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SAG Awards Showcase Diversity; Interview with Rory McIlroy; Iowa Caucuses Explained; France Proposes Israeli-Palestinian Peace Plan, Israeli Prime Minister Rejects it. Aired 11a-12p ET
Aired January 31, 2016 - 11:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[11:00:11] BECKY ANDERSON, HOST: War rages on in Syria. Another series of deadly blasts. Can peace talks underway find a solution to what is this
five-year-old conflict? We are live in Geneva for you where diplomats are trying to stop the fighting.
Also ahead tonight, picking the president. We are just one day away from the first major event in the U.S. election cycle. Later in the hour,
we'll explain why the Iowa caucuses are so crucial.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RORY MCILROY, GOLFER: I dropped out of that number one position in the world as well. And I'd love to get back there. So, there's a lot of
objectives this year.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: I talk with Rory McIlroy with the Olympics, the Ryder Cup and the Masters ahead it is a big year for this golf superstar. That interview
ANNOUNCER: Live from CNN Abu Dhabi, this is Connect the World with Becky Anderson.
ANDERSON: And just after 8:00 in the evening here in the UAE. And I'm afraid we begin tonight with another attack in Syria just as talks aimed at
peace are being held in Geneva.
Now, ISIS says it was behind Sunday's triple bombing near an important Shia shrine on the outskirts of Damascus. At least 45 people were killed and
more than 100 were wounded.
And in Geneva, the spokesman for Syria's main opposition group expresses optimism that Syria's long and bloody civil war can be resolved.
The talks there are meant to get the Assad government and the opposition on board with a UN process that calls for a cease fire and ultimately a new
So, let's get the latest on all of this. And our international diplomatic editor Nic Robertson joining us live from those talks in Geneva.
Lest we forget, Nic, the human toll exacted by this endless bloody war and the importance of finding a solution, another attack on civilians, this
time in the heart of Damascus. Let's start with what you know to have happened there.
NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, a triple suicide bombing attack is what we understand. The target or the location around
the target is a Shia shrine.
This is a very, very important shrine for Shia pilgrims. This site is so important that the protection of this site that Shia militias are recruited
from Baghdad to come and join Bashar al-Assad's forces to secure the shrine to make it it safe and also to support Bashar al Assad's government in
So this is how important that shrine is. The fact that it is targeted on a day when the talks are about to begin is perhaps no surprise to anyone
familiar with these sorts of negotiations. Why? Because fringe groups, and in this case it's ISIS claiming responsibility, will always try to do
something that will destabilize the situation. And this is clearly something that would anger the government side because principally that is
who is being targeted here and destabilize and try to put people off balance before they even begin the talks, Becky.
ANDERSON: Nic, as one local commentator here in the Gulf put it today, this is a war by proxy of exceptionally rare nature even by the standards
of the Middle East. This will inevitably be a long and unpredictable process. What chance do you think Geneva will achieve anything
substantive in the short term at least?
ROBERTSON: It's very hard to judge. I mean, if you look at the past two attempts, because this after all it's called Geneva III, the last one,
Geneva II talks were two years ago and lasted about two weeks before they broke down. The UN blamed it on the Syrian government for only wanting to
talk about terrorism and not wanting to talk about the substantive issues.
We were there when the Syrian government head of delegation, he's the Syrian representative to the United Nations, Dr. Bashar al-Jaafari, was
speaking -- again terrorism was a big issue for him.
But I think, look, we can break it down this way. At the moment, you have both sides here. The talks haven't really started properly. The special
representatives, special envoy, Staffan de Mistura who mediates the talks went in to meet informally with the opposition today, the High Negotiating
Committee, the HNC. The HNC has been holding out to go into talks properly because they want humanitarian access, they want prisoner releases. They
want an end to the bombardment. They say that is all enshrined in the UN resolution that brought about these two talks -- brought about the talks.
OK, so where do things really stand? But I've talked to both the opposition
and they asked the question of the government representative today about those issues, about the issues that the opposition is demanding first.
This is how they answered.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
[11:05:02] ROBERTSON: So specifically so we understand, what precisely are you looking for in that language and a firmness of guarantees that they can
guarantee that the bombardments can stop, that the food can get through, that the prisoners can be released?
SALIM AL-MUSLAT, HIGH NEGOTIATIONS COMMITTEE SPOKESMAN: These three issues are very important to us. You know, they can -- I believe they can do it.
ROBERTSON: We hear from the HNC that they would like to see humanitarian corridors opened up, that they would like to see a ceasefire, that they
would like to see some prisoners released before they get into the talks. Is that something that the government is considering?
