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tv   News  Al Jazeera  June 17, 2015 9:00pm-10:01pm EDT

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>> war games in the baltic sea. the u.s. and its nato allies run military drills sending a message to russia. >> we will defend every inch of nato territory. >> as cold war type posturing plays out between the white house and the kremlin. u.s. against i.s.i.l. a small number of iraqis are willing to take up arms against the rebels. stopping the sahara.
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man made oasis played to stop spread of deserts across africa. but desertification is a problem. turning away boats filled with migrants. good evening i'm antonio mora. this is al jazeera america. it this, we begin in the baltic where a massive show of strength by nato is underway. soldiers and sailors from 17 countries are taking part in military exercises near the russian border. the maneuvers were clearly aimed at moscow as a reminder of the consequences of invading a nato member. in brussels the eu was taking aim at the economy extending
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sanctions against russia for its actions in ukraine. but russian president putin is not backing down, even as the kremlin dismisses attacking a nato nation as insane. lawrence lee explains. >> reporter: a nato fleet off the coast. coming to liberate a country from the grip of the enemy. it's a drill or in the worst case scenario it's a rehearsal. and no prize for guessing who the supposed enemy is. nato's supreme allied commander told me russia had to understand just how serious nato is in its defense of the baltic states. >> my commander in chief made it very very clear here last year that we will defend every inch of nato territory. >> vladimir putin said it was insane, is what i think the words he used. >> we have no idea what
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mr. putin would do. anyone who would guess would not be able to give you any clear insight. >> reporter: we were flown out over the baltic on a british helicopter and let down on the u.s.s. ocean. spain and sweden aren't even cincinnati members. a contribution from several other countries a russian fleet is out there as well but not on speaking terms with one another. >> russians are watching. we are neighbors of russia. russia is not afar away, a neighbor of poland, clearly they're interested in what we are doing but this is routine business and we shouldn't be worried about that. >> reporter: the u.s. has already said it's shipping in huge amounts of military hardware into eastern europe. in kalinengrad russia will speed
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up the installation of blisk missiles. what is defense and what is aggression? this is about openness and about moral authority. it is a complicated world and for many western facing it's not easy to figure out who's oa friend and who isn't but in all this in the defense of the baltic states, the u.s. feels it can offer moral legitimacy over russia. >> provocation over the russians. >> i believe every nation has the right to exercise to make sure they have military skills and what you say in nato is absolute transparency. we announce our exercises ahead of time, we talk about the size of the exercises the objectives of the exercises, there is no secrets here. but than snap exercises turn into
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invasions. the russians have a the right to exercise in international space. is. >> reporter: so the marines went off shore and went into search of the red forces that took over the airport. when politicians in be washington and moscow this is what you get. lawrence lee, al jazeera on poland's baltic coast. russia is also being pressured on the economic front. at a meeting in brussels today european union officials announced an intention to extend until january after russia annexed crimea from ukraine last year. vladimir putin continues to tout his military might. the russian defense ministry hopes to show off new military
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technologies. rory challands reports. >> examining the produce looking for bargains, an arms fair is like any other market just with more uniforms. brought their shopping lists from all across the world and has given park patriots dubbed russia's military be be disneyland. >> be vladimir putin kicked off with a explanation of what the park will do when it opens to the public next year. >> translator: here you will be able to see enactments of famous legendary battles get to see the history of military aviation, navy and arm take part in military competitions and extreme sports. i'm sure that the new park will become a main park in patriotic
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education for the younger generation. >> reporter: instilling in young russians an impulse to love and fight for the mother land doesn't come cheap $263 million, but with militaristic enthusiasm some countries might feel a little uneasy about the idea of russia trying to make a fun family day out to see such power. russian missile systems and this is the type of weapon system the west says pro-russian separatists destroyed ma-18 last year. upgrades for 70% of equipment by 2020 new intercontinental
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ballistic missiles for its nuclear arsenal. compare to it park small fry more conscious of the benefits of pr than is typical russian politician he. >> most likely he is considering continuing his career, the defense minister of russia is maybe not the end of it. maybe he has ambition of running for president some day so he wants to be seen as the person who led russia to military victories, to reboot the russian military into something great and wonderful. >> reporter: russians are starting to speak of a new amortization race but history contains warnings. the ussr's collapse was hastened by a ruinous arms race that moscow couldn't afford. rory challands. al jazeera. senior fellow at the center
