this half hour. thank you so much for joining us. i'm jonathan betz. stay right here, because the news continues next live from london. ♪ at least 55 people are killed in a bomb attack in a crowded market in iraq. ♪ i'm lauren taylor, this is al jazeera live from london. also coming up. rising death toll in china's huge explosions with at least 50 now killed and 700 injured. the prediction that ebola will be defeated by year's end. and starlight express, sky gazers are treated to an action-packed night. ♪
hello. fighters from the islamic state of iraq and the levant say they are responsible for a huge bombing in baghdad. it tore through a crowded market in a mainly shia neighborhood. >> reporter: in the blank of an eye, the scene turned from mundane to murderous as a track packed with explosives blew up in a crowded vegetable market in the city. the predominantly shia muslim neighborhood in eastern baghdad is one of the capitol's most densely populated, as some searched for survivors, others found the dead. because the early-morn attack was apparently planned to maximize civilian casualties, many iraqis new this would be the work of isil. it was the third attack by the group in as many days, underscoring how tenuous the security situation here is.
on tuesday, isil attacked two other areas where many shia muslims live. dozens were killed and dozens more injured. attempts to deepen sectarian lines at a time when increasing numbers of iraqis are demanding their government work together. fed up at the lack of basic services such as electricity and clean water, tens of thousands have been demonstrating against corruption. a call that's alarmed iraqi leaders who have quickly passed sweeping reform proposals. while protests are planned for friday in several iraqi cities it is unclear how this attack may affect the turn out, especially here in baghdad which has now experienced another brutal reminder of the security crisis in this country. the blast is one of the biggest to strike baghdad since the prime minister took office in 2014. isil attacks have escalated in recent months as government forces move to drive the group out of its strong hold in anbar
province. on monday at least 58 people were killed and more than a 100 injured in two blasts. an attack in july killed around 84 people. many of those killed were women and children gathering to mark the end of ramadan. according to the u.n. about 15,000 civilians have been killed in iraq since the start of 2014. chairman of iraq's parliamentar parliamenta parliamentary block spoke out. >> most iraqis know these are not iraqi sunnis. we can differentiate between sunnis who are moderate, who adopt a national discourse from the extremist, from the -- from those terrorists who are -- have this very extreme discourse. it's clearly not sectarian.
i mean, although the motivation behind the attacks is sectarian, because isil believes that shia and moderate sunnis should be killed, they are not muslims. this is not going to raise any -- any tension. this is going to draw -- maybe distract the attention given to the areas where daesh is occupying. this is going to distract the attention of the government from focusing on basic services from solving the political problems. maybe this is going to be the main -- i mean the main negative or the main problem that this attack or such attacks will create. ♪ the death toll from huge explosions in the chinese port city has risen to at least 50. these pictures reported by a camera drone show the aftermath
of the blast. as many as 700 are injured and 36 firemen are still missing. adrian brown has more from the site of the explosions. >> reporter: the heart of one of china's most important economic hubs, torn apart by multiple blasts. [ explosion ] >> reporter: fires burned throughout the night. there were further explosions on thursday afternoon. as a pool of toxic smoke billowed across the city with local people concerned not for the first time, about the air they are now breathing. >> translator: we are very worried, very worried about what chemical is in the air. we're worried it might be toxic and could be harmful in the future. >> reporter: close to the epicenter of the explosions, the scale of the destruction is difficult for dazed survivors to comprehend what happened and why. >> translator: i thought it was
a gas explosion. my bedroom wall was hit by a shock wave by through me out of bed. >> reporter: others thought it was an earthquake or nuclear explosion. windows were shattered in homes almost two kilometers away. the flying debris sliced through hundreds of vehicles. temporary housing for migrant workers bore the brunt of the blasts. this is a worker's dormitory, and as you can see it has been completely shredded. the damage here really bares testament to the force of the explosions, the people in here were lucky to get out live. the number of dead is continuing to rise, many of them were firefighters. government officials say hundreds of people were treated in hospital, mostly for cuts caused by flying glass and concrete. >> translator: my first reaction was to run. i then heard another blast.
