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tv   Real Money With Ali Velshi  Al Jazeera  January 1, 2015 2:00am-3:01am EST

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she is awesome. coolest mom ever. >> from the only people who really count. a court inky gent prepares to look again at the three jailed al jazerra journalists. ♪ ♪ hello, i am moore teen dennis with the world news from al jazerra. also to come. a stampede at a new year's celebration in shanghai, 35 people are reported dead. north korea's leaden kim jong you feel n says he's open to talks with south korea. celebrations art the world. as 2015 begins.
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♪ ♪ the court in cairo is just beginning its hearings for the day, among them the case of three jailed al jazerra journalists they have been in prison for more than a year. they were convicted of broadcasting false news and of helping the outlawed muslim brotherhood, a charge al jazerra completely rejects. well, their case is now being reviewed. this the live shot of the court in cairo. let's have this report now from andrew simmons. >> reporter: a new year and some new hope that 2015 will see their release. they are still living with the shock of their sentences. they didn't see a minute of freedom in 2014. correspondent peter crester jailed for seven years on falsified charges has been using
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meditation as one means of getting by. his parents were allowed an hour and a half prison visit on christmas day. and they say it's best not to be too optimistic about the appeal. peter is trying to temper his hopes. >> the difficulty of getting too hopeful and then finding it can't come true is truly devastating. and he did talk about the fact of how difficult it was when the verdict came down. and that he had to face the thought of seven years in prison. >> there is so much about the egyptian legal system that is unclear, to say the least. we know that an appeal is coming up. but any of the real possibilities that we normally would draw upon precedent in the
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anglo sack sonanglo saxon system is just not there. >> reporter: human rights groups, foreign governments governments and a vast worldwide protest campaign are united behind the #freeajstaff that's gone viral. producer bahar mohamed is an egyptian citizen jailed for 10 years. his wife, who lives in cairo gave birth to their third child while her husband was behind bars. >> translator: all of my hopes rest on him being declared innocent and exonerated. it was a as far as, no witnesses appeared in the trial. i wonder how they were indicted and then sentenced in the first place. there isn't a single piece of evidence against them. >> reporter: the cairo bureau chief mohamed fahmy who has dual canadian citizenship was jailed for seven years are he has to cope with a shoulder injury sustained before his arrest.
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his latest letter was part after i protest outside the egyptian embassy in the netherlands this week. 1111 other deers were tried in ab then is and given 10 year sentences six of them are al jazerra staff. this dutch journalist not connected with the network but one of those convicted in absentia read out fahmy's message. >> i accepted the job as al jazerra bureau chief because i recognized many excellent journalists that i worked for the channel. our reporter was fair, balanced and served the interest of no specific party or another. >> reporter: robbed of freedom and cling on the ground to their reputations as independent journalists, they are handling depravation the best they can. but they are assured of one thing, their colleagues and a big international protest network, won't give up until they are free. andrew simmons, al jazerra. >> jeffrey robertson say human
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rights lawyer and former u.n. appeals judge. he joins us live now from sydney australia. thank you for talking to us today. peter greste's father made mention in that report of the difficulty of understanding the legal process in egypt. but are we right to assume that the court is an appeals court? >> oh, yes, it is an appeals court. and it will be judging the appalling and disgusting decision of the first rank court where you had three politically appointed and selected judges, quite contemporary to protocol, who found these journalists guilty. without a evidence. they were found guilty of spreading false news. there was no evidence that any report they ever made was false.
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as far as the second charge, assisting the muslim brotherhood, although it had been democratically elected a few years ago was regarded as trait russ by the army, all they were doing was some interviews, there was no evidence that they supplied the muslim brotherhood with money with prop began duh with any kind of assistance. and the best the judges could do was to have an intelligence officer called hussein give evidence in secret. and then announce that his secret evidence, based on secret sources, this supported the charges. that's all you find in the judgment. it's a disgrace. and whether internationally or nationally the three judges who gave this first instance decision are disgraces to their calling. and so this is a big moment about to happen for the family and friends of obviously of these innocent men.
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but also for all of those that support freedom of speech throughout the world because this is a quite blatant attack on freedom of speech and coverage of an opposition party in a so-called democracy with an army government suppressing any kind of coverage of the opposition. >> yes mr. robertson can i just jump in. i was going to move onto that points actually, because president sisi has distances himself from the process and maintained the independence of the egyptian legal process. how independent is it? >> well, we will shortly know. there is only one proper verdict. under any judicial, reasonable judicial standard. and if it's reached. that will be a tick for the egyptian judiciary which once was reckoned to be quite good.
