10/05/2016 World News Today


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Hello and welcome, this is BBC World News Today


President Obama will make a historic visit to Hiroshima


But he will not apologise for the US nuclear attack in 1945.


The British Prime Minister is overheard describing Nigeria


and Afghanistan as "fantastically corrupt"


We've got some leaders of some fantastically corrupt


Also coming up: A heartbreaking BBC investigation, finds that more


than 1,700 migrants have been buried in unmarked graves after they died


And facing extinction, how a fifth of all plants


are at risk thanks to a range of threats including


President Obama will make a highly symbolic visit


It will be the first time a serving American president has visited


the Japanese city destroyed by a US atomic bomb in 1945.


Let's remind ourselves of the events surrounding


In December 1941, Japan bombed Pearl Harbor and the United States


On May 7th, 1945, Germany agreed to unconditional surrender,


On August 6th, 1945, the first atomic bomb to be used


as a weapon is dropped on Hiroshima in Japan.


140,000 people died, some instantly,


others later from the effects of radiation.


On 9th August, 1945, the US dropped an atomic bomb


August 15, 1945, Japan surrenders, ending World War II.


However, the White House made it clear that during his


visit Mr Obama would not apologise for the bombing.


The BBC's Gary O'Donoghue joins me from Washington.


Gary, another piece of history to add to the Obama Legacy?


Yes, it is and it will be quite a moment when they sitting American


president visits Hiroshima. We have had one former president go there


before, Jimmy Carter, who was president in the 1970s and obviously


he has been there but a sitting president carries with it enormous


symbolic power and while the White House is stressing that this is not


an apology, he will not apologise, he will not revisit, in their words,


the decision to drop the atomic bomb in 1945, he will in some


sense recognise the toll that it took on civilians in particular, so


that will be the message and also one about going forward and shared


futures etc. That reflects, of course, the fact that Japan and the


US are now very close allies and President Barack Obama has focused a


lot of his efforts on the pivot to Asia, as it is often called, and


they have significant economic and political interests in common and


that will be part of the trip as well so it will be an enormous


moment really, it will be an enormous moment for both countries.


Dr Sheila Smith is Senior Fellow for Japan Studies at the Council


How significant do you think this is? I think it is tremendous and for


those of us who have worked on the relationship with the US and Japan


for many years, it is long overdue. President Barack Obama began his


presidency very focused on nuclear disarmament and the Japanese people


have been very strong advocates of the reduction of nuclear weapons and


so I think you see a little bit of an American and Japanese gathering


of mines here about the future and what our two countries may be able


to do together. We know from the White House that he will not make an


official apology but will his presence there be viewed as a kind


of a conciliatory gesture? Absolutely. President Reagan went to


Europe many years ago in an attempt symbolically to put that war behind


us in our relationship with the European allies and I think for many


Japanese, especially off at wartime generation, the presence of a US


president at Hiroshima will be tremendous. I think without saying a


word, his intent will be very clear. I think for younger Japanese you


have quite lively debate about whether or not the president should


apologise for the dropping of those bombs and I think that debate will


continue long this visit. What do you think is the main reasoning


behind this? You mentioned Japan and US relations and if there a wider


message about something like this never happening again? That is


exactly right. When the President spoke in Prague early in his tenure


he spoke very openly about the moral responsibility of the United States,


as the only company -- country having used these terrible weapons,


to push forward on nuclear disarmament and nonproliferation. It


is also true that in Asia at the moment you are looking towards North


Korea who tested nuclear weapons in January and you are looking at the


nuclear arsenal of China and their glowing -- in military might and you


can be a little worried about the nuclear balance. Our president has


touched on that alliance with Japan in a way that is alarming to many


Japanese so I think this visit will be very reassuring and will touch


many Japanese deeply. Thank you very much.


