>> welcome to al jazeera america. i'm barbara serra. we begin tonight in havana. the obama administration has taken the historic step of removing cuba from the list of state sponsors of terrorism. the reagan administration put cuba on that list in 1982. president obama paid a visit to a symbolic shrine in miami. and secretary of state john kerry officially changed cuba's status. this goes an away from democratic and possible economic ties between u.s. and cuba. we go to havana where cubans are welcoming the news. >> there is another obstacle
removed. it's something that had to happen as far as the cubans were concerned. there would be no progress without cuba coming off the list. the sense of cautious optimism is here and excitement about the future as well. but a cautious optimism. remember this is only an incremental step. if you were to lift the trade embargo, which is a decision by congress, which is way down the line you might see more of a reaction on the streets. but that's a long way away from now. in the meantime the next step are the embassies opening the cuban embassy in washington, d.c. and opening the american embassy in havana. andthe embassy here is delap tateddilapidated.
there may be renovation around the corner because there could be announcements in the next week or so, and all the time remember that the united states of america is just 90 miles over there. >> havana is not the only structure that would need rebuilding. >> an embassy by any other name here is called an intersection. that's what the building behind me has been for more than 50 years since the united states and cuba broke diplomatic ties at the height of the cold war. this used to be the u.s. embassy and it is still u.s. property, but it is not treated or considered a proper embassy. and the schedule tan u.s. staff is not allowed to leave havana without special permission. as is the case of cuban diplomats in their intersection of washington. there have been countless protests. the structure facing the former
u.s. embassy has been nicknamed the pro pest drone. president castro that he told president obama that he want assurances that the embassy will not helped to promote dissidents especially by journalists. this will be one more thorny issue that will have to be resolved before this u.s. flag can fly over this building again. >> rebuilding relationships with the former cold war rival will be easy. mike viqueira, do you think in the future they will be more likely to go along with the concessions that the president might have to take in future negotiations with cuba? >> it's a difference between being proactive and active. congress was given a 45--day
window to challenge the ruling to lift cuba from the state sponsors of terrorism. they chose not to do that because it's an issue that device the american party in half in congress. of course, republicans are leading both the house and the senate. it was a no-win political situation for them. at the same time house speaker john people and woundinger has been very critical of what the president is doing saying he's giving away things and getting nothing in return. there is a large issue that was referred to earlier in the first report that is the trade embargo codified and imposed by an i am formal wave before that that still stands today that would require congress to lift it. no one here in washington, no one here wants this relationship. and startling events since september 17th when president obama made his dramatic announcement that he wants to normalize relations. no one expects congress to act on that any time soon, barbara. >> do you get the sense that the
white house is optimistic, they'll be able to normalize relations before president obama actually leaves office? >> normalizing relations and lifting the trade embargo is a different distinction. normalizing relations could happen in the next several days. the clock expired today for congress to challenge the president's ruling. now they can do business with american banks. they can have credit cards credit diplomats can walk around in washington and elsewhere and not have to carry cash everywhere they went. that sounds trivial yap but it's important to the cubans, cuban business and financial sector as deaths institute destitute as it is at this point. normalizing relations opening embassy and exchanging ambassadors, that is expected to
happen in the next several days. that was more than similar symbolic. you heard lucia talk about some of nuts and bolts that have to be negotiated. there have been four rounds since december's announcement, and they're very close to normalizing relations which is separate and apart from lifting the trade embargo. >> mike, thank you. carlos, a policy analyst from latin perk, the center for global liberty and process prosperity institute. now the 45-day congressional notification period is over, and cuba is off the state sponsor terrorism list. symbolically this is a step in the right direction.
but in practical terms what changes are we going to start seeing from today? >> well, this was namely the biggest obstacle to establish diplomatic relations. at least what the cubans were saying. now we'll see what the next meet willing allow. there is still some controversy the resistence that the cuban government has mentioned about allowing u.s. diplomats to travel around cuba, mean civil site members they don't want that to be a reality. there are some sticking points in the agenda. but this one was by far the biggest obstacle to establish normalization. we have reached a point of no return now that the decision has been made. >> when comes to reaching an agreement on exchanging
ambassadors, this is quite telling about the ideological differences that still very much remains between the u.s. and cuba. >> indeed, we don't have to be--we cannot under the impression that this means that washington and havana are going to be allies or friendly to each other. not at all. havana is going to remain hostile to the united states. there are huge differences between both countries. the nature of the castro regime has not changed much in the last year or so, but still this is the right approach. isolating cuba did not work. it did not help the democracy cause on the island, it did not bring a change in cuba. by engageing the island, by engaging the cuban regime, i think obama is actually undermining the long growth of the repressionist regime.
