18/08/2014 World News Today


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This is BBC World News Today with me, Daniela Ritorto.


Our top story. The ongoing violence in Missouri


after police kill an unarmed black teenager.


An independent autopsy suggests Michael Brown was in a defensive


position when he was fatally wounded. At least six shots, could


be more, but at least six. Kurdish forces in northern Iraq move


to retake the strategic Mosul dam from Islamic militants -


but not without a battle. While we have been here, couple of


artillery rounds have, over, there are still some fight left in the


Islamic State. Wikileaks founder Julian Assange


hints he'll be leaving the Ecuadorean embassy in London, where


he's been holed up for two years. And we visit a lawless border town


in Myanmar, which has become a mecca for Chinese gamblers and traders


in endangered wildlife. Hello and welcome.


We start in the US where lawyers for the family of a black teenager


killed by police, say an independent autopsy confirms he was shot at


least six times, twice in the head. It comes after more than a week


of violent protests. This was the scene on Sunday night,


prompting the Governor of Missouri to extend the curfew and deploy


the US National Guard, a reserve military force, to Ferguson in


St Louis to try to restore order. 18 year old Michael Brown was


unarmed when he was killed by a white police officer on 9th


August following an altercation His family are demanding


the immediate arrest Our correspondent Aleem Maqbool


reports from Ferguson. Chaos once again on the streets of


Missouri. Please use tear gas and sound bombs to clear protesters.


There was a curfew in place of the midnight. The trouble started much


earlier. People in Ferguson say that they feel under siege and would not


stand for it. I am going nowhere, I am going to hospital right now but I


will be back tomorrow. This would be very calm if it was not like police,


acting like were coming here to attack us. Unlike other times when


the police acted first against peaceful protesters, this time it


was clear that some on the streets had a plan to make trouble. The


authorities say that they are now going to deploy troops in the town.


It started with prayers and messages. Of peace and justice. It


took a very different tone, after dark. Molotov cocktail 's were


thrown. There were shootings. Looting. Vandalism. And other acts


of violence. It has been more than a week of violence since police shot


dead Michael Brown, who was 18 and unarmed. Police say they have video


showing in being aggressive and stealing cigars, shop, but they said


the officer who killed him was not aware of the robbery. His family


said they did not trust the police and have commissioned their own


postmortem, which proves he was shot multiple times. He was shot at least


six times. The other critical point that I want everyone to be clear on,


the arm is a very mobile part of the body, so it could have occurred when


he was putting his hands up. When I put my hand up you could see were


that wound is at. It could have been when he was crossing his arms in a


defensive manner, we don't know. Many have been critical of the


tactics used by police since the shooting. The hope is that troops


from the National Guard will restore calm, but local people, who say that


they have been discriminated against for years, will feel all the more


antagonised. In the last few minutes we have had an update. The official


autopsy revealing that Michael Brown was shot 6-8 times. This is


accounting to the county medical examiner, saying that the autopsy


showed that he was hit in the head and the chest. Just one more line to


bring you, that has just happened in the last couple of minutes. There


has been an announcement from the governor of Missouri, that the


curfew for Monday night that we mentioned, has now been lifted. This


is very much a developing story. Let's get some opinion and analysis.


Joining me from Washington DC is the writer and blogger Garfield Hylton.


What is your reaction to the family autopsy revealing that he was shot


six times, and now confirmation from the official examiner that he was


shot, 6-8 times. I believe that is backed up what we have been told all


along, the three or four eyewitness accounts of Michael Brown been shot


all said the same thing, that he was in a defensive posture, he was not


doing anything at the time. There were cases or of shell cases being


35 feet away from the body. Now we can see that he was shot 6-8 times,


twice in the head, and we have found on a couple of minutes ago that he


was also shot in the chest. They have given us three or four


variations as to what has happened, and eyewitness reports have backed


up the autopsy reports. I am not sure what remains to be said at this


point. Do you think the officer should be arrested? Yes, I do. It


does not take 6-8 shots to subdue a person. This leads me to believe


that he had an intent to kill. I want to get your reaction to how


this has been handled politically by President Obama, particularly. We


have heard from Ban Ki-Moon, the Secretary General of the UN, wanting


restraint from law enforcement officials in Ferguson, and we have


not heard from President Obama since last Wednesday or Thursday. Do you


think he should be saying more? I read the written statement he


released and I saw the speech he did and I thought that the soft sold it.


