16/09/2011 GMT with George Alagiah


16/09/2011

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Fierce fighting in Colonel Gaddafi's final strongholds.

:00:09.:00:16.

Libya's new rulers launch an assault. Anti-Gaddafi fighters pour

:00:16.:00:20.

into Bani Walid. Is the end of Colonel Gaddafi's resistance

:00:20.:00:30.
:00:30.:00:33.

approaching? Welcome to GMT. Also in the

:00:33.:00:38.

programme, Palestinians facing the diplomatic heat as they prepare

:00:38.:00:44.

their UN bid for stated. Washington warns of negative consequences. --

:00:44.:00:48.

statehood. And months of protest by hundreds

:00:48.:00:53.

of thousands of students in Chile. Why is the country's education

:00:53.:01:02.

system in crisis? It is 7:30am and Washington DC and

:01:02.:01:06.

1:30pm in the Libyan capital of Tripoli where the country's interim

:01:06.:01:09.

government has given the green light for an assault on Colonel

:01:09.:01:16.

Gaddafi's few remaining strongholds. Eyewitnesses reported heavy

:01:16.:01:23.

fighting in Bani Walid. In Sirte, to the north, loyalists are putting

:01:23.:01:28.

up fierce resistance. As to Gaddafi's whereabouts, Libya's

:01:28.:01:34.

rulers insist he is in the country but do not know where.

:01:34.:01:40.

They gave the enemy a deadline. It has now run out. Military columns

:01:40.:01:45.

of the National Transitional Council and their orders to go in

:01:45.:01:51.

and oust Gaddafi loyalists. Two key towns are under attack. The last

:01:51.:01:57.

stands of a civil war. They moved towards the heart of Sirte, an

:01:57.:02:02.

ancient Mediterranean city made rich from Gaddafi's patronage. On

:02:02.:02:10.

the way, they clear buildings were loyalists are hiding. And they take

:02:10.:02:18.

casualties, too. A sniper, killed in a firefight. They discover

:02:18.:02:25.

shallow graves of loyalist fighters. Fighting is now in Sirte and Bani

:02:25.:02:35.
:02:35.:02:35.

Walid. Further south, Sabha and smaller pockets are holding out.

:02:35.:02:41.

Outside of Bani Walid, it was hoped that leaders of the local crime

:02:41.:02:46.

would hand over the town but it has not worked out like that. On the

:02:46.:02:54.

cusp of victory, peppered with threats from the dictatorship.

:02:54.:02:58.

TRANSLATION: They have come to Tripoli to sign agreements with

:02:58.:03:03.

traitors. These people pretend that they have come to rebuild Libya but

:03:03.:03:07.

at the same time, they carry on destroying its buildings, schools,

:03:07.:03:13.

factories and hospitals. Colonel Gaddafi's strongholds are

:03:13.:03:16.

surrounded but the transitional council has yet to control the

:03:16.:03:24.

whole country. Richard Galpin joins us from the

:03:24.:03:29.

Libyan capital. We have a renewed assault, we continue to see

:03:29.:03:38.

sustained resistance. Does this seem like the end game? It is very

:03:38.:03:42.

difficult to make that call. We have had a lot of false starts

:03:42.:03:48.

before. The assault on Bani Walid started one week ago. We were there

:03:48.:03:51.

and the forces loyal to the interim government were saying it would be

:03:51.:03:56.

over in a matter of hours. Here we are, one week on, and there is a

:03:56.:04:01.

major assault going on in Bani Walid. It is coming from the north-

:04:01.:04:06.

west and from the east. It seems clear that there are more fighters

:04:06.:04:12.

involved. The numbers were pretty small were we were there. A lot of

:04:12.:04:17.

the fighters were inexperienced. It seems that more fighters have moved

:04:17.:04:24.

in, with more reinforcements on the way. It is a major assault. As they

:04:24.:04:29.

tried to get in, to control the key parts of the city centre, we

:04:29.:04:35.

understand they are facing heavy resistance from loyalists. At the

:04:35.:04:39.

moment, the battle continues and we do not know whether this assault

:04:39.:04:44.