>> do you think we're likely to see a softer stance now that cuba is off the list? >> not at all. cuba is going to remain antagonistic antagonistic towards washington. we have a presidential race under way. we have seen that most republicans still resist engage engaging cuba. that's going to be a topic in the political conversation that we'll have in washington for the next couple of years. still, i think that the fact that we didn't see much resistence from congress to this move from the obama administration shows that most republicans have resigned themselves to the fact that the united states and cuba are going to establish diplomatic relations so that a new turn has been reached regarding the relationship between both countries. >> the white house spokesman has said that president obama hopes to be able to visit cuba in the near future. do you think we'll see that kind of progress before the president steps down?
>> there have been so many surprises in the way both countries have approached each other. that could be something that could happen. i could see president obama visiting cuba next year. what i don't see happening is a deal reaching president obama's desk from congress lifting the embargo or lifting the traffic ban before he leaves office. >> carlos, at the cato institute, sir, thank you for for your time. >> a bombing killed four people during friday prayers. the explosion happened in eastern saudi arabia. isil has claimed responsibility. the attack comes exactly a week after another one killed 21 people at a different shia mosque. amnesty international is calling on saudi arabia to do more to protect its shia minority
population. new gains in isil in libya. the group has apparently taken control of the airport in sirte. muammar qaddafi's hometown. an estimated 85,000 people have fled the iraqi city of ramadi since isil captured it last week. the united nations said that many of them are still struggling to find safety. it has led to hard questions about who is responsible for the losses. we have this report. >> reporter: for ramadi the scene was frighteningly reminiscent. the black flags raised by isil last week. an eerie echo raised by insurgent as decade ago. >> isis is on the march and it's march is inevitable. it's a sunni majority city in a sunni majority province.
it's significant because it's one step closer to baghdad. >> for the capital of anbar province this type of threat is nothing new. between 2003 and 2007 the strategic city became a base of foreign fighters who wanted to exploit angry of the shia government. until the u.s. turned their weapons on insurgents and largely drove them out. this year it was iraqi security forces being driven out. with the fall of ramadi isil controls a vital and seemingly open supply route for its fighters and weapons. one that spans all the way from strongholds through mosul and iraq to within 130 kilometers were baghdad. analysts say it's no surprise iraqi army soldiers were ill equipped to fight and point to the policy of debaathfication.
>> there was a large purge when the united states was occupying iraq. there were subsequent purging by the maliki government by the iraqi officer score. a lot of their best talent for the last decade or so has been pushed out of the armed services and in the private sector some of those people have gone and joined isis. >> experts say repression of sunni dissent between 2011 and 2013 was for many a breaking point. >> all the calls for unified government goes to anbar demonstration two years ago. when anbar asked for their rights and calls to be part of the unified government. >> during that time sunnies accused nouri al-maliki of depriving and marginalizing them
because of their sectarian policies. [ gunfire ] protesters were killed as government forces fired at them. and then anger and animosity has only grown. now the situation is even worse. as the united states and iraq engage in a war of words about who is to blame for failing to stop isil both also wage war on the streets against their common enemy, one still very much on the march. al jazeera. >> in syria fighting conditions on several fronts. rival factions are targeting isil the syrian government and often each other. we have reports all this confusion means it's not clear who, if anyone mighty merge victorious. >> another gain for rebels in idlib province. these are fighters of coalition of rebels which includes al nusra front fighters allied to al-qaeda. they now control the town.
it is thought to be the last major stronghold for the regime in the entire province. >> thank god we liberated the town just few hours. i swear they ran like rats. >> after days of ongoing battles regime soldiers have left. the states news agency says government forces have pulled out to the outskirts to regroup. but then families are fleeing. >> some people are scared that they will destroy the town using barrel bombs. >> rebels have also moved on in the western countryside killing a number of government soldiers. days earlier rebels captured the town. last month they took control of idlib city the province capital. the next major battle for these fighters could be president
bashar al-assad's hold on the coast. and syria's palmyra the islamic state in iraq and the levant is widening it's control. they show a glimpse of syria's notorious prisons. inmates were moved by government forces before they fled. further south a war of attrition is taking place. fighting between is not over in the mountain range. hezbollah has announced it made gains in the border of lebanon two weeks ago. but fighters carrying out hit-and-run attacks. more than 40 hezbollah fighters are said to have been killed since fighting started earlier this month. the area is crucial to hezbollah and syrian government. it's where both sides gain reinforcements.
