everything else we have been covering here on al jazeera on our website. you can see it on your screen right now, aljazeera.com. a lot there about the climate change conference in paris. we're expecting it to end on saturday morning. ♪ breaking news, heavily fighting underway right now in kabul afghanistan after a guest house near the spanish embassy is attacked. defendant is guilty of the crime of sexual battery -- >> a former police officer convicted of raping women while on duty. tonight they step off the plane as refugees, but they walk out of this terminal as permanent residents of canada. >> a very warm overnight welcome
for syrian refugees. starting their new lives in canada. ♪ good morning, everyone, this is al jazeera america live from new york. i'm adam may filling in for del walters who is off. following the breaking news coming out of kabul where the taliban has claimed responsibility for the attack in the afghan capitol. these are new pictures coming in. officials say there has begun fire in the central part of the city after an explosion. there are reports that this is happening near the spanish embassy. jennifer glasse is there on the ground and has more for us. >> reporter: the taliban has claimed responsibility for this attack. but we understand it is on the spanish embassy guest house or come pound here in kabul. the area is cordoned off. you are seeing pictures now of
the police on the scene, heavily -- in this heavily fortified area. it is inside kabul's ring of steel. a local hospital says seven wounded afghans have been brought to their hospital. after the explosion, we heard several bursts of gunfire, but so far it has been quiet, unclear exactly what is happening, whether there are attackers inside, there are some local reports that there are three attackers inside that compound, but it is quiet so far, but as i say, the authorities have cordoned off the area, and of course this comes just a couple of days after the taliban launched a huge assault in southern afghanistan in kandahar where they fought with afghan security forces for 24 hours. very unsecure, we're told not to move ash the city at all. there are embassies nearby, also residents, police have cordoned
off the area. people concerned -- everyone is communicating on social media to be worried about secondary explosions. we have had sieges like this before where gunmen have gotten inside compounds, and sometimes it takes hours to get them out. a large number of afghan security forces on the scene at the time. >> that's jennifer glasse reporting for us. back here in the u.s. a former oklahoma city police officer is now facing life in prison after being convicted of sexual assault, including rape. he was crying as the jury read the guilty verdict on thursday. he was convicted of raping women while on duty. al jazeera's john henry smith has more. >> reporter: on his 29th birthday he found out he would likely spending the rest of his birthdays behind bars.
a jury found the ex-oklahoma city police officer guilty on four counts of first degree rape as well as 14 other counts he had been facing 36 criminal counts in total. >> defendant is guilty of the crime of forcible oral sodomy and punishment will be 20 years. >> reporter: the juries said he used his authority to sexually abuse african american women while on duty. they were all african american women from the low-income areas he patrols. he is white and asian. it was an all-white, mostly male jury that returned the guilty verdicts and recommended up to 263 years in prison. >> i appreciate you trusting us, and standing down and making sure nothing foolish happened during the investigation of this case, and during the trying of this case. you trusted us, and we
appreciate that. the oklahoma city city police department did the right thing, and so did we. today family and friends are remembering two more victims of the shootings in this san bernardino. a memorial service have been planned for the man who worked for the health department, and a count think food inspector. a 27 year old was remembered on thursday. meanwhile officials continue the investigation into the shootings that left 14 dead. >> reporter: a week later, and a new lead in the deadliest mass shooting since new town. police divers searching a lake near the scene. >> we're searching this lake today because we did have a lead that indicated that the subjects came into this area. we're seeking evidence of anything that had to do with this particular crime. >> reporter: officials also urged patience for the people in
the community. this investigation as i have mentioned many, many times massive, and that's going to take time. so i know it's a little bit of a disruption to the area. it would not be uncommon for us to do neighborhood canvases. >> reporter: as this unfolds the focus intensifies on the couple behind the massacre, who the fbi says appear to have been radicalized before they met. fbi director briefed lawmakers on the status of the investigation. >> no, it's a dangerous world. director comey made it clear that the fbi is conducting a thorough investigation. it's a far from over, and we're uncertain where it is going to lead. >> reporter: investigators haven't found any direct links between the couple and violent groups. according to reuters, the couple tried and failed to contact
armed islamic groups. the groups ignored them, the report says, probably because they were afraid of being caught in a u.s. government sting. meanwhile investigators are continuing to monitor the role of enrique marquez, farooks relatively marriage and a former neighborhood. the atf says marquez purchased two of the guns used in the shootings. all of this as officials meet with the families of victims, and those who were injured. >> the emotional and physical scars that were suffered by them will take years to get over, and many of them will never get over some of the emotional scars. >> investigators believe that farook may have been plotting an attack as far back as 2012, but that attack was called off when several men were arrested on terrorism charges.