will be a successful or not. And we should not forget that there is a

:04:44.:04:48.

similar situation in Sirte with an offensive that was repelled to a

:04:48.:04:54.

certain extent. I just wonder whether you're getting indications

:04:54.:04:58.

in Tripoli that officials believe that Colonel Gaddafi may be in

:04:58.:05:05.

either of these towns? That has been the rumour. Not so much Sirte

:05:05.:05:09.

but certainly Bani Walid. There had been rumours about the Gaddafi

:05:09.:05:14.

family. Colonel Gaddafi, I think not. Certainly, we interviewed the

:05:14.:05:19.

end of the entrant government, a couple of days ago, and we asked

:05:19.:05:25.

him how the hunt for Colonel Gaddafi was going. He said that he

:05:25.:05:30.

believes he is in southern Libya. So we think he is not in Bani Walid.

:05:30.:05:34.

Certainly, there have been rumours from the fighters around the town

:05:35.:05:39.

saying that one of his sons, possibly Saif al-Islam, is there.

:05:39.:05:45.

He has been seen their not so long ago. And possibly also Mussa

:05:45.:05:50.

Ibrahim, Colonel Gaddafi's main spokesman. These are rumours. There

:05:50.:05:55.

are contradictory accounts. Other people say that yes, they may have

:05:55.:05:58.

been here when they withdrew from Tripoli but it is unlikely they

:05:58.:06:08.

would allow themselves to be cornered. Thank you very much. Let

:06:08.:06:12.

us look at the other stories. Widespread flooding has brought

:06:12.:06:16.

misery to a swathe of territory in southern Pakistan. Over 200 people

:06:16.:06:21.

have died, 200,000 are said to be homeless and it is feared that 2

:06:21.:06:24.

million have been infected with disease. The region are still

:06:24.:06:28.

recovering from last year's devastating floods. The current

:06:28.:06:34.

situation could deteriorate rapidly. Live now to Sindh Province and Det

:06:34.:06:44.
:06:44.:06:45.

Aleem Maqbool. What is the latest situation where you are? We had

:06:45.:06:49.

been travelling across the rural areas of this province, is fast

:06:49.:06:53.

province. We have been travelling for eight hours and the entire way,

:06:53.:07:00.

we have seen water on either side of us. We have seen people grabbing

:07:00.:07:05.

belongings. In some cases, they had to do it very quickly. There was

:07:05.:07:11.

flash flooding in many areas. They went to higher land with whatever

:07:11.:07:16.

livestock they could find. Often the only high land was the road, so

:07:16.:07:24.

we were weaving through a tense and livestock. -- through tents. We

:07:24.:07:30.

have been seeing the carcasses of dead animals. They have been

:07:31.:07:34.

several occasions where we have looked out to our left and see

:07:34.:07:42.

nothing but water. And we are a few hundred kilometres from the sea.

:07:42.:07:46.

gave some depressing statistics at the beginning, the scale of this

:07:46.:07:50.

disaster, with a couple of hundred 1000 people homeless and up to 2

:07:50.:07:54.

million suffering from water-borne disease. Is it your impression that

:07:54.:07:58.

the authorities, the Government, the military are able to cope and

:07:58.:08:04.

that the rescue effort is reaching everywhere it needs to reach?

:08:04.:08:09.

are two things going on. There is a visible military presence. The army

:08:09.:08:15.

is carrying. Rescue missions in boats and by a helicopters. --

:08:15.:08:20.

carrying out rescue missions. Just as it was last year, there are lots

:08:20.:08:24.

of complaints about the aid effort and the Government's capacity to

:08:24.:08:31.

deal with all of this. Eight has been very patchy. We have gone

:08:31.:08:36.

through Sindh Province and we have seen so many communities were

:08:36.:08:40.

people have said they have not seen any aid at all. That is why you're

:08:40.:08:45.

getting these problems. People are so desperate for clean water that

:08:45.:08:52.

they are resorting to drinking floodwaters in many cases. And

:08:52.:08:55.

there are dead bodies of animals lying around, there is much concern

:08:55.:09:03.

that many more people will get ill and will die because of this.

:09:03.:09:08.

