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CONNECT THE WORLD
American Joins Fight Against ISIS In Syria; Dilma Rousseff Reelected As President Of Brazil; African Start-up: Pink Foods Industries; Iraq Makes Gains in Battle Against ISIS; Denmark Rehabilitates Jihadis; Voice of Moderate Islam; Brazil's President Rousseff Wins Second Term; Parting Shots: Space Smells
Aired October 27, 2014 - 11:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
IVAN WATSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Basically people are running into battle without even any armor.
JORDAN MATSON, AMERICAN YPG FIGHTER: Yes.
WATSON: And wearing sneakers half the time.
MATSON: Yes. Combat Adidas.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BECKY ANDERSON, HOST: No U.S. boots on the ground, but at least one pair of sports shoes. We hear from a former American serviceman taking on
ISIS with a Kurdish militia.
This hour, I'll get you both extremes in this unrelenting fight and examine a new reality for the jihadis heading home.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: In reality, I have met a lot of western people in Syria. And nobody has ever talked about getting back to plan to bomb these
countries as they try to make it sound like in the media.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: We'll learn how one small European nation is taking the lead in reforming the so-called radicalized stands accused of being too
And I speak to the cleric name checked by none other than the U.S. president for striking the right balance in the teaching of Islam and the
fight against extremism.
ANNOUNCER: Live from CNN Abu Dhabi, this is Connect the World with Becky Anderson.
ANDERSON: A very good evening. And it's just after 7:00 here in the UAE. You often hear stories about young men and women from the west
traveling to Syria and to Iraq to join Islamic groups like ISIS.
But as our Ivan Watson shows us now, there are also westerners fighting for the other side. He brings us the story now of one former U.S.
soldier who felt compelled to make the journey in order to try to stop the slaughter.
WATSON: Armed men a common sight here in Kurdish controlled northern Syria, a country embroiled in a vicious civil war.
But one of the gunmen in this truck is not like the others.
So how do people react to you when they see you and realize you're from the U.S.?
JORDAN MATSON, AMERICANYPG FIGHTER: They ask me over for dinner at their house.
WATSON: Jordan Matson (ph) is a 28-year-old former army soldier from Sterdivent (ph), Wisconsin.
MATSON: How are you? (SPEAKING IN FOREIGN LANGUAGE).
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: (SPEAKING IN FOREIGN LANGUAGE)
MATSON: I'm good.
WATSON: For the last month, he's also been a volunteer fighter in the Kurdish militia known here as the YPG.
MATSON: I got in contact with the YPG on Facebook and I prayed about it for about a month or to and, you know, just really soulsearched and said
is this what I want to do? And eventually, you know, decided to do it.
WATSON: During his two years in the army, Matson never once saw combat or employment overseas. But soon after arriving here in Syria, he
says he ended up in a battle against ISIS.
MATSON: The second day in I got hit by a mortar in a fight.
WATSON: While recovering from shrapnel wounds, Matson went to work online, recruiting more foreigners to help the YPG fight against ISIS.
MATSON: I've had ex-military come from east -- from Eastern Europe, Western Europe, Canada, the United States, Australia, you name it they've
You know, ISIS has threatened all of these countries that I've named to push their agenda in those nations And the veterans of those nations
who love their countries don't want to sit by while this is happening.
WATSON: Back home in Wisconsin, Matson used to work in a food packing company.
MATSON: Other than that, we just hang out in here.
WATSON: Now he lives in places like this former restaurant, converted into a militias camp.
What are the pictures?
MATSON: These are all men that have died fighting against ISIS.
WATSON: The YPG are very lightly armed guerrillas.
Is this even a flak jacket?
MATSON: No, this is just a vest to carry ammunition.
WATSON: So basically people are running into battle without even any armor.
WATSON: And wearing sneakers half the time.
MATSON: Yes. Combat Adidas.
WATSON: U.S. law enforcement officials say it's illegal for an American to join a Syrian militia, but Matson says being here, fighting
ISIS alongside the Kurds is a dream come true.
You could not be further from home right now.
MATSON: Yeah. I guess this is the other side of the world.
All my life I just wanted to be a soldier I guess growing up. And so this -- it just fits well over here. I'm at peace being here.
ANDERSON: Ivan joins us now from Dohuk in northern Iraq. Ivan, how does an American from Wisconsin end up in the theater of war. Not as what
many would consider a conventional serviceman?
