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Hurricane Maria aftermath; Catalonia Independence Vote; Trump again lashes out at critics over Puerto Rico; U.S. has direct communication with North Korea; Two women killed in France knife attack; Saudi University to set up driving school for women; Muslims take to the streets of Ashura; Former NFL star leaves prison on parole, Football Stars back Independence; Police Crack Down On Voters During Catalonian Referendum; Understanding Why Catalan Wants To Break Away From Spain; Kurdish Vote Sparks Fear Of Conflict; A Rare Look At Syria's Deir Ezzor; Report Terror Group Counterattack Defeated; Saturday Night Live Mocks Trump's Puerto Rico Response; Women In Workforce; Qatar Crisis 4 Months On. Aired 11-12p

Aired October 1, 2017 - 11:00   ET




[11:00:13] CARMEN YULIN CRUZ, SAN JUAN, PUERTO RICO MAYOR: I have no time for small politics or comments that really don't ask for the situation.

BECKY ANDERSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: San Juan's mayor firing back the president of the United States hoped that he may hear his latest Twitter

targets. All the while millions in Puerto Rico are without food, running water, or electricity.

Next, we are live for you on the island until tonight. Clashes in parts of Spain, riot police disrupting the controversial Catalonian independence

vote. Coming up, the very latest for you from Barcelona.


ANDERSON: Right just past 7 o'clock in the evening in Abu Dhabi. Hello, and welcome, this is CONNECT THE WORLD time with Becky Anderson. We are

keeping across these two major developing stories this hour.

A lot from Spain coming up. I want to start the other with the crisis in Puerto Rico as millions of Americans continue to struggle with an ongoing

humanitarian situation.

U.S. President Donald Trump again this morning launching more Twitter attacks, this time against those criticizing the way he sees the

government's response to the hurricane disaster.

That, "We have done a great job with the almost impossible situation in Puerto Rico." He said, "Outside of the fake news are politically motive --

motivated ingrates people are now starting to recognize the amazing work that is being done by FEMA and our great military.

All buildings now inspected for safety, thank you to governor of PR and to all of those who are working so closely with our first responders.


ANDERSON: Fantastic job," he says, those buildings inspections Mr. Trump is referring to. Well, the government of Puerto Rico says this --

RICARDO ROSSELLO, PUERTO RICO GOVERNO: I'm not aware of such inspection. Of course, there are areas of Puerto Rico where -- which we haven't really

gotten in contacts. Perhaps he was referring to a particular setup of buildings, I'm not sure what the contest of the -- of the messages.


ANDERSON: Well, the governor also said help is arriving. There had been days of mounting criticism as you will be well aware, federal authorities

accused of not responding quickly enough to the crisis.

Eleven days after Hurricane Maria smashed into Puerto Rico millions still without regular electricity service and access to gas, cash, and running

water, limited. The Governor Rossello says more help is needed.


ROSSELLO: Food and water is getting there, it is increasing, the logistics and the visibilities are increasing as well. Although, as I stated before

we recognized we still need to do much more.


ANDERSON: Well, CNN has a team of reporters across the island covering all angles of this crisis. Dr. Sanjay Gupta is there amongst them following

the medical emergency joins us now live from San Juan. And I'm very interested to look at the medical response there. How are hospitals and

medical centers holding up, Sanjay?

SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, it's been for them as you might imagine, Becky. Hospitals unlike just about any other building

are completely dependent on power.

I mean, you can't so much just put on a stitch or get someone on those advance one if you don't have power. So they're really (INAUDIBLE) when

that happens or if they're told that they're going to have power, but it's only going to be for a short time.

And that they can't be guaranteed when more fuel, more diesel will come for those generators. So it's certainly challenging for them. There's also

this issue of communications, you know, there's been constant reports of 40 hospitals now open, 50, 60, differing numbers. Some of these hospitals

have just not been contacted.

We've talked to some of the people at these hospitals, no one's ever contacted them. They may be listed as up and running, they don't have

reliable fuel, they don't have reliable water.

We had ourselves to take them some medications because they didn't have those medications to treat patients. So, is that really a hospital that is

up and running?

Really not because their objectives to take care of patients, they can't do that at this time, many of those hospitals. So it's challenge. In San

Juan, it's a different picture obviously.

Go 15, 20 minutes outside the city and that's -- it's -- you'll see something entirely different.

ANDERSON: Yes. What is happening to the people who can't even make it to a hospital and haven't seen any relief or aid as of yet, Sanjay?

[11:05:12]GUPTA: You know, you might imagine, Becky, if you look at the lines at hospitals, for example, they're not that long and you start

wondering, well, maybe people not need care and then you start to do the ask the next question, which is, where are the people?

