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tv   News  Al Jazeera  May 11, 2014 3:00am-3:31am EDT

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>> >> eastern ukraine's controversial referendum on self rule gets under way. hello, welcome. i'm steven cole in doha. had this is al jazeera -- this is al jazeera. the top stories this hour. >> i'll tell you how the jordanian authorities are trying to improve securityies in the refugee camps of syria. plus, another five years in office - jacob zuma declared the winner of south africa's
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election. excluded from the world's biggest election - why millions of indians are unable to cast their ballots. first, polling stations in parts of eastern ukraine are open as separatists hold a wide by condemned referendum on self-rule. separatists say they printed 3 million ballot papers. around 70% of people do not want to leave ukraine. >> the election is held in donetsk and luhansk. with a combined population of 6. million people. only those in areas under separatist control will be able to vote. we have this report from donetsk. >> the voters of eastern ukraine are encouraged to see their country in stark turns. blood-thirsty ultra nationalists
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in kiev waging war on the communities of donetsk and its surrounds. the only answer a tick for yes to the idea of their own people's republic. opinion polls suggest that popular support for the idea is low. we found it divided at level. >> translation: i'll vote yes in the referendum. i want peace. i don't want to west to come here, shooting at our kids. >> i'm not going to vote. of course it will have an impact on us. >> i won't go and vote. it's not that i support it, i don't find the referendum legitimate. >> neither does the government in kiev. there doesn't seem to be much it can do to stop polling stations from opening. >> the head of the central election commission of the people's republic of donetsk says the referendum will meet all international standards. here is something that international observers might have cause to question - a sign
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in the window of the polling station with the instruction "say yes to the republic." but, of course, there aren't going to be any international observers. and among volunteer polling station workers the outcome is not in much doubt. >> translation: when it comes to the percentage i cannot tell but i believe it will be no less than 60% in favour. if the polls are right. that there's a majority against, veteran civil society campaigner says there's good reason to stay silent. in recent weeks many of her colleagues have been ab dubilityd, beaten and -- ab ducted, beaten and intimidated. >> translation: at the beginning it was hooliganism. there was no rejection from the police, there was no punishment. they started to arm themselves
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and we only have our hands. as security and civil society fell away so violence and lawlessness have risen on both sides, it's hardly an ideal environment for any exercise in democracy. the son of the late libyan leader madison square garduammao give evidence in court. he is held by militia and will be tried via video link. former officials are facing charges. some are accused of killing protesters during the uprising in 2011. in syria, there are reports that many residents of aleppo have been without water for a week. the syrian observatory for human rights says the al-qaeda-led rebels from the al nusra cut water supplies.
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the observatory says residents have been queueing in front of wells to collect water. it's feared some are drinking unclean water. which risks a spread of disease. jordan made security at the refugee camp a national rivalry. groups have taken route, and the discovery of an explosive device forced the government to implement an effective plan. we report on a new technology used in the overpopulated camp. >> it's the second largest ref gee camp in the world, home to 100,000 syrians. maintaining order has become a matter of national security for jordan. riots and clashes broke out here in the past and jordan doesn't see the camps closing any time soon. that's why a comprehensive security plan is seen as essential. tighter security means everything and everyone entering
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the camp gets thoroughly searched. last month the army found on intact improvised device near the gates. that sounded alarm bells. >> a lot are working in syria, a lot of parties trying to transfer up to jordan, we know that some of them enter jordan to make trouble for us. police patrols have increased. higher sand barriers aimed to prevent refugees entering and leaving the camp illegally, and a hands-off approach. leaders are trained and paid to carry out internal policing and report threats. >> when there's a problem we try to solve it ourselves and not go to the security forces. if we can't, we have to tell them so the issue does not get
