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tv   Going Underground  RT  November 21, 2020 5:30pm-6:00pm EST

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we're going underground as the comparative success of different coronavirus responses takes center stage in saudi arabia. at the 15th summit of the g. 20, representing most of the world economy coming up on the show. will any of the g 20 countries bring up the world's worst humanitarian crisis? yemen when they're hosted today by the saudi autocrats who bomb and blockade? it backed up by u.k. arms. we speak to the man in the white suitable custom martin bell, who has reported from war zones all over the world about the arguable mainstream media blackout of a country facing the largest famine. the world has ever seen. dispatches from the front line of nagorno-karabakh with legendary journalist, peter oborne, all of them all coming up in today's going underground, but 1st saudi arabia today plays host to a virtual g. 20 summit representing most of the world economy. but while coronavirus will be at the top of the agenda, one of the world's worst humanitarian crisis, the one in yemen, the one armed to the teeth by britain despite the evidence of war crimes. joining me now is former british member of parliament and then reward reporter and unicef
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u.k. ambassador martin bell. martin, thanks so much for coming on. i know you're going on in your own capacity here today. begins the g. 20 summit. do you expect yemen to be brought up at the g 20 summit? i certainly do. there are many countries in which the powerful forces arguing against continuing to supply sophisticated systems to the saudi tend to coalition. there is deep concern in many countries, including in the u.k. about the role of the saudi led effort was about attacks on civilians. and i think in the last fight the since the war, they've been an average of one error, a den reach 10 days, and the targeting seems to be temporary indiscriminate which crucial amine kills a bus, abbas hitch schools and so on. so the concern is the identity of the delegates will be doing their job if they, if they can find that gender of the coronavirus. while boris johnson is
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a minister liz just contended that there are isolated incidents that may have breached international law. very different from what you're saying. i think it's very different from what a lot of people are saying, including observers on the ground and human rights groups. the same still be a accident of indiscriminate attacks, of targeting, going wrong. and i think they, they, this seems to me a forum when this can reasonably be the be raised. maybe it's a good thing that it is happening in saudi arabia because they, they need to, they need to be told and they, i, as i said that the delegates won't be doing their job unless they do raise this issue for the good also. because, well, morris johnson, when he was foreign secretary said he didn't want independent inquiries into british arms sales to saudi arabia. as regards yemenis and the saudis have a mess,
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insight into their own procedures and will be able to conduct the most. and vera and conclusive investigations into the kinds of allegations you're making them sick, many people would, would, would agree with that. i think we all have to do what we can look i'm, i'm not in politics anymore, but i was for 10 years on the ethical oversight committee of a vicious electronics company. and 18 months ago, i discovered that they were intending to sell what they called stores really, systems to the saudi air force, where they've been for the contract in the stores being released with weapons. so that point i resigned. i couldn't stay on the board of that company and work for unicef, so we will do what we can and, you know, the house of commons is also going forum to raise these concerns. i haven't, i haven't heard any convincing defense of these arms sales from distrust from our stance and from, from anybody. even though there are
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a must arms sale regimens in place in this country. he even though, has, i said isolated to hinson and i mean, did you do that after you actually visited yemen? as the unicef ambassador, you might have to remind us what you, what you saw when un. yes, i actually visited. i couldn't go now. publics, i'm too old and partly because it's too dangerous and it's hard to, it's hard to get in this with actually 10 years ago that had 6 was in 6 years. and i, so even better, this is before the center is if you gratian of central and requiring this support by the coalition. but i saw the effects even then on these everett's,, i held the hand of a 9 year old girl, was suffering from p.t.s.d., having been bombed in northern yemen. and i, and she didn't know who she was. 00 or where she was. it was, it was
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a most moving incident for me and it struck me that that will fare happens east the states mostly among civilians. civilians are often targeted that's certainly often it. and i realize sets the difference between p.t.s.d. in a child and p.t.s.d. in an adult is just that in a child. it lasts longer. who? well, britain gives aid for those children. and regardless of the fact oxfam is alleging that the g 20 sales dwarfs the actual aid being given. i think the oxfam report says of the g 20 arms sales to saudia 3 times the humanitarian aid money. surely you can criticize the british government for its response to the yemen, humanitarian catastrophe, because it gives so much aid. oh, absolutely, absolutely i'm. i'm very much on the, on, on the side of the, of the people and it gives of aid and the agencies of course,
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legislators give more aid, but let us be very careful about south our military exports. they had to be, they have, i think they should be, they should be stopped spending an international inquiry, which i think the united nations might might well carry out this. i'm not for a moment criticising the amount of aid that we give. i am criticising our arms exports and the damage that they do the you've covered more as in your history of war reporting with the r.a.f. . i mean, how, how is it possible that if they are half a training these pilots that the pilots could be accidentally, or is it deliberately killing men, women, and children in yemen? and so there is not only the saudis, of course, are they the other countries simply in the coalition. i'm not going to criticise a r f, but there would appear to be something wrong with the training if or something defect about it. if they, the,
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if the targeting goes goes wrong so regularly in time making these appear not to be isolated incidents, but they are parts of any action of wrong targeting. and it just couldn't talk. and i accept that jane in modern warfare. there's no real distinction. soldiers have submitted because the war was fought among the civilians and it spread. now, since i was that's the port city of high data and widely across the country. but i think that we cannot we cannot carry on as we have tonight. i only wish i was still a member of parliament, but i, i know there are plenty of m.p.'s waiting to raise. that's what the world talking about tempered jeremy coleman was one who raised it quite a lot. he's in the news breaks. it's in the news cove, it is in the news. can you understand why despite unicef and n.g.o.s trying to get this further up, the mainstream media news agenda it is failing to make the news in this country.
