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Live. Tonight - storms lash

Darwin as the Top End battens

down for Cyclone Carlos. A

liberal apology over the

Christmas Island funeral

tragedy. The timing of my

comments over the last 24 hours

was insensitive and was

inappropriate. Made in China -

BHP hits the profit motherlode.

And the Kiwis may be family,

but they can't resist a dig or

of respect when our friends two. So we treat it as

across the Tasman claim

ownership of such traditional

New Zealand icons as pavlova

and Phar Lap. Good evening.

Welcome to ABC News. I'm

Virginia Haussegger. First it

was Queensland, then Victoria,

now it's Darwin's turn to face

the fury of Australia's

unusually stormy summer. A

tropical cyclone is bearing

down on the NT capital and it's

expected to intensify tonight. The storm's already caused

extensive damage around Darwin

and residents are preparing for matters to get even worse.

Darwin has been lashed by wild

weather, ripping trees from the

ground, some ending up on homes. Roads have

flash flooding and thousands of

homes have been left without

power. We were having a nice little sleep until about 2.30,

when both the trees came down,

landed on the roof. That sort

of woke us up a fair bit. In

the past 24 hours, more than 430mm of rain has fallen on the

city, leaving many cars

stranded and things are

expected to get worse. The

summer of hardship for

Australia is not over Australia is not over yet and

my thoughts are with the people

of Darwin and the Top End as they prepare for this. Tropical

cyclone Carlos is tonight menacing the Top End coast and

predictions are it's likely to

intensify. Many in Darwin have

begun stockpiling food and

fuel. Hopefully it doesn't

turn out as bad as they predict. Cyclone Carlos is

forecast to go west over the

sea or whip around and give

Darwin another lashing. There

is a heightened level Tropical Cyclone Yasi. We are anxiety around as a result of

in no way in any comparison to what Queensland was facing. As

conditions intensify, coastal

suburbs are at the most danger

of flash flooding and damaging

wind and police have

begun door knocking warning wind and police have already

residents of the potential

danger. The Government has

also opened up extra shelters

in the area for anyone who

feels they need extra

protection during the storm.

Tony Abbott and his

immigration spokesman have

admitted they were wrong to question spending on asylum

seekers on the day mourners

were burying their loved ones.

Yesterday they criticised the

Government for flying survivors

of the Christmas Island

shipwreck to Sydney for

funerals. But now they can see

their timing was

Jennett reports. Back behind Political correspondent Greg

bars, survivors of December's

Christmas Island shipwreck were

allowed family, food and friends at Villawood Detention

Centre. No return to Christmas

Island, let them stay. The raw

emotion of the Sydney funerals

has given way to calmer calls

for compassion ... Help them.

If you are human, help

them. And a change of heart in

the coalition, as mourners had

farewelled their loved ones,

the Opposition's immigration

spokesman had questioned the

cost of flying them from Christmas Island. I think the

Government has gone a bit too

far with this. A day later he's

backed down, admitting he acted

in haste. You know, timing in

very important. The timing of terms of comments I

my comments over the last 24

hours was insensitive and was

inappropriate. I want to thank

Scott for being man enough to

little bit too far accept that perhaps we did go a

yesterday. It's a less than seamless attempt to repair

another split in his party.

Joe Hockey had opposed Scott Morrison's tactics all along

publicly. Does it show a split

in your party? No, no.

(Laughter) no split. We all

love each other. Although the

moderate Hockey approach prevailed, the Government's not

leaving it there. I think

stealing sound bites from One

Nation is about as low as you

Abbott has ended can go. That's where Tony

the Government $300,000 to

mainland, bring the mourners to the

mainland, but sending them back to Christmas Island may prove

the trickier part. They don't

want to go and have told supporters they plan to physically resist their

transfer. The orphaned eight-year-old them until the Minister

approves his release into the

community. I certainly take as compassionate approach I can in

considering the cases The group is due to move to Christmas today received a standing ovation Island. The Prime Minister

today when she became the first foreign leader to address New

Zealand's parliament. Julia

Gillard and her New Zealand

counter part John Key stressed

their commitment to even closer

ties, signing a protocol aimed at boosting trans-Tasman

investment. New Zealand Schwartz reports from correspondent Dominique

Wellington. It was welcome for the Prime Minister,

who came to New Zealand to

promote and deepen a fierce

friendship. Australia has many

alliances and friendships

around the world. Economic and

defence partnerships of every

kind, but New Zealand alone is

family. Nations so close, not

even the leaders can sometimes

Gillard met the tell their flags apart. Julia

Governor-General and New

Zealanders who helped Queensland flood victims. I

welcome the honourable ... But

it was her address to

parliament which made history.