BASHAR JAAFARI, SYARIAN AMBASSADOR TO UN: Absolutely. Because this is part of the agenda. We agreed upon and that would be one of the very
important topics that we will discuss among ourselves as Syrian citizens.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ROBERTSON: But therein lies the rub. The Syrian government says, yes, we are up for discussing that. The opposition is saying we are up for
discussing that. In fact, it is so important it has to be discussed and agreed before we
get into the talks proper and the Syrian government not giving a timeframe on when it will be discussed and the Syrian government expressing that the
talks haven't really begun.
So, both sides are saying the same thing. They both want the same thing. But there is a difference here and that is they're in anywhere close to
being in the same room, not in anywhere close to actually discussing this face-to-face and the nuances, the essence of the difference, is still vast
even though they say they want the same thing.
The timeframe of when these issues would happen. The cease fire, the humanitarian aid, the prison release, that's crucial. The talks may not
even get up and running here, Becky.
ANDERSON: Yeah, well just let's hope these aren't just talks about talks about talks as we have seen so many times. A row littered with these
Nic, let's just hope that something does get achieved.
Thank you very much indeed.
Nic is in Geneva for you.
Meanwhile, France has proposed a new initiative to restart peace talks between the Israelis and the Palestinians. It calls American, Arab and
European partners to push for a two-state solution. The plan has come under fire by the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. He said the
proposal, which would see France recognize a Palestinian state if the initiative failed provides
an incentive for the Palestinians not to compromise.
Well, let's get you to CNN's Oren Liebermann. He is in Jerusalem for you this evening.
Oren, the French say this is an offer to try to find peace, elusive, of course, now for more than 45 years. The Israelis see the French threat as
no way to go about finding a solution.
As things stand, do you think 2016 and this suggestion is any more likely to be the year that significant progress is made between Israelis and
OREN LIEBERMANN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, any progress would be significant progress, especially compared to last year when there were
no peace negotiations. No one came to the table. And by the end of the year in a wave of violence.
Both sides were accusing each other of incitement and blaming the other side for not wanting to negotiate while claiming that they were immediately
ready to negotiate. So, that is how 2015 ended.
Whether this year will lead to any real progress of course remains to be seen. But what we do see just in the first month of this year is an
increased or perhaps at the least at the very least, a continuation of international pressure on Israelis and Palestinians to come back to
negotiations, to come back to something that may kickstart the continuation of a peace process.
The French initiative here is part of that, but just a couple of weeks ago, we saw UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon's comments. He condemned the
attacks on Israelis, but at the same time said it is a human response to years and decades of occupation a comment that immediately elicited a harsh
response from Prime Minister Netanyahu, but the secretary-general stood by his comments.
Just before that, it was the ambassador to Israel, the American ambassador to Israel Dan Shapiro questioning whether Israel has two different systems
here and what the government's real intents are regarding a two-state solution.
Settlements, of course, being one of the big issues here. It was just last week that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu stood by settlements and said
this government stands by settlements at any time.
So, it's those kinds of comments that get the international community questioning what are this government's intents and what can be done to move
a peace process forward.
While the Israelis condemned the French initiative, it was the Palestinians who welcomed the initiative saying they will reach out to the French and
others in the international community to move forward some sort of peace process.
Becky, the last time we saw negotiations it started mid-2013, ended April 2014, nine months of talks effectively led nowhere.
ANDERSON: Yeah, all right. Well, again, as we were suggesting with Nic Robertson, let's hope these can at least kickstart a process. Oren
Libermann is in Jerusalem for you this evening. Thank you.
Well, the first voting in the U.S. presidential election is just a day away. Candidates campaigning across Iowa, the state of Iowa, for that
state's crucial caucuses, as they're known.
And the race is extremely close.
A new poll gives Donald Trump a five-point lead over Ted Cruz, one point outside what is the sampling error.
On the Democratic side, Hillary Clinton at 45 percent, Bernie Sanders is 42 percent. That is within the sampling error, meaning they are statistically
Let's bring in our senior political reporter Stephen Collinson. He joins us
now from Washington as part of a really effective CNN team.
As we move into what is 2016, we are still, Stephen, more than 10 months away from what is actual election day. How important is the upcoming 24
hours in Iowa?
STEPHEN COLLINSON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It is going to be very important, Becky.
First of all, Iowans are notorious for making up their minds late. Over the last few days of the election, sometimes even the caucus meetings
themselves. So, we don't know what is going to happen despite those polls that you mentioned. And we are on the verge of learning whether we are
going to see a political earthquake in the United States that would echo around the world. That was, I think what would be the description of a
Donald Trump victory following his rhetoric against Muslims and Mexicans.
And on the Democratic side, we could be for an upset, too. Hillary Clinton is trying to bottle up Bernie Sanders in Iowa before he poses a threat to
her front running campaign for the nomination.
