♪ >> announcer: this is al jazeera. ♪ you're watching the news hour live from our headquarters in doha, these are the top stories. a rare evacuation underway, syrians trapped in three battleground areas are given safe passage out. a painful legacy resolved, south korea and japan reach an agreement over the women used as war time sex slaves. border agency dispatchs hundreds of officials to greece to speed up the processing of refugees.
and hoping to enburundi's unrest and talks underway to try to resolve the month-long violence. ♪ dburundi's unrest and talks underway to try to resolve the month-long violence. ♪ we begin with details of a rare deal to evacuate syrians trapped by the fighting in two parts of the country and on syria's border with lebanon a group of rebel fighters and their families have been stuck in this area under siege by government forces and now these families are being allowed safe passage to go to idlib where el nusra are strongest and shia families trapped in two towns controlled by rebels and under the u.n. backed deal will be given safe route to damascus where the government will largely still have control. now the fighters and their families will be leaving and
headed to lebanon and they will continue on to turkey before finally settling in idlib and shia families will go from idlib to turkey and beirut before settling in damascus. this is not the first evacuation agreement of its kind. in fact, in the past year there have been similar agreements in the city of homs and yurmuk which is currently on hold. and we are joined from the lebanon, syria border crossing. what is happening where you are? >> reporter: what we know now is the u.n. and the international community for the red cross convoys have left the town and heading towards where i am currently and they will be passing through heading to beirut airport and we want to remind viewers this has been under siege since 2012 and witnessing major battles mostly over the summer between the syrian army and the hezbollah
fighting alongside syrian army and opposition groups. this is how this deal has gone in late september a brokered deal between iran and turkey under went underway. it has been delayed for this day we are seeing today the swaps, a ceasefire went on for the last three months but remind there have been russian air strikes and artargeting idlib rebel held and given the wounded what are the numbers for both sides to agree on? today what we are seeing is that there is implementation based on this for this evacuation. >> tell me more about the people on the buses, it's fighters and families as well, how many people actually are we talking about? >> what we know and confirmed that with the makeshift hospital inside that there is about 123. 70 of them are wounded fighters that have been fighting especially in the last few
months and they will be coming out with their families. we expect them to be coming through here and put in context that the general security is going to be securing their safe passage and transfer for the groups to come through lebanon and go back into syria. >> any idea when they will, in fact, be making their way back to syria or is that just a little bit too far down the road to know? >> we know this is a simultaneous deal and it's significant and interesting all the convoys will be heading out at the same time which we know they have started coming their way through here and we expect this to go on all throughout the day and the day we should expect both of these groups to be back inside syria in different parts of the country. >> so fairly quickly and thank you so much. and we are live for us near the turkey-syria border with the second aspect, the other aspect of the story and tell us about
what is happening on your side. >> we are expecting 336 supporters of the syrian government and mainly shia and militia fighters who will hold up in the cities to arrive in the turkish crossing in the coming hours. the bordered buses and the buses are on their way to turkey. then they will be flown from turkey to beirut. from there they will drive to the syrian capitol damascus. and they are areas in idlib and idlib came this year under full control of the rebels. a coalition of powerful factions like el nusra front managed to sweep through idlib and taking over cities, downtown and also the outskirts. there were only two areas where
the government still has support basically the predominately shia villages and the rebel came for the pro-government fighters to leave. and they should be given safe passage and this is happening right now. source from the national correspondence says this has been part of an international push to build confidence measures between the government and the rebels so that when they go through geneva next month there will be some momentum that could pave the way for both parties to overcome the obstacles they face in the past. >> is it possible that something like this really could have that huge of an impact? >> it could but because if you look at the pattern we are seeing similar things happening across the country so the government for example is now trying to negotiate similar deal with the el nusra front and i.s.i.l. in the nearby camp and
also a significant deal which is underway between the rebels and the government in the district in homs and this is very rushl for both parties and opposition because they have a concentration of a huge number of fighters who have been besieged for months and have been agreeing with the government on one foot out of their fighters handing over heavy weapons to the government and starting reconstruction but now they are saying if we can go to geneva with this good news about the prisoners, evacuation of civilians then we can move forward and try to find a way out of the whole political crisis in the country. so this is what we have. we have the evacuation, we have the u.n. enjoy with the opposition in riyadh in the coming days and seeing what could be the beginning of an international diplomatic push to find a way out of syria's civil war. >> all right, live and thank