It's truly a great privilege

to be the first Australian

Prime Minister - indeed, the first foreign head of

Government - to address members

of the Parliament of New

Zealand. Both leaders joked

about the about the intercountry rivalry.

When our friends across the

Tasman claim ownership of such traditional New Zealand icons

as pavlova, Crowded House and

Phar Lap. But Ms Gillard said

Australia always abides by the umpire's decision. Australia

accepts the verdict of the

global umpire and will

implement the World Trade

Organization rulings on the importation of New Zealand apples into Australia. Honouring the Anzac

spirit, Ms Gillard ended her

trip at the National War

Memorial after news that

another New Zealand soldier had died in Afghanistan. Julia

Gillard doesn't want her first

official visit to be her last.

She wants to restore annual primeministerial visits because she says familiar alty

shouldn't lead getfulness. This visit at

least will certainly be

remembered and recorded in the

h istry books. The conservation

group Sea Shepherd says it's

won a major victory in the

fight against whaling. The Japanese fisheries Japanese fisheries agency has

told the ABC it's temporarily

suspended its Antarctic hunt. The

The agency is citing harassment by activists as one of the reasons for the decision. Sea

Shepherd says its strategy to

stop the hunt is clearly

working. We speak the only

language that these poachers

speak, that's the language of

profit and loss. Every day we

prevent these guys from whaling they're literally losing

millions of dollars a day in

profits. This year has been

our most successful campaign to

date. Japan says it will have

to decide whether to cut short

this year's mission.

Shepherd says only one tenth of

Japan's annual quota of 1,000

whales has been killed so far. Italy's Prime Minister

will stand trial on April 6 on

charges of having sex with an underage prostitute, then

trying to cover it up. Silvio Berlusconi's case will come

before a panel of three female

judges, but he's not obliged to appear in person. Emma

Alberici reports. The girl in question, Karima El Mahroug, also known by the stage name

Ruby the heart stealer, is

cashing in on new-found campaign, appearing in this

marketing campaign for a

self-help book. Prosecutors

say she was 17 when she met Mr

Berlusconi at one of bunga sex parties. Both she

and the Prime Minister deny

having sex, but he does admit

giving her a car, a diamond

necklace and $9,500 in cash.

Once you start hearing the

positions of, you know, the

testimony of the various witnesses and the girls who , I

think that could hurt the image

of Berlusconi and

of Berlusconi and his positioning as Prime

Minister. Three female judges

will also hear evidence about

Mr Berlusconi's decision to

telephone a police station to

have Ruby released from have Ruby released from custody

on an unrelated theft charge.

The PM denies hes abused his

position. He says it was all a

misunder standing, that he believed she was the granddaughter of the Egyptian

President, whom he wanted to

save from any diplomatic

embarrassment. Berlusconi is a fighter.

in the past, even when he lost

elections. He is unlikely to resign because that would be

some sort of admission of his guilt. Notice of the trial was

served just days after up to 1

million people took to the streets calling for Mr Berlusconi's resignation.

he's found guilty, he faces 15

years in gaol. Yet another

Arab country is feeling the

heat as anti-government sentiment sweeps the Middle

East. Thousands of people have

been on the streets of the Gulf

kingdom of Bahrain, demanding

regime change and democratic

reform. Two people have died

in clashes with security

forces. The king to make a rare national address in which he's apologised for the deaths

and promised a full

investigation. Bahrain is mainly Shia Muslim country, but

has been ruled by the Sunni

royal family since the 18th centstry. A Canberra woman

accused of murdering a man in

Kingston in 2008 has given her

account of that night to the

Supreme Court. She says stabbed the man in self-defence

because he raped her. Vivienne

Nunis reports. Cameron Anderson

was stabbed eight times near

Telopea Park in September 2008.

The apprentice chef from

Queanbeyan had been drinking at

a pub in Green Square with a

17-year-old girl, now on trial

for his murder. Today her

lawyer Bernard Colleary asked

her to explain what happened

that night. She said she asked

a barman to help her look for her knife because she thought

she'd be walking home. He gave her her a pearing knife. The woman

said Mr Anderson offered to

walk her home to Barton, saying

he lived in the same direction.

