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BBC news 2017-02-26 加文本

[日期:2008-03-11]   [字体: ]
BBC 2008-02-26


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BBC news with Jerry Schmitt.

A photo of the Democratic Party presidential candidate Barack Obama dressed in traditional Somali clothing including a turban has prompted an angry exchange with his opponent Hillary Clinton. The row has erupted just a week before the Ohio and Texas primaries, widely seen as vital to Senator Clinton's survival in the nomination race. Here's our North America editor Justin Webb.

The bare-knuckle fight senior democrats had feared appears now to have started. The news and gossip website, The Drudge Report, says it was sent a photograph of Senator Obama after it was distributed among Clinton aids. The photograph taken in 2006 on an African tour shows the candidate whose father came from Kenya posing in the dress of a Somali elder with a white turban and matching robes. The Clinton camp have made efforts before to suggest to democrats that Barack Obama's background might be off-putting to mainstream voters. David Plouffe, Obama's campaign manager called the emergence of the photograph the most shameful, offensive fear-mongering we've seen from either party in this election.

A major survey of religious life in the United States suggests that more than a quarter of the American adults have left the faith in which they were raised for another one or abandoned religion all together. The pure forum, found that the Roman Catholic Church, has suffered most. But there is also been a fall in the number of Protestants. Sixteen percent of Americans questioned said they were not affiliated to any religion.

The former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan has warned that Kenya's opposing political parties appear incapable of resolving their differences. Negotiations between them following December's disputed presidential elections have broken down. Meanwhile, the United Nations under Secretary for humanitarian affairs John Holmes has told the Security Council that Kenya's problems will be felt by many Kenyans for some time to come.

Even if there was a rapid political settlement, some of the issues which lie behind explosion of violence after the elections are very deep-rooted and they have to do with questions of land and poverty and economic inequality. They will need to be addressed. That will require a huge political effort and sometime from all the politicians in Kenya.

There is renewed optimism that there may soon be proGREss towards a peace agreement on the divided island of Cyprus. The newly elected Greek Cypriot President Demetris Christofias and the Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat have both called for talks. Tabitha Morgan reports from Nicosia.

Less than 24 hours after his victory in the presidential election, Mr. Christofias said that he asked the UN representative on the island to arrange exploratory talks with Mr. Talat. For his part, Mr. Talat warmly welcomed Mr. Christofias's election, calling him a person who could implement the GREek Cypriot Community’s desire for change. He then went further saying that he would not be surprised if the problems were solved by the end of 2008.

World News from the BBC.

The British ambassador to the United Nations nuclear monitoring body, the IAEA says documents handed to the organization show Iran may have continued secret work to develop nuclear weapons after 2003, the year it said it abandoned the program. The ambassador Simon Smith said the information included designs for a nuclear warhead. The Iranian ambassador to the IAEA dismissed the documents as forgeries.

More figures have been published showing the continued weakness of the American housing market. The group which represents US State Agent says sales of homes excluding new ones are now at their lowest level for nine years. This report from our economics correspondent Andrew Walker.

Sales of existing homes in January fell 0.4% from the previous month. But compared with the year earlier, they are down by 23%. Many analysts had expected the figures to be even worse. They do point to a housing market that remains very weak. It was the sector where recent US economic problems began, as many borrowers struggled to repay home purchase loans. Slow sales suggest that prices are also likely to remain relatively weak which can make consumers reluctant to spend.

A number of universities in Turkey say they will defy a new law which came into force on Monday permitting women to wear the Islamic headscarf. The universities argue the new law undermines the separation of state and religion. Over the weekend, the head of the higher education board called on university presidents to allow the headscarf for the immediate effect.

A court in Milan has aGREed to suspend the trial of Italy's opposition leader Silvio Berlusconi until after the April elections so that he can concentrate on campaigning. The trial concerns alleged fraud at Mr. Berlusconi's private television company Mediaset. The case will resume the week after the election when Mr. Berlusconi could be Italy's new Prime Minister.

BBC News

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