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CONNECT THE WORLD
ISIS Claims Another Attack In Baghdad; Controversy Over Eurovision 2016 Winner; Interview with Bollywood Actress Aishwarya Rai Bachchan; Interview with Girl Effect CEO Farah Ramzan Golant; Old Trafford Evacuated After Bomb Scare; Bernie Sanders Fights On Despite Long Odds. Aired 11a- 12p
Aired May 15, 2016 - 11:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[11:00:14] BECKY ANDESRON, HOST: Tonight, a fireball erupts into the skies near Baghdad as ISIS claims an attack once again. What is being done to
stop the group's latest surge of violence there? We'll have a live report for you later this hour.
Plus, well Moscow isn't happy about this year's winning Eurovision song. Is it hitting a little too close to home perhaps? We'll break it down for
you this hour.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Your (inaudible), because I thought that would be pretty insensitive and selfish from the perspective of the making of the
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: One of Bollywood's biggest stars tells me why she couldn't bring herself to meet the woman who inspired her latest role.
And just after 7:00 here in the evening here in the UAE. Welcome.
I want to begin with a security alert at a Premier League football match. The match between Manchester United and Bournemouth has been called off and
Old Trafford Stadium has been evacuated.
The Manchester United Football Club says that police are investigating a suspicious package found inside the stadium.
Let's get you the very latest. World Sport's Don Riddell joining me now.
What do we know at this point, Don?
DON RIDDELL, CNN WORLD SPORT: Yeah, these are extraordinary scenes, Becky, possibly even unprecedented, certainly in the Premier League. This is the
final day of the Premier League season. All the games were supposed to kickoff at exactly the same time just over an hour ago. But we then got
word, as you say, that the iconic Old Trafford Stadium was being evacuated.
We understand that a suspicious package was discovered. And initially two parts of the ground were evacuated, that's the Alex Ferguson stand and the
Stretford End. And it then got to a point where they decided to evacuate the whole
stadium. Sniffer dogs were sent in to inspect many areas of the stadium. The game has now been abandoned. We don't know when this came will be
played. But clearly a very worrying situation there at Old Trafford.
This is one of the biggest stadiums in European football. It holds 75,000 supporters. So, evacuating that stadium was no mean feat. The fans are
now leaving the vicinity. And this situation is very much ongoing right now, Becky.
ANDERSON: Yeah, some confusion then at the end of what has been the most remarkable season.
RIDDELL: Oh, absolutely. And, you know, it remains to be seen how and when this game will be played. I guess this is not the most important
thing for the authorities at Old Trafford right now. As I say, they're still dealing with this situation.
But of course Manchester United due to play in the FA Cup final next weekend. After that, we've got the European championships.
There has been some debate today as to whether or not they would actually need to play this game. Of course, Manchester United were trying to get
themselves into the Champion's League. And results elsewhere made determine that they're not going to be able to get into the Champion's
League anyway. But there are points at stake with regards to qualification for the Europa League.
Bournemouth United's rivals today would also expect to finish their season and get as high up the table as they can, because that will determine prize
money at the end of the season.
So, all of that yet to be determined. But we're not hearing any guidance on when any of that is going to happen. You know, as I say, potentially a
very serious situation at Old Trafford and a lot of concern for the people who were there.
ANDERSON: Yeah, and football stadiums, of course, being watched very carefully at president after the threats from ISIS over Euro 2016. And
what sort of -- are we aware of what sort of added security have been put in place at football stadiums and other sporting stadiums?
RIDDELL: Well, I think certainly in Europe after the attacks last year, one of which was actually targeted at the Stade de France when the French
National Team was playing Germany in a friendly game towards the end of last year, yes, I think major sports events know that they are potential
targets. I don't think there's any doubt about that.
Of course, a lot of the attention has been focused on what the French authorities are doing ahead of the European championships this summer.
There is no doubt that security has been beefed up in a major way at all of the stadiums and all of the fan zones in many of the cities across France.
But, yes, I think that was a gamechanger when that incident took place in France last year.
We did hear one of the media members, Graham Suness (ph) talking about going into Old Trafford today, saying he felt as thought security was
tighter than usual. So, perhaps we will learn after the fact that maybe the authorities knew something today. We're just speculating at this
But, yes, football stadiums with tens of thousands of people who have the eyes of the media and live television cameras on them are absolutely
targets for anybody wishing to cause harm.
ANDERSON: All right, Don, thank you for that. Don Riddell on the story for you.
Well, ISIS has claimed responsibility for Sunday's suicide attack when a cooking gas factory near Baghdad at least, ten security officers were
killed, and two dozen people were wounded.
Now, it is the latest in a surge of attacks by the Sunni jihadists on mostly Shia targets in Iraq. More than 90 people were killed on Wednesday
alone. Analysts say ISIS appears to be trying to spark a new sectarian war.
