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Germans LookinG for Tunisian Man in Connection with Christmas Market Attack; Massive Fireworks Explosion Kills at Least 29 in Mexico; African Startup: Nigerian Clothing Company Ethnic. Aired 10-11a ET

Aired December 21, 2016 - 10:00   ET


[10:00:46] PAULA NEWTON, HOST: Hello and welcome to Connect the World. I'm Paula Newton in New York sitting in for Becky Anderson.

We have a lot to get to. And we begin with breaking news about that suspect in Monday's truck attack in Berlin.

Now, Germany confirms he is a Tunisian man in his early 20s. And a security official tells CNN he has links to an ISIS recruitment network in

Germany, something German officials were already following.

Now, that official also tells us the man was arrested in Germany back in August with forged documents, but was released by a judge.

Now, a government spokesperson says the suspect was considered what they're calling a known

risk. And he did, in fact, face deportation from Germany.

Now, there is, of course, as you can imagine, a large manhunt ongoing right now as police raid

possible hideouts, fearful, of course, that the suspect could strike again. Our Hala Gorani has more on the ground from Berlin.


HALA GORANI, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): An urgent manhunt under way across Germany. Police warning that the driver who

carried out Monday's deadly attack may be armed and dangerous, and cautioning that there could be more than one perpetrator at large.

The desperate search intensifying after German authorities acknowledged Tuesday that they initially detained the wrong man, releasing the man who

they picked up after forensic evidence failed to connect him to the scene.

This as ISIS claims they inspired the attack, calling the driver "their soldier."

The day of the attack the Polish driver of the black semi- truck was on a planned run from Italy to Germany, delivering steel before losing contact

with his employer. Authorities believe that the truck was hijacked about four hours before plowing into the Christmas market. The driver's body,

shot at close range, found in the passenger seat.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: People go here to have a good evening. To have -- they drink wine and eat -- eat something and stay here and with friends or

family. And then they are dead.

GORANI: Thousands of mourners, including German Chancellor Angela Merkel, filing into the famous Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church Tuesday to pay

respect to the victims.

Merkel's re-election bid complicated by the assault as she faces growing concerns over her government's generous acceptance of nearly 900,000 asylum

seekers over the past year. Despite the fact that initial reports about the driver being a refugee were wrong, far-right leaders in Europe are already

casting blame on the German chancellor for the attack.


NEWTON: That was, of course, our Hala Gorani reporting there from Berlin. And of course Berliners are still mourning the dead, caring for the injured

and nervous that a terrorist a still on the loose. It's time to bring in Simon Shuster. He's a Time correspondent

based in Berlin.

And, you know, the details, even from the German government now, are extraordinary. This is was someone who is known to authorities and someone

who even had their asylum request denied.

At this point, what can you tell us, by the way, you know, people in Germany are taking this in?

SIMON SHUSTER, TIME: It is difficult to take all this in. I think that the first target for many

Germans of the and ire and anger and frustration is their chancellor, Angela Merkel, because of her refugee policy. I think she is extremely

vulnerable to criticism right now of -- and the criticism has been coming already from far-right parties like the Alternative of Germany who has

accusing her of essentially importing extremism into the country with her openness toward refugees.

But the news is coming so fast today that I think it's been quite hard for everyone to take in, but the streets are still crowded, people are out

enjoying the holiday season. So, there doesn't seem to be a sense of fear in the city.

NEWTON: Yeah, which is extraordinary. Their resilience, given everything that's gone on, and continues to go on, because we get updates by the hour

right now. There are raids going on in perhaps as many as two locations, perhaps more, in Germany. But there is, as police have said, perhaps a

dangerous terrorist on the loose in Germany right now.

I mean, Simon, you've written about this before and that the blame falls to the government. In past years, the German government has done quite a good

job of trying to thwart these terrorist attacks, and yet what has changed in the last year?

SHUSTER: Well, I think nothing specifically has changed. From my conversations with politicians, asking them why has Germany been a

relatively lucky one when it comes to the kinds of terrorist attacks that neighboring Belgium and France have seen, they

said it is that, it's luck, because they can't possibly surveil and keep an eye out for every potential terrorism suspect.

There is a known and rather active and large Islamist and extremist underground, particularly in the west of Germany. And you know, officials

say that it was sort of a matter of time.

So, I wouldn't say there was any one thing that's changed that led to this.

And yet, will there there be demands from the German people to really change their security intelligence posture. I mean, many people pointed

out, you can't let that many people in the country and hope that each one - - some of them, by no fault of their own, arriving with no documents to prove their identity, you can't assume that any of these people has been

vetted properly.

