>> we have a table and eight chairs, and probably a few plants. >> i spent eight hours yesterday, cleaning up the tumble weed. and this is what i have got today. all of the news at aljazeera.com. aljazeera.com. the white house lays out the details for the president's newly announced trip to cuba. new numbers out showing donald trump may be losing his lead heading into the next republican primary. turkey blaming syrian kurds for that deadly explosion. and a california hospital admitting that it gave hackers big money to get its computer system back online. ♪
this is al jazeera america live in new york city. i'm del walters. for the first time in almost 90 years, a u.s. president will be going to cuba. president obama tweeting this morning that he will head to havana on march 21st. we'll meet with raul castro, and plans to meet with civil society organizations, and cuban entrepreneurs. mike viqueira is live with us from washington. and mike, what is the goal of this visit? >> reporter: well, the president says there has been progress made in 14 months, del. and he believes, and as do his aids that going to cuba will further that progress. but this is something that president obama has personally wanted to do. there you see him shaking hands with raul castro in panama. as talks had been underway for
quite sometime, secret talks brokered by st. francis in the vatican. and then over the summer in july, the cuban flag being raised in washington over what is now the cuban embassy. in that flag being raised for the first time in 54 years. the united states reciprocating in august. president obama despite the criticism that there has been very little progress on human rights since this a announcement, president obama believes he is going to keep the momentum going here; that the openings that he has announced just the other day, more direct flights being announced between the united states and cuba, the united states easing that restriction, he believes that his presence there will continue what he believes a march towards openness in cuba that bebeen when he normalized diplomatic relations. >> mike, why now? what about the timing? and how does this play into the
presidential race? >> reporter: first of all the logistics, you never know exactly what goes into something like this. the president has long planned trip to south america. he will be bringing along the first lady, michelle obama. it is also the last year of his presidency. that's obvious. this is something that everybody expected him to do. he said he wants to meet with civil society, in other words those individuals who are involved in civil rights and humanitarian causes in cuba, if he were to go. and that something the cuban government isn't obviously going to be too keen on. as far as the reaction from republicans, very predictable. bush called it appalling. rubio and cruz are objecting. congress has refused to raise the trade embargo, and blocking the appointment of an
ambassador. >> mike, also this, the white house announcing this morning that the president is not going to attend the funeral of supreme court justice antonin scalia. >> reporter: that's right. they let that be known yesterday, however, he will lie in repose in the grand chamber of the supreme court tomorrow over the course of the day and president obama will attend that ceremony. that will occur sometime in the morning. but at the national shrine, the basilica of the national shrine, pope francis stopped there for an enormous mass last august, just up the street from the supreme court, president obama will not be attending the funeral there. he'll be sending joe biden. conservative media is aghast saying this is a slight against scalia. pointing out how many times president obama has attended what they consider lesser lights many america. the funeral happens on saturday, del.
>> mike thank you very much. the latest poll shows that ted cruz is now inched ahead of donald trump. the republican primaries in south carolina and the caucuses in nevada. the latest poll showing that it is the first time that this has happened, but a cbs news poll gives trump a commanding lead, nearly double that of cruz. and also good news for marco rubio, nikki haley endorsing him. endorse coming as trump and cruz squared off last night in a series of townhall meetings. >> reporter: the republican candidates each had the stage to himself during townhalls on cnn, and msnbc, but they still took shots and depends against attacks from the others as if they were in a debate. >> he makes statements about -- like i'm pro-life, and he said he is not pro-life.
he can't say that. >> it is the most ridiculous theory i have heard that telling the voters what donald trump's record is is, is deceitful and lying. >> whenever anyone points to their actual record, to what they have said, voted on, and done, they start screaming liar, liar, liar. >> i don't know this back and forth is silly. >> reporter: but with the spotlight on only one candidate at a time came more pointed questions. >> are you qualified to be commander in chief and are you qualified to deal with these national security threats? >> i obviously think so, or i wouldn't be running for president. it's the political class that has tried to convince everybody that they are the only ones that can solve the problems. >> i think my biggest strength -- >> jeb bush would disagree.