Nobody expected Bernie Sanders to be where he is, least of all Bernie Sanders. Actually, he sort of went into that this morning a few hours ago
in an interview with CNN's Jake Tapper.
ANDERSON: All right. I think we are going to hear from him, aren't we? Are we going to hear from Bernie Sanders?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. BERNIE SANDERS, (I) VERMONT: When we started this campaign here in Iowa, we were 50 or 60 points behind Secretary Clinton.
We have come a long, long way. And the reason for that is, we have 15,000 volunteers who today are going to be knocking on doors. They're going to be
making telephone calls. They're going to be urging people in very large numbers to come out and vote.
What I sense is, there are a lot of people who will participate in the caucus process on Monday night who previously were not involved in
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COLLINSON: There, Becky, Bernie Sanders is...
ANDERSON: I think what you've been -- yeah, go on.
COLLISON: Bernie Sanders really put his finger on it there for the importance of turnout for not just his campaign, but also Donald Trump's.
If we see more caucus goers than we are used to seeing in previous contests, trekking to the caucus meetings tomorrow night, we are going to a
very good indication early on that Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders are going to do well in this election. If it is the normal caucus goers that
show up I think it is going to to look good for Hillary Clinton and the other sort of favored Republican in Iowa, Senator Ted Cruz of Texas,
ANDERSON: I have to ask this on behalf of the international viewers, the millions of people
watching this, is this, Stephen, the most bizarre U.S. election you can remember or is it just that the Donald makes it seem that way?
COLLINSON: You know, Becky, American politics is never boring. You see some pretty extreme things. But I think Donald Trump is something else
entirely. If he wins Iowa and goes on to make a serious challenge for the nomination, he will be tearing up
everything we think we know about how you win a presidential nomination in terms of the rules for doing so and in terms of historical precedent.
But it's not just Donald Trump. If you think about it, Bernie Sanders is running as a Democratic Socialist in an American election.
President Barack Obama has spent the last seven years denying Republican claims that he is really a closet socialist. Now we have somebody that's
running for nomination of the president's party to be his heir in the Democratic Party who is basically proudly a socialist.
It's really interesting. Bernie Sanders will be much more home I think in a European social democratic party, Labor Party in the UK or in a Socialist
Party in France, for example, or in Scandinavia than he would be in American politics.
So, we're seeing on the right, we are seeing ferocious anger at the elites in Washington. On the left, we are seeing a sort of leftward march of the
Democratic Party. I think we are seeing real substantial changes in American politics in this election, Becky.
ANDERSON: Well, I guess on the left we are actually seeing some left as it were. All right, it doesn't seem to have been a lot of that in the past
Stephen, always a pleasure. Thank you. Stephen Collinson, part of the CNN Politics team.
Still to come tonight -- and we will do more on that as we move through the hour. After this, break, though, Brazil is ground zero for the zika virus
ahead of Carnival and the Summer Olympics. What they are doing there to keep tourists safe.
Also ahead tonight, 2016, of course, does promise to be a big year in golf as well. We will speak to Rory McIlroy about the challenges ahead.
[11:17:24] ANDERSON: You're watching CNN. This is Connect the World with me Becky Anderson. Welcome back. It is 17 minutes past the hour here in
The Zika virus is exploding across the Americas. The mosquito-born virus is linked to a surge in birth defects in Brazil.
In Colombia, fumigators are busy as more than 2,000 pregnant women there have tested positive for the virus.
Right now more than two dozen countries and territories are dealing with active transmissions leading to travel warnings to pregnant women or women
who plan to become pregnant.
Well, I want to bring in CNN's Shasta Darlington who joins us live tonight from Rio de Janeiro. And the Brazilian president vowing Friday to win the
war against this virus. Any evidence that that is happening?
DARLINGTON: You know, the problem, Becky, is that this is not a war that is going to be won overnight. So, they are fighting this on two fronts
really. On the one hand desperately trying to come up with a vaccine that will actually protect people from the virus. In fact, the razilian
president Dilma Rousseff was on the phone with President Barack Obama talking about how they could collaborate on research and again speed up a
But realistically we are many months if not years away from that happening. So, they are also fighting the battle on another front, that's against the
mosquito that transmits the virus, the Aedes agypti.
But that's really a door to door battle. They sent out 200,000 soldiers and health workers that are going door to door, looking for pools of water
that collect in shower drains, under plants, water tanks where these mosquitoes breed. In fact, the vast majority of these agypti mosquitos
breeds in people's homes.
That is a very slow war.
So, no, we don't have any evidence yet that that war is being won, but it is urgent because more than 4,000 babies been reported born with these
birth defects right here in Brazil, Becky.
ANDERSON: Shasta, the images that you see of fumigators trying to deal with this mosquito and then the juxtaposition of Carnival which, of course,
is beginning in Brazil, quite remarkable the contrast really quite remarkable.
