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Turkish-backed Rebels Retake Symbolic Syrian City; Another Woman Comes Forward to Accuse Trump; Negotiations Begin on New Ceasefire in Aleppo; Negotiations For the Release of More Chibok Girls. Aired 11a-12p ET

Aired October 16, 2016 - 11:00   ET


[11:00:15] BECKY ANDERSON, HOST: The battle for Mosul looms. Iraqi coalition forces prepare to go on the offensive against ISIS. We are live

in Iraq for you this hour.

And in Syria, a victory against the terror group on the ground has Turkish- backed rebels seize a symbolic town. All of this as diplomatic talks drag on.

We are live in London where the latest round is set to begin.

Plus, with 23 days and counting until the U.S. presidential election, another woman accuses Donald Trump of sexual assault, and the Republican

contender accuses Hillary Clinton of taking performance enhancing drugs. The state of the race is coming up.

Hello and welcome to Connect the World. I'm Becky Anderson in Abu Dhabi here at 7:00 here in the evening. With war planes roaring into the sky and

the troops filling their guns with bullets, the fullscale moment to try to take back Mosul could blast into action at any moment now.

This is a very important fight. Mosul isn't only Iraq's largest city, it sits along the Tigris River is close to Syril, Turkey and Irbil in Iraqi

Kurdistan. So it is crucial strategically.

Well, militants snatched control more than two years ago as the Iraqi army just seemed to melt away. Well, now, the army is coming back with militia,

Kurdish fighters and others all in the mix.

So how Mosul is won and shared between them could give us a sense of the future of Iraq, itself.

Well, before the bombs started raining down, these leaflets have been dropped warning people to stay away from where they believe that militants

are and to the hunker down at home, but the UN recons that as many as 1 million residents could try to escape which is five times as many people

that live in Geneva, Switzerland, for example, all needing some place to stay

and something to eat.

Well, let's get you on to the ground in Iraq. CNN's Ben Wedeman is with us from Irbil. It's about an hour's drive from Mosul.

And Ben, it's not officially begun, but some kind of operations very much underway, it seems. A key bridge taken out. How will that affect things?

BEN WEDEMAN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, this is Hariah (ph) bridge over the Tigris River in Mosul. And we understand that it actually

wasn't struck, rather some boats nearby were struck and one of the columns was damaged. But what we have seen over the last 24 hours is an

intensification of artillery barrages on the city and its outskirts by artillery that is operated by U.S. personnel as well as the Iraqi army and

the Peshmerga, the Kurdish fighters. So really this is just the softening up, perhaps, of before the official beginning of this offensive. And if

the past is anything to go by, the offensive will be announced on Iraqi television by Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, but the pieces are all

in place at the moment.

You have tens of thousands of Iraqi soldiers, Iraqi anti-terrorism forces, policemen, Kurdish Peshmerga, the so-called Hashd al-Shaabi, or the Popular

Mobilization Forces, Shia, Sunni, Kurd, Chrsitians representing all the different groups that live here in Iraq. And keep in mind, of course, that

Mosul is the most ethnically diverse city in the country, so there are many people very concerned not just with the battle itself, but as you

mentioned, the aftermath.

Who is going to control it? Who is going to maintain peace and order? Who is going to make sure that property doesn't get seized by one group or

another? So, it is not only a very complicated military battle, it is also a very complex political landscape that needs to be dealt with carefully by

all parties involved -- Becky?

ANDERSON: And Ben, we are going to be taking on some of those challenges that this offensive throws out vis-a-vis coordination and control a little

later this hour. From you, ISIS certainly on the back foot, it seems, but just earlier, bombings in Baghdad -- well, you have spent a lot of time

recently. Are people there feeling any safer at this point?

[11:05:19] WEDEMAN: There is intense concern. We had yesterday a bombing of the procession of Shia pilgrims left 34 people dead. Today, another

bombing of a similar procession left two people dead, four people wounded.

Now, security in Baghdad has been dramatically increased, certainly since that July bombing in which more than 300 people were killed. As a result,

they have introduced new methods for bomb detection. They gotten rid of those old bomb detectors that were absolutely useless. But the worry is

that as the offensive against ISIS and Mosul gets underway, there are ISIS sleeper cells in Baghdad, and they will be activated. So, that is a

serious concern, and as we saw yesterday, today, last week as well, there were a series of bombings. So this is definitely something to keep in mind

as this operation begins -- Becky.

ANDERSON: Ben Wedeman on the ground for you. Ben, thank you for that.

