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Pope Francis Delivers Mass In War-Torn Bangui, Central African Republic; Republican Presidential Candidate Ben Carson Visits Syrian Refugee Camps in Jordan; French Police Arrest 100 Protesters Ahead of COP21 in Paris. Aired 11a-12p ET

Aired November 29, 2015 - 11:00   ET


NICK PARKER, HOST: A message of hope for a war-torn and divided country. Pope Francis is in the Central African Republic. We'll take you there live

in just a moment.

Also ahead, clashes and a controversial security crackdown before a major meeting in Paris on climate change. This as activists and protesters

around the world take to the streets to put pressure on world leaders.

ANNOUNCER: Live from CNN Center, this is Connect the World.

PARKER: Thanks for joining us. Right now the pope is about to celebrate mass in an active war zone. Pope Francis is in the Central African

Republic, a visit that marks the end of his Africa tour.

The pope is set to celebrate mass in the capital city Bangui and we are seeing video coming into us right now over the pope arriving at what we

believe is the capital's cathedral. He will also open the holy door of that city's cathedral, which is a ceremonial gesture that anticipates the

start of the new holy year.

It will be the first time, the first time, a holy door outside of the Vatican has been used for this purpose.

Meanwhile, security has been extra high after more than two years of ongoing violence between Christians and Muslims.

Earlier, the pope visited a camp in Bangui, housing hundreds of people displaced by the conflict. He plans to visit a mosque on Monday, sending a

powerful symbol of religious unity.

Our Vatican correspondent Delia Gallagher is traveling with the pope and she joins us live now on the phone. Delia, what's been the reaction to his


DELIA GALLAGHER, CNN VATICAN CORRESPONDENT: Oh, complete enthusiasm and I think relief, Nick, because some of the people have told us that they were

very worried with the press report of security that the pope might not come and they were desperate for him to come, they said, because they felt like

they were people who have been forgotten.

The archbishop of Bangui, which is the capital city where the pope is now, said that he had spoken to Muslims and to Christians and even to the armed

men who are all ready to welcome the pope.

So, you know, I think this trip is -- couldn't have been canceled. It's an important, symbolic gesture by the pope to come to this place, which has

one of the largest humanitarian crises in the world with some almost 1 million refugees displaced and fled to other countries because of the armed

conflict. It has very unstable government situation right now, a transitional government, which is going to try for elections in December.

It has 10,000 to 13,000 UN troops here trying to keep the peace between Christian and Muslim militia fight.

Much of that fighting not necessarily just about religion, but about resources and power because this is a country rich in oil, in diamonds, and

in minerals and obviously a lot of the fighting about that about who controls that power.

But here he is at the cathedral, as you said, which is a symbolic gesture which he will do also on December 8 in Rome, that opens up the big jubilee

year of mercy. And that is the year the pope wants reconciliation and peace all around the world, but he decided that he would start it here in a

country which needsit most -- Nick.

PARKER: absolutely.

And Delia, you've been with Pope Francis at every stage of his African trip. What is the difference in terms of the security and I guess the

atmosphere when you left Uganda to go to the Central African Republic?

GALLAGHER: Well, certainly the security is noticeable. I mean, there are tanks on the street. We have armored cars escorting us and UN military all

around us and the pope.

Nonetheless, I've been happy to see the pope has been able to reach out and touch the people literally. At the refugee center where he went straight

all the kids were running up to him and getting around security and through their legs, because they run quite fast and wanted to just touch the pope.

It's quite touching to see.

And one of the noticeable things, actually, is normally when you travel with the pope and people are able to glimpse them for the first time, they

put iPhones are up. And they're just all capturing him on their iPhones.

Here, they don't have any iPhones. They at the hotel. And the guys were looking at my iPhone saying, oh, that's -- we'd love an iPhone.

So, they have got to live in the moment here and they have really been showing him a very warm welcome despite all that security.

But for them, they live with that security day in and day out. They've been chased from their homes, they're living in camps. But they've come to

see him and as they told me, they feel like somebody is remembering them, and somebody is telling the rest of the world, please, remember us.