Well, let's get the very latest. Ian Lee following developments for us today out of Cairo -- Ian.
[11:06:21] IAN LEE, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Becky, this latest attack was slammed by Baghdad's governor Ali al-Tamimi (ph) saying
that there wasn't enough security at the plant, enough security personnel, security guards as well as weaponry to stop an ISIS attack, especially
because this cooking gas plant is important. Economically, it provides a basic service to the Iraqi people. And also the geographical location of
These guards didn't have the means to stop an ISIS attack with heavy weaponry and also the tactics that they use.
He also slammed Iraqi special forces -- get this, Becky, it took them two- and-a-half hours to get to the plant after it had -- the attack had begun.
He's also calling for security personnel -- or the chiefs of security of the plant of the area to be replaced and for a new plan to be put in place
to protect this plant. But it also underlines what you pointed out is that we've seen an increased number of attacks by these sleeper cells in area
that is controlled by Iraqi security forces. Even though ISIS is facing defeats on multiple fronts on the battlefield, they have -- we have seen an
increased number of those attacks against soft targets and also economic and strategic targets as well, Becky.
ANDERSON: Ian Lee reporting for you today from Cairo. Ian, thank you.
Let's get you some of the other stories on our radar, then, today. And ISIS has also claimed Sunday's suicide attack at a military base in
southern Yemen. At least 30 troops were killed and 29 were wounded. Officials say the bomb was set off in a crowd of new recruits.
In Australia, five men are facing terrorism charges accused of plotting to join the militant group. Authorities say the men planned to travel to
Syria and bought a boat for the first leg. The attorney general says they were long under surveillance. They face life in prison.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry met with Saudi King Salman about strengthening Syria's fragile ceasefire. Earlier, Kerry arrived in Jeddah
on Saturday for meetings with top officials.
On Tuesday, he will co-chair an international Syria support group meeting in Vienna.
ANDERSON: Where is your mind, humanity cries, some of the powerful lyrics that helped Ukraine's Jamala win this year's Eurovision song contest
The song about the Soviet Union's deportation of Tartars from Crimea under Josef Stalin is called 1944, but some critics have speculated it may as
well have been called 2014, the year Russia annexed Crimea.
Well, Moscow says the song violated Eurovision rules, something cost officials disagreed with.
Russia itself came third, behind Australia. Matthew Chance has the reaction from Moscow.
MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Already, state television, you can see behind me, is going through its analysis of what
happens in this Eurovision song contest. They were convinced that Sergey Lazarev was going to win this. And indeed he did win the popular vote.
But one of the things that commentators are saying is this was a politicized competition. That, you know, the voting was skewed against
Russia, and because Lazarev winning the popular vote they're saying that this goes to the discrepency between what governments in Europe think about
Russia and what people in Europe think about Russia.
So, I think the attitude at the moment isn't so much dwelling on the rights and wrongs of Ukraine winning this competition, they're looking at the
moment of why they lost.
Although, I have to say the song by Jamala (ph) very controversial. It went very close to the line in terms of how political songs are supposed to
be in the Eurovision song contest. They're not supposed to be political at all. This was about the deportation in 1944, the song, of Crimean Tartars
and something that angered the Russians when they heard the song. And of course Russia annexed Crimea two years ago and is accused of persecuting
the Crimean Tartars today.
And so there's a sort of relevancy of that Ukrainian song, which won the Eurovision song contest, again, in what we perceive here as a major blow.
And to their efforts to promote themselves here in Russia on the international stage.
ANDERSON: Matthew Chance reporting.
Well, from politics to popular culture. Stay with us here on Connect the World as we break down Eurovision with broadcast author and Eurovision
expert John Kennedy O'Connor. That is in around half an hour from now here on CNN. Do not miss that.
The latest world news headlines will be coming up for you.
And who killed a top Hezbollah commander. I dive into some of the series with Middle East analyst Fawaz Gerges.
Plus, American voters have almost chosen their presidential candidates, which means their candidates have their own big decisions to make. All
that coming up. Stay with us.
ANDERSON: Right. You're watching CNN. This is Connect the World with me, Becky Anderson. Just about a quarter past 7:00 in the UAE.
To the question of who killed a top Hezbollah commander in Syria. Mustafa Badreddine was convicted of carrying out bombings in Kuwait. He was also
indicted in former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafic Hariri's assassination in Lebanon, and suspected of planning attacks Israel.
So, as he was mourned in Beirut, it's clear he had a lot of enemies. Well, I sat down with Fawaz Gerges earlier. He is a professor of international
relations at the London School of Economics, a regular guest on this show. We talked about why Badreddine's death is significant.
