Skip to main content
Search
Services


 

Return to Transcripts main page

YOUR WORLD TODAY

New Charges Filed Against Saddam Hussein; Fifth National Day of Protest Under Way in France; Regenerative Medicine

Aired April 4, 2006 - 12:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


JIM CLANCY, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: While one trial of Saddam Hussein drags on, another looms. The new charge, genocide.
HALA GORANI, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: And mass day of action in France. Protesters keep up the pressure on the government and its new jobs law.

CLANCY: And a step toward a more normal life. Remarkable new transplant technology raises the hopes of patients worldwide.

GORANI: Well, it is noon here in Atlanta, 8:00 p.m. in Baghdad, Iraq.

I'm Hala Gorani.

CLANCY: I'm Jim Clancy.

Welcome to our viewers throughout the world and in the United States.

This is YOUR WORLD TODAY.

GORANI: First, we take you to Iraq where authorities have filed new charges against former dictator Saddam Hussein and six others, accusing them of attempts to exterminate the country's Kurdish population during the 1980s.

CLANCY: And that's opening the door to a second trial against Saddam Hussein, one that involves gross human rights abuses committed during his reign.

Aneesh Raman has more now from Baghdad.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ANEESH RAMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Dubbed the Anfal campaign, it stands as one of the gravest atrocities of Saddam Hussein's rule. It's estimated that more than 100,000 Iraqi Kurds were killed in the late 1980s as Saddam's regime tried to stamp out their opposition. And now, Saddam and six co-defendants have been indicted over the Anfal campaign, and the charges for the first time include the crime of genocide.

BARHAM SAIAH, KURDISH POLITICAL LEADER: Justice at long last. And it has been a long, painful wait. But this is an important moment in our history. RAMAN: It is unclear when the Anfal trial will start. Saddam is currently in the midst of his first trial. And the Iraqi high tribunal hasn't said whether the second trial must wait for the first to finish or can be conducted at the same time.

Unclear, as well, will Saddam even be in the court to face charges over the Anfal campaign? If he is found guilty and sentenced to death after the first trial is done, Iraqi law says Saddam must be executed within 30 days of the appeals process ending. But Iraq's president suggested that could change.

JALAL TALABANI, IRAQI PRESIDENT (through translator): I believe the court is working on a plan whereby he will be tried for all the crimes, then a verdict will be handed down.

RAMAN: Kurdish and Shia communities want Saddam to be tried for many more crimes, including the suppression of the uprisings that followed the 1991 Gulf War.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

RAMAN: And Saddam is set to reappear in court tomorrow, set to further testify. He could potentially face cross-examination. Prosecutors say this first trial could be near completion, Jim, but now a second trial could begin within weeks.

CLANCY: Aneesh, more violence in the Iraqi capital this day, and taking it to the current situation, some disturbing numbers coming from the U.S. military to put in perspective, how this -- this conflict seems to be transforming itself.

RAMAN: The conflict on the ground is now really defined, Jim, by Shia militias. A U.S. military commander has said to CNN the biggest threat Iraq faces are these Shia militias.

As you mentioned, today a suicide car bombing in Sadr City. At least 10 people killed. Sadr City home to one of the country's strongest Shia militias, the Mehdi militia, those loyal to Shia cleric Muqtada al-Sadr. They will see these images and be further enraged. They will again contend that Iraq security forces are incapable of protecting the Shia people.

But disbanding those militias is seen as a critical step towards bringing stability to Iraq. But you can't disband the militias until you have a government. Right now, there is a political vacuum that has gripped this country, which is why we've heard calls, most recently from U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and from her British counterpart, Foreign Secretary Jack Straw, for a unity government to form and form now so it can start dealing with these issues -- Jim.

CLANCY: Aneesh Raman, reporting there live from Baghdad.

GORANI: Now, Paris, Marseilles, Lyon, Bordeaux and cities across France. Demonstrators are turning up for another day of protests against the controversial youth jobs law. Unions and student groups mobilized in nearly 200 towns and cities for a fifth day of action. One French union says more than two million people took part in the rallies, but no official police figures are out yet. We're going to have to wait for the final figure.

Meanwhile, at a heated debate at the French National Assembly Tuesday, Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin vigorously defended his controversial law.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DOMINIQUE DE VILLEPIN, FRENCH PRIME MINISTER (through translator): The government will not lower its arms. It will -- it will not give in, Madame Deputy. We need to have more equality, more justice, and a more dynamic approach in our country.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CLANCY: Now, de Villepin announced the creation of the disputed first job contract back in January. Now, that measure was introduced in parliament without prior consultation with the trade unions. It would allow employers to fire workers under the age of 26 during their first two years on a job without giving any reason.

Villepin and others say it will boost the company and stem chronic youth unemployment. Critics, though, say it threatens France's hallmark labor protections.

President Jacques Chirac signed the legislation into law Sunday, saying France needs it to keep up with the world economy. He offered modifications, but students and unions say they want the law withdrawn, not softened.

GORANI: Well, it's a big movement, but it has a few individuals at its head. A 25-year-old law student and activist named Bruno Julliard is one of those at the center of that storm in France. He heads the largest student group.

Jim Bittermann spent some time with him.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JIM BITTERMANN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice over): After weeks of strikes and protests in France, with millions of people in the streets, with the president and prime minister backed into a corner, the unassuming 25-year-old student leader described here as the biggest thorn in the government's side, says he really is not trying to bring down the government, just stop a law he opposes.

BRUNO JULLIARD, NATIONAL UNION OF FRENCH STUDENTS (through translator): The stubbornness of the government has turned this into a political event, and they've had to retreat. But that was not our intention.

BITTERMANN: For Bruno Julliard, the president of the largest student union, activism is nothing new. Some say his first protest came in primary school when he led the opposition against a plan to cut down trees in the schoolyard. And his family has ties to the French resistance and the socialist and communist parties.

He denies he's using the student demonstrations as a springboard to get into politics. Julliard says he wants only to be a lawyer and sees no contradiction in representing the law while opposing a part of it.

JULLIARD (through translator): The respect of democracy also means that you take into account the aspirations and expectations of the majority of the people.

BITTERMANN (on camera): Some compare Julliard to the student leaders back in 1968, who, with demonstrations here in the Latin quarter and elsewhere, eventually brought the country to a halt. And while there are similarities, Julliard himself says there are big differences in the times and the goals.

(voice over): And he says disdainfully that the leaders back then have become economic liberals, part of the establishment.

In one TV interview after another, Julliard insists the protests will continue until the law is repealed and disregards those who point out it was passed by parliament. He says the national assembly, even if it is democratically elected, can make mistakes, and that's what happened with this law.

Jim Bittermann, CNN, Paris.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

CLANCY: The prime minister who said he would never step down has. Turning our focus now to Asia and the political situation in Thailand that has now taken a surprising turn.

Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra says he's going to step aside and allow someone else to take over. That announcement came after weeks of opposition protest, as well as a snap election.

