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CONNECT THE WORLD
Connect the World Special: Sights and Sounds of Egypt; Interview with Bassem Yousseff; Interview with Mahmoud Salem; A Look at the Work of the Hellenic Coast Guard; Syrian Refugees Pour from Tal Abyad. Aired 11:00a-12:00p ET
Aired June 15, 2015 - 11:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[11:00:09] BECKY ANDERSON, HOST: As conflicts rage and great powers clash, groups like ISIS seem to spread unchecked and people do whatever it
takes to survive.
But away from the headlines, life goes on in a region full of youth and aspiration, one with a serious sense of humor.
The next four years, Connect the World is in four cities across the region, to walk the streets, hear the stories and talk to some very special
Tonight, we start our tour in the heart of the Arab world's most populous country, caught between revolution and reform, trying to reshape
its global role.
We're live from the Egyptian capital of Cairo for you this evening with the Giza pyramids behind me on what is a beautiful evening. We'll be
here all this week.
Let's get you tonight now to our top story playing out along the Syrian-Turkish border. Nearly 3,000 Syrian refugees have already crossed
into Turkey in recent days, and nearly that many are expected to date.
Most are from the border town of Tal Abyad. This video shows what they are leaving behind. Kurdish forces fighting ISIS militants on the
outskirts of the city. CNN's Arwa Damon was at the border and described what she saw.
ARWA DAMON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: People are understandably quite upset as they are just being allowed to come across on
this day. Those women were just saying it's beyond a nightmare.
We've seen groups of people also dumping water on themselves. It's been fairly difficult for them on the other side. Some of them having to
wait overnight, women, children, babies all of them.
This is just the latest round of individuals that are fleeing the latest bout of fighting. In this particular case, we are talking about a
vital town called Tal Abyad on the other side of the border that is under ISIS control. And there, there are Kurdish fighters along with some Arabs
who have encircled the town. If they are able to capture it, and Tal Abyad is just out of eyesight on the other side of that wall, they will have cut
off one of the key ISIS strategic routes to their stronghold of Raqqa.
You can see also the Turkish military readying themselves along this border.
People were in such a panic a few days ago in some cases that they literally forced down this wall in some areas.
And for so many of those who are coming across, this is not necessarily the first time that they have been forced to flee. Some we
were talking to who were living in Tal Abyad said that there were refugees there as well.
They didn't want to necessarily live under ISIS, but for some of them it was a better option than living in insecurity than having to make the
choice to come across and end up as refugees.
ANDERSON: Well, Arwa Damon now in the town of Urfa (ph) in Turkey from where she joins us.
And Arwa, if you will, just further describe what you saw?
DAMON: Well, you saw the scenes there, Becky, and to add to that there were a lot of people's relatives who had already come across, so the
moment that border fence was opened, they were frantically phoning their relatives, because it seems like it's only being opened for a few hours, if
that, every single day. People wanting to make sure that their loved ones are able to get across.
A lot of the people that we tried to speak to just wanted to keep on going. They were so upset. They were so distraught. Many of them who we
spoke to said, look, we didn't want to live under ISIS. We didn't want to live under the Syrian regime, but we did in both cases because whoever it
is who comes into govern us, we will obey them.
This is a very impoverished part of the country, very rural, reliant mostly on agriculture and goat and cattle herding. People just want to be
left alone. They will obey the laws and if obeying the laws means living under ISIS and living in relatively speaking security, they will do that.
And that is what they say they had up until this advance began to get significantly closer to Tal Abyad, until the coalition airstrikes began
getting close enough to force them to flee.
These are people, this is a population that already has so little in life that they chose to live under ISIS rather than leave the little they
But at this stage, this is a choice that has been taken from them because of the fighting, Becky.
ANDERSON: Arwa, Turkey says before days end nearly 5,000 refugees will have crossed into the country from Syria since Sunday. And the
country's foreign minister said this week that Turkey needs help. Quoting here, "Turkey has spent more than $6 billion so far for refugees. The
international community's help is only $300 million. The burden, he said, must be shared.
What is it that the government in Turkey is proposing to do at this point?
[11:05:25] DAMON: Well, they've been saying this for quite some time now, Becky, in the sense that they've been pleading for more financial
support. Because they, like the other countries that border Syria, are unable to cope with these influxes of refugees.
