05/01/2012 World News Today


05/01/2012

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

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foreign secretary William Hague is the latest senior western

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politician to visit Burma. Is the international community moving too

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soon and too fast to embrace its military-backed government?

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message is, well, if you want those sanctions, those restrictive

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measures, as we call them, lifted, then it's very important to show

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that you are completing this process of reform. We believe now

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that you are sincere about it. President Obama announces nearly

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half a trillion dollars' worth of cuts to the US defence budget - and

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a plan to refocus America's military effort.

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We'll be strengthening our presence in the Asia Pacific, and budget

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reductions will not come at the expense of this critical region.

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Also coming up, the woman photographer who captured the

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Golden Age of Hollywood. We look back at the life and career of the

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renowned American photojournalist, Eve Arnold, who has died there the

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age of 99. And the player on the London riots

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last year opens in the suburb but where the unrest began. We talk to

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the play's writer. Welcome. William Hague is in Burma.

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He is the first British Foreign Secretary to visit the country

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since 1955. It is being seen as the latest sign that the country is

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open to reform. After meetings with the Burmese government, he met the

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pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi. She told the BBC that reforms

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in Burma are not unstoppable and will only succeed if the powerful

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military accepts the changes. Her party, the National League for

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Democracy, had just received official recognition as a political

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party in advance of the forthcoming by-elections.

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These are brighter Burmese Days. A country so long isolated, now

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opening to the world. Today, the first visit in half a century by a

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British Foreign Secretary. He pressed the reforming President to

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free more political prisoners. The president did not speak publicly,

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but privately promised more reform. The president said to me in those

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words that the progress of democracy is irreversible. The

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words are there, but we also need to see action to release other

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political prisoners and see free and fair elections. Then the world

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will believe it. It is a long way from all of this. Brutal crackdowns,

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shootings and disappearances. Journalists banned. It really is

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extraordinary to be able to come back here and work openly as a

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journalist in Burma. The most profound change that I sense is

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that the essential dynamic which drove Burmese life for so long,

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fear, is fading away. Change here is hugely driven by regional

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realities. The Burmese have long depended on China for investment.

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But the fear of being dominated by that powerful neighbour has

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prompted opening to the West. With a young population, Berman needs

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the prosperity only political stability can bring. The opposition

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leader Aung San Ms Suu Kyi, when we first met nearly 20 years ago, now

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talks warmly of the country's president, or words unthinkable in

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the old days. The most important thing about the president is that

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he is an honest man. He does not make big promises that he would be

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incapable of keeping. It has been 17 years since I sat in his room,

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listening to you speak of hope. There have been many false dawns

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since then. Can we really believe that what is happening in Burma now

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will end in real democracy? I have always said that hope should be

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joined to endeavour. We can only hope if we work very hard to

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realise your hopes, and we have been working hard over the last 23

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years. This is why we have the right to hope. Will it happen in

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your lifetime that we will see a full democratic election? You s, I

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think there will be a full democratic election in my lifetime,

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but I do not know how long I am going to live. But if I live out a

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normal lifespan, yes. Tonight, the opposition leader met the Foreign

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Secretary. On all sides now, there seems to be the sober political

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calculation that the days of isolation much be banished forever.

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Joining us now is David Williams from Indiana University in the US.

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Do you think Western leaders like William Hague are putting too much

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faith in the words of the Burmese President? I hope they are not

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putting any faith in his words, I hope they are putting faith in

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actions. There have been baby steps, but that is more than we have had

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for decades. It is good that they are engaged. What kind of pressure

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should they be applying? Are they doing it? They are playing a

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pragmatic game. The president wants warmer relations with the West to

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counterbalance China, and he wants no longer to be regarded as a

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pariah nation. The only way to do that is to be able to warm up to

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people like the UK and the US. This visit is a kind of pressure.

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Looking at the role of Aung San Suu Kyi, it is seen as a barometer of

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how far the reforms in Burma are going. But she is not the only

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indicator. People ought to look elsewhere in the country as well,

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for instance the ethnic tensions in parts of Burma? The ethnic tensions

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are critical. Aung San Suu Kyi is concerned about them, but she is

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not out there. Sometimes it is not the forefront of her concern. We

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will never see real democracy unless we address that. How far do

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you think these reforms that are being suggested by the military-

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backed government are directed towards and elite, particularly in

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Rangoon? I think they are. The president is going to talk to the

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ethnic groups, and maybe we will see progress on that. But right now,

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they are moving around little bits of power inside Rangoon. There is

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some liberalisation, but we are far from a multi-party democracy.

