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tv   News  Al Jazeera  February 18, 2015 11:00am-11:31am EST

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the system". premieres sunday march 1st, 10:00 eastern. only on al jazeera america. ♪ government troops are forced out of a town in eastern ukraine after an assault by pro-russian rebels. ♪ hello again from doha everyone. i'm here with the world news from al jazeera. [ gunfire ] >> reporter: a state of emergency in myanmar after an attack on a red cross convoy. [ explosion ] >> reporter: egypt wants more support from the united states after striking isil fighters in libya. i'm lawrence lee in
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copenhagen which is set to become the world's first carbon neutral capitol. ♪ we are focusing on the ukrainian town of debaltseve this hour which has seen weeks of intense fighting, but has now fallen to pro-russian separatists. that has been condemned by the international community, which says the separatists have violated the minsk agreement. the ukrainian troops started leaving earlier on wednesday. separatists said they pushed the soldiers out. ukraine's president described the withdrawal as having been done in a planned and paeszful way. >> translator: we have taken new defensive line and drawn my talks with the leaders of the united states of america, and european union, we demanded a
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hard response to the activities of russia. and we be prepare organized and coordinated actions. now i'm going to the front line to meet those two left and i have a high honor to shake their hands and to thank ukrainian heros. >> that's poroshenko putting the most positive spin he can on it. but the fall of debaltseve is a big loss. it's at an intersection between two highways the ones that link the separatists territories, and a rail hub. have a look at this from paul brennan now, he sent in a report outside of debaltseve. >> reporter: we're at check points about five kill meters to the southwest of the town of debaltseve, and this is as far as we'll being allowed to go. the soldiers are perfectly friendly towards us but they are not allowing us beyond this
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point, the reason why they say, is because there are ukrainian forces still defending their positions even now. that said the main fighting appears to have finished. we have been here for several hours now, and when we first arrived there was a significant artillery and tank barrage underway. we saw tanks firing shells in the general direction of the ukrainian positions in that way, and still here we have got tanks and various armor. two tanks over there, armor here on a full state of alert, and they are very much aware that this is a front-line town. as far as the situation inside of debaltseve goes we're getting conflicting reports. the pro-russian separatists said they are in total control. the president said around 80% of the forcing who were holding debaltseve, have now withdrawn, and the rest of the troops who
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are still there are in the process of withdrawing. it's a bloody nose frankly for the ukrainian military. debaltseve was a important strategic hub, but in the weight of numbers they have waged against them and the armor that we have seen firing into the town frankly the defense of the town was not tenable anymore. just after 7:00 pm local time in moscow let's talk to rory challands our correspondent there. is there a ceasefire in place anymore, rory? can we use that word to describe what is going on when events like this have unfolded today? >> reporter: you certainly can't use it to describe what has been happening over the last few days. whether we start to see more general deescalation of the tensions now, i think that remains to be seen. what we're going to have to watch for is whether debaltseve is enough of a prize for the
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separatists. it is obviously a big prize for them, and a big loss for the ukrainians. but are they going to be satisfied with this the separatists? or are they going to keep on pushing, try to gain more grounds off of the ukrainian army? might they try to push for mariupol, for example. it doesn't seem like they are going to do that at the moment. the separatists have said that at various points along the front, they have already started moving back heavy weaponry artillery, for example, in accordance with -- with the minsk agreement, and that's fire. there are also people who i think appeared on an earlier program who said that the winter fighting conditions, where the ground is frozen and tanks and things like that can move around quite freely that is coming to an end fairly soon. we'll get the thaw that will turn the ground very muddy, and
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this kind of mechanized fighting is going to become much more difficult, and that might have an influence on how much violence we see over the coming weeks. >> yeah good point. quick update on the conference call we're expecting tonight? >> reporter: yes it's the same leaders who were in minsk. there is only going to be one happy caller and that will be vladimir putin. he is essentially gotten what he wanted and the rebels have gotten what they wanted. they wanted debaltseve. we know in the minsk discussions, vladimir putin was paying to petro poroshenko, debaltseve is surrounded your troops are encircled. do the right thing, let them surrender. petro poroshenko's response was no this is not the case my troops are perfectly well
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supplied and holding out there, and the ceasefire should begin as it was scheduled to do on sunday. now of course, it turned out that petro poroshenko was wrong. he is putting a good gloss on it, but this is a significant defeat for the ukrainians. >> thanks rory. moving to other news myanmar's president has declared a state of emergency after an attack on a red cross convoy. government troops are trying to drive ut the mmdaa rebels. rebels who say they are fighting for the rights of the haan chinese minorities. recent fighting appears to have been triggered by the return of the leader from exile in china. it is the first widespread unrest in the region since a major offensive in 2009 when myanmar's army forced the group's rebel leader and tens of thousands of people from the area to take refuge in china.
