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tv   News  Al Jazeera  May 7, 2015 10:00am-10:31am EDT

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>> saudi arabia holds talks with the u.s. about implementing a five-day ceasefire in yemen. plus will the houthis agree? ♪ hello, this is al jazeera live from doha i'm aide aide also ahead, fierce fighting in syria over a strategic area near the lebanese border. britain goes to the polls in what is expected to be one of
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the closest elections in decades. and why these high-rises in new york are going on a diet. the u.s. secretary of state says he welcomes a saudi saudi -- initiative for a five-day ceasefire in yemen. the saudis say a five-day humanitarian truce will depend on whether the houthi rebels are comply. >> translator: i also briefed him about the way the kingdom is thinking about the ceasefire for five days in yemen in order to coordinate with the international organizations to send the assistance and aid to the yemeni brotherly people if the houthis are committed to that and if the houthis are
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committed not to attack any of these areas in yemen during that period of time and we will determine the time very soon together with all of the details. >> john kerry was widely expected to push for a pause in the fighting. he says he welcomes the peace initiative. >> king salman has announced a conference to which he is inviting all yemeni parties. we support that conference. everyone agreed -- [ no audio ]
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-- peaceful resolution to the situation in yemen. >> some analysis now from mohamed vall in riyadh. >> a five-day ceasefire is quite an achieve for secretary of state john kerry. now they have given the offer to the yemeni particularly to the houthis and the loyalests to the former president saleh. and it is conditional to their favor reply. if they agree the five-day ceasefire could be extended. it is not going to happen until there are arrangements to be able to channel relief supplies to the victims in need. but there is an opportunity there for the houthis, if they accept it that it could turn into one month, two month, or
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even an open-ended ceasefire, and also saudi arabia showed flexibility there in saying that they want to hold a peace conference on the 17th of this month. but also after that they are acceptable after the talks take place anywhere else around the world. now everything hinges on the response of the houthis. there has been heavy fighting in the port city of aden. more now from our correspondent. >> reporter: for thousands of people trapped in aden's district here the sea is their only way out. they have been caught in the battle for the southern part city. the residents are terrified. >> translator: the conditions of rockets bombing, random shelling on our houses no electricity,
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no water. >> translator: the gulf states are [ inaudible ] their responsibilities for the people of south yemen, or they should step aside. >> reporter: many are confined in their homes. others are on the move looking for a way out. boats like this have become the only hope for survival. on wednesday one of the boats was shelled by houthi rebels, killing dozens of people. this district is important. it's not far from the city's port. the area is vital for control over yemen's southern coast. the houthis and loyalists to former president saleh remain powerful here. north of aden the fight is equally hard. forces loyal to the former president are putting on a tough fight, but most of the city is destroyed. houthis and their allies
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continue to push for control of the city. >> translator: our priority is to unite and regroup the army. the houthis sees all army's equipment, and send the officers home. around 80% of the army is not doing their job. >> reporter: back in yemen most of the country is a battlefield, and millions continue to suffer. the syrian opposition is denying that hezbollah fighters have retaken key areas on the lebanese syrian border. fierce battles are taking place in the mountainous border region which has seen intense fighting in recent weeks. there are now fears that that violence could spill over into neighboring yemen. >> reporter: the battles in syria's mountains have
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intensified. this is the western part where a coalition of syrian opposition groups says it is pushing out the government and hezbollah fighters. it is on the lebanese syrian border. commanders from the al-nusra front say they don't want to distract from the fight in other areas against isis and the syrian government but they are adamant about maintaining control of areas they have taken. the syrian army has been targeting the operations. the government denies losing ground to the opposition and recent rebel gains in other areas of the country are prompts rare acknowledgments of setbacks and promises to raise morale of syrian troops. >> translator: god willing the army will soon reach those under
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siege. >> reporter: in neighboring lebanon funerals were held for the hezbollah soldiers killed in battle. it promises to clear the area. but the battles near the divided part of lebanon is a cause for concern for others as well. the eye liance of political parties says it is worried that hezbollah's advances could drag the lebanese army into syria's war. >> translator: any intervention to protect outside of the country creates a threat for the army itself and for the whole lebanese society. >> reporter: the syrian opposition says it does not want to cross the border into lebanon, but fighters insist on battling hezbollah, considered a vital lifeline. the lebanese army has already been deployed in areas where
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hezbollah can't operate because of sectarian issues. in a fight so close to home it is seen as a threat for lebanon, which is already struggling to maintain the divide. our correspondent is near the border. give us a sense of what has been happening in the last few days there on the ground. >> reporter: well adrian we're here our back develop of the mountains along the border with syria. we're hearing reports from eyewitnesss that fighting still is ongoing deeper inside syria, a few kilometers behind us. there have been violent clashes between the syrian regime and the rebels different factions different rebel groups. they have been going back and
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forth trying to overtake strategic points in these mountains overlooking not just parts of lebanon, but also within lebanon, supply routes by which they get weapons into syria. it really is a fight that both groups see as one for survival in what they are trying to accomplish. right now it does seem quiet behind us but we're hearing there are war planes deeper in the country, they are trying to drive insurgents islamist fight frers the area. they are trying to overtake them. hezbollah says they have killed dozens of militant fighters in the past few days but they also have lost some of their fighters in the last 24 hours. in this area we're in right now, the fighting seems to have subsided a little bit, it does seem to be quite violent deeper in the hills behind us. >> how do those keep feel about
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the battle of kalamoon which threatens to spill into lebanon itself? >> reporter: yeah the lebanese army has stayed out of the fight in the past few days. they say they will intervene militarily if and when there is a direct threat to lebanon. if they see fighters approaching lebanon. they are not seeing that at this point. some of the points they have overtaken these past few days they are overlooking the areas where they get weapons into syria from lebanon and vice versa. also as far as for the rebels they have tried to use their hideouts against the syrians as well. it's a concern for the lebanese. because the lebanese government doesn't want to get drawn further into the crisis.
