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tv   News  Al Jazeera  October 7, 2015 10:00am-10:31am EDT

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russia carries out a series of new air strikes in syria, and starts firing missiles from the caspian sea. ♪ hello this is al jazeera, live from doha. i'm adrian finighan. francois hollande and angela merkel call for european solidarity. diamonds it seems are not frfr, one of the world's biggest producers discovers the gems aren't so precious anymore. ♪
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russian air strikes on syria are now being reinforced by russian warships firing missiles from the caspian sea to hit targets in syria 1500 kilometers away. first a report from zana hoda. >> reporter: a new phase in russia's military intervention in syria. for the past week, moscow has been targeting the opposition from the air. now that air power is being used to support a syrian army counter offensive on the ground. areas are coming under fire. this battle is for control of an important corner in western syria, strategically situated along the main highway between the cities of damascus and aleppo, and it seems the government had informed the residents of the assault. >> translator: after the syrian
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regime threatened to invade the town, the families fled from their homes and now this town is empty of civilians and only rebels remain. >> reporter: tens of thousands live in the town. it is not clear how many already left. but the rebel factions in this region are promising to fight back. >> translator: we will defend our land. we promise that will be return those that enter. >> reporter: the aid agency said this year alone an additional 2 million people have been displaced. the group is calling on the international community to act. >> the international community in ocfam's opinion must respond. we have looked at the efforts to
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stop the violence. >> reporter: russia's military campaign has complicated an already complex war, and the officials have made it clear that they consider the majority of opposition groups terrorists. they have been weakening the defenses of the of situation in front line areas. they stopped the rebel advances in this region, and now they are helping the army recapture territory. the immediate objective of russia's intervention in the conflict is becoming clear to change the balance of power on the ground. more now on that russian naval bombardment in syria. peter sharp is there. russia has opened a new front in its military campaign in syria. >> reporter: that's right. the caspian sea, fleet, is one of russia's most powerful and
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modernized naval detachments, and they launched without warning a few hours ago, 26 cruise missiles. it's code name for nato is sizzler, and the trajectory was well over 2,000 miles away -- 2,000 kilometers away. what we're looking at now is the fact that russia had to go to iran, iraq, and syria to obtain overflight permissions for the -- for the strike, and it really segments the question why would russia target isil targets 1200 kilometers away, when it has got a large fighter bomber force on the ground carrying out target strikes on isil on a daily basis. well, it does go to remind the west of russia's military reach
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in this conflict. >> peter many thanks. peter sharp in moscow. earlier russia that it might cooperate militarily with the united states in syria. let's go live to ros jordan in washington, d.c. on that. what has been the response from the u.s., ros? >> reporter: the defense secretary, ash carter is on a tour of european capitols in part to meet with nato defense ministers. he had a press briefing a short time ago in milan, italy, and this was his response. >> we are not prepared to cooperate in a strategy, which is -- we explained is tragically flawed on the russian's part. >> so the u.s. isn't cooperating militarily with russia, but it has agreed to talk about avoiding military mishaps,
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confrontations between the two sides, what is the latest on the status of those talks. >> well, there hasn't been an agreement to have those talks. there was a video conference nearly a week ago to agree to talk about setting up these discussions, these so-called de-confliction talks, but while the russians have been saying they have reached out to the americans and want to hold these discussions, the american's position is they haven't heard back from moscow and are still waiting to hear from them to talk about ways of avoiding getting in each other's way. so we don't know if there's going to be anymore progress made on this, but the u.s.'s position is very firm. there's not going to be any discussion about trying to coordinate military actions inside syria. there is certainly not going to be any discussion about coordinating a larger plan to
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deal with the civil war inside syria. at this moment the u.s. is only interested in trying to limit the interactions that the u.s. and russian military aircraft have with each other, trying to avoid having that, frankly. adrian. >> ros many thanks. rosiland jordan live in washington. there have been more calls from europe to deal with the refugee crisis together. this time it comes from angela merkel and francois hollande. it's the first joint speech from the two since 1989. let's go to neave barker. what did they have to say? >> reporter: they both began their 20-minute addresses by acknowledging the historical significance that both are here
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together addressing the european parliament. the last time, the chancellor and president were here were a matter of weeks after the collapse of the berlin wall, then the rhetoric was all about european expansion and unity. now it's about facing up to the long list of serious challenges that now face the european union. and francois hollande listed several of them. he talked about youth unemployme unemployment, the desperate need of monetary reform, but perhaps the most overriding of challenges is of course the immense challenge of the refugee crisis that does threaten to divide those countries like france and germany who feel there is a moral imperative to support those refugees, and those nationalistic countries,
