>> russia says it's jets are launching air strikes inside syria, to help president bashar al-assad. ♪ hello there, i'm shiulie ghosh live from our headquarters in doha. afghan forces send reinforcem t reinforcements to retake kunduz. tens of thousands of protesters take part in anti-corruption marches in south africa. digging and driving for gold, the philippines is accused
of failing to protect children who risk their lives in the rush to mine the valuable metal. ♪ we begin in syria where russia says it has launched its first air strikes against targets inside the country. bashar al-assad has asked for help from the russians and has welcomed their decision. the move is likely to increase tensions between russia and the west. the international community has criticized president vladimir putin for russias increasing military presence in syria. moscow insists, though, that no ground troops will be deployed. >> translator: we are talking about syria, specifically and not about the pursuit of some political goals or ambitions which we are regularly accused of by our western partners.
after more than four years of fighting in syria, control has changed hands many times. the political vacuum left the door open for the islamic state of iraq and the levant to make huge gains, most recently in the central corridor. the syrian opposition controls large parts of the north and southwest. there have also been advances by the al-nusra front in the northwest most recently. and the ypg have also been battling isil for control of their territory. this is what government forces control, so little that in july president bashar al-assad conceded that his troops were overstretched. let's get more now from peter
sharp in moscow. clearly, we're already hearing that the u.s. is saying that russia started air strikes in syria already. >> reporter: yes, that's right. the rubber stamping, really, of president putins decision to authorize strikes against isil which was taken at the u.n. was a mere formality. but ironically the news of the first air strikes came not from moscow, but washington. washington had been given an hour's advance notice by moscow that it was going to attack, and that news was released by -- by the americans saying that russian planes had struck near and around homs. now we heard from the russian defense ministry about half an hour ago. it said that its attack aircraft, su-24s, and s-34s,
have targeted military equipment, fuel dumps, ammunitions and arms caches and arms dumps. president putin said the only way to fight terrorism was to act pre-emptively, and he has stressed again that the help that russia gives will only be coming from the air and directed at isil. and he didn't note -- it's the first time he has publicly said this about president assad, he urged him to engage in meaningful dialogue with the opposition, so it has been an interesting hour in moscow. >> that is an interesting move this call for more dialogue moving president assad, of course this is one of the key points of dispute between russia and the west as to what happens to assad in the event of any kind of successful dialogue, also concerns over what exactly
russia is bombing. is it just isil positions or is it also opposition positions? >> i think that will become more clear in the hours ahead, the american state department is -- is quoting sources as saying it is believed that possibly anti-government militias and rebels have been instruct, and the syrian rights observatory for human rights said 27 civilians were killed in the raids, and i think it will become more clear in the next few hours exactly where the attacks came, and what they hit, but we can only quote, really, at the moment, the ministry of defense in moscow saying these were directed at isil arms and ammunitions supplies. >> peter thank you for that. peter sharp in moscow, there. a defense analyst and columnist
with a russian newspaper says it won't be easy for moscow to differentiate between the syrian opposition and isil. >> in a recent interview just published president putin said he doesn't know about the position in syria, they are all terrorists, he said, so it could be very much also the assad opposition forces too, especially like those that would be easy to attack at least ideologically, the al-nusra frokt -- front. russia could mostly concentrate in the palmyra region, the only region where right now isil forces are standing against the assad people, so that could be most likely where they would
concentrate. and there would be most likely a kind of separation of nations, americans more concentrating on iraq, and russia more on syria. >> well, we're expecting the russian foreign minister to speak at the united nations security council meeting any moment now. earlier world leaders met to discuss the syria war on how to combat isil. russia insists bashar al-assad needs to stay in power to fight the armed group. james bayes explains more. >> reporter: a special meeting at the u.n. to boost the coalition against isil. >> i believe what we have here today is the emergence of a global movement that is united by the mission of degrading and ultimately destroying isil. >> reporter: but if you listen to the words the president chose, you see the problem. there has not been as much
progress on the ground as the u.s. would like. >> this is not an easy task. we have isil take root. >> taking root across large swathes of syria and iraq, including the syrian city of raqqa and mosul in iraq. iraq's prime minister said his government was making progress. he did retake tikrit, but lost ramadi, and all the while, foreign fighters have been streaming in. >> [ inaudible ] that my government has introduced against foreign terrorist fighters since 2011, we have recorded almost 20,000 names. >> it is attracting more people because it has created that state-like entity, and the inability of the united states and the coalition to dismantle that state is the biggest
deficiency. >> reporter: lack of progress isn't the only problem, there is not unity among the international community. russia's foreign minister didn't take part in meeting, iran was not invited. on wednesday the u.n. security council will discuss similar issues in meeting organized by russia, the current president of the council. >> james joins us now. what are we expecting from meeting now getting underway? >> reporter: well, you can see in our live pictures the foreign minister of russia, sergei lavrov who is presiding over this meeting, he knows that seat before well, because he used to be russia's ambassador at the united nations. he is going to be introducing meeting, introducing ban ki-moon. this is a meeting mainly about the fight against isil, and then we get the russian speech.