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for transatlantic operations. good to have you with us ambassador. let's start with the nato military exercises. it is a nice show of military might but a lot of nato countries are struggling to keep up their military capabilities. nato still the force it once was? >> oh i think it is. the basic thing is what mr. putin said was it would be insane for them to pose a threat to any nato countries. i hope he really understands it would be insane. because if indeed there were an attack on any of the nato countries such as the three baltic states orfully of the others it would bring -- or any of the others it would bring the full might and power of the nato alliance, the united states all by itself is by far the most potent military force in the world so i don't think there would be any question this would be a mistake. >> how significant are the nato
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drills? given the state of relations with russia could they be seen as heightening tensions as an unneeded provocation? >> o, i don't think so. it's not so much to convince the russians that the united states would stand firm. it's to reassure the people particularly the baltic states and in poland that we mean what we say. and by showing up and having these exercises it does help with the people there in those countries to know it's not just words, but we have the capability of doing things if it comes to that. >> and this week russia announced it was going to add more than 40 new intercontinental bliss till missiles to its arsenal. you just heard the story about what can be done to defuse tensions? >> well, i think in the first place it's a sign of weakness not of strength.
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if the russian military really was as strong as mr. putin would like it to be he wouldn't have to go through this particular kind of display. what i think we need to do is take a step back and recognize that people can say things on both sides that can get out of hand. the fact is, there is no interest of either side of getting in more deeply than we already are. and frankly mr. putin has already gone too far with what he's been doing in ukraine. >> right. >> the sanctions against this country are really quite extensive. and he's going to lose this. >> and as we just heard the eu is extending its sanctions. that obviously won't defuse sanctions but they really haven't been so far in slowing down what russia seems to be doing in ukraine. >> well, what is going so happen over time is the average russian is going to come to understand that it's hitting them in their pocketbook. they won't have the standard of living they had hoped for.
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at the same time, as long as we don't show the russians that they're just a little country that we can push around, as unfortunately we did for too many years then this kind of show and tell that they're going through won't count with the russian people. and i think mr. putin will look for a way out. and at that point i think we'll be willing to help them with a way out. >> and the economy has been wounded. doesn't putin worry about history repeating itself? as rory challands pointed out the arms race was ruinous for the soviet union and russia can ill afford another one now. >> i think that's correct. i think that's what prompted putin to say, it is insane that we would attack the west. in terms of time, measured in months rather than years he's going to have to find a way to climb out off the limb that he
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got himself out on and frankly was pushed out onto by some of these russian speakers in eastern ukraine taking him further than i think he wanted to go. so if we hang in there keep patient keep the rhetoric down i think he's going to have to back down. >> ambassador robert hunter, thank you for joining us. >> thank you. >> in yemen at least 31 people are dead after a series of attacks on mosques in the capital sanaa. four simultaneous car bombs hit shia mosques while another one exploded at the time at the headquarters of the houthi rebel movement. i.s.i.l. has claimed responsibility. senior politician was attending yemeni peace talks at geneva, with rival sides refusing to sit at the same table. lawmakers are questioning why top officials believes their no ground troops policy is
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effective in defeating the group group. rosalyn jordan reports. >> kurdish flag flying over bl tal abyad syria, won back the border town from i.s.i.l. on tuesday. but u.s. military leaders say the war against the group is far from over. in part because of the lack of iraqi manpower. the defense secretary says it's unlikely the goal of training 24,000 iraqi military recruits will be reached by the end of the year. right now u.s. advisors have trained just 7,000. >> we have had unused capacity in our training equipped sites in iraq because iraq hasn't furnished us with trained
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troops. now it has to turn around. >> chairman of the joint chiefs of staff martin dempsey says the situation is difficult especially since the fall of ramadi dempsey suggested it might be ending sooner rather than later and that the u.s. was talking with its allies about how to respond. >> it's generally the consensus there that in the near term it's probably more likely that the regime would limit its -- would go over to the defensive and limit its protection of the aloite shia and some of the minority groups, leaving the rest of shia essentially ungoverned. >> mid east policy including iran, with the final weeks of negotiations underway, the members had plenty of questions.