True, Rand Paul, his anger was more about big governance and the


militarisation of the police, but he was able to say that black and brown


men are being targeted by the police in America and locked up at a higher


rate. Lots of people like to say that Balmer is everybody's


president, but Michael Brown is an American and he was gunned down by


the police. If you're that we should have had a much stronger statement,


especially the people protesting peacefully, and the police are at


Julie antagonising these peaceful protesters. -- actually


antagonising. Some feel that the president has struck a different


tone compared with the shooting of Trayvon Martin, and his reaction one


year ago after the verdict. But these are very different cases,


involving two different sets of circumstances. The thing about


Trayvon Martin, when he first spoke about that he said it was somebody


who could have been his son. That created a lot of backlash among


people who might have been on the side of Trayvon Martin, that was


used against President Obama. And I think he must have realised that by


him speaking out on Trayvon Martin, it had a negative effect, so he may


have decided to play at a little bit safer on this Michael Brown


shooting. Are you disappointed by that? I think that there are more


things that he could have said, and I know that Rand Paul is not the


president, but I feel I know that Rand Paul is not the


Obama could have spoken out more strongly as regards the fact on


black and brown men in America. Iraqi forces say they're planning


an assault on the northern city of Mosul, a stronghold of


Islamic State militants. It comes as Kurdish


and Iraqi forces claim to have re-captured the strategically


important hydroelectric dam just north of Mosul, a claim denied by IS


fighters who seized it two weeks ago as part of their campaign


across northern Iraq and Syria. The dam is essential


for controlling water supplies and, if destroyed, as many feared


the militants were planning to do, would have sent millions of tonnes


of water crashing through cities Our Correspondent Paul Wood,


travelled close to the dam There were US air strikes this


morning, on either side of the Mosul damn. Fighting is still clearly


going on in the area. The Kurdish and Iraqi military say that they


have recaptured the dam complex itself. Special forces are checking


for bombs and booby-traps. Who controls this lake controls the


water supply for most of the country, and blowing up the dam


could send a 20 metre wall of water towards Mosul, washing away a city


of 2 million people. So the Kurds, the Iraqi government and the US


could not allow the down to remain in the hands of rebel fighters. They


are under strict orders not to talk about this operation. We followed


the path cleared by the Kurdish forces. A few days ago, this road


and the villages either side were in the hands of the Islamic State. The


jihad would not leave easily. We reach a Kurdish forward artillery


position. Just two weeks ago, Kurdish units were put to flight by


Islamic State, and now they are supported by US air power overhead


and are pushing them back. They are making steady progress, confident of


the eventual success of this operation. Islamic State are just


two miles away from this battery, they say. A ground rocket launcher


is used to push them back still further. That plume of smoke behind


me is a village that the Kurds say was set alight by jihadis as they


retreated. The Kurds are confident they are pushing back the Islamic


State, but there have been a couple of artillery rounds come at us, so


there are still some fight in the jihadis on this part of the front


line. The recapture of the dam, if confirmed, would be the most


significant victory yet in the battle against the Islamic State.