SHUSTER: That's right. And I think even well before this attack, the government and Chancellor Merkel realized that. The influx of refugees,

they stopped that early this year, it is now -- the borders are more tightly controlled. So, there isn't so much more they can do in terms of

limiting the influx of migrants. They've already done that.

I think there will be calls, perhaps, to tighten security measures. I mean, Germans hold very dearly their freedoms and privacy protections.

There's much less CCTV and various surveillance than there would be in the United States, for example. Things like that may change, but I haven't

heard anyone calling specifically yet for those kinds of security measures to be tightened, because, again, Germans really honor their -- those

freedoms, and they have a long history with totalitarian surveillance states watching over every citizen. And they don't want to go back to that

NEWTON: And good points to be made. Of course, the resilience is being tested right now by the hour as that manhunt continues in Germany.

Simon thank you so much.

Meantime, Tunisia, as we are learning, is by far the largest source of foreign fighters joining ISIS. More than 6,000 Tunisians have traveled to

Iraq and Syria to join the self-proclaimed Islamic State, according to an intelligence company, Soufan Group. That's more than twice as many as the

next closest country, Saudi Arabia, which has a much larger population.

Now, analysts say many Tunisian extremists are also joining ISIS in neighboring Libya. Now, thousands of others have been banned from

international travel out of suspicion that they also intend to join ISIS.

Fidelis Cloer is a German security expert. And you are well aware of the security apparatus that is needed. You know, we just heard from Simon

something that I know you know well. Germany is not a surveillance state, and they really rally against this. Do you think that that needs to change

if Germany wants to protect what it holds dear, and that is the freedom through its towns and cities?

FIDELIS CLOER, SECURITY EXPERT: Well, in regards to cameras, I'm quite sure there will be changes and it has to change, because not necessarily to

prevent attacks, but in the end, to investigate them properly. It is necessary to have at least at certain points surveillance systems and

cameras. And I'm quite sure that there will be many changes after these traumatic events of last Monday.

NEWTON: And traumatic they still are because they do not have a suspect. It is an explained reason they didn't have security cameras, or at least

none that we have seen so far. Apparently, we just learned that in fact in Germany right now, they're passing some of that new legislation to get more

of the cameras in certain public places. It comes too late now.

But what about other measures? You know, it is extraordinary that as of right now, police still have not released a photo of the suspect and are

not really looking for the public's help in that way.

CLOER: Oh, I can fully understand that. You would not want any member of the public to confront this terrorist. This apparently seems to be a very

dangerous person, and it is the job of these special police units, and we have many of them, and we have very, very well

equipped and trained units. It is their job to hunt down this man.

So it's better, really, to stay back, back off and let them do their job.

NEWTON: Now, given what you do, though, I mean, you just heard from Simon there on the ground, there are people going back out to those Christmas

markets. They don't want to live in fear, especially perhaps in cities outside of Berlin, where the events maybe haven't been quite as traumatic.

What do you think? What kind of better protection do you think Germany, and quite frankly, the whole of Europe needs at this point though, I mean,

you just heard from Simon there on the ground, there are people going back out to the Christmas markets. They don't want

to live in fear, especially in cities perhaps outside of Berlin, where the events maybe haven't been quite as traumatic.

What do you think? What kind of better protection do you think Germany, and quite frankly, the whole of Europe, needs at this point to confront this


CLOER: Well, if you focus on this Christmas market in Berlin, when I saw the first pictures of the event, I was surprised. I was surprised that

this person was able to drive the truck onto the Christmas market. I actually was of the opinion that there was a security plan in place for

Christmas markets in general, because Berlin is the capital of our country. A Christmas market is a symbol of our religion. And we gather there. It

is a big tradition in our country. 2,500 markets throughout Germany.

We here you have this market that is also strategically extremely well placed for an attack. You have these two lane roads leading to it. So,

this super heavy truck, a 40 ton truck, had enough space to accelerate, then to enter the pedestrian area, and then to run down that corridor.

And I'm quite sure that this -- that the truck veered to the left side. That was not the intention, the intention was for the truck to drive down

the entire corridor and to kill as many people as possible.

So the district mayor yesterday said he thinks nothing was done wrong, I think that cannot stand like this. This needs to be questioned. I think

this particular market was a very soft target, and it was presented on a silver plate.

NEWTON: You know, we have been watching, as you've been speaking -- and I know you can't see the video -- we have had an artist rendition, some

graphics and some pictures, and you can see quite clearly what you're talking about that unfortunately, whoever perpetrated this crime did have

carte blanche to run down the length of that Christmas market.

We thank you for your insights and we will continue to check in as this investigation unfolds. Appreciate it.

