04/04/2016 Newsnight


The Panama Papers. Glasgow lawyer targeted by Muslim extremists. Ex-pat Brits on Brexit. Ex-NZ pm Helen Clarke. Jennifer Knoll on 'The Luckiest Girl Alive'. With Kirsty Wark.

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Tax avoidance, corruption and money laundering of epic proportions...


As the world wakes up to the enormity of the revelations


in the Panama Papers, we'll ask why the world has failed


What this confirms is that if you're in a position,


in an official position, a political position,


which allows you to earn a bit of gravy on the side


through your position of influence, then it's very tempting to do so.


Could there ever be a justification for this kind of behaviour?


Also tonight: The Brits living in the EU.


What do the ex-pats in Spain make of a possible Brexit?


Because, whether it's right or wrong, I still


believe that the UK is the best place in the world.


And we talk to best selling American author Jessica Knoll,


who has revealed - after a year of denials -


that her thriller, Luckiest Girl Alive,


about a teenager who has gang raped by her classmates,


Money laundering, sanctions dodging and tax avoidance,


not, you would automatically think, the behaviour of heads of state...


The leak of 11 million documents from the Panamanian law firm


Mossack Fonseca show that the company, who has never been


charged with criminal wrongdoing, has helped some current


or former heads of state, including Ukraine's President,


and Iceland's Prime Minister and individuals linked to leaders


such as Vladimir Putin and China's President Xi Jinping,


find tax havens to hide their wealth.


Simon Cox has been reporting on the story and joins me now.


There was a welter of information last night and today about huge


amounts of money being hidden away. What has happened since? It is one


of those amazing stories where each hour there is a new revelation. I


suppose one of the most significant today was about the relatives of


Chinese leadership who had relations with Mossack Fonseca. Embarrassing


for them because they made a big crackdown on corruption. And also


Fifa, their lawyer, connected to their ethics committee, who has been


helping these offshore companies. It is interesting seeing the numbers


they are coming up with. Germany, 1000 people in the documents,


Australia, 800 people in the documents. And HMRC saying they


would like to get their hands on and see what is in those 11 million


documents. So much more presumably still to come out. Now we will look


it sanctions busting, what is happening tomorrow? We are talking


about tax evasion, money-laundering, but what we have looked at is


individuals and companies subject to sanctions who were clients of


Mossack Fonseca. We looked at Syria, a really interesting tale about


North Korea involving a bank and a British banker. Sanctions busting


for North Korea? There was a company in North Korea and they were subject


to sanctions and a British banker was involved in that company. A


serious sanction, but it ended up it was sanctioned because it was linked


to a bank providing funding for North Korea's nuclear weapons


programme. Really serious. Thank you very much, Simon.


Politicians of all stripes across Europe and the US have long


pledged to crack down on tax havens - but the Panama Papers show that


Will these latest revelations finally provide the impetus


Here's our Diplomatic Editor Mark Urban.


One law firm, so many destinations, from the Alps to the Caribbean,


places where offshore companies are used to hide wealth on a vast scale.


And Panama law firm, Mossack Fonseca, is just a part of that. Yet


it's hacked files show 143 some time politicians and officials from


around the world among its clients. What chance then the tax haven


reformer, when so many leaders are at it? I think the scale is


enormous. I think what this confirms is if you are in a position, an


official position, a political position, which allows you to earn a


bit of gravy on the side through your position of influence, then it


is very tempting to do so. Many remember the G8 Summit almost three


years ago, only for this frosty Obama, Putin encounter. Several of


the Russian President's close friends emerge in the Panama Papers,


yet he and the other members signed up to the host agenda on the fight


against offshore tax dodging. At the G8 I will push the international


agreements to fight the scourge of tax evasion and aggressive tax


avoidance. That means automatic exchange of information between our


tax authorities, so those who want to evade taxes have nowhere to hide.


