20/11/2013 World News Today


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

Similar Content

Browse content similar to 20/11/2013. Check below for episodes and series from the same categories and more!



This is BBC World News Today, with me, Philippa Thomas. They're off


again - a fresh round of talks about Iran's nuclear programme has started


in Geneva. But back in Tehran, stern words from Iran's Supreme Leade,


in Geneva. But back in Tehran, stern words from Iran's Supreme Leade the


Ayatollah warns that his country will not step back from its "right"


to enrich uranium. Under fire from Al-Shabab - we have a special report


from the front line in Somalia, targeting the militants behind the


attack on a Kenyan shopping mall. I roadside bomb has just gone off.


Also coming up: Britain's Prime Minister rules out an amnesty in


Northern Ireland - we talk to a leading Irish American who advised


President Clinton on the peace process.


And Mumbai eight London nil - how India is blazing a trail with the


number of female executives running the country's top banks.


Hello and welcome. What does Iran intend to do with its


nuclear power programme? Its diplomats are meeting in Geneva for


more talks with the US, UK, France, China, Russia, and Germany. Iran's


Supreme Leader in Tehran is warning that Iran will not step back "one


iota" from its nuclear rights. And its Foreign Minister - in a YouTube


video - is talking in more conciliatory tones about Iranian


dignity and its desire for diversified energy. Our Iran


correspondent James Reynolds in Geneva reports now on the latest


diplomatic developments. The world's power negotiator has a


driver, but she probably knows the roads well enough to take the wheel


herself. This is the third time in the last five weeks that she has


been here for nuclear talks. She wants to persuade this man, Iran's


Foreign Minister, to make negotiations about the nuclear


programme. It is not about joining the club or threatening others.


Nuclear energy is about a leaked. I jumped towards deciding our own


destiny. These talks are essentially an effort to sort out to run's place


in the world and in its own region. So the discussions which are taking


place here affect the shape of the entire Middle East. And in that


region Iran's supreme leader has told a loyal audience that he is


watching the talks closely. Any final decision on a nuclear


agreement will be made by him. Although we do not intervene in the


details of these talks there are certain red lines, there are limits.


These limits are to be observed. On a visit to Istanbul, William Hague


raised the possibility of an interim agreement. This is an historic


opportunity to build agreement on how to curb nuclear proliferation in


the Middle East. And potentially to set are lesions whether run on a


different path. It is the best chance for a long time to make


progress on one of the gravest problems in foreign policy. For a


decade, that problem has defeated teams of the goal shooters.


Diplomats here have three days to see if they can draft deal for a


first step. In the last 30 minutes it has been


reported that delegates in Geneva were saying it would be difficult to


strike a deal. Michael Mann, spokesman for the EU's Foreign


Policy chief Catherine Ashton, is in Geneva. The first session only


lasted ten minutes - what do you make of that? You must feel you are


getting to know Geneva very well, too. What about this downbeat line


from an American official? I do not think it is necessarily downbeat


upbeat. These are very complicated negotiations, we have made a lot of


progress over the last two meetings. Nobody is pretending this is going


to be simple, it is often tying up the fine details that is the


difficult bit. We have come with the message that Catherine Ashton was to


negotiate hard to find assisting the ball and robust deal. We have made a


lot of progress, there are still differences between us, but we will


work hard to make sure we move things forward. It is difficult for


me to make any predictions, but we want to progress certainly. The


opening session lasted ten minutes. They need to have these bilateral


discussions. That is right. There was a long lunchtime meeting between


Catherine Ashton and Minister -- the Catherine Ashton and Minister - the


Foreign Minister of Iran. There was a brief recession, people got


excited. There was need for that -- no need for that excitement. They


broke into what we call bilateral meetings with the Iranians I with


each of the six in turn, and that is what is happening at the time. While


you are negotiating, there is this line taken by the reader. -- leader.