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and it's ironic that it was in fact the morsi government, the muslim brotherhood government, that started to threaten the judiciary and beat them up and intimidate them. and then you have the army coming in and making a number of its own appointments. and so this is a crucial test. but, again, you have got to remember that in times of revolution and as egypt is, you find the judges are the first to turn their coats the first to become lick spittles of the new regime and it will be suggested, if mr. fahmy and mr. greste and so on are acquitted that that may have not entirely be because of judicial independence, but it may be because the government has
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reached an accommodation with the government of qatar which of course, from where al jazerra broadcasts. and another broadcasting station, which has no connection with al jazerra but which is pro islamic has been closed down. >> all right. we need to leave it there. jeffrey robertson -- >> there will be suggestions -- >> we need to leave it there for now. >> it's now polight comply palatable. >> but we'll wait and see. >> indeed we will and we'll keep you, of course across all the developments coming out of could i ho today here at al jazerra. but jeffrey robertson thank you very much indeed. now, we'll move onto some other news and it's been a tragic start to 2015 in china where at least 35 people died in a stampede. >> reporter: a night of revel are you quickly turned chaotic this is the scene of what started out as a new year's celebration, instead the injured lie on the ground, run down in a
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stampede on the waterfront district. the stampede started just before midnight. police say they are still investigating the cause. >> translator: we were downstairs and wanted to move up and those who were upstairs wanted to move down, we were pushed down by the people coming from above. all those tries to move up fell down on the stairs. >> reporter: local media say witnesses reported seeing coupons being thrown in to the crowd. they looked like dollar bills pictures of the coupons have appeared on social media. it's a popular spot in the city with restored old buildings and mayo streets. a new year's eve laser display had been planned here. the one in 2013 had a tract some 300,000 people. but a week ago the local government cancelled the show, official reason to improve traffic flow. it's hard to cancel tradition it's a gathering place for major vents so people went there
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anyway. it's not clear what kind of crowd measures were in place but what was it was, it seems it was not enough. florence looi. al jazerra beijing. a bomb explosion in northeast it were nigeria has killed at least 11 people. a bus was struck. the explosives were reportedly hidden in a bag. meanwhile, in two bombs exploded close to military barracks. the north korean leader kim jong un has proposed high-level talks with the south during his traditional new year's speech. it comes at a time when relations between the north and the rest of the world are being closely watched hairy fawcett harry fawcett now reports. >> reporter: for the second year running kim jong un used his speech to strike a conciliatory tone. this time mentioning a summit with its south korean member. >> the atmosphere and environment is there, there is no reason not to hold the
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highest level summit. we'll make every effort to advance dialogue and cooperation. >> reporter: but he also said such talks couldn't take place while south korea carried out military drills with the u.s. a twice yearly events and reaffirmed his country's nuclear weapons policy. >> translator: we proved clearly how right it is that we support the values of late leaders strengthen our national defense based mainly on the nuclear deterrence and saved the finances. the life of the country strongly. >> reporter: kim's offer follows a briefing on monday by the unification industry. the south korean president's own new message in which she promised to lead them two eventual reunification she has consistently said they would be willing to meet kim jong un but phone if it offed real progress, no talks for talk sake this. year would carry extra symbolism for such a meeting.
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it's the 70th anniversary of the end of the second world war which here means the end of japanese colonial rule and the beginning of the north-south divide. if 2015 does see a summit it would be a third after the earlier meetings in 2000 and 2007 between kim jong il and two different south korean presidents but get to that stage would be fraught with difficulty. the main obstacle remains nuclear disarmament and pyongyang has committed itself to continue as a key national policy. harry fawcett, al jazerra seoul. still to think come. palestinian president mahmoud abbas moves to joint international criminal court. plus welcoming the new year in style. russia puts on a brave face as western sanctions and a sliding ruble continue to batter the economy.
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north korean leader kim jong un says he's open to a high-level summit with north korea days after a proposal from seoul to resume stocks, the statement was part of kim's new year address. now, the u.s. has criticized the palestinian authorities bid to join the international criminal court as counter productive. in it demanded that israel end its occupation by 2017. there the occupied west bank we have a report. >> reporter: if you agree, raise your hands. that's what palestinian president mahmoud abbas said before signing the rome statute and nearly 20 other international conventions. >> translator: the first thing that we chose for the icc.