On today's evidence there are all too many places to hide, and the


UK's record of prosecuting successfully since 2010 just 11


cases of offshore tax evasion is hardly impressive. We as a committee


feel there should be more prosecutions to be a deterrent to


people, to prove to the good taxpayer and the taxpayer and think


they will get away with it, that if you are evade tax you will be


prosecuted on possibly go to prison and if you aggressively avoid it,


you will be caught. The American pressure group researches offshore


financial activity and its index puts Switzerland top. The Cayman


Islands coming fifth, with Panama at 13th, just ahead of the UK. But if


you add the Cayman Islands and other overseas Territories to the British


figure, it would come top. The Prime Minister has talked the talk and he


has to prove he will walk the walk. He has a summit coming up in May


looking at corruption. An ideal opportunity for him to take the


issue on and try to tackle international tax havens with other


countries. Also, the British government could go further, the tax


transparency very easily by insisting companies publish their


information in their companies house returns. From Panama to the Cayman


Islands, allowing foreign companies to base themselves somewhere without


tying them up with too much regulation has long been a way of


generating revenue. But now the US is using its financial clout to


impose foreign account compliance rural is on many smaller countries.


Over the last few years the Americans have taken a number of


steps, including the imposition of a law that requires offshore banks to


report to the American authorities what money they are holding for US


citizens, and they have also taken action against Fifa. I think the


Americans are taking this seriously and if we want to be successful in


making offshore havens transparent, we need the Americans to be fully


committed. People in the offshore business have told us America's new


disclosure rules have already had a big effect on their trade. Yet


America will not reciprocally disposed to many foreign governments


details of deposits in the USA, making it a more destination for


money some people may wish to hide. And there is the dilemma, for


governments like the US or the UK... Do they really want to crack down,


or do they want to welcome all sorts of new foreign investors with tax


breaks and, indeed, investor visas? Far from the Caribbean demonstrators


gathered in Iceland to demand the resignation of their Premier.


Today's allegations produced an immediate effect, but hardly any in


China or Russia. Mark Urban. I'm joined now in the studio


by Vince Cable the former Business Secretary from Paris,


Grace Perez-Navarro from the OECD and in Washington DC, Dan Mitchell,


economist at the Cato Institute. Good evening to you all. First,


Vince Cable, did you have any idea of the extent of the corruption of


sanctions busting until you saw the Panama Papers? Not the specifics but


we knew there was large-scale tax avoidance and tax evasion going on.


The reason why at the summit, which you described a few minutes ago,


that the Prime Minister pushed for an open register of ownership, which


we implemented, I introduced at the end of the last government, was


precisely to make ownership transparent. The problem with that


initiative is the Prime Minister in fighting these tax havens to come to


London, the British dependencies, require them to have a serious


similar register which would have made it impossible to hide these


kind of things. What happened is these little places like the Virgin


Islands told the British government to take a running jump. Absolutely


no control? 50% British dependencies and there is nothing you can do? We


can and we should do something about it. The mechanism that is open is to


impose direct rule, which we did with the Turks. But what about AIDS?


The richer ones to get any aid but if we do, we should be using it. --


what about aid question mark is cracking down on corruption, making


them have a full, open and transparent register would be one


way of seeing through all this Merc. Would you favour that? Yes. On all


the dependencies? Where the abuses are on that scale. The Virgin


Islands at the top of the list. Can we go back to your time in power.


Since 2010, as you heard in that report, only 11 UK prosecutions were


brought for tax evasion on your watch. Surely that is a derisory


amount. Yes, I will accept that criticism. I think what happened


under this government, the coalition, the previous Labour


government, is the resources available to HMRC, and this is a


resource intensive business, well cut. Did you protest at the time? We


did have arguments about priorities. We did other things, in choosing the


anti-avoidance for all, requiring banks not to offer facilitation...


