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Tonight - firing up for the

Games with a plea for more

sports funding. We're talking

about the need for a very big

kick. The bold plan to create

thousands of Indigenous

jobs. To break the Aboriginal

social poverty cycle with real

jobs. And Qantas staff

demanding answers over the

airline's latest mishaps.

Good evening. Felicity Davey

with ABC News. The world is

getting set to turn its gaze on

Beijing. Just five days out

from the start of the Games,

the temperature's rising, but

at least the smog appears to

have cleared. It's an important

Games for Australia, with

Australia's sporting reputation administrators warning

is on the line. The ABC's

Olympics reporter Lisa Millar

is in Beijing. Australia

is in Beijing. Australia has

certainly shone in previous

Olympics, but it's set to win

less medals here in Beijing

than it did in Athens.

Australian Olympic officials

have warned that that medal

count will continue to fall,

unless there's a major

injection of cash into sport

across Australia. In fact the

AOC President has even

suggested that Britain could

overtake Australia in the medal

tally by the time it hosts the

Games in four years' time.

Exploding across the skies

of Beijing, these fireworks are

just the dress rehearsal. The

real thing on Friday night is

set to be the most expensive

show in Olympic history. I'm

very excited and very happy to have the Olympic Games in

China. Come on, Olympics, come

on China! There's no cress

dress rehearsal though for the Australians. The expectations

are huge but the Australian

Olympic Committee doesn't think

they'll reach the 49 medals won

in Athens. And John Coates is

warning that medal count will

continue to fall if there isn't

a massive injection of

money. We're talking about the

need for a very big kicker.

He's asked all sports in

Australia to report on what

they need to bring athletes to

their peak, and to stop coaches

being poached by other

countries. While Australia is

at risk of slipping out of the

top 10 countries, John Coates

says this is about more than

just medals. Australia's

reputation apart from gallantry

at times of war, is founded on

the performance of our athletes. There are reputations

at risk as well on the International Olympic

Committee. The President, International Olympic

Jacques Rogge, has been forced

to defend himself again over

the Internet access controversy. I'm not going to

make an apology for something

what the IOC is not responsible

for. We are not running the

Internet in China. It's the

Chinese authorities who are

running Internet. It appears

authorities have fixed the

pollution problem, for now. I

think all

think all the athletes are

almost fearful of it and are

happily surprised in the first

two days. But even the Chinese admit they can't control the

Friday's Opening Ceremony is weather. The forecast for

less than ideal. Very overcast,

perhaps some precipitation.

But it won't kous the Olympic --

douse the Olympic flame,

fireworks or complin niece

enthusiasm. In fact, more than half of Australia's

half of Australia's 433-strong

team has now arrived in China.

Over the last hours, the

swimmers flew in from their

training base in Malaysia. This

is the strongest swim team that Australia has ever sent to an

Olympics and there is big

expectations about how it will

perform here over the next week

or two. In other news there has

been ACT itting scam. Thousands

of sports fans have fallen victim to

victim to it, buying fake

Olympic tickets off a web site.

Here in Beijing there are new

rules on protests. Anyone

wanting to demonstrate has to

apply for permission five days

in advance, they have to do it

in person, and foreigners have

to do it in Chinese. 50,000

50,000 jobs for Indigenous

Australians over the next two

years. That's the challenge

Australia's richest man has set

for his peers. The head of

Fortescue Metals, Andrew

Forrest, says his Australian

employment covenant has the backing of many of the nation's

business leaders, and he's also

won government support. Kevin

Rudd says if business provides

the jobs, the government will

supply the training. ABC

political editor

political editor Chris Uhlmann

reports. From out of the west

comes a new covenant. Have the

heart, have the will and

certainly have the ability to

break the Aboriginal social and

poverty cycle with real jobs.

The nation's richest man likes setting ambitious public

targets and now he has a new

one. 50,000 jobs for Indigenous

Australians over the next two

corporate world years. And he says the

corporate world is ready to

provide them. What I've found

myself pushing against is an

open door. If business finds

the jobs, government will provide the

training. Government-only

programs I fear are doomed to

failure. That's why we need a strong partnership between

Indigenous leadership, major

companieses as well as the

government itself. Getting Indigenous Australians off

welfare and into work is Noel

Pearson's passion. One piece of

the jigsaw I haven't been able

to do is provide the work

community answer. We're gonna

break through the breakdown of

dependence on welfare, we'll

need jobs across the Australian

economy. The government's

business adviser says corporate

Australia should grasp the

opportunity. To be part of a

practical, workable scheme to

of bring the young men and women

of the Indigenous community

into the work force. But one

job continues to obsess some

and that's who might emerge as

Opposition Leader. Labor

Leaders say they don't care but they're remarkably focused on

just one man. Peter

Costello. Mr Costello. And just

in case he does make a

comeback, the script is already

written. An on-the-record

industrial relations extremist.

didn't go far He thought that WorkChoices

didn't go far enough. All this

talk of Peter Costello staying

on in politics is setting some

other hearts aflutter. We miss

him! We love him! We want him!

