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UK Hacking; `News of the World' Closing

Aired July 7, 2011 - 16:00:00   ET


BECKY ANDERSON, CNN ANCHOR: After a phone hacking scandal that has shocked an entire country, Britain's biggest Sunday newspaper is axed. Rupert Murdoch's son may have made the stunning announcement but what does the paper's owner - the world's biggest media mogul - really stand to lose?

Plus, an exclusive report tonight on the secret medics of Syria - risking their lives to save those fighting for their freedom.

And later this evening, I'll be speaking to the cast of Harry Potter as the boy wizard and his friends prepare for a magical farewell.

These stories and more tonight as we CONNECT THE WORLD.

Well, Britain's best-selling Sunday tabloid has fallen on its sword. Scandal-hit "News of the World" will go to print for the last time on Sunday, shut down by its owner amid a phone hacking saga that has rocked British media. Now, the shock closure comes as police revealed they've identified nearly 4,000 potential victims of illegal eavesdropping.

In announcing the shutdown, News International's chairman James Murdoch said wrongdoers had turned a good newsroom bad and admitted his organization had failed to adequately deal with the scandal.


JAMES MURDOCH, NEWS INTERNATIONAL CHAIRMAN: I feel regret. Clearly, the practices of certain individuals did not live up to the standards and quality of journalism that we believe in, that I believe in.


ANDERSON: Well, today's events are the culmination of a scandal that began six years ago when it emerged that the "News of the World" had illegally eavesdropped on celebrities and politicians including Britain's royal family. But the turning point came this week when it was alleged the tabloid had also hacked into the phone of murdered British school girl Milly Dowler. The paper was said to have accused the 13-year-old's - I'm sorry - accessed the 13-year-old's voicemail, even deleting messages which gave her family false hopes that she was still alive.

Well, 24 hours later, it emerged that families who lost loved ones in the London terror attacks had also apparently been targeted. Then, in what appears to have been the last straw, relatives of British soldiers killed in Afghanistan and in Iraq. The Royal British Legion had joined what has been an exodus of support for the paper.

Well, one of the paper's victims was the former Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott. Now, Lord Prescott - his phone was allegedly hacked more than 40 times and he has led calls for action against the tabloid.

Well, I spoke to him just before this show started and asked him for his reaction to the closure of the newspaper. This is what he said.


JOHN PRESCOTT, FORMER BRITISH DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER: Well, it's a typical Murdoch management operation. It's like saying it's only a one rogue reporter, they told us for years. I kept contesting that and eventually when I took it to the court that the police weren't doing their job properly, we began to get real action on what happened. Now, to close down a factory and for the workers to pay the price when none of the chiefs have actually resigned seems to feel that if you cut off the arm, there's nothing wrong with the body. Now, the problem's in the body and in the head. It's a whole cut culture of operation in Murdoch press.

ANDERSON: You're wanting to see, I assume, the demise of Rebecca Brooks - are you - the chief executive of News International?

PRESCOTT: Well, she's there. She was the editor of the paper that just closed down. She was there when a lot of these practices were going on and now she said she knew nothing about them. Well, if you knew nothing about them, as the editor, why the hell have they given the job as a chief executive to run the whole company? And many of those workers today in the "News of the World" are saying "Why are we to blame? " And they're right - when Rebecca there gets promoted.

ANDERSON: James Murdoch will hope to have drawn a line under this whole affair by announcing the closure of the "News of the World" on Sunday. What do you want to see happen next?

PRESCOTT: Well, I think, you know, them are already talking about merging "The Sun" and indeed the "News of the World." This gives them an opportunity, close it down, cut costs, put people on the (INAUDIBLE). And I suppose what we'll move into now, it's a kind of "Sun" becomes "The Sunday Sun" and they get one paper from it and they get back to doing what they were before - more efficient, more effective but at the cost of redundancy. And they seem to believe by cutting off the arm - one of their papers - somehow the body will recover. No. The fault is in the body and the head of Murdoch's company itself.

ANDERSON: Well, you had won a bid to begin legal action over the police investigation. What happens with that?

PRESCOTT: Well, it's still there. In fact, they've told us for a number of some months that I hadn't had my phone tracked into. And then it turned out when I went to the courts and demanded that the court - the police release the information they'd got, they decided to do a second inquiry and the commissioner came to me and said "We're wrong. We misled you. It was done 44 times." Now, she - the new commissioner - is beginning to expose all the inadequacies of those but the Murdoch people, they try to buy people off as they did in civil actions by threatening to go to the courts and I've filled up that action. The police have to come and explain why they didn't do the job. And then we want to know "Why did you have such a close relation with the Murdoch interest?" That's why we want a public inquiry into the way that it operates here in Murdoch press and indeed in the media in Britain.

ANDERSON: We've been waiting for news on whether Rupert Murdoch was to be allowed by the government here to take over BSkyB. Should that happen now?

