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CONNECT THE WORLD
Analysts Suggests New ISIS Video Act Of Desperation; African Startup: African Public Bicycles; Protesters Seeking Action Of 43 Missing Students In Mexico Losing Public Support; US Strategy to Battle ISIS; Resolving a Gulf Rift; UAE Terror Blacklist; Cutting Off ISIS Funding; #Influencer2014: Recep Tayyip Erdogan; Breaking News: France Says French National Could Be on ISIS Video; Pope Francis to Make First US Visit
Aired November 17, 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)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He risked his life every day to, you know, save the lives of people that he didn't have any relation to. And we will
forever be grateful for that.
BECKY ANDERSON, HOST: A humanitarian killed for an extreme militant cause. As those who knew American aid worker Peter Kassig remember what he
did for the good of Syria, we will consider what the coalition, led by his own government, can do to prevent more slaughter there and beyond.
This hour, we'll put the anti-ISIS mission under the microscope for you.
Also ahead, differing definitions of terrorism. We'll hear from the head of a U.S. faith group that finds itself on the UAE's list of rogue
ANNOUNCER: Live from CNN Abu Dhabi, this is Connect the World with Becky Anderson.
ANDERSON: A very good evening. It's 8:00 out here in the UAE.
Intelligence analysts are pouring over every detail in what is the latest execution video released by ISIS.
Now, the graphic images show the aftermath of the beheading of American hostage Peter Kassig.
The former U.S. soldier was a humanitarian aid worker when he was seized by ISIS in 2013. You see him here helping wounded Syrians in 2012.
Meanwhile, France has also been studying the execution video. And the interior minister Bernard Cazeneuve says based on intelligence analysis, a
French national could be involved in what he calls, quote, terrible crimes shown on the video.
He says a, quote, strong presumption exists that this could be Maxime Hauchard, seen in these pictures. He's described by Cazeneuve as a 22 or
23-year-old who went to Syria last year.
Well, the latest video differs in many ways from earlier beheading videos from ISIS. And some analysts say the tape offers new clues about
the current state of the militant group.
Atika Shubert joining me now from London with more on that.
And what more have we learned about the circumstances of Peter's death and the accompanying video, Atika?
SHUBERT: Well, this is a very different video from the other ones that we've seen released. It really almost seems to be two videos put
The first half is about 14 minutes long. In total, it's about 16 minutes. And it really tells the sort of propaganda history of ISIS. How
the caliphate has grown despite these airstrikes from the coalition. And that is the part where we see a very highly choreographed mass murder of a
number of Syrian soldiers. And that is done by -- led by the mass militant with the British accent known as Jihadi John.
And then tacked on at the end, we see the body of Peter Kassig. And unlike previous videos of western hostages that have been paraded out in
orange suits and addressing the camera, we never hear from him. We only see his body. Standing over him is that militant speaking directly to the
So it is very different kind of video. And it's clearly designed to show that ISIS continues to grow despite these airstrikes. But the fact
that it was -- seems to have sort of been tacked on at the end, the killing of Peter Kassig, some are suggesting may show the growing desperation of
ISIS, that they're not able to produce quite the same videos as they were before.
ANDERSON: Yeah, that is what some experts are saying. Is there anything in what we've seen that really tells us definitively about ISIS
and their current circumstances?
SHUBERT: What this really is, is a video that tries -- in which ISIS tries to portray itself as growing stronger and stronger. What we know in
reality is that they've had a number of setbacks, particularly from the airstrikes.
You have to remember that just a few days ago, reports that ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi was wounded in an airstrike and a British
tabloid report that Jihadi John was also wounded in that same airstrike and had been identified. So in a way, this video is a response almost to those
But we don't really know much else besides the fact that the location of Peter Kassig's killing seems to have been very clearly identified in the
video as Dabiq, Syria. And this is unusual, this is the first time we've seen that location being posted. And it's almost an open invitation for
the coalition troops to come there.
You have to remember that Dabiq is very symbolic for many of these ISIS fighters. They see this as part of a prophecy for the last great
battle. And so that may be one reason why they have been very openly locating where this killing appears to have happened.
ANDERSON: This week, Atika, the region here, particularly the UAE, upping the ante on discussions about how to counter the terrorism message
and certainly a media summit here in Abu Dhabi talking exactly to that.
On Tuesday, how was this latest video disseminated? And what does it tell us about the message and the managing of the extremist group's message
across the technology platforms, if anything?
SHUBERT: It was put out on another media channel. And it's not unusual for them to do that, although originally it wasn't -- didn't come
from the normal ISIS -- authentic ISIS sources, so it took a little while for the video to be authenticated.
