tv BBC World News WHUT December 30, 2011 7:00am-7:30am EST
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>> and now, "bbc world news." >> reports of further protests in the streets of syria in a show of strength to the arab league monitors. the government revealed its plans to revive the troubled economy of spain. a political comeback and jamaica for the former prime minister, portia simpson miller. welcome to "bbc world news." i am david eades. blink and you missed it. how samoa abandoned friday. also, we know they are clever, but how clever? a new take on the ability of chimps to look out for each other.
>> thank you for joining us. with friday prayers coming to a close in syria, there have been calls from activists for tens of thousands of protesters to get out on the streets and let the arab league monitors know exactly how they feel about their government. so far, the activists say the observers have done little to stop the bloodshed. our correspondent is in neighboring beirut. we're getting reports of more violence breaking out. this time in douma. >> that is right. it is difficult to know exactly what is going on inside syria. as you said, reports of clashes between tens of thousands of demonstrators in douma, a suburb on the edge of damascus, clashing with security forces. they're also getting reports
from opposition groups within syria that the bodies of at least eight people have been recovered today. those numbers are difficult to verify, but that would fit with the pattern of no let up in violence since the arab league monitors entered the country. >> the message from the observers was that they need a week or so to assess what is going on. it seems pretty clear that violence is still absolutely a part of daily life. >> the opposition groups have been concerned that the arab league observers -- we have seen footage this week of the arab league observers apparently coming under fire from government forces, having to flee in homs. we saw pictures of a young boy who looked to be about five years old being laid on the arab
league's observer's car. the question will be, when they bring out the interim report, what are they going to say? if they are very critical, what happens then? >> we'll wait to see how many people take to the streets today. thank you very much. north korea has gone on the diplomatic offensive, using provocative language to spell out that there will be no shift in its policies since declaring kim jong un as its new supreme leader. the no. 3 in national defence commission said it would stick to the path set out by kim jong il. it said it would still refuse to engage with south korea in what it described as its treacherous president. the statement described politicians around the world as being foolish and the south korean government as puppets. the u.s. said it would mean
sending its top asian diplomat to china, south korea, and japan to discuss the implications of north korea's leadership change. she was jamaica's first female leader and the former prime minister is to take on the job again. she has made a remarkable political comeback and the general election. the left-of-center jamaican party won by a quite margin. they tapped into voter dissolution over a deeply troubled economy. >> in central kingston, he turned out early to vote. the fingerprint technology used at some polling stations to verify the identities failed, leaving some disappointed. the snap vote was seen by the jamaican labor party as a way to bring the people's national party is to the polls. he had taken over after bruce
golding resigned. it was a gamble that he hopes will pay off. >> what i did my assessment on -- scientifically done, sampling. on both polls, we are ahead. >> it was clear turnout was low, but both parties knew they need to address the financial situation of the country. a high level of debt and unemployment. in the end, it was far from the close race as predicted by pollsters. portia simpson miller, having returned to government after taking the majority. jlp, 22. portia simpson miller was seen to appeal to the working class and mobilize their vote. her job now as prime minister
elected is to make good on promises of the campaign. now the second shortest prime minister, mr. holness. nick davis, bbc news, jamaica. >> you go to bed on a thursday and wake up on a saturday morning. it sounds like a pretty heavy night. that's exactly what has happened and the tiny pacific island of samoa, but not because of a heavy night, but because they've decided to miss out an entire day. the clock struck midnight. instead of moving it to december 30, the country has jumped straight to the 31st. it is all in the name of a hard- nosed business sense as some what looks to improve ties with its major trading partners, australia and new zealand. the prime minister of samoa joined me straight from a ceremony to mark the date
change. >> it feels very great. we have just finished our ceremony, which formally signals the changing of our times ozone. it has been attended by a lot of our dignitaries in samoa. we all feel very happy. >> you have done this for business reasons. are you able to give us an idea, to quantify the benefit of changing times zones? >> i have already mentioned several times that immediate benefit will be to our tourist industry with the confusion in the different time zones,
especially over different times in schedules. and the fact that we now have five working days of continuous contacts with our business counterparts in new zealand and australia now that we have the same time zone. mayhemust have cosaused for computer systems and electronics across the country. >> yes, you are quite right. we have been alerted by our telephone provider that there will be a brief suspension of communication while they go about changing their computer technology to fit in with the time zone we are having now. >> i hope it all works out. tell me a bit about the
ceremony. do you see this as a moment of great celebration? what have you been up to? >> yes, right now, we have morning tea and coffee to celebrate with the great number of people that participated and are getting applause to the occasion. >> , of course, you are prime minister. perhaps you would say it is inevitably a case that everyone is behind us. was there much opposition to changing the date, to losing a day? >> there has been no opposition. it feels common sense that everybody knows it would be for the benefit of people in general. >> i suppose now the proof in the pudding is in the eating.
