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tv   News  Al Jazeera  February 22, 2016 1:00pm-2:01pm EST

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stay tune for news next from london. >> this is al jazeera. >> and it is good to have your company, for the al jazeera newshour. i'm david foster in london. an agreement between the u.s. and russia, calling for hostilities to stop in russia, the warring sides agree. uganda needs help. promising to protest after disputed elections. 21 die as a cyclone with winds over 300 kilometers an hour hits
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fiji and why thousands of afghan refugees are trapped along greece's border with macedonia. >> i'm farah with all the sports, manchester united look to salvage some pride in the fa cup quarter finals. on the one side russia, on the other side, the united states. they have reached an agreement on what they hoped would be a cessation of hostilities inside syria. they have set thi this saturdays the day that hostilities should stop. they have on the ground until noontime on friday. by that time they need to commit to a deal and then 12 hours later at midnight the cessation is supposed to begin. the guns are supposed to go
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quiet. because the united nations classes i.s.i.l. and el nusra front as terrorist, a political way to end what has been a five-year very, very bloody civil war. diplomatic editor james bays is at the united nations, james you were one of the first to get wind of this. the devil's in the detail. what do we need to see in place before this can happen? >> reporter: well, we need all of the sides apartly from the two groups you mentioned, i.s.i.l. and jabbat 'em nusra to agree to this. hostilities that are going to stop 12 hours later as we hit saturday morning damascus time. we have been reporting on this
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as you say david for several hoirs. this is the formal statement issued by the russians and the u.s., who are the co-chairs of the task force that was set up to put the cessation in place. when you read this statement it tells you that they have delineated they say where those two groups, el nusra and i.s.i.l. are, one of the problems is going to be with the position of el new nusra. unlike i.s.i.l. holdings clear territory, el nusra is intred sd out and operating alongside other opposition groups. that is a potential problem in this deal. another potential problem when you get into the annex of the deal and i've been quickly reading through the annex, it says that sides who are party to this deal are allowed to use a proportionate use of force if responding in self defense. so you've actually got a cessation of hostilities deal,
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something short of a ceasefire, but it actually allows them to yu force iuse force if they are. that is included in the annex of the deal which has been welcomed in the last few moments by the u.n. secretary-general ban ki-moon. he issued a statement saying he welcomes it but there is a lot of work to do to turn this cessation of hospital tiflts inthostilities into amore worka. the latest report grim toll of atrocities that have taken place in syria, their chairman was giving a news conference here at the united nations and i asked him about the prospect of the cessation of hostilities. you've welcomed the possible start of a cessation of hostilities and you welcomed the idea that the geneva talks should resume. but are you not worried that in the search for peace, justice might be forgotten,
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accountability might be forgotten? >> it is our duty always to remind that there is no peace without justice. but we are also aware that the accountability is an element necessarily present. but i think that there is a timing that is not that -- to live for future, that nobody knows, i think that there are several aspects of accountability that has negotiation, for instance no negotiable humanitarian clause, the release of the prisoners, there are several initiatives that can be in the process. because the accountability is not a magical one, that suddenly all the crimes would be accountable. it is a process. >> james, it's all very well to
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say look, you've got oreach a deal by friday lunch time, the guns should go quiet on saturday. it's a totally different thing making sure that it happens. so who on the ground is going to police this, if anybody? >> reporter: well, it's the verification that is going to be the problem you're right david. and i think that is certainly not going to be done by any international body. yes, i think the international parties to this, including the russians and the u.s. will be using the technical skills and their satellites and their spy technology to look at what's going on, on the ground. but other than that, i think they've also got to rely on both sides in this. and when i say both sides, more than two sides, on one side the syrian government and the other side, the various different opposition forces as well as civil society which they hope will be giving them information about what's going on on the ground. but it is going to be a very difficult process because you
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can't do what you'd want to do, which is to put, for example, u.n. monitors with their blue helmets on the ground because it's simply too unsafe. one last thing worth telling you david, we have unliners, on cessation of hostilities and starting at the beginning of saturday, damascus time. one other thing that i've been told by diplomats is that it is hoped if the cessation of hostilities could hold, within seven days they could start those geneva peace talks get them started again. >> thank you james, detailed analysis from united nations. we're going to go to syrian knowledgturkish border. first up, how desperately is a ceasefire cessation of
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hostilities needed for those opposition forces who are trying their very best to prevent the people of aleppo being totally encircled by government forces syrian government forces and others? >> reporter: well to answer that david i'll give you an update on the latest developments there. that is one of the main supply routes from turkey to aleppo, al hanassar has actually been taken over, half of it by rebel forces close to the turkish side and the other side by i.s.i.l. fighters. if they maintain their position he in cutting off that route that aleppo would be cut off from turkey in terms of supply, whether it be in terms of military supplies to opposition groups fighting there or in terms of desperately needed aid food clothing other things that are needed in what is now if this continues besieged areas of aleppo.