PRESCOTT: No, it should not be and opposing it all the time. I think, you know, at somebody pointing out the other day, there's a lot of criminal offenses sort of occurred by Murdoch press. They tried to blame it solely on to the "News of the World." But you know, it's just the parent company - they must have known. James Murdoch admits it today he wasn't told all the information and he's the chief executive. But frankly, that's not good enough to be person take over control a hundred percent of BSkyB. So we'd be making it clear that's not acceptable. The government said it's only about plurality. I wish they'd be concerned a little bit more about morality and I think that now it's been put on the backburner and I hope will eventually stop it.


ANDERSON: John Prescott, the former Deputy Prime Minister speaking to me earlier about the closure of Britain's biggest Sunday newspaper and the effect possibly on the Murdoch empire.

While the haemorrhaging's been put to a swift end by the Murdoch family today, one more edition of "News of the World" will be published and all of its advertising revenues, they say, will go to charity. Well, that is little consolation to the roughly 200 people who will be out of work come Sunday.

Jim Boulden is outside News International's headquarters in Wapping and he joins me now live.


JIM BOULDEN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Becky, these 200 employees were told this afternoon that the paper will be shutting down and that they will be made redundant. They will lose their jobs. But News International said they could apply for other jobs within the company if they so choose to.

We spoke to a few of them as they came out. Not many wanted to speak. But one of them - the political editor, David Wooding - indeed want to speak and he said he was absolutely shocked. There was absolutely no hint that this was coming. Obviously, they themselves say they were not here when the hacking happened. Many of them here are employees have only been here for the last few years. They say that this paper was clean in the last few years and they really feel - as John Prescott just said to you - that they are taking much of the blame. They are the ones also being victimized in this entire scandal, Becky.

ANDERSON: Boulden outside the newspaper's offices there. News International, of course, is the owner of the "News of the World." Well, it has been a huge force in breaking some of the world's most riveting stories.

I just want to give you a sense of just what this paper has been up to over the years.

This cover from 2002 shows how Prince Harry was sent to a rehab clinic after admitting that he had taken drugs as well as drinking under age.

"News of the World: Beckham's Secret Affair" - they'd also brought the world's most famous footballer into their headlines. It exposes a secret affair David Beckham was having with his personal assistant in 2004.

In 2009, following the death of Michael Jackson, the paper carried these first pictures of the bed where the pop star died.

This - August 29, 2010 - it also exposed a cricket-betting ring that alleged players were fixing matches.

And Harry back on its cover here in 2009 after the paper saw a video of the Prince racially abusing fellow soldiers of Asian descent.

Well, from breaking the news to being in the news, making headlines - let me tell you, in every single newspaper and television company across Britain and all over the world, from all the stunning turn of events, I'm joined now by Richard Quest.

And Richard, just before we talk, let's just remind ourselves of just (INAUDIBLE) Murdoch's statement - a mea culpa as it were - earlier on today. Can we bring that up for the viewers so they can see what James Murdoch actually said?

And let's see: "The good things the News of the World does, however, have been sullied by behaviour that was wrong." Why now? Why today?

RICHARD QUEST, HOST, "QUEST MEANS BUSINESS": Oh, he's went further. He said if the allegations are true, it's inhuman. He also went on to say and talk about how the "News of the World" and News International had failed to investigate back in 2006 and 2007 that Lord Prescott was talking about.

Why now? It depends on what you believe they've done. Have they shut the paper down on moral grounds? It's the "right" thing to do. How has it been done? For commercial grounds. They want to get rid of - they want to take over BSkyB. Or where they intending to do this anyway? There's a lot of rumour and gossip out there that says they were planning to merge "The Sun" and the "News of the World". This has given them an opportunistic moment to take a business decision that they were already planning to do.

ANDERSON: What sort of damage do you think these increasingly shocking revelations have done to News International and the larger picture would be News Corp. We're going to talk later about Rupert Murdoch.

But if in fact what you've just said is true - that they were thinking about closing this paper down anyway - they don't seem to really care about the damage done to the newspaper, do they?

QUEST: They don't because they're going to come back with a Sunday newspaper. There's a difference between closing the title and seeding the market ground. Now, they've closed the title but how long before - it can't be called "The Sunday Sun", it'll be called "The Sun on Sunday" or some other paper. Murdoch didn't say today whether or not he was going to actually not come back with another paper. So the feeling is that something will come along to take its place, something will be put in its place that will show that frankly the damage has been done, they've exorcised the cancer, the woman at the top has still not been removed, 200 journalists are out of a job, and plan B goes into operation.

ANDERSON: So they cut off the arms to save the body? That is certainly what John Prescott was saying tonight and the story news and you and I are going to talk about Rupert Murdoch, a man right at the top of these organizations shortly. Stay with me for that.

In a statement too, (INAUDIBLE) News International chairman James Murdoch said "the good things the paper does has been sullied by behaviour that was wrong indeed. If recent allegations are true, it was inhuman and has no place in our company." Just to remind you what we heard earlier on today. We'll do more on this story as we move through the hour.

It's 30 minutes past nine in London. You're watching CONNECT THE WORLD. I'm Becky Anderson.

Coming up, he was almost killed during an attack on his palace but Yemen's badly-burned president insists he is on the mend. We'll have more on that in a few moments along with the other news that we are following here.

And a lot more on the "News of the World" scandal in 10 minutes. What does it mean for Rupert Murdoch's empire and his readers?