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carter was quick to reassure the legislators. >> checking that ma line influence and defending our ally israel and keeping our commitments to our gulf allies is the reason why there are 35,000 u.s. force he paid in the middle east. >> reporter: but it doesn't appear carter's words were enough. some members of congress still doubt obama's commitment to leaving i.s.i.l. in the form of ground troops. rosalyn jordan, al jazeera capitol hill. a group of american kurds were among those attending the service for 36-year-old keith broomfield. kurdish officials say he was killed fighting alongside forces in northern syria. on the syrian side of golan
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heights, israel says it will prepare for possibility that refugees may try and cross over to their side of the golan heights. the area has been the scene of fierce battles of rebels from the free syrian army and bashar al-assad's forces. the target of forces in konaitra province which borders the golan heights. all fluids from the destruction of syrian chemical weapons have now been successfully disposed of at facilities in germany and finland. but on capitol hill syrian doctors is said the assad government replaced those chemical weapons with chlorine gas placed in barrel bombs. >> i lift in syria and i never see these used against
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extremists and so on. all we see is these being used against hospitals against schools, against general civilian population ofs. >> more than 30 chlorine gas attacks since march. several members of congress are pushing the white house to establish a no fly zone in syria. desertification, what's being done to to the that. and the pope's message to the world about human responsibility, when it comes to taking care of the planet.
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>> this home of ours is being ruined and that damages everyone, especially the poor. this then is an appeal towards
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responsibility. to the duty that god gave the human being during creation. cultivate and look after the garden in which he placed them. >> on thursday, pope francis will release his encyclicle on the environment talks about climate change. the pope calls global warming is a threat to the planet planet caused by the environment. severe water shortage is affecting the country's ability to grow produce. world food program. little rainfall and dry temperatures have dried up 30% of its rice paddies. north korea plants 90% of its crops in june or july. in north africa, the sahara
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desert is getting larger. today is world desertification day. nazanine moshiri takes us on the story. >> reporter: a few years ago this entire area was covered in sand. but now life is returning. amar someaizi hope these salt resistant plants mean his three children won't have to migrate elsewhere. >> translator: if you have sheep and camels that eat these plants, they can live here. before, we didn't have this water, we only had water from god. >> reporter: scientists partly blame climate change for what's happening here. more undergroundwater evaporates. the soil becomes dry and salty. >> translator: large amounts of water have very high salt
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levels, between eight to 12 grams of salt per liter. >> reporter: it's called desertification. some of the most famous scenes in star wars were filmed here. thousands of cubic meters of sand are removed from the set. the shoor sahara, the greatest hot desert in the world is growing every day. scientists are talking about building a green belt across the sahara, a belt of trees and plants that will help the creeping of the desert north and south and try to stop more land erosion. here in hasoa a unique irrigation system makes sure the plants only get water they need, a major source of fruits, these
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organic dates are exported abroad creating jobs and money for community. >> we need to stop this irration am exploitation. chopping down trees in the desert. if there's no common cause or vision the solutions we have won't be enough. >> reporter: the people of this town have shown it's possible to survive this harsh environment. their dream is other communities follow their example. before the expanding desert destroys more land. nazanine moshiri al jazeera hasoa, stowrn southern tunisia. >> let's bring in, allen very good to have you with us. while we're just hearing about the sahara expanding the reality is we've seen an increase in deserts in the past few decades all around the world. we're showing a map now the areas in red are areas already desert, the areas in yellow are