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that is why a cessation of fire is needed. people we have been speaking to on the ground inside syria how this is going to impact main groups, be it i.s.i.l, or el nusra front, whether it would have any impact on the status quo or not. people are very negative or skeptical to say the least david. >> and dean of course, this is one of the principal battle grounds at the moment. i was going to ask you if you know, consume, if you know where else in and -- excuse me if you know where else these two groups have been written out of this kind of agreement have stronghold or strongholds? >> well, the thing is, i mean obviously, we know raqqa, for example, the base of i.s.i.l, el nusra front have managed to maintain its position he. but ultimately this is grill ula
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warfare. if they have announced they take over these routes, all it requires is the russian air force or syrian air force to carpet this area and they are no longer in control. what's ironic is the russians or the syrians don't have the power on the ground. while they can carpet that area by the sky, they can't do it from the ground. you have seen territories change hands once, twice, in the sequence of a week. that's why they keep saying yes a cessation of fire is needed but what's needed is some sort of demilitarized no fly zone, where that is controlled by peace keeping force or international force and that's the only way they believe is
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sort of peace can be achieved. >> jamal, thank you for that. dropping bombs to the north of aleppo. russian air strikes have targeted areas to the north of the city. the strikes could help. it's a very confused picture, isn't it? the strikes could help the kurdish ychg advantages on that. more than 90,000 have been displaced this week alone as the offensive by government troops is intensifying. thousands of syrian civilians are fleeing north, putting pressure on hose and services. border town of azaz, let's take a look at that with zeina khodr. >> a town that's gained international attention.
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losing azaz could be an irreversible set back for the rebels. just a few kilometers from the border crossing with turkey it is a much needed position. the kurdish armed group the ypg and its allies. >> translator: the military situation is now better after we've received reenforcements from idlib. we fortified our positions and god willing we will advance. we are no longer weak. in a few days you'll hear about our victories and things will return to the way they were. >> reporter: last week's air strikes was a meafnlg this things could change. targeted including a hospital, aid agencies have already warned that the devastated health system is close to collapse. >> translator: azaz is close to the border so people think it's a safe place. that's why a lot of internally displaced people are here. we have more patients, not just
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providing care to people in azaz. all other hospital locations throughout throwt the country sidthroughout thecountry side d. >> reporter: lost their supply line to turkey from the northern country side, they still have access to strongholds in western syria w. >> translator: we want to besiege aleppo city, foreign militias to fight for it show we are strong and they are weak. we liberated the city with our blood. >> reporter: the opposition feels the same about azaz. it is not just home to thousands of syrian. it is their last line of offense. it may be the base from which to launch further offenses. not far away, they have
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threatened to advance into azaz but for over a week there has been no movement on that front. there was a risk of a wider global con36t conflict and it ss that battle last now been put on hold at least trailer. temporarily -- temporarily. for those fighting against the opposition azaz has lost its military importance. supply routes have been cut south of town. zeina khodr, al jazeera, southern turkey. >> let's bring in our senior political analyst, malwan bashara. what sort of agreement work by midnight on friday into saturday? >> you know david the situation on the ground as we've heard from our colleagues earlier is