The fight for the city of Mosul will be much harder. But this is just one


of many battlefronts against the Islamic State, throughout Iraq. We


can talk to Professor Gareth Stansfield who has returned to the


UK from northern Iraq. He is speaking to me from our Exeter


studio. As we just heard, Kurdish and Iraqi forces are thinking about


retaking Mosul, but that is not going to be easy. But they have been


posted by Western intervention. Yes, the Kurdish forces had a very


difficult time. They found themselves outgunned and


outmanoeuvred by the Islamic State forces, but now the American attacks


seem to have taken out the heavy armour of Islamic State and a lot of


their artillery pieces, and the new abutment and ammunition that has


come to the Kurdish forces as emboldened them. Now they are


coordinating efforts against Islamic State going forward, but Mosul is a


very large city in which Islamic State is firmly rooted, and retaking


that'll be a very difficult task indeed. Give us the sense of Western


intervention through air strikes, and arming the Kurds, and whether


that is working. It is working up to a point. It helps them protect the


Kurdish region of Iraq. It takes some pressure off the Yazidi


population that had been subjected to genocide. But the removal of


Islamic State as a political and military threat, there needs to be a


new articulation of what that means and what strategy will be followed


to remove them. If you air strikes and encouraging the Kurdish militia


and the Iraqi security forces is not going to be enough. What would


victory looked like, what would be the end of the mission? I don't


think anybody has actually said this, including David Cameron and


President Obama. Beyond limiting the activities of ISIS, from the map of


the Middle East and reinstate the borders of Iraq and Syria, to


rebuild the Iraqi political process so that it incorporates all of its


communities, including Sunni Muslims that had been marginalised, then


that is an extremely big task, and one that nobody is articulating, but


everybody seems to be moving towards. Erbil is the capital of the


Kurdish region. If the Kurds manage to fight off ISIS, what is the


ultimate reward, is it an independent state? They want to have


the right to express self-determination in future.


Self-determination can have a variety of outcomes including


autonomy, a binational federation between Kurds and Arabs, or the


setting up of an independent state. I think they will have to gauge


carefully what the region and the international community will allow


them to do, whether they will be allowed to move towards secession,


whether that would be respected, but ultimately, if they feel that they


can be independent and control their own oil exports, and the masters of


their own destiny, then independence for the Kurds in Iraq is a very


attractive proposition, but it still may be a little time off, as there


is a lot of pressure from the Americans to maintain --


Now a look at some of the days other news.


The United Nations health agency is urging countries affected by Ebola


to screen all passengers leaving international ports,


The World Health Organisation says anyone suspected of having the virus


Israeli troops have demolished the homes of two Palestinians


suspected of murdering three Israeli teenagers.


The killings triggered the latest conflict in Gaza.


The demolition comes as Israeli and Palestinian negotiators continue


A ceasefire in Gaza is due to expire in just under three hours.


The Pakistan opposition party led by Imran Khan has announced that


its members will resign their seats in the national


parliament to try to force the prime minister, Nawaz Sharif, to quit.


The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf party says last year's national


The Ukrainian authorities say a convoy of refugees has been hit


by fire from mortars and Grad rocket launchers


in the rebel-controlled region of Luhansk, killing many civilians.


The rebels said they do not have the military capability to conduct


The incident is said to have happened near the village


of Novosvitlivka near the rebel held city of Luhansk,


which is reported to be surrounded by Ukrainian troops.


On the line from Donetsk, a city also controlled by


pro-Russian rebels, is Andrew Kramer a reporter at the New York Times.


Thank you very much for being with us. Do you have any information


about this refugee convoy that appears to be hit? Thank you for


having me on. The Ukrainian military is saying that rebels fired rockets


at a convoy of minibuses carrying women and children out of Lou Hants.


The sceptic test government here denies that they did this and denies


that the incident occurred, there was no shelling of a convoy and


unfortunately it has taken place in a part of the battlefield here that


is inaccessible and there has not been any independent confirmation


either way. That seems to be the problem with reporting on Ukraine,


you get complete denials and contradictions coming from both


sides. Something that cannot be denied is the humanitarian crisis


that is happening in the Hants and Donetsk as well. That is right.


Things are very dire in this region now. There are long lines for water


and bread and people have to wait for four hours in the morning to


pick up water and there is no electricity and the hospitals are


packed and in the maul the electricity has cut off with the


refrigeration is all. Despite the hardships the main problems faced by


people here is the shelling in the city which is causing great


difficulty to them. The bigger issue of ending the war is really what the


people here say that they need. Many thanks for talking us -- talking to


us from Donetsk. The Wikileaks founder Julian Assange


says he will leave the Ecuadorian embassy in London soon,


after living there for two years. Mr Assange sought refuge


in the embassy as part of a bid to That's where he's wanted


for questioning over allegations Back in the limelight again, Julia


Assange after 26 months in this gilded confinement. As rumours of


ill health 's world, was he planning to leave, the world wanted to know,


his spokesman had indicated that he was. I am leaving the embassy soon.


