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ABC Asia Pacific News -

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Live. Pakistan's leaders

order the elip nation of the

Taliban. Violence Maher the

second last phase of general

elections in India. Fresh

warnings as the swine flu

numbers top 2000. Protests

continue in Nepal with calls

for the President to go.

Good morning. Beverley

O'Connor with ABC News for

Australia Network. Deadly

violence has marred the

second last round of voting

in India's month long general

election. At least 2 people

were killed in West Bengal

state and there were clashes in Jammu-Kashmir. Over all the elision commission says

the polls were a success with

a 57% turn out. Thousands of

armed guards were on hand to

bolster security at more than

200 polling stations in the

capital. New Delly voters

arrived early before the

scorching midday heat set in.

Among those casting their

votes were the country's

president and leader of the

ruling Congress Party. But despite tight security in the

7 states involved in

Thursday's polls two people

died in clashes in West

Bengal between supporters of

the ruling Communist Party

and the Opposition. Protests

also erupted in the northern

state of Jammu-Kashmir.

Opponents of Indian rule felted security force was

stones but the vote did go

ahead with the state's Chief

for the current Prime Minister voicing his support

Minister. We are firmly in

favour of Singh being returned Key already

Despite the violence the election itty says over all

the fourth phase of elections

went well It was by and

large peaceful barring a few

stray incidents of violence.

And this is a satisfactory

process Neither the ruling

Congress Party nor the main

Opposition BJP are expected

to win outright majority when

results are released in just

over a week. Both parties

would need support from

smaller groups in order the

form Government. Pakistan's

Prime Minister has accused

Taliban insurgents of holding

the nation hostage and

ordered the Army the wipe

them out. Setting the stage

for a major offensive in the

Swat Valley. The move comes

just a day after US President

Obama made it clear more was

expected from Pakistan in the battle against the Taliban.

The Army has stepped up air

and ground assaults on second

roomiest hide-outs as tens of

thousands of refugees

continue the flee. Thousands

of terrified civilians have

dodged Taliban roadblocks to

escape from the Swat Valley

which is being shelled by the

Pakistan military. They are

seeking sanctuary in

makeshift camps and hospitals

as the Army continue to bombarded the militant who

have taken over most.

Area. TRANSLATION: We think they are going to target us.

Is impossible to know where

the about and shells are

coming from This man escape

from Buner. He said there was

so much shelling. Helicopters

came again and again. Tanks

were blown up in front of

people's eyes. More than half

a million Pakistan people are

known to have been driven out

and with more flooding out of

crisis is Swat the human their than

growing TRANSLATION: We have

received 194 families so far

but we expect the number will

go up to 50 0. We cannot cope

with any more. We have put a

number of the refugees on the

committee so we can tell

everybody hot is Nedded in

terms of food and medicine

Many leaving Swat were

trapped in their homes for

days while a your few

remained in force but when

the Army decided to lift the

restrictions for a short time

people took the opportunity

to escape. As the fighting

continues it is estimated

there are 700 Taliban mill

stands in Swat up against

15,000 Pakistan troops. The US Defence Minister says he

does not anticipate the need

for any American involvement

I personally have been very

satisfied with the strong

response this the Pakistan

Government and Army have

taken in response to this and

I think that there is very

little chance of the Taliban

in Pakistan achieving a level

of success that would give

them access to Pakistan's

nuclear weapons. But while

the conflict continues the UN

concerned about the fate of says it is extremely

the latest wave of refugees.

2000 people are confirmed to

be infected with swine flu

around the world. The World

Health Organisation has not

raised its alert level but

has warned up to a third of

the world's population could

be infected in the event of a

pandemic. The warning came

has health ministers from the

Association of South-East

Asian nations began a two-day

meeting on the out pick

alongside official from

Japan, China and South Korea.