They cut through Telopea Park, he pushed her into a tree and

raped her. She said: The

trial has woman was sexually abused by

her stepfather and grandfather

when she was a child. Today she told the court she'd had

the opportunity to kill her

stepfather, but she didn't do

it. She said there was a

sawn-off shotgun in their house

in Queensland: The woman was

cross-examined by crown

prosecutor John White. He

suggested she stabbed Mr

Anderson to seek revenge for

past sexual abuse. She said it

had nothing to do with that,

she stabbed Mr Anderson because he raped her. The cross-examination will continue

tomorrow. The world's biggest

miner has unveiled some big

numbers in its half-year profit

results. Soaring commodity

prices have lifted BHP

Billiton's interim earnings by

more than 70%. A record. It's

prompted the company to give $10 billion back to

shareholders, as Andrew

Robertson reports. Rio Tinto

last week, BHP Billiton this

week, the big miners are

rolling in cash. We are very

proud of the record set of

results. The company is

extremely well configured around enormous resource-base

to continue to grow. And grow

BHP has been doing. First-half

net profit soared by 72% to a

record $10.5 billion, as the

company took advantage of high production. It's very

important that when prices are

high, the company's maximising

production and it's been able

to do that successfully. Flush

with cash, BHP Billiton is giving more of it back to its

shareholders. It's lifted its

interim dividend by 10% to 46

cents a share, its share

buyback program will now be $10 billion, an increase of $6

billion. Marius Kloppers has

also flagged that future growth

for now will come through expansion of existing

businesses, with BHP planning

to spend $80 billion on capital

investment. BHP Billiton's

huge profit has sparked renewed

discussion about just how large

the extra tax on the big

miners' earnings should be. It

coincides with claims the Government's controversial and

watered-down version of a super

profits tax will raise billions

of dollars less than expected. We said at the time it raise less revenue than

expected by the form of

proposal. It does. There's

nothing new in what is being

said today. The only downside

for BHP Billiton at the moment

is that production at its Queensland coalmines will be

affected for the rest of the financial year because of the

floods. Despite all that good

news, BHP Billiton's share

price fell sharply today, but

the banks did well, as Alan

Kohler reports. Well, BHP fell

1.6%. It's a repeat of what

happened with Rio Tinto last

week. The speculators bought

in in the lead-up to the result

and then jumped out when it was

announced, because basically it

was as analysts expected, so traders were off looking for

something else to anticipate.

CBA and CBA and ANZ went up 1% each and

CSL fell more than 1%, after

announcing a 19% drop in first-half profit. The knelt

result was no change in the All

Ordinaries index. On BHP and Rio, it's worth noting perhaps

that over the past 12 months

Rio shares have gone up 25% but

BHP is up only 15%. That's

because Rio had such a long way

to come back. I haven't shown

you a graph of the price earnings ratio for the market

for a while. Basically this is one method of determining

whether shares are cheap or

expensive. The answer is that

the current share price to

earnings ratio is 13, below the

15-year average of 14.6, which

means shares are a bit cheaper

than usual. Global shares are

even better value. 12.9 PE for

all shares in the world,

compared to a 15-year average

of 16.7. But interesting thing is whereas

Australian shares have

traditionally traded at a

discount to the rest of the world, that discount has

disappeared. It's because of

the China-based commodities

boom. Ours is more of a

resources market than most. On

global markets today, US shares fell but European and Japanese

ones rose, and the Aussie

dollar has fallen below parity

again, but it's been bobbing up

and down above a dollar US for

three months. The ACT

Government is $77 million

better off after settling a long-running tax dispute with

News Corporation. The ACT

Treasury has been pursuing Rupert Murdoch's global

multi-media company for $84

million in unpaid stamp duty

due on the transfer. Finance experts say the Government

deserves credit for its successful pursuit corp. It was four years of investigations prior to that

and the whole time they were

having to track a complex set

of transactions where a company

was moved between States in

Australia and ended up being listed on the Bermuda Stock

Exchange. So for Treasury to

devote that amount of time, four years and

years in the courts is

massive. The ACT Government

declined to comment, citing

secrecy provisions, but

confirmed the deal will help restore the Territory's budget

bottom line. Experts say the

result may open the door for

other similar claims against

News corp. The sword hanging

over residents of the

Narrabundah Long Stay Park has

finally been listed. The

tenure has been uncertain since

a proposal to redevelop the

caravan park was overturned in

2006. But today the ACT

Government said it would grant

three-year leases if homes

comply with a building audit. Kathleen dyet reports Residents

of the Narrabundah long stay

park had unexpected callers

today. Okay, the ACT

Government is going to continue

to manage the park. After

several years of uncertainty

for residents, the Government's

ready to make changes. Allan

Newell has been here for more

than two decades. He's happy

the Government will do free safety audits of all houses in

the park. Cool. If they need

renovation, yeah, I reckon it

should be done, yeah. Been a

caravan park, there are some that are old and that

too. Yuanet Marsh welcomes the

news she'll get a longer lease

if her home meets building

standards. It's giving us that

peace of mind, security, that

we have three years, not just

month to month, what happens

next month. It's the response

As it unveils detail of a

review ofth of the park. While

issues are complex, the Government's interest is

simple. We want a park that is

affordable, safe and managed in the interests of

the interests of the park community. But not everyone's convinced residents will have long-term security. Scan you

imagine if this was your home, but for another three but for another three years you're still not going to have

a resolution to security of

tenure. The park will stay in Government hands for now, but

future private ownership hasn't

been ruled out. And more

housing may be built on the

site. Audits of homes start

next week and there's a warning

that some may be demolished.