Do you think there is expertise in the HMRC to deal with this at this


level? This is rather complicated stuff and it does require a lot of


resource and special people. If we are taking it seriously, there has


to be proper resource. And there hasn't been for years. The OECD have


come up with this idea of various reforms. But with these reforms,


stop and the Russian oligarchs, stop the people in the Chinese bureau,


stop the possibility Putin's needs have been sorting money away... Well


anything you propose a fact that level of change? Well, I think here


at the OECD what we have been trying to do is get all countries to


improve their legal frameworks and level of cooperation they have


between each other, in terms of sharing information, banking


information, ownership information and so on. It's been a very


difficult job but we have made great progress on global Forum on


transparency, which now has 132 members. You might have heard our


reporter saying earlier, the idea that Chinese politburo is involved


is embarrassing for the Chinese because they have tried to crack


down on this, which is a nonsense now, because if it goes right to the


top, nothing you can do will stop that? I think that is quite


pessimistic view, because I think the structures we have put in place


for cooperation between has resulted in real change. There have been over


800 legislative changes undertaken in different countries. There have


been a number of exchanges of information between countries, and


we have already, through voluntary disclosure programmes, in a board


governments to collect $48 billion that they would not have otherwise


collected without the threat of these initiatives. Dan Mitchell,


what possible benign reason could there be for individuals and


companies moving their money around, hiding money, creating shell


companies and so forth to avoid tax? I think the reason we see a lot of


this is international business requires international structures.


If you are a wealthy investor, entrepreneur, business owner, you


are doing cross-border activity, you want a structure in a tax neutral


environment. So this notion there is something bad about having a company


is ridiculous. It is like saying, we shouldn't allow cars to be sold


because some people use them as getaway vehicles for bank robberies.


I think if we want more global trade a more global investment, we


shouldn't have governments trying to make international business Morkel


freaky. If there are some bad guys, just like there are bad guys who'd


use motors as getaway vehicles, by all means punish them. But don't let


international bureaucracies like the OECD, the greatest tax dodge of all,


they go around the world telling people to raise taxes. We should


focus on low and simple tax rate, which makes it easy to comply, keep


government more streamlined and let international business flow. Let's


put this back to the OECD. A tax-free salary first of all factor


please respond to Dan Mitchell. Well, my response is we fully


support the idea of a low rate and broad-based tax, the problem is we


need to get everyone paying those taxes. Right now what we have is a


system where taxpayers can operate in a world without borders but tax


authorities are restricted by their national boundaries, so they need a


means by which they can work together, in order to be able to


tackle these tax crimes, even Asian and fraught, that's what we're


talking about. We are not talking about legitimate business. --


invasion and fraud. If you have world leaders involved in this you


will never clear it up? You can at least make it transparent and let


the world see what's going on. This is where somebody has done a great


public service by exposing to the public... Maybe you cannot stop bad


behaviour on the other side of the world but you can show we know


what's going on. Let's turn to look at present problem in the UK and


that is Tata Steel and the future of Port Talbot. You said one of the


deterrents to attracting a buyer is the pension pot. Sajid Javid talks


about the Treasury perhaps taking over the pension pot. We had that is


contrary to all is an EU state aid would it be out of the question? I


don't think that is true. I was in government and we applied to the


European Commission for state aid approval to take off the pension


fund of the Royal Mail. The problem with is that it is


losing a million a day, it is a different situation. -- the problem


with Tata. It is not like Royal Mail in that way. I'm not a lawyer, but


if I was Secretary of State at the moment, I would be expiring every


opportunity to get that agreed. If you have a steel business in Wales


and a steel business in Germany, the energy costs in Germany are half of


what they were in the United Kingdom, do you think that green


elegy problems are to blame? The reason why this was introduced, the


biggest element, tax reasons and tax revenue rather than green. -- green


energy problems. We were well aware of this, there was an environmental


element in it, we would try to get to the root of the energy cost


differentials, we spent years, we brought in a compensation scheme, we


got the green value commission, for reasons I do not understand the


Treasury have been reluctant to pay cut out, steel companies, like in


South Wales, they say they do not have any of the money but it has


been approved, that should be paid. Thank you very much.