It does show that they're following that same pattern of using social media to put out their message. And that the first part of the video is
extremely slickly produced with HD recordings -- HD cameras and these very fancy graphics, for example. But the last bit of the video is not so
slickly produced. And what it may show is simply that they don't have quite the facilities that they're able to have before.
In terms of countering that message, though, it's interesting that YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, all of these sites are cracking down much more
heavily on these accounts, deleting them, getting rid of these videos as soon as they see them. So there is definitely an emphasis to try and get
this extremist message off of social media.
ANDERSON: Atika, as ever, always a pleasure. Thank you
We've got much more both on the life of Peter Kassig and the continued threat posed by his killers coming up this hour.
I want to get you to Joe Johns who is in Washington now, because U.S. President Barack Obama says the execution of Peter Kassig was an act of
Senior Washington correspondent Joe Johns is joining me live now from the White House.
And Joe, ISIS posting this video while the top U.S. general and joint chiefs of staff Martin Dempsey was in Iraq. The timing of that
JOE JOHNS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, the truth is we don't know when this video was actually recorded. No idea on that, no idea when Peter
Kassig was actually executed, Becky.
So all we really know is when this video was released. And it happened to have been released at a time when the chairman of the joint
chiefs was in Iraq.
So, the significance of that could be anything and it could be nothing, but we do also have to say that officials here in Washington have
been telling the media for the record that they believe they're making some headway against ISIS. And there have been some suggestion by analysts here
in Washington that the release of this video might have been to try to regain a bit of momentum in the public relations battle. We know the
release of this video.
These videos over the past few weeks has been very much a public relations exercise and the analysts suggest this would have been something
along a similar vein, Becky.
ANDERSON: All right, Joe, new this morning, the French interior minister has named a French nationalist likely being involved in one of
these terrible crimes shown in the latest ISIS video. What more do we know about what he has been saying?
JOHNS: OK. This does come from the interior minister of France. And I'll use his language. He says, an analysis of the video tends to
establish with a very high probability that a French citizen named Maxime Hauchard allegedly participated in this massacre that we see on video.
So, not clear what that participation may have been. There's a bit of biographical information about this Maxime Hauchard, apparently from
Normandy and apparently went to Syria in 2013, Becky.
ANDERSON: All right, Joe Johns with the very latest as we know it out of Washington. Joe, thank you.
We're going to take a closer look this hour at the relations that Kassig had with his family and community back home in Indiana and their
understanding of the work that he was doing in Syria. And we'll examine how the U.S. response to the ISIS threat is shaping up after the latest
American deaths at militant hands.
The countries of the Gulf region, including our home here in the UAE have formed a united front against the terror group, but later in the hour
we'll explore how their definitions of terrorism do still differ. That all coming up.
Well, shows of violence in anger becoming every day occurrence's in Mexico's Guerrero State as the disappearance of 43 college students -- let
me remind you that was back in September.
Protesters are causing chaos with blockades, stopping supplies, trade and even tourists. They are demanding that authorities give them more
answers about what happened.
Dozens have been arrested, but the protesters say officials still aren't sharing everything that they know about what happened to those
Well, Rosa Flores is in Mexico in the capital of Guerroro State. And Rosa, what impact are these growing demonstrations having over the missing
students, on daily life there? And what do we know about what happened to them at this point?
ROSA FLORES, CNN CORRESPONDENT: You know, protesters are starting to lose the sympathy of the masses not just because of what they're doing on
the streets, but because of what they're doing to businesses. And so it is escalating the violence. And people in these communities are saying enough
FLORES (voice-over): The chaos starts as people roll into town. Mass protesters blocking the highway and syphoning gas, enough to scare drivers
and people who call Guerrero, Mexico, home. Especially business owner who depend on open roads to get merchandise and make a living, like this woman,
who doesn't want to be identified for fear of retaliation, but who says at least four distributors have stopped deliveries to her store.
(on camera): She says she feels a sense of hopelessness because there's not much that citizens, business owners can do.
(voice-over): Protestors have also a commandeered vehicles by day and by night and turned them into fiery messages.
(on camera): There is this commercial vehicle that delivers milk.
(voice-over): It's all in effort to pressure the government into finding 43 students who went missing just under two months ago. Officials
say they're dead. Families don't believe it. While most support their cause, others are fed up.
(on camera): She has talked to other business owners who say they feel like taking arms and defending their stores and defending their property
This is a perfect example of how protests are impacting the economy. Right now it's the middle of the day, but take a look, there's an empty
parking lot and a closed grocery store.
(voice-over): At the nearby airport Acapulco Airport, protesters beat a police officer last week. Their protest blocked air travel several hours
at one of the nation's top tourist destinations. All signs of the escalating dysfunction.
