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Interview with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu; Ramadan Begins Today; World Cup Action Continues

Aired June 29, 2014 - 11:00:00   ET


BECKY ANDERSON, HOST: A time of prayer for Muslims around the globe as the month of Ramadan begins. But this year, the holy season marred by turmoil,

violence and sectarian hatred that threatens to rip the Middle East apart. This hour, fierce clashes in Iraq as the country's defense forces get some

new firepower to battle ISIS militants. We're live for you in Baghdad.

And rising recriminations -- Israel says it launched air strikes on Gaza to kill those involved in these rocket attacks from last week.

Also ahead, clear contender for best goal of the tournament. Colombia celebrates this rising star at the World Cup.

ANNOUNCER: This is the hour we Connect the World with Becky Anderson live.

ANDERSON: Well, as the sun goes down behind the Sheikh Zayed Mosque behind me.

Hello and welcome to a special edition of Connect the World.

For the next month, we will take you on a journey across the Middle East as we take in the sights and sounds of Ramadan. We'll also explore for you

some of the key issues people are grappling with.

How do the millions of youngsters living here feel about their future? What are the challenges facing the women of the Arab and Muslim world? And

above all, how are the regional crises in Syria and Iraq resonating across the region?

Well, we begin here in Abu Dhabi just across from the Shaikh Zayed Mosque. This may be an oasis of calm, but the UAE, a key regional player with a

vital role in deciding the fate of Iraq as well as the terms of Iran's reemergence on the world stage.

Well, as for Iraq, Baghdad looking to Russia for help in its fight against Sunni militants that have made huge advances in the north and west of the


Now the first of 25 Russia jet fighters has arrived in Iraq. Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki says he's been trying to get war planes from the

U.S., but they've been slow coming. U.S. officials say that's not the case, that the first batch was not expected to be delivered until later

this year.

And we're getting conflicting reports about who is in control of Saddam Hussein's old home town of Tikrit. Iraqi media report troops control the

city after several air strikes, but other reports say rebels hold it. And video posted on YouTube shows a deserted city with no sign of Iraqi forces.

Nima Elbagir joins us now live from Baghdad with more on all of this.

Those Russian jets that have just arrived in Iraq, just how significant is this, Nima?

NIMA ELGABIR, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Becky, the Iraqi government has made no apologies about the fact that they believe that this

battle will be won in the skies. It's proving extraordinarily difficult to claw back any of the momentum on the ground, so they're taking to the air.

We saw that in the air strikes that they called over Mosul, we also saw that to the south of Baghdad in Hillah (ph) where an embattled Iraqi ground

force was forced to call in increased air support.

Now the issue with the U.S. seems to be about a broader disappointment that they were hoping for much more in terms of U.S. military support. And it's

being expressed in their turning to Russia. And not only have Russia delivered these jets, but they've also sent with them what the head of the

Iraqi Air Force has called a friendly contingent of technical advisers. So, the Iraqi turning where they can to get this much needed support.

You're very right about that push and pull and Saddam's hometown of Tikrit. It's been very hard, Becky, to get any kind of confirmed information.

Iraqi (inaudible) continues to say that it is in control of that crucial town on the road to Baghdad and just south of the Baiji oil refinery. But

we keep hearing conflicting reports.

So we will update you as and when that comes in to us, Becky.

ANDERSON: Can you explain just for our viewers' sake just how difficult to get a clear picture of what is going on on the ground and who is gaining

ground and where?

ELBAGIR: Well, to a broader degree that the lines as they have fallen after that initial huge push of momentum seems almost be along the lines of

the Shia population areas still very much being in government hands and the Sunni population areas the majority of Anbar province that fall falls

between Syria and Iraq, Mosul of course, and Tikrit and the areas that kind of fall in the middle just north of Baghdad, they're the ones that are

being most hotly contested now, Becky.