Correspondent Ram Ramgopal spoke to us earlier about the prime minister's rocky political tenure from Bangkok.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

RAM RAMGOPAL, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: This is a stunning development for a person who has served more than five years in office, has become something of a lightning rod for criticism among his opponents, but in large parts of this country he's extremely admired and loved for his populist policies. So this is a stunning turnaround for a situation which even a couple days along looked as if it was going towards really a deepening impasse.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CLANCY: Largely, it was seen as an embarrassment to the king on his 60th anniversary of being on the throne. The king looking on, and here was a prime minister that was implicated in $1.9 billion of what many in the public said was clear evidence of conflict of interest. That was his profit off a telecom company.

GORANI: And facing many protests, of course, throughout the country.

That was Ram Ramgopal reporting.

Now we're going to take a short break. On YOUR WORLD TODAY when we come back, it sounds like something out of a science fiction novel.

CLANCY: It does.

GORANI: In the United States, a medical marvel brings new hope for people in need of new organs.

CLANCY: Just ahead in our report, how cutting-edge transplant technology has changed the life of one patient, and it could do the same for so many more.

Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

GORANI: Welcome back to YOUR WORLD TODAY on CNN International.

I'm Hala Gorani.

CLANCY: A potential medical breakthrough of mind-boggling proportions, Hala.

GORANI: Now, it's the first human transplant that is lab-grown, an organ, reported in the medical journal "The Lancet."

CLANCY: That's right. Seven young patients all received bladders that were grown from their own cells in a procedure designed to dramatically reduce the risk of rejection, also one that could certainly save some lives.

GORANI: Now, Senior Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta has our story.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN SENIOR MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): By most definitions, this is the life of a typical 16-year-old girl. Her days are filled with teenage fare, family, friends, even a tinge of attitude.

KAITLYNE MCNAMARA, 16 YEARS OLD: What would you do without me?

GUPTA: But the days were not always this happy for Kaitlyne McNamara.

TRACY MCNAMARA, MOTHER OF KAITLYNE MCNAMARA: By the time she was 3 or 4 years old, she was already up to like 35 surgeries. And we're not talking tonsillectomies. We're talking major neurological, orthopedic, urological.

GUPTA: Kaitlyne was born with spina bifida. That's a rare birth defect that stunts brain and spinal cord development. For Kaitlyne, that meant, among other things, a crippling jumble of nerves jetting out from the base of her spine. Doctors said she would probably never sit up on her own.

As if that weren't enough for her parents to bear, another problem surfaced. Kaitlyne's bladder was not functioning properly.

T. MCNAMARA: We realized that something wasn't right. Then you hit a developmental stage, and you're supposed to be out of diapers. You're supposed to be doing this. It's when we realized that she was never wet.

GUPTA: The problem was, Kaitlyne's bladder was the size of a thimble and could not sustain normal amounts of fluid. What didn't fit into her bladder flowed back towards her kidneys.

T. MCNAMARA: If she drank a cup of water or a cup of juice, her bladder's pressure were at such an intense point that she would have what they call a bladder burst.

GUPTA: The accidents, especially at school, were embarrassing for Kaitlyne.

K. MCNAMARA: At my school, they make fun of you. And I didn't want to become singled out as being different than everybody else.

GUPTA: Problems with Kaitlyne's bladder were causing major damage to her kidneys. Doctors offered the most common surgical option, using a piece of intestine to create a new bladder. But that procedure is not without risks.

DR. ANTHONY ATALA, WAKE FOREST UNIV. SCHOOL OF MEDICINE: When you put that piece of intestine to function as a bladder, you start having absorption of things that you shouldn't be having, and this may lead to problems with bone growth, mucus production, certain metabolic problems, even cancer.

GUPTA: Dr. Anthony Atala, a urologist at Wake Forest University, believed there had to be a way to dodge those problems. With few options left, Atala and his colleagues looked for help somewhere they hadn't considered before, Kaitlyne's own bladder. Not just repairing it, but creating an entirely new bladder using her own cells.

ATALA: We're not using any type of stem cell population or cloning techniques, but mainly the patient's own cells that we're using to create these organs and putting them back into the patient.

GUPTA: Kaitlyne was one of the first patients ever to undergo this technique.

T. MCNAMARA: We didn't understand in the beginning. I think it was too science fictiony (ph) for us.

GUPTA: So how does it work? Well, a small piece, less than the size of a postage stamp, is taken from the patient's bladder. Both muscle and bladder cells are teased out from that piece of the bladder and grown in a Petri dish.

When there are a sufficient number of cells, they're layered onto a three-dimensional mold shaped like a bladder and they're allowed to grow. Several weeks later, the cells have produced a newly engineered bladder which is implanted into the patient. Several more weeks later, the new bladder has grown fully inside the body and can function on its own.

All seven patients who underwent the procedure including Kaitlyne report dramatic improvements. Their bladders hold more fluid and they have fewer problems with incontinence and because the organ comes from their own tissues ...

ATALA: When the organ is placed back into the patient, you avoid all of the problems with rejection.

GUPTA: Many more studies must still be done before growing replacement organs becomes mainstream and used for other organs like hearts, livers or lungs. But the potential impact of engineering organs from a patient's own cells is enormous. For now, this beneficiary of the new technology is a step closer to being a normal teenager.

K. MCNAMARA: I'm happy. I was always afraid that I was going to have, like, an accident or something. Now I can just go and -- go out with my friends, go do whatever I want.

GUPTA: Dr. Sanjay Gupta, CNN, reporting.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

CLANCY: Doctor and bioethicist Arthur Caplan has been following this technology since its inception. In fact, he was asked for his opinion on the new procedure by the company that co-developed and hopes to market that.

A little earlier, he spoke with own our Michael Holmes about the possible impact.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

DR. ARTHUR CAPLAN, UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA: This really is a breakthrough. This is the first time any scientific steam has grown an organ from cells. And if you think about it, what we face these days around the world is shortages of organs and tissues, livers, hearts, tendons, bones. If you could really put the right chemicals on cells, get them to grow, you would have a technology that would get rid of organ and tissue transplant as we know it and replace it with this kind of generation of organs or cell repair. Very exciting, really quite a breakthrough. MICHAEL HOLMES, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: Now, as said, you offered your advice, or they asked your advice. You gave it to them. I'm curious, what did you tell them?

CAPLAN: Well, they wanted to know, first of all, is it ethical to try this in human beings and how do we get the right informed consent? You know, you've seen from the little setup piece, if you don't have a bladder, if it's not working right, it's something that's horrific and intrudes on your life. You are going to sign up basically for anything that might let you get away from that kind of problem.

What I said was, we've got to make sure that the science is absolutely sound. We've got to have good animal studies. That's going to make this ethical to try. And that's what they did. They really did this extensively in rats and mice long before we got to people.

HOLMES: Yes. And as I say, "Lancet" is a very respected medical journal.

CAPLAN: Yes.

HOLMES: And they wouldn't run it if it didn't have something going for it. This study group, bladder cells, you touched on this. What's the potential for other organs?

CAPLAN: Well, just, Michael, so we all understand, the bladder here, it's a bag, and they grew it out using a scaffold. You might see other organs growing. Not growing a heart or a lung or a kidney in a dish, but actually growing enough cells on a sheet so that you can put them in and kind of plug them in like a flat tire plugging a hole. If you have a heart attack and some of your heart muscle dies, you don't need to replace the whole heart. You just need to replace a heart of it. So...

HOLMES: Basically patch it.

CAPLAN: Yes. And so growing patches, I think, is where the action is going to be on this technology.

