>> a major offensive with airstrikes on aleppo, but opposition say that it is undermining talks in geneva. hello there, i'm barbara sierr certificate serra. you're watching al jazeera news. the "world health organization" sets up a gear in the fight against zika virus. the eagle has landed dutch police's latest measure to keep dangerous drones away.
>> syrian government forces have launched a major offensive from the north of aleppo and captur ed several strategically important towns. they're trying to cut supply lines to aleppo. they've captured the aim is to break through rebel-held territory to reach the pro government villages. by doing this the government would cut off rebel fighters in the north and prevent reinforcements from getting through. we have reports from southern turkey close to the syrian border. >> this battle can change the balance of power. the syrian army and it's allies are taking it town by town in the northern countryside of
aleppo. with the help of russian air power the government is advancing. civilians are caught in the cross fire and the heavy bombardment is forcing many families to leave. >> look at the situation. look at those people who are arriving. all the roads are closed. they're surrounded by the regime and isil. where should people go? there are no homes, and no camps. >> thonce a free syrian army commander in aleppo explained the objective from the campaign. the army he said is pushing north towards the loyalist towns. those towns are predominantly shia, and they're on a highway that runs between the turkish border in the divided city of aleppo. >> it won't an good situation for us. they are in effect military
bases. there are fighters and weapons there. >> rebels are fighting back hard if they lose ground their stronghold inside aleppo city will be cut off from the rest of the province. there has been no easing of the conflict on the ground despite efforts in geneva to reduce the violence. the offensive is the latest government push against strongholds across the country. the turkish border has been their lifeline. >> russia's intervention has changed the dynamics on the ground. the air campaign over recent months have targeted rebel supply lines of turkey as well as moderate groups that operate under the fsa flag. >> the russians want to eliminate the free syrian army. they want to say there is no revolution. the choice will be between the regime and the terrorists. >> the battle has reached a
crucial stage. this will be a major strategic loss and symbolic blow to the revolution because aleppo is home to the strong holds in the north who fight under the pattern of the syrian army. >> that battle in aleppo is taking place. in geneva they're attempting to find common ground. al jazeera's diplomatic editor james bays has this report from switzer. >> and the delegation from the syrian regime arriving at the u.n. they're supposed to be talking peace. instead, the government has launched a major escalation. the man in charge of convening the talks has repeatedly called for the lifting of sieges and has asked all the the countries who are in the sponsor of this process however, opposition members say th they've carried
out heavy bombing in support of the defense around aleppo. >> we're hoping for a good surprise and nice surprise that would have give us some oxygen to hope and to reassure our people that we made the right decision by coming to geneva. instead, we had this unbelievable attack of this morning, unprecedented air bombing on the city of aleppo and on the city of homs. aleppo is currently under huge attacks. we have not seen that since the beginning of the revolution. it looks even like aleppo might be besieged. >> members of the main opposition block have been having almost continuous meetings in this hotel. they decided not to go to the u.n. again to see the special envoy, but for now they're staying in geneva. they know very well that their position is the undermined by the russian and syrian
government military operation, which they believe was carefully tied to this moment. they want their allies to speak out, the ongoing bombardedment is not only causing bloodshed in syria it risks destroying these talks. >> the coalition of countries fighting isil met in rome and pledged to continue the fighting against syria and iraq. the u.s. secretary of state john kerry warned to be wary of isil. al jazeera has sent us this report from rome. >> taking on isil remains a top priority for the international community. the gathering that would establish in 2014 to stem the rise of isil iraq and syria say there is a long way to go. the ongoing fighting as if deteriorates humanitarian situation in syria is likely to
empearl the push to defeat isil. it's the reason why u.s. secretary of state urged the syrian government to allow aid to reach those badly affected in different places. >> children are suffering. not as a result of an accident of war, but as the consequence of an absolutely intentional tactic. as i mentioned that tactic of using starvation as an instrument of war is directly against the law of war. >> key players in the coalition like saudi arabia and turkey insist isil won't be defeated as long as president bashar al-assad stays in power. this is another potential battleground for the coalition. libya has been marred by
infighting. the off shoot along the coastal area to europe's door step. the international coalition is considering a military operation to stem the rise of isil. >> we know that the more daesh is squeezed in its territory, the more it is tempted to carry out its activities elsewhere by targeting other countries, and we're witnessing renewing activity in libya and in sub-sahara africa all by looking for fighting. >> but libya remains politically divided. the government was announced a few weeks ago but soon was rejected by the internationally recognized parliament in the east. the political en pass played into the hands of isil that continuously expands in the african country. despite the ongoing airstrikes against isil and iraq and syria,
the group that controls the huge swaths of land and is expanding in north africa was trying to build a base in libya. there is a growing consensus of actioner it should be followed by a diplomatic push to end war in syria and end fighting in libya. hashem ahelbarra, al jazeera, rome. >> the first case of the zika virus transmitted within the united states has been reported in dallas. authorities say it was contracted through sexual transmission. virus is connected to bitter defects and has spread to 24 countries. the "world health organization" has called the outbreak an international emergency. alan fisher is live for news washington, d.c.