[11:15:05] FAWAZ GERGES, LONDON SCHOOL OF ECONOMICS: Mustafa Badreddine was the commander of Hezbollah fighters in Syria, the most senior leader --
Hezbollah leader in Syria. He was the commander of Hezbollah fighters in southern Lebanon before Israel pulled out of Lebanon in 1999. He was not
just a military leader, he was one of the most trusted figures for Hezbollah. He sat on Hezbollah shura (ph) council, one of the most, you
might say, significant decision maker.
He was also accused by the international court of playing a role in the assassination of the Lebanese Prime Minister Rafic Hariri.
All in all, I think this was a signficant loss for Hezbollah, not just a military leader, but a critical player. And the politics of Lebanon and
also in the politics of Syria as well.
ANDERSON: And some disagreement over how he lost his life. Why? And what are the consequences?
GERGES: Becky, the first report by Hezbollah came through the al-Manar (ph) television. Al-Manar (ph) is the station of Hezbollah. It accused
Israel of basically killing Mustafa Badreddine. And that makes sense. There's a pattern.
Israel has killed several top leaders of Hezbollah in the past two or three years. It's been targeting Hezbollah leaders who are basically trying to,
according to Israel, trying to get some weapons, qualitative weapons from Syria into Lebanon.
Then, Hezbollah after al-Manar (ph) statement said, no, we have to wait and see. We are doing an investigation.
During the funeral, a few hours after the funeral, Hezbollah came with a new report saying it was the Tahriri (ph) fighters, the Salafi jihadist
fighters, some of the militant Islamist fighters of the rebels, of the Syrian rebels. And basically they bombed the headquarters, you know, where
So, you had three, you know, almost two or three narratives.
The Israeli I mean claim makes more sense, because I mean it seems to me that there is a pattern that Israel is not the first time or the last time
that Israel targets senior Hezbollah leaders. And secondly, I mean, I think many observers and strategists are questioning the ability of the
rebels to really, I mean, long-range, basically bombing of such a I mean serious critical target.
ANDERSON: And these being the rebels in Syria.
Where are we so far as a solution, any solution, is concerned for the conflict in Syria. Talks coming up once again this week. Kerry is in
Riyadh before these talks happens. We're talking the talk. Nobody seems to be walking the walk. In the meantime, people continue to die.
GERGES: If you ask me if there is a light at the end of the tunnel, I don't think there is a political light. I don't think there is a military
light. There's a deadlock, political deadlock and you have military deadlock. Even though Russia has changed the balance of power, the balance
of force in Syria in favor of the Assad government, even though Russian military intervention has changed the political realities -- no one is
talking now about the future of Assad, except the opposition. And the Americans and the Europeans are playing lip service, but there is no common
In fact, let me turn the question on its head and say that Syria might have reached a critical junction, a turning point. It might have descended into
what I call long war. And the question is, sadly and tragically for Syria, because as you've said you have now between 300 and 400,000 Syrians who
have been killed, the question is not whether there is basically the prospect of a political solution. What if Syria descends into a long war,
10, 15 years? What are the implications not only for Syria, but for neighboring countries -- Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey and Iraq, that even for
European security and global security as well.
ANDERSON: You tell me. What do you think the implications are?
GERGES: Tremendous. Lebanon is on the brink of all out war. Turkey now, terrorism is becoming part of the life of Turkey. You have, I mean, almost
4, 5 million refugees in Lebanon, in Jordan and Turkey. It's really adding -- weighing down on the social and political fabric. Also, the flames of
the Syrian conflict threatening to devour not only the Syrian state, but even the social fabric and the state system that was established Sykes-
Picot at the end of World War II (sic).
ANDERSON: And that is 100 years ago this year, or even last week, of course.
Rewriting the borders in the modern Middle East, it seems, is what is at stake at present here.
You wrote ISIS, a history recently published. You've talked about the impact that Syria will have on Iraq. We are lead to believe that there was
some ambition to actually counter ISIS -- some said they were on the run to a certain extent in Syria and in Iraq. Are they?
[11:20:12] GERGES: No, not yet. We are not seeing the beginning of the end of ISIS neither in Syria nor in Iraq. In fact, most probably ISIS
will be with us after, you know the American President Barack Obama is gone from the scene. This is how bad it is. These are not my words, these are
the words of the top U.S. intelligence services.
If you ask me about ISIS, how do we make sense of ISIS? ISIS, Becky, is a symptom of the breakdown of state institutions. ISIS is a symptom,
basically, of the collapse of the social fabric in Syria and Iraq and neighboring countries. So, the question is not -- the question is not only
about ISIS, that why ISIS has been able to do as well as it has, because of the spreading fires in Syria and Iraq, because of the fragility of state
institutions, because of the creeping Shiite-Sunni sectarianism in Syria and Iraq, and also because of the collapse of the state system as we know
So, without tackling the Syrian conflict, without finding a solution for the political -- I mean, crisis inside Iraq, without resolving -- I mean,
the whole idea about the relationship between the state and citizen, I think ISIS, or versions of ISIS -- because even if you defeat ISIS
militarily, ISIS could mutate into what, into another terrorist organization.