WATSON: Well, Jordan Matson told me that he traveled by air from Chicago to Turkey and then he crossed to here, to Iraqi Kurdistan in
northern Iraq and then had to use some subterfuge to get across the border into this Kurdish enclave in northern Syria where he joined the YPG.
He said he was met by clearly supporters of this Kurdish movement in Istanbul and they helped bring him through to join the ranks of this
Kurdish militia -- Becky.
ANDERSON: Did you get the sense -- I mean, he said he was at peace there. Did you get the sense that he will stay on, that he knows what he's
up to, that he's absolutely clear that his intentions are good?
WATSON: Well, he spoke with the fervor about the Kurdish cause in northern Syria with the fervor of a recent convert, even though he
confessed that he did not know very much about Kurdish culture, society or politics prior to his arrival there.
Yeah, I asked him did he see any parallels between himself and other westerners who had gone to join the Kurdish militia there and foreigners
who have gone to join the ISIS militants. And he kind of dodged the question. He said he was coming to defend the Kurds and he viewed ISIS as
a threat to the U.S. and as former American military man he had a duty to defend America.
He said that he had initially been compelled to come to the Middle East after ISIS captured an Iraqi city, Mosul, last June. And he said that
he had to stand up for American servicemen who were killed defending that city during the U.S. occupation of Iraq, but didn't have a really good
explanation for how he ended up in Syria fighting with Kurds in Syria rather than alongside the Iraqi-Kurdish Peshmerga here in Iraq.
I guess that's just the way it turned out. And that's which group seemed to accept somebody writing them on Facebook all the way from
ANDERSON: Ivan, you've spent a lot of time in the region. Is he fairly unique, do you think, or are there other young men from the likes of
Wisconsin with the same ideas, intentions and efforts that this guy is making?
Well, I think we may have lost him. That is a fascinating story.
Let me get you an update on what is going on on the ground elsewhere in that bit of war, as it were.
Iraqi-Kurdish reinforcements, I'm told, are still waiting to join the fight in the northern Syrian town of Kobani. Media reports say the
Peshmerga are standing by and ready to go, but Kurdish officials say they've been delayed by Turkey -- this has been a sort of ongoing story
over the past sort of 48 to 72 hours.
Meanwhile in Iraq, just one day after the Iraqi military and Shiite militia pushed ISIS militants out of the town south of Baghdad, a suicide
bomber drove a car packed with explosives into a checkpoint. Reuters reporting at least 27 Shiite militiamen were killed.
We're going to have a lot more on the fight against ISIS later on Connect the World with me Becky Anderson out of Abu Dhabi for you this
Plus, countering the ISIS propaganda machine, that's the focus of a Kuwait meeting of coalition nations going on as we speak. Let me get a
live report from Baghdad on recent gains made by the Iraqi forces against ISIS.
And can Muslim extremists be reformed when they return home? One European country says yes; details in a live report from London.
And we'll hear from a moderate Muslim cleric about whether he believes that scholars are relevant in the fight against militants in
counterterrorism narratives. All that coming up.
Now confusing situation in Nigeria where insurgent group Boko Haram is being blamed for a series of attacks over the weekend. At least 17 people
were killed and 30 boys and girls, I'm afraid were taken around Mafa in the northeast state of Borno.
Now local leaders there tell CNN it was Boko Haram, but the Nigerian government says the group has denied that, though the group itself has said
Well, Isha Sesay is in Nigeria's capital Abuja. And Isha, this is a confusing situation. Do you have any sense of what is going on at this
ISHA SESAY, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Hi there, Becky. That's a question that we're all contemplating, people here on the ground in
Nigeria and quite frankly around the world. Certainly more questions being asked about those government statements made last week saying that they had
a ceasefire in place with Boko Haram and that there was a deal in place to release these girls, that becomes increasingly -- it seems increasingly
questionable given this latest attack on Mafa where it was children, Becky, we need to spell that out for our viewers, boys as young as 13, girls as
young as 11, taken off by what are believed to be Boko Haram insurgents, taken -- or believed to be used as child soldiers, you know, really --
Especially when you bear in mind, Becky, you and I discussed this, it comes on the heals of another attack that happened towards the end of last
week in which we are told 60 women and girl were taken.