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so complex, and the different forces, whether opposition forces or others, are so intertwined now within the syrian territory. notably as james said between the el nusra and the other groups that would accept a ceasefire. so the situation is complex. and to be honest with you, ooh although the human suffering is so high, i wouldn't woifer about thworry aboutthe particular timy 27th. i think the strategy behind it, if you will, or the escalation of that very back story, to president obama and president putin shows that even if it doesn't work on the 27th, that there is a real intention now to get something sooner or later. >> excuse me malwan. i wanted to ask the pressure that the russians have been able
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to exert on the opposition forces and by extension the united states to bring everybody to this position. from their point of view so far would you class it a success? with is well look, the russians have been or will be by the 27th been bombing the opposition for five months quowlt. continuously. closer to the united states than al qaeda and daesh, the more extremist groups. i think russians basically, that's to me if you will reading between the lines, the russians have run out of targets to hit in syria. i think they had an offensive plan for the month of february and that's why when secretary kerry insisted something must happen ten days ago, they said
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no no no, it has to wait until the end of the month, they got their way, it's not going to happen until the end of the month they will probably get their offensive strategy in place, the stunning grab of the syrian war if you will, but the americans are also getting fed up with the syrian issue, getting fed up with being humiliated by the syrian issue. that's why i think, and that's my last point that i think president obama has made a deal with. president putin, as to what the political solution would look like moving forward. >> okay that's your last point on that but please stay with us, because it's not your last point if i have anything to say with it on the bigger picture. the russians have slapped down president assad following his statement that he's going to take back the whole of the country. the russians don't think he's going to be able to do that and yet, those on the other side say syria has to exist without him.
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if there is to be some final compromise on this, is it going to be a division of syria with bashar al-assad in some weakened position and the opposition having to accept that they didn't get entirely what they wanted but they have something? >> you know, after five months of russian investment in the syrian regime i think you know for whatever it's worth, i think they basically own it now. they own it in such a way that i think they basically can bargain with various bits of it, if you will, in order to preserve their interest, and build on their investment, if you will, in the syrian crisis and come out winners in the region. that might involve somewhere in the process, preferably in the beginning as far as the americans are concerned or in the middle or in the end, that bashar al-assad will not be part of the future of syria, will not be part of any serious authority
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on the long term. he may stay as a symbolic in the intermediate period. but the russians and the americans have already agreed to a transitional ruling government body of a sort and if the americans were wise enough they would let assad go and maintain the regime along with the opposition in order to start what they would like to see a war against daesh. >> some time to go yet but malwan thank you very much. talking to us from doha. coming up on the program, hitting the indian economy. and 16 iraqi soldiers killed fighting i.s.i.l. in ramadi. plus: >> i'm andy richardson in rwanda. to see the end of sepp blatter's
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reign as fifa's president. >> afghan government forces have pulled out of a second district in helmond province in just three days leaving the taliban there in control of most of the northern part of that province. now this retreat from nowzad district, after troops left the district last week, seemingly a strategic decision, fiercest battles with the taliban since 2001. >> translator: we have decided to pull our troops identities from their defensive role and get them ready for an offensive. this new move is part of a new strategy. those troops that have been pulled from the districts are still on the ground. they have not gone somewhere else. we are providing them with new training ande and equipping the.
