11/11/2013 World News Today


11/11/2013

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This is BBC World News Today with me Philippa Thomas. The scale of

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devastation and desperation in the Philippines comes clear. Up to 0

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million people have been affected by Typhoon Haiyan. We are very hungry

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and thirsty. If you have water and food there maybe you can give some

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to as. The destruction is almost complete.

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There is the stench of death in the air.

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Also coming up: It's not the big deal between the Iran and the US but

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there has been a step forward today with nuclear negotiations.

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And, the artist allowed to paint at Guantanamo Bay - so long as there

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are blanks in his canvas. We'll tell you why.

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Hello and welcome. Massive and unprecedented. That is how the

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disaster in the Philippines is being described. A state of emergency has

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been declared but the government is struggling to cope with the

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aftermath of what looks like the most powerful Typhoon ever to hit

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land. So many victims desperately need water, food and shelter. Some

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are turning to looting to survive. The BBC's Jon Donnison reports from

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the worst hit area we know of - Tacloban city.

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People are grieving, homeless and hungry. If you have water or food

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maybe you can give some to as. And makeshift hospital. Some

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patients are being treated without anaesthetic. This woman has just

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given birth. A baby born into a world upturned. And another young

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woman is also in labour. People waiting here are desperate to get

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out on any plane they can find. This is my father's only chance for life.

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He needs dialysis. He is in critical condition. Send help. Outside the

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airport hundreds have been waiting, desperate for any aid they can get.

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We need food. Please help me. I am still alive. Today there was some

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hope with the arrival of the American military. An expeditionary

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force helping to organise the response. The embassy has asked not

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just for the military, but for international relief organisations

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to be here. The streets are busy as people search for their loved ones

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that are still missing. We have seen scores of bodies in the

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few kilometres we have German and from the airport. -- we have driven

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from the airport. The devastation is overwhelming So

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far there is little sign the government is managing to get aid to

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the many in need. People are doing whatever they can to help

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themselves. This used to be a supermarket. Those who have nothing

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are looking for anything they can find. Unless more relief comes

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quickly the little food there is will run out soon.

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As we saw Tacloban is a city in name only. From hospitals to shops,

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nothing is functioning. With authorities largely absent, families

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of the victims have been burying their own dead, and organising the

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digging of mass graves. This report from Rupert Wingfield-Hayes.

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The only way to get someone buried in Tacloban is to do it yourself.

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For three days this body was not covered in the street. Now with a

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home-made coffin and masks to cover the stench they must march on foot

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to the burial ground. This man is trying to make a list of

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all his neighbours who are dead All children? Yes.

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We found a man and a woman in that housed there.

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It is impossible to know how many people have died in this

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devastation. We have been told that in this street 18 people died. That

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is just in this stretch of road in one neighbourhood. Many of the

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bodies are still lying around and they are starting to beautify. -

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starting to putrify. Here the cry is the same, where is

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the government, where is the help? We need food. That is the most

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important. All the dead bodies must be buried.

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They are digging a grave for the mother of these three young men

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Suddenly one of the men is overcome by grief and frustration. The body

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of his mother is stuck under a fallen tree and they cannot get it

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out. I could not sleep. She was a very good mother. I am very

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hopeless. Everything is gone. A short distance away they have dug

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a mass grave. We counted at least 30 bodies going on here. How many more

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informal graves like this are being dug along this coast we do not

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know, except that it is many. Let's cross live to Manila, and the

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BBC's Tim Wilcox. We still do not know the full scale

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of this. The reality is still unfolding.

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That is the problem. Aid agencies were sending in logistic teams.

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Nobody has any idea about the scale of this disaster. There are maybe

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10,000 people in one area alone What about elsewhere? What about

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those communities where aid agencies have not been able to reach yet

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Because there are no local authorities for people to

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communicate with, nobody knows what has happened there.

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It makes it hard for the government and for aid agencies to prioritise.