They're -- many of them in shelters. Some of them going -- having gone there before the hurricane and now not able to leave. Many are still in

their communities and their homes.

As busted as those homes may be, they haven't been able to seek out medical cares. So I think you start to see this pattern where now 11 days, 10 days

depending on how you count the days after the hurricane, people are starting to filter out of those communities and starting to seek care more

and more.

But it's been challenging. No power, very little water, you know, hot. You're suffering how do you -- how do you deal with it? It's just -- it's

just a miserable situation for them.

ANDERSON: Well, Sanjay is on -- in San Juan. Sanjay, thank you for that with the sense what is going on for medical facilities, hospital facilities

on the island. People across the island, of course, waiting for all sorts of supplies to arrive. Brynn Gingras shows us how the people of one town

are trying to cope.


MIRIAM CRUZ, UTUADO RESIDENT: And the wind, it sounded like a monster.

BRYNN GINGRAS, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Miriam Cruz rode out Hurricane Maria from insides this bedroom. The storm's eyewall traveled right

through mountainous Utuado, a city about 90 minutes from San Juan. The river that runs through this area rose more than 20 feet. What was your

thought looking out the window and seeing this river go up?

CRUZ: Terrible. I thought it was going to come, you know, up here, but it didn't. Thank God for that.

GINGRAS: But the flooding caused landslides and knocked out this bridge, the only way for Cruz's community to get out.

CRUZ: We were afraid that we will be left alone.

GINGRAS: But they weren't. Right now, we're crossing a river with a pole system constructed by a task force that's under the direction of FEMA. And

really across the river about 40 families who haven't seen relief up until today, up until this pole system was constructed.

This group has specialized officers, firemen, and EMS come from New York, Indiana, and Ohio. In the past week, there are teams across Puerto Rico

have saved more than 800 people.


GINGRAS: This task force look after Cruz's neighborhood.

MIKE MCGUINNESS, NEW YORK TASK FORCE 1: While we were conducting out assessments that's how we receive the information from the local emergency

management officials that, "Hey, in this particular areas we haven't been able to get there yet. We have no communication with them, can you help

us?" And that's really what we're hearing here.

GINGRAS: Now residents are rushing in this new shipment of supplies and they're grateful.

CRUZ: When I saw come the first time I saw heaven. So finally we knew that they knew about our situation.

GINGRAS: But with the broke bridge food and supplies will be needed again and communications are still out. This man can't get in touch of his

daughter, bringing him to tears. What do you want to say to your daughter in Texas?


GINGRAS: You're surviving.

SERRANO: And we are -- and we are good because we appreciate your help, ma'am.


ANDERSON: Uh-hmm. Let's bring in Brynn, she's live for us in San Juan at this point. From the comfort of this New Jersey Gold Course, Donald

Trump's tweets have been, well, effectively politicizing this crisis.

I doubt many people have the time to care quite friendly about what the U.S. President is tweeting. And when they are trying to rebuild their

lives and just survive.

But just give me a sense to the mayor, to the governor, to those who are trying to organizing relief, trying to get this island going once again,

how this sort of disclose from mainland U.S. is going down?

GINGRAS: Well, I mean, there are certainly different opinions about that. I mean, if you ask the San Juan mayor she has the strong opinions, been

very vocal about that and her, you know, saying we need help and it's bad, people are dying.

And then there's also the governor who's been a little bit more tamped in his response saying that really we're not going to publicize this, we just

need the help.

You know, governor also today said, we are looking forward to the president's visit. We want the people of Puerto Rico to know that help is

on the way.

But certainly, you know, the people, I'll be honest, Becky, with the people we talked to yesterday who are an hour outside of San Juan who are

literally on an island -- on an island, they don't even know that the president is coming.

They don't have any communications with their family members, never mind what's going on in the world. They're just trying to live day to day. You

saw how they constructed that line to get across the river.

[11:10:03] That's what they've been using for the past 10 days just to get water. There's another line that we didn't show you on the other side of

that woman's house that has like a little seat.

They have a teenager that's sitting on that seat and slides across that river to go to the town to get some supplies. I mean, these are the things

that are happening but that probably people in the mainland don't understand.

These are -- these are the situations people are in and it's hard to, sort of, convey that unless you really live this area. So I think that's

another thing.

I think the people of Puerto Rico hope that the president will actually see outside of San Juan because the situation is really black and white at that

point. Becky?