lindsey graham would disagree. >> jeb is a sad case. >> see there you go again. >> no one running for president has more experience on position thattal security or foreign policy than i do. >> reporter: on the issue of appointing a replace for the late supreme court justice, dr. ben carson broke with his competitors. >> i would probably take the opportunity to nominate someone. >> reporter: the others have said it should be up to whoever wins in november to name who is the next justice. and donald trump brushed off that poll that puts him behind ted cruz nationwide. >> i never do well with the wall street journal. a former justice is weighing in on just who she thinks should appoint antonny scalia's endorsement. >> reporter: so when you hear one side saying they would like to wait until the next president is in office to appoint a
justice, what do you think about that? >> i don't agree. i think we need somebody there now to do the job and let's get on it. >> reporter: she was nominated by then president ronald reagan. she retired back in 2006 to care for her ailing husband. and some republicans also breaking ranks on what the president should do. the senator from nevada saying the president should appoint someone. he later backtracked however. senator corner saying he is open to hearings. and chuck grassley saying he is going to wait until a nominee is named to decide whether to schedule any hearings. turkey's president vowing to retaliate to a deadly bombing there on wednesday. a convoy of military personnel near the turkish parliament was the target. turkish leaders blame kurdish
rebels from syria. >> reporter: it took the turkish government just a few hours to identify those it believes carried out wednesday's dead i will bomb attack. officials are blaming the ypg. though it denies any involvement in the explosion. ankara, says the ypg in syria is an offshoot of the pkk, a separatists group that has been fighting the turkish government for decades. >> translator: the investigation into the attack continues so far nine people linked to the bombing have been taken into custody, and others have been identified. there will be other arrests in due course. that's all the information i can give in detail right now. >> reporter: security has become more and more of a certain in turkey in recent month bs. in october a twin bomb attack killed close to a hundred people in the capitol. and just a few weeks ago, isil claimed responsibility after a man blew himself up at an
historic site popular with tourists in istanbul. all of these attacks are linked to the war in sir yoo. turkey has been saying that its allies need to support it in its fight against those it calls terrori terrorists. but as far as the u.s. and other western powers are concerned, the ypg is its ally in the fight against isil. >> translator: the pyd and ypg in the north of syria and linked with the pkk in turkey, we have touched upon. we have said repeatedly there is a strong link between them. sooner or later our allies will understand, one day these terrorist ore niceations and those who support them will be judged. >> reporter: earlier turkish war planes bombed targets in northern iraq. ankara has been shelling ypg
forces inside syria for weeks now. but so long as syria and its russian allies control the sky, that option appears to be off of the table. with wednesday's attack calls increased anger from turkey towards its allies. the government here clearly feels it is being let down by the u.s. and nato. this latest attack could provide justification for turkey to send forces across the border, but itself position tweerds syrian-based kurdish groups continues to be at difference with its allies. a new report, shows the u.s. military struggles to help soldiers who suffer from posttraumatic stress disorder and depression. the ranged corporation studied 40,000 cases, and shows that two-thirds of troops who suffer from ptsd, don't get the minimum
number of sessions they need. the study does, however, point to some improvements. and the fcc voting on new regulations that could cut your cable bill. it would let customers buy cable boxes from companies like google and amazon. the fcc says it hopes the move will help lower your prices. toyia announcing a recall because of seat belts that say they could fail in a crash. it involves nearly 2.9 million suvs, 1.9 are in the united states, it covers rav4s from 2005 to 2014, and the rav4 electric vehicle from 2012 as well. up next, the effect this battle is having on illinois residents. and we take a look at why the number of babies born across the u.s. are addicted to drugs. ♪
this afternoon a judge is going to here from the mother of sandra bland, the texas woman who died in police custody last year. she says she hopes to gain access to records, including a report by the texas rangers of bland's death and also an unedited video of her detention. the medical examiner ruling her death was a suicide. her family, though is
unconvinced. and hillary clinton was on the campaign trail with blanked's mother yesterday, and told the crowd that her vote will go to clinton. and clinton talked about systemic racism and police brutality. >> we owe it to them to reform police practices. [ cheers and applause ] >> to make sure no other young woman like sandra bland is ever pulled out of a car for no good reason and thrown into a jail where she was found dead. well, clinton and her rival bernie sanders trying to court minority voters, but sanders had to disimportance himself by comments made by the rapper killer mike. he said he was quoting another progressive saying, quote, a uterus does not qualify you to be president of the united states, end quote. in that comment sparked a fierce debate on social media.
there are some serious money problems in illinois. and that is where the governor says he wants to cut billions to end the budget battle. as andy roesgen reports, the fight is having a -- major effect on the most vulnerable. >> reporter: kristen treats drug addicts at this center that is funded partly by the state of illinois. she was a drug addict herself. >> the environment, what i felt was like a very safe comfortable place to heal and grow. i was at a bottom that no one wanted to help me. and this was my only choice. >> reporter: but most of the services here are going away, because the state is locked in a budget stalemate between the first term governor, and a democratic-controlled state legislature. this is the longest illinois has
ever gone without a state budget. each side is blaming each other. >> the majority party thought that just raising taxes to fund those services, they could do it. they -- and they haven't -- they haven't even moved a finger to go do that. >> we ought to get busy, sit down. what can we do to solve this budget problem? >> reporter: thanks like state parks and museums have already been closed. payments to latry winners have been delayed, but the cuts to lutheran services represent the biggest cut yet. >> we are adding to the number of people in illinois who can't access services. >> reporter: another floor for cold turkey detox is closing, as is the residence haul for female addicts. >> it's just making it harder and more difficult for everybody. >> reporter: the state's human services department tells us that the patients will have
other options for treatment, but the director says that is kind of like ford shutting down and gm and chrysler having to pick up the slack. >> the simple nature of going someplace where you are familiar, where you trust the staff, that's going to be gone. >> it's a going to be a fight to get into treatment centers, because all of these people -- they are closing all of these places, and people want to get in. they want the help. >> reporter: lutheran social services says the state owes it $6 million for services and hasn't made a payment in seven months, so it is laying off 750 people around the state, effecting nearly 5,000 patients and senior citizens. there is no patience around here for the politicians in this budget stalemate. >> it's about the money, they are going to be paying for it with jail or prison, and it is going to be more money. >> reporter: even the alcohol rehab clinic is now closing.