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more do you want to see being done? William Hague has talked about the

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release of political prisoners. That is important. Sometimes it can

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come to dominate the other issues. Round-table negotiations with all

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the ethnic groups in the same room is critical. William Hague's

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pressure can play a role in causing that to happen. Economic changes

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are critical. We have seen almost none of those. As a result,

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economic power remains with the military. Finally, we have to see

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free, fair and monitored elections. You talked about the international

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career she's need to maintain pressure on the military-backed

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government. The international community does not act or speak

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with one voice. No, and that is unfortunate. I think they are

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speaking more with one voice now than in the past, because everybody

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seems to be saying yes, there is progress and that is good, but

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there is not nearly enough and we should push harder. Japan, the US

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and UK are all pushing hard. Now a look at the other news. A

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series of bombings in Iraq targeting Shia Muslims has killed

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at least 71 people, including 44 in one city. It came hours after bombs

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in the capital, Baghdad, killed at least 27. Sectarian violence has

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increased recently after an arrest warrant was issued against the Sony

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vice-president. In Egypt, the trial of the former

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president Hosni Mubarak has heard from the prosecution that it wants

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a case against him with an uncompromising call for him to be

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sentenced to death by hanging. Mr Mubarak is accused of ordering the

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killing of demonstrators during last year's protests which forced

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him from power. Chinese airlines are refusing to

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pay a carbon emissions charged to fly in Europe. The EU introduced

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the fee on January 1st as part of its emissions trading scheme,

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meaning that airlines now need to by pollution credits, but the

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Chinese aviation Transport Association says its members will

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not be forced into paying the fee. The British government is expected

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to publish the findings of a review on Friday into the risks posed to

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women by breast implants made up by a French manufacturer. The French

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government has already recommended a 30,000 French women should have

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the implants removed. The authorities there are also

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investigating claims that the French company has exported in

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plans for men. It is not known whether they were manufactured

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using the same sub-standard silicon. A new year, and a new defence

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strategy for the US. President Obama has announced defence cuts of

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$450 billion, saying that US forces would be leaner, but would maintain

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their military superiority. The overall defence budget will still

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be bigger than the next 10 countries combined. Mr Obama said

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the US will strengthen its presence in the Asia-Pacific region and

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continue to invest in what he called America's critical

:10:28.:10:38.
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partnerships, including NATO. The Pentagon, the seat of American

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military power, learning to adapt to this country's changing economic

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fortunes and a changing world. America is turning the page and a

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decade of war that started with the attacks of September 11th. The last

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US soldier finally left Iraq in December. In the coming years, they

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will withdraw from Afghanistan as well. But President Obama, in a

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rare appearance at the Pentagon, insisted that this was no retreat.

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Yes, the tide of war is receding, but the question that this strategy

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answers is, what kind of military will we need long after the wars of

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the last decade are over? Today, we are fortunate to be moving forward

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from a position of strength. As I made clear in Australia, we will be

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strengthening our presence in the Asia-Pacific. Budget reductions

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will not come at the expense of that region. For America, the

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future lies in the Pacific. American soldiers will soon be

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based in Australia. There will be fewer of them in Europe. The US

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wants to counter the rise of China, reassure its allies in the region

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and maintain access to trade routes by land and sea. The overall number

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of US ground troops will be cut. Washington may long longer be able

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to fight two ground was at the same time, but it insists that it

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remains ready for all challenges. For some, the cuts do not go deep

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enough. Others worried that they undermine American power. I think

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America's potential enemies will see the stated strategy change as a

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sign of weakness. But whether that is seen as a true weakness over the

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long term will be what capabilities the American military continues to

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have. President Obama will also face criticism from Republicans in

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this election year. They will accuse him of being weak on defence.

