cartel uses to bring drugs to the united states. foreign ministers are in paris for high-level talks trying to increase the diplomatic pressure to end syria's bloody civil war. fighting has killed more than 250,000 people in five years and injured more than a million. most of them civilian. more than half of the 22 million population of syria has been displaced. lost their homes. that's 7.6 million inside the country. 3.9million outside of syria. and the u.s. .2 million people inside the country meets humanitarian assistance. steve o'brien has been in the syrian capital o.
>> winter has arrived in syria, bringing with it a new set of challenges for people who displaced from their homes. >> these heaters are dangerous to have in a tent. children can suffocate from the smoke. >> 35,000 syrians live in this camp on the northern outskirts of aleppo. while fighting in the area continues, and this perhaps the most intense anywhere in syria, in the central city of homs, an u.n.-administered cease-fire between the rebels and the government is holding. the humanitarian chief stephen o'brien met residents. he said that u.n. has been able to deliver life-saving aid in the district for the first time in 11 months. but this is now under threat. iranian-backed rebel fight verse
been tunneling towards opposition positions. they say they're trying to cut a supply route to the airport. they say the pro regime fighters don't recognize the truce signed by president bashar al-assad's government. and more than 50 people have been killed in attacks on an opposition stronghold east of the damascus. it happened as the u.n. humanitarian chief wrapped up it's three-day visit. >> this situation is unacceptable. a blot on our collective conscious. >> there are 7.6 million internally displaced syrians. the u.n. said that three-quarters of them don't have access to drinking water while two million children are out of school. bernard smith, al jazeera. >> and there are correspondent dominic smith live for news paris. it is right that we report this, but what is the import of it? in effect what they're doing, they're assessing what has
previously been discussed in saudi arabia before further meeting in new york, or is there more to it? >> well, that is the question, david. certainly we know the foreign ministers of ten different countries will be here. in the course of the next hour or so to come together, to discuss the situation. we can surmise, as you say, the meeting in riyadh in rein days which was held to discuss the way forward, the future of syria, whether that should be with bashar al-assad involved in it or not. that is likely to be on the agenda. as, indeed, the humanitaria hue humanitarian crisis. whether or not there will be any progress remains to be seen. we know for example there is unlikely to be a news conference at this meeting here today.
we also know, as you say, the russians are not here, the iranians are not here. so the question will be whether real progress can be made at this meeting without such key players. >> yet, you mentioned russia there, dominic. and john kerry getting together with his count parts in paris, they'll have to find some common ground to take on those opposition groups in particular isil and syria. >> well, indeed, mr. kerry has been going through the rounds attending different meetings regarding different problem areas in the world. we talk about the situation in libya, and now the situation in syria is slap bang on his door step. we understand that he's going to
meet with vladimir putin and mr. lavrov to talk through this. but the question is what is the question of syria? does it involved bashar al-assad? we can surmise that the russian position will be that it does need to be with bashar al-assad. and if he is the answer then you're asking the wrong question. the question will be what sort of wiggle room, as it were, the americans and russians can play out with each other to find any sort of solution. the fact that mr. kerry is going at some point this week, whether it is immediately after this meeting or in the days to come to moscow may be seen by some as progress. but we shall have to wait and see how that works out. it's worth making the point that the e.u. foreign ministers have been meeting today in brussels to discuss the situation. we know that e.u. foreign policy
chief has been outspoken about the situation, and we also know, of course, that the e.u. heads of government will be meeting in brussels on thursday and friday to discuss the situation vis-a-vis isil, vis-a-vis syria, and what it means for them in europe, where the situation of terrorism, as it has been described certainly by the french government, is very high on their agenda. all of these things to come, david. >> diplomacy by inches, indeed. dominic kane in paris, thank you. turkey has withdrawn a thousand troops it had stationed in a camp of northern iraq. they were close to the city of mosul, an isil stronghold. the deployment had led to a diplomatic row between baghdad and ankara. protesters were demanding that the troops lead. some soldiers were pulled out because of military necessity.
we have the latest from erbil. >> after weeks of a war of words between turkey and iraq, the turkish troops stationed in northern iraq are finally on their way out. from the peshmerga forces we know more than a thousand troops according to these kurdish forces are on their way out. the kurds say there are trucks carrying not just tanks but heavy military government back to turkey. the prime minister of iraq wrote to the united nations asking to use its influence on turkey to try and get these troops out of his territory. they insist these troops are important in the fight against isil, also to take on the isil stronghold of mosul. kurdish forces told us this happened after intense negotiations between baghdad and ankara and also pressure from
the u.n. now we know that these troops are on their way out, and turkey insisting that this was just a regular redeployment of troops. >> using tear gas and water canon to break up a protest. the group there protesting about a security crackdown. the region has strong kurdish majorities, and it comes as turkish fighters battle. ankara has imposed curfews in many parts of the city. >> welcome, confirmation comes from saudi arabia. it's head of special operations and commander have been killed in fighting in yemen. the saudi arabian colonel was taking part in the offensive in the city of taiz when he was attacked.