what more do we know about this case? >> the confirmation of this case coming from the last few hours in dallas. they say that the patient contracted the zika virus after having sexual inter course with someone who had been in the country in this case we're told it was venezuela. this has happened before in 2008. a colorado researcher passed on the virus to his wife after he returned from a trip where again the zika virus was known to exist. the authorities say this will obviously change the mention that they're putting out to people. not only do they need to take protection against areas where there is a risk, wearing long sleeves, spraying themselves with deet and avoid areas late at night and early in the morning when mosquitoes are most active. now they're saying if you have a partner who has been to an area where this is prevalent you have to use a con dome to protect
yourself and them as well. the authorities in dallas are saying this was not transferred by a mosquito. as you see, it comes just a day after the "world health organization" declares the zika virus a global emergency. >> thank you. >> earlier i spoke with a scientist in england who said that the mosquito bite is still the easiest way to cash the zika virus. >> it is important to get this in context. it's important to know the routes by which the virus can be spread. it has already been known that it could be spread by sexual transmission, but the frequency by which it occurs is very low.
international coalition against isil has spoken out against the group which is expanding in libya. zika it was mita was transmitted through sexual transmission. spain has nominated pedro sánchez as prime minister. he has a chance to lead talks against parliament who is in deadlock. sánchez said he'll need three weeks before a parliamentary confidence vote can be organized. one day after iowa voters cast their ballot in the u.s. presidential primaries the candidates turn their attention to new hampshire. in the democratic camp it is up tight two candidate races between hillary clinton and bernie sanders. the republican race is led by senator ted cruz followed by donald trump and senator marco
rubio. >> iowa, thank you. >> boosted by iowa. leading in new hampshire, bernie sanders is riding a surprising scurge we look to do well in new hampshire. after that we're off to do battle in south carolina where i think we'll surprise a whole bunch of people. >> the 74-year-old socialist is giving presumed frontrunner hillary clinton a surprisingly strong run. >> we're bringing all that energy, all that excitement, all that determination right here to new hampshire, where we're going to work hard. up until the primary. >> for donald trump t who came in second new hampshire is a way to regroup after the loss in iowa. >> we will go on to get the republican nomination, and we'll go on to beat hillary or bernie or whoever the hell they put
throug there. >> this election is not going to be decided by the lobbyists and the washington cartel. [applause] it's going to be decided by the grassroots. >> the u.s. republican senator marco rubio with a close third place in iowa means new momentum. >> we neaneed to unify the republican party. i can do that. >> it's unclear how long candidates jeb bush can go on mustering money and votes, but with bernie sanders with a close race with hillary clinton the democratic race is close about no end in sight. >> jeb bush tried to move past his weak showing in iowa. >> it's an extraordinary win. he worked really hard. he deserves praise for his
victory, but if you look at their records they're gifted in how they speak, but what about their life experience? >> for the remaining contenders new hampshire offers another chance to change the stakes. al jazeera, des moines, iowa. >> after two days of heavy shelling, yemen's national museum has been destroyed by fire. many of the manuscripts have been burned and the antiques have melted at the national museum we have the updates to the my see. >> um-- i stand here in the museum in taiz. you can see the fire is in every corner here in the building. everything was burned down. the manuscripts.
here in my land, the pistol of imam ahmed. and it melted because of the fire. it was the leader of the family and the last monarch in yemen this is yemen's heritage burned to the ground. various belongings of the ruling family that governed yemen and now everything has turned into ashes. this is the hill where the houthi ali abdullah saleh forces she willed the museum from, and even until knew they at th they keep bombing the area. al jazeera, taiz. >> south sudan's former vice president muchar has told al jazeera it will take at least three weeks and support from the international community to get troops to the capital of juba for the formation of the unity
government. muchar had failed to meet the deadline despite signing the peace agreement. we have the latetress nairobi. >> for the third year south sudan is one of the countries that dominated the recent african union summit. what started out as a dispute between the president and vice president had evolved into an ethnic conflict. tens of thousands people since have been killed. millions displaced. the two failed to meet a deadline, and despite a peace agreement in place, fighting is still continuing. heads of state at the a.u. summit demanded the leaders form a traditional government as soon as possible. >> we have to form the government, and we will prepare ourselves. and then the security.
