Transcript of BBC
News on Video (In the News of January
>> Serbia's hard-line nationalists claim election victory, but
they're unlikely to form a new government. The E.U.'s
foreign policy chief says he's still hoping for a pro-European
administration. This is bbc world. I'm Lucy Hawkings
>> Also on this programme, an investigation in Belfast. Was there
collusion in northern ireland? America's top companies urge british
to get serious about climate change.
>> Hello and welcome to Belgrade. These election results are
serbia and they've produced no clear winneR. It's true that the
ultra nationis of alarm throughse meet blicy pro-E.U. Government
here in Belgrade. Let me take you through the results as we have
them at the moment. With preliminary figures in, the radical
nationalists have over 28% of t thclember, vojvse and is currently
being held in the hagu a n gontough.Thred 22.9% of the vote, but it
could be the outgoing prime minister, vojislav kostunica, who may
ultimately be the kingin smimi of serbia won 17% of the vote, and he
could be crucial when italition government.E. Nt chris morris.
>> Victory for the radicals, government for the democrats. One
headline to describe the outcome of serbia's first election since
the breakup last year of its union with montenegro. Pro-european
parties led by the democrats seem to be in pole position to form a
>> ( Translated ): I hope the democrats will stay in power, that
they'll form a coalition and that it will work.
>> ( Translated ): I expect a small crisis. There could be
problems, but i hope they sort it out.
>> There certainly could be weeks of political ahead, but
serbia's president, the leader of the democratic party, appears
confident about the outcome.
>> The democratic parties, the pro-european parties are making a
huge majority now of parliament, and this is really possible. We
have a small majority. We have a strong decision. We're sharing
values and our goals. We're going to achieve this.
>> But let's not forget who was celebrating last night,
supporters of the radical party which won nearly 30% of the vote.
Serbia's flirtation with nationalism isn't oveR. That's food for
thought for european union leaders meeting in brussels today.
>> We hope very much that there will be a formation of a
government that will be in line with pro-european forces.
>> Isn't this a failure of the E.U. Policies?
>> No, no, the majority of the vote has been to the parties that
support pro-european objectives.
>> But still some tricky decisions ahead. An announcement from
the U.N. In the next few days will probably suggest conditional
independence for the Albanian majority province of Kosovo, and in
Serbia that's a big nationalist issue, which provokes strong
feelings. Chris Morris, bbc news.
>> There's lots of uncertainty here in Belgrade today. No one
really wants to see weeks or months of lengthy negotiations. People
here are also concerned about a possible political vacuum so they're
looking for solutions.
>> Thank you very much for joining us from Belgrade, and we'll
have more from lucy later in the programme. For now let's turn to
the other top stories of the hour. News coming in from iraq, two
bombs have exploded in central Baghdad. It's believe a near
simultaneous explosion struck a predominantly shia area shortly
after middaY. Joining us from Baghdad is andrew north. Any more
details, andrew, on these attacks?
>> Well, the casualty figures have been rising almost every few
minutes. We've been getting new details in from police and hospital
officials. At least 60 people now killed, 11 injured.
-- 110 injured. From these very powerful blasts. From what we
understand, those behind it tried to make sure there were a maximum
number of people around before they detonated these two park car
bombs. We heard them very clearly from our bureau in Baghdad. If you
look on the skyline there, you'll see two large plumes of smoke.
There's still some smoke in the air from where the bombs went all.
Almost certainly this kind of attack was carried out by sunni
insurgents. It appears to be following an upsurge in the number of
these kinds of attacks to be an attempt by insurgent groups to, if
you like, exploit a window of opportunity before the new american
and iraqi plan gets going in force. They're particularly going after
shia communities, trying to increase the sectarian tension here.
It's not just bombingS. We're getting reports of a lot more mortar
attacks around the city, a lot more gun battles going on, as well.
There is a real sense at the moment that the violence is on an
>> We saw more raids carried out by the iraqi security forces
working with the americans, andrew. When do we expect there to be an
escalation in line with the new american strategy worked out with
>> Well, that's right. There was never going to be an exact date
when things start. But the americans have said over the weekend they
have got their first brigade of reinforcements in from around 3,000
troops. They're not expecting for them to be fully deployable until
the beginning of next month, so they're still bedding down, if you
like. Some operations are going on, extra operations. It's very
difficult to know whether that is definitely linked to the plan, but
it will be some time before all the american reinforcements are in,
and also critically the extra iraqi reinforcements. And that's why
there is this sense that possibly some of the insurgent groups on
the sunni side particularly appear to be trying to get in there
early before all these extra forces are on the grounD.