It would certainly be an affair

to remember.

The air safety regulator has

announced a new review of

Qantas after the airline's

third emergency landing in nine

days. Yesterday a plane was forced to return to

forced to return to Sydney

shortly after take-off, when

the pilot discovered a

hydraulic fuel leak. The spate

of midair faults also has

Qantas cabin crew demanding

answers from management.

Qantas's safety record is regarded as one of the best but

it's taking a battering almost

daily. This time a Manila-bound

jet began leaking hydraulic

fluid from a critical steering

unit shortly after take-off

unit shortly after take-off at

Sydney Airport. When we first

took off there was some funny

noise from the - I don't know

what it was. We were sitting

next to the wing and we could

see the water come out of the

wing, so that gave us a good

indication that something was

going wrong. The plane this h

to circle over the ocean to

dump fuel before returning to

Sydney Airport. In a statement,

Qantas says there was no saest

issue, but it's the airline's

third emergency landing in just over a

over a week. And it's got flight attendants

worried. Obviously we're

interested in just getting a

briefing from Qantas as to

whether there's anything that

flight attendants need to be

concerned about. New pictures

show the extent of the damage

to a Qantas plane which was

forced to land in Manila nine

days ago when an exploding

oxygen bottle tore a hole in

the jet's fuselage and on Monday there was another emergency landing, this

emergency landing, this time in

Adelaide, when a door failed to

close after take-off. Qantas

engineers who are lobbying for

a pay rise say they're

concerned the recent incidents

might be part of a pattern.

They argue the airline's cost

cutting is putting safety at

risk. Qantas have cut back on

training, closed their

apprentice training school and

sold a lot of their air

sports. It's said there's no

sports. It's said there's no

evidence that standards are

Qantas standed are slipping but

CASA is keeping a very eye on

the airline. We'll take in a

new team and take a look at operational elements within

Qantas. CASA expects its review

to be completed by the end of

this month. A man has been

charged over five sexual

assaults in Sydney's west.

Police released closed circuit television footage

television footage of

23-year-old Joey De Mesa from

Minchinbury yesterday. It came

offer a victim allegedly

identified him at Blacktown

Station. He was arrested after

seeing the CCTV footage last

night and presented himself to

the police station. De Mesa is

facing a range of charges

including aggravated sexual

assault. He didn't apply for

bail but the magistrate

bail but the magistrate

formally refused it. Around 500 people have gathered in Sydney to remember an Australian tourist who died in Greece

after he was bashed. Friends

and family of Doujon Zammit said the gathering was more

about a celebration of his life

than of mourning his death. We

want you to know how happy we

are and how thankful we are

that we know he was loved by

all of youse. The gathering came as one of the

came as one of the bouncers

accused over the attack was

charged with attempted murder.

The Greek Tourism Minister has

expressed his sorrow for what

he called the tragic death.

While it's painful to lose a

loved one, there's also ongoing

suffering for those whose sons

and daughters just disappear.

Missing Persons Week is under

way in New South Wales, giving

people the chance to make a

fresh appeal for information.

Many say the search gets harder each year, but police

each year, but police say new

technology is making their job

a little easier. It's seven

years to the day since Janet

Draper's son Ian went missing

in Sydney's south west. I'm

getting really worried I won't

have answers and that's what is

really upsetting me. Each

year, she joins the friends and

families of dozens of others

who've disappeared for a

service to mark the start of

say many Missing Persons Week. Police

say many people choose not to

be found, because they're

escaping a relationship

breakdown or financial

difficulties, but Louise

Menhennit believes her daughter

Melloney was the victim of violence when she went missing

four years ago. As I keep

saying to people, it gets

harder every year. It doesn't

get easier at all. This year's

theme for Missing Persons Week

is communication. And it's a

very modern form of

communication which is helping police

police in their search. The

Internet's a positive way which

has moved forward. Many people

connect through Facebook,

MySpace, those sorts of things, and we're able to track them

that way. More than 10,000

people were reported missing in

New South Wales last year. 99%

of those who disappear are

eventually found, but for those

who are still looking, events

support and such as in allow them to share

support and ideas. They wanted

to find out if they've been

doing something that I haven't

done. It's also a chance to

send a message to those whose

whereabouts remain unknown.