i was running wild and got blood all over my body. >> reporter: the authorities say the blasts were caused by chemicals stored in a warehouse close to where thousands lived. an investigation into how that was possible has now begun. adrian brown, al jazeera. seven people have been sentenced to death in pakistan over a series of attacks including an attack that killed more than 150 people, mostly children. the school was stormed by gunmen in december last year. the army says those sentenced are members of the taliban and two local armed groups. our correspondent camel hider phoned in this update. >> reporter: the seven who have been sentenced to death including the perpetrators of the attack on the school in december in 2014, and also one
of the people were involved on the tack on the bus in kay raw chee. one of the offenders was given a lighter sentence of life imprisonment. all of this is happening after the pakistani [ inaudible ] within the supreme court ruled that military courts were indeed legal, that there were serious crimes committed by the perpetrator, and therefore the military courts now has the right to try these people. however, the military says they will still have a right of appeal. people across pakistan are in favor of the death penalty. they want the military to be able to have speedy trials because that was the demand of the people. parliament has moved a special amendment in the constitution known as the 21st amendment, so there is support on the ground,
however, civil rights organizations would be criticizing the move, saying that the death penalty should be abop -- abolished. the world health organization says ebola may be eliminated by the end of the year. but she warned against complacency. >> if the current intensity of case [ inaudible ] and contact tracing is sustained, the virus can be soundly defeated by the end of this year. that means going to zero and staying at zero. a spokesman spoke to us earlier saying the predictions are premature, but all groups on the ground need to be vigilant. >> it is very, very important
that we do not get complacent together with the population, together with all of those involved in this response so far. we have seen that one unsafe burial can lead to a number of new transmission chains, so we have to be vigilant. what we got from the first trial of vaccine, it seems that the vaccine is safe, is efficient, again, further studies are needed. we need more research to be sure that the vaccine is playing a big role in -- in ebola outbreaks. really for the time being we have to focus on these traditional methods that we have been using these past months that helped us to basically get down to small number of new infections, but, again, vaccine and work on a new vaccine is a very promising sign and hopefully it can be a very encouraging new tool in the future. >> the president of the west africa nation of guinea biaasu
has dismissed the president. there have been months of infighting over the division of power. donors have threatened to withhold $1 billion in aid if the leaders fail to maintain stability. our correspondent says the president and prime minister have a difficult relationship. >> i think the main problem is between the ruling party, where there are really many classes or many clans inside fighting one another, and the other problem also i think is that our constitution itself, which needs to be reviewed, because we have a parliament and constitution which give force to the prime minister while in this frame the head of state wanted to have a final review in management of the country.
so the country is really matter of burning concern, because they are just coming from the round table where the donors have promised to give more than $1 billion. so in this condition for sure they will postpone or wait for a lot of time. it will be a very, very very difficult, or very tough time to just -- for the people and for the economy of the country also. still ahead on the program, the video that put five soldiers behind bars and shocked a central american nation. ♪ also wartime wounds why their suspicion in south korea are [ inaudible ] from japan. ♪
♪ hello again a reminder of the top stories here on al jazeera. at least 55 people have been killed in a bombing in baghdad. it's the third attack by isil in as many days. a military court in pakistan has sentenced seven people to death for their involvement of an attack in a school last december. and the death toll from two huge explosions in an trial area in china has risen to 50. five people have been arrested over an attack in bahrain last month. the july 28th bombing targeted a bus carrying policemen.
two officers were killed and six others wounded. the chief of police say investigators have connected the suspects to ooish's revolutionary guard, as well as the lebanese hezbollah group. the syrian city of aleppo has access to water again after being cut off for three weeks. unicef has restored supplies to the city, and they were cut off in july after al-qaeda's nusra front closed the city's main water station. residents were forced to drink untreated water from wells. around half a million people are still struggling to receive enough water to survive. turkish opposition parties say talks between the prime minister and the opposition party have failed. the president now has one more week to decide on the coalition,
or possibly call an early election. >> translator: early elections are a possibility, a strong possibility. the greek government is asking its parliament to approve an 85 billion euro bailout deal. that's what the country needs to avoid defaulting on a debt repayment next week. politicians are debating the matter ahead of a vote expected on friday. john psaropoulos has the latest. >> reporter: the government is very keen to point out the positive points of this particular law. it comes under a third bailout loan which is going to allow the greek government to pay roughly $22 billion less to creditors between now and 2018. and this is the first implementation law that comes under that more favorable loan agreement. the government is also pointing out that this bailout loan comes
with a 35 billion euro development package funded by the european commission, but it is being forced to accept that it has gone back on a preelection promise to accept more austerity measures. for example, one of the more painful aspects will be the fact that this law being voted on tonight on thursday night, is making it much more -- is making it much more difficult for greek taxpayers to get away with not paying their tax, whether they are doing so as a result of not wanting to pay it, or as a result of not being able to pay it. so this law is giving the general secretary for public revenue, much bigger teeth with which to take people's property or money in their bank accounts if it's perceived that there is
a way in which they can pay some of their tax arrears. also public spending cuts for several servants for benefits for things like travel, and there are going to be further spending cuts in medicine provided by the public sector through the national health system. so there are definitely many hundreds of millions of dollars worth of spending cuts foreseen in this bill, and don't forget that this is only one of a legislative series of bills that is going to be affecting austerity measures that flow from the third bailout agreement. five gaud mall land soldiers are behind bars accused of beating up a young man. the video prompted questions about the military's role in civilian policing. david mercer reports from guatemala city. >> reporter: an abuse of power