We are going to staying with the battle for Mosul throughout the campaign and throughout this

hour. We are going to get you on board a French aircraft that's ramping up its fight against the militants. Then, with Kurdish fighters on the front

line against ISIS, as Ben pointed out, I'm going to speak to the foreign minister of Kurdistan's regional government to ask what's he hoping to gain

from all of this?

And finally, we'll meet one young girl wounded by the remnants of yet another war in Iraq, but now she's fighting to change how disabilities are

looked at in the Arab world. All that coming up this hour.

Well, for the latest diplomatic push for peace in Syria now. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry meeting with key European partners in London.

Now, is after talks in Switzerland with Russia and Syria's neighbors ended without a breakthrough on Saturday.

These new discussions are focused on ending Syria's Russian-backed offensive in what is the rebel-held eastern Aleppo where a ceasefire

brokered last month by the U.S. and Russia, you'll remember, collapsed in a matter of days.

Our international diplomatic editor Nic Robertson joining us from London just back in from Switzerland. And Nic, what is the latest from there?

NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, they have sat down at the Syria meeting in about the last hour. So, you have Britain, France,

Germany, Italy on the European side, European Union representative as well. You have Turkey. You have Saudi Arabia, Qatar, United Arab Emirates and

Jordan all in there.

So, what they are looking at will be what Secretary Kerry can tell them and also the Jordanians, the Qataris and the Saudis were at that meeting in

Lauzanne in Switzerland yesterday.

So, they will be looking at how that discussion went and what their objetives are, the difference between yesterday in Switzerland and today in

London is in London you essentially have a group of allies sitting around the table. Yes, they have got their differences. Yes, they want to do

thigss a different way from each other, but they have got a better chance of coming up themselves with what they would like to achieve. It doesn't

mean that they can achieve it, but you have, for example, just today the president of Turkey, Erdogan, saying that now the Turkish-backed Free

Syrian Army forces have liberated some of the 5,000 square kilometers in northern Syria, and this was going to be a safe zone. It's a question

becomes how do you make that safe?

There always been this question about can you have a no-fly zone? Maybe something that gets discussed today, certainly from British politicians

there's pressure and calling for the politicians, and pressure from some of the hawks if you will for the British to get involved in that. But we have

heard Boris Johnson who is hosting these talks saying, well, you know, if we do that sort of thing, not ruling it out, but it's going to take a big

coalition, a strong coalition, a coalition that would have to be led by the United States.

So, they'll be looking at Secretary Kerry today to see what the U.S. position of his is here.

So, there's no quick fixes. Everyone knows that. So, a lot to discuss. But the potential here that they could evolve some of those ideas that came

out of the yesterday meeting in Switzerland, Becky.

ANDERSON: All right. And Boris Johnson, we are looking at pictures of him, the foreign secretary in the UK, welcoming his counterparts who are

involved in what are these UK-hosted talks.

Nick, the fighting continues well be it beyond Aleppo, as you rightly pointed out. And ISIS certainly losing ground. Opposition activists say

that Turkish backed Syrian rebels have kicked the militants out of the northern town of Dabiq (ph).

But there are still mines and booby traps to clear. Dabiq (ph) is notable as some Islamic prophecies say it could be the site of the battle to end

all battles between Christianity and Islam.

Just how significant was these talks at this time, given what is going on on the ground? Our viewers will be exhausted by hearing us talk about

diplomatic maneuverings around what is going on in Syria. The consequences, though, of course, of anything coming out of these are huge,

aren't they?

[11:10:27] ROBERTSON: They are. The focus has been, and we heard this from both the Russian side and the U.S. side yesterday and Switzerland, the

focus was on, you know, a modest focus, huge, really, when you think about the fact of how many efforts they've had to bring about this modest desire

to bring a cessation of hostilities only in Aleppo and get humanitarian aid to the quarter of a million Syrians there who are sort of living on the

rebel-controlled side who are now under siege. That is relatively modest to wanting to bring peace and the stability to the whole of the contest.

But, yes you know, the focus is on Aleppo. They weren't able to achieve that. You have this town of Dabiq (ph), as you say, it's been very

important for ISIS. They have named one of their PR magazines after this town. It was supposed to be a great battle. It will be a PR loss for

them, and perhaps a motivational setback for them as well when they lose this town, which looks as if it has happened already.

So, in terms of the broader battlefield inside Syria, we're a long way. Boris Johnson put it this way, we are a long day's march from are finding a

position that we can achieve that sort of the lofty goal.

They are just not there yet, Becky.

ANDERSON: Nic Robertson on the story today out of London for you.