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vulnerable. many of the areas are in the united states. how big a problem is this? >> it's more serious than i can express. it's occurring right now. my home here in a wilderness area where there's no livestock no cutting of trees it's very misunderstood and far more serious than world is realizing. >> you're in new mexico, in albuquerque. one of the most lawrnlg comments that i've read in connection with world dessertfication day u.n. secretary-general ban ki-moon says if we don't heed, we will be creating an area the size of norway every year. that's unsustainable. >> absolutely. >> deforestation and the improper use of agriculture. >> it's not deforestation and it's mostly over-resting the
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land. and that is totally counterintuitive. and so my work has been resisted for many years. i started working on this 60 years ago. and it's always been blamed on over-grazing, over cutting of trees, et cetera. but as i say it's occurring even in wilderness areas here in america. and it's very serious because it's the underlying factor, the main role in droughts and floods today poverty immigration across border genocide, violence all these things. and really what's being done is based on deep beliefs thought on science. these beliefs go back centuries. and to correct it, we can correct it, begin to correct it very easily and have been doing that demonstrably and replicating it over and over -- >> i want to ask you about that in a second but to your point about what this is creating around the world when it comes
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to violence and urban blight because it is forcing people to leave regions and go into cities. and many believe that it's a great cause of terrorism. because the problem is worse in poor regions around the world so much so that any pours of the people directly affected -- that 90% of the people directly affected, where is it worst in your region? >> it's worst north africa, china to india the worst region in the world but it will only be reversed and can be reversed by increasing livestock. >> bringing in more livestock can bring back grasslands, one of the things you are trying to promote? >> not can bring it back, they are bringing it back, we've done that for 50 years and straighting it over and over again and it absolutely does it it.
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>> it is certainly an issue that needs to be addressed, allen savory, thank you for bringing your perspective. >> how climate change could play a role in the u.s. presidential election. a deadly turn in an american antidrug operation in honduras. family members who are still waiting for answers more than three years later. also, where police tracked down and killed a tiger that escaped from a zoo in the republic of georgia after a massive flood.
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>> welcome back to al jazeera america. i'm antonio mora. coming up this half hour of international news an exclusive report into the investigation of a dea probation in honduras that
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turned deadly and a look at the dea's efforts throughout central america. but first a look at the headlines throughout the u.s. in our american minute. the official ceremony for loretta lynch was held today. the official ceremony was held months ago but it is traditional to hold a second one. tropical storm bill moved across texas after torrential rains soaked texas last month swollen rivers and reservoirs can't accommodate more water. slapping $100 million fine on at&t the faa said, that at&t
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slowed data after reaching a certain amount. the fine is the largest in fcc history . s the war on drugs in honduras. the country is a major drug route for cocaine into the u.s. two years ago four people were killed in an operation against u.s. drug enforcement agents. but residents said they had no links to drug trafficking. al jazeera's you paul beban has been following the investigation and we must warn you some of the video is graphic. is. >> reporter: on the night of may 11th, 2012, a long moderate boat was motoring up. boat headed for a jungle outpost called ajuas most of the 16 on board were simply on their way home. all of them were about to be caught in the cross fire of the war on drugs.