CLOER: Thank you, Paula.

NEWTON: Good day to you.

We want to go to our terrorism analyst Paul Cruickshank now, who has continually been updating us on this investigation. You know, Paul --

actually, I'm just getting word that we do not have Paul right now. He continues to follow this investigation and is looking at his sources right


We can tell you that at least two raids, he is reporting, are going on in Germany at this moment and that authorities say he was a suspect who had

already been refused asylum.

We will have more to come as this investigation in Germany unfolds.


NEWTON: Live from New York, you're watching CNN and this is Connect the World. I'm Paula Newton. Welcome back. As we continue to follow events

in Germany, we want to update you now on the breaking news about that urgent manhunt that is underway. Police are carrying out raids, searching

for a new suspect linked to that Christmas market attack in Berlin.

Authorities say he's a young Tunisian man who had been flagged as a possible threat by

law enforcement. Police arrested him in August, but he was released by a judge. Sources say the suspect has ties to an ISIS recruitment network.

CNN terrorism analyst Paul Cruickshank joins me now live from London. You have been following this investigation and speaking to your sources.

I mean, what do they say about the fact that this was a suspect who was known to officials and was perhaps even a known threat?

PAUL CRUICKSHANK, CNN TERRORISM ANALYST: Yeah, he was very much on the radar screen of German security services, according to what German

officials are saying today. German security officials telling me that he was part of an ISIS recruitment network that was operating in the north of

Germany, sending extremists from northern Germany all the way to Syria and Iraq.

A number of the leaders of that network, including its leader, a charismatic figure known as Abu Walla (ph), real name Ahmed Abdullah (ph),

an Iraqi, was one of those who was arrested and charged on terrorism offenses back in November.

So this network, very much on the radar screen of the German security services. And one of the concerns when it comes to the manhunt is this

logistical smuggling network could either, one, hide him or, two, try and spirit him out of the country.

So, it may be rather harder to find this guy than if he was just somebody with no connections to

the extremist scene inside Germany. But the picture that is now being painted is somebody with a lot of connections to extremists inside Germany,

somebody who came into the country in 2015, according to German authorities, and somebody who has been living in various parts of the

country, including North Rhine-Westfhalia, including Berlin in the period since then. But very much a known quantity.

And of course, that raises all sorts of questions for the Germans. And they're now saying that the reason they were not able to deport him was

because they were not able to fully establish his identity. And according to German -- under German law, you have to know who you're dealing with

before you are going to deport them.

And so, that was a problem for them and why they were not able to keep him in custody, and why he was sort of free and at-large to plot this attack,

an attack which ISIS have said that they inspired.

And given all his connections to this ISIS recruitment network, allegedly in Germany, that begs

the question, was he also in touch with ISIS operatives in Syria and Iraq? Perhaps people who have traveled from Germany, that he might have known or

been put in touch with.

That is a very plausible scenario now, given everything we're hearing.

NEWTON: Yeah, to see if he had extensive help or if in fact it was a lone wolf attack. It will be important for them to sort that out.

You know, Paula, I'm interested to get your take on this. We just had a guest who showed, unfortunately, quite clearly how vulnerable this market

and other markets might be in Germany. We also just discussed the fact unlike where your sitting in Britain where they have extensive camera

surveillance, they don't have that in Germany and it's been something that's been resisted by the German government.

Do you think this is a game changer? I mean, I know officials have been telling you for months that, look, we can't possibly handle the influx of

all the tips on security we get on a daily basis.

CRUICKSHANK: Yeah, there is going to be a renewed debate in Geramny about CCTV. There's much less use of that in Germany than there is in a country

like Britain. There's been a resistance to it for obvious kind of historical reasons in Germany.

There was, we understand, some camera footage in the vicinity of the attack, which they are

reviewing. But not a lot of cameras typically in Germany to kind of capture all this.

If this had happened in the UK, they would have had this likely covered from multiple angles and able to perhaps make a more quick determination

about who was responsible and not responsible than they were able to do in this case, because after all, they were pretty sure they had the right guy

in custody for hours and hours, and it turned out it was absolutely the wrong

guy yesterday, which may have distracted the investigation to a certain degree.

It is not clear when they discovered this identity document inside the truck linking this Tunisian to the attack, but presumably, they would have

found it quickly. And so they, in the early hours, may have thought there was both a potential Tunisian involved and also this Pakistani that they

had in custody. Obviously, the Pakistani was nothing to do with it. And I think that's maybe one of the reasons they were talking early on about

potentially multiple attackers here. I think they probably found that identity document pretty quickly.

