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This is BBC World News Today with me, Tim Wilcox. Too little, too
late? As violent protests continue in Cairo Egypt's military leader
insists there is no going back on democracy. We are only here to
serve the nation and God. The armed forces fully reject these attempts
that are trying to harm the armed forces. Where to put Saif Al-Islam
Gaddafi on trial? Libya says it will not hand him over to the
International Criminal Court, but it says it has to be involved.
Party politics divide Washington as Republicans and Democrats again
fail to agree on how to cut America's debt. Coming up: The boom
in illegal gold mining in Colombia. We have a special report on how the
lucrativeOf business is good for the Mafia.
And famous for his music, but should the Sex Pistols' Johnny
Rotten be remembered for his Hello and welcome. In the face of
growing unrest in Egypt and in a dramatic attempt to placate
protesters, the leader of the country's Military Council, Field
Marshal Hussein Tantawi, has agreed to hand over power to a civilian
president by January last year. He agreed to accept the resignation of
the Prime Minister's cabinet and replace it within days. Let's go
live to Lyse Doucet to joins us from Tahrir Square.
Today the organisers called it A Million man protest. Today's
demonstrations were the biggest since their historic protests in
January and February that toppled President Hosni Mubarak. Now the
same chance are going up from the square, calling for the President
to go and also Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi to step down. Even
when he spoke to the people of Egypt he spoke to these protesters
saying he has no intention to remain in power, but the square
said leave, lead. There has been a constant wail of ambulance sirens,
a measure of how many people are being injured in these running
battles. This report is from our Middle East correspondent.
They are carrying the dead. In the square they celebrated a revolution
not so long ago. Today was the biggest demonstration so far in
what they are calling the second revolution. As a protest build up
on the edge of the square there was relentless confrontation. Egyptians
are furious with the way the military are running the country.
The police fired round after round of tear gas and gunshots. The
motorcycles are bringing in more casualties by the hour. The crowds
are growing in the square and the military rulers of Egypt have no
new ideas, no answers to this crisis. At the field hospital I met
a 37 year-old doctor originally from Luxor. He is bitterly
disappointed to find himself back on medical duty in the square just
as he was nine months ago. thought everything was beautiful
and our country was heading for democracy and everything would be
fine. I never expected we would stay all this time without change.
Everything is the same. We have the same regime. I have lost hope. I am
very, very disappointed. Finally after days of silence the Prime
Minister emerged to make a desperate appeal. I beg you, I beg
you, put your country first, please go back home and let things come
down. And then the commander himself, Field Marshal Hussein
Tantawi, head of the military cancelled that now rules Egypt made
a rare television broadcast. He insisted the military do not want
to hold on to power. Parliamentary elections will go ahead next week
as planned and presidential elections by the middle of next
year. The military, he said, only had the interests of the Egyptian
people at heart. So, driven by the huge demonstrations, late in the
day the Army have finally started making concessions, but will it be
enough? These protesters want an end to military rule right now and
there is no sign they are about to go away.
In a country of 80 million people many would have watched and
listened to this rare speech by the field marshal. It could be a speed
that divides Egyptians outside the Square, but Egyptians are now
saying the military has given us a road map for moving ahead and the
countries should move on. But here in Tahrir Square where people are
huddled around car radios to listen to what he said, many are saying
they cannot move on unless they are certain Egypt at last is moving in
the right direction. We will keep an eye on all the developments.
The wrangling over where Colonel Gaddafi's son aside up his man will
stand trial continues. Libya's justice minister says he will not
be handed over to the International War crimes Tribunal. The ICC's says
they must be involved. Saif Al- Islam is currently being held in
Zintan. Caroline Hawley sent this report.
These pictures were filmed in southern Libya shortly after Saif
Al-Islam was captured on Saturday, a major prize for the militia men
who found him. They promise you'll get a fair trial. Saif Al-Islam
replies he does not know where he will be held prisoner, in Libya or
outside the country. In Libya he is told. His captors show the cameras
this applies he had with him during the weeks he spent on the run after
his father's regime was toppled in August. He also carried with him a
warning, that the country would see new divisions and the former rebels
now in charge would bring no good to Libya. TRANSLATION: Regarding
the people of Benghazi or Misrata, you consider them your brothers,
go-ahead, but just give them a couple of months or one year and
you will find out the reality. Please do not deny it on the day
Saif Al-Islam was taken prisoner he did not warn you of that. He is
being held in Zintan where he was brought shortly after his capture.