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bigger. >> sense the beginning of the year the government used iris scans. the jordanian authority expressed fear over sleeper cells across the country. they are believed to be quietly working on behalf of the government and are suspected of planning to create chaos and instability inside and outside refugee camps. >> refugees agreed there are syrian government loyalists living among them. >> they are infiltrators, they are syrian government loyalists who want government and turmoil. they are here in the camp, many in this area. i used to live in the camp and i moved. >> it's not just syrian government loyalists that are here. refugees say they have established a foot hold, a reason why jordan is taking the security of these camps
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seriously. the african national congress officially won south africa's election. jacob zuma vowed to create jobs and improve infrastructure. it fell short of a two-thirds majority, taking 62% of the vote. 249 seats in the national assembly. the democratic alliance took 22%, making the biggest gain, securing 89 seats. we were at the victory party in johannesburg. >> reporter: that is the sound of aac supporters celebrating the election win. lots of people are packed in this small square in johannesburg. people of all ages coming to celebrate the victory. president jacob zuma told them that he's happy that they've given him and his administration another five years in government. he told them about the past. about apartheid and said the a.n.c. is doing the level he can do live on the promises to the
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poor. he promised jobs, houses, sanitation, water, electricity - all the things that people really wanted. jacob zuma knows that he can't do what he normally does, but knows there's a long road ahead. tonight people will celebrate and dance. come tomorrow morning. he and the administration will go back to the drawing board and find a way forward. he promised he'd do the level he can in the next five years to deliver on promises. let's take a look at other news - after five month of fighting a ceasefire in south sudan appears to be holding. president salva kiir and former vice president riek machar called on the rebels and opposition forces to play down weapons. both agreed to open humanitarian corridors so aid could be delivered. in venezuela hundreds fought with police in caracas and are
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calling for the release of 200 demonstrators arrested in raids on camps. supporters say they'll stay on the streets until all protesters are free. >> thousands of that supporters are rallying on the outskirts of bangkok, angry at the dismissal of yingluck shinawatra. two grenades were fired at anti-government rallies, two were injured. >> the final face of india's 5-week general election is drawing to a close. voter turn out has been high. there are tens of millions of people prevented from voting. we went to meet some of them. >> reporter: three generations of one family talking about the elections. most were able to vote. raj and his wife couldn't. >> you have a lot of emotions when you discuss politics in office, at home. at the end of the day you want to action on what you think. you want to work for a party
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with whom your ideology goes far. when it comes, you go and don't see your name in the list, and you feel frustrated, hopeless. >> iraqis voted in general elections, but no one can tell him why he was not on the role. he is one of two eligible to vote, but couldn't. it includes transit crews. the government estimates that there are over 10 million indians working abroad. many are low-paid migrants working in the gulf. then there are others whose issue is not cost nor distance. >> disabled and had surgery. it meant she missed out on a chance to vote. >> they vote to past the ballot. if i had the people coming into my house i would have voted.
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i don't know why the government has not talked about it. >> a few people can vote by mail, including security personnel, polling staff and diplomats abroad. india's supreme court ordered the election commission of india to look into the problem. >> the postal ballot has to be the exception, not the norm. it should be available for people who, for a valid reason, not apathy, not leth argy, not watching a movie, they should not be the reasons. >> reporter: analysts predict that india is heading for another coalition government. it's anyone's guess as to whether the millions will have an effect on the final count. what is clear is the world's largest democracy has a problem that can only be fixed by the electoral commission. still to come - michael sam
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becomes the first openly gay man drafted into america's biggest football lead. what's in a word - we explain the growing linguistic divide between north and south korea.