you. now as you can imagine it is difficult to get people out of syria. at the moment i.s.i.l. controls much of the country's central corridor, the syrian opposition controls large parts of the north and southwest. the kurdish population protection units or the ypg have also been battling i.s.i.l. the rest of the country remains under government control. now in the evacuations have been taking place under the supervision of the international red cross. it's lebanon spokesman is on the phone for us from the crossing and we appreciate it so much. so how has this process been going as your organization sees it? >> good morning. well, as you may know this operation has been separation for the past through months at least and it's basically a cooperation between the u.n. and syria, the icrc lebanon and
syria and the red cross and right now i'm at the border crossing between lebanon and syria. we are still waiting for the convoy to get to lebanon. >> okay, what are you hoping to accomplish? >> well, hopefully first of all there are many places that we don't have access to, to any such deal or the people there. and once the people get to lebanon be it there are emergency medical care that needs to be provided before they continue their journey to the final destination. >> are you optimistic if all goes well with this today perhaps there will be other agreements like this in the future? >> well, again, we hope so. we are not part of the negotiation for this deal. however, we hope that we will see more of it in the future and as i said before there are more than 100,000 people now that we cannot access inside syria so we
really hope things happen. >> what are the most dire needs there that the things that you all would want to do? >> well, yeah, the people in the area lack of water, lack of food, absolutely no medical care whatsoever and injured people and would have access to healthcare so there are many needs to be met. >> and at this point you're just waiting for the buses to get to where they need to be, is that ma my understanding? that's correct, waiting for the convoy to enter lebanon. >> we will be checking with you throughout the day with the international red cross in lebanon, thank you so much. syrian state t.v. supporting multiple explosions in the city of homs, at least 14 people have been killed, more than 130 wounded in these blasts. a syrian rights group has the death toll at the explosions of 32.
syrian bomber in the afghan capitol killed at least one person and wounded 13 others near the airport and attack happened near the military entrance used by nato forces and we report. >> reporter: the attack happened on a road near kabul airport. the suicide bomber target appear to be member of nato security forces. but state civilians were caught up in the blast. >> translator: our standing near my shop when suddenly i heard a huge explosion and everything became dark around me, shattered pieces of iron fell on me and i was three meters from the explosion and saw two dead on the ground, it was real terrible. >> reporter: explosion destroyed cars and hit a street lined with shops. >> translator: i was feeding children in the mosque when the suicide attack happened and i was injured. >> reporter: kabul is chief of police says that the attack was
creating fear of them. >> translator: suicide bomber in a car loaded with explosives detonated his bomb in the area, as a result 13 passersby were wounded and one person killed, all of them were civilians. >> reporter: this is the latest in a series of security setbacks for the afghan government. in september the taliban took control of afghan city of kunduz and held it two weeks before the army regained control and early this month more than 70 people died in a taliban attack on kandahir and it came a day after the aid of afghanistan army attended a conference in the city aimed at helping peace talks with the taliban. al jazeera, kabul. south korea and japan have agreed on a historic deal to end
a longstanding dispute. the issue of war time sex slaves. japan's prime minister will offer an apology and tokyo will offer $8.7 million as compensation to former people used as sex slaves and they enslaved nearly 200,000 korean women during world war ii. >> translator: as prime minister of japan prime minister has apologies to all women who under went a painful experience and suffered incurrable physical and psychological wounds. >> translator: south korea confirms together with japan with this announcement on the premise the japanese government implement the measures. >> professor of science at the university and joins us now from
tokyo. appreciate your time very much. could you characterize this development, how big of a deal is this? >> well, this is a huge deal. as far as we can tell a long time problem that has divided these two countries has been seemingly resolved, at least on a government to government level. now, saying that, you have to realize that this is an issue that has divided peoples and has been very much personalized whether the individuals who have been involved in this issue will accept this government to government agreement is something that is really up in the air still at this time. >> why did it take so long for it to be resolved? were there baby steps along the way? >> there were steps along the way that were attempted in the 1990s but they reached an impass, basically the government of japan during the 1990s came
