check check >> the african president and the scandal of missing millions of aid. a corruption trial gets underway in malawi. >> this is al jazeera live from doha. also coming up dash -- >> it is american diplomacy that has halted the process of iran's nuclear program. >> barack obama claims the credit for the deal with iran in the state of union address. >> there are opposing ses in
the syrian war. now they are trying to get closer. turkey's prime minister lands in iran. >> and an historic site under threat in pakistan. >> it's a scandal involving hundreds of millions going missing. politicians and civil servants in malawi have been helping themselves for fash intended for the budget. more than 60 people are going on trial. we'll be live to the capital. first, this report from mike hanna. >> the modest high court in the capital is the setting for a corruption trial. charges are brought separately against individuals. within two weeks it's expected as many as 10 simultaneous hearings will be under way.
appearing in the dock will be some prominent politicians and business people. >> the politician will in part argue that government computers were hacked into and sums of money transferred when they were transferred into private accounts, and the amounts were staggering. the country's current president estimates that as much as 30% of the country's budget has been stolen over the past decade. >> it was the president that ordered the investigation that led to the criminal proceedings. even though evidence indicates widespread corruption did not end when she took office. she appointed a new justice minister to oversee the process, and a man that baha asani replaced was arrested on charges of laundering money. >> i was amazed. i never thought we'd have people in our country doing that to
their own country. it's not just about theft but economic sabotage. >> the president made it clear that the most powerful must face justice. >> he went further to say even if it means a member of my family, that person should be arrested. and nobody, nobody should be spared. >> a long suffering malawi republic was skeptical at a clean government office. the world watches a tarnished nation. >> mike hanna joins us from outside the court to tell us what we are expecting to happen today. >> what is happening at the moment is that the prosecution is deciding exactly which cases it is going to begin with before
the judge. we understood that two people would be brought into the dock. there's discussion that more may be happening. this is the beginning of something that will be a long and exhaustive process. at the moment only one court is sitting. we are told that within a week as many as 10ourts will operate to carry proceedings against the 70 accused who will be appearing at the high court over the coming weeks. among these as well the pillars of malawian society. senior politiciansnd civil service, and bankers who the prosecution alleges were deeply cognisant in the wide-ranging scheme which took place over the close to a decade it would appear. >> what about the president joyce banda. some of this took place under her watch. when she came to office she vowed to fight corruption in the
country. >> indeed, yes, joyce banda came to office with a promise of clean governance, now she estimated that some $50 million has gone missing during the time she has been in office, adding to $500 million that went missing during the term of her predecessor. she insists she's incident on cleaning the situation up. she's adamant, as you heard in that piece. that nobody will be sred facing justice, including those that may be close to her. malouans have been skeptical. they have seen many a show trial happening in the past where the accused appear in court. the case is remanded. on this occasion the president is adamant this proceeding is going to hold its course, and there's a lot at stake. in particular, there's some 40%
of the country's annual budget coming in the form of international donor aid. that has been suspended and unless the donors are satisfied that the proceedings are transparent and will reach a conclusion, that will remain suspended. something that has an immense impact on the country, something which the president is aware. >> thank you. mike hanna reporting there. >> ukrainian mps are due to meet shortly to decide whether to offer amnesties to anti-government activists. the move came a day after the prime minister resigned. two months ago, when president viktor yanukovych rejected a trade deal with the european union in favour of closer ties to russia. the political crisis in ukraine was on the agenda of a meeting
with russian president vladimir putin and e.u. officials, both have been trading accusations about meddling in ukraine affairs during the unrest. >> translation: russia will never interfere but you imagine how the european friends will act we thing this in certainly is not nice. if you take the relationship between russia and ukraine, it is unacceptable. >> u.s. president barack obama outlined his priorities in his annual state of union address a few hours ago. it was not just limited to domestic issues, he claimed credit for the nuclear deal with iran. the white house correspondent patty culhane looked at what he said, and what is next. >> mr speaker the president of the united states. >> tens of millions of americans spent their evening watching the
u.s. president outline his priorities. the family who called this family home had to wait 48 minutes to hear him address what they care most about, their former homeland, syria. and this was all he had to say. >> american diplomacy, backed by the threat of force is why syria's chemical weapons are being eliminated. we will continue to work with the international community to usher in the future that the community deserves of. >> it is very substantiate disappointing. i feel like it's more of the same. the syrians feel abandoned. >> the most important policy issue was clearly iran. >> if john f. kennedy and ronald reagan could negotiate with the soviet union, surely a strong and confident america can negotiate with less powerful adversaries today. he warned the congress not to
