying operations. struggling nations asking for ecb held would also need to commit to returning their fiscal status back to health. the german bank president opposes the program and says it
would strengthen independence. and policymakers plan to discuss a cut in the key interest rate to boost growth. the euro zone economy shrank in april to june period due to ongoing debt problems. meanwhile, euro group president, will attend the ecb board meeting. his first appearance at a board meeting for a year. he'll explain the state of the economy and finances in the euro zone. and talk about the latest economic outlet for greece and spain. he is expected to urge the ecb to take on an active role in containing the region's debt crisis. the malaysian government has given long awaited approval for trade, rare earth plant in the country. this a raises hope for challenging, china's dominance in the sector. rare earth, are essential to production of smart phones and electric vehicle. china produces 90% of the world's supply, but restrictions
on rare earth exports are forcing many countries to fiend othfiend -- find other suppliers. and the new plant in the central state of pahang. and hopes to acquire one third from the plant once operating. the plant is expected to start operating as early as next month. approval was delayed as local residents concerned about safety, continue to oppose it. bill clinton made a case for why voters should give obama another term. >> i want -- i want barack obama to be the next president of the united states. and i proudly nominate him to be the standard bearer of the democratic party.
>> clinton praised obama for his efforts to revive the economy. he said the president stopped the nation's slide and put the u.s. on the road to recovery. clinton said republicans are asking to fire obama though they left the country in a mess the administration is cleaning up. clinton said people who envision the country for shared prosperity and shared responsibility should vote for obama. delegates at the convention are set to nominate obama as the democratic candidate for a second term. obama has been fighting opposition from within his own party, some democrats blame him for the flagging economy and for the problems plaguing his health care reforms. so, he is working to broaden his base and turning attention to liberals. >> reporter: barack obama the
first president to announce support for same-sex marriage. it looked like a smart, compassionate move it forced the republicans to take a less tolerant position. >> gay and lesbian americans should be treated fairly and equally. >> reporter: california has a large population of liberals. obama's same-sex marriage declaration gave a boost to his campaign in the state. >> are you able to do some volunteering? come down to the office, do phone banking like what i am doing. >> reporter: the democrats have raised significant fund through events staged by same-sex marriage advocates. but the historic announcement also triggered protests. clashes occurred after comments on the radio by the president of a may jjor fast-food chain j. he condemned obama's stance. >> i am against gay marriage.
if some one says it is okay for a woman to marry a woman, a man to marry a man, it's okay for a man to marry a 12-year-old girl. >> reporter: some say obama's support of gay marriage, in the long run will have limited impact on the election. >> they're trying to use carefully targeted policy is nesh ti initiatives to gin up support among core constituents. whether it will score a macro success, it is unlikely. >> as the election draws near, it will be unlikely obama can win back from four years ago, how much he can win back liberal backing remans ins to be seen. the people of seoul, capital city of south korea are getting used to a new addition to their
skyline. a shining new city hall. it looks and operates look a 21st ten chcentury building. anna jong is standing by to give us a live tour. >> city hall boosts a unique design and it dominates its surroundings. it reaches 13 floors above ground, and there are five more underground. it took builders, just under 4 1/2 yerz to complete at ape cost of $263 million. the new structure links to the old city hall built in 1926, but just renovated. city hall comes with a lot of eco-friendly technologies. this side of the glass wall is especially coated to keep the heat out. inside the building we find even more devices, to save the
energy. almost right away, when you are go inside, you notice a difference in temperature. because it is much cooler inside. this area is echto plaza. 14 kinds of plants grow in the vertical garden. it starts from the first floor and rises all the way to the seventh. water is spread automatically from a system imbedded in the soil. these green walls, these green walls save energy and remove toxic substapsncesubstances. but this wall is one of many eco friendly inventions here. for example, the eves. they block the summer sun. but in the winter, when the sun is lower, sun light pours into the building and warms it up.
the idea comes from korea's eco friendly traditional houses. the architect of the new city hall. >> translator: this is a traditional ecological design of korea. i adapted it to the new city hall and found it worked. >> the new city hall makes use of natural forms of energy. for instance, it gets electricity from solar power. and the building is heated by geothermal power. in fact, renewable energy provides the building with about 28% of its total electricity. it is not only bureaucrats, will use this building. a huge amount of space is intended for ordinary citizens. this includes the old city hall which is connected to the new one.