Dick, I want to tell you that just before he went to this cathedral, he made an unscheduled stop at a children's hospital and the pope gave them a

donation of boxes medicine he brought over from the Gemelli Hospital in Rome to this

children's hospital. It's something desperately need here along with many other things -- medicine and pharmaceuticals -- Nick.

[11:05:28] PARKER: Absolutely. Delia Gallagher reporting for us live from Central African Republic. We're be sure to check in with you in the hour

ahead. Thanks for that.

Let's get some more now on the significance of the pope's trip. Roman Catholic priest and CNN religious commentator Father Edward Beck joins us

live now from New York.

Father Beck, thank you for being with us today. We do appreciate it.

So, I wanted to begin by asking you on the subject of the pope being in an active war zone, he was warned, or the Vatican was warned by French troops that there was quite a major risk involved in him doing this trip,

but he wanted to do it anyway. What's behind the determination on his part do you think?

FATHER EDWARD BECK, CNN RELIGIOUS COMMENTATOR: Well, Nick, I realize -- and I think the pope realizes -- that what's so important about this, this

is being billed as a religious conflict between Christians and Muslims.

Now, remember, Muslims tried to overtake the capital about almost three years ago now and thus began this religious conflict. But as Delia

mentioned, it's more than just religion, it's about resources.

So now the Christian militias are fighting with the Muslims and it's an active war zone. The first time a pope has ever entered an active war


And so this pope has said I want to go there because that's where the shepherd need to be in this midst of this kind of conflict. He is speaking

about interreligious dialogue, the need for peace, the need for harmony and, of course, against oppression.

So supposedly he refused to even wear a bulletproof vest. He didn't want any extra security, though I think he has gotten some extra security here

despite his wishes to downplay that.

But I think what's important about it is that he sees himself as needing to take the risk to make the point that this is where the shepherd belongs.

PARKER: Indeed.

And I wanted to ask you a little bit about the service that he's expected to start in about -- a few minutes from now from the cathedral in the

capital there. He will be opening the holy door and that's the first time that it's been done outside of the Vatican in the history of the Catholic

Church. Can you tell us more about the significance of this.

BECK: Well, the cathedral doors are only opened for very special occasions. And you know that the pope is beginning the year of mercy, as

Delia mentioned, December 8 in Rome where he will open the doors then.

But I think he wants to do it here to say that it's not only Rome that is important, this is a pope who has said I am bishop of Rome, but the church is

universal and he has empowered the bishops elsewhere in a very collegial manner.

So, I think by him opening the cathedral doors here, too, he is saying that the church is everywhere. And the open door symbol is one that this pope

has certainly accentuated, that the church needs to be more open, more welcoming, especially of those who can't get through the doors.

And so I think that that's the real reason. It's the decentralization of not

making this just a Roman celebration, but indeed a worldwide celebration. And here he is doing it in one of the most conflict ridden, poorest nations

in the world.

PARKER: Absolutely.

And as he wraps up his trip to Africa, how would you characterize the overall message of his trip to the continent compared to, say, another

continent like Latin America. What was specific about his message to Africa, do you think?

BECK: Well, actually many of the themes have been familiar. But I think the situation in Africa is a little bit different. Christianity,

Catholicism, is growing by leaps and bounds as is Islam. And so the interreligious conflict and dimension of the need for the religions to get

along has certainly be accentuated.

Also, the corruption in Africa is extreme where the poor are oppressed by a very small minority. I think when he was in Kenya we heard 1 percent of

the population controls 95 percent of the wealth. And so this pope is intent on saying, remember he has said more equitable distribution of the

world's goods. He has spoken that message here in Africa. Whether or not it will be heard by the administrations is, of course, another question.

He has also been intent on talking about the environment. Remember in December we have the Paris meeting coming up and the pope

encyclical,Laudato si', has spoken about the need for the care of the environment, but also talking to big business, very operative in the

African countries to be attentive to how this affects the poor, how they are pillaging of the environment, and their nonrespect of the resources of

the environment, affects the poor. And so this pope has been talking about those issue as well in preparation for that Paris summit on the

environment that is coming.

