04/11/2011 World News Today


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


Greece's Prime Minister, George Papandreou, hangs in the balance.


He faces a knife-edge vote of confidence in the Greek Parliament.


As crowds gathered outside Parliament, we report live on his


political gamble which has shaken the Mirror. -- the euro.


The situation in Greece dominates the G20 summit in Cannes. The US


tells Europe they can manage the crisis. There is more hard work


ahead and difficult choices to make but our European partners have laid


a foundation on which to build. Reports of 100 deaths in the Syrian


city of Homs after two days of protests.


Coming up: The prosecution and the defence have made their closing


arguments. This is not a reality show. It is reality. Now the jury


in a trial of Michael Jackson's doctor considers its verdict.


And a little wobbly, but all smiles, as six men emerged from self-


imposed isolation lasting more than 500 days. Why would they have


Hello and welcome. The G20 summit in Cannes had been hoping to lay


down plans to stimulate global economic growth. Instead the crisis


in Greece has dominated the agenda. Let's go live to Athens.


Good evening and welcome to Athens. In three hours' time, George


Papandreou, the Greek Prime Minister, will know his fate. He


has been under growing calls to resign following his unilateral


declaration that there should be a referendum on a bail-out so


painstakingly agreed at a Brussels summit last week. In Athens the


protesters have taken to the streets once again. The Communists


came in earlier on receiving an hour of the groups have joined them,


to say that Greece should not have to shoulder any more pain as a


result of the austerity measures that have been implemented by the


European Union to prevent Greece from defaulting on its debt, to


prevent Greece from falling out of the eurozone. Let's get this report


from our correspondent, Matthew Price.


Greek members of Parliament have been arriving this evening for a


confidence vote that is too close to call. Some rebel MPs have


indicated that they may now back their leader. Even if he survives,


he is weakened. The country faces continuing political uncertainty.


This is the man at the eye of the storm. Greece's Prime Minister


caused panic when he suggested a referendum on the latest debt bail-


out package for the country. Many here feared that no vote might mean


Greece would have to leave the euro and few want that. What with the


situation be after leaving Europe? They think it would be much worse.


If you leave the euro? If we leave the euro. I think that we will be


totally alone. Without the help of Europe, things would be very


difficult for Greece. Already Europe is losing confidence in


Greece's ability to deal with its debt problem. This is very much the


epicentre of the global financial uncertainty at the moment. Until


the politicians in this building can work out exactly who will run


in Greece, Europe stands very little chance of being able to


contain its debt crisis. Already the political turbulence here is


affecting other vulnerable economies, especially Italy. But in


the cafes here, you find little belief that the current politicians


can get them out of this mass. never know. Maybe things need to


get so dark before a great leader comes around and makes a big change.


Once again there is a demonstration tonight. Anger outside the


Parliament and inside. Even from members of the Prime Minister's own


party. TRANSLATION: We are being asked to vote in favour of a


Government but everyone knows they have lost the trust of the people


of Greece and the international community. The next few hours will


determine much. The future of Greece's Prime Minister, the future


of his country, and to a large extent the future of Europe.


Events in Greece and the eurozone debt crisis have dominated the


summit of the world's richest nations. Barack Obama has urged


European leaders to sort out the problems, to take aggressive steps


to fix the financial crisis. The French President Nicolas Sarkozy,


closing the G20 summit, said that Europe would do everything to


protect the euro. Let's get this report from our diplomatic


correspondent, James Robbins. This summit did not write to the


rescue of the euro and the eurozone. Leaders of the world's major


economies place that responsibility on the members of the currency


union itself. Several heads of Government made clear that Europe


could afford to heal itself. In the midst of crisis in Greece and Italy,


Barack Obama barely concealed his exasperation with European


decision-making. He said he had learned a lot in the past few days


about how laborious it was. He pointedly made clear his view that


the eurozone, including wealthy Germany, could afford to save


itself. Having heard from our European partners over the past two


days, I am confident that Europe has the capacity to meet this


challenge. I know it is not easy, but it is absolutely critical. It


is what the world looks for in moments such as this, action.


also pushed Silvio Berlusconi into accepting that the IMF should


monitor his Government's debt reduction programme, to reduce the


risk of financial catastrophe in one of the largest economies of the


eurozone. Italy insists it volunteered, but this amounts to a


public audit every quarter by the IMF. The G20 did agree that the


resources of the International Monetary Fund needed strengthening


to help individual countries around the world. But no figures will be


agreed before February next year. President Sarkozy had hoped for so


much for this meeting and he stressed the positive. We have


committed ourselves to reinforcing the means of the IMF if necessary.