They haven't found this guy though. There have been raids in North Rhine- Westphalia today. They may have got some more information on him, but they haven't got him in custody. He's armed and dangerous, they think, and he

could strike again. And he could strike again, Paula, with a truck. He could hijack another truck anywhere really in Europe and do this again.

They need to get this guy.

NEWTON: Yeah, and it's important to underscore anywhere in Europe -- again, they're calling this a pan-European search not just in Germany.

I mean, Paul, again when you look at this, and many people have discussed with what's going on with ISIS in Iraq and Syria, the fact that they're

being hit hard if you believe authorities from Russia, the Syrian government, even the United States with their air strikes, does this mean,

do you think, are officials saying that, look, this means ISIS will step up its terrorism efforts in Europe and elsewhere?

Well, this may be a product of ISIS stepping up its terrorism efforts in Europe, particularly in Germany. They've really been trying to accelerate

plots against Germany in the past few months. We've had five serious plots linked back to ISIS in various different ways, ranging from operatives who

were actually sent over to Germany to launch attacks to people who were being instigated and using encrypted apps to launch attacks. So, the

system has been blinking red in Germany when it comes to the threat, German officials talking about an unprecedented threat. You've had more than 800

German residents travel over to Syria and Iraq and join various jihadi groups, including ISIS. I have come back to German the biggest challenge

of all, these million or so refugees that have come in.the vast majority of which are not a security concern and are fleeing the violence of ISIS in

Syria and Iiraq and other places.

But there are some bad apples who have come in. ISIS have exploited particularly those refugee flows back in the autumn of 2015 when there was

just this massive movements of people into Europe. And it is interesting that this individual came in to Germany, we understand, at some point

during 2015, when those numbers were really, really huge.

And there is also concern that some of these people, young, dislocated Sunnis, may become

radicalized by radicals already inside Germany, exactly the kind of recruitment network this guy was part of.

NEWTON: Yeah, it is a difficult puzzle for the German authorities and the European authorities to put together. Paul Cruickshank continues to follow

the latest details of this investigation. We'll check back in with you when you have more on the manhunt now ongoing in Europe and throughout

Germany obviously.

Now, moving on to Russia, says it is too soon to say who was behind the murder of its ambassador to Turkey. Now, Andrey Karlov was assassinated

while speaking at an art gallery in Ankara on Monday. Many of you will remember that dramatic footage. Turkish authorities have detained a total

of 12 people for questioning. Karlov's funeral will take place on Thursday. This picture of his wife was taken before his body was returned

to Russia.

And it shows a private moment of intense grief there in the midst of such a very public death. And we want to go now straight to our Matthew Chance,

who has more on all of this.

You know, Matthew, not surprising at all, Russia has been quite expedient, quite shrewd about taking advantage of this yesterday. Already, yesterday,

you have Sergey Lavrov saying that, you know, Turkey is onside now saying that terrorism, fighting terrorism, is much more important than regime

change in Syria. What I'm interested to get from you is how are Russians reacting to this? And they must see it as an offense to Russia, the fact

that he was murdered so brutally by someone who, in fact, was a Turkish security official?

MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, they do see that. And quite rightly. This -- the whole country has been outraged by the way

in which this senior russian diplomat was gunned down so publicly by that assassin who stood coolly in the background in that photograph gallery,

that exhibition, and pulled out his shot the ambassador nine times until he was dead. And Russians have seen the footage again and again, as we have,

and they are outraged and they're shocked and the country is grieving for the death of this individual.

You know, up until now, with some notable exceptions, the intervention in Syria has been pretty cost free, from a Russian public point of view.

There have been deaths, of course. There have been other instances of apparent retribution by militant groups against Russian interests, but this

was showing fully in that very dramatic way that there are costs, potentially, for the Russians intervening in

Syria. That conflict has spilled out across borders into Turkey. it is increasingly doing so. It is exporting the problems, and russia Rs feeling

that problem very closely itself.

The Russians have also -- the Russian officials, I should say, that we've spoken to, that have given speeches on this, have been condemning it, of

course. Vladimir Putin, of course, the first amongst them, calling it a despicable act. It bestowed the title of hero of the Russian Federation on

the ambassador today, posthumously, for the services it did to Russian diplomacy and Russian policy.

And Vladimir Putin will be at the funeral tomorrow, which is being held here in Moscow. Talking about what he did for Russian policy. Vladimir

Putin will be at the funeral tomorrow, which is being held here in Moscow. And it is so important that he's put off an annual press conference, which

as you know, is a big set piece event for the end of the year for the Russian president. That's been delayed by perhaps a day to allow for these

national commemorations, this national mourning and this funeral to take place, Paula.

