11/06/2014 World News Today


11/06/2014

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This is BBC World News Today, with me, Philippa Thomas.

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The Islamist march through Iraq gathers pace - a day after its

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second biggest city fell, violence edges closer to the capital Baghdad.

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And raised the stakes in Mosul by seizing the Turkish consulate there.

:00:18.:00:24.

Hundreds of thousands of Iraqis are fleeling their homes -

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the Iraqi Prime Minister has urged civilians to fight back.

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We have declared a state of high alert.

:00:44.:00:47.

Lessons of history - will the Georgian enclave of South Ossetia be

:00:48.:00:50.

next to go the way of Crimea and join the Russian Federation?

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We'll speak to Georgia's Prime Minister - Irakli

:00:54.:00:55.

With the World Cup almost upon us, we'll go to the city that stages

:00:56.:01:01.

Brazil take on Croatia in just over 24 hours time. The Brazilian

:01:02.:01:14.

president says the country is ready. And taxi drivers across some

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of Europe's biggest cities strike in protest at the smartphone app

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they say steals their fares. In only 24 hours,

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Iraq has undergone violent change. One key city was taken over

:01:35.:01:40.

by Islamists on Tuesday. Today, armed radicals have swept

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through one town after another. With

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the Islamists' black flag flying across swathes of the country,

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it looks as if the Baghdad-based Let's just take you through

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this fast developing story. Latest pictures

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from the road towards Tikrit suggest more heavy fighting as the Islamic

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militants of ISIS overwhelm Iraqi Reports suggest the Sunni fighters

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have taken Tikrit, Now they apparently control another

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city soon after seizing Mosul. Iraq's second city Mosul

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is still emptying out. These are some

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of the half a million people who have fled across the Tigris River to

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escape fighting on the other side. Thousands of families are fleeing

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and seeking refuge elsewhere. They have two options, really,

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either to find family members who live in the countryside or to try

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and survive in the wilderness. Mosul has fallen,

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a disaster for Iraq's government, but also for the wider world, too,

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as Islamist extremists take more It is humiliating for Iraq's Prime

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Minister vowing to fight back. We're not going to allow this to

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carry on, regardless of the price. We are getting ready, we are

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organising, we are restructuring the armed units that we cleanse Ninevah

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province from these terrorists. They are Sunni Muslim jihadist

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group, an offshoot of Al Qaeda, formed a year ago and pledged to

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create an Islamic state across Iraq, They're are now in control of

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significant parts of Syria, where Westerners, including some British

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Muslims, are fighting with them. It is all helping to increase ISIS's

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power in Iraq, too. Now they have Mosul

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and appear to have taken the city This is their leader -

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Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi - seen as a brilliant commander and tactician,

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battle-hardened since joining the Some blame the American-led

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invasion for all this. Others say it as Iraq's failed

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political system which cannot stop the daily bloodshed,

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but increasingly it is Islamist In the last half hour, Turkey has

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called for an emergency NATO meeting It comes

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as ISIS militants have taken dozens of Turkish nationals hostage,

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including the Consul-General and some children, in their takeover

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of Turkey's embassy in Mosul. James Reynolds is in Istanbul

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and joins me now. What more do we know about who has

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been taken? 49 people in its diplomatic compound were seized,

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abducted. Those 49 includes diplomats and family members, that

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may be women and children as well. The consul general was amongst those

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seized. I think we losing the sound they from James. We will have to try

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and get back on that. Sorry about that.

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During talks brokered by the European Union today,

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Russia and Ukraine failed to reach agreement over the price of gas.

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The Russian gas giant Gazprom has threatened to cut off supplies if

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Kiev fails to pay what's demanded. It's just one example

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of the continuing tension between the two, but while global attention

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is focussed on Ukraine, Russia also has a tense relationship with other

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former Soviet Republics - notably Georgia, with whom it fought a brief

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war in 2008 over the disputed territory of South Ossetia.

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Since then, Russia has been supporting that breakaway

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region with money and arms. And last week the de-facto president

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hinted South Ossetia might ask to join the Russian Federation.

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Could it go the way of Ukraine's Crimea?