Then, Formula One's friendly rivalry.


LEWIS HAMILTON, FORMULA 1 DRIVER: Well, I've definitely been in several. I did my last weekend - it was the first weekend I actually wasn't at (INAUDIBLE) office so it felt fantastic.


HAMILTON: Yeah, yeah.


ANDERSON: Our big interview coming up in about 20 minutes' time. This is CNN. Stay with us.


ANDERSON: Welcome back. I'm Becky Anderson. A busy evening in London. You're watching CONNECT THE WORLD.

Here's a look at the other stories that we are following for you this hour.

And the world is getting its first look at Yemen's president since he was wounded in an attack on his compound last month. Yemeni state television aired this recorded speech a short time ago. Ali Abdullah Saleh's face appears burned and his hands are wrapped in bandages. He says he had eight successful operations in Saudi Arabia where he's recovering in a hospital. President Saleh didn't say when he might come home.

A no plea deal, no guilty plea to anything - that is how a lawyer for Dominique Strauss-Kahn describes his sexual assault case in New York. The former chief of the International Monetary Fund denies charges he attempted to rape a hotel maid. Well, the lawyer's remarks came after the defense and prosecutors discussed the case. Strauss-Kahn's lawyers called the meeting "constructive". Prosecutors have questioned the accuser's credibility but say their investigation continues.

Well, the woman who's child murder trial captivated the U.S. will walk free next Wednesday. A judge today sentenced Casey Anthony to four consecutive years in prison but she's getting credit for three years already served along with a reduced time for good behaviour. On Tuesday, the jury acquitted Anthony of murdering her two-year-old daughter Caylee but convicted her of four lesser counts of lying to police.


JUDGE BELVIN PERRY, ORANGE COUNTRY CIRCUIT COURT: I will sentence you to one year in Orange County Jail, imposing a $1,000 fine on each count of four counts to run consecutive to each other.


ANDERSON: Okay. Well, a Mexican citizen at the center of a highly- controversial case could have just hours left to live.

Humberto Leal Garcia Jr. faces execution today in Texas after he was convicted of a grisly crime. But his attorneys say that conviction is tainted because the U.S. state ignored his rights under an international treaty.

Rafael Romo has the details.


RAFAEL ROMO, SENIOR LATIN AMERICAN AFFAIRS EDITOR: Legal analysts say the issue is not one of guilt or innocence but whether the rights of a foreigner convicted of murder in the United States were violated.

Humberto Leal Garcia Jr., a Mexican national, was tried for raping and killing a teenager in Texas in 1994. Leal, who is now 38 years old, was found guilty and sentenced to the death penalty for the murder of Adria Sauceda who was only 16 years old when she was raped and bludgeoned to death. Leal's defense attorney says her client was never given the chance to seek the assistance of the Mexican consular authorities as required under international law before his trial and conviction.

A criminal defense attorney says the main legal question is whether access to consular assistance could have helped Leal avoid the death penalty.

DOUGLAS ROHAN, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: The issue is not is he innocent or guilty. He's not going to be retried. It's just would there have been an impact or would there have been any changes if he had in fact been given/afforded that opportunity early on.

ROMO: Rohan also says that if a defendant's right to contact officials from his home country is not respected in the United States, Americans might find themselves denied the same right while travelling in other countries around the world. But Rachel Terry, the victim's mother, is asking authorities to carry out the execution as scheduled.

RACHEL TERRY, VICTIM'S MOTHER: Because of a technicality, it doesn't give anyone the right to come to this country and rape, torture, and murder anyone - in this case, my daughter.

ROMO: Leal's attorneys say denial of consular access is no technicality. The state's former top prosecutor says Leal's defense team simply waited too long to raise the issue.

Rafael Romo, CNN Atlanta.


ANDERSON: Will the European Central Bank increase its key interest rate by a quarter of one percent on Thursday to cool down any inflation repressions? The rate is now one and a half percent. The ECB's president says it's of paramount importance that rising inflation does not become too broad. This is the bank's second rate hike this year.

And finally, Prince William and his wife Catherine are heading to Canada's biggest cowboy festival - the stampede, as it's called - in Calgary, Alberta. On Wednesday, they visited Slave Lake - a town devastated by wild fires in May - and the provinces north. Hundreds of homes and other buildings there were destroyed. Well, the couple met with firefighters and emergency workers earlier.

Kate and Will had a little private time last night at a rustic lodge in the mountains. They head to California in the U.S.A. tomorrow.

Well, still to come this hour, more on the scandal that brought down Britain's best-selling Sunday tabloid. We're going to ask whether the whole affair has tainted the rest of Rupert Murdoch's empire.

And it's an illegal activity that could get them killed but some Syrian doctors are willing to take the risk to save the lives of others. Our exclusive report on an underground clinic ahead, here on CNN. Stay with us.


ANDERSON: Well, a breaking development in tonight's big story - the closure of scandal-hit "News of the World", Britain's biggest selling Sunday newspaper. Well, some staff from the tabloid's sister "The Sun" - which is a daily newspaper - have walked out in protest over the shutdown and potential loss of 200 jobs when printing presses grind to a halt on Sunday.