HOLMES: And for treating cancer as well, perhaps? Lung cancer I'm thinking about, which is almost always fatal.

CAPLAN: Well, if you -- and remember our friend with the face transplant that we were all looking at a while back. You can grow back part of the face if you have lost it due to oral cancer, some of your face and bone. Here come the patches, grow them around a scaffold, maybe make a new jaw, part of a jaw, part of a cheek.

That's why this is all so exciting. It lets you kind of self- repair yourself in ways that, you know, I'm astounded by.

HOLMES: Yes. You're an ethicists. Let me ask you about potential ethical issues.

I imagine one ethical issue in this case that's gone away is they're not using embryonic stem cells...

CAPLAN: Yes.

HOLMES: ... for this procedure. There are others that are going to require that. But so that's one ethical issue that went away in this case.

But what about, first of all, the cost? Then you've got to talk about, well, who goes first? What about my kid? What about mine?

CAPLAN: So there's going to be three ethical issues here.

First, someday we're going to say, well, we never have to get into that embryo research and cloning research. We've got this.

Unfortunately, this isn't going to work for all kinds of cells, particularly nerve cells. It is hard to make them grow and flourish. So, for spinal cord injury, probably Parkinson's, this isn't it. We are still going to have to have that debate about embryonic stem cell research.

Secondly, this is not going to be cheap. I can imagine this costing tens of thousands of dollars to do, and there are going to be arguments about insurance companies, national governments, when do we pay for it?

The third big issue, people are going to be clamoring for this. There are lots of adults who don't have bladders due to cancer. They are going to say, hey, how do I find out about this? Where do I get this?

This is still relatively novel research. You've got to be careful. You've got to make sure that it really works not just for a year, two years, but five or 10 years. So we are going to have a debate, if you will, about who's next.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

GORANI: All right. Well, we have a lot of questions about this, and I'm sure many of our viewers do, too, and comments and thoughts. And that's our "Question of the Day" today.

CLANCY: What are your perspectives on this medical breakthrough?

E-mail us your responses to YWT@CNN.com.

A new bladder grown from stem cells, a pretty incredible development.

GORANI: OK. And a medical breakthrough that, of course, as we heard there, could also help in other areas, and for people who have lost or have damaged organs due to illness.

As always, keep your comments brief and include your name and where you are writing from. We will read a selection of it later in the program. CLANCY: And we've got to take a break, but we'll be checking the latest business news in just a moment.

GORANI: And then, a lesson in business etiquette.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This is a dish that maybe some overseas businessmen and women might find a little bit unpalatable. It's a sea slug. We also have a sauteed bullfrog.

If you are a business person, you are being offered this as a guest in China, and you don't want to eat it, what do you do?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I would just say, "Xie xie."

(END VIDEOTAPE)

CLANCY: That means "thank you" in China. It's about a lot more than just the art of the deal.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

DARYN KAGAN, CNN ANCHOR: I'm Daryn Kagan at CNN Center in Atlanta.

More of YOUR WORLD TODAY in just a few minutes. First, though, a check on stories making headlines here in the U.S.

A blow for Delta Airlines. Word just moments ago that pilots of Delta Airlines have voted by a wide margin to authorize a strike.

The pilots are angered by management's offer to throw out their contract and impose deep pay cuts. An arbitration panel has until April 15th to decide whether to void the contracts. If that happens the pilots say they will strike.

Delta executives have said that a strike would put the airline out of business. The carrier is operating under bankruptcy protection.

A young man says that he is sharing his story in an effort to save others from sexual predators. On Capitol Hill this morning, teenager Justin Berry told lawmakers he became increasingly involved in a sordid world of Web cam sex. Eventually, he says he was molested by older men.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JUSTIN BERRY, SEX PREDATOR VICTIM: Web cams and instant messaging give predators power over children. The predators become part of that child's life. Whatever warnings the child may have heard about meeting strangers, these people are no longer strangers. They have every advantage. It is the standard seduction of child predators multiplied on a geometric scale.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KAGAN: And there's more about tracking online sexual predators tonight on "ANDERSON COOPER 360," 10:00 Eastern here on CNN.

He was a republican power broker and now Tom DeLay is leaving Congress. The embattled Texas congressman and former House majority leader plans to give up his seat by mid June. He was nicknamed "The Hammer" for his hardball politics.

DeLay is facing some legal problems. He's been indicted on campaign finance charges in Texas. He's also been linked to a lobbying scandal. DeLay denies any wrongdoing in both cases.

Here is President bush's reaction.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I had a talk last night on my way back from the ballgame with Congressman DeLay. He informed me of his decision. My reaction was it had to have been a very difficult decision for someone who loved representing his district in the state of Texas. I wished him all the very best.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KAGAN: In making his announcement, DeLay did not rule out a future run for office.

Fire investigators are converging on the ruins of a burned out church in Talladega, Alabama, today. They're not yet sure what or perhaps who started the fire. You may remember, three men are jailed in a series of arsons that damaged or destroyed nine churches in the state. No one has been charged in the suspected arson attack on a tenth Alabama church.

Tennessee Governor Phil Bredesen calls it the wrath of god. The governor received a first-hand look at tornado damage in his state this morning. Sunday's violent weather killed at least two dozen people in west Tennessee and destroyed at least 1,800 homes and businesses.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GOV. PHIL BREDESEN, TENNESSEE: Two reactions. First of all, as you were flying over it -- I know this is crazy -- the phrase that kept coming through my mind is just "the wrath of god." I have never seen anything like that.

I've looked at several tornadoes. I'm used to seeing roofs off houses, or a house blown over or something. There were foundations that had just been scraped -- scraped clean.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KAGAN: The line of severe weather also struck seven other states. In North Dakota and Minnesota, the Red River is on the rise. The situation is especially troublesome in Fargo, North Dakota. Floodwaters are lapping at dozens of homes in that city. The river is expected to crest tomorrow more than 20 feet above flood stage.

Taking a look at the weather, Chad Myers is here with that -- Chad.

CHAD MYERS, CNN METEOROLOGIST: Hi, Daryn.

(WEATHER REPORT)

KAGAN: All right, Chad. You will be watching it for us. Thank you.

And I'm asking you to join me every weekday morning at 10:00 Eastern for CNN LIVE TODAY.

"LIVE FROM" -- Tony Harris filling in for Kyra today -- will kick off at the top of the hour.

Meanwhile, YOUR WORLD TODAY continues after a quick break.

I'm Daryn Kagan.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(NEWSBREAK)

CLANCY: The United Nations is calling it the worst humanitarian crisis in the world today. The conflict in the Darfur region of Sudan is intensifying, according to U.N. relief coordinator Jan Egeland. He was pre prevented from visiting Darfur, even overflying it, by the Sudanese government. A short while ago, (INAUDIBLE) spoke to him on the phone about his most recent attempts to help the people who are being victimized there.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JAN EGELAND, U.N. RELIEF COORDINATOR: I had (INAUDIBLE). I had everything cleared. I had spoken to the foreign minister. We had everything going for this very important mission to get attention for an increased funding for us. As the United Nations system, working with many government organizations, providing a lifeline to three million people, who have nothing but the international community to rely on, to survive in the war-torn (INAUDIBLE) region.