Two men have been rescued

after their $1.5 million yacht

hit a reef more than 200 nought call miles off Cairns early

this morning. Emergency

services were alerted just

after 4am when the pair let off

after 4am when the pair let off an emergency beacon. They were

found sitting on the yacht's

hull and were flown back to

Cairns. Our chart didn't show

any reef in the area at all. We

just hit this reef at 4am,

really heavily. The boat won't

be salvaged. As we speak,

probably by minute, it's

getting pounded and crushed

into the reef itself. That's

one of the reasons why they

needed to abandon the ship. The men were halfway

The men were halfway through an

around the world race. The

Federal Government has moved to

ban a large hybrid cat from

being imported into Australia.

The savannah cat is a cross

between a domestic housecat and

a wild animal serval. A

government scientific report

showed the cats have retained

their hunting genes and

would've been a risk to native wildlife. We already have over

Australia. 12 million feral cats in

Australia. This hybrid cat

would've grown up to 20 kg in

weight. It's understood some

of the cats were also in

quarantine in the United States

awaiting export to Australia.

The deadly rivalry between the

Palestinian factions in Gaza

has flared again, dealing a

blow to efforts to reconcile

Hamas and Fatah. Nine people

died in the bloodiest

confrontation since Hamas took control of

control of Gaza a year ago. The militant Hamas organisation,

which controls Gaza, accused

members of the rival Fatah

faction of being behind a

series of recent deadly

bombings. Fatah denied it but

Hamas gunmen moved in to round them up anyway.

At least nine people were

killed in the fighting that

followed. Hamas fighters

followed. Hamas fighters

displayed the weapons they'd

seized from their rivals. Many

Fatah loyalists escaped across

the border into Israel.

Some of the wounded were

treated in Israeli

hospitals. During the last 15

minutes, the medical centre

received seven Palestinians

from Gaza wounded heavily. 180 other Fatah members

other Fatah members were

allowed to enter Israel but it

wasn't a dignified retreat.

Israeli forces were taking no

chances, ensuring none of those

fleeing the violence in Gaza

could pose a threat to the

Jewish state. Most are expected

to be sent back to Gaza in the

next 24 hours. In the other Palestinian territory, the West

Bank, where Fatah is in

control, security forces

clamped down on public

clamped down on public

gatherings. They barred

hundreds of Islamist activists

from holding a demonstration

which they said was illegal.

Neither of the major factions

wants the tension to spiral out

of control. And many of those

arrested on both sides were

later released. TRANSLATION:

We hope to stop this complicated situation. We have

suffered enough. We don't want

to see another single drop of

to see another single drop of

blood. Egypt has been trying

to negotiate an end to the

conflict between the rival Palestinian factions. However,

the events of the past week

have shown just how much

bitterness there is between the

two sides.

The celebrations for Nelson

Mandela's 90th birthday are

continuing in South Africa, the

political party he founded, the

honoured the of a cab National Congress

honoured the former President

at a rally in Pretoria. His

current wife Graca Machel and

former wife Winnie joined the

celebrations.

Flanked by rivals for the

ANC leadership, Mr Mandela

urged the party to maintain

unity and never return to the

division and strife of the

past. Do not celebrate an

past. Do not celebrate an

individual. Celebrate the

achievements and reaffirm the

values of a great organisation.

One that has led for almost a

hundred years. Mandela's

birthday was on 18 July but

official celebrations have been

held around the world before

and after the actual day.

Reduced noise, less pollution

Reduced noise, less pollution and big fuel savings. Sounds

too good to be true. But these

are the results from a new air

traffic control system that's

transforming the way we manage

our air space. It's being

developed by Australian

scientists and it's already

being trialed in Europe. It may

look like what a pilot would

see from a flight deck, but

this computerised cockpit is

breaking new ground in the way

we manage aviation air

we manage aviation air

space. The ATOMS simulator can simulate hundreds and thousands

of complex scenarios of air

traffic and come up with

innovative methodologies and

procedures for air traffic.

These scientists are

integrating air traffic

modelling with data on aircraft

noise and emissions to deliver

a more efficient flight path.

