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The coalition edges ahead of Labor in the polls, but the government says it's still early days.We're the underdogs. He is writing his victory speech. There's a long way to go. And Tony Abbott's in the Top End, calling for engagement on Indigenous affairs.

This Program Is Captioned Live.

The US President Barack Obama promises changes to his government's surveillance programs. And villagers find a father and son who hid in the Vietnam jungle for 40 years. Hello. You're watching ABC News 24. I'm Richard Davies. A quick look at tomorrow's weather now: The Opposition Leader Tony Abbott has traveled to the Top End to talk Indigenous policy. He has recruited Warren Mundine to head a new national advisory body and promised a new approach to Aboriginal land rights. Reporter Melissa Clarke is travelling with Tony Abbott. Tony Abbott has come here to make
the Garma Festival near gof to make his mark on Indigenous affairs. He is aiming to shake up the management of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander affairs when it comes to being manageed from a level. He's announced he would set up a prime ministerial Indigenous advisory council to be chaired by none other than former ALP National President Warren Mundine. It would report to him three times a year and Warren Mundine would have monthly meetings with the Prime Minister. Tony Abbott also says Australians have a lot further to go when it comes to people-to-people engagement. Between White Australia and Black Australia.The problem if I may say so, between white Australia and Aboriginal Australia is not lack of food will, it's not lack of money, but in recent times it's been lack of engage ment. The Labor Party has announced it's expanding its Closing the Gap program to include three new targets aiming at reducing the gap between Indigenous Australia and non-Indigenous Australians when it comes to justice, access to disability services and higher education. But Tony Abbott and Warren Mundine have something a little more radical in mind. They want to look at reforming landownership systems and reducing the number of governance bodies that are involved in Indigenous affairs. A point Tony Abbott pressed home when he addressed the crowd at the festival. It's all to live on your land, having all very well having the right the right to live on your the right land, having the right the right to back over your necessary to land, having the right if necessary to exclude people from from your land, but land has to from from your land, but has to be an economic asset as well as a spiritual asset and I will do whatever will do whatever I humanly can in government to bring this about, should we win the election. Tony Abbott has been a regular visitor to Indigenous communities through his political years, and he considers it a personal
priority. But there's also a political edge to his appearance here in the electorate of Linnegar ree. There has been a swing in support towards the coalition and the Country Liberal Party here in the Northern Territory, in recent Northern Territory elections, and the coalition is hoping they can capitalise on that at a Commonwealth level as well. They hope they might be able to unseat Warren Snowden from the seat of Linnegar ree which he holds by only just over 3%. For Tony Abbott to come here to Gove, is a personal issue, a policy issue but also a political imperative. The Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has been campaigning in Tasmania today and says he's not worried by a poor showing in the latest opinion poll.

Mr Rudd's preferred Prime Minister rating has also fallen along with his trust levels. He says it proves Labor is the underdog in the election. Latika Bourke is travelling with Mr Rudd. Mr Rudd's campaign has come to an unlikely place in Tasmania today. Here in Hobart, a seat of Denison. Now, that's held by the independent Andrew Wilkie, who actually initially supported the Gillard Government into minority of the all along this campaign, both sources, sources from both that they didn't think either side would win this sides had been telling the ABC
that they side would win this seat. They that they didn't think either
thought it would stay with Andrew Wilkie. thought Andrew Wilkie. Well, this is Mr Rudd's first Andrew Wilkie. Well, this Rudd's first stop in Tasmania, and a sign that since the leadership change, perhaps things are going to change here, and this is a seat they could pick up. Now, of course, Labor needs to hold all its seats and gain some to win. Tasmania will be a very critical State on September 7. That night, when the votes are counted, there are many seats that both sides will be watching very keenly. One of them is Bass where Mr Rudd's also visiting today. That's held by Labor, but Liberal Party sources are very confident they' pick that up in the election. Now, as we're nearing the end of week 1 of the official campaign, Mr Rudd heads back to Canberra and he will prepare for his official debate with Tony Abbott on Sunday night but he said today he's still the underdog. Opinion polls would seem to confirm that. Mr Rudd himself says if today the election were held he'd have lost.I said on the day that I called the election that we enter this election as the underdogs and I said on that day that if an election was held that day, just
that we would lose. And we are just through week 1 of a five-week election campaign and that remains the case. I don't gild the lily about any of that. We remain the underdog. Mr Abbott has already said he has put attention into writing his victory speech already. I don't think people like that sort of arrogance myself. But he has said on the record he has been working on his victory speech. We're the underdogs. But on top of all that, I think we have a huge way to go in this election campaign. It's going to
going to be about jobs, it's going to be about cost of lig pressures and about who people trust for the long-term management of our economy. We're the underdogs, he is writing his victory speech. There's a long way to go. Are you embarrassed that Warren Mundine has decided to assist Tony Abbott on Indigenous affairs?Not at all. I'm delighted. Warren has got to the stage in his life where he is over and above bomb ticks. He will provided a vice to anyone and everyone about what should now happen in Indigenous policy in Australia. And as it should be. And I'm delighted if he is going to have an input to the other side of politics. I don't think he has been shy in putting his views forward in the past to whomever, and I am not faintly fazed by any of that. On the broader question of Indigenous policy, I would, however, just remind people on something as basic as the apology to the first Australians, we did wait many, many years for that to happen under Mr Howard's government of which Mr Abbott was a senior minister. It didn't happen. It was the first action of the government that I led back in 2008. I think we have a track record of engaging seriously with the challenges in Aboriginal Australia, including the first ever national agreement with the Commonwealth and States on investing in closing the gap in education, health, the rest with Indigenous health, employment, Australians. You're going see Warren active Australians. You're space. That is see Warren active across the space. That be. A Queensland One Nation candidate space. That is as it should
be. A candidate who was embarrassed in a commercial television interview has withdrawn from the federal election. Stephanie Banister, who was the federal Banister, who was running in
the seat