(on camera): In hands of God, she says.
(voice-over): A test of faith that many in this community find increasingly difficult.
FLORES: Now according to the local chamber of commerce, he says that in lost revenues alone, since these protests have started in just this
particular city, it adds up to the tune of $66 million -- Becky.
ANDERSON: All right, Reza, thank you. Out of Mexico for you this evening.
Still to come tonight out of the UAE this is Connect the World, striking back, foreign groups criticize their inclusion on a UAE terror
list. We're going to get reaction later from the Council on American Islamic Relations. One of those groups says it made it here.
Plus, Barack Obama has said no U.S. troops will be sent to Iraq in the battle against ISIS. Is the U.S. president now changing his tune? We'll
have an expert weigh in on that coming up.
ANDERSON: Welcome back. this is Connect the World with me Becky Anderson.
It is 15 minutes past 8:00 in Abu Dhabi.
U.S. President Barack Obama calls the latest ISIS execution video an act of, and I quote, pure evil. Peter Kassig was a former U.S. soldier who
worked as a humanitarian aid worker in Syria when he was captured by ISIS last year. Over the weekend, ISIS posted a video showing the aftermath of
Well, Mr. Obama learned of the beheading as he returned from the G20 summit. Earlier, he signaled a slight shift in his position on American
military involvement in Iraq and Syria.
Erin McPike with this report.
ERIN MCPIKE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: As he headed home from the G20 summit in Australia, President Obama was briefed aboard Air Force One by National
Security Adviser Susan Rice on the latest aggressive move from ISIS: the apparent beheading of a third American, aid worker Peter Kassig of Indiana.
The video's release came just hours after the president shifted slightly from his vow that he would never commit U.S. combat ground troops
to fight ISIS in Iraq.
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: There are always circumstances in which the United States might need to deploy U.S. ground
troops. If we discovered that ISIL had gotten possession of a nuclear weapon and we had to run an operation to get it out of their hands, then
yes you can anticipate that not only would Chairman Dempsey recommend me sending U.S. ground troops to get that weapon out of their hands, but I
would order it.
MCPIKE: Dempsey, the nation's top general, has just been in Iraq evaluating whether the U.S. presence there is enough. The president,
though, held firm that the U.S. will not change its position against working with Syria's president Bashar al-Assad to battle ISIS.
OBAMA: Assad has ruthlessly murdered hundreds of thousands of his citizens and as a consequence has completely lost legitimacy with the
majority of the country. For us to then make common cause with him against ISIL would only turn more Sunnis in Syria in the direction of supporting
ISIL and would weaken our coalition that sends a message around the region this is not against -- a fight against Sunni...
ANDERSON: Well, that report was from CNN's Erin McPike.
President Obama's comments come after reports this week -- this past week that he has ordered a review of his administration's policy on Syria.
Well, speaking at a congressional hearing late last week, General Martin Dempsey hinted at the possible future need for U.S. ground troops in
Iraq. He also discussed the complexities of that current operation.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GEN. MARTIN DEMPSEY, CHAIRMAN, JOINT CHIEFS OF STAFF: The thing that will cause these Sunni population to actually take heart and begin to
reject ISIL is if we're very careful not to create circumstances of civilian casualties or to in some way impact on other groups, tribes for
So we've got to be very, very deliberate and very precise in our air campaign. And I think we're accomplishing that. In just over 800 strikes
to date, I think we've been both successful and careful.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: That was General Dempsey talking about precision.
But sources on the ground talk about chaos in places like Anbar Province where Shia militia are doing most of the heavy lifting. More on
this as we move through the show.
Live from Abu Dhabi, this is Connect the World with me Becky Anderson.
Coming up, the UAE unveils a terror blacklist of more than 80 organizations. So why are western community groups are being lumped in
with the likes of ISIS and al Qaeda? We'll hear from the director of one such group.
And pedaling the history and culture of the township -- up next, we meet and entrepreneur doing two wheel tours of Johannesburg's poorest area.
Coming up, African Startup here on CNN.
JEFFREY MULAUDZI, FOUNDER, AFRICAN PUBLIC BICYCLES: Hi, my name is Jeffrey Mulaudzi, the founder of African Public Bicycles in Johannesburg,
South Africa. Come, let me show you around.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Based in Alexadra (ph), one of Johannesburg's poorest townships, Mulaudzi started a unique tourism business.
MULAUDZI: I do bicycle tours. It do bicycle rental. That's what I do. Around the township of Alexandra (ph) this tour is about introducing
to the township life. You get to experience the life, the lifestyle which is the culture, the history of the township. But it's more interacting
with community of the township.
