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tv   NEWS LIVE - 30  Al Jazeera  August 5, 2020 3:00am-3:34am +03

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men and women can barely talk about it. they are the only witnesses who can help bring about justice how does iran fall as human rights campaigners in libya investigating since the 2011. libya unspeakable crime on al-jazeera. an enormous explosion kills at least 78 people in beirut sending a mushroom cloud into the sky and destructive shock waves through the city. more than 4000 people injured hospitals are overwhelmed pleading for blood supplies and generators to keep their lights on.
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and i'm peter dhabi here in doha with the very latest on the disaster in beirut the fires are burning into the night as rescue crews search for more survivors and victims. while countries around the world offer their support to levon on which is already in the grip of its worst economic crisis in decades. a massive explosion has brought catastrophe to lebanon's capital beirut killing at least 78 people and injuring thousands more as a shockwave smashed through the city it's erupted from a port warehouse where about 2700 tons of ammonium nitrate had been stored for years is believed to be set off by welders the blast was felt 160 kilometers away in cyprus countries around the world including lebanon's traditional folk.
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israel or offering help is in a hole in beirut begins our coverage. a massive explosion in the heart of the lebanese capital. was. 6 the blast essential quavers across beirut shattering windows destroying buildings. and injuring hundreds. the streets were filled with panic and confusion for most of the so you know my call was down there it rolled over i think my injuries all because of the loss the loss cut me up my call was like this i don't know about the sun i don't know what happened i was fishing i heard there was a fire so i began to hit home then i heard something explode and then this happened i got injured this is all i know. rescue work began quickly and emergency vehicles converged on the side of the blast. putting out fires.
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and getting the injured to safety lebanon's internal security chief confirmed the blast originated in the port district in a section housing highly explosive materials. lebanon's prime minister has addressed the nation promising that the victims would get justice for what happened . it will not post without accountability those responsible for this catastrophe will pay the price this is a promise to the martyrs an injured this is a national commitment while the cause is still unknown some are already blaming the government levanon is an accident waiting to happen so many wait so many places whether it's. public services like just any kinds of government industries are not regulated well we don't like inspectors that so many buildings could collapse you know again all the problems that lebanon face because they don't really have a strong government that is able to it's. the safety of its citizens and that's
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been why people have been protesting that's why the currency has been palling so you know there are so many possible accidents going on so it's very hard to speculate i mean alan says continue to arrive at this explosion there have been dozens of casualties many victims are still trapped in the rubble and rescue work looks set to continue long into the night the destruction of central beirut appear to come out of nowhere and there's the shock of what happened subsides the demands for answers will continue to grow louder santa for their favorite. well anyway we spoke to mondo he's a professor of communications of the american university of beirut he told us more about the warehouse where the explosion happened the material is stored it was in the have your number 12 which is one of the biggest and they store all flammable in an order material that is highly sensitive to explosions and otherwise and those
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who are stuck there by quote touring because they're not allowed to enter lebanon and they were basically trying to get them into lebanon using excuses off using them for fertilizers so the reports so far are saying and it seems that something terribly when drunk there and they were not stored properly there was a lot of flammables and that region and then there was a massive fire followed by in intensity. which basically destroyed the 2 to 30 kilometer radius of homes and houses around i was one of those who who is missing or the glass and an entire entrance to a house because of the blast basically it's negligence you have got the customs department that responsible for it and then you've got the ministry of defense because they have that i thought to supervise anything off an explosive nature such as dynamite and others and include including the ammonium by traits
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that exploded this evening. as there is a forward port of beirut by the way is 80 percent of all imports into lebanon so it is the main vein it's the main ought to be for this economy for food for medicine for everything right next to it is the massive the biggest storage and if you see the footage you'll notice the big dominant white building that's the strategic game reserve for lebanon which got completely destroyed and that means wheat it means 3 months off wheat and i don't deport there are a can use 2 or 3 of the biggest militants and 11 on that or so produce the flour for the bread so the damage is massive on every scale. well homes and buildings quite some distance away from the site of the explosion have been badly damaged and so for us as a journalist living in beirut disappeared just from her house the impact of the
