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tv   Al Jazeera World News  LINKTV  March 28, 2013 7:00pm-7:30pm PDT

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>> the united nations failed to agree on a treaty to control the arms trade. iran, syria and north korea say o. you're in watching "al jazeera." also on the program, support and prayers around the world for south africa's liberation leader. nelson mandela is said to be responding positively to treatment. commemorating the pope, he washes the feet of prisoners in rome. >> and liftoff. >> liftoff. >> from earth to the international space station in ust six hours.
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>> a global arms treaty seven years in the making has been blocked by iran, north korea and syria. they're still talking at the united nations but there's little chance of a consensus. let's go straight to our diplomatic editor who is at the u.n. h.q. with the latest developments. what's happening? >> well, there is no consensus and there is no treaty. for today anyway. and that's because when they opened it up to the floor to all those countries who are gathered here, three countries said they couldn't agree. those three countries, iran, syria and north korea. the president of the meeting isas an australian ambassador, took them all away for other talks, said, are you really sure you want to block this treat jy? they met again, reconvened and again those three countries blocked this arms trade treaty. that's not the end of the story. let's pick it up. first, where we are right now, what's your reaction after all the work you've done over the
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last 10 days and many years as well for the facts that been blocked? >> it's outrageous that these three countries have held up the talks and proceedings and stalled in this way. we're disgusted that the three countries, because they're all right isolated in the international community, and syria, should be the ones to veto agreement on the treaty today. this isn't just an academic exercise. this is a treaty that's been saving lives. one person dies every minute from armed violence and millions more see their lives torn apart by the conflict and devastation of an arms trade. we had 190 countries today that were ready to say yes, let's have this treaty. they've worked intensively through day and night to make this happen in these last few weeks. it's not just this fortnight, this is after more than a decade of campaigning work from civil society and six years of negotiations at the u.n. it's not the end, it's going to go forward to the general assembly now and we're
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confident that there will be a vote and it will be passed but it's frustrating that today was not the day it was agreed. >> tell us a little bit more about what this treaty, if it is eventually passed and goes to the next stage, what it would actually mean and stop. >> what it will mean is that for the first time all the world's governments will have agreed to an absolute ban on weapons of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humidity and that they will have dwround take a clear risk assessment for arms transfers against the risk of human rights and humanitarian law violations. that means governments will be made responsible for arms that leave a territory, pass through the territory or come into their territory. and it means we'll start at that to bring the arms trade out under control and the days of dodgy gun runners and arms dealers are going to be over soon because they are no longer going to be easily able to get their hands on deadly weapons. >> thank you very much. as was said this now looks like the president of this conference is going to send his draft treaty to the general
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assembly of the united nations where it will be subject to -- subject to a majority vote. campaigners here hoping that could happen in just a matter of days. in fact, most of them staying in new york, hoping that they will see this treaty they've worked for so long for within the week. >> still life in it. thank you very much. doctors in south africa say nelson mandela is responding positively to treatments. the 90-year-old was taken to a hospital on wednesday. it is the third time the former south african president has been hospitalized. in four months. for a recurring lung infection. >> the doctors are attending to him and ensuring that the best -- he receives the best possible expert medical treatment and is kept comfortable. the president has wished him a speedy recovery and appeals to the people of south africa and the world to pray for our beloved and his family and to keep them in their thoughtless.
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>> let's hear from our correspondent there. >> the presidency saying that nelson mandela is responding well to treatment. they've asked south africans not to panic and to pray for him. they haven't said where he's at. they said they'll update people when they can, when they have information on nelson mandela's condition. south africans have been on facebook, twitter, sending messages, wishing nelson mandela well. they're calling him father. he's an icon here. a lot of people love him. they wish him a speedy recovery but they do know he is 94 years old. he is an old man. he's frail. they know he's been in and out of hospital a lot. they say that happens a lot as well. they know he won't live forever but they all think this time he's released as soon as possible and he gets to go home. >> north korean state media have said rocket units have been on stand by to attack u.s. bases in the pacific. the order was signed off by the leader after an emergency meeting with top generals.