But we're also seeing this horrifying turn to the east of irregular warfare tactics, the detonation of suicide bombs and car bombs inside those

population centers that are majority Shia dominated partly because they're so hard to reach for the militants, but also because this country still

teeters on that sectarian knife edge and the more they can ramp up the pressure in the Shia areas, the more they can try and pull those old Shia

militias like the Mehdi army or even some of the more extreme fighting forces into the fray here, Becky.

And that is the fear. So many people remember just how horrible it got during the hardest days of sectarian violence here and nobody wants to see

a return to that. And you really feel the militants trying to pull the country back in that direction, Becky, with their latest tactics.

ANDERSON: Nima Elbagir reporting for you from Baghdad.

Well, Israeli war planes struck targets in Gaza overnight. Palestinian medics say two people were wounded. Israel responding to militant rocket

fire that hit a factory in southern Israel.

Now rocket fire from Gaza has been on the rise as Israel has been carrying out raids in the West Bank. They began after three Israeli teenagers,

remember, went missing earlier this month.

Well, CNN's Ben Wedeman spoke with the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu just a short time ago. He joins us now from the bureau in


What did Netanyahu have to say, Ben?

BEN WEDEMAN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Becky, regarding the missing three Israeli teenagers who disappeared on the 12th of June, he

said he reiterated his belief that Hamas is indeed behind their kidnapping. He mentioned that, of course, as was announced Friday evening that there

are two residents of Hebron in the southern West Bank who have been missing -- Palestinian residents who have been missing since then, since the 11th

of June. They are affiliated with Hamas. And he believes that they are indeed the ones who were involved in that kidnapping.

But he's -- in addition to that, he did say that he does believe that the three teenagers according to their information are still alive, that is the

working assumption, he said.

But he really wanted to talk about the P5+1 talks, that's the permanent five members of the UN security council plus Germany who will be meeting on

Wednesday with representatives of the Iranian government. They are aiming at the 20th of July to have a comprehensive agreement on Iran's nuclear


Now what was interesting in this interview was that Prime Minister Netanyahu held up the agreement over Syria's chemical weapons as an example

that the negotiators should follow, that in the case of Syria the weapons were removed and then destroyed overseas, that's what he'd like to see done

with the components of Iran's nuclear program. But clearly that is not something, according to our understanding, that is really going to be the

purpose of these talks.

Now I also asked him if given the warming relationship between Washington and Tehran, whether he was concerned that the U.S. was making a strategic

pivot in the region toward Iran. And he said that in the Middle East, the enemy of your enemy is still your enemy. So he is not enthusiastic of

warmer relationship between the United States and Iran, Becky.

ANDERSON: Ben Wedeman in Jerusalem for you.

Well, the accused mastermind of the 2012 attack on the American diplomatic compound in Benghazi has made his first appearance in a U.S. court.

Ahmed Abu Khatallah faces charges in connection with the deaths of four Americans, including U.S. ambassador Chris Stevens.

Now, Evan Perez has more from outside a federal court building in Washington.


EVAN PEREZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Abu Khatallah appeared very subdued as he appeared in court here in Washington, D.C. He was read one charge, which

was material support of terrorism. Now this charge is the one that he's facing for now. The U.S. government says that they will add additional

charges at a later date.

He was flown here from the USS New York, which is where he has been held for the last couple of weeks undergoing interrogation by the FBI.

Now we're told by sources that the FBI advised him of his Miranda Rights, which allows him to remain silent and not answer questions, last week, some

time last week, and that he continued to answer questions from the interrogators even after he was advised of those rights.

Now we know from the government that he has requested some consular assistance from the Libyan embassy here in Washington and they are working

to provide that information to him.

He did plead not guilty for now. And his court appointed attorney requested a speedy trial. So we expect that this trial will move very

quickly in the next few months.


ANDERSON: Well, this is Connect the World live from Abu Dhabi on the first day of Ramadan.

As one of the most important Muslim traditions begins, we look closely at the celebrations of the holy month as you see the sun just disappear behind

the Sheikh Zayed Mosque behind me, the eighth largest mosque in the world. All that and more after this.