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>> reporter: a barrage of bullets brings this red cross vehicle to an abrupt halt. it was part of the convoy attacked on tuesday in myanmar's eastern region where a new wave of fighting has broken out between rebels and government forces. >> unless there is a ceasefire called, there would be more attacks. ? the resistance experience red cross trucks have been used by the burma army to attack the resistance. >> reporter: two red cross volunteer workers were injured in the attack one suffered head wounds, the other injuries to abdomen. both are in stable custody in hospital. the president of the myanmar red dress released a statement saying:
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the humanitarian situation that's emerging from the violence is similar to that of five years ago, when thousands of ethnic chinese residence fled the eastern province, many taking refuge in the southwest. now some 30,000 refugees have reportedly made the same trek. china is calling for dialogue. >> translator: we want to use this opportunity to once again call on all sides involved in clashes in myanmar to exercise restraint and avoid the situation escalating any further to ensure peace and stability of the border and especially to avoid affecting security on the chinese side. ♪ >> reporter: but now three months of marshall law is being imposed by mie yar man's government, a sign that the fighting is not expected to end any time soon. the syrian observatory for human rights says at least 150 people have been killed since
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tuesday during fighting in and around the city of app leapt poe. at least 70 pro-government fighters died. the city is divided between the rebel-controlled east and the government-held west. it is syria's biggest city. it was once a financial hub, but look at these pictures you see the fighting has reduced it to rubble in many parts. syria's government says it will decide when to suspend bombing in the ancient city. however, it is still a reason for hope. >> the government of syria has indicated to me it's willingness to halt all aerial bombing. all aerial bombing. all sorts, all types of aerial bombing. and artillery shelling for a period of six weeks. all over the city of aleppo.
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from a date which we will be announcing from damascus. i plan therefore, to proceed to both damascus and hopefully to aleppo as soon as possible. now the u.n. security council is to hold an emergency session on the crisis in libya in a few hour's time. it comes as egypt says it has carried out air strikes in libya in response to the beheading of 21 egyptian christians. that targeted isil affiliated groups. but witnesses say eight civilians were killed as well including three children. victoria gatenby reports. >> reporter: these pictures are from a hospital. witnesses say this boy was fatally wounded during air strikes by the egyptian military. his sister was severely injured. doctors couldn't save their lives or the lives of their younger brother. but some egyptian commentators insist they died of suffocation.