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Rayhan Demytrie reports. This is the administrative boundary

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line between Georgia and its The sign over their reads,

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the republic of South Ossetia. This is the demarcation of what

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the South Ossetians and their allies, Russia, that are patrolling

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this area, call the state border. But is of course,

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not recognised by Georgia, because Georgia and the international

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committee believe that this And on the Georgian side it is

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the EU monitoring mission that has been patrolling

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since the 2008 ceasefire agreement. With me here is one of the EU

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monitors here, Marek. Marek, what sort

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of problems do people face here? People go to areas close to

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the borderline to proceed with their work,

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but more and more they are being Russia's annexation of Crimea has

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fuelled speculation about whether post-Soviet breakaway regions such

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as South Ossetia might follow suit. In fact, south Ossetians held

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parliamentary elections last Sunday and it looks like the party that won

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the majority of seats was saying in its pre-election campaign that

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it wants to hold a referendum This is the village of Terra Vanni

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that was built by the Georgian There are rows and rows

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of identical cottages that house some of the thousands of people who

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were displaced by this conflict. She is here with her mother

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and children. Her house is now

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in the territory which is under You were not able to take part

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in the Sunday elections in The elections were held without our

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participation and we do not expect With no solution to the conflict

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in sight, and with politicians back in South Ossetia raising the

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prospect of joining Russia, there is very little hope for people here of

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ever returning back to their homes. The Prime Minister of Georgia,

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Irakli Garibashvili is with me now. Welcome to World News Today. South

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the Sethi, is it your fear that it could go the way of Crimea and be

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absorbed? -- South Ossetia. When we describe the situation in South

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Ossetia with crime union -- with Crimea, I think it is a mistake.

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Russia has recognised these de facto states. Since then there has been

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these problems. These two territorial his -- territories have

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been part of Georgia. According to my knowledge, Russia is not

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interested in annex and these two de facto territories. Let's look at

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Russia's interests. There has been a warning from the foreign minister

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that if you sign the European Association, which you intend to do

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later this month, it has serious consequences. When we came into

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power after the elections in 2012, we changed our attitude to Russia.

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We made a number of constructive steps. We appointed a special envoy,

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a representative for Russian nations. We made a lot of progress I

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would say in terms of trade, communication. Just recently they

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opened a market for agricultural products. I think we have proved

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that we would like to have a normalised relationship with them. A

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month ago, the official person, we had a statement that Russia does not

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intend to interfere with Georgia's European agreement. Do you think you

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can succeed where Ukraine failed in signing a European succession

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agreement? Georgia is unique. We are moving towards the European Union,

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we made this clear in November that this process became irreversible. At

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the same time we are trying to normalise the relationship with

:11:55.:11:57.

Russia. I think we are creating an interesting precedent in the

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region. On the one hand we would like to become of the European Union

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and we will sign the agreement in this June, on the 27th of June. At

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the same time we are normalising our relationship with Russia. We have

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found the perfect balance, I think. You might be suggesting -- setting

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is precedent for other states. We are confident. What about Georgia

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and NATO? That was one of the problems that led to the war a few

:12:42.:12:45.

years ago. Would that be a step too far? We made it clear that Georgia

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is keen to become a member of the European union and NATO, this is an

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irreversible process. We understand it takes time. But Georgia made a

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tremendous effort. They have made progress. We had fear and proper

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Parliamentary representations. Last year we had unprecedented free and

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fair presidential elections. As far as I know, Georgia remains the

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largest nonmember NATO states in Afghanistan. We are committed to

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stay there after 2014. At a point where the US has made it clear to

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states such as Poland and the Baltic republics that it has its interests

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at heart. It does not want to see any further Russian expansionism. Do

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you feel you are close to Washington? Georgia and the US

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administration? I had a successful trip in Washington several months

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ago. I had a meeting with the president and the vice president. We

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have excellent relationships with the United States. United States are

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our main partner, our strategic partner to keep strong ties with the

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United States. Our aspiration to be a part of the European Union does

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not conflict with them. Peaceful and street -- a peaceful and stable

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Georgia means a peaceful and stable Georgia because Georgia is unique

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and has a strategic location. Everybody should be entrusted and

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having accessibility in that region. Prime Minister, thank you for coming

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in and speaking with us. Now a look at some

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of the day?s other news. The European Commission has opened

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investigations into decisions by three countries, on how much tax is

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paid by the multinational companies The Commission says it's important

:14:57.:14:59.

that large multinationals pay their fair share at a time

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of tight public budgets. It's part of

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a wider push to stop multinationals The US Secretary of Defense,

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Chuck Hagel, has told lawmakers that last month's prisoner swap with

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the Taliban may have been the last and best chance to secure the