battles continue to intensify. too many warring factions with different educations are agendas are battling themselves. >> let's go to iran where hundreds of people took to the streets to protest against the ongoing nuclear talks with western powers. demonstrators don't approve of the deal because they feel that tehran is making too many concessions. but others say that hard liners are jeopardizing the talks with unrealistic demands. there is a june 30th target date with a deal with iran. a security summit in singapore today. they addressed a potential u.s.-china stand off over the territories. >> each country feels repelled to react to what others have done in order to protect their own interests. but even if we avoid a physical
clash, if the outcomes are determined on the basis of might is right that will set a very bad precedent. >> the obama administration is demanding an immediate halt to chinese land reclamation in the south china sea energies the midst of a widespread corruption scandal fifa has re-elected seth blatter to lead fifa. also coming up, the fight to save one of the world's natural wonders.
ali withdrew his bid. the re-election comes as fifa is embroiled in a damaging corruption scandal. seven top officials were arrested on wednesday. part ofn inquiry that indicted 14 people. bu despite calls to resign blatter is once again leading soccer's governing body. andy richardson reports. >> it was a confused and somewhat anti-climactic end to the tumultuous fifa and seth platter. the prince could not get the votes he needed and blatter was free to gain a fifth term as fifa president. >> i thank you that you accepted me that for the be in command of this boat called fifa, and we'll bring it back.
>> on wednesday zurich was where seven fifa representatives were arrested on corruption charges. now it's where prince hussein hopes the promise of a fresh start could win in football's top job. the jordanians final word, a thinly veled criticism. >> it is not a demand of wrongdoing and then route it out. our path mutt be led by a creation of a culture that includes transparency, inclusiveness and accountability. >> representing the world's 209 football associations to think about with two-thirds majority required to win. blatter's total of 133 was just short of that, but his rival decided not to carry the fight into a second round when a simple majority would have been enough. >> there are 73 national
association who is were really brave. i did it for them. i don't want them to be in any more trouble. they took a proper stand. so that's why i did it. >> under blaterrer african football has received huge invests and it's first world cup. the continent repays blatter with its votes. >> they've done well for africa. he's done well for africa. >> do you not think that that time is for change? after all the corruptions? >> not for now. maybe for future. >> the head of european football governing body helped blatter to his first win in 1998. this week he asked him to resign. in the coming days uefa said that the option of pulling out of fifa could be discussed. >> i think it's a shock to blatter that this many people opposed him given that you got
to remember the incumbent has a massive issue. >> he has always been a divisive character beyond the waffles fifa, and that is within the organization as well. but he does have the majority of support he needs. he has effectively created the world's most powerful and lucrative football club, and the last thing that anybody wants is meaningful change. >> south american soccer fans are still reeling from the fifa scandal, but as reports with a major tournament on the horizon the game must go on. >> there is not much sign of cope copa america fever.
with the biggest tournament kicking off here on june june 11th, the stench of corruption is contaminating expectations. >> copa america will go forward. >> preparations of this tournament have been smooth. chile has been dealing with other problems off the pitch. the hope is that the action on the pitch will be distraction
from what is going on elsewhere. >> they're doing their best not to let the scandal get to them the players are surprising. our minds have to be working towards cope copa america and not be distracted. >> while those officials brazilian champions will finance as normal. the team will play normally. football will continue as normal. this is a crisis that involves the administration. >> some of the biggest football will be performing at copa america hoping to win over fans, disillusions and angry with the running of the game they love.
>> much welcome back to al jazeera america. i'm barbara serra. coming up in this half our of international news. terrible toll super india's heatwave continues to grow. elderly grandmothers take the initiative to help their orphaned grand children. we take a look at the headlines across the u.s. the death toll and devastation is rising with the rain totals in texas tonight. the record-breaking flooding has moved north into dallas
stranding hundreds of drivers and turning roads into rivers. flooding hast has killed 27 people in texas and oklahoma in the wettest may on record. we're learning more about the allegations against former house speaker dennis hastert. a man claims that hastert sexually abused him decades ago when hastert was a high school teacher and wrestling coach in illinois. he's charged with breaking banking laws and lying to the fbi when he paid the man millions of dollars to keep quiet. president obama and a handful of senators is the only thing standing in the way of key sections of the patriot act. sections you used to justified the phone records collection program expired at midnight sunday. the senate will hold a rare sunday session to find a solution. now this is a live picture from phoenix arizona where security is heavy around a mosque tonight. an anti-muslim demonstration is
underway. around the islamic community center in phoenix. it was to display cartoons of the prophet mohammed, which is considered blasphemous by muslims. so far the event is peaceful. in nigeria muhammadu buhari taken the oath of president. >> muhammadu buhari was sworn in by chief justice at eagle square in the capital abuja. it was an historical occasion because it was the first transfer of power from one democratic leader to the other since the end of military rule in 1999.