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lebanon had its own civil war for the past 15 years. they feel when there is an up tick in more of the fighting they are worried they are going to get drawn more and more into the civil war. they are worried the more they get drawn in the more perilous it becomes for lebanon as a whole. >> mohammed many thanks indeed. on the lebanese side of the lebanon, syria border. voting is underway in the u.k.'s general election. 650 seats in parliament are being contested and around 50 million people have registered to vote. more now from lawrence lee who is in central london. >> reporter: election day in the u.k. for broadcast journalists contend to be somewhat of an out of body experience. from the point in time when the
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polls open until the point in time when they shut you can't say anything at all, which might be construed at potentially influencing the way they vote. it is very much like a court case, when a jury retires you are not allowed to say anything at all. so it restricts things like when the polls open and when they shut how many are edgeable to vote and all of that but when the polls shut it all goes back out in the open. there are exit polls then it will become later on exactly who has done well and who has done badly. these ruling don't apply to other sorts of media. twitter for example and social media are unregulated and so are the newspapers. and the newspapers are full of advice on how they think people
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should vote and yet if i told you what the newspapers are saying, i would be breaking the law. so no doubt people see this as ak ramonous but here people see it as sack row sang.
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hello again, the top stories here on al jazeera, the u.s. secretary of state says he welcome the saudi initiative for a five-day ceasefire in yemen. he has met with saudi's leader as well as yemen's exiled president. syrian opposition fighters deny that the government has retaken areas near the border. and voting is underway in the u.k.'s general election in what could be the country's tightest political election in years. 650 seats are being contested, around 50 million are registered to vote. the possibility of a five-day ceasefire in yemen, hussein is a houthi supporter
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and activist and believes the group will agree to a ceasefire. >> i think when it comes to the humanitarian issue, i'm pretty sure they will agree about that. but after 40 days of bombardment, the houthis and the humanitarian agencies have been calling for a ceasefire, and the saudi arabias have been refusing. now they are calling for a ceasefire. they are using this humanitarian issue to save them because they were losing really really bad in the south, and one other thing that a ceasefire doesn't mean that -- especially tribes -- yemeni tribesmen will withdrawal from saudi's areas that they have control of. a ceasefire means you stop firing at each other and that's all. the palestinian liberation
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has reacted angrily on wednesday in a statement the plo's chief negotiator said: mike hannah has our update. >> reporter: there's been intense criticism of the new government from the opposition within israel and palestinians throughout. opposition politicians say that the government is narrow and one rooted in self interest. the palestinians have described it as extreme right-wing composed of people who have no interest whatsoever in seeking a two-state solution.
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yet they may take comfort in the fact that the government may not last long. some analysts contend it is inherently self destructive. a number were brought in with a promise of increased government expenditure on their interest. another member of the coalition partners is headed by a man tapped to be the finance minister who has insisted that he will cut government spending. clearly the interests are very divergent divergent. there has been speckation that benjamin netenyahu may invite the leader of the zionist movement into join the government. however, he has made clear from the beginning he has no interest in joining a coalition headed by benjamin netenyahu and is even less likely to join a coalition composed of parties whom he would regard as even more unsavory. turning to the situation in
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syria, the dangers of the ever-growing refugees who are fleeing the violence. one man was trying to take his two eldest sons to germany. he used forged passports. it was a journey that ended in tragedy. here is his story in his own words. >> translator: we got to the port outside of athens and passed through several check points out problem. at the last one i was called over. the port was huge very big, so i asked another arab family to keep my youngest son while my eldest son and i went to be checked. at the check point they saw my fake passports and seized them. because we're syrians, they didn't arrest us but they made us leave the port. i called my family and told them not to worry. i stayed in a hotel for the night and then headed back to
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athens. then i saw the tv news of a rescue operation of a ferry fire out at sea. it was the same ship i was going to get. i saw them rescuing children. i looked to see if my son was on the list of survivors, but he wasn't. the wife and daughter of the family that took my son has died. the greek authorities told me that my son is officially missing, presumed dead but i believed he was still alive. i'm fairly sure he's still alive. i can't explain why. it's father's feeling. he might be with some people and he might be in shock. can you imagine the reaction a parent losing a 7-year-old child. of course i regret being smuggled. everyone always asks that. but let me ask this question what other options do i have?