Owner James Murdoch took the decision in the last few hours after nearly a week of devastating allegations of phone hacking. British police say they've identified nearly 4,000 potential victims including family members of terror victims.

Welcome back. You're watching CONNECT THE WORLD.

So just how big a deal is the closing of the "News of the World"? I want to take you through some numbers here for you.

"News of the World" - a look at the people - people are reading across the UK. You can see the "News of the World" is the most popular. 2.16 - sorry - 61 million people. And normally, you would say that about twice as many read that so you have upwards of about 5 million there.

We've got the "Mail on Sunday" - around about 2 million. The "Sunday Mirror" down there - 1.1. And then you've got the smaller newspapers. The "Sunday Times" - not a tabloid of course. That is a broadsheet. The "Sunday Express" and then the "Sunday Telegraph".

So it is an important newspaper. So News Corporation losing out on their most popular paper in the UK. What does it mean for the company as a whole? What are we doing there?

All right. Well, this is what it means. News Corp. took in $32.7 billion in revenue last year. Much of that - about 15 billion - was from its TV holdings as you can see here such as Fox channel in the U.S.

All right. Its film studios took in $7.6 billion. Its newspapers - more than 6 billion. And others down there - books and other business (INAUDIBLE).

Interesting to note that it's UK publications that include the "News of the World". The Times and the Sun actually lost $126 million, book holdings and other divisions making up the rest. Well, in less than a week, it's gone from one of Britain's top tabloids to being shutdown.

News Corp. is in the process of trying to acquire BSkyB - a paid-TV broadcast that's serving the UK and Ireland, News Corp being the overriding owner of News International and therefore "News of the World". Some say getting rid of the paper will actually help News Corp. in its bid.

Well, earlier, my colleague Richard Quest spoke with Michael White, the assistant Guardian editor at the Guardian. Richard's with me now but I just want to get our viewers a sense of what Mr. White said. That was the paper that first reported the hacking claims this week and you asked him why he thought News Corp. had taken the decision to shut down the paper. Let's have a listen to what he said.


MICHAEL WHITE, ASSISTANT EDITOR, THE GUARDIAN: I think Rupert Murdoch or James Murdoch, his son who runs the show in this country, has attempted to sacrifice the "News of the World" in order to save the BSkyB bid and to save Rebekah Brooks who is a Murdoch Corp. favourite chief executive.

QUEST: Why - why Rebekah Brooks? Why shouldn't she be, you know, given a very healthy payoff, sent on her way, and rehabilitated in three or four years' time? The longer she has been allowed to stay, the harder that now becomes, doesn't it?

WHITE: It is a mystery to us all. But the chemistry of personal relations between people are - is a strange thing. Murdoch has always liked and admired Rebekah. She can be a formidably persuasive figure. She's the great schmoozer. She's a personal friend of the current prime minister of Great Britain David Cameron. She lives near him in the country and they have lunch together and they spend time together at Christmas, three or four meetings we're told this last Christmas.


ANDERSON: Is that the reason she hasn't lost her job after all?

QUEST: Look, this is just getting worse. Here you have James Murdoch closing the "News of the World" and if we pause for a second to hear his official reason, his official reason why he said the N.O.W. had to go.


JAMES MURDOCH, CEO, NEWS CORP. EUROPE & ASIA: I feel regret. Clearly, the practices that certain individuals did not live up to the standards and quality of journalism that we believe in and that I believe in--.


QUEST: But in the same breath, he closes the paper, puts 200 journalists and other people out of work without any consultation, he erupts a dispute with his Sun - the Sun newspaper which is allegedly going to take over the franchise anyway, the sister - the sister daily newspaper, and in doing so, the allegations are out there tonight that actually they wanted rid of it anyway.

ANDERSON: James Murdoch, of course, was only the messenger today. His father who stands at the top of News Corporation must have known this was going to (INAUDIBLE). How long do you think he had this planned?

QUEST: I think that the - in terms of getting rid of "News of the World", that's the bigger plan. James Murdoch would have been highly involved with that - exceptionally competent. Rupert Murdoch pulls the strings, James Murdoch though is his father's son. Now, I think you've got to look a bit more closely at this. I have no doubt that Rupert Murdoch will have probably been pretty horrified by not a phone hacking per se but at the depths and the depravity. Say I was James Murdoch, we take them at their face value, he said he's appalled, he said it's deplorable, we have to take them at their face value. But those are newspapers. They're a small - you graphically showed they're a small part of the empire. They're not even the important bit. It's movies and television and online and dot come and all those things where the real money's made. But that's the bit they love. It's the politics. It's the power. And that comes with the papers.

ANDERSON: We know that this wasn't just a face-saving exercise today. News Corporation shares have been hit very, very badly. Advertisers have been pulling out with what they've been doing with the "News of the World" and who knows whether they may have pulled that from other sides of News Corporation. How much damage do you think this whole exercise - and you and I were just talking in the advertising break - this hasn't been handled well. This really hasn't been handled well. How much damage has it done to News Corp.?

QUEST: In their - in their defense, I don't know that you can handle this well, frankly. You show me how you can handle this sort of scandal well and I'll give you--.

ANDERSON: It's been six years.

