Return to Transcripts main page

STUDENT NEWS

Protests in Thailand; 4 Killed in Train Derailment in New York City; Actor Paul Walker Dies in Car Crash

Aired December 2, 2013 - 04:00:00   ET

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


CARL AZUZ, CNN ANCHOR: A new month, a new week and a new day. Welcome to CNN STUDENT NEWS. We`re starting December in Thailand. The country is a constitutional monarchy. That means it has a king. The government is run by an elected prime minister. Right now, that prime minister is Yingluck Shinawatra. Some people in Thailand want her out of power. They say she`s a puppet for her brother. He was prime minister until he was forced out of power and convicted of corruption. Yingluck Shinawatra denies the accusation against her. Her critics have been calling for her to step down for weeks. Yesterday, protesters tried to force their way into government headquarters in Bangkok. On Friday, they jumped the gate at the army headquarters, demanding help to overthrow the government.

For the most part, the protests have been peaceful, but on Saturday, four people were killed when protesters fought with Prime Minister Shinawatra`s supporters. Each side blames the other for starting the violence, but the situation in Bangkok is tense.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The tear gas canisters are starting once again, and you can see everyone starts to run. Look over here. Some of these tear gas canisters are actually being thrown back. The (inaudible) police lines by the protesters. Watch (ph) the car (ph).

Some of the protesters are actually firing straight back, as soon as they see the tear gas coming. Over here.

We have to try and get away from the tear gas at this point. Otherwise we just can`t keep reporting. But you can see the sheer level of the tear gas that`s here at the moment. This basically disperses the crowds in a matter of minutes, but then they just come straight back once the tear gas actually clears. So it`s a very difficult situation here on the streets of Bangkok as you can see.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

AZUZ: In the Bronx, a borough of New York City, investigators are trying to figure out what caused a passenger train to jump off the tracks. About 150 people were on board when it happened Sunday morning. At least four were killed and more than 65 were injured. By Sunday afternoon, authorities thought that all passengers were accounted for. Seven of the eight cars were off the tracks. At least two turned on their sides. One car was just a few feet away from the Harlem River. This happened in the same area where a freight train derailed in July.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Just the facts. HIV stands for Human Immunodeficiency Virus. It interferes with the body`s ability to fight off diseases, and it can cause AIDS, Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome. In 2012, more than 35 million people worldwide were living with HIV or AIDS. There is no cure for HIV or AIDS, but medications can slow down the progress of the disease.

AZUZ: HIV/AIDS can be spread through sexual contact or by sharing a needle with someone who is infected, and mothers with the disease can pass it on to their babies if they`re not treated properly. Getting that word out is part of the goal of World AIDS Day. It was yesterday, December 1. And it is symbolized by red ribbons that are worn or displayed at events around the globe. Those who participate remember people who died from the disease and help raise money to fight it.

HIV used to be considered a death sentence. That`s not the case today. There are medicines, as you heard, that can help those who are infected live longer. Problem is, not everyone has access to these medicines, and not everyone with HIV/AIDS is diagnosed in time. World AIDS Day aims to change that.

A White House official says the difference is like night and day. He`s talking about changes to healthcare.gov. It`s a web site for Americans to sign up for Obamacare. When it launched on October 1, the site struggled through breakdowns, error messages, long delays. President Obama`s administration set a November 30 deadline to make improvements. Now officials say the site`s running smoothly for the vast majority of users. Officials say the work isn`t over. They`ll keep dealing with bugs and glitches. Some Republicans who have been critical of the Obamacare law say the White House should wait before declaring that the web site truly is fixed.

Movie fans probably know Paul Walker best from the "Fast and Furious" franchise, but the actor`s career started back when he was 2. He worked on TV shows, movies, and he helped start a charity focused on disaster relief. Sadly, Walker`s life was cut short over the weekend.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Right behind you.