So it's becoming increasingly difficult to marry up the statement that talks continue in Chad and they are on track and Boko Haram has no part in
the attacks when we continue to see women and girls and young boys carried off by insurgent groups -- Becky.
ANDERSON: The Human Rights Watch group getting involved just earlier today detailing, Isha, the abuse that captives have gone through for
refusing to convert to Islam.
Now this report saying they've been subjected to physical and psychological abuse, forced labor, forced participation in military
operations, forced marriage to their captives and sexual abuse including rape. We cannot overstate the enormity of what, as you rightly point out,
women, children, boys and girls as you say as young as 11 or possibly younger, the sort of brutality the kids are going through.
I guess the question is, as you've alluded to the fact that these talks continue in Chad. How much more is the government of Nigeria trying
to do on the ground to stop this? Is it clear?
SESAY: Becky, it's worth again laying out for our viewers that these areas where these attacks are taking place are under a state of emergency,
i.e. there's an increase in government forces, security service personnel on the ground and yet these attacks occur. Since that government
announcement of a ceasefire and a deal to release the 219 girls in captivity from that April 14 attack. There have been near daily attacks
happening as we just pointed out with more people being taken on.
Listen, for the people on the ground in those areas, they feel that this is a battle that the government has already lost. We continue to hear
of people leaving their homes, Becky, going elsewhere, fleeing, seeking safety in some cases in the state capital of Borno because they just don't
feel the Nigerian government can take care of them, can protect them.
And when you bear in mind that attacks continue to happen near daily, it's hard to disagree with them.
I mean, Human Rights Watch also goes on to say in this report that there is basically horrific vulnerability of women and girls in the
northeast as they continue to be targeted, but also most worryingly, Becky, when you read the report, one of the other striking claims made by Human
Rights Watch is that victims do not get adequate support from the government in terms of rehabilitation and a way back from the horrors that
you've just laid out.
So, it is quite a distressing situation. Again, it is worth pointing out that the government says these talks are on track. But for many people
in these parts of the country and the northeast, it's too little, too late. I mean, their lives have been turned upside down. And you know they don't
really know what comes next -- Becky.
ANDERSON: Distressing stuff. Isha for the time being, thank you.
Brazil's voters have spoken. Dilma Rousseff will be president for another four years. But now, she faces what is a Herculean task of
reconciling a bitterly divided country. She narrowly defeated opposition candidate Aecio Neves, nearly 52 percent to just over 48 percent making
this one of the closest presidential races the country has seen in years.
Now in her victory speech, she told supporters she understood voters' frustrations and vowed to make changes to her government and to her
Well, Shasta Darlington is in Sao Paulo with more on the election outcome.
And after what is an extremely tight victory, the president promising great changes, Shasta. Did she explain where or what she will start with
at this point?
SHASTA DARLINGTON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: You know, she did, Becky. She started talking, first of all, about electoral reform and
the need to basically she's been pushing all along for the need to eliminate the -- or at least regulate the way that companies can donate to
campaigns. So that's one of the first things she says she wants to get done.
But to tell you the truth, that's not what most Brazilians are concerned about right now. As you mentioned, this is one of the tightest
and most divisive races in decades. And what we have coming out of it is a country kind of divided in two and roughly along class lines, which makes
this a very difficult path going forward, because on the one hand Dilma Rousseff has to keep her base happy, and that's generally speaking the
poorest in Brazil. She has to keep up all of those social programs.
But she's also got an economy that's in a serious -- dire straits. It was in a recession in the first half of the year. Inflation is spiking.
And she said during the campaign that one of her first measures would be actually to pick a new economy minister. So that's what a lot of people
will be looking out for when we actually came to work today.
You take a look at the markets. They're not happy about this income. That's no surprise. But stocks were down more than 5 percent at open, the
currency was at a near six year low. So, if she wants to build up that investor confidence needed to get this big BRICs economy back on track
she's going to have to name the economy minister and name some measures that will help the economy, Becky.
ANDERSON: Shasta, thank you.
And we're going to do more on this election. It was the closest presidential election in 25 years.
But Dilma Rousseff was reelected. Now Brazilians look to her slogan, "New Government, New Ideas."
We're going to see what change, then, is in the works. You were looking before at the live board on the Brazilian stock exchange. You can
see the market pulling back a little bit, but not much today.