UNIDENTIFIED CNN ANCHOR: But, sir, you did meet, however, with the foreign minister of Sudan. What did he tell you? Why wouldn't they help you in trying to help their people?

EGELAND: Well, it's quite remarkable. Foreign Minister Ram Macal (ph) who comes from the southern SBLM (ph) movement, said he wasn't even informed of the decision to bar me from going to the Darfur region, and even visiting Khartoum. I am on a mission on behalf of Secretary General Kofi Annan. I'm coordinating the U.N. effort, which is a billion-dollar operation nearly. We have thousands of aid workers on the ground. I was just informed that just there now that one of the key nongovernment organizations in providing work in southern Darfur, and Camp Management, in one the largest refugee or displacement camps, the Norwegian Refugee Council, was given until tomorrow to leave Darfur, southern Darfur, completely.

So I think this is part of a larger hole. We are not enabled to work. We are obstructed in our work. We are getting less and less security. Our aid workers are harassed. We're witnesses to 200,000 new people being displaced due to recent attacks over the last few months. And we're getting less resources from the international community. We have even less money, and have to cut food rations to the people there, so I think we all have to wake up to what is happening in Darfur.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

CLANCY: More than two million people have been displaced by the conflict in Darfur. Tens of thousands have been killed in fighting between the government forces backed by militias and the rebels. Tens upon tens of thousands of others have been killed due to the affects of malnutrition and disease. The Sudanese government resisting efforts by the U.N. to bring in a peacekeeping force.

GORANI: Forced to join forces in Israel. Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Labor Party chairman Amir Peretz says they will form a governing coalition together. Mr. Olmert's Kadima Party won more sets than any other group in last week's general election, but fewer than they'd hoped. Labor came in second. Official talks between the two parties will begin as soon as President Moshe Katsav names Mr. Olmert to lead the new government, which is just a formality right now.

CLANCY: All right, so the real news coming out of the Middle East right now in Israel today. There were some Kassam rocket strikes that hit very close to a flammable liquid storage area in Israel. Israel responded for the first time since Hamas was elected to power with an airstrike. But the air strike targeted the compound of Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian president, Authority president, and of course a member, not of Hamas, but of Fatah.

In the meantime, politics in Israel, one party emerging as a key player, a bit of a surprise. Few would suspect the Pensioners Party, dominated by aging politicians, to really be part of the next coalition, but that's now likely next to happen.

John Vause explaining why.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JOHN VAUSE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The new, yet aging force in Israeli politics, the Pensioners Party.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Everybody's asking why we are doing so good in these elections?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, people we are charming.

VAUSE: They won a surprising seven seats in the fractious 120- seat parliament, almost guaranteeing a place in the next coalition government.

But that support comes with a hefty price.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Just, to put, a few billions of dollars, and that's all.

(LAUGHTER)

VAUSE: Billions (INAUDIBLE) people like Eliyahu Misrachi. His only meal each day is at a Jerusalem soup kitchen. Like so many others here, he blames his hardships on the economic policies of the previous government.

"All the benefits have been cut, and since then, it has been very difficult," he told me. They cut the money for the children, the old people's pension.

And in a country where Holocaust survivors are honored by the army, many like Sara Gorovich (ph) say they couldn't get by without financial support from family.

"To just survive on the government benefit," she says, "is very difficult."

(on camera): A few years ago, the Israeli economy was in crisis, and the government was forced to take some tough measures, including slashing social benefits, and it worked. Economic growth is up, unemployment is coming down. But not everyone has shared in the wealth equally: The number of poor has grown, and one in three children are living in poverty.

(voice-over): The Pensioners Party cashed in on a protest vote, especially among younger voters.

ARI SHAVIT, "HA'ARETZ" NEWSPAPER: Hardly anyone thought it will become such a considerable force in Israeli politics. This is really -- there was an element of humor in this vote.

VAUSE: The party leader is 79-year-old Raffa Attan (ph). Two hearing aids, thick glasses, and once a master spy. In 1960, he commanded the unit that snatched the infamous Nazi fugitive Adolf Eichmann from Buenos Ares. During the '80s, Etan recruited Jonathan Pollard, the American intelligence officer who spied on the U.S. for Israel. He was tried for treason and is serving a life sentence.

Now these geriatric politicians will likely play a prominent role in any decision to evacuate many of the smaller Jewish settlements in the West Bank. And as acting prime minister, Ehud Olmert hopes to define Israel's borders within the next four years.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don't know. I don't know. I have to talk about it with my mind.

VAUSE: John Vause, CNN, Jerusalem.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

GORANI: In another part of the Middle East, women are making history, and it's happening in Kuwait. For the first time ever, women cast ballots and ran as candidates in a municipal bi-election (ph). Men and women are voting separately to conform with Islamic traditions, really at the request of Islamist parties. This election comes almost a year after parliament passed a bill giving women the right to vote and run for office. There was strong opposition from some hardline Sunni Muslims, who believe a woman's...



JIM CLANCY, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: While one trial of Saddam Hussein drags on, another looms. The new charge, genocide.

HALA GORANI, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: And mass day of action in France. Protesters keep up the pressure on the government and its new jobs law.

CLANCY: And a step toward a more normal life. Remarkable new transplant technology raises the hopes of patients worldwide.

GORANI: Well, it is noon here in Atlanta, 8:00 p.m. in Baghdad, Iraq.

I'm Hala Gorani.

CLANCY: I'm Jim Clancy.

Welcome to our viewers throughout the world and in the United States.

This is YOUR WORLD TODAY.

GORANI: First, we take you to Iraq where authorities have filed new charges against former dictator Saddam Hussein and six others, accusing them of attempts to exterminate the country's Kurdish population during the 1980s.

CLANCY: And that's opening the door to a second trial against Saddam Hussein, one that involves gross human rights abuses committed during his reign.

Aneesh Raman has more now from Baghdad.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) ANEESH RAMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Dubbed the Anfal campaign, it stands as one of the gravest atrocities of Saddam Hussein's rule. It's estimated that more than 100,000 Iraqi Kurds were killed in the late 1980s as Saddam's regime tried to stamp out their opposition. And now, Saddam and six co-defendants have been indicted over the Anfal campaign, and the charges for the first time include the crime of genocide.

BARHAM SAIAH, KURDISH POLITICAL LEADER: Justice at long last. And it has been a long, painful wait. But this is an important moment in our history.

RAMAN: It is unclear when the Anfal trial will start. Saddam is currently in the midst of his first trial. And the Iraqi high tribunal hasn't said whether the second trial must wait for the first to finish or can be conducted at the same time.

Unclear, as well, will Saddam even be in the court to face charges over the Anfal campaign? If he is found guilty and sentenced to death after the first trial is done, Iraqi law says Saddam must be executed within 30 days of the appeals process ending. But Iraq's president suggested that could change.

JALAL TALABANI, IRAQI PRESIDENT (through translator): I believe the court is working on a plan whereby he will be tried for all the crimes, then a verdict will be handed down.

RAMAN: Kurdish and Shia communities want Saddam to be tried for many more crimes, including the suppression of the uprisings that followed the 1991 Gulf War.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

RAMAN: And Saddam is set to reappear in court tomorrow, set to further testify. He could potentially face cross-examination. Prosecutors say this first trial could be near completion, Jim, but now a second trial could begin within weeks.

