27/02/2012 World News Today


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

Similar Content

Browse content similar to 27/02/2012. Check below for episodes and series from the same categories and more!



If this is BBC World News. Another day of fierce shelling in Syria.


With more shells battering the city of Homs, can today's sanctions


agreed on by the EU make any difference to the Syrian regime hot


or the people under fire. It did not help us, it did not give us


food or medical surprise. He did not prevent the regime from killing


us. It is not enough until now. Russian state television sets for


two men have been arrested on suspicion of plotting to kill


Vladimir Putin. The Spanish Supreme Court clears


the judge Baltasar Garzon of exceeding his powers. Hated and


loved, we examine this controversial figure.


Also coming up: The bruising nature of politics down under. Australia's


Prime Minister regains her political stride after defeating


her bitter rival in the leadership challenge. Can they now mend fences.


And the winner is... Well, mainly, The Artist. The silent film creates


a big noise at the Oscars are in Hollywood.


Good evening. After that "Friends of Syria" meeting on Friday, EU


ministers have agreed to impose tougher political sanctions on


Syria and its leaders. So far, international pressure has not


stopped President Assad's shelling of civilians so there is doubt this


latest round of sanctions will have much impact. Qatar has joined Saudi


Arabia in calling for opposition forces to be armed and today a


least 46 people were reportedly killed in violence across the


country. Night-time protests. Pictures


apparently taking yesterday evening, although that is impossible to


verify. The crowds denounce President Assad's regime. The


regime's response is predictable. A protester lies winded but still


moving as others call for help and chant, may God protect the Free


Syrian Army. The use any pictures appear to show shelling of the Baba


Amr district of Homs. It is not possible to verify or when they


were taking up but a correspondent in northern Syria is witnessing


renewed efforts by government forces are to seize back towns in


open revolt. We were woken up to the sound of bombing coming in. As


I am talking, there is gunfire in the distance. We believe they are


using anti-aircraft guns. They are also setting up mortar positions.


In response to all this, the European union is united in its


response, even if the international community as a whole is certainly


not. EU Foreign Minister have agreed to impose new sanctions on


Syria, adding to their existing bans. Assets abroad are being


frozen. The freeze will apply to assets in Europe of Syria's central


bank. There will be a new ban on cargo for loan to Syria. Europe


admits it sanctions are blunted by a lack of support from other key


powers. We have a difference of view with China and Russia. That


remains a major blockage in what the international community can do.


Look how Syrian state television is drawing strength from Russia's


position. Vladimir Putin insists nobody should be allowed to to


repeat the Libyan scenario in its area. Russia will welcome the


referendum. It is no surprise President Assad won the referendum


comfortably. The opposition boycotted the poll in many


governments called it a sham. So far, the regime has proved


impossible to dislodge. I am joined by Marwa Daoudy from


Oxford. She is currently at Princeton University. Cannot the


Syrian people derive any comfort whatsoever from a this round of


sanctions? -- can the Syrian people. The sanctions have been impacting


on the freedom and access to assets. It has impacted also on the daily


life of the Syrian people. They have been incurring additional


hardship in addition to the instability. Increasing the


sanctions would be an effective way to prevent the regime from having


alternatives and continuing violence if one wants to see the


political solution to the conned -- conflict. How long do you think the


Syrian government can continue in the face of these sanctions? Can


they just go on for a long time? Saddam is sane survive for many


years. -- Saddam Hussein. The situation has deteriorated


drastically in the last few months. We know a lot of the regime


officials cannot access their foreign assets. This would be an


effective solution, a way from other solutions such as the


military in for repair -- intervention, as this would bring


conflict in Syria and the launch of a civil war. The diplomatic


solution, the increase of sanctions, and diplomatic pressure to isolate


the regime, would be ineffective -- would be an effective way forward.


The solution would prolong the survival of the regime in Syria. It


would serve its interests in pretending to fight external forces.


In so far as what is going on in the international arena, is now a


battle between if the "Friends of Syria" and friends of the regime?


Well, unfortunately the revolution in Syria has been hijacked by a the


regional context, the geopolitical factor is the stock that has


exacerbated the conflict. Now it is not about a revolution, Syria is a


call attar of Middle East politics. -- corner axes. It is being


confronted by a broader coalition. It is unfortunate all of this is


being played on Syrian ground, taking over the revolution with


calls for armed groups in Syria. That would bring in cash or weapons


into the country. -- Qatar weapons. It would be a catastrophic


situation. It would take the revolution away from its peaceful


and powerful goal which is to double that President Assad regime


and bring possibly a peaceful transition. Thank you.