We will talk with each

resident individually and

assess their individual

needs. The Government says it will ensure no-one is left of Dame Joan Sutherland filled London's Westminster Abbey

overnight. The opera singer dubbed La Stupenda died last

year at her home in

Switzerland. Rachael Brown was at the London thanks giving

service. Zb the voice of the

century, century, as her friend Luciano

Pavarotti called her, enveloped

her 2,000 fans, dignitaries and royalty including Prince

Charles. Joon was a

superlative singer possessed of

a ravishingly beautiful voice,

pure, large even throughout its

wide range, flexible, warm and vibrant. Her husband, credited

as the architect of her career,

says he's been overwhelmed by

the public outpouring of grief

since her death last October.

Her grand son presented her honour medals

generation of Australian

sopranos celebrated her legacy.

Most of us when we heard of

her passing thought we would never have any chance in any

way to say thank you or to

remember her in anything that

we do, apart from just our

normal work. To actually have

a chance to sing at something

like this is huge. La Stupenda,

as she was known, might be gone

but memories of a unique voice

still resonate. Michael Clarke

says losses in Australia's two

World Cup warm-up games are not

a cause for concern. Clarke

and skipper Ricky Ponting made half centuries, but the

Australian bowlers struggled to

make an impact, as South Africa

recorded a comfortable win. Duncan Huntsdale

reports. Luckily for Australia, these

these are only warm-up games and, like their uniforms,

Michael Clarke is looking on

the bright side. There's

obviously areas of our game we

need to improve. I think we've

had a good hit-out, now using

these two days as practice

games to see the conditions

that we're going to come up

against. The South Africans weren't getting weren't getting carried away by

the ease of their win. It's a

warm-up game, so we're not looking too much

looking too much into that. The

Indian fans are taking it all

very seriously, though. India

opens its World Cup campaign

against Bangladesh on Saturday.

The controversial and colourful

career of Kevin Muscat will end

in May. The Melbourne victory

captain is currently serving an eight-game suspension in the

A-League and will hang up his

boots after playing in the

Asian champions league. What

brought me to 21-odd years in

football was that playing on

the the edge and that winning

attitude, and, you know, for

that I won't apologise. Muscat says the highlight of his

career was scoring for the

Socceroos in a World Cup

qualifier against Uruguay in

2001. What started as a

spirited champions league clash

between AC Milan and Tottenham

this morning turned despiteful

in the second half. That's a

nasty challenge. There was as

much action on the sidelines as

on the pitch, most of it

involving Milan's captain. Spurs scored the only goal of

the game late in the second

half. He disgraced himself

again after full time. His

clash with Spurs assistant Joe

Jordan almost sparked a brawl

between the two teams. It was

a knockout blow that stunned

Australian boxing, when Garth

Wood, the winner of

TV program, flawed world

champion Anthony Mundine. It

was a wake-up call The pair will square off again in

April I know he's hungry,

seeking revenge. I'm up for

it. I'm going to match his will, I've got to match his hunger. I haven't had that in

a long time. The fight will be in Brisbane. Three-time Tour De France winner Alberto

Contador is free to race again

after the Spanish cycling

federation overturned his ban

for doping. We are speaking

about not only the best Spanish

cyclist, but the best cyclist

in the world. It is obvious

that for the Spanish federation

and for Spanish cycling this is good news. The International Cycling Union could still

challenge the ruling. Three of Canberra's best Aussie Rules players have been train with the new Greater

Western Sydney squad and

they're hoping for a permanent

place. Ben Hughes, Mitchell Daniher and Marcus Crook were

called up to

called up to training this

week. The three were selected

after standout performances in

a game between the ACT and Giants last weekend. They'll

compete for a place in this

weekend's pre-season opener for

the Giants. Kevin Sheedy, mark Williams, a few of the other

shed coaches have a fair bit of

experience, good to listen and

see what they have to

say They're all there because they're talented footballers

and coaches as well. So just

being around that environment, everyone - we'll all

benefit. The players will

remain with the Giants until the main season starts. Some

valuable Australian art donated

to the Museum of Contemporary

Art in Sydney, by one of the

nation's Premier collectors has

a showing in Canberra. It

includes abstract art and

modern Aboriginal pieces, which

curators say have more in common than you might think. It

measures up as one of the best collections of modern

Australian art. Ann Lewis

spent five decades as spent five decades as a gallery director, collector and patron

of the arts. It's as much about people and the relationship between people as

it is between the relationship

between objects. A lot of

these artist s ... Her

collection is her life's work

and Sydney' Museum of

Contemporary Art was thrilled

when she decided to give them.