>> Andrew north, thank you for that update. Police in kenya say a
senior leader of somalia's islamic courts union has handed himself
over to the kenyan authorities. Sheikh ahmad was the leader of the
executive council that controlled much of somalia until it was
driven out this month. The kenyan government is believed to be
negotiating with the united states over what should happen to the
sheikH. With more money and troops, the taliban could be defeated
within the yeaR. David richards told a british newspaper his forces
should and can win in afghanistan but he wasn't convinced that nato
nation end that more military might was need. Officials in pakistan
say at least three pakistani soldiers have been killed in a suicide
bombing in north waziristaN. A number of soldiers are believed to
have been injured in today's attack. Air strikes were carried out in
nearby south waziristaN. The organisations responsible for managing
the world's tuna fish are looking at japan to see how they can boost
numbers. Stocks have fallen to alarming numbers and conservationists
say bluefin tuna have been critical because of illegal and
unregulated fishing. A pig farmer accused of being canada's worst
serial killer goes on trial on monday in a case a judge has warned
will be as bad as a horror movie. Robert pixton is charged with
killing 26 women over two decadeS. He'll be the first to be tried
for six of the deaths and has plead not guilty to each. Jim cook
reports from vancouver.
>> Massive investigation into crimes which defy imagination.
Prosecutors believe this pig farm was a killing field for the man
they say is the worst serial murderer in canada's history. The
police moved in back in 2002, supported by dozens of anthropologists
and archaeologists. Over the ensuing months and years, time and time
again the material gathered here has tested positive for human
remains. Today the farm's owner, robert william pickton, will go on
trial, standing accused of killing women over a period of two
decades. The excavation work here has produced a mountain of D.N.A.
Evidence, so much that the judge is concerned that any jury could be
overwhelmed by the sheer scale of it all. For that reason he's
decided to split this case into at least two trials and his first
one would deal with the murders of just six of the alleged 26
victims. Most of the murdered women were prostitutes or drug
addicts, many of them from native canadian communities. All of them,
it seems, living on the mar margins of society, women like ser rena
abbottsway, mona wilson, lang joesbury, brenda wolf, georgina papin
and marni fraY. Some of their families say the police were slow and
unresponsive to the disappearance of so many young women, but for
the authorities here, today's trial is the result of an
unprecedented investigation. Only with the opening prosecution
remarks will this country learn the details of the case they built
against a man who insists he's innocenT. Jeremy cook, bbc news,
>> In northern ireland, a long-awaited report has been published
which confirms police intelligence officers shielded protestant
outlaws involved in at least ten killings from prosecution. A
three-year investigation concluded that former officers in the
secret special branch paid informants in the outlawed ulster
volunteer force who were permitted to pursue killings, bombings and
drug dealing. Joining us now from belfast is the bbc's chris butler.
Chris, just tell us how important this whole investigation is.
>> Well, there's a potentially hugely damaging for the police.
This investigation, as you say, was carried out by the northern
ireland police ombudsman. It started with one murder, but it's been
expand much beyond .That it takes into account a 12-year period when
this ulster paramilitary group were effectively allowed to carry out
killings with impunitY. This report is going to say that senior
police officers effectively protected them from prosecution and
stopped other officers from investigating their activities. This
crime relates to drugs to, murder and to a series of other events.
Now, of course, what's important here is that these people are
relating to a number of different prosecutions. However, the police
officers themselves could well not be prosecuted as a result of
this. The police ombudsman is going to say that effectively evidence
has been destroyed, it's missing or lost, and she believes that was
a deliberate strategy by those police officers to ensure they evaded
prosecution. However, today, the families are calling for those
murder investigations to be reopened, and we believe there are ten
murders that the police ombudsman has looked. A
>> Chris, thank you very much for that update from belfast. Well,
it seems british airways is taking moves to reassure its passengers.
Tanya beckett is here with more.
>> Absolutely. If you booked flights the word is you can move the
dates if you need tO. The airline is warning of massive disruptions
to customers if cabin crew go on strike as threatened. Talks between
b.A. And one of its main trade unions broke down on sunday. The
airline is facing a walkout by cabin true between the 29th and the
31st of january. This could be the first of three strikes. A group
of america's largest companies will today press president george
bush to take action on climate change. The united states' climate
action partnership includes industrial giants such as g.E., Alcoa
and caterpillar. A year ago the president declared that the united
states was addicted to oil, but the U.S. Along with china and india,
have refused to sign up to the kyoto protocol on cutting emissions.