In Afghanistan, a suicide car bomb has killed at least nine people at


a military airport in Jalalabad. That means 30 people have now died


in six days of violent anti-US demonstrations following the


burning of Korans during rubbish disposal at a US military airbase


in Afghanistan. The German parliament has approved


the terms of a second bail-out for Greece. Angela Merkel said the


package carries opportunities that outweigh the risks of Greek


financial collapse. It's a cruise ship with 1,000


people on board is drifting without power in the Indian Ocean and the


seashells. The Allegre, operated by the same company which owns the


Costa Concordia, suffered engine failure after a fire.


In Russia, the state owned for TV station Channel One broke the story


earlier today of an alleged assassination plot against Vladimir


Putin. Is it two men had confessed to being part of a plot to kill the


Prime Minister after the presidential election next Sunday


which was -- which Vladimir Putin is expected to win. This was the


aftermath of the apartment explosion which started this


investigation. It took place in a Ukraine and in


the rubble, the Security Service found evidence of home-made


explosives. One man died and another was detained. That led to


the dramatic arrest in early February of this man, who today


appeared on one of Russia's state owned channel, apparently


confessing he was involved in a plot to kill Russia's most powerful


politician. We asked to go to Moscow to carry out an attack on


Vladimir Putin. -- we were asked. The plan was to be executed after


the presidential election. timing of the Russian TV report was


attacked by opposition leaders who said Vladimir Putin was trying to


gain at cynical advantage of just six days before the polls. By


Vladimir Putin's secretary told me this was absolutely a plot to kill


his boss. In a series of phone calls, the spokeswoman for this is


-- for the security services did not want to confirm that on the


record. This is an organisation that is supposed to be holding the


main suspect in a plot to kill a world leader. The report even


contain footage does appear to show the interrogation of another


suspect. He said they were learning to use explosives before going to


Moscow to carry out a series of attacks. Rush and television said


the men had been ordered to carry out the attack by this man. He is a


Chechen warlord. Last year, he claimed his group carried out an


attack in Moscow which killed 37 people full stop a he is either a


crusading superstar of the legal system or a judge overstepping his


jurisdiction. Baltasar Garzon divides opinion in


Spain. To an international audience, he is best for imprisoning a


dictator. He began investigating the killings of the Franco era. The


ruling is bittersweet consolation for Baltasar Garzon.


This woman's parents went missing when she was five. They were both


teachers and Republicans. She said they were killed by fascists at the


end of Spain's civil war. They had neither a trial or a legal verdict.


It is a shame I am still crying after so many years. I cannot make


a better. She says this man was her last hope for justice. When


Baltasar Garzon tried to investigate the disappearance of


people, he was accused of misusing his powers as a judge and was taken


to court in a civil case. Today's decision by the Supreme Court will


be a hollow victory over -- victory for Baltasar Garzon because just


over a week ago he was bound to have denied two business men the


right to a fair trial who he was investigating in a separate case.


As a result, he was banned from being a judge for 11 years. Today,


he has been cleared in a more controversial case which has clear


implications for Spain and its devisers past. In the 1930s, Spain


experienced three years of war. The dictator Franco ruled until his


death in 1975. Two years later, there was an amnesty and a law


banning any investigations into deaths during the past. It was that


all that Baltasar Garzon was accused of breaking. -- that law.


We are talking of things that took place more than 70 years ago. The


majority of people from that era are no longer here. You have to


remember only one person from the political class during the civil


war is still alive. We are talking about historical facts. If we have


to carry out legal investigations, where is the limit? Franca is still


buried at this valley. It is a symbol of fascist Russia --


repression or is it a memorial? In some respects, Spain has not moved


on. She still wears a photograph of her parents when she goes to


protests to support Baltasar Garzon. For her, the search for justice


will go on. The controversy over Libyan man convicted of the


Lockerbie bomb went, Abdelbaset Mohmed Ali al-Megrahi, he has been


given -- has been given fresh impetus. A new book claims he is


innocent of the bombing. Abdelbaset Mohmed Ali al-Megrahi was released


on compassionate grounds are in 2009 because of the advance state


of his cancer. I have been talking to John Aston, the author of the


book. I asked him what evidence claimed -- proved the innocence.