The prominent Scottish Asian Human Right's lawyer who was a leader


of the Stop The War coalition, Aamer Anwar, has revealed


that he has received death threats after convening and chairing


an ecumenical meeting after the killing of a Scottish Asian


shopkeeper Asad Shah, who was stabbed 30 times


after posted an Easter greeting message to his


VOICEOVER: It was a killing that rocked a community.


Asad Shah, a Glasgow shopkeeper, filmed here in his shop in August,


was found stabbed to death in a nearby street on 24th March.


Hours earlier he'd posted a message on Facebook wishing the local


Christian community a happy Easter, and the police


are treating his murder as religiously motivated.


In response, prominent local human rights lawyer Aamer Anwar brought


Glasgow's religious leaders together in a call for tolerance and harmony.


We do not want to import sectarian violence that has caused so much


division and so much bloodshed in Pakistan to our communities and


streets. But what was a plea


for peace, has angered some. Mr Anwar has received angry


messages on social media. After handling many controversial


cases, he says he's used to that. But now, he faces something far


graver, more direct threats that


have sparked a police investigation and led Mr Anwar


to fear for his life. Mr Anwar says he is now concerned


about escalating factional hatred STUDIO: Aamer Anwar is with us


in our Glasgow studio. Aamer, because there's an ongoing


police investigation, we're limited in what we can


say about these new, You have had many threats in the


past, you have said, but in a different order.


-- of a different order. Why is it important for you to make this


public? I have been fighting against racism 525 years but this was


different, because this is actually a small minority from within the


community who thought that because I dissented, because I condemned what


I consider to be controversial comments, by individuals within my


community, on the question of sectarian violence, on the question


of blasphemy laws, etc, it seemed as though I was fair game, it seemed to


give the green light to create a climate of fear through which they


thought it was OK for individuals to put abuse online, creating bogus


petitions online, attacking me and my reputation. To threaten me, to


call me an unbeliever, to call me an unbeliever for which the punishment


is one of death, that is the work they have used, in Arabic. That is


beyond the pale. Creating a climate of fear, we need to have a debate in


the community. There has been a climate of fear since 9/11 within


the Muslim community because it has been criminalised and targeted. That


does not mean that you close down debate windows within the community


want to be critical, when they want to raise issues of concern. As the


threat that you have received come from abroad, or has it come from the


UK? -- has the threat. I cannot go into specific details but it is


within the UK and that is a matter for the police investigation. You


have been under pressure from family and friends to withdraw from any


kind of involvement, to reconcile some of the different groups in the


community, some of whom, as you say, take a very hard line on blasphemy


laws, some who are much more tolerant parts of the community. Why


are you not now stepping back? It has been a creamy difficult, my


family and friends, members of the community, has said it is not worth


it, put your young family first. I have got to say, it was


heartbreaking when one night last week I had to go out, for a meeting


with local community leaders, and I kissed my children good night. I


held them longer than I normally would, trying to get out of the


door. I thought, the thought that went through my head, will this be


the last time I see my children? It would have been a creamy easy for me


to have walked away. I keep asking that question, my family keep asking


me to walk away. That is wrong. It is about my children's future. -- it


would have been extremely easy. As I said in the news these early on, I


do not want to see the importation of extremist politics from Pakistan,


I do not want that. Some say that could be inflammatory. It should not


be seen as inflammatory. Using to be saying there is a problem in this


country about speaking out. For whatever reason in the past you feel


there has been a demonisation of the British Asian community, there is a


problem speaking out. -- you seem to be saying. So people will not stand


up against extremism in this country, and that is a real concern


of yours. Yes, there is an underlying current, people feel they


cannot speak out and if they do they will be targeted and silenced and


are they splintering, is the British community is entering into those who


will speak out, very few, those who won't, and those who do not condemn


the killing of the Punjabi politician because he spoke out


against laws. It is important to emphasise that the Glasgow Central


Mosque actually managed to come together, the first time ever in the


UK that we saw representatives with Pakistani Christians coming


together, a Sunni imam even, and when we broke at this meeting I said


to the police, this issue is far too great, it is about our future, when


we see the loss of one life on our streets, it is one life to many.