His whereabouts remain a closely guarded secret as the process of
bringing him to justice is discussed in Tripoli between the
new Libyan authorities and prosecutors from the International
Criminal Court. Luis Moreno-Ocampo had wanted to see Saif Al-Islam in
court in the Hague, but he now seems to have accepted a blunt
message from the Libyans, that Saif Al-Islam will be tried in the
country where he committed his crimes. If they prosecute him here,
we will discuss with them how to inform the judges. Saif Al-Islam is
billed as he was blown into Zintan and he is likely to face a long
wait before Libya is ready to give him a proper trial. -- filmed.
In the Gulf state of Bahrain around 3000 protesters have clashed with
police in the city of Sitra a day before the findings are released of
a human rights report into violence between Government and political
activists earlier this year. That includes the convictions of 20
Medix accused of helping the protesters. They say they were
forced into confessions and are currently on trial -- on bail.
Zeinab Badawi has been speaking to one of them, Dr Nada Dhaif, and she
asked if there was a fresh opportunity. Personally I am not
very optimistic about it. Why not? I do not see how the Government,
how the king is going to hire somebody for a fact-finding. I
believe it should be an independent committee and not appointed by any
party, not the opposition or the Government. The authorities say
there were doctors who occupied the hospital in the capital. Were you
amongst them? That is the accusation against you. Of course
not, I have nothing to do with these charges. I was very shocked
the first time I learnt about these charges was when I was at the
military court. When I heard the judge telling defendant number sat,
I was No. 12, is charged with occupying the hospital, with
weapons, I just could not help it, I laughed. When you get so shocked
and then you do not know how to react, where did it come from? I do
not even work there. You were not there? I was not there. And you
have been sentenced to 15 years in prison. Exactly. But you have been
granted an appeal. We appealed in front of a civilian court and we
were sentenced in a military court. But we were happily in a civilian
court. Do you have any idea how your appeal will go? Will your
sentence be reduced or thrown out? That depends on the report of the
fact-finding commission. It depends on what comes in it and what it
says. If it is critical of the authorities, what is the
implication for you? We are clear and free to go. Dr Nada Dhaif
speaking to Zeinab Badawi. In Tunisia where a popular uprising
read to the fall of President Ben Ali in January and sparked a wave
of unrest across the Arab world the new constitutional Assembly has
held its first session. It was elected last month with a
previously banned Islamist party getting the most seats. They will
be writing a new constitution to pave the way for elections.
A special, so-called Super congressional committee in the US
has failed to agree on how to reduce the Bast Government debt.
Made up of six Republicans and six Democrats it had been asked to
reach a deal on how to cut more than a trillion dollars from the
Budget. There are too many Republicans who have refused to
listen to the voices of reason and compromise that are coming up
outside Washington. They continue to insist on protecting $100
billion of tax cuts for the World visits to -- wealthiest Americans
at any cost. At this point they simply will not budge from their
position. What is the scale of the US debt crisis and what are the
implications of Republicans and Democrats failing to reach a deal.
The national debt is now running at more than 15 trillion dollars. The
committee's failure to agree means automatic cuts should now take
effect in 2013. The automatic cuts amount to one trillion dollars,
equal to the annual national output of South Korea. Half of that burden,
$500 billion, is expected to fall on defence and national security
spending despite their already facing a $450 billion reduction. As
this is not set to take effect until January 2013, lawmakers can
appeal them. President Obama said he would veto any attempt to do so.
Let's go to Washington. The national debt is roughly equal to
the US economy. They have had three months to sort this out. They
cannot do anything. They really cannot. The whole idea was if you
put people in a room with no distraction, with a fast track,
they would come to some decision and that is completely wrong.
Republicans would not get off keeping the tax rates are low for
the wealthy, Democrats would not get off entitlement programmes and
keeping programmes like health care for the elderly and the poor. They
wanted to keep those programmes as his, which is very difficult. They
never really got any closer to that and that was the stalemate. We are
looking at political gridlock and presumably this is a live issue
right up to the presidential elections. In terms of the
automatic cuts, where do they kick in and can they be challenge?
you notice President Obama chose his words carefully. He said he
would have vetoed turning off those automatic cuts. That is different
to changing them. Republicans in Congress and some Democrats are
expected to want to change them for less than the impact on defence.