They have drained the economies in the areas where the refugees are located. They've become over populated. They've put a strain on society.
And they can't handle it. There aren't any sort of long-term plans being put into place to try to ease the burden that the refugees is causing in
these relative countries, never mind trying to provide the refugees with ongoing assistance when it comes to living, education for the children and
We hear the United Nations echoing that call for the need for more money. And this is why it's so difficult for so many Syrians who we speak
to, to understand why it is that the international community isn't calling up the money that's needed.
People have accepted it to a certain degree that they are pawns in a broader political game. They have accepted that their country is in ruins,
that they are being forced to flee. What they can't understand is why it is in this one aspect where money can help ease their lives, can help ease the
burden on the countries that are hosting them, that money quite simply is not available.
Turkey was one of the first countries to open a refugee camp around four years ago when this all initially began in Syria, when people first
coming across the border then thought they would only be staying here for a few weeks. And now years on, this and other countries are still
desperately struggling, trying to cope with this endless influx.
ANDERSON: Arwa Damon is on the border for you. Arwa, thank you.
Well, the family of a 17-year-old British boy is, quote, devastated and heartbroken after seeing some of the latest photos released by ISIS.
It's not just how the images show this man, Talha Asmal smiling with the extremist group's flag. But also that it's reported the teen may have
carried out a suicide attack near the Iraqi city of Baiji on Saturday.
Well, CNN's Nic Robertson is in Asmal's hometown of Dewsbury in England and joins me now live.
And Nic, what else is the family saying?
NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, the family have issued a very detailed and poignant press release through a lawyer, we
understand obviously saying how devastated they are at this loss, saying they need time to learn how to deal with it.
But also how they believe Talha was in essence exploited by ISIS. If we think about it this way, it was only two months ago that in April that
he was still here. The police when he disappeared with the help of the family issued an appeal. He ran off and disappeared with a friend. So
it's only been two months. And the families say that prior to that, they had no idea that this was his intention. He certainly didn't go their
wishes and blessings, indeed that they would have forbidden it if he had, you know, told them that this was what he was planning to do.
The families say that ISIS leaders have essentially used him to do their own dirty work, because they're too cowardly. They're saying that it
is his innocence and his vulnerability that was exploited online. And that's also something we've been hearing from neighbors here as well,
ANDERSON: Yeah, Nic Robertson reporting for you.
South African high court judges have ordered the arrest of Sudan's president, but Omar al-Bashir is no longer in the country. He headed back
home to Khartoum. A South African court weighed whether or not to arrest him as requested by the International Criminal Court.
CNN's Diana Magnay is in Johannesburg for you on the story. Reports that Mr. Bashir's plane was actually expected to land in Khartoum around
now. Diana, explain what happened.
DIANA MAGNAY, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, he arrived here for the AU summit on Saturday and South Africa is obliged both in terms of
its international obligations, but also because the Rome statute, which is the foundation of the international criminal court is embedded into
domestic constitutional law here. It is obliged if he sets foot on South African soil to hand him over to the ICC, because President Bashir is
charged with very, very heinous crimes, crimes against humanity, war crimes and genocide.
Now, human rights lawyers brought this application to the high court on Sunday saying he's in South Africa. We are obliged to arrest him.
And effectively what happened is that the States just bought time. They kept making applications to the judge saying we need more time to
prepare our arguments. We need more time to prepare our arguments. This morning, there were these reports from journalists around the Waterkloof
Airforce Base where the Sudanese presidential jet had moved overnight, that he had actually been moved, and the state said in the hearing, well, we're
not even sure that that's true. And then a few hours ago the court ruled that the fact that the government hadn't arrested him was unconstitutional
and that they must arrest him immediately whereupon the state said, oh, we now have reason to believe that he has indeed left the country. And he's
still in the air and expected in Khartoum very shortly.
So, that's the sequence of events.
What your now seeing is the African Union has just concluded a press conference relating to this issue where they'd essentially just smashed the
International Criminal Court. They've always said that it unfairly targeted African leaders, that it victimizes Africans. But all of those
arguments don't really take into account the hundreds of thousands of African victims supposedly, according to the ICC, that can be laid at
President Bashir's door -- Becky.
[11:11:34] ANDERSON: All right, Diana, thank you for that. Diana Magnay in Johannesburg for you this morning.