QUEST: No, but I mean, tell you, (INAUDIBLE) but I'd give you a gold watch. The fact is what they are desperate to do is prevent contagion. They don't want American politicians on the left or the right to start saying "Well, we need to now look at what The Post is doing or The Journal. We need to now look at - or Fox News channel - competitor to our own (INAUDIBLE) Fox News channel. We don't - they don't want contagion. They've laughed off this bit but they're going to be desperate to try and get it back on again.

ANDERSON: If there are people out there tonight who believe that Rupert Murdoch has lost his grip, what would you say to them in a word or two?


ANDERSON: No. I thought you would. Good. (INAUDIBLE).

QUEST: A foolish person--.

ANDERSON: (INAUDIBLE). It is a most remarkable story. There'll be time tomorrow to discuss this further. Richard Quest, my colleague, here on the show.

You're watching CONNECT THE WORLD -- what a day -- out of London. Coming up, Patrick Snell will be in with all the latest sports news for you, and Don Riddell's interview with racing legends Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button.

And then on this show, saving lives in secret. In just 10 minutes time, Arwa Damon takes us undercover with a team of doctors in Syria.

And 20 minutes from now, just about, Potter fans in a frenzy. After 10 years, the last "Harry Potter" film finally arrives, and let me tell you, I was on the red carpet today, and it was quite remarkable. Thousands and thousands of mad fans.

That all coming up on this show. Stay with us.


ANDERSON: It's just after half past nine in London. I'm Becky Anderson, you are back with CONNECT THE WORLD. Before we move on with the show, let me get you a quick check of the headlines this hour.

Scandal-hit British tabloid "News of the World" has been shut down. Owner James Murdoch made the shock announcement amid claims the paper had hacked into the phones of families of murder victims and British soldiers killed in action.

Yemen's president is calling for dialogue with opposition forces. Ali Abdullah Saleh made his first appearance on state TV since he was wounded in an attack on his compound. He says he's recovering well in Saudi Arabia but did not indicate when he might return home.

Sectarian violence in Pakistan's largest city has now claimed 52 lives. In the deadliest incident on Thursday, Karachi police say gunmen attacked two buses and indiscriminately opened fire, killing at least 10 passengers.

Casey Anthony will walk free next Wednesday after a judge in the US sentenced her to four consecutive years in prison. She was acquitted Tuesday of murdering her two-year-old daughter, but convicted of lying to police. She's getting credit for three years already served behind bars.

An attorney for Dominique Strauss-Kahn says the former IMF chief will not accept a plea deal and won't plead guilty to anything. Strauss-Kahn is accused of sexually assaulting a hotel maid in New York.

Those are your news headlines. Let us get you the latest sports news now. The "World of Sport" with Patrick Snell, who is at CNN Center. Sir, away you go.

PATRICK SNELL, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: Thanks, Becky. Yes, we're going to get going with some sad news out of the Netherlands with at least one person dying after part of a stadium at Dutch Football Club Twente collapsed.

Around 16 others have been injured, two of them seriously, we understand. This according to the mayor of Enschede town, which is about 62 miles of east of Amsterdam.

Now, FC Twente are redeveloping their grounds currently to increase its seating capacity, but part of the De Grolsch Veste stands falling down during the reconstruction. Those affected are believed to be construction workers themselves, although it's not known exactly how many were onsite at the time. Twente were Dutch champions in 2010 and finish runners-up to Ajax last season.

After his success on Wednesday, would Mark Cavendish be able to maintain his impressive current form at this year's Tour de France? It was his 16th career stage victory, but this latest challenge will be the longest of this year's race, at 226.5 kilometers.

Let's check in, then, on the big race action for you from Thursday. And early on, Cavendish did win the sprint to gain valuable points in the race with a sprinter's green jersey, but he would end the stage in fifth place in that classification.

Now, the American Levi Leipheimer's challenge for the yellow jersey taking a severe hit with a crash. He lost about one minute five seconds on the leaders and is now in 31st place, 1:23 back or so.

Thor Hushovd of Norway still holding the overall lead as he would finish in the third place on this stage just behind countryman Edvald Boasson Hagen, who claims the latest stage win for Team Sky. Shaping up to be quite a Tour de France this year, Becky.

ANDERSON: Don't go anywhere, I'm going to have a chat to you in a moment. CNN's Don Riddell, one of our colleagues, has caught up with Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton, and they showed him some of their favorite Formula One images. Take a look at this.


DON RIDDELL, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: We're in a wonderful photographic exhibition, here. I wonder if you guys could just show me around and show me your favorite pictures. Do you have a favorite, here, Jenson?

JENSON BUTTON, FORMULA ONE DRIVER: It's difficult to pick one, really. But probably the person that's changed my life the most is Frank Williams, because he's the person that really gave me a chance of racing in Formula One back in 99.

So, he -- that picture means a lot to me. Notice, that picture's 30 years ago. But there are many. I mean, Alain Prost on the podium, one of my heroes, if you like, and person I've really learned a lot from and also gave me a chance to drive his car.

LEWIS HAMILTON, FORMULA ONE DRIVER: I love this great picture of Senna in the Lotus, Camel Lotus.