CLANCY: Aneesh, more violence in the Iraqi capital this day, and taking it to the current situation, some disturbing numbers coming from the U.S. military to put in perspective, how this -- this conflict seems to be transforming itself.

RAMAN: The conflict on the ground is now really defined, Jim, by Shia militias. A U.S. military commander has said to CNN the biggest threat Iraq faces are these Shia militias.

As you mentioned, today a suicide car bombing in Sadr City. At least 10 people killed. Sadr City home to one of the country's strongest Shia militias, the Mehdi militia, those loyal to Shia cleric Muqtada al-Sadr. They will see these images and be further enraged. They will again contend that Iraq security forces are incapable of protecting the Shia people.

But disbanding those militias is seen as a critical step towards bringing stability to Iraq. But you can't disband the militias until you have a government. Right now, there is a political vacuum that has gripped this country, which is why we've heard calls, most recently from U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and from her British counterpart, Foreign Secretary Jack Straw, for a unity government to form and form now so it can start dealing with these issues -- Jim.

CLANCY: Aneesh Raman, reporting there live from Baghdad.

GORANI: Now, Paris, Marseilles, Lyon, Bordeaux and cities across France. Demonstrators are turning up for another day of protests against the controversial youth jobs law.

Unions and student groups mobilized in nearly 200 towns and cities for a fifth day of action. One French union says more than two million people took part in the rallies, but no official police figures are out yet. We're going to have to wait for the final figure.

Meanwhile, at a heated debate at the French National Assembly Tuesday, Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin vigorously defended his controversial law.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DOMINIQUE DE VILLEPIN, FRENCH PRIME MINISTER (through translator): The government will not lower its arms. It will -- it will not give in, Madame Deputy. We need to have more equality, more justice, and a more dynamic approach in our country.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CLANCY: Now, de Villepin announced the creation of the disputed first job contract back in January. Now, that measure was introduced in parliament without prior consultation with the trade unions. It would allow employers to fire workers under the age of 26 during their first two years on a job without giving any reason.

Villepin and others say it will boost the company and stem chronic youth unemployment. Critics, though, say it threatens France's hallmark labor protections.

President Jacques Chirac signed the legislation into law Sunday, saying France needs it to keep up with the world economy. He offered modifications, but students and unions say they want the law withdrawn, not softened.

GORANI: Well, it's a big movement, but it has a few individuals at its head. A 25-year-old law student and activist named Bruno Julliard is one of those at the center of that storm in France. He heads the largest student group.

Jim Bittermann spent some time with him.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JIM BITTERMANN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice over): After weeks of strikes and protests in France, with millions of people in the streets, with the president and prime minister backed into a corner, the unassuming 25-year-old student leader described here as the biggest thorn in the government's side, says he really is not trying to bring down the government, just stop a law he opposes.

BRUNO JULLIARD, NATIONAL UNION OF FRENCH STUDENTS (through translator): The stubbornness of the government has turned this into a political event, and they've had to retreat. But that was not our intention.

BITTERMANN: For Bruno Julliard, the president of the largest student union, activism is nothing new. Some say his first protest came in primary school when he led the opposition against a plan to cut down trees in the schoolyard. And his family has ties to the French resistance and the socialist and communist parties.

He denies he's using the student demonstrations as a springboard to get into politics. Julliard says he wants only to be a lawyer and sees no contradiction in representing the law while opposing a part of it.

JULLIARD (through translator): The respect of democracy also means that you take into account the aspirations and expectations of the majority of the people.

BITTERMANN (on camera): Some compare Julliard to the student leaders back in 1968, who, with demonstrations here in the Latin quarter and elsewhere, eventually brought the country to a halt. And while there are similarities, Julliard himself says there are big differences in the times and the goals.

(voice over): And he says disdainfully that the leaders back then have become economic liberals, part of the establishment.

In one TV interview after another, Julliard insists the protests will continue until the law is repealed and disregards those who point out it was passed by parliament. He says the national assembly, even if it is democratically elected, can make mistakes, and that's what happened with this law.

Jim Bittermann, CNN, Paris.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

CLANCY: The prime minister who said he would never step down has. Turning our focus now to Asia and the political situation in Thailand that has now taken a surprising turn.

Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra says he's going to step aside and allow someone else to take over. That announcement came after weeks of opposition protest, as well as a snap election.

Correspondent Ram Ramgopal spoke to us earlier about the prime minister's rocky political tenure from Bangkok.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) RAM RAMGOPAL, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: This is a stunning development for a person who has served more than five years in office, has become something of a lightning rod for criticism among his opponents, but in large parts of this country he's extremely admired and loved for his populist policies. So this is a stunning turnaround for a situation which even a couple days along looked as if it was going towards really a deepening impasse.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CLANCY: Largely, it was seen as an embarrassment to the king on his 60th anniversary of being on the throne. The king looking on, and here was a prime minister that was implicated in $1.9 billion of what many in the public said was clear evidence of conflict of interest. That was his profit off a telecom company.

GORANI: And facing many protests, of course, throughout the country.

That was Ram Ramgopal reporting.

Now we're going to take a short break. On YOUR WORLD TODAY when we come back, it sounds like something out of a science fiction novel.

CLANCY: It does.

GORANI: In the United States, a medical marvel brings new hope for people in need of new organs.

CLANCY: Just ahead in our report, how cutting-edge transplant technology has changed the life of one patient, and it could do the same for so many more.

Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

GORANI: Welcome back to YOUR WORLD TODAY on CNN International.

I'm Hala Gorani.

CLANCY: A potential medical breakthrough of mind-boggling proportions, Hala.

GORANI: Now, it's the first human transplant that is lab-grown, an organ, reported in the medical journal "The Lancet."

CLANCY: That's right. Seven young patients all received bladders that were grown from their own cells in a procedure designed to dramatically reduce the risk of rejection, also one that could certainly save some lives.

GORANI: Now, Senior Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta has our story.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN SENIOR MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): By most definitions, this is the life of a typical 16-year-old girl. Her days are filled with teenage fare, family, friends, even a tinge of attitude.

KAITLYNE MCNAMARA, 16 YEARS OLD: What would you do without me?

GUPTA: But the days were not always this happy for Kaitlyne McNamara.

TRACY MCNAMARA, MOTHER OF KAITLYNE MCNAMARA: By the time she was 3 or 4 years old, she was already up to like 35 surgeries. And we're not talking tonsillectomies. We're talking major neurological, orthopedic, urological.

GUPTA: Kaitlyne was born with spina bifida. That's a rare birth defect that stunts brain and spinal cord development. For Kaitlyne, that meant, among other things, a crippling jumble of nerves jetting out from the base of her spine. Doctors said she would probably never sit up on her own.

As if that weren't enough for her parents to bear, another problem surfaced. Kaitlyne's bladder was not functioning properly.

T. MCNAMARA: We realized that something wasn't right. Then you hit a developmental stage, and you're supposed to be out of diapers. You're supposed to be doing this. It's when we realized that she was never wet.

GUPTA: The problem was, Kaitlyne's bladder was the size of a thimble and could not sustain normal amounts of fluid. What didn't fit into her bladder flowed back towards her kidneys.