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release of sergeant Bowe Bergdahl. Mr Hagel became the first official

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to testify publicly Republicans

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and some Democrats have criticized the administration for not informing

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Congress in advance of the swap. Police in the northern Indian state

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of Uttar Pradesh say a woman's body was found hanging from a tree in a

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village in the district of Bahraich. An autopsy has failed to establish

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whether she had been raped - authorities are going to conduct

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more tests. Rescue workers in Germany say

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an injured explorer trapped in the country's deepest cave is able

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to walk, and could be brought to The 52-year-old man is stuck nearly

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four miles from the entrance. He was hit by falling rocks

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on Sunday. It's just one day to go

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before the start of the World Cup's By hosting such

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a popular international event, the country wanted the tournament

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to show off its potential. But so far it's tended to be poor

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planning and protest marches which Brazil's president Dilma Rousseff

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has insisted her country is ready. She's said the pessimists

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and critics Let's hear from our man

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at the scene - Dilma Rousseff, the Brazilian

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president, was insistent the World Cup will leave a good legacy behind

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for Brazil and the people of Brazil and its economy.

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But it has been marked. All types of protest have been going on. Some

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have taken to the streets and ugly clashes with police, others have

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done it through the internet and others still have picked up cans of

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spray paint. It sometimes feels that every square

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centimetre of every wall in Some of it, it has to be said,

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better than others. What I want to show you know is this

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picture, an image created by Paolo, It has gone viral, it has gone

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around the world, and it is being seen as one of the most important

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comments on the World Cup. What did you want this

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picture to convey? I was trying to show some other

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points of view of the Brazilian The football is presumably

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representing food and you can't It is about what is a priority and

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what people must be concerned about. Do you think Brazil would be better

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off not having the World Cup? I guess the advantage we have

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in the World Cup is that all the world is looking at us

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and it is also an opportunity to show a little more about

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our reality and forget this also. If you have been watching you will

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know that Paolo has been doing part two. It looks fantastic and I can

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see which you have done. He has got angry and he has put his knife and

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fork through the football. Yes, he is revolted with the situation. That

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is the finished work, part two. Thank you for doing it. It has been

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great having you with us, really good fun. I want to talk to an

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entrepreneur in Sao Paulo. Thank you for being with us. How do you see

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the World Cup? Do you think it is great for Brazil or do you

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understand the concerns of the protesters? It is a great

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opportunity for Brazil to show what they are capable of doing. They have

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big ambitions and they are doing a lot of upgrades to the structure.

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Not all the upgrades are complete but overall it has potential for

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Brazilian business and foreign business, to Brazil in years to

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come. I know you do a lot of foreign businesses coming to Brazil. Have

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they been impressed by what they have seen or have they been alarmed?

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They are concerned with things being at last minute but there are its

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focus on infrastructure and there has been an increase in skills and

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knowledge from the workforce, which is relevant for the years to come.

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In general they are interested in Brazil and see the opportunities.

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After the World Cup we should not be counting the time away, then it is

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the Olympic Games. Do you think Brazil will be a different place on

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the world map as a result of hosting these events? It is going to be a

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different place. As to global ambition, I am not sure. There is a

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lot to be done in Brazil and a lot of infrastructure that needs to be

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created that is necessary for the next 5100 years. Businesses doing

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work in Brazil there is a a huge difference. If you bring foreign

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investors to the contrary, what would you show them? What would you

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say, this is proof that Brazil is a different country from it was? You

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would show them the new railway systems, the new electricity grid,

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the new airports. The general upgrade has been enormous. There

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have been more than 100 projects across the country on

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infrastructure. Are those infrastructure projects working and

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making the difference? A lot of them have just finished or will be

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finished in the next couple of years, so there is still a lot to

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see. The airports are definitely working and you can see the increase

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in these security and the stable electricity supply. Have you managed

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to get tickets for the World Cup? I have not, unfortunately. I was

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hoping you would say yes and you would sell me some! I have a

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colleague with a ticket for Nigeria against Bosnia and that is the

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closest I can get. Lovely to meet you. Thank you for being with us. We

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will be live throughout the day tomorrow when the noise will be

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intense as Brazil get ready to take on Croatia in the opening match of

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the 2014 World Cup. The day is finally going to arrive.

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Traffic in several major European cities was disrupted today as taxi

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drivers protested against the use of mobile apps to book rides.