We are continuing our work here. I do not think anyone should get too


worried about what has been said. There is a political process in


various capitals. We will continue our work here to keep things going


forward. We take note of what is being said, but I think both sides


of the negotiations understand each other and we will try and move wings


forward. The fact that we are here just ten days after the other talks


shows how serious we are. I will have to be invasive here, we cannot


go into detail about what is on the table. We are here to see as the


assurance, verifiable reassurance from the Iranians said that their


nuclear programme is for peaceful means. There is an issue with the


level of uranium enrichment going on in Iran. We are seeing from their


obligations that they were full on, they are prepared to prove that


their programme is purely peaceful and they will stop purifying and


enriching uranium to that level That is the key issue. Good to talk


to you as always. Thank you. Meanwhile, security is tight in


Beirut after Iran's embassy in the Lebanese capital was targeted in a


bomb attack on Tuesday, which killed 23 people and injured more than 140.


A Sunni Lebanese group fighting with rebels in neighbouring Syria has


claimed responsibility. It's likely the attack came in retaliation for


Iran's support for Syria's President Assad. It also comes at a time when


rebels just over the border in Syria are struggling to reverse recent


government gains. In the Qalamoun hills north of Damascus, suicide


bombers today targeted government troops and a hospital. Let's talk to


our Middle East correspondent Paul Wood, who's in Beirut, about this


regional hotspot. Can you tell us more about this


hotspot and the significance of the Qalamoun Hills. They are important


because if you have the Qalamoun bills, you have the main highway.


Ultimately you can threaten Damascus. The battle is all about


what is the endgame for Syria, the battle for Damascus. If the rebels


have Qalamoun, they can be group and they can mount as they have been


doing over the past two years of fences into the suburbs of Damascus.


It is difficult for them to do that any longer. This successful


defensive from the regime will push the rebels out of these last pockets


into Lebanon. Given that the government offensive has been


relatively successful so far, there are reports of hundreds of rebel


fighters pouring in. You sense that feeling of escalation on both sides?


Talking to people we understand that the main Al-Qaeda linked group in


Syria has been trying to final fighters down from the North where


they do not feel they are doing very much at the moment, into the fight


in the Qalamoun bills. That was according to sources ten days ago. I


do not know how much they will be able to accomplish. It is important


now, not least the cost of rebels lose this area altogether, they will


not have any means of getting their casualties out. It does sound as


there is potential turning point here. Neither side looks likely to


win in the near future. We are in a sense in a state of stalemate? If


the government is winning in Qalamoun, it will take a long, long


time. These are isolated mountains, there is one road in and one road


out. Even if they have taken this town and they hold it as they appear


to be doing, the rebels will it back. It is starting to turn into


winter, it is difficult for troops and people on both sides and


refugees streaming into Lebanon in greater numbers. There is a feeling


generally that the momentum is with the government. That does not mean


that they can extinguish the fighters on the rebel side. There is


some kind of stalemate with the rebels holed up parts of the


countryside, the government's authority extends to some highways.


Britain and the United States and even countries like Iran are telling


all sides in the conflict the only way out is a negotiated solution,


one that does not seem to be happening on either side at the


moment. Thank you very much. The Somali group Al-Shabab may be


the most powerful Islamist force in the world - and put itself back in


the spotlight recently when it attacked the Westgate Shopping Mall


in Nairobi. It sought to justify that attack as revenge for Kenya


sending troops to fight Al Shabaab in Somalia, where the militants have


been waging a bloody war for several years. The African Union mission in


Somalia has now been reinforced - and we have a special report on the


dangers it faces. Our correspondent Mark Doyle travelling with the


Ugandan contingent deep into central Somalia.