the seat of Rankin south of Brisbane, told Channel 7 that Islam is a country, and that Disability Care is already working well. One Nation's State leader Jim Savage says Ms Banister has been receiving threats since the appearance earlier this week. The Federal Government's deal to settle asylum seekers in Nauru is facing opposition in the Pacific island nation. Many prospect
locals are un happy at the prospect of new arrival s to their home and the government's move to silence reporting about anger.
the deal has caused further anger. The ABC's Kathy McLeish reports from Nauru. In the distance, surrounded by the famed pinnacles of Nauru, you can see what seems to be quite temporary accommodation that's been set up to house asylum seekers here on Nauru since their accommodation was destroyed in the riots last month. Locally, anger has grown among Nauruans since they first heard of the new deal that was signed between Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd and acting President Baron wonga. Locals are angry they heard about it through overseas media and the opposition spokesman has accused the Nauruan government offen are soship. He says local media were stopped from running an interview that he gave on the issue. But this week, the government has moved to ease those concerns. It's series those concerns. It's held a consultation meetings during the week. The last one was today. And acting President David Adiang says he's prepared to hold more next week if Nauruans still want to talk, but the opposition says the consultation should've been held before the deal was signed and not after.

Police have recovered a man's body on Carlos Island in south-east Queensland. It's believed to be a man in his 50s who disappeared off the town Tin Can Bay four days ago. The body was found in mangroves.

The US President Barack Obama has announced changes to the oversight of US surveillance programs after months of pressure from civil liberties groups, Internet companies and Congress. President Obama says he will amend laws on data collection because he wants people to know the government isn't spying on ordinary citizens. President Obama's first press conference in months.Good afternoon, everybody. Please have a seat. He outlined major changes to oversight of intelligence gathering.To give the American people additional confidence that there are additional safeguards against abuse. Not just Americans. The President also wants to counter act perceptions abroad.That shower' out there Willy nilly just sucking in information on everybody and doing what we please with it. President Obama has again called for former security contractor Edward Snowden to leave asylum in Russia and face an American court over leaks about US surveillance he started in May.I don't think Mr Snowden was a patriot. I called for a thorough review of our surveillance operations before Mr Snowden made these leaks. US Russian relations have been strained over the Snowden case, however, ministerial talks in Washington went ahead today and were described by the Russians as normal. Barack Obama describes his relationship with Vladimir Putin as productive. But earlier this week, he drew laughter on a US comedy show when describing his Russian counterpart's demeanour. Today we had another go.He's got that kind of slouch, looking like the bored kid in the back. Classroom.On the Winter Olympics, the US leader again rejected anti-gay laws in Russia but he doesn't back a boycott. Instead he says gay athletes should go and win medals.Which I think would go a long way in rejecting the kind of attitudes that we're seeing there. President Obama now goes on holidays for a week.