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They say apps like Uber are affecting their

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Here in London, black cab drivers gridlocked part of the city by

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Berlin, Rome and Milan were among cities affected.

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These are French taxi drivers protesting in Paris,

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including Orly airport, and several motorways.

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The action has coincided with a major train strike

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against proposed reforms for the French rail industry,

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making the disruption particularly severe.

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Simon Calder is a presenter on the Travel Show on BBC World News.

:22:57.:23:04.

If we start in London, the black cab is an iconic site in London and they

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have been protesting today. It's history passing them by? Quite

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possibly. I was meeting the drivers today. The whole of the city centre

:23:17.:23:22.

was gridlocked for a couple of hours and you had a very annoyed driver of

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the other London icon, the double-decker bus, fed up that you

:23:29.:23:31.

could not get anywhere from Buckingham Palace to the City

:23:32.:23:35.

because of the traffic. The problem is that the black lab in London, the

:23:36.:23:39.

yellow cab in New York, is an icon but also an extremely useful form of

:23:40.:23:45.

transport - OnDemand transport - and in the 20th century that was great

:23:46.:23:49.

but now many of us have a smartphone and an app to summon a car to where

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we need at a price lower than what you would pay. That is the issue,

:23:57.:24:01.

especially here. Yellow cards in New York, not as expensive as a black

:24:02.:24:06.

habit in London, which you could say is for the wealthy. -- a black cab.

:24:07.:24:12.

Or a distress purchase for people. Black taxi drivers say, you should

:24:13.:24:17.

see the training we have to go through. They have the knowledge.

:24:18.:24:21.

Within a six mile, ten kilometre radius of the centre of London they

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have to know the fastest point to get from every single street to

:24:28.:24:32.

another in the area. Drivers of other vehicles will say, well, wake

:24:33.:24:37.

up, we are in the 21st-century and you can have satellite navigation to

:24:38.:24:42.

wherever you need to go. It is not just the London Black cabbies. In

:24:43.:24:46.

Madrid the taxi drivers were out in force. We also saw it in Berlin and

:24:47.:24:52.

other cities. There have been protests in the US as well. They

:24:53.:24:59.

say, we are safer, if you summon someone by smartphone who knows what

:25:00.:25:06.

you will get. There is definitely a place for people who want to ensure

:25:07.:25:09.

maximum security when they are travelling. There is nothing like

:25:10.:25:14.

just stepping out of your studio and flagging down a black cab. Of course

:25:15.:25:20.

I will be getting onto my bicycle because it is a lot cheaper and more

:25:21.:25:24.

environmentally friendly! There will always be a place for that service

:25:25.:25:31.

but I fear there will not be a need for so many drivers and that is

:25:32.:25:35.

where they were protesting. A lot of people will say this is the best

:25:36.:25:39.

publicity that these various apps have. They said today that since

:25:40.:25:45.

Uber launched in Britain it is the day when it has been downloaded most

:25:46.:25:51.

times. I expressed to taxi drivers this was the best publicity the app

:25:52.:25:58.

could have and it would annoy motorists from Madrid to London

:25:59.:26:01.

because they simply can't get around. We shall see how it

:26:02.:26:07.

develops. We have talked about the unstoppable march of technology

:26:08.:26:11.

before and I fear we will again. Thank you for joining us and talking

:26:12.:26:15.

about the black cabs and the future of the industry.

:26:16.:26:17.

Reports from Iraq say that jihadists have seized their second city

:26:18.:26:21.

A convoy of ISIS fighters is reported to have

:26:22.:26:24.

taken control of the city of Tikrit, the administrative capital

:26:25.:26:27.

of Salaheddine province and the birthplace of Saddam Hussein.

:26:28.:26:31.

ISIS, a breakaway faction of Al-Qaeda,

:26:32.:26:34.

which is also fighting in Syria, is reported to have freed hundreds

:26:35.:26:37.

of prisoners after it took control of the northern city of Mosul,

:26:38.:26:40.

It feels like summer is getting into its stride.

:26:41.:27:03.

Plenty of warm sunshine to come tomorrow. Not so good if you are a

:27:04.:27:09.

hay fever sufferer because pollen levels are high across many areas.

:27:10.:27:13.

High pressure has got it settled at the moment. No pressure trying to

:27:14.:27:18.

push in. These low France will just brush across the far north-west so

:27:19.:27:21.

maybe

:27:22.:27:22.

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