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it comes just hours after two u.s. stealth jets capable of carrying nuclear bombs conducted a practice run over south korea. the b-2 bombers made the 20,000-kilometer round trip from missouri in a single mission. >> this isn't the first time that kind of threat has been made. even this week. earlier this week those rocket units were told to be put on the highest state of combat readiness. in the past when north korea has done some kind of provocative act, as recently as 2010, when the south korean warship was sunk and south korea blamings that sinking on the north koreaner to peed strike and when north korean artillery fired on an island, there was no warning, there was no buildup of rhetoric before that. the question is whether this intense rhetoric and the very strong nature of these threats, and in recent days these threats coming without any kind of get-out clause, without any
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kind of if attacks, just very stark threats that the prockcations have already been made by the united states and south korea and it's time to respond. whether that does signal some kind of change, whether there is pressure on the leadership, that's the big question, whether he may may be trying to shore up his position, exactly what kind of leader is he, exactly what is he being advised to do by his generals? what has prevailed up until now is the fact that north korea, the leadership there, is very keen on its own survival. if they were to launch a full-out assault, they could expect to be defeated in relatively short order. that is what many people have been counting on stopping north korea doing anything too provocktific. >> the united states has nominated air force general to become nato's top military commander. his nomination was widely expected and has been endorsed by ambassadors from nato's member nations.
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he's in charge of air force units in europe and africa. he needs to be confirmed by united states senate before taking charge of nato. the u.n. security council unanimously approved the formation of a military unit to fight rebels in the democratic republic of congo. we have the story on the special force for the d.r.c. >> the draft resolution received 15 votes in favor. >> a unanimous show of support for a hugely significant resolution. the united nations security council has authorized the deployment of troops to the democratic republic of congo, with an historic mandate. soldiers from a newly formed intervention brigade will be able to open fire without being fired upon first. >> it means for the first time that there will be a peace enforcement capacity which will carry out targeted offensive operations. either in support of the army or unilaterally in order to neutralize the armed groups.
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>> their main target will be m-23 rebels who have gradually taken control of parts of eastern congo and are accused of mass rape, executions and recruiting child soldiers. they're also -- the result of engagement is still unclear and at least one country which will have troops in the brigade is worried that the u.n. could become a party to the conflict. >> we still have serious difficulties with getting the u.n. involved in peace enforcement activities. since these may compromise our neutrality and impartial iowaality which we believe is so e-- impartiality which we believe is essential. >> there are also concerns over the command structure. the man who will be in charge of the intervention brigade is also running the u.n.'s peace keeping force. diplomats tell "al jazeera" the resolution was rushed because rwanda becomes president of the security council on the first of april. the d.r.c. neighbor has been accused of funding m-23, a charge rwanda denies. the u.n. resolution gives the brigade a year oned ground in the d.r.c., but --
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>> an exit strategy won't be possible without genuine engagement from the congo authorities to take over for such a brigade. unless we see that, we fear having a group of troops that are engaged in long-term military confrontations with armed groups in the east, increasing human rights violations, increasing humanitarian followed, increasing violence without much end in sight. >> despite the skepticism and perhaps just a touch of nervousness about the d.r.c. intervention brigade, all the talk now shifts to when the troops will be deployed. the security council vote proves its members are willing to take a risk on the unknown because quite simply nothing else has worked. >> athletics world governing body, the iaaf, says that oscar pistorius would be allowed to compete in moscow if he qualifies. the double amputee was granted permission to leave south africa for races while he awaits trial for shooting his girlfriend. the iaaf also said that event invites are at the discretion
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of the organizers. somalia's fragile economy is under threat this time because of a rapidly strengthening currency. the dramatic rise of the schilling is due to the influx of u.s. dollars from foreign investors. as we report, that is what having an impact on small businesses -- that is having an impact on small businesses. >> it's tough being a money changer in mogadishu. the local currency, the schilling, has doubled in value. and it shifts wildly every day. each million schilling brick is worth about $60 u.s., he tells me. tomorrow it will be worth between $62 and $65. the booming construction industry is one sector that ought to benefit from the schilling strength by making imports cheaper. but in somalia, investors in big business operate in the kind of parallel dollarized economy and here that's a problem. >> we have to change dollars into schillings to pay our
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workers. but the dollar keeps moving. also, we don't have a central bank. if we had one money, the schilling from the dollars, that would be easier. >> the government solution -- to introduce a new currency that is hope -- that it hopes will stabilize the exchange rate and tamp down inflation. >> to inject a new currency into the market is not something that can happen within days or so. we are working, it's very, very hard and it's a matter of months. it will take longer to bring a new currency into somalia and we're working on it. >> if the plan works, it will flood the market with the new schillings, delighting the currency's strength and hopefully making livestock cheaper for foreign buyers. that's important for the government which needs somalia's biggest industry to grow fast and deliver a peace dividend. but the government solution may not be as straightforward as it sounds. for years the war effectively divided so malia into three separate regions and each developed their own version of the currency. they're all schillings of course but they weren't