Driving by night through a war zone is not ideal. But the soldiers I was


with wanted to press ahead. The relative safety of their next well


defended position. We are headed for one of the most dangerous areas of


Somalia, 120 kilometres south of the capital. There are Al-Shabab


positions on both sides of the vehicle I am travelling in now and


we are heading for a Ugandan base. As we arrived, we heard over the


sound of night-time insects, an attack on the adjacent base. These


African union soldiers are trying to stop Al-Shabab from turning Somalia


into an Al-Qaeda style strictly Islamist country. The African forces


mainly financed by the United States and is making some progress. But


Al-Shabab are fighting back. These are parts of the roadside bomb that


was detonated against the tiger that was ahead of us. This is the battery


and this is the detonator that was strung out on a wire on the side of


the road there. -- the tank. All of these little bits of green, these


are the leaves from the trees which have been blasted off by the


strength of the explosion. This is the vehicle itself. It was hit from


underneath. The blast went up through the store and you can see


the fragments and so on the shrapnel which are asked about the windows in


the mirrors. -- have blasted. Then another explosion and even closer


call. The roadside bomb has gone off binders. The gardeners on the


carrier we are in our shooting at the bushes all around. -- the


Gunners. Many of the roadside bombs are set off by children. We cannot


give this man's name, he is only 15 years old. What did you do? At first


he says I was sent into towns to shoot people in the lead. Then I


became a commander myself and sent out others to carry out


assassinations. Al-Shabab our only interested in religion. They told me


I would go to heaven when I died. African Union firepower has got a


long way down a deadly road. It has pushed Al-Shabab out of Somalia's


pushed Al-Shabab out of Somalia s main towns. But those advances were


headed by soldiers from Uganda are threatened and shortages of military


equipment. We need more trucks, more helicopters and more manpower. To do


what? To make sure we cover up all the areas that are covered by the


Al-Shabab. These soldiers are gearing themselves up for more


fighting stop but will richer countries support them with the


tools they need to finish the job? Now a look at some of the day's


other news. One of 30 Greenpeace activists being


detained in Russia has been released. Brazilian Ana Paula Maciel


is among 20 activists so far granted bail after they were arrested at an


offshore oil rig in the Arctic two months ago. The court in the city of


St Petersburg ruled that the activists would be released once the


bail sum of about ?60,000 each was paid. -- $60,000.


The Church of England's ruling body has voted in favour of proposals


which could allow the ordination of women bishops. The approval paves


the way for a vote next year, which could see the measures become part


of church legislation. The issue of women bishops has been discussed


within the Church of England for nearly 50 years.


The South African double-amputee Olympic runner, Oscar Pistorius has


been charged with a further two gun-related offences. Pistorius has


already been charged with murder for the killing of his girlfriend Reeva


Steenkamp. Mr Pistorius has admitted killing Ms Steenkamp, but denies it


was murder. His trial begins in March next year.


The British scientist who helped the world to understand the building


blocks of DNA has died. Frederick Sanger, the only person from Britain


to have won two Nobel Prizes, was 95. Fellow researchers describe him


as "one of the greatest scientists of any generation" and "a real hero"


of British science. The British Prime Minister David


Cameron has ruled out plans for an amnesty on offences during the


Northern Ireland Troubles - that is, crimes committed before the Good


Friday Agreement in 1998. His comments came after Northern


Ireland's Attorney-General said there should no more prosecutions


linked to the deaths inflicted during decades of sectarian


violence. Chris Buckler reports. Belfast is a place that has


benefited from peace. As city opened up after years of tight security.


But the decades of violence cannot be forgotten. Bombings and killings


were on all too common part of life. There are still murders and solved,


killer is not held accountable. But now the Attorney-General for


Northern Ireland has suggested that the time may have come to end any


prosecutions or investigations related to the worst years of


troubles. -- of the Troubles. The time may have come to set online


set out the Good Friday Agreement with respect to prosecutions and


inquests. Across Northern Ireland, there are


families who feel they have never had justice. This proposal would


mean anybody involved in killings before 1998 would be immune from


prosecution. He did not have a chance to draw a gun pointed --


anything, it was in the back and he was left lying in the road to die,


with nobody there. That memory comes to be quite often.


Florence's son was a police officer, murdered on duty in 1980. She


strongly feels you cannot draw a line. I know we have to go on with


life, but I think we never got closure, so how can you have closure


if you did not get justice? Dealing with that legacy of violence


is always a difficult discussion. It has been debated on radio phone in


programmes. And the American -- this American diplomat is trying to


broker an agreement between politicians about the past.


However, the Prime Minister has suggested this could be a step too


far. We have no plans to legislate for an amnesty for crimes committed


during the Troubles. But there are politicians concerned,


as well as victims propose groups. This is a place where the past casts


a long shadow. -- victims' groups. Former US Congressman Bruce Morrison


was an adviser to President Bill Clinton on Northern Ireland issues


during the peace process. He joins us live from Washington.


Your thoughts on this idea of an end to prosecutions on these historic


crimes. I think your piece that you just ran kind of explains why it is


a bad idea. Justice is something we want to prevail in the future of


Northern Ireland, and there are many victims who still feel that justice


has not been done for their cases and those cases and or on the smack


are on both sides of the divide. When the victims feel that it is


time to move on, then I think one can move on, but I don't think you


can leave them, believed as they are, feeling that closure has been


abandoned in their cases. Is there not a danger that by egging into


these historic crimes you are unearthing old bitterness is in


feelings of betrayal, and yet every year it finds the smack it finds the


smack it becomes harder to check out that evidence? -- it becomes harder.