The initiative from corporate comes ahead of the president's annual
address to the nation which is on tuesday. And airbus says it is
finally fixed the electrical problems that have plagued the a-380
superjumbo and put it two years behind schedule. It's now on track
to deliver the giant jet to its first customer, singapore airlines,
if october. And the world's biggest drugs company is expected to
announce today it will cut 10% of its workforce. America's pfizer is
facing expiry on some of its patents that is causing a drop in
sales. And we'll update you on the B.A. Story on the bbc world
business report in about a quarter of an hour.
>> Tanya, thank you. Stay with us on bbc world. Still to come in
our programme, more reaction from results in the serbian elections
where serbian nationalists have claimed victory. Talks in syria
between the two main palestinian parties have ended without
agreement on forming a unity government. President mahmoud abbas has
been meeting an exiled hamas leader. Both sides are optimistic and
talks will continue.
>> Better late than never. The palestinian president finally met
with the leader of hamas after talks were delayed on saturday. They
were trying to reach a deal over the creation of a government of
national unity. So far there's been little success. Both men came
out to brief reporters, admitting a deal was some way off, but they
were as one on some issueS. "We agreed between us that the spilling
of palestinian blood is forbidden," said mahmoud abbas, at -- "and
we have to make every effort to avoid internal conflict,." "There
are still some points of disagreement, but we will reach a deal and
form a national unity government." The problem goes like this: Hamas
won parliamentary elections lasty, but israel and the U.S. Won't
talk to them because they won't renounce violence and recognise
israel's right to exist. Hamas is only offering a long-term truce.
Both sides say the talks will continue. A deal may still be reached.
>> One of france's most respected public figures, abbe pierre,
has died in paris at the age of 94. He dedicated most of his life to
campaigning for homeless, the poor, the refugeeS. He founded the
charity emmaus shortly after the second world war when he took part
in the resistance against nazi occupation. He was a man on the
progressive fringes of the roman catholic church supporting gay
adoption and admitting to having sex with a womb despite his
chastity vows. This is bbc world. The main news this hour, brussels
still hopes for the formation of a pro-european government in serbia
by hardline nationalists claiming victory. More than 60 are dead
after a bombing in Baghdad's central square.
>> Welcome back to Belgrade. While kosovo was not a big election
issue here, the future of kosovo does loom large over this region.
Everyone waiting to hear what the U.N. Special envoy's
recommendations will be for the future of kosovo. We're expecting
those any day noW. Lest get a sense of how these elections were
viewed in kosovo. We can go live to pristina now and talk to our
correspondent therE. Alex, any reaction to these election results?
>> The lack of reaction is really quite striking. We contacted
the president's office to see what he would say. The answer came
back that he would not give an interview. He regarded the serbian
election as the internal matters of a foreign country, that means
that kosovo's albanian majority already regards itself separate from
serbia. Similar reactions in the papers. One paper had the headline,
"serbia votes for the past." Others aren't featuring the story at
>> Alex, what are people in kosovo expecting from the united
>> They're expecting a decision and fast, and there will be
mounting impatience. Two months ago there were demonstrations
outside the U.N. Headquarters here by a movement calling itself
"self-determination." That represents a minority at the moment, but
that sentiment could grow. There could be increasing support for
some kind of more outspoken action. Kosovo's albanian majority wants
this decision without any further delay after the delay that was
already announced for the serbian elections. Now they say it's time
for the recommendations to be made public.
>> Alex, thanks for the update from pristina. Let's get some more
analysis now of the crucial election results. I'm joined by a
balkans expert here in Belgrade. Tim, the radicals did very well in
terms of the popular vote, but the democratic bloc has doubled their
votE. How difficult is it going to be now to form some kind of
>> It's going to be extremely difficult because Mr.. Kostunica,
the current prime minister, will demand that in a future coalition
government with mr. Tadic, president tadic's democratic party, that
he remains prime minister, but the democratic party, Mr.. Tadic did
better, so he's going to demand that his man is prime minister. So
there's going to be weeks of tough negotiations.
>> We just spoke to our correspondent in pristina about the
rising frustration with the lack of a decision from the united
nations. That decision comes out in the next few days about the
future of kosovo. How could that influence negotiations here?
>> I'm not quite sure if it's going to influence negotiations
here. It's possible that mr. Kostunica may put some demands for the
forming of a coalition government, but I'm not quite sure that
that's the main issue here. The main problem will be for kosovo,
though, if the negotiations mean that no government here is really
prepared to engage over the u.N. Proposal, which is expected in the
beginning of february, therefore building in more delay. So that's
going to be the problem, not so much in forming a government here.