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That is perhaps why he came here in person, to show that he and his

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generals are on the same page. In the UK, a panel of legal and

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medical experts has called for assisted suicide to be legalised

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for people who are terminally ill and likely to die within a year.

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Campaigners for assisted suicide commissioned the report. The bid

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it'll Medical Association refused to take part -- the British Medical

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Association refused to take part. Assisted suicide is when one person

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helps another take their own life, as opposed to euthanasia, when the

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other person, most often a doctor, end the life. A few countries allow

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the practice. In Europe, it is legal in the Netherlands, Belgium

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and Switzerland, where the motive of the person helping has to be

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proved. Assisted suicide is also allowed in Luxembourg. There, they

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failed to get Royal Assent to legalise it, so they amended the

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constitution to stop the monarch from blocking it, and it was

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legalised in 2009. In America, three states, Oregon, Washington

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and Montana, have legalised assisted suicide, but sub-standard

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conditions have to be met before it is allowed. Joining us is Dr Evan

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Harris, the former Liberal Democrat MP, who is a member of Healthcare

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Professionals for Assisted Dying. You know the criticism about these

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proposals. Vulnerable people may feel pressurised into ending their

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lives. Firstly, it is assisted dying, not assisted suicide. In all

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the countries you mentioned, there are strict safeguards. One of the

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things from this report is that this should be legalised, subject

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to strict safeguards. The person has to be attested to be terminally

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ill, not only mentally ill or disabled. They have to have the

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capacity to make the decision, and it has to be repeated request.

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Thirdly, there must be checks that they are not under duress.

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Currently, there are no such safeguards when people who are very

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ill refuse, as they are entitled to do, life-saving treatment. Even if

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they are not terminally ill, they can refuse life-saving treatment

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and therefore kill themselves possibly without any of those safe

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guards. In countries which have legalised assisted dying with

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safeguards, there are fewer pieces of the vulnerable and those who are

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under duress. But you never know for sure. Research has been done,

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asking doctors how often they have chosen to end the lives of patients,

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which is something called non- voluntary euthanasia. No one is

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arguing that that should be legal. In countries like Holland, where

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assisted dying is legal, subject to safeguards, there is much more

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discussion between patients, families and doctors of what

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patients would have wanted and the reports of non- voluntary

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euthanasia, where doctors are making decisions on patients with a

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capacity, people who are unconscious, is lower than the

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reported incidence in this country, where doctors are not allowed to

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have the conversation about what the patient would have been wanted.

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But you are in a minority, because most of the medical establishment

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:16:17.:16:18.

in the UK are opposed to assisted At least 80% is in favour of

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assisted dying with safeguards. We know that certain religious people

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supported. We know that it states in America supported. It is likely

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that the majority of doctors would agree with the proposition that

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people who have the capacity, suffering intolerably and who'll

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are terminally ill, should be allowed to have assistance. -- who

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are terminally ill. There should be an opt-out for conscientious

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objection. I do not accept that the argument would not have majority

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medical support. The British Medical Association did oppose this.

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They did in other countries until it was legalised as well. There are

:17:10.:17:20.
:17:20.:17:25.

so many things that around known. - - are on known. Patients... How do

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you know whether a person as less than a year to live? Whenever you

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give a prognosis you can only give what I Dr believes is their best

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judgment. At the moment it is legal for someone to go took Switzerland

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where there are none of these checks, where you do not have to be

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terminally ill, and where often people who do not want to die

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immediately put are terrified of dying in paint, are earlier. -- go

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:18:07.:18:11.

One word for the other side of the argument. Alex Schadenberg from the

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youth and a share Prevention Commission. -- Euthanasia

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Prevention Commission. Why do you believe these proposals are

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misguided? First of all, to allow Darren -- doctors to be directly

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involved in assisting death means that you're giving doctors to cause

:18:31.:18:41.
:18:41.:18:42.

the death of a patient. It really does not matter... Even if they say

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the rules are watertight, these rules can be changed by anybody.