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we want to complain, we are being assaulted and our lands are being attacked every day. who do we complain to? the u.n. security council has let us down, where do we go? >> reporter: the next step would appear to be to go to the international criminal court to pursue war crime charges against israel. but many obstacles stand in the way of an icc investigation including the announcement by israel in september that they are already investigating their own actions. however, some see this has an important to the larger goal of statehood. >> we are canopy did he want on the long-term that the international community will get fed up with this last illegal occupation. and will help the palestinians achieving their legitimate rights of freedom and independence. >> reporter: benjamin netanyahu has responded angrily to the move warning the palestinians have more to fear from the courts than israel and a
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statement from the u.s. state department the decision was described as counter productive. u.s. officials have repeatedly warned abbas in the past by by joining theism c.c. they could face economic sanctions . >> there is a lot at stake here for the palestinian leadership. they rely heavily on foreign aid for their funding if sanctions are imposed it could weaken their authority. but with so many fed up with the worse earning situation the skp*t leadership losing its popularity a bold step needed to be taken but where it will lead is less certain. al jazerra, in the occupied west bank. meanwhile in israel the prime minister benjamin netanyahu has was the support of his party in elections and will lead the right wing party in general elections on march 17th. he has an overwhelming lead over
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his challenger the former deputy defense minister. bashar al is al-assad has visited the outskirts of duh damascus, he wanted to personally thank soldiers battling opposition fighters there. syrian television broke out footage of what was said to be the trip. the family of 18 age girl in syria is accusing kurdish forces there of kidnapping her and forcing her to become a child soldier. kurdish forces deny the allegations, but they, and other armed opposition groups in syria, have been condemned by human rights watch for putting children on the frontline. natasha reports. >> reporter: 15-year-old should be home, helping to care for her disabled mother. instead her family says kurdish forces kidnapped her and now she's a soldier. protesters walked through the streets of her town in northeastern syria calling the
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kurdish tosses criminals and demanding the teenager's freed yumfreedom. the kurds deny snatching her. last year kurdish forces officially banned the recruitment of people under the age of 18. and demobilized 149 child soldiers. but children are still finding their way to the battlefield. >> translator: i was hit by a fighter bomb ore my first day. i am used to it all now. no more fear. >> reporter: human rights watch says all opposition groups in syria are aggressively recruiting minors, in violation of international law. and they need to stop sending children to the frontlines. >> translator: i started fighting when i was 13 or 14. and i am still carrying on. >> reporter: a spokesman with kurdish forces tells al jazerra they faced great resistence when they prohibited children from fighting. loyalty to the kurdish cause and
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a lack of opportunities have be speared young people to serve. but this battle-weary teenager is now a veteran. >> translator: i would like to resume my studies and have my normal life. >> reporter: war has deprived syria's young of a care free childhood. but insuring they don't join the fight will at least allow them to remain children a little longer. natasha ghoneim, al jazerra. at least 26 people have been killed in afghanistan after a stray rocket hit a wedding party in helman province the victims were all women and children and the report is the rocket was fired as the taliban battled soldiers. >> reporter: civilians caught in the middle again afghan government forces and the taliban were fighting fighting with when a rocket fell on a house crowded with party goers. >> the rocket struck a wedding party. almost two dozen people have been moved to the hospital so
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far. and more are on the way. >> reporter: all this just hours after nato's bad mission officially ended. evidence the war isn't over. the fighting in helman has been fierce all year, the taliban control much of the countryside. it's a similar story in the east. the afghan army says it can't move more than a few kilometers from its bases because of the taliban. it says al qaeda is rebuilding its training camps on the mountain tops nearby. all signals of a difficult year ahead for a country asserting its sovereignty. jennifer glasse, al jazerra kabul. in indonesia more coffins carrying victims of the air asia plane crash have a required for identification. the bodies were removed from the crash site by ship. and then fairied to land by helicopter. at least eight bodies have so far been recovered. the parents of 43 missing
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students have been holding a new year's vigil in mexico city. they went missing in september after a confrontation with police in the state of guerrero. david mercer spoke with some of the families. >> reporter: while people around the world are celebrating the start of a new year the parents of mexico's 43 missing students are back in mexico city close to the president's house determined not to let their children be forgotten. it's been more than three months since police can i kidnapped the students and handed them over to a drug gain, yes recently it was revealed that fad al soldiered were by it and may have participated. many believe they were murdered back in september but their parents say they are holding out hope. >> translator: we don't know when we will find them. but we have to do whatever it takes. >> reporter: this case has sho*bgd shocked the nation and
