October 18, 2002

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US Uses Different Approach with N. Korea (3:29)
The Bush Administration has gone public with a North Korean admission that is has been working secretly for years to develop nuclear weapons. The White House has chosen a diplomatic path in confronting North Korea’s weapons of mass destruction, a marked change from the President’s policy towards Iraq. Gareth Schweitzer reports from Washington.

Indonesia Responds to Terrorism (2:20)
A bomb ripped through a bus in suburban Manila late today, killing at least three people and injuring 20 others. This came hours after a grenade blast in the capital’s financial district and a day after two deadly bombings in the southern Philippines. There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the bus blast. The blasts in the Philippines come after the weekend’s deadly bomb blasts in a Bali nightclub that killed close to 200, mostly Australians. And as Australia comes to terms with what has been seen as 9-11 Down Under, Indonesians themselves are bracing for hard economic times as tourism has taken a great blow and the notoriously human rights abusing Indonesian army is set to get expanded powers. Michael Bushell reports from community radio station 2SER in Sydney.

Meanwhile, pressure from the US and Australia in particular has been mounting on the Indonesian president Megawati Soukarnputri to crack down. Megawati signed emergency legislation late today to combat terrorism and give authorities wider powers to investigate the Bali bombings. While the West lauds her moves towards combating terrorism, few seem concerned about what these wider powers will mean for Indonesian civilians who have seen many years of flagrant human rights abuses by their own military. In fact, as John Miller of the East Timor Action network notes, after years of pressure form activists, the US finally stopped funding to the Indonesian military in 1999 after the violence in East Timor.

Colombia Cracks Down on Human Rights Observers (4:28)
This week in Colombia, under Operation Orion, as the Government?s armed forces confronted rebel groups in the city of Medellin, killing civilians and detaining 38 militia members. In Cali, students clashed with police in street protests. This as it is now one month since President Alvaro Uribe issued the Decree 2002. The decree allows house searches, interception of communications and civilian detentions. These measures are part of what the Uribe administration calls “Democratic Security.” The decree also authorizes security forces to restrict civilian movement and stipulates strict rules for foreigners in conflict zones. Last Friday, a U.S. citizen was deported for improper use of his tourist visa. From Colombia, Nicole Karsin has more.

Human Rights Commission Investigates Mexican Government   (4:15)
Almost one year after the discovery of eight murdered women in Ciudad Juarez caused an international uproar, questions linger about those cases as well as new ones. While protest against the killings spreads, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights in Washington is considering complaints this month against the Mexican government filed by family members of the victims. Kent Paterson has more from Ciudad Juarez.

Afghan Warlords Use US Weapons (4:36)
Criticism is emerging from Afghanistan that the US military is providing recovered weapons to the countries warlords. Every week, US troops combing eastern Afghanistan find huge weapons caches. Last week the army uncovered an arsenal in a warehouse in Khost and filled 35 trucks with weapons ranging from 120mm rockets to anti-tank guns. Militia fighters traveling with the US troops got first crack at the seized weapons and ammunition, followed by nearby forces. Deepa Fernandes reports.

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