While the threat from the

swine flu appears to be

easing the out bake has

identified the need to be

better prepared. All

participating nations have a

individual plan in place but

now realise a little regional

cooperation could make a big

difference. All countries

have prepared plans and they

practice the plans so it is

time new the activate them

and to harm files as much as

possible and cooperate in

this region to protect the

safety of people This is the

time to show our solidarity

and our resolve to address

the imminent pandemic we face today. A joint statement on

regional cooperation is

expected Friday. On the

sidelines of the gathering

health ministers from China and South Korea held a

separate meeting and Thailand

had a specific goal in mind.


outbreak of the disease

becomes a crisis China is one

of the best antivirus drug

producers and ASEAN almost

want help from China. We have

agreed to jointly develop a

vaccine As the summit began China released a group of

people quarantined for a week

in Shanghai after being on

the same filth as a Mexican

man diagnosed with swine flu.


the Chinese and foreign

passengers on the flight are

in good health so they belong

in the category of being

healthy and safe. Some

remain unimpressed with the

strong-arm tactics Chased me

like I was a criminal or

something. I think that was

not very nice. Almost 300

staff and guests at a Hong

Kong hotel are also spending their has night in

quarantine. There have been

several days of protests by

Maoist in Nepal who have promised to take to the streets until the President

resigns. About 100 people

have protested peacefully in

the capital watched closely

by extra troops. They want

the President the step down

calling him a trait tore.

They are angry he overruled a

decision to sack the head of

the military prompting the

Prime Minister's sudden

resignation W the nation in

political limbo parties have

until Saturday the agree on a

Coalition Government. If

they are going to form the

Government of national unity

then the Maoist should be

part of the problem. Earlier

riot police used bamboo baton

the beat back hundreds of

women protesting in front

president's house. US

regulator haves told the

country's biggest banks they

need the privately raised

74.6 billion the offset the

impact of the deepest

recession in decades A

Federal Reserve review shows

10 of the 19 biggest

financial institutions would

need significant additional

funds to withstand any future

losses. As expected Bank of

America needs the most

capital, almost $34 billion

while Wells Fargo needs $14

billion, Citigroup needs $5.5

billion. Barack Obama says

Washington will help if they

cannot raise enough. The US

trashy secretary says the

assessment will help restore

confidence and encourage

lending These action are

critical the help get lending

flowing again to make sure there will be the credit

those to help the economy get

back on track. The actions

today will bring an unprecedented level of answer

the parents say and clarity

to the health of the nation's

banking system. They will

replace this deep clot of

uncertainty over the system

with more disclosure, more

certainty. That is going to

make it easier for private

capital to come into the

financial system. Help expand

the capacity of bank the

lend, help repiss the banks

investment with private

capital as soon as possible.

Our hopes is with these

actions banks will get back

to the business of banking

US secretary Treasury Timothy

Geithner there. Coming up - a

new sporting craze in the

Philippines. And could a pair

of remarkable feet finally

end a long-running

archeological debate? South

Korean officials say they de

the ebbed activity at a

nuclear test site. The news

came as senior American negotiators arrived in

Beijing hoping to dies a

straight difficult for

reviving the stalled 6-party

talks. The drive the restart

the negotiations was taken on

renewed urgency since the

North Koreans say the were

restarting their atomic

program. The US special envoy

Stephen Bosworth said he and

Ambassador Sung Kim had

extensive discussion was

China's Foreign Ministry Yang

Jie-Chi and his deputy who is

also South Korea's top envoy

The US reiterates its desire

to engage multi laterally and

by laterally with North Korea

and we believe very strongly

the solution to the tensions

and problems of the area now

lies in dialogue and

negotiation The US

negotiators will now fly on

the Seoul and Tokyo and Moscow but they have no plans

to visit Pyonyang. Thousands

of people from Papua New

Guinea left homeless by

volcanic eruptions say they

have been abandoned. The

entire population of Manam

Island was evacuated to the

mainland five years ago and

an organisation created to

find them a new home but

nobody has heard from it in

months. Manam Island off Papua New Guinea's north

coast looks like an ideal

place to live. But locals say

it is far from paradise. Five

years ago 15,000 residents

fled to the mainland after a

series of volcanic eruptions.

They were settled in

so-called care centres on

plantations When we have

land problems, we have school

fee problems, we have water,

sanitation problems, shelter

problems. Tension between the

islanders and this locals

regularly flares into

violence. Four

Maroondah-Yarra people were

recently murdered and several

houses set on fire. In

response the provisional

Government sent 2000 people

back the Maroondah-Yarra.

But bananas are the only crop

that grows in the rocky soil

and they want fruit for

another nine months.

Freshwater is scarce and the

closest medical help is a

45-minute boat ride away.