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this is awkward. check your speed. see how fast your internet can be. switch now and add voice and tv for $34.90. comcast business built for business. welcome back. the top stories on al jazeera - people in eastern ukraine are taking part in a widely criticised referendum. voting is taking part in parts of the stritist controlled renaling -- separatist controlled regions of luhansk and donetsk. the son of muammar gaddafi
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is due to gave evidence via video link. he and former officials face corruption and war crime charges. security in jordan has made the refugee camp al-zaatari a priority. rival groups have taken root at the world's largest refugee camp for syrians. back to the top story - the referendum on top rule. john square is a former leader of a group that funded civil society groups and tells us in his view the vote is illegitimate. >> in terms of international legitimacy and within ukraine, it doesn't exist. it's no more legitimate than, say, a vote in a school for a" with underaged voters. what is likely to happen afterwards is it will be seized
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upon as a pretext by russia for further intervention, possibility armed in the eastern half of ukraine, or for further pressure on the kiev government to give concessions to russia in that part of ukraine. paul bripan is live in -- brennan is live in donetsk. what is on the ballot paper. what is the question ukrainians are asked. >> the question is, some would say, is deliberately coy. what it askses is whether people voting yes or no support self-rule for donetsk people's rub lible, a parel going on in oblask and luhansk. it's self rule. it doesn't specify what form
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that may or may not take in the future. the international community will not recognise it, neither will ukraine's president. the acting president oleksandr turchynov describes it as a step into the abyss. a question that talks self rule seems coy. deliberately coy. because it is - i'm posing this as a question more than a fact, but do the people there want more autonomy of the big question on the ballot paper. it seems to be unclear if they want to breakaway from kiev, or they just want a degree of more independence from kiev. >> well, you are absolutely right to talk about the nuance that there is here in eastern
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ukraine. it's not by any means a universal sentiment that everybody's pro-russia or everybody wants to embrace russia and ses seed to russia, there was a poll done by a u.s. polling company earlier in the week finding that although there was widespread disconsent and dislike to the kiev government 18% of people in the east wanted to breakaway from ukraine and leave it altogether. what we are seeing here, when we speak to people in the days leading up to the poll, people want peace. second of all they want a degree of stability. they don't like the kiev government, but they don't necessary want to breakaway. so this one question seems to be a catch-all, open to interpretation and open to abuse, depending on how the results are used by the
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self-declared authorities which are in control with many of the towns. it doesn't sound like critical sounds in the east. let's talk about the legitimacy of this referendum. as you know, the capital kiev called it illegitimate. do we know if it is indeed illegitimate, legal, illegal? >> well certainly i'm not an international lawyer, but i will take what the governments are saying. not just in kiev, but in paris or london or washington. most of the western governments declared the poll to be illegitimate. there are concerns about the way it's operated. it's a people's poll. it's amateurish. i'm here at a school. it's east of the city center. there are no voting booths, so
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there's no privacy. most people are registering their details and ticking the box in front of the adjudicator. they are not concealing their vote. i haven't seen a single no vote on the ballot paper. the passport details are taken down, they are not having fingers dipped in ipping or anything like -- ink or anything like that. it seems possible to nip down the next polling station and register and vote a second or third or fourth time. by international standards, it doesn't seem to meet the criteria for official recognition. that said, the authorities in donetsk and luhansk insist that the results will be good enough for their purposes. >> paul brennan reporting from donetsk. a medical report shows our colleague from al jazeera arabic, abdullah al-shami, is dangerously close to death in an egyptian prison.
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he's been in custody since august and been on a hunger strike for 111 days. the report obtained by al jazeera shows signs of microsciatic anemia likely due to an iron deficiency presenting oxygen meeting proper organs, his kidneys are not functioning normally, also high levels of urea in his blood. liz liver knlos to failure. three al jazeera journalist are held in an egyptian prison for 133 days, peter greste, mohamed fadel fahmy and baher mohamed are accused of conspiring with the muslim brotherhood, which has been declared a terror organization. al jazeera rejects the charges and demands their release. michael sam has become the first open reply gay player to be appointed to the n.f.l. he finishes his football career in college when he announced he
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was gay. he will join the st. louis rams and was selected in the final round of the n.f.l. draft. ross shimabuku has more. >> reporter: it was an historical day. the n.f.l. deepens the draw. in the final day of the final round michael sam got the call. >> with the 249th pick in the 2014 n.f.l. drafs, the st. louis rams select michael sam from missouri. >> with that, michael sam's dream of getting drafted is a reality. he was overwhelmed with emotion. it was a touching moment for sam, surrounded by friends and family. friends said he wants to be judged as a football player. in there give him the chance for the 249th tip. there are concerns that sam would not get drafted after a
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disappointing performance. make no mistake, it was a high energy, high-effort player, and the one thing that proscouts cannot measure is a players' heart. the next step for michael sam, the st. louis rams fly him in to meet the media and it's time to go to work, learn the system and playbook, in the hopes of making the roster to become the first openly za player. >> people in some parts of the world are celebrating mother's day. in mexico it's marked as a day of progress. they are calling for more to be done to find their children taken by corrupt police and drug gangs. this report from mexico. >> reporter: where are our children demand these women marching in mexico city on mathers day.