Right, some of the other stories on our radar today. And the U.S. and South Korea say the medium range missile that North Korea test fired

Saturday failed right after launch. Washington calling on Pyongyang to avoid increasing tensions in the region.

China getting ready to send two astronauts into space. The state media says they will

blast off Monday from the Gobi Desert. Their vessel will dock at this space lab, which went into orbit last month. They'll spend 33 days there

mostly conducting science experiments.

Thailand's crown prince is trying to reassure the country of a smooth succession. Its revered king, of course, died this past week after 70

years on the throne. He was seen as a stabilizing influence amid the multiple military coup during his reign.

In the race for the White House, a brand-new NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll puts Hillary Clinton 11 points ahead of Donald Trump. She has 48

percent support to his with 37 percent. Another poll from the Washington Post and ABC News puts the contest much closer. It has Clinton just four

points ahead of Trump, that's within the margin of error.

Well, the polls were released as a ninth woman accuses Trump of making unwanted sexual advances nearly 20 years ago. The Trump campaign says

there is no way her account is true. And Trump sent out a tweet saying he lost a large number of female voters

because of the allegations he calls made up. He also doubled down on claims the media are rigging the election.

Well, for more at CNN Politics reporter, Eugene Scott joining me now from Washington. And Eugene, Trump blasting the media and the opponent for what

he calls a rigged election. How is this latest charge slightly to affect how people vote at this point? Is it clear?

EUGENE SCOTT, CNN POLITICS: Well, I don't think that Trump is taking into consideration with that most recent tweet that he wasn't doing really well

with women voters before these comments. There are people who are looking at him differently after these accusations and after the release of the

video that we saw with Billy Bush.

But the reality is the number of undecided voters at this point is probably being exaggerated quite a bit. People generally know who they are going to

the vote for, or if they are going to vote at all. And that is why we continue to see Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton have

the support they do despite the WikiLeaks leaks and despite these allegations.

ANERSON: Eugene, both candidates retiring to their respective corners, as it were, for what is debate prep. What are their respective game plans

likely to be going in what is this third and final debate scheduled for Wednesday this week?

[11:15:30] SCOTT: Well, what we see from Trump's advisers is that they would want their candidate to focus more on the issues and to pivot to talk

about the issues that his voters and the American public have said they really need to hear the competitors address. Whether or not he stays on

that remains to be seen. He has used the last few of his rallies to defend himself against these allegations that he says are not true.

But that is the approach they want him to take. Whether he will take that or not I'm not sure is clear. Hillary Clinton is going to try to avoid

talking about WikiLeaks, which Donald Trump is certainly going to bring up and focus on the issues that affect the demographics that she thinks she

needs to win, such as Millennial voters and independents.

ANDERSON: Are these -- finally, are these debates making any difference to the undecideds as of yet? Is it clear?

SCOTT: Well, we saw after the second presidential debate many of the undecided voters who attended and were questions they said that after the

debate, they remained undecided, that they certainly did not know in what direction they were going the go. We have three weeks left for both of

these candidates to win more people to their side. Whether or not it will actually happen I think remains to be seen, and will be dependent upon

whether or not they talk about the issues that these undecided voters say matter most to them.

ANDERSON: With that, we're going to leave it there. We thank you very much indeed. Always a pleasure.

SCOTT: Thank you.

ANDERSON: Still to come tonight here on this show: well, France vowed war on ISIS, and

this is what it looks like. CNN has rare access into the heart of their operations. We will take you inside, up next.

And the Kurds also taking up the fight against ISIS, what is their long- term goal? I will ask the foreign minister for their regional government in Iraq just ahead. Taking a very short break. Back after this.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): God willing, we are ready and fully prepare. All the troops, the counter terrorism forces are ready and

fully equipped. We say to our people and brothers in Mosul that we will come to save them from Daesh as we will saved the people of Anbar from



ANDERSON: An Iraqi soldiers there talking about kicking ISIS out of Mosul and out of Iraq, that has been a long march up and down the country. But

Iraqi soldiers aren't fighting the militants alone, they are backed up on the ground by special forces from America and elsewhere, not to mention the

massive hammer of international air power, some of which comes from the sea.

CNN's Frederik Pleitgen got rare access to a french air craft carrier to find out how the view against ISIS looks from there.


[11:20:10] FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: As the French aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle ramps up its operations against

ISIS with Rafale fighter jets frequently taking off and landing from the Mediterranean Sea. The actual air operations are only a small part of the

activity on this massive floating airfield.

Specialists preform maintenance day and night to keep the jets combat ready, the officer in charge tells me.