So those are make of the issues he's been addressing.

[11:10:20] PARKER: That's certainly a key theme, Father Beck, here. And I just wanted to jump in for you -- on you for just a for second. Becuase we

are getting now some live pictures of Pope Francis outside of the cathedral. He appears to be beginning the mass and speaking to some of the


Could you give us some idea of what form this mass will take over the coming hour or so? And in particular whether we know what will be in the

homily, which is obviously closely watched.

BECK: Well, Nick, the mass here at the cathedral is going to be for priests, religious, catechists and some young people. So it's not one of

those large masses like we've seen elsewhere thus far in Africa. There will be a

larger mass tomorrow at a stadium there.

But this is going to be particularly speaking to the ministers in the church, those who have the job of formation of the faithful. And so I'm

sure we'll hear him address some of those concerns about the growing church in Africa. And I think he'll probably hit again some of those themes we

just mentioned again in the homily.

I have not yet seen an advanced copy of the homily, so I'll be interested to watch and listen along with you to do some analysis of what the pope is

saying here at the cathedral.

PARKER: Indeed.

And sorry, we're still getting an idea of exactly what Pope Francis is doing, because he seems to have made an unexpected stop outside the

cathedral where he was speaking to crowds. And we're just looking at pictures right now. I don't know if you can seem. Perhaps, you can

explain what he's doing and whether this is, in fact, the holy door that he might be opening.

BECK: Yes. He's blessing the outside, prayers to bless the outside of the cathedral. Now now giving -- this is the first Sunday of Advent, by

the way, that's why he's wearing purple. Purple is the color of advent. And so there are four Sundays leading up to Christmas, the coming of


And so he's celebrating the first Sunday of that event here at the Cathedral, thus he is donning those purple vestments. And he's saying the

blessing prayers before opening the doors of the cathedral right now in the Central African

Republic in Bangui, the capital there.

PARKER: And we do understand he will also be visiting a mosque in the Capital's Muslim district on Monday. Discuss the significance of that for


BECK: Well, again, the Christian-Muslim conflict here has been extreme ever since the attempted takeover of the capital.

And so this mosque, the Koduko (ph) mosque in Bangui, is in the PK5 Muslim enclave there in the capital, one of the most dangerous regions. So, for

the pope to go, first of all, to a mosque there is a statement itself, then in one of the most dangerous regions of the capital. I mean, many think he

should not go. The security concerns have been heightened here. There's been some talk of him not even being able to get here to celebrate mass,

nevermind going to the mosque

So, I think all eyes will be on what he will say with regards interreligious dialogue and what the security concern will be as he goes to

that mosque tomorrow.

PARKER: Absolutely. At this stage, we'll pause and just let our audience listen into the start of this service.


PARKER: A highly significant moment there as the pope opens the holy door to the cathedral in the capital of the Central African REpublic, his first

trip to a war zone.

Father Becky, tell us more about the significance of that moment.

BECK: Well, again, this is the seat of Catholicism here for the Central AFrican Republic at the Cathedral. And so the first day of Advent the pope

has opened, then, these doors to the cathedral, the shepherd of the church, the primary shepherd, the vicar of Christ, the most important person in the

Catholic Church, has now entered those doors and is welcoming that faith community.

You hear the exuberance as the pope enters. I mean, many, again, never thought that they would see a pope come to this country because of the

danger that's extant here. And so here we do see some of those cell phones and people videoing. So, they have obviously been able to get some cell

phones to be able to momentously capture this moment of the pope processing now down the

aisle of the cathedral where, again, priests, religious and catechists are gathered so

that he is going to be having this mass with those who are doing the field work of the church.

These are the ones in the parishes. These are the ones saying the masses, teaching the faithful. And so here the shepherd is speaking to his right

arm, his left arm, those who will be ministering the word.