And also coming up this evening, we look ahead at the diplomatic discussion that David Cameron faces this week in the fight to stem the flow
of funds to ISIS into the UK for you this hour as well. That up next.
ANDERSON: Welcome back. This is CNN and Connect the World with me Becky Anderson. It is 19 minutes past 7:00 in the UAE.
Kuwait hosting members of the anti-ISIS coalition today. They are discussing how to deal with the group's propaganda amongst other things.
But the fight against the group pitting one western leader in a tough spot.
This week, the British prime minister David Cameron is meeting with the Qatar emir, the leader there. There telegraph reports that Mr. Cameron
hopes to attract billions of dollars in investment to the UK or even more than he's already got. He's also under pressure to demand that the Gulf
state do more amid allegations of ISIS fundraisers operating in his country.
Well, our emerging markets editor John Defterios joining me here on the terrorists in Abu Dhabi.
There are 60 member countries of the coalition against ISIS. I was actually surprised by that, about a dozen of them in Kuwait at this
meeting. Can we say that a common policy at this point is coming together?
JOHN DEFTERIOS, CNN EMERGING MARKETS EDITOR: Slowly, and I think that's the biggest challenge. There's a common belief now that we know how
to hit the three main areas, which is oil, extortion, and the fundraising, but the problem is trying to get all these countries on the same track
moving in the same direction.
Now ISIS still carries this mantle of being the wealthiest terrorist group ever, it's still collecting, according to the U.S. Treasury, a $1
million a day. But what has changed, I think, Becky, since the last time you and I talked about it is that they're actually naming countries that
are progressing in this effort to shut down the fundraising in the Gulf states and those who are lagging behind.
The U.S. Treasury, for example, suggesting that Saudi Arabia after the meeting that General John Allen had with the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia
over the weekend they're actually making progress. The United Arab Emirates making progress.
But I thought it was interesting even though this meeting is taking place in Kuwait and they had this financial intelligence unit, they're
suggesting Kuwait is moving slowly; Qatar is committed to attacking the fundraising, but they're suggesting that Qatar is moving slowly as well.
It was Sheikh Tamim going into the UK, as you suggested in your lead- in here, a major investor in the UK economy, particularly in London right now. Will David Cameron step forward and suggest you need to move faster
to choke off the fundraising efforts here that we're seeing for ISIS and the region.
ANDERSON: It's a tough one.
We've talked about the strikes on oil fields, oil -- black market oil being one of the sort of streams of income as it were that ISIS is able to
take advantage of and make is, as you've said, the wealthiest terror group ever, as it were.
Where do we stand with that? Because there was some -- there was a big effort by the allied coalition. And they seemed to be getting
DEFTERIOS: Absolutely. Last time you and I had this conversation they were suggesting 30,000 to 40,000 barrels of production a day. U.S.
Treasury is putting that number closer to 25,000 barrels. When we started covering this story, that was at 70,000 barrels.
The income is still $1 million a day from the oil sales. We're seeing now with the forces coming together in the coalition that they see
contracts from the Assad regime in Syria still with ISIS to get this money on a day to day basis.
What has changed since the last time we talked here, they're going after the oil fields, attacking the oil fields, trying to get the Banti
refinery (ph) back into firm control of Iraq. But at the same time, they're not turning a blind eye to the work of the Kurdish regional
government or Turkey to allow this oil to go out.
They're suggesting now if you're allowing the oil to go out, supporting the network of traders, we're going to go after the traders, but
also come after the countries. This is David Cohen, the undersecretary of the U.S. Treasury, Becky.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RICHARD COHEN, UNDERSECRETARY OF U.S. TREASURY: What's different now, frankly, is that the oil that had previously moved through these smuggling
networks we now know that that oil finds its origin with ISIL. And anyone involved in the sale of this oil is frankly assisting ISIL, funding ISIL.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
DEFTERIOS: So what you can expect, Becky, going forward is the fact that they're going to go after the banking sanctions, so any banks that
support that trader network and put people on no-fly lists as well.
Now it takes a long time for this to happen. Just last week, they identified 20 people of the Assad regime to put them on no-fly lists and
target their banks. You can expect the same going forward with ISIS and their ability to trade oil.
It's a slower process than most people would like. There are two UN resolutions. It's just enforcing the resolutions and then all trying to
move in the same direction at the same time.