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You quoted the figures at the beginning of the programme about the

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latest estimates. 9.8 million people have been affected. 660,000 people

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have been displaced. The United Nations are keen to stress that the

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initial response from the authorities has been impressive

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This is the 25th Typhoon since January this year. They had an

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earthquake last month. They understand, almost the feet, of this

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area. But there has been nothing of this scale in this country since

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records began. The last big Typhoon was in 1991. That killed about 000

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people. It does seem that this one is going to have a much bigger

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impact. We are seeing some warnings of heavy

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rainfall. That kind of weather will hamper the relief operations.

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It is also very humid as well. There is another weather fronts moving in

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behind. Torrential rain, very high temperatures, when you think of all

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these bodies lying on the grounds that have not been buried, the

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threat of disease is very real. The United Nations is prioritising that.

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The first priority is burying the dead. Then food, shelter, medicines,

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and evacuating people. Joining me from Geneva is the acting

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head of Disaster and Crisis Management Unit with the

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International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.

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I understand you will launch your appeal tomorrow. What will you be

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asking for? The plan is to launch our appeal tomorrow. The focus of

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that appeal will be to support 100,000 families. That is 500,0 0

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people or more. That will be emergency food supplies, non-food

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items that'll help them with emergency shelter. Tents, blankets,

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and also good for water and sanitation. We are sending in

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emergency response units. I would agree with your previous

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correspondence. Health needs are the biggest needs. Those are our biggest

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priorities. One of the other issues was the lack of information. There

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are perhaps large areas that have been affected and they do not know

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how bad it is. How are you getting information from the ground? We

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faced similar challenges to other organisations. We worked through our

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member national societies. They have volunteers and staff on the ground

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in remote areas. The problem is getting information from them. We

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still do not know the full extent. There are parts of the country that

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there is still no news from. The scale of the disaster is likely to

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increase in the coming days. You have talked about the kind of

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equipment you need. Do you need more professionals to go then?

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At the moment we have already mobilised a team of 30 technical

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professionals. Some of them are on the ground already. Some will be

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coming in the next day or two. They will be working closely with

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experience seems helping them with equipment. They will hand over as

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quickly as possible. E Now a look at some of the day s

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other news. The Syrian National Council says it

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will attend peace talks in Geneva - but it's laid out a series of

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conditions. These include barring the Syria's current leader Bashar

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al-Assad from the transitional government and giving that

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government full executive powers over the military and security.

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A long-running dispute that had led to violent clashes between Cambodia

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and Thailand over who owns a World Heritage site may be closer to

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resolution. The United Nations' highest court has ruled that

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Cambodia should have sovereignty over territory around the ancient

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Preah Vihear Temple on the border between the two countries.

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A senior Afghan militant leader has been shot dead near the Pakistani

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capital, Islamabad. Nasiruddin Haqqani was one of the leading

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members of the Haqqani network, which has carried out numerous

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attacks on Western and Afghan forces. He's thought to have managed

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the group's finances. A deal has been made over Iran's

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nuclear programme. Britain and Iran have also established direct

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diplomatic relations. We all got quite excited over the weekend, and

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then there was a feeling of despair when talks didn't yield a deal. But

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that is the reality lie here? I think we are closer than we had

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never been to a deal with Iran, but it's tough. The body negotiating

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with Iran represents diverging interests and responsibilities

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concerning the run. -- concerning Iran. But on a very macro level all

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of these countries don't want to see Iran get a nuclear weapon, and they

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don't want a war with Iran. In that sense, there is forward momentum

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going forward in the next few weeks. Those negotiations will pick up

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again on the 20th of November, so not a lot of time. What's the

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biggest stumbling block they are trying to iron out behind the

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scenes? In the last 24 hours, one of the things which may have fallen

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apart is the confidentiality of the negotiations. The United States and

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Iran have a tough time keeping the details of these negotiations

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private. In the last hour, I was looking on twitter and there were

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several quite accuser Tory tweets. If negotiations were only between

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John Kerry and the Iranian former minister, the likelihood of a deal

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would be very high. -- quite accusatory. But because there are

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the interests of so many other countries, it's going to be tough to

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find a deal in which everyone can be happy. We've heard from Israel as

