tv Al Jazeera English News Bulletin LINKTV March 31, 2021 5:30pm-6:01pm PDT
moments alive are shown in court as the man accused of causing his death goes on trial for the third day. ♪ anchor: hello. this is al jazeera live from london. also coming up -- as people keep protesting against me and mark's military, warnings that ethnic minority armed groups may soon join the fight. brazil's death toll surges again. resident bolsonaro says hunger is killing more people than the
coronavirus. president macron announces a nationwide lockdown for france to stop covid infections getting out of control. >> i can't breathe. i can't breathe. i can't breathe. anchor: the killing of george floyd sparked anger across the world, bringing hundreds of thousands to the streets with demands for racial justice. now, a court in minneapolis has been shown the last moments of the unarmed black man's life from the perspective of the police officers who arrested him. often distressing recordings from their body cameras, the jury witnessed the video, including derek chauvin, who is on trial for his murder. >> please, don't shoot me. please, don't shoot me. >> i'm not going to shoot me. >> please. please. please, man. please. please. i didn't know, man.
i didn't know. i didn't know. anchor: another scene, before show --chauvin belt on his neck, floyd pleaded with officers. >> hey, listen. >> gang, man. i'm not that kind of guy. look at that. look at it. ok, man. you all do me bad, man. man. just a moment. anchor: the film of floyd being pinned under chauvin's knee in his final moments was too much for one witness. >> i can't breathe. i can't breathe. anchor: charles mcmillan was a passing motorist who stopped and tried to persuade floyd to give himself up to police. he broke down in court when asked to relive the day's event
saying he felt helpless. the court also heard from christopher martin who was working in a food store and saw -- and sold george floyd a packet of cigarettes. he was given a counterfeit note. the incident which kicked off the chain of events leading to officers apprehending floyd. >> i saw you standing there with your hands on your head. what was going through your mind during that time? >> disbelief. and guilt. >> why guilt? >> if i would have just not taken the bill. this could have been avoided. >> we also saw another individual get pushed by an officer. >> correct. >> what did you do after that happened? >> i was ting to calm down, tell him to stand back. anchor: our reporter is live and has been following the trial and the jury has adjourned. how would you some update three of this trial?
gabe: traumatic in a word. traumatic. this is a city that has lived on the front lines, if you will, of this incident. you get a sense 10 months later how it really affected those people that were there on that day outside that convenience store. and you are really getting a sense now on day three of this trial w so many people that were there and witnessed this are still traumatically affected by what they saw and what they heard. that was very clear in the testimony all day, on wednesday. as you mentioned, the beginning of the day began with the surveillance video from inside. that convenience store video we have never seen before of george floyd in there for many, many minutes. at some points, laughing or smiling.
at some points, a little fidgety. but the jury was shown that video by the prosecution because the prosecution is trying to come on this day, wednesday, add context. add context to what happened in the moments before george floyd was belly down on the cement with the knee of derek chauvin in his neck. that is what the prosecution was trying to do today. and with all of the video they showed, particularly the body cam footage from the other officers on scene, there were moments where you could really sense what the people were feeling there. on the defense's standpoint, early in the day, they were focusing on -- and what the defense is focusing this entire trial on quite frankly, is they
are going to argue once they are able to call witnesses, that it was drugs found in george floyd's body that caused him to die. that will be coming up in the coming days and weeks of this trial. now, the prosecution is really trying to bring the jury to that y, may 25, 10 months ago, and have them feel what the eyewitnesses felt. and in some way, feel what george floyd might have felt. i think with all of this video, it simply was a traumatic day in the courtroom for so many people to experience that. also for the jury, i should mention. the trial was paused briefly when a juror motioned to the judge, and said she needed a break. to judge later said she was suffering from a little bit of a traumatic experience. you can really get a sense of whathat day was like outside that convenience store. and i think the jury is starting