To achieve this objective, the IMF should fulfil its role. The finance


ministers during a future meeting in February have instructions to


table, instructions and plans to achieve this within the IMF. China,


with its huge earnings from the surplus of export over import, says


it will allow greater flexibility for its currency. That should


correct some of the imbalance in world trade that hurts weaker


countries. Other proposals including a tax on financial


transactions to fund aid to the world's poor met stiff opposition,


or were pushed off the agenda by the subject that dominated the


summit, the crisis in the eurozone. As we heard and that report, the


G20 agreed to boost the resources of the IMF, to deal with the crisis


now besetting the eurozone. And also to monitor more closely what


Greece is up to in terms of its financial reforms. Our economics


editor has been speaking to the head of the IMF, Christine Lagarde.


End of the summit and time to reflect on whether the world is


safer now than it was a few days ago before the drama kicked off in


Greece. This summit started with France and Germany 10 increase that


it could not hold the eurozone to ransom. -- 10 increase. But it felt


that they were doing the same to the world economy. The answer came


back this afternoon, no. Or at least not yet. I asked the managing


director of the IMF if she was disappointed. For the moment I have


sufficient resources to face requests. But if there was a crisis,


if there was escalating demands, then the members of the IMF present


in the room today said we will put what it takes to make sure that you


can continue to play. Even a few hours ago, people certainly on the


French side and in other countries were saying that we are going to


see numbers in that communicate, and an increase. Is it not the case


that the rest of the World said no, this is Europe's job and we will


not cough up more money. Everybody understands that it is Europe's job.


The Europeans heard it and they actually said it was their job to


face a crisis. Italy has asked for her help, but there is no money


attached to that either. I am coming to Italy. Because I am


invited, you see. We will go quarterly. We will check that what


Italy has promised, it is delivering. If it is not delivering,


I will say so. The problem for Italy was its cost of borrowing was


rising in the markets. It has leapt today on hearing that news, so it


is not going very well so far. Let's see how things pan out. If


you look at the way that markets assess risks, it is very bizarre.


Two De Beers have been broken here. Europe's leaders have for many


drawn a link between Italy and the IMF, and they have openly


contemplated the possibility of a country leaving the euro. Now they


have to hope they have not tempted fate.


Let's talk to Christian favour, who has been in Cannes for us for the


G20 summit throughout. -- Christian Fraser. They look ready to fight


war on two friends. In Greece there are problems, but also in Italy as


well. Very much so. I think the many summits that were going on


last night after the dinner suggests that there are real


concerns about Italy. That caused to yield prices on ten-year Italian


bonds to rise much past the levels they were at in August. The ECB


intervened then. Angela Merkel is probably worried that they will


turn on Italy and she looked very glum tonight. One of the statement


that she made this morning, she said that she had had no money


promised by the G20 countries will this fire wall to protect Italy. I


am hearing downstairs that there is also frustration with the Germans.


Not only are the Germans tough austerity within the eurozone, they


are also tough on the European Central Bank. This into Christine


Lagarde, I think there is a sentiment from her that the ECB


should be doing more. -- listening to Christine Lagarde. They cannot


rely on European partners to prop up the eurozone. Germany might have


to do more and relax its view of what the ECB does at the end of the


day. This is an example of economics meeting politics. This is


where the economics needs German history. The Germans are very, very


reluctant about the idea of the ECB printing money. Absolutely. They


are terrified of hyperinflation. Just a quick history recap. In the


1920s, people needed wheelbarrow loads to buy a loaf of bread. The


highest priced stamp in 1920 was four marks and by 1923 it was 50


billion. That might be a long time ago but it is in the DNA of German


people and they remember it and they don't like the idea of funny


money, putting it simply. The Brits and those outside the eurozone are


saying that is all well and good, but you did not have to sign up to


the eurozone. It was your idea, and putting it bluntly it is up to you


guys to fix it. I think that is the message that has been delivered in


no uncertain terms this week. you very much.


In Athens, that vote is taking place in a little under three hours


time. That might start to map out some of the political future for


Greece. Whether there will be any more political uncertainty about


the decisions being taken and implemented in this country. In a


sense, that has been a problem. There is political paralysis. What


George Papandreou and the Greek people need tonight is a sense that


a direction has been set and that it will be followed. That has been


sadly lacking in recent weeks and months. From Athens, back to the


studio. Thank you.


A colleague Jon Sopel and of course we are waiting for that vote of


confidence in the great Parliament and if there is any news, we will


bring it to you. -- Greek Parliament.


Medical officials in Homs have told the BBC that the hospital has


received 100 corpses in the past 48 hours. Medical officials have


condemned the clamp down, saying that the Government is breaking the


commitment to an Arab League clamp down. We report from Turkey, where


many Syrians have fled following the unrest.