ANDERSON: Well, do we have any idea what his itineraries when he -- when he turns up? What the point of this visit is aside from P.R. at this


GINGRAS: I -- to be honest with you, I don't know the president's itinerary at this point. I'm sure we're getting briefed on that as we


But I -- again, I think it comes down to what the people really hope he does and that is to understand that there is a serious need that hopefully

the rescues have been all completed, and now it's about humanitarian efforts.

And now it's about getting relief to everyone and then replenishing that relief because there's still so much that needs to be done to

telecommunication, when it comes to power, when it comes to the airport, the hospitals, as you heard Dr. Sanjay Gupta talked about.

So at this point, I think there's just this dire of hope or need -- to make sure that he knows the need that exists here.

ANDERSON: Yes. Get it. All right. Brynn, thank you for that. Excellent reporting from the -- from the efforts on the ground. Former U.S.

President (INAUDIBLE) Bernie Sanders has slammed President Trump's criticism.

Here's what he told CNN's Jake Tapper about his reaction to the president's attack on San Juan's mayor on Twitter.


SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (D), VERMONT: Speaking from his fancy gold club, playing golf with his billionaire friends, attacking the mayor of San Juan

who is struggling to bring electricity to the island, food to the island, water to the island, gas to the island.

There's just -- it is unspeakable and I don't know what world Trump is living in.

ANDERSON: Bernie Sanders there, all of just amazing pretty overwhelming. There are ways that you can help survivors of Hurricane Maria.

Clearly, there's still a need for water, for food, for shelter, and for medical supplies. Even though stuff is getting intrude (INAUDIBLE) For

information to help, do use

Turning now to a voting so dangerous. While the Spanish government and riot police are being deployed to prevent people from entering polling



ANDERSON: This is what we've seen in the northern city of Girona as people attempted to vote in Catalonian independence referendum. And you can see

police using batons on people.

Many of whom have their hands up and now those forcibly dragged away from voting stations. The mayor of Barcelona says more than 450 people have

been injured by police.

Still, though residents are turning out to vote. CNN's Isa Soares joins me now from outside of polling station in Barcelona. Isa?

ISA SOARES, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Becky, there is definitely a sense of uneasiness here on the streets of Barcelona which is under three hours to

go until polls close.

Well, we are seeing many Catalonians have taken to the streets. Take a look at this, see, people basically occupying the street protecting one of

the biggest polling stations here.

This is a school and they are calling on people once they've vote, Becky, to actually stay behind, stay here and really protect the polling station

because the fear is although we haven't seen much action from the Guardia Civil in the last four hours, of course, the concern is that they will show

up unexpectedly and take the ballot boxes and those ballot papers. So very tense moment right now, any moment. Any bit of sounds these people hear

very much won't act, Becky.

ANDERSON: The British Labour Party Leader Jeremy Corbyn speaking out, we've been keeping an eye on reaction to what we are seeing on our screens

from and politicians elsewhere. He tweeted this, "Police violence against citizens in Catalonia is shocking. The Spanish government must end -- act

to end it now." Any sense that this will stop, that -- and that the voters would be allowed to vote as they wish? What do we expect to see next?

SOARES: Becky, the -- we saw the action from that heavy handedness as some I would say from Guardia Civil in the -- in the morning, roughly until mid-

day also.

[11:15:03] Since then we haven't seen any more of the Guardia Civil actually going into polling stations and stopping -- and stopping voters.

The Catalonian government telling CNN there are more 90 percent of polling stations are still open and people can vote.

And what we've been hearing from the Catalonian government and from the government of Madrid, of Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy it's just a blame


One saying that their actions are unproportionate, irresponsible, unjustifiable, this is what the Catalonian was saying regarding the action

of police.

And the Spanish government, they're basically saying if there one -- is one person to blame in all of this said one parliament today is really the

president of Catalonia Carles Puigdemont.

The people not listening to what they -- what the government -- what government here are saying. They're coming out to the street, they believe

they have the right to vote.

Although it is important to point out, Becky, that in the last poll conducted by the Catalonian government back in July of this year more than

49 percentile sort of people didn't want independent, 41 percent did want independence but importantly 70n percent wanted to have a say.

There is a feeling amongst some perhaps that the event following the terrors here in the Barcelona but also what we've seen in the early hours

of this morning that we may have convinced them or the moderate to go to separate accord, Becky.

ANDERSON: Yes. All right. Good stuff. Thank you for that and we will follow this story here on CNN to bring you any further information that we

get as we get it. Thank you, Isa. Well, I want to get you up to speed in some of the other stories that are on our radar right now. Secretary of

State the Rex Tillerson says, the U.S. is communicating directly with North Korea. Made it clear U.S. to resolve the nuclear standoff pre-talks. The

U.S. says Pyongyang is not showing any interest in giving up its weapons. And President Trump seems to think it's all lost cause tweeting just a

while ago, "I told Rex to listen, our wonderful secretary of state that he is wasting his time trying to negotiate with little rocket man. Save your

energy, Rex. We'll do what has to be done."