captured on video. soldiers viciously two young men in a town nflt it was rumored the young men were delinquents and the solders warned them that this is how they were trained. the video went viral in guatemala with some approving and others shocked. guatemalan authorities launched an investigation. on thursday the soldiers in the video were arrested and brought here to the public prosecutor's office. in the coming days they will face a judge on allegations of abuse of authority and maltreatment of a minor. for more than 15 years the military has helped with civilian policing, combined patrols were set up to assist a police force created at the end of the country's civil war, but police have been unable to curve violent crime, and the president ordered more soldiers on to the streets. this analyst says that puts guatemalans at risk, a
government accord states that combined patrols must be under police command. >> translator: it's worrying that in the video, we don't see any police officers in the patrol. the police are trained to serve the community and guarantee the safety of citizens. soldiers don't have specialized training to carry out this kind of work. >> reporter: military officials are quick to highlight guatemala's role in peace-keeping missions abroad and the support they receive at home. community leaders in the town where the video was recorded signed this document asking that the army continue their patrols. >> translator: i think this is an isolated incident. i don't think it will have serious repercussions in the way we have seen. we're guarantors of guatemala's institutions. >> reporter: some guatemalans are calling the soldiers heros
and say they should be released. a court will now decide if these men went too far. david mercer, al jazeera, guatemala city. japan's prime minister is expected to apologize for the part his country played in world war ii. he is seeking his cabinet's approval. but there are fears in china and south korea that he will down play the scale of japanese atrocities. haye -- harry fawcett reports. >> reporter: a history still live in the minds of the young. >> translator: even though lots of time has passed japan hasn't settled it past issues and offered an apology. >> reporter: japan's army forced
up to 200,000 asian women into prostitution. this woman was taken from her home at age 14. told she would be sent to a factory. instead shipped between military brothels throughout asia. >> translator: for us liberation hasn't come. even now we are still fighting against japan. >> reporter: conflict between korea and japan goes back hundreds of years. a recent hit tv show charts the invasion of the 16th century. but it's japan's 20th century record that dominates relations. koreans were forced to adopt japanese names and language. the catalog of horrors carried out by japan certainly explains a lot of the continued political animosity between the two countries. but that history can also be
drawn on to serve present day political differences as well. for some south korea has relied too much on historical grievance to build its national identity. with campaigns of military action. >> if south korea could step back a little bit it would strip away the fig leaf for japanese denial. >> reporter: others say the prime minister is refusing to deal with the past as he looks to free it from post-war passivist restrictions. >> translator: we're trying to realize collective self-defense. [ inaudible ] of aggression. [ cheers ] >> reporter: as south korea marks 70 years of freedom from japanese rule, that history
still bares down heavily on its relationship. in mexico five gunmen have reportedly burst into a bar killing a drug gang boss, reporter and four other people. the area is often a scene of battles between gangs. u.s. scientists say the colorado river is showing signs of improvement after last week's toxic contamination. the head of the environmental protection agency is facing criticism over the way the agency handled the spill. >> reporter: the farmers of ship rock are angry. >> due to the fact that we are denied fresh water and access only to water with toxins, we're in a real crisis. human rights. the basic human right is to have fresh water.
>> reporter: this chapter of the navajo nation rely on the san juan for its water. the leak occurred on wednesday, the ship rock chapter was told thursday afternoon, and it wasn't told much. >> they did not tell us any specifics, as to how much waste was coming our way. or what was contained in it. we apparently were supposed to do our own research. >> reporter: ship rock's livestock has to rely on one water tanker, circulating the reservation. as for the crops there is the rain. >> it would have to come on a regular basis once a week. and it would have to be substantial rain to soak into the ground. >> reporter: or the season is lost. >> or the season is lost. >> reporter: the environmental protection agency has released
some test results. >> the levels have returned to preevent conditions. >> reporter: but the navajo are waiting for their own independent tests before they take the epa at its word. there is criticism of others too. this is the little town of silver ton, it has long resisted a federally funded cleanup of its leaking abandoned mines. >> silverton's fears were based upon potential reduction of property values and tourism. silverton is a community that would really like to mine. and there's also a real reluctance about having a federal agency take control. >> reporter: so for decades just a few hundred meters from tourists catching the train, toxic metals were making the same journey.
will last week's spill finally address a decade's long problem, or will the epa take the fall? the epa did cause this spill, but it did not create the problem. let's return to mexico and those killings we were referring to earlier. john holman joins us live from mexico city. tell us more about this incident. >> reporter: in the early morning hours of thursday, armed gunmen broke into and shot down six people, among them, according to the state government of vara cruz, was the local leader of a very powerful mexican cartel, but also in the bar was a journalist who was also among the six people killed. now he is now the 15th, by some
counts, 13th by others, journalist to be killed in this the state. so this is an incident along with the loss of life that occurred that is very worrying to people within and without vieira cruz. >> why it is so dangerous for journalists? >> reporter: there is a two-pronged threat to the journalists in vera cruz. we were talking to journalists earlier about why they were so at risk there. the go is part of it, repression on free speech is quite ripe there. and the organized crime is very powerful there. so really there's two different threats that occasionally are
linked to each other. >> okay. john holman, thank you very much indeed. plenty more for you any time on our website. a reminder of the address of that, aljazeera.com, and you can watch us by clicking on the watch-now icon. aljazeera.com. ♪ >> okay. you are looking at live now a news conference out of farmington, new mexico, the ina, and there is the head of the epa, they are holding a news conference on the toxic spill in the animus river. dozens killed thousands evacuated after explosions in china. the government confirms po