And more on this still ahead on what is a special show live from Cairo all week for you.
I'm joined by one of Egypt's most prominent bloggers this evening, a man who made his mark during anti-Mubarak protests gives me his take on the
stories resonating today, and on Egypt today.
We're going to take a look at President el-Sisi's grand Suez plan. Will it be enough to reboot what is a stricken economy? And can satire
ever land a fatal blow against extremist ideology? I'm going to put that question to one of Egypt's funniest men, comedian and razor wit Basem
You're watching Connect the World in Cairo. Do stay with us. Taking a very short break. Back after this.
ANDERSON: Well, live from Cairo tonight, you're watching CNN. And a special Connect the World with me, Becky Anderson. Welcome back to what is
a pretty windy city this evening.
A family in shock by the death of a young son recruited by ISIS. A country overwhelmed by refugees. The International Criminal Court accused
of interfering in African Affairs.
There is an awful lot happening today that is clearly relevant here in Cairo as elsewhere in the wider region.
Well, hear in the city to help me sort through it all is writer and political analyst Mahmoud Salem, perhaps better known as the creator of the
blog Rantings of a Sand Monkey. Sir, thank you very much indeed for joining us.
Another British family effectively numbed by the appeal of ISIS for one of their kids, and clearly here this is a story, this is a story around
the region of youngsters joining up to ISIS, the Egyptians fighting an Islamic insurgency. What's the solution here?
MAHMOUD SALEM, EGYPTIAN BLOGGER: Solution to ISIS or fighting insurgency?
Well, basically you're going need to actually address the ideas and the thoughts that are being projected by them. I mean, the fight in Egypt
is a different fight, because it's a fight over ideology, but the way that ISIS actually gets recruits, you know, young Europeans, young British
people like it's a different story altogether, because they're basically appealing -- we did an entire case study on them. I have a company
(inaudible) media. And what we've seen is that they very much recruit them utilizing video game (inaudible).
I mean, they do attacks, for example, videos using GoPro cams, which is very reminiscent of you know watching video games, whatever -- shooting
So what you're dealing with is a population of European children who feel disenfranchised, you know, from the (inaudible) cultural or whatever.
And they find at least that actually adheres to whatever fantasies that they might have from violent movies or whatever, which is let's go there
and like shoot people, fight the infidels, get women, like this really macho like vision of society that apparently appeals to them.
ANDERSON: We heard from the British prime minister earlier this year on a case related to three young women who left the country to join ISIS.
Let's just have a listen to what the prime minister of Britain said.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP
DAVID CAMERON, PRIME MINISTER OF BRITAIN: We need the school to be combating extremism, we need the community to be doing as much as it can.
You know, that's the point about the whole duty, the prevent duty we're putting on all these institutions. It's to say we're all in this together,
we've all got to play a role.
We also need social media organizations to do more.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Well, David Cameron I think alluded to a similar problem that you yourselves as an organization have noted, that being sort of
online resonance that ISIS has for these youngsters.
One of the other stories that we're covering today is this -- or feels like a tsunami of Syrian refugees leaving into Turkey. Again, a story that
resonates here, the burden being shared by Egypt as well as other countries around the region.
When it comes to Syria, what is Egypt and the rest of this region really doing about it?
SALEM: Not as much as we should in all actual. It's been very embarrassing to see how we've treated the Syrian refugees in Egypt for the
past two years. I mean, there has been lots of (inaudible), making their lives very hard. Lately, it has been more and more acceptable by Egyptian
society and law enforcement agencies.
But we're not doing as much as we should. And we're not opening our hands or arms to them the same way the Swedes have done, for example.
ANDERSON: Well, Turkey is no friend of the Egyptian regime. The prime minister words, of course, must resonate here about sharing the
burden so far as the international community is concerned.
Egypt last week hosted a meeting of Syrian opposition leaders. No representatives from Islamic or rebel factions. A noble cause, perhaps,
looking for a political solution. What's the point, ultimately, if you're not talking to the right people?
SALEM: I think the point for the Egyptian regime is finding a way to actually maintain the regime of Syria, which is a position that's not
shared by the rest of the Middle East, and specifically not shared by the Gulf.
ANDERSON: Explain why.