UNIDENITIFIED MALE: It is the key of success to be at sea and to have long deployments, we need to have exactly the same capability as when we are on

the land.

PLEITGEN: Around 2,000 people work on the Charles de Ggaulle, many of them in the massive hangar bays.

Simply running a ship like this and its hangar wing is challenging enough, but of course it becomes even more demanding in times of combat when the

crew runs an intense operations 24 hours a day.

And those operations require constant resupplying, much of which happens at night when cargo vessels come alongside the carrier with food and jet fuel.

Nighttime is also when the plans are outfitted with new munitions, 500 pound laser and GPS-guided bombs.

UNIDENITIFIED MALE: The crew is trained for this. So, it's the only difference we have is the quantity of bombs we have to gather and to

deliver. That's the only difference.

PLEITGEN: The Charles de Gaulle's crew is constantly looking for ways to work more efficiently to keep up the pressure on ISIS, its captain tells


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: To be able to work as good as possible between the air wing and the carrier, so that means a very fluid and very easy going

launching and recovery mostly, and also all of the ammunition and maintenance process.

PLEITGEN: With two dozen Rafale jets, the Charles de Gaulle is a major weapon in the fight against ISIS with its crew working day and night to

make sure they're ready to strike at any time.

Fred Pleitgen, CNN, aboard the aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle in the Mediterranean Sea.


ANDERSON: That's Fred's reporting.

Kurdish fighters, known as the Peshmerga will also be key in the fight to take back Mosul. They have been helping contain ISIS in Iraq pretty much

ever since they sprung up, you'll remember. They were the fighters who took back control of the vital Mosul dam from the terror group.

Well, let's get back to Irbil now to bring in Falah Mustafa Bakr, the foreign minister of the Kurdish regional government in Iraq. And, sir,

thank you for joining us.

And what do you know about when this offensive will begin and how are the Kurdish Peshmerga involved, firstly?


Preparations are going underway very well as a result of the coordination which is there between Irbil and Baghdad, between the Peshmerga forces and

the Iraqi army as well as the U.S.-led coalition in order to prepare for the day of the launch of the Mosul attack.

This would be an important moment in our history. That will open up the door for a new chapter in the history of Iraq for us working together in

rder to liberate Mosul from ISIS.

We're proud of the role played by the Peshmerga in the past. And we have them ready in order to play their role in this fight as well.

ANDERSON: Earlier this month, sir, you said that Kurdish Peshmerga troops will not be entering Mosul if allied forces battling ISIS recapture what is

this northern Iraqi city. Nouri al-Maliki who was Iraq's prime minister during the fall of Mosul two years ago is warning that the city's borders

mustn't change once it is liberated. He says, and I quote him, Mosul has to be returned to its

administrative units as it is.

And all the forces who have asserted new borders by force have to withdrawal.

While there was no clear reference to the KRG, these comments are clearly directed at the Kurds.

At this stage, do you stick by that pledge you made? No Peshmerga to enter Mosul under any circumstances?

BAKR: The leadership in Kurdistan region is aware of the diversity of Mosul and also the composition of Nineveh Province. When we said that

Kurdish Peshmerga forces will not enter Mosul. It was to avoid any misunderstanding or any potential problem in the city, therefore we said

that we will play our role in order to liberate the areas, which would be designed according to the military plan that we have agreed upon with the

Iraqi army and with the coalition.

But as for Mosul, it is an Iraqi city. The important thing is that Irbil has asked for -- in order to have a political arrangement for the day

after, which we see is also an important thing.

Therefore, nobody has asked about separating Mosul from the rest of Iraq, nobody has asked for dividing Mosul.

But the point is that we need to be working together in order to provide a better future for all the communities who have lived in Mosul. Therefore,

we are glad at the level of coordination and cooperation between Irbil and Baghdad, especially President Barzani and Prime Minister Abadi on

addressing the issue of Mosul which unfortunately failed during the time of the former Prime Minister

Maliki, and will be liberated now by President Barzani and Prime Minister Abadi.

[11:25:33] ANDERSON: We can see the huge mix involved in this offensive. And this offensive, as we all agree, I think, has huge consequences for

Iraq's future. So just talk us through the plans as you understand them for securing long-term any victory and ensuring that ethnic and sectarian

conflict isn't the result.

BAKR: Well the leadership here in Kurdistan region has been very clear from day one in addressing all of the issues regarding the Mosul campaign,

the post-ISIS era, and also the political arrangements the governance arrangements for the day after. Therefore, we believe that we have come a

long way. We have agreed on all aspects of the military plans, the role and the responsiblity of the Peshmerga and that of the Iraqi army and

(inaudible) and the coalition.