Maqbool, thank you very much. Human Rights Act of this say that

:09:08.:09:12.

Syrian security forces had shot dead at least four people during a

:09:12.:09:17.

raid on a town near this central city in Syria. Meanwhile, Lebanon

:09:17.:09:21.

says that Syria has fired into their territory and people fleeing

:09:21.:09:26.

across the border are now being targeted. The Lebanese claimed the

:09:26.:09:31.

patrol came 200 metres into Lebanese territory. Locals say that

:09:31.:09:35.

the shooting went on for two hours. In recent months, refugees have

:09:35.:09:40.

been moving across the border between the two countries.

:09:40.:09:43.

For one of four miners trapped underground in South Wales has been

:09:43.:09:48.

found dead. It is hoped the remaining men in the Swansea Valley

:09:48.:09:52.

have found pockets of air in which to shelter after water burst

:09:53.:09:56.

through a retaining wall and cut off their escape route.

:09:56.:10:00.

In Australia, firefighters had been fighting a blaze in a chemical

:10:00.:10:10.
:10:10.:10:10.

factory in Canberra. This is what Firefighters have gained control of

:10:10.:10:16.

the Inferno, which billows toxic smoke across the capital. Many

:10:16.:10:21.

residents had to evacuate the area. Anyone within 10 kilometres was

:10:21.:10:26.

told to stay indoors and keep their windows closed. Two people have

:10:26.:10:30.

been treated for smoke inhalation. Over 2000 have been arrested in

:10:30.:10:34.

China as part of a crackdown on gang related crime. Chinese

:10:34.:10:39.

television broadcast images of Swat teams carrying out raids on a mafia

:10:39.:10:49.

gang who police believe are involved in the production of drugs.

:10:49.:10:58.

Coming up, postman Pat. Do you remember him? It is 30 years since

:10:58.:11:08.

the friendly postman was created. First, the business news. Aaron

:11:08.:11:14.

Heselhurst is here. It is the Eurozone again. Finance ministers

:11:14.:11:18.

meeting in Poland. Not just European finance ministers, it is

:11:18.:11:24.

also the US treasury secretary, Tim Geithner. What are they saying?

:11:24.:11:27.

fact that he is there highlights that there is growing international

:11:27.:11:32.

worry that the Eurozone problems could spread. Number one on the

:11:32.:11:37.

agenda, increasing the rescue pot. At the moment, it is 250 billion

:11:37.:11:40.

euros but that is nowhere near enough if the bigger countries get

:11:40.:11:46.

into trouble, like Italy and Spain. Also, Greece, on the agenda.

:11:46.:11:51.

Willetts default? Austria's Finance Minister said earlier today that a

:11:51.:11:55.

Greek default would be the cheapest option for the Eurozone. The reason

:11:55.:11:58.

being that the more money you throw into Greece, the bigger their

:11:58.:12:04.

problem gets. All the time, it will press down on Greek growth, which

:12:04.:12:10.

is collapsing. It fell by 7% in the second quarter. Official forecasts

:12:10.:12:15.

are for a return to bolster growth next year but that looks hopelessly

:12:15.:12:19.

optimistic. In that environment, it will never get better. The GDP

:12:19.:12:29.
:12:29.:12:31.

ratio will be 152170%, and the default risk will remain high.

:12:31.:12:37.

there is momentum in Germany, Finland, Slovakia, where people are

:12:37.:12:40.

saying, enough is enough. They are seeing a slowdown in their own

:12:41.:12:46.

economies. So still the focus on sovereign debt. And yet one of the

:12:46.:12:49.

bigger stories over the last couple of days has been the debts run up

:12:49.:12:59.
:12:59.:13:00.

by a banker working for DPS. He is being questioned over these

:13:00.:13:04.

unauthorised trades. It was him who went to the UBS management to

:13:04.:13:10.

notify them, and that is a huge worry. That highlights the fact

:13:10.:13:16.

that if this can happen at UBS, it could possibly happen in other

:13:16.:13:21.

banks. Let us listen to this. happened in the equity trading

:13:21.:13:25.

division of the UBS, one of the biggest traders of equities in the

:13:25.:13:31.

world. It has world-class systems and a long track record. You have

:13:31.:13:36.

to assume that if they cannot control this, then you cannot

:13:36.:13:42.

expect other banks to be able to control it. That is a worry. The

:13:42.:13:45.

markets are roll-up on the back of the move by the five central banks

:13:45.:13:49.

saying they would pump US dollars into the liquidity market. That has

:13:49.:13:56.

eased some of the pressure. -- the markets are all up.