The Pentagon has said they cannot afford any more cuts, so that will
be a huge political issue and that will be the main battle in 2012,
trying to lessen the impact of the issued defence cuts in 2013. Could
it potentially affect America's credit rating yet further?
credit rating agencies are very careful in what they say, but they
are expected to keep the credit rating at the level that it is that
as long as these cuts do not go away, the 1.2 trillion dollars in
cuts mandated. As long as that deficit reduction happens, we do
not expect to see a credit downgrade, although we did not
expect to see one last time. It is kind of an enigma to everybody, but
that would be another huge stumble for an American political system
that seems to have lost its way You have got people trying to work
for the public good, but always falling back on to party political
prejudices. I was talking to some political folks this morning, no
one is willing to fall on their sword. That is the overarching
message we hear from both parties, no one is able to fall on their
assault and do what is right. All the political figures are staring
at a problem they know it exists. They saw trillion -- trillion
dollars worth of debt recently. Everyone knows what he's to be done
and no one wants to do what. That is what we are living with him
watching 10. It is frustrating to be bolder political figures saying,
what is going on here. It is a spectacle of sorts and has been
over the last couple of months. Thank you.
Let's return to our main story on this edition. While the Arab Spring
appears to be progressing in the country which was the catalyst for
the revolution, what has gone wrong in Egypt to have sparked a second
spontaneous uprising in recent days? Let's go to Cairo and speak
to our correspondent there who has been following the Arab Uprising.
Some of the protesters demands have been met seemingly, but is it too
little too late? I was in Tahrir Square and it is packed. People are
still there, they are not leaving and there seems to be
disappointment. They won more, they expected more, but they did not get
it. They were looking for an immediate end to military rule, but
they got a transferred to a civilian power by July at the
earliest. There was a big gap between what the protesters are
asking for and what the military was willing to give. That said, I
expect the concessions will go well with the majority of Egyptians. We
might see a disconnect between the hard core of protesters who want to
stay until they get exactly what they want and other Egyptians who
want to see a Writtle -- return to normalcy. They want to see
elections on Monday as originally to a job and to continue the
transition. That cap -- that gap will be interesting to see.
there are also a disbelief about the military's role of are the last
few months and their perceived to have been wanting to play on to
power at all costs? The military has woefully mismanaged Egypt's
transition. They have used many of the same authoritarian tactics as
the old regime so that is where a lot of disillusion and frustration
has come in. Sometimes even worse. Amnesty International says they
even exceeded some of the torture and brutality of President Mubarak.
That is a remarkable thing, in some ways they have been worse. When
they came to power on 11th February, they promised a tradition -- a
transition in six months and we are nine months into a. They are
comfortable holding power in Egypt. That is the reason all of this
happened in the first place, the unwillingness for the military to
give power to a 7th -- civilian elected leadership. How will they
persuade people to get involved in this National Salvation government?
Will there be the appetite to join that, or will they be seen as
stooges of the military, whoever puts their name for? That is the
big risk for any political party thinking about Cabinet ministers
now. If they go away and that government is not popular and there
are more protests here and elsewhere, that is exactly what
people are going to be saying, that these are sell-outs and stooges.
Any political party that is considering that and balancing the
costs and benefits will have to think long and hard about whether
this is worth it. Do we want to wait until things stabilise?
Briefly, how have the last few months changed that inherent
respect Egyptians traditionally have had for the Army in the past
50 years? A couple of months ago, there was an opinion poll which
suggested that the military had anywhere between 80 % and 90 %
approval ratings. Recently, that confidence has dipped and people
are starting to wonder, is the military good at managing the
country? I still think there is a general respect, and we have to
distinguish between the military as an institution and the ruling
military council which is made up of around 25 senior members of the
military. But I think you are right to point out that there will still
be that respect to the institution, not necessarily to the people
around those in power right now. Thank you for joining us.
Some other news. Pakistan's ambassador, Husain Haqqani, has
resigned. It follows disputed evidence that he asked the United
States to help in training and the power of the military.
Noun Chea, the No. 2 Leader Of the Khmer Rouge, has been giving
evidence on charges of genocide and crimes against humanity. He gave a
long statement defending his actions when millions of Cambodians
died. He called the victims traitors.
