19/08/2011 World News Today


The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.

Similar Content

Browse content similar to 19/08/2011. Check below for episodes and series from the same categories and more!



This is BBC World News Today with me, Zeinab Badawi.


An audacious attack on the British Council compound in Kabul leaves 12


people dead. It's believed that at least six suicide attackers made it


inside the compound after detonating a car bomb, which took


out one of the walls at the British Council behind me.


Killed during Friday prayers - more than 40 die in a bomb attack on a


mosque in the Khyber region of Pakistan.


Has the controversial leader of the ANC's youth wing Julius Malema gone


a step too far this time? He's charged with bringing the party


into disrepute. And we report from the Edinburgh


Fringe Festival on what happens when social media meets modern


Hello and welcome. The British Council, the institution that for


decades has served as Britain's cultural organisation abroad, found


itself the specific target of a co- ordinated and audacious attack in


the Afghan capital Kabul. First, a suicide bomb destroyed the wall of


the British Council compound, allowing gunmen to storm the


12 people were killed in the attack, mostly Afghan police. All of the


attackers themselves were killed in an eight-hour gun battle. In a


moment we will hear from the head of the British Council. First,


Quentin Sommerville reports from Kabul.


Moments after morning prayers, the attack began with a huge explosion


that rattled windows across Kabul. The Taliban blue and massive hole


in the wall around the British Council. At least half-a-dozen at


suicide bombers then went inside. TRANSLATION: I bought outside the


house and I saw smashed windows. I saw the second bomber. He blew


himself up. The fighting continued around the morning. As the injured


were led away, three Afghan guards and a number of police were killed.


We heard more than three -- we heard three explosions. We believe


the suicide bombers blew themselves up. One survived and we think he is


in hiding. You can hear gunfire and heavy explosions at from the


British Council compound. You can see the British quick reaction


force who are on the scene. It is believed that six suicide attackers


made it inside the compound before detonating a car bomb that took out


one of the walls. The siege of the British Council lasted eight hours.


As soon as the attack began, staff inside, including two female


teachers, headed to an underground safe and room. After fierce


fighting, a New Zealand special forces and Afghan commandos came to


their rescue. But British Council stop in the compound who


essentially were in the safer route for most of the day and we were in


contact with them, had been extracted safely. There are now in


the embassy, obviously shaken, but well and an injured. As the clear-


up at the site began, it emerged that the war Atmel attackers had


disguise themselves in material -- in burkas. It is a vicious attack,


but an attack that has not succeeded. Today, as Afghanistan


and celebrated the success in it moving away from British rule was


the reason why the Taliban said they are attacked. As our combat


soldiers leave, the soldiers will be left to face the Taliban alone.


Martin Davidson is Chief Executive of the British Council. He gave us


his response to how the attack had affected his organisation. I think


the biggest shock for us is that an organisation which is there to


build close links between people internationally has been targeted


in this way. A lot of the work that the British Council does in


countries like Afghanistan is to get that face-to-face engagement,


isn't it? And absolutely. Are you worried those activities will be


restricted? It is early days. We have got to look at what happened


today. We are going to have to analyse what went wrong, but the


one thing we do want to do is to stay in Afghanistan, stay working


with the young Afghans because they tell us that they want the sort of


things that we do. They want the international connections, they


want to be part of the wider world, they want the skills and be able to


engage with their peers along -- around the world. Tell us a bit


about the activities you carry out in Afghanistan? You say you have


strong links with the young people. We are really focusing on two


things at the moment. One is working with the Afghan authorities


on the development and changes to the education system, both at the


basic education level as well as the higher education level. So we


are working with 22 key schools across the country, looking at how


the schools are run, how you train the teachers, what are the skills


you need. So you have a visible presence? You yes. It is about


working with Afghans who want to change their own society. But in a


country like Afghanistan, your efforts are compromise because


Britain is engaged in combat. need to build trust between young


people in Afghanistan and people in this country. To do that, you have


to get people to know and understand each other. You do not


have to agree, but there needs to be a dialogue and that is what we


are involved in. We know that the people we are talking there, the


young people, they want to be part of the wider world. They don't want


to be part of a closed society that resort to violence to get their


point across. It is a young population in Afghanistan. They


want to be like everyone else in the world and that is what I would


job is. If we get it right and do it well, it giving of those young


people an opportunity will build trust.


