January 04, 2005

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Headlines (5:02)

109th Congress/Powell in Asia
The 109th U.S. Congress opened today by swearing in its newest members. The Senate also sent a message of sympathy to the people of Asia who have suffered such devastating losses after an earthquake and subsequent tsunami took the lives of more than 120-thousand people.  Secretary of State Colin Powell is now traveling in the region.  However, since Powell is leaving the post, President Bush has assigned his brother, Florida Governor Jeb Bush to spearhead U.S. relief efforts in Asia. (We’ll have more on living with the devastation from the tsunami coming up.)

Military Leaders Say Pull AG Nomination
Former U.S. military leaders are asking the Bush administration to reconsider the nomination of Alberto Gonzales as Attorney General over letters Gonzales wrote that approve the use of torture. Adam Sharon reports from D.C.

Pinochet’s Lawyers Request Rejected
Chile’s former Dictator Augusto Pinochet will face charges on human rights violations now that the Supreme Court tossed a defense appeal to dismiss the charges. Jorge Garreton has more from Santiago.

Governor of Baghdad Killed
The governor of the Baghdad province was killed today in just one of a series of attacks against the U.S. installed interim government. David Enders reports from Baghdad.

More Palestinians Killed, Elections Approach
At least seven Palestinians were killed this morning during an Israeli military invasion in the Gaza strip.  According to doctors in a local hospital, all of them were under 18.  From occupied Gaza, Mohammed Omar has more.


Tsumani Refugee Crisis Escalates ~ Report from Aceh (2:55)
The Tsunami death toll in Aceh today rose to 90,000 with over one million people internally displaced. Refugees are everywhere across Aceh and even though humanitarian aid is now flowing into Indonesia, volunteers are facing difficulties in distributing the aid. From Aceh, Meggy Margiyono has the story.

Madras Treats Trauma Victims from Tsunami (2:50)
The Tsunami has virtually disappeared India’s Andaman and Nicobar archipelago islands, while rescue efforts in the southern city of Madras are slow. But as our correspondent Binu Alex reports, while the aid is flowing into the affected areas, experts say survivors will suffer the trauma from the tsunami for a long time to come.

Peace Deal Signed in Senegal (3:26)
Senegal’s government has signed a peace deal with the Movement of Democratic Forces of the Casamance (MFDC), possibly ending one of West Africa’s longest-running wars. Thousands of people cheered as the interior minister and rebel leader signed their names to a cease-fire pact. However many more fear that this will just be another one of the many agreements have been signed over the years with no particular action taken by either party. But this agreement does bring some hope for peace in the Casamance, the region known as the bread basket of Sengal. From Senegal, FSRN’s Ndiaga Seck reports.

New Mexico Vote Recount? (3:22)
Today, David Cobb, Green Party US Presidential candidate, and his legal team called for a recount in New Mexico. This comes as New Mexico’s Secretary of State’s office recently released a report finding numerous errors and discrepancies with the counting and reporting of New Mexico’s presidential vote. This is only one in a series of actions taking place across the US that may threaten the swearing in of George W. Bush for his second term as President. Ingrid Drake from the DC Radio Co-op reports.

Florida’s Provisional Ballot Controversy (3:08)
In 2001, Congress created the provisional ballot to help people who showed up on election day and were not on the voting rolls, so that they could still vote and have their problems fixed later.  But an analysis of this year’s election in Florida has found that two-thirds of the provisional ballots in that state were rejected.  From Tampa, FSRN’s Andrew Stelzer reports.

Tenants Victory in Buenos Aires, Argentina (3:42)
In Buenos Aires, hundreds of people are being violently evicted by the state from abandoned factories and houses each week. Over the past few years, tenants have formed a popular assembly to resist these evictions. And one such group, the Tenants Center of Buenos Aires (CIBA using its Spanish acronym), has just won the right to permanently take 18 houses from the state. FSRN correspondent Aura Bogado has more.


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