and that's what we need to watch very closely, as i don't think these air strikes in the city of homs is a coincidence, the fact that it is taking place on the same day as this meeting under their presidency. the u.s. ambassador, samantha power listening to the russian foreign minister. john kerry is not here yet. and i think there's a great deal of unease over the russians and u.s. over this meeting. john kerry is not even turning up for the start of this meeting. we'll be coming in later, and speaking later on in the meeting. of course this isn't the only meeting concerning syria today at the u.n. syrians are the biggest number of refugees currently heading to europe. how do you deal with the whole issue of refugees, ban ki-moon will be chairing a meeting on
that particular subject. and i have been speaking about the whole issue of refugees to one of the front line countries, malta, the prime minister sat down with me earlier on, and this is what he had to say. >> we don't have the luxury, let's put it that way, of telling people just wait outside the wall, let us see who you are, let us see whether you are good people, not so good people, and then we will decide. because we have a night from my army there is one decision we can take, you either save people or let them die. for me it's a no-brainer, it's obviously we are going to save people. so the illusion that you can just build a wall and the problem stops, is just that. an illusion. >> reporter: do you believe in the best case scenario that there was a political solution in libya, that your problems with migration and refugees would be over?
>> i believe first of all we should not let the flow be managed by criminals, by criminal gangs who are raking in millions if not billions from this business, so they should be taken out. secondly, we should give a legal root for migrants to come into europe. thirdly, well, there isn't enough space for everyone. so it shouldn't be, yes, please, do some. it should be there is a system. go through the system, we should do our best to welcome as many people as we possibly can. >> reporter: the prime minister of malta speaking to me earlier on in the rose garden of the united nations, and the third big event of the day -- there's lots of news being made today at the united nations -- will take place in that rose garden in a few hour's time, because there will be a ceremony, ban ki-moon will be there, and they will be raising the flag of palestine
for the first time. following a ruling that non-members of u.n., observer states can fly their flags for the first time. so the palestinian flag as well as the vatican flag flying at the united nations. and that will follow, and the timing has been deliberately chosen the speech by the palestinian authority president who will be speaking at the u.n. general assembly, he is promising to drop a bomb shell. the tension right now, and you can see >> bil -- ban ki-moon speaking now, the speaker after that will be sergei lavrov, and we're looking closely to see what he says about those russian air strikes near homs in the last few hours. >> okay. all of those issues we will be covering here on al jazeera.
james thank you much indeed. the saudi-lead coalition said it sent a boat to yemen. the statement says the boat was manned by 14 iranians and had weapons including anti-tank shells. saudi-lead coalition forces are fighting the iranian backed houthi rebels in yemen. large numbers of people are leaving the northern afghan city of kunduz after the taliban seized control. nato special forces have joined a counterattack against the taliban, but afghan security forces have told al jazeera the fight has been tougher than originally planned. mohammed jamjoom reports. >> reporter: as reinforcements arrive and heavy fighting continues, afghan security forces struggle to regain control of kunduz from the taliban. >> government problem is first that civil people, and the second one is that mining -- mines, they put the
mines in the road, and a big [ inaudible ] on the road that is full of mine and the explosive equipment. >> reporter: captain and his fellow fighters haven't been able reach their target yet, insisting that because taliban fighters are hiding among civilians, the fight so far has been much harder than anticipated. here south of kunduz, these forces have repeatedly been ambushed and hit by improvised bombs. afghan government forces now backed by u.s. air strikes and nato special forces are desperate to regain control of the northern city from taliban fighters. the loss of kunduz has been seen as one of the biggest military victories achieved by the taliban, since overthrow of the taliban government in 2001.