[11:15:34] PARKER: And as he heralds the holy year of mercy with the opening of that door, highly significant moment as you've just been saying,

tell us a little bit about the holy year of mercy. What is that likely to involve?

BECK: Well, this pope in all of his trips, and in all of his speeches has been very intent on talking about the church's need to be a more merciful

church. And again, mercy, welcome, understanding, this pope has said we must go to the periphery, we must be a church who welcomes those who can't

even get to the doors of the church.

And so it's particularly significant that -- and, again, you see him being helped there. He's had some trouble walking recently. And just helped him

up those steps. So, there's some concerns of his growing tiredness and some of his stumbling actually. So, his health concerns seem to be

mounting as well.

But, I mean, the year of mercy is to say as a merciful church, how do we become more inclusive, how do we bring in those who feel themselves to be

on the fringe or outcast? How do we say that the mercy of Christ, the compassion of Christ, is first and foremost. So we will see again during

this year of mercy -- you'll remember that the sin of abortion, he said that that's not going to be restricted this year to just bishops and

certain diocese saying that they can forgive that sin, but all priests will be able to forgive the sin of abortion if someone comes to them for

forgiveness. And that's just a very symbolic one thing to say hat this year of mercy is about meeting people where they are and ministering the

compassion and mercy of the church where you find people.

PARKER: Indeed.

And for our viewers that may just be tuning in right now, you are looking at live pictures of the service of Pope Francis in the capital of the

Central African Republic of Bangui.

This is the first time that a pope has visited an active war zone, so a hugely significant occasion from that regard. And also Pope Francis began

this mass by opening the holy door, which begins a new holy year of mercy for

the Catholic church. And that's the first time that that has been done outside of the Vatican.

Father Beck, I wanted to just ask you again if we could recap against this highly challenging security backdrop, why was it so important for Pope

Francis to come to the Central African Republic?

BECK: I think that what we find is, this pope believes he has to be where no one else will go. He has to be where people feel shunned and forgotten. And so if he were to say because it's too violent, people live in that

situation, why would either shepherd not go.

And so insiders have said that even though some around him have encouraged him not to do this visit, because of the security concerns, he has pushed

and said, look, if my life is at risk, so be it. I need to be where people are suffering and feeling left out.

And certainly here with the conflicts we have seen in the capital, again, just recently there was a church bombing just a few weeks ago in this

capital. And so we know that this is, indeed, an active war zone. And again, it's presented as

an interreligious conflict between Christians and Muslims but it is also about the resources of this country. It's rich in diamonds, it's rich in

gold. And the violence is really about who controls this.

And so again, the pope will speak to I think to those issues, the issues of greed, the issues of killing people for the sake of money, for the sake of

power. This is a place he needs to be, because these are the very issues that the pope is intent on addressing.

PARKER: Well, Edward Beck joining us live from New York. Thank you so much for your analysis on this and your perspective on these highly

significant events that we are witnessing right now.

We'll be sure to check in with you in the hour ahead when we go back to the service to try and listen in to some of the homily. But for now we are

going to break and more news after this.


[11:23:11] PARKER: Right now, the pope is celebrating mass in the capital of the Central African Republic, Bangui. It's the final stop in his three-

nation tour of Africa.

You're looking at live pictures of the mass that he's holding there. He's urging people not to give into fear and especially personal message given

the past two years of violence between Christians and Muslims there.

World leaders beginning to arrive in Paris ahead of Monday's COP21 climate change conference. The gathering is putting an extraordinary burden on the

city with nearly 3,000 security officers deployed at just the summit venue alone, that's after, of course, the Paris attacks two weeks ago that left

130 people dead.

Meanwhile, there have been small clashes between protesters and police officers near one of the city's main squares. Some in the crowd threw

items at the police who responded with tear gas.

Our Phil Black is in Paris. And he joins us live now. So, Phil, demonstrations were banned, but it seems some people still turned out. Can

you tell us more about this?