Welcome to Alexandra (ph). Let me show you the township -- the oldest township in Johannesburg. Today, you are not going to be a tourist in the
township, so feel free and enjoy yourself. let's go.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Coming from Alexandra (ph) himself, Mulaudzi started his business when there was a large number of tourists visit South
MULAUDZI: Well, at the World Cup we had (inaudible) quite a lot of tourism going through within Johannesburg. So, I really (inaudible)
because I saw an opportunities. People were very interesting in going into Alexadra (ph), but they did not have a chance of going there. So for me to
(inaudible) I think it's quite easy to bring people to Alexandra (ph).
With my mother -- I asked my mother if we can take a loan. We took a loan. We bought seven bicycles in total. With good conditions, I started
to have two people, three people coming through the tour. And I had fliers with the money that I've been getting, we started to print out fliers.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Business has steadily grown since then. And now Mulaudzi regularly takes out around seven clients a week.
MULAUDZI: What I like about what I do is that I meet different people. I love what I do.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: But Mulaudzi has had to overcome some obstacles.
MULAUDZI: My problems, of course, capital is one of them. One of them was definitely to get customers, to get (inaudible). And being young
as an entrepreneur was a challenge, because people might not be used to it.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Africa Public Bicycle was recently listed as one of the best activities to do in Johannesburg on TripAdvisor.
MULAUDZI: I'm quite proud of being one of the top activities in Johannesburg.
When I do group (inaudible), everything follows, everything follows with (inaudible).
ANDERSON: This is Connect the World with me Becky Anderson. The top stories for you this hour.
A doctor who contracted Ebola while working in West Africa has died from the virus in a Nebraska hospital in the United States. The hospital
said he was extremely critical when treatment began. And despite their best efforts, they were unable to save him. Martin Salia is now the second
person to die from Ebola in the U.S.
Crews in eastern Ukraine spent a second day retrieving wreckage of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 are trying to get as much of the plane as
possible before snowfall covers the crash site. Now they are hoping that the debris will tell them more about exactly how the plane went down over
rebel held territory back in July. Nearly 300 people, you'll remember, were killed.
New explosions were seen in the northern Syrian city of Kobani today, the site of a long battle between ISIS militants and Kurdish fighters.
U.S. Central Comand confirms nine airstrikes near Kobani n the last few days.
U.S. President Barack Obama has condemned the brutal murder of an American aid worker as an act of pure evil. ISIS released a video over the
weekend showing the aftermath of the beheadings of this man Peter Kassig.
Another American death posing more questions about the US-led coalition's tactics in actually tackling ISIS. Joining me now to talk about the
possibility of a change in tactics on behalf of the Obama administration, the possibility of sending in ground troops to Iraq, is Peter Brookes.
He is a former US deputy assistant secretary of defense. And now, Peter, you are senior fellow for national security affairs at the Heritage
Foundation. We are hearing Obama talk in -- to a certain extent, hypotheticals about why there could be a shift in tactics in Iraq and,
indeed, possibly in Syria. Should we expect one, and if so, how?
PETER BROOKES, FORMER US DEPUTY ASSISTANT DEFENSE SECRETARY: Well, the president made some comments when he was down in Australia at the G20,
specifically, Becky, he talked about if ISIS were to get their hands on a nuclear weapon. I mean, terrible thought. He said that would change
I think the president should have left all options on the table and laid out his strategy when he did. Now, General Dempsey, who's the
chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, in a surprise visit to Iraq this weekend said that he thinks things are starting to turn, and we're seeing
another 1500 American troops as advisors go into Iraq.
So, in the last couple of days, we've seen some major events. We saw, perhaps, Al-Baghdadi, the leader of ISIS, injured. We saw some other
leaders taken out. Kobani has been a stalemate for ISIS. But of course, we've seen this terrible beheading video and the assassination of those
So, I'm not sure we're going to see a major change in the short term of US strategy. It may be incremental, and we're already seeing some of
ANDERSON: All right, Peter, meantime, there are experts who say there are not 35,000 fighters involved with this militant group called ISIS, but
some 200,000, and they may not just be in Iraq and Syria. We're looking at evidence of the tentacles of ISIS spreading across the region.
When Dempsey says that ISIS, though, is on the back foot in Iraq, what's the evidence for that? And who is pushing them? Is this the
coalition, is this Peshmerga, is this Iraqi troops or Shia militia? There's a lot of talk here. Where's the evidence of this?
BROOKES: Yes. I see what you're saying, Becky. I think the operative term, there, operative word in what General Dempsey said is
"Iraq." Not in Syria. ISIS isn't on its back foot in Syria, I don't believe that. But like I said, there have been some progress in Iraq.