ANDERSON: Well, let's get you some U.S. election action now. It seems all but over on the Democratic side. Even if Hillary Clinton loses badly in
the next few states, she is still all but assured of winning the nomination. But her rival is still fighting. Here's what Bernie Sanders
told supporters in Kentucky.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. BERNIE SANDERS, 2016 DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: Nobody would have believed that we would receive well over 9 million votes at this point
in the campaign. And very few people would have believed that this coming Tuesday we're going to win a great victory right here in Kentucky.
And by the way I think we're going to win in Oregon as well. So...
And then on June 7, we've got California and a bunch of other states.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: It looks as if he's enjoying it, doesn't he, still?
Sanders heads into Tuesday's contest fresh off a win in West Virginia. But Hillary Clinton needs less than a fifth of the delegates on the table still
So, why is Sanders pledging to stay in through the convention? CNN's John King crunched the numbers for you. And this is what he came up with.
JOHN KING, CNN CORREPOSNDENT: Is there anybody who really six months ago, eight months ago thought Bernie Sanders was going to be giving Hillary
Clinton this kind of a run for her money? I think not, except for maybe Bernie Sanders and his top campaign team.
But the very rules that have kept Bernie Sanders in the race so far, the Democratic proportional rules -- no winner take all states, they don't
exist -- that has kept Bernie Sanders in the race. Now, it keeps Secretary Clinton with her lead.
SANDERS: It's an uphill struggle. We have the chance to end up with a majority of the pledged delegates. And if we do that, I think you are
looking at the Democratic nominee for president.
KING: This is the problem. You see what's left of the map, right. You see what's left on the map. Does Bernie Sanders have a mathematical
chance? yes. But, is realistic math? There's 897 pledged delegates left. He needs to win 67 percent of them. He has not been winning anywhere near
67 percent of the delegates so far. So is it possible? Sure, it's possible. That's mathematically possible. Would you place a bet on Bernie
Sanders winning California with 67 percent of the vote? I think not.
Look at that, all Bernie Sanders, every county in West Virginia. That's pretty impressive.
SANDERS: It seems a little bit dumb to me, if I might say so, that last night where Secretary Clinton ended up with 35, 36 percent of the votes,
she is going to get six out of seven super delegates.
KING: In the end, she's still ahead, even if he wins everything left on the board by 10 points, she's still ahead in pledged delegates.
Now, a, the Clinton campaign says this isn't going to happen. B, if this happens, unless they panic, Hillary Clinton still has in her back pocket
the secret weapon.
If Senator Sanders could run the board, some of these people would defect. The math is not impossible for Bernie Sanders, but it's pretty damn hard.
[11:25:07] ANDERSON: John King on the numbers for you.
Well, meanwhile, Hillary Clinton locking her sights on Donald Trump's taxes. Last week, Trump told the Associated Press that he probably
wouldn't be releasing his tax returns after all. Keep in mind, he'd be the first nominee in decades to refuse to do so.
Well, now, Clinton has released a new web video, accusing Trump of hiding something.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, 2016 REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Maybe I'm going to do the tax returns when Obama does his birth certificate.
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The state of Hawaii released my official long form birth certificate.
TRUMP: If I decide to run for office, I'll produce my tax returns. Absolutely.
I am officially running for president of the United States.
GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS, ABC NEWS ANCHOR: Getting any closer to releasing your tax returns?
TRUMP: Well, I'm thinking about it.
I can't do it until the audit is finished.
STEPHANOPOULOS: The audit is no excuse. The IRS has made it very clear that an audit is not a bar to public release. It is entirely your choice.
TRUMP: It's none of your business.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Well, there you go. It's been quite some campaign season today, isn't it?
And get this, we are still six months away from the actual presidential election. Some people, though, already looking ahead. That is right,
there is already talk about the next presidential election in 2020. To give your sense at a leg up at the bookies for then head online CNNpolitics.com.
Check out who may take a run at the White House in four years time. It's a bit fun for you.
Again, that's CNNpolitics.com.
Still to come tonight on this show, Connect the World with me Becky Anderson, a blast at the past. The winner of Eurovision targets Russia's
military history, reigniting modern-day tensions. More on that up next.
[11:30:15] ANDERSON: Nigeria stepping up the battle against Boko Haram. The nation hosted an international security summit to discuss strategies
for fighting the militant group. Nigeria's president says more than a billion dollars was promised to help rebuild areas torn apart by Boko Haram
violence. George Howell has more.