PHIL BLACK, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yeah, sure Nic. So, there were plans for a huge demonstration today in support of strong action

against climate change. It was supposed to be organizers had hoped hundreds of thousand of people. But that wasn't allowed to take place,

because of the security concerns here at the moment, the ban on mass gatherings.

Most activists, most French people here, accepted that, somewhat begrudgingly. A much smaller crowd still gathered in the center of Paris

today and the police responded to them, probably a few hundred people tried to form a human chain.

These are people that weren't so much campaigning for the environment, but more just angry at the actions of the state recently since those Paris

terror attacks, but the ban on congregation, the restrictions on their Freedom. These are the things that they were aggravated about. And so

they gathered mostly in Place de la Republic, which has become the central point for people reallyu grieving, remembering those attacks.

And it was here and around here that they clashed with police through the afternoon. The police arrested, we're told, more than 100 people. And

there wass some scuffles, some violence, police using crowd control spray, that sort of thing, generally low key stuff, though. The crowd mostly

happy, chanting, singing, standing up against the police, sometimes refusing to move and the police have generally through the course of the

afternoon cleared them from the square.

PARKER: And Phil, just briefly, we're seeing a number of world leaders arrive ahead of the summit, which begins tomorrow. But there are some

high-level meetings planned today, I understand.

BLACK: Well, so most of the arrivals are beginning to take place today. This -- we're starting to see in course with that. We've seen the French

president meeting with a couple key leaders as well, notably the UN secretary

general. And that's really just a taste of what we're going to see over the next 24 to 48 hours or so.

147 heads of state are coming here for this, really quite an extraordinary figure, primarily, and really with the sole goal of negotiating, trying to

take a stronger stance on climate change.

It's an act of defiance, really, in the face of the terror attacks that have taken place here. The huge security that is required, and the hope

is, certainly from the French hosts, that the greatest act of defiance against the terror that he city has seen, will be these leaders, their

negotiators, coming up with a strong climate agreement at the end of the conference in two weeks, Nick.

PARKER: Absolutely.

Phil Black reporting live from Paris, appreciate it.

Meanwhile, climate protests are also taking place around the world.

Protesters in Indonesia are urging the government to reduce the country's dependence on fossil fuels. And people in New Zealand, Switzerland and the

Philippines and Australia are all calling for strong action to stop climate change.

The latest news headlines are just ahead. Stay with us.


[11:30:59] PARKER: Good to have you with us. This is Connect the World. The top stories this hour. Pope Francis is celebrating mass in the Central

African Republic. He landed there this morning on the final leg of his six-day visit to Africa. You're seeing live pictures of that right now.

The conflict ravaged CAR is considered the most dangerous part of his tour. He has brought a message of religious tolerance to a country racked with

fighting between Christians and Muslims.

Moscow put new sanctions on Turkey for downing a Russian warplane last week. Part of the restrictions limit trade and travel between the two

nations. Meantime, Turkey says it's received the body of the pilot who died and will return it to Russia.

Two separate knife attacks have taken place in Jerusalem. Police say they shot and killed a Palestinian man after he wounded an officer with a stamp

in the neck, another Palestinian attacked a woman from the Philippines at a bus station. That suspect got away. Both victims were treated in the


Protests are taking place around the world ahead of Monday's climate change summit in Paris. Marchers are demanding bold action to protect the

environment. In Paris, police clashed with demonstrators firing tear gas at them. 100 people were arrested.

The group included activists angry over rules limiting protests in the aftermath of the November 13 terror attacks.

Climate change activists have also been holding a major but peaceful rally over in London. Thousands marched to voice concerns about climate change

and to call on world leaders to finally do something meaningful about it.

Remember, the conference is called COP21, because this is the 21st time, 21st time leaders have gathered to tackle climate problems.

To help us understand the scope and the likely impact of these protests, we're joined by Craig Bennett, he's the CEO of Friends of the Earth, and

was at the demonstration in London.

Craig, thanks very much for your time today. We do appreciate it.