the white house says it is working out new proposals on background checks. it is trying to remove the loophole that allows people to purchase firearms online without any checks. >> congress hasn't acted, and they haven't acted, and that has been the source of immense frustration on the president and a lot of people in the executive branch. >> the nra and some republicans are calling the president's latest effort an overreach. meanwhile in connecticut the governor taking steps to control the flow of guns into that state. the governor says he will issue an executive order that will deny gun permits for people on the federal no-fly list. he called it common sense that a person considered too dangerous to fly, should also not be
allowed to buy a gun. >> the executive order would require those who apply for a permit to be screened against government watch lists. that would prevent anyone on the list of the ability to purchase handguns, shotguns, rifles, ammunition, assault weapons are already outlawed in connecticut. >> connecticut would be the first state to take this step. house speaker paul ryan says that the government puts people on watch list without due process, and that mean there's no legal reason to deny them the ability to buy guns. officials are warning americans in switzerland about a possible attack there. switzerland raised its terrorism alert level after the cia tipped off swiss authorities about a potential planned attack in geneva. officials are currently investigating suspects that are linked to groups like isil and al-qaeda. the u.s. embassy is advising
americans to be aware of their surrounding and keep an eye on the local news. muslim leaders here say they have seen a rise in threats and violence. the washington, d.c. office of the council of islamic american relations had to be evacuated. care officials say they got a suspicious envelope with white powder in the mail. the powder was found to be harmless, and the fbi is investigating. justin trudeau is head to toronto tonight to welcome syrian refugees. >> reporter: happy and anxious moments here in toronto last night, as 163 syrian refugees made the long journey to canada. when they landed, believe it or
not, they were introduced to the prime minister. he made statements, shook hands and welcomed his new residents to his country. it was late thursday night when 163 syrian refugees arrived in toronto. their long journey from the war-torn country was finally over. unlike some areas of the united states, and many other countries, syrian refugees are being warmly welcomed in canada. >> this is a wonderful night where we get to show not just a plane load of new canadians what canada is all about, but we get to show the world how to open our hearts and welcome in people who are fleeing extraordinarily difficult situations. >> reporter: in a recent poll, nearly 65% of canadian citizens support syrian refugees taking up a new life here in canada. in that is compared to just 27%
in the united states. it took hours to process the group. the first of 25,000 refugees to enter the country by february of next year. this man runs a sponsorship program in toronto. to those that say, you know, these are people that are coming into canada or the u.s. that we really don't know a lot about, we're afraid. what do you say? >> well, it goes right back to that us versus them mentality, right? i think it's important that we don't play into the hands of these terrorist organizations, because that's a tactic they use, this fear and divide, you know? >> reporter: more than 5700 miles from home, these syrians now have a chance at a new life, in a country where they now have status as permanent residents. they are being sponsored, which means they will be given a home for about a year, their children will be put in shool, they will
be given language lessons, they'll be shepherded through society, and they will be able to get a job through the assistance of these private sponsors, a long journey ahead, but certainly a good one. a big setback for fantasy sports websites. the legal blow from one judge for the popular sites. also breaking of silence, former pow, bo bird doll explains why he walked away from his post and ended up in enemy hands.
new york's attorney general and ordered the fantasy websites to cease operations in the state. this decision could really cripple this million billion dollars daily fantasy sports industry. draft king says it plans to appeal. a new york state attorney general found both sites were illegal gambling, and were not based on skill. a major merger between two giants in the chemical industry becomes official this morning. dupont and dow chemical have announced they want to join forces. the company would be valued at $130 billion. the plan is to eventually split two three separate parts. the deal is expected to face intense scrutiny from regulators. look, this is trillion dollars we're dealing with. this is hard-working taxpayers
work hard to send us their tax dollars. we have to suspect that. that's why we have to make sure that how we spend the hard-working taxpayer dollars are done in a way where we are not rushing. we're going to get it right. >> the extension will give lawmakers until wednesday to make up their minds. but some say they want a wider debate over side items, including a provision that could undermine the consumer financial protection bureau. libby casey reports. >> reporter: democrats won the battle to create the consumer financial protection bureau five years ago, but the fight isn't over yet. >> as long as congress is as influenced by the financial sector as they are, they are going to be trying to find a way to keep the agency from protecting consumers from one thing or another.