NEWTON: Indeed. Putin sending a message there, that this really was an attack on the entire country. Our Matthew Chance following developments

there for us in Moscow.

Now, the ambassador's assassination came before Russia, Turkey and Iran met in Moscow to discuss ways of ending the war in Syria. Now, they pledged to

secure a wider cease-fire so that, finally, aid could be delivered.

Now, this as officials say the evacuation of eastern Aleppo could be coming to a close very

soon. Turkey says about 37,000 people have been transported out so far, though the Red Cross estimate is a bit lower. Among them, the little girl

who made a huge impact when it comes to shining the light on the horrors of her city.

Now you're looking at pictures of 7-year-old Bana Al Abed (ph), meeting Turkey's president in Ankara. Just a few days ago she was on Twitter,

asking to be rescued, unsure if she would make it out of Aleppo alive. Her few days ago. Unsure if she'd make it out of Aleppo alive.

Her tweets about her life under constant attack earned her hundreds of thousands of followers. It seems she is now safe. But for more on the

evacuations we go straight to our Muhammad Lila. He joins us now from the Turkish-Syria border. And Muhammad, when you and I spoke yesterday, we

thought that this could be very close to ending. I mean, we've had this dispute between the Red Cross and Russian and Syrian officials for days


What is your best estimate of the number now?

MUHAMMAD LILA, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, you know, the fact that we were talking about this yesterday just shows how precarious all of

this is on the ground. And in terms of the numbers, of course, it depends who you ask. I mean, Turkish sources here in Turkey are still saying

around 29,000 have been evacuated, other sources are are saying 25,000.

What is important is actually not the final number, but the fact that today, right now, as we're

speaking, Paula, Turkish state media and Syrian state media are both saying the same thing: that this

last wave of evacuations is now underway.

Turkey, of course, brokering this cease-fire and evacuation deal. The Turkish side, Turkish media reporting, just to give a sense of the scope of

the evacuations, they say this last batch consists of 20 buses and 700 private vehicles that will be leaving the eastern part of Aleppo and to the

countryside. So, it's certainly a very big operation, very complex.

Earlier in the day, there was a lengthy delay and unusual delay. We're not sure what caused the

delay. But that delay appears to be over and things seem to be finally moving once again.

That is certainly good news. And Muhammad, as you're speaking, we're taking note of the weather in Aleppo right now, continuing to make things

miserable for people desperate to get out. Our Muhammad Lila continues to follow the story for us. Appreciate it.

Now, some other stories on our radar today. Indonesia's elite anti- terrorism squad was caught in a fire fight in a raid south of Jakarta. Three suspects have been killed and had a fourth has been detained. CNN

Indonesia reports they were planning a New Year's Eve attack.

U.S. musician James Taylor is canceling a February concert in The Philippines, that's in protest of President Rodrigo Duterte's war on drugs.

Taylor says he doesn't feel his music is particularly political but, quote, sometimes one is called upon to take a political stand.

U.S. President Barack Obama is taking sweeping action to cement part of his environmental agenda before he leaves office. Now, he's banned future

offshore drilling in parts of the Arctic and Atlantic oceans indefinitely. Donald Trump would face legal challenges

if he tries to overturn it.

The United States and Japan have formally marked the handing over of the land on Okinawa

to the Japanese government, nearly 10,000 acres is being given back Thursday, the largest transfer in more than 40 years. The land has been

held by the U.S. since World War II.

Now, the latest world headlines are just ahead, plus how Germans are dealing with a new reality in the wake of Monday's terrorist attack.



[10:34:22] NEWTON: Now, as we have been following here, Berliners are reeling in the wake of Monday's terrorist attack and facing a holiday

tinged with sadness, fear and shock. Erin McLaughlin reports on how Germans are dealing with this new reality.


ERIN MCLAUGHLIN, CNN CORRESPODENT: At the scene of unimaginable horror, a 25-ton tool of terror is slowly driven away, leaving behind unanswered

questions and a country in shock. Nearby a makeshift memorial grows by the hour. Young and old, people of all faith, gather to mourn.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: All over of 2016, we heard of all the terrible attacks that happened all over the world. And yesterday was a black day for human

history. It's just depressing.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, and people go here to have a good evening. To have -- they drink wine and eat something and stay here, and with friends

or family. And then they're dead after five minutes. It's shocking. Yes, it is.

MCLAUGHLIN: What remains of the Christmas market is eerily quiet. Children's rides stand still, and there's a heavy police presence.

Normally this Christmas market would be full of shoppers drinking spiced wine and looking for gifts but as you can see these kiosks are closed. As

authorities look for answers and Berliners mourn their dead.

