tv DW News LINKTV February 5, 2021 3:00pm-3:31pm PST
berlin. expelling diplomats as tensions rise over jailed kremlin critic exei navalny. mr. navalny was put on trial again. the foreign affairs chief said relations with russia are at an all-time low point. german chancellor angela merkel condemns expulsions as unjustified. she attended a security meeti with the french president.
turkey has refused an appeal to release prominent philanthropist -- the latest from our correspondent in istanbul. they fled war and famine. freezing temperatures make life harder for syrian refugees sheltering in idlib province. ♪ i am full gale. welcome to the program. germany has summoned the russian ambassador over the kremlin's expulsion of swedish, polish and german diplomats, accusing them of taking part in illegal protests against the jailing of alexei navalny. the russian announcement came as a top diplomat was in moscow describing the bloc's ties with russia under severe strain. reporter: t gl is to keep
communication chanls open as there for an representatives visit moscow. there are opportunities for cooperation. during his meeting with sergey lavrov, the representative said the russian vaccine sputnik view was one of them, but neither side has -- the elephant in the room is alexei navalny. >> i convey our deep concern and we have an appeal to his release and an investigation of his poisoning. reporter: russia's foreign minister argues the e.u. is acting more like the u.s., always threatening new sanctions. we have become accustomed to unilateral and illegitimate measures and we have adjusted our positions accordingly. we assume the e.u. is no longer
a reliable partner. elsewhere in moscow, journalists waited outside a district court during a hearing in another trial against navalny. he is accused of slandering a war veteran. he reportedly saw it and meeting with the kremlin critic, but it is unsure if he can see him before his departure saturday. phil: those diplomatic expulsions overshadowed a virtual defense of security council meeting between the leaders of germany and france friday afternoon, the first meeting between angela merkel and emmanuel macron since joe biden took office. the leaders have been pushing differing solutions toward worsening relations with russia. both condemned russia's actions. here is angela merkel -- >> during our meeting, we were also informed about the expulsion of german, swedish and polish diplomats from moscow in
connection with demonstrations related to mr. navalny. we consider these expulsions unjustified and believe this to be another expression of what we are seeing in russia. it is far from the rounds of the rule of law. phil: bruno is a senior fellow specializing in defense. welcome to dw. east germany -- is germany's response likely to go further, telling the russian ambassador off? bruno: the eves today were t a incidence, it is russia showing its muscle, telling the e.u., look what we can do. we can expel members, even though the top foreign affairs chief is in town trying to appease relations. this was pouring oil on the fire and a significant provocation
from russia to europe. there are two options. the countries to whom the diplomats belong could decide to summoned the ambassador, but also decide to expel russian diplomats from their own territory. this could be one option at the national level. i think the other option would be an e.u.-wide response from the european union. and we talk about sanctions. sanctions are complex. only lastonth e.u. foreign affas ministers were in brussels. theyailed to impose new sanctions. ere is no unity aroun this. that approach is lost. the nt -- stop her to d a may be next nth. there will be an e.u. summit in brussels. leaders could examine the
possibility to introduce new sanctions. as diplomatic retaliation, it is late and slow. phil: so much to unpack. i wonder if that perceived lack of unity is why russia has chosen to do this? if not, what is behind this hardening of attitude from ruia choosing to make this calculated insult? bruno: the hardening orussia foreign policy has to do with diplomatic interest. atever russia bught, it serves a domestic interest. it sers the kremlin as a tool to tell its people, we have an adversary, an enemy, and the country must unite. this is behind the kremlin hardening position. especially in difficult times for russia, when people are protesting the kremlin.
in terms of the european union, nothing is black or white, it is grey. there is a level of unity with respect to how the e.u. thinks about russia. they have agreed to condemn russia. they have agreed on sanctions in the past. but when we talk about real responses, the picture is complicated. you have e.u.ouries that want a hard response and others that are softer on this issue. phil: good talking to you. thank you for joining us. this is dw news live from berlin. moving on, the european union leaders are under pressure of the slope progress of the c -- bloc's vaccination campaign.
angela merkel has defended their campaign, offering someone -- everyone an initial dose by september. reporter: more than 2 million in germany have been injected with the coronavirus vaccine. nearly 3/4 of an million have had their second dose. there is a widespread feeling it is not fast enough. 68% of those surveyed said they think the vaccine rollout has been too slow in germany. that is a 16% increase compared to a month ago. chancellor merkel knows it, too. she called the meeting to speed things up. >> the path has been slower at some points, but i think there were good reasons for this. one of the reasons cited was that the european union countries acted together.