I'm not trying to defend the administration's progress on this, but if you look, the Iraqi army took back the refining city of Baiji. Like I
said, there were some strikes on Syrian ISIS leadership in Iraq.
I think what they've done is -- and I think they've also peeled off some of the Sunni tribes from supporting ISIS. So, we're seeing -- they
blunted the advance, the blitz --
ANDERSON: All right.
BROOKES: -- of ISIS in recent days, it seems, and I think that's where the optimism comes from
ANDERSON: And you talk about the Sunni tribes, who may be in the mix and helping to push ISIS back if, indeed, that is what is happening. I'm
wondering, though, how much control, if any, you think that the US has over actions, for example, of the Shia militia in Iraq. And what is the danger
that their tactics could actually inspire more support for ISIS, not less.
BROOKES: That's a good point, Becky. And -- Iraq is a mess. There's no doubt about it. You have the violence going on, we had suicide attacks
in Baghdad. You have this huge Sunni-Shia divide, which could be exacerbated by efforts by Shia militias. You have a new government there.
You have the Kurds in the north who want -- will want, I think, greater independence. There's concerns among some about arming them to a
great extent, especially in Baghdad, because they're worried the Kurds, after this is over, will move for independence and be well-armed to do so.
So, it's a very, very difficult and complex situation we're dealing with.
My view is is that because ISIS is such a social media super power, that if we're not wining, we're losing. Because as you mentioned, they are
bringing on new foot soldiers, new followers, new funding. And of course - -
BROOKES: -- what we saw in Libya, where the city of Derna considers itself to be a caliphate itself and in alliance with ISIS in Syria and
ANDERSON: As the region here ups the ante on trying to counter the organization's message and its tactics, one of the continued evidence that
recruits are coming not just from the region, for example, Libya, but from the US, from Europe, from Southeast Asia?
BROOKES: Well, there's very strong concern about that. Obviously, the French identified an individual they believe were involved in these
terrible videos we saw over the weekend. There are numbers -- I would say that -- I don't have exact numbers, because they're murky, but maybe nearly
50 percent of ISIS are foreign fighters.
We've seen numbers as high as they come from 90 different countries around the world, and we're talking about 190-some countries in the world.
So, they have been provided by half of the countries.
And obviously, the homegrown terror issue is a big deal. What we saw a few weeks ago in Canada and the United States is obviously of great
concern to any of the countries where they've seen foreign fighters move to Syria and Iraq or other places and may return and undertake acts of
violence at home.
ANDERSON: Peter, thank you.
BROOKES: Thank you.
ANDERSON: Out of Washington for you this evening. Well, to a diplomatic breakthrough of sorts and a move to end an eight-month rift here
in the Gulf. Saudi, the United Arab Emirates, and Bahrain are to send their ambassadors back to Qatar.
Now, this decision was announced at an emergency Gulf Cooperation Council meeting. The GCC, as it's known, which also includes Oman and
Kuwait, has been split for months over Doha's support for Islamist groups like the Muslim Brotherhood.
Qatar has taken in many exiled Brotherhood figures, but Saudi Arabia and the UAE listed the Brotherhood as a terror group. And to continue
this, the UAE also listing more than 80 other groups as terror organizations.
The blacklist, recently released over the past couple of days, includes ISIS and al Qaeda. It also named several bodies who deny any
links to illegal activity, including two US-based advocacy groups, the Muslim American Society and the Council on American Islamic Relations.
Well, one of the groups on that list, the Cordoba Foundation, says that the UAE's accusations against it are "libelous." The group's CEO,
Anas Altikriti, joins me now from London. "Libelous," you say. Why on Earth do you think that you are on that list, or the group, at least?
ANAS ALTIKRITI, CEO, THE CORDOBA FOUNDATION: Well, my guess is as good as yours. And I think that's a question for the UAE authorities who
ratified this law. It's not just a policy, it's not just a trend, it's a law that was ratified by the cabinet of the UAE on Saturday.
And when we say libelous here, it's because of the gravity of the charge. The charge of terrorism is not to be taken lightly.
The fact that the United Arab Emirates somehow, someone did some extraordinary research and found that groups such as ISIS, such as Boko
Haram, such as al Qaeda, who espouse violence in order to achieve political goals can be lumped together with organizations that do incredible work on
the ground within their various communities, such as the American ones that you've just mentioned.
Ourselves, we claim to be having a track record of ten years being a British think tank that do a lot of good, including hostage negotiation,
releasing dozens of hostages around the world -- who are non-Muslims, by the way -- and being all lumped together.