And here, I think this is probably -- I think this really was one of my first Grand Prix I ever saw on TV, and this lovely lady here, I wish I had met her. She was awesome.

BUTTON: The thing about that, you've got three world champions in that picture as well, haven't you?

HAMILTON: Yes, yes, absolutely.

BUTTON: And that was just before they ran onto the circuit, wasn't it?

RIDDELL: And it just went crazy.


RIDDELL: But you don't see this at all, now, these days. I mean, if you were to have stopped and offered Sebastian a lift in Montreal, would he have got on? Would you have offered him?

HAMILTON: You wouldn't think he would have offered him a lift.

BUTTON: No, I wouldn't.

HAMILTON: But after last year --

BUTTON: He would've got a penalty anyway. But it would have broken the body work, as well. They were built a bit more sturdy back then.


HAMILTON: It would be cool, though.

BUTTON: Yes, it would be awesome.

HAMILTON: It would be really, really cool.

BUTTON: Would you get on with someone?


BUTTON: I don't know who I'd trust.

HAMILTON: No, I don't think I -- I don't know you can trust anyone in F1 nowadays. They would try and throw you off. Yes.

RIDDELL: I've got a couple of questions from our viewers. We'd like to know, from Steven Stimmel, what driver do you emulate the most, or what driver inspired you the most?

HAMILTON: For me, it was Ayrton. A massive fan of Ayrton, I think. Again, that was a day -- a time when I first started watching it, and I think as a -- I think young kids, what I've begun to realize, is I think they -- what attracts them is colors.

So firstly they notice colors. So they always remember someone's helmet color. Young kids always remember my helmet color, and as they get older, they remember my name and what I look like.

So, I think I was probably -- I noticed the colors, the team, and then as I got older, began to understand the way he was driving and the way he came across, and I've always wanted to emulate him and studied his videos and studied him as much as I could before I even got to Formula One. And I'm probably still learning things from him.

RIDDELL: Your style is quite similar to Ayrton's. Do you think that's got you into a bit of trouble recently?

HAMILTON: Well, I've definitely been in trouble. I did -- my last weekend was the first weekend I actually wasn't at the steward's office, so it felt fantastic.

BUTTON: They've given him a loyalty card, there.

HAMILTON: Yes, so I don't need my pass when I go in. They just look up.

RIDDELL: "I'm back."

HAMILTON: It's actually platinum, so.

BUTTON: There's our chair.

HAMILTON: Yes, exactly.

RIDDELL: Who inspired you the most?

BUTTON: His main competitor, also in that picture.

RIDDELL: Alain Prost.

BUTTON: Alain Prost, yes. Yes, definitely. His -- I really liked his style of driving, and both of them, for me, were very special drivers, and I was growing up in the middle-late 80s, I was sort of eight, nine years old, and that's when I started go-carting.

I remember watching these two fighting as teammates, and it was great to watch. I think those were some of the best times in Formula One history.

RIDDELL: Fares Atassi in Paris wants to know -- and this is a pretty simple question -- how do you stop Sebastian Vettel?

HAMILTON: Simple question, yes.


BUTTON: Well, there is a simple answer to it.

HAMILTON: Kneecaps.

BUTTON: No. You just need to get a faster car. Once a car's as fast as his, then I don't think we'll be having too many problems.


ANDERSON: All right. Well, that was Don Riddell spending time with F1 champions Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton.

Patrick's still with us in Atlanta. It's the British Grand Prix, of course, this weekend. Do you think home advantage inspires Brits like Button and Hamilton, Pat?

SNELL: I think no doubt about it, Becky. It has to. It's such an inspiring circuit. I know from my days of growing up in the UK, the special thrill of going there, to going to such an event like that, to getting behind the homegrown driver.

Of course, in my day, it was a certain Nigel Mansell, and I know these drivers, for a fact, they thrive off that kind of popularity, the home fans, they can hear them, the cheering.

And Silverstone is a classic British venue. It's a classic circuit. These drivers love it, the fans love it, it's a thrilling weekend for F1 fans.

You know, this venue at Silverstone has been hosting the British Grand Prix since 1948. It's also steeped in history, Beck. It's one of these special occasions on the F1 calendar.

ANDERSON: That's right. All right, good stuff. Look forward to it this weekend.

Don't forget, we've got "World Sport" coming your way with Patrick in less than an hour's time, so make sure you join him for that. A lot more on the buildup to this year's British Grand Prix, plus the latest from the US Women's Golf Open in progress right now. That's "World Sport" at the bottom of the next hour.

They call themselves the Damascus Doctors, and their brave mission could cost them their lives. Coming up, we'll visit a secret clinic that treats demonstrators wounded in the uprising for freedom. Stay with us.


ANDERSON: Welcome back. Anti-government protesters in the Syrian city of Hama are getting some high-level support. The US State Department says its ambassador to Damascus spent the day there to show solidarity with peaceful demonstrators.

Human rights groups say dozens of people have been killed in Hama over the last few days and more than 700 arrested. Now, this amateur video is said to show security forces dragging a man off the streets. CNN can't confirm its authenticity, but it does appear to match witness reports.