impose sanctions on iran while he tries to net a deal over rain adds nuclear program. it was a threat that a sponsor of the bill brushed off. >> we don't believe there'll be sanctions. >> meaning, despite the applause, the president is likely in for a big fight even with his political party over iran. on his domestic agenda the president called for higher wages for the working four. immigration reform, infrastructure investment. >> he hats called for those thin every year, and every year congress ignored him. >> once the politicians head to the chamber, it's unlikely that most, if not all of the president's agenda may get through congress. >> turkey's prime minister recep tayyip erdogan is in iran for an
efficient visit. oil and gas is on the agenda. they are trying to rebuild a relationship strained by the war in syria, he is set to meet the aya tolda and hassan rouhani. they are looking at strengthening ties worth $20 million in 2012. a large part is gas and oil. turkey wants to increase orders. a major point of disagreement is the war in tisyria. turkey backs the rebels, iran backs the syrian government. >> joining us on the set - syria has been a point of difference between iran and turkey. what is going on between the two countries, why are they meeting. is it the trade ties? >> i don't think so. i mean, if you look at the turkish foreign policies, tps an
impasse, it's in deadlock. it is not going anywhere. both in syria and the u.s.-turkey relations. the prime minister is looking for an escape out of the impasse, then to find a base upon which it can put in turkish policy, to go back to the original policy. i don't know if people believe that at this moment. >> speaking of u.s. turkish relations, u.s. officials, before the meeting said that iran is not open for business as you are aware. there have been sanctions on rain, which have been - some of which have been relieved with the p5 plus 1 nuclear deal. by turkey going to iran, are they undermining sanctions. >> there's an ongoing investigation in turkey.
>> the cash for gold. >> yes. in that case that shows that turkey undermined the sanctions. that's the sensitive part of the investigation. to what extent after this relations at this low level, to the extent they've never risked. i don't think so. maybe as i said, for me this visit is more about turkey is looking for an escape out of this backlog that it is in. they are in the middle east and relations in the u.s. and e.u. as you are aware, hassan rouhani brought a new energy and light to iranian positioning. he's a beloved person, and maybe recep tayyip erdogan is trying to put a cap on that capital too. so i guess that's --
>> so do you expect anything concrete to come out of this meeting or is it the beginning of the warming of relations between the two countries. >> well, so far, despite what has happened in syria, turkey and iran never formally cut their relations. i mean, both sides need each other. turkey is buying natural gas from here. it doesn't increase the natural gas. iran is selling turkey at a high rate. much expensive than russia and other sources. i don't think it's natural gases at stake here. for me it's more like a symbolic visit to iran to show the domestic international communities is that turkey is a power that has places to go.
because ins turkish criticism in the papers that we don't have friends in the region, recep tayyip erdogan cannot visit middle eastern countries because we have so many troubles. he is trying to address the criticism by going to iran. i don't think there'll be concrete things to come out of it. >> thank you. >> still ahead on al jazeera, averting genocide, the deployment of u.n. troops in the central african republic. plus a failing grade. they are revealing reports from the u.n. about the state of global education system.
>> hello again, you are with al jazeera, the top stories. a huge corruption trial is taking place that malawi, dealing with hundreds of millions missing, including aid. >> president barack obama has delivered this state of union address, saying he'll push for narrowing inequality between the rich and the poor. and claimed credit for the nuclear deal. >> president recep tayyip erdogan from turkey is on a visit to iran, trying to build a relationship from the war in syria. iran supports bashar al-assad,
and turkey opposes him. >> hundreds of millions of children are not get an edu case, and 1.4 million that go school don't learn to read. a third of all young women in west asia are illiterate. educating women is a matter of life and debt. there'd by 15% fewer child deaths if mothers received a primary education, the lives of 2.8 million children could be saved if they had secondary hearing. in the government prioritised basic education the u.n. says 171 million people could be lifted out of posterity. a senior policy analyst on education for unesco says government needs to realise the
benefit of educating everyone. >> some of the poorest countries in particular underspend on education. they don't spend enough resources to make sure all children that reach the end of primary school, to learn. there's about 75% of children in this situation that come from sub-sahara south africa and south-west asia. it is in these parts of the world where the largest loss of resources is observed. >> the report argues that 20% of the budget should be allocated to education. and it's only a handful, 25 counties, that managed to achieve the tart. what is most important is to realise what education can bring for everybody to benefit, and i
don't think any government would t want to see peep people prosper. governments need to realise how essential it is to invest in education. >> the philippine military says it is looking for members of b.f.f. in the south of the country. reports say 37 rebels have been killed in a two-day offensive. many families are trapped in the region without food or aids. officials fear they'll be used as human shields. we have more. they said they have not finished operations yet. they have requested for an approval to extend the operations to hunt down members of the freedom movement, and said they have not given the extension, but are keen in pursuing lawless elements here.