It's a farcical list in the sense it de-credits -- it takes away its own credibility, it delegitimizes itself from the nature that it was
compiled. But like I said, in today's day and age, the charge of terrorism is one --
ANDERSON: Wait --
ALTIKRITI: -- that has to be taken extremely seriously.
ANDERSON: Were you warned of this?
ALTIKRITI: Not at all. And that adds to the bewilderment. The -- no one contacted us, no one picked up a phone, no one offered to visit our
offices, see our field work, check with our clients, who include governments around the world --
ANDERSON: All right.
ALTIKRITI: -- some of whom are extremely close to the UAE government. No one actually opted to do that.
ANDERSON: So, do describe the sort of field work that you do, and as you suggest, the clients that you have. And let me just -- before you do
that, let me just point out that we have, actually, reached out to the authorities here in the UAE to seek further details on why a number of
these groups have been included on their list.
At this stage, we have nothing further to add than the original statement that you rightly point out came out at the weekend. So, describe
the work that you do and the clients that you have, very briefly.
ALTIKRITI: Well, the Cordoba Foundation is a think tank that was set up a decade ago and is involved in peace building and bridging and opening
dialogues, whether it be interfaith, political. We've been involved in peace talks across the world in Sri Lanka, Malaysia. We've helped various
governments in sorting out their own ethnic and racial tensions.
ANDERSON: All right.
ALTIKRITI: We advise governments in terms of how to deal with their minorities. Hostage negotiations -- well, the list is very, very long.
ANDERSON: All right. Backed by whom, sir?
ALTIKRITI: Oh, backed by --
ANDERSON: Backed by whom? Who are you backed by?
ALTIKRITI: Backed by people -- we're an independent organization. We don't take monies from governments. That's where our credibility comes
from, and that's why a lot of people believe in the work that we do. They fund what we do, they like what we do.
And for the past ten years, we've been basically raising private funds from private sources, and also applying for grants from varying -- various
grants giving organizations.
Our work is absolutely transparent, totally above board. In Britain, you can't spend a penny or earn a penny without actually verifying the
sources. We've been doing that for ten years, and our track record speaks for itself.
ANDERSON: I'm going to leave it there. We've got the message out there, and we will continue to reach out the authorities here, of course.
Thank you, sir.
Definitions of terrorist groups may vary from country to country in this part of the world, but where ISIS is concerned, concerted efforts to
cut off cash and resources are already underway.
John Defterios sat down with Bahrain's central bank governor just towards the end of last week. That is Rasheed al Maraj, who says his
country has already put barriers in place to stop funds reaching terror- related organizations. Have a listen to this.
RASHEED AL MARAJ, GOVERNOR, CENTRAL BANK OF BAHRAIN: I haven't seen any kind of evidence about the magnitude of money that is allegedly going
out of this region. And Bahrain, and I believe in the rest of the Gulf, there has been very strict rules and regulations when it comes to the
transfer of funds outside of this region.
JOHN DEFTERIOS, EMERGING MARKETS EDITOR: So, the numbers that people have talked about of $200 million over the last 18 months coming from Gulf
families, you don't buy this number? Is that what you're suggesting?
AL MARAJ: I would dispute this because we have no evidence. For us in Bahrain, we have not seen any money going out to any organization
outside Bahrain that is not legitimate.
And Bahrain has been on the forefront of introducing laws and measures and regulations in order to ensure that our financial system is clean from
this tainted money.
DEFTERIOS: Any arrests? Anybody take to trial for money laundering, for financial terrorism in Bahrain themselves? Can you actually point and
say we did this?
AL MARAJ: We did recently. We have indicted a company that is involved in money laundering. The company went to trial. And we monitor
DEFTERIOS: How do you clean up the charitable organizations that perhaps have the right intention initially, but the money gets funneled
into a terrorist organization in the end? There are some that are still sympathetic to the Sunni cause, as you know.
AL MARAJ: Look, there is a very comprehensive rules and regulation and processes in Bahrain on how to collect and distribute funds locally and
outside Bahrain. So, it is not that things will just flow freely out without any kind of inspection and oversight from --
DEFTERIOS: You're suggesting that the tracing, all the way to the ground, all the way to the very end recipient --
AL MARAJ: We don't -- through the financial organization, there is absolutely no way that any fund -- any illegitimate funds can go out of
DEFTERIOS: Governor, what do you say to the critics that suggest not enough crackdown on those supporting the Sunni cause in Bahrain, but plenty
of crackdown on the dissidents that we've seen over the last three or four years? That's a very constant legal procedure. And less so when it comes
to those supporting the Sunni cause.
AL MARAJ: No, I don't agree to this kind of analogy. We apply the laws universally, with no prejudice against anyone. Anybody who violates
the law of the land will have to face the court.
