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tv   News  Al Jazeera  December 29, 2014 2:00am-2:31am EST

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on our twitter or facebook page. we'll have more of "america tonight," tomorrow. > the man in charge of indonesia's search for a missing airasia plane says it's probably at the bottom of the sea from al jazeera's headquarters in doha also ahead - a rescue operation is under way 24 hours after a ferry caught fire off the coast of italy. hundreds are trapped on board free aj staff. they have been gaoled in egypt for one year. journalists around the world show their solidarity sharing secrets on kim jong
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un - south korea and japan and the u.s. pool their resources the search area for the missing airasia flight has been widened as more countries join the international effort to locate the wreckage. flight qz8501 disappeared 42 minutes after take off from the indonesian city surabaya en route to singapore. search teams are scouring the java sea, looking for the plane around the belitung island and banka and singkep. the head of the search operation says it's likely the plane is at the bottom of the sea. scott heidler is with us from surabaya, where the plane departed. just get us up to date on to the latest on the search and rescue
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mission. >> for the very latest in the search and rescue mission is it's a true multinational operation. you have assets in the sky and on the sea from malaysia singapore, and also australia. p3 orion, a sophisticated aircraft has been deployed and searching the 200km stretch in the java sea. we heard earlier from officials from search and rescue. we are at terminal 2 this is where the plane took off from. there's a small area inside just for family and friends on board. they briefed them in private, and came out and briefed us and said they are expanding the search and rescue operation because the weather conditions are better and they have a bit more of an idea where it might be. they have more assets. singapore agreed - sorry, there has been agreement between indonesia and singapore that they'd use underwater
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surveillance equipment from singapore. that's been unveiled and goes with the head of the search and rescue operation. they believe most of the evidence is pointing - the aircraft is under water. most things is when there's new, it's not that deep not like the searching going on for mh370, the malaysia airliners jet that went down. they are looking at focussing on those two areas. family and friends of those on board are waiting for any kind of information. they are still here. >> let's talk about the family and friend no doubt distraught at the moment waiting for any information. what help is being provided for them at the moment? >> well, tony fernandes is the c.e.o. and said whatever has to be done - he's willing to put them up in hotels. more family and friend are
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coming from singapore. we have to focus that 149 out of 162 people on board the aircraft crew and passengers were from indonesia. 77 were from this community specifically. so this is going to be the focal point. this is the emotional focal point because there's so many people involved in the aircraft who are based here coming here. that's why there's an interest there. the vice president of indonesia is going to be coming. we expected him last hour. he's going to be coming. he's the face of the indonesian government in this crisis. we heard last hour that his flight was delayed coming down here. we know that tony fernandes was in jakarta earlier, meeting with the head of the search and rescue operation. he's returning here as well so he can do everything that he said in a tweet, do everything he can for the family and friends of those victims on board the aircraft. >> thank you scott heidler there, with the latest on the
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qz8501 a ferry that caught fire in the adriatic sea is being towed to an it lalian court. the -- italian court. the italian navy is carry out a rescue mission to pluck passengers off the vessel. the cargo ship is arriving at barry port in italy. one perp died 227 passengers -- person died 227 passengers are on the ship. let's go to simon mcgregor-wood, who is on the line from a coastal city. we are hearing that bad weather is hampering the rescue effort at the moment. can you confirm that? >> yes, absolutely it's been a difficult night from all that we can understand from the conversations with the italian coast guard and navy.
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we were told that the "northern atlantic", was going to be towed to a port in southern italy. that changed. the rescue operation is centered at the scene of the ferry's fire, the ferry is stable it's been attached with cables. it's not being toed. that's the latest situation through the night. the shuttle mission, if you like of italian helicopters winching small groups of passengers from the top decks of the ferry to nearby waiting ships, and to other merchant vessel ships that are circling the northern atlantic to provide a place where they can be airlifted to.