PARKER: The first question I had, was we are seeing a number of major protests around the world. And this is clearly an expression of public

will and hope that something can be done in Paris. But to what extent can these protests actually shape events there do you think behind closed


BENNETT: I think they are very important, because the only thing that's really lacking at the moment is political will. You know, we know what the

answers are to climate change. We know the scientists tell us about the level of cuts to emission that are required, and we need to try and hold

global climate change to 1.5 degrees.

With the technology already exists and new technology will be invented as we deploy it. Even if we start to shift the finance from dirty fossil

fuels where the vast majority of government subsidies are going at the moment, to 100

percent clean, renewable technology, then we can speed the solutions up and get there far faster than anyone predicts.

The only thing holding us up is political will. So these protests can really try and galvanize infractions, leadership coming from people in

communities around the world at the moment, it's time politicians caught up.

PARKER: Right, and if you look at the numbers, they are staggering, 40,000 delegates from 195 countries, 147 world leaders including leaders of the

main police of the United States, India and China. Against this backdrop, how optimistic are you a deal could be struck?

BENNETT: Well, I'm optimistic there will be a deal. The question is what type of deal. I mean, the deal that's on the table at the moment, the

draft deal, is not going to be anywhere near good enough.

The process that the United Nations had to go through because some of the rich countries blocked and other protests is to try and ask countries to

supply voluntary cuts. What's the voluntary cut to emissions they can do.

This would be rather like, you know, the last few years we've seen a lot of government saying we've got to cut public spending and so on. Imagine if a

finance minister went to every government department and said can you tell us voluntarily what cuts to finances you'd be happy to make. And somehow

hope it will add up to the number that was in the finance minister's head. This is ridiculous.

You know, clearly we need a much more science-based approach to cutting emissions. And so it's no big surprise that what's on the table at the

moment is giving us perhaps a hope of getting 2.7 degrees of climate change. Well, that's way more than is safe according to what scientists

tell us. The scientists tell us very clearly we have to get to 1.5.

So, there's a big, big gap.

So, you know, some progress is good. It will be good to get a deal. The concern is if you get a deal that locks in low ambition, because we need

high ambition.

[11:35:40] PARKER: President Obama, obviously, of the United States seems to have invested a lot of political capital in his attendance at this

summit. And to some extent I think is hoping he can drive something through as one of his last big signature policies. How important is that,

do you think?

BENNETT: I think it's very important that you see President Obama coming forward and saying how important this is. Various commitments recently

stopping the Keystone pipeline have been welcome. You have to balance that with the fact that he's still allowing drilling and supporting drilling in

the Arctic. And it's so often the case with the governments of the richest countries, you know, they all give with one hand on climate change and take

away with another.

You know, you see that some of the the richest countries still handing out trillions of dollars worth combined in taxpayer subsidies to big oil and

gas companies. What you have here is the problem of an old incumbent system that rewards the big, old established polluting oil and gas

companies. And what thousands of people, hundreds of thousands of people around the world today are

saying, it is a hopeful message.

There is a positive future. There is a future of 100 percent renewable energy really with -- if we can switch the finance from those dirty energy

corporations to clean energy and if we can shift the power from a handful of corporations to communities running those energy projects around the

world, there is hope. There is a positive future.

What we need to do is the governments and companies that are holding us back, keeping us back stuck in the last century, the polluting century,

they need to get out of the way -- either get with the plot and get on the bus and help us or get

out of the way.

PARKER: Craig Bennett, CEOP of Friends of the Earth joining us live from London. Thank you very much for your perspective on that, very


Now, we've seen images of rallies around the world but protests themselves have been banned in Paris amid heightened security concerns. They are

clamping down on protests and calling off organized gatherings.

So activists who had been planning to march instead left some 10,000 pairs of shoes at the city's Place de la Republic to symbolize the steps that

they would not be taking.

Among those placed there were a pair from Pope Francis, no less, that after he recently published an encyclical letter calling for everybody on the

planet to care for it.

Also there, some running shoes from the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.

One climate scientist has been running for months ahead of the climate conference all the way from Norway to Paris. It's to raise awareness how

climate change has affected the arctic.