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la moskitia is a haven for drug traffickers. cocaine arrives on the coast by boat or by small plane lunding on jungle air strips. clarclara and her son were two of the passengers. clara awoke to the sound of helicopters and gun fire. >> translator: the shont began from above and i jumped up. i shouted out to god, where is my son but he wasn't there in the front of the boat, no one was there. >> reporter: al e-another passenger was traveling with her two young daughters. she struggled to shield them as the boat was riddled with bullets. i thought how am i going to save myself. it is better to stay with my children. that's why i didn't jump out of the boat and swim, i waited for
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the shot that would kill me, waiting for death. >> reporter: hilda was shot in both legs. >> i had to throw myself in the water to save myself. i don't know how i did it because all of my blood was flowing out into the water. >> the shots were close enough to be heard in ajuas friends and family members rushed to the river. they say honduran and u.s. personnel were already there. >> they had three guns pointed at my head. three at reply side and one at the base of my skull. they said they would shoot me and get rid of me. they said where are the drugs? i told them i was nent, i was innocent, i was just here to look for my aunt. >> hilder said he was ordered to
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take two men out to the river where a canoe was drifting, and already on board. >> when we arrived at the scan a they told me to get close to it and i did. then they loaded the drugs into our boat, they never helped me rescue my mother. >> witness he say after the honduran and u.s. team loaded the drugs onto the helicopters they left without helping the injured. >> the americans went down to the river got the drugs and then took them out in the helicopter. they saw very well that they were leaving people dead. >> reporter: four passengers had been killed. emerson martinez, juana jackson canandelaria trap and wanda jackson's son haskett.
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we reached out to the dea mum timesdeamultiple times but our requests were not answered. jim kenny gives a detailed account of the night of may 11th, 2012 to a group of american human rights workers visiting the honduran capital. kenny explained last night the dea and honduran units were getting geared up as a suspected drug plane was being tracked from venezuela to honduras. the plane lands on an airstrip and is unloaded by 30 to 40 men many of them heavily armed. kenny says more than a thousand pounds of cocaine were transferred to a truck then a boat. that's when a team of dea and honduran anti-drug agents landed in helicopters. kenny says everyone runs and the armed men abandoned the boat filled with cocaine. kenny explained after the dea
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and honduran agents get to the boat the motor fails. that's when kenny says the passenger boat carrying clara wood and 15 others closed in and made a deliberate action to the boat loaded with drugs and opened fire. kenny said the agents returned fire they fired on us, we fired on he them an the helicopter them and the helicopter did as well. they also deny any shots were fired from their boat. kenny says he has intelligence that proves otherwise but won't say more. kenny also makes it clear that while officially honduras is in charge of joint operations like this one the dea runs the show. and that the honored hondurans report
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directly to me and the dea. it took four days to recover the bodies from the river. clara's son hasket was last. >> when they found him he was already rotting. i put him in a bag and that's how i had to bury him. they killed him like he was a dog. two honduran investigations acquitted all of the honduran agents involved. for its part the u.s. maintained that other than an internal dea inquire it would inquiryinquiry it would not conduct one on its own. >> what happened there is a wake up call for many of us here in
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america. >> in 2013 congressman hank johnson wrote a letter, demanding answers from the the dea, a letter co-signed by 56 other representatives from both sides of the aisle. >> your office has sent another letter asking for an update. are you satisfied with the pace with which this is happening? >> it's bean slow slog through what seems to be indifference and what could be construed as some to be a coverup. >> reporter: is there a concern that there's a lack of accountability at dea? >> our war on drugs has been a complete failure here at home and now we're starting to see the effective of that drug war south of our borders and how it has negatively impacted honest law abiding citizens who have nothing to do with the drug trade but yet they get caught up in america's war on drugs.
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>> reporter: in may we asked the state department for an yucht, and got nowhere. >> it's actually been three years since four people were killed during a u.s.-honduran drug operation near ajuas what's the status of that, what's going on? >> it's still ongoing as you said it's a joint investigation it evolves the inspector general of the state department as well as the inspector general of the of department of justice. we don't have any comment on the investigation. >> reporter: any anticipation of when it will be completed? >> i don't have a time line for conclusion, we're still working on the investigation. >> reporter: the dea agents in honduras were part of a foreign deployed advisory team or faft.