to the idea that it cannot apologize as the government. instead various forms of apologies involving prime ministers as first as private individuals were worked out amongst bureaucrats. however, this did not satisfy public opinion particularly in south korea. so this is an issue which would have been put away a long time ago if someone in the japanese government had said this is a government problem, let's solve it and perhaps now they have come to some realization, many, many decades too late that what they were doing a few decades back was simply insufficient. >> let's talk a little bit more about something you said a moment ago that the government doing the right thing but that doesn't necessarily mean it's going to be resolved between the people, the peoples of this country. how so? >> well, in a very simple
illustration, both prime minister and president park have basically been arsonists on this issue tossing gasoline on it and setting it alight and dancing by the flames for about a decade. they have been amongst the extremist on the issue and now the governments are making a compromise, both sides are making sacrifices and they have come up with this moderate solution. however, the extremists with whom both sides associated are are still around and they must be feeling that they were played for fools. >> interesting. we will have to see how this plays out and perhaps trickles down to the people that the government represents. michael thank you so much. plenty of ground to cover this hour on al jazeera. let's take a look here, iraqi government forces continue to make gains in ramadi, we will be live from irbil with the latest
and stylish, and affordable we will meet the philippine engineers behind a budget sports car and in sports the carolina panthers unbeaten season comes to an end. ♪ talks aimed at ending months of unrest in burundi are underway in uganda. the government opposition parties and civil society groups are expected at this meeting and more than 300 people have died in violence in burundi since april. the country is struggling to emerge from a decade long ethnic based civil war. the violence began in april when president announced he was running for a third term. the opposition says this violates ethnic power sharing principles and following a failed coup in may he was voted in. the african union wants to send
peace keepers and that is a move the government is rejecting and amnesty international says the country is facing a human rights crisis and says extra judicial killings are taking place and we are joined from the capitol of burundi. so what is the reaction in burundi been, mohamed? >> well, the talks are underway new grain uganda in a small sid outside the capitol kampala and opened the talks with a plea for an end to the violence in burundi. now, these talks have been welcomed by most burundi people who see them as the best possible way out of the crisis in their country, a crisis that has seen the deaths of more than 300 people, 200,000 people fleeing the country and the
economy of the country shrinking 2% this year according to the international monetary fund but where they have their hopes high about the peace talks many burundi people also know that it will be difficult to reach an agreement in those talks because of both sides the opposition maintains that the president is in power illegally after running for a third term which they see as unconstitutional while the president and his supporters say that he is in power legally because he was only elected by the people once and not twice as said in the constitution. now, while the talks are going underway in uganda the african union is also trying to convince the burundi government to agree to 5,000 peace keeping forces who were supposed to have been deployed here which burundi said no to and the african union has
written to the president and also delegations coming to burundi in the past few days from countries that are friendly to president zizi and burundi is still facing and not allowing deployment of foreign peace keepers on its soil. >> let's talk about the coup leaders the failed coup leaders who were scheduled to appear in court, tell us more about that. >> well, yes, they were supposed to appear today in court about 100 kilometers from here. there are 28 suspects who are still in custody. these eight including five former generals in the army and the former defense minister of burundi and syria was supposed to appear in court today for the hearing of their case, a case in which they are accused of having
formented a coup against the president and the judge postponed the hearing until the 4th of january and that is when we are going to see how the hearing is going to go. >> all right, mohamed live for us and thank you. suspected boko haram fighters have killed at least 15 people in northeastern nigeria. they attacked a village near the city of madaguri and feared the death toll may be much higher and local media say at least ten gunmen were killed in the attack and we have more from abuja. >> reporter: nigerian military in hot pursuit of attackers on the village and surrounding communities as they come through the bushes to find out whether or not there are more boko haram fighters hiding around there. security and local sources are telling al jazeera that boko haram fighters had 8 female suicide bombers to attack the
village causing so much damage. after the nigerian government and military announced they degraded the capacity of boko haram technically defeating it we will see incidents like this and such as this attacking isolated communities, launching suicide missions as well as ambushing either patrols or local communities supplying the highways. shortly before the attack i spoke to the commander of the oppressions against boko haram in the northeast of the country and this is what he is saying. >> it's daily becoming more peaceful, better place than it used to be and we believe that for every second, for every minute, for everyday things will continue to improve. >> reporter: now the government is confident it has broken the will of boko haram to occupy any nigerian territory and we will see in the next few months along with troops cameroon, chad try