Carnival, the Rio Olympics, what is the government doing to try and assuage fears from tourists, those who might be looking to travel to the country
for celebrations this year?
DARLINGTON: they are really, again, acting on a lot of different fronts. Right now we are in the southern hemisphere. This is the summer. This is
the height of the rainy season when you get a lot of mosquitoes and when mosquito-born diseases are at their peak, also dengue fever spread by the
So, for example, they were fumigating in the Sambadrome (ph), where the Carnival parade is taking place. And they say they will do the same thing
during the Olympics, heading up to the Olympics during the games. They will be inspecting every single venue on a daily basis to make sure there
aren't any puddles there.
They will have weather on their side. Although these are going to be the summer Olympics they are actually going to take place in the winter here in
Brazil. So, that's when the mosquito population does tend to die off. But there are also -- you know, this is an education campaign. they want
to remind people right now the risk is for pregnant women. Let's put this in perspective. The Zika virus itself has pretty mild symptoms. Most
people don't even know they have it. So, they want people to be aware that, yes, it is a risk for pregnant women but let's not exaggerate, let's
not blow this out of context and so far Rio hasn't been as hard hit as some other parts of Brazil, Becky.
[11:20:53] ANDERSON: Yeah, all right. Well, thank you for that.
As Shasta noted, there is no vaccine to prevent Zika nor medication to cure it.
Our chief medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta takes a closer look at Zika and explains how you could protect yourself.
DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Here`s what we know about Zika. Some of it will frighten you -- but maybe not as much as you
It`s a mosquito-borne virus. Part of the same family as yellow fever, West Nile, Chikungunya and dengue.
As things stand now, there is no vaccine to prevent Zika, or a medicine to treat the infection.
The most common symptoms include fever, rash, headaches and red eyes. But 80 percent of people who get Zika won`t even know they have it. That`s
right. There are only symptoms in one in five people.
Now, the virus is spreading quickly across Central and South America and the Caribbean. What makes Zika so scary is it`s alarming connection between
the virus and microcephaly -- that is babies being born with heads and brains that are too small.
In Brazil and several Latin American countries, they`re becoming concerned enough they have asked women there not to get pregnant. In the United
States, pregnant women are being told to postpone travel to any of these countries.
In case you`re curious, this is the bloodsucker everyone is after. The female Aedes Aegypti, she`s an aggressive biter, but unlike other
mosquitoes, feeds mostly during the day. For example, she`s different than the mosquitoes that transmit malaria, like to feed at night. That`s
important, because bed nets won`t help as much here.
The best way to prevent infections is using insect repellant with DEET, wearing thick long sleeve shirts and long pants and staying inside, in
screened, air-conditioned areas as much as possible.
ANDERSON: Dr. Sanjay Gupta for you.
You're watching Connect the World with me Becky Anderson live out of Abu Dhabi, as you know. 22 minutes past 8:00.
(BEIGN VIDEO CLIP)
MCILROY: I'd definitely wait four years for another chance at the Olympics if I can win The Masters this year.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Find out what Rory McIlroy is wishing for 2016 as the former world number one eyes a spectacular year in golf.
And we get a rare look inside Iran's parliament. Find out why there is controversy ahead of next
month's elections there.
Taking a short break. Back, after this.
ANDERSON: Well, Novak Djokovic needed less than three hours to see off Britain's Andy Murray and win his sixth Australian Open title earlier.
The Serb won in straight sets picking up the 11th grand slam drawing him level with the likes of Rod Lever and Bjorn Borg. How about that blast
from the past.
You are watching Connect the World live from Abu Dhabi. I'm Becky Anderson for you.
From one sporting icon, then, to another. Golfer Rory McIlroy has a major year ahead of him with the Olympics and the Ryder Cup taking place in 2016
amongst other things.
We caught up with him here in Abu Dhabi to talk all things golf and a little bit of football.
MCILROY: Everyone has obvious goals. Everyone has goals of winning tournaments and winning majors, and I don't feel like I need to write those
down because they are always in my head. But little things, by trying to improve certain parts of my game, trying to -- even just trying to become a
better person in every day life, you know, they are the goals that are most important to me.
ANDERSON; Target is a bit more ambitious, though, this year?
MCILROY: It's a busy year. The majors are always important. After not winning a major last year, I want to try and get back on track and try to
win another one of those and with the Ryder Cup coming up and the Olympics and everything else, it is a big year. You
know, I dropped out of the number one position as well. And I would love to get back there.
So, there's a lot of objectives this year.
ANDERSON: It is the Olympics this year, 2016. If you had one win would it be the Masters or a gold at the Olympics in Rio?