ANDERSON: Thank you, John.
DEFTERIOS: Yeah, nice to see you.
ANDERSON: John Defterios in the house for you.
Live from Abu Dhabi, this is Connect the World with me Becky Anderson. We get the day's headlines for you shortly. Before that, though, and after
this short break, find out how two entrepreneurs in Uganda plan on turning an inheritance into one of Africa's biggest businesses. That is African
Start-up. And that is next.
FELIX OKUYA, CO-FOUNDER PINK FOOD INDUSTRIES: Hi, I'm Felix Okuye, co-founder of Think Foods Industries.
STEPHEN SSEMBUYA, CO-FOUNDER : Hi, I'm Stephen Ssembuya co-founder of Think Foods Industries. Come check out the factory.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Think Food Industries is based in the Ugandan capital Kampala. It manufactures food products made of cocoa, harvested on
land inherited by Ssembuya.
SSEMBUYA: This plantation was planted by my grandfather (inaudible) then passed over to my dad and uncle Christopher Ssembuya and now I'm
managing it together with my friend.
OKUYE: We have been friends with my partner quite long, right, they were from high school.
SSEMBUYA: Looking at the fun that we have, we thought it would help something and add value to the crop, the cocoa that we're growing in the
farm. And today, we're able to do chocolate, cocoa powder and cocoa butter.
OKUYE: A lot of cocoa is being exported and most is going to Europe and Asia. You can imagine all the cocoa that is being produced in Uganda
is going out.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Ssembuy and Okuye launched their product line in May of 2014.
OKUYE: We are branding our chocolate Uganda. You know, Uganda is not properly known as a cocoa producing country. And as we brand our
chocolates, the world out there will know that there is cocoa and chocolate coming from Uganda.
UNIDNETIFIED FEMALE: Coming from a country unfamiliar with chocolate making has been challenging.
OKUYE: We took it upon ourselves to teach ourselves. So with the savings we had, we began with the minimum. And as such, we also developed
(inaudible) equipment to process our products.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Currently the pair sell their cocoa products through social media, but they have big plans.
OKUYE: Pink Foods, we have a vision of being the biggest processors of cocoa in Africa. And we believe now that we have got a product out of
our very own cocoa in our farm, we now have the confidence to promote cocoa growing in Uganda.
ANDERSON: You're watching CONNECT THE WORLD with me, Becky Anderson. The top stories for you this hour on CNN.
State prosecutors in South Africa say they will appeal the judge's ruling in the Oscar Pistorius case. Last week, the Paralympic athlete was
convicted of culpable homicide and sentenced to five years for shooting and killing his girlfriend.
South African police are looking for three suspects in the killing of the captain of the national soccer team. Police say 27-year-old Senzo
Meyiwa was shot Sunday night in an attempted robbery at a house in a township near Johannesburg.
Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff has promised to be a better leader after winning a presidential runoff. She brought in just over 51 percent
of the vote in one of the tightest competitions Brazil has seen in years.
Exit polls in Ukraine show pro-Western parties on course for a win in parliament. President Petro Poroshenko says the results show voters, and I
quote, "irreversibly support a path to Europe." Citizens in Crimea and the eastern areas controlled by pro-Russian separatists didn't participate in
Just one day after the Iraq military and Shiite militia pushed ISIS militants south of the town of Baghdad -- south of Baghdad, sorry -- a
suicide bomber drove a car packed with explosives into a checkpoint. Ben Wedeman is on the ground in Baghdad and joins me with more.
And Ben, we spoke at this time last night, and it was unclear whether the reports of gains against ISIS held any water at that point. Any
further evidence at this stage? And if so, who is responsible? Is it the Iraqi military, is it the coalition, or is it Shia militia at this point?
BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: We were in that area, Becky, yesterday, and it does appear that -- and this is a pattern
we've noticed before -- is that as you're approaching the front lines, you see a lot of checkpoints of the Iraqi army.
But when you get to the area near the front lines, you see more and more militia. And it does seem that these Shia militias are playing a
major role if not the leading role when it comes to actually engaging and fighting ISIS on the ground.
Now, what we've seen on Iraqi television is lots of pictures of soldiers of the Iraqi army and militiamen celebrating what they claim are
these victories -- this victory in this area, which is about 50 kilometers to the south of Baghdad, called Jurf al-Sakhr. So, certainly they do seem
to have made some advances.