Britain's Prime Minister, David Cameron, has called Nigeria


and Afghanistan "possibly the two most corrupt countries


Mr Cameron was caught making the comments as he chatted


with the Queen at an event to mark her 90th birthday.


A very satisfactory cabinet meeting this morning when we talked about


our successful summit. We have leaders of fantastically corrupt


countries coming to Britain. Nigeria and Afghanistan, wasn't it, the two


most corrupt countries in the world. This particular president is


actually not corrupt. He is working very hard. They are coming at their


own expense! The remarks come ahead


of an international summit on corruption taking place in London


later this week. The anti-corruption campaign group


Transparency International ranked Afghanistan 167th,


in its 2015 corruption perception index, ahead of only


Somalia and North Korea. We will discuss this more in a few


moments with an expert on global corruption. Let us look at some more


News stories for now: now: Maverick anti-crime candidate


Rodrigo "Digong" Duterte has won the Philippine presidential


elections, following the withdrawal of his


opponents. Although the official result has not


yet been declared, his main rival, Mar Roxas, admitted defeat


after polls gave Mr Duterte Officials in southern Germany say


a man who killed a commuter and injured three others in a knife


attack at a railway station suffered from psychological


problems and drug addiction. They said there was no evidence


the 27-year-old attacker Eyewitnesses had earlier reported


that the assailant had shouted Allahu Akbar,


God is Great, during Nasa's Kepler space telescope has


discovered what has been described as a treasure trove of planets. Over


1000 XO planets has been found which Nasa says increases the chances of


finding a planet similar to Earth. Afghan and US special forces have


rescued the kidnapped son of Pakistan's ex-Prime


Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani. He was abducted three


years ago, it's believed Yusuf Raza Gilani was taken


while he was in his home town But he was found hundreds


of kilometres away in Paktika Four militants were


killed in the rescue. Ali Haider's brother,


Ali Musa Gillani has spoken to the BBC from his home in Lahore


and described the moment He called himself from an


Afghanistan number, and he just told me I have US military around me


and they have rescued me and what are you doing


and who are you getting in And I replied that we are talking


to the Afghan ambassador and our military forces and the government


officials to bring him back, because he was really, really


confused about who was going to bring him back, because here only


I am in Bagram Base. Shaaima Khalil is in Islamabad


and tells us more about what's We now have confirmation


from the international forces in Afghanistan


that Ali Haider Gilani operation between US special


operations forces and Afghan commandos in the eastern


province of Paktika. We also understand that four


militants are believed to have been killed during that operation


and this mission was launched when evidence of terror activities


was confirmed, We also know now that arrangements


for Mr Gilani to return to Pakistan are being made


after some medical checkups. We understand that he was held


by an Al-Qaeda linked or affiliated group,


we're not exactly sure which group that is,


but we do know last year, from his father, former Prime


Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani, asked for Al-Qaeda prisoners to be


released in return for his son. We also know that there was a video


in 2014 where abductors had


asked for ransom. during that rescue mission


are still going to come in. We are not very clear about how


exactly that happened but we do know, of course, that Ali Haider


Gilani was abducted not very far from his house in his


hometown of Multan which was in 2013, almost three years ago now,


and at the time he was campaigning for parliamentary elections


for the Pakistan People's Party. When the news broke today there was


huge celebrations in his hometown, by family and


friends and party workers and also at a party rally in


Pakistani administered Kashmir Let us go back now to that story


about David cannon calling Nigeria and Afghanistan corrupt and we have


heard from the Afghanistan Prime Minister who has said he was


shocked. He spoke through a spokesman and he argued that David


cannon, who was secretly films, must be referring to Nigeria's past


notoriety for corruption before his coming to power in May last year.


The president of Nigeria has been in power for around one year but says


that his government is deeply shocked and embarrassed by those


comments and says he must have been referring to the past of Nigeria.


Well, joining me from our Millbank studio is Transparency


International's Managing Director, Cobus de Swardt.