:13:56.:14:03.

Get in touch with us here and tell us what do you think. You can see

:14:03.:14:13.
:14:13.:14:16.

highlights of the programme on our This is GMT. Here are the

:14:16.:14:22.

headlines: Forces loyal to Libya's interim government launch a major

:14:22.:14:26.

military assault on Colonel Gaddafi's final strongholds in such

:14:26.:14:30.

-- including his home town. Flood misery in Pakistan as 200,000

:14:30.:14:35.

people are homeless and 2 million exposed to disease. Emergency teams

:14:35.:14:39.

struggled to reach the worst affected areas.

:14:40.:14:44.

The Obama administration is putting intense diplomatic pressure on the

:14:44.:14:48.

Palestinians to dissuade them from applying for full membership of the

:14:48.:14:52.

United Nations at the General Assembly next week. In a few hours'

:14:52.:14:56.

time, Mahmoud Abbas will address his people to explain the reasons

:14:56.:15:00.

behind the decision to seek UN recognition. It is a move opposed

:15:00.:15:06.

by Israel and by the US government. In an interview with the BBC, the

:15:06.:15:11.

US ambassador to the UN said that the proposed bid for Palestinian

:15:11.:15:19.

statehood would set back prospects We share the aspiration for the

:15:19.:15:22.

creation of a Palestinian state but that can only be accomplished

:15:22.:15:26.

through direct negotiation between the Israelis and Palestinians.

:15:26.:15:31.

There is no short cut to where we pass a resolution in the General

:15:31.:15:35.

Assembly and the Security Council. In the real world, it creates a

:15:35.:15:40.

Palestinian state. The issues that divide them, boarders, security,

:15:40.:15:46.

Jerusalem, refugees etc, can only be resolved through director Nick

:15:46.:15:50.

associations at the negotiating table and that's why we view the

:15:50.:15:55.

Palestinian potential drive to come to the City Council and the General

:15:55.:15:59.

Assembly as counter-productive. Those negotiations are effectively

:15:59.:16:04.

dead at the moment. 20 years of a US-led negotiations have not got

:16:04.:16:07.

anywhere and the Palestinians are saying, we need something to keep

:16:07.:16:14.

the state to States alive a. There is no magic wand which can be

:16:14.:16:17.

waived in the New York to make everything right. There is a risk

:16:17.:16:21.

in that because if you are an average person in the territories,

:16:21.:16:25.

and your hopes have been raised that by some action in New York,

:16:25.:16:28.

something will be different, the reality is, nothing will change.

:16:28.:16:34.

There will be no more sovereignty, no more food on the table. This gap

:16:34.:16:39.

between expectation and reality is quite dangerous for the there is

:16:39.:16:42.

the risk Palestinians look at what happens in the United Nations next

:16:42.:16:49.

we can say to themselves, the path of diplomacy has not work. The

:16:49.:16:53.

miscalculation is it by coming to the UN in some fashion, they will

:16:53.:16:58.

be in a better position to negotiate. There will not be a

:16:58.:17:03.

credible environment for Nick associations. It will be much

:17:03.:17:10.

tougher. After action in New York. If the aim is to isolate and

:17:10.:17:16.

confront his role, then that is not going to encourage Israel to come

:17:16.:17:20.

back to the negotiating table any sooner. The diplomatic manoeuvring

:17:21.:17:27.

around the UN General Assembly next week has already begun and for more

:17:27.:17:29.

on the planned Palestinian statehood UN full membership bid,

:17:29.:17:31.

we're joined from Jerusalem by Professor Gerald Steinberg, the

:17:31.:17:34.

head of conflict management and negotiations faculty at Bar Iban

:17:34.:17:41.

university. How worried is Israel about this looming isolation Susan

:17:41.:17:48.