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interchangeable. so the cattle trade has believed that unless there's greater political corporation right across the country, the government's plan could in fact be destabilizing. >> abdul is one of the country's biggest livestock exporters. he buys his animals from across the country, so those three currencies are a constant headache. even so, he thinks the president's plan for one new currency is flawed. >> what do we do with this new money of the government? because of the different values of the currencies, if we change them for new somalia schillings, then the weaker ones we lose and there might be problems. >> back in mogadishu's markets they don't much care how the government does it. all they want is for the currency to settle down. the longer it takes, the greater the risks to this slowly recovering economy. >> those stories here on "al jazeera." iran, north korea and syria have blocked the u.n.'s global arms treaty during its final vote. all 193 u.n. member nations
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needed to agree in order for the draft to be adopted. south african officials say nelson mandela is responding positively to hospital treatments. 94-year-old liberation leader is being treated for a recurring lung infection. north korean state media say rocket units have been put on stand by to attack u.s. bases in the pacific. it comes out after two u.s. stealth jets capable of carrying nuclear bombs had a practice run over south korea. more than 160 people will dead after heavy fighting near the south sudan border. there's fighting in the eastern state. south sudan has accused its its northern neighbor of supporting the fighters. 20 soldiers were among those killed. turkey's denying that it has deported syrian refugees. earlier news reports suggested hundreds of jeff jis have been forced to leave a camp near the southern border. on wednesday security forces at the camp fired water cannoned a tear gas at refugees when
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fighting broke out. the syrians were complaining about living conditions. while the u.n. refugee agency says it is trying to find out if any syrians have been forced over the border. >> there is a lot of anger and there was a lot of damage. there have been also reports that there may have been deportation as a result. we're trying to clarify this with turkish authorities. deportation to syria would be, if they occurred, against the principles of international law. and so we're very much hoping this didn't occur. >> in syria state-run news agency says 15 students were killed when mortar shells his a can teen at a university. opposition groups confirm the attack but no group has deny order claimed responsibility. this is the second mortar attack on the city in two dales. we have more now from beirut and neighboring lebanon. >> both the government and the
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activists confirm the mortar shells hit the architecture department of the dema cass -- damascus university inside the capitol today. according to the pro-government media, at least 15 people were killed, many more injured. this is an incident where the government will try very hard to manipulate in order to mobilize people against the free syrian army and against attacks by the rebels. the mortar shells could have been fired by the free army but by mistake hit the university campus. mortar shells are known not to be very accurate. the president of the university insists the university will not close its doors down. it will continue to operate as it did for 150 years. >> cypriots might have to live with limited amounts of cash longer than they expected. the government says it will take a month to lift all restrictions rather than a week. banks in the country reopen on thursday for the first time in lmost two weeks. >> at 12:00 local time, and
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after 12:00 12 days of closure, cyprus' banks finally open for bills. outside most branches, private security guards were on duty to ensure law and order and soothe any frayed nerves. before sun rise at the central bank of cyprus, trucks were loaded up with cash, 6 -- $6.5 billion worth of fresh euro notes flown in from frankfurt and dispatched to banks across the island. this is a branch of a bank which will be closed entirely as part of the e.u. bailout deal. it is the worst of the so-called bad banks. only eight customers allowed at a time. if you have over $130 here, you're -- $130,000 here, you're probably going to lose most of it. one of them, in this 31-year-old. he came here with many questions for his bank manager. >> i feel like i've lost, it yes. i feel like, i mean, for sure. if you come here and you ask the bankers, they don't even know what's happening. you have this feeling of, you
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know, of going nowhere. >> i think it's a severe blow to the euro and it's extremely urn sent -- uncertain if there's not going to be an affect on other european countries and people with accounts over there. anybody with money above $100,000 investing in a country that is in trouble will be afraid and people with less than $100,000 will wonder if something that had been suggested for cyprus but then withdrawn might not come up. i don't think it will but it's confidence that matters. >> there's $86 deposited in -- $86 billion deposited in cyprus' banks. 1/3 of that held by bealty -- wealthy russians. much of that could be spirited away now that cyprus' reputation has as a financial center of excellence lies in tatters. the banks closed at 6:00 p.m. and the authorities' wort fears for panic and chaos were not realized. the president of cyprus even sent a statement out congratulating his people on their restraint. but those limits on what people
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can do with their money inside cyprus' banks, they won't be in place for a week. the foreign minister announced they will now be in place for a month. >> u.s. prosecutors say they will not accept the offer of a plea deal from the accused gunman in last year's colorado cinema shooting. james helms said he would plead guilty to shooting and killing 12 people. if he can avoid being executed. his lawyers said that holmes wanted to serve a life sentence rather than face the death penalty. new evidence has been made public about a shooting at a primary school in the u.s. state of connecticut last year and it's strong enough for president obama to use it to reignite support for stricter gun controls. >> new evidence in the sandy hook elementary school shooting in newton, connecticut, last deast is almost as shocking as the event itself. just over 100 days ago. arrest warrants made public show the gunman, 20-year-old adam lanza, shot his way into the building and killed 20
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first graders and six adult staff in less than five minutes. he carried with him three guns, one was in the car outside. at the home he shared with his mother, who he shot before going to the school, an arsenal of weapons and ammunition have been found. according to the police, a bank check signed by his mother had been intended for her son to buy more. at the white house president obama used the 100-day marker to remind americans and especially members of congress not to forget the massacre. >> the entire country pledged we would do something about it and this time would be different. shame on us if we have forgotten. >> obama spoke just weeks before the u.s. senate is to vote on stricter background checks for gun sales. but plans to ban semi-automatic assault weapons like the one used at sandy hook ought to limit the size of magazines, look like they have no chance of passing the congress.