Authorities fear up to six people have been killed after a plane crash in the United States. A twin engine plane crashed into houses in Connecticut as it approached the Tweed New Haven Two bodies have been found. Two
children aged Two bodies have been found. children aged 1 and 13 were in one of children one of the houses at the children aged 1 and 13 were one of the houses at the time
of the crash, but it's not known if they're known if they're the two confirmed victims. The pilot and passengers are also unaccounted for. Zimbabwe's main opposition party has filed a legal challenge to President Robert Mugabe's win in last week's presidential elections. The Movement for Democratic Change Party led by Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai has maintained the vote was marked by fraud and irregularities. Lawyers for the party say a shockingly high number of people were unable to vote at the polls and that food and other bribes were used to persuade voters to back Mr Mugabe. Mr Mugabe won office with a 61% majority vote. The opposition's electoral petition seeks an order for the results to be declared null and void and a new election to be called within 60 days. A previously unknown group in Lebanon has claimed responsibility for the abduction of two Turkish airline pilots from a shuttle bus near Beirut's airport. The group is demanding the release of a group of Lebanese Shia pilgrims kidnapped in Syria last year by forces supposedly Turkey
linked to rebel fighters. Turkey has been a strong supporter of opposition fighters in Syria. Turkey's Foreign Ministry spokesman is demanding they be released. Moscow is about to hit the international spotlight for the World Athletics Championships, but already there's controversy, both on and off the track. The run-up to the event has been hit by a series of doping scandals, and there have been Russian
anti-gay laws passed by the Russian Parliament. There's a depressingly familiar feeling hanging over these World Championships. Instead of hosting a celebration of athletic, all the talk hosting a athletic, hosting a celebration of Moscow is of athletic, all the talk here in Moscow is of drugs and cheating. The Russians are ready but with dozens of their own athletes ready but with dozens of own athletes serving bans, some are asking if these Championships should even be here. Those in charge say Russia shouldn't be singled out.This problem is not only in Russia, it's a problem in different countries, ...They clearly have a very big problem, though?But of course we go to the country. We choose Moscow, which is Russia and we see now is ready for great successful Championships. And these steps will be a positive change. It's been called track and field's biggest doping crisis for more than a decade. Russia currently have 44 athletes banned for doping offences. In the last few weeks, 40 Turkish athletes have been served with bans, in a pre-Championships crackdown. And a number of leading sprinters, including America's Tyson Gay and Jamaica's Asafa Powell have also tested positive.It's pretty bad, isn't it?Yeah, because this is really takes us disappointed. But also, as I said before, look at it this way: before we did in court, it means for me, it's clearly a system, it's much better . With these Championships, the Socchi Winter Olympics and the 2018 football World Cup, Russia is using sport to project a more open image of itself to the rest of the world. But some say that sport is turning a blind eye to concerns that go far beyond doping. Socchi is the latest focal point for Russia's increasingly frosty relationship with the west. Activists want a boycott of the games, in response to a new law they say is an attack on gay rights. Today the IOC said it was seeking further assurances from Russia. So can the debate bring about wider reform?I do think we need to use the momentum that we can come to countries like this, hopefully put on excellent expected Championships but it can be a catalyst to change there and by the athletes asking for change, then the wider public will ask for change too. Nearly everywhere you go here, you are remind ed of how much Russia has already changed. Many are hoping that sport's global power can help this uncountry go even further. Massive floods are affecting Russia's Far East region. The deluge is among the
highest on record region. The deluge is authorities have warned it highest on not yet reached highest on record and
authorities have Hundreds of homes have Hundreds of homes have been evacuated. A and his son evacuated. and his son who disappeared during the Vietnam War during the Vietnam War 40 years ago have been found living in the jungle. Both are reported to have fled their home village after a bomb killed three members of their family. They were discovered in the jungle in Vietnam's central Kwangi province by locals. The pair is thought to have survived by foraging and planting corn. Interest there's been great excitement at Scotland's Edinburgh Zoo after it emerged that one of its pandas may be pregnant. Tee tee was relocated from China two years ago and her keepers say she's showing signs of expecting cubs. Is this panda pregnant? Tee tee's not giving much away but the signs are very promising. - Tian Tian. For a start she's become moody, not so keen on her daily trip to be weighed. She's also off her food and that's not all.She is becoming more restless as well. She is very particular, can be quite difficult and so we haven't been able to do any kind of doing
ultrasounds on her.They're doing the key tests in Germany. One shows a rise in hormones, another a promising mix of proteins. If Tian Tian does give birth, any cub would be tiny. 150 g or 1/700th of the mother's weight. It would be born between 24 August and 10 needed.
September. And cubs are badly needed. The giant pandas' hab gnat in China has been eaten up. There may be as few as 1,500 left in the wild. So back in the bamboo store, they know how much this means.I think there's going to be a very there's going to be a very big buzz about it within the staff that work here, went the the visitors that come. It's such an exciting thing. I think it will go off the scale. Two pandas, including this one, were used for the artificial insemination. But he seems pretty relaxed about the whole affair. So this is Yang Gwang who may be the father of a cub. We'll have to wait and see for sure. Even if he is, he will have no role at all in the rearing of that baby panda. Yang Gwang has proved his prowess in the past. He is already a father. And Tian Tian has reared her own cub before. Within weeks she could have the first ever British-born panda. Now to sport. Nathan Lyon has impressed on Day 16 the fourth Ashes Test?He sure has. The spinner has shrugged off the disappointment of being dropped for the first two Ashes Tests to take four wickets on Day 16 the fourth Test at Durham. Lyon's efforts helped hold England to 9/238. Tim Bresnan and Jimmy Anderson will return to the crease unbeaten for the home side tonight. It didn't take long before the decision review system was the centre of attention yet again. As Joe Root edged one to the keeper but the umpire didn't flinch.Strikes me there's something there. And and the finger goes up.Alistair Cook and Jonathan Trott looked comfortable, but Trott continued with his poor form as he gifted a catch to Usman Khawaja.