Our John Sutter biked alongside him for part of the journey.


JOHN SUTTER, CNN CORRESPONDNET: Erlend Moster Knudsen is a climate scientist from Norway, and he's been running for nearly four months.

They call this journey Pole to Paris. It started in the Arctic and I caught up with him thousands of kilometers later here in northern France.

ERLEND MOSTER KNUDSEN, CLIMATE SCIENTIST: Yes, and today we're going to do 32 kilometers from Mabush (ph) to Toulon (ph). And that's quite an average

day for us.

SUTTER: He only carries one extra pair of clothes and he's already on his fourth pair of shoes.

KNUDSEN: Now, all in this bag is everything I have.

SUTTER: Today it's almost eight hours on the road, through villages and across farms. His destination a UN climate summit called COP21. And I had

to bike just to keep up.

KNUDSEN: What we try to do with this journey, running and biking across half the globe, is really to connect the stories from people around the

world. For me the distances that the world has gotten smaller rather than larger over this journey as I'm seeing it's possible, actually, to move

just by running from pretty much polar regions into Paris.

SUTTER: Erlend has run the farthest of the Pole to Paris group. He's been 2,100 kilometers on the road, running almost a marathon a day. He started

in Arctic Norway. Some days have been beautiful, other days like this, snowy and rainy here in France. He's on his way to the COP21 climate talks

where he'll bring with him all the stories of people he's met along the road.

KNUDSEN; In the Arctic, things are changing rapidly. It's warming more than twice as fast as the global average. This is all having huge

consequences, for example, for reindeer, for polar bears, but also for people living in that

region. In Paris, I hope very much we can continue on this path, that we can take it another step and a big and important step in the right


[11:40:16] SUTTER: The recent terror attacks in Paris haven't stopped him. If anything, he's more determined to arrive with the message of hope.

John Sutter, CNN, France.


PARKER: And you'll find complete coverage of the COP21 conference on our website with reports on the climate change debate from the field. From a

community that's standing up to coal mining efforts and a look at why the meat on our tables has a bigger carbon footprint than you might think.

It's all at

Live from CNN Center, this is Connect the World. Coming up, fresh off a visit to a Syrian refugee camp in Jordan, U.S. presidential candidate Ben

Carson is talking about America's role in solving the crisis. Stay with us.


PARKER: Pope Francis has been celebrating mass in the capital of the Central African Republic, Bangui. You're looking at live pictures of the

mass right now.

It's the final stop on his Africa tour and an active war zone.

Earlier, he opened the holy door at the cathedral in Bangui. It symbolizes the start of the new holy year, which actually begins on December 8. He's

urged people not to give into fear. This in a country that's seen two years of sectarian


You're watching CNN. And this is Connect the World. I'm Nick Parker. Welcome back. Thanks for joining us.

U.S. presidential candidate Ben Carson says the U.S. could do more to those fleeing ISIS in Syria. He's been visiting refugee camps in two spots in

Jordan on Saturday. But he also says bringing refugees to the United States will not solve the crisis.

Speaking with our Brianna Keilar just a short time ago, he said many of the refugees he talked to say they don't want to come to the United States.


[11:45:10] BEN CARSON, 2016 REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTAIL CANDIDATE: No desire. Their true desire is to be resettled in Syria. But, you know, they are

satisfied to be in the refugee camps if the refugee camps are adequately funded. Recognize that in these camps they have schools, they have

recreational facilities that are really quite nice, and they are putting in all kinds of things that make life more tolerable.


PARKER: Our Oren Liebermann is in Amman with more on the politics of the presidential candidate's trip.


OREN LIEBERMANN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Ben Carson's trip to Jordan could be boosting credentials on two major issues here: foreign policy and national

security where he's seen as being particularly weak.

So, this is a surprising, fairly secretive trip to two Syrian refugee camps here, the Azrak refugee camp (ph) and the Zaatari refugee camp where he met

with Syrian refugees, visited the facilities and met some of the workers there.