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well. Is the President... But Saudi Arabia very interested. That's

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right. If you are Saudi Arabia, the concerned they have is not about the

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Islamic Republic of Iran, it's about Iran at large. They filled their

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relationship in the United States has premised on these mutual

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concerns about Iranians who Germany in the Middle East. If the US and

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Iran made peace, they worry about their alliance with the United

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States. A lot of countries have lots of difference -- difference and

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concern, but everyone wants an Iranian bomb and wants to prevent

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Iran becoming Bond. It's a very big challenge for John Kerry as well. --

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becoming bombed. The irony is that two years ago, it looked like we

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were far closer to going to war against Iran and getting a nuclear

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deal. Now, if you are President Obama or John Kerry, the Middle East

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is all bad news. Syria is in a terrible civil war, Egypt is

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unravelling, other US allies in the region are facing tremendous

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difficulty, and the one positive legacy which John Kerry and

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President Obama may have is reaching a nuclear deal with Iran. I think

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they are doing everything they can to test whether this is possible.

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Acts of remembrance have taken place around the UK to mark the

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anniversary of the World War One armistice with two-minute silences

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at military bases, town halls, churches, schools and at the

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National Memorial Arboretum. The day has also been marked in Belgium

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where where many of World War One's most deadly battles were fought

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It was the moment when men looked at one another in disbelief. The moment

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the founder of guns faded. -- the thunder. The moment when the

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slaughter stopped. At the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month,

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we paused on a busy Monday and shared the silence.

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Today, on Dorothy's 93rd birthday, Dorothy Lay her wreath in memory of

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Wilfred. I have done something today which I feel was worthwhile, but

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unfortunately, I couldn't do in the way I wanted to. I couldn't stand up

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and be counted. But I did the best I could. In the classrooms, amid the

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hushed traffic of Trafalgar Square, the bat on of remembrance has been

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passed on once more. In art, sometimes it's what you

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don't see that's important. And that was the challenge for an American

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painter who was allowed by US military to visit Guantanamo Bay and

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to sketch some of the prison grounds but not allowed to paint the

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detainees who are controversially still held there. An exhibit of

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Steve Mumford's watercolor sketches called The Snow Leopard is now on

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display at the Postmasters Gallery in New York City.

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The subject matter of the show is ultimately the prisoners. It wound

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up being everything but the prisoners. I didn't have many acts

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bet -- many expectations about Guant?namo. For some reason, it

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never occurred to me to go to Guant?namo Bay. The place that I

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really fastened on was camp x-ray. X was the first prison where they

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brought the prisoners right off the battlefields of Afghanistan, and it

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was the place where torture was done to the detainees. It's a strangely

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beautiful place, actually. It's a series of deserted plywood hearts.

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It's been abandoned for decades and nature has taken over. It feels like

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this strange, almost nature preserve, but with these haunting

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places where you know terrible things happen. One of the things

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that was unique for me in drawing was the censorship there. They were

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very open about it. Something like a building sitting on a hillside, I

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could draw the land scheme but not the building. That was artistic

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gold. I could do a fully fleshed out landscape and then leave this blank

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place where I could simply write classified on it. There was

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something so intrinsically funny and absurd about that and playing with

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the meaning of watercolour. My big disappointment, particularly the

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second trip, was that I was not able to draw the detainees, and I thought

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it had been arranged ahead of time. When I arrived at the medium

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security prison, the head MP looked at me with shock and said, you want

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to draw what? ! For that week I drew everything but the actual detainees.

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I drew the chair in which they were force-fed. One early morning, I drew

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the hallway where they were having a call to prayer, but that was the

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closest I got a feeling the presence of the people.

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A reminder of our main news: The full scale of the disaster in the

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Philippines is still emerging. A state of emergency has been declared

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but the Government is struggling to cope with the aftermath of what

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looks like the most powerful typhoon ever to hit land. Many victims

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desperately need water, food and shelter.

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Monday was a dull and damp affair for many parts of England and Wales.

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Thankfully for tomorrow, that brighter regime wins out and turns

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things drier. That would be the case of

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