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tv   News  Al Jazeera  April 14, 2015 12:00pm-12:31pm EDT

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united nations approves a resolution targeting the houthis and the country's former president. ♪ hello. you are watching al jazeera live from london. also coming up. iraq's fight against isil. the prime minister goes to washington to seek more help in the battle. one year on and still no sign of the 200 nigerian schoolgirls kidnapped by boko haram. we speak to some of the lucky ones who manage to escape. and the cat you really don't
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want to cuddle a report on the mission against feral felines. ♪ we begin in yemen, and the situation's security council has voted in favor of a draft resolution. it calls on the houthi rebels to stop fighting and withdraw from all areas they have captured including the capitol. in yemen itself there has been more intense fighting around the port city of aden and the capitol. aid agencies are continuing to warn that supply routes are being threatened by the conflict. james bayes is at the u.n. for us. and this draft resolution underscoring sharp divisions between the gulf states and russia. >> reporter: absolutely and very significant this resolution passed in the u.n. security council, but one of the permanent members of that council was not convinced,
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russia. russia didn't like aspects of the resolution. let me tell you the main points of the resolution and where russia had problems. the main point of the resolution is calling on the houthis to pull back from all area they have taken including the capitol sana'a. the russians supported that aspect of the resolution but when it came to the idea of the arms embargo, they wanted an arms embargo on everyone in yemen. they said the embargo should be associated with five people including the former president of yemen and his son, and a list of other houthis who already has sanctions, the main houthi leader. and there will be humanitarian pauses. ban ki-moon will institute these
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in coordination with the yemeni government. the russians wanted an absolute ceasefire applying to everyone. but russia didn't use veto so this is now international law. >> iran has been speaking out proposing its own plan what has the foreign minister been saying? >> reporter: he has been in madrid for a visit, and there he has been saying that iran wants its own 4-point plan on the situation in yemen. those four points are, ceasefire, humanitarian assistance dialogue between all of the parties, and a brood-based government. he is suggesting that iran will bring this to the united nations here in new york. supposedly that means bring it to the second quarter. i have to tell you the diplomats
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i have spoken to say it's unlikely to be much appetite for something else at the u.n. security council now that has passed this resolution. there was originally a russian resolution and then there was this other resolution which came up from the gulf cooperation council. they managed to avoid a russian veto, so i think the other members, other than russia will be happy with what they have achieved and it's unlikely the security council will do anything else about yemen any time soon. >> james bayes thank you very much. let's get more now on what is .hahhing in yemen where tribes are fighting against houthi rebels. alexei o'brien reports. >> reporter: tribal fighters just 500 meters from the houthi front lines. thousands of local men have been
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on high alert, since the rebels captured sana'a in september. there have been almost daily skirmishes here for months. >> translator: as you can see we are everywhere on the front lines. our situation is solid, and our locations are strong. because we have the support of god and the will of the brave then here. >> reporter: they call themselves popular resistance committees and support president hat hadi. so far the houthis haven't been able to take control of the area and the tribesmen want it to say that way. >> translator: we are defending our land and our families. we did not exercise aggression against anyone. but our enemies did against us. they will be defeated. >> reporter: the tribes are backed by the yemenny army and the saudi-lead coalition.
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but they say the weapons aren't as good as the houthis. >> translator: we need to increase pressure on the houthis in the south and on every front. there are volunteers like us here and in other places. >> reporter: the fighters move off to protect another section of their front line but there are fears any escalation in damage here could damage vital oil supply lines. now al-qaeda in the arabian peninsula says its spiritual leader has been killed in a drone attack. the united states posted a $5 million reward for the man. he travelled to yemen after being sent home to saudi arabia in 2006. i'm joined now from doha by our
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correspondent hashem ahelbarra. why is this so important, and what was his significance to the organization? >> reporter: basically, as a spiritual leader he was always issues fatwas one of the most prominent was in 2013 urging attacks against western targets, particularly the americans. this is why he became on the radar screen of the international intelligence community. particularly the americans. and he's also been suspected of recruiting fighters who are sent to syria to fight alongside with groups affiliated with al-qaeda and isil. he is a saudi citizen who, as
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you said went to afghanistan, was captured sent to guantanamo then in 2006 was released went through this rehabilitation program in saudi arabia, a program that was set up to make sure that those who were detained abandoned radical ideology, and it was replicated in different parts of the mum limb world, but then once he was released he disappeared and joined al-qaeda in the arabian peninsula, and was always seen as one of the top leaders in yemen. now it remains to be scene whether this is going to further undermine, aqap. there are still some commanders operating on the ground that are very active in places like
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shebwa. >> we still don't know the circumstances involving the killing here but how -- what are the possibilities in terms of how he might have been killed and by whom? >> reporter: well what we have seen over the last few months basically are -- are drones targeting al-qaeda operatives across the country. now we don't know exactly what happened over the last few weeks, especially after u.s. personnel operating in yemen left because of a deteriorating security situation in yemen, particularly in the south. basically what was happening in the past was army officers -- yemeni army officers
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coordinating with the americans to pinpoint the target and then launch those attacks. now most of the other u.s. personnel operating in yemen left after the air base was captured by houthi -- before houthi fighters took over the air base in the port city of aden but it seems like that the operations against al-qaeda continue gathering intelligence about the whereabouts and the movements of those operatives continued. it could be another scenario that the saudis who are launching attacks against houthi fighterers still active in sharing some intelligence with the americans and coordinating those attacks. >> all right. hashem thank you very much. we will have much more on the conflict in yemen later in the program when the saudi-lead coalition holds its daily briefing.