SALEM: Well, at one point it actually -- take, for instance, the Saudi position. The Saudi position is supposedly against both ISIS and
Bashar. You know, the Egyptian is anti-ISIS and pro-Bashar because it allows the Egyptian government room to maneuver. They don't want to get
dragged into a sectarian war. The moment we start going after the Bashar for being Shiite, you know, or like the war we got dragged in Yemen in
order for us to fight Shias we have to become really, really like, you know, crazy Sunnis about it. And if we become really crazy Sunnis about
it, what's the difference between us and the Islamists who are running around.
So, they're trying to like work something out, which I'm not sure if feasible, you know, because the regional powers that are fueling this
conflict are not on the table with them.
ANDERSON: Let me get our viewers just up to date, again, to remind them that the president of Sudan Omar al-Bashir is due to be landing in
Khartoum at any time now. Mr. al-Bashir flew home from an African Union summit in Johannesburg despite a South African court order to remain in the
The court considering a request from the International Criminal Court to arrest the Sudanese president on human rights violations.
Why do attempts at accountability and international justice, particularly in this -- perhaps this region and the wider region -- go so
SALEM: I don't think it's only this region. I think the ICC has not had much of a success doing anything.
The story about South Africa was so positive because finally found them international law and local law enforcement have actually like
cooperating to bring a leader to justice, you know, as for like war crimes.
And -- but considerations. I think there has been some sort of an unspoken agreement between African leaders not to actually obey the rules
of the ICC. And I think what happened in South Africa is that actually clashed the judicial authority in the country, so they ended up -- he got
out on a military airport I think, right. So that's what they end up doing, they just manage to put him out through a military airport and he
But it happens because of international considerations. Nobody wants to bear the brunt of that responsibility.
ANDERSON: In January, you wrote that you had stopped blogging regularly because writing about Egypt these days is like writing another
roundup of this week's most unfortunate events. You said it's boring, it's like tweeting from the Titanic hashtag #saveus.
That sounds very defeatist. Can you explain to our viewers why as such an ardent activist for so long you sort of sound as if you're giving up.
SALEM: No, because the news about Egypt isn't only (inaudible). I mean, when you hear the story about the King Tut, like, mask which is being
-- like people tried to fix it with epoxy, or like when you're dealing with any kind of other story that was incredibly funny, almost satirical, you
know, that's actually happening we're dealing with a level of incompetence and, you know, that is actually comical.
So it becomes an issue of, OK, I can make fun of this, but the reality is it's really, really sad. You know, this is the state of the situation.
I mean, we're a country in which we announce we cured AIDS and Hepatitis C like three years ago, you know, using a military magic machine.
I mean, that's the kind of stuff that comes from banana republics.
ANDERSON: You -- it is true viewers, and I have to tell you are no fan of the Sisi government, but I'm going to keep you hear despite that.
No, of course I don't mean that.
We're going to talk about the Sisi government and about the economic story here as we get news of what looks like the finalities to the
extension to the Suez Canal a little bit later on. But for the time being, thank you very much indeed for joining me.
Live from Cairo, this is Connect the World. Apologies, it's a very windy night. My hair all over the place. But no mind, we'll carry on.
Egypt is hoping that this new Suez Canal will help revive its struggling economy. How big of an impact, though, will it have?
And transformations is in California this week where Playa Vista is becoming a rising tech hub attracting big names like Google and Facebook.
That story up next. Back with you at the bottom of the hour.
KRISTIE LU STOUT, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: In the 1940s, this was home to California's aerospace empire. Now, the west Los Angeles town
is getting a face lift.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're in the Hercules hangar, which is this massive space where Howard Hughes used to make his advanced aircraft. And
now Playa Vista is actually the scene of really the emerging Los Angeles tech industry.
LU STOUT: Playa Vista is now coming back into the spotlight as a convergence point for technology and media. And at the heart of it all
The 180 hectare stretch of land now joins Silicon Beach in the center of L.A.'s technology boom.
[11:25:20] UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You're seeing a whole new city within the city being built with tech companies such as Microsoft and Google, lots
of folks -- Yahoo -- are in this area creating, if you will, the future again.
LU STOUT: Everywhere you go, construction on the same grounds where innovators like Howard Hughes once put L.A. on the map.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Los Angeles has always created things whether they've been airplanes, whether they've been movies, whether they've been
medical advances, you name it.
