October 10, 2003

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Headlines with Randi Zimmerman
Iranian Woman Wins Peace Prize
The first woman judge in Iran is now the first Iranian and first Muslim woman to win the Nobel Peace Prize. Shirin Ebadi, according to the Nobel Committee, earned the award “for her efforts for democracy and human rights,” particularly for women and children in her country. In a press conference, she said, “The fight for human rights is conducted in Iran by the Iranian people and we are against any foreign intervention in Iran.”

Red Cross Criticizes US Gitmo Policy
The Red Cross is breaking silence on their observations at Guantanamo Bay about the treatment of prisoners being held there. Craig Murphy reports from D.C.

Israeli Military Raids Rafah Refugees
A Canadian born Israeli soldier began his 28-day military prison term for refusing to serve in the occupied West Bank. The 33-year-old paratrooper said, “I believe with all my heart that in refusing to serve in the occupied territories, I am serving the state of Israel in the most important manner.” And, overnight the Israeli military invaded the Rafah refugee camp, killing 7 people. Mohammed Ghalayini has more from Gaza City.

US Congressmen Investigating Mexico Murders
A U.S. Congressional delegation will travel to the Tex-Mex border to investigate the hundreds of disappearances, rapes and gruesome murders of young women. Shannon Young reports from KPFT in Houston.

NATO Protestors Pushed Back
Protestors in Colorado were denied the chance to take their message to NATO defense ministers. Len Houle explains from KGNU in Boulder.

Syrian Neighbors Wary of U.S. Intentions
As Thursday marked the 6 month anniversary of US and British forces toppling the statue of former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein in Baghdad- Today the death toll rises as two more US soldiers were killed and four others injured in a Baghdad neighborhood. This comes on a day when U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney defended the Bush Administration’s actions in Iraq as saying “terrorists are doing everything they can” to get weapons of mass destruction. Earlier this week, Israeli officials defended the attack on Syria as a “pre-emptive strike”- this coupled with a US move to impose sanctions on the country has sparked anger and condemnation around the Arab world, underlining fears that Syria might be next country the United States may target. Oula Farawati in Amman, Jordan has more.

Very Temporary Assistance for Needy Families
This week President Bush signed a six-month extension of the welfare reform law TANF just ahead of its expiration. Under the current Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program, otherwise known as welfare reform, a single mother with two children receives a payment of $356 a month. And for more than a year, Congress has been working on bills that would reauthorize the TANF program. Versions of the legislation making their way through the House and Senate would increase the required number of work-related hours for TANF recipients but would not provide additional funding for childcare. The end result, experts say, would force parents to spend more time away from their children and bear the cost of additional child-care expenses. Deepa Fernandes has this report from Austin Texas where today many women are gathered under the auspices of the Ms Foundation for Women to draw attention to the fast deteriorating economic and human rights of women under the Bush Administration.

Zero Tolerance in Mexico City
It is one year since the beginning of the zero tolerance policies in Mexico City, implemented by Mexico City’s government after hiring as a consultant former NYC mayor Rudolph Giuliani. Although the set of recommendations by Giulliani has been received well by business groups, civil rights activists have indicated that there’s been a marked increase of human rights violations. Vladimir Flores and Carlo Martinez have more from Mexico City.

Peace Talks in Senegal
The Casamance is the southern part of Senegal and since 1982, Casamance has seen intense fighting between the Senegalese military and rebels, know as the Movement of Democratic Forces for Casamance (MFDC), which has greatly endangered the region. Land mines and proliferation of light weapons have made it impossible for civilians to work on their rice farms and orchards. This past May, the president of the rebel group, met with Senegalese president Abdoulaye Wade and they signed a 10-point declaration for peace in the Casamance. One of the points involved a meeting of all the different wings of the MFDC and this week saw the 3-day event take place. From Senegal, Ndiaga Seck reports.

Anniversary of Bombings in Bali
This Sunday marks the first anniversary of the bombings in Bali Indonesia that killed 202 people including 7 Americans, 88 Australians and 38 Balinese. Not only did the Bali bombings bring terrorism to Australia’s doorstep but it has ushered in an era where Australia is asserting itself in the Asia-Pacific region to fight terrorism – a move that is straining relations with its neighbors including Indonesia. One year on from Bali, Guy Degen reports from Sydney, Australia.


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