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♪ now the u.s. president barack obama has promised an extra $200 million worth of humanitarian aid to iraq. the announcement comes as iraq's prime minister visits the white house. he had been expected to ask for more military support in the fight against isil. we'll head live to washington, d.c. and get the back on those discussions later on. but right now as you can see the saudi briefing is underway. that taking place, of course live in the saudi capitol, riyadh where the spokesman for the saudi-lead coalition is giving us a bit more information about what has been happening in yemen. let's listen in. >> translator: -- also brigade 111, and brigade from the border
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guards have went back -- have gone to the legitimacy, and we salute the officers and the leaders of these brigades because they are up to the responsibility. we know how big this responsibility is towards supporting the yemeni people and bringing back stability to the country. at the same time we call upon all of the leaders of the units and brigades in yemen to follow the steps of these ones who felt very responsible regarding the people in such a difficult situation in the country, and we stress at the same time that the humanitarian efforts are being there, and during the 24-coming hours, [ inaudible ] will be there on the ground in order to help facilitate these efforts, and they are all for the sake of
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the yemeni people the yemenny individual. and this will facilitate every day life of the yemenis. regarding the military campaign operations are being done according to the plans, and we said that the mention of aerial campaign -- we said that the objectives of the aerial campaign are always ongoing, and we have started a new phase, which is mainly to prevent the houthis militias and their allies from reorganizing or from making use of the abilities of the military camps. that's why we have carried out so many operations in the last 24 hours, and of course we have targeted so many locations, [ inaudible ] brigade has been
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targeted. it has been targeted before but the militias are trying to come back to reorganize themselves in these areas, so we have targeted them. we have targeted a military camp in marryboll also. everyone has noticed through the media yesterday that we have targeted the technical institute because as we said in the last few days these militias are now trying to resort and get rejfuge in schools, in institutes and sports institutes and we have found so many militias in so
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many schools, and this has been mentioned by the media. that's why -- because we have confirmed information regarding a lot of equipment and ammunitions in these places so we have targeted that yesterday, and we will show you that. also a military camp has been targeted yesterday. the camp in sana'a, and another camp are also under heavy bombardment yesterday, because these militias are now trying to reorganize themselves and because we are practicing a lot of pressure in the surrounding areas, and northern parts of yemen, we can call this an escape to the borders of saudi arabia, and we will tackle this point when it comes to the
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ground operation. that's why we have targeted so many locations in northern yemen and other places, camps and places. operations are ongoing, and we are escalating these operations. we have said that we also have ongoing arreal raids, 24 hours, 24/7 and we deal with everything at a time. in aden the situation is as it was. the militias in yemen, the houthis militias in aden are trying to -- to play the same game in other areas and on the coastal road the popular resistance committees have done a great job in so many location yesterday they have done a good job, and they have been
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supported by some equipment in order to balance the confrontation on the ground and we need to say that the yemeni citizen is under the pressure on his daily life. we expect within very few days to minimize these things and minimize the power of these militias, and prevent them from being able to reorganize themselves. what has been stored in aden and the surrounding of the city the tunnels and schools and institutes have seen a lot of equipment, a lot of ammunitions, and this is not going to continue because these militias were trying to dominate the city of aden and to put an end to the legitimate government but the storm is there to put an end to all of these actions and activities.
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these are the operations of yesterday on the technical institute, and we said that the institute was under the control of these militias. that's why we have got -- and we have confirmed the information that they are there, and we have targeted this institute yesterday. it's not strange anymore. at the moment we have seen the second explosion. it was big because fuel is there in the building and you will heard that every day. the civil institutions have been turned into a place to store weapons and equipment and ammunitions by those militias. that's why we deal with this
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thing by attacking and targeting these places and we depend on intelligence accurate information. we deem with these things in a very accurate manner without causing any casualties amongst the civilians, the yemeni people. we are on a permanent plan to stop these militias from applying the tactics, and they are now suffering a lot. their movement is now being decreased, and you can [ inaudible ] the three last days we have concentrated on their unit on their camps where they used to store equipment.
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we need to prevent these from spreading these weapons. also the support of the [ inaudible ] and the populist militias are great. and these militias are now on the defensive mode because they want to escape. they want to leave their -- their -- their locations with as much as they could equipment and -- and weapons, due to the aerial attacks by the coalition. this is another station communications station that was hit by our forces because the militias were trying to make use of it. when it comes to the ground operations, let me say that 24/7 there is a pressure on sa'dah and the areas in the northern part of yemen.