operation and crush boko haram will be incidents such as like attacking isolated communities, ambushing patrols or highways, civilians on the highways and launching of suicide missions. >> flooding forced more than 150,000 people from their homes across south america and this is the worst effected country and local media reporting at least five people have died and many have been trapped in their homes. in an argentina the northeast is the worst hit region and the president cancelled his christmas holidays to visit one of the worst effected areas. nearly 10,000 people have been evacuated from there. and brazil's president took an aerial tour of flooded areas in the state of rio-grande and it's attributed to the el nino weather pattern and at least 11 people died when a string of tornados swept through north texas and toppled homes, blew
away cars, cut power lines and caused traffic jams. the worst hit was garland northeast of dallas. eight people died there. the weather service has warned the extreme weather will continue over the next few days. now more on weather with richard who has the latest on these storms and blizzards that are hitting the united states. it's quite a mess, richard. >> awful. the garland tornado that was an ef-4. >> my goodness. >> so just one off the maximum so really, really severe storm. what we are seeing at the moment is truly exceptional now part of it is as a result of the very cold air across central and western parts of the united states meeting this very warm air coming from the gulf of mexico, this is record breaking warm air and doesn't attract headlines at the moment but the effects of it are attracting the headlines and you see the development taking place on some southern states and an area of low pressure and the classic frontal set up and what is
happening within it is very extreme indeed. looking at some rainfall totals and vast amounts of rain being reported over the last 24 hours but obviously it's tornados which caused so many fatalities and this is quite interesting. on sunday it was a 7th consecutive day when a tornado touched down somewhere in the united states. that beat the previous record of the days back in 1982. the significance of this is that 1982 and 83 was the last really big el nino and think it's highly likely these tornados are el nino related and south america bad weather and all linked and very severe weather to come and neglecting this giving lots of snow and freezing rain across parts of alabama, and louisiana and a chance of more tornados. >> richard thank you. the philippines is known for its lush tropical beauty and probably not the first country
th that is here and a group of young engineers is aiming to change that and we report where they are building luxury and affordable super cars. >> reporter: this is what is described as the philippines first super car weighing 650 kilos pumps out 517 horse power and top speed of 200 kilometers per hour and designed and developed by young philippine car enthusiasts because they cannot afford to buy a sports car they decided to build one. >> translator: it all started when we were challenged and told we couldn't do it. that we wouldn't be able to complete one and make it run. >> reporter: but they did using parts that were easy to find locally and adapting the over all design for the philippine market and the engine is japanese with a tubular space
range chassis. >> translator: the thing about this car is that it isn't too delicate in how its made. in the philippine context and a lot of traffic and a lot of humps and many uneven roads and it adapted to that. >> reporter: it's called the par man poor man's sports car and doesn't bother builders and seen as a way of recycling up. no machines or assembly lines and each piece of the car body is crafted and molded by hand. it takes between 6-8 months to complete a car. so far only four prototypes have been produced and developers say there has been much interest from buyers but it will be a while longer before the car is ready for the market. >> translator: we want this to serve as inspiration to each philippine and if we can achieve the dream so can others appreciate what we have done
here. >> reporter: what they have done developers say is a work of art by making the most of what they had. al jazeera, laguna, philippines. reaping the benefits of a gold mine in kurzistan and a chinese government crack down on corruption and in sports the la lakers season gets worse with a defeat of the grizzlies and we will have more later in the program. ♪ bring your family and friends together to discover the best shows and movies with xfinity's winter watchlist. later on, we'll conspire ♪ ♪ as we dream by the fire ♪
a beautiful sight, we're happy tonight ♪ ♪ watching in a winter watchlist land, ♪ ♪ watching in a winter watchlist land! ♪ xfinity's winter watchlist. watch now with xfinity on demand- your home for the best entertainment this holiday season. tand that's what we're doings to chat xfinity.rself, we are challenging ourselves to improve every aspect of your experience. and this includes our commitment to being on time. every time. that's why if we're ever late for an appointment, we'll credit your account $20. it's our promise to you. we're doing everything we can to give you the best experience possible. because we should fit into your life. not the other way around.
