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tv   News  Al Jazeera  September 30, 2015 6:00pm-6:31pm EDT

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russia launches airstrikes against targets in syria. >> hello there, i'm felicity barr. you're watching al jazeera live from london. also coming up. the palestinian flag is raised for the first time at the u.n. as the president says he no longer is bound by any agreement with israel. afghan forces backed by u.s. and nato continue their fight for the control of the city of kunduz. the man accused of destroying
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cultural sites now faces war crime charges at the international criminal court. >> hello, russia has launched it's first airstrikes in syria. it's defense ministry said that 20 missions targeted fighters from the islamic state in iraq and the levant. there are, however, other groups that they would hit, some that may be allied to the u.s. coalition in syria. roslind jordan has details. >> russian fighter jets flying around the city of homs. moscow said it was targeting isil fighters in and around the city. president vladimir putin said he was committed to help his country's long-time ally to defeat the group. >> we'll support the syrian army only in legitimate fights. secondly the support will be from the air without
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participation in ground operations. and third, such support will be limited in time as long as the syrian army is on offensive. >> the airstrikes started just one day after leaders agreed to hold deconflicts talks. but instead of talks, the u.s. got a verbal notice one hour before the russian jets took off. the defense secretary was not pleased. >> fighting isil without pursu pursuing a parallel political transition only risks escalat ing the civil war in syria. with it, the very extremism and instability that moscow claims to be concerned about and aspire to fighting. so this approach, that approach is tantamount, as i said then, to pouring gasoline on the fire.
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>> but carter said he was not surprised given the russians' recent build up of helicopters, fighter jets and troops at the air base in latakia. the obama administration has long suspected russia of doing so to help bashar al-assad win a long-running civil war. the secretary of state warned russia not to use isil as an excuse to keep al-assad in power. >> an assad has really chosen himself to fight isil. as the terrorists made inroads throughout large swaths of syria and iraq, raping, enslaving, murdering civilians along the way, the syrian regime did not try to stop them. instead, it focused all of its military power on moderate opposition groups who were fighting for a voice in syria. >> it is not clear how quickly the u.s. will get the talks it wants and it is not clear what it will do if future russian
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airstrikes go after not after isil fighters but instead the fighters opposed to bashar al-assad. roslind jordan, al jazeera. >> and al jazeera's correspondent peter sharp sends this report from moscow. >> well, it's got to be said that the russian airstrikes were expected. they have been steadily building up their military arsenal in syria for the last 30 days, and nearly 60 aircraft on the tarmac near latakia the air base. but it's not that the kremlin announced the fact that the raid was taking place, it was u.s. central command who was given an hour's notice of russian intentions. they hit isil targets including communication bases, arms and fuel dumps. and president putin was quick to respond after that by saying that the support from russia will only come from the air. and he had a warning, a political warning for president assad basically telling him what the price he'll have to pay for
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russian support. he said you're going to have to compromise. >> we proceed from the fact that a fuel and long-term settlement in syria is possible only through political reforms in dialogue between supporters of the country. i know president assad understands that and is ready for this process. we hope that his position will be active and flexible, and he'll be ready to compromise for the sake of his country and his people. >> the build up continues of the russian fleet. these are live fire exercises and civilian aircraft have been told to stay away from the area. according to the u.n. convention this exercise is legal, but it's worrying nato, who say they're getting more armed vessels in an area that is already militarized, and that could upset stability in the middle east.
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>> just a few minutes ago we were listening in to a press conference with u.s. secretary of state john kerry and his counterpart sergei lavrov when they should get in touch about the situation in syria very soon. let's go to james bays who was at that media conference for us. both have agreed that communication right now is vital. >> absolutely. because you now have the russian air force operating over the skies of syria as you have the u.s. and it's allies operating over the skies of syria, clearly they wouldn't want to shoot one another down and create an international incident. that's the reason for this coordination deconfrictioning the efforts of the two separate operations going on against isil. certainly, that's what the u.s.' operation is against. the russians say simply theirs is against terrorism. it was clear from that news conference there is still a central disagreement on the way forward. it does concern the roll of
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president assad. and whether he should be enrolled in the fight against isil. let's listen to some of the words from the russian foreign minister sergei lavrov when he spoke to us just a few moments ago. >> the first instruction to us was to make sure that the military of the united states, the coalition led by the united states on the one hand and the military of the russian confederation now engaged at the request of the syrian government, get in touch and establish channels of communications to avoid any unintended incidents, and we agree that the military should get in contact with each other very soon. number two, we also discussed what the president told us about the promoting of political process. we all want syria democratic,
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united, secular, syria, a home for all ethnic groups, whose rights are guaranteed, but we have some differences as for the way to get there. we agree on some steps that we'll undertake very soon including the united nations on creating the conditions for options to be used--to be applied, to promote the political process. >> you heard him there. sergei lavrov. we have some differences on the details. i think many of us would describe the detail of whether president assad can still be involved in the governance of syria is a little bit more than just a detail. they did say that although they don't agree on the fundamental point. that fundamental point, which is basically stopping or hindering the fight against isil, but also stopping the peace process, and