In neighbouring Pakistan, a suspected suicide attack inside a


mosque in the north-west Khyber region has killed more than 40


people. Hundreds were offering Friday prayers when the attack took


place. At least 85 people have been wounded, many of them with severe


burns and shrapnel injuries. The attack came without warning


inside a mosque packed with more than 1,000 worshippers who had come


for Friday prayers. It was the first major actor Piet -- violence


in Pakistan during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. The scenes of


hundreds of injured people been ferried to hospital are as


depressing reminder. The final number of those killed is expected


to be high. This man, who survived the explosion, said the attack


followed a cry of alarm who Akbar. The attack came in at an important


region - the Khyber Pass. It was not an attack on NATO. It was


another form of dangerous Islamist extremism. These people believe


that violence against their own people will further their cause.


Activists in Syria say security forces have killed at least 12


people as thousands of protesters took to the streets again after


Friday prayers. This week President Assad had assured the UN Secretary


General Ban Ki Moon that security operations against civilians had


stopped. The BBC is not allowed to freely report from inside Syria, so


Jim Muir sent this report from neighbouring Lebanon.


Nothing much seems to have changed since President Assad statements


bat or police and military operations have stop. Activist


videos on the internet cannot be verified independently, but many of


them appear to show government forces attacking protesters. In the


third biggest city, troops appeared to be on rooftops and in the


streets. Several civilians were killed here. There was trouble in


the suburbs of the capital Damascus as well. Civilian deaths were


reported. At the United Nations and elsewhere, patience is running


short. But as well as telling the secretary general military


operations had stopped, President Assad allowed to a humanitarian


mission to visit the troubled areas. We want to concentrate on the areas


where there had been reports of fighting so we can see exactly for


ourselves what has been going on. But pressures on Assad is


increasing. There are more international sanctions, but he


said Syria would stand firm, whatever the pressures. He blames


armed terrorist gangs fog all the problems. Syrian television has


shown footage of people with rifles and guns and knives who are


attacking the police, or security, who are throwing them into the


river. Unfortunately, for some reason, the West will only see with


one eye and listen with one ear. President Assad will take heart


from the fact that the Turks, who have been pressuring him, have not


supported the call for him to go now. They and the Russians say he


needs more time to implement the changes he has promised. And so the


struggle continues. The uprising is not going away, nor is the regime.


Five months on, nobody knows how this will end and how much longer


it will take. Now a look at some of the days


other news. The International Organisation for


Migration says it is planning to evacuate thousands of foreigners


from the Libyan capital Tripoli as fighting gets closer to the city.


It comes as rebels say they have launched a new assault on the town


of Zlitan, east of Tripoli, after capturing the last functioning oil


refinery in Zawiya and the town of Sabratha. The IOM says many migrant


workers are trapped by the clashes and are asking to leave as rebel


forces advance. Relatives of Norwegians killed in


last month's gun attack on the island of Utoeya have visited the


scene for the first time. Meanwhile, a court in Oslo has ruled that


Anders Behring Breivik, who admitted the attack, will remain in


solitary confinement for another month.


The Turkish prime minister Recep Tayip Erdogan says his country will


open an embassy in Somalia to help distribute aid to the country. Mr


Erdogan made the announcement during a visit to the Somali


capital Mogadishu. He said Turkey would also help build


infrastructure and schools. The start of the Spanish football


season this weekend will be delayed after negotiations to prevent a


strike by players failed. Many players, mostly in the second


division, have not been paid for months. Clubs are facing severe


financial difficulties. Staying with Spain, the government


has announced more austerity measures, including an effort to


cut hospital spending with a shift to generic drugs. It is also


bringing forward the date big businesses must pay their taxes,


But new homebuyers will enjoy lower taxes.