♪ you're watching al jazeera. let's take a look at the top stories now. international red cross is over seeing the transfer of around 140 syrian rebel fighters and their families from the town to be treated for their wounds in turkey. separately assad supporters from two villages in idlib providence are also boarding buses for turkey and will then head to lebanon in route to damascus and it's all part of a deal between the syrian government and opposition negotiated with the help of iran, turkey and the u.n. historic deal between south korea and japan over the issue of war time sex slaves. japanese prime minister is to offer apology and compensation to former sex slaves. talks aimed at ending months of unrest in burundi have been taking place in uganda.
violence began in april when president announced his intention to run for a third term. the african union warned the country they be in danger of returning to civil war. and let's return now to our top story and the syrians who are being given safe passage out of three battleground areas and joining us live from the capitol beirut is a retired lebanese army general and military analyst and general we always appreciate your time so what is your take on the safe passage, these transfers that are happening? >> i think this is not the first time. we have seen this in homs a long time ago. it is cost benefit approach and good for everybody, it's a win-win situation. for the regime he is securing his backyard. for hezbollah he is economizing
forces and protecting his soft belly because this area is in the middle of the area of influence of hezbollah with hezbollah and we have pro-shia and at the same time it is beneficial for the rebels to go and fight in different places. but i think it's like a trend going on. we have seen it in homs as i said earlier. now and so it's like a positive for everybody, cost benefit approach. however it's like really partition and exchanging population. >> that was going to be exactly my next question and next point general there are people that are concerned about the transfers of people, the transfers of population, i'd like to hear your thoughts on that. >> yes, ma'am. it's like politician and agreed upon politician because it's a place where you have the
proregime surrounded by an area controlled by the rebels. on the other hand the opposite thing is like the rebels surrounded by an area by the regime. it's like really cleaning the area where the regime is holding ground in order to have a safe place, maybe it's preparing for the next round of political process which is, you know, i don't see it in the near future. >> do you think that there will be more situations, more agreements like this to come? >> yes, when it is necessary to cooperate we have seen the trend and go and cooperate and when they have to fight they are going and fighting. maybe the new element that is really added for the rebels to agree to leave, maybe the russian air power because the russian air power and the russian, the coming of the russian really changed the whole
military dynamics in syria, you know. so we have seen maybe a trend political u.n. security council to do five-four and riyadh conference and, you know, this is asking for the global national ceasefire. >> yes. >> we are seeing now political process parallel to the military one. maybe this military one is one of these agreements. >> so i hear what you're saying but in the long run do you think that something like this will really have any type of impact on actually getting to peace in syria or steps like this just too small? >> i mean, we will never see syria the same as used to be syria. syria is like divided. there is a partition. you have many players and new leaders and new commanders. however, in every civil war when
you have this exchange of population you go to certain stalemate and when you have this stalemate it leads maybe to political solution because you can never bring people back to their area, to their places, to their homes. we are going to see a different syria in the coming future even with the political process coming very soon. >> retired army general, military analyst, general thank you. iraqi forces claiming victory over i.s.i.l. and ramadi after retaking government buildings in the city center. i.s.i.l. seized ramadi more than 100 kilometers back in may and the army with tribal fighters now controls the government compound in the neighborhood. other reports say i.s.i.l. still controls parts of the city. and we are joined now from
irbill so tell us more about the tactics, what do we know? >> what we can tell you from iraqi security forces is that they have taken this strategic compound in the neighborhood which hosts not just the iraqi and anbar but the buildings as well and this is symbolic victory because this compound is held by whoever controls the city but having said that i.s.i.l. is in charge of four or five major downtown neighborhoods in ramadi. iraqi forces have not been able to cross the river from the north and the fight still continues. in terms of tactics i.s.i.l. has forced the iraqi security forces to use more conventional tactics like air support and going in the heavy armor rather than hit-and-run and anti-insurgent tactics that were earlier in the