ANDERSON: Well, there you have it. At least one drawback of living on top of the Burj Khalifa. If you are fasting this month, you can imagine if you

are fasting from dawn to dusk, it is a challenge.

Leone Lakhani weighs the risks and the benefits for you.


LEONE LAKHANI, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: The holy month of Ramadan is a time for reflection, but also one of moral and physical discipline.

Fasting during daylight hours is one of the requirements. So before it starts, I decide I'm going to give it a go.

I'm planning to fast next week, so I've come here to a doctor for a consultation to find out how to fast in a healthy way.

I don't have any ailments, so I shouldn't have any problems. It's not recommended for the elderly, the very young and those with health issues.

But those who can fast, however, Dr. Hegazi says it has benefits.

DR. MONA HEGAZI, MEDICLINIC CITY HOSPITAL: You're not eat four extensive amounts of time, so that gives the digestive system a break. It allows it

to eliminate all the toxins.

LAKHANI: And so the day arrives, the first day of Ramadan.

So I'm just getting ready for work. And fasting during Ramadan means no food or drink from dawn til dusk. Having no caffeine in the morning is a

bit hard. I tried to ween myself off last week, so hopefully I won't suffer too much.

The work day is busy, so the times flies pretty quickly. Luckily, I don't have to film outside today.

Temperatures here are sweltering at this time of year, near 40 degrees Celsius. So for those who work outdoors, hours are shifted to avoid

dehydration in the daylight hours.

Although Dr. Hegazi says, bodies adjust to lack of liquids during the day.

HEGAZI: The kidneys concentrate the urine during the hours of fasting. And then when -- after Iftar, or after you break your fast, it dilutes the

urine so that's kind of an exercise for the kidney.

LAKHANI: Still, it's best to stay out of the sun if possible.

Back at the office, just a few hours to go now.

I feel fine. I think the first day is a bit of a shock to the system, but then it gets easier and you get used to it.


ANDERSON: All right.

So let's bring Leone in to find out how she is doing as we await what is one of the many Ramadan traditions here, which will be the firing of the

cannon there at the Sheihk Zayed Mosque to signal Iftar, the breaking of the fast.

How are you getting on

LAKHANI: I'm fine, actually.

You know, for lots of people, they don't know what to expect. And I think the first day is probably tough, as I said, and then you kind of ease into

it after a couple of days.

ANDERSON: Iftar, the food that will be eaten as people break fast can often be quick heavy. People have been waiting all day. We talked about

the benefits and the risks here of fasting. What should people eat?

LAKHANI: Becks, as you say, there's so many people. You hear these stories of them being rushed into the hospital with severe cases of

indigestion. And what doctors say people need to be aware that your whole system has slowed down during the day so you need to ease your way back in.

So a lot of times, traditionally people break their fast on dates, because it gives them a bit of energy. But doctors will say pick small meals

frequently rather than having a big, massive meal. Avoid fatty foods. Avoid sugary foods. And of course takes lots of liquids, you know,

replenish yourself.

And a lot of people over do it and then they get indigestion and they need to slow it down a bit.

ANDERSON: As we would all do if we were of course fasting.

Listen, Muslim (inaudible) I think I'm just hearing behind us the shots. Before modern times. Just have a listen to the cannon being fired behind

us. Before modern times, the firing of the cannon was the only way to tell people it was time to break the fast. Let's have a listen.

Now I think it plays more of a ceremonial role. These were fired from the place behind me, the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque. Remarkable stuff.

Now we're well aware that the World Cup is on at present. Muslim players observing Ramadan will find it tough, of course, during the World Cup,

particularly as the teams battle it out for the final spots.

France, Germany, Switzerland, Belgium, and Nigeria and indeed Algeria have all got teams who have players who may be fasting.

LAKHANI: A whole host of them, Becky.

I mean, let's just take a look at some of them.

