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Update on Malala`s Condition; Armstrong Steps Down as LiveStrong Chairman

Aired October 18, 2012 - 04:00:00   ET


CARL AZUZ, CNN ANCHOR: Hello and welcome to CNN STUDENT NEWS on this Thursday, October 18th. A fair warning: if you enjoy being outside soaking up the sun, you might be a little jealous by the end of today show. The extraterrestrial explanations coming up in just a bit.

First up today, we have an update for you on Malala Yousafzai. She is the 14-year old from Pakistan who was attacked and shot by the Taliban recently. Malala had spoken out against the group and called for education rights for girls. That`s something that the Taliban are against. On Monday, Malala was airlifted from Pakistan to a hospital in England for specialized medical treatment. Doctors say, her recovery could take months. As of Wednesday, Malala was in stable condition, but she wasn`t able to speak. Malala was attacked on October 9th on her way home from school. And she wasn`t the only one who was hurt in the shooting. Reza Sayah traveled to the region in Pakistan where Malala is from. He talked to one of the other girls who was shot that day and visited their school. Here is his report.


REZA SAYAH, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The city of Mangora in Pakistan`s scenic Swat Valley. This is the region the Taliban took over in 2008, forcing shut then blowing up girls` schools. Threatening to kill anyone who stood in their way. This is also where Malala Yousafzai and her classmate Kainat Ahmed (ph) defied the Taliban by going to school anyway. Kainat was seated next to Malala when Taliban gunman stopped their school van and opened fire. One of the bullets hit Kainat in the arm.

In her hospital room, a mob of reporters shoved their way through for a glimpse of Kainat`s ten minutes visit with Pakistan`s interior minister.

(on camera): Do you regret standing up against the Taliban now that you`ve been hurt?

KAINAT AHMED, INJURED IN TALIBAN ATTACK (through translator): No, sir, I don`t regret it. God willing, I will continue my education.

SAYAH: What do you want the world to know?

AHMED: Girls` education here is more important than boys`. Because boys can have any jobs they want to, but girls cannot. I want to tell all the girls to continue their mission to get an education.

SAYAH: We have left Kainat in the hospital, we are heading to Malala`s school, and we are really racing at high speeds and in armed convoy. And it shows you, even thought the government says, they`ve cleared the Taliban out of this region, there are still a lot of safety concerns.

We arrived at Malala`s school, this is where Kainat went to school as well, so did Shazi (ph) and the other school girl who was hurt. When the Taliban took over this region, this was one of the few girls` schools that remained open. The headmaster was Malala`s father. He essentially said, no, we are staying open.

Much of what Malala learned was in classrooms here, despite the attack on students here, the school opened three days after the shooting.

(on camera): How can you take practical steps to make sure these little girls are safe?

REHMAN MALIK, PAKISTANI INTERIOR MINISTER: We are taking practical steps, but we have to change the mindset. There is the mindset we need to change. And the first practical step is, to take action against (inaudible), these terrorists.

SAYAH (voice over): Before she was attacked, Malala was working on starting a charity to promote female education. In the report, you just heard Kainat talking about the importance of girls getting an education in Pakistan. To learn more about Malala and the cause that she and her friends have fought for, click the "impact your world" link in the spotlight section of



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What`s the word? Is the study of objects and materials that are outside of Earth`s atmosphere?

Astronomy, that`s the word.


AZUZ: There is a lot of sky. A lot of universe out there for astronomers to study, sometimes those astronomers at NASA crowd source, and what that means, is they give wide groups of people access to the same information to see if they can come up with anything.

For example, the Kepler telescope, that`s what this is, its mission is to search the galaxy and collect data about stars and planets. And NASA made this data available to the public, and that`s how two amateur astronomers discovered something like this: it`s called a circum binary planet, which means it orbits two suns, only the one that was just discovered is believed to be orbited by two more distant stars, so you are looking at one planet, four suns. The citizen scientists compared their findings with professional astronomers to confirm the finding of the four star planet.

