>> live from berlin, this is the "journal" on dw. >> nato reaffirms its commitment to afghanistan, but another soldier photo scandal shakes up trust on all sides. the german cabinet approves increased powers for german soldiers fighting pirates in the horn of africa, and t minus 100 days until the summer olympics, and london says everything is on
>> the "los angeles times" newspaper has released a photograph showing u.s. serviceman posing with the bodies of dead afghan suicide bombers. heavy criticism. >> they overshadow a nato meeting in brussels designed to map out what role the alliance will play in afghanistan once foreign troops are gone. we will have more analysis from brussels and washington in a moment, but our coverage begins with what came out of the meeting in brussels. >> speaking to media at the meeting, the nato secretary general was quite clear on this point -- nato will remain committed to afghanistan beyond 2014, not as a fighting force, but to train and assist. >> it is in the interest of the whole international community to
see strong and highly capable afghan security forces take full responsibility for security. >> the price tag of a mission to assist in afghanistan's army and police forces could cost around $4 billion a year, says nato. that is less than the cost of keeping combat troops there, but it is unclear how much member states would contribute. on tuesday, australia said it would withdraw most soldiers as early as mid-2013 and turned over command to local forces. a statement that caused some consternation at nato headquarters. >> as far as a australia is concerned, we were surprised by the announcement. my australian counterpart expressed it somewhat differently in february, but that will not deter us from our strategy. >> that suggests berlin intends to stick to its withdrawal
timetable as nato members struggled to find a common line. >> a short while ago, i talked to our brussels correspondent and asked her to cut through the talk and tell us what nato put into motion today. >> withdrawing combat troops does not mean that you are abandoning afghanistan -- that was the message sent out here by nato partners who are meeting in brussels. nato's secretary general called on all partners again to commit themselves to support afghanistan even beyond 2014, which is when nato partners plan to withdraw their troops and hand over full responsibility to the afghan forces. this plan was confirmed. no decisions were taken as yet on wednesday. the goal of the two-day meeting is to prepare a key summit in chicago, but nato hopes to have a much clearer picture as far as financing is concerned. financing is a big problem,
especially for some european countries. defense budgets are getting smaller, but transition as on the right track. this was confirmed here as well, and the fact that it was afghan forces who fought back taliban militants last weekend was a good sign. everybody said that the country is in a position to take over full responsibility soon. >> thank you very much. when nato members were not talking about the future of afghanistan, they were answering questions about the behavior of soldiers there now. pictures of u.s. servicemen with the corpses of afghan suicide bombers have gone public. let's go to our washington correspondent. talk to me about the damage control machine that appears to be in operation yet again in washington. >> yes, u.s. defence secretary panetta had to apologize for the misconduct of the mostly young
american troops. the word he used, i think we have heard before. he condemns the behavior. he said that the matter will be fully investigated. the response will be there will be held accountable. he also said that the majority of american troops in afghanistan are doing a good job, and he said, when asked about those photographs, "that is not who we are." >> that behavior that was depicted in those photos absolutely violates both our regulations and, more importantly, our core values. this is not who we are, and it is certainly not who we represent when it comes to the great majority of men and women in uniform who are serving their.
>> the american-afghan relationship is fragile, and he hopes that afghanistan will make no provocative statements this friday, but he also made clear that probably, the matter will be used by the enemy and will probably strengthen the will of the taliban to fight against not only american troops but all foreign troops in afghanistan, meaning also german or british troops. let me also make clear that the majority of americans -- more than 60% -- say that this war in afghanistan is not worth fighting. when you have an incident like this one, this number is probably even going to grow. >> all right, our man in washington for us. thank you very much. >> fighting is continuing in syria, despite the united nations-brokered cease-fire that went into effect last week and
the arrival of international observers in the country. witnesses say the assad regime is still carrying out assaults in areas where anti-government rebels are active, but the united nations insists the fragile truce is still holding and remains intact. >> this footage was purportedly shot this morning where an advance team of united nations observers was visiting. activists say damascus's campaign against dissidents claimed another 20 lives. the violence has concerned the international community about the observer mission's by ability, but united nations says the violence has become more sporadic, and they vowed to go ahead with the mission. the advance group's leader told reporters in terse words that his team was continuing to do its duty. but the team itself was also the target of protests according to activists. many people there see the mission's prospects as dead on arrival. meanwhile, syria's foreign
minister travel to beijing to meet with his chinese counterpart. china has backed the peace plan laid out by united nations special envoy kofi annan and says syria pledges to uphold the plan, but skeptical diplomats say damascus is just buying time. >> in a related story, turkey has intercepted a german container ship suspected of carrying iranian weapons destined for syria. a coast guard patrol vote escorted the freighter to a turkish port where it is being searched by turkish authorities. media reports have cited a serious defect as saying the ship's cargo included military equipment from iran which would be a clear breach of an arms embargo. germany used an important step further in upping its attack on somali pirates. >> the german cabinet approved measures this wednesday which allow german forces to join other eu countries in pursuing pirates on land, not just at sea.