MCILROY: The Masters. I would definitely wait four years for another chance at the Olympics if I could win The Masters this year.
ANDERSON: I know you're a big soccer fan. And you've been talking to Shevchenko, former Milan, former Chelsea, former Dynamo Kiev player. He's
a decent golfer. You are a Man United fan, right. Ruud van Gaal. In or out?
MCILROY: Ruud van Gaal, you know, it's funny, I think it has taken a while. It's -- I'm very back and forth. There are weeks where I think it
is okay and there are weeks where I don't think it is okay. And I like -- I watch his press conference this week before the derby game, and I liked
that he stood up for himself a little bit. I liked that. I liked that he was very forthright.
And it's hard. You know, the media are very tough on managers these days. And it's a really hard profession to be in. So, he is under a lot of
pressure. But I think the team have been improving. The results have been improving. So, hopefully things are heading in the right direction.
ANDERSON: And you'll be watching the Euro Championships as well.
MCILROY: I will be. Northern Ireland in there for the first time. I'm hopefully going to get to the mas well.
I was actually just talking Shevo (ph) about that, because he -- I think he's taken on a role with the Ukrainian national team. So -- and we have
them in our group.
MCILROY: I'm not sure. I mean, I tell you what, we topped the group and played some really, really good football. It's a tough group, you know,
with Germany in there as wel.
But, just great to be a part of and great for the Northern Ireland fans to have something to cheer about.
ANDERSON: Speith, Day: this competition between you lot. Is it overdone or does it spur you on?
MCIROY: Honestly, I think it's overdone a little bit by the media. But, like, you guys have to have to talk about something and write about
something. So -- but at the same time, it's great for all of us. It's motivation for all of us. We all want to beat each other regardless
whether we are one, two, three in the world. So -- but it is good. It's good motivation. It's good to try and get back to the top. And I feel
like I feel like I want to get back to the top of the game and good to try to get back to the
top of the game and hopefully this year I am on the right path to do that.
ANDERSON: Congratulations. Good luck this season.
MCILROY: Thank you. (END VIDEOTAPE)
ANDERSON: And if you are wondering you can see from my hair well you probably won't wondering, you can see from my hair, that it was extremely
windy out there.
It is blowing a hooly (ph) in the Middle East at the moment. Certainly through the UAE. It looks lovely, but it is breezy outside.
The latest world news headlines are just ahead plus the U.S. presidential race gets ready to enter
a new phase. We will demystify how the Iowa caucuses work as candidates prepare for Monday's key vote.
[11:33:00] ANDERON: Well, fresh from the lifting of international sanctions, Iran is gearing up to go to the polls next month.
But as CNN's Frederik Pleitgen has been finding out, there are serious concerns.
FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: After the nuclear agreement, Iran is heading for key elections. Voters will choose a new
parliament and also the body that elects the country's supreme leader.
This is a very important election for Iran, because it is also seen as a referendum of this country's current course after the nuclear agreement of
opening up towards the west and even slightly towards the U.S.
But there is controversy ahead of the vote. Moderate supporters of President Hassan Rouhani say many of their candidates have been
The head of the economic committee is one of them. Arsalan Fatifor (ph) says he will appeal.
"Whoever has been disqualified has the right to object to that disqualification," he says.
He can defend himself and see the documents against him.
Some claim the disqualifications are a move by hard liners to cement their power fearing the
nuke deal and better relations with the west will drive voters to Rouhani's camp.
Even the grandson of the Islamic Republic's founder Ayatollah Khomenei, Hassan Khomenei, seen as a relative moderate, has been blocked from running
for a top clerical body.
The election for the assembly of experts is on the same day as Iran's parliamentary elections.
All cancidates are vetted by a body called The Guardian Counsel, half of its members are chosen by Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
Conservatives we spoke to denied that moderates are being singled out.
"These disqualifications have all happened according to the law," this conservative MP says. "All of those who have been disqualified did
something against the law, otherwise the guardian council would not have disqualified them."
The upcoming elections will do a lot to shape Iran's approach towards the west. As Tehran looks for a foreign investment, some worry that politics
could get in the way of the current reconciliation process.
Fred Pleitgen, CNN, Tehran.
[11:35:13] ANDERSON: Well, it was another deadly weekend for migrants trying to reach Europe in search of a better future. More than 30 people
died when their boat capsized in the sea off the coast of Turkey.
Well, authorities say several of the bodies rescued were children. They were on their way to the Greek Islands.
Well, for those who make it there is still a long and dangerous trip ahead, as you will be well aware. To survive migrants often rely on kindness and
good will of people. And that is why there have been calls to nominate Greek islanders for a Nobel Peace Prize.
Arwa Damon introduces us to some of those people who have gone out of their way to help others.