Activists also say water and electricity across the city have been cut, making it hard for hospitals to treat wounded protesters.

Some injured protesters wouldn't seek treatment at state hospitals anyway. They are too afraid they'll be arrested or even killed. Our next story is about these victims of violence in Syria, and we must warn you, it contains video that may be too disturbing for some of you to watch.

Arwa Damon found out how a few doctors have taken matters into their own hands. They've set up an underground clinic of sorts, not only to save lives, but also to document horrific abuse.


ARWA DAMON, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): On concrete floors in secret locations, an underground network of medics struggle to save lives.

They call themselves the Damascus Doctors.


DAMON: We met the founder, a young man in his late 20s, at an anti- government demonstration after we broke away from our official escorts. For his own safety, we are hiding his identity and disguising his voice.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We want to show you the field hospital that we have here.

DAMON (on camera): You set up a field hospital?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes. We have many things. We have --

DAMON (voice-over): The field hospital is nothing more than a tiny room. The equipment and supplies, basic at best.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I saw a lot of blood, a lot of shouting, a lot of pain.

DAMON: But he explains, people are afraid to go to government hospitals.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They refuse to go to the government hospital because they would be arrested and, if they died, we can't take their body. After we -- their family can come and make a signature, that they aren't armed troops.

DAMON: And so, some of them die, like this man, the doctor helpless to save him.

A few days later, after careful planning to avoid being trailed, I met the doctor again in secret.

DAMON (on camera): How was your organization structured? How did you get it going?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I started talking to my friend, to the circle around me, the circle of doctors who I trust.

DAMON (voice-over): They set up a Facebook page, their intent not only to treat the wounded, but to catalog the regime's crimes, the doctor says.

Like this clip they posted of a man whose body they found dumped in the street, who they say later died.

DAMON (on camera): But you're risking your life to do this.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, I know that, but the demonstrators, they are risking their life, too, so we have to help them. And that hurts -- there is something that hurts the doctors that we spent all of our life trying to treat people and help them.

DAMON (voice-over): We met some of those who have been treated by this clandestine network. A teenager, who claims his back was cut open when security forces dragged him over glass.

"They would detain me if I went to the hospital," he says.

And this 17-year-old boy. "He was shot in the chest and it missed his spinal cord. He had blood in his lungs, so we had to drain it," the doctor tells me. Initially, he didn't think there was any nerve damage.

DAMON (on camera): The blood clotted inside, right?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The hematoma. The blood collected next to the spinal cord until it makes a --

DAMON: Paralysis.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, paralysis, and it brushed the spinal cord, the nerves.

DAMON (voice-over): Something that would have been detected in most hospitals. Instead, this teenager is in a wheelchair, partially paralyzed.

The government says the demonstrators fears are unfounded. Dr. Adiv Mahmoud (ph) is the director-general at Damascus Hospital.

"We accept all cases without regard as to how the injuries were sustained or where it happened," he says.

At the hospital, we speak with a young man who was shot in the leg -- he says he doesn't know by whom -- when he found himself in the middle of a demonstration.

"After I got hit," he tells us, "people carried me off to see a doctor outside of the hospital. But the wound didn't heal."

He admits he was afraid to visit a government hospital, but he says he had no problems.

Others, like this man, shot in the thigh, firmly believe that if they go to a government hospital, they will be killed.

And so, they rely on this illegal network of professionals, risking their life to try and save others.

DAMON (on camera): What was the hardest moment for you during all of this?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Every time when I leave home, I say good-bye to my mother. Sometimes, I feel I won't be able to come back and see her again.

And sometimes I feel bad when I see people shouting for their freedom. Even when I'm making the sutures to their muscle tendons or their skin, they keep shouting for freedom, they say, "We want our freedom, we will keep -- we will keep fighting."


DAMON (voice-over): Later, he writes to me. "In the name of humanity, let people know that we are suffering for our freedom," he says.

Arwa Damon, CNN, Damascus.


ANDERSON: Not easy to watch, but important to report. Well, the UN Secretary-General is calling for the killings in Syria to stop saying, quote, "We cannot go on like this."

But what action is the world taking to protect civilian lives? Let me just describe a little bit. The US and European Union have independently leveled sanctions, but critics say the world must agree on a broader, more unified response.

So far, the UN Security Council couldn't even settle on a resolution that would merely condemn the violence. And so it goes on.

Coming up on CONNECT THE WORLD, it's 49 minutes past 9:00 here in London, and I'm going to change gears from the world's harsh realities to the world of fantasy. One last adventure for our favorite witches and wizards.

We're going to talk to the stars and their devoted fans at the premier of the very last "Harry Potter" film. That is after this short break.





ANDERSON: "Harry Potter" hysteria. Fans have been waiting for this for ten years and finally arrived. The last "Harry Potter" film, "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part Two" has premiered in London.

These fans camped out for days to farewell -- to bid farewell to the films that they grew up with and the characters that they loved.

Well, let me tell you, the British weather was predictably unpredictable, but the wind and rain could do nothing to dampen the spirits of the Potter fans gathered in central London.

I was in Trafalgar Square on the red carpet a little earlier on, and I caught up with some of the young stars on the red carpet.