T. MCNAMARA: If she drank a cup of water or a cup of juice, her bladder's pressure were at such an intense point that she would have what they call a bladder burst.

GUPTA: The accidents, especially at school, were embarrassing for Kaitlyne.

K. MCNAMARA: At my school, they make fun of you. And I didn't want to become singled out as being different than everybody else.

GUPTA: Problems with Kaitlyne's bladder were causing major damage to her kidneys. Doctors offered the most common surgical option, using a piece of intestine to create a new bladder. But that procedure is not without risks.

DR. ANTHONY ATALA, WAKE FOREST UNIV. SCHOOL OF MEDICINE: When you put that piece of intestine to function as a bladder, you start having absorption of things that you shouldn't be having, and this may lead to problems with bone growth, mucus production, certain metabolic problems, even cancer.

GUPTA: Dr. Anthony Atala, a urologist at Wake Forest University, believed there had to be a way to dodge those problems. With few options left, Atala and his colleagues looked for help somewhere they hadn't considered before, Kaitlyne's own bladder. Not just repairing it, but creating an entirely new bladder using her own cells.

ATALA: We're not using any type of stem cell population or cloning techniques, but mainly the patient's own cells that we're using to create these organs and putting them back into the patient.

GUPTA: Kaitlyne was one of the first patients ever to undergo this technique.

T. MCNAMARA: We didn't understand in the beginning. I think it was too science fictiony (ph) for us.

GUPTA: So how does it work? Well, a small piece, less than the size of a postage stamp, is taken from the patient's bladder. Both muscle and bladder cells are teased out from that piece of the bladder and grown in a Petri dish.

When there are a sufficient number of cells, they're layered onto a three-dimensional mold shaped like a bladder and they're allowed to grow. Several weeks later, the cells have produced a newly engineered bladder which is implanted into the patient. Several more weeks later, the new bladder has grown fully inside the body and can function on its own.

All seven patients who underwent the procedure including Kaitlyne report dramatic improvements. Their bladders hold more fluid and they have fewer problems with incontinence and because the organ comes from their own tissues ...

ATALA: When the organ is placed back into the patient, you avoid all of the problems with rejection.

GUPTA: Many more studies must still be done before growing replacement organs becomes mainstream and used for other organs like hearts, livers or lungs. But the potential impact of engineering organs from a patient's own cells is enormous. For now, this beneficiary of the new technology is a step closer to being a normal teenager.

K. MCNAMARA: I'm happy. I was always afraid that I was going to have, like, an accident or something. Now I can just go and -- go out with my friends, go do whatever I want.

GUPTA: Dr. Sanjay Gupta, CNN, reporting.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

CLANCY: Doctor and bioethicist Arthur Caplan has been following this technology since its inception. In fact, he was asked for his opinion on the new procedure by the company that co-developed and hopes to market that.

A little earlier, he spoke with own our Michael Holmes about the possible impact.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

DR. ARTHUR CAPLAN, UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA: This really is a breakthrough. This is the first time any scientific steam has grown an organ from cells. And if you think about it, what we face these days around the world is shortages of organs and tissues, livers, hearts, tendons, bones. If you could really put the right chemicals on cells, get them to grow, you would have a technology that would get rid of organ and tissue transplant as we know it and replace it with this kind of generation of organs or cell repair. Very exciting, really quite a breakthrough.

MICHAEL HOLMES, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: Now, as said, you offered your advice, or they asked your advice. You gave it to them. I'm curious, what did you tell them?

CAPLAN: Well, they wanted to know, first of all, is it ethical to try this in human beings and how do we get the right informed consent? You know, you've seen from the little setup piece, if you don't have a bladder, if it's not working right, it's something that's horrific and intrudes on your life. You are going to sign up basically for anything that might let you get away from that kind of problem.

What I said was, we've got to make sure that the science is absolutely sound. We've got to have good animal studies. That's going to make this ethical to try. And that's what they did. They really did this extensively in rats and mice long before we got to people.

HOLMES: Yes. And as I say, "Lancet" is a very respected medical journal.

CAPLAN: Yes.

HOLMES: And they wouldn't run it if it didn't have something going for it. This study group, bladder cells, you touched on this. What's the potential for other organs?

CAPLAN: Well, just, Michael, so we all understand, the bladder here, it's a bag, and they grew it out using a scaffold. You might see other organs growing. Not growing a heart or a lung or a kidney in a dish, but actually growing enough cells on a sheet so that you can put them in and kind of plug them in like a flat tire plugging a hole. If you have a heart attack and some of your heart muscle dies, you don't need to replace the whole heart. You just need to replace a heart of it. So...

HOLMES: Basically patch it.

CAPLAN: Yes. And so growing patches, I think, is where the action is going to be on this technology.

HOLMES: And for treating cancer as well, perhaps? Lung cancer I'm thinking about, which is almost always fatal.

CAPLAN: Well, if you -- and remember our friend with the face transplant that we were all looking at a while back. You can grow back part of the face if you have lost it due to oral cancer, some of your face and bone. Here come the patches, grow them around a scaffold, maybe make a new jaw, part of a jaw, part of a cheek.

That's why this is all so exciting. It lets you kind of self- repair yourself in ways that, you know, I'm astounded by.

HOLMES: Yes. You're an ethicists. Let me ask you about potential ethical issues.

I imagine one ethical issue in this case that's gone away is they're not using embryonic stem cells...

CAPLAN: Yes.

HOLMES: ... for this procedure. There are others that are going to require that. But so that's one ethical issue that went away in this case.

But what about, first of all, the cost? Then you've got to talk about, well, who goes first? What about my kid? What about mine?

CAPLAN: So there's going to be three ethical issues here.

First, someday we're going to say, well, we never have to get into that embryo research and cloning research. We've got this.

Unfortunately, this isn't going to work for all kinds of cells, particularly nerve cells. It is hard to make them grow and flourish. So, for spinal cord injury, probably Parkinson's, this isn't it. We are still going to have to have that debate about embryonic stem cell research.

Secondly, this is not going to be cheap. I can imagine this costing tens of thousands of dollars to do, and there are going to be arguments about insurance companies, national governments, when do we pay for it?

The third big issue, people are going to be clamoring for this. There are lots of adults who don't have bladders due to cancer. They are going to say, hey, how do I find out about this? Where do I get this?

This is still relatively novel research. You've got to be careful. You've got to make sure that it really works not just for a year, two years, but five or 10 years. So we are going to have a debate, if you will, about who's next.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

GORANI: All right. Well, we have a lot of questions about this, and I'm sure many of our viewers do, too, and comments and thoughts. And that's our "Question of the Day" today.

CLANCY: What are your perspectives on this medical breakthrough?

E-mail us your responses to YWT@CNN.com.

A new bladder grown from stem cells, a pretty incredible development.

GORANI: OK. And a medical breakthrough that, of course, as we heard there, could also help in other areas, and for people who have lost or have damaged organs due to illness.

As always, keep your comments brief and include your name and where you are writing from. We will read a selection of it later in the program.

CLANCY: And we've got to take a break, but we'll be checking the latest business news in just a moment.

GORANI: And then, a lesson in business etiquette.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This is a dish that maybe some overseas businessmen and women might find a little bit unpalatable. It's a sea slug. We also have a sauteed bullfrog.