Police investigating the night attack saying (INAUDIBLE) as terrorism. Two women was stabbed to death at a train station in Marseille. Military

police shot and killed the assailant. Police looking to whether that assailant had any ties to a terror organization. Saudi Arabia's Princess

Nourah University has announced plans to set up a driving school as women there prepare to take the wheels for the first time in decades.

Based on the government issued an historical degree -- decree lifting the ban. Well, same as the festival of remembrance name as Ashura have made

tight security. Muslims across the region including Iraq took to the streets to mourn the death of Prophet Muhammad's grandson Husayn who was

killed in battle in 680.

But here's a former NFL star, former murder suspect, and a convicted fellow now O.J. Simpson is a free man. He was released from prison in the U.S.

State of Nevada shortly after midnight local time.

Simpson served nine years of the 33-year sentence for armed robbery and kidnapping that goes back to an incident in Las Vegas where he tried to

steal sports memorabilia at gunpoint.

A parole board should've granted his release in July. Well, CNN's Paul Vercammen joins us now live from Las Vegas. And this was O.J. Simpson, a

man who was seen his fair share of the spotlight slipping out of a Vegas prison or sorry, out of a prison. And effectively in the night.

PAUL VERCAMMEN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Absolutely. Done by, designed by the board of prison. They did not want any sort of incident, they had gone

through great lengths, Becky, to protect Simpson, worried that some other inmate might try to make a run at him and attack him late.

So they had put him in a -- basically his own cell, his own area, not having contact. And then as you said in the middle of the night the cover

of darkness, O.J. Simpson leaving at 12:08 prison.

Public information officer said to him, "Don't come back," and Simpson was lighthearted and said, "I don't intend to." It a box of belongings such as

a hot plate and some clothes.

And then he headed off into a van and he headed for here, Las Vegas. This is where he will begin serving as a parolee. Basically, they say he's

going to go within his friends.

A gated community, a very lavish and opulent place. And that he will be here for a while. Then the debate, is he going to go to Florida, which he

had said all along.

Well, right now Florida doesn't have his paperwork, the Attorney General of Florida Pam Bondi basically teeing off of O.J. Simpson, saying Florida

doesn't want him, he's a scofflaw.

[11:20:08] We don't want him turning Florida into a country club. I just spoke with Simpson's lawyer via phone. He says that Pam Bondi doesn't have

any jurisdiction on Simpson's transfer.

And that basically she's just electioneer, trying to get attention for herself because she's going to run for office next year and she'll lose.

So harsh words already, another media circus, if you will, starting to surround O.J. Simpson, Becky.

ANDERSON: Paul, thank you for that. Still to come tonight, tending (INAUDIBLE) of a hurricane disaster in Puerto Rico. A war of words erupt

on, guess what, Twitter. That's right. We'll tell you what that is all about up next.


ANDERSON: We were challenged with the catastrophe that is the aftermath of Hurricane Maria is Puerto Rico. Well, massive aid efforts are underway on

the island.

Twitter war between U.S. President Donald Trump and the San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulin Cruz has been getting a lot of attention. All began with the

news conference that she held last Thursday. Have a listen.


CRUZ: We are dying here and I cannot fathom the thought that the greatest nation in the world cannot figure out logistics for a small island of a

hundred miles 35 miles small.


ANDERSON: Well, President Trump then criticized the poor leadership in Puerto Rico and accused the people there of waiting around for help and not

doing enough for themselves. Today his tweets focused more on the aid work as what Mr. Trump called the fake media. Joining us now from Washington is

New York Times White House reporter, Michael Shear. And I think it's important for our international viewers too to understand what is going on

between mainland U.S. and the island at this point.

What should Puerto Rico have expected from the federal government? And what could they get?

MICHAEL SHEAR, WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT, THE NEW YORK TIMES: Well, look I think there's two -- there are two things here going on. There's the

reality and there's the perception. The reality is that there's a fair amount of response that is being - that a fair amount of help that's being

delivered to the people on Puerto Rico.

It's a very devastating situation there and so, you know, there are clearly -- there's a clearly long way to go and people that aren't -- that help

isn't reaching everybody.

I think the perception thing is the striking difference with this president. Most presidents would try to make the point that we're helping,

we're providing help, but that -- but that there's a long way to go and that we're not there yet.

[11:25:05] What happened with President Trump is that the minute he got criticized that the mayor -- that Mayor Cruz suggested that everything

wasn't just hunky-dory and everything was all right, President Trump took it as a personal insult.