ANDERSON: John Defterios reporting from Bahrain, which was a terror financing or counter-terror financing conference late last week.
Regardless of where ISIS is getting its money from, the militant group seems set on making its own. Go online, do, please, to find out how the
new ISIS currency and it had plans to mint its coins in copper, silver, and gold.
An interesting story there online, cnn.com/international, along with all the latest news. The conflict, of course, and analysis of events in
Iraq and Syria, as you would expect, from CNN.
Now, one country that has been implicated in supporting terrorists, Qatar, may have on the face of it, at least, healed its rift with its
neighbors, but Turkey also stands accused of not doing enough, either to stop ISIS or to stop fighters and weapons reaching militants.
The country's president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, is amount the ten nominees in our campaign to find the most influential person in the Middle
East in 2014. Have a look at this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JIM CLANCY, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: Turkish prime minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan becoming his country's first directly-elected president.
DEFTERIOS: Wave after wave of allegations against the prime minister and his cabinet, with allegations of corruption reaching right to the top
of the administration, including even Mr. Erdogan's family. Also, the geopolitical challenges with Syria and neighboring Iraq right at his
RECEP TAYYIP ERDOGAN, PRESIDENT OF TURKEY (through translator): The regime of Syria should be the target. You cannot solve this with Kobani.
What will you do with other places?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: OK, hash tag #Influencer2014, in conjunction with our friends at cnnarabic.com. Do take part in our survey, make your selection
there, if you will. That hash tag, #Influencer2014, that's arabic.com/influencer2014.
You'll find summaries of all the candidates, and you can select three of the ten, there, to take forward for what will be a big debate in our
town hall special, filmed here in the UAE next month. Also remember to use that hash tag, #Influencer2014 if you are joining the conversation on
Twitter. You can always get me on Twitter, of course, at @BeckyCNN.
Live from Abu Dhabi, this is CONNECT THE WORLD. Coming up, hidden beauty. We meet the man capturing what are these stunning scenes inside
Iran's mosques. That in our Parting Shots, up next.
ANDERSON: All right, well the French prosecutor's office is holding a news conference. This follows the interior minister in France saying that
intelligence analysis indicates a French national could be involved in what he called "terrible crimes" shown on the latest ISIS video showing an
execution. Let's listen in.
FRANCOIS MOINS, FRENCH PROSECUTOR (through translator): I would like to add that the first investigation with Syria was initiated on the 21st of
July 2012 with Syria, and the number of proceedings has never ceased to increase, 93 legal proceedings are in progress, 48 preliminary inquiries,
and 45 judicial inquiries.
In this setting, 185 people are -- being investigated, and 76 people are being detained in various -- two cases were initially tried, the last
being Flavien Moreau, who was in Syria or Iraq, who last year was condemned to seven years imprisonment.
I'd like to go back to what happened last Sunday. A video of -- an IS propaganda video -- which could be translated as "Disbelievers," which is
distributed Sunday by IS, allowed to identify one of the -- jihadists as being a French national named Maxime Hauchard. Maxime Hauchard is known to
the intelligence -- the anti-terrorist division of the intelligence services.
In 2012, the Paris prosecution office obtained information from the Internal Ministry relating to what is happening in Syria with regards to
the Rouant (ph) radical movement, a member who joined IS.
With this information in hand, there was a preliminary inquiry that was opened, and within the framework of this investigation, it was possible
to establish that Maxime Hauchard had left France to join Syria by taking a Paris-Istanbul flight.
And under the cover of a humanitarian action, similarly, like other people, the humanitarian aspect was just a facade, and it clearly appeared
that he took part in the fighting and was a member of IS.
In March 2014, he had photographs on Facebook in army fatigues. In July 2014, he gave a Skype interview by Raqqa on a channel where he
explained that he had been self-radicalized on the web and talked about his army training and his life in barracks together with 40 other people.
And in August 2014, as a candidate of jihad, he asked others to join him in Syria and in Iraq. Maxime Hauchard was the object of warrant on the
24th of October. The recent developments of the initial inquiry, of which he was the subject, led to the arrest of a contact in France and, last
week, an individual which led to illegal inquiries. That was initiated on the 7th of November, 2014.
At the end of last week, in the framework of which there was an investigation for being a wanted terrorist person, and he was under
Maxime Hauchard, who is he? A French national, born 17th of March, 1992 in Normandy. Both parents from Normandy. Only one criminal record, a
sentence -- a fine of 300 euros from the (inaudible) tribunal, one must specify that it already attracted the intelligence services in 2011 because
of his membership as a local Safarist group.
He was already known to the special services for having spent two holidays in Mauritania in October and May 2013, in order to follow a common
training and workshop. He came back from Mauritania disappointed and claimed that the training was not sufficiently radical for him.