But of course, those advances come at losses among the Iraqi forces themselves. In fact, overnight, ISIS managed to get their hands on a
Humvee, disguise it as an Iraqi army Humvee, drive it right up to a checkpoint, which I think we were at yesterday, and explode it, killing at
least, according to sources on the ground, killing 15 militiamen, wounding many more.
So, ISIS may have been driven out of that area, but somehow, it manages to still operate there. Becky?
ANDERSON: Ben Wedeman is on the ground with the very latest from there. Well, international fear -- thank you, Ben -- is growing over ISIS
and its ability to recruit jihadists abroad and inspire lone wolf terror attacks in the West. In fact, there's a meeting going on as I speak in
Kuwait here in the GCC on ISIS propaganda and, indeed, terror financing.
One European country, though, is using a controversial method to turn the tide. Atika Shubert joins us now from London. Let's call this the
"Danish Solution," Atika. What are we talking about here?
ATIKA SHUBERT, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, basically, Denmark's policy is one more of prevention, and when fighters come home,
they're part of a policy to try and include them back into society. So, they aren't necessarily thrown into prison straight away.
We actually had a chance to speak to one fighter who had just returned to Syria to get his reaction. Take a listen.
SHUBERT (voice-over): There are an estimated 100 Danish fighters in Syria. That is a lot for a small country. Denmark has one of Europe's
highest rates of jihadi fighters, and it faces a dilemma: what to do when these fighters come home.
"Omar," in his early 20s, recently returned from Syria. His parents thought he was helping at a refugee camp. He was fighting with a jihadist
brigade. He spoke to us on condition of anonymity.
"OMAR," DANISH JIHADIST: In reality, I have met a lot of Western people in Syria. Nobody had ever talked about getting back, plan to bomb
these countries as they're trying to make it sound like in the media.
SHUBERT: Omar is one of 16 known fighters to return. On arrival, he did a very un-radical thing: he contacted the Danish police program for
returning fighters voluntarily.
SHUBERT (on camera): Were you nervous about coming back home to Denmark?
"OMAR": No, I wasn't that nervous because I knew that I didn't do any kind of criminal act or something like that.
SHUBERT (voice-over): Here's how the program works. Any returning fighter is eligible for help getting a job, a house, an education, and
psychological counseling, just like any other Danish citizen. But, they must be screened by police. Anyone found to have committed a crime will be
put through the courts and possibly prison. Their information is also passed to Danish intelligence.
JORGEN ILUM, AARHUS POLICE COMMISSIONER: This is not a gift shop. You have to be motivated, you have to really want to become a part of the
Danish society. We help them find a way through the system. And what we've seen is that out of these 16 who have returned, 10 of them are now
back in school, have a job. And it seems to us that their focus is on something else than in Syria.
SHUBERT: Police here say it is a Danish solution that's not that special, simply a crime prevention program with a focus on jihadis. And
it's voluntary. Omar is one of those who decided he didn't need the help, but he has friends who are in the program.
"OMAR": They don't help people by harassing them, by raiding their homes and taking away their passports and putting them into prison.
SHUBERT: Importantly, the program does not try to change the fundamentalist beliefs of returning fighters as long as they do not
ILUM: They are still Muslim believers, some of them in, perhaps, a way that we would call radical, but not to an extent that, as far as we can
see, they are a threat to the society.
SHUBERT: Omar believes the program is preventing attacks back home, but he also says he might return to Syria.
"OMAR": Young people have a lot of feelings. So, if you're going to be humble towards those returned fighters, they were be humble to us, too.
If you're going to be harsh towards them, they're going to be harsh towards you.
SHUBERT (on camera): What advice do you have for somebody who wants to come back from Syria, back home? What advice do you have?
"OMAR": I would tell them that there's nothing to fear if you want to come back?
SHUBERT (voice-over): So, does it work? It's too soon to know, but police say the alternative would be fighters that return and simply
disappear. This program is designed to help while also keeping a close watch.
SHUBERT: Now, this program only started in January, so it really is too soon to tell, but there are some interesting numbers. Last year, an
estimated 30 fighters left from that town of Aarhus. This year, only one is recorded to have left, so that is a significant drop that, according to
police, they believe it's a reflection of this de-radicalization program, Becky.