And also, we have agreed to have a high political commitment between Irbil and Baghdad in order to work closely with the current governor and also the

provisional council in order to deal with any political problem, that might come up.

Therefore, we believe that these are the true important aspects, the military and the political to be taken into consideration. But also we

have the humanitarian situation, because already Kurdistan region is home to 1.8 million internally displaced people from the rest of Iraq and

refugees from Syria, but expecting to have another half a million people coming here. And that would be a real problem for us. And this is why we

have called upon our partners around the world in order to help us, help the UN, and the international NGOs in order to be ready for this

humanitarian disaster.

ANDERSON: Falah, we have seen ISIS launch or inspire a web of terror across the world, of course, stretching all the way from California to

Indonesia. So, if you kick them out of Mosul, they won't be on your doorstep anymore, but they will still be dangerous to others and to you, of

course. Will you follow them into Syria to help stamp them out completely?

BAKR: The point is that we need to have regional and international cooperation, and fighting ISIS is not only military on the ground, we may

be able to defeat them militarily physically on the ground, but we have to fight the ideology. We have to use all possible channels at our disposal

to fight this ideology, to them economically, financially, logistically in order to prepare the ground for a better

dialogue among religions and communities around the world.

We will -- we are proud to be part of this U.S.-led international coalition, 67 nations. To be part of this coalition is important. We have

a stake in this, because we need to bring about stability, prosperity and security, therefore, if there is a need for as we are ready, but the point

is that we have to make sure that we work together in order to address the military, but also other aspects of this fight.

ANDERSON: Last question, and finally to you and very briefly, what happened to Kurdish independence? The Kurdish leader Barzani calling for

the referendum by the end of 2016. This was back in 2014. What happened? Is that off the table now?

BAKR: President Barzani when he last time visited Baghdad on 29th of September, visited Baghdad to address a number of issues coordination of

the Mosul campaign, the humanitarian situation, pending issues between Irbil and Baghdad, but also future relations between Irbil and Baghdad.

his was an important issue. It was discussed openly and frankly with Prime Minister Abad,

and the Iraqi national alliance. And prior to that, Prime Minister Barzani led another delegation end of August to Baghdad same way, discuss the issue

of future relations between Irbil and Baghdad.

We need to discuss this. The relationship, it has not been a proper federal system in Iraq. We believe that federalism has been emptied from

its content. So, therefore, we need to discuss this situation that right now we are neither fully integrated into Iraq, nor are we fully independent

and sovereign, that's why both leaders have agreed that there will be a commission on both sides to discuss the future relations between Irbil and

Baghdad and Kurdistan region and Iraq.

[11:30:02] ANDERSON: Not off the table, but clearly the focus at present the offensive against ISIS in Mosul. Sir, with that we leave it there. We

thank you very much indeed for joining us.

The latest world news headlines are just ahead here on CNN. Plus, the other war in the Middle East, what world leaders are planning to do about

the bloodshed in Yemen just ahead.



[11:34:06] ANDERSON: The other big story happening right now in this region is Yemen. And there's been a breaking development on the situation

there. World leaders demanding an immediate and unconditional ceasefire in Yemen a week after a devastating strike on a funeral home.

Well, the latest diplomatic push comes after U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry met with the foreign ministers of Saudi Arabia and other regional

powers in Switzerland.

Well, Muhammad Lila is following all of these developments and joins us live from the UAE tonight. Muhammad, tell us about this new and

potentially crucial development?

MUHAMMAD LILA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Becky, that meeting ended just moments ago. And it ended with the U.S., UK, and the United Nations all

demanding an immediate and unconditional ceasefire. It comes on the heels of two American hostages being released after a deal with the Houthi rebels

in Yemen.


[11:35:03] LILA: These are the first pictures of the American hostages who are now free. They were released in the middle of the night walking off a

plane in Oman, the tiny Gulf nation that brokered their release.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry announcing their release at the Syria talks in Switzerland. The State Department later putting out a statement

recognizing the humanitarian gesture by the Houthis in releasing the Americans and calling for the immediate and unconditional release of any

toher U.S. citizens who may still be held.

As part of the deal, the same plane carrying the American hostages also carry dozens of wounded from this: last week's devastating airstrike on a

funeral home in the capital Sanaa.

The Saudi coalition admitted that the bombing was a mistake based on false intelligence. But that mistake was deadly, killing at least 150 civilians

and leaving hundreds more in desperate need of medical treatment.