He released what seems to be a very carefully worded statement after visiting these camps. He said the U.S. taking in 25,000 Syrian refugees

isn't enough. But in the statement, he doesn't say the U.S. should take in more refugees, instead its seems he says the U.S. should help other

countries like Jordan that are taking in refugees.

He promises in the coming days to tell more about his foreign policy plans. He also blames the current Syrian refugee crisis on the Clinton and Obama


So it seems from his statement that this trip had an impact on him, but it could also be Carson trying to distance himself from some very

controversial comments he recently made where he compared some Syrian refugees to rabid dogs.

He's tried to put that in the past, he's tried to backtrack a bit. And this visit to the Syrian refugee camps and his call for helping them could

be seen as a way of pushing himself passed that and getting past that comparison that he made, also again trying to boosting his credentials on

foreign policy and national security.

Oren Liebermann, CNN, Amman, Jordan.


PARKER: Now to a story that brought worldwide attention to Europe's migrant crisis. You may recall the 2-year-old Syrian boy who drowned off

the coast of Turkey in September along with his mother and brother. A photograph of his body washed ashore and caused global outrage. The world

came to know him as Aylan.

Now his aunt says that pronunciation and spelling came from Turkish officials, but his given name is Allen.

His aunt lives in Canada now where she says the extended family will soon be granted asylum. She spoke with our Paula Newton.


TIMA KURDI, AUNT OF ALAN KURDI: So far what I know on the application from Canada, from here, it has been approved and being sent to Ankara in Turkey.

And it's been in the process. And they did like the regular medical exam, both the family in Turkey and my brother in Germany. And they are going

through the security check and all that.

So so far I'm waiting for either an email or a phone call to tell me on the date when they are arriving.

So, I'm hoping before Christmas, but I'm not sure at this moment.

PAULA NEWTON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: We've just had a very dramatic couple of weeks, three weeks really when you count the bombings in Lebanon and Beruit

and those terrible attacks in Paris. You know, Tima, it's turned some people, especially in the United States and Europe against accepting

refugees. They think it's too much of a security risk. What would you tell them, people who are afraid to grant asylum to thousands of refugees?

KURDI: First of all, I don't blame them. They have the right to concern about security. I always say take your time, make sure you do the security

checks. We don't want any terrorist to come to any country. But please open your heart and

your arms and welcome those desperate refugees. Those refugees, they fled from

the rubble, from ISIS. It doesn't mean they are a terrorist.

NEWTON: Yeah, and yet it is difficult for people to try and recognize the fear, the terror that these refugees are running from, and then perhaps

they feel risking the national security. Tima, I can't let you go without asking you how Alan's father is right now. Where is he? Do you have any

hopes that he may be able to come to Canada?

KURDI: Abdullah, he's in Kurdistan IRbil. What he's doing volunteer work in a refugee camp to helping refugee children with their needs. And he's

hoping to open a charity under his son's name, also to help the refugee children. And -- but so far he refuse -- he doesn't want to come to Canada

or anywhere.


PARKER: That was Tima Kurdi, Aunt of Alan Kurdi, the 2-year-old boy who drowned off the coast of Turkey in September. She was speaking with CNN's

Paula Newton.

You're watching Connect the World. Stay with us, we'll be back with more after this short break.


PARKER: Welcome back. In tonight's Parting Shots, it's all about fast cars. The Mercedes driver Nico Rosburg has just won Formula One's last

race of the season, the Grand Prix in Abu Dhabi. It's his third straight victory and sixth of the season. He beat out teammate Lewis Hamilton to

the top spot by 8.2 seconds. That's a wide margin in F1.

And a short drive from all that action, Dubai held its annual motor show just down the road. We want to show you now some of the very rare and very

expensive classic cars that were on display.

Take a look.

[11:55:55] PARKER: Some not too shabby cars there safe to say.

We want to leave you, though, with these images of Central African Republic where Pope Francis is saying mass in the war-torn nation and delivering, he

says, a message of hope.

I'm Nick Parker, thanks for watching Connect the World.