ANDERSON (voice-over): They came from all over the world, thousands of fans, all gathered in central London to catch a glimpse of the cast of the last movie in what is a multibillion-dollar franchise.

And for many, the wait was a long one.


ANDERSON (on camera): When did you arrive?


ANDERSON: And you've been camped out since then?



ANDERSON: You're mad, aren't you?


ANDERSON (voice-over): In this epic finale, the battle between the good and evil forces of the wizarding world escalates into all-out war.


ANDERSON: As Harry Potter goes head-to-head with the dark lord Voldemort. For the stars, it's the climactic end of a magical era.

EMMA WATSON, ACTRESS: I've spent more than half my life playing this role and being the character and it's -- it's so sad that it's come to an end, and I -- and I'm also aware that I will probably never see anything like this again in my lifetime.

RUPERT GRINT, ACTOR: It is quite moving, seeing all these people here, as it is the end.

MATT LEWIS, ACTOR: I stood on that podium there, and I looked out across a sea of people chanting "Neville Longbottom," and I just suddenly realized what it was I was going to be missing. And -- yes, it got to me, I think.

TOM FELTON, ACTOR: I'm there every night firing spells in my bedroom. No, it is a very sad thing to leave a character behind that I've been playing for so long.

ANDERSON (on camera): For the thousands of fans behind me, here, in Trafalgar Square, there was no life before Harry Potter and Hogwarts, so as the cast and crew walk the red carpet together for the last time, there is no doubt that this magical movie franchise will go on for generations to come.


ANDERSON: Well, how did "Harry Potter" become such a global phenomenon? It all began, of course, back in 1997 with the first book, when it came out, called "Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone." Remember that?

Well, these are the six books which followed, ending ten years later with "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows" in 2007.

In total, the books have sold more than 450 million copies globally. It's been translated into 70 different languages, and have all been on the number one best-selling lists.

The movies, too, have been thrilling audiences. The films from the -- look at these numbers, they are quite remarkable. The films have grossed more than $6.4 billion globally, and that doesn't even include the last one. Five of the films are in the all-time top ten at the box office.

And the last one, of course, remember, two parts, this is the second part, really the final. First film, well, it was from 2001, it's been the biggest success, grossing $974 million, nearly a billion from the first alone, of course.

Who can forget that first young actor? Daniel Radcliffe was just 11 years old when he started it all, and it was remarkable, really, to see him on the red carpet. He's such a grown man these days.

Well, those of us having trouble letting go of Harry Potter can rest a little easier. As Jim Boulden explains, author JK Rowling has made sure fans are never far away from a Potter fix. Have a look.



JIM BOULDEN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The tag line for this, the final of the eight "Harry Potter" films, "It all ends here."

That may be the case after seven novels, but Harry will live on in the form of a new website coming soon,

JK ROWLING, AUTHOR: Back in 1998, I knew I was generating a lot more material than would ever appear in the books. Just -- it was simply ridiculous to anyone. To me, at the time, I thought, who will ever want to know the significance of all these difference wand woods? This was all in my head.

BOULDEN: Now, author JK Rowling has joined up with Sony to create a home for the background Potter material, Potter discussions, and games.

Potter fans, once signed up, will answer questions, which will place them in one of the four Hogwarts houses, and there will be room for users to have their own Potter web pages. Though everything will be free, Rowling says it's her way of giving back to fans.

ROWLING: You don't have to pay to get the extra material, you don't have to buy a single thing to go onto Pottermore and have the whole experience you've just seen. And that was really important to me.

BOULDEN: Thought he site will be the only place to buy Potter e- books. Rowling has kept the digital rights to her material. She never before allowed e-books, though these e-books will not be tied to a certain kind of electronic reader.

TAREK NSEIR, CEO, TH_NK: People are asking for these e-books and their audio books. There's a big demand for them. I think what's incredible is that this digital experience that's been created really allows you to accompany the reading in a really sort of interactive and innovative way.

BOULDEN: And, of course, there is the official Potter theme park in Orlando, Florida. And from spring next year, at the Harry Potter Experience tour at Leavesden Studios outside London, where "Potter" was shot. It's being built now by CNN's sister company, Warner Brothers.

And then there are all of those unofficial tours in London. Clearly - -


BOULDEN: Pottermania will not disappear amongst the Deathly Hallows. Jim Boulden, CNN, London.


ANDERSON: Which, let me tell you, is quite a remarkable movie. A real swashbuckler, let's say.

All right, our Parting Shots today, day one of the running of the bulls of Pamplona in Spain. Hundreds of brave people -- some would say foolhardy people -- try to outrun the bulls through the old town of every year.

Of course, as usual, most of the runners were men, but there were a few women. They wore the traditional white outfits with red bandanas.

Commentators on Spanish TV say it was a relatively safe start to the dangerous tradition. Only one person ended up in hospital. Fifteen people have died and thousands have been injured since record-keeping began in 1924.

Animal rights activists often criticized the eight-day event because the bulls are killed in the ring after their daily run.

I'm Becky Anderson, that is your fix, your world is connected, thanks for watching. The world news headlines and "BackStory" will follow this short break. Don't go away.