preserving it, will arise controversy because some consider it a symbol of the japanese occupation. but it became a registered cultural heritage site in 2003. now it stand reborn as a new public library. the shelves will be stacked with 100,000 books. readers can locate them through a high-tech search system. >> we have plans to raise city hall's awareness and make it a place favored by massive visitors. >> normally, a city hall has a formal air about it. the glass exterior is sophisticated. >> the new city hall appeals to the korean sense of beauty and attracts tourists as well. >> city officials hope to
attract both citizens and foreign visitors as this new creative and eco friendly city hall becomes a landmark of seoul city. anna jung, nhk world, seoul. >> thank you very much there, anna jung in seoul. two astronauts have stepped outside the international space station again. they want on a space walk to fin, a job they left undone. japanese astronaut and his american colleague, tried a week ago to bolt down a power switching unit. but try as they might they couldn't attach it. they had better luck this time. they coaxed the unit into place and restored a key part of the station's power system. they also replaced a camera attached to a robotic arm. and that took them 6 1/2 hours. every three years, a major arts festival is held. this year one of the events was
staged in an area known for heavy snowfall. it was a dance with a difference. >> reporter: winter, the snow is deep. the plows have plenty to do. but in the heat of summer it is unusual to see snowplows in action, least of all performing ballet. american artist came up with the idea. she was inspired to create this ballet as she was fascinated by the unusual shapes of the snowplows. >> it is surreal. it's weird. and maybe shifting -- shifting what you usually see and i want to say to them. look at them. look how, look how wonderful
they are. >> 13 snow work ears grers agre lend their operating skills to the tragic love story, romeo and juliet. >> as long as our team work is good, we can evoke feelings, even using machine. >> i hope the audience feels the emotion yuunderlying this work. >> in ballet, the dancers have to be in harmony. but plow operators usually work solo. synchronizing the movements of their trucks doesn't come easily. will it take long? i'll do my best. >> through a process of trial and error-- the drivers work on the choreography.
the day of the performance arrives. about 300 people have come from across the country to see this unique performance. a snowplow ballet. all their hard work in practice pays off. the movements of the machines are perfectly synchronized. the four wheeled romeo and juliet take center stage. they express their love through the subtle coordination of their movements.
but the lovers are hardened. love and sorrow. though the dancers are machines. the emotions are very real. they express complex emotion, human emotion. it was great. through the medium of dance, with humor, people are being inspired to look in a different way at the snowplows that are part of life in winter in the snow country. and the snowplow ballet will be performed again on september 15th also. and cloudy skies here in tokyo on thursday, humid as well. let's turn now to rachel ferguson for the latest on the world weather forecast. >> hi there, quite stormy across
much of japan today. a long front moving across north to south. at the moment it has been impacting sea of japan side of the country. heading over towards pacific edge. so we have had reports of more than 130 millimeters of rain and then in another region, 63 millimeters of rain fell in a space of one hour. looking at short time, heavy rain. as well as strong wind with the system. good news is that will pass very quickly. and when the does, high pressure will move in, in its place. it will be dry, high pressure from the continent, rather than from the sea. which means it is not going to be humid, muggy as it has been. so, short time, really moving through the beijing area, as well. nothing too severe. looking fairly wet across eastern china. done to the south. likely to see significant rainfall in parts of the region, 100 millimeters of rain. for indochina peninsula. ongoing showers could turn heavy at times for parts of northern
and central thailand, as well as for vietnam. all right, take-up to the hurricane leslie. and check on progress here. moving slowly, towards bermuda. expected to move over the weekend. just four kilometers an hour, moving at the moment. but it is already generating strong wind which in turn are generating swells, for florida, as well as bermuda already. northern leeward island. virgin islands. and puerto rico. dangerous rip currents at the moment. it is intensifying. category 2 system. by the time it moves over bermuda. another low we are keeping an eye on for development at the moment. it is actually a part of isaac. remember hurricane isaac, of course. from last week. it is just a fragment that looks like it might be set for tropical developments. a 50/50 chance at the moment. bringing showers from louisiana through to florida. heavy rain is moving out of the east. but we are going to be seeing
some -- some showers moving in behind that. staying unsettled for the mid-atlantic region. we could see severe thunderstorms for the central and southern plains today. temperaturewise. built of a barack freak for you. denver, 32, down to 20. 20 degrees for height on friday. oklahoma city, 37. very, very hot. but into saturday. you will see a drop of 10 degrees. should feel more comfortable. can't promise the same unfortunately in houston. looks like heat is with you for the time beak. into europe we go. a large low up to the northwest. impacting iceland right now. going to move across the northern british isles. scandinavia. wet, fairly cool as well. quite windy. a system hot on its heels. into the week end. probably not much change in conditions. things are looking dry and finer for much of the rest of the continent. apart from the stubborn low, sitting down, italy for the last several days. now starting to move to the east. and weaken off. some good news.
storm are going to have to move through the peninsula first. in terms of temperatures. hot down to the south. fairly cool towards, towards we berlin. temperatures, mid to upper 20s over the next few days. get a surge of warmth from the south. let's check on t next few days,paralympics. can't get better than this. sunshine for three days. warming to 26 degrees by saturday. here is your extended forecast.
>> a reminder of our main news once again. delegates at the democratic national convention have nominated barack obama as their candidate for a second time. the president is said to accept the nomination in a speech on thursday to wrap up the convention. barack obama has been nominated at the democratic national convention for a second time. and the president will be giving a speech on thursday to accept the nomination. that's all for now on this edition of "newsline" i'm yuko aotoni in tokyo. thank you for watching.