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>> my sister loves teaching at sandy hook. every student would say, i hope i get her next year. >> for the first time some feab members of the sandy hook victims are appearing in an emotional tv advertisement for tighter gun control measures paid for by an alliance of u.s. mayors from across the country. >> that was the last day i saw jesse alive. >> i want to prevent any other family from having to go through what we're going through. >> but polls show while support for many gun control measures remains high throughout the country, public support for major gun reform has been slipping in recent weeks. one poll suggests it's down by as much as 10%. despite obama's emotional appeal not to forget the victims of newton, the momentum for gun control throughout the country is clearly wanning and whether new measures can make it through the congress must be in doubt. >> a brazilian doctor has been charged with killing seven patients to make way for new ones in a hospital's intensive care unit. prosecutors now say that the
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doctor could have killed as many as 300. she deny the allegations. if convicted she'll be among the world's worst-known sirial killers. still at brazil, one of the main stadiums for next year's football world cup has been closed for repairs. the stadium was shut by the city's mayor. the report by city inspectors found that the roof is at risk of damage in high winds. scuffles between chilean police and demonstrators broke out in the capital over education reforms. security forces used tear gas and water cannons on protesters. the march began peacefully but some demonstrators grew angry that the police had changed the approved route. chileans have been calling for changes to education systems for nearly a year. the newly elected pope francis has held his first holy thursday mass as the head of the roman catholic church. in a prison rrived
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in rome to take part in a traditional easter ritual of the washing of the feet of 12 young offendsers. it's replicating the bible's account of jesus' gesture of humility. >> if i the lord of the teacher have washed your feet, you too have to wash each other's feet. i have given you an example so you may do as i have done. it is the example of the lord. he was the most important but he washed the feet of others. the most important must be at the service of others. >> and christians all over the world will also celebrate easter this weekend. marking the moment that many believe jesus christ rose from dead after crucifixion. but in jerusalem, the city where he died, the number of his followers has fallen below 10,000. and now both christians and muslims say they are the victims of an israeli policy designed to boost jewish identity at their expense.
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>> a procession down jerusalem's via de la rosa. literally the way of grief, pain and suffering. these people are following the path they believe jesus christ was forced to take to his crucifixion. now some christians in this city say they too are suffering. >> the pain of the palestinians began with the israeli occupation and has just got worse ever since. now even more so with the creation of the separation wall. >> the christian population in jerusalem has been in steady decline since 1946. but now it's fallen to below 10,000. some christians believe that a combination of israeli road blocks, the separation wall and settlement programs is to blame. and muslims too say they feel threatens. >> religious destinations have
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become israeli posts. this includes surveillance cameras, israeli flags and above all israeli settlements. >> as easter approaches, both muslim and christian representatives have come together to highlight their concerns. jerusalem must be a city for three religions and two peoples. peace and security will not prevail in the middle east unless a sustainable just peace is established in this city. >> israeli law does enshrine the right for christians, jews and muslims to practice their religion freely. but the prime minister has said the city belongs to the jewish people and will remain under israeli sovereignty for eternity. christianity portrays easter as the moment of revival and renewal. that's something its dwindling congregation in jerusalem might ell be hoping for.
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>> a plague of low custs has infested almost half of the indian ocean island of madagascar. there are concerns of food shortages as billions of the crop-devouring insects could leave 60% of the population hungry. about $22 million is needed to fight the plague. an inquest into the death of a man has heard that he was found lying on the floor of his bathroom with a little tour around his neck. he died at his home in london last weekend. police have said there was no sign of a struggle and his death was consistent with hanging. from earth to the international space station in just six hours. >> and liftoff. liftoff as chris caddyingsy -- >> as incredible as it sounds, three astronauts are attempting to do just that. the trip would usually have taken 48 hours. the speedy version is down to extremely precise orbital adjustments from the space
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station and its booster which had been tested on
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