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linked to the taliban in afghanistan. critics of the program say all too often its military approach to antidrug operations has deadly consequences. >> the team that was active in the time in honored the faft team came from teams that existed in afghanistan. and that were inspired directly by operations that had taken place in colombia previously where you have both counternarcotics and counterinsurgency tactics that come together in a highly mill highly militarized fashion. >> feeding america's endless appetite for drugs is impossible to escape. the country has the highest murder rate in the world corrupt and chaotic. the mayor of ajuas says his
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people are poor, and some succumb. >> when they have come and offered work clearing landing strips our people have cleared them. that is concern we always have had. but what alternatives do our people have? >> small compensation fund to the victims' families through charities working in honduras. but without anything like a formal apology or official admission of responsibility for the deaths victims' families say all they have now are memories and mourning. >> she loved to walk along here to stop and chat. now when i leave she's not there in her house. she doesn't come to meet me here and i will never see her again. i go to the cemetery and she doesn't rise to talk to me. it's all over. >> paul beban, al jazeera. >> al jazeera has learned the same doj team is now looking
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into the dea operation in honduras. michael vehele former chief of operations and the throor of author of the book, deal. the dea has denied responsibility for these deaths but there's little doubt innocents got caught in the cross fire. >> well it appears that innocent individuals on one of the boats got caught in the cross fire. but let me clarify a couple of opinionspoints here. is when the helicopters arrived they saw about 40 or 50 people offloading drugs from a vehicle taking it toot water. they put it on a large canoe. they saw the helicopters approaching and they pushed the
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canoe into the river. there were two honduran police officers and one dea agent that were able to get on the boat and they attempted to start it. but what they didn't realize is that the individuals that were on the beach had disconnected the fuel line. when the helicopters started to approach they saw the canoe in question carrying you know some civilians, apparently. and they were in a zigzag pattern. they were apparently looking for something or attempting to possibly retrieve the cocaine. so the helicopter received fire from that particular canoe. and as they approached the other canoe containing the two police officers and dea they also fired on the boat with the officials on board. the dea agent jumped into the
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water, and it was the honduran police officers that returned fire. >> well, we'll see what the investigation turns out. but i do want to get a couple of questions in that aren't specific to this case. >> sure. >> because when people think of the drug trade they think of colombia mexico, why is central america also a key for dea? >> well, central america has become a transit point for drugs coming out of south america principally colombia. they go into honduras, guatemala. from there they are crossed over into mexico and then eventually get into the u.s. consumer market which is smuggled across the border by major mexican cartels. >> right. and are these dea efforts and has offices in every central american country as we layered
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in that story does the dea run these operations in the local law enforcement follows dea orders? >> that's a very incorrect statement. because we are there to support strain advise and it's you know sovereign countries that dictate what we do in those countries. but we're there in a support role. and we don't run the show. these are sovereign nations. >> as someone who headed an international operations for the dea how successful have the drug interdiction programs been? because in mexico it seems we see cartels spring up when others fall. so how successful is this? >> well, we have had a great deal of success in terms of interdicting from transit zones interdicting tons of cocaine. however it's kind of like the
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balloon effect. in the 1980s we had tremendous success in the caribbean. but then we pushed them into mexico. and now that we're having success in mexico it appears that they're moving back into the caribbean. unfortunately, a lot of resources are required to shut down all of these transit zones. but i think that we have been successful in removing hundreds of tons of drugs from the u.s. consumer market. >> michael vihil it's good to have you with us again to bring your insights often this story. thank you. the unit australian government is facing tough new allegations it paid people smugglers to turn back to indonesia. a report from sydney on the syriaing pressure. and the move that threatens to separate children from their
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emmy award winning investigative series... fault lines invisible hands only on al jazeera america >> in the republic of georgia a run away tiger has reportedly mauled a man to death in the
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capital tbilisi. the tiger and other animals escaped a local zoo after torrential rains caused flooding. officials killed the marauding tiger who was hiding in a white house. exclusive images obtained by al jazeera show cash, apparently paid to smugglers to prevent indonesian migrants from reaching australian shores. andrew are prime minister tony abbott of australia is not saying anything. >> well, the pressure is growing but prime minister tony abbott has refused to confirm that these claims are true. shows u.s. dollars that the