ARWA DAMON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: From their house on the cliff, 81-year-old woman Despiona Zourzouvilis, and her husband, who just
passed away, noticed the first boats in April of last year.
DESPIONA ZOURZOUVILIS, LESBOS RESIDENT (through translator): My mind went back years because my mother came as a refugee from Turkey. I saw the
people walking, drenched. It's a deep sorrow. I felt like my heart was breaking.
DAMON: She calls them the Red Boats.
Despiona did what she could, putting out water, sandwiches, hosing people off to cool them down in the summer heat. Often, she wanted to run down
the cliff when she heard screams for help, but her knees aren't strong enough.
ZOURZOUVILIS (through translator): Do you know how many people drowned and were taken out of the sea? What can I say? I feel like I have seen
DAMON: Scattered graves lie in a plot in the Lesbos cemetery, often marked with just a number and a date, small toys identifying those of the youngest
The Greek Islanders found themselves the first responders in the months before the coast
guard increased its numbers over the summer, before Frontex and NGOs finally arrived.
For their actions, kindness and generosity there have been petitions to nominate the islanders for the Nobel Peace Prize.
Thomas Zourzouvilis is one of the many fishermen who time and time again inadvertently ended up on rescue missions when he was hauling in his nets.
THOMAS ZOURZOUVILIS: Because the weather was not very nice. OK, people when you take people out. They start kissing your hands and their this.
Many, many small children and women there, you know, I think anyone would do it.
DAMON: The massive influx of migrants and refugees completely changed the nature of this tourist destination. All islanders have pitched in, drying
clothes, providing food, blankets and even risking jail time.
Before the government and NGOs provided official transport, driving refugees was considered smuggling.
But Maria Androulaki did not care, cramming as many people as could fit in her tiny car.
MARIA ANDROULAKI, TOUR GUIDE: Here, I was taking the people that they walking. They had to walk 75 kilometers from here down to the town
Mitilini (ph) and get registered.
DAMON: That is a one to two day walk.
You could have been arrested back then for this. What made you still stop?
ANDROULAKI: Seeing kids at the age of my son walking to get to the next station. I could see in their eyes my son trying to get a life, searching
to get a life.
I couldn't just pass by and drive my car.
DAMON: It's that type of compassion that may earn the islanders the Nobel nod, but Maria says it is wrong.
ANDROULAKI: We are monsters if we don't do this. Why should we be given a prize for being human beings? We are supposed to be human beings.
DAMON: In a world where humanity seems to be in increasing short supply, perhaps that is exactly why the islanders deserve to be recognized.
Arwa Damon, CNN, Lesbos, Greece.
ANDERSON: To another part of Europe now. Once more, Austrian town has been welcoming
refugees for decades and has felt the benefits.
Kelly Morgan with this report.
KELLIE MORGAN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Neudorfl (ph) is bitterly cold this time of year. The town's lake freezes over. The ground is
blanketed in snow. But when you step foot in this small Austrian town, the welcome is undoubtedly warm.
Adil Banyenovic (ph) was among the first migrants to feel it when he fled the Bosnian war 23 years ago.
He explains how his family was immediately accepted by Neudorfl (ph) resident, and that he worked as a lifeguard at the lake during summer,
protecting the community that he says has kept him safe.
Now a new wave of migrants are finding sanctuary in this idyllic place, population 4,500.
This family of six from Afghanistan has only just arrived after a cold three month journey sleeping in tents boosting the number of refugees in
town to 80.
The parish church has given them a warm home to stay while they await asylum. The family will have access to local schools, including the
Here, children sleep soundly far from the cacophony war so many have fled. The most recent arrivals are mainly Kurdish, but the preschool takes in all
The current count is 21 different languages. It is through play they learn to communicate, integrate.
So, too, these young migrant men who are living in a private house run by Karatas (ph), the same not for profit organization that housed refugees
from the Bosnia war. They made their way to Austria alone and are now awaiting asylum, including this 16 year old Akmet Takushi (ph) who is keen
to practice the German he has been learning since he arrived last may.
"I need to learn German so I can go to school and become a carpenter," he says.
It's the process this Neudorfl (ph) hostel has been guiding migrants through for 26 years.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The people living here in the house, they are staying in Neudorfl (ph), so they have jobs here, their children, the kids are
going to university now. They are really well integrated and it really works.
MORGAN: It is a model for integration Mayor Deiter Posch is sharing with other local leaders from countries dealing with the unprecedented flow of
He is calling for a change in the way migrants are received.
DEITER POSCH, NEUDORFL MAYOR: Migrants take on the first day from the community, but on the second day if we make it possible they bring to the
MORGAN: In this small town with a big heart, migrants are not treated as a burden, they are simply given a safe haven and a new start.