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people across mexico are calling for president enrique peña knee eight owe to step down. the big question here is whether mexicans are ready to forgive and forget. now, protesters in the u.s. have been marking the end of 2014 by calling on police to end the use of excessive force. people in boston layed down on the streets in a so-called die-in demonstration which was meant to highlight recent killings of unarmed black men by white police officers and in st. louis, protesters storms police headquarters and put up eviction notices some vowed to stay for four and a half hours the amount of time black teenager michael brown's body lie in the street after he was fatly shot by a police officer in a st. louis suburb of ferguson in august. five people were arrested. russia's president vladimir putin has been hailing the
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annexation of crimea from ukraine in his annual new year address. but his country and his 2015 are hobbled by western sanctions falling oil prices and a sliding ruble. peter sharp reports on what lies ahead. >> reporter: the traditional fireworks over red square, bringing in the new year in moscow. but for the russian people, an uncertainty about what lies ahead. there were reassuring words from president putin? his traditional new year message to the nation. >> translator: dear friends, at this time when we summarize the ending of the year, i want to sincerely thank you for your unity and solidarity. for your deep feelings of truth honor and justice and responsibility for the destiny of your country. for your unwavering readiness to defends the interests of russia. for standing by, not only in triumph, but also at a time of trials. to fight for the implementation
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of our most brave and wide-scale plans. >> reporter: 2014 has been a year of highs and lows for russia. there was the glory of hosting the world's most expensive olympics in history. a $50 billion spectacular that compounded the critics. a month later crimea was annexed a triumphant putin neatly stepping nato and the west as they vote today rejoin russia. but the war that followed in the east of ukraine between government rooms and pro-russian separatists raged virtually uninterrupted as the west piled on the sanctions. the ruble plummeted losing more than 50% of its value against the dollar. oil prices followed in the same direction. as more than $130 billion in foreign capital left the country heading west. but for the russian people today preparing for the 2-week new year holdiday, are a particularly resilient bunch the kremlin has told them the
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country is under threat by nato, america and the west, and this siege mentalities is reflected in the upbeat predictions of the year ahead. >> translator: i expect all of the best from the new year. everything is going to be all right. we will be happy and healthy. >> translator: it's hard to say what to expect with the current situation in the country. we hope that everything will be okay. we will be lucky and happy. >> translator: i think that everything is going to be great. >> reporter: but despite these words of confidence and reassurance, there is a growing realization, perhaps unspoken, among these people that things are going to get worse possibly far worse but they get better. peter sharp, al jazerra in, moscow. well, in nearby lithuania it's marking the new year there by switching to the euro currency. now, this is the last baltic nation to adopt the european single currency. it was a lot of pomp and
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ceremony in the capital as it became the 19th country to join. lithuania hopes the move will increase trade and investment as well as boost its economy. well, there have been the traditional celebrations around the world to bring in the new year. more than a million australians australians partied on sydney harbor it's reckons a billion tv viewers watched this spectacular start to 2015. the australians always do it so well, don't they? and in the united arab emirates the crowds in dubai were treat today a spectacular display a record-breaking l.e.d. display to be precise on the tower. 70,000l.e.d. financials were by the reliably informed. and going back to london, thousands of people witnessed this spectacular display on the banks of the tales thames where
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hundreds of thousands of fireworks were launch ofed. and this is new york again proving it's a city that never sleep. hundreds of thousands braved temperatures well below feeing to watch the ball drop in sometimes square. you can see all those pictures again and indeed the rest of the day's news on our website ♪ hi, i'm lisa fletcher, and you are in the "stream." journalists around the world condemn the egyptian government for the detention of three al jazeera journalists. plus females talk about being harassed, assaulted and stripped on the streets of egypt. and later an american citizen imprisoned during anti-government demonstrations
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who was said to be near death sparksn online movement calling on the u.s. to do more to secure his release. ♪ my digital producer and co-host wajahat ali is here, bringing in all of your feedback throughout the program. we decided to launch this hashtag this year, as a network. and it was a way to bring the point home and make it personal about the things we missed had we been away for a year. >> yeah, our three colleagues have been in prison for a year. and we often don't think what would we miss if we were falsely imprisoned for a year. check out my screen: look at that beautiful photo.