>> but some lawmakers say this could draw germany into a conflict that has potential to expand. >> somali pirates in small votes continue to menace international shipping off the horn of africa. the eu's mission to crack down on piracy to protect shipping has had only lebanese -- limited success. germany wants to increase the power of its forces. new measures would permit them to use aircraft to attack higher targets up to two kilometers inland. -- an attack pirate targets up to two kilometers inland. >> we are not prepared to sit back and let others take the fight to the pirates while we make it easy for ourselves. this is something we have to deal with together. we need to work together. it is right that germany not isolate itself in europe.
>> the opposition social democrats and greens are cautious. they supported anti-piracy measures in the past, but they call the new proposal redundant and dangerous. >> this mission as we have known it is threatening to more from one of securing international borders to an air and ground war, and that could be playing with fire. >> both the opposition and the government said they favor a political solution to the simoleon pirate problem. >> now today three of the trial of norway's mass murder appeared today, he told the court that he should either be acquitted or put to death. as you know, capital punishment is illegal, and breivik faces a 21-year prison sentence.
breivik has confessed to killing 77 people last summer. many of them young people affiliated with the country's ruling labor party. and what he says is his struggle to stop islam's march across europe. italy has unveiled some disappointing economic data this wednesday as it struggles to get its finances in order. a technocrat government which was formed to street that the country's economy says a deeper than expected recession means it will fail to meet its goal of a balanced budget next year. this news from roan coincides with an announcement by agrees that it expects to see its economy contract this year by another 4.7% -- an announcement by greece. investors anxiously await a report from the european commission on whether the painful reform efforts are working. on to the markets, and following
tuesday's strong rally, investors sent equities lower in the mid-week session. our correspondent sent us this summary from the frankfurt stock exchange. >> after the unexpected rally at the beginning of this week when the dax went up by 4% on monday and tuesday, the traders here on the frankfurt floor took a break, but the dax was also driven down by new concerns concerning the debt crisis in europe. italy might fail to reach its goals in the household policy. also, there are no worries about spain. there will be an option of going on on thursday, and investors are really fearing that spain might have to pay high yields. >> we said in frankfurt for a closer look at wednesday's numbers. the dax gave up about 1/4% -- up
about 1%. across the atlantic on wall street, the dow at this hour down by just over 0.4% at 13,060 points. the euro up a tad against the dollar trading at a value of $ 1.3128. well, what happens to the records of phone calls made here in germany? evidently, not what the law demands. >> that is right. there's a political showdown in the making here. the european union says all phone calls should be stored for six months for security reasons. >> but germany's justice minister says that chips away too much at private data protection, and she is not spending quite yet. >> the german justice minister is digging in her heels. she says internet and telephone data should be stored only if authorities suspect criminal activity, but germany cozy
interior minister and the e you disagree. they believe that all user data should be stored for up to six months so law enforcement agencies can access it during investigations. >> the justice minister has to implement new laws and guidelines. the eu commission is demanding no more and no less of her, and that is also what i expect. >> brussels has been waiting for years for berlin to enforce the rules. when the government initially implemented, germany's court halted the process. its 2010 decision said the law needed stronger data protection. in this latest row, chancellor merkel made clear she expects the just a minute -- the justice minister to forge a compromise. >> if we cannot reach an agreement on political matters such as this, there is an option for discussions with the chancellor. i am not implying that will happen in this case.
>> welcome back, everyone. muammar gaddafi did not last long enough to face justice, but that is not the case for his son. on wednesday, the chief prosecutor at the international criminal court arrived in the libyan capital, partly to talk about the fate of men who already faces trial in libya. the chief prosecutor is already stopping by the coastal city of misratah to investigate allegations of abuse in detention facilities run by militiamen who fought against get off the's forces. >> during the uprising, misratah came under heavy fire by the of the's forces, who were trying to
keep the city from falling to rebels. we sent our reporters to get a picture of what life is like in the city today. >> misratah -- no libyan city was heavily damaged in the fighting between gaddafi loyalists and revolutionaries. few buildings escaped unscathed. it was raided by security forces for months and battered by heavy artillery. thousands of people here died. the new city administration faces a herculean task -- gaddafi loyalists have been replaced by supporters of the revolution, mostly businessmen and shop owners. right now, they are discussing salaries for the police force, but the coffers are empty. >> our most important task is to rebuild the city. it was nearly destroyed, and not just houses, but also our health care, education, school, and police as well.