conflict and more than 600 air strikes carried out by international coalition to take out defensive positions held by i.s.i.l. and to give you an idea these positions were behind mind fields that i.s.i.l. had laid out and when iraqi forces would go and clear those land mines or ieds, the i.s.i.l. fighters would fight them and wouldn't let them clear the way so that more forces could come in. international coalition forces have taken out majority of these positions in ramadi and the iraqi forces are making progress and are confident that within a matter of days they will be able to take call of the city of ramadi. >> a matter of days? >> absolutely because this is urban warfare and the battles are street by street and house by house. there are mines, there are improvised explosive devices and
houses rigged by explosives and suicide bombers which are left behind hiding in buildings waiting for iraqi forces to enter and have not taken the whole city of ramadi and are trying to but progress has been very slow and this is day seven of offensive which was supposed to be quick to take the city of ramadi but finding it much harder to subdue i.s.i.l. which is deploying all sorts of tactics including see side bombers in areas as well as buildings. >> thank you so much joining us from irbill. saudi arabia is due to unveil its budget for the next year and it's the first state budget being approved under the king solomon and government expected to cut spending after the fall and oil prices. european union border agency is stepping forward to help the process help processing rather the large number of refugees still arriving on the greek islands. the block is sending a team of almost 400 officers and
interpreters that will include experts in security screening, fingerprinting and also forged documents. and we are joined live from the greece-macedonia border so have they arrived yet where you are, omar? >> i've seen only two officers using police vehicle. there were two other people with them so i assume it's an interpreter and another person with that team, the two officers i saw were in police uniforms carrying the logo of the european union. we tried to speak to them. they refused and they are going to headquarters in war saw. what we have been told by greek police is that actually they arrived a few days earlier. they did set up on my right a cara van which is not
operational and lacks appliances and no documents, there are no machines, et cetera, so where i am there have not been operational yet. there could be arriving reenforcements arriving to the greek islands according to the text 447 soldiers in greece and according to the new deal with the greek government is that they will be sending 376 officers gradually to try and help the greek authorities process the large number of refugees. >> and tell us more about what this new force will be doing. >> well, they will be screening the refugees, holding debriefs with them, trying to clear them, try to check their security backgrounds, trying to identify their nationalitys and also
fingerprint them and cross check it with national and european database. it's a big process security wise. the whole reenforcement is aimed at the security side of things. how will that play out? it remains to be seen because as i said there are not operation where i am for example and it will take a lot of time and when you just think about the sheer number of refugees crossing over a million people most of them have gone through probably with some initial registration but not security checks so it's a big, big amount i would say and also that process will not stem, help stem the flow of refugees, it will only help speed the registration process for the refugees to continue their journey to northern parts of europe. >> reporting live from the greece-macedonia border, omar, thank you. united states is facing growing anger over new restrictions for people trying to enter the country. it is prohibiting visa travel
for anyone who has visited or is a citizen of so called high risk countries including syria and iran and passed by congress last week after the shooting in california and tom ackerman reports. >> reporter: since pakistani woman alleged to have pledged allegiance to aisle joined her husband in killing 14 people in california concerns mounted about the ability of potential terrorists to avoid scrutiny in entering the u.s. the congress has passed a law to toughen requirements and puts new limits on travelers and americans and citizens of 38 countries who have long been able to visit the u.s. without a visa. >> it will also disqualify anyone who has traveled to syria, iraq, sudan and iran in the past five years for participating in the program and will require the individuals to apply for visa and go through the screening process. >> reporter: the visa changes have been met with anger from several quarters.