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You just have to open the equation and say it is OK to kill you are

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patient. That is completely unacceptable. Especially when you

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consider concerns about people with disabilities etc. We cannot go down

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that road. Thank you very much indeed. For

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technical reasons we could not come to you earlier. At least you had

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the last word. Let's return to our story earlier on about the new

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Defence Secretary unveiled by Barack Obama in Washington. There

:19:25.:19:29.

are Foran that and $50 billion worth of cuts to the US military

:19:29.:19:39.
:19:39.:19:39.

budget. -- $450 billion. President Obama wants to focus more on the

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Asia-Pacific region. We are joined by Philip Hammond, the British

:19:44.:19:47.

Defence Secretary. Do you believe the United States is turning its

:19:47.:19:53.

back on Europe by strengthening its role in the Asia-Pacific? Does that

:19:53.:19:58.

worry you? I do not think it should worry us. It was always inevitable

:19:58.:20:04.

that the US would refocus its strategic effort on the Asia-

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Pacific region, responding to the phenomenal growth of China as an

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economic and military power. The message I am getting here in

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Washington is that people here value the North Atlantic

:20:16.:20:20.

relationship. They want to see the Europeans shouldering a greater

:20:20.:20:25.

share of the burden. They understand working together with us

:20:25.:20:30.

in areas of greater stability is the to the benefit of both the US

:20:30.:20:35.

and Europe, and that collaboration will continue. If they cut their

:20:35.:20:42.

spending, they will expect a major European military power to cough up

:20:42.:20:47.

more? I have given a speech here this morning with a plate -- blunt

:20:47.:20:54.

message. The reality is that nobody can coughed up any more. We in the

:20:54.:20:59.

UK he inherited a huge budget deficit. We have set to work

:20:59.:21:05.

tackling it. The US is now engaged with a similar process and is

:21:05.:21:09.

determined to put its defence spending on an affordable and

:21:09.:21:14.

sustainable footing, as we are doing in the UK. What we have found

:21:14.:21:17.

in the UK is that responding to what is essentially a budgetary

:21:17.:21:24.

problem, when we have looked at how we respond to that, we look at a

:21:24.:21:29.

our strategy, we have come up with a solution which will give us more

:21:29.:21:35.

flexible, more adaptable, more mobile and more deplorable forces

:21:35.:21:43.

than we had before. -- employable. Let's take the challenge of budget

:21:43.:21:46.

necessity and turn it into a strategic opportunity, to rethink

:21:46.:21:51.

how we do defence in Europe and North America, so that we do get

:21:51.:21:57.

for every precious pound or dollar of taxpayers' money, the very best

:21:57.:22:07.
:22:07.:22:11.

Thank you very much. The renowned American photo-journalist, Eve

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Arnold, has died at the age of 99. She captured images of many

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celebrities, but her iconic photos of the Hollywood star, Marilyn

:22:16.:22:20.

Monroe, made her famous around the world. Eve Arnold was born in

:22:20.:22:23.

Philadelphia, and worked briefly in China. She lived in London for more

:22:23.:22:26.

than 40 years, where she died just few months before her 100th

:22:26.:22:36.
:22:36.:22:37.

birthday. David Sillito looks back at her life.

:22:37.:22:41.

Marilyn Monroe had good reason to look thoughtful and vulnerable

:22:41.:22:45.

during these photographs. She had twice taken an overdose and was

:22:45.:22:51.

drinking heavily. There was only one photographer she trusted, Eve

:22:51.:22:57.

Arnold. We all used each other. She used me to get -- to help her to

:22:57.:23:02.

get where she was going, me and hundreds of others. I was unique

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only in the fact that she trusted me. Eve Arnold was the first woman

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to work with the famous Magnum photographic agency. Born in

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Philadelphia, she photographed friends and family and made her

:23:17.:23:22.

name when Britain's Picture Post published have pictures. She hated

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Studios. Her skill was capturing the fleeting intimate moment behind

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the glossy the sad. It was this which attracted the attention of

:23:33.:23:36.

Marilyn Monroe. It was the opposite of the traditional Hollywood

:23:36.:23:41.

glamour or photograph. producers of the film's were

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worried because they kept saying, you're killing the illusion. You

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were building -- we're building dreams and you are giving us

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nightmares. In the end when they so how much space they could command,

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all of that shift it. -- saw. was open hostility to her when she

:24:02.:24:11.

photographed black Muslim leader Malcolm X. And in her long career

:24:11.:24:14.

she won praise for pictures of everyone from world leaders to the

:24:14.:24:19.

dispossessed. Her most difficult subject was Margaret Thatcher, who

:24:19.:24:25.

she said it tried to control her every move. Good pictures, she felt,

:24:25.:24:29.

relied on have good relationships. That is what she had with Marilyn

:24:29.:24:34.