As part of today's hostage deal, some of those winded are now being treated in Oman. All of this comes as the U.S. military is now changing its story

on a bizarre incident overnight. Early on Sunday, the Pentagon said one of its destroyers, the USS Mason, may have been fired on yet again from Houthi

territory. The warship responded by firing countermeasures.

But now American officials say they're not sure exactly what happened, if the ship was targeted or if their radar system was just malfunctioning.


LILA: Back to that proposed ceasefire. Today, John Kerry said that he has spoken with both sides in the conflict and he's hopeful that they will

accept and implement a ceasefire, quote, withinthe next few days, Becky.

ANDERSON: Muhammad, we've seen so much killing and destruction. What are the changes a ceasefire -- chances, sorry, that a ceasefire could actually

hold at this point?

LILA: Well, it's a good question, because both sides have so much animosity with each other. But there is one important thing to keep in

mind and that is that the U.S. and the UK have been supplying Saudi Arabia with a lot of the bombs that they've been dropping on Yemen. So, there is

no question that they do have a lot of leverage and a lot of influence here.

ANDERSON: Muhammad Lila on the story for you today. Thank you.

Well, let's turn back to the race for the White House, shall we? Top Donald Trump adviser and former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani appeared on

CNN a short time ago. He defended his candidate against a growing number of allegations of sexual misconduct.

Well, Giuliani also chimed in on Trump's latest talking point that there's a conspiracy to keep him from the presidency.

Listen to what the former mayor told my colleague Jake Tapper about the possibility of a rigged U.S. election.


RUDY GIULIANI, FRM. MAYOR OF NEW YORK CITY: Dead people generally vote for Democrats rather than Republicans.

JAKE TAPPER, CNN ANCHOR: So, he's not talking about elections being stolen except in some cases when he is talking about elections begin stolen?

GIULIANI: I would be -- if you want me to tell me that I think the election of Philadelphia and Chicago is going to be fair, I would have to

be a moron to say that. I mean, I would have to dislearn everything I learned in 40 years of being a prosecutor.

TAPPER: The Republican Party of Philadelphia would disagree with you. They looked into the allegations from 2012 and they said that there was

nothing irregular with what happened there. Yes, there are areas where people only voted for Obama, just like in Utah there are places that only

voted for Mitt Romney.

GIULIANI: Maybe there are situations in which it's right. I remember a case when I was associate attorney general where 720 dead people voted in

Chicago in the 1982 election. I remember in my own election about 60 dead people voted.

So, I can't sit here and tell you that they don't cheat.


ANDERSON: On another note, Donald Trump maintains that none of the allegations of sexual assault made against him ever happened. He's been

relentlessly trying to discredit the women who came forward to accuse him.

This as he props up the accusers of Hillary Clinton's husband, former president Bill Clinton.

Jake Tapper asked Democratic House leader and Clinton supporter Nancy Pelosi if she thinks that this is a double standard.


REP. NANCY PELOSI, (D) C ALIFORNIA: Well, it is a double standard. Bill Clinton is not on the ballot. He's not on the ballot. Hillary Clinton is

the candidate for president that we are asking people to vote for, not because she's a woman and not because her husband was president and all the

good things he did as well, but because she's the best person to be president of the United States, one of the best qualified in the history of

our country.

But I'm curiously watching the behavior of Donald Trump, because he's always projecting. When his -- he knows that his temperament is not going

over very well, he said: I have the temperament for the job.

When he knows that his stamina is lagging he says: I have the -- I have the stamina for the job.

TAPPER: Stamina.

PELOSI: When he knows that he has exposure in terms of women, he projects onto Bill Clinton.

When he knows that -- I don't know what this drug thing is, but I'm very suspicious that he is saying, she should take a drug test. What's he

talking about there?

And when he says she's engaged in an international conspiracy, whatever he's describing it as, his own people -- people describe,it's his advisers

are admitting to having back-channel conversations with the Russians.


ANDERSON: All right. Let's talk more about the issues, shall we? Alice Stewart is a CNN political commentator and a Republican strategist joining

me now from Washington.

What do you make from the latest narratives as hear more sexual assault allegations, suggestions from the Trump campaign of rigged elections, of

performance enhancing drugs. This is ridiculous, isn't it?

ALICE STEWART, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: It certainly is. And, look, to remind folks states elections are run state by state. The presidential

election, people go to to the polls, and that activity is run by each individual state.

I'm a former secretary of state in my state and they take the election laws very seriously. They go out of their way to make that the election process

is carried out in a fair process, and everyone has free and fair elections. So, to say that the process is rigged, is not fair to the process.