This yellow wristbands you are probably seeing all over the place are from the Live Strong cancer charity. Cyclist Lance Armstrong who was a cancer survivor helped found that organization 15 years ago. Yesterday, he announced he is stepping down as LiveStrong`s chairman.

The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency says it has overwhelming evidence that Armstrong used banned performance-enhancing drugs during his career. Armstrong denies doping, he said he is walking away from the Live Strong organization to "spare the foundation any negative effects as a result of controversy surrounding my cycling career."


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Today`s "Shoutout" goes out to Mr. Ibarra and the students and teachers at Lunsford Middle School in Chantilly, Virginia.

What is the capital of Texas? You know what to do, is it Dallas, Houston, Austin or El Paso? You`ve got three seconds, go!

The capital of the lone start state is its fourth largest city Austin. That`s your answer and that`s your "Shoutout."


AZUZ: Just outside of Austin, you can hop on highway 130 to toll road, and it`s one way to get from the state`s fourth largest city to its second largest, which is San Antonio. But if you do take highway 130, starting next month, you might be able to make that trip a little faster. That is because the speed limit is going up for a stretch of 41 miles. The new limit will be 85 miles per hours. When that happens, this section of highway 130 will officially become the fastest road in America. 35 states have raised speed limits to 70 or higher. And the engineers who built this one, say that 85 is the safe and right speed for highway 130. But some safety expert have raised concerns. They say that increasing speed limits leads to more accidents and more severe injuries in those accidents.

All right, we are going to stay on the road for this next report, but we are going to move into the bike lane. Now, you`ve seen road bikes, mountain bikes, dirt bikes, but the two wheeler that Isha Sesay is talking about, is in the class all its own. And that is because of the material that it`s made out of. Check this out:


ISHA SESAY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Setting the wheels in motion on a breakthrough: with its pedal power and traditional two wheel frame, this may look like a typical bicycle. But the Israeli entrepreneurs behind this bike call it the future of low cost transportation.

NIMROD ELMISH, CARDBOARD BICYCLE PROJECT: Basically, this bicycle is built out of 95 percent recycled cardboard, which is the most cheapest raw material that you can find in any country.

SESAY: And there is no metal parts. The rest is recycled car tires and plastic bottles. Not only is the bike eco-friendly, it`s cheap. Each costs just $9 to build. Inventor Izhar Gafni (ph) came up with the design in his backyard chair.

IZHAR GAFNI, INVENTOR, CARDBOARD BICYCLE: What I did is when I took the cardboard I tried to overcome all the weaknesses that the cardboard as a shipping material as we all know had.

SESAY: Using a secret process, Gafni says his cardboard bike is both waterproof and fire resistant. And by using green materials and keeping production costs low, he hopes the bikes can be given away in poor countries.

ELMISH: When you see something like this, you understand quite fast that this is a real game changer. I know that the lifespan of the regular bike is maximum five years. So, in five years basically I can replace all of them, because that would be cheaper, faster, stronger and ecological.

SESAY: Production is set to begin on three bicycle modules and a wheelchair. They should be on sale within a year. Isha Sesay, CNN, Atlanta.


AZUZ: So, a cardboard bike might work, but a cardboard anchor - that could produce some challenges. For example, trying to get him to ride a bike. We thought this will be off the chain, but it didn`t really work. He can`t figure out how to sip hot chocolate, needs someone to spill it out for him. All right, man, stop mugging for the camera.

He doesn`t need much help getting ready to go on camera, but, you know, this can go - hair today, gone tomorrow.

Especially since he is an absolutely terrible news anchor. Look at him, always falling down on the job. You know, it`s worse that we came up with all of these plans and all of these situations for cardboard Carl, but in all of them, his performance was absolutely flat. Well, we did the best we card, and hopefully, you weren`t board by it. Back tomorrow to close out the week. I`m Carl Azuz.

Let`s go, Buddy.