Rice referred to? Well, it is worrying. Israel has been

:17:48.:17:53.

increasingly isolated as Egypt has become unstable. We sought violent

:17:53.:17:57.

riots last week and there were demonstrations in Turkey and Jordan.

:17:57.:18:05.

There is a sense there is a sense Israel is much more isolated than

:18:05.:18:11.

it was and that adds to instability. The Palestinians are taking

:18:11.:18:16.

advantage, exploiting that situation. None of the questions we

:18:16.:18:22.

heard a few moments ago we heard from the Palestinian Authority had

:18:22.:18:27.

been directed at reassuring Israel. It is saying that we understand for

:18:27.:18:30.

the last 63 years to have been subject to isolation and of

:18:30.:18:35.

terrorism. We are looking for a compromise. The move up to the UN

:18:36.:18:40.

is to increase that isolation. It's a cynical political ploy and will

:18:40.:18:47.

not help the peace process. We have focused on that Susan Rice's words.

:18:47.:18:50.

The Barack Obama administration has tried again and again to get

:18:50.:18:55.

Benjamin Netanyahu to renew a commitment to stop settlement

:18:55.:19:00.

construction on occupied land. He refused to do so. Is he prepared to

:19:00.:19:07.

make that sort of a move? That isolation of but one issue after so

:19:07.:19:14.

many complex issues in the conflict was a big mistake by the Obama

:19:14.:19:22.

administration. We need to have a compromise on the Palestinian side.

:19:22.:19:27.

It can't be focused on Israelis who are concerned, instead of getting a

:19:27.:19:32.

stable to state solution, we will have a very violent terrorist

:19:32.:19:38.

regime and a failed at state. These factors are very important.

:19:38.:19:43.

give me for interrupting. In that answer you imply a Israel has put

:19:43.:19:46.

concessions on the table. Benjamin Netanyahu is going to go to New

:19:46.:19:52.

York and make a speech at the UN are. What sort of concessions will

:19:52.:19:57.

he be prepared to put on the table? Up we have a history of a very

:19:57.:20:06.

generous Israeli concessions. To heighten 3% differences in borders.

:20:06.:20:11.

If there was a Palestinian partner who was serious, if they were

:20:11.:20:20.

talking about ending their right of return claim a Offiah's the people

:20:20.:20:29.

There is the incitement. That is the main issue here. There is

:20:30.:20:34.

absolutely no question... haven't actually outlined any

:20:34.:20:42.

significant specific compromised proposal or concession but Benjamin

:20:42.:20:47.

Netanyahu is prepared to take to New York. Is there one? You get

:20:47.:20:53.

proportion to watch our put on the table into what it is receiving. It

:20:53.:20:57.

has received nothing from Palestine. Complete stonewalling from the

:20:57.:21:04.

beginning. Only focusing on Israel to stop settlement construction

:21:04.:21:06.

when the areas involved are under the speed and the boundaries are

:21:06.:21:12.

not clear. The Palestinians want to impose an agreement which has not

:21:12.:21:18.

going to be stable and to create another failed state in the region.

:21:18.:21:25.

We have to ended their but thank you for joining us on GMT. For the

:21:25.:21:28.

past five months, hundreds of thousands of Chilean students have

:21:28.:21:31.

joined a movement for free, equal and good quality education in their

:21:31.:21:34.

country. Back in May, the demonstrations started peacefully,

:21:34.:21:37.

with the students trying to get their message across in unusual

:21:37.:21:41.

ways. A kissing protest and then protesting in fancy dress. But in

:21:41.:21:44.

the past few weeks the protests have become violent, with frequent

:21:44.:21:48.

clashes with police. It's become a huge political problem for the

:21:49.:21:55.

government as President Sebastian Piera's poll ratings have plunged.

:21:55.:21:58.

Well for more on the movement we're joined via webcam from the Chilean

:21:58.:22:01.

capital Santiago by Juanita Chacon Snow, the Acting Editor of the

:22:01.:22:08.