Kevin Pietersen's intentions were evident. Playing his innings more like a Twenty20 smash and bash. So it was no surprise when Lyon claimed his second wicket of the innings when Pietersen clipped one to Haddin.

Mitchell Starc's replacement Jackson Bird came to the fore when he got rid of half centurion Alistair Cook. Go-do batsman Ian Bell quickly followed, unable to gauge Lyon's bowling.That's his third wicket. Matt Prior and Johnny bear stow tried to stem the flow of wickets but it wasn't long before the ever determined Peter Siddle contributed to the attack getting Pryor leg stow was Lyon's fourth wicket. England had gone from 149/2 to 238/9 in the blink of an eye. The day belonged to the Baggy Greens and Nathan Lyon's tremendous display of spin. The western bulldogs have a slender lead over Carlton heading intoth second quarter of this afternoon's round 20 AFL match. Brisbane trail the tyingifying by 45 points at half-time, but a scratchy tyingifying by 45 points second half from Richmond saw the Lie second half from Richmond the Lie yops close within 16 the Jack
points in the last quarter. Jack Riewoldt's the fourth secured the Tigers' victory.

Geelong outmuscled Port Adelaide by 25 points to assert their position as third on the ladder. Captain Joel Selwood was the stand-out for the Cats with a career best four goals and 28 touches. Essendon coach James Hird has refused to comment on reports he's likely to be charged by the AFL Commission over the club's supplement program. Newspaper reports suggest Hird, football operations manager Danny Corcoran and Dr Bruce Reid have been told by the club they're likely to be charged in coming days. Hird says he's still very confident about his position, after the ASADA report was given to his lawyers.I can't answer where it's going to end up. That's beyond where my decision is at. My decision is around how he play tomorrow. Where this ends up is a matter for the AFL.Charges have yet to be finalised by the AFL. It's finally official, Benji Marshall has announced he will be moving back to New Zealand to play rugby for the Auckland Blues. After weeks of speculation surrounding his future, the Wests Tigers five-eighth has signed a two-year deal with the New Zealand-based club. Marshall leaves the Tigers after 11 years and 196 games and will make the move to New Zealand in September. Hopefully one day I'll represent the All Blacks and bring a title to the Blues.Tim Sheens has started legal action against the club after it reportedly stopped paying him. Sheens was sacked last year with two seasons remaining on his contract. Tigers Chairman Sheens
Mike Bailey has confirmed Sheens has started legal but declined to comment any further. Adam Scott remains on track to become the first Australian golfer to win two majors in a year. The US Masters winner is in a three-way tie for second at 7 under par on Day 2 of the PGA Championship in New York State and two shots off leader Jason Duffner of America. Duffner shot a second round 63 to equal the record low at a major. Marcus Fraser and Jason Day are at 4 under and 2 under respectively.I had a fantastic day today in a major Championship. Chased a bit of history. Came up short on the last putt but all in all I'm excited the position I'm in. The golf course has obviously yielded some low scores and I'm looking forward to continuing good play here on the weekend.

Starting with the satellite. The cold front is producing showers, storms and power. Winds in Tasmania, a high is causing showers to clear over South Australia, Victoria and New South Wales, this high is keeping Queensland, the Northern Territory and northern WA mostly dry and sunny, brisk westerlies ahead of a cold front are causing the odd shower in southern WA.

That is ABC News for now. But don't forget if you're away from your television, you can always keep up to date on the stories wer sea following by visiting our web site. I will be back in a moment with an update of the headlines, then after that, it will be time for One Plus One. I'm Richard Davies. Have a great evening.

This program is not captioned. Live.
This Program Is Captioned Live.

The top stories from ABC News - Opposition Leader Tony Abbott has today announced that if elected he will set up a forum for Indigenous policy discussion. Speaking in the Top End, Mr Abbott says the Indigenous advisory council will be chaired by the former National President of the Labor Party Warren Mundine. Mr Abbott says it's part of a new approach to Indigenous issues. Meanwhile, Kevin Rudd says he's not worried about Labor's poor showing in the latest opinion poll. The Nielsen poll shows the coalition leading Labor 52-48 on a two-party-preferred basis. Mr Rudd's preferred Prime Minister rating has also fallen but he says it proves Labor is the underdog in the election. The US President Barack Obama says reforms of surveillance programs were not.prompted by the actions of fugitive leaker Edward Snowden. Barack Obama has announced