There is nothing else. A man who made his career out of exposing


state secrets was less than forthcoming when asked to direct


questions about himself. None of us are any the wiser about how this


extraordinary saga will end. Julian Assange first made headlines in 2010


when Wikileaks published military document and he says he fears being


extradited to the States to face trial but it is to Sweden he faces


extradition after allegations of assault were made by two women there


and he denies the allegations. An international arrest warrant was


made in November 2010. He made a series of appeals against


extradition which he eventually lost. He has been under constant


guard since seeking refuge there at this embassy and he was later


granted asylum. Police are poised to arrest him the moment he steps out.


The police operation has so far cost ?6.4 million, most of it in police


salaries, with a further ?1.1 million in extra costs. If I was his


lawyer I would advise him to leave and face justice in Sweden. There is


nothing he can achieve illegally by waiting any further and there is


nothing he can achieve diplomatically either. The only way


to resolve this is to face justice in Sweden. Inside the embassy he has


a treadmill and a special lamp that mimics sunlight but what he does not


seem to have is an exit strategy. Myanmar has a long history


of civil war. Some of those past conflicts have


left behind a patchwork Special Region Number Four, also


known as Mong-La, is one such strip It's existed entirely outside


central government control for more than 25 years and


the area has evolved into a place Our Myanmar correspondent Jonah


Fisher has this exclusive report. We are looking for one of the worst


kept secrets in Myanmar. Our official guide refused to take us so


we have hired motorbikes and heading deep into the eastern Bernie 's


jungle. After half an hour of darkness, there are distant and


Gerrish lights. It is a gambling complex aimed exclusively at a


Chinese customers. Casinos are illegal, both in Myanmar and in


mainland China. The 15 gambling halls here are packed. They are not


all tourists. Look closely at the people wearing headphones, they work


here, placing bets on behalf of clients back in China. The satellite


dish outside makes sure that the connection never drops and that the


money keeps coming in. Welcome to Mong-La, a Sin city state of


gambling, prostitution and drugs. The dystopian consequence of a peace


agreement signed 25 years ago. The deal saw Rebel fighters stopped


their insurgency and in return at the Birmingham 's government gave


them full control over a small strip of land along the Chinese border.


There is no real law enforcement here so Mong-La and this market in


particular have become notorious for openly trading in the parts of


exotic and endangered animals. openly trading in the parts of


filmed secretly and saw stalls of ivory, leopard skins, tortoises and


snakes. That is the hide of a scaly anteater which is a danger to --


Endangered Species Act its scales are used in Chinese medicine. Not


far away we see some that are still alive, just about, their cages are


outside a restaurant. If this is not to your taste the menu also includes


black bear and Bernie 's python. These small Slue in a Mong-La is


also shocking. There was no need for us to fill shocking -- secretly at


the souvenir shop. -- this small Slue. A small tiger skull. This is


about 1000 US dollars. It is thought there are fewer than 4000 tigers now


living wild in the whole world. Though part of Myanmar, it is the


relationship of Mong-La and China that really counts. At the moment


the Chinese provide electricity and investment and every night bus-loads


of thrill-seeking tourists. The government of Burma have very little


influence. As long as a blind eye is turned to the gambling the weird


world of Mong-La will continue to thrive. The German government has


received an angry reaction from Turkey after reports that they spied


on their ally. Such practices have been called unacceptable and the


German media have claimed that the foreign intelligence agency has been


eased dropping on Turkish officials since 2009. German opposition has


accused the government of hypocrisy because of its own anger over


allegations that it was spied on by the United States.


One of London's most famous landmarks is getting a wash and


brush-up and, because that landmark is Big Ben, it's a pretty big


undertaking. The clock faces on The Elizabeth Tower are being cleaned


for the first time since 2010 and that means workers having to abseil


down to carry out work on the Great Clock. Big Ben will still chime and


keep time but the hands will be temporarily paused with the ongoing


work. Each of the four faces are made up of 312 pieces of glass with


the work expected to take up to five days. Many people know the landmark


as Big Ben, but that is the nickname of the bell and not the name of the


A quick reminder of our top story. The governor of Missouri has


announced he is ending the curfew in Ferguson where there have been by


lit clashes between police and protesters following the fatal


shooting of the black teenager Michael Brown by a police officer.


Thank you for watching. Goodbye for now.


Hello there. For the rest of this week it looks as though we will


maintain our wind from the north so there will be an edge to the breeze


again tomorrow. It will feel chilly and there will be a mixture of


sunshine and showers.


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