Kellie Morgan, CNN, Neudorfl, Austria.
ANDERSON: Well, there are many ways you can help migrants and refugees in Europe at present or elsewhere. CNN gathering a list of organizations
which have taken action.
Use the website. CNN.com/impact for the details, that is CNN.com/impact.
You are watching Connect the World. We're going to take a very short break at this point. Another 15 minutes or so of the show. So do stay with us.
Coming up Iowa voters prepare to head for the caucuses. We're going to tell you how the process works as the race for the White House in 2016
[11:45:24] ANDERSON: Now, back with us on CNN. U.S. presidential candidates are making their last pitches to voters in the state of Iowa
just one day before the state's caucuses.
Now, the caucus process different from a traditional primary vote. Republicans come together and try to persuade each other to vote for their
favorite candidate before casting a binding ballot.
But Democrats caucus in a more intricate way.
All this explained for those of you who may be new to or just reminding yourselves about the U.S. election process, by our Jonathan Mann.
JONATHAN MANN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: First, the caucus goers gather in a public space, like a high school gymnasium. Each candidate has a
representative who speaks on their behalf, trying to sway undecided voters and everyone else too. It looks like the speeches are done.
Now the voters are headed for their respective candidates' corners. George Washington has the most support with seven of our faceless little people.
But the caucus isn't over yet. It's time now for community discussion and persuasion. Jefferson's supporters are headed for the Washington corner
with cupcake and every reason they can imagine for their rival supporters to join them. And they have succeeded in convincing one Washington
supporter to move over to the Jefferson camp. They don't actually have eyes, but Lincoln supporters seen an opportunity, and one of them is headed
over to Jefferson's camp armed with evidence of Lincoln's achievements and every argument he can summon up.
But, no, the Washington supporter who defected to Jefferson is going back to the first President's corner, and he's taking a Lincoln supporter with
him. So the tally is now eight for Washington, four for Jefferson, and just three for Abraham Lincoln. Does anybody want to change their votes? No. So,
it looks like the caucus is over and George Washington will have his cupcake and eat it too. If they had mouths, they'd be smiling.
ANDERSON: Jonathan Mann, our own political man joining us now from CNN center.
That helps for those of our viewers who may not be with the machinations of the process.
It is so hard to understand, though, for many people who haven't grown up with this, does the Iowa caucus process make sense, John?
MANN: Well, you just saw our explanation. It does not. I mean, this was a system that dates
back to the 1800s but has survived into the 21st Century. And it is really even odder when you think about Iowa itself, because there are few people
in the entire state and of those few people are really small number of people turn out to vote.
So, it is a tiny sample of American public opinion. And not only that, people vote as we saw in a way that is the exact opposite of a secret
ballot. Instead of being alone with your thoughts, able to cast your vote, you are surrounded by your neighbors, maybe your employer is there, maybe
the people you go to church or mosque or temple with. And they are there watching how you vote, they are empowered to get you to change your vote if
it doesn't agree with theirs.
And so the system, when you think about it, is truly bizarre. But Iowans cling to it. And this is really the way that Americans get their first
opportunity to see who might eventually be a presidential nominee.
ANDERSON: Well, it would if it was predictable, but it is not. Why not?
MANN: Well, because of this process. Once again, if you were going into a secret ballot election, we could ask you just before you headed in how you
are going to vote.
But when you go to a caucus, we don't really know what is going to happen in the dynamic of the caucus. Do you have a really, really convincing
neighbor who can talk you into changing sides?
The other thing is that the caucuses take an awfully lot longer period of time than just going in to cast the ballot. The evening might take three
hours. How many people head out and spend three hours voting on a day or evening when it might be snowing, when they can't get child care?
There are no absentee ballots. If you are working or you have got a family or you just don't feel like spending three hours in a high school gym you
don't turn out.
ANDERSON: So, how many people do turn out?
MANN: Relatively few.
The republicans are lucky if they get into double digits. It's not unusual for them to get in the low teens. But sometimes not even that.
The Democrats might make it into 20, 25 percent but once again a tiny number of voters. Say if Bernie Sanders can convince every 17-year-old in
the state to vote for him because so few people turn out you can swing the vote with a tiny number and that is why turnout is so crucial.
ANDERSON: John, this is just the start of the primary process in this U.S. election. What is it going to tell us?
[11:50:10] MANN: It may tell us, for example, if Donald Trump can really win.
We know that Donald Trump is famous. We know he has a lot of fans. We know a lot of them come to his rallies, but he has never run for dogcatcher
or student council president. We don't know how many fans turn into voters. So, it will tell us that on the Republican side.
On the Democratic side it is not going to tell us a whole lot, unless Hillary Clinton or Bernie
Sanders really win big, we are expecting it will be close and so both of them will have ample reason to say, well, I did pretty well. Let's go on to
New Hampshire and the races to come.