GEORGE HOWELL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: At least 20,000 people killed since Boko Haram first waged war on Nigeria. In 2009, the terror group has been
labeled the most deadly in the world by the latest global terrorism index, a threat so great regional and world governments came together in Abuja
with plans to work together and to fight back.
MUHAMMADU BUHARI, NIGERIAN PRESIDENT: We must seize the opportunity that this (inaudible) presents to (inaudible) the successes we have achieved,
consolidate the gains, identify any shortcoming we have experienced, and then draw important lessons on which to (inaudible) forward.
HOWELL: Since the last meeting of delegates two years ago in Paris to discuss the problem and find solutions, the Islamic extremist group has
been pushed out of territory it once controlled in northeastern Nigeria, instead resorting to smaller suicide attacks.
And with the worsening humanitarian crisis of more than 2.6 million people in the Lake Chad region, neighboring nations, from Chad, Niger, Benin and
Cameroon came together to discuss strategies and affirm that they're not letting their guard down.
Supported by the United States, the UK and France that will play a key role in the fight.
FRANCOIS HOLLANDE, FRENCH PRESIDENT (through translator): Boko Haram has been weakened, but it is still capable to conduct attacks of harassment and
equally deliver suicide attacks in the middle of the civilian population. So, we have to support Nigerian armed forces in the regional countries,
help them to be more efficient, be with them whenever it's possible, prepare their staff and provide training.
HOWELL: Western governments worry that ISIS's growing presence in North Africa and ties with Boko Haram could herald a push south and create a
springboard for wider attacks. Nigeria has asked the United States to help with surveillance and reconnaissance and also to sell aircraft to the
nation in the fight against Boko Haram.
The United Kingdom has pledged to give Nigeria 40 million pounds to fight back.
PHILIP HAMMOND, BRITISH FOREIGN SECRETARY: The growing cooperation between Daesh in the Middle East and Boko Haram in this region is a growing threat.
As Daesh faces increasing pressure in its heartland in Syria from the international coalition, there is the real risk that it increases its
efforts in support of Boko Haram here in Nigeria and across the wider region.
ANDERSON: That was George Howell reporting.
I want to get you back to our top story this hour, Manchester United's final league game of the season abandoned earlier on due to a suspect
package. The game had been due to take place against Bournemouth and these are images from inside the stadium.
Luke Greasley (ph) was there and had to leave. He joins us now on the phone. Luke, describe what happened?
LUKE GREASLEY (ph), AT MANCHESTER UNITED GAME: Hello. Well, it was quite bizarre really, because I turned up into the actual stadium after having a
meal in the exec suite. And what we could see was basically people clearing the stadium and it was 10 minutes before the game. So, that's
when you expect people to be entering. And it was very -- it was very relaxed vibe (inaudible).
ANDERSON: How would you say security dealt with it?
GREASLEY (ph): Well, on the Sanoy (ph), an announcement came out saying we -- for all security personnel, we have a code red. And it was that time
quite ominous. And as it happened, everyone starts clearing. And we weren't too sure what we should be doing ourselves, but our stewards kept
us in. So we didn't really know the situation. From there, we just kept waiting. And then they told us that they (inaudible) so then we had a
(inaudible) which meant get out of there.
ANDERSON: What was the reaction of fans?
GREASLEY (ph): What was the reaction of the fans, sorry?
ANDERSON: Correct, yeah.
GREASLEY (ph): To be honest, everyone was quite relaxed because they just didn't know what was going, because we didn't know it was a bomb scare at
this point. So, we all stayed in our seats, as I say. And then it was only later on that apparently it was a mobile phone attached to a pipe
somewhere in the north stand.
[11:35:09] ANDERSON: That's not something that we can confirm at present. I mean, there will be a lot of speculation as to what actually happened and
we will wait official confirmation, of course, from Manchester United.
Did you notice any extra security at this game or at any other game that you've attended recently?
GREASLEY (ph): That was the bizarre part of it, because obviously when we come to the stands, (inaudible) historic road leading up to Old Trafford.
And we actually got checked out, which was almost an added security. We've never been checked on (inaudible) Way. And then you get checked into the
stands as well. So, it's amazing that it's been found.
But the rumors are that it was a mobile phone that was the thing that was found attached to a pipe. And obviously, that's obviously quite a hidden
thing that even if a security person was checking -- unless they were using some special system I guess they wouldn't pick that up.
ANDERSON: Well, we're glad that everybody got out. And it was, as you say, a relaxed evacuation. It's perhaps only because people actually
didn't really know what was going on.
