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Four Corners -

View in ParlView

(generated from captions) Good evening Virginia an

an ABC news update. The big sell is Good evening Virginia Haussegger with

on as Julia Gillard promotes her

carbon tax and Tony

carbon tax and Tony Abbott ramps up carbon tax and Tony Abbott ramps

his assault on the scheme. Julia

Gillard

Gillard promised she'd wear out her

shoe leather explaining her

shoe leather explaining her carbon

tax to voters and

just that with a

tax to voters and today she was doing

just that with a visit to a shopping

mall... A suburban housecall and

endless media interviews. Meanwhile, endless mYzX nterviews. Meanwhile, Tony

endless media interviews. Meanwhile, Tony Abbott is popping

Labor-held seats promsing he'll Tony Abbott is popping up in

the rest of his career on scrapping Labor-held seats promsing he'll stake

the tax. Investors today reacted the tax.i 7>n? s today reacted badly

badly to the carbon tax news. The the tax. Investors today reacted

sharemarket's initial reaction to

plan was negative, Airline stocks sharemarket's initial reaction to the were among those

were among those hardest hit.

were among those hardest hit. They've

revealed just how much the carbon

will cost them. And airline revealed just how much the carbon tax passengers

passengers are expected to foot the

been quick to re-open its doors bill and Canberra's Diamant hotel has

a

a huge fire engulfed

a huge fire engulfed it last month. been quick to re-open its doors after a huge fire engulfed it lasY? ? I The

The fire gutted

The fire gutted a restaurant and a huge fire engulfed it last month.

The fire gutted a restauran?and damaged a

damaged a bar and offices adjoining The fire gutted a restaurant and the heritage listed hotel. But after

just two weeks of repairs. . Guests

were welcomed back to the diamant

hotel today. To Canberra's weather -

a bit of wind around tomorrow a top

of 12 and low of 0. Sydney - 18.