What is your reaction? The way David cannon has been saying this is not


ideal but how much truth is there in this? Historically Nigeria and


Afghanistan have had very high levels of corruption that continues


by the current leadership has sent very strong symbols that they want


to change that and this summit is the opportunity for those countries


to sign up to a new era. At the same time, countries such as the UK also


have to sign up to changing their fight against corruption, as the UK


and its own overseas territories remain a safe haven for corrupt


money and a big problem for corruption worldwide. We had the


relatively new Nigerian President they're saying that his government


was shocked and embarrassed by these comments from David cannon. How much


progress has there been in the fight against corruption in these


countries and we know that this president came to power in that he


would really fight this scourge. Progress first day starts with very


clear commitments from the top and we have seen strong signals from the


Nigerian government and that needs to go further and in addition to


that there needs to be a common working together. Nigeria cannot do


this alone. When you do not work together, for example, in stopping


corrupt money leaving Nigeria and entering the UK, it makes it harder.


We have seen some progress but clearly not enough. This summit


would need to bring these countries together in a common commitment to


prevent corruption and actually create a safe space for those who


fight corruption and also to tackle and punish those that facilitate


corruption, such as bankers, lawyers, estate agents, as the


Panama papers clearly show, as another major part of the global


fight against corruption. There will be some wondering what a conference


here in London, with lots of good words perhaps, can realistically


achieve. What are your hopes? How positive do you think it would be?


We have no hope for new work. What we are seeking our concrete and


specific commitments, for example on preventing corruption it is time


that those countries that participate make very concrete


commitments to ensure that companies that operate from their countries


have all the beneficial owners, those that own and control those


companies in public registers and that people and companies that did


for public contracts, that we know who they are owned by. We want to


see very strong commitments on those countries that participate that they


will protect the space of whistle-blowers and that they will


protect the space of civil society activists to fight corruption and we


want to see concrete actions by these countries on tackling those


that facilitate corruption. This is not that difficult. We can see major


progress this week but it needs to be concrete actions and the need to


be actions were those leaders that make them can be held accountable by


the citizens of their countries. We must and that there. It certainly


got us talking about it. Thank you very much.


1,700 men, women and children have been buried in unmarked graves


after they died crossing the Mediterranean,


That's what a BBC investigation has discovered.


There are more than 70 such sites in Turkey, Greece and Italy.


Over the past two years it is estimated that more than 8,000


people have died, many lost at sea, with many bodies washed ashore.


A boat full of Syrians fleeing war land on the Greek island of Lesbos.


No one on this boat drowned, but one man was crushed to death on board,


and another died of a heart attack when he set foot on land.


Both victims were travelling with other people who were able


There are hundreds more that have either been lost at sea or found


Their relatives, scattered across the globe, are left


with a lingering pain that could haunt them


In the last two years more than 8000 people have died


On average at least one person each day has been buried


in an unmarked grave, which you can see by these red dots,


scattered across Italy, Greece and Turkey.


More than 70 of these burial sites have been found as part


This ceremony in Lesbos is one of them, with dozens of bodies.


Some are recovered when the boats they were on capsized.


Others washed up on shore days or even weeks later.


Many relatives of the missing are desperately trying to find them.


Farouk Bakar has been on such a quest for the last five months.


His brother and wife died when their boat capsized off Lesbos,


but the bodies of their four children were never found.


He has travelled hundreds of miles in Turkey and in Greece, hoping


to find either proof of life or at least a DNA match


with unidentified bodies of children buried in Lesbos.


Local authorities in all three countries have been stretched


as they try to deal with unidentified dead bodies.


Because of the large number of bodies found by the Greek


authorities, they've had to bring in containers like these.


Sometimes the bodies of migrants stay here for days or


These containers are on the island of Samos, which doesn't


Many of those who brave death to reach Europe leave relatives


behind with the hope of some day seeing them again.