I mean, in France you've got Bacary Sagna whose team plays Nigeria on Monday. And he said he won't be fasting.

You've also, obviously got Karim Benzema. There's no decision on him yet.

It seems the Algerian team hasn't decided either. They face the formidable Germany on Monday. There's been much debate in Algeria about them.

But on the other hand Germany's Mesut Ozil, there you see a picture of, has already said he will not fast during the Cup.

Now, it is a dilemma, I do say, because for these players they want to respect their religion, but they also want to be in tip top shape for

arguably the biggest event of their careers. And there's a lot of religious scholars weighing in on what they should and shouldn't do, lots

of different interpretations, some saying these players should be exempt because they're traveling, others saying that they should be exempt because

this could impede their profession and their livelihood.

So lots of interpretations. But at the end of the day most of the countries and team managers are leaving it up to the players to decide what

they what they want to do.

ANDERSON: Fantastic.

All right, Leone, thank you very much indeed for that.

And we will catch up with you throughout the month of Ramadan to see how you are getting on.

All right, Leone Lakhani for you.

Well, Ramadan will also feature prominently for us on Connect the World as we embark on a journey across the Middle East over the next few weeks.

We'll continue those -- the cannons going off -- let's take a look at the main developing stories like thee crisis in Iraq from our home base of Abu

Dhabi this coming week.

Before we travel to Cairo and see how Egyptians are celebrating their first Ramadan under new leadership.

From there, we will travel to Lebanon, a country dealing with both domestic, political deadlock and blowback from the Syrian civil war. Of

course, we'll also see how the conflicts in Syria and Iraq are impacting countries like Turkey. And we'll wrap up our trip back here in the USAE

and the Emirate of Sharjah.

Now now you can follow us throughout this trip by using the hashtag #CWLivefrom and by going to our blog at

Keep in touch, talk to us, let us know how you're feeling. Sights, sounds and spirit from the region is what we are looking for. It's a global

conversation. Join us on journey.

Live from Abu Dhabi, this is a special edition of Connect the World. Do stay with us. We'll be back after this.


ANDERSON: Right. You're back with us here on CNN with Connect the World with me, Becky Anderson.

Well, a short time ago we heard from Ben Wedeman about his discussion with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. That comes as Iran and world

powers prepare to sit down for more talks on Tehran's nuclear program.

I want you to now hear what Mr. Netanyahu had to say in full to Ben.


WEDEMAN: Thank you very much for this opportunity, Mr. Prime Minister.

An Israeli delegation is going to Washington tomorrow to meet with the American team in the P5+1 negotiations. What is their message? And what

is your message?

BENJAMIN NETANYAHU, PRIME MINISTER OF ISRAEL: Don't do a bad deal, do a good deal. The good deal is what was done with Syria. In the case of

Syria, the United States lead an effort to dismantle and remove Syria's chemical stockpiles and its means to make chemical weapons.

What Iran is pushing for is an entirely different deal, that is to keep and inspect. Keep its nuclear stockpiles and the means to make nuclear weapons

and rely on inspectors to prevent it from using them.

WEDEMAN: Are you worried that given the situation in Iraq, the United States is eager to get Iran on board and therefore this whole nuclear issue

is going to be diluted for the sake of some sort of arrangement in Iraq?

NETANYAHU: Well, I hope not because that would be a grievous strategic error. That is you cross a historical threshold of giving the Ayatollahs

atomic bombs for tactic daily gains in Iraq? I just don't believe it.

WEDEMAN: the ayatollahs atomic bombs.

NETANYAHU: But that's essentially what will happen if they have the capability to make atomic bombs, or the enriched material necessary for

atomic bombs in a very short order. That's what is being discussed.

WEDEMAN: People accuse you of crying Wolf, that this is just another case of crying wolf.

NETANYAHU: No, I think we've been able to stop the hemorrhaging. I mean, it's taken Iran a lot longer to get where it is because of the warnings and

actions that were put in place by many people, including myself, including the sanctions, really, that held it back.