And we expect to see that continue.
LU STOUT: For decades, the land had been unused.
MARC HUFFMAN, BROOKFIELD RESIDENTIAL: It was the only place in Los Angeles, and one of the only places in the country, where you had a blank
canvas this large in order to create a community like this from scratch.
LU STOUT: Hoping to create a place where people can live, work and play, an incredibly unique urban setting in L.A. with residences, retail
and office space located centrally and close to one another.
HUFFMAN: We wanted to make it easier for people to live closer to where they work. There's absolutely nothing like this anywhere in Los
LU STOUT: In 2012, Google launched YouTube Space L.A. in Playa Vista, roughly 38,000 square meters dedicated to facilitating the creators on the
video sharing platform.
LIAM COLLINS, YOUTUBE SPACE: We really believe that when creative people get together and work in the same facility great things can happen.
So, that happening on a bigger scale outside this building in this area generally is extending that concept to this entire neighborhood.
LU STOUT: And across the street, Google recently purchased another five hectares of land, bringing further cohesion to the Playa Vista tech
scene -- Facebook, Microsoft and Yahoo also have a foothold in the area.
COLLINS: You can walk down the street and talk to someone else in your discipline without getting in the car, without going a long distance,
get those serendipitous encounters, the more that interesting and potentially revolutionary technical, technology ideas can come from this
[11:30:06] ANDERSON: This is Connect the World coming to you live from the Egyptian capital Cairo on what is a very windy evening tonight.
Some shots there of the historic lifeline of this city, the River Nile and a little taste of Cairoeke (ph), one of Egypt's biggest bans.
You're watching CNN. News, of course, always comes first. The top stories for you this hour.
Around 2,000 Syrian refugees are expected to cross the border into Turkey today. The vast majority come from the border town of Tal Aybad.
They are fleeing fighting between Kurdish forces and ISIS in the area.
Relatives of a British teenager have spoken out after ISIS apparently released a picture of him posing in front of the group's flag. The family
of 17-year-old Talha Asmal say that they are, quote, devastated and heartbroken. It's reported the teen may have carried out a suicide attack
near the Iraqi city of Baiji on Saturday.
Well, a veteran al Qaeda figure may have been killed in a U.S. airstrike in Libya. The Libyan interim government says Mokhtar Belmokhtar
was killed in eastern Libya on Saturday, but the U.S. has not confirmed his death.
And Italy is issuing a warning to other EU nations of its struggles to cope with an influx of migrants crossing the Mediterranean. Prime Minister
Matteo Renzi says if more EU nations don't take in asylum seekers, his nation would move to plan B. But he didn't give details, but said it could
ultimately, in his words, wound Europe.
Well, in just under two months time the new Suez Canal here is expected to open in Egypt. It's one of several major projects announced by
President el-Sisi to help boost Egypt's struggling economy.
CNN's Ian Lee has a look at its potential impact for you.
IAN LEE, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It's arguably the most strategic strip of water in the world. The Suez Canal provides a vital
lifeline between east and west. Now President Adbel Fattah el-Sisi hopes its face lift can breathe new life into Egypt's economy.
Everything about this project is ambitious, from the funding, taking eight days to raise almost $9 billion, all sourced from Egyptian citizens,
to the date of completion one year.
The president gave responsibility to vice admiral Mohab Mamish.
MOHAM MAMISH, VICE ADMIRAL: Take five years, OK. But we push and we make (inaudible). It will (inaudible) three years. But when they told me
one years, I told them, yes, I wil do it. And the (inaudible).
LEE: Since the project started 10 months ago, 41,000 people work around the clock to move a quarter of a billion cubic meters of earth. The
additional 70 kilometers turns the whole Suez Canal into a two-lane highway.
Egypt's mega project will support the world's mega ships.
Nearly a tenth of all global maritime trade passes though the Suez Canal. So if you're in Europe and you order something like an iPhone
produced in Asia, it'll pass through Egypt first.
The improvements mean you'll receive the latest gadgets sooner.
Last year, the canal earned roughly $5.5 billion. The government forecasts $13.5 billion by 2023: ambitious with global trade increasing at
only around 5 percent annually.
The admiral tells me the $13 billion is slated to come from passage fees and from the increased number of ships and also efficiency, an
increase of maritime services presented to passing ships.