Luke, thank you. I know you must be disappointed. It was a big game forecast and a big day this being the end of the season, so a game still to
play, of course, in the EPL at some point. We will report on when that will be as soon as we know. Thank you, Luke.
Well, let's get you a contest that's often as much about politics as it is about pop music. And this year's Eurovision was no exception. Ukraine's
Jamala won with a song paying tribute to the ethnic Tartars of Crimea. Some thought she was also alluding to Russia's recent annexation of Crimea.
Well, it hasn't gone down well in Russia. And there was more bad news when the country came third behind Australia. Yep, Australia. Despite winning
the popular vote. The voting slightly changed this year.
Well, a Eurovision expert John Kennedy O'Connor joins us via Skype from Stockholm, where the contest was held.
John, did the right country win?
JOHN KENNEDY O'CONNOR, EUROVISION EXPERT: Well, how could anyone answer that question. The wonderful thing about pop music, and the wonderful
thing about the Eurovision song contest is it's completely subjective. I personally didn't like the Ukrainian song, but when I arrived in Stockholm,
well, gosh it seems like three years ago now, everybody was telling me it was a song that was going to win. So, I think it was a very popular
choice. It wouldn't have been my choice.
ANDERSON: Some controversy in the runup to the event as we've been reporting with Russia even suggesting that this song shouldn't have been
in. It was -- it shouldn't have an overt political message, and many will say it did.
But, look, the subterfuge of the voting process, as it were, Eurovision is all about politics, correct? I mean, it always has been.
O'CONNOR: NO. I don't agree with that at all. It really never has been. But, the rules of the contest are very, very explicit. And my sympathy
this morning and certainly this afternoon is definitely tipping towards the Russians. The rules are clear, you cannot have any political message in
your song, and that is sacrosanct. And it is enshrined in the rulebook.
And this year, from my interpretation, that rule was not enforced. I know the Ukrainians are claiming this is a song about an historical event. It's
about an event that happened. It 's about a historical incident. But you cannot get away from the fact that something similar is happening in
Ukraine right now. And this was a wonderful way for the Ukrainians to, if you like, stick it to the Russians and really go in with all fists blazing,
if you like.
And I can understand the Russians feeling upset and the fact that the lyrics were approved.
But at the same time, I can also see how the Russians are extremely upset today, because they installed themselves as the favorite about three months
ago. They were the hottest favorite I've ever known in the contest, and yet they crashed and burned, and their entry failed. So the sour grapes on
one side, and then you've got political anger on the other.
ANDERSON: Right, sure.
Are you denying that politics is never involved in the voting process, in this wonderful competition they call the Eurovision?
O'CONNOR: Yes, I am. I mean, I think, you know, countries vote for countries because they share cultures, because you know anyone in the UK
who voted last night might have voted for Sweden, because their grandmother is Swedish. Is that political? I don't know.
The fact that neighbors support each other is because, you know, they have a great deal of diaspora. There are Russians all over Europe who would
have voted for Russia last night.
Now, Ukraine and Russia hate each other. I think that's an established fact. We get it. Russia gave Ukraine 10 points and Ukraine gave Russia 12
points -- or the other way around. If it's political, that could never have happened.
ANDERSON: All right.
Even though it's not in Europe, Australia made a big impact after qualifying for this year's contest. Singer Dami Im wowed many with her
performance winning the most points from the jury panel. She didn't get enough votes from the viewers calling in, so she finished second. Many
immediately took to Twitter -- you may have seen this -- to express their disappointment, as you can see from tweets like these, the hashtag
#justiceforaustralia began trending. And as this fan said, "many simply believe Australia was cheated."
[11:40:32] O'CONNOR: Well, I can't see how. I mean, the voting process was completely clear and it is completely legitimate and it is shared. The
jury's all picked Australia. Fair enough. They came top of that poll, but the voting public did not pick Australia to win.
I mean, of course what people are very confused about is what Australia are doing here in the first place. That in itself is political. And that's a
political decision taken by the EU who are trying to expand Eurovision into Asia. And they're also trying to expand it into North and South America.
So, what they're trying to do is really bolster Australia in this competition so that Asiavision will start in a couple of years for the
Asia-Pacific nations. And Australia will leave Eurovision. And there will be a brand new competition.
And that's something I look forward to, becuase it would be wonderful to have the Eurovision winner against the Asianvision winner in a Worldvision
final. That would be fantastic.
But I can understand why people are very upset that Australia were here. But they did have without doubt a fantastic song. I just wasn't too sure
about their artist. She left me cold, but that's once again personal taste. I think she's a fantastic song.
ANDERSON: Wonderful. Thank you, sir.
Live from Abu Dhabi, this is Connect the World. Coming up, my interview -- thank you -- with one of the stars of the new movie Subject. The story of
an accidental border crossing that lead to decades of struggle.