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>> translator: this is strong evidence of the conspiracy lying and fab ration against egypt. >> reporter: hospital staff say that account of events is a lie. >> translator: we started recitation on this bench. everything happened here. while they say the suffocation took place elsewhere. the children were here and the man who appeared on the video with them is from the anesthesiology department. >> reporter: the egyptian government said the air strikes hit camps of isil-affiliated groups. egypt says the military campaign was launched in retaliation for the beheading of 21 egyptian christians. but witnesses say several civilians were killed in the air strikes. >> translator: there was no military presence here. just families that lived here. the family their mother and children were all killed. there was a gentlemen who were also killed there were about eight killed in the
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neighborhood. >> reporter: the cause-appointed tripoli based government says egypt is trying to run away from its own internal crisis by exporting its problems to libya. >> translator: we call for an investigation regarding the beheading, and to condemn the air strikes by the egyptian army. >> reporter: egypt is calling for austin underresolution to intervene militarily in libya. france and italy are also campaigning for a coordinated international response. they are worried if left unchecked in libya, fighting groups linked to isil could be at europe's doorstep. as many as 150 americans have tried to leave the united states to fight with isil according to u.s. intelligence agencies. preventing young people from being recruited is the focus of a three-day summit in washington, d.c. which has begun. the white house has invited
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leaders from communities from los angeles, boston and minneapolis to prevent pilot programs which are already in place. we go to patty culhane in washington, d.c. it's a summit about extremism, and the white house is being very careful to use that word. >> exactly. they call it a summit to combat violent extremism. and there have been a lot of commentators who are saying it should be islamic extremism. i don't want to point out, we did just hear from a member of the anti-defamation league who said that 95% of terrorist attackses have been carried out by right-wing extremists. but it's aimed at stopping the islamic state of iraq and the levant, boko haram, and
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al-qaeda. they say they isil does not represent islam. and that isil is trying to paint this as a u.s. war against islam, and that is not the case. and they have been criticized domestically by religious groups that say just focusing on islam will only increase the fare of muslims in america and islamaphobia. >> how does this feed into the idea of building relations with muslim communities? >> reporter: that's exactly the focus, but federal firms will tell you they know they have a huge challenge. sense september 11th muslim communities have been targeted sometimes in the guise of doing those sorts of outreach they were in fact intelligence gathering. the vast majority of muslims who have been arrested on terrorist charges have been the victims of entrapment by officials. the officials here admit that
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that is the case. they are trying to make the argument it is going to be different now. their goal is to convince those community leaders that that is in fact the case. >> thank you, patty, get yourself inside out of the snow. still ahead on al jazeera, the cost of conflict in afghanistan, the number of civilian casualties reaches its highest level in five years. and a video of chelsea football fans in the paris metro, prompts accusations of racism. >> monday. >> this is the place where 43 students were handed over to criminal organizations. >> a crime that shocked the world. >> the military is about a mile away. they say that they didn't hear anything. >> where are mexico's missing students? >> kidnappings keep going up human security is collapsing. >> "faultlines". al jazeera america's hard-hitting... >> today they will be arrested. >> ground-breaking... >> they're firing canisters of gas at us. >> award-winning investigative documentary series.
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"mexico's disappeared". monday, 10:00 eastern. only on al jazeera america.
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♪ the top stories for you on
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al jazeera, pro-russian separatists have taken over the ukrainian town of debaltseve with government troops withdrawing. international community says the separatists have violated the minsk agreement. myanmar's president has declared a state of emergency after an attack on a red cross convoy. widespread unrest has caused many to flee into china. and the u.n. security council is due to told a emergency session on the crisis in libia. at least one person is dead after a suicide attack in afghanistan. this was in the southern city of kandahar. an african army spokesperson, said the bomber targeted a military vehicle. eight more were wounded in that attack. the united nations saying the number of civilians sill
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sill -- killed or wounded in afghanistan is at the highest number in four years. nicole john stan has more. >> reporter: every hour this boy is rolled over. his father keeps an anxious vigil. he is 14 and was paralyzed from the waist down when he was shot during a taliban ambush of officials. >> translator: it has been seven months like this. i blame the taliban. the poor are suffering. i don't have anyone. just another small son and a wife. there's no one here who knows our situation. >> reporter: when he arrived at this hospital in kabul, he had a bed sore the size of a man's fist. he is now recovering, day by day. last year was a terrible year for afghanistan civilians. the u.n. assistance mission in
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afghanistan says almost 3,700 civilians were killed. up 25% on the previous year. the number of child casualties increased by 40%. >> 2014 was the worst year we ever had in terms of admission of casualties in both our hospitals in kabul. he notice an increase of usage of ied, that are improvised explosive devices that are very dangerous and are creating a lot of damage. [ explosion ] >> reporter: last year, almost all foreign troops withdrew from afghanistan. now the afghan government is fighting against the taliban on its own. [ gunfire ] >> reporter: a large part of the increase in civilian casualties is being blamed on the withdrawal of international forces. there is less air support for the afghan security forces and that means the fighting on the ground has become much wider and
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is lasting for longer. the u.n. says the number of deaths and injuries caused by ground operations has increased by more than 50% in 12 months. >> we have seen increased ground fighting between the insurgents and the afghan forces both parties making offensive and defensive ground operations in and around often district centers. >> reporter: this man was traveling with his family in a mini van when it was hit by an ied. if he's lucky, he should be able to walk again in another six months. nicole johnston al jazeera, kabul. the trial of thailand's former prime minister is set to begin on thursday. she faces criminal charges related to a corruption scheme. >> reporter: she has already been impeached for dereliction of duty. now the former prime minister is to appear on court on criminal charges over the same expensive
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populous scheme to support rice farmers. if convicted she could be jailed for ten years, and effectively banned from politics for life. it has been less than a year since the general military takeover happened which was said to allow time for negotiations. >> translator: we did it to protect the dignity and honor of the thai people. we cannot step back anymore. we must stop fighting and keep working for reconciliation. >> reporter: but the criminal charges take the crackdown on them further than ever before. >> if one side goes after the other side without any concession or compromise then it's not reconciliation. so we can see clearly now, we don't want to use severe terms, but certainly there's a political effort to keep one side out and down and to -- to enable the other side to -- to go on.