People have to put aside differences and egos, and they also understood


there is individuals within our community, a small minority, who


seem to think that what they say in private does not matter. It does


matter, that filters out to how they conduct themselves publicly, and if


they get with politics in Pakistan and think that is cut off point,


that somehow it will not have an impact, then they are wrong. We have


seen that, in other situations. The mosques down south, women who have


spoken out have been criticised and attacked and abuse online and yet I


find myself in the same situation in Scotland. Thank you very much


rejoining us. -- thank you very much for joining us.


The UN is looking for a new Secretary General.


Head of the United Nations Secretariat and Spokesperson


Budget? $5.4b billion and rising.


Term? Can be indefinite,


but usually restricted to two five year stints.


Remit? The World!


An diplomatic and troubleshooting skills essential.


Since its inception in 1945, nine people have held


This time, at least one woman wants it.


Helen Clark, the former Prime Minister of New Zealand,


has just announced she will be running.


I spoke to her from New York an hour ago.


I started by asking her about the role that the UN plays in global


crisis and why they are often criticised for not reacting fast


enough. Taking the Syria crisis, from the outset the


Secretary-General did appoint a special envoy, Kofi and nine, and


curvy in and was followed by Mr Brahimi, and another, and another,


and they are talking as we speak in recess at the moment. -- Kofi Annan.


The Syria talks are under way and for the sake of the people of Syria,


I hope they will succeed. Everything else we do is like a Band Aid as


long as there is not peace in Syria. What about the Ebola virus crisis,


it has been criticised for the way that they did not handle it. The


Secretary-General stepped in. With a special mission to mobilise support.


My own organisation was very active. It has led for the UN on the


recovery process. At the very top, looking at the Security Council and


the five permanent members, which looks like a gentleman 's club of


old powers, not new emerging, and that Security Council has a veto. Do


you think the make-up of the Security Council is wrong? The


Security Council reflects the geopolitical realities of 1945. I


have been a Prime Minister, engaged with my country on issues of


Security Council reform, I would like the Security Council to look


more like the 21st-century world that we live in today. What


countries would be in that? There is a group of four that have banded


together for many years: Germany, Japan, India, Brazil is outstanding


of the standards. Then there has also been the proposal alongside


that for permanent and Bishop for two places from Africa, and other


suggestions as well. -- permanent membership. As constructed in 1945,


before many of today's member states in the UN were independent nations,


the Security Council does not reflect the geopolitics we see


today. And as you say, the world looks very different from what it


did in 1945, what is the justification for the United Kingdom


for having a permanent place on the Security Council? 1945, coming out


of the disaster of World War II, the United Kingdom was a great power and


is still a very significant power, but the member states will have to


sort this out, whatever technical experts, secretaries, support the


organisation, can give, it will. In the end, it is a member state


decision as to what they want it to look like. Looking at the United


Nations since 1945, there have been nine Secretary-General, none have


been a woman. With the fact of being a woman and a former leader of a


country put you in a different kind of footing? I am not campaigning as


a woman candidate, I am campaigning as the best person to the job.