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yes, i do understand that. i watch news broadcasts still quite compulsively, at least one a day. and there's very little in the dating foreign news in the very little about yemen. the wars of africa, the number of countries threatened now by famine you and used to call it food insecurity. and now it's now it's famine. so the country can the yemenis speak in a context of international dockings. and i do understand how the, i think an agenda of the use of gender is taken into a caption if you like by. they can run a virus. but doesn't stop these humanitarian crises. in fact, the crisis is whistling in, in yemen because if they coronavirus these things, these things interact. yeah, the london school of hygiene and tropical medicine saying the deaths have doubled in aden because of covidien. tell me about the scale of the famine because i know
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you saw famine when you were in yemen, but the figure is now a 24000000 needing food assistance out of a population of what 30000000. i think that creates things are getting, getting much worse. the infrastructure has, as has collapsed. you can't have normal agriculture in the middle of a war. millions of people threatened with death by, by starvation. i think signs and they have died because already it's very hard to get the figures because of the crisis on the ground. and even the, even the aid agencies don't have the access to show that satellite imagery is really worrying a freshly dug and dug graves of the, of the victims of the coronavirus. you know, everything. sometimes i felt when i was in yemen that anything that could go wrong was, was going wrong. and to that know the plague of coronavirus and the famine. and it's about as pat is it, as, as he can get. but how can we help?
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we help by, by foreign aid, of course, we help by helping the aid agencies, unicef, and the others looking after the children. and we will help, i think, by stopping the supply of lethal weapons to the saudi led coalition. however much it costs them are all costs to the xoom. what is the nature of the disconnect? some might have thought you had become in sensitized desensitized by all the wars you've covered. but it is a fact that boris johnson, as foreign secretary, signed off as the sending of munition parts to saudi and saudi arabia, days after civilian deaths were being reported of civilians. so why is it your perspective seems so different? he, you think it's so important the home sales, as opposed to the important aid to britain is giving in the same time. i think the
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onset of us has set over half a century. i've been caught up in being a witness told or at the fringes of all 19 woes and all respects, same as and haven't seen it. neither has, has his chance. i think i sometimes describe myself as a battle, softened veteran. i'm not actually a pacifist, so i'm some of the way there. but i have seen at 1st hand the misery and the destruction and, and the end it took close damage that will cause you and i find it just fishy trust rating. no, it's very difficult to get the attention of the world for anything else other than discrete pestilence, sweeping it and the pestilence. his wessling, the plight of the yemeni. and we have to call hold. we have to, and somehow we got to draw attention to this. is it not only that they haven't seen? the kind of things you've seen is, is money in the,
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in quaid equation because britain and the british government apparently are fighting the judicial review after the, after the resumption of a weapon sales that fuel the conflict. there is a judicial review that the campaign is hoping for about weapon sales, because money is part of the equation. economy is quite significantly sustained by arms exports, not just of course, to saudi arabia but, but, but, but all that was the world and it's done by it's done by a special license. but again, i think the moral imperative is so great that if there is a cost to the economy, i think it has to be borne. we claim to be as a civilized people. why are we arming it? can i put it crudely, the gang that can't shoot straight? if i mean, i'm still haunted by what i saw in yemen. that was i do that for a few days. you know, i still children, i saw
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a child dying before my before my eyes to a lack of medical attention. the death toll is, it's unsustainable. and if there's a, if there's a hit to the economy as a result, well is a hit to the economy be claimed to be a civilized nation. civilized nation should not be doing what we're doing and we're not the only run others are doing it as well. martin bell, thank you. after the break, after a putin brokered cease fire, we go to the heart of the frozen conflict that we're taught. they're going to cairo back with award winning journalist peter oborne. all the more coming up about 2 of going on the ground
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it's been decades since the fall of spain's fascist regime, but old wounds still haven't healed in the evenings in the past at the source mean older than just the same cause which we know sells and of newborn babies were torn from their mothers and given away and forced adoption. that only leaves the feaster to this day
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mothers still search for grown children looking in hope for their birth parents. new gold rush is underway in ghana. thousands of ill equipped workers are flocking to the gold fields, hoping to strike it. rich, as children are torn between galled was very poor. i thought i was doing my best to get back to school. which side will have the strongest appeal so what we've got to do is identify the threats that we have. it's crazy confrontation, let it be an arms race in this period. dramatic development. the only time you sit down and talk.