to feel that now as well. anchor: the killing of george floyd, protests not just in e u.s. but around 70 countries, more around the world. now that the trial is underway, how much attention is it getting nationally? gabe: a lot. on the national news here in the united states. it is getting a lot of attention. many of the major domestic broadcasters here in the united states are just like us, airing the trial uninterrupted. because this trial is more -- is about more than just george floyd. it is about more than derek chauvin. it is about more than the city of minneapolis. it is about more than the police department in minneapolis, in many ways. it is about racial justice in america. and i think that is why so many people are glued to this. but in that courtroom, it is
about what happened specifically on that day that caused george floyd to die. you have two things happening. what is happening in the courthouse behind me, and you have the bigger picture of racial justice in the united states. and how police treat black men in the united states. that is a discussion happening nationally, and in some ways, internationally. but the defense, it is important to point out, despite what we are seeing if this dramatic footage inside, the defense is continuing to say that this trial is not about racial justice. the defense is saying this is specifically going to be about what caused george floyd to die. and again, they are going to argue, the defense, that it was drugs in his system that caused him to die. and they have been arguing, today, and setting up the argument, that the reason that derek chauvin had his knee on george floyd's neck for so long
is because there was an unruly crowd that was around the scene. that is ultimately for the jury to decide. that still does not answer the question, if george floyd, if, the defense is arguing that george floyd was resisting arrest, if that is what they are arguing, that seems to be what they are insinuating, into a degree, what some of the video shows a little bit, that still does not answer the question of why more than nine minutes is his knee on george floyd's neck? these are the central questions playing out in the courtroom that will ultimately be decided i the jury. outside the courtroom, it is a bigger issue of racial justice in america. anchor: gabriela zonta, following that trial in minneapolis. thank you. debbie heinz is a legal analyst and former prosecutor from the city of baltimore. she says the new footage released by the police doesn't change anything. debbie: you are seeing what happens before.
what happens before with the police officers trying to get mr. floyd into the vehicle, he is saying he has anxiety, he has issues, or he is claustrophobic and they are taking him out of the vehicle. there is slight resistance. what officers are allowed to do, they are allowed to use reasonable force when there is any type of resister's of interest. -- resistance of an arrest. once the resistance had stopped, they cannot use force. that is the focus of the case. is the nine minutes and 29 seconds that mr. floyd was on the ground, pent down by derek chauvin, by two other officers, while a crowd is yelling he cannot breathe. . that is the case. ♪ anchor: let's go to myanmar, which is slipping further into crisis with fears of a looming armed struggle as the military stokes the country's regional
and ethnic conflicts. in the southeast of the country, thousands of men, women and children have fled the border to thailand. the military has been launching ground attacks against rebels from the national liberation army. there are warnings that other armed groups may still -- soon be joining forces for what they call a revolution. if security forces don't stop killing unarmed protesters. meanwhile in myanmar's cities, peaceful demonstrations continue against last months coup. protesters continue to demand a return to the -- to democracy despite a brutal crackdown by security forces. they've been calling on the international community to act against them and do more than just condemn the violence. a local rights group says at least 521 people have been killed, and more than 2600 are detained. scott hyde letter is following developments from bangkok in neighboring thailand.