A hasty funeral for somebody reportedly killed after the peace


deal was agreed. Opposition activist so that the death toll


since the announcement on Wednesday show that the Syrian Government


cannot be trusted. The Arab League is making specific demands on the


President. Add to remove the military from the streets, release


prisoners, and allow monitors and Instead, he has come back with an


offer of his own, giving opposition groups two weeks. It is hard to


envisage that he will withdraw his forces from the main cities. The


minute he withdraws these forces, he will see millions of people on


the streets because the fear factor will no longer be there. People


will demand his downfall and his position will be even weaker.


reports we are getting from serious suggest nothing has changed yet. --


from Syria. Statements from doctors talking about 100 patients or more


in hospitals suggest the violence may have escalated. What is


proposed by the Arab League is the only deal on offer now. The only


possibility to stop Syria sliding into civil war. But it needs to


show some results soon if the Syrians are to believe in it.


The Chinese foreign ministry has said recent incidents of Tibetan


monks and nuns are setting themselves alight in protest


against Chinese rule should be condemned. The remarks come a day


after a Buddhist nun are burnt herself to death in western China.


In India, and ethnic Tibetan tried to set himself on fire in front of


the Chinese embassy today. He was quickly overpowered by police, who


extinguished the fire. Rescuers in China are continuing


efforts to reach 50 miners trapped underground in central Henan


province. The mineshaft collapsed shortly after a low level


earthquake. 14 miners managed to escape immediately and seven were


subsequently rescued. At least six people have been


killed and flash floods that last general and easterly's western


coastline to date. The water rage through the town, uprooting trees


and sweeping cars and furniture through the streets. -- Italy's


western coastline. Do Liberian opposition candidate


has said he will not take part in the country's one of presidential


election next week. He was due to stand against the incumbent


president and from from that, a recent Nobel Peace Prize winner. He


said he could not legitimise the process.


Israel's may be has boarded two bodes carrying pro Palestinian


activists, trying to break the Israeli blockade of Gaza. The boat


set sail from Turkey on Wednesday carrying medical supplies and


nearly 30 add to this will stop Israel says the seizure of the


vessel had taken place peacefully. After six weeks of evidence and


testimony, the jury in the trial of Michael Jackson's Dr has begun


considering its verdict in Los Angeles. Dr Conrad Murray is


charged with involuntary manslaughter and faces up to four


years in jail if convicted. He is accused of causing the start's


death in 2009 by Reg Presley administering a dose of the


powerful tranquilliser propofol, and then trying to cover his tracks.


He denies involuntary manslaughter. For six weeks, America has followed


every step of this trial. Each day the Jackson family were in court,


to see the man accused of killing Michael. Conrad Murray, presented


as unethical - of the man who broke the trust between doctor and


patient out of greed. Michael Jackson was shown


rehearsing for a demanding run of concerts in London. Hours later, he


was dead. He had become dependent on the drug propofol to sleep. It


is a powerful anaesthetic, normally used in hospitals. Experts


explained that it should never be given at home without monitoring


equipment. Dr Murray provided it, and was paid �100,000 a month. He


was out of the room when Michael Jackson stopped breathing and did


not call emergency services for 20 minutes. Michael Jackson trusted


Conrad Murray, but Conrad Murray corrupted that relationship and,


for that, Michael Jackson paid with his life. Their defence claimed to


Michael Jackson had injected himself with the drug that killed


him. Or they are really asking you to do is to convict Dr Murray for


the absence of Michael Jackson. If you are going to hold Dr Murray


responsible, don't do it because it is Michael Jackson. -- at the


actions of Michael Jackson. This is not a reality show, it is reality.


The jury started deliberations a few hours ago. They have to decide


not just whether Conrad Murray was negligent or unethical in the way


he treated his patient, but whether his actions directly led to to the


death of Michael Jackson. Six men and, more than 500 days


together in total isolation in giant metal tubes - now, that


sounds like something you would not normally volunteer to do. But in


this case, it was all part of a Russian experiment to simulate a


mission to Mars and back. The aim was to plan ahead for a possible


voyage to the distant, but reachable, it red planet.


It was the door that had not been open for 520 days. Behind it, six


men who, for 17 months, had only had each other for company. Then,


pale from a lack of sunlight but smiling, they started to emerge.