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>> our man in harad, in western afghanistan. >> this is a development that doesn't bode well for afghan government and afghan security forces in their fight against the taliban according to a senior military official who asked not to be named, afghan troops including soldiers and police officers have pulled out of the critical district of nozad in the very important province of helmond in southern afghanistan. that means in the past three days two districts in helmond province have seen afghan troops pull out which seems that the taliban is gaining momentum of territory while the afghan army is on its heels. we should point out that the spokesperson for governor of helmond also confirms the troops pulled out. however the defense ministry has a different approach, spokesman told al jazeera that the troops
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pulled out but part of planned reorganization in preparation for offensive against the taliban coming up in the days and weeks ahead. this development comes just one day before the governments of the united states pakistan, afghanistan and china are set to discuss the framework of peace talks with the taliban, however, this troop pullout adds more uncertainty to the peace talks if indeed they ever happen. >> uganda's main opposition group is rejecting police accounts that some of the groups plan to cause trouble in the electoral division. kizza besigye is critical of how the vote was conducted last week, under in his word,
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intimidation. and the u.n. has expressed its concerns. here is malcolm webb. >> kizza besigye says he wants to protest against the election results. they want to challenge, possibly challenge the election results in the supreme court. besigye wanted to go to the electoral commission to get paperwork necessary to do that. he wasn't allowed to do that by police, they said it would cause unrest in the city center.he those results papers will be produced to his home instead. >> malcolm web spoke to the former president to nigeria. he says the electoral commission
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is guilty of gross incompetence. >> well, first of all, we had a preliminary statement which was made two days ago. before the election was formally declared. we pointed out a number of anomalies, or if you like, minuses in the process leading to the election. something that should not have happened, that happened, on the day of the election itself. both in the cities and in the rural areas as we observed them. and we said that this amount to incompetence, gross incompetence on the part of the electoral
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commission which assured us that they were fully prepared, and that when it came to the crunch they were not prepared at all. and we said that these were inexcusable, what has happened. really had no reason for it to happen. >> a deal has been reached in india to end days of protest by an influential farming community. the demonstration by the jats walked millions of water supply. as divya gopalan report ed, some demonstrators are not satisfied, still angry. >> reporter: their anger and determination could not be swayed by the government's attempts to appease them nor the thousands of troops sent to confront them. the protesters want reservation status is and want it now. >> the jung generation of the
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jat community is losing out. the government should immediately grant us reservation status. >> reporter: 18 million members of the jat community live across northern indian, traditionally from farming backgrounds, they are not part of the government's affirmative action which gives deprived groups and lower castes positions. the protestors say it's not enough. at the heart of the matter is trust. they say their community has been promised this many times before and this time they want written confirmation. until then, they will carry on with blockades like this. the impact has been felt in this community and others. drivers say they are not getting paid and unable to leave their cargo. >> translator: i have been
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stuck here for four days. i can't even go out and get food or a cup of tea. people are trying to rob and burn vehicles. >> reporter: many trucks which tried to defy blockade have had their tires slashed. the protest has hit businesses hard. many businesses have had to shut down. hundreds of factories have also closed. economic loss he are estimated to be close to $3 billion. mohammed runs his family tire shop but hasn't had any customers for days since the protests started. >> translator: i only make a small profit usually but this is impossible. how am i supposed to pay my employees and my suppliers? my debt is growing. >> reporter: previous governments have tried to grant the jat reservation status, the neighboring states will also fight for it.
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divya gopalan, al jazeera. three day standoff begins security forces in india, in kashmir, is over. killed were at least 3 three government officers, six died when a bus carrying police entered a training facility on saturday. thousands of refugees are currently strand he in northern greece near the macedonia border. to impose further controls over who they let in. they, the refugees, are blocking the passages of other refugees into macedonia. the greece greek government expecting the number of stranded people to grow in the next several days. hoda abdel hamid is there. looks like a very complicated situation and a complicated
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overall picture. so how does it get resolved? >> reporter: well, that i think is what everybody here is wondering. at the moment as you said the afghan refugees had first blocked the crossing point for all refugees into macedonia and then they decided to have a sit in along the rail tracks. they say if we can't get in then no one else will be getting in. i have to tell you that there are fictions between different groups of refugees at the moment because the syrians an are sayig we are being blocked here. they are running out of money, it is dark, you can't see what's going on around me, there are tents, a lot of tents i would say all in this area in the empty field simply because the transit center is filled with 1500 people are in there and probably that same amount of number is out here, and keep on
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coming, certainly since we have been standing here, for the past few days. how it gets solved is he is the difficult situation. >> thank you that's hoda abdel hamid there on the greece-macedonia border. you're watching the newshour on al jazeera with me david foster coming up. ways to rebalance the oil market. the talents of tech gather in barcelona, and in sports, one of the most prestigious motor races has its closest finish ever.