One potential road block to all of this is security. Militants wage a deadly insurgency next to the canal in northern Sinai. About two years
ago, militants fired a rocket propelled grenade at a passing boat in the canal, though no one was killed in the attack.
Mamish insists the boats are safe, protected by Egypt's massive military. His main concern is reaching August's deadline and bringing this
roughly 150 year old canal into the 21st Century.
ANDERSON: Well, Ian Lee joining us now.
During his inauguration speech a year ago on Monday, President Sisi, a new President Sisi, vowed to boost the economy in order to stabilize this
place. How does the Suez Canal fit in?
LEE: Well, this is a huge project for President el-Sisi's plan. It is really the hallmark of his presidency. This needs to work for him. He
hopes to have a million jobs the government puts out by the time this development of the Suez Canal as well as this industrial zone around it.
They're hoping to get $100 billion of revenue out of it.
These are very impressive numbers, but it...
[11:35:20] ANDERSON: Realistic numbers?
That's the big question. Are these realistic numbers?
If you look at the Suez Canal. They say -- well, right now they make $5.5 billion a year. By 2023, they want to make $13.5. Well, if global
trade is only increasing by about 5 percent, really where is that money going to come from? Where is that difference.
So, they're impressive numbers, but are they realistic. That's to be seen.
ANDERSON: There is no doubt that President Sisi is a global -- a polarizing figure. But those who are his naysayers? Do they accept that
in principal this is the start of what could be a much more robust economy going forward?
LEE: Well, talking to different economist and business leaders, what they see from President el-Sisi, they're optimistic. They tell me that
things are going in the right direction, they wish reforms would come quicker. There's still a massive bureaucracy here in Egypt.
But really it's also about the period on the ground. Egypt still have roughly 13 percent unemployment, youth unemployment is around 40 percent.
And that's going to be the key factor there is to see if he can reduce those numbers.
ANDERSON: How big, sadly, a target is the Suez Canal, given the Islamic insurgency here.
LEE: It's a huge target. We've seen attacks on it before. The -- I talked to the head of the Suez Canal, he said that it is secure. It is a
huge military zone. They control it. They secure it. But it is easy for a militant with an RPG to sneak in and fire off a rocket. We saw it happen
with little effect.
But it does present a problem. And really, that is of concern, the northern Sinai.
Ian, always a pleasure. Thank you.
You're watching this special show live out of Cairo this week. And on CNN's Freedom Project series, we'll be focus on Egypt's child migrants, the
many hundreds who are driven by desperation and poverty to take the boat to Europe.
Have a look at this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
NIMA ELBAGIR, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: The Nile delta is home to generations of Egyptian fisherman casting out onto the Med. It's also
the country's smuggling heartland.
We've been investigating the trafficking of teenagers and boys from Egypt to Italy for several months now.
A lot of these months that are flooding around us, they say that their sons are on these ships.
Captain Mahmoud (ph) and his ship's mate have made the journey to Italy many times. The parents, he says, are as much to blame as smugglers.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Well, you can watch the rest of Nima's report on Egypt's child migrants and follow the story all the way to the streets of Italy's
capital this week on Amanpour, that starts at 7:00 p.m. in London, 8:00 p.m. in Rome, and in Cairo only on CNN.
Well, as we heard Europe struggling to cope with its influx of migrants, Greece in particular is badly affected. Isa Soares has what is
this exclusive report.
ISA SOARES, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Under the cover of darkness, the Hellenic coast guard leaves the harbor to patrol the Aegean.
A team of four. Their job is to spot migrants making the perilous crossing to Greece and rescue them before the tide turns.
Within 40 minutes of our journey, a vessel is spotted ahead.
A closer look reveals a rubber dinghy with six men paddling their way to Greece.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: One by one.
SOARES: Weak and wet, their brought to safety, relieved to be alive.
For the coast guard, this is a delicate yet critical role they must take on.
"When they see us and they understand they're in our waters, they collaborate. They stop the engine and then we board them on our boats,
transfer them to the island of Kos.
Once they've been dropped off, we return to sea. And soon enough, another dinghy spotted in the darkness. Crammed inside are 44 people,
mostly young men.