the outgoing president sat next to buhari. buhari thanked him for accepting defeat during elections in march. after being sworn in the new president took his inaugural speech. he said that the world had come to expect the worst of nigeria but nigeria had surprised the world in conducting a free, fair peaceful election that brought him to power. he promised to fight corruption, bring employment and improve security. >> if is a complete change for the image of africa. something that frustrates me a lot is that nigeria and other countries cannot have a democratic peaceful transition
or election. i think those days are over. >> outside of the venue thousands of supporters try to get in to watch the ceremony. >> we need to show our happiness as a mass of this country. we come to eagle square security did not allow the masses to be there. why! >> demonstrations to mark this historic occasion are taking place throughout nigeria. and the hope that the country is on the rights track begins. >> joining me now from the silver screen is ambassador lyman. he served as ambassador to nigeria, thank thank you for joining us here on al jazeera. we were just watching that report. we saw president buhari is seen
by a man of the nigeria. you've been able to get to know him during your time in that country. does this mark a change of style of leadership in nigeria? >> he has shown that he lives quite austerely. he has no record of ever having been caught up in corruption. he comes to that office with a reputation as someone who means what he says when he says he wants to clean up corruption. he will not be easy for him to do it. he's not been in government except once since he had was head of the country. it will be a challenge for him. he is what he says he is. >> right now he certainly does have the good will of the people on his side, and there are huge expectations but they'll have to deliver on many problems effecting nigeria. let's take a look at some of them. one of them is security. six years of conflict with boko
haram have left tens of thousands of people dead and millions displaced. will buhari be able to irradicate the group? if so, what changes does he bring? >> well, it's the end of boko haram being a partisan issue and political issue between south and north and the government in abuja. that allows the country to come together and attack this terrible problem. i think he has two real problems in doing so, though. there needs to be a lot of reform for the security forces. he's of a different generation of the officers who are now there. so it's not going to be an easy task. and second, even though they have taken back a lot of boko haram territory there is a lot of underlying problems of under development, unemployment, and bad governance that's going to have to be addressed so that boko haram can't come back with the kind of support it had
before. >> and part of that sport as you mentioned was the poverty and corruption that arrives in nigeria. buhari said, i quote i belong to everybody and i belong to nobody. i guess he's sort of saying he's he is going to be impossible to corrupt. do you think he'll be able to stamp out corruption and create a stable economy? >> i think it's going to be hard and it depends a lot on who he puts in charge for the various ministries and particularly in the oil sector, and that these have to be trusted people who have the--who share the same objective as he does. it's very institutionalized corruption. the second thing though, is he has to set some very hard priorities on the economic
front. the oil revenues are way down, and that's what the budget has lived on for all these many years, and it's not just the federal government but all the state government. so he has to work with those governors to make sure that they too set priorities but they live up to the kinds of standards that he's trying to represent. >> nigeria is africa's most populous nation, the top economy, the leading oil producer. what impact do you think a strong stable nigeria will have on the rest of the continent and in west africa. >> in west africa, if nigeria is stable and prospers, all of the surroundings countries benefit. they all benefit from a growing and stable economy in nigeria. so that will be of benefit all around west of course. but i think also in recent years nigeria has not played strong role in the african union as it
has in the past. that's very much needed. so i'm hoping that president buhari will give attention to that as well. because the africa union faces a number of very difficult challenges south sudan somalia somalia, burundi etc. the weight of nigeria and it's wisdom will be very important. >> thank you for sharing your expertise with us here on al jazeera. thank you. >> parts of end are under a record-breaking heatwave with temperatures soaring for the seventh straight day. we have reports from new delhi heat-related illness and deaths are on the rise. >> millions of indians have been struggle to go live and work in sweltering conditions with temperatures reaching over 45 degrees celsius in some parts of the country over the past two weeks. the worst effected states have been the southern indian states.