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any sort of transition in syria. they do say that they have some new ideas that they both propose that they want to take back to their capitals for consultation. i suspect one of those is an idea floated by the russians, by the u.n. by various other parties in the last week or so, which is the idea of some international contact group, international players and regional players getting together to continue discussing the situation in syria. i don't think we have any great break through, felicity. one interesting thing perhaps i should share with you. when you hang around the cor corridors of the united nations, you get to see things that perhaps give you a backdrop to what is really going on. when we saw the secretary of state come towards the news conference, he waited in a small waiting area for some considerable time. when we saw sergei lavrov head off to a room near the security council. then we saw the syrian foreign
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minister head in the same direction. it seems to me, i can't confirm it because i was not allowed in the room, that actually the foreign minister had a meeting with the deputy foreign minister and kept the secretary of state waiting. if that's true, i think that's pretty telling. >> absolutely. thank you. >> large numbers of people are leaving the city of kunzuz after the taliban seized control there. they're being supported by nato and special forces as afghanistan security forces try to take back the city. but the afghan security forces say that the fight has been tougher than anticipated. >> as reinforcements arrive. and heavy fighting continues. forces struggle to gain kunduz
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from the taliban. >> they've put mines on the roads and it's full of mines and explosives equipment. >> the captain and his fellow fighters have not been able to reach their target yet. insisting that because taliban fighters are hiding amongst civilians the fight so far has been much harder than anticipated. even here just south of kunduz these forces have been repeatedly ambushed on the main road and hit by improviseed bombs. >> to retake the kunduz province as soon as possible. >> afghan government forces now backed by u.s. astrikes and nato special forces are desperate to regain control from the northern city from taliban fighters. the loss of kunduz is seen as a major set back by afghanistan government and a victory
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achieved by the taliban since the overthrow of the taliban government in 2001. raising questions once more about the strength and effectiveness of afghanistan's army. now anger is on the rise in parliament with some politicians calling on president ashraf ghani to resign. >> we don't want to hear lies any more. the government keep telling us that they're sending troops. but it's 72 hours the people inside the city have been suffering from a lack of food, water and electricity. children are dying because of hunger. >> many residents are fleeing kunduz, fleeing for their lives. while the number of the dead and wounded in the fighting is still unclear, many more civilians may be killed or injured if fighti fighting--fighting continues. >> still to come on the program. tens of thousands of protesters march against corruption in
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south africa. >> in london, looking at the fabric of india.
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>> a reminder of the top stories on al jazeera. russia says it has carried out 20 airstrikes in syria. the u.s. believes the attacks may have been in an area where there have been no isil forces. the afghan army's battle to regain control of the city of kunduz has intensified.
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it has involved special forces from the u.s.-led co-alation engaging in ground clashes for the first time. palestine has warned it is no longer bound by a 1993 agreement that sought to bring peace with israel. the oslo accord recognized palestinian as a stat palestine as a state for the first time. >> raised for the first time at the united nations, the flag of the palestine, observer states there are two palestine and holy now allowed to fly their national flags. the ceremony was attended by
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president mahmood abbas and the u.s. secretary general. >> i certainly hope that a successful peace process will soon yield what they--what we unfurl the palestinian flag in its proper place. among the family of nations as a sovereign member state of the united nations. >> however, the political process to lead to that day is deadlocked. in his speech the general assembly general abbas put all the blame on the israelis. he said that he needed to raise the alarm about recent violence in jerusalem which was caused by incursions around the al aqsa among mosque, and he said now if israel would not sign the accord, he would not do so either.
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>> while israel continuously violates the agreements. we will not be bound by the agreements and israel must assume all of its responsibilities as an occupying power. >> so is this the bombshell that president abbas said he would drop or just an empty promise? there are more questions than answers? how would they change the way the palestinian authority work on the ground in the west bank. and what will be the reaction from palestinians there and in gaza? >> i think it is just now just a speak. they have reached a conclusion that all these things were lies. >> the israeli-palestinian conflict will remain in the u.n. spotlight.
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president speaks to the general assembly on thursday. james bays, al jazeera, at the united nations. >> al jazeera's in ramallah. we have this update the palestinian president mahmood abbas said that he would drop a bombshell in that speech. instead what we got was a warning. a warning to israel that the palestinians would no longer be bound to the oslo accords so long as israel does not fulfill its side of those agreements. something that mr. abbas says israel has consistently failed to do for the past several years. what does this mean on the ground? at this stage we don't know. there is ambiguity here. does it mean that we'll see the end of cooperation between israel and the palestinians, something that mr. abbas once described as sacred. will we see an end to the palestinian authority? we just don't know at this stage. but the message is clear to the israelis.