It's been another shaky day at the end of a shaky week for the world's


financial markets. In Europe there were further losses for the main


stock markets, with banking shares under pressure again. Lloyds here


in Britain has lost almost a fifth of its value this week, while banks


in France and Germany have also taken a battering. In New York the


markets haven't closed yet, but it's been a volatile day in the US,


too. Joining us is Daniel from the stern Business University. What is


feeding the fears this time? have a paralysis, and it is similar


to what we saw in the US in 2001. There is so much uncertainty about


the euro zone that if you are a corporate manager, you are not


ready to make the strong decision to hire or invest. If you are an


investor, you are probably keeping your money on the sideline. Whilst


this uncertainty remains, the paralysis does as well. What about


the United States? What is the situation there? There were some


poor indicators that suggested the economic outlook for the US was not


great. Everybody here has come to terms with the fact that this is


going to be a long and slow recovery. What we need Tapper now


is some good long-term planning, not just for the fiscal situation


of the country, but in the corporate boardrooms as well. Right


now the politicians and other leaders have bought themselves some


time to come to a compromise and makes some of those plans. In the


fiscal situation, it has to be a plan for more cuts. It when people


look at the market, could there be another recession on the way? --


where people. The stock market does tend to be a leading indicator of


the economy, but it is not completely reliable. It is hard to


judge a recession whilst you are experiencing it, which is why the


National Bureau typically calls a One of the most controversial


politicians in South Africa has been charged with bringing the


ruling ANC in to distribute -- disrepute. Julius Malema angered


party leaders by calling for regime change in neighbouring plots one,


which she called a puppet of the US. He has previously been told to take


anger management classes for his controversial statements.


Julius Malema is the firebrand ANC Youth League presence -- President,


re-elected unopposed in April of this year. He says he joined the


ANC when he was only nine years old. His mother, who raised him as a


single parent. Here he is throwing a journalist out of a press


conference last year. A few months ago he appeared in front of an


equality court in Johannesburg. He was called to explain why he still


scald and of -- still sings an old anti-apartheid liberation song.


Today the ANC has charged him for sowing divisions within party ranks.


He is also off -- faced with a charge of bringing the party into


disrepute. The trigger for today's charges is because he said in a


press conference a fortnight ago that he supports regime change in


neighbouring box one. This was the reaction from the streets of


Johannesburg. Do you charge him in person or do


you charge the Youth League? Is he responsible or the Youth League as


a whole? Julius Malema is speaking from his experience and what he


understands as a person and he is representing the ANC Youth League


opinion. I don't think he has brought it the ANC into disrepute.


TRANSLATION: He has no problem. The problem is people like Jacob Zuma,


because after we voted for them we have no jobs.


Meanwhile, South Africa's public protect it is investigating a


company linked to Mr Malema on suspicion of possible corruption in


awarding government contracts. Joining us now is Deputy Vice


Chancellor at the University of Johannesburg and African politics


specialist Adam Habib. In the eyes of the ANC leadership, has Julius


Malema gone a bit too far this time? I think so, but remember that


the leadership of the ANC has a dilemma left foot -- has I don't --


has ID -- has a dilemma. They are building up for the centenary


celebrations. But if they wait too long, Julius Malema has


increasingly been embarrassing be President, he has been antagonising


foreign investors and he has created destabilisation around


foreign investment questions. It seems that the leadership is saying


it is too far and that we need to act immediately to neutralise him.


In what way does he represent that fight for the heart and soul of the


ANC? Clearly this is an organisation divided between


broadly the nationalists and the left. The left are going for some


level of intervention, the nationalists are arguing for the


modus operandi under theorbo and Becky, a much more free market


party. -- under Toll Bar Mbeki. Either side are articulating


positions that you would not normally see them articulating,


like the Communist Party arguing against nationalisation. The


Communists are proposing it on the grounds that this is a bail-out for


mining companies rather than a real empowerment of poor people.