do you expect to see a rise in the economic fortunes of some of what? >> yes, the benefits will be media will -- be immediate, especially with people traveling to new zealand. they don't need to rush now. they have more time to get their to attend to their travel s. >> at least you have not missed out on new year's eve. i suspect you will be having more celebrations. >> the prime minister of samoa there. >> in india, a cyclone has hit a part of the southeast, killing six people. a cyclone struck on the coast there. this was a matter of hours ago. rain and gale force winds created havoc really.
houses were damaged. trees were uprooted. the electricity poles have gone, as well. people are seeking relief shelters. they're told to not go out. extremely dangerous conditions. there may yet be more to come. i want to move on to the situation in spain now. an important day today. the new government is to lay out the tell plans for some pretty hefty cuts in the next hour or so. the prime minister was swept to power on a substantial majority in the recent elections. he has vowed to meet spain's target of reducing the public deficit to 4.4% of gdp in 2012. let's get some more now from madrid. he also knows he has a big majority to work with. >> that is right. he has got a big majority in
congress. in that sense, he's in a strong position politically. he won the election in november with a landslide. he is very strong in that sense. a more difficult challenge beyond that is the political challenge -- is the one to convince the man in the street of what he is doing and that these cuts are the right thing for spain. it is likely he could face some opposition once these measures are announced. >> that will be a challenge. he is not a great orator. he is not what you might think of as a leader of men, someone who pulls the country along with him through sheer force of personality. >> he is not known as a charismatic politician. before winning the general election in november, he had lost two general elections in the past. the third time was lucky for him. he insists that what spain needs is a sensible head right now and
a real perseverance and cutting down the deficit. although we do not have many details so far about his economic plans, he has outlined some general ideas that you want to implement in the coming months in coming years. the deficit is very much at the top of that. he wants to cut out unemployment and restructure the banks and introduce some structural reforms. he says all these things are necessary for spain's economy. >> thank you very much. >> thank you for watching "bbc world news." coming up, the sprinter who is struggling at the moment to be ready for the london olympics. >> secret government files just released in britain show that the former prime minister, margaret thatcher, along with her home secretary at the time, considered are mean the police to deal with the riots that swept the country in 1981. at the time, those civil
disturbances were the worst britain had seen for some 60 years. >> april, 1981. ferocious rating broke out in britain, south london. unemployment was high. the economy was deep in recession. without effective protection, many officers were injured and struggled to regain control of the streets. newly released files showed the prime minister, margaret thatcher, was warned of worse to come. a secret paper said spontaneous disorder was likely among ethnic minorities. it started in liverpool in early july and spread to other cities. files showed's own how closely she followed the events. >> it's very hard to reconstruct. it is exactly what she knew and when and the thoughts that went through their mind in terms of
possibilities, not least that flickering moment when they considered using the army. >> instead, she made certain the police had the equipment they wanted, including plastic bullets, water cannons. >> every year, a secret government papers are released from 30 years ago. i have been looking at them for about the last decade or so. this is the first year i can remember where there has been such a close parallel between events and then and now. civil disturbance on this scale overshadows other events. this year, like 1981, will be scarred by the riots. bbc news. >> >> let's get the headlines on "bbc world news." after one week of building violence across syria, reports of further protests in the country. the austerity drive in spain
begins with the new government planning multi-billion euro cuts to the budget. the chimpanzees recognize when others in the group are in danger. they only called out a warning when there were others around had not yet seen. the. the researchers used rubber snakes to see how they react. findings have been published in "current biology." we will talk to alison at monkey world in the west of england. the research -- as it enlightened you? >> it has not tommy anything new about chimpanzee -- it has not taught me anything new about chimpanzees.
i have seen them deal with a snake in there in closure on two occasions. they were issuing a normal, allowed, full-blown alarm calls. what i would put to the researchers that perhaps needs more investigation is that -- brightthe chimpanzees enough to recognize it is a rubber snake on the floor, and therefore a quieter alarm call. yes, you need to be cautious of something that looks like this, but actually this is a rubber snake. i know that our chimpanzees at monkey world are very capable of distinguishing between a rubber snake and a live snake. it's something that perhaps requires further investigation. they do have a very complex social network and a very
complex source of communication. >> they're very relaxed in the environment now. i know you do a good impression of the alarm shriek. give us a sense of what is sounds like. >> for the chimpanzees, they have a large vocabulary of a chimpanzee calls. you can hear an alarm clock across the part. that's how i heard them. you can hear them very loud, a very loud sort of bark. even with me doing a poor impression, you can feel it is a person or an chimpanzee making a noticeable alarm call. they are suggesting that the chimpanzees will modify the alarm call in the presence of others who perhaps are not aware of the potential threat.