He returned in 2013 to France, had not attracted the services and intelligence services, so when did convert? He himself says during his
interview on BFN, that he converted himself at the age of 17 years of age.
I'd like to conclude by saying a few words about the possible existence -- I do stress "possible" -- presence of a second person, because
in addition to Maxime Hauchard, a second French person could be involved, but it's too early to confirm it.
The intelligence services and the Paris prosecution are investigating to see whether it can be confirmed or not. It could, in view of the
elements -- who joined in 2013 the jihadists, and who is the subject of a warrant, which had been initiates in October, 2013.
With regards to other, this scene of collective decapitation, and together with the 18 Syrians and because of the information that I've just
given you, the anti-terrorist section of the Paris prosecution is today opening an inquiry with regards to the assassination, together with a
terrorist organization, for -- to initiate proceedings, let's just say that the two possible French people who could be involved in this video that was
distributed yesterday. If you have any questions.
MOINS (through translator): No, no, no. Are there three people altogether? No. I said -- I talked about two people, one who initially --
who's been because of a photographic resemblance, and a second one --
ANDERSON: All right. Well, we've been listening to the French prosecutor, who appears to be confirming that a man by the name of Maxime
Hauchard, who is known to the anti-terrorist division since 2012, was associated with that execution video of Peter Kassig.
What the French prosecutor was telling us is that he joined IS, as far as the French understand, in Syria. Went there from Paris to Istanbul
under the cover of humanitarian work. It clearly appears that he took part in the fighting in March of 2014.
The French prosecutor pointing out there were pictures of him in army fatigues. He spoke from Raqqa by Skype to a French channel earlier in the
year and spoke about being radicalized and fighting.
In August of 2014, he reached out to others, the French prosecutor said in a news conference, to join the fight there, as well, and a warrant
issued against him. One man has been arrested in association with an investigation on the back of that warrant.
Who is Maxime Hauchard? Well, the French prosecutor tells us he's a French national, born March the 17th, 1992 in Normandy. He only had one
criminal record in the past, and that was a fine of some 300 euros.
In 2011, he attracted the attention of the special services, he said, having spent 200 days in Mauritania, apparently returning from Mauritania
disappointed, the French prosecutor said, that he hadn't been radicalized enough.
Converting at the age of 17, the possible existence of a second person who could be involved in the Peter Kassig execution video also being
flushed out in what is a news conference, which is ongoing, there, by the French prosecutor.
More on that, of course, as we get it. They are taking questions, much of which will be in French at present. We get more lines out of that
news conference, we will bring it to you.
OK. Well, Francis -- Pope Francis made waves in the Middle East with a tour of Jordan, Israel, and the Palestinian territories in May, and he
brought millions to the beaches of Brazil on his first trip to Latin America as pontiff last year.
Now, he's hoping to have another meaningful trip as he plans to visit the United States for the first time since he became head of the Catholic
Church. We're told Pope Francis will attend the World Meeting of Families next year in Philadelphia.
Do we have our Vatican correspondent there, or are we doing Parting Shots? Yes, we do. We do have our Vatican correspondent. Delia Gallagher
is with us. Delia, what do we know of this trip?
DELIA GALLAGHER, CNN VATICAN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Becky, we know that the pope himself confirmed this morning that he will be going to
Philadelphia. We do not yet know the full agenda, the papal spokesman telling us just a few hours ago it has yet to be determined what other
cities the pope will go to.
But we know that Pope Francis in August on his return flight from South Korea told journalists that he would like to go to the UN in New
York. He has also been invited by the president to go to a joint session of Congress in Washington.
And indeed, Becky, would like to visit Mexico. He said he's been invited by the Mexicans to go visit Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico City,
and that is something that he thought might be possible on this trip.
So, definitely we're going to know in the next few months what is the agenda, but it's going to be a big trip. The announcement this morning of
Philadelphia to the excitement of those people in Philadelphia, and Pope Francis will be letting us know, probably himself, what will be his next
stops. But we know where he'd like to go, so we'll be seeing logistically --
ANDERSON: All right.
GALLAGHER: -- if the Vatican can make it all happen in September of next year.
ANDERSON: Delia Gallagher reporting. And I did promise you some Parting Shots today from an amateur photographer whose persistence has paid
off, and he's revealed Iran's mosques in all their symmetrical splendor. It's a great peace, haven't got time for it tonight. I will get that for
you tomorrow, so stand by for that on the show.
The team at CONNECT THE WORLD always wants to hear from you, @BeckyCNN, facebook.com/CNNconnect for our very latest content. From us as
a team here in the UAE this evening, it's a very good evening.