>> reporter: brad miller says it is hard as a politician to buck the big banking that fuel wall street and washington. >> someone elected to congress, even someone reasonably idealistic, the first thing they are told by their party leadership and by everybody in washington is to be respected, you have got to be a big money raiser. >> reporter: and the top place to get that money, the financial sector. and miller says its influence grows and grows to we the point where we are now, a massive spending bill that may get peppered with seemingly unrelated riders. >> washington has become the bridge troll. >> reporter: the white house says those riders wouldn't be able to stand on their own. >> these are in most cases
little more than just earmarks. >> reporter: one of the most powerful voices on capitol hill is the chairman of the house financial services committee. he calls the cfpb an unaccountable agency that is hurting the economy. open secrets reports that as of september his campaign had received this election cycle more than $150,000 from commercial banks, and he is supported by the insurance industry, securities and investment firms, other financial sectors and real estate companies. he has major support from companies like jpmorgan chase, and new york city democrat has been a defender of the payday loan industry. contributions to his campaign this cyclen collude nearly $50,000 from the security and
investment field. meeks gets major support from nasdaq members and goldman sachs. wall street has powerful friends on capitol hill. libby casey, al jazeera, washington. for the first time in more than a year, we're hearing from army sergeant bo bergdahl. he is speaking about his capture by the taliban and the controversial prisoner exchange that set him free. john terrett has the details. >> reporter: bowe bergdahl recounting his captivity for the first time since being released by the tral ban. >> how do i explain to a person that just standing in an empty dark room hurts? i couldn't see my hands.
i couldn't do anything. the only thing i could do was touch my face. >> reporter: he is speaking on the podcast serial. he suggests he didn't go awol, or flee during a fight, but planned to go missing to highlight a series of concerns he had regarding leadership problems within his unit. >> what was seeing from my first unit was basically leadership failure to the point that the lives of the guys standing next to me were barely, from what i could see in dangerous of something seriously going wrong and somebody being killed. >> reporter: he aimed to involve his colleagues but then pop up later alive and well, likening himself to a fictional action hero.
>> he has the skills of a dangerous man. >> i need to know what went wrong? >> i think he snapped. >> reporter: he was finally set free in may 2014 as part of a white house brokered exchange. bowe bergdahl is an active duty soldier with a clerical job based in san antonio,t third quarter. after a three-day hearing, the army recommended he not be court-martialed. he is now waiting for a decision. eight cadets at the citadel
have been suspended over an image posted online. these pictures surfaced earlier this week. they show cadets at the military college in south carolina dressed in hoods and all-white clothing. they say it was for a christmas skit and they were dressed as ghosts of christmas past. >> i think they know what they were doing. people like to deny that kind of thing exists, but they simply ung scored the reality with an explanation point. >> the school says it is launching an investigation. up next, rebuilding the bayou, how a signature food on the gulf coast is now helping protect the coastline. ♪ first lady is jamming, a new
[ laughter ] >> get educated. that is obviously the first lady's message with this rap video, encouraging teens to go to college. michelle obama's rapping skills are certainly getting a lot of attention online. she created the video as part of her initiative that is helping americans pursue higher education. i missed that the first time i saw that, the george washington joining in. louisiana is about to get more than $52 million to help restore's state's disappearing coastline. the money coming from fines that were paid after the 2010 deep water horizon explosion. one organization is using a louisiana staple to rebuild what has been lost. >> okay. >> reporter: in new orleans french quarter may be tough to find a restaurant where oysters
are not on the menu. the shelled used to end up in the trash. now they are being recycled and sent back to the sea. >> we're a turning point for coastal louisiana where not taking action is just not an option anymore. >> reporter: jenny bird is with the coalition to restore coastal louisiana. they are collecting more than 1300 tons of oyster shells from restaurants. they will end up in a container used to rebuild the reef. >> it's knocked down some of that high-wave energy and help promote land growth behind it. >> reporter: before they are bagged they go through a natural curing process, sitting here for months allowing the sun to remove any remaining bits of food. volunteers like al are also
helping. he has watched miles of marsh land his family used to fish on, disappear. >> so much has contributed to the loss of south louisiana, starting over 100 years ago, when we levied up the mississippi river, bridging, and oil and transportation canals. >> reporter: the reef should be finished next summer. >> not in my wildest dreams do i think if i sit here and shovel a thousand pounds of shells i'm going to seay south louisiana, but with efforts like this and some of the projects that is on the books right now with fresh water and sediment diversion, we have got a shot. >> reporter: jonathan martin, al jazeera, louisiana. another great reason to enje enjoy oysters.
thank for joining us. the news is live next from london. have a great day, everyone. ♪ libya takes another step down the path of peace as the countries two governments agree to sign a u.n.-backed deal on a unity government. ♪ hello there, i'm barbara sarah, you are watching al jazeera live from london. the taliban claim responsibility for a car bomb attack on the spanish embassy compound in kabul. clime talks in paris are extended until saturday. and question eel be on the