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>> this is al jazeera america live from new york. >> at 7:00 - "news roundup". tony harris gives you a fast-paced recap of the day's events. >> this is the first line of defense. >> we have an exclusive story tonight. >> then at 8:00 - john seigenthaler brings you the top stories from across america. >> the question is, will these dams hold? >> and at 9:00 - >> i'm ali velshi, on target tonight... >> ali velshi on target. digging deeper into the issues that matter. >> i'm trying to get a sense for what iranians are feeling. >> good to have you with us. you're watching the al jazeera newshour with me david foster. russia and the united states have said they have reached some agreement on the cessation of
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hostilities in syria. and this friday the conflict should stop. kizza besigye has been arrested in uganda. the agreement to end hostilities for the time being at least that kind of cessation of violence as they put it in syria, agreed by the united states and russia, let's talk about that with the spokesman for what is known as operation inherent resolve the u.s. military's title for campaign against i.s.i.l. let me ask you first of all colonel, when a cessation of hostilities starts, when the guns go silent at midnight on friday stroke saturday that does happen what will you stop doing? >> the coalition towks i focus n fighting daesh, many call them
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the islamic state. the cessation of hostilities outlines that terrorists identified by the united states as terrorist organizations may be still attacked or struck during this cessation of hostilities. >> and the russians will continue to do the the same they consider terrorist as well, nothing really changes does it? >> the cessation documents outline only groups identified by the united nations as terrorist-o he which includes javad el nusra, formerly known as al qaeda and daesh. >> going after what they consider terror groups, also includes i.s.i.l. but javad el nusra. how do you learn that they are not continuing on as they are doing now? >> we will observe and report. as we see the conduct we'll be
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able to move from there. the russians have said one thing and done another. let's be very clear about that. they nowed the announced they wn syria to fight i.s.i.l. they have not done so. they have been there to prop the regime of bashar al-assad. let's be clear. >> what about the cold war with russia? >> kind of early to call it a cold war with russia. >> it has its presence in eastern ukraine which is objected to, it has said if turkey goes into syria it would regard that as an invasion. can't be far off. to say it's too early, you must think about it already. >> we think about everything, that's what we're paid to did. what we don't want to do is
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start ramping up rhetoric that is a little too soon for situation. >> you have seen they have muddied the waters, hugely. >> the russians have muddied the water, no question about that. >> to what end? >> their action he have prolonged bashar al-assad's rule. this guy is the problem. he has according the many reports been responsible to half a million deaths of his own people. this is a bad guy. there is no future that we can see in syria that includes bashar al-assad. >> what do you reckon the russian motives are? >> certainly, they want to be players in the region, they have some interest in latakia where they have a port, access to the mediterranean from. there but more i think it probably has to did with russia -- putin's desire for self esteem. desire for russia to look better. >> barack obama and vladimir
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putin have had a conversation on the phone presumably, to say look, we must stick to this. how important do you believe that there is some measure of success, how would you measure success in this situation? >> we're going to measure success first and foremost by whether or not humanitarian relief can get to these citizens, these civilians who are suffering so greatly. that's what we are really trying to do, that's kind of the first set of goals. get some relief in. number 2 then is set the conditions for a more lasting, for further negotiations which presumably would lead to a more lasting peace. >> and if the russians continue doing what they're doing, is in a red line? >> well, here in the united states military and coalition military we don't identify red lines, we react to them obviously so this is something that was going to come out of the national capital. >> colonel thank you very much indeed. we have heard that vladimir
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putin has called the idea of the ceasefire a real step forward. 16 iraqi army soldiers have been killed fighting i.s.i.l. earlier this month, the government claimed to have recovered this i.s.i.l. stronghold, 120 kilometers away from baghdad, i.s.i.l. still controlling large parts of that country, iraq, including fallujah and mosul where the iraqi hammer is planning a major offensive. -- iraqi army is planning a major offensive. rebalancing the market, it is not known if they will decide on a short or long term effectively ostaibility to stabe prize. late 2014 it was down to just over 80. it hasn't stopped falling. mid january acknowledge the
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price was 28. because there was so much oil on the market. round about now, the price up slightly, roughly $34.11. a barrel. let us get more on this al jazeera's john hendren, in houston, the oil capital of the united states, where officials are pleating. are there some notable exceptions those who would be quite happy to see oil prices stay low? >> reporter: david, this is sort of the woodstock of oil conferences. nearly everybody who matters is here. you've got mexican president enrique pena nieto, the saudi oil minister is here, here for the first time since 2009. that was the most recent disastrous year for oil before this one which is actually even worse. there are some notable exceptions, american shale oil producers, many of them blamed