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>> reporter: at this market in her hometown, we found vendors who are strong supporters of the family. >> translator: of course this is not the way to reconcile people in the country. what they are doing is actually totally against it. in any case we don't want to reconcile with them anyway. >> reporter: this is where the clan's ancestors remain. in the context of thailand's deeply polarized society, it's more about politics than justice. every night it was on soldiers in plain clothes would come to watch and explore this play. >> translator: yingluck is only one of the many cases. it's just that everyone knows about her, because she is in the
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spotlight. and reconciliation won't happen until people are allowed to express their views freely. >> reporter: despite the military's promises any hope of reconciliation has left thailand's political stage. could copenhagen be the world's first carbon neutral capitol. denmark says controlling its own energy power is better for its security. >> reporter: would chips not coal heat the burners in this the biggest power plant in the country. it provides steam-driven hot water for 200,000 homes, and wind-driven electricity for 1.5 million more. copenhagen will soon be the world's first carbon neutral capitol city. >> the virtues of that is that we're going to deliver green power, and cost effective
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heating, and be dependent of other countries. >> reporter: clean ever-lasting supplies have become the obvious choice and with that denmark has solved many problems. there is barely a country in europe that doesn't have enormous challenges working out where its energy is going to come from in the future. frac-ing is deeply unpopular. get your gas from russia well that has huge ramifications. denmark by contrast is set to be completely self-sufficient in just a few years, and it's being driven by simple and renewable forms of energy. so at a time when the cold war feels like it is being reborn. denmark says its own policies towards russia aren't compromised by energy demands.
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if you go green like us if you lose the reliance on russian gas, you can stop feeling threatened. >> if the day came where russia cut off all gas supplies we would have to also deliver sacrifices to comfort some of our neighbors, but if all countries would have done like denmark, they would be in a completely secure situation. >> reporter: in european governments don't want to be environmentally friendly out of choice, the danish argument that it's better for their own security looks extremely compelling. finally, the chelsea football club has reacted to a video which shows its fans harassing a black man on the paris metro. >> reporter: a black man tries to board a train and is
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repeatedly pushed off by fans of the english football club, chelsea. the british man who filmed the scene says people around him couldn't believe what they were seeing but what happened next was perhaps even more shocking. the morning after chelsea's champions league match we got a reaction from some fans. >> we're disappointing for two reasons, firstly because of what happened. secondly, because now we're all labeled racists. they set the whole club back 30 years. >> i'm horrified. absolutely horrified. really, really uncomfortable. >> it's unacceptable. and i'm sure any true chelsea
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fans would abhor that. >> reporter: the governing body uefa says it is appalled by the incident. chelsea football club has put out a statement, saying: but this paris-based black rights campaigner wants to see bolder action. >> i want the chelsea football club -- i urge them you know, to make a call for those who know the supporters so that they can be prosecuted. i urge them to please make a call. i urge the chelsea football club to take this opportunity to launch a massive anti-racism
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campaign. >> reporter: the paris police force is already investigating the incident. nadine barber al jazeera, paris. plenty more news for you online whenever you want it 24/7, it's at can we teach robots morality? the u.s. is betting millions on the prospect. later from catching criminals to reading emotions, mind-blowing advances in facial recognition software, bringing computers frighteningly close to mind-reading.


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