Melbourne -14 Adelaide - 14. More

news in an hour

This program ? Theme music human tide from North Africa After the Arab Spring, a new increasingly turbulent reception. washes ashore in Europe to an Welcome to Four Corners. As Australia continues to struggle asylum-seekers this year, who have arrived here by boat island of Lampedusa, in the same time, the tiny Italian population 6,000, off the coast of Sicily, from Libya and Tunisia has seen more than 40,000 refugees arrive by boat. While the Arab Spring for a more stable democratic region, has brought with it hope centred in Europe the bombardments from NATO forces to try to protect Libyan civilians embattled Gaddafi forces, under threat from to the flow of refugees. have inevitably contributed point for a political debate Lampedusa has now become a focal that has grown in its stridency, the free flow of people threatening to stop within the European community. across 25 borders are on the rise. Anti-immigration parties as the key pressure point. Geography has nominated Italy And France, too, feels an unfair share of the burden. it is being forced to shoulder a single Libyan or Tunisian refugee. To this point, Britain has not taken it has become a pawn Lampedusa now feels over refugees. in Europe's political game the BBC's This World team. This report comes from MAN: The tourist island of Lampedusa its crystal-clear waters, is famous for and remote coves and beaches. 6,000 residents It's March 2011, and the island's summer season, are getting ready for the crucial from Italy and abroad. when wealthy tourists jet in (Speaks in local language) the island's tourist economy The responsibility of promoting falls to one man. the island's mayor for four years. Bernardino de Rubes has been he's a familiar figure around town. And at nearly 7-feet tall, (Bernadino speaks Italian) not Mayor, because I'm one of them. TRANSLATOR: Everyone calls me Dino, I'm everyone's mayor. I know everyone, I love everyone. I'm here all year round. is jeweller to the tourists Just up the road from Dino's office Stella Migliosini. I decided to live here in Lampedusa. TRANSLATOR: I was tired of the city. I love the calmness, the peace. I love the sea, This is a peaceful island. (Waves crashing) Lampedusa is attracting But this year, of foreign traveller. an entirely different kind its beaches With only 70 miles separating of the Arab Spring, from the uprisings the first port of call the island has become in search of a better life overseas. for Tunisians leaving North Africa (Speaks Italian) in the Mediterranean, TRANSLATOR: As a port a transit point for immigrants. Lampedusa has always been We're always very welcoming to them. food. We do all we can, and more. We give them what we can - blankets, With the revolution in Tunis, with the EU have collapsed, all immigration agreements things are going to be different. and word is out that this year, starting to run regular items With Italian TV news about migrants arriving in Lampedusa, disaster for the summer season. Dino knows that this could spell (Speaks Italian) because of the phenomenon, TRANSLATOR: Cameras came here this unique phenomenon, to people who'd never heard of it - and they showed Lampedusa to the whole world. (Continues speaking Italian) But the world must know is not just about migrants. that Lampedusa which lives off tourism. It's also a place of tourism, (TV announcer speaks Italian) of the town, A mile away from the cafes and shops Lampedusa's Migrant Reception Centre. and hidden behind the hills, is but was forced to reopen this year It was closed in 2009, of the Tunisians. to cater for the sudden arrival (Indistinct conversations) We are with diploma, graduation. We are good pupils, education. But we not... but we not have a chance to have a good job, with the minimum. to have a good life, a good time to stay in Tunisia, INTERVIEWER: Would it not be when there's now democracy? just a word. But not in reality. It's just a title, (Indistinct conversations) So far, Italian politicians in Rome have kept their distance from Lampedusa's Tunisian invasion. But for Far-Right French politician and presidential hopeful Marine Le Pen a chance to capitalise on the situation proves irresistible. (Indistinct conversations in French) With an international press pack in tow, she declares that it's time to close Europe's borders. Le Pen is currently campaigning to be France's next president... ..and is keen to abandon the Schengen Agreement, that allows free travel within Europe. (Journalist speaks in French) (Indistinct conversations) Away from the foreign press pack, local Lampedusians have prepared their own welcoming committee. (Laughs and speaks Italian) TRANSLATOR: We are awaiting the arrival of Madam Le Pen to welcome her properly, to make her understand that in Lampedusa there are also people who don't think like her. And they're ready to shout it out loud. (Singing in Italian) Paola la Rosa is part of a local group that's dedicated to welcoming migrants, and promoting cultural integration. (Singing continues) Over the following three days, 26 boats, carrying almost 2,000 migrants, arrive in Lampedusa. They're nearly all young men who've paid around ?500 to be shipped across by smugglers like this one. (Indistinct conversations) And these men told us that many more were on their way. With such a sudden spike in numbers, the Centre is overflowing. There are now over 3,000 Tunisians in Lampedusa. With reports of tensions running high in the Centre, Italian guards are turning a blind eye to men jumping the fence, and taking day trips into town. In the past, migrants were kept in the Centre, and away from the eyes of locals and tourists. (Indistinct conversations) For many of the islanders, this is their worst nightmare. (Speaks Italian) TRANSLATOR: Look who's walking around. (Continues speaking Italian) We're used to seeing familiar faces, people we talk to, always at ease with each other. Now we're surrounded by strangers. I'm feeling like a prisoner on my island. We're all free normally. Everyone knows each other. You can't walk alone at night with all these African men around. Absolutely not. (Sounds of traffic) With hundreds of young Tunisian men filling up the handful of bars and cafes in town, Stella decides that enough is enough. A demonstration about the growing number of migrants has been called in the town square, and the community has turned out in force. (Indistinct conversations) Some are beginning to suspect that Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi is deliberately turning a blind eye to Lampedusa's problems, and that images of a small Italian town overrun with migrants may actually win support for his anti-immigration policies. Former Lampedusian councillor Antony Pappalardo steps in to address the crowd. The speech has touched a nerve with his audience, and Paola's group are shocked by the overwhelming local support for Pappalardo's views. (Sighs and speaks Italian) TRANSLATOR: If I had the strength, I'd go out there and talk to as many people as possible, to make them understand that their slogans are deeply racist and illiberal. I saw one of the banners in the square, and it left me feeling empty. 