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for driving up the supply of oil that's now glutted on the market. many of them are not here. and but other than that i mean it's a widely represented group here, nearly every major country that is an oil producer is here. and to tell us a little bit more about that i'm with mike amon, the wall street journal's european editor. what's so important about this conference and what is likely to happen here? >> rarely does everyone get together in one place and talk about what's going on. this is an historic moment in the oil industry. there is so much pain in this industry right now with oil price he being lower than they've been in -- pricessen loweprices beinglower than they2 years. from companies in texas to the biggest oil companies in the
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world. the question most people in the industry ask themselves, have we hit the bottom, are we going to turn any time soon? i think answer is no. >> there are something like 300,000 layoffs globally in the oil industry. doesn't just affect these companies at the top, it really goes to the work he level, affecting economies here in houston where 60,000 people have lost their jobs so far in this oil glut. i mean what are we expecting to come out of this? it's not like these guys are going to get together and suddenly decide to restrict production are they? >> that is something that could really only happen if opec called an emergency meeting and got the biggest oil producers together in one place, generally happens in vienna and that will be happening later in june perhaps. what could happen here is that i think the industry is trying the find an answer. as you mentioned, the oil price
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swoon is really start to affect economies around the world. and low oil price he were once seen as an economic boon. drivers, consumers have more money to -- and it's generally just increased gdp in the past. but this time you're seeing all these layoffs in texas, north dakota, it's really a head wind for the economy and not just in the u.s. but places like venezuela where the economy contracted by 500% last year. the saudis are burning through their cash reserves so something has got to give. >> we expect to hear some answers at the ich conference, this goes all week today, we have enrique pena nieto speaking tomorrow, the saudi oil minister. unlikely to come up with solution he but what oil price he are likely to be near the end of the year. david. >> john, thank you, more coverage as that conference goes
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on. aid workers are warning of a possible health crisis in fiji cleaning up after the strongest cyclones ever to hit. winston. andrew thomas is looking at the severe damage. >> the word being used around fiji is flattened. these were villages on remote islands on fiji's main island the damage is bad enough. but no news has come from some of the islands hit worst, cables have been cut. it's not known if people died, fiji's prime minister warned people to expect bad news. >> the most devastating storm record in the southern hemisphere category 5 when it
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reached our shores in the last couple of days. the damage has been widespread. homes have been destroyed. many low lying areas have flooded. and many people have been left stunned and confused about what to do. >> reporter: the cities of suva and nandi escaped the full force of the cyclone but still an hour north of the tourist hub there's still widespread destruction. it is still pretty windy now but compared to when the cyclone was at its peak, it's destroyed inside and the debris is everywhere, filling this swimming pool, a bit of broken wood, debris everywhere and there a guest house totally destroyed. nearby house he have been strewn down the hillside. nabira's house did survive but only just.
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she and her friends are cleaning up, terrified. >> it was terror, we heard about hurricanes and all that and we have been through so many of them but this one was really terrible, it was horrible. >> reporter: in this part of fiji already crews are at work restoring fallen power lines and climbing up to repair mobile phone masts. but there are many mobile masts damaged in places inaccessible. places currently cut off restore communication, what will the result be? andrew thomas, al jazeera, fiji. >> victims of the san bernardino terrorist attack, will protest,
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apple has so far challenged a legal ruling ordering the company to unlock the phone, raising serious privacy issues for all of its customers. >> it's that time of year that the tech industry gathers in spain showing off the newest and flashiest gizmos, now, the applications not necessarily the devices that are creating the buzz. our reporter trek bazle treak bs the story. >> the reason a oslowing chinese market coupled with saturation of many of the markets. if these phone makeers can't come up with a significantly
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better model, many are choosing to hold onto the ones they have. if phone sales are down why not put your technology to other uses. your dog tends to run ooff, this high tech dollar will watch him at all times. at all times. >> the latest technology allows the batteries in those devices to last for up to ten years. >> reporter: there's nothing new to online shopping but this particular application which has been tagged to bus stations and metro stations in dubai. this virtual mall situation, when you are happy you have got enough avocados from kenya, you can go in checkout, put in your mobile number as a way to
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identify yourself. this allows them to send a confirmation text message and a physical location to deliver the goods in the couple of hours. high powered video projector inside the hand set, seemingly unending innovation, sales of new mobiles down breathing new life and functionality into existing models seems to be the imiz. tareway to go. tarek bazley, al jazeera. former formula 1 champion with his lopes for the season ahead.