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the numbers, therefore, are changing all the time. here are the latest numbers. 290 passengers and crew members have been saved from the burning ferry. that leaves 188 still on board, and the operation is continuing. we arrived in the area late last night in the port and drove down. the weather was atrocious, strong wind very low temperatures and drive rain all of which made the operation extremely difficult. >> simon, has there been any idea to what caused the fire on the ship? >> no. the initial spark of this fire if you like remains a mystery. what we do know from various sources, including passengers is that the fire took hold in the car deck. there were over 200 vehicles of all kind including, it is reported several trucks
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containing olive oil, which it is suspected has contributed to the fire. we understand from the italian navy this morning, monday morning, that the fire itself had been contained. nowhere near as difficult a situation as it was through the day on sunday. however, there's still a lot of smoke, there are hot spots, what are called hot spots within the vessel that have been burning, but the fire compared with yesterday is under control. overnight, sunday and monday the italian navy were able to drop blankets for the people sheltering on the top decks, a nurse, a doctor and a helicopter pilot who is coordinating this helicopter shuttle rescue operation, which as i say, is ongoing, and probably will go on all day. >> thank you. simon mcgregor-wood updating us from the coastal city of brindisi in italy three al jazeera journalists
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have been gaoled in egypt for a full year. our colleagues peter greste, mohamed fadel fahmy and baher mohamed were arrested on december 29th, 2013. all three were falsely aexcused and convicted of aiding the outlawed muslim brotherhood, and damaging egypt's reputation abroad. stephanie dekker reports the detaining of three al jazeera staff in cairo on december 29th of last year was assumed to be short-termed. as time passed it became clear that the egyptian authorities under the government of general abdul fatah al-sisi seemed to have other intentions. peter greste is a veteran correspondent, based in kenya at the time of his arrest. by his own administration knew little about egypt. he was shocked at the idea that he was linked in some way to what the government in cairo described as terrorists. the same could be said about the rest of the team, award winning journalist and producer baher
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mohamed. the # freeaj-staff went viral and journalists came out with support. the trial failed to come up with anything against the three me that vaguely could be said to implicate them. a video from a different channel was shown as evidence. adjournment after adjournment followed. and to the fury of the world, the men were convicted and gaoled. for the men's families it was the lowest point of a desperate year. peter greste spent over four months in and out of cairo visiting his brother. speaking from his farm in australia he describes what it's like for peter. he is determined the experience will not break him. he doesn't want to come out bitter and twisted. it has taken a lot of effort and
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self-discipline and determination and focus to - for him to remain mentally together and look after himself physically. >> reporter: world leaders including president obama denounced the court conviction. >> the issue of the al jazeera journalists in egypt. we are clear publicly and privately that they should be released the egyptian government argued that it was not a political decision and it was up to the appeals process to determine what should happen next. al jazeera denies any allegation allegation. >> we work in so demafferent places and should be taken as a professional media institution, not as a part of any political or ideological or any other establishment al jazeera's maintained its public campaign on behalf of journalists. what is going on behind the
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scenes is less clear. president abdul fatah al-sisi confirmed that he would rather have had the journalists deported. a sign of the damage that it would do to egypt's reputation. a year on the three men are still in gaol. on january the 1st egypt's court will hear an appeal by the three men. peter greste's brothers andrew and mike are cautiously hopeful that he will be pardoned. >> it's the next milestone for us is 1 january. i mean that's the next milestone in the court process. obviously we have heard lots of indications and we've had lots of statements from the egyptian authorities going back as far as, you know a couple of days after peter was sentenced, indicating that they wished that this whole - that peter didn't get gaoled that the whole thing didn't occur. recently we heard a statement
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from president abdul fatah al-sisi on french 24 television saying they were considering a pardon. you know i guess it's been under consideration for some time. >> the president said or clearly said a few days after he was convicted that he wouldn't pardon or step in until the legal process has been finalise the. going on that statement, we have to hang our hopes on the legal process. however, he gets released is fine by us. >> this is peter's first christmas in prison. can you reflect on that or how your parents celebrated or marked the day? >> look mum and dad visited him on christmas day. i think he was - it was a fairly sombre occasion. peter's getting fairly anxious, i think, in the lead-up to the first. so one thing they mentioned was he's trying to distract himself by doing his next assignment in
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the diploma course that he's doing. look it's been a trying christmas, and certainly a lonely one. having said that you know plenty of families are separated at the time so we are not the only ones having sort of a sombre christmas, i guess. and journalists in news rooms across australia held a vigil to mark the year al jazeera's journalists have been held in gaol. journalists from the special broadcasting service channel 7, 'sydney morning herald' and the guardian australia paused for a moment to mark the arrest of peter greste, mohamed fadel fahmy and baher mohamed more to come here on al jazeera. shouldering the burden - how the youngest victims of syria's civil war are helping their families get by tapping into a precious resource, we look at the
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scramble for water in an african megacity.