is forensic evidence that relates to the golden thread their


connected Abdelbaset Mohmed Ali al- Megrahi to the bombing. It was a


circuit board from the bomb's timing mechanism. He was determined


this was part of a timer that was given exclusively to Libby up by a


Swiss company. We have determined the balls used in that, the circuit


boards, were very different from the circuit boards in which the


fragments originated. -- the boards. It was coated with pure tin. The


ones from Libya were coated with an ally of tin leg. Significant in the


way that had it been available, he would not have been convicted of


the Lockerbie bombings? I believe that is the case. Had the evidence


that came into opposition one month before he went home, a couple of


documents from the main forensic experts who did the work, which


demonstrated he did not have this circuit board, had that been in


their position, the defence would have had a greater defence. The


evidence would have been knocked out. You are suggesting there was


some understanding or conversation between the Scottish Justice


Secretary and Abdelbaset Mohmed Ali al-Megrahi prior to his release in


2009? The Scottish government has always denied this. The book states


subsequent to a visit by a delegation of Libyan officials to


the Scottish justice minister, one of those officials told Abdelbaset


Mohmed Ali al-Megrahi the Scottish justice minister had indicated to


him it would be easier to grant compassionate release if he dropped


his appeal. That was not a demand. It was very clear he was not making


a demand. He had no direct contact The Scottish government has told us


it does not doubt the safety of the conviction and it maintains that he


was released simply on compassionate grounds alone. It


also says categorically that the Scottish government had no


involvement or interest of any kind in Mr al-Megrahi dropping his


appeal. Now, it has been a bruising few


days in Australian politics. Julia Gillard remains Prime Minister


after she defeated the man she ousted from the post, Kevin Rudd,


in 2010. She won a leadership vote in her ruling Labor party on Sunday.


She had caught the ballot to assert her authority after Kevin Rudd


resigned unexpectedly as foreign minister last week and made a bid


of the party leadership. Julia Gillard says she wants to draw a


line under what she called an ugly battle. At times, it has been ugly,


I understand that. I also understand that as a result,


Australians have had a gut full of seeing us focus of ourselves. I


understand the frustration of Australian has been seeing us do


that. So today I want to say to Australians won and all, this issue,


the leadership question is now determined. Kevin Rudd put the


recent bitterness, he said, behind him in a speech conceding defeat


after the vote. I congratulate Julia on her strong win today. The


caucus has spoken. I accept the verdict without qualification and


without rancour. TUI Jan every one of my supporters, who together to


nearly one third of the caucus, I thank them. -- two each and every


one. We are joined by Philip Williams, Europe correspondent for


Australia's ABC, and in his studio is Keir Reeves from Monash


University, Australia. Kevin Rudd, bloodied, but not out? He says he


is out, that is the end of it, the caucus has made its decision. Do


believe in? He is a very ambitious man who feels aggrieved about the


way he was ousted. It would seem unlikely that he would have packed


away all of his ambitions. I would predict that some time in the


future, perhaps at the polls continue to go down, he may put his


hand up and say, look, I am the man to win the election, I can call us


back from the brink. He says he will not do it, but he would not be


the first politician to change his mind. Keir Reeves, Julia Gillard is


pretty much on probation. She has got to get her approval ratings up


before the election next year. think the margin of the victory she


had in the party room but was quite comprehensive, but her elect our


ranking is still pretty low. As you said, she is on probation. Why do


the Australian public not like her? She is popular within the party.


think the question that needs to be answered is what was the rationale


for dumping Kevin Rudd in the first place? That narrative was never


really explained to the Australian public. Australian politics at the


top seems to be a fairly bruising affair, bitter rivalry between


Julia Gillard and Kevin Rudd, is that typical of the Labor party in


Australia? We are no strangers to this sort of competition. You only


have to look at Paul Keating before him. He was always challenging the


Prime Minister and eventually got the leadership. You know very well


in Britain how this works in the Labour Party, the Brown-Blair


competition. It is a very common narrative. What is a little less


common is the way he has bounced back and had another go tanned been


quite determined, having said that he was a happy little venture might


be in foreign minister. Now he is going to the back benches, it means


he has no ministerial responsibility, and he is a man who


likes to be in control. It seems unlikely that he will suit there


comfortably until the next election. It sounds very intriguing. Is that


it? Australian politics, this is not unusual? You are a fairly


straightforward, direct talking people. Sure, I think the Federal


parliamentary Labor party is a fairly brutal arena, politically. I


agree with Philip that if not soon, that some point there will be some


sort of challenge against Iraq if she cannot lift their ratings with


the public. -- against Gillard. What did the public make of this?