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i ask that the e.u. the u.n. and turkey who didn't give me travel documents. what choices were given to me before i killed my son. police in south africa say they have arrested hundreds of undocumented migrants in overnight raids. but activists say the government should focus on tackling the route causes. charles stratford reports. patrick escaped political violence in ivory coast, and came to south africa in 1998. he is what the south african government calls an illegal immigrant. he says he has tried for years to get political asylum. >> i feel bad because as someone who is committed to the community within the country for 17 years, being forced to be
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illegal, because there are no open doors. they are forcing us to be illegal so that we can be tracked down. >> reporter: it's believed there could be up to 2 million undocumented migrant workers in south africa. the majority come from other african countries, hoping for a better life. but in a country with rrnd 40% unemployment many south africans blame migrants for taking their jobs. foreign workers and their families were target ed in a recent recent wave of attacks. it has started with a crackdown on undocumented migrants. and the arrests have begun. there was a police raid here a few days ago, and we hear that the police took a number of undocumented migrants away with them. there are raids like this
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happening across south africa and with them we're hearing allegations of police abuse and human rights violations. lucky came to south africa from ethiopia five years ago, he said when he showed the police his papers allowing him to work here they wrecked his shop and demanded money. rights groups say there is little sign the government is changing its immigration policy. >> why not try to educate the police on the rights of non-nationals. now the government has closed the refugee and reception offices, they are appealing against a judgment that says they should reopen and in cape town, so it's very easy to become undocumented even if you actually shouldn't be. >> reporter: for migrants like patrick, they have little choice but to hide from the police and those who want foreigners like him to leave south africa. two people have been killed
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by a grenade that was thrown at protesters at a rally in burundi. nine -- others have been injured in a separate protest. they have been protesting against the president's decision to run for a third term. a series of tornados has has -- torn through the central united states. oklahoma was the hardest hit. al jazeera's gerald tan has the latest. >> reporter: terrifying yet ah-inspiring. a tornado rips its way through the u.s. state of oklahoma. more than two dozen twisters touched down on wednesday, cutting a path from texas to nebraska. they flipped cars tore down trees and power lines, and ripped up roofs, the storm system also brought heavy down
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pours, the national water service declared a flash flood emergency, a first for oklahoma city. in the business district streets were inundated. >> distraught dishevelled, saddened but we're going to get it cleaned up and get back to business. >> reporter: more than 10,000 homes in oklahoma lost electricity. people have been advised to stay off of the roads until the debris is cleared. a tornado watch remains in effect for oklahoma and other states in the great plains and midwest. a new form of knife-like tower is being built in new york for the super rich. one which is still under construction will be one of the tallest residential towers in the world. jacob ward reports. >> reporter: there is a new kind of sky scraper going up in
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new york city. supertall knife-like towers for the extremely rich. the tallest posts views of central park the whole of manhattan. this apartment cost $95 million. but we managed to get inside while it was still under construction. this is the engineer behind pretty much every tall building in manhattan. it's amazing. we are looking at your portfolio right now. >> yes. yes. >> reporter: for him the height isn't the challenge, the challenge is that in manhattan you have to make it very thin. >> the width of the building multiplied by 15 is equal to the height of the building. >> reporter: that creates it's own set of problems. robert is designing another super slender tower for a
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turkish developer. >> it's much more about the way the wind interwants a tall building. if it moves very very slowly you don't feel it. >> reporter: where we're standing now is it moving? >> absolutely. but you don't feel it. >> reporter: a pair of 650 ton pen -- pen ja lums on the roof steady the building. i can't get used to this. my hands are sweaty they are shaking, and yet in theory people are going to live up here. experts say this is the future of high-end residential living.
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a federal appeals court says the nsa's collection of billions of phone records is not authorized, but the ruling won't stop government spying. a yemen ceasefire. saudi arabia's foreign minister announces a pause in fighting but only if houthi rebels comply. and election day in the u.k., they will be deciding who will be the next prime minister.