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explosion blew out windows and damaged finish inside her house she suffered minor injuries earlier she told al jazeera more about what happened. next tricks. i don't know what they were very. hovering over. the window he's up. and. i open the window and i was even now gone within seconds. i was on the ground i was bleeding there was a speck of blood. but i have to tell you that i suffer we do have other injuries because all the hospitals in the city get that a lot of journalists less than editors are trying to get me a doctor but they're hearing is that the hospital is a fact and i. know at this point in time i probably. just sort of
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driven to the fence but. really sit down to see what i could do was my own situation but it certainly was a terrifying experience even as a doctor this is something i have a conflict all the time but this happened in court how you know we just got off lucky funded but that's not what you think of when that happened. the story of how devaney the struggle to buy bread but the price of bread has doubled and my heart going out. for all the people these people already had. and talking to us just a little earlier let's bring in a scene he's a professor at the american university of beirut nasser you're seeing great to talk to you again 1st off nasser can you just explain to us what the city feels like what it looks like tonight. the city is diverse dated. everyone is feeling. the impact of all of this. there is
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a sense of. failure of the government of the state in dealey dealing with is what people want this has been coming for some months now and this is has become like the straw that at the back of the live only is this full of anger. and it will are not really able to manage your call was the extent and the the size of all of this only you thought of the only thing pardon me for interrupting you now see a scene but when you talk about anger. this happened a few hours ago so are you saying the anger is there it's instantaneous and i guess not wishing to put words into your mouth i guess when it's question would be is it feels by the preexisting condition that lebanon was in any way.
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absolutely i mean this has been accumulating for many months and years and particularly for the last 6 months after people went to the streets asking for law just as politically government for the better economy and what we've got there is there's good things getting worse and now we just got this. beyond imagination explosion in a major part of the city in the main port of the country with soudan of injured and millions of dollars of of destruction and then we think news that this is this happened because they've been stored in nitrates for years without actually managing to deal with that is order or storing them in a different phase or an area security this is just negligence at responsibility if
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this of that's the case and this is again a sign of the failing of the of the state and just different but others in dealing with the needs of that have been i'm going to expect to morrow things will look worse people will realize the extent of this this explosion of course everybody is now trying to help everyone is going to hospital and trying to support families and friends but i think in couple of days the anger really can ease and people will ask for accountability and ask to make people you know answer to what exactly happened and why this happened ok let's talk for the next minute about the immediate aftermath of this explosion and its potential consequences is there a new your mind a distance or a difference if you will between what the government should do and what the government might actually do over the coming immediate hours and days and then when
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it comes to doing the right thing by lebanese people. i mean i have no love that this is going to be this explosion this incident this disaster is going to be beyond what that even his government can go words i think it needs international support but like many issues for the last few months we've been seeing a little bit believe in his government not thinking that i decisions when it comes to managing the economy or the finances or social issues and they can imagine that this disaster this catastrophe will be dealt by the way that live in these people do relying on themselves under some wart on their communities of and it is government will just be lost in not giving in and not doing the right decision i hope to do things differently this time i hope all the states the government the
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parliament administration a leader look into this and give real answers from people and people accountable and i think this this is what we want ok i think it was around april may time this year the prime minister wrote a piece for i think it was the washington post maybe the new york times probably the washington post and he was saying look world you've got to engage with us as a country because we are this close to being food insecure we don't have enough stuff to feed lebanese talking about a country where 80 percent of what you use is imported 20 percent of the population is basically occupying refugee status at that time there was a big pile on on the back of that article saying look he's diverting because so many of the issues in lebanon are self-inflicted anyway so he's trying to dilute the reaction because his name is in the crosshairs of accountability what i've just said to you now is that