Obviously I am a woman and as someone who has been a long-time


advocate of women's empowerment and gender equality, I like to see women


get to the top of whatever field in life. If there is one thing that the


United Nations should be achieving now that it has not achieved, what


is it? Developing the skills required for the new kinds of


conflicts. The conflict we are seeing are by and large not those


that were envisaged when the charter was written, when the idea was to


banish war between nations, by and large, with few exceptions, that has


been achieved. We see so much conflict, civil wars, disparate,


non-state actors in these complex, violent extremists. This calls for


different approaches and for the United Nations with its strong


development, he managed Aryan, human rights, building of peacekeeping


arms, -- humanitarian. We need to make a real difference and we need


to play as a team. The latest opinion polls on the EU


Referendum suggest that the result will be close so both Leave


and Remain campaigns will be chasing down every last vote,


and millions of those It's estimated that 5.5


million UK nationals live beyond our shores, and if they have


been on the electoral register in the past 15 years


they will be eligible to vote So what does EU membership look


like from where they live? Secunder Kermani reports from that


British haven in Spain, VOICEOVER: Around 2 million Brits


live in the continental EU, I love Spain.


I love the Spanish people. And the sunshine, obviously!


Many end up in the Costa Del Sol. We took this over,


lock, stock and barrel. Brits have been here for decades,


but now with the possibility of a Brexit, there is definitely


a sense of trouble in paradise. who now spends his time looking


after stray Spanish donkeys Ron's horrified at the possibility


of a Brexit. He's even more angry


that he won't be allowed a vote, as he left the UK more


than 15 years ago. I still hold, and my wife,


holds a British passport. Ron, like many expats,


is a Spanish resident, I could seek Spanish nationality


now, I've been here long enough, I want to be British.