this unprecedented heatwave as described has killed more than 1300 people in one state alone. they're in worst-affected area where limited medical and water resources are being stretched to the limit. there are growing concerns on the part of doctors and health experts that the high temperatures that delhi has experienced there are dangerous toxins in the air that will have long-term consequences for millions of residents. this heatwave is going to persist for some time to come and it may be some time before there is an improvement in the forecast. >> for now on the fifa corruption scandal the fifa football association has dropped its calls for israel have a to be kicked out of fifa. hundreds demonstrated outside of switzerland. they say that israel has restricted the movement of palestinian soccer players.
no word yet why the organization decided to withdraw its proposal. meanwhile in brazil there is lingering anger in that nation over just how much was spent for 2014's world cup. virginia lopez reports. >> for many in brazil, the example of everything that was wrong with the 2014 fifa world cup if cost $600 million to build. twice as much as originally planned, and after hosting less than a handful of matches during last year's world cup it has never been filled again. today it serves as a parking lot for these buses. after seeing cases of mismanagement and disproportionate spending in stadiums all around the country to many the signs of wrongdoing during the world cup were glaring and took very few by surprise. >> the brazilians have never trusted fifa. some of us already suspected corruption was rampant.
for others it was a surprise with the corruption scheme. >> indignation was such that thousands took to the stress in 2013 to protest what they thought were misused resources for a country where millions live on so little. >> all these stadiums are unnecessary. brasilia, for example, they have no football coach. the money would have been best spent on hospitals and schools. >> the fact that brasilia has no professional team. these days there is very little football being played at the world's second most expensive stadium. it mostly stays empty except for the occasional concert. it even played host to a mass wedding. now approved in light of the recent revelations coming out of the fifa scandal. >> there is no doubt that the government works to avoid our
investigation related to the world cup last year. it's all connected could the corruption scheme in fifa and the brasilia football confederation. >> it was meant to demonstrate to the world that brazil was now a major economic power. instead, critics say it might stand as a symbol of rampant corruption and squandered resources. >> the fate of thousands of migrant and refugees in southeast asia remains up in the air tonight. coming up next the disagreements between the failure to reach a diplomatic solution to the problem.
ws, go deeper and get more perspectives on every issue. al jazeera america. >> last night we told you about the eruption of a cool vain know in southern japan. tonight we have seen scenario at the moment of eruption. it's located on a mall island of a total population of 130 people was evacuated. one man was hurt suffering minor burns from falling debris.
>> myanmar has seen the impact of migrants off its coasts. >> thailand planned this meeting weeks ago after the migrant boats were discovered adrift in the sea. packed with desperate rohingya from myanmar and bangladeshi migrants. many are still out there. issuesmany came to coordinate the crisis at sea. regional countries agreed to set up an anti-trafficking task force. and china agreed to the use of its air force. myanmar accused the u.n. of inaccurately placing blame. but the u.n.'s refugee agency said that it's focused on
stemming the illegal and deadly flow of people for the long term. >> we're not in the business of finger pointing at all. we're looking at this situation comprehensively and that includes looking at some of the root causes. >> the meeting gave nation who is have criticized the actions of regional players a chance to participate. >> for people who have expressed concern this is an opportunity to help find a solution. >> so the agreement at the end of the day was focused on saving those in danger. with you but the more difficult task was how to improve people's lives so they're not willing to put themselves in danger in the first place. >> in bangladesh some fishermen found that human trafficking is far more lucrative than holding
a daily catch. but the police have begun to crackdown on the traffickers. >> from the mountains of myanmar it's a short hop across the river to the boats of bangladesh. for years now tens of thousands of rohingya have been crossing the border from myanmar and setting sail. not any more. with world attention on migrants off the coast of malaysia and thailand the bangladeshi government has brought an end to people trafficking. some have been arrested. one man was shot down. this man's third wife said that she has six young children. his first wife is paralyzed and can't speak.
the homes are made of brick and the walls are painted. but the family and associates say he was a poor man who was not involved in anything illegal illegal. >> the officers came and dragged my husband from our house and shot him. my husband didn't do anything wrong. he was just a poor hard working man. >> the police say the alleged traffickers were killed when they accidently shot themselves while trying to escape a fight with officers. they have had a dramatic affect on the community. they say half the men here worked in the trafficking business. many are now in hiding. >> the whole society changed. people could not afford the market any more because the traffickers had more money to spend. they would intimidate everyone. >> pretty much everyone in society here would get involved in trafficking. this is where the road to shoppersbreaks down.
