Return to Transcripts main page


G8 and NATO Summits; Chen Guangcheng Comes to the US

Aired May 21, 2012 - 04:00:00   ET



UNIDENTIFIED STUDENTS: Hi, we`re the eighth grade class of St. Gabriel`s Soul in Midford, Pennsylvania, happy to introduce the best CNN STUDENT NEWS broadcaster -- a curtain call for Carl Azuz.

Take it away, Carl.

CARL AZUZ, HOST: That looked great and I most certainly will.

Thank you to the students at St. Gabriel`s for that introduction.

I am Carl Azuz.

CNN STUDENT NEWS is kicking off a new week of headlines on this Monday, May 21st.

First up, President Obama is wrapping up four days of meetings with other world leaders. It started last Friday with the annual two day gathering of the G-8. This is a group of eight powerful countries that gets together every year to discuss global issues. Its members are the U.S., the U.K., France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia and Canada.

President Obama hosted this year`s meeting at the presidential country residence. That`s Camp David. The leaders talked about food issues in Africa, political issues in the Middle East and Iran`s controversial nuclear program.

But the main focus of this meeting was on the global economy, specifically on the financial struggles happening around Europe.

Brianna Keilar has more.


BRIANNA KEILAR, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: As the Eurozone crisis enters its third year, we saw a shift at this G-8 Summit toward a strategy that President Obama has been advocating for some time, focusing not only on government spending cuts, on budget cuts, but also on economic growth and creating jobs, something that has eluded many Eurozone nations for some time now.

And President Obama has an eye very much on the crisis there during this election year, as it threatens to affect the fragile economic recovery here in the U.S.

AZUZ: After the G-8 summit, the U.S. president headed to Chicago for a NATO meeting that started yesterday and runs through today. The leaders of more than 50 countries are at this conference, which is primarily about the war in Afghanistan.

At this meeting, the leaders are expected to work on a plan for how security in Afghanistan will shift from NATO forces to Afghan troops. They`re mapping out the time frame and looking at who will pay for the increased number of Afghan troops it will take to secure the country.

While the NATO members are working on that inside, more protesters have been gathering outside the conference and five men have been arrested in connection with an alleged terror plot in Chicago. Police say there are no imminent threats to the world leaders at the NATO meeting.

Chen Guangcheng is a Chinese human rights activist, but he`s not in China anymore. On Saturday, Chen, his wife and his two children arrived in the United States.

Now, you might remember this name from reports we gave you last month, when Chen took shelter at the U.S. Embassy in Beijing after he escaped from house arrest.

That caused some tension between the United States and China.

Richard Roth was in New York when Chen Guangcheng arrived there Saturday night.


RICHARD ROTH, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Chen arrived here, at New York University, in Washington Square Village, his new home now. He came here by van from Newark Airport in neighboring New Jersey.

(voice-over): Chen was escorted from the van and approached the microphones to cheers of onlookers, who screamed, "Welcome to the USA!"

He`s been through a lot and he was grateful.

CHEN GUANGCHENG, CIVIL RIGHTS ACTIVIST (through translator): After much turbulence, I have come out of Shandong. This is thanks to the assistance of many friends.

ROTH: He thanked the U.S. Embassy. He thanked the Chinese government for calm and restraint in handling the matter. But he is very worried about relatives back home and he, three times, made the point that the Chinese government should live up to its promises to respect the lives of his family members.

GUANGCHENG: As we see acts of retribution in Shandong may not have been abated, my rights to practice law have been curbed and we hope to see, in the future, a thorough investigation into these events.

ROTH: This human rights activist, who escaped house arrest by scaling a wall and seeking refuge in the U.S. Embassy in Beijing, now wants everyone to try to get along.

GUANGCHENG: I believe that no matter how difficult the environment, nothing is impossible, as long as you put your heart to it.

ROTH (on camera): Chen is going to be a fellow studying here with the law department at New York University. It`s likely there will be interviews in the days ahead and he`s going to stay concerned about family back at home -- an end, for now, of what was a huge diplomatic affair.

Richard Roth, CNN, New York.


AZUZ: We told you earlier that Italy is part of the G-8. The country`s prime minister, Mario Monti, was also at the NATO meeting in Chicago. But he headed home early, after an earthquake hit Italy on -- early on Sunday morning.

The quake had a magnitude of 6.0. It struck around 4:00 a.m. local time on Sunday. At least seven people were killed. There were 50 others who were injured and a large number of people were forced out of their homes by the damage, you can see in these pictures.

Rescue workers are digging through the rubble in hopes of finding survivors. They`ll also be making their way out to search smaller, more remote villages. Prime Minister Monti promised to help victims, saying, quote, "All that is necessary will be done as soon as possible."

What you`re looking at here is a mountain in Switzerland. But pay attention, because this thing is about to look very different.

Watch this -- trees just collapsing. Over the course of several hours, more than 10 million cubic feet of rock slid down the mountainside and into the valley below. Officials evacuated the area to avoid any potential injuries from this landslide. Scientists said the cliff was stable afterward, but it was still classified as a danger zone.


The bugle song, "Taps," is played at the end of the day on U.S. military bases.

True. You`ve probably also heard it played in connection with military funerals.

AZUZ: "Taps" isn`t a complicated song, just 24 notes total. The melody was written by a U.S. Civil War general who didn`t like the old "Lights Out" bugle call.

He wrote "Taps" 150 years ago. And in order to commemorate that anniversary, nearly 200 buglers and trumpeters gathered at Arlington National Cemetery over the weekend.



RICH PAULING, BUGLER: Well, this is part of the 150th anniversary of "Taps." And we`re one of over 200 buglers that have been invited here today to give the playing of bugles all over Arlington Cemetery -- National Cemetery, I should add.

If this doesn`t make you proud to be an American, I don`t know what`s wrong with you.


ALLISON CUMMINGS, BUGLER: It`s just such an honor to play that for them. It`s for the family, as well. But I think of it as playing to that person just a final thank you for what they did.


AZUZ: Well, is our home page. You know that address, all the great stuff you can find there. We want you to make us your home page.

Our daily show is going on break in just a few weeks, but we are going to be updating our site throughout the summer with new posts from our blogs From A to Z and Schools of Thought. You can keep up with us. Keep up with everything we`ve got going on by making us your home page today.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Today`s Shoutout goes out to Miss. Borman`s classes at Washington Middle School in Evansville, Indiana.

What does the prefix amphi- mean?

You know what to do.

Does it mean loud, both, water or split?

You`ve got three seconds.


Amphi means both, like an amphibian, which can live both on land and in water. That`s your answer and that`s your Shoutout.

AZUZ: Today`s Before We Go report is about something that`s amphibious, but we`re not talking about a frog. This is a car. And it is fast. It looks fast. On land, this thing goes up to 180 miles per hour. And after you take it for a spin, you can take it for a swim. Top speed in the water, a little over 60, which is pretty fast for that.

It`s called the Sea Lion and it took an engineer six years to design and build it. This kind of thrill ride doesn`t come cheap. In fact, you might not believe me if I told you how much it costs. It`s nearly 260,000 bucks.

No lying, see?

Now, hopefully, there are some interested buyers who will spend that much. Otherwise, I gas this amphibious car idea might just be washed up.

It`s time for us to hit the road after treading over a few puns.

For CNN STUDENT NEWS, I`m Carl Azuz.

And we will look forward to seeing you on Tuesday.