Plus, how one charity is fighting corruption by empowering girls with health messages. Good story. Stay with us.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DAVID CAMERON, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: WE had a very successful cabinet meeting this morning to talk about our anti-corruption summit. We've got
the Nigerians. We've actually got some leaders of some fantastically corrupt countries coming to Britain. The Nigerian and Afghanistan,
possibly the two most corrupt countries in the world.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Well, you're watching CNN. This is Connect the World with me Becky Anderson. Welcome back.
British Prime Minister David Cameron speaking candidly before a corruption summit last week. Corruption often prevents money, of course, from being
used to help some of the world's most vulnerable people. In those cases, charities are often left to fill in the gaps, but cash flow is a constant
Some organizations like Girl Effect are finding ways around that problem. Girl Effect creates and markets its own magazines, radio shows, even its
own bands to try to empower other girls with self-worth and entrepreneurial spirit.
Well, I spoke to Girl Effect CEO Farah Ramzan Golant. I began by asking her how corruption affects their efforts to help teenage girls get out of
FARAH RAMZAN GOLANT, CEO GIRL EFFECT: What we all know is that it affects the most vulnerable and the most excluded. And that's why it's very
important that the work we do is from the ground up working with people who are on the margins of society and finding a way to create action on the
ground in real life.
[11:45:35] ANDERSON: You are joining us from the World Economic Forum in Kigali in Rwanda. For Africa as a continent to reach its potential in
business, in technology, and in industry, how important is it for leaders to realize that young girls play an important role in developing an
GOLANT: Well, that's a brilliant question. And of course it goes critically to the heart of what we do. (inaudible) with Africa and Rwanda
is extraordinary. I mean, huge energy around themes of connectivity, creativity, collaboration and change for good. And to your question about
adolescent girls, you know, adolescent girls remain a major untapped resource and our work is really to shift the lens on them so that they
become less of a component of a global problem and we start to see them as participants and actually change makers in their own societies.
And therein lies the real challenge with Africa and the work that we're seeing here is to create very unusual collaborations between private sector
institutions and civil societies. So, it's vitally important for private sector and for civil society organizations as well as government
institutions to really collaborate on creating change for adolescent girls because they are a rising force and a potential transformation for the
ANDERSON: Technology, of course, plays a big part in that. And I know that you're NGO Girl Effect uses media like magazines and radio and pop
groups, for example, to reach millions of girls in their communities in Ethiopia, in Nigeria and indeed in Rwanda. Just tell us a little bit more
about that work and the success that it's had, if you will.
GOLANT: So, of course, we know that connectivity in this world is everything. You know, there's a statistic, which says a 10 percent
increase in mobile penetration creates a 1.2 percent increase in GDP growth. So, the facts speak for themselves.
And our work is really to get -- to release the voices of girls. We create media brands, magazine, music, radio, drama, chat shows, to really help
girls frame for themselves the realities that they're facing, to create a connectivity between them and other girls and to use music, culture,
information and entertainment to really reframe their reality and talk about the solutions that they're willing to participate in and as such we
create, as a social creative business for good, we create media brands that touch the lives the millions of girls, but importantly they're gatekeeper -
- their families, their communities, their societies.
And as you know, brands have a multiplier effect. If a brand is born inside a culture, framed by girls for girls, it can literally spread
exponentially. And that's what our brands in Ethiopia, Rwanda and Nigeria are showing, the real promise of a new narrative by girls for girls.
ANDERSON: And deserve some support, I say.
ANDERSON: Let me just update you on some news just coming in to CNN Center, a controlled explosion has been carried out at Old Trafford Stadium
where a suspicious package was found ahead of Sunday's soccer match between Manchester United and Bournemouth. That is according to the official
Twitter account of the greater Manchester police.
We know that the stadium was evacuated earlier on today. The game canceled, yet to be rescheduled after an unexplained item was found in one
of the stands. So, we've just heard now that a controlled explosion carried out at Old Trafford Stadium where a suspicious package had been
found ahead of the soccer match.
We spoke to one of the fans who had been there, he said it was a very relaxed evacuation. He felt the security had dealt well with the
situation. Disappointed, of course, but had suggested that there had been, he thought, more security rather than less on the way into the stadium,
which had somewhat surprised him, he said.
All right, live from Abu Dhabi, this is Connect the World. Coming up, Beer is a tradition in Belgium, not (inaudible) if you don't know about that.
But, getting it from the brewery to the bar is no easy task when you are up against constant traffic jams. Now, one company has come up with a unique
Plus, my interview with a Bollywood actress on her latest role in what is a new movie. Sarbjit. That, coming up.
[11:51:54] ANDERSON: Right. You're back with CNN. This is Connect the World with me, Becky Anderson. Welcome back.