Why? Because, whether it's right


or wrong, I still believe Maybe not to live, but it's


still the best place in the world. concerned at the prospect


of being cut adrift from Britain, thousands of others here can


vote in June. More than half the British expats


here in Spain are reportedly over 50 years old, and many of them are now


worried about what the EU referendum could mean for their plans


for retirement in the sun. One rather dramatic phrase that's


been going round the community as they could all be turned


into illegal immigrants overnight. This bowling club is where Malaga


meets Middle England. The big concerns here,


other than the rub of the green, are access to health


care and pensions. Brits here get free medical


treatment, but that could come I do suffer from diabetes and one


or two other conditions. They look after me,


whether that will continue And if you had to start


paying for a privately? Then we would have


to go back to England. What kind of stuff are people


talking about, then? It affects a lot of people here,


if their pensions are going Will that make life a lot harder


for people, do you think? They've already lost their heating


allowance, and that's affected It does get cold over here,


you do need heating over But other pensioners here are more


worried about what they see I have a daughter in Tunbridge Wells


and we regularly go and visit. And when I walk round


Tunbridge Wells, the shopping centre, I rarely hear


an English person. Tunbridge Wells 20 years ago


was a lovely place to live, and now they have


their own pubs, etc. Isn't that a bit like the British


people here in the Costa Del Sol? You come to live in Spain,


the Spanish government There are plenty of pubs,


restaurants and bars catering for British people


on the Costa Del Sol. In Spainsburys you can get


all your favourites from home. With 80% of their stock


brought over from Britain, the owners worry getting their hands


on vital imports likr expats favourite sauces,


will be much harder. What's the biggest sellers


for the British customers? That has to come,


imported in, does it? You can buy the Spanish equivalent


of our most popular brand in the UK, but again, they don't seem


to taste the same. Do you think it could be a lot


harder to import all this type I hope not, but quite possibly,


yeah. Big Dave has dished up his fair


share of baked beans. He owns one of the most popular


cafes on the Costa Del Sol. Roast beef and Yorkshire


pudding on Sunday... Dave's worried that leaving the EU


could mean fewer customers They're already talking


about shutting orders and checking British people's passport


and visas for us. I've been here 15 years,


what's going to change then? You have an immigration problem


at home at the moment with immigrants


coming back in. I don't know how many Brits


in Europe at the moment... We would be a massive strain


on the NHS if we all turn up, overweight, nice and suntanned


but looking for some free health cover and maybe a house or somewhere


to live because we've just been thrown out of Spain,


because you've said Even though most people


here are in favour of staying in Europe, worried what a Brexit


would mean for them, many say if they were in Britain


they might be voting differently, an indication perhaps of how


divisive this referendum really is. When first time author


Jessica Knoll's thriller Luckiest Girl Alive was published


last year it garnered brilliant reviews, sold all over the world


and spent four months It was the darkest and most


terrfiying of stories about a young outwardly successful


young woman in New York, Ani Fanelli,


who is hiding a dreadful secret. As a teenager she was gang raped


by three boys at her upscale private Now, a year after publication,


and after repeatedly being asked the question and denying it,


Jessica Knoll has revealed in an essay on Lena Dunham's website


that what happened to Ani Fanelli, was inspired by what happened


to her. This paradigm shift has caused


a sensation and Jessica Knoll says Good evening, Jessica. You were


constantly asked if this book was based on you when the hardback came


out and you constantly denied it. Why did you stay silent for so long?


I think it was just a matter of being conditioned to being silent


about it. When this first happened to me I did try to talk about and I


did try to ask for help and it was like I was shot down where ever I


was turned and told not to talk about this, that nothing bad had


happened to me. That is how I internalised it and spend the next


17 years of my life, not talking about it and feeling... It would


make people feel uncomfortable to talk about. In the book there is a


scene where Ani Fanelli, after what happens to, goes to a doctor and


asks the doctor if he thinks she has been raped and they say, I'm not


qualified to say. That did happen to you. I wonder if that doctor said


yes, you were raped, if your life would be different? I think it is a


real possibility. What I was looking for then was someone to give me a


voice, and someone to say, yes, you were raped, that did happen to you.


I wonder if I felt I had any measure of support, especially from an


authority figure or an adult, if the situation would have turned out


differently. You then decided to confess. Why did you put your essay


on Lena Dunham's site? I think it is an amazing platform. I'm a big


admirer. A big admirer of Lena Dunham and of the editor and chief


of their site. They were supportive of the book when it first came out


and said, if you ever want to write anything for us, please let us know.


That was probably about 8-9 months ago. That stayed with me and when I


decided I did want to write about this, they were the first people I


turned to. Why did you make the decision to come clean? I think it


was just knowing I was about to go on a tour for the paperback release


here in the states and knowing I was going to be asked this question


again and again in every city where I docked. Did something similar


happened to you that happened to Ani Fanelli, or how did you write that


seems so specifically? I did a very awkward song and dance and I didn't


want to do that any more. I wanted to speak candidly. What we must


remember is this is the start now, because you have said this, of


course a difficult process for you personally? Well, yes. This is all


part of the healing process, which I never went through when I was


younger. I buried it. Now I'm talking about it, and now I'm


actually dealing with it. I'm hurting about it and crying about


it, and those are all good things, but they are very hard. This is the


beginning of a long, overdue healing process. I was going to say, do you


think the act of talking about it now is bringing some measure of


relief? Not necessarily relief, but what it's bringing me is a sense of


strength and power. I didn't have a voice when I was younger. Nobody


stood up for me. I tried to stand up for myself and I wasn't able to. Now


I'm able to do that and supported in doing that, so it's a very


empowering feeling. Just because I think the book has appealed to so


many young women and has done the rounds. You have written a


screenplay and so forth. I wonder what you would say to other young


women... The point of this is at the age of 14 and 15, would you say to


them, keep pushing, you have to tell people? Because for them there is no


great revelation of healing in your book. I mean, I don't presume to


tell anyone and what to do with her own experiences. The essay, what I


was hoping to do in writing that essay was to let women like that


know that they are not alone. If I had written an essay like that when


I was 15 it would have meant the world to me. I hope someone is able


to read it and feel a connection to me and to know that all this


wonderful support I have received over the last week is also support


for them. How have your parents been? This is the must be difficult


for them to see go through this recently? It has been very difficult


for them, no parent wants to see their child in pain or know they


have carried something as awful as this with them for all these years.


At the end of the day they understand completely why I did this


and are very proud of me. Jessica, thank very much.


That's all we have time for - I am back tomorrow -


A very good evening to you. The downpours of