In the capital, a show of solidarity. At the memorial church, people gather to honor the dead. And officials prepared the country for the worst.

ANGELA MERKEL, GERMAN CHANCELLOR (Translator): I know that would be especially hard to bear for us. If it was to be confirmed that the person

committed this act was given protection and asylum in Germany. This would be especially disgusting.

MCLAUGHLIN: German officials set free the asylum seeker they first arrested. No longer suspecting he perpetrated the attack. Chancellor Angela

Merkel visited the church Tuesday, visibly shocked. It is Christmas week and the country has been shaken, and with it her political future.

Erin Mclaughlin, CNN, Berlin.


[10:36:26] NEWTON: And now for the latest on the investigation, we're joined by journalist Chris Burns. I mean, Chris, right now, they are

looking for this suspect of Tunisian origin. We have heard there may be raids going on throughout the country. What's the latest?

CHRIS BURNS, JOURNALIST: Yes, Paula, there are raids going on across the country. This Tunisian man is what they're looking for. He came to

Germany about a year ago in 2015. He's facing charges, assault charges. He didn't show up in court. And he is also facing deportation. There is a

deportation process. But he was released because they didn't have the full identification on him. It is a very, very legal process. And that's why

he was let loose. And that's why they're trying to track him down right now.

Now, the officials are saying that the man could be armed because the attacker who drove that

truck beat and shot dead the Polish driver who had been driving the truck. So he is very dangerous. And even the head of the BKA, which is the FBI

here, is saying that there could be another attack, taht there is a risk of another attack, Paula.

NEWTON: Yeah. Stunning. They're telling everyone, look, you need to remain vigilant.

I want to get your take on this, Chris. You know, you've lived there many, many years. We were just speaking earlier in this program about the fact

that Germans have shunned the surveillance society for clear and obviously good, historical reasons. It seems that

the German government has now passed different legislation, though, and there will be more surveillance cameras. Is this something that Germans

are willing to accept at this point?

BURNS: Well, I think that's quite possible. I think they want to defend their way of life, as the

foreign minister has said a while away here at the memorial church saying we are living through some very difficult, painful moments. We need to

stand together and defend our way of life, but having that way of life, I think a lot of people realize that they have to -- realize -- see what is

happening, the reality on the ground today is that perhaps surveillance is a more important thing.

And we've also seen that they're reaching out, the police are reaching out for any kind of

video from people because they don't have a lot of surveillance cameras here. That's one of the very problems of trying to track down this

suspect. So that's very true.

At the same time, I was -- I stood by the candles a while ago here and a German man I spoke

with he said, look, we need to stay together and life goes on. Life goes on. In fact, there was a headline, a newspaper here that essentially says

that, that Berlin stays Berlin. That really touched me. Because, yes, I have lived here for about seven years. And it says every tear is an oath

to Berlin staying Berlin.

And one of the messages that I saw among the candles was, they will not divide us -- Paula.

NEWTON: Yeah, and important to keep that in historical context. You're talking about a city that's been through so much since the Second World


Having said that, in terms of Germans grasping what they're dealing with now, do you already -- you know, we've been documenting the political

backlash against Angela Merkel for months now, the fact that she did have almost perhaps 1 million asylum seekers. She opened the borders of the

country and let these people in.

That has been festering. But do you see that backlash as we close in now, as I say, almost two days since that attack happened?

[10:40:02] BURNS: Well, yes, absolutely, Paula. We're seeing blow back even within the party grouping itself. The CSU, the sister party in

Bavaria, the head of it, Host Zehova (ph) said we have to take another look at this refugee position here because there is going to be to protest by

the far-right Alternative for Deutschland on one side of us, on the other side, there is going to be the counter demonstration.

They've been saying in the last couple days that those dead, those 12 dead from that attack

are Merkel's dead.

So, we're going to see them, the AFD, trying to make some political mileage in the months

leading up to that general election next year in the fall, Paula.

NEWTON: Yes, such a stunning comment there that was made. Our Chris Burns continuing to follow developments there on the ground in Berlin.

Now, as Chris and I were talking about what the security challenges that face Germany, we

want you to keep in mind that German officials say more than 820 extremists have left the country to join ISIS and other extremistgroups in both Syria

and Iraq.

Now, here's what's interesting, about 270 have returned to Germany, more than a quarter of whom are believed to have been involved in actual

fighting or have received paramilitary training. And there is increasing concern among officials that there are terror cells and radicalized people

inside Germany, in touch with ISIS right now, awaiting their orders to strike.

Now, investigators in Mexico, meantime, are picking through the charred remains of a fireworks market trying to determine what set off a mass

series of explosions.