But now the question is do you allow them to go the last mile? If you do, then the world will change.

We have Sunnis, militant Sunnis and militant Shiites, lead by Iran, fighting each other. You don't want either side of them to have weapons of

mass death, huge mistake. Don't do it.

WEDEMAN: But what we do see is a gradual rapprochement between the United States and Iran. They're talking about, they're negotiating. They're

making sanction -- the sanctions regime is being modified.

Are you worried that these United States is making a fundamental shift in its Mideast policy closer to Iran?

NETANYAHU: Well, I hope not. And it would be unwise to do that, because Iran is not your friend. It is your enemy. It is our enemy, your enemy --

just as the militant Shiite are your enemies.

The fact that both enemies are fighting one another, doesn't make one of them your friend. It's not the case.

In the Middle East , the enemy of my enemy is still my enemy.


ANDERSON: Benjamin Netanyahu speaking to Ben Wedeman just a short time ago.

The latest world news headlines are ahead for you. Plus two big games in the World Cup last 16. Later, Greece face off against Costa Rica and

Mexico and the Netherlands first I think for their clash for a place in the quaterfinals.

An update on all the World Cup action from Rio is just ahead.


ANDERSON: This is Connect the World with me Becky Anderson. The top stories for you this hour.

And we are still getting conflicting reports about who is in control of Tikrit after the Iraqi military carried out air strikes on the city.

Now, convoys of Iraqi military vehicles can be seen moving on the road that links Samarra with Tikrit.

Israel says it is ready to step up its operation in Gaza if necessary. Israeli war planes bombed militant targets in Gaza overnight in response to

a surge in rocket fire. One rocket hit this factory in southern Israel.

A frantic rescue is underway at the scene of a collapsed building in southern India. 10 people are confirmed dead and dozens of construction

workers may be trapped. 10 others were killed in another collapse, this time in New Delhi on Saturday.

Today was the final day of voting in Hong Kong in an unofficial referendum on democratic reform. The poll enraged Beijing with media reports calling

it an illegal farce. It comes as an annual pro-Democracy protest on July 1.

Well, four more teams seeking a spot in the quarter finals today after Brazil and Colombia are advanced on Saturday. Host nation Brazil defeating

Chile on penalties after the game ended in a draw. And Colombia beat Uruguay 2-0 with both goals coming from defender James Rodriguez.

Uruguay's coach later admitted that the team was hurting without star striker Luis Suarez.

Well, let's go to our Isa Soares in Rio de Janeiro with more details on those matches. And I know we're going to talk about Brazil in a moment.

First, a star is born and his name is Rodriguez.

ISA SOARES, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Indeed. I think Colombia has managed to unearth a very rare thing at this World Cup, a potential super

star, Becky, in James Rodriguez.

James Rodriguez very well known to many Colombians. You know, he signed a record deal to Monaco. Bent on the international stage, Becky, is always

in the shadows of the star striker of Colmobia Radamel Falcao who actually is out of this World Cup. So we have the opportunity to really see him

come to light and show what he can do.

Now for the fans here, I met many of them, very boisterous fans yesterday. And they are all taking a bow to King James.


SOARES: A new World Cup star was born today with James Rodriguez inspiring Colombians through victory against Uruguay.

With the fans here in force (inaudible) James Rodriguez scored two goals. He's now the tournament's top scorer with five goals.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He is just the number 10. He is like the special one. He's a great player.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think now all the clubs in Europe are going ot want James Rodriguez to be part of their club.

SOARES: Next up for the team and these adoring fans, is Brazil. But with 11 goals by far in this tournament, and James Rodriguez in the lineup,

these fans are confident.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think Colombia will win, because Colombia is making up pretty much big gamer than Brazil.

UNIDNETIFIED MALE: I hope Colombia wins, but Brazil is local so it's difficult.