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mr. abbas is looking for a way forward. he's attuned to the anger on the street here in the occupied territories, in the occupied west bank in which a recent poll found more than two-thirds of palestinians want mr. abbas to step down and want a new leadership to move forward. so he finds himself in a very tricky situation that's why perhaps we're hearing these strong comments. but what it will mean practically, we just don't know at this stage. >> india has sentenced five men to death for the 2006 mumbai train blasts. it kill the 185 people and injured several hours. several other men were jailed for life. the train network carries around 7 million people a day. >> five people have been given the death sentence. seven others sentenced to life for the 2006 blast where bombs were placed in pressure cookers and then put on commuter trains
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that went off during rush hour the prosecution called 200 people to the witness stand, which delayed the trial. then the supreme court god involved after one of the accused contested him being arrested under anti-terrorism laws, which delayed the trial for two years. now the convicts can appeal to a higher court and even as a last ditch to the president of india although that could take years. but this case isn't closed yet. police believe 15 accused are still at large, including who they believe to be the mastermind. victims' families feel that until they are all caught and convicted, just won't be done. >> accused of war crimes over
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the destruction of the city of timbuktu. >> this man is accused of destroying precious cultural heritage. he listened to the charge against him and identified himself. >> it's me. >> i'm from the taureg tribe. i was born about 40 years ago and i was a civil servant in education in the mali government starting 2011. >> it was in 2012 that the taureg rebels with links to al-qaeda up ad the fabled city of timbuktu. they set about destroying the number of tombs and mosques which offended their own strict interpretation of islam. hundreds of years of history smashed into dust.
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accord to the prosecutor, he was a zealous member. he could become the first man to be tried for war crimes committed against buildings and culture, although human rights groups hope that court will examine other allegations against him and his colleagues. >> these atrocities including rape, forced marriage and amongst others. we hope that the international criminal court will take into account the credible evidence about these further scopes of crimes. >> timbuktu in its day a center of islamic learning suffered badly during the occupation. he will next appear next in court in january 2016. the icc hopes that the case against him might deter others who destroy national treasures in other parts of the world.
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>> thousands of people have been mashin marching through the south africaen cities of pretoria and cape town against widespread corruption. the president has been widely criticized for using state funds to upgrade his house. they are accusing the government of undermining anti-corruption bodies. we were at one of those demonstrations applications, priests and everyone in between united. >> it's estimated that political corruption cost south africas up to $3.5 billion a year. >> the government does not take corruption seriously. there is corruption at the highest ranks of government, the highest ranks of anc. when that corruption is not
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challenged, when people are not put in prison it sends a signal across society. >> in this society corruption means that some of the most vulnerable people are most at risk. asylum seekers are especially easy prey for corrupt officials and others looking for bribes. this woman paid $10 just to queue. she'll likely pay more once inside. >> i pay hundreds. we pay hundreds. >> can you get anywhere without paying money? >> no, you can't. >> but the government isn't ignoring accusations of corruption. the public service commission has handled 16 thousands cases so far and runs a hotline for people to report corruption but say that whistle blowers need better protection. >> once pool report something, at the end of the day they will suffer occupational detriment. they will be victimized, and it is difficult to prove it.
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>> what is undeniable is that corruption touches the lives of nearly everyone in this country of nearly 55 million. >> this is the beginning of a movement to bring an end to corruption. the organizers say that this could be the start that brings thousands more men and women. >> next month is the turn of south africa's powerful unions to take to the streets. a rainbow nation united against corruption. al jazeera, pretoria, south africa. >> norwegian mask killer is threatening to starve himself to death against conditions in prison. he killed 77 people four years ago when he bombed central oslo and went on a shooting spree at a youth camp. he's serving a 21-year prison sentence. declaring a state of emergency in the south of the
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country, the army has been brought in as police use tear gas to disperse the mostly highlanders. they're protesting against a chinese owned copper mining project in the region. on monday four people died and 22 injured when police open fired on protesters. argentina has launched two satellites into space from a space force in guyana. the satellites are designed to bring new television access to australia and argentina. it will give argentina coverage of the falkland islands and will save the south american country millions of dollars that is currently paid to the u.s. india has produced some of the most beautiful and expensive fabrics in the world. the hand make garments destined for india's ruling classes now
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are on display here in london. jessica baldwin discovered some of the garments played an oh role in india's independence. >> used for pleasure trips around the country by the sultan. a swatch of a blanket from the third century well preserved shreds of fabric with patterns that feel contemporary. the fabric shows 200 different items. the majority from the victoria albert's own collection. luxurious clothes fo designed to show off wealth. the jewel beetles, parts ever bugs embellish a skirt. >> part of the exhibition is devoted to explain how fabric
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became a symbol of protest, national identity and inspired mahatma gunned di gandhi. >> a resistence movement grew encouraging people to buy indian products. >> this message of self reliance was important. and it inspired mahatma gandhi to ask for self rule. he saw how fabric could become the symbol of national identity. he called on the nation to spin, weave and wear their own cloth. >> the curators leather skirt and chiffon shirt are represented in the show. modern saris and increasing global demand for indian design all part of the fabric of india. >> and it's time to remind you that you can find out much more
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on many of our stories over on our website. that's what the front page looks like at the moment leading on that speech at the general assembly. the address to click on to is for your latest breaking news. how to avoid shooting at each other. the not quite united nation