One example is a plane takes a

more direct route at altitudes where the winds are more

favourable, cutting the use of

fuel. We have estimated that

for a typical Melbourne-Sydney

night, there can be a saving of

around half a tonne by using smarter air traffic

procedures. The system has

also managed to cut aircraft

noise by 30%. One instance is

keeping higher altitude s on

approach and reducing power during descent.

during descent. It sounds

simple but for the first time

these scientists are combining

all the data to deliver the

best result. Once you look at

the system level and the

interaction between the system

components, you can see a lot

of avenues for optimising the

system as a mole. Airservices

Australia is trialing the

system to cut aviation's carbon

footprint. At the moment the

real focus is on carbon dioxide.

dioxide. But in the scientific

community there is equal

concern about nitrous oxides,

the levels of water vapour that

are emitted. We're tracking all

those. So is the European air

safety body which is also using

the Australian system and if

all goes to plan these

scientists may help deliver a

cleaner, smaller footprint for

aviation around the world.

The Wests Tigers have moved

into the NRL top 8 thanks to

their record win over the

Bulldogs today and Canberra's

win over Brisbane. Today the

Tigers ran in 10 tries against

the Bulldogs white the Broncos

ended the Raiders 'winning

run. The Raiders were chasing their fourth consecutive win

while the Broncos are just finding form

finding form and their big

names Lockyer, Hodges and Hunt

combined for the first points.

On his return from suspension,

Justin Hodges' handiwork was

important as was his brutal

defence. Trevor Thurling gave

the Canberrans some hope but

they were menaced by Sam thigh

day. He extended the advantage

in the second half. The

Raiders' potent

Raiders' potent attack

misfired. The Raiders loss

opened a window for the Tigers.

New fullback Shannon Gallant

impressed. There were ominous

early signs for the Bulldogs.

Nannai somehow slowed the tally

and grabbed the Dogs' first try

in more than an hour of football. Their sell operations

were brief as the Bulldogs cap

pit lated. The Tigers

pit lated. The Tigers scored

the next 44 points, they made

14 line breaks and the

once-fierce Bulldogs missed 57

tackles. The Tigers tallied 10

tries, including two in two

minutes, to Ben Tio. Their only

concern, an injury to halfback

Robbie Farrah. Last night the

Cowboys looked set to break

their losing streak when they

led by 10 points

led by 10 points until Mitchell

Pearce took control. He scored

his first hat trick to lead the

Roosters to a comeback win that

means a top 2 finish is still a

chance. The Warriors fumbled

their opportunity to move into

the top 8. Evan Tuomavavi

dropped what should've been the

match winner. The Sharks

produced a late highlight

against the Dragons. Got no

against the Dragons. Got no

right to throw a pass like

that! And Brett Kimmorley's

last-minute field goal stole

the win. The top 4 is looking

settled. The Tigers their the 8

but have five teams on their

tail, including the Knights and

the Eels who play tomorrow.

The Wallabies are confident

of regrouping for the South

African leg of their

Tri-Nations campaign after last

night's 29-point loss to New

night's 29-point loss to New

Zealand. The result continued a

run of 14 Australian defeats in

away Tri-Nations matches dating

back to 2001. The Wallabies

were on early flights from

another rugby Test defeat in

Auckland. It's now 22 years

since they won at Eden Park. I

don't think any confidence will

be lost. I think a lot of the

boys are looking forward to the

next game. We should be good

next game. We should be good

enough to beat the conditions

and the opposition. No

excuses. A try in the 82nd minute which earned New Zealand

a bonus point was a final

bitter pill. The All Blacks had

done their homework. They

played with ferocity, to climb

back into the Tri-Nations

picture and level the four-Test

series. The Wallabies must win

the series to regain the

game plan Bledisloe Cup. We changed the

game plan around and the guys executed that exceptionally

well. A coach who was under

pressure, Henry has kept the

wolves at bay. His opponent

looked somewhat relieved to

have had his first loss as

Wallabies coach. Looked a bit

empty with no-one in the front row. The overview was

simple. Essentially a mirror in

many ways of last week. The All

Blacks built pressure, and

didn't allow us to build

didn't allow us to build any pressure. New Zealand's

forward domination was the

key. The front five especially

had a hell of a game. You know,

they never got any front

football. Didn't go our way.