'Send them back now.' (Speaks Arabic) It's five days since we first met Ali in the Centre, and since then 42 boats, carrying over 3,000 migrants, have arrived in Lampedusa. Ali tells us that the Centre has descended into chaos. OK, when we look at the Centre from this place, we feel the photo, it's happy. But when you go inside, you'll discover something not good. Normally off-limits to journalists, he says that no-one is in control, and he can escort us in to show us how bad the conditions have become. With no room to sleep, hundreds of men have been forced to shelter under plastic sheets and bin bags. Some were even sleeping in the toilet blocks. (Indistinct conversations) OK. He say, 'I prefer to come back to my country because it's better than what I live there.' (Speaks Italian) TRANSLATOR: We're on our way to see the women, and some children, who are guests in my mother's house. Away from the Centre, some migrants are living in somewhat better conditions. Dino's family owns a number of luxury tourist villas, and in the absence of paying guests, he's taken in the women and children who've arrived on the island. TRANSLATOR: Ah! Migrant children! Aren't they sweet? I know, only a few, unfortunately. I'd save them all if I could. It's not easy. This is Zakaria. (Speaks Italian) TRANSLATOR: And so, here we have an entire family - husband, wife, the little one. Here's the grandmother. This mother, the old lady, went through a long journey, so she wouldn't be separated from the family. (Speaks Italian) And so my heart led me to make this big humanitarian gesture. If everyone did the same, there wouldn't be migrants on the streets. Italy has six boats and a helicopter patrolling the waters between Lampedusa and North Africa. Giovanni Monteleone is a commander in the Italian Coast Guard. And over the last seven years, he and his crew have rescued over 5,000 migrants as they tried to reach the island. (Speaks Italian) TRANSLATOR: Our feeling, it's a beautiful feeling, to be able to see people change, to see them go from being worried and frightened, to being relaxed. Maybe even happy. (Man speaks Italian over radio) Today, local fishermen have reported up to seven boats on their way to Lampedusa. Many boats are unseaworthy, and part of Giovanni's job is to check on them. (Indistinct conversations) These 110 men are among the lucky ones. The United Nations estimates that this year alone, nearly 1,500 people have drowned while trying to make this journey. (Cheering) (Indistinct conversations) (Indistinct shouting) (Speaks Italian) TRANSLATOR: It's the first time this has ever happened. It's something that's never happened in Lampedusa - a welcome like this. But, there's always a first time. (Speaks Italian) TRANSLATOR: They're right, but so are we, and this is not the way. I hear what they're saying, they speak for their island. They're sick of people coming everyday - 1,000, 2,000, 3,000. If it was my country, I'd probably do the same. (Whistles) Hey! Hey! With the boat unable to dock, it's a triumph for the protesters, and for the first time in Lampedusa's history, the port has been blockaded against migrants. Giovanni must take them out to sea until the crowd can be cleared. But the crowd isn't going anywhere. After two hours, word spreads that a landing area has been prepared on the other side of the harbour, at the island's larger ferry port. Local mum Rosi decided to take charge. The crowd moves quickly round the harbour to the ferry port, to stop Giovanni's boat from landing. But when a line of riot police prevent them from getting near the landing area, the demonstration gets out of control. (Indistinct shouting) Protected by a line of armed police, the Tunisians are quietly brought ashore as the rain begins to fall. Long into the night, the Lampedusians and Tunisians are kept apart. (Indistinct shouting) That night, 1,106 migrants landed on the island. With the migration centre full, and Lampedusians unwilling to let them in, most are trapped here to sleep where they can, at the ferry port. There are only two chemical toilets, no food or water, and just hospital bedsheets for blankets. And with nowhere to go, these men soon get desperate. (Indistinct shouting) Dino, the mayor, is forced to take things into his own hands. (Speaks Italian) The building of the port houses the coast guard's headquarters, and a turtle conservation centre. Overnight, newly arrived Tunisians have forced open doors, and used the building to shelter from the rain. (Dino speaks Italian) TRANSLATOR: This is the office of the captains of the coast guards, the captains of the vessels who rescue migrants at sea. (Speaks Italian) Four days, 25 boats and 2,400 migrants later, Italian politicians in Rome have still done nothing to relieve the pressure on Lampedusa. With the Centre and the port, both overflowing, new arrivals are forced to seek shelter on the hill above the ferry port. The Lampedusians soon dub it The Hill Of Shame. (Aircraft engine shrieks) Two newcomers on the hill are Yusuf and his friend Adel. From beginning I know all the people don't like to stay here. We don't like Italy because Italy is nothing. Compared between England, Germany, France, these three countries, but Italy is nothing. Italy is as Tunisia, I'm sure. With me, I'd like to go to France, but my dream is to be in England, from I'm young, from I'm a kid. I know many thing about England, but in England it's so difficult. So, step by step, maybe we'll be there someday. I hope so. (Men speak indistinctly) (Speaks Arabic) TRANSLATOR: I'm glad they had a safe journey, and I'm happy they've come. They're my Tunisian brothers and they haven't died at sea. They've made it here safe. Thank God. Across the water in Libya, a war is raging... ..and Colonel Gaddafi announces he's abandoning all immigration agreements with the EU, and threatens to flood Europe with migrants. (Jet planes roar) (Paola speaks Italian) TRANSLATOR: You can't stop immigration. You can't stop people who want to move, no matter what. You can't stop it. At a moment like this, we're dealing with history - an upheaval in North Africa that really could bring in a new world order... ..a reworking of everything we were taking for granted. Finally, Rome responds. (Foghorn blares) The Italian Ministry of the Interior has sent some tents and portable toilets to the island, with orders to build a tented encampment for the migrants. But another day brings another protest. Fearing that a refugee camp would just attract more migrants, and ruin Lampedusa's image, the islanders are having none of it. (Speaks Italian) TRANSLATOR: We're staying here. We're not moving for any reason. We will not let the trucks through. The mayor is on our side. He's declared a state of emergency, and a council meeting is going to be held here. But despite his promises to the crowd, Dino is under pressure from Italy's Minister of the Interior, and police chiefs in Palermo. After an hour of phone calls behind the scenes, he's ordered to take everything off the ferry. As he prepares to break the news, police reinforcements are brought in to help. (Microphone squeals) As a compromise, Dino has negotiated that the containers of aid will be brought on to the island, but will remain unopened on the quayside. (Indistinct shouting) Stella agrees with this compromise, but she's in a minority. After more than eight hours negotiation, the containers of tents and toilets are finally driven on to the quayside, where they will be held, under guard, by the Italian army. And as if to taunt the nearby protesters, as the ferry prepares to leave, another boat arrives to take its place. (Whistling and cheering) It's the first of six that will arrive in the next five hours, bringing 800 more Tunisians to Lampedusa. (Whistling and shouting continue) For the first time in the island's history, foreign migrants now outnumber Italians. (Whistling and shouting continues) (Speaks Italian) TRANSLATOR: I'm tired, tired. Tired because it's a massive phenomenon, a historical phenomenon. It's enormously difficult to deal with this daily humanitarian emergency - an emergency we find difficult to deal with, because the numbers are just so big. (Indistinct conversations) On the island, the locals feel frustrated. Finally, over a month after the crisis began, the first senior Italian politician flies to Lampedusa. President of Sicily, Rafaele Lombardo, has come to hear the varied complaints of the islanders. Knowing that Lombardo has the ear of senior politicians in Rome, Dino decides to make a stand. But just as Dino is trying to put pressure on Rome, Rome is on the phone. A call from Prime Minister Berlusconi himself. The ever-growing number of migrants on the Hill Of Shame are making politicians nervous all over Europe. No-one seems to know what to do with them. Around the EU, states have begun to drop hints that they're considering abandoning Europe's Schengen Agreement, and closing their internal borders. But for Adel and his friends, all that matters is staying warm. (Speaks Italian) Down in town, there's a breakthrough. Hey! For the first time in Lampedusa's history, the island is to welcome the nation's serving Prime Minister. Silvio Berlusconi has come to answer his critics. (Speaks Italian) Berlusconi has been busy off late, fending off allegations of political corruption, and sex with under-aged girls at his notorious 'bunga bunga' parties. But Dino is determined to keep Berlusconi's problems off the agenda.