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many join her to protest against the government for not doing enough to find sons and daughters. the 31-year-old son disappeared in gidare. he planned to open a restaurant. after having dinner out, he never came home. >> translation: i don't have anything to celebrate because i'm missing one of my kids. i miss him. i don't know where he is, and authorities are not investigating. >> reporter: there are thousands of mothers throughout mexico searching for disappeared children. the president promised his government would help them find loved ones. these women feel frustrated, angry and let down. >> more than 26,000 have gone missing in mexico since 2006. that is when the former government declared war on the drug cartel and violence
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exploded. after the president took office, he formed a special missing appearance unit to help investigate the disappearances. it's been a year since the unit was created. sara is waiting for help. investigators haven't collect evidence, tracked down phone or email records or traced her son's bank accounts. every time a mass grave is disoffed she sends police details of her son. >> translation: i'm the disct. i'm looking for him alive or dead. i don't want to give up hope. >> not enough cases have been solved and they haven't finished creating a national database for the missing. the human rights director is committed and frustrated. >> it doesn't matter what we do, if we kill ourselves trying to
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find children. unless we find them alive the mothers will feel we are not doing enough. >> her words may sound offensive, but they are accurate. sara and the other mothers say all they know is that their children were taken alive. and that is how they want them back. the military standoff between the north and south defined the tense relationship for 70 years. one of the most heavily fortified borders is not the only factor. the years of separation left a cultural divide too. that is reflected in the languages spoken in the two koreas today. >> this is a one-woman success story. a north korean defector, she has built up a business promoting a lost northern food culture. if north korea has a separate
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cuisine, the same can be said of its language. when she studied in sole she understood 30% of what was said. her recipes turned out different from classmate's. >> it's okay if you don't understand english. basically it's the same language that we don't n understand so the misunderstanding created is deeper and lasts longer. >> we met two university students, one born and raised in south korea, and a defector from the north. >> reporter: it comes down to basic things like a donut what, is that? >> [ speaking foreign language ] . >> as is north korea. [ speaking foreign language ] . >> and how about a pen? >> [ speaking foreign language ] . >> and. [ speaking foreign language ] >> i used to watch movies in drama. at first i couldn't understand anything. over time i realised it was the same language and i was able to
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understand what was going on. that helped me when i arrived here, but still there were words that i didn't know. >> since 2005, they have been working with their north korean counterparts on a north-south dictionary. the issue stems from contrasting attitudes. and the fact that different social systems required different vocab u lairies. >> we found 52% of words used by south koreans differed from north koreans. for words used by professionals, it was 66%. differences had become deeper for professional terminologyie. >> in downtown seoul they celebrate a hero. responsible for the creation of the korean alphabet. he was not to know 600 years later his country men would be
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divided by a border and by a diverging language. >> you can keep up to date with the our news the eastern regions holding the vote is the story. >> in 2009 peace came to sri lanka after 26 years of civil war. >> government troops had crushed the tamil tigers - a guerrilla force which had waged a brutal insurgency seeking self-rule for the tamils c a minority making up about 12 percent of sri lanka's population mainly living here in the north.