we had the chance to speak to the leader of the islamic freedom movement. he's accused of being a spoiler of the peace discussions between the philippines government and the moray front. he denies that the members have been killed. one has been wounded. he's accusing the military of being the spoiler. he said the kids were not the ones causing displacement. they did not kiss people that caused hunger and starvation. >> the men are not going to surrender. she is not opposing the peace talks and the philippine government. they had their own agenda. they want an islamic state in
the southern philippines. people here are worried that peace may come. >> a grenade attack injured two people. it happened before anti-government protesters prepared to set off for march. the elections took place op sunday. the electoral commissions threatened to postpone the vote. >> there has been little process. the chief u.n. negotiator said no breakthrough has been made on humanitarian aid. both sides are continuing with the process. >> translation: negotiations have not been easy today, these past days, and they will probably not beasy in the coming few days.
but i'm glad that you have been told by representatives of the two sides that they intend to stay and continue, these discussions until friday, as originally planned. nobody is working out, nobody is running away. >> well, the united nations security council authorised the deployment of european union troops. they'll bolster french and african forces quelling political violence. >> celebrations in the streets of bangui as french and african soldiers are escorted out of town. a million people have been displaced since the muslim rebel group overthrew the christian government. >> translation: we suffered under the seleka and their acts. >> european union troops are on
their way to reinforce french and african forces there to keep the peace. the united nations security council gave them permission to use forms. sanctions, and threatened the political process. >> it's sending a message to those who were committing violence by setting up a sanctions regime. the homes of muslim residents were looted. evidence that tension and the potential for violence remain high. some say a full-fledge of u.n. peacekeeping sources are necessary. >> they fall short of what is needed underground which is a u.n. peacekeeping force. they are better equipped. >> the security council has been weighing the option of a u.n.
peace-keeping force. the afghan union insists it can get the job done. the french insist they can get more hep. no action is expected until march. >> nicaragua's president ortagao be re-elected indefinitely now that presidential terms have been removed. critics see the approval of the term limits bill as a way to stay in tower. ortaga has been president for seven years and is widely expected to seek another term. >> leaders from across latin america and the caribbean are meeting in the cuban capital. they are part of the group known as salek. g adam raney is in havana. >> at the end of the first day of official meetings it's clear that this organization is gaining some sort of momentum
and seeming to be a respectable challenge to the organization, an organization that for decades that shows regional issues. it's long seen as having undue influence put on it by washington. selek doesn't have the influence because canada and the united states are excluded. what we have seen is since yewingo chavez, died, there was a lot of speculation that this organization, his baby, his idea might peater out. it's growing in importance. we had the first visit here in havana for the conference. we saw the secretary-general of the organization make his first official visit by any head of that organization. all that is to say that this
organization is a vanity problem. it's attracting attention. they are ready to solve their issues without the input or influence. >> the national treasure in pakistan is under threat. the world's second-largest force has been destroyed. we have this report. >> a meal on an open fire is ordinary. this one isn't. they have to use juniper wood. a slow growing tree rising one foot every year. he'd switch to another source of energy, if he had an alternative. >> translation: there is no electricity or gas here. we have no choice. it snows every other day. you can see it's very cold.
we need to cut the trees to survive. >> the primitive forest is the second-largest in the world. it's been declared a unesco reserve. the conservation requires a mix of technical and social solutions. >> some of the trees in the forest are 2500 years owl. their survival is at stake due to illegal logging and rapid population growth. >> cutting down trees is not for survival. the forest spans more than 90,000 hectares. locals are copping down centuries old trees to grow profitable produce. >> the first factor threatening the forest is land use trains. openers are cutting downtrees. another reason for deforestation is livelihood. sap lippings have been trampled and cannot take route.
>> we were shown 30 trees, they couldn't catch the culprits. you can imagine hold is each treated. the forest department says it lacks fund, equipment, map power and training to stop the logging. >> when it snows people start cutting trees. that's when the rangers are alert. we is limited resources. >> the people of this area have no other option. the government admits there's a lack of warns. it started a small of smal project. corruption and lack of staff is contributing to deforestation. satellite images reveal thousands of hectares of the forest have been lost. unless steps are taken to