Do they enjoy it or just think, get over it? I think everybody is sick


and tired of it. They want to see effective management of the economy


and the Government moving on with the business of the day, rather


than this massive sideshow which has turned into the main event.


Philip, is it a gift for correspondence IQ covering this


kind of story, the personalities and intrigue? -- correspondents


like you. Journalists love this sort of story, but the people don't.


They really are annoyed with this. There are big questions not just


for Australians, the global economy, to be answered, and things to be


settled. They see this as an unnecessary distraction. It is a


gift for the opposition, there are way ahead in the polls anyway. Tony


Abbott, the leader of the opposition, cannot believe his luck.


All he has to do is stay silent and what then destroy each other. He


has to do very little between now and election to romp in, unless


something dramatic changes. Philip Williams, Keir Reeves, I think you


agree the opposition when it is the right when levels of There's only


one poll that counts. We will have Was Hollywood's big night out, the


Oscars, the usual red carpet, the glamorous designer dresses and it


was a big night for The Artist. It picked up five Academy Awards,


including best film and best actor for Jean Dujardin. He becomes the


first Frenchman ever to win that accolade. As expected, Meryl Streep


won the best actress award for the depiction of Margaret Thatcher in


the Iron Lady. Here is Alastair A red carpet crammed with Hollywood


royalty. Tinseltown at its most glamorous and glitzy. Sacha Baron


Cohen used the spotlight to plug his latest role as a dictator. The


academy warned him about publicity stunts and throwing pretend ashes


of Kim Jong Il over one of the biggest entertainment presenters


live on-air certainly broke protocol. And you know the show is


ready to start when Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie hit the red carpet,


always the last to arrive with a It was the clear favourite from the


beginning, and The Artist did not disappoint, becoming only the


second silent movie ever to win Best Picture. And it took best


director, Best costume, best music and best actor. The Oscar goes to


If George Valentin could speak, he would say, Wow! Merci beaucoup! I


love you! The right honourable gentleman could bat attend more


closely to what I am saying. last time Meryl Streep won and


Oscar, Margaret Thatcher was Prime Minister, but it was her portrayal


of the Iron Lady which won her the best actress prize. I look out here


and I see my life before my eyes, my old friends, my new friends.


Thank you, all of you, departed and here. Thank you for this


inexplicably wonderful career, thank you so much, thank you.


were British hopes for poor best supporting roles, but Christopher


Plummer won his first gone aged 82, the oldest actor ever to win an


Oscar. You are only two years older than me, darling, where have you


been all my life?! The biggest British winner of the evening went


to the Shore, a gritty tale of life amid the troubles in Northern


Ireland which won best short film. It was an amazing night. We made


this short film a couple of years ago based on peace and


reconciliation, and little did we know that we would be here tonight.


With the awards are given out, the celebrations are well under way. It


has been a huge night for Hollywood outsiders, and although there was


no big British win, at least the Iron Lady won Meryl Streep the


Oscar she has waited 30 years for. Not often that Alastair Leithead


gets to wear a bow-tie! A reminder of our top story: The European


Union has agreed further sanctions against the Syrian government over


continuing violence against protesters. Bank assets have been


frozen and travel bans imposed on another seven of President Assad's


close associates. That is all from the programme, next it is the


weather. From me, Zeinab Badawi, Tonight it is going to be very mild,


cloudy and breezy with a bit of patchy rain in one or two places.


As we look to tomorrow's forecasts, we have a big area of high pressure


around us and southwesterly winds coming up across the country. Again,


temperatures well above average, maybe record breaking across


Scotland, staying quite overcast in the West, where we will have rather


misty, murky start to the day. Things fairly damp through parts of


western Scotland. By the afternoon, north-west England keeps the cloud,


rain through Cumbria, but east of the Pennines a bit of brightness


and temperatures at around 14-15 degrees. Some sunshine breaking


through across Cambridgeshire and East Anglia. Towards western areas,


a bit more cloud, temperatures here a few degrees down, 11 or 12.


Across Wales, cooler towards the coast, but move further inland


towards the Welsh border temperatures of 13 or 14. For


Northern Ireland, south-westerly breeze, cloudy skies in western


areas, but in Antrim and Down the best chance of seeing brightness.


Western Scotland stays rather damp, eastern Scotland could see


Download Subtitles