In addition to that, when Trump does that, it sends the wrong message to voters. It tells voters, well, if the process is rigged or crooked, why

should I even vote. He needs to get back to what enabled him to win the nomination, is focusing on the issues.

ANDERSON: Alice, Mayor Giuliani, former mayor Giuliani, has been in politics for 40 years says he would be a moron if he were to suggest that

there is no rigging of U.S. elections. For our international viewers, that is quite a statement?

STEWART: It is quite a statement, and of course, he is actually pointing to specific incidents where there have been election problems, and there's

no denying the fact we have had some election issues at the polls with specific isolated incidents, but to carry that into a larger narrative that

the entire process is crooked and rigged, that is completely false, and it is not what they need to be focusing on. And I think they do a tremendous

disservice to the Republican voters. And I think Donald Trump needs to remind voters, not just the base, that he is working hard to secure, but

the undecideds that he needs to expand his message to say that I'm a Republican. I have the policies that are important in terms of how to fix

the economy, and foreign policy, and also immigration. That is what he needs to focus on, but calling the media and the election process crooked

is simply not what he needs to expand his electorate.

ANDERSON: I think from both sides, our viewers might suggest that we need to more, more -- substantive narrative of the policy and position going

forward, but let's assume that as these two candidates get into their debate preparations, Alice, that they will be look at these latest polls.

I'm sure they'll find time to do this. A new NBC News/Wall Street journal poll putting Clinton 11 points ahead of Trump, 48 percent to his 37.

Another poll, though, from the Washington Post and ABC News shows a much closer race. It has Clinton just 4 points ahead of Trump, that is within

the margin of error.

You may or may not buy polls. Our viewers, I'm sure will have their own thoughts about these things. But which is more realistic do you believe at

this point?

STEWART; Well, certainly -- look, I just returned from Europe and I saw how closely people across the world are keeping an eye on the American

process, on the cover of every paper that I saw. And generally, you don't follow one poll or maybe two polls, but you follow the trends, and what we

have seen over the last several weeks is the trend is in Hillary Clinton's favor. And you don't normally look and base your overall assessment of an

election based on the national polls, because as I indicated the polls are run state by state.

The key for Hillary Clinton right now is that she is winning in these key states. She has locked up the states that typically vote for Democrats.

And if you are looking at the electoral map here, the winner has to receive 270 electoral votes. She is much closer to that than Donald Trump.

So when you look at the polls, you look at the overall trend, she seems to have been gaining ground. He tends to be losing ground in a lot of the

polling data. And that looks like right now unless something changes, unless he can get back on course, and talk about the real issues that

motivated his voters in the primary, it looks like it's not looking too great right now.

But then again, the unexpected is now expected here in American politics.

ANDERSON; Yeah, it can't be easy as a strategist of either party at this point, but certainly not as a Republican strategist. There is some empathy

from me to you tonight.

Comedy show Saturday Night Live continuing to poke fun at both presidential candidates. But

Donald Trump doesn't appreciate the sketch parodying last week's presidential debate. He is now calling the show he has eagerly guest

hosted in the past, quote, boring and unfunny, and the sketch is a hit job.

Let's take a look at how the fake debate began.

It is very, very funny, it has to be said.

He doesn't appreciate SNL as it is known. Does she?

[11:46:04] STEWART: I think, look, anyone appreciates SNL if they are making fun of the other person. When they are make fun of you, it is not


And look, the debates are a great way for people to get their news or get their news in the actual debate. The problem for Donald Trump and Hillary

Clinton for that matter, a lot of the people don't tune into the debates, they actually do tune in to Saturday Night Live and some of the late night

comedy shows and these types of programs to get what they view as actual information on the presidential election. So from that standpoint, of

course, if the SNL skits don't look favorable on either one of the candidates, it is disturbing, because a lot of people do base their

opinions on that.

So it is not unusual. If the polls are in your favor, the polls are great. If they're not, they're rigged. And if Saturday Night Live is propping you

up and making you look great, it's a great show. If it's not, then you don't like it. That's just the way it is.

And that -- you know, Donald Trump's charm is that if things are great and you support him, you're in good favor. If not, then he tends to attack the


ANDERSON; Yeah. It is satire, folks.

STEWART: No doubt. And the point being is that a lot of people...

ANDERSON: It is great to have you.

Oh, we lost her. Go on -- the point was what.