They had been on one of the strangest space missions of recent


years - a voyage to know where, but simulating a journey to Mars.


really great to see you all again. Rather overwhelming. On the Mars500


mission, we have achieved on Earth the longest space voyage ever, so


that's humankind can one day greet a new dawn on the service of a


distant, but reachable, planet. idea was to test whether the men


could endear the stress and boredom of a long space voyage. Their minds


and bodies were checked continuously postop they kept


themselves amused at Christmas, for example, but scientists at --


insist this was a serious experiment. The most exciting


moment for the men during their 17 month-long mission was stepping out


onto this pile of sand, the simulation of a walk on the surface


of Mars. But the experiment had major shortcomings. There was no


weightlessness, or space radiation, and the men were never in any real


danger. Save for, man has only been to the moon. It took three days to


cover the distance. -- so far. Just getting to Mars will take at least


250 days. It is a minimum of 35 million miles, but astronauts say


it is within reach. If we make a real big effort starting today, I


think we can do it in 15 years. More realistically, I think it is


it more in the order of 25 years. For decades, Mars has been a


distant dream for those interested in human space flight. Today it


came a little bit closer. Let's discuss this a bit more.


Joining us from Leicester is Anu Ojha, a director of the UK National


Space Centre. It seems a bit of a strange thing to have done, doesn't


it? Would you have volunteered for it, by the way? Interesting. When


they put it forward, I did consider it. We need to remember, these guys


have gone deep into the human Psyche. As well as the engineering


and scientific talent has of getting to Mars, being cooped up


for 17 months and isolated from the rest of humanity will push the


human mind to the limits. When the results come out from this


experiment, they will transform our understanding of human psychology


as it relates to did space missions. But in what way would this really


help us understand better, first of all? Earth is the one planet in the


solar system that we know is teeming with life. The Mall world's


we know to compare hours to, the more we will understand it. Mars is


a schizophrenic planet. It has an atmosphere but it is incredibly


thin. We have all these clues that billions of years ago, it was a


warmer, wetter world with oceans and rivers. What we know about


Earth is that if the conditions are right for live, it thrives.


Ultimately, why we want to explore Mars is to find out if life was


ever bed. If we can confirm that, even if it is just my grades, we


will know that we are not alone in the universe. -- microbes have.


Poor demeanour about whether Mars could have supported live in the


past or will in future? Spacecraft orbiting Mars have detected gases


that, on Earth, are produced by biological processes. We have got


more controversial Cleese. I have got a sample of the planet here. I


don't know if you can see this on camera. It is just a few grains of


rock and dust but this is a meteorite from Mars. It fell on


Earth in 1911. There are 16 or 17 of these that we found around Earth


but three in particular have got tell-tale clues that they could


have been produced by biological processes. In the scientific


community, if you have an extraordinary claim you need


extraordinary evidence. As much as I would love this to be evidence of


ancient life on Mars, the only way we will settle this issue for once


and for all is to send a crew of human scientists to Mars. When do


you think it might be feasible that humans will actually reach Mars?


People are amazed to find out that we could have gone to Mars in the


1980s if the Americans hadn't pushed through the space shuttle


approached -- space shuttle plan. It was always the Russians' goal. I


am unlikely to see activity on Mars in my lifetime. I would like to but


it will certainly be when I am in retirement. But when that grew


actually goes, they will be taking humanity's next giant leap.


Anu Ojha, clearly a man with a mission and a passion. Thank you


for talking to us. A reminder of the main news:


Outside the Greek parliament in Athens, protesters are gathering.


These are live pictures we are showing you. Inside, the Prime


Minister, George Papandreou, is facing a vote of confidence. He


sparked an angry response in Greece and elsewhere in the world -


particularly in Europe - over a plan to hold a referendum on the


latest bail-out plan for Greece, which is listed of austerity


measures there. He has abandoned his referendum proposal but there


have been numerous demands for his resignation. We are still waiting


for the results of that vote of confidence in the Greek parliament.


It is a knife-edge vote. Brummie, goodbye and enjoy your weekend. --


We have had a few showers today that should ease overnight. First


thing tomorrow, it should not be too bad as start. However, that is


going to change in the south through the day, because we have


got this weather system approaching. It will, in from the near Continent


overnight tonight and arrive in the far south-east in the early hours


of tomorrow. That will spill westwards along with some outbreaks


of rain. At around 3pm, Yorkshire will turn cloudy and Lincolnshire


will turn damp through the afternoon. Rain for East Anglia and


much of south-east England. Southern Counties turning


increasingly grey but luckily staying dry. Further west, a dry,


bright day. To stay in brighter across South West England and Wales


as we had through the afternoon. For Northern Ireland and Scotland,


we are in the same boat again. High pressure builds and keeps the


weather fronts at bay. We stick with dry up with an sunshine for


Scotland, and light winds to boot. Through the evening, expected to


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