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and then we have a young journalist says: and one of our colleagues, peter greste wrote this recently from prison. he say: amen to that lisa. >> yeah that was published globally in the biggest newspapers ash the world. three al jazeera journalists as we mentioned remain behind bars sparking international condemnation over their treatment. this week marks the one-year anniversary of their detention. they were detained by egyptian authorities in december of 2013, while reporting on the military-lead coup that toppled the government of president morsi. they are accused of aiding the muslim brotherhood and reporting false news, charges they and al jazeera deny. the brotherhood was designated a
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terrorist organization by the interim egyptian government shortly before the journalists were arrested. the prosecution's case was called into question when the evidence they produced was: in june, greste and baher mohamed -- mohammed fahmy were sentenced to seven years in prison, and baher mohamed was sentenced to an additional three years for having a spent bull it will casing in his procession. human rights and press freedom advocates say the move is mart of a wider crackdown on free speech. and part of a major effort by the egyptian authorities to silence decent. this year egypt has been named among the worst for its crack down on professionals.
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joining us from doha is a correspondent who was held without charge in an egyptian prison for ten months. he was released in june of 2014. also with us a non-resident fellow for the brookings institution center for middle east policy, and an associate fellow at the royal united states institute in london. thank you two for being here. abdullah, you spent more than 10 months in an egyptian prison. here in america we expect detainees to have basic human rights. describe for us the circumstances you experienced in the egyptian prison. >> i think egyptian prisons are an experience that no one would like to go through, because basically it's a nightmare for anyone who has gone through that kind of experience.
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in egyptian jails it's mostly beatings all the time, never any kind of medical attention, of course, cells are overcrowded with people, they don't get any kind of hygiene, or even any basic humans rights as -- you know, allowing people to have some time to walk on their feet, or probably meet each other or in some cases it's not even allowed to have a newspaper or a book or even a pen. so it's mostly a very bad experience for anyone who goes through that, and it's -- it's -- it's mostly -- you know, it works according to how the offices in any prison would like to control it, because there isn't something like that law that really defines how they can treat prisoners, because one day you can see, you know, the officer or the warden in control. maybe he is just feeling good
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or -- you know, he feels -- you know, it's a good day, so well, let's give them some good time, and then the other day he has trouble back in his own home, and i mean it literally if he's feeling bad for any kind of reason, he just reflects that upon the prisoners. so any kind of -- you know -- yes? >> i just want to stop you there for a second. you went on a hunger strike in prison for 149 days. what prompted you to do that? >> well, because i don't believe there's a judicial system in egypt. i don't believe there's justice? the first place in egypt. i mean i was there for almost five months before i started my hunger strike. i gave all sort of evidence i could give, you know, to prove that i was there doing my job, and it was not just me, there was another journalists who has been in jail for over 500 days now, and he was also with me in
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jail. he -- he is also -- you know, has been there without any kind of interrogation or investigation, so that's why it really prompted me to go on this hunger strike, because i felt that was the only way i could get back my freedom, because any kind of, you know, persecution or any kind of trial was useless. we -- we just kept getting 45 days detention renewal every month and a half and nothing would half. no one would listen to you. the judge wouldn't listen to you. lawyers wouldn't -- they were doing all the best they could, but it was not really a process of justice taking place. so i felt that was the only way i could speak out. >> our come community has been tweeting in about the political climate:
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you are an expert on egyptian politics, how much of this, what has been happening, especially the crackdown on journalists and the crackdown on our colleagues who have been in prison for a year, is a connection between sisi, and the supporters of the muslim brotherhood? >> i think that's a large factor that one has to take into account just in terms of understanding the context in which all of this takes place. there are many journalists who are in egypt who have been taken from their offices in the same way. there are many journalists that operate in egypt that have not had that sort of treatment, and that has less to do with the work they have actually been doing, because as you pointed out about the trial, there wasn't really much that was brought up in the trial with