now anger is on the rise in parliament, with some politicians calling on the president to resign. >> translator: we don't want to hear lies anymore. the government keeps telling us they are sending troops, but it's almost 72 hours that people inside the city have been suffering from a lack of food, water, and electricity. children and women are dying because of hunger. >> reporter: many are fleeing for their lives and while the number of dead and wounded is still unclear, aid workers fear many more civilians may be killed or injured if fighting continues. in india five men have been sentenced to death for the mumbai train bomb attacks nine years ago. 189 people were killed in seven explosions during the evening of rush hour, seven others were sentenced to life in prison. now let's cross to the u.n.
security council meeting on the battle against isil taking place in new york there. russian foreign minister sergei lavrov has started to speak. let's listen in. >> translator: sudden outbreak of terrorism in the middle east and northern africa. this situation has deteriorated further. one can now refer to the destruction of the political map of the region which was formed in those days. today one can claim that attempts to -- to deal in an isolated way, without linking it to the historic overall context of individual conflicts enjoys no prospects. in the past we have dealt like this with iraq, libya, lebanon, syria, every time trying to convince one another we're going to resolve this problem and everything will be fine. and the decisions in most cases or solutions were often sought in a change of venue cries of that or other regime, without caring about the consequences or
without having a strategy. as a result of the euphoria which engulfed a great many following the arab spring war, [ inaudible ] faced with the expansion of horror and violence, and the shadow looming over the region, as well as terrorist threats. al-qaeda in the countries of [ inaudible ], the yemeni branch of al-qaeda, and other groups of course have faded in the actions of the islamic state. isil creating an extremist state with stable sources of income, a well-equipped army and elements of weapons of mass destruction. isil [ inaudible ] are flourishing in libya and other
countries, they are claiming attacks on egypt, and elsewhere. they are threatening the very existence of various religious groups, including christians, kurds, and alawites. now they have an expansion team, active in many languages. it has been recognized that the harm has been caused and there is a need for joint action. during the recent summit of the e.u., was clearly recognized that the migration crisis cannot be tackled without removing its root causes. in other words without creating a solid [ inaudible ] on the path of the islamic state, and it's desire to subjugate the
region. one should not stop the refugees but the terrorists. the russians are set in a situation that was clearly spelled out on the 20th of september. we're not attempting to drive the discussion into a prospect-less direction, of determining who is right, who is guilty, but without learning the lessons of the reckless actions of the last ten to 12 years, we will not be successful. any literal actions are dangerous. what we require are collective agreed approaches backed by decisions of the security council. we need a clear determination of priorities, and here as we see it, there is a clear understanding that the main threat is terrorist aggression embodied in the actions of isil. this could be followed by consistent practical steps. firstly, there is a need to
unite the efforts. in one word, all of those who are standing up against isil on the ground as well as outside players who in one or another form can back the counter terrorist activities in the region. it is a foreign minister importance that such coordination should be based on the decisions of the security council. in planning joint actions in combatting isil one could utilize a charter body as the military staff committed. this is just the case when one requires a military expertise for a maximum -- maximally effective forging and build-up of counter terrorist work in the region. secondly, there is a need to step up the progress of the intersyrian dialogue, on the
communique, we back the efforts of the fsrg, and make our contribution in making the political progress, in which we could bring together the whole spectrum. thirdly, there is a need to have an inclusive and balanced outside assistance. with russia, united states of america, saudi arabia, egypt, jordan, and qatar. we believe a useful role must be played here by the european union. the involvement of china would also enhance such success. the sponsors acting in a united way are in a position to reach syrians in a constructive way, and strengthen the syrian state on the basis of national reconciliation and understanding. speaking at the rostrum of the general assembly, president