from americans who hold dual nationality with those four countries even if they have never set foot in their parents' home land. like iran american. >> if your father is iran national you are considered an iran national and that applies even if you have never traveled to iran but that is the circumstance that a lot of people will know but faced with. >> reporter: sparked online campaign condemning what opponents call creation of second class u.s. citizenship based on national origin then there is the eu and 28 members don't currently need visas and they will have to retaliate against american visitors and only hurting economies on both sides of the atlantic. but the motive for the eligibility changes appear clear to iran. the speaker of its parliament said they were aimed at harassment and blatantly violate the nuclear agreement sabotaging
efforts to recover from years of economic sanctions. the obama administration is worried about the visa changes. >> it could have a very negative impact on the deal. >> reporter: but secretary of state john kerry has assured the iranians the visa reform would not be an obstacle and said they had the power to waive the rules so as not to interfere with the legitimate business interests of iran. the republicans who control the congress and who oppose the nuclear deal say they will resist any effort to placate iran but after realizing the unintended consequences of the new restrictions some leaders say they may have to reassess next year. tom ackerman, al jazeera, washington. a gold mine is creating big profits but there are many who say they are not seeing any of the profits and people in areas surrounding the gold mines say they want better facilities like schools and hospitals but their demands are being silenced and
walker reports. >> reporter: harvest time is a reliable if humble income for the people of this region. but they know that gold in the mountains above earns the government tens of millions of dollars a year. the contour gold mine contributes as much as 25% of gdp here however many who live nearby worry about the environmental impact of the mine and lack of tangible benefits. two years ago demonstrations against it turned violent. protesters who were jailed accused police of brutality. now activists say nothing has changed and no one feels safe to speak out. >> translator: the guys who were convicted, their relatives are always being frightened, told if you talk to someone your voice won't ever get out.
they will rot in jail. >> reporter: we drove to the villages to see for ourselves if things had improved but discovered we were being followed. unfortunately we are not going to stop here because we know that the people we want to speak to have been warned not to talk to foreigners and, in fact, a team of environmentists came here and surrounded by an angry crowd and later they were held in question for three hours by state security and told to go back to the capitol. >> reporter: this is a delicate time for the government. it's trying to renegotiate its ownership agreement with the canadian company which runs the mine sintera gold. the prime minister says more than enough is being done for local villages and he warns he won't tolerate interference with the terms of the agreement. >> translator: protect investors is the job of our state security services. we have a lot of people there
who sometimes are motivated by greed. >> reporter: these men filmed allegedly trying to extort $3 million from the managers of the gold mine were later jailed. but environmentists say villages demands for decent schools and hospitals are legitimate. >> if you look into what their demands are, they are pretty simple and see it's for the communities of the villages rather than describing them as people who just blackmailing to get the personal profit. >> reporter: in the search for greater national profit villages are not yet convinced of its value. robin walker, al jazeera. plenty more still to come on al jazeera manchester united take on chelsea with manager aiming to end a run of four straight defeats. ♪
♪ transfusions are regarded as a vital part of modern medicines but when patients have religious objections to transfusions doctors need to find different treatments and from new jersey we report. >> reporter: kimberly brown suffers from a number of medical issues including a tumor in her breast but as a practical jehovah witness she deny as blood transfusions and passages in the bible for bid the blood
and has the essence of a person's life or soul. >> i was raised a witness all my life and is all i know. i have complete trust in faith that if anything happens to me my family will be okay but i'm human and i do get nervous. >> reporter: so when it came time to remove the tumor in addition to god she put her fate in the hands of angle wood hospital and here they cater to witnesses and specialize in bloodless medicine. >> with surgery and expect high blood loss then you may want to make sure that the patient is optimized, if the patient needs to take iron to build blood counts up to prepare for surgery. if the surgery where we are not losing a lot of blood there is nothing special the patient has to do ahead of time. >> reporter: kimberly's procedure is fairly routine but in an emergency her beliefs take a common treatment option off the table. her father and brother under