STEWART: No, the point -- as I mentioned a lot of people do form their opinions of these candidates based on Saturday Night Live and a lot of

these programs. So it is important to not only knock it out of the park on the debate stage, but you want to make yourself

look flattering and favorable to those who tune into these programs.

ANDERSON: Yeah, good luck.

All right. Alice, thank you.

Well, winning the U.S. presidential election comes down to meeting or exceeding one magical number as Alice pointed out, and that is 270: that is

the college threshold needed to ascend to the presidency. And you can successfully predict the outcome of the race or can you?

Well, head over to the the for our interactive electoral map. Each state awards a different number of electoral votes and you can start from

scratch or work with one of our pre-set templates.

It's worth a go. Give it a go.

Live from Abu Dhabi, this is Connect the World. Coming up, the Nigerian government negotiating to free more kidnapped schoolgirls from Boko Haram,

but it appears not all of the missing girls are part of the bargain. That's coming up after this.


[11:50:40] ANDERSON: Well, the Nigerian government is set to resume negotiations with Boko Haram militants tomorrow. They are trying to reach

an agreement about the release of some of the Chibok schoolgrls kidnapped two years ago.

The militant group handed over 21 of the girls last week. Nearly 200 of them are still missing.

Sources say only 84 girls will be part of Monday's negotiations. And for more our David McKenzie joins me now from Nigeria's capital, Abuja. And

David, why is that the case?

ANDERSON: Well, we don't know exactly yet, but what seems to be, according to a source close to those negotiation, that is the number of those Chibok

girls that are possibly going to be negotiated on to get back to their loved ones. It could mean that maybe some of them have been

radicalized. We have in the past reported that several of them at least have been killed tragically. We won't know until this entire process


And it is important to stress while the negotiations are set to begin tomorrow that doesn't mean this will be a quick process. Like any hostage

negotiation that could see twists and turns. But today, there have been emotional reunions between the family members and those 21 missing girls

that have been released and they are here in the capital, Abuja. We spoke to one father who said that he was overjoyed to meet his daughter, but that

was tinged with sadness as extraordinarily that daughter had a twin, and she is still being kept by Boko Haram. And that really sums up the feeling

here in Nigeria that there is a great deal of joy here that these girls have been released, but that they are more from Chibok still being held.

And of course, many more than that who haven't gotten the international attention that have been held as sex slaves and in these awful conditions

deep in the Sambisa forests, both dealing with the atrocities o Boko Haram and the constant battles that are going on between Nigeria and the

multinational force and this ISIS-linked group -- Becky.

ANDERSON: David is in Abuja in Nigeria for you tonight. David, thank you.

And live from Abu Dhabi, you're watching Connect the World. I'm Becky Anderson. Coming up, a young Iraqi woman overcomes the loss of a limb to

see her dream in the water. We're going to take you to meet her up next.


ANDERSON: All right. Let's get you back to Iraq this evening where amid all of the talk of

conflict let's not forget about the innocent victims. In tonight's Parting Shots, I'm going to get you

the story of the young Iraqi woman who lost her leg to a bomb, a remnant of the Gulf War, in fact.

Well, now, she's looking to overcome her injury and stereotypes about disability. And she is doing that by becoming a certified SCUBA diver.

Have a look at this.


[11:55:25] UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I appreciate super tiny details that maybe others don't see it. Sometimes doing certain movements in the water really

added a priceless happiness to me.

You realize what you really can do even if you are losing a limb.

My name is Zane al-Abalarqabi (ph) from Iraq based in Dubai, a pharmacist, motivational speaker and a certified SCUBA diver.

I was horribly injured in my leg. We found something cylindrical, And we never thought it may be a bomb that was left over from the war of 1990.

So, we used this cylindrical thing to fix my bicycle and with higher friction with the hummer (ph), it exploded.

Here in the Middle East, we keep on hiding whatever is causing the other person in the society to look on us in a pity way or a sympathy. We have

no idea that sharing our stories in a very loud voice will make others listen and understand us.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And your disability stays on dry land. Once you are going to be in the water, you are going to be as able-bodied as anybody


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: In SCUBA diving I believe that the main challenge was the balance. When I am diving, there is a big part of my body that is not

existing, so we need to compensate that. I really wanted to learn SCUBA diving. At the same time that I wanted to build really a strong memories

with the leg that I had recently.

The fact that you feel free under the water and how you can see all of the fishes around you, it definitely adds lots of happiness to you. When you

are out of the water, the peaceful feeling that you get is priceless.


ANDERSON: I'm Becky Anderson and that was Connect the World. From the team here, it is a very good evening. Thank you for watching. CNN of

course continues after this short break. Don't go away.