They have been protests in South Africa against the parliament's
approval of a new information law. Critics say the -- it is a major
breach of freedom of speech. Columbia has been battling
revolutionaries for decades funded through drug trafficking. While
cocaine production has been hit by eradication and arrests, illegal
gold mining is booming, so much so it has become a new line of
business for the local Mafia and armed groups.
For centuries, gold has been the sole of Colombia, the heart of its
myths and legends, the essence of its history and culture. It has
never been as important as today when the country's future wealth
and stability depends -- depends on mining this and other precious
minerals. High in the mountains were decades of war with violent
revolutionaries have been fuelled by drug-trafficking, gold is
becoming the new cocaine. It is almost industrial, but it is
illegal. This process can collect $1,000 worth of gold in a day. A
week ago, there were five for offering machines here. The
government is confiscating them as drug smugglers and local Mafia
muscle in on the business. The more successful we are against drug
trafficking, and we have been very successful, we have diverted to
other sources of funds, and one is illegal mining, especially gold. We
are fighting that because as the drug trafficking has tremendous
environmental consequences, so there's illegal mining.
There has been traditional mining here for centuries. The high price
of gold has drawn over 100,000 people into illegal gold mining,
tearing down forests and pouring Machrie into the forest.
TRANSLATION: We used to live off cocaine, but not any more. If the
government closes this down, tell me what we were live off? They
suspect the government also wants big mining companies to replace
them to make bigger royalties. Local Mafia had a powerful hand in
the gold-rush towns where there is This is worth nearly 50,000 US
dollars. For nearly 30 years, Colombia has
been torn apart by revolutionary groups and armed militia, all
funded by the illegal drugs trade. The government is winning out war,
but unless it acts quickly and effectively against the illegal
gold mining trade, the violence could spark again. Columbia's
ancient treasure could yet be a curse.
They were scrawled in marker pen on the walls of a central London flat.
You might think it is just graffiti, but one critic thinks the pictures
drawn by the Sex Pistols thing that Johnny Rotten can be compared to
cave paintings by early man. -- Sex Pistols singer. They were
the ultimate bad boy band. Controversial yet compelling. The
media loved to know them but they could not care less. -- loved to
load them. About most things. But Johnny Rotten was a bit upset
one day when he came back to the flat he then shared in central
London. He walked up these stairs and found that the others had given
the place a makeover. It wasn't quite to his taste so we got out a
marker pen and added his own finishing touches.
He drew a comic character -- comic caricature of up Sid vicious and of
his girlfriend, and off Malcolm McLaren, the ban's charismatic
manager. They are not unlike the Do loo -- doodles of a bored teenager,
but according to some archaeologists, they are of great
cultural importance. We know how significant punk was to that
generation in the 1970s. These paintings are relevant and
significant for their generation, and for that particular period of
history. That is the academic's point of view, but what about the
quality of the drawings? There are a lot of rock musicians that have
produced a lot of terrible art. The funny thing is that unwittingly,
Johnny Rotten has produced good caricature us. The story emerged
without his influence. Whatever the future holds for this collection of
drawings, there is little doubt that the time the Sex Pistols spent
in this flat will be studied by academics and enthusiasts for many
years to come. That is all from the programme.
Next, the weather. But for now, It did stay cloudy and BME across
the south-east corner, but for many we have sunshine around. The cloud
will break up across England and Wales tonight and gave a frosty
start tomorrow. That is something we have not seemed very much of
this autumn. There is a weather front moving in across parts of
Scotland so a different story here. Staying frost-free and it will be
cloudy and wet in the morning. You can see sunshine in parts of
England. There will be more cloud for the afternoon across northern
areas. Temperatures recovering to double figures after a load start.
Across the south-east corner, we have got some fine sunshine. A real
change compared to the cloud of today. Sunny spells across the
south-west and temperatures reaching 12 degrees. It will cloud
over across Wales for the afternoon, but some brightness holding on
towards the border and across parts of North Wales, we might see the
odd shower at the end of the afternoon. For Northern Ireland, it
will be cloudy and wet with a bit of a breeze. The rain is sinking
further south so the afternoon across the north-west Highlands
should be drier and brighter, but here we will see some showers.