Yeah, so many of us were taken aback by the video that you see there. I mean, the area near Mexico City looked like a war zone, as you might

imagine, after seeing that.

Now, authorities say at least 31 people were killed, dozens of others were injured, some, unfortunately, with extreme burns. Now, we want to get more

from the scene from our Sara Sidner. I mean, it is heartbreaking to think of those injured and the extreme burns they're dealing with. I know a few

have been moved to medical facilities in the United States. But, Sara, I'm truly heartbroken to hear that where you are now, loved ones have come,

still searching for people that are missing.

SARA SIDNER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yeah, they're also at the morgue, waiting to find out if their loved ones are among the dead. It is a terrible scene

here in Tultepec.

I want to give you a look at what the scene looks like right now. This was a time right before

Christmas, as you know, and very important time and one of the reasons why this market was so full of people, because here in Mmexico, blowing off

fireworks at Christmas is part of a tradition. So families were here -- mothers, fathers, children, aunts,

uncles, all coming to grab up some fireworks to enjoy the holiday, not only Christmas but New Year's, as well.

What you are seeing now, though, is what is basically turned into a graveyard. And those men you are seeing there in white are from forensics.

They are looking around for evidence as to what may have started this fire, but also trying to check to see if there are any other charred remains left

inside of this market.

This market had about 300 stalls. You can see basically, this is the line of what is left. There are just about ten buildings that are still

standing, only a couple of them looked like they survived without being burned inside. This was an incredible amount of explosions.

And we understand that it may have started with six explosives, six explosions going off. And then suddenly, the whole market going up. This

has happened before here. There have been two prior major fires here, but no one died in those fires, though there were some injuries in one of them.

But since then, they tried to implement some safety valves, basically trying to move the

buildings further apart, so that if something happened, there wouldn't be a chain reaction. Clearly, that wasn't enough. You see almost the entire

market burned to the ground. A very sad scene here, especially since we are right near Christmas and there are still people wondering if their

loved ones are among the dead -- Paula.

NEWTON: Yeah, a depressing scenes, chilling scenes, really, Sara, that you brought to us of those people still combing the site, looking for those

remains. Sara Sidner there on the ground, appreciate it.

We want to go to Wall Street now, where the Dow Jones is closing in on a record high of 20,000 points. Now, this is how things stand at the

moment. As you can see, the Dow just absolutely not able to get close to that 20,000 mark. It is down about 14 points. The Dow, S&P and NASDAQ

have all recently hit mutliple record highs. The election of Donald Trump has been credited with some of the recent rallies.

Our Maggie Lake is here in New York with more. I know, Maggie, you've been watching this

thing for days now, seeing if it would actually hit 20,000.


NEWTON: It doesn't seem to be able to do it today, although let's face it, anything is possible.

But Maggie, if we look beyond 20,000, as I know you've been doing for weeks now, is it a bubble or people say this market has legs?

[10:45:10] LAKE: I think that it is not a bubble. There is a feeling that there are real forces that are behind this rally. Can it continue to

accelerate at this speed? That is a completely different story. And I know that there are some that are concerned that maybe we've priced in too

much good news and gotten a little ahead of ourselves here. And that is why, I think, we're having so much trouble getting over this big, round, psychological


And you know, maybe it should be hard to get over these levels, Paula.

But you're right, a lot of it is based on the incoming Trump administration, the perception that this administration will be much more

business friendly, talking about reducing regulation, lowering corporate tax rates, spending on infrastructure, repealing and replacing the

Affordable Care Act, what's known as Obamacare. So it has really fueled gains in things like financials, in health care, and industrials.

Stocks like Caterpillar. That's what's carried this market higher.

So, there is a lot of optimism about what is in store for the U.S. economy. They have to deliver on those goods if we're going to see this march

continue. But right now, it is absolutely clear, the bulls are in control of this market.

We're having a hard time getting over it, but we talked to a trader in the 9:00 hour on CNN Money and he said it is just a matter of time at this

point. There is a feeling that we're going to be able to break through the 20,000 mark, Paula.

NEWTON: Yeah. And as you and I both know, it can still happen today, even though the market is down right now.

Maggie, I have to ask you -- you know, we're -- you know, tackling the investigation in Germany right now, just the latest terror attack that's

been quite alarming. Why are the markets seem to easily shrugging this off? We may not have been able to say that a few years ago.

LAKE: Yeah, I mean, it seems counterintuitive, doesn't it, that amid all these terrible stories of terror and of destruction, that the markets would

seem to complacent.

They're not, certainly not from a human level, Paula. They react the way we all do.