>> muchar told us with the logistical financial support from the international community it will take up to three weeks to get his troops to juba. >> what has delayed the formation of the government is that the president is awaiting for the arrival of the leader of the rebel movement so that they can form the government. >> they felt that they will go to juba. there will be no more conditions, and you will, together as a government, form this transitional government they've been waiting for for so long. >> you know, ma'am, i want to be in juba. i want the government national unity to be formed as soon as possible. all we needed is to insure that the obstacles which were--which were creating difficulties for us to form the government are removed. >> the armed opposition group
had pulled out of negotiations after the president decided to increase the states to 28 up from 10. it was not in the spirit of the peace agreement, and it must be withdrawen for now. >> he has formed 21 states. >> representatives from both sides are now willing to reach a compromise. so with that out of the way they execute arrangements in juba demightizinmight demilitarizing th. >> they will make plans to extend th the national state of emergency for another three months. it will give authorities sweeping powers allowing police
to conduct arrests. neave barker is reporting from paris. >> in the land of liberty, equality and fraternity, matters of national security and now center stage. since the paris attacks france has been living under a state of emergency, and many people here welcome it. >> the measures are good. they allow us to identify people with bad intentions. >> i prefer to see some that no one would be killed in the streets. i think we must be very careful today. >> at the end of february the three month long state of emergency will expire after weeks of speculation the french governments also now almost certain to speak parliaments approval to extend it. the state of emergency gives authorities unprecedented power to be able to arrest and conduct
searching without the need of a warrant. also to shut down websites seeming to glorifying acts of violence and to start public gathering and demonstrations. the french government says the country is at war. >> we are going to extend the state of emergency. we've already voted for two anti-terrorism bills, and we're also going to propose the law giving more powers to the police and the courts. >> but plans to extend the measures have led to this. thousands took to the streets of paris over the weekend. many hearsay the measures threaten french values, freedom of speech, and the right to demonstrate. there are also questions about the effectiveness of the measures. since the attacks police have carried out thousands of raids but so far only four terrorism related investigations have been opened. activists say the heighten the security is unfairly targeted
muslim community. >> the measures are taken by the government are counter productive. state of emergency, nothing works. >> there are some signs of descent. last year the justice minister resigned about a reform that would allow people convicted of terrorism to be stripped of their french citizenship. more than two months after the attacks there is still a place of initial mourning. despite the criticism, many believe it should come first but many ask if these temporary measures will become a permanent reality. >> the leader of the russian rebel of chechnya is accused of bowing to the pressure of the
u.s. an outspoken supporter has been accused of being a threat. the prime minister has hammered out a deal with e.u. officials. now he must sell it to his own people. >> we want to have an europe where we're not consumed in a super state but where we can be proud and independent. we want an europe that is competitive. we want an europe that accepted our currency and treats us fairly and we want an europe that--
>> among the key points in the e.u. negotiation, a restriction on social benefits that e.u. citizens can claim in britain for the first four years. new limits on british social benefits that e.u. workers are able to send to their children still living abroad. a guarantee to british tax payers that their money won't be used to bail out troubled countries in the eurozone. they sound like dry details but there are big issues at stake for the british people. those campaigning for britain to leave the e.u. will now try to persuade them that the prime minister has failed to win significant concessions. >> it has made no progress on genuine controls over the number of people who can come into the country and what qualifications
and what they may have. they have not brought back power with countries outside of the e.u. he has not brought back additional goals, and he has not reduced our budget contributions one iota. >> the proposals will go before other other leaders for their agreement. if they sign up to them, they could announce that the referendum could be as soon as june. >> here in westminster and in the british media the referendum campaign has already effectively gun, and the polls suggest that the results will be close. european leaders are frustrated with britain's demands. but they would like to ebritains stay in the e.u. not least because of the country's diplomatic military significance. so european leaders will be watching the u.k. very closely over the next few months. >> you india's supreme court will reexamine a law that
punishes people who take part in homosexual act which carries a tariff of up to a decade in prison. a five-judge panel will reconsider a ruling that says only parliament can change the 1861 law which bans gay sex. >> around 40,000 train passengers remain stranded because of heavy snow. earlier in the day more than 52,000 commuters were stuck there, most of them were heading home to celebrate chinese new year. many of the delayed passengers had to be housed in makeshift sheds. dutch police are testing a new method of removing drones from the skies if they present a safety threat. bald eagles are being trained to bring down small commercial drones. they're investigating will the eagle's tallinn tall talons are
strong enoug enough. we have more of everything else we've been covering on the website at www.aljazeera.com. >> being able to have windows into three, four different communities is something that i feel privileged to the swedish-raised celebrity cook was born if ethiopia but group in scannedan ava. he and his sister were adopted after their mother died from tush tuberculosis. in life, the worst thing can be a saviour.