the e.u. decided not to issue conditional approvals, as happened in other places. >> i think we did the right thing. it is about trust. reporter: another delaying factor was the joint e.u. approach to ordering vaccines. some say attempts to push down the price meant it took longer to reach a deal. whatever the reason, support further e.u.'s common purchasing policy is dropping. only 63% of those asked in germany said it was a good idea, 7% less than in january. the government promised all adults will be offered at least a first dose of the vaccine before september. the good news is, the number of people taking up the offer is steadily rising. phil: this is dw news live from berlin. refugees are underrepresented in german politics. we meet a man trying to change that, who will have a seat in
the german parliament,, december. more headlines around the world -- teachers and students in myanmar protesting the recent military coup. they wore red ribbons in support of detained leader aung san suu kyi. the civil disobedience movement has grown since monday when the military said they wou take power for a year. judges at the criminal court in the hague ruled it does have jurisdiction in the palestinian territories. this could lead to investigations of alleged war crimes committed there. israel, not a member of the icc, says the court has no jurisdiction. in turkey, they rejected the release of a prominent businessman and philanthropist. osman kavala has been in jail three years, accused of espionage and trying to overthrow the government, following a failed coup in 20
human rights groups say his detention16. . failed coup in 2016. human rights groups say his detention is to silence him. >> they have been running kavala 's foundation on his behalf. it promotes cultural understanding and human rights projects. even if that is becoming increasingly challenging. >> they fight people like osman kavala who advocate closer integration with the european union, amicable ties with one's neighbors, democracy and peace. we are living in a paranoid atmosphere where dissidents are labeled terrorists. reporter: turkish authorities accused kavala of both
supporting left-wing terrorism and plotting an islamist coup. initially the prosecutor accused kavala of having banked a 2013 protest, but no evidence was presented to back this up. turkish president erdogan is convinced kavala is guilty. >> there are foreign forces seeking to spark unrest in other countries. the man who acted on behalf of these people in turkey is now behind bars. reporter: kavala was arrested in 2017 and held for nearly 1200 days in this prison outside istanbul. the court of human rights demanded kavala's release. when a turkish court complied, his wife arrived to collect them. within hours, authorities issued a new warrant for his arrest. >> you stop belieng injustice when you experience something like that.
there is no justified reason to keep osman kavala locked up in jail. not a single reason. they can fabricate one at any moment. reporter: osman kavala's supporters view him as a cultural philanthropist, eager to forge understanding between peoples. to turkish authorities, kavala is just a dangerous agitator. phil: let's take a closer look at this case with our correspondent dorian jones in istanbul. what is the turkish government see osman kavala as a threat? dorian: he is a giant of turkey's nongovernmental organizations, some of the most important ones. he set up important institutions in turkey's nongovernmental organizations and distributes european union funds.
while his work initially was to bridge deep divides between secular and religious, and building bridges between kurdish and turks, more recently with an authoritarian shift, ngo's have been crical holdi the vernmento accou in thes undecratic mes. the prosution of kavala is sendg a meage to organitions --o one isafe. speaki to man worki in these movements, they say it has a profound, chilling effect. phil: osman kavala was not in court today, but several european diplomats were. was this just symbolism, or will there be international pressure to secure his release? dorian: there is a concern the presence of the european diplomat is symbolic, given relations between turkey and the e.u. seem to be on a positive
track. both sides are talking about a reset of relations. cynics may say it is due to renegotiating an important refugee deal with europe next month, which is key to keeping refugees and migrants seeking to enter europe. they also point out president erdogan has given a commitment to major democratic reforms, even a new constitution. those reforms are expected to be unveiled in the coming weeks. they will be looking to make good on those words. that could be why europe is holding back on criticism. europe is looking to the u.s. with new president biden. he has made a clear human rights will be a big part of his foreign policy agenda. they are talking about working together in a coordinated approach toward turkey. you speak to people and the
ngo's, opposition parties, which claim they are increasingly targeted for persecutions. the silence from europe is alarming. a feeling of abandonment from many i have spoken to. phil: turkey is a member of the court of human rights, which called for osman kavala's immediate release. how has turkey been able to disregard that? dorian: president erdogan dismissed it out of hand. they say it was basically wrong. that has been echoed by the court which rejected the european court's ruling, even though the european court is a higher judicial body than any in turkey. they have no powers to enforce their decision. turkey feels it can act with impunity. phil: thank you.