But when it comes down to trading, listen, this is, you know, the NYSE, is the epicenter of a

terrible terror attack. They have learned that this is the world we live in. They understand how this works. And again, in this particular time

we're in, they're watching it. But what they're trading on is more of an internal focus on domestic U.S. politics and how that is going to affect


They do worry about it coming to shores here. They know the U.S. is certainly always vulnerable to an attack. And to the extent that it will

change geopolitical relationships, then they will start to react to it.

So, there is a headline risk, but right now when it comes to putting money to work, they remain focused on the fundamentals and the risks that they

know how to quantify.

NEWTON: And we will continue to be on standby in 2016 to see if the market can do it. Our Maggie Lake watching with us, appreciate it.

LAKE: Thanks.

NEWTON: Now, live from New York, this is Connect the World. Coming up, these shoes and bags are made using a traditional Nigerian weaving style.

We take a look at how this local brand preserves African heritage through modern fashion.

Plus, a city in mourning: Berlin comes together to pay tribute to the lives lost in that Christmas market attack.



UNIDENITIFIED FEMALE: Under the direction of designer and photographer, Tunde Owalabe Oshoke (ph), a customary traditional dress from western

Nigeria is now a global fashion statement for sneakers and accessories.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ethnic is a unique brand inspired by culture. We use 100 percent Nigerian fabric. Every piece of product is an art, creating a

movement, not just on the fashion stage, but on the cultural stage, as well.

UNIDETIFIED FEMALE: Tunde Owalabe (ph) founded Ethnic in Lagos in 2015. The company aims to preserve the traditional crafting of a ashoke (ph), a

uniquely woven wool found amongst the Yoruba people. The technique is passed down from generations.

UNIDENITIFIED MALE: I'm Yoruba, so I needed to go back to my roots, I needed to go back to my heritage. And for me, it is all about sustaining

the culture. It is all about reinventing the culture and making sure that it doesn't die like other fabric. And it's

proudly Nigerian. It's one of the only surviving Nigerian fabric.

UNIDENTIFIIED FEALE: The startup prides itself in enabling artisans to continue traditional weaving while incorporating the fabric into modern


UNIDENITIFIED MALE: I needed to find others ways of using ashoke (ph), and making it more appealing to the younger people and the international world,

because after the wedding or after the ceremony, people don't wear ashoke (ph) anymore. I decided to dig deep and see what else ashoke (ph) can be

used for.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: With an initial capital of just $84, ethnic has grown from one

cobbler to nine employees. This year, they made an annual revenue of $25,000 from corporate and individual clients, shoes range from $75 to $100

a pair. Ethnic distributes throughout Nigeria with hopes to expand in Europe, the U.S. and the rest of Africa.

Despite the challenges, the young company pressed forward.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Since Ethnic started, we've been faced with a lot of challenges. The most pressing is the logistics right now, being able to

distribute around the world.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: In 2017, the start-up hopes to place ashoke (ph) on runways around the globe.

UNIDENITIFIED MALE: 2017 is going to be an amazing year for Ethnic, because we see a lot of collaborations. We see a wider reach. I think it

will get to a point where Nigeria will be one of the fashion capitals, and you know the same way you have the New York Fashion Week being raved about, Nigeria is going to get to that point.

I hope Ethnic will be on the runway as well very soon.



NEWTON: Live from New York, you're watching CNN. This is Connect the World. I'm Paula Newton in New York. Welcome back.

We are continuing to follow breaking developments in Germany as a manhunt is underway. Here's what we know about how the investigation into the

Christmas market attack in Berlin is ongoing.

Police right now are hunting for a Tunisian suspect who had refused asylum -- who had been

refused asylum in Germany. Now, a German security official also says the suspect was arrested in

southern Germany back in August. The suspect was carrying forged documents and had been trying to

travel to Italy. The man was later released, though, by a judge.

Monday's attack killed 12 people and wounded dozens more.

Now, for more on how Germany is coping with this terrible event and other news from the Middle East and around the world, our global team is working

hard to get all the details to you. We want you to check out our Facebook page.

And to get in touch directly with us, tweet the team @cnnconnect, where you'll also find all of the interviews that we are doing on this show.

Now, in doing our live from Berlin today, we heard that there there is a great amount of resilience throughout Berlin and obviously Germany as well,

helping to pull the country together at this very tragic time.

Now, the iconic Brandenberg Gate bridge lit up in German's in red, black, and gold. Candles and flowers are being left in makeshift memorials and

people are coming together in solidarity with a human chain all of this to pay tribute to the victims.

So, for your Parting Shots, we leave you with some of those very touching images.

I'm Paula Newton in New York. That was Connect the World.