ANDERSON: Atika in London for you. Thank you. I'm going to get you back to September's UN General Assembly for a moment, now. That is when
the US president called on the world to take a stand against religious extremism. Barack Obama singled out one person, Sheikh Abdullah bin
Bayyah, as a voice of moderate Islam. Take a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The ideology of ISIL or al Qaeda or Boko Haram, will wilt and die if it is consistently exposed and
confronted and refuted in the light of day.
Look at the new Forum for Promoting Peace in Muslim Societies. Sheikh bin Bayyah described its purpose: "We must declare war on war so the
outcome will be peace upon peace."
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: I had the opportunity to sit down with Sheikh bin Bayyah, the Mauritanian-born cleric, right here in Abu Dhabi. Have a listen to
ANDERSON: Why are we seeing such extreme violence in Muslim countries today?
SHEIKH ABDULLAH BIN BAYYAH, MUSLIM SCHOLAR (through translator): It involved historical grievances: unemployment, poverty, political and
social conditions, as well as an extreme religious element. For that reason, it is not possible for a cleric to put forward solutions to all of
But we can at least attempt to address this problem at hand, to convince those who stir up the violence that their methodology and their
vision is not a sound one from the religious perspective.
ANDERSON: The US president asked the world to challenge what he called the "perverse ideology" of ISIS or Daesh. I'm going to show you a
recent training video, a video called "Blood of Jihad," and I wonder how you believe you can challenge what is this propaganda being released by the
organization, which is being used to pull in disenfranchised, disillusioned young Muslims. This is the video, sir.
ANDERSON: How do you counter the message from ISIS?
BIN BAYYAH (through translator): This is a great challenge that has to be confronted with a strong response. This is what it means to wage war
on war. This is challenging our existence, and its treatment has to come from Islam itself, using the same language that the extremists understand.
For some time now, we have been crafting the appropriate language. Islam does not call to war. Islam invites to peace.
ANDERSON: With respect, sir, given these slick propaganda videos that you see, the likes of "Blood of Jihad" and "Dabiq," the magazine that ISIS
releases, there are those who say that scholars are no longer relevant to this younger, disenchanted, disenfranchised Muslim. Your response?
BIN BAYYAH (through translator): The scholars themselves are in need of introspection. We need satellite channels in order to reach people, and
we need means of communication, the internet and social media, because to a certain degree, scholars today are incapacitated. The scholars are the
only ones who are able to challenge those ideas.
Military opposition is not enough, and I think the world is beginning to admit that. Military solutions are not effective solutions in reality,
because even though one group can be stopped today with military might, another will emerge somewhere else. So, the real solution is an
intellectual and social one.
ANDERSON: To some, sir, in the West, you are a controversial Muslim leader, the allegation is that you signed a fatwa post-2003 on killing US
soldiers. Did you?
BIN BAYYAH (through translator): I have never issued a fatwa to kill anyone. My fatwas are for supporting, promoting, and for protecting life.
I have never given a fatwa that has to do with death and killing.
Perhaps there was some resolutions at conferences that I was involved in that denounced certain policies -- for instance, American occupation or
Israeli occupation -- but I don't believe that denouncing occupation is a fatwa to kill anyone.
In fact, I can never recall giving a fatwa that harmed anyone, let alone one that's calling for anyone's death. I call to life. I call to
life. I do not call to death. I do not call to kill anyone, and if anyone claims this or are making allegations, let him bring his proof.
ANDERSON: Sheikh bin Bayyah, who is part of the narrative, as you hear more and more voices in this region and around the world looking for
inspiration in the fight against terrorism.
Live from Abu Dhabi, this is CONNECT THE WORLD with me, Becky Anderson. Coming up, a neck-and-neck presidential race in Brazil is over,
and incumbent Dilma Rousseff won by a whisker. How she now plans to unite a divided country, up next.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DILMA ROUSSEFF, PRESIDENT OF BRAZIL (through translator): A reelection vote is a vote of hope, especially for improving the actions of
those who have been governing. I know that is what people say when they reelect a leader. That is what I have heard from the voting booth. That
is why I want to be a much better president than I have been up until now.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Dilma Rousseff saying that she will be a better president in her next term after Brazilian voters handed her a narrow victory in
Sunday's election. She defeated the opposition candidate, Aecio Neves, with just over 51 percent of the vote. She promised reform, saying she was
reelected to make the changes Brazilians are demanding.