The harder we tried , the more

we seemed to dig ourselves into

a hole. In eight days the

trans-Tasman rivals have

delivered one heavy blow

apiece. I think the

apiece. I think the next

contest will be massive. Both

team also have equal

edge. You've just seen that a

week in rugby is a long

time. Tri-Nations attention now

turns to South Africa, where

the Springboks wait. The

Wallabies won't get another

crack at the All Blacks until

next month in Brisbane. The

Sydney Swans' hold on a spot in

the AFL top 4 is even more

tenuous, after a 16-point loss

to the Western Bulldogs in

to the Western Bulldogs in

Canberra. Geelong and the

Kangaroos won overnight. Today,

St Kilda beat Port Adelaide,

Fremantle took the late game,

and the Bulldogs shot clear in

the second quarter. The

nation's capital hosted two top

4 sides, desperately needing a

win, and it was Sydney which

got off to a flyer. The Swans

looking for two in a minute.

Have a dream start! After

conceding four goals in the

first 6 minutes, the Bulldogs'

Brad Johnson attempted to

steady the ship but despite

being on top the Swans were far

from perfect. It proved costly.

The Dogs trailed by just 13

points and quickly pegged back

the margin. 10 minutes into the

second term, they had the

lead. And the Western Bulldogs

have kicked four goals in 12

minutes! Umpire Matthew

Nicholls was in the wrong place

Nicholls was in the wrong place

at the wrong time and the same

could be said for Sydney on the

wrong end of an 8 goal to 1

quarter. Sydney had its chances

to get back into the contest.

But fired too many blanks. They

finally found the target with

two goals in a minute, but the Bulldogs' Scott Welsh responded

with his fourth. The Swans'

with his fourth. The Swans'

accuracy didn't get any better

in the final term. The Dogs

capital yiszed on their

chances. McVeigh produced a

career-best effort with six

goals. But it was a bittersweet

record as Johnson finished the

day for the Dogs like he

started it. Their 16-point win

putting them bab on track for the finals. --

back on track for the finals.

Every four years, the best from

Every four years, the best from

around the world compete for

glory. It's not just at the

Olympics, but also in the

Sydney International Piano

Competition. Last night, a

Russian pianist whose fingers

move faster than the eye can

follow took out first prize. Konstantin Shamray doesn't

so much PLAY the piano as ATTACK it. His passion

ATTACK it. His passion for 20th

century Russian music helped

propel him to first place and

more than $50,000 in prize

money. The Sydney International

Piano Competition attracts

hopefuls from around the world.

Eric Zuber from the United

States practised nine hours a day to

day to make the final. Don't

your fingers ache? Yes. When

you're doing that much, everything aches.

All have to work hard,

because the competition is the

most challenging of its kind.

Finalists must memorise almost

2.5 hours of music.

One of the

One of the most interesting,

because this competition has

very big program, very big.

It's impossible.

The entrants from different

nations have their unique

styles. 17-year-old Tomoki

Kitamarua from Japan plays with

passion.

Israel's Ran Dank came

third. He's considered a

showman.

The best Australian made the

top 12. Hoang Pham came to

Australia as a refugee from Vietnam. He's

Vietnam. He's now studying in

New York. I'm thrilled to be -

to have reached the semifinals,

and I really did my best.

There is no rest for the gold,

silver and bronze medallists.

They're now booked for a

58-concert national tour.

To the weather now. There

was a burst of sunshine over

most of the state

most of the state today. That

sunshine won't last long.

Winter weather is already

starting to creep towards the

southern inland. In Sydney today, temperatures ranged from

minus 1 at Richmond to tops of

around 17 to 19 degrees.

Cloud over the south-east is

developing ahead of a

low-pressure system that will move over New South Wales

tomorrow. The effects of this

low will be felt mostly in the

southern half of the state

although an upper level

disturbance following the

surface low will see showers

move further north and east on

Tuesday. But rainfall

Tuesday. But rainfall forecast

models suggest most totals will

be less than 5 mm, but there

could be isolated heavier falls

with some thunderstorms. Some

of those storms will affect

Adelaide and Canberra, with showers in Melbourne, although

it will remain sunny through

most of the other cities.

Across New South Wales

tomorrow, west to

north-westerly winds throughout

the state.

A reminder

A reminder of tonight's top

story - five days out from the

start of the Games the AOC boss

John Coates has called for a

massive funding boost to stop

Australia's future medal

tallies from falling. And that

is ABC Television news for now.

We'll have another update for

you in an hour. For the latest

headlines any time, there 's

ABC Radio and ABC News on-line.

For now, goodnight.

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