Monroe. She might have appeared innocent and unguarded. But Marilyn

:24:34.:24:40.

knew what she was projecting. And even Harold was the one she trusted

:24:40.:24:49.

to protect it. -- projected. Eve Arnold, who has died aged 99. A

:24:49.:24:56.

play about the August riots has opened in Tottenham. 'The Riots' is

:24:56.:25:00.

based on interviews with politicians, police, victims and

:25:00.:25:06.

the rioters themselves. In a moment, we talked to Gillian Slovo. First,

:25:06.:25:10.

I click of the play and the monologue from the actor, Steve

:25:10.:25:16.

Toussaint. Those kids were, to all intents and purposes, they were

:25:16.:25:21.

suicide bombers. In our community they have been imploding as opposed

:25:21.:25:26.

to exploding. On that Saturday the exploded. Telling these kids, stop

:25:26.:25:31.

what you're doing, we will give you longer sentences, is like saying to

:25:31.:25:36.

somebody strap with a bomb, stop or I will shoot. It does not mean

:25:36.:25:43.

anything. It reinforces their cynicism, they believe.

:25:43.:25:47.

Steve Toussaint. Gillian Slovo, Newspoll do plenty of people

:25:47.:25:51.

preparing for this play? I got about 54 hours of interviews which

:25:51.:25:57.

I had to calm down into a two Our Plaice. Was the one essential

:25:57.:26:04.

message which came to you? -- was the one central message which came

:26:04.:26:09.

to you? There were a lot of messages. I have compiled and

:26:09.:26:15.

narrative of the riots. It is about people wondering what their causes

:26:15.:26:19.

war. There were quite opposing understandings of that. What was

:26:19.:26:25.

clear to me is that it started out as legitimate anger by a community

:26:25.:26:30.

about the death of another black man in police hands, and the fact

:26:30.:26:34.

there was misinformation. The failure of the police do properly

:26:34.:26:41.

policed the demonstration that took place. And then as spreading into

:26:41.:26:47.

other parts of the England, which was partly about people seeing that

:26:47.:26:51.

the police were not going to do anything else, and going out to get

:26:51.:26:57.

things free. The authorities talked about playing criminal activity.

:26:57.:27:04.

Heavy sentences were meted out to those found guilty. There was

:27:04.:27:07.

undoubtedly a lot of looting and criminality. What the Government

:27:07.:27:12.

has failed to do is to understand that it you have a society where

:27:12.:27:15.

there is a significant minority of people who have nothing to lose,

:27:15.:27:20.

then you will get this kind of behaviour. It should concern us all.

:27:20.:27:27.

How did it go down when you showed it in Tottenham? It went down well.

:27:27.:27:31.

The question and answer session was very serious, not angry, but a very

:27:31.:27:35.

serious discussion about the kinds of things that caused these riots.

:27:35.:27:41.

And how to stop them in the future. Gillian Slovo, thank you. That is

:27:41.:27:51.
:27:51.:27:59.

all from this edition of World News Hello there. We have had some very

:27:59.:28:05.

windy conditions in the last few days. It is set to change. The

:28:05.:28:10.

winds will ease. It is set to be a sunny start tomorrow. And actually

:28:10.:28:20.

won as well. We could see a touch of frost. We could well see frost

:28:20.:28:25.

in the north. A crisp and sunny start through central and eastern

:28:25.:28:30.

areas. The cloud will gather from the West. For much of north-west

:28:30.:28:38.

England, patchy rain later in the afternoon. Lighter wind and

:28:38.:28:45.

sunshine give rise to 728 degrees in the south-east of England.

:28:45.:28:50.

Higher in the south-west. A little more cloud through Wales and south-

:28:50.:28:58.

west England. That could produce light rain. Friday across Northern

:28:58.:29:03.

Ireland, the winds much lighter, scattered showers. A little more

:29:03.:29:08.

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