As dawn breaks, the challenge of the job at hand is revealed, 10 nautical miles, or almost 19 kilometers of vastness that must be watched
There may only be a six kilometer distance between Turkey and Greece, but the journey is still very much a perilous one, and for the Hellenic
coast guard, the number one priority is to save lives.
To date, no migrant has died on their watch, a point of pride for these coast guards who until recently had been patrolling drunken tourists
in the sea.
"We are very proud and we feel satisfied with the results," he tells me. "During 2015 until the end of May, more than 5,000 migrants have
entered the Island of Kos. In the last two years, there have been 38 arrests of smugglers."
By early morning, their overnight efforts are clear for all to see. Here, sleepy and exhausted, children, women and men huddle together in the
port looking to authorities for direction.
But it takes time, because they too are overwhelmed by what they are seeing.
Still, they cope, because nothing quite compares to the life adrift with these migrants, nor the life of peril and persecution they've left in
Isa Soares, CNN, in the Greek Island of Kos.
[11:40:42] ANDERSON: Well, battling the elements slightly tonight. I'm Becky Anderson live from Cairo. This is Connect the World.
Coming up, the faces and places of Egypt. We explore the country's diversity into tonight's Parting Shots in about 15 minutes from now.
And millions of people across the Arab world tune into his show every week. Could satire tackle extremism? I'm going to put that question to my
next guest. Tonight Bassem Yousseff.
BASSEM YOUSSEFF, COMEDIAN: Hello, my name is Bassem Yousseff. Welcome back to Connect the World. I'm your new host, because I'm in Dubai
and Becky Anderson is nowhere to be found, so I'm taking over the program.
So, what do we have here? I guess it's my program now, and let's connect the world together.
ANDERSON: Hang on a minute.
YOUSSEFF: What? What?
YOUSSEFF: What? They told me to come? I mean, I put on my wedding suit. I came here.
ANDERSON: And you are my guest tonight.
YOUSSEFF: Oh, come on. I mean, I can't get a break here. I put on like my blackest suit here.
Hi, how are you, Becky. Nice to be here.
ANDERSON: You need little introduction, sir, of course. I'm very, very well.
You had a show that left millions across the Arab world anxiously waiting to tune in every week. You filmed your last show of course last
year. But despite that, you went where no other Arab satirist has been before, breaking boundaries, of course, on controversial and often taboo
subjects through humor.
Any red lines as far as you are concerned?
YOUSSEFF: Oh, there -- I think our experience has proved that there are many, many red lines, plenty. And these lines will actually come back
and bite you.
ANDERSON: Yeah, OK. All right. Well, you've been called the Jon Stewart of Egypt. And you've made several appearances on the Daily Show
trying to simplify what is the complexity of the turmoil in the Middle East.
I want our viewers to see a clip from a recent appearance. Have a listen to this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JON STEWART, HOST, THE DAILY SHOW: Bassem, obviously right now the Middle East spiraling out of control. So tell me what should America do
YOUSSEFF: Well, how about nothing?
YOUSSEFF: Yes. I feel the love, yes.
STEWART: OK, we haven't tried that one yet.
YOUSSEFF: Yeah, we noticed.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: All right. Well, you've blazed a trail, of course, in the region using satire to talk about controversial issues.
In large part, thanks to you there are plenty of homegrown Middle Eastern satirists poking fun at jihadis.
I wonder how powerful you think satire is as a weapon against a group like ISIS?
YOUSSEFF: Well, I think -- I mean, there are people who have even went much further than I ever went before, because there are cartoonists,
there are like actors, there are people who are doing their own videos making fun of the big evil right now in the world, which is ISIS. They
have done stuff that I didn't have the chance to do.
And I think satire is an incredible weapon, because basically it takes down this kind of fear form the hearts of people and when you take away the
fear there -- through laughter, they're not scary anymore.
So, satire is a very, very great weapon, especially like -- I mean, what people -- what ISIS is doing right now...
ANDERSON: Bassem, in large part thanks to you there are plenty of homegrown Middle Eastern satirists poking fun at jihadis as I said.
Let's show you one of them made by Syrian refugees in Turkey. Oh, I've lost...
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): I have one problem, I want to kill Syrians without feeling guilty. I don't want to feel the torment of
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): I have your solution.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): What have you turned me into?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): You can now kill in the name of religion without having a guilty conscience.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Well, I'm -- Baseem, I'm afraid that I've actually lost communication with you. I'm sure my viewers have been loving having you on
the show. I'm going to take a very short break. If I can reestablish communications, I will.