She picked up abstract art

before it was popular.

Indigenous art that was cutting

edge. These Emily Kngwarreye's

are too costly for big public

galleries to acquire these days

and are the first Emilies in

the collection. . We were

looking at long time and we wanted to find

the right works too. When Ann came to

came to us with the gift and

allowed us to make a selection

from her collection, these were

two works that were definitely

high on our list. Priceless

pieces created by the women of

the desert hang alongside

masculine abstract art charting

the evolution of Australian artistic expression. Both speak of landscape, the lines

and the colours that make up

Australia. You get a sense of the sort of interplay between

indigenous and non-indigenous

painting in particular and that

sort of moving across

generations too, that sort of

dialogue and a sense of the

sort of spirit and power of abstract painting. There's also sculpture and photography which

is often boldly Australian in

texture and subject matter.

Boldly collected and generously

shared. Looks fabulous. Now a

look at today's weather, here's Mark Carmody. Thanks,

Virginia. Good evening. I was

busier than a bee in

this morning in the garden,

trying to get it mowed, weeded

and pruned so I could put out

pelted poo and complete fertiliser, what is needs now,

to take advantage of the rain.

I finished at 11.30, just as

the rain started tumbling down.

So far our gauge here at Dixon

has 15mm in it. Due to the

cloud cover, Tuggeranong didn't

make the forecast 21, but the

airport did. Currently it's

still raining, but it's eased a

bit. It's 18 degrees. It

rained pretty well right across

our region today, with falls

ranging from the

Tuggeranong to 4 at Charlotte

Pass and an average of 1 down

the coast. Winds were mostly light light to moderate south-easterlies to

north-easterlies. The top

temperatures were in the low 20s, except Nowra, which

reached 27. As we've seen in

our top story, it was wild and

woolly in Darwin, with a record

24-hour rain fall. Showers

fell in Brisbane, but Sydney

was mostly sunny and that's why

Nowra was a standout

regionally. Perth an even

bigger standout, reaching a

very hot 39. There's cloud

over the Top End and also off

the WA coast, but the cloud

that's probably of more

interest to us covers most of

the south-east. And that's

associated with a slow-moving States. This trough will

deepen as it links up with a

series of cold fronts, resulting

resulting in showers. So around the country tomorrow,

showers right down the eastern

seaboard, wet and windy again

in Darwin, thunderstorms in the

Alice and Broome, fine and

sunny in Perth and Adelaide.

Regionally tomorrow, these

showers will continue with a

wind change now coming from the

north-west, it will be a lot warmer and stickier than today,

with an expected 28 in Bega and

Yass, 30 in Griffith. And in

Canberra tomorrow, probably not

a good day to dig holes, as

these showers are expected to

continue and there could be

between 4mm and 10mm in it. It

will more than likely fill up

with water. with water. On the positive

side, it will be warmer than

today as winds will swing

around to the north-west and

archl at 25 km/h. Top tomorrow

27, after a minimum of 16.

Then the showers will continue on and off until Sunday, but

hopefully they should ease for

Tropfest at stage 88. The top

temperatures will stick around

the 26, 27 mark. Virginia, one

of my favourite garden plants

is the fuchsia. It does all

right in a semi-shaded, easy

going and not demanded, when

flowering it's showy. Pure

poetry. Thanks Mark. A brief recap of the top stories recap of the top stories

tonight, Darwin is tonight

battening down as cyclone

Carlos approacheses. There has

already been heavy rain and

strong winds in the city.

Japan has suspended its whale

hunt in the Southern Ocean as

Sea Shepherd activists claim

their most successful season.

That's ABC News. Stay with us

now for the '7.30 Report'.

I'll be back with a news update

in one hour. Until then, good

night. Closed Captions by CSI

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Report - to dump or not

dump? The new push for a

crackdown on cheap imports. Anti-dumping generally

protects a small number of

applicants at the expense of the

the broader economy. They're

laughing at us. Beijing is laughing at us. police graduates bridging the

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Live.

Welcome to the program, I'm Heather Ewart.

Heather Ewart. Australia's