But those lost along the trail leave a darker kind of longing,


no longer for reunion - only for closure.


To Saudi Arabia now where authorities are trying


to curb the powers of the notorious religious police.


The new regulation bans members of the Promotion Of Virtue


And Prevention Of Vice Committee to chase suspects or arrest them.


Religious police officers are frequently accused


However, the new decision hasn't been welcomed


by everyone in the country, as Hanan Razek reports from Riyadh.


This widely shared video has sparked a debate in Saudi Arabia.


The woman tells a member of the morality police


It's one of many incidents where Saudis accused members of the


committee of abusing their authority.


It is quite rare to find someone who is willing to speak out


about their experience with the morality police publicly,


but we've succeeded to track down a Saudi woman who says she was


A bite on the hand is what this woman, who doesn't want


to reveal her identity, says it was the result


The BBC couldn't verify the incident details independently.


TRANSLATION: They wrapped my headscarf around me


and insulted me because I didn't delete the video.


I started screaming and I tried to get out of


the car but they locked me and my friend inside.


I was trying to film again so he bit me.


Recently the Saudi government, in what some describe as


a bold move, decided to curb their powers.


work of the religious police means that members of the


Committee To Promote Virtue And Prevent Vice can no longer stop


people on the streets, arrest them, or ask for their identifications.


Many Saudis have praised the decision, saying it will put an end


to the violenations practiced by the members of this committee.


However, not everybody here is happy about it.


Some have taken to Twitter, which is very big


in the most conservative of kingdoms, to voice their concern


about losing the powers of the Committee.


And some clerics weighed into the public debate


The new regulation came in a rush and it didn't comply


with the core of the governing system, and it violates the


committee law that was issued by a Royal decree.


For 76 years the Saudi religious police have enjoyed lots


of powers over people's day-to-day matters.


The new regulation has triggered a big debate.


Many here think it is only a beginning of a


Scientists have published their first global assessment


The new study reveals that there are just under 400,000


plant species known to science, and researchers say there


However the report also found that a fifth of all plants


are at risk of extinction, and face a broad range of threats.


Coming into bloom - the beauty of plants on display


at the Royal Botanical Gardens, Kew.


Now, for the first time, scientists here have carried out


And it has highlighted some big gaps in our knowledge.


One of the things we did in this report was to count how many


plant species there are, and that was interesting -


391,000 we have come up with, and that's addressing four different


databases to come up with that figure.


But this is just scratching the surface.


There are thousands out there that we don't know about.


We have come behind the scenes here at Kew where the latest new


Botanists have been heading to far-flung corners of the world,


searching through existing collections, and even trawling


through pictures of plants on the internet.


And they are making new discoveries all the time.


This orchid was one of 2000 plants found in 2015.


New, too, was this 50-metre high tree in Gabon, and an insect-eating


But there are also threats, and invasive species


like Japanese Knotweed are a major problem.


Damaging the environment, they are difficult


The report now estimates that there are 5000 different


Now that we have got this list and this number,


it's certainly a bit like know your enemy.


We know what we're dealing with, we can then look at them -


what is similar, what makes a good invasive - and how can we use that


information to have better management practices in place


or recommendations, how you deal with them.


But while the public enjoy their close encounter


with nature, conservationists warn that one in five species


This new report, though, will allow scientists to measure


these changes to keep track of the future of our plants.


We are just getting reports in the last few minutes that the leader of


Bangladesh's largest Islamist party has been executed for war crimes.


That announcement is coming from the War Ministry in Dakar. The offences


committed by him all dates back to 1971 and the Bangladesh liberation


war against Pakistan, one of the bloodiest in history. He led an


Islami party for 15 years. The tribunal was set up in 2010 and this


is one of the verdicts we have been waiting all day to hear whether or


not this was going to happen, but it seems that Bangladesh has executed


the top Islamist party leader for war crimes committed in 1971. More


on the BBC website and all of our channels.


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