TRANSLATION: If we can't

find a boat we treat our sick

children with traditional

medicine. The issue appears

to have fallen between the

cracks of different levels of

Government Unfortunately

Manam Island is in between

national Government and the provisional Government area

of responsibility. A body

called the Manam Island

re-settlement authority was

created and funded to find

the islanders a new home but

as far as we can tell it has no office or phone number. The Papua New Guinea

Government has not heard from

the authority since August

last year. And the islanders

want to know where the money

has gone The people on the

ground, the settlers have not

seen anything tangible Most

islanders say they would

rather die than return home.

The way things are go that go looks like a distinct

possibility. Chinese

authorities have for the

first time released an

official figure on how many

schoolchildren died during

last year's Sichuan earthquake. Beijing says over

5000 children were killed, a

figure much lower than other

independent estimates. It has

been nearly a year since the

Sichuan earthquake, it killed

more than 68,00 people and

18,00 are still listed as

missing. When the quake

struck a disproportionate

number of schools collapsed.

Until new the Government has

refused to release any official statistics on the

number of schools in which

children died. Now they have

but still there are doubts.

It does not mean anything

because long time ago they,

for 2 or 3 occasions they

released different numbers

and only this number is lower

than the number released a

long time ago. Under all

those numbers it does relate

to the conditions and which

school they relate to so it

is still a number and has no

meaning It has been a

contentious issue with

accusation the collapsed

schools had been badly con

strucked. The Government has

admitted nearly 14,000 zools

were damaged during the quake and residents stay the

Government needs to take

responsibility. TRANSLATION:

It is such a shame the Government knows it has done

something wrong but dares not

let people they or take

responsibility for it An amnesty international report

released earlier this month revealed instances where

dozens of parents who questioned the Government

were detained or questioned

by police. A siege is

continuing in New Zealand

where a gunman has killed a

police officer. Senior

Constable Len Snee was shot

siege has continued now for dead during a drug raid. The

almost a day. The shooter is

believed to be a 51-year-old

former Army reservist.

Beijing is hosting an art

exhibition with a difference

this weekend. More than 50 Chinese-Australian artists

are showing their work and

helping the support a

struggling community in their

adopted country. China correspondent Tom Iggulden

reports. At this gallery in

Beijing's famous 798 art

district more than 50 Chinese-Australian artist its

are putting the finishing

touches on a new exhibition

in the Chinese capital. Part

of the aims to showcase how

much Australian-based artists

have contributed to China's

hot art scene in recent

years. It is a funny mix you

know. You have the floating

figure was Australian wild

flowers for heads you they

and the mixtures of

Aboriginal dances with

Chinese ink The Bringing

Them Home exhibition includes

works from winners and

finalists of some of Australia's premiere art

competitions including the

Archibald Prize. Other work

are already famous on the

Chinese art landscape. Most

have a distinctive Chinese

look to them but with a

device that strikes achord with Australian audiences

too. There is even a for

trait of former Miss Universe Jennifer Hawkins. Deng Zhong

moved from Australia to but

now lives in the NSW town of

Goulburn We are very much

laid-back an engaged in what

we are willing to engage in

so therefore it is not quite

a surprise to me. Australia

is always like that so that

is probably why I'm very glad

to be in Australia instead

Deng Zhong is among several

artists in the exhibition who

have donated works for a

charity auction with proceeds

going to the Victorian

bushfires appeal. Especially

from Goulburn I is a very dry

place so I very much relate

it to me so yes I follow up

the news and feel sorrow for

my country fellow men so

yeah, donation almost like I

have an obligation for me, it

is my duty for doing so The

response and the enthusiasm

and the quality of the work

that they have offered is

enormous. In has been a significant downturn in the Chinese art market thanks to

the global financial crisis

but even in these tough times

the auction is expected to

raise in excess of a quater

of a million dollars. Tom Iggulden, ABC News, Beijing.

You are watching ABC News

for Australia Network. Our

top story - Pakistan's Prime

Minister has accused Taliban

insurgents of holding the nation hostage and has

ordered the Army inform wipe

them out. Some financial

news - US car-maker General

Motors has posted a loss of

$6 billion US for the first

three months of this year.

