>> welcome to al jazeera america. i'm richelle carey. here are the stories that we're following for you. the desperate flight of syrian refugees seeking safe haven beyond their borders and now winter is bearing down. north korea releases video of an 85-year-old american veteran alleged apology to that nation. and protests against thailand's prime minister turned deadly. >> as the war in syria grinds on, so does the flood of people fleeing all the violence.
the united nations said 2.2 million syrian versus left the country. more than 200,000 are now in iraq, and as winter approaches many are still living in tents. we have reports on what is being done in northern iraq to prepare refugees for the cold. >> it's early morning and the women in this refugee camp prepare food. they've been cooking outdoors since the summer but that will have to end soon because winter has come and with it plunging temperatures and heavy rain. >> i make a special effort to cook every friday a small treat to help forget where we are. but with the rains we won't be able to do this for much longer. even this small treat will be taken away from us. >> reporter: preparations to get this camp ready for winter are well under way. drainage systems are put in place to make sure the camp doesn't flood.
from the u.n. refugee agency said although things are on track they have a long way to go. >> we will support the international community with the needs for the winter. >> reporter: there is a huge difference between having a camp ready for winter and the reality of having to actually live there. despite hard winter conditions just around the corner, children find a way to smile and have fun. they're taking advantage of the mild weather before the winter comes. but it doesn't matter how well prepared this camp is for winter. the one thing that these children and every resident of this camp wants is the one thing that the aid agencies can't give them, and that's a safe passage bacback to a peaceful syria. but a return to syria is a distant dream. there are more pressing things to worry about. >> reporter: ten days ago it
rained. the whole camp was flooded. my tent was flooded. my children couldn't walk anywhere. winter is coming and i'm scared of how bad things will get. >> with the u.s. agencies facing a funding crisis and the arrival of winter this camp is typical of many. it's technically ready for winter but that's scant comfort for those who have to live through it. what happens next as they say here, is up to god. al jazeera northern iraq. >> and the situation is just as dire in refugee camps in lebanon. we have reports from camps there. >> reporter: we're at a tented settlement in lebanon. they dot the landscape along the border with syria. people here live in miserable conditions, they may be safe. they no longer have to face the violence in syria, but they're all warning of the danger to come, and that is the cold. in this region temperatures drop
to below zero. you can see people have barely anything. the grouped is all mud and these plastic sheetings do not provide any shelter when rain starts. just look around just a few weeks ago there was rain and the whole area was flooded. so people here are worried. they're calling on the international community to help them. but the international community can only do so much. and the lebanese government can only do so much. they have to deal with their own economic problems. this is how people live sometimes four to five families just in one tent. people are talking about their children suffering from respiratory problems, pneumonia, and in fact social workers are warning of the possibility of such diseases spreading. so miserable conditions in the next few days and weeks temperatures are going to drop. it's going to be below zero and
people here really have nothing to protect them from this new threat. >> we'll continue the special coverage of the plight of syrian refugees. reports from jordan where half a million people are living. >> high thermal blankets and clothing distribution has just started here. as you can see behind me there are hundreds of refugees who are queuing to receive these items on the first day of distribution, which is always very busy. the thigh thermal blankets are a valuable commodity. they're especially important for residents and refugees who are still living inside plastic tents and have much less protection from the rain, cold and wind in the winter. now aid agencies are also distributing clothing kits for babies and children up to the age of five. what you see in these boxes behind me includes enough winter clothing for 24,000 children. now each of these winter kits
include quite a bit of winter floating. such as these heavy jackets, h hat, socks, winter shoes as well as sweaters and gloves. children need it the most because they're the most vulnerable during winter. delivering of these trailers also resumes. interruption in funding left agencies unable to replace all the tents before the start of the winter. now the hope is to get rid of tents by january. now these units are by no means cheap. each one costs $2,500. and the total of $35 million has so far been spent on tent replacement. more funding needed because 3,000 families still live inside plastic tents. >> we spoke for the spokesperson united nations my commissioner
about the refugees from syria. he talked about the need to keep families warm this winter. >> we were just in iraq last week where we brought in soil to create platforms for the tents. we're putting down plastic shooting layers of apply to do and then putting in the tent, and then we're giving people carpet to create a layer and insulated layer in their tent. but these are only insulated layers effectively on top of the earth. it's a very scant development to try to help people get through the winter. indeed, the way the cries is developing we expect to see 2.2 refugees we have now joined by many more, and for the crisis to endure. it is necessary for countries to think about more developed situations and their families. we're having to tackle everything at once. we're providing decisional