SOARES: As for Uruguay, their tournament has ended on a sour note. Their sorely missed striker Luis Suarez sent home.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I was sure I was going to see our guys win and that they were going to do great, but they didn't.

SOARES: Do you think Uruguay would have won if you had Luis Suarez?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: For sure. Certainly. cCertainly.


SOARES: Becky, it was hard to match the spectacular drama of Brazil's penalty shootout win earlier yesterday. But Colombia definitely put on a

show, giving Brazil plenty to worry about for the next match -- Becky.

ANDERSON: What was I thinking calling James Rodriguez, James Rodriguez -- apologies to him and to every Spanish speaker around the world. James --


Brazil, though, getting through of course. I mean, Brazilians must be absolutely delighted, aren't they?

SOARES: Absolutely delighted. They go through, though it was very tight. For the Brazilians here, it was nerve racking, Becky. That first half

dominated by Brazil. The second half a bit dominated by Chile, really. You know, Hulk had an opportunity, he scored, but then that was disallowed,

many saying it was -- that the ball touched his arm, but later they think that actually the referee made the right call.

Then, after full time, extra time, we went down to penalties. And this is a bit that no one wants, Becky, where actually one of our producers here

went to the room because she couldn't watch it, that's how worrying it was.

This place went absolutely silent during this penalty kickout.

Neymar scored the last goal for Brazil.

But the star of the day, the star of the match was without a doubt Julio Cesar. Many people were hailing his the star, including Brazil's president

saying he was really the man of the match, Becky.

And a thrilling match, but really goes to show how tight it was for Brazil and how much work they've got to do ahead with, again, Colombia.

ANDERSON: Yeah, and you see Cesar there saving that goal and putting Brazil through.

All right, thank you young lady.

Greece and Costa Rica kickoff later this evening. First up, though, The Netherlands and Mexico. Both, of course, are hoping to advance to the

quaterfinals. But the UAE's resident football expert has already picked the winner. Have a look at this.

Yes, you saw it correctly, Shaheen the camel has chosen The Netherlands to triumph over Mexico in Sunday's match.

Just in case you missed it the first time.

So what would Mexico fans have to say about that prediction if they were in the UAE? Our Nick Parker joins me now from Mexico City.

Now something that they wanted to see, I'm sure.

NICK PARKER, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Probably not, Becky, probably wouldn't go down too well here.

Right now, we're in the main square of Mexico City the Socalo (ph), really the nerve center for Mexico City such as it is. And as you can see,

there's a huge party atmosphere here behind me, there's very loud salsa music coming from the main stage where the government installed giant

screens to attract thousands of people to come on and cheer their national team. There were steel workers handing out ice lollies.

It's really a party atmosphere with a huge sense of anticipation.

It's worth remembering going into this that Mexico barely even qualified for the World Cup. They scraped through in playoffs against New Zealand.

But now I think the story of Mexico in this World Cup it's resurgence, resurgence in terms of their performance on a pitch and resurgent hope

throughout the country under the talisman-like figure of Miguel Herrera.

I just wanted to bring in two fans right now, Martha and Isaac, very excited -- mother and son.

Tell me, how are you feeling going into this?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I am so excited. Viva Mexico. yes.

PARKER: How about you?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm really excited. We're going to kick butt today. I'm really excited.

PARKER: And just give me some predictions. Give me some predictions for the score.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think Mexico is going to win 3-2. We're going all the way.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We are winning. Yes. 4-3.

PARKER: Some very, very confident...


PARKER: Rampant enthusiasm, Becky. Sending it back to you. Just half an hour to go or so.

And as you can see, the atmosphere here is electric.

ANDERSON: Yeah. Lovely.

Nick, I don't think I -- I don't think I've seen that enthusiastic fan in a very long time. And Mexican fans are always enthusiastic.

4-3, 3-2, is that realistic, do you think tonight? I don't want you to get lynched.

PARKER: I think it's anybody's guess. I think it's anybody's guess. Anything can happen in the World Cup. And I think they genuinely believe

that they are a real contender now and could even, with the right wind behind them, go ahead and win the championship -- Becky.