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a fair interpretation of the reality of lebanon not where the prime minister might like to say lebanon is. i mean yes i mean the the the lebanese government and leaders and many of the shows keep keep you know pushing that can hitting the can for and more vigorous for civility to others and nominees 1st and foremost but also international supporters have been asking for more reforms more you know action when it comes to immediate action needed and then different sectors particularly to cut the losses and the electricity sector and other sectors and so on before they get the support from others whether it is the i.m.f. or the international committee that was just before disaster and now you get this disaster and i don't i'm not optimistic that lebanese government would be able to
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deal with that and this aftermath we need we need more response of the leaders and we need the engagement of the international community to deal with this kind of disaster and i think this is what's needed until we get to that point i think believe in his people by that also for their own ways of and i've been following him and been part of some of these initiatives at the moment and they're they're working you know since that explosion happened by the minute to support each other unfortunately this can take place for katie forgetting for the immediate you know needs but i don't think this would be would last when it comes to rebuilding measure parts of the city or the major part of it which you know the major for this is the major port of beirut that was almost totally destroyed and part of it also the grain silos where the. of the grain and the wheat that actually live mini's and people who live in lebanon need and that's another disaster and they're making if
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we can get support in terms of grain and we and other food supplies. for the coming days and weeks we will be dealing with the immediate needs and immediate aftermath but i think after that we really need to look into in new ways and new people to govern this country rather than just keep pushing the can and pushing that responsibility into others now so you see and thank you so much for putting that into the broader context for us on such a difficult difficult evening we do appreciate your time good luck nothing seen there talking to us from beirut thank you thank you thank you both nations were among the 1st to offer help the kashmir shake to mean bin hamad all funny says his country will send medical equipment to set up field hospitals iran has also offered support as has its regional rival saudi arabia israel too is offering humanitarian aid through foreign channels because it has no diplomatic relationship with lebanon
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e.u. leaders as well say they are ready to provide whatever is required the u.s. president on the trump says his country will help as well but he also seemed to contradict official reports by describing the blast as an attack let me begin by sending america's deepest sympathies to the people of lebanon where reports indicate that many many people were killed hundreds more were very badly wounded in a large explosion in beirut our prayers go out to all the victims and their families the united states stands ready to assist lebanon a very good relationship with the people of lebanon and we will be there to help it looks like a terrible attack. so washington my colleague mike hanna mike what's the president talking about here a bomb attack. well it's not exactly clear
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later on in that briefing president trump was asked directly why he referred to this explosion as an attack and he said he'd been talking with his great generals as he put it and they argued that it was not a mechanical accident certainly the explosion looked like a bomb blast president tran keeping on saying that it does look like a bomb blast according to his generals now one is just point out that shortly before that briefing took place president trump was meeting with some of his senior military commanders it was the swearing in of the new chief of staff of the air force charles brown and so certainly he would have had the opportunity to speak to some of those senior generals during that event whether that was told to him at that particular time that this was an attack an attack that is not clear at this particular point we have asked the pentagon to clarify the situation and president trumps comment however and no response as yet peter not only easy square to circle
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for the trumpet ministration not a nice relationship between washington and beirut because washington the state department they've spent so many weeks and months now trying to undermine hezbollah because hezbollah is kind of soft wired to so many other big issues across the region and clearly the the latitude that the lebanese government doesn't mirror perfectly what the u.s. government would like the lebanese government to do about one particular relationship. well precisely that the u.s. is deeply concerned about iran's greater influence within lebanon particularly on the issue of oil deals iran offering lebanon to take payment for oil deal used in lebanese currency which is of course would be immensely favorable to lebanon now state department has expressed deep concern about that the relationship under the administration has been somewhat rocky peter for
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a sample in september last year congress passed an act giving lebanon more than 100 $1000000.00 in military aid for some reason the trumpet ministration sat on that payment despite pleas from congress are saying why the money hasn't been handed over from the pentagon who was exceedingly keen to see that money handed over the print but ministration not giving any indication why it was sitting on this money for a long period of time very similar to what happened with the ukraine although there's no suggestion that president trump was extend team to leverage something out of the lebanese authorities there was a lot of talk about u.s. concern of corruption within lebanon president trump indicating that he was sitting on this money to get a clear report from state department it was eventually released in december months after they've been passed in congress but the slipped something off a tattering in the relationship between the u.s. and levanon attempts have been made to improve that relationship the chief of staff