>> there have been chaotic scenes in the upper house of the indian parliament where mp's have been unable to vote on an anti-corruption bill. members the been the parliament here. they're very angry after the bill that has already been approved by the lower house was stalled in the upper chamber after several. hours of. at one stage, an mp tore up the bill and through the shreds in the eair. to a vaccine for malaria, a year for remarkable medical breakthroughs. one came from research scientists in cambridge. they have discovered what they say could eventually be a cure for multiple sclerosis. >> emily miller was diagnosed six years ago with ms. she lives with chronic fatigue, periods of blindness. she is 30 and has two young
boys. >> i think you have to live for the day. in a way, it makes me live more like that. i enjoy every single day with my children. i enjoy looking at the clouds in the sky. i just think tomorrow, and may go blind. i try to enjoy every day. >> multiple sclerosis is caused when our own body attacks the nervous system. for reasons that are not clear, the immune system destroys the protective coating around nerve fibers. as the nerves are exposed and damaged, messages from the brain fail to get through. they're treated with drugs that dampen the immune system. only this year in cambridge, scientists made an important discovery, a way to trigger stem cells in the brain to repair and
regenerate. robyn franklin has been co leading the research. >> what we have been trying to do is figure out how you can put it back on the nerve fiber. here is a stem cell. there are plenty of them. we need to understand how those stem cells -- when we understand as mechanisms, we can begin to design drug interventions that possibly target them. if this works as well in patients as the works in the laboratory, we would have a means of reversing the damage. in conjunction with other therapies that are currently available for ms, that would be getting pretty close to a cure for ms. >> multiple sclerosis is a progressive illness. she knows her illness will
deteriorate over time. the ongoing research has become a lifeline. >> you have to have hope. it is all about hope. yes, it might never happen. you know, like i say, the hopes of five or 10 years' time that it will happen -- you have to cling onto to it. >> it will take millions of pounds and at least 10 years for new drugs to be developed, but there's now a clear path to an effective treatment for ms. bbc news, cambridge. >> to the london olympics now. just seven months to go before the games begin. athletes' hopes can suddenly fade in the face of injury, for example. much of the country's olympic hopes are wresting with marilyn diamond.
her injuries are not over. >> her road to london has not been easy. she has been battling injuries, which is common enough for athletes, but also loneliness and despair. the 20-year-old runner spent much of 2011 at a training camp organized by the ioc. injured with a pulled hamstring and homesick, she found her preparations ground to a halt in the indian ocean. >> it has left me extremely unhappy. i was extremely depressed. i would mostly want to be on my own. >> did it feel like your chances of competing in london were slipping away? >> yes. >> back home, she is feeling the frustration only stalled athletes seem to know. she is not running as fast as
she used to our needs to to qualify. she is also feeling the burn of punishing bio-kinetic sessions designed to help speed a recovery. she remains the strongest hopes for olympic success for the country for a long time. certainly since the country's only ever olympic medalist won four silver medals in the 1990's. london may be a game too soon for marilyn. >> may be 2012 will be putting too much pressure on her. i think she has about six months to make sure she gets it all together. we know it will be something that's very difficult. >> sunday for maryland means rest and church. church here is a colorful and
majestic affair. for her, is also a constant in the middle of uncertainty. sporting confidence comes from lots of different sources. some people some peopleheart. some people talk about mental hardness. been here -- being here with her, it is showing a big way that a lot of her strength comes from this church. she will be plenty of strength. . she is running out of road. the date of the london olympics is changing for no one. bbc news. >> we will track her progress. so she makes it in time. good luck to her. you one more on the olympics, we have so much covers on the website. it is fascinating stuff, as well. the preparations and many of the individuals, as well.
also, more on all our main stories from syria to samoa. they are on the website, bbc.com/news. >> make sense of international news. bbcom/news. >> funding for this presentation is made possible by -- the freeman foundation of new york, stowe, vermont, and honolulu newman's own foundation and union bank. >> you are no longer in the service. only an outsider can find the double agent. >> i'll do my utmost. >> from the bestseller by john le carre -- >> all i want from you is one code name. >> it will take a master spy -- >> you are alone. >> you can't mention me. >> to catch a spy. >> you have to assume they're watching you. >> what the hell are you doing up here? >> things aren't always what