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welcome back. in part one, we have from iconic war correspondent martin bell about the world's worst humanitarian crisis. but let's now look to another persistent cough, exeunt nagorno-karabakh, where a russian brokered cease fire has ended a 6 week long war in a 3 decades old battlefield between azerbaijan and armenia. the great peter oborne was just returned from reporting from the center of the conflict, joins me now from wiltshire in the u.k. . peter, thanks for coming on before we get to know bono karabakh. we heard from one of the most celebrated war correspondents, martin bell, just now yemen. in part one. you were there, i understand. do you understand why other news is pushed yemen out of the headlines? well, it's not near is it that the yen conflict, which is described by the united nations as the worst humanitarian crisis of the 21st century has been disgracefully fully underreported. and that has been some very good reporting,
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but very not nearly enough of know what a mcguffey of the n.b.a. say, by the way, that's an antacid report, but it's totally overlooked. and he can see why there are there are in britain, and you sense a worry whether it's because of the british interests in saudi arabia, which has prevented us from really looking at the exposing the, it's difficult to get to by the way, i mean, you have to get a society possible, i, you know, you've got to be, you've got base very hard to gain. and when you're in, it's not very easy to get around. and there are a putting of it. i mean, the british, the finish hasn't been reported nearly enough, is that shameful kurdish role in aiding and abetting the saudis in the bombing raids in, in yemen which are targeted 70 schools, hospitals, markets, and so forth. and of course, our role in the british role in blocking the and independent war crimes
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investigation. well, obviously the prime minister, your old colleague, boris johnson, denies that as does the british government. it says there have been isolated incidents. i do want to actually, before i can't to the way you've just been by john. another story knocking yemen out, arguably, and saudi which has hosting the g 20 summit is jeremy corbin because he wrote that tearing the labor party apart in middle east. what have you made of the guest? basically throwing him out of the parliamentary labor party. haven't you just got back looking from the looking as it said the outside. the problem with much of the reporting of this case is simply that he's totally one sided and the minute may very organizations and writers who write about it. so you know the facts. and i think this journalism what really speak about training troops is
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a very great issues. but i do think there are bigger aussie tragedy. and that's the argument that making well, corbin, of course, always an ethical foreign policy was central to his leadership of the labor party wiley, while he led it. why should people be interested in armenia and azerbaijan, having a conflict and interested you so much that you went there during a covert pandemic? and of only just got back? yes, by the way, the code was raging. you know, it was, i was free for afraid that i would get stuck. i catch it and then happy stuff that i mean people, you know, war, people forget about, you know, educated at least that becomes less important. and therefore, it's important to go to the magic crowds and i was very concerned about that the, this, this war is, i think, a particularly brutal war. i mean, it was a tweet and it said really reengagement that this conflict which brings in so many global power and russia, turkey,
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israel, through the drones and then the kind of the west stepping back and the plight of the armenians. i mean when i was there, i went to the genocide memorial in if i say arafat and it's very somber. and as far as the one of the fat says, which is you going to be very careful about talking about it. but is that the that the armenians do see themselves not only flightsim be obeyed, john, but as fighting that it's, and of course, the long history of the you know, it's more than 100 years since the media genocide, which of course, is not recognized by turkey at all tonight by turkey and of course not recognize, i think it's very profound this not recognized by the united states or britain
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because quite simply because they don't want to offend that even though so much more information is coming out. and so here you have a battle going on in a nickel, no care about, except that it's legal status, it's very complex studies. it's mainly armenian in terms of people who live there and i to talking to them as they will be driven out of their homes. and to think out of religious places. i mean, it was like a, you were, it was like to a funeral actually. well, i mean, turkey obviously is a nato ally. so perhaps 1 may detect some level of bias, had not read media on the side of azerbaijan. have you detected that, and what did you actually see as regards who are committing the most crimes? i suppose, i mean there was the, it is a war i think it's more that there's
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a limit to myself and this, and so i went that yes, it's very limited understanding of what is actually going on. and it's also important to say i was only on the armenian side, so i got one side of the story and, and i, but i did talk to a lot of soldiers who come back from the front. i talked to their families, talked to widows or took suit and the story was very consistent. so it's a civilian army. so in a way i hadn't really appreciated that it's an extraordinary year 98 place. i had an amazing, very moving profound conversation with a doctor who'd worked in one of the hospital surgeon who works in the house to a year of that. and he said on the 27th of september that they fight the, the bombing started. his son was a conscripts in a circus,