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of centcom central command paid a visit to lebanon in july of this year he held a meeting with senior military start and once again reiterated u.s. support for lebanon and for the government of lebanon and indeed for the lebanese army which plays a crucial role in u.s. eyes in terms of attempting to limit iranian influence within lebanon ok mike many thanks mike i'm a reporter there in washington d.c. . now to some breaking news out of colombia where the supreme court has now in the last hour confirmed it has ordered the detention of the former president . has to do with a case in which the former leader is accused of witness tampering and fraud has repeatedly declared his innocence and questioned the court's independence he is a close ally of the current president even duke a. possible use of course on our developing stories out
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of the website al jazeera dot com or you can follow us on twitter as well. argentina has reached a deal with its creditors to restructure a large government debt it follows months of talks and is being hailed as a major step toward stabilizing its struggling economy argentina owes nearly $65000000000.00 it defaulted for the 9th time in may making it difficult to access more capital on the international markets successive governments overextended themselves with expensive social programs causing chronic inflation and frequent debt crises the pandemic made reaching a deal even more important argentina's in deep recession its economy is expected to contract by around 12 percent this coming year to reserve those in-born as iris she has more about the challenges that still lie ahead. an economy that is shattered not only because of coronaviruses been shattered since back in 2018 with recession
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inflation and many many other problems argentina had what even the i.m.f. said is an amp a able debt $320000000000.00 in debt and it was trying to restructure $65000000000.00 in this past few months it's been very very tense negotiations at a time it seemed that the country was once again it entered the fall of last may but that it once again those stocks we are going to failed and what the ended up agree with 3 of the main credits for years groups that includes breton blackrock which is the largest asset manager in the world they agreed for a grace period until 2025 and they're saving around $30000000000.00 in debt this is at enormous success for argentina's government because it certainly helps at times when the government needs to be spending money fighting with the crisis and fighting what's coronavirus is living in the country with a rise in poverty of unemployment among many other things argentina defaulted as
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you just mentioned also 9 times in history the last time was last may it was a soft default but let's not forget what happened in this country back in 2001 when it defaulted again on its foreign debt there were years of litigation 60 percent cover to rates among many other things so pressing that about a man that's what he said on this day is that argentina succeeded that they managed to make payable at a debt in times of a massive economic crisis and in the middle of a pandemic. arabia has reportedly moved one step closer to having nuclear power constructing a uranium yellowcake extraction facility with the help of china analysts according to sources being quoted by the wall street journal the facility is said to be close to the town of houla yellowcake is a milled form of uranium ore that's found naturally there but will take additional steps and technology to enrich it enough for a nuclear power plant saudi arabia denies building a uranium ore facility there but says mineral extraction is
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a part of its economic diversification. turning to corona virus in the pandemic and despite soaring infection rates hospital admissions and deaths in the united states president trump says the outbreak is as under control as it can be at least 156000 people have died over 4700000 are infected politicians are still negotiating a new emergency aid package the latest unemployment benefit program lapsed last week in an interview on monday mr trump was challenge on how he's quantifying the impact of the virus on the united states united states is lowest in numerous care to gore's were lower then the world lowder lower then words in europe in what was in one take a look. right here in this case death. oh you're doing death as
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a proportion of cases i'm talking about death as a proportion of population that's where the u.s. is really bad are much worse than south korea or germany can't you can't are there you have i can't really have to go by you have to know why we're here is the united states here have to go by the case is the case why not as a proportion of later somebody what it says is when you have somebody that you know has it with there's a case oh ok the people the little from all those cases it's surely a relevant statistic to say if the u.s. has x. population and x. percentage of death of that population are. more than 5000000 coronavirus infections and about 200000 deaths of now being reported across latin america some of the worst affected countries are still rolling back restrictions brazil's biggest cities sao paulo and rio de janeiro are reopening their businesses mexico is also easing restrictions. the zimbabwean president. is defending his government against allegations of