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>> sports time now with sanah. >> thank you very much david. in less than an hour's time manchester united would play, a game manchester may have been confident in winning but nothing normal about their season so f far. seen them knocked out by middle player sy middle $spur. united have lost seven times in the premier league, leaving them 12 points adrift of leaders lester, all means nothing has
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been taken for granted ahead of this fifth round. >> you cannot continue losing games and the question is how we are lifting ourselves, for that game. because shrewsbury town will play for that direct kind of thing. and you have to accomplish that. >> on friday world football's member associations will vote on a new president. sepp blatter is currently suspended. but has won fifa elections on other occasions. haste been well supported by african countries. andy richardson reports on why african plays a key role in who gets to run the global game.
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>> erik seasoned just home to some of the world's most empassed football fans, it is where fifa elections can be won or lost. almost a quarter of world football's 209 member associations are in the continent and every country gets a vote. something sepp blatter was always very aware of. when blatter's predecessor came to power he did so on the back of african votes. there was greater fifa investment here. blatter went even further. he brought the world cup to african and oversaw the contribution of hundreds of millions of dollars of fifa cash in africa's member association he. in rwanda that included opportunities to build this community center in kagale. offers free access to sports and
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education. >> for kids who have been hopeless now with the center they know that tomorrow is the future. in africa where we have centers like this, it's the gift from fifa. >> rwanda's national team also train at a facility funded by fifa. no surprise that this country's football association isn't looking for radical change from the new president. >> mr. blatter did a lot for africa and especially for rwanda, and the level we have it's not the same level we had, a long time, few years ago. we hope that the new one will follow the same relationship between africa and fifa. >> reporter: blatter's long time ally sheik abraham khalif,
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ensures just that. that doesn't mean all the country raps candidates will back him. governing body of european football uefa has been hugely critical of blatter. whit comes to winning votes in africa, he is nor graphic. >> i acknowledge very openly the huge work and benefits that mr. blatter has brought, in particular, as well, to africa along with the world cup and development programs. i think these development programs need not to be maintained but to be increased. >> poised to play omatch winning role. andy richardson, al jazeera, kagale, rwanda. preseason testing in barcelona, the are briton will
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have, a third championship this year, first race is on march the 20th in australia. >> the first time i was in cars was exciting. the sag same is, i imagine whenu go buy a new car and the first time you drive it, that's exactly the same as whether i get to go in my formal 1 car, even more fun. one of the most prestigious raises in the world, daytona 500, denny hamlin edging out martin dirks, junior for his first ever win. that's it for me. >> thank you sanah and all the sports team as well. is what better than celebrating
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turning 106, but president obama and the first lady and celebrating it at the white house. >> she was so excited, virginia mclaren, both the president and the first lady also seemed to be. mclaren is a length 80 social media campaign victor, happy life, keep moving! >> i never thought i would live to get this. >> you are here! >> i am so happy. >> we are happy to have you! >> just take a look at him, she said. thank you for watching the newshour from me, david foster and from the newshour team. good to have your company.
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maryam nemazee is next with more news.
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>> only on al jazeera america. >> the u.s. and russia agree a draft deal on ending hostilities in syria but will the warring sides put down their weapons? hello i'm maryam nemazee. you're watching live from london also coming up. afghan forces pull out of another district in helmond province ceding control to the taliban. 21 people are confirmed dead after a cyclone packing winds of more than 300 kilometers an hour hit sphee


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