ANDERSON: All right, Nick. Thank you for that.

Let's just get back to Isa Soares who has surrounded herself by fans in Brazil over the past couple of weeks.

Isa, I don't know if you could see or or hear that, but certainly the Zocalo (ph) in Mexico City tonight absolutely alive. You'd been knocking

around there in Brazil for some time there, you much have met some Dutch fans. They must be extremely confident as well, given their performance

over the past couple of weeks?

SOARES: Absolutely. They're extremely confident.

But the Latin Americans, the confidence they have are incredible. You know, the Dutch are always like, oh we hope to win, but the Latin Americans

of course we're going to win, of course we're going to get through this.

Look, the Mexican, El Tri, have basically said we know that the Dutch are considered one of hte top teams to win this World Cup. we know they're

among the factories. gut this does not worry us,. In fact, it's just motivates us to go out and do better.

And Becky, they have only -- you know, they have got a fantastic goalkeeper in Guillermo Ochoa. And they've only actually conceded -- they only had

one goal put in in their team. So in fact they've got a fantastic team in which they've got very strong chances.

One thing they do have on their side, Becky, finally is they're playing in Portaleza, which is exceptionally hot. So I think the Dutch will struggle

a bit and the coach van Gaal has asked for water breaks, because I think they're expected to lose something like four liters of fluids duiring that

match. So maybe they'll have advantage when it comes to temperatures.

ANDERSON: And it would be unfair not to talk about Greece and Costa Rica. I mean, I think most Greek fans would agree that they kind of dragged their

way to this part of the tournament, but it's anybody's game at this point, isn't it? Costa Rica have been on fire, haven't they?

SOARES: Absolutely. I mean, we should really go a camel to try and sort this one out. It's quite hard to tell.

You know, these two were the ones that many were thinking never -- if we spoke at the beginning of the tournament, neither of us would have said,

oh, you know, they're going to get through. They've been surprising, Costa Rica, this is a surprise group. Winning, winning you know -- winning with

Italy -- eliminating Italy, tying with England and so they've been -- you know, they've been fantastic.

Many thought they were whipping boys, Becky. But in fact they've come on top. They work so hard. Train something like three hours a day. That last

match against Italy, they out ran Italy by more than 12.7 kilometers.

So it will be a great match. Many people putting their names and putting their bets behind Costa Rica.

ANDERSON: Fast facts from Isa Soares tonight. Thank you.

Well, in tonight's parting shots, I want to get you behind the scenes here setting up what is an outside broadcast. We'll be doing this over the next

month as we travel the region even though we're in Abu Dhabi, it isn't easy, but the engineers at CNN are masters of their art. In fact, blink

and you'd miss them setting up.

Well, it clearly takes a little more than 18 seconds it takes all day, but a sense of what we need as we set up here at the Shangri La Hotel for the

next three days.

For the world's 1.6 billion Muslims, the holy month is not only about fasting, it's also a time of spiritual reflection and supporting to the

Islamic teaching, the Korean, was first revealed to the Prophet Muslim in this month as it falls in the summer months with long days. It's also

about self restraint as observing Muslims abstain from food and drink during daylight hours. Today that was some 15 hours. But come sunset,

it's time to break the fast traditionally by eating dates and drinking water.

And the month ends with the celebration of Eid, one of the most important days in the Islamic calendar.

Well, you can get involved and share your stories, ideas, questions with us throughout this next month as we journey across the Middle East. Use this

hashtag #CTWLiveFrom, that's #CTWLiveFrom. If you're fasting, send us your pictures, as you celebrate Iftar send us your thoughts on regional

politics, on business art and entertainment whatever you want. And you can always tweet me @BeckCNN.

For the time being, though, that was Connect the World from Abu Dhabi. it is a very good evening. We leave you with pictures of Ramadan preparations

and observations from around the world starting tonight in Afghanistan.