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regards to peter greste, and mohammed fahmy, and baher mohamed, that actually made a lot of sense, but it was very much about the association with al jazeera, and very much about the association with al jazeera owned by qatar, a country that was claimed to have supported the muslim brotherhood, and that provides for political context that puts the light on al jazeera in particular. in the months and -- actually even the weeks after the muslim brotherhood was pushed out of power last summer in 2013, you saw a lot of press being put out there about how al jazeera was essentially the spokesperson media channel for the muslim brotherhood. and in the context of egyptian politics with this, you know, new war on terror, and people talking about how the -- the country is going through all of this turmoil, al jazeera in particular as a channel is put
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into that frame. and that provides a huge amount of the backdrop for how you can see people like peter greste who has been in cairo for two weeks. and mohammed fahmy, who had no connection to the muslim brotherhood whatsoever -- >> if what he is saying is true, and this is political retaliation on the part of egypt towards qatar, then it really has nothing to do with the work of journalists, making journalists even more vulnerable than they may have been in the past. what is your hope that things are going to get better for journalists in conflict zones such as those in egypt? >> i don't think it is going to get any better in egypt either for the general situation in the country, or for journalists because as long as -- you know, security -- as long as the security [ inaudible ] in the country is having all those kind of, you know, endless powers for them to arrest and detain people
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without any charge, i mean, that will continue, because i remember just like -- in my own case i was detained, you know, and kept there just for no reason because -- you know, well the officer who detained me just thought i should be put in jail, just like he was saying most of those journalists -- either al jazeera or others, some of them get picked up from their homes, some of them being picked up from their offices, from on the street. so it has really nothing to do with journalists in particular, but i think it's also about, you know, trying to silence those who don't, you know, walk in favor of the regime in the country. >> right. ahate to cut you off but we are out of time. thanks to both of our guests. this image of a woman in cairo, dragged by police, and
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stripped down to her bra, has become an enduring symbol of sexual assaults of women reported in post revolution egypt. why so many accounts of rape have yielded so few prosecutions. and later why are some accusing the u.s. government of doing too little to secure the release of an american held in egypt. his brother joins us to talk about that. and on the one year anniversary in prison, our colleagues reflect on what they have missed. same hashtag. ♪
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♪ welcome back. we're talking about press
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freedom in egypt, as we mark a year since three al jazeera journ aileses were detained and are still held in prison by authorities. those were some examples of support they have gotten. women in particular have woman forward with stories of harassment, assault, and even gang rape in downtown cairo. one journalist says she was sexually assaulted while being detained in prison. egypt's government faces criticism to failing to prosecute these cases. here to discuss this, out of paris is an egypt correspondent for france 24. she is also director of the film sexual harassment, an egyptian disease, and she herself was assaulted in 2012. also an egyptian journalist who
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is the subject of the documentary where she navigates the revolution in 2012. egypt? >> it is very difficult because of harassment. and especially when there was the protests in 2000 and even 2012, because now you have almost no protection. it's forbidden to protest, and if you protest you risk to go to jail, so you really have to be careful, but i think we're all aware of harassment, so especially like me since i had a bad experience end of 2012, i was much more cautious since when i go in the street, when i go -- you know, on the ground -- >> sonia what happened to you in the square? >> so it was at the end of a protest at the end of october in
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2012, i was covering from the ground usually i work from balcony in the hotel which was on the square. this time we were on the ground. it was the end of the protest. it was a very quiet day. and at the end of the -- the protest, there was still some guys hang around. when i begin my -- my live, there was not so much people, but very quickly like it's all of this things usually happen very quickly, like in a few minutes you have suddenly like a few men like surrounded me, and at the end of my live i tried to -- to leave, but very quickly a circle was formed around me, and -- and i was grabbed, but thanks to my coworker that was here, i managed to escape thanks to another journalist. >> i'm going to stop you right there for a minute.