The loss is substantially

more than the last General Motors announced this time

last year. The company's

General Motors has received revenue has dropped by 47%.

billions of dollars in aid

from the US Government. Checking business

figures now - the markets in

the US overnight dipped ahead

of Washington's announcement

that many banks still feed

significant extra funds to

withstand future losses. In

London the FTSE closed the

day slightly higher. Around the region this morning the

New Zealand market has

opened, it is lower.

Sports news - Australia's

cricketers could reply a Test

series against Pakistan in

England next year. Discussions between the three

parties are said to be at an

advanced stage after

Australia ruled out touring

Pakistan because of a terror

attack on the Sri Lankan

team. Kamran Akmal took 4

for 8 in his fur overs

helping the restrict

Australia to 108. Pakistan's

reply saw Kamran Akmal and

Umar Gul. Manny Pacquiao is

on his bay home to a hero's reception in the Philippines

after he knocked out Britain's Ricky Hatton to

take the world

light-welterweight title in

Las Vegas. Manny Pacquiao

decided to make the trip

despite being urged the wait

by the Filipino Health

Minister because of concerns

over swine flu I'm very

excited to be back home and

prepare right now and they

say it is going to be a big

parade, big celebration. In

Rugby Union South Africa has

confirmed it is buildings to

host the World Cup in either

2015 or 2019. It will be competing against England and Japan. South Africa was the

winner when it last staged

the current World Cup the tournament in 1995 and is

holder. I have been very

fortunate to have been part

of a very successful World

Cup winning side in 207 and

to be a part of it is I don't think words can describe how

much it means to me South

Africa sis playing host to

the IPL and next year will

stage the World Cup. While

last weekend's successful

Filipino boxer machine man

reafirm his status as a

national hero it is not

surprising because it is a

country where there is a national obsession with watching blood sports there

is a new draw for the crowds

which promises to be even

bloodier than the rest. Deep

underground on the streets of

Manilla a new style of

martial arts has upon taking

hold. Mixed martial arts

started here in the

Philippines and underground

fights. I have had a lot of

underground fights as well.

This is at lot of Filipinos

involved and they want the

test each other But to the

outside world it looks more

like street brawling than

sport giving it the label

human cock fighting When you

have underground fights that

are not regulated there are a

lot of danger thanks can

happen Upper kit. 1, 2. We

go in. Switch the other side

A Brazilian black belt Alvin has been instrumental in

bringing mixed martial arts

off the streets in the main

stream This is a really

technical sport. You get

somebody from the street he

will get his arse kicked. I

mean you have to know

wrestling, boxing. Brazilian,

you have to be good at them

all But bringing some

legitimate say to the sport

has not been easy Before all

the fighters hated each other

now they are inside the ring

enemies but brothers outside

It may sound merciless but

the appeal is the spectator.

While it may seem more

supporters is much more it lawless than other come bats

thely regulated There are

rules and you are not there

the kill the guy you are

there for the sport, you

know, you are pitting each

other in springt. There is no

sport you get into that it is

injury-free While there have

been deaths in MMA most were

in unsanctioned events out

site the Philippines Getting

punched repeatedly is not

entertaining It may not be

for the fighters in the ring

but as crowd numbers continue

to degree it is clear it is

entear training for those

watching All our event are

sold out and there are people

outside we cannot let in A

crowd willing the pay big

bucks to watch a sport that

promises to be bloodier and

more realistic than other

combat sports. I think I will keep clear of that sport slam let's have a quick look at

how the weather is shaping up

for our Friday. In Australia

a high will keep the

south-east cool and the

inland dry but light showers

and drizzle should clear from

Melbourne and Hobart. Warm

Western Australia. Further easterly wind will persist in

north rain is on the way for

Darwin, Cairns too is in for

to a few showers. Across the

Tasman there will be showers

in Wellington, stormy for

Auckland, elsewhere in the

Pacific a clearing shower.

You have

been watching ABC News for

Australia Network. Before we

go let's check again our top stories. Pakistan's Prime

insurgents of holding the Minister has accused Taliban

nation hostage and ordered

the Army to wipe them out.

Deadly violence has marred

the second last round of

voting in India's general

election. The World Health

Organisation warns up to a

third of the world's population could be infected

by swine flu in the event of

a pandemic. That is the bulletin. For more news and

current affairs if the region

you can check out our web

site. I'm Bev O'Connor.

Thank you for your company.

Hope to see you again soon. Goodbye for now. Closed captions by CSI