early led coalition airstrikes around taiz killed around 54 hut54 houthi rebels, and in haija province, civilians died after a bomb went off on several homes and a marketplace. the seven-day cease-fire yemen's foreign minister said that fighting and forces loyal to president hadi will stop december 14th. there was confirmation of the agreement. at a bus stop 11 people are originalled. the attacker was shot dead by
security guard. an axe was found in the vehicle. it was near the city lead together main highway to tel aviv. a baby is among those to have been hurt. an egyptian report into the crash of the russian plane into at peninsula said it was an accident. moscow said that a bomb caused the crash. egyptians said that theirs is a preliminary report and the investigation is continuing. the plane was coming back from resort sharm el sheik. south african president jacob zuma sacked the finance
minister, sending the rand value down. >> we've seen a steady recovery of the rand in the last 24 hours. that's immediately after the announcement was made that there would be a new finance minister, pravin gordhan. he has the history, he has the political standing and the experience to chart the way forward to see increasing more gains in the rand as well as stabilizing the economy, and reassuring investors that south africa will be okay, and this is, of course, shortly after south africa africa africa narrowly missed being down graded to junk status. but they say they're worried and they'll wait to see what happens in the new year. president zuma has seen
criticism in his presidency, and this is just the latest in a string of controversial incidents. initially when he sacked the first finance minister, the african national congress came out to say that they note and respect his decision. they didn't say too much after that, usually coming to his defense. it was only after the appointment of pravin gordhan that they say that they support the decision. there has been massive amounts of criticism. they saw him on the weekend, and that's where they saw the results being reinstated as finance minister. >> still coming here on
al jazeera, security alerts after reports of an attack on a teacher in paris. what actually happened, though? plus... >> they seem to be doing their best to prevent the media from getting anywhere near the court. >> scuffles in china as a prominent human rights lawyer is tried over online posts mocking the government.
in syria. talks by world powers will be held next week. turkey has withdrawn troops stationed in northern iraq after diplomatic row between baghdad and ankara. and pravin gordhan has been reappointed as south africa's finance minister, the third person to be given the job in less than a week. peace keepers in the central african republic allow people to vote safely. at least two people were killed in confrontations on sunday in the muslim-majority pk 5 district. heightening fears about whether long delayed elections can go ahead on december 27th. well, more than 100,000 muslims have been forced to
leave bangui. many say they live in stab fear for their lives. >> a rare call to prayer in the central african republic. the tension was in bangui as one of four places of worship for the muslims who remain in the capital. muslims are forced from their homes and thousands of others were killed during the civil war. >> it's all for major league africans. christians and muslims. they want to live in dignity and freedom. >> this is the district that is safe for muslims. it is protected by international peace keepers. and in this neighborhood there
is no conflict between muslims and christians, but danger lurks nearby. >> we cannot go to the hospital. we have sick children. if we go out this will kill us. >> security and limited access to the area makes it hard to earn a living. >> we have problems securing merchandise. we can't go down to buy any goods. an no one is transporting the goods to us out of fear of getting killed. >> what started three years ago as a power grab between armed groups turned to fighting between christians and muslim rebels. especially here christian militias are accused of increasingly targeting muslim families. but christian worshipers in this
church want to live in harmony with their neighbors. sunday mass is a weekly chance to break up forgiveness and peace. >> peace goes through forgiveness, and the check has to review his life and admitted mistakes. >> while the call for prayers the search for long-lasting peace continues. al jazeera. bangui. >> a teacher in france said that he was attacked by a hooded man claiming allegiance to isil admits he made the story up. the teacher claimed the man attacked him in the classroom with a craft knife before running off. the police would reinforce security at all schools. but after a day-long manhunt t , they learned that the teacher
invented the incident. opposition politicians have set off tear gas canasters. the latest such incident. opposition mps are angry over the deal to allow ethnic serbs greater power. exactly 20 years now the deal was officially signed that ended the war in kosovo an. an estimated 2 million people have lost their homes, and 20 years on many have not returned. the agreement ratified in paris, it kept bosnia as a single country but split it into two parts. from sarajevo we have reports.