obviously strikes a chord among a lot of people. Can be a n c afford


to lose him if it comes to that? -- can be ANC. I think they can. Their


popularity goes belonged Julius Malema but his popularity lies in


the fact that this is a divided country. -- goes beyond. The poor


are angry and they gravitate towards a populist figure like


Malema. The more you deal with the divides and the inequality, the


more you cut the ground from someone like Julius Malema.


terms of the charges he is seeing because of his comments about


Botswana, how much diplomatic fall- out was there with but one about


that? -- with. One or -- with bots won. We have lost sound there I am


afraid. The world's largest arts festival,


the Edinburgh Fringe, is in full swing, with people descending on


Scotland. Social media and technology pay a big part -- play a


big part in the promotion of events. Twitter and Facebook are being used


in some of the performances and Danny Robins has been to Edinburgh


to find out more. The Edinburgh Fringe, the largest


arts festival in the world. This year's festival is the biggest yet,


with more than 2500 show is. To pull in an audience you have to


stand out. New media is the latest weapon in the battle to get noticed,


Twitter, Facebook and even a host of applications. But the use of


technology is not limited to promoting shows. With digital media


such a big part of our lives, it comes as no surprise that many


fought -- many performers are using it as a way to interact with their


audience. Buy a ticket for this show and the


main character will be friends you on Facebook, inviting you to a


party at their house. -- befriend. Half the characters are here, the


other half Orin Austin Texas. The internet links this it -- the two


sides and the comic story is played out via Skype. There is also a


third audience, online. You can watch the show screened live and


even interact with the actors on Twitter.


I feel that there are moves in theatre with shows there are really


incorporating technology and the way that we use it.


It drives the play forward and when people ask questions on Skype it


progresses the play and they find out more about the characters.


Yes, I am at the Edinburgh Festival. Send me an e-mail. The fact that a


lot of us had smart phones which mean that we can access the


Internet we if we are means that if you do not have time to catch a


whole show at the Theatre, why not just download one?


Ghost city is part of our new trend amongst the Fringe shows for shows


that you can download. Each recording is Trevor -- based around


a particular Edinburgh location. One person who is no stranger to


integrating these media into his show is Alex Horne.


What opportunities to feel it opens up? -- do you feel. You can use it


in your show or use it to popularise your gig, or possibly


there is another way which is better than Beausale but -- but of


those things! It is pretty certain that her --


over the next few years performers and audiences will be interacting


in ways we do not even know about yet.


Finally, it was meant to be an example of how sport in -- and


strengthen diplomatic ties, but nobody counted on a brawl breaking


out in a basketball game between a Chinese team and visiting American


players. Yesterday's game between Georgetown University and to the


Chinese team degenerated into a mass brawl in the 4th quarter, with


players throwing punches and chairs, forcing after-match to end early.


The Georgetown team is in shine on a ten-day goodwill trip, timed


along with the Joe Biden's trip. The two teams are due to play again


in Shanghai over the weekend but you may not be surprised to hear


that it is not known if that game will go ahead. Who knows what might


happen this time? Whatever happened to sportsmanship?


Militants in Afghanistan have killed 12 people in attack on a


British cultural office in Kabul. Most of the dead were Afghan police.


There was a lengthy gun battle with Afghan commandos and special forces


from New Zealand. The Taliban say they ordered the assault to mark


the anniversary of Afghan independence from Britain in 1919.


That is all from the programme. Next, the weather. Goodbye and


For many of us it was a beautiful day, lots of sunshine around.


Tomorrow, a lot more cloud in the forecast and a fair bit of rain.


Tonight this weather front pushes across the north-west of the UK,


turning breezy. Through the night it sinks southwards. For Saturday,


a cloudy a start the southern England and Wales. Through the day


these will push into the Midlands and East Anglia. It looks as though,


for parts of the Midlands, East Anglia, turning increasingly wet,


and into the home counties. For London and the south-east it will


turn drier and brighter through the afternoon. Across south-west


England, again some brightness where the sun comes out. I think


staying cloudy for much of the day in Wales. Outbreaks of rain in the


West. Disappointingly called here. In Northern Ireland, the cloud will


come in from the South. The north- west of Scotland is dominated by


Download Subtitles