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a renewed crackdown on dissent one local human rights group says more than 60 people have been arrested since last week the government enforced a virus lockdown just days before planned protests last friday the opposition says this was aimed at stopping its rally calling for men and gargle and the ruling party to resign. sri lanka's about old south asia's 1st major elections during a pandemic president rajapaksa and his party want to win a majority this time critics however say it could see him and his brother the interim prime minister mahinda rajapaksa leaving power minal fernandez reports. well indeed i think his son dylan was inducted in september 2008. he was one of 11 young men kidnapped to be ransomed a group within the sri lankan navy including its highest ranking officers have been implicated. that we just want our child and 12 years we haven't been
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told whether he's alive or not so much information has been uncovered one can get away we don't even care if they do but the officers or whoever allowed this injustice must be punished human rights activists this and similar cases involving the disappearances of hundreds of tamils after the 26 year conflict with the tamil tigers will be forgotten in sri lanka and go to the polls on windy sri lanka people's party led by the rajapaksa brothers is expected to win. president hu top then prime minister mind sadly will protect war heroes who brought acute ensure national security subcommittee and bring prosperity. the president's party must come to power to take this program forward we require a 2 thirds majority for this amendments needed to the constitution or else we need to change the constitution the presidential powers were weakened and those of the parliament strengthened under an amendment passed by m.p.'s in 2015 and only see
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any reversal would be detrimental as far as departure if that arch boxes get close enough all day so it will be out of the window and therefore you will have a strong authoritarian government. but this doesn't seem to want emotion lancken for many the rajapaksa appear the best option given their handling of the corona virus outbreak and the negative perception of the previous government including security failures that led to one of the worst bombing in sri lanka on easter sunday 2019 the main opposition united national party has been ripped apart by infighting and he's contesting the election separately we'd rather not have to carry. the past history show. that it was only on the screen on
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the sidelines. competent people on the us who have exhibited leadership qualities i'm not because nobody no lines and low voter turnout is possible as fears of 19 may keep people who we from the ballot boxes winning the general election will be the easy part there are multiple challengers but a looming economic crisis aggravated by the credit of august and demick was severely test the next government in sri lanka. families like the reducing has tried not. enough and and al jazeera colombo. recapping the main news for you so far this half hour a massive explosion in lebanon's capital beirut was killed at least $78.00 people and injured thousands more as a shockwave smashed across the city the blast took place at
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a port where house for about $2700.00 tons of ammonium nitrate had been stored for 6 years hospital say they're overwhelmed lebanon's prime minister has addressed the nation he said those responsible will pay the price. it would not pass without. accountability those responsible for these catastrophe will pay the price to the martyrs and the injured this is some national commitment u.s. president donald trump spoke not long ago offering his country's help but he also seemed to contradict official reports by describing the blast as an attack our prayers go out to all the victims and their families the united states stands ready to assist lebanon a very good relationship with the people of lebanon and we will be there to help it looks like a terrible attack. columbia's supreme court has now confirmed in the last few minutes or that the dissention of the former president. is to do with a case in which the former leader is accused of witness tampering and ford has
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repeatedly declared his innocence and questioned the court's independence he is a close ally of the current president even. argentina has reached a deal with its creditors to restructure a large government debt it follows months of talks argentina owes nearly $65000000000.00 saudi arabia has reportedly moved one step closer to nuclear power constructing a uranium yellowcake extraction plant with the help of china that's according to sources quoted by the wall street journal the facility is said to be close to the town of. yellowcake is a milled form of uranium ore that's fun naturally there but would take additional steps and technology to enrich it enough for a nuclear power plant riyadh denies building or facility near this location but says mineral extraction is a part of its economic diversification those are your top stories up next inside story we'll have the latest from beirut on the other side of the program in about
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30 minutes see that. the hot. so how crucial is the election this time and why. this is. hello welcome to the program. gotta buy and behave as
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a 2 brothers who have long shaped sri lanka's politics they're known for their role in anding the 26 year war against.


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