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welcome back. the top stories on al jazeera, and the man in charge of indonesia's search for a missing airasia flight says the aircraft is probably at the bottom of the sea. the search area for the missing plane has been widened and disappeared shortly after takeoff on sunday. passengers rescued from a greek ferry that caught fire are arriving in barry port in italy.
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italian officials say the fire on the ferry is under control. a rescue operation is ongoing for the 188 people left on board and three al jazeera journalists, peter greste, mohamed fadel fahmy and baher mohamed, have now been in prison for a whole year. they were falsely accused and sentenced for aiding the outlawed muslim brotherhood and damaged egypt's reputation abroad we are staying on the story of our detained colleagues. al jazeera's kristen saloomey spoke to richard stenningle, the u.s. under secretary of state for public diplomacy and public affairs, and he told her the continued detention of our colleagues is worrying for the u.s. administration. >> yes, we are very concerned about it. myself, as a former journalist it's something that i feel passionately about. the fact that the al jazeera three were detained for committing journalism is state government that goes against
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everything we believe in. we believe in a robust free speech environment and that is something that is important for egypt too, going forward for their economy, foreign investment. we constantly urge people all around the world, and the leadership in egypt to preserve and protect the free space, environment and the journalists who work there. >> i know president obama spoke to president abdul fatah al-sisi. do you know what he told him, what he said about this? >> they spoke recently. he raised t general issue of the detention of journalist and civil society activists, and having the free speech space. he mentioned the al jazeera journalists as well. >> for me and the purpose of al jazeera who know the man and are worried about them and their families, let's be honest, it's personal for us. what we find hard to swallow is the united states as the men
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were being convicted, gave the egyptian government $1.5 billion, most for military purposes. why is the united states supporting a government that is repressing journalists and peaceful demonstrators, doing what is contrary to the rule of law. >> i'll take exception to various parts of your question. i think they are too separate issues. they are aligned around the idea that we talk to the egyptian government president abdul fatah al-sisi about preserving the rule of law. protecting civil society and free speech. the interests are aligned in the sense that the al jazeera tree are caught in that nexus, and we want them to be released we want them to be let go on almost any terms. that's our particular focus here. >> do you see any reason to be
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optimistic. is there hope we can give the three journalists and their family that they may get to go home? >> we ask what hope is there. president abdul fatah al-sisi has expressed interest in resolving the matter and said it probably should have been resolved in a different way. i think he very much wants to have a successful outcome here which we share. getting to that spot is not so easy you can find out more about our staff gaoled in egypt on the website. there are more articles there about their plight, and you can read a letter from peter greste. he wrote the letter just before christmas. that's all at aljazeera.com a new intelligence-sharing pact between south korea, the u.s. and japan came into effect. it will allow seoul and tokyo to share military secrets on north korea indirectly using the
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united states as an intermediary. harry fawcett joins us from seoul. one would thing that this pact would have been implemented years ago. why now? >> well that's right. you would think that two countries which share a common threat from a country like north korea, which often threatened them with nuclear weapons would be cooperating to a full degree on such matters. that is to ignore what happened here in the last century, when japan was a colonial power, and ruled korea as it then was, often in a brutal way. that history wrangles deeply in south korea. in 2012 there was plans for a military pact between the two countries, an hour before it was to be signed. the south koreans pulled out because of public outrage and the outrage in parliament.