temperatures and plastic sheeting to put over the tents to keep them even drier. we have pre-fabricated containers which in this environment is a good solution. many authorities in iraq don't want the people to get that sense of permanence. we're giving people kerosene stoves oh so they can have heating and cooking. the children are growing all the time. their footwear arrives in sandals. they're really shoddy. when i was in camps in iraq it was pouring rain and children running around barefoot or in sandals. these are human beings that children are growthing and it's a challenge to keep up with all the needs with the millions of people who have been displaced
in the region. >> deadly violence in protests in thailand. one person has been killed. several others caught between pro-and anti-government protesters. >> it would become a flash point because the pro-government red shirts as they are known have been gathering in that part of the capital city in big numbers. and outside anti-government protesters gathered at an university which is popular with students from south of the country, which is a stronghold of the opposition democrat party, which is in turn behind or backing this anti-government movement. during the day some protesters attack people they suspect being red shirts outside of that
university, with that one person being injured. in the evening there were shots fired with some people being injured as well. this all taking place as the anti-government pro possessors premiere they are saying will be the day they will topple the government. to do that they're going to storm several government facilities. in response the prime minister has asked for the military's help. the military has been relunch can't to take sides and reluctant to show its hands. some showing going to those facilities, including the government house to help protect them but at the moment they are unarmed. take a look at live pictures we have from st. michael's square in kiev. thousands have been gathering to urge their government to sign an agreement that will improve relations with the european
union. we have reports from kiev. >> reporter: the move against the pro european protesters moved swift in the rally answers independent square. crowds were dispersersed, some who were still sleeping, and who beaten and dragged across the ground. protesters were organizing an overnight vigil. ambulance workers treating those who had been injured. president ca yanukovych refusedo sign the agreement. it was a move that opposition leaders expected but none thought it would come so soon. the brutal crackdown by riot police in independent square has
far but dampened down this protest. in fact, it has increased the momentum. the opposition parties have now united and will set up what they call a national resistence headquarters and they called for a general strike across the ukraine. >> the protesters have found sankry at the sight of st. michael's thatly traditional. a 12th century monastery that was demolished during the reign of the soviet union and then rebuilt back at ukraine's independence 22 years ago. >> this was the most brutal thing i ever experienced. >> reporter: tomorrow will be a hot and hard day for all of
ukraine if build is spilled on the streets. it will start civil war. >> the scene is being set for a violent stand off between o the government and pro government supporters. >> china's demanding that it be informed of any planes wanting to fly through china's air defense zone that covers the set of di disputeed islands claimedy china, japan, and taiwan. >> reporter: the skies over the senkaku or daiyu islands.
japanese and american aircraft are also taking routine patrols over the islands. the danger is there could be confrontation or accident if the number of planes who are flying over the region continue. japan and america say they are not backing down from chinese threats. japan is going to set up a permanent base in okinawa for spy planes, and they have one already, and they will send in a second aircraft in the new year. so clearly while you could argue the chinese are clearly being provocative, the japanese and the americans are not going to back down. >> at least eight people are dead in glasgow. scotland after a helicopter crashed into a pub. all three people on board were killed. two dozen others are in the hospital. emergency crews continue to sift through all that wreckage.
the helicopter crashed through the roof of the pub last night where a concert was happening. the cause of this crash is still not known. there is still not word of a the condition of an american war veteran being held by north korea. the 5-year-old released videotape of him apologizing for hostile acts. >> this video released by north korean authorities claims to show the 85-year-old reading an allegedy. >> on this trip i can under that in u.s. and western countries there is mislead information and propaganda about pprk. >> the video and statement cannot be independently verified. it aired and accuses newman of, quote, masterminded espionage and subversive treatment.
>> killed three innocent operatorrers. >> newman served in the korean war. he was in north korea as a tourist when the government detained him on october 26th. newman said his father wanted to return to the country where he fought for three years. he said all the other tourist in his dad's group were allowed to fly home. >> they had checked out of the hotel, gone to the airport, boarded the plane and we understand were five minutes from taking off when an korean official came on board, asked to see his bas passport, and has bn there every since. >> lee newman wants her home. safely and hopes he's getting the medication he needs for his
heart conditions. >> we hope whatever the misunderstanding is can be resolved quickly and he can return and be at our table for the holidays. >> reporter: right now it's not clear if that will happen. erica ferrari, al jazeera. >> still ahead, small businesses hope to cash in on the post thanksgiving shopping frenzy, and today is the deadline set by the president who had the affordable care act healthcare website working for most people. >> al jazeera america presents: do the math.