In a lot of cases there has been a suggestion there would be


prosecutions in the killings from Bloody Sunday, those are on one


side, there are Parliament -- paramilitary offences that others


are concerned about. The past is still alive, it is not being on


earth, it still lives in Northern Ireland. -- it is not being on


earth. Northern Ireland has benefited from negotiations between


the communities and the politicians, and it is a bottom-up solution that


is needed here. A top-down decree that these historical cases are


off-limits will not please anyone, and I don't think it will pave the


way towards a better future. Northern Ireland's Chief Constable


is saying the cost of policing the past has a massive impact on how we


deal with the present. He said dealing with what he calls legacy


issues put significant pressure on our finances. That suggestion that


people of Northern Ireland today could lose out from the money being


invested in the Palace -- in investigating the past. I think that


is a decision for the political leadership in the province to come


together and debate at Stormont. I don't think there are priorities to


be set on an efficiency basis as opposed to what brings the greater


sense of justice and protection to the people who are living there now.


There are still very live issues like flags, parades, as well as the


investigation of past crimes. From an American standpoint you feel


there is a very difficult death suspect different view of Northern


Ireland to a few years ago? -- a different view of Northern Ireland?


View among the people generally is that a tremendous amount of progress


has been made. -- the view is. But it will take a long time to resolve


the many conflicts that exist. It is a positive story, but it has not


reached its end, and work will have to be done, and I think that what


Richard Hass is trying to do is a very positive contribution, but at


the end of the day it comes from the people in Northern Ireland to chart


their own future in a way that builds on the peace that has been


created. We have to leave it there. Thank you


for joining us. London may be the world's largest


financial centre, but there aren't ANY women at the helm of any British


banks and very few at senior levels in finance in the UK. Yet in India


several females are running the country's banks, including the


largest. How did they do it? Reeta Chakrabarti reports.


Banking has been one of the engines driving the Indian economy. Its


growth has seen a startling rise in the success of women, not just on


the shop floor but right at the very top. This woman has worked at


India's second-largest rank for nearly 30 years, and she now leads


it. How is it that women like her have done so well? The banks are


making a decision based on merit, and picking and choosing the


candidate they think is the most meritorious at that point in time.


Without any inhibition in their mind of whether the candidate is male or


female. As banking has grown, so has female


talent. There are now eight major banks headed by female executives.


They include this woman, who says Indian woman have an advantage as


there is always domestic help and the extended family. Family support


is a huge distinction for us, so my mother or my mother-in-law or even


my father father-in-law would come by and help me if I was stuck in a


situation. -- father or father-in-law. Competition to get


into this management college is unbelievably fierce, with around


1000 applications per place. Girls are determined to succeed. I wanted


to make sure I am working. I want to make a contribution. It is more


about the talent you have less about social constraints. India's first


female banking boss was in the 1990s, but she says it was an only


business then being the only woman at the top. But banking was always


seen as a good option for women. These women joined because it was a


dream job for them. The family did not object to them, they went to an


air-conditioned office, they were very happy, and meeting so many


people, dealing with money, it was glamorous.


Women have always worked in India, but their rise in the last two


decades in banking at least has proved a phenomenal success. All the


more remarkable given the many -- more remarkable given the many -


and said -- conservative attitudes to women in many other parts of the


country. With much of the population still


lacking basic education, there's attitudes will not disappear soon.


But the educated middle class now equals around 250 million people.


With numbers like that, India's corporate revolution might have only


just began. A reminder of our main news.


Talks between Iran and six world powers have resumed in Geneva to try


to reach a deal to curb Iran's nuclear programme. An Iranian


official described as constructive preliminary discussions between the


foreign minister and the EU's foreign policy chief Catherine


Ashton. Earlier the Supreme Leader of Iran, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei,


of Iran, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said Tehran would not back down from


its right to have a nuclear programme.


Well, that's all from the programme. Next, the weather. But for now, from


me, Philippa Thomas and the rest of the team, goodbye.


Download Subtitles