But fixing Brazil's long list of social and economic problems will not be an easy task. Joining me now from Sao Paulo is Ricardo Gandour, the
executive editor of "Grupo Estado."
Now, the opinion section of your newspaper group, which I know you point out is independent and doesn't speak for the editorial management,
did, though, profess support for Neves, the losing candidate. Do you believe it was time for change in Brazil?
RICARDO GANDOUR, EXECUTIVE EDITOR, "GRUPO ESTADO": Hi, Becky, glad to join you. Yes, "change" was a word very extremely constructed last year
during the process of June. And both candidates embraced the concept.
But Mrs. Rousseff indeed has two big challenges ahead: politically to deal with this very strong Congress and full of scandals in the political
scenario and, of course, in the economic front, to manage all the key indicators of the economy -- inflation is high -- and deal with the next
investment rate in Brazil. She has a tough horizon ahead.
ANDERSON: She was way down in opinion polls only some -- what? -- three, four, five months ago. And yet, she has won this, with a very tight
victory, but still, she has won this.
What was it that Neves did wrong? Was he just too divisive in the end? To middle-to-upper class? Was he only talking and walking for
industrialists and those who are well-off in Brazil? What was the problem, do you think, in the end?
GANDOUR: Well, there's no doubt there's the social programs and a kind of a fear campaign, the political marketing of the Mrs. Rousseff
campaign, did very strongly, took an important role in these elections.
But of course, we should say that the country is now electorally divided. If this division will be transformed in a social division, that's
a mystery and a question to be very well observed in the months ahead.
ANDERSON: Well, Ricardo, your organization will keep a watchful eye on what happens next. She has talked the talk. It is time to walk the
walk, of course. What is her plan to fix a failing health and welfare system, rising corruption, spiking crime, creeping inflation, many people
say? And that is just for starters.
She's also got to restore investor confidence which, of course, can be a full-time job in and of itself. I want to just show our viewers what,
for example, the stock market is doing as we speak. It's down some 4 percent.
Every time you saw Rousseff rise in the polls ahead of this election, the markets dropped out. There is an awful lot of external investor, of
course, in this market. So, where does she start at this point?
GANDOUR: Yes, as you know, the market right now is falling as well as the Petrobras, bit oil state company stocks. Markets seem to be answering
to the news of the new period of Mrs. Dilma Rousseff, which is her party is known by the high degree of state invention in the economy.
And the business market in Brazil wants to be more clear about that, more dialogue, and more safe and trust environment for --
ANDERSON: All right.
GANDOUR: -- doing business. That's the big challenge for her.
ANDERSON: Very briefly -- right, OK. Very briefly, how important was the support of the former president, Lula da Silva, whose influence
continues to be massive in the country?
GANDOUR: Oh, there's no doubt his influence is still very significant. And he maybe could play an important role in the four years
ahead for the next elections. Let's see.
ANDERSON: You think he may run again in 2018, yes or no?
GANDOUR: Well, that's the talk of the town right now. Lula is an important political leader in Brazil, and the Workers Party also has to
solve some internal problems, internal issues, and also PSDB, the opposition party, will be -- come out of these elections very well
reinforced. And I think we will have a very interesting political scenario ahead.
ANDERSON: Ricardo Gandour, pleasure to speak to you. The executive editor of the group that you have seen on yours screen. Thank you, sir.
Live from Abu Dhabi, this is CONNECT THE WORLD. Coming up, amidst the novelty of space exploration, some smells that are a whole lot closer to
home. Your Parting Shots with a pong right ahead.
ANDERSON: Get a whiff of this story. Scientists have learned that the destination of the European Space Agency's Rosetta Mission, Comet
67P/C-G, if you didn't know, already has a pretty unpleasant aroma. Now, the Rosetta orbiter has traveled to within just a few miles of the comet's
surface, close enough to detect a pungent bouquet similar, I am told, to rotten eggs, horse stables, and methanol.
Now, scientists say they'll use the information to help understand how the solar system formed. The not-so-sweet smell of successful space
exploration, your Parting Shots from the team here in Abu Dhabi this evening. From the Gulf, I'm Becky Anderson, thank you for watching.