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many in south and eastern europe, who are deeply skeptical that this is the best way to go forward. during the course of the speech, angela merkel talks about the need for cohesion, and more europe not less europe. and hollande said we should not be dominated by fears, or retreat into shells. and the leader of hungary said that he felt that europe's identity was at risk by the arrival of large numbers of muslims. there is a time now according to merkel to reinvigorate belief in the european project. >> so this, neave was a rallying cry, if you would like, for the european project as you say from the two nations at its heart,
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the two driving forces behind it? >> reporter: yes, and that has to a certain extent created a degree of recentment within the european union, a feeling that perhaps the well think thinker -- wealthier nations have the means to allow refugees to arrive in their territory and settle. there have been some comments from the likes of slovakia, that they are unable to bare the burden. they are deeply worried that their national identities will be effected by large numbers of non-europeans aliving on their territory. but over the course of the morning, we have also learned in a leaked document, a document prepared by the european council, but behind closed
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doors, senior european officials may at least be considering plans to send perhaps tens, hundreds of thousands of failed asylum seekers, economic migrants as opposed to refugees back to their countries of origin, and that raises concerns about the impulses the european union is going to be affected by, the strong desire to provide to those in need, and the pressure that some states are worried that europe and its identity is at risk. >> neave many thanks. tension remains high between israelis and palestinians with two attacks reported in the last few hours and clashes across the occupied west bank. >> reporter: ongoing tension in the wake of two separate attacks in the course of the day in the
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old city of jerusalem, an 18-year-old palestinian girl was shot after she allegedly stabbed an israeli, and in a southen town a man allegedly attempted to steal a weapon from a soldier, he was always shot. but the lifting on restrictions on access to the old city remains in place. equal access is being given to the al aqsa mosque compound. in that appears to have restored a degree of calm to the situation. the israeli security said a meeting was held overnight with palestinian officials. they said the intenning was to discuss ways in which a degree of calm could be restored on the ground. also messages from the various leaders, benjamin netenyahu allegedly calling on government
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ministers to lower their tone of rhetoric. and president abbas saying they were not seeking conflict with israel. so ongoing demonstrations in the occupied west banks, attempts it seems are being made to restore a semblance of calm. still so come gambling with fictional sports teams is legal, but some say it's not a level playing field. we'll be right back. ♪
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♪ hello again, the top stories here on al jazeera. russia air strikes on syria are now being reinforced by russian warships firing missiles from the caspian sea. moscow says that isil fighters are being targeted. there have been calls for more european solidarity in the face of the refugee crisis. they have come from francois hollande and angela merkel during a joint address to the european parliament. tension remains tie between israelis and palestinians with two attacks reported in the last few hours. a doctor's aid group is calling for an independent
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investigation into the bombing of one of its hospitals in afghanistan. 2 2 patients and staff were killed. the doctors aid group wanted the inquiry to be carried out by the international humanitarian fact finding commission which was set up by the u.n. to monitor alleged war crimes, but the commission has never been used and needs one of its 76 signatory states to request an investigation. >> it's unacceptable that states hide, and in doing so create a free for all in an environment of impunity. it is unacceptable that the bombing of a hospital and killing of staff and patients can be dismissed as collateral damage or brushed aside as a
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mistake. today we are fighting back for the respect of the ga gaga -- geneva con fengs. we need you to stand with us to say that even rules have words. at least 18 people have been killed and 8 injured in three separate suicide bombings in nigeria. two of the bombs went off outside of a housing development, and a third went off in the outskirts of the city. in south africa, workers have been on the march to demand a minimum wage that would allow them to feed their families properly. tania page reports. >> reporter: these protesters say a national minimum wage of between 330 and $340 a month
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would mean dignity for all workers. they are all here. >> let us on the streets are saying enough is a enough, we demand immediate implementation of the minimum wage as a springboard to ensure that ever worker can sleep with something in his or her stomach. >> reporter: there are 5.5 million working poor in south africa, employed full-time, yet still can't afford to cover all of their family's needs. people like tina. she works more than 35 hours a week as a cleaner, but her pay is $88 a month. she lives in this shack, and manages to put some salary into a savings scheme. her second biggest cost is food for her and her daughter, she
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never has spare cash. >> working for that money it's better than sitting at home. how am i going to survive? because i have a child? at the end of this day, this child will be looking at my face like she wants food. >> reporter: there is already a set minimum wage, but they are rarely enforced. instead of a national minimum wage any employer's association says government leaders should make it easier for businesses to grow and create more jobs. >> the biggest driver of poverty is not low wage it's unemployment. >> reporter: these protesters say the lowest paid workers are being exploited and an enforced national minimum wage would lift millions out of poverty. if the government can't create more jobs, then south africa is