you need to get out of your vehicle and go over there and they'll take to you the village. they were involved in transporting the would-be migrant to the boats. the drivers deny that's the case. >> with increaseed vigilance by security forces trafficking here appears to have come to a halt. that may not remain the case. once the spotlight has moved on al jazeera. >> the focus is on the united states and it's status as a superpower. here is a preview. >> which may not be able to call as many as we would like to, but still we are secure. we're still the number one country to which our allyies turn looking for support and enemies most fear in terms of the united united states--
>> they say they're going to have options. they'll have china and others. >> russia turn to china? don't be ridiculous. >> your question is helping us to rehearse the main issue in the presidential election next year. the republican candidates are all saying not just jeb bush they're trying to point out to a very sympathetic public that america is weak. president obama has not done well overseas. there is a sense of the isis beheadings some how shouldn't have happened or should have been punished immediately. so the hen candidates are quite united in attacking both obama and his former secretary of state from making a mess of our role in the world. >> and you can see third rail program coming up sunday at 6:00 p.m. eastern 3:00 p.m. pacific. meanwhile, coming up next, relying on the wisdom of grandmothers to help orphans ofenof an a.i.d.s. epidemic.
>> on hard earned, down but not out, >> i'm in recovery i've been in recovery for 23 years... >> last shot at a better life... >> this is the one... this is the one... >> we haven't got it yet... >> it's all or nothing... >> i've told walgreen's i quit... >> hard earned pride... hard earned respect... hard earned future... a real look at the american dream hard earned only on al jazeera america >> part of our month long look
at working in america. "hard earned". >> we'll go to kenya where an estimated 1.1 million children have been orphaned by a.i.d.s. that's left grandparents struggling to provide for their grandchildren. in one village grandmothers are now taking unusually steps to make sure that children have a brighter future. catherine soi has their story. >> vowels are today's lesson in this kindergarten in western kenya. the children are orphans. most of their parents have died from hiv/aids. and a few classrooms away is a special group of students. grandmothers who have been left behind to take care of the orphans. they may be old and frail, but wisdom can be taught in a
classroom, but a few years ago they decided to get back to class and study arithmetic, writing and reading. the oldest of the lot at 96 proudly shows me her work. she can write to ten. >> this is very tiresome, but i have to keep coming. >> the teacher livens it up with music. >> here they sing about the importance of education. >> most of them know the benefits for education. >> after class some of the ladies make their way home to wait for their grandchildren who are still in school. >> this is where this woman listens with her six grandchildren. taking care of them is a struggle, but she's able to
monitor their progress at school. so she's ready for them when they return. their parents died seven years ago and she's a sole provider. >> what pains me most is that they rely on me, but i'm growing old, and i'm not able to take care of them as well as i would like to. >> but she and other widows operate a small business here. here hands that have weakened after decades of hard work still have the energy to prepare small rolls of dough for baking. they will make pastry which they will sell and share the profits. it's not:,but they tell us its enough to get by. >> amazing women. now, our global view segment. let's start with the guardian from the u.k.
>> there is a possibility that they'll restructure fifa and write that you cannot miss the opportunity. and then there is an image entitled king blatter. a committee stopped short of placing australia's great barrier reef on an endangered list. but unesco is concerned about the world's longest coral reef system. >> it's one of the world's natural wonders but it's under threat. exports ports are built along the coast. dredged mud is dumped at sea. chemical run off from farming
has polluted the reef's waters. unesco have threatened to you had great barrier reef on its endangered list. the move would have been hugely embarrassing to australia's government so in recent moves it has announced curbs on development and abandoning dumping dredged mud at sea. >> we've seen an 11% reduction in sediment. a 16% rediscussion in nitrogen and 28% reduction in pesticides. the. >> action has been enough to persuade unesco for now not to declare the reef in danger. instead it will keep the wreath on its watch list. it still wants greater attention paid to the impact of development and concerned about the fish and coral to date.
>> the reef has lost 50% of its coral. i'm 30 years in my lifetime half the reef is gone. had the opera house been demolished there is no question that it would be in danger. >> others are disappointed by the endanger label won't be applied. australia's government spend hundreds of thousands of dollars in lobbying unesco members not to declare the great barrier reef in danger. it said it does have a policy that allows for sustainable development and that half of bad practice has been stopped. it suggests that australian's government has just done enough but the custodian of the reef is still on watch. >> that's it for this edition of news. i'm barbara serra. i'll be back in an hour for more