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the solution came through months of secret negotiations through the united states saying okay we'll have a trilateral intelligence sharing pact. you can share your north korea intelligence with each other, through us as a mediator and that seems to be what has done the trick. certainly the united states wants a fuller trilateral alliance between itself and two key allies in north-east asia not just because of north korea's nuclear threats, but the rise of china and tensions with russia. you get the impression it's done reluctantly, not just because of the issues but the poll sees of shinzo abe, seen as going away from the peace of passivist nature of japan's constitution visiting a war crime. this is managed carefully in seoul. no doubt north korea won't be reacting too well to this pact
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given that there are reports. south korea's proposing another wound of peace talks with their northerly neighbour. >> certainly high-level talks are being outlined by south korea's unification minister. the unification minister coming out and saying he would travel to pyongyang to have talks with his counterparts there in north korea. there were two such high level talks during the course of this year. in february the first round resulted in a family reunion ceremony where those families separated by the korean war were able to see each other again. and then in october there was a surprise visit by extremely high level contingent of leadership figures to seoul. that was followed by military clashes across the border between north and south. nothing eventuated from that. what we saw at the beginning of
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2014 was a new year's message talking about better relations. this could be south korea trying to get on the front foot and seeing if they can elicit similar words from kim jong un in this knew year's message this week. >> harry fawcett speaking to us from soul of the south. >> well iran says one of its most senior revolutionary guard commanders has been killed in iraq. the brigadier died in samarra. the germ was advising -- general was advising iraqi troops in the fight against islamic state of iraq and levant. iran maintains that its forces are not involved in active military duty in iran the syrian observatory for human rights says i.s.i.l. murdered nearly 2,000 people in syria. the monitoring group documents 1,878 killings, 930 victims said to belong with the tribe in the day az u province.
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i.s.i.l. killed 120 of its own members mostly for trying to return to their own country as syria enters the fourth year, children are the most affected. hundreds of thousands are not in school. many are forced to work. every morning 10-year-old mustafa leaves home - not for food but for work. he sells corn to make money for his family. my mother prepares corn for me. i wait for the school to open so i can go and sell some beer. >> three years of war devastated the economy. forcing boys like mustafa to work while the men fight. my son never worked in his life. he didn't have to. we are forced to let him go. everything is very expensive.
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>> mustafa is one of the lucky ones. thousands of children have been killed in syria's 3-year war. many have fled to refugee camps, where there are few schools. >> when it stops raining i go to collect firewood. there's a garden from where i bring the wood. we burn it for heat in the house. >> children suffered the most during the syrian conflict. children symbolized the resilience. syrian people. like mustafa, they struggle and survive in nigeria's capital many people do not have proper access to water. the government says it has a solution. activists say it's not working. >> reporter: for this person water coming out of the tap is not for granted. like everywhere in the compound her family had to dig a borehole
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to get water. it had to be pumped and stay in a tank. it had to have a generator if the power goes off. >> i don't know what they do. they cannot explain to us why we don't have water. >> reporter: access to water has been a problem in the city of 20 million people. there's not enough government funding for the sector. many people resort to drilling boreholes or relying on unsafe sources of water. water sellers are a fixture in neighbourhoods. a jerie can on average going tore $0.15, a medium sized family needing four a day. it's a bill that adds up not everyone can afford it. some opt for streams and rainwater. water demand in the city is 540 million. existing municipal water projects are only able to provide 200 million gallons.
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the government says it led it to partner with a pointed sector. >> we must be act develop existing water schemes. we are target 745 million gallons, costing 3.5 billion usd. no government can afford to fund wholly on its own. >> reporter: water officials are not looking at privatisation in the traditional sense, but activists in lagos are not happy with the new plans. concerns range from price hikes to what they say is the shutting out of civil society groups. >> they are mostly participation, water belongings to the people water is commonly owned. we should allow people to manage their own god-given resources. >> reporter: activists argue that plans backed by the world bank to privatize water in other parts of the world resulted in poor service.
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cities surrounded by water, but for decades municipal services have been unreliable. many say it will take a lot for them to trufl the government's -- trust the government's promises that this time the plans would work. >> you can get more news from the website at aljazeera.com. the e.p.a. wants to reduce ways from coal burning power plants. residents say it's too little, too late, why they are afraid to drink the water. energy prices are dropping like a rock. in new england the cost is on the rise. why. and our new series "between the lines", a look at why congress is giving sacred native american land in arizona to a foreign mining company in the name of national security. i'm da

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