A new film opens here in the UAE this week. It is a true story about an Indian woman's campaign to free her brother from a Pakistani prison only to
have him die there as an accused spy.
Sarbjit tells a painful, personal story, but also reflects tense times between India and Parkistan.
Well, Bollywood star Aishwarya Rai Bachchan plays Sarbjit's sister. And I spoke with her about the film.
AISHWARYA RAI BACHCHAN, ACTRESS: (inaudible) 23 years, she was unable to bring her brother back alive. She continues to work for the release of
prisoners on both sides of the border, which I think is huge.
ANDERSON: How did you feel playing a character whose personal story mirrors such a tumultuous period in Indian history? I know that you were
not encouraged to speak to Sarbjit's sister, so how did that affect the way that you played her character?
BACHCHAN: If it meant referencing her in terms of her mannerisms or her nuances, she has been extensively documented in her media interactions.
And I felt that I could do that and I did not need to meet her, to observe her, because I thought that would be pretty insensitive and selfish from
the perspective of the making of a film.
And I did meet her when we began the movie, because I wanted to, as a person, Ashwarya the person wanted to me (inaudible).
ANDERSON: She does manage to draw attention to her brother's plight, and that of hundreds of other prisoners, of course, in similar situations.
Tell us more about the journey that she went through to achieve this?
BACHCHAN: For -- for taking 18 years to meet her brother for the first time, from the day that he disappeared, and to have kept that spirit of
perseverance, that resilience, that she may have faced so many challenges coming from a small town in Punjab and to have reached the higher corridors
in New Delhi to eventually go across to Pakistan and be able to take his wife and children is a huge journey.
There was the situation where we filmed at the (inaudible) border. And for an Indian, for me, to be standing there was surreal, because there I am
seeing Pakistan a couple of steps away, seeing our flag, and yet seeing people with the same amount of love and you know camaraderie on both sides.
And you have to remind yourself it's two sides, whereas it felt the same.
[11:55:07] ANDERSON: The film opens in the UAE this coming week. That's where we broadcast from. That's a day earlier than anywhere else.
How big a deal is the UAE for Bollywood these days?
BACHCHAN: It is important messaging to recognize that this film needs to be seen in any and every market, because what it largely is doing here is
telling a human story and human stories really knows no boundaries or borders.
ANDERSON: That was Bollywood star Ashwarya Rai Bachchan speaking to me earlier.
Now, the narrow streets of Bruges in Belgium offer an unforgettable glimpse into history, but they are not so great when it comes to transporting large
trucks of the country's famous beer. Well, now one brewery has come up with a unique solution. Erin McLaughlin explains tonight's Parting Shots,
then, a pipe dream with a difference.
ERIN MCLAUGHLIN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Bruges, Belgium, this Medieval town is a tourist haven, known as one of the best places to drink Belgian beer.
But not much of it is made here anymore, most of the breweries are long gone, except for De Halve Maan, the only one left within the town's walls.
But this brewery had a big problem, the streets of this town are simply too small to accommodate the large tanker trucks required to transport the beer
from the brewery to the bottling plant. So, the solution is right over here: a two-mile long beer pipe underground. And this is where it begins.
For 160 years, Xavier Vanneste family has been brewing beer within the walls of Bruges. The problem started back in 2010 when the brewery moved
its bottling facility out of the town, creating a bottleneck of beer trucks. He says this is the best way to keep the family tradition going.
XAVIER VANNESTE, DE HALVE MAAN BREWERY: I think we are the very first one to do this, yeah.
MCLAUGHLIN: Engineers drilled through the towns canals and cobbled streets, all to lay a pipeline made of high-end plastic capable of
transporting 4,000 liters of beer an hour.
And how did the residents react?
VANNESTE: Well, the residents were quite enthusiastic actually. We received a lot of people spontaneously offering us to pass alongside their
house. They just had one condition, they wanted a tapping point, a private tapping point, but...
MCLAUGHLIN: Are you worried about people tapping into your pipeline?
VANNESTE: We are pretty sure this will technically not be possible.
MCLAUGHLIN: The pipeline's popularity gave Vanneste an idea -- crowd fund the projects 4.5 million dollar pricetag. He came up with a scheme to
exchange donations for beer.
Local restauranteur Philip Lelou (ph) gave over 11,000 dollars and now gets free beer for life.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I like the beer. I drink it every day. But it's more for the friendship.
MCLAUGHLIN: And there's nothing like good friends and the crisp taste of freshly brewed beer.
Well, the pipeline is still under construction. The beer is expected to start flowing the beginning of summer. In the meantime, have a taste.
Erin McLaughlin, CNN, Bruges.
ANDERSON: Cheers. I'm Becky Anderson, that was Connect the World. Thank for watching.