Live from Cairo tonight, this is a special edition of Connect the World. Stay with us. Taking a break. Back after this.
[11:50:04] ANDERSON: You're back with me here in Cairo. This is Connect the World. A very special program for you.
And I've got a very special in Dubai in the UAE where we are normally at home, that is Bassem Yousseff, the comedian out of Egypt now out of the
UAE for us this evening.
We were talking about satire as a weapon, as a tool against terrorists, as a tool against organizations like ISIS. What's the solution
so far as these groups are concerned in this region?
YOUSSEFF: Well, I mean, satire doesn't actually give a solution. What the satire does is that it brings more people to the table and make them
think about that kind of danger. And they -- it shows them that these people are not scary as they think they are. And then it's up to the
people to make that kind of solution.
The solution could not just be military, could not just be security wise. It has to be more of a culture war. It has to be more of an
ISIS didn't spring out of nothing, it's sprang out because of years and years and years of extreme ideas under the eyes and nose of maybe some
of the regimes here in the Middle East.
So basically you have to come and go back to the root of the problem. You can -- part of the fight against ISIS should be through art, should be
through comedy, through satire, through freedom of speech and expression.
ANDERSON: As satire and comedy is used in the name of freedom of expression, do you have any (inaudible) with those who may be supporters of
these jihadi groups who say that they have just as much -- that they should be permitted in the same vein to use video games, to use the sort of
skillset that they're using to recruit youngsters in the name of Islam?
YOUSSEFF: Well, the thing is, you can do a lot of things in the name of religion, in the name of Islam. But I don't think that you should -- I
mean, you cannot really compare using satire and freedom of expression and that -- because a joke doesn't kill anybody, it doesn't spread hate and
doesn't like make people incite violence. But these people do that for the sake of killing other people.
And I don't care if they're like in the name of religion or Islam or anything else, killing people and taking their freedom is unjust under any
ANDERSON: Bassem, you hijacked the show out of the break, do you want to take us into what is going to be a very short break at this point? I'm
just going to sit down -- I'm just going have a look at the (inaudible) and you take it away for a short time -- take us to a break.
Oh, we don't want to go to a break. In fact, you can't hijack the show again.
All right, listen, I was going to have...
YOUSSEFF: I was going to treat you as my correspondent. OK.
OK. All right. So, what do you want me to do, Becky? I'm lost. What do I do?
ANDERSON: Just wrap yourself. You're wrapped. You're wrapped.
YOUSSEFF: All right, you want me to wrap myself? All right.
Thank you. This was Bassem Yousseff with Connect the World.
ANDERSON: All right. It's an absolute pleasure having you on.
You're watching CNN. This is a special edition of Connect the World with me Becky Anderson. We've got some parting shots for you up next.
Egypt is the Arab world's most populous country with more than 85 million. In tonight's parting shots, then, we want to bring you the
different faces and places of this country. Photograph Abdelrahman Qatr (ph) captured the following images and explains the make up of Egypt's
culture and diversity.
ABEDLRAHMAN QATR (ph), PHOTOJOURNALIST: My project is called Faces of Egypt.
The Egyptian people are different, because they've been mixed with many cultures from British to France to Ottoman empire. We have upper
Egypt, which is (inaudible). They are very famous with alligators. They put them as a pet.
In Alexandria, for example, we have Greeks. We have Armenians. We have Italians. We have all sort of kind of, you know, like a second New
York, but in an Egyptian style.
I wanted to capture their way of living, because it's about the culture and the people and the places of Egypt. I am Abdelrahman (ph) and
this was my...
ANDERSON: Fabulous stuff.
We're going to have the team here in Cairo all week as we kick off our summer road trip. And I want to hear from you. This is your show. Send
us your tips and your questions. Share your Cairo secrets with us. And do watch all the reports on our Facebook page. That is
Facebook.com/CNNConnect to have your say and continue the conversation on Twitter, tweet me @BeckyCNN and the team at CNN Connect. We really want to
hear from you.
I'm Becky Anderson, and this has been a special edition of Connect the World live from Cairo. We'll be back here at the same time tomorrow.