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they called the border koroma and he just going to his car and drove to find the sun. and they go right at that. and already the shelling had started and he was there one and he spent the next. he would not be separated from me some for the next $44.00 days until the conflict ended. i don't incredibly moving and then he's a kind of what it was like permanent shadow and then drove us drones apart all the time. he should use ready drones and he acts and the feeling i mean as faces as this is mean, you know that you're not really can see or enemy and the drones sort of holler above you and they may be punished for kind of cause he drones. it was an incredibly brave man. i mean, he said that the one he wouldn't be separated would be somebody didn't want him solely to be redeployed amun, but one occasion in the middle of the battlefield. there were 4 wounded. and you know, if you went in a back in
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a car in the middle of the night and obviously as lights off, picked up the full into soldiers and went back in then i think which he's a doctor. he would appreciate them and 1st and he does is say no matter of fact and actually worry to you that if he was why did was not the fact the u.k. into the range of the as a very foresees, what worried it was that he was separated from his son and there were cases of grandfathers, fathers and sons, all fighting gather. he said it's quite moved. and the grace of attrition was enormously, as they said, there was a platoon of summers in a platoon of about 22 open forward kills 2. missing and about 11 or 12 including his son have been willing to eat so that he's in a 44 day war. that's a very high rate of attrition. who invite the turkish and, and israeli ambassadors on to try and refute any allegations that are going to
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disappear. war crimes, being conducted by my generation, gesture that the use of drone warfare against troops. this is a war crime. i made him and the next there are war crimes. there are allegations about the killing of civilians on both sides. it should be sad. i spent a long time with a remarkable man. actually i was a human rights on but it's moment in our blind man. he gave me the face said about 50 civilians to show had been killed by sharing and that's a war crime targeting of civilians. and he also said that up in sushi, the bay city which fell on the eve of the ceasefire. he said there are about 30 civilians missing that he felt they were probably dead. many of them he said back. he thought if you have a behavior that worked there, would you have any groups operating on the villages get to those. yanni group halla geishas,
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because i know britain notoriously supported the overthrow of president assad in syria. did you see any evidence there that perhaps al-qaeda linked isis linked people from the syrian conflict to a de facto mak by turkey. and of course, nato nations that they were being used as kind of mercenary troops by azerbaijan, against armenia. well, again, i am going to repeat, i was only on the with the armenian side, i didn't, i did not get a shot, but they were clear that mercenary or jihadi groups gone from syria so that syria, bashar and were fighting. and they had really quite upset a film they show. this is not, this is i can't check natural, terribly upset, film out of jihadi operates. they actually say we should be put out except by the jihadists themselves of horrible are terrorists, mistreatment,
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including the headings. but between and the reports are between about 2 to 4000 of these groups were operating. well, obviously we can vary by and he claims that he got there. i don't recall if they came from syria and of course, similar groups do seem to be deployed in libya. of course we're expecting of course . now people are talking about a my presidency. perhaps some talk of the people around him, the old obama, people who obviously supported those rebels against the syrian government. i really just got time to ask you about someone who didn't eliminate struggles in armenia as a page on hand all around the world. julian, a songe. what would you say about british conduct of the case very briefly, and what have you made of these reports that coronaviruses was to lock down at the prison. he, according to the un special rapporteur on his welter, is being tortured in well, i only had the same reports you have,
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that there are the areas in belmarsh. i think i'm right in saying in isolation, the tribe it is in the aspiring to the present as we should not be surprising there . or we had very serious testimony about race baiters health in the, in the hearing which finished in september. and i think there is a reason for grave concern about the health of jewry, an assumption. and i, i think ladies, i don't see being in belmarsh now is more than a year. i was in there are i, i'm what i think you should be. i think that's great. i think he should be concerned about his health and the way he's being treated because i want thank you . the show will be back on monday, 39 years to the day. u.s. president reagan national security decision director 17, which gave the cia authority to recruit militarily, support contra death squads against nicaragua,
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leading to 30000 dead until then join the underground. when you troops on pattinson on facebook and twitter, a new gold rush is underway and workers are flocking to the gold fields, hoping to strike it rich. as children, a tool in between gold. my family was very poor. i thought i was doing my best to get back to school, which side will have the strongest appeal many, many times countries will need to strategically, politically get into this is what's happening in the united states right now.
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clashes break out in central paris over a security bill criminalizing the filming of french police officers say it will fuel police brutality and violate press freedoms. a lawsuit by u.s. republicans. democrats encouraged to native americans in nevada to vote in exchange for gift cards. helping joe biden win the state and experts question whether a new u.s. with german vaccine will be viable saying it would need to store it at minus 70 degrees celsius is.


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