we have big problems. we are starting from scratch. >> misratah lost more than 30,000 residents. gaddafi supporters who could not leave are being held in detention centers like this one. many foreign journalists have tried to enter the complex, one of four jails run by the new government in misratah. what once housed state security workers now holds the revolution's losers. guards and prisoners once worked together as drivers, craftsman, and farmers. now, five months after the fighting, all that matters is who collaborated with the gaddafi regime. around 1200 men are being held here. more than 200 sleep in this room alone. they have not based trials, nor do they know what they are accused of. >> i do not know anything about
torture. we just watch over things. you have spoken with them yourselves, seen how we treat them. i know nothing about torture. that is not my job. >> but there are reports of secret camps throughout libya were gaddafi [applause] former supporters are being tortured, sometimes to debt. even here in misratah, prisoners say they are being mistreated. -- reports of secret camps throughout libya where gaddafi poesies former supporters are being tortured, sometimes to death -- gaddafi's former supporters. >> i need stitches in my head. >> doctors without borders began treating prisoners in misratah last august. the humanitarian group complained to authorities when they saw increasing evidence of torture. they were ignored, so doctors
stopped their work in protest. >> we have seen in electroshock ones. we cared for prisoners for months. we treated their bullet wounds and that sort of thing. we knew most of the prisoners. some disappeared from the jails for a few days and then came back, ones that had nearly healed had reopened. >> this is the camp in the capital, tripoli. 1400 are being held here. they fled their city as it was overrun by revolutionaries. they were on the wrong side of the battle, on gaddafi's side. children take a lesson in arabic in dormitories once used by a turkish construction firm.
the 200 families in this camp are still viewed as enemies. these people organize their own lives. the government provides food, water, and guards at the camp fences. they keep out armed militants seeking revenge. people here would be hunted down if they were to leave the camp. six have been missing for weeks, presumed dead or being tortured in a secret prison. the camp director says his people fear for their lives. >> i cannot return to my homeland. if i left this camp, it would be a game of russian roulette. they may or may not find me. if they did, they would capture me and take me to a secret location. >> the city or what remains of it -- about 25,000 people, more than half of the tribe, used to live here.
all were forced to flee from the revolutionaries. they are also accused of human- rights abuses. they help get off the -- gaddafi's forces and gave them shelter. this commander remembers those times. he describes the three months of unrelenting fighting here from may until august last year. it was one of the decisive battles in libya's civil war. >> there was a war here. troops loyal to the regime dug in their heels here. >> dark-and libyans -- dark- skinned libyans are often viewed with suspicion by the arab majority, but the protection they once enjoyed under the gaddafi regime is now gone. >> a reconciliation is out of the question.
it would be like throwing oil on the fire. there has been too much fighting here. they have committed to many crimes manyrape, -- too many crimes -- rape, murder, robbery. >> the goal was to end the dictatorship and construct a democracy with new schools, streets, hospitals, and jobs. it seems that a government based on the rule of law is still not a high priority. >> changing gears now, and the summer olympics kick off in 100 days in london. the city has hosted the games twice already. >> you could say that practice makes perfect. construction is on track with some major venues ahead of schedule. take a look. >> london's olympic stadium is ready more than three months before the games start, and local sports enthusiasts are putting it to the test.
the arena holds 80,000 people. also ready for action is the aquatics center with the olympic swimming and diving pools. many of the new facilities will be used by local communities after the games are over. the parade in central london is being used short term as a beach volleyball court, and, of course, tennis matches will take place at wimbledon and football at wembley stadium. the olympic village is located within walking distance of the venues. during the games, 17,000 athletes will be housed here with 1500 security guards. >> it is merging to capacity, so there will be a feeling of camaraderie, french appeared of competition, but also mutual support. >> the whole neighborhood around the olympic park has been
upgraded, something many residents welcome. >> it is a bit prettier now with all these buildings. >> working with people, changing the area, as long as it can carry on after the olympics. >> london is prepared for the games and the onslaught of visitors that will come to them. that all right, from the games to art, germany's largest international art fair is under way this week. it includes works of classical modernism, post-war, and contemporary art. >> for the first time, the new art dealers alliance from the u.s. is working directly with the art fair, which features a well-known artists as well as international newcomers, providing a range of this place for visitors to enjoy. >> visitors to the art fair did not have to go far before
getting a chance to relax in this with his culture. the artist calls his work "man on shares." the city is celebrating 25 years a partnership with beijing, but chinese art is just one small part of the exhibition. the fair has undergone a bit of a makeover. fans say it seems better organized and more whimsical. the fare is also very popular. judging by the crowds wanting to get in on opening night. art experts are optimistic about the future. >> it has risen like a phoenix from the ashes, and old creature that is still full of life. this is the art fair that invented contemporary art fairs. in 2012, it has a unique place in germany and beyond. the ryland boasts a number of high-profile collectors and
galleries. in the last decade, though, it seemed like many have followed the politicians to berlin. now, many galleries are back, in part, thanks to the director. the focus of the fair is on a young american artists with a goal of strengthening ties between new york and cologne. >> cool jigsaw puzzle there. i would hate to have to put it back together. >> all right, that is all for the "journal" this hour. for more information, check us out on our web site -- www.dw.de. stay with us.