If you are a business person, you are being offered this as a guest in China, and you don't want to eat it, what do you do?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I would just say, "Xie xie."

(END VIDEOTAPE)

CLANCY: That means "thank you" in China. It's about a lot more than just the art of the deal.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

DARYN KAGAN, CNN ANCHOR: I'm Daryn Kagan at CNN Center in Atlanta.

More of YOUR WORLD TODAY in just a few minutes. First, though, a check on stories making headlines here in the U.S.

A blow for Delta Airlines. Word just moments ago that pilots of Delta Airlines have voted by a wide margin to authorize a strike.

The pilots are angered by management's offer to throw out their contract and impose deep pay cuts. An arbitration panel has until April 15th to decide whether to void the contracts. If that happens the pilots say they will strike.

Delta executives have said that a strike would put the airline out of business. The carrier is operating under bankruptcy protection.

A young man says that he is sharing his story in an effort to save others from sexual predators. On Capitol Hill this morning, teenager Justin Berry told lawmakers he became increasingly involved in a sordid world of Web cam sex. Eventually, he says he was molested by older men.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JUSTIN BERRY, SEX PREDATOR VICTIM: Web cams and instant messaging give predators power over children. The predators become part of that child's life. Whatever warnings the child may have heard about meeting strangers, these people are no longer strangers. They have every advantage. It is the standard seduction of child predators multiplied on a geometric scale.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KAGAN: And there's more about tracking online sexual predators tonight on "ANDERSON COOPER 360," 10:00 Eastern here on CNN.

He was a republican power broker and now Tom DeLay is leaving Congress. The embattled Texas congressman and former House majority leader plans to give up his seat by mid June. He was nicknamed "The Hammer" for his hardball politics.

DeLay is facing some legal problems. He's been indicted on campaign finance charges in Texas. He's also been linked to a lobbying scandal. DeLay denies any wrongdoing in both cases.

Here is President bush's reaction.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I had a talk last night on my way back from the ballgame with Congressman DeLay. He informed me of his decision. My reaction was it had to have been a very difficult decision for someone who loved representing his district in the state of Texas. I wished him all the very best.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KAGAN: In making his announcement, DeLay did not rule out a future run for office.

Fire investigators are converging on the ruins of a burned out church in Talladega, Alabama, today. They're not yet sure what or perhaps who started the fire. You may remember, three men are jailed in a series of arsons that damaged or destroyed nine churches in the state. No one has been charged in the suspected arson attack on a tenth Alabama church.

Tennessee Governor Phil Bredesen calls it the wrath of god. The governor received a first-hand look at tornado damage in his state this morning. Sunday's violent weather killed at least two dozen people in west Tennessee and destroyed at least 1,800 homes and businesses.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GOV. PHIL BREDESEN, TENNESSEE: Two reactions. First of all, as you were flying over it -- I know this is crazy -- the phrase that kept coming through my mind is just "the wrath of god." I have never seen anything like that.

I've looked at several tornadoes. I'm used to seeing roofs off houses, or a house blown over or something. There were foundations that had just been scraped -- scraped clean.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KAGAN: The line of severe weather also struck seven other states.

In North Dakota and Minnesota, the Red River is on the rise. The situation is especially troublesome in Fargo, North Dakota. Floodwaters are lapping at dozens of homes in that city. The river is expected to crest tomorrow more than 20 feet above flood stage.

Taking a look at the weather, Chad Myers is here with that -- Chad.

CHAD MYERS, CNN METEOROLOGIST: Hi, Daryn.

(WEATHER REPORT)

KAGAN: All right, Chad. You will be watching it for us. Thank you.

And I'm asking you to join me every weekday morning at 10:00 Eastern for CNN LIVE TODAY.

"LIVE FROM" -- Tony Harris filling in for Kyra today -- will kick off at the top of the hour.

Meanwhile, YOUR WORLD TODAY continues after a quick break.

I'm Daryn Kagan.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

GORANI: This election comes almost a year after parliament passed a bill giving women the right to vote and run for office. There was strong opposition from some hard line Sunni Muslims who believe a woman's priority is to take care of her family, as well as tribal parties. Let's get some perspective on this. We are joined on the telephone from Kuwait by Dr. Massouma al-Mubarak, the first minister to be sworn in in Kuwait.

Is this a historic day for women?

DR. MASSOUMA AL-MUBARAK, KUWAIT PLANNING MINISTER: Of course. This is actually a happy day, an historic day, that a dream come true, because this dream we have been waiting for for four decades now. Today is the first practice day for women to join, as candidates and also as a voter.

GORANI: They're not voting for parliamentary elections. This is a municipal bi-election right now. AL-MUBARAK: Definitely. It is a municipality election. It is only for, in one district, but this is the first actual election for political action for women, and that's why we see it today, as a practice that we really waited a long time for, and, to practice for 2007.

GORANI: So women will be able to run for office for parliament for a seat in the Kuwaiti parliament next year?

AL-MUBARAK: Yes, of course. Yes. Lots of women are preparing themselves, and indicating themselves in that regard, and we are getting the training. Sometimes we train each other, sometimes we seek training from other parliamentary members who are winning, to give us training, and, also, from outside.

GORANI: All right, all that being said, you know, Islamist parties, as you know full well, tribal parties in Kuwait, not happy with this. Tried to block this from happening. This is still a contentious, controversial issue in a country like Kuwait.

AL-MUBARAK: Actually it's not anymore. Because, now, it's a fact, as women are empowered to have their political right as voter and candidate, so, everybody now, even those who were against the women political participation, now, they are seeking women's votes, and also they are seeking to please women in terms of talking and trying to talk about the needs of women and the issues concerning women. So, now, as long -- it's a fact, so everybody is acting in that regard.

GORANI: Very briefly, you were the first minister, female minister to be sworn in in Kuwait. What advice to do you have for female politicians in your country?

AL-MUBARAK: Be dedicated to the issues that you believe in. Be dedicated to your principles and go for it.

GORANI: Masoumma Al-Mubarak. All right, Kuwait's planning minister, thank you very much.

CLANCY: Good advice. Go for it.

GORANI: Go for it. Bed dedicated

CLANCY: Speaking of that we have to take a short break, but increasingly, foreigners are coming into China. We are there all week with "Eye on China." Our reporters and anchors are there, and they are looking at, when you want to do business to the 1.3 billion consumers, what do you have to do?

GORANI: You have to make sure you a follow a certain set of etiquette rules. There is a cultural difference there. Something very unpalletable is on the menu, for instance, what do you do?

CLANCY: We'll find out, coming up next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK) CLANCY: Welcome back to our viewers in the U.S. and around the world.

GORANI: To win you business, you have to make the right impression.

CLANCY: That's very important in China, certainly. You make the wrong move, you could lose the deal.

GORANI: As part of our special "Eye on China" programming this week, Kristie Lu Stout takes a lesson in Chinese business etiquette.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

KRISTIE LU STOUT: Very nice to meet you. Thank you for giving me this lesson in Chinese business etiquette . I have to ask you. Am I dressed for the part?

PETER P.W. CHEN, BUSINESS MANAGEMENT CONSULTANT: Absolutely perfect for Chinese business meeting. Conservative color, long skirt.