went open heart surgeries here also without transfusions. the practice of treating patients without the use of blood transfusions was developed for those who have religious objections to them but turns out there are medical advantages to so called bloodless medicine and the number of transfusions in the united states is going down. doctors can bank or recycle the patient's own blood as an alternative as was the case in this open heart surgery. because transfusions cause an immune reaction and blood can be contaminated, they come with risks and in resent years studies have confirmed what hospitals like engle wood have experienced firsthand, less blood leads to better outcomes for patients. >> some patients that risk is worth taking because the blood may out weigh the risk but estimates are between 40-60% of transfusions in this country for no good reason. >> reporter: while kimberly says she would risk death rather
than accept another person's blood she is happy for alternative therapies that give her a chance to live without compromising her beliefs. kristen with al jazeera, engle wood, new jersey. time for all of your sport with sanaa. >> thank you very much. the carolina panthers perfect nfl season is over after 14 straight wins. they finally lost to the atlanta falcons and jones had a 70-yard touchdown reception in the third quarter put them ahead and panthers couldn't come back and the defeat at the georgia dome and deny the panthers from home field advantage in the nfc playoffs. >> disappointing with opportunities in the game and didn't take advantage of the opportunities. quite honestly we did not coach or play to abilities but got to give them credit and coach quinn did a nice job and prep and ready to play and hard and physical and took advantage of
the mistakes and at the end of the day we were not good enough as a football team is the bottom line. >> there is no magic words that need to be said and you are not going to hear me wave a wand or do anything like that and got our ass kicked and deserved it with the type of way we played, offensively and defensively and special teams and i'm talking with a mirror in front of my face. some plays that we left out there we knew it. but yet we know we are capable of. we are 14-1 right now. we put ourselves in a situation that we can use this as fuel to the fire. >> reporter: kansas chiefs clinched playoff spot after they beat the cleveland browns after losing five of their first six games 17-13 win was their ninth straight victory. the games on sunday included arizona clinching a first round playoff with the ninth straight
win against the green bay packers and minnesota's win over the new york giants means next week's game against the packers will decide nfc north title and new yo new york jets are in a contention spot with the reigning superbowl champions the new england patriots. nba the memphis grizzlies ended the run of two defeats beating the la lakers at home and kobe bryant only played in the first and third quarters as he recovers from a sore right knee. the lakers scored 19 points but not much help from his teammates and dominated from start to finish and scored 19 points and green added 17 as they easily defeated the lakers 112-96 is the lakers third loss in a row. also on sunday the boston celtics beat the new york nicks 30 points from russell and
helped the oklahoma city thunder to 122-112 victory over the denver nuggets and trailblazers had 98-94 win at sacramento. and reigning stanley cup champions blackhawks stumbled out of the christmas break with defeat to the hurricanes and both scored a goal each to take it 2-nil lead for hurricanes going in the third period but star of the note was goalie who made 35 saves while he was only beaten once by blackhawk defender with three seconds remaining and carolina held on for a 2-1 win. english league manchester united and under pressure manager take on chelsea later on monday. the game pits them against dutch
and there is speculation in the british press that could be his last game in charge. the 2-nil defeat on saturday was their fourth in a row and it was the 7th game without a victory and united are sixth on the table. eight matches to be played on monday and can go top of the table if they win who managed to draw chelsea on saturday and hosting first. australia has taken a lead of 459 runs against the west indies at the end of day three of the second test after being 91 for 6 overnight west indies managed 271 in their first innings and he got 81 but despite not getting close to australia total of 551 they were not forced to follow on in mel burn, instead they reached 179 for 3 in the second inning and steve smith with an unbeaten 70.
despite a century south africa were bowled out for 214 on day three and taking four wick ets each and visitors are now there for the second innings and are seven for no loss. and that's it for me. >> thank you very much. the latest star wars movie has broken another record, the walt disney company says this is the fastest movie to hit $1 billion in worldwide ticket sales and blockbuster reached it in 12 days and the previous was jurassic world who did it in 13 days and keep it here on al jazeera, there is another full bulletin of news straight ahead and you can always go to our website as well, that is al jazeera.com, plenty more news ahead including development out of iraq with ramadi and we are checking on that.
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♪ an iraq brigadier general says the city of ramadi is under their full control and raised the flag of liberation over the government building. ♪ you are watching al jazeera live from our headquarters in doha and also ahead a rare evacuation underway, syrians trapped in three battleground areas given safe passage out. a painful legacy resolved, south korea and japan reach an agreement over the women used as war time sex