now to syria, where displaced people in the country's northwest face increasingly desperate conditions. with ongoing fighting, the coronavirus, and winter but heavy rains and bitterly cold temperatures, tens of thousands of people fled to idlib province a year ago in search of safety, away from the assad regime's attacks. hundreds of makeshift camps were built close to the border with turkey, but they lack winter supplies. the winter weather is making things worse. they have not found safety. a dw correspondent visited a family in one of the camps. reporter: standing among charred ruins, a reminder of a horrible night four weeks ago when they lost their 10-year-old daughter. in the bitter cold, his 10 neighbors were trying to light a homemade furnace when the entire
tent went up in flames. >> the fire spread very quickly. there were huge flames and a motorcycle and fuel exploded. all the tents caught fire. my wife and children were caught inside. only five made it out. >> my sister tried to save our mother and pushed her out. she told her go, i will come out after you, but she got caught inside and died. reporter: their youngest daughter suffered severe burns. in aid organization brought the one-year-old to turkey for medical treatment. doctors have sent messages and videos, but the family is not allowed to visit her. the border with turkey is closed to syrian refugees. the mother can barely stand it. >> i hope she will come back
healthy, but i saw the fire. i fear the worst. reporter: tradies likthese happen fquently i the keshift cas in northn idlib. tens of thousands of people are living here in miserable conditions. they are lacking basic necessities, latrines, food, heating fuel, medical care. constant heavy rain has made the situation worse. people here were cut off from supplies for days. many tents were destroyed. aid organizations have been doing their best, but are totally overwhelmed. the situation is made worse by coronavirus. the infection rate in idlib province has risen dramatically. >> we have done what we can and together with other aid organizations, we have tried to raise awareness about the coronavirus. we have handed out masks and
disinfectant, given the desperate situation, it is not enough. the family are glad that it organization has given them a new tents, clothing and even a new furnace. but they hardly use it, despite the cold. they have no money for fuel and they are terrified of using it anyway. >> my children and i have a psychological problem in the tent. we are afraid to light the furnace when my husband is not here. my children panic and start screaming when they see fire. it is very hard for us. reporter: when they fled the fighting and air raids, they thought they would only be here for a few days, but now it has been 14 months. they are too afraid to go home to southern idlib because the fighting rages on. phil: it has been more than five
years since german chancellor angela merkel told the country and the world, we can do this, at the height of europe's migration crisis. germany welcomed more than one million refugees. though many now called germany their home, they are underrepresented in political life. one man has only been in the country six years, but is hoping to join the parliament in september's elections. we have the story. reporter: misses terry klaus, a legal advisor from damascus. he arrived in germany, applied for asylum in 2015. now he wants to run for a seat in germany's government, the bundestag, in september. >> i arrived in germany in 2015
and was brought to an emergency shelter with 60 other people. i was shocked by the living conditions. as a longtime human rights activist in syria, i decided to get involved here again in germany for refugees. i have also worked as an asylum advisor here. reporter: he is no stranger to political activism. in damascus, he worked for the red crescent. he founded an ngo which advocate safer passage to europe for refugees. a constituency was his first home when he arrived in germany. >> i arrived and had my first flat, first job, first friends in germany. i have a strong emotional attachment to it.
oberhausen is the city where i started my work. i want to take the next step from there. reporter: nearly six years after angela merkel's famous "i can do this," his is a success story. but migrants are underrepresented in germany, he says. >> i stand for human rights. i have come to europe, to germany, to live a safe and dignified life. i have experienced that feeling. at the same time, i was appalled by the situation for refugees, by their living conditions. i want to represent those people in parliament with my candidacy. there are many debates on refugees, but nobody actually talks to them. that is why i want to give them a political voice. reporter: one last hurdle remains.
he has to be a german citizen. he has already filed for citizenship. if all goes well, they can put him on the official list of candidates by spring. phil: these days you will find them in souvenir shops all over the world, snow globes. they were invented in vienna in the 1900's. the inventor's family is still making them by the same method he devised 125 years ago. ♪ >> you should not shake a snow globe. instead, you turn it on its head, wait until the snow settles. you turn it back over, and it snows. reporter: he knows all the secrets about snow globes. his grandfather conducted his initial experiments at this workshop in vienna. he was a mechanic of surgical instruments and an inventor.
using a glass bowl filled with water, he was planning on enhancing operating room lighting. >> more than 120 years ago, my grandfather invented the snow globe by chance. he found semolina and put it in the bowl of water. it soaked the water and floated to the bottom of the bowl slowly. he thought, it looks like it is snowing. that is how the idea was born for the snow globe. reporter: his grandfather found a miniature version of the basilica, an austrian pilgrimage site. he painted a pedestal with shoe polish and set it in. he applied for a patent on the world's first snow globe. the flakes fluttered down gently, thanks to the viennese formula. >> my father was the first to produce the mixture of snow we use today. that is my secret.
so far, i am the only one who knows exactly how it is done. reporter: directly next to the workshop is the family's own snow globe museum. the snow globe is an austrian export. former u.s. presidents have many on the shelf. like this one for the obama faly, i think you gift given by a resident of vienna. the company stocks more than 350 motifs. >> when you gaze in, it is a beautiful, perfect world. that has been my world for over 40 years. reporter: a safe and cozy world where it always snows. phil: oscar-winning actor christopher plummer has died at the age of 91. born in canada, christopher plummer had a prolific career, spanning seven decades. he was best known as captain von
trapp in 1965's "the sound of music." at the age of 82 he became the oldest academy award winner in history, taking the oscar for best supporting actor in a film. that is it, you up-to-date. more world news at the top of the hour. i will be back to take you through the day. have a good day. [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org]
>> welcome to a new edition of focus on europe. thank you so much for joining us today. thousands of migrants dream of reaching europe. but at the eu borders they often get a rude awakening. likeere in theosnian refugee camp lipa. it recently burned to the ground. people have to brace the bitter winter cold. authorities ve set up w tents. but there's still no running water or electricity. from here, the eu seems within reach. for most migrants in the lipa