and he and kristen fear for those who are used like they used to be. there is more trouble for cliven bundy and some of his supporters. a jury indicted bundy for that standoff in nevada. bundy right now is in jail in oregon. he and his son ammon were among those charged with occupying that federal wildlife center there. the university of texas, austin out with his plan for allowing handguns on college campuses. the law requires public colleges and universities to allow for concealed carry. under the plan, concealed guns will not be allowed in dorms or offices or open to the public. a trial is underway for a
man in phoenix for a man accused of supporting isil. he is charged with orchestrating a violent attack at a cartoon contest int dks last year. in that event was designed to showcase images of the prophet muhammad. up next a hospital hacked and held for ransom. and this is being called the hairy panic, and it is paralyzing an australian town. we'll explain. ♪
opioid addictions is a growing crisis in america, now that epidemic is reaching newborns. every 25 minutes there is a baby born suffering from withdraw. kimberly halkett has more from baltimore. >> reporter: every day for two weeks, michael george has made this hour-long trip, his first trip to a clinic to help withdrew from heroin. his second stop is to see his newborn daughter, also withdrawing from drugs. his daughter was born hooked on heroin, and other drugs her mother took during pregnancy. after two weeks in hospital, isabelle, like so many other drug-dependent babies is still
suffering from tremendousers, feeding difficulties and distress. >> it hurts a lot. it does. >> reporter: in the united states the number of drug he dependant babies is soaring. they argue the reason is an increasing number of prescriptions being written for painkillers. it is often considered the gateway drug for heroin. >> this past year we admitted about 100 babies with withdrawal. now on that ends up to be about 20% of the total infant population here. >> reporter: what baltimore's hospital, special units are equipped with low light to help babies. still their first few hours are often spent in agony. >> my addiction was soed bad,
you know, that i really didn't stop and think what i was doing to my child, but when she was born, that's when it really opened my eyes. >> reporter: to the outcome of their addiction, michael is now jobless, facing jail time for drug use, amanda must submit to random drug tests. if she tests positive, she could lose her child. >> i want the best for her like every mom does. i just have to keep myself together so she can have that. >> reporter: still isabelle remains in intensive care, spending another night in the hospital without her parents, adjusting to a life without drugs. kimberly halkett, al jazeera, baltimore. this morning a california hospital is defending how it ended a hack attack on its servers. it paid thousands of dollars to end the cyber threat.
ines ferre has more. >> reporter: hollywood press bah tarn medical center admits it paid up. hackers took control of the computers, demanding a payment of $17,000 in digital currency called bitcoin. >> once they infect your system it is contagious, and typically there is a key to undo it. think of it like a virus and antidote. so the key is basically the antidote. >> reporter: in a statement, the hospital says the quickest and most efficient way to restore our systems was to pay the ransom and obtain the key. the hacked computers had been off line for about a week, included those needed for lab work, pharmaceutical orders and the emergency room. >> all of the signs said do not use the computers. i'm like what is going on here?
and they said, well, we got hacked. >> reporter: in an email to al jazeera, the fbi confirmed it is investigating a cyber compromise at the hospital to determine the person or group responsible, but due to the ongoing investigation, we're not at liberty to provide specific details. a similar attack happened to a south florida plastic surgeon two years ago. >> we knew there were these internet blackmailers saying we had to pay them in bitcoin immediately or lose our files forever. >> reporter: the doctor said after paying the ransom he received the key and regained control of his files. >> this is the form of the easiest armed robbery that you can have. this will happen, and unfortunately this will happen more and more. >> reporter: according to global network security report, there was a 25% increase in ransomware attacks last year. and the world health
organization saying it wants more money to fast track research for vaccines for zika. most of the focus is in rio. meanwhile organizers are offering up a drone's eye view of the games. 10,500 athletes are going to be competing. it will be the first olympic games held in latin america. and australia, the warm weather creating a nuisance. residents of a small town up to their heads in tumble weeds. residents say you can see, are doing everything they can to move what they are now calling the hairy panic from their homes. thanks for joining us. i'm del walters. the news continues live from london next. and a reminder you can fine us 24 hours a day, 7 days a week by logging on to our website, aljazeera.com, where the news never stops. ♪
police arrest the main challenger to uganda's president as the opposition alleges vote rigging. good to have you along, i'm david foster. also coming up in this program. syria's main kurdish armed group denies turkey's accusation that it planted a car bomb in ankara, killing 28 people. the u.k. prime minister david cameron is in brussels meeting other