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expected to continue to suffer from high unemployment, and from what these workers say is modern day slave wages. in botswana, the diamond industry is losing its luster. >> reporter: botswana's bread and butter, diamonds contribute more than 70% of its export income, but with too many polished diamonds on the market, sales is down and so are prices. >> it's a challenging period for us as well. but as i say, you know, that imbalance will pull through, and, you know, we're working very hard to ensure that consumers still desire diamonds. >> reporter: sales reached $80 billion for the first time last year, but this year's economic uncertainty in many countries and a slowdown in growth in china are damaging the
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industry. the world's leading diamond company says demand remains strong despite a nearly 20% drop in sales in the first half of this year. >> we have about $3 billion invested in future projects. >> reporter: but jobs have been lost in botswana and other countries. a third of employees in the diamond sector have already lost their jobs. die -- diamond suppliers hope this year's christmas period will improve sales. >> diamonds really is though life blood of the area. we are talking about people in the government, employees, we are talking about people in hospitality, education. >> reporter: the trade union
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also says diamonds need to be marketed differently. executives are urging go leaders to make concessions. >> they want to buy diamonds and ship them out of the country completely. they call that flexibility. want to see if we could have services removed from the diamond. they have come up with all sorts of things. what which can help them we have, those we can't, we haven't. >> reporter: many here say current conditions are a wake-up call for botswana, to ensure it diversifies its economy. it looks like it is losing its sparkle for some just now. now global sports gambling is a $500 million a year
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industry. one company is coming under scrutiny however. >> reporter: it's a wildly popular online sports betting company called draft kings. television commercials temp sports fans with a chance to win big money in american football. >> everyone knows draft king makes more millionaires than anyone else. >> reporter: it's called fantasy sports. fans pay an online entry fee anywhere from $1 to $1,000 to join a pool. fans pick players assemble a imaginary of hypothetical team and then win or lose based on how the players perform each week. it's a $2.5 billion a year industry, and expected to grow to $14 billion by 2020. but now they face a big scandal after accusations that an employee from draft kings won hundreds of thousands of dollars betting on american football
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with a rival company allegedly based on information not available to the public. it's being called a case akin to insider trading or cheating. >> when you play poker you figure nobody else has access to see your cards. that's what is at question here. what data and information can people have access to and what kind of protections are on that. >> draft king and fan duel, fish youed a joint statement denying employees had insider information that helped them win. but both companies have put a ban on employees participating in online fantasy sports contests while internal investigations continue. in america, unlike casino gambling or online poker, fantasy sports betting leagues are not regulated by federal law, the latest controversy has
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many wondering if they should be. >> they are trusting the companies to run the games themselves. there's no government oversight, so that's why people want answers about what is going on. >> fantasy sports fans expecting to be betting on a level playing field now wondering if that wasn't fantasy itself. police in australia have arrested four people in connection with the killing of a civilian police worker. 200 officers raided homes. hong kong is one of the world's busiest harbors with ships of all shapes and sizes creating lots of pollution. despite that, scientists have made an unexpected discovery, corral reefs are thriving there.
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>> cranes and construction sites circle the harbor front. land is slowly devouring these waters as the city expands its footprint. these scientists are keeping a close watch on what is happening on land, and also what might be happening from the corral. >> we have pollution particularly from sewage, heavy metal contamination, and sedimentation that results from reclamation activities, so all of these things synergistically affect corral in a very negative way. >> david baker is leading the team. the group is diving at key spots around the harbor, logging corral species and how they are faring in the face of these tough conditions, and no one was expecting this. >> i am pretty surprised because the numbers and water quality,
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nutrients, they [ inaudible ]. >> reporter: just a few nautical miles aware, the drives have found corral not just alive by thriving. >> we are diving in places where you think no corral could survive. polluted harbors, marinas, and you still can find corral or corral relatives. >> reporter: so far the team has recorded more than 80 different species of hard corral. more than what has been identified in the entire caribbean sea. >> in this site we saw a great diversity of corral and schools of fishes. >> reporter: this region is filling the impact of climate change and development, but the stronger types of corral species
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here are holding on, despite the unrelenting conditions, and scientists are trying to establish how they survive. on each dive the scientists collect fragments of corral to monitor and cultivate. >> we can create baby corrals and our goal is to put them back in the sites where they came from. we could make a hypothesis that the corrals here have been collected for only the strongest. only the strong esz survive, so it could be the corrals we have here today are super corrals that may hold secrets for corral survival globally. there's scientists have jointly won this year's nobel prize for chemistry.
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they were awarded the prize for finding out cells repaired damaged dna. the nobel prize committee says their work could be useful for the development of new cancer treatments. more real news from al jazeera at our website, demanding answers in kunduz. doctors without borders want an independent investigation. russia steps up its offensive in syria, launching missiles and isil forces there. the syrians say they have launched ground troops as part of the operation. and