scott: when you look at armed conflict, it has been ongoing in the country. what makes it a very delicate is because of the post-coup activity, because of the violent crackdown on the streets across myanmar. so you have these ethnic armies that have had their individual battles with the group. some of them have been under cease fire. some of that had been in peace talks. because of what has been happening since the coup, they are saying they want to directly go against the group, the government forces because of what they have been doing, not their individual fights. their individual fights had been going on for quite some time. one thing that has happened over the weekend that was something we had not seen in quite some time, and that was in this karen area which is across the border, into myanmar. there are airstrikes. that is why you saw that flow of people coming over, 3000 coming over to thailand, fleeing that, seeking refuge. and medical attention. the thai's said there are 550
here in highland's territory. -- thailand's territory. thai officials said it is because the situation was safe. human rights groups say no, they were pushed back when they didn't want to go. when we look at the situation, yes, you have these ethnic armies that have been using their forces for individual battles with the government forces in myanmar. they say they are willing to work together as they see this escalation on the streets across myanmar. and they believe something needs to be done to stop that from continuing. anchor: the united nations security council has been holding closed-door meetings on the situation in myanmar. our editor says members were warned of a potential bloodbath in the tree. james: certainly you have some members of the security council, russia, china, vietnam potentially, who are not keen on any punitive action against the
generals. if the security council does not take some further action, if it just comes up with another statement, is not clear where that takes us. because remember, the security council has issued two statements, urging a return to democracy in myanmar, urging the release of all the politicians that have been detained, and condemning the violence. despite that, the bloodshed has gone on. individual country sleep -- countries can pursue their own policies and many have done that. certainly western countries have stopped doing business with me and martin sanctions on the military, businesses linked with the military. the u.n. secretary general would like to haveer -- like to have tougher actions. that is clear from his special envoy, who has been speaking to the security council in meetings behind closed doors. i have obtained a copy of the remarks she has delivered, and she says, i remain open to dialogue and continue to signal
this, if we only wait for when they are ready to talk, the ground situation will only worsen. a bloodbath is imminent. the un's special envoy who speaks for the general, says this counsel must consider significant action that can reverse the course of events in myanmar. clearly, that is also what those representing the democratic -- democratically elected politicians want. they have also come up in the last couple of hours with this new charter from -- for a constitution in myanmar. they say it is a way forward. they would like to have a new unity government. they would like to get everyone involved with the military under a civilian control. anchor: still to come in this half-hour, pfizer, -- pfizer biontech says it's vaccine is 100% effective in 12 to 15-year-olds. plus -- >> we are definitely not a beacon for the world. anchor: so why is the
government-backed report praying -- praising multiethnic britain? ♪ >> hello. the weather is largely dry across much of australia, with a nice area of high pressure in charge. a little atmosphere. clear skies as a result of that. there is our high. high and dry for victoria, new south wales and queensland. top and also seeing showers. a clutch of storms here off the northwest coast of australia. that could develop into a tropical low. that could bring a low as we head toward the weekend. for the time being, it is fabulous. pleasant autumnal sunshine coming through. as we go into friday,
temperatures around 33 celsius for adelaide. 28, melbourne. 26, sydney. might catch one or two showers drifting toward the eastern coast of queensland. a chance of a shower or two into central parts of new zealand. by large, not too bad. not too bad into japan. still on the warm side for the most part. high pressure in charge here as well. largely clear skies. 20 celsius in tokyo. 12, sapporo. wetter weather into parts of china, heading its way further east. pushing towards southern japan. ♪ >> a mineral central to the quest for clean energy, a key ingredient for the production of electric car batteries. cobalt. extracting that is dangerous but profitable. with global demands set to skyrocket. people empower investigate claims that industrial mines
extracting the material needed for your energy are in fact poisoning the environment. with the dire health consequences for those living in the shadow, the cost of cobalt, people empower on al jazeera. ♪ ♪ anchor: a reminder of the top stories on al jazeera. to court in minneapolis has been shown harrowing footage of the moment that an officer arrested george floyd on day three of derek chauvin's trial. floyd could be heard begging them not to shoot him in the officers bodycam footage. protesters in myanmar have appealed to ethnic armed groups
to help their movement against the military. some rebels are getting increasingly involved. fighters from a community have attacked the police outpost in the north, days after rebels seized the base in the east. brazil has just recorded another day with more coronavirus deaths than any so far in the pandemic. nearly 3900 people have died in the last 24 hours. despite that mounting toll, the president is insisting there is no need to lock down. but as our correspondent reports, parts of the country can no longer report -- cope with the number of bodies that need to be buried. reporter: burials in the middle of the night. this is how the city of sao paulo is trying to cope with the rising death toll from covid-19 in brazil's economic capital.
so far, over 300,000 people have lost their lives in brazil. more than 3700 of them in the past 24 hours. experts in the country say brazil needs to adapt urgently to turn the tide. >> is ill needs to rapidly increase the speed of vaccination. i merely among the most vulnerable population to stamp out signs that do not say are effective against covid-19. and lastly, improve vigilance in the tracing of the variants that could have filed logical behavior from the mutant strains of covid-19 virus. reporter: the death toll rise comes as brazil's biomedical institute detected a new strain of the virus, similar to the one registered in south africa. as president j or bolsonaro struggles to growing pressure over his handling of the pandemic.