news was happening. >> here are the stories we're following. >> find out what happened and what to expect. >> international outrage. >> a day of political posturing. >> every morning from 5 to 9am al jazeera america brings you more us and global news than any other american news channel. >> tell us exactly what is behind this story. >> from more sources around the world. >> the situation has intensified here at the border. >> start every morning, every day, 5am to 9 eastern with al jazeera america. >> so today is the deadline for the healthcare.gov website to be up and running for the majority of americans, that is. the administration set this goal to be able to handle as many 50,000 users at a time and 800,000 in a day. with the administration still expect there is to be some bottom next. the waiting feature that tells those waiting at the site to tell of any potential overload.
today is saturday and today's focus is on mom and sh p stores designed to keep money in communities. we're at a bookstore in downtown new york. how big is today to small businesses? how much does it mean to them? >> reporter: it means a lot, richelle, especially that we are right here, black friday, in cyber monday, you have people shopping in the big stores. you have people shopping online. this event was created in 2010 by american express to remind customers to shop local, get the money in the local economy and let that circulate. i'm here at mysterious book shop. they've been here for 35 years overcoming all sorts of economic challenges. i want to bring in ian who has managed the store for eight
years. how big--social media has been a huge part of this campaign for shop small, how important is social media is to your store? >> it's very important to our store. it helps raise awareness and helps keeps people aware of wherer we are. but it's smart to do in moderation. run of the witness that peoplone to shop small is they like personal customer service. when you start to bombard them, it's unwanted. >> what does it mean to shop small. >> to support your friends and
family. >> this store has survived the power outages of hurricane sandy and the economic down turn. the miraculou mysterious book ss been here for 35 years. >> we love to read and recommend good books to people. we know a lot of authors and since we've been around we've always offered signed first editions of new books and we never charged extra for signatures. customers really, really appreciate that. >> excellent, thank you so much, ian. and last year small business saturday generated $5.5 billion. that's pretty incredible. >> that is a fantastic number, thank you. ♪ >> meteorologist: well, it is the end to the 2013 atlanta hurricane season, and while it was not busy at all, very good
news. take a look at map here behind me. we have a total number of hurricanes at zero. two hurricanes, both having a major impact on mexico. but in terms of the united states it's been very quiet. i'll tell you why. we've had a couple of factors help the systems not develop. that's the dust rising off the west coast of africa. in decision to that we had strong westerly winds pushing out throw the united states. very weak season, and it's coming to an end here today. across the united states very quiet across the atlantic. also all the way into portions of i-95 from portions of maine all the way down into florida. we have a few scattered showers, overall quiet and beautiful. minneapolis waiting 38.
chicago, 60 degrees. we have a low area of pressure tracking across the great lakes and by tomorrow morning we could see one to three inches of snow across i-95 and across portions of maine. auburn is taking on alabama, and while folks are their this sweaters because we'll see partly sunny skies and temperatures will be in the mid 50s. >> thank you. coming up next, an update on our top stories, and the exodus from puerto rico, why islanders were leaving in droves for the mainland.
>> welcome back to al jazeera america. i'm richelle carey. syria's war has created a growing humanitarian crisis. 2.2 million people have taken refugee in other countries, and as winter approaches it makes the situation more dire. particularly vulnerable are the more than 1 million children living in camps. anti-government protests. gunshots were fired during clashes. several people were injured, and
the identify of the gunman is unknown. today is the deadline to fix the healthcare.gov website. the goal was to handle 50,000 visitors at one time. data shows puerto rico has the highest unemployment rate in the u.s. and residents are leaving in alarming numbers. >> unemployment here is twice the national average but angel has never worked so much. he said he can't keep up with requests. >> most go abroad, miami, florida, texas, new york. we have local jobs but it's rare. [♪ singing ] >> mr. and mrs. lopez once lived in the u.s. and came back to puerto rico for retirement. but now all their children and most of their relatives are in florida. >> i want to talk to them and
share everything with them. i want to spend my old age with them. that's the most important thing for me. >> when their youngest daughter told them she would stay in the u.s. after nell studies they realized they would be alone here except for their grand daughter ariana. she's a bit camera shy. >> you start with $100,000 to be a cardiologist assistant after graduating. here you get $60,000. >> their destination is orlando, florida. angel helps people move off the island every day of the week. >> life is good. we are working. at least i don't have to leave. [ chuckling ] >> puerto ricos are people in transit. their american passports allow them to move easily, but recent immigration has hit record less.
600,000 puerto ricans have left the islands in the past ten years by far the largest drop compared to anywhere else in the united states. 40% of recent college graduates have left to look for employment, but angel said the job market is tough for blue collar workers, too. >> salaries are not enough. you have to work a lot of overtime to get by. i even have a colleague who works on saturdays and sundays as a deejay. there are no farming jobs any more. and the factories are closing too. >> the government says immigration costs the local economy $3 billion a year. but angel has not lost a penny. he's off to his next job packing a shipment for miami. >> thank you for watching al jazeera america. "techknow" is pup next up next.