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that's why they are trying to -- the militias are trying to escape, and we have observed so many things on the borders. we have observed a lot of them. we have observed a lot of movements and attempts to reorganize that's why their artillery have attacked in the areas around sa'dah have attacked the houthis locations. i think media people have seen some of these operations. in order to prevent the militias from achieving any media victory, if you could call it because they are under continuous pressure and god willing, they will never be allow to go through [ inaudible ] saudi arabia. the maritime ships of the coalition are still there to
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prevent any movement to inspect the yemeni port and operations are going normally more or less and in case we find anything we're apply our procedures firmly to make sure that no support are going to these militias. thank you very much. and in case you have any questions we are ready for that now. peace be upon you. what is the reaction of the coalition forces after the u.n. resolution of today? my dear brother, the command of the coalition forces considers the u.n. resolution as a big victory and the support of the yemeni people and the -- you
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all know and everyone knows that the diplomatic effort and the political will together with the military action are going to achieve peace, and this means the international community is quite aware of the situation in yemen, and the international community is quite responsible for protecting the yemeni people together with the coalition operation. that's why we hope that these efforts will be for the sake of the yemeni people and we hope we can bring stability to yemen and its citizens. >> the resolution calls on all parties to end violence. i wondered how that might effect the air strikes as well as the support to committees and other tribes in yemen.
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>> as i mentioned for your [ inaudible ] for you. that is the motion of the united nations, is victory for the yemeni population, a victory for peace, it is complimentary with the coalition operations. you know the -- the political will and the diplomatic effort plus the military operation could make the stability and peace in yemen. and we hope that the houthis militias and their allies understand the mission of the international community, that they have decided to help the population, and bring peace and stability for yemen, and we hope that they understand the message, and the yemeni become peaceful and a stable country. >> just a second question is on egyptian ground troops -- >> all right. we have been listening to the
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saudi briefing getting the latest of what has been happening in yemen. obviously operations are continuing. the fighting continues in and around the southern port city of aden. the popular resistance committee ground forces are making some progress pushing the houthis back. the popular resistance committees are effectively the armed local militia that saudis are relying on to do the fighting on the grown, as the houthis are still holed up in aden. we know that extra troops and equipment has been deployed to the southwestern border with yemen, which lies next to . and also he said that coalition ships are still in place in the waters around yemen, so they are continuing to inspect any cargo or shipment going into yemen.
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of course those ships stationed around the gulf of aden. joining me is a visiting fellow of foreign relations and a yemen specialist. let me start by getting you thoughts there. there seems to have been some progress in pushing the houthis back and we know this is almost certainly the case in two provinces. >> yeah the key is we're seeing progress against the houthis because there is a committed local ground force there. additionally that's why you have seen the houthis manage to be held into this kind of stalemate in aden where you have also had a very committed albeit rag tag force really hold their own against the houthis. most of these forces are simply local men who have taken up arms to try to push back against the houthis. so the fact that they have held their own is rather significant.
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>> i suppose the crucial point about that we were hearing a little bit about operations that are continuing along the yemen, saudi border and the crucial point about that is there are no such forces that they can rely on. >> yeah the houthis have more or less complete control for real four years now. so one, the saudis will not be able to find people easily to partner with. further there is a fact that this is some of the most rugged land in all of yemen. we're talking craggy mountains, mountain passes things like that. so if you are an outsider coming in, you will be facing an uphill battle literally and
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figuratively. >> and we have heard that the former minister of interior and others have arrived in riyadh. there have been reports that this is happening. what could be read into that? >> i think this is rather significant, the head of saleh's party in parliament these are both very significant figures in saleh's party. this could signal that support for saleh is fracturing even among the highest echelons the second thing is that this shows the ground work may be getting laid for some sort of negotiations. this follows the appointment of baja has vice president, he is a much more popular figure and i think he's smart enough to know if he is going to maintain his credibility he has to start making moves as soon as possible towards settlement. >> so possibly we're seeing the
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building blocks to a political solution behind the scenes. is that more likely than perhaps a continuation of the air strikes and more protracted conflict. >> i think both options are on the table. i think what we're likely to see now is the continuation of the air strikes, and if there is no progress towards a political settlement, i think the possibility for ground troops becomes more and more likely. when we look at it. yemen is under effectively a complete naval blockade. the humanitarian situation grows worse every day. so i think all sides really are under pressure to do something to bring this to a conclusion or at the very least bring it to a new stage. >> all right. thanks very much. you can find the latest on yemen and everything we're talking
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about on our website. the address is you'll find the latest comment, analysis and blogs. also reports from sources on the ground. is where you need to go. we're going to bring you an update of all of our top stories in just a few moment's time. do stay with al jazeera. ♪ cloo iraq's prime minister visits president obama at the white house asking for more help and more weapons to fight isil. the united nations security council takes action against yemen's houthi rebels limiting the flow of arms but it may not ease tensions. and years of jail time and fines for some atlanta public school educators who cha