(Indistinct conversations) (Applause and shouting) (Cheering) (Clapping and shouting) (Applause and cheering) (Woman shouts in Italian) (Foghorn blares) Two days later, Yusuf and Adel were given space on one of six ships taking migrants to Sicily, on Berlusconi's orders. I have to go to... group our... our group, and hope that we leave this magic place. Thanks to God, and... well... Merci bien. Thanks... Merci bien. I wear all my clothes, all of them, to support. One, two, three... ..four... um... five... ..and six and seven. (Speaks indistinctly) Berlusconi kept his word. Within days the island is cleared of Tunisians, and Lampedusians turn out to see them off. Within a week, Yusuf, Ali and Adel, would all be in Paris. Paola remains convinced that the breakdown in Lampedusa was manufactured to win support for anti-immigration policies. (Speaks Italian) TRANSLATOR: When they were forced to stay on the island, and started threatening the island's image, people's attitudes changed. We started to see these people as a threat, a real threat. Two months later, and the islanders are hoping that the tourists will still come this year. But they know that the next wave of migrants is on its way. This time, from the war in Libya. With boats of refugees already arriving, the crisis in Lampedusa has shown how unprepared Europe is for the fallout of the Arab Spring. STELLA'S TRANSLATOR: We're all scared. Let's remember Africa is in turmoil. They're at war. We should shut the borders as Europe is planning to do. Italy should do the same. We can't let them through the door of the Mediterranean, and keep them here in Italy. We don't have enough space. DINO'S TRANSLATOR: We're a welcoming people, and not racist. This is different from Europe, who's behaviour is questionable. You could call them dismissive, even perhaps racist. Europe's politicians now face the biggest challenge ever to the EU's policy on immigration. Will they stand alone, or act together? More likely to be standing alone, perhaps, after Denmark just last week announced that it will introduce immigration controls on its borders with Germany and Sweden, threatening a 26-year-old European Union treaty called the Schengen Agreement. Next week, we travel to the booming Western Australian Pilbara region for a rare glimpse behind the scenes as Indigenous groups vie for a fair slice of an unprecedented minerals bonanza. Until then, goodnight. ? Theme music Closed Captions by CSI - Matt Whitmore & Sharmishta Sarkar This Program is Captioned Live # Theme music The truth is, we have all been in this together - the press, politicians and leaders of all parties - and yes, that includes me. We have not gripped this issue. No other country would allow one man to garner four national newspapers, the second largest broadcaster, a monopoly on sports rights and first-view movies. Well, Australia isn't far behind. Welcome to Media Watch. I'm Jonathan Holmes. News Corporation, its power and influence All week, Britain has been obsessed with the biggest media story to hit that country in my lifetime.