BBC News在线听力附文本(2009-2-24)


BBC news with Fiona McDonald.

President Obama says American workers will see the benefit of his tax cuts as soon as April, given the typical family's 65 dollars a month more in their pay packets. The president said it was the fastest working tax cut in American history. In his weekly address, Mr. Obama said he'd hold a fiscal summit on Monday and would release what he desCRIbed as a sober and honest budget on Thursday. But he also had this warning.

"None of this will be easy. The road ahead will be long and full of hazards. But I am confident that we as a people have the strength and wisdom to carry out the strategy and overcome this CRIsis. And if we do, our economy and our country will be better and stronger for it."

It's been announced that the British Prime Minister Gordon Brown will hold talks with President Obama in Washington on the third of March, making him the first European leader to have secured a meeting with the new president. The White House said the two men would discuss challenges, such as the global financial CRIsis, the economic summit in London in April and a comprehensive strategy for Afghanistan.

About 100,000 people in Ireland have taken to the streets of the capital Dublin to protest against government plans to cut the pay of public sector workers. The government says the measures are needed to control Ireland's ballooning deficits. Mark Simpson reports from Dublin.

Irish workers are angry. They feel they are being punished for the mistakes of the Irish banks. That's why the center of Dublin came to a standstill this afternoon with tens of thousands of builders, nurses and teachers, demonstrating against proposed wage cuts. The Irish government fears that today's protests could eventually lead to strikes. That may or may not happen, but what's clear is that the days of Ireland's "Celtic Tiger" economy being the envy of Europe are long gone.

Taliban insurgents fighting the army in Pakistan's northwestern Swat Valley say they will announce in the next few days whether they will make their temporary ceasefire a permanent one. A Taliban spokesman told the BBC they would first review government progress on implementing Sharia law in the district. Earlier Pakistani officials said that a permanent truce with militants had been agreed. Shoaib Hasan reports from Islamabad.

Mr. Syed Javed, the head of the local administration in Swat, said that the army would scale back its operations in the valley. Mr. Javed also requested all locals who had migrated due to the fighting to return home. The Taliban's spokesman said their leader expressed satisfaction with the peace agreement, but the spokesman also said that the Taliban would not lay down their arms until the new Sharia regulations were enforced to their satisfaction.

Pakistan's ambassador to the US denied they were caving in to the Taliban, and told the BBC it was a local solution to a local problem.

World news from the BBC.

The director of the Colombian intelligence agency, the DAS, has ordered an investigation into reports that the agency has been infiltrated by criminal gangs. According to a news magazine, rogue agents have been intercepting phone calls to journalists, opposition politicians and magistrates to pass information to drugs gangs. The director, Felipe Munoz, said that an elite team would try to establish whether there was a criminal network working against Colombia's national interests.

Four people have been killed and many injured in fighting between Christians and Muslims in northern Nigeria. A number of churches and mosques were set on fire during the clashes in the northeastern city of Bauchi. The security forces have now restored order. Caroline Duffy reports.

The violence erupted in the suburb of the city, an area known as the ... in the Dutsin-Tashin neighbourhood. It houses a mosque and a church extremely close together. Residents there say that these clashes were sparked by a running disagreement over where worshipers were parking. The state governor has appeared on television warning that perpetrators of mayhem would be swiftly dealt with.

Burma's military government says it has begun releasing up to 6,000 prisoners in what it described as a goodwill gesture to enable them to take part in general election scheduled for 2010. The opposition National League for Democracy welcomed the releases but said only about 15 of an estimated 2,000 political prisoners have been included.

The border between Morocco and Algeria has been opened temporarily for the first time since 1994 to allow an aid convoy for Gaza to travel through. The two North African countries shut their border crossings after Morocco accused Algeria of organizing an attack on a hotel in Marrakesh. A BBC correspondent says despite the Gaza aid convoy concession, there is little sign people would be able to travel overland between Morocco and Aigeria.

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