>> The E.U. Has been demanding for a while they want to see ratko
mladic at the war crimes tribunal in the hague. Will a democratic
government be able to deliver mladic to the hague?
>> It's difficult. The two main parties have democratic in their
name, the democratic party of mr. Kostunica. They haven't delivered.
The democratic party of mr. Tadic, if he had been in control, i
suspect he would have done, but the fact is it's going to be a
coalition government, so I suspect more of the samE. Probably not.
>> Tim, thank you very much for that analysis. The issue of
general mladic a hot one here. Some people continue to see him as a
war herO. Others don't want serbia's eventual membership or contact
with the european union to be held up all over the fate of one man.
So that is definitely going to be a topic facing any new government
here. Back to london.
>> Thank you. And stay with us here on bbc world. Still to come
in our programme, the poison plot thickens. The bbc uncovers new
evidence about the murder of alexander litvinenko. In australia,
firefighters are battling to contain a serious bushfire north of
sydneY. The fire broke out and forced the closure of a highway and
threatened residential homes. Rain and winds in victoria eased
bushfires which have been burning for two months. Such is the
downpour in some area that residents now face danger of flash
floods. The bbc's phil mercer has this report.
>> This time it's sydney's turn to face the bushfire menace.
These outbreaks in a national park near the city's northern fringes
have caused plenty of headaches. A major highway was closed as the
flames advanceD. Water bombing helicopters were called in while on
the ground hundreds of volunteer firefighters toiled awaY. The
authorities have said they are gradually winning this battle, but
nature is a powerful enemy. Many communities are facing a very
nervous wait to see which way these unpredictable wildfires might
head next. A sudden change in the direction of the winds can bring
relief or disaster. It's during the hours of darkness that southern
australia's bushfire emergency seems far more threatening. As the
land burns out of control, the night sky's an ominous shade of
orangE. Further south in victoria, wet weather has come to the aid
of exhausted and overstretched fire crews. Some of these bushfires
have been burning for more than 50 days. Several homes have been
destroyed. Thousands of hectares of forest and farm slans gone the
same way, reduced to ash by unstoppable walls of flame. Many fires
are caused by lightning strikes, but the depressing reality is that
a large number are started deliberately. Australia has asked for
international help. About 100 american firefighters are expected to
arrive shortly. Their task is to help contain outbreaks in one of
the world's most fire-prone regions. Phil mercer, bbc news, Sydney.
>> The fatal poisoning of the former russian spy alexander
litvinenko still remains a mystery. But recent reports reveal he was
likely to have been the target of multiple poisoning attempts before
his death. After the critic of the kremlin died last november from
ingesting polonium-210, a series of locations, planes and people
were found to have been contaminated with the rare poison. The bbc's
"panorama" programme has been following the plutonium trail.
>> Two months on since he was buried, the mystery of who killed
alexander litvinenko remains. He was poisoned with the radioactive
element plutonium. This woman -- poloniuM. This woman believes she
knows who was behind her husband's murder.
>> I can say putin is behind everything that happens in russia.
>> The kremlin doesn't agree.
>> If she says that russia has killed alexander, she's a liar in
>> A "panorama" investigate has put the spotlight on two russian
businessmen, andrei lugovI and another man. They deny the murder.
The polonium trail makes them prime suspects. May made several trips
to london in autumn. Almost everywhere they went is now radioactive.
Germany is contaminated, too, where koptin visited. The pine bar in
may fair, litvinenko met the two.
>> He had a cup of tea and didn't finish at all. He later said he
wasn't very good.
>> He fell they'll night. No one's been arrested, but the
polonium trail has made lugovi and coptune prime suspects. Why might
the crim lynn want them dead? He wrote a book claiming bombs that
killed hundreds in moscow in '99 were planted by putin's maintain
secret police. Six other russian, M.P.S and journalists who
investigated this story have died in mysterious circumstances.
>> I was ready to go home, and he just told me, marina, i love
you so much.
>> The question is, was alexander litvinenko victim number seven?
John sweeney, bbc news.
>> You can get lots more detail about all the news stories in our
programme by logging on to our web site. We've had just some
breaking news there that the prime minister... there's been an
official reaction from the prime minister in britain on that
collusion report in northern ireland saying this is a deeply
disturbing report about events which were totally wrong and should
never have happeneD. More on that story and all the other stories on
our web site, as well, bbcnews.Com. <
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