on tuesday, top commanders of the armed forces stepped down, coming just one day after bolsonaro replaced six government ministers in a sudden reshuffle that appeared to secure loyalty. at the beginning of the pandemic, brazil's president disregarded the risks of covid-19, and resisted taking extreme measures to reduce the spread of the virus. >> we have two m&a -- enemies p the virus and unemployment. it is reality. we are not going to solve this problem by staying at home. reporter: in spite of the rising death toll, bolsonaro continues to challenge medical recommendations. >> this policy of isolation, restriction and curfew, it is a suppression of right to come and go. kate goes far beyond even a state of siege. i appeal to all authorities in brazil to review this policy and
allow the people to go to work. reporter: the slow pace in the vaccination campaign have people frustrated and angry. only 2.1% of brazilians have received two vaccine shots and only one third of the 77 million brazilians who qualify for shots are being vaccinated. covid-19 is a major challenge for latin america. concerns are mounting in the region because the pandemic cannot be contained if the crisis in brazil lingers. argentina already suspended flights coming from brazil and other countries like bolivia have stepped up efforts at the border to prevent the spread of the virus. anchor: meanwhile, france will widen lockdown measures that have been in place for paris since some of the regions to the entire country from saturday. president macron told the nation in a live address the new restrictions would need to last for a month. >> we decided on the 18th of
march to take further measures alongside the curfew in almost 20 regions. two weeks after taking those measures, the numbers are clear. yes, the strategy had its first effects. clearly, these efforts are limited as the epidemic surges. in some ways, we are facing this acceleration due to the new variant. we will lose control if we do not move n. in the upcoming months, we need to set a new framework. anchor: president macron's input paris and says the president wants t avoid this being seen as another lockdown. >> the french president emmanuel macron is not calling this a national lockdown, but it resembles one. even if it is not as strict as the one that was imposed in march and april. nevertheless, the restrictions are nationwide. on saturday, across the country, people across france will have to stay within a 10 kilometer perimeter from their home.
all nonessential shops will have to close. there will be no travel allowed between different regions. one of the main measures announced by the french president was the fact that schools will have to shut across france between three and four weeks, depending on the child's age. the french government have made much of the fact that they have managed to keep schools open since may last year, when the first lockdown was lifted. the french education minister said over again that it was a real priority for france. this shows you how badly the health situation here in france has deteriorated. there has been a lot of pressure on emmanuel macron in recent weeks to tighten restrictions because of the covid infection rate that has been soaring. nine out of 10 icu beds in the country is full. emmanuel macron says the main way out is to vaccinate as many as people as possible. he is calling it a race against time. he says priority will be to vaccinate people like teachers and police officers, as well as
the elderly before getting onto the rest of the adult population. that is really the focus of the next few weeks. april he said will be a difficult month for the french people, but he said there is light at the end of the tunnel. anchor: there has been another breakthrough in the race to inoculate the world against covid-19. pfizer biontech say their vaccine is safe and effective for children between the ages of 12 and 15. they say those who are 100% effective at preventing the disease, among more than 2000 adolescents in the trial the companies hope to get emergency approval to start vaccinating children in the u.s. and europe before the next school year. the pfizer biontech vaccine is authorized for use in people aged 16 and over. one young trial participant said he was proud to help out. >> i was -- it was definitely a special opportunity to be able to do something like this. usually, i'm just at home doing
online school and there is not much i can really do to fight back against the virus. so probably participating in this trial, and potentially helping other kids to feel safe and want to get the vaccine in the future when it becomes hopefully available, was really some way that i could actually help out. anchor: in the u.s., two young children have been rescued from the new mexico desert after being dropped from a border wall more than four meters high. smugglers dropped the girls, reportedly aged just three and five. in the middle of the night. the pair were left far from the nearest homes, before being found by customs and border protection offfvfvfvfvfvfvfvfvfv
rrator: on thiepisode "earth fus," avocadohave become one of the most popular foods on the planet and exploded into a multibillion-dollar industry. the petorca province in chile is a hub of worldwide avocado production, but the growth of the industry has created a crisis over water rights, raising questions about the moral dimensions of how our avocados are grown and consumed.