Santiago Times. I suppose I want an update. Are these protests

:22:08.:22:13.

continuing and is there still violence in San Diego? We received

:22:13.:22:18.

word this morning from the student movement that they have rejected

:22:18.:22:25.

the recent government proposal to get working groups going to discuss

:22:25.:22:30.

three of the major concerns raised by the student groups -- Santiago.

:22:30.:22:35.

They have announced another general strike for next Thursday. A big

:22:35.:22:41.

March. Basically because the Government did not agreed to two of

:22:41.:22:45.

the four conditions that they placed before them to agree to

:22:45.:22:48.

participate in these working groups would have been proposed by the

:22:48.:22:54.

Government. What they were requesting was a freeze to two

:22:54.:22:59.

bills which will put the Congress on the 17th for Education Reform

:22:59.:23:05.

which was drafted without student participation. It just strikes me

:23:05.:23:10.

that the students are using some of the tactics they drew inspiration

:23:10.:23:16.

from the Arab Spring. In the end, it's a different situation. Chile

:23:16.:23:20.

has been successful in recent years. I wonder why street protests have

:23:20.:23:28.

become such a popular form of political action? Well, it's at new

:23:28.:23:36.

phenomenon here. The student body began following a series of other

:23:36.:23:40.

protests here in Chile when people were expressing discontent and the

:23:40.:23:44.

opposition to a series of projects, environmental ones up specifically,

:23:44.:23:52.

in the south, and also the rise in gas prices in the south. There have

:23:52.:23:58.

been a series of protests and people just want to express their

:23:58.:24:02.

frustration with the situation here in Chile right now. There are many

:24:02.:24:08.

other stories you may have heard of in terms of the increased profits

:24:08.:24:14.

of the private health system, there are serious legacies situations

:24:14.:24:18.

here in the country which have made people feel less afraid to express

:24:18.:24:24.

their opinions. We have to end there. Thank you for joining us on

:24:24.:24:28.

GMT. It's exactly 30 years since the

:24:28.:24:31.

first broadcast of the animated childrens TV show Postman Pat. Some

:24:31.:24:36.

of you like me may still have the theme tune stuck in your heads. The

:24:36.:24:39.

show, starring the doughty rural postman in his delivery van became

:24:39.:24:42.

an unlikely hit across the world from China to Iran to the

:24:42.:24:44.

Philippines. On this 30th anniversary the creator of Postman

:24:44.:24:54.

Pat has been recalling what # Everybody knows his bright red

:24:54.:24:57.

banner. # All his friends will smile as he

:24:57.:25:07.

I and the creator of Postman Pat and a few of the characters in the

:25:07.:25:12.

box and a television as well. MUSIC PLAYS and Pat and his black

:25:12.:25:22.
:25:22.:25:24.

I said to them, what about having a post man? I looked at my farming

:25:24.:25:29.

stories and we hadn't used to those. Who else lives in the countryside?

:25:29.:25:33.

The postman troubles around and needs a lot of people. It would not

:25:33.:25:39.

be static -- the postman travels around and meets a lot of people.

:25:39.:25:44.

They said, it sounds quite likely. I don't think anybody has done it.

:25:44.:25:50.

OK, you go back to Kendal and write an outline for 13 episodes.

:25:51.:25:57.

ANNOUNCER: Postman Pat was on his way. A bit further back in his life

:25:57.:26:01.

I was a mobile librarian in Northumberland and I travelled

:26:01.:26:06.

around a very much in the way Postman Pat travels around in a

:26:06.:26:10.

large mobile library, travelling around the farms, around the

:26:10.:26:17.

countryside. A lot of that fed into it. Come on, Jess, we have got work

:26:17.:26:23.

to do. Jess provided some body poor postman Pat to speak to without

:26:23.:26:30.

seeming peculiar. The question in the press about it, I think it was

:26:30.:26:38.

said the postman are not allowed to carry pepsin their vans. -- pets in

:26:38.:26:43.

International news and intelligent analysis going live to the heart of the day's top global story presented by Stephen Sackur. Featuring exclusive reports from BBC World News correspondents based around the world, plus up-to-the-minute global business news.


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