The key question is will there be any really big surprise? Will Trump come in second? Will Sanders get all those 17 year olds? We could be
surprised. But if there is not a startling, a startling result, this is just going to be the first fight of a very long war.
ANDERSON: Yep. And we are 10-and-a-half months away. Fascinating stuff. We will stick with you and your show Political Mann. That is at the
weekend. Thanks, John,
It's a show that brings you the latest on the U.S. presidential race all explained by John from the candidate's platforms to the political missteps
and he will be talking about why all of this matters to you and me. You sit watching this from so many miles away, be sure to tune in at 5:00 a.m.
Monday if you are in the UAE here, that is 1:00 a.m. in London.
If you are not live from Abu Dhabi, this is Connect the World. Coming up, a lot of adults in Thailand are buying dolls. We are going to tell you why
they believe these dolls are so special.
And diversity took the spotlight at this year's Screen Actors Guild Award. But that's why some say the Oscars should take note.
ANDERSON: Right, 53 minutes past the hour.
You are with CNN. This is Connect the World with me, Becky Anderson. Just before we go, a
couple of things for you.
The Academy Awards have drawn heavy criticism, as you may be well aware, for a lack of diversity in their film nominations, but it was a different
story at another Hollywood award show, the Screen Actors Guild Awards on the best in both film and in television.
And some say diversity was Saturday night's big winner. David Daniel with this.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to diverse TV.
DAVID DANIEL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The 22nd Annual SAG Awards turned into a show of strength for diversity in Hollywood. Queen Latifah was honored for
the TV movie Bessey.
QUEEN LATIFA, ACTOR/SINGER: And I hope that anyone out there who does not come in the package that people say you should keep fighting for it.
DANIEL: For the second straight year, Orange is the New Black doubled down, Uzo Aduba repeated as best female actor in a comedy.
UZO ADUBA, ACTOR: In a show that reflects and represents so many people.
DANIEL: And the show triumphed again as best comedy series.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Look at this stage. I mean, this is what we talk about when we talk about diversity.
DANIEL: Idris Elba pulled off a double of his own winning a TV award for Luther and a film award for Beast of No Nation.
IDRIS ELBA, ACTOR: We made a film about real people and real lives.
DANIEL: Jeffrey Tambor won for playing a transgender woman in Transparent and Alicia Vikander won for playing the wife of a trans woman in The Danish
Even the night's lifetime achievement honoree, the legendary Carol Burnett, recalled being told early in her career...
CAROL BURNETT, COMEDIAN: No, no, no, no, look, look, all the comedy variety shows are hosted by men. Comedy variety is a man's game.
DANIEL: As for those looking for Oscar indicators The Revenant star Leonaro De Caprio and Brie Larsen from Room took top film acting honors
and the nights big award, best film ensemble went to Spotlight about journalists revealing sexual abuse by Catholic priests.
MICHAEL KEATON, ACTOR: This is for the disenfranchised everywhere. This is for every Flint, Michigan in the world. This is for the powerless.
DANIEL: A fitting end to a night that showed Hollywood's ability to reach and represent people through its diversity.
In Hollywood. I'm David Daniel.
ANDERSON: An unusual trend trend picking up in Thailand. Your Parting Shots.
AMARA WALKER, CNN CORRESPONDENT : They are called Child Angel Dolls. They may look life like or not depending on your point of view, but in Thailand
they are the latest trend for believers seeking good fortune.
Many Thais seek the blessing of Buddhist monks for their dolls. Some believe their dolls possess a child's spirit bringing good luck and wealth.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (through translator): She gave me a better life. She helped me earn more money when I earned very little. I won many lotteries.
WALKER: First popularized by celebrities whose claim the dolls had brought them professional success. Some observers say they reflect anxiety in
Thailand's struggling economy. Other says the dolls make up for what may be missing in their personal lives.
MANANYA BOCONMEE, CHILD ANGELS CLUB FOUNDER (through translator): Part of the reason why people buy these dolls is because they don't have kids or
aren't earning so much. But once they adopted a doll their lives really improved.
WALKER: Many of the dolls are imported and cost hundreds of dollars. Owners often lavish attention on them like children, dressing them, feeding
them, paying to take them to restaurants, the movies.
One Thai airline is even welcoming the dolls aboard as paying passengers.
NATSUDA JANTABTIM, DOLL OWNER (through translator): I can see it in their eyes. I know some of them must be wondering why I am carrying a doll, but
I just don't care.
WALKER: Thai mental health officials are expressing concern over the supernatural dolls, but for now their popularity seems to be growing.
Amara Walker, CNN.
ANDERSON: I'm Becky Anderson, that was Connect the World.