STOUT: Good to hear. Let's start it, then.

CHEN: Let's go this way.

This is my business card.

STOUT: Thank you.

CHEN: Notice how I present it with English side facing you.

STOUT: I could do the same for you. Here is my business card.

CHEN: Oh, wonderful. You have spelled your Chinese name. Notice how I spent a little bit of time paying attention to detail of the card. That is a sign of respect.

STOUT: A business meeting sometimes ends with a gift exchange. Here's some CNN gifts. Would these appropriate to give in China?

CHEN: Some of them, like the iPod might be too expensive. It could carry a bribery undertone. The other side might uncomfortable because he would have to reciprocate with something of equal value.

STOUT: This is a photo CD. Would this be more appropriate?

CHEN: That is a perfect gift. It introduce your company, your city, or your country.

STOUT: OK. That wraps up the session here. Our etiquette lesson will continue tonight over dinner.

CHEN: OK. See you then.

STOUT: So, Peter, tell me, how important is dining to building a business relationship in China? CHEN: Culturally, Chinese people regard eating as one of the most important things, as they say (SPEAKING IN CHINESE).

STOUT: What does that mean?

CHEN: Eating is as important as the sky.

STOUT: Now, this is a dish that maybe some overseas businessmen and women may find unpalletable. Sea slug. We have sauteed bullfrog. If you are a business person, you are being offered these as a guest in China, and you don't want to eat it, what do you do --

CHEN: I would just say (SPEAKING IN CHINESE).

STOUT: Like this and then, no one's feelings are hurt, everything is fine.

And now we have the fish. I notice it is looking at me, it is pointed this direction. What does that mean?

CHEN: That me means you have to drink a glass of white liquor, because the head of the fish is pointing toward you.

STOUT: If that is the custom, I will have to drink a glass of white liquor. So, please.

CHEN: OK.

STOUT: Now, this white liquor is pretty serious stuff. Being served this, can a guest be in a position to decline at all?

CHEN: Yes. But the host would prefer that you join him in drinking it.

STOUT: Well, I'm going to have to join the host to a toast.

CHEN: That's right.

STOUT: I have to struggle to get lower than your glass.

CHEN: And the host will try to lower glass and yours to show his respect for you.

STOUT: Bottoms up. Kristie Lu Stout, CNN, Shanghai.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

CLANCY: Done deal.

GORANI: Cheers. Done deal. CNN is in Shanghai all week. You can see more reports throughout the day.

CLANCY: On Wednesday, join me for "CNN CONNECTS: The Price of Progress." Here from regional experts on China's challenge in balancing its double digit growth while trying to protect its already endangered environment. Watch "CNN CONNECTS" Wednesday, 14:00 GMT. We are going to continue with YOUR WORLD TODAY right after this short break.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

CLANCY: Wednesday, 1,400 hours GMT. We're going to continue with YOUR WORLD TODAY right after this short break.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

GORANI: Well, being a celebrity -- part of the job of being a celebrity is being used to being stalked, as being used to being mobbed by adoring fans. But what if fans could stalk a star's every move minute by minute?

CLANCY: One Web site actually exists, Hala, to do just that, posting real-time information about famous people.

GORANI: And one top star has launched a vigorous campaign to throw off would-be gawker stalkers. Brooke Anderson reports.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

(MUSIC)

BROOKE ANDERSON, CNN ENTERTAINMENT CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It's the latest innovation in celebrity obsession, and it's under attack by one of Hollywood's biggest and brightest stars. Oscar- winner George Clooney is trying, in essence, to shutdown a Web site called Gawker Stalker.

It posts real-time information about the whereabouts of all of your famous people, primarily in Manhattan complete with a map, all of the info coming from celeb sightings sent in via e-mail or text message by the site's legions of fans. But the site's critics have called it a major threat to the safety of the stars.

STAN ROSENFIELD, CLOONEY'S PUBLICIST: We've come up with a plan that could work to help render this Web site not so effective.

ANDERSON: Clooney via his publicist, Stan Rosenfield, sent an e- mail last week to other publicists, urging them and their clients to join in the fight against Gawker. The e-mail read, quote, "Flood their Web site with bogus sightings. A couple hundred conflicting sightings and this Web site is worthless."

ROSENFIELD: It is a first amendment issue. They have every right in the world to have freedom of speech. But what we would like to do is provide them with enough information that will make their information that they do put out suspect.

ANDERSON (on-camera): Gawker.com is quick to defend itself, saying the site isn't harmful, that the celebrities' information is already out there. And that they are not to blame.

JESSICA COEN, CO-EDITOR, GAWKER.COM: If you found out George Clooney were getting a cup of Starbucks, had the time to click your Web site, run downstairs, get to that Starbucks and inflict bodily harm, I think that's something that not any single Web site can take the blame for.

ANDERSON (voice-over): Clooney's efforts appear to be making a difference. The site has been inundated with fake star sightings, many of which are about George Clooney including, "George Clooney is with me and helping to reset all of my clocks to daylights savings time. George Clooney at the Beverly Hills Hotel. Hey I saw Clooney on the moon."

In truth, Clooney is now in New York City working on the film "Michael Clayton."

ROSENFIELD: I just want people to realize that this is not a case of celebrity whining. This is a case of, you know, protecting somebody's right to privacy and not putting them in any danger. What we are concerned about is not so much the fan because the fan has nothing but good intentions. We are concerned about somebody who might be a legitimate stalker.

ANDERSON: Seriousness aside, Clooney known as a prankster in all likelihood is having a bit of fun with this spirited Gawker Stalker smack down. He ended his e-mail with this, "Just make them useless. That's the fun of it. And then sit back and enjoy the ride."

Brooke Anderson, CNN, Hollywood.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

CLANCY: Well, it's time for us to open up the "Inbox" today, Hal. We were asking the question about our medical story.

GORANI: Yes, the first recorded human transplant of an organ grown in the lab.

CLANCY: Our question was this: What's your opinion of the latest medical breakthrough?

GORANI: All right. So we have some answers here. Steven Okensosto (ph) from the Netherlands said: " I believe that the new medical breakthrough is a great development and it is a gift of odd. I pray that it works out well in the patients that take the treatment."

CLANCY: Kylie -- we have this one coming up. It doesn't say who it's from, but he says, "I saw this news item, I'm all for it. I've been a type 1 diabetic for the past 56 years. It would be nice to be able to throw away all my syringes and all that stuff and be able to live like the non-diabetics do."

GORANI: All right, thank you very much for writing in. We have a lot ahead on CNN International. Stay tuned for more of YOUR WORLD TODAY.

CLANCY: Also, if you are watching us on CNN USA, Tony Harris is next with CNN "LIVE FROM."

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

TO ORDER A VIDEO OF THIS TRANSCRIPT, PLEASE CALL 800-CNN-NEWS OR USE OUR SECURE ONLINE ORDER FORM LOCATED AT www.fdch.com

Search
© 2007 Cable News Network.
A Time Warner Company. All Rights Reserved.
Terms under which this service is provided to you.
Read our privacy guidelines. Contact us. Site Map.
Offsite Icon External sites open in new window; not endorsed by CNN.com
Pipeline Icon Pay service with live and archived video. Learn more
Radio News Icon Download audio news  |  RSS Feed Add RSS headlines