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indonesians say were hand he over 30,000 u.s. dollars to the crew of this boat of asylum seekers. we've also had an interview shown an interview where the captain of the asylum seekers where he was told to turn the boat around. this was shown on wednesday and put by reporters and the politicians to the prime minister. they were almost comical scenes though when he left parliament of a pack of journalists he simply ignored the reporters refused to comment. this has been his position for a few days. but remember a week ago two of his government ministers refused point blank that these allegations were true. they said they were not true, wrong. they have moved from not true to no comment leaving many to believe these payments did take place. why did they matter? for a few years australia has
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been decrying an evil trade trying to bring people from indonesia to australia and even newnew seeld. new zealand. it fails the sniff test. test . >> you have learned more about the boat journey and the asylum seekers? >> that's right. my colleagues in indonesia have done interviews with the crew and the passengers we'll have a full report on thursday. but in essence we've heard of a horrific journey that lasted almost a month on these very rickety boats. intercepted in international waters they say by australian navy officials who to cut a long
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story short interested them, took the crew onto one boat, paid them money and then gave them other fishing boats unsea worthy boats without a toilet, very little food, very little water, sent them back to indonesia. one boat ran out of fuel, one grounded on this island, a horrific journey still ongoing. >> andrew thomas, thanks for joining us from sydney. tense of thousands could betens of thousands of dominicans could be deported to the other side of the island. the government says it is fighting illegal immigration human rights groups say this is all racially motivated xenophobia. greece and painful default on
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its debt, how greeks are being forced to leave the euro zone, scientists are attempting to start rosetta experiments on the surface of a comet.
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>> tonight, more than a billion muz whrimtionmuslims around the world are prepare for the holy month of ramadan. many muslims join together announcing that daily fasting will again on thursday june 18th. pakistan the nation, an article calling going after al qaeda points to the death of nasir al wuhayshi, questions whether the
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u.s. really cares about peace in the middle east. the new zealand harold, looks at whether australia paid people smugglers to turn their boats around. tony abbott's refusal to speak about it. gs and the satirical look at president jake onzuma and omar al bashir. the paper jokes zuma is now hosting al bashir at his sprawling estate where he is growing his nails to scratch bashir's back expecting equal treatment somewhere in the future. new warnings today about what would happen if grease and its lenders fail. greece's central bank could
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default on its debt and leave the euro zone, meanwhile thousands of greeks gathered in athens to show their support of getting a better deal. john siropolous has the story. >> the greek side saying it has put the best counteroffer it can on the table. creditors are demanding $4 billion of additional austerity cuts which would have to take place immediately. that means in the next six months in order to affect this year's budget and fiscal gap. have that's the tax revenue shortfall that creditors believe greece is in for. greece says we can't do $4 billion this year on top of the other austerity measures we have agreed to uphold. what we can do is a certain amount of that through consumer tax, at least a billion and a half through consumer tax but then we would like more concessions from creditors on how much of the debt to repay this year. creditors have made such a
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concession, they've dropped the amount of gdp that greece would have to spend on repaying debt this year from three and a half to 1%. greece wants a little bit more than that, a slightly better offer but nonetheless even if that's granted there still seems to be a gap between the two sides. not just for this year's measures but also for the next three or four years. creditors are simply not convinced that the greeks really want to undertake what they say would be painful but beneficial reforms that would ensure growth over the longer term for greek economy. >> john siropolous in athens, thank you. a team of scientists are attempting risky triefg in driving in space. rosetta could become disoriented by the dust the comet throws off and lose control. one scientist compared this to
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driving in a snow storm. that's it for this edition of al jazeera america news. i will see you tomorrow. "america tonight" is up next. >> on "america tonight," a watery warning. from briny tidal pools comes sign that trouble in the air is dripping down into our food supply. >> who knows how far this issue goes. if it's affecting our oysters what other oysters is it affecting? >> "america tonight's" lisa fletcher with the stories t