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because i want to get hiba into the conversation. it is suspected that these attacks are carried out by men hired by the government paid to attack female journalists and protesters. is there anything you have learned that would lend truth to those accusations? >> i can't say for sure, because we don't have evidence of either, but i can say at some point in some specific incidents, for example like mohammed in 2011, it seemed to be very organized. it seemed to happen all of a sudden, and people were coming out of nowhere in very large groups, and were organized. and we have seen very similar tactics used, but i wouldn't confirm or deny this. but whether or not what is happening on the ground is orchestrated by the state or just happening, what we know for sure is the state is failing to prevent this, and the state is using sexual violence itself with
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political dissidence. >> we asked your community, what can be done to ensure the safety of female journalists reporting in areas of unrest: however, we have heard today there is a double standard -- >> [ inaudible ]. >> yep. sonia you have are the writer and director of the documentary, what is the vaccine and what is the cure? >> first i think the egyptian society needed to really be fully aware of the phenomenon, because it was a huge taboo in the society. no one really talked about it. the egyptian media never really talk about the subject until
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some women since the revolution in 2011 became to -- to talk about it openly, one of the women i interviewed was raped entirely for 45 minutes. it was a horrible assault. she went on egyptian tv end of 2012, and she talk about it openly showing on tv her shirt that was -- you know, there was blood on her shirt and her pants that were turned down, and she show all of that, and it's because some brave egyptian woman began to talk openly on social media and tv that finally the problem is less taboo, and we had the egyptian authority pass the law december punishing five or six year harassment. and finally there is a law that designs sexual harassment. but still you need a national strategy, and even if there is
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this law now, it has to be implied, you know, by the police and the judiciary system, because often some woman say that they file a complaint and the policemen, you know, almost -- like some of them even harass the woman. it's such a big issue in this society that you need a really national strategy. >> right. >> and you need to make effort about that. >> hibba, female activists and reporters are having to choose between what they consider their professional and moral duty and being a target for rape. how do you think that is changing the dynamics particularly for female journalists on the ground. >> i think it's a shame while i'm doing my job and others are doing their job as journalists, they have to think about this as one additional layer of risk that you are taking. so other than thinking about the
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usual danger that everyone on the street is facing, you also have to think about your own personal safety, and your basic need to protect your body. so for me there was a point where i decided it's too dangerous to go into large crowds, and that was when the square was really bad and i almost was not able to get out. so at this point to decide, okay, we're going to be reporting on the peripheries and not inside of the action, and it's a shame. >> it is a heavy burden to bare. thank you both so much for joining us. still ahead -- >> i ask my government, the government of the united states of america is my life not worth anything to you? >> the family of an american citizen on a hunger strike in an egyptian prison says he is near death. how the u.s. is responding next. ♪
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♪ >> i have had my freedoms stripped away from me. why? because i was living by the same values o principles that our founding fathers built this great message on. >> that message was smuggled out of an egyptian prison this year. he has been imprisoned for more than a year. he is accused of aiming to spread violence and disseminating false news. he denies the charges and has staged a hunger strike to protest his detention. he is only drinking water with sugar. as a result his family has said he has had several strokes and fallen into two comas. supporters have been demanding
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his release for a hashtag. human rights groups say his active twitter feed landed him in hot water, and he is not alone. sneerly half of all i prisoned journalists work in online media. joining us is his brother, who has been working to secure his release. and washington director for reporters without borders. give us the latest on your brother's health. he has been on this hunger strike for 334 days. that's the longest in egyptian reported history. >> first of all i would like to say that mohammed was not initially arrested for his activism on twitter. he was picked up at our house as the forces were raiding the house looking for my father, and they found mohammed and arrested
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him. and only three days after his arrest they issued a warrant. as for his health, he is completely cut off, we haven't had any news from him in the past two to three weeks. he has been in solitary and icu in the prison in cairo. before that he was moved over to the icu, because there was fear that he was going into another coma, as he had multiple seizures within the prison. so right now he could fall into another coma. he could have another stroke, but for that we don't know, because he has been cut off from the entire world for over two or three weeks. >> what has the u.s. government done to get your brother released from your perspective, has it been enough? >> in the beginning the u.s. government was not doing enough,
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but right now, obama called for his release, john kerry called for his release, and amnesty continues to go to his hearings, submit requests for his release on health grounds. i believe that they are doing as much as they -- they could do, but i still believe they should be doing more. they should be applying more pressure -- egypt has a lot of interests coinciding with the united states, so that should be used. the united states should be able to use that to protect its own citizens. requests. >> i'm going to get our community in: del delfine what do you think the u.s. should be doing?
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>> they should be doing much more until all activists and journalists are freed. and the u.s. announced they will provide millions of dollars in military aide to egypt. democratic requirements are needed, but we have to make sure that the release of american political prisoner will be guaranteed to obtain these millions of dollars of aid. >> obviously we could have used a whole hour just for this segment. thank you so much for all of our guests. and until next time, waj and i will see you online. ♪
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an egyptian appeals court orders a retrial in the case against three jailed al jazerra journalists. ♪ ♪ hello, i am martin dennis with the world news from al jazerra. also to come, a stampede at a new year's celebration in shanghai, 35 people are reported dead. north korea's leader kim jong un says he's open to talks with south korea. ♪ ♪ the celebrations around the world as 2015