>> sarajevo was the iconic heart of the brutal ethnic conflicts that marked the disintegration of yugoslavia. the siege lasted for 44 months, the longest recorded in modern warfare. shells and sniper fire rained down on civilians and defenders alike. monday is the 20th anniversary of the signing of the dayton peace accord in paris that brought peace to sarajevo, and ended the war that forced more than 2 million people from their homes and killed an estimated 100,000 across the former communist state. >> with such a painful past the question is can sarajevo's question ever be truly secure? the conflict may now be frozen after man after, but many fear
the past will come back to haunt them. >> we're going back to the polarization between the ethnic divisions that that are a bye product of the war and in a way cemented by the peace accords. >> cemented, too, in the streets of the city reminders of where civilians were cut down during the siege. the so-called roses of sarajevo. >> at the art gallery in the historical heart of the city, they told me about the explosion of color that has come back to their work since the siege ended. a siege that strangled any desire in her to paint. >> we all were exposed to daily shelling. our lives were so simple. and we didn't know whether we would wake up the next morning alive. >> hope for the future is hard to find in this city.
a city still besieged by its past. david cater, al jazeera, sarajevo. >> the trial of one of china's most prominent dissidents has ended after five hours only. the human rights lawyer has spent more than a year and a half in prison because of comments he posted online criticizing the ruling communists. adrian brown reports from beijing. >> china's constitution guarantees free speech. but there wasn't much of that outside of beijing's second intermediate court. police pushed away diplomats, journalists and supporters of one of china's best-known dissidents. it's a very sensitive case. they seem to be doing their best, as you can see, to prevent the media from getting anywhere near the court. this has been the same treatment meted out to foreign diplomats. of course, many people are
watching this trial with great interest. pu is a very prominent dissident and it is very difficult to film now. among the diplomats turned away the first secretary of the u.s. embassy. >> those of civil society leaders such as mr. pu cannot be subjected to continuing oppression. >> that's about as much as he was i believe to say before he, too, was pushed away. he was here to show support to pu zhiqiang. pu was arrested over statements posted on social media mocking china's government. his clients include another dissenting voice, artist ai
weiwei. this poster said that pu is not guilty. that's enough to get you arrested in the current climate. >> there is no freedom at all. you are guilty if you talk. you are even guilty if you send flowers. >> pu is more than 300 human rights activists, lawyers and journalist who is have been detained since president xi. >> last week one state-owned up in urged judges to ignore pressure from western governments. adrian brown, al jazeera, beijing. >> more than 40 argentine border officers were killed when their
bus went off a bridge. one of three vehicles carrying police, another 20 were seriously hurt. >> the world's most wanted drug lord joachim guzman wa escaped through tunnels. we went through one of them. >> this looks like another empty warehouse in tijuana just a stone's throw from the u.s. border. but this one is different. it hides a secret. under its floorboard is one of the super tunnels built to get drugs into the biggest market, the united states. the sophisticated works of engineering with electric lighting, ventilation and even a primitive transport system.
this trolley can be wheeled along these rows as i'm doing now. that's exactly what the people working here would do to transport soil in and out of the tunnel. >> they are multi million dollar investments up to eight soccer pitches long. each one pays for itself with just one load of marijuana. that's why everyone wants in. investigators tell us that tunnels like this one are actually rented out by their owners to other criminal groups who want to transport their merchandise to the other side. >> those hired to do the digging are normally told little and run the biggest risk of arrest or worse. >> it has happened in the past, apparently, that cartels simply killed the people who were digging so they took the secret to their grave with them. >> the sinaloa cartel are the undisputed masters even recently tunneling the world's most wanted drug lord el chapo out of jail through his cell shower.
>> there are long row of warehouses on the mexican side and another long row on the u.s. side, there are a lot of empty warehouses and the cartels will use that to their benefit. >> eric feldman is in charge of a special tunnel task force u.s. authorities formed to try to stop the cartels using rudimentary equipment and door to door inquiries they discovered 40 tunnels under tolt toilets and lighting panels. they fill them in, but that does not always happen on the mexican side. >> we have down instances where the tunnels are not remediated, and the cartel also dig into a pre-existing tunnel to lessen the investment. >> so far about 180 tunnels have been discovered along the border. but how many more are moving
millions of dollars of drugs under the very ground that the authorities are guarding. tijuana, mexico. >> fascinating background stories such as that as the main global headlines are all to be found on www.aljazeera.com. that's www.aljazeera.com. >> fighting isil, president obama is at the meant gone discussing national security as he tries to easy the nation's fears over potential threats. closing arguments in baltimore, the juries will soon get the case the first officer tried in the death of freddie gray. new restrictions, the faa lays out new rules for operating drones. and the shake up at the top of the polls ahead of tuesday's re