NISCHELLE TURNER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: One of Hollywod`s most bankable stars, Paul Walker, who has made a name for himself in the "Fast and Furious" movie franchise, died in a fiery car crash in Santa Clarita, California. A second person also died in the accident. Both were attending a charity event for Walker`s organization, Reach Out WorldWide. The event was intended to benefit the victims of typhoon Hayian in the Philippines. The crash happened just north of Los Angeles on Saturday afternoon. According to his representative, Paul Walker was not driving the 2005 Porsche. When deputies arrived, the car was on fire. Both people in the car pronounced dead at the scene.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There`s nothing. We tried. We went through fire extinguishers.

TURNER: All that remains, burned mangle metal, and a light pole that`s been knocked down. Authorities say speed was a factor.

Walker wasn`t just a car enthusiast on screen. Off screen, the actor competed in the Red Line Time Attack racing series. He had been filming the seventh installment of "Fast and Furious" at the time of his death, and some of Hollywood`s biggest stars are reacting.

Co-star Vin Diesel said on his Instagram account, "Brother, I will miss you very much. I am absolutely speechless. Heaven has gained a new angel. Rest in peace."

And another "Fast and Furious" co-star Ludacris tweeted, "Your humble spirit was felt from the start. Wherever you blessed your presence, you always left a mark." And fellow actor Tyrese Gibson said, "My heart is hurting so bad, no one can make me believe this is real. My God, My God, I can`t believe I`m writing this."

(END VIDEOTAPE)

AZUZ: Warner Pacific College in Portland, Oregon, signed a 10-year-old to its women`s basketball team. She doesn`t get any playing time on the court, but the team`s coach says the newest member offers some perspective to her teammates about life off the court.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you remember what you`re going to say to them?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The coach leads the newest member of the Lady Knights onto the court. They circle up. She has a message.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Work hard.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: 10-year-old Lexie De Las Raos (ph) just signed with the women`s basketball team at Warner Pacific College.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Go, Knights, go. Yay, Knights, woo-hoo!

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Officially, she is the honorary sixth man.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Go, girls!

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Unofficially, she is a role model at 10.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: With iPhones and iPads and the I-World, we`re trying to get them to think outside of I and think about somebody else besides themselves.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Lexie is that somebody else.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Are you excited about the game tomorrow?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yeah.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She`s been fighting cancer nearly as long as Jessica Owens (ph) has been dribbling a basketball. That`s nine years, if you`re counting.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What surprises me is just the amount of hope that she has. And strength. I`ve never known someone that strong, especially being so young.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think it just changes their whole outlook straight away when she walks in the gym, and she has a smile on her face, and she`s limping, and I mean, it`s just amazing to see the turnaround in their personalities when that happens.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Such an overwhelming feeling. It`s just great, it`s wonderful.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I wouldn`t, like, be able to do half the things she does. She`s like really brave. She trusts people. And I like that about her.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Getting poked with needles and just all the pain and all the medicines, and then just losing her sight last year. There`s no really way of getting used to that.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: All the gym, all the cancer talk disappears.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Life is so much more than just the sport that we play. Really, it`s about just caring about others.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She`s a member of a college basketball team. She follows the game, cheers with friends, forgets about the pain.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Go Lady Knights, it`s time to fight! You can do it!

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Lexie is having fun, and the players are learning a valuable lesson - never give up.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

AZUZ: We are storming into a new month of roll call schools. Today, we`re reaching weathering (ph) heights. Starting from a sand storm. The Sandys from Amarillo High School in Amarillo, Texas. Next up is a surprise. Surprise, Arizona, home of the Valley Vista High and the Monsoon. From there, we will take an eastern view to Virginia and check out of the Cyclones from Eastern View High School.

There is a pretty good chance you`ve seen a gingerbread house, maybe a gingerbread lane. What you`re looking at here is a gingerbread village, and even that might be minimizing this miniature marvel, especially since it set a record as the largest gingerbread village, ever. More than 150 buildings, the whole thing weighs 1.5 tons. The man who made it all by hand started this project in February, and with so many intricate details to worry about, we`re sure he worked gingerly, but it sure turned into one sweet project. It`s going to eat up all our time for now. Have a great rest of the day. We`ll see you again tomorrow.

END