putin presented the possibility of discussing a resolution of the security council, and coordinating all forces which wish to stand up against the islamic state and other structures. today we will present a draft resolution, based on building up joint counter terrorist activities on the basis of the norms of international law. at the same time we expect comprehensive discussion on this topic. at the same time mindful of the growth of the threat posed by isil, there is a need now to forge cooperation on all forces countering terrorism. on the 30th of september in response to a letter to the president of syria, the president asked and received the consent for the use of the armed forces of the russian federation in the syrian arab republic. we're referring exclusive to the operation of the russian air force to carry out strikes
against isil positions in syria, we have informed the authorities of the united states and other members of the coalition created by the americans of this, and are ready to forge communication to ensure maximum effect against the terrorist groups. the most important part is to counter the financing of terrorism. the terrorists strive to diversify their sources of funds is alarming. illicit trafficking of narcotic, weapons, and cultural artifacts. we call for a more stringent implication of a sanctions list of individuals who are trading with islamic state. there is a need to enhance effectiveness of the anti-al-qaeda sanctions committee, using the potential
of the fatf, and related regional structures. we propose also to make [ inaudible ] accountable for the implementation of resolution 2029 in a systemic way. we believe there's a need to inclues the islamic state as a separate entity on the terrorist list. any delay would be counterproductive. we call to in a more active way counter the threats which stem from foreign terrorist fighters. there's a need to rapidly form a single database which continues information on them, and to elaborate for an exchange of information. special importance is -- preventtive work.
the pressing nature of countering terrorist ideology has increased substantially. the multi-ethnic and multi-religious aspect of russia means we have a unique experience in terms of the peaceful coexistence of various faiths and entities. we're ready to share this experience, and of course are willing to learn from our partners. presenting terrorism, including with institutions of civil society includes issues of countering violent extremism. the initiatives being brought forward in this field right now should be based on the sound basis of international law, and to prevent any interference in the internal affairs. one cannot come up with slogans of fighting extremism, in individual counties above the heads of legitimate government. fighting the terrorists danger must go hand in hand with
stepping up efforts to settle various conflict situations in the area. this applies to the long-standing stalemate in the palestinian israeli affairs which are fuelling extremist feelings on the streets. with the support of other u.n. members, we must recognize their responsibility for renewing talks tween palestine and israel on the basis of a two-state situation. ensuring regional stability and security of the people living in the region. we look forward to frank candid discussion in today's meeting. it's important that we should listen to each other, hear each other, and seek mutual cooperation in order to end the terrorist threat and security in the middle east and northern africa. thank you so much for your
attention. i now resume my functions as president of this council, and i'm now going to give the floor to other members of the council. i live the floor to his excellency [ inaudible ]. >> that was sergei lavrov who is chairing this meeting on the fight against isil. basically calling for more coordination against isil, coordination from groups on the ground and outside of syria, and stepping up the progress of dialogue when syria parties as was set out in the geneva communique which seems so long ago now, and there needed to be an inclusive and balanced outside support for syria, which includes countries like the u.s., russia and various arab states. the key message appears to be we really have to work together. >> reporter: we all have to work
together and include president assad in that effort, because all of those references -- and he kept referring to the u.n. charter, the syrian seat at the united nations, and no real reference to the bombing raids that were carried out by russia in homs province in syria. we have no reaction yet from other security council members. right now speaking is the chinese foreign minister. when he walked in, i said what is your reaction to russia's bombing in syria? and he said you'll have to ask lavrov. in the russian foreign minister's speech, there were a couple of other things worth remarking on, and one of the ideas was one of the few ideas where perhaps there might be agreement, and that's the idea of some sort of contact with
regional and international players. and the other idea was coming up with something from the u.n. charter, a dormant body of military staff committee. that perhaps, he says could be the coordinating body, shiulie. ♪ the security council is meeting to discuss the fight against isil. a major storm drenches the region, as an even bigger tropical threat looms. joaquin is now a hurricane. and for the first time in 70 years, the state of georgia has executed a woman. a man is scheduled to