And you could see that on his Twitter feed. He -- I think he's now tweeted close to 20 times over the weekend. And almost all of them are clearly him

responding to what he perceive as an attack on him and he's lashing back out.

And that's, you know, so striking because that's different than what any president, democrat or republican, would normally do in a situation like


ANDERSON: Well, as treasury secretary on one of the morning shows, Sunday morning shows in the states, he said, "Look, you know, if you hit out at

Donald Trump he will hit back at you but nothing short of a national disgrace is how one commentator has responded to Donald Trump's mocking

tone on Twitter over the weekend.

And unspeakable says Bernie Sanders, the White House pushing back against his criticism of their response to the crisis. Here's what the White House

Budget Director told my colleague Jake Tapper on "STATE OF THE UNION" have a listen.


MICK MULVANEY, WHITE HOUSE BUDGET DIRECTOR: I think it's unfair to say that we haven't done everything we can because we have done everything that

we can and we'll continue to do so. It's unfortunate that the Puerto Rico mayor wants to -- excuse me, the San Juan mayor wants to sort of go against the grain. We'd love to have her on

the team as we pull the same direction.

My understanding is that as of yesterday she had not even been to the C.M. Operation Center in her own cities.

ANDERSON: He said the criticism is unfair, and you would say what?

SHEAR: Well, look, I mean, I'm not on the island but I have colleagues that are and obviously there's a lot of reporters that had been on the


And what they documented was a very slow effort to reach parts of the island. That's not to say -- I mean, and we've seen the images of FEMA

workers and of -- there had been some stories even just this morning of people from the mainland that are there, you know, helping.

Obviously, you know, the president and the White House doesn't want to undercut those people, those are folks that in some cases had been working

for weeks at hurricanes that started with Harvey and Irma.

And so there is a -- there's a dual imperative here. You do want to portray and not undercut those people that are helping but, you know, it's

-- it is, I think, rich for the president who is sitting up in Bedminster and his aid to be describing a situation as sort of, you know, going really

great and that we're doing all we can when the people on the ground, both the mayor in her case, but also reporters who are indecently documenting

this are suggesting that it's not all working all that great and that more needs to be done.

ANDERSON: You're needed there. We're going to take a very short break, but thank you for that. President Trump heading to Puerto Rico on Tuesday

for the first time. Look, Michael, we'll keep an eye on that I'm sure.

So his visit may remind some of when President George W. Bush flew over New Orleans after hurricane Katrina in 2005. He said he was on his way back

from vacation and didn't want to get in the way.

So he settled for a bird's eye view. Bush heavily criticized for being detached or uncaring. He made multiple trips to the region later but never

fully recovered from that event.

Coming from Abu Dhabi, still ahead, getting out of the -- getting out the vote in Catalonia despite police incredible scenes in the heart of Europe

as the vote for independence popped up.



[11:31:21] PEP GUARDIOLA, COACH, SPANISH FOOTBALL TEAM: Is a -- is a day for the democracy, so what the people are looking for, the people say is

illegally or not legally. No, it's not about illegal, it's as to the people what you want to do in their lives is a party for the democracy and

chance everyone to allow to vote, that's simple, I mean, nobody knows what would be the results.


ANDERSON: Well, Manchester City Boss and former FC Barcelona player and manager, Pep Guardiola there, you'll recognize him, reflecting on today's

historic and let's call it controversial referendum in Spain's Catalan Region, he's not the only footballer who are coming out in support of the

Catalan right to vote, Barcelona Star Defender Gerard Pique seen here and received a round applause on casting his ballot earlier today before he

rushed back to Camp Nou to take part in the teams match against Las Palmas.

Well, that game is going ahead right now, it's in the second half, and Barcelona have just scored, go up one nil. But the company give statement

right before the match saying, it'll have to be played behind closed doors, an empty stadium, but even with no spectators in the stadium, they just

tweeted this out moments ago, reminding the world where they stand, so football and politics. Just another day in Barcelona, right? But let's

get more, journalist Sara Canals joins me now. You and I spoke during the weekend of the Barcelona attack, it was a very difficult time for the city,

but we saw the city come together and you've felt that sense of nationalistic fervor. So, you live and work in Catalonia, your reaction

then to the era ordinary scene surrounding this vote, if you will?

SARA CANALS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, here it's been pretty extraordinary with -- we're living an extraordinary day, it's no longer a matter of

independence, whether we want to -- we want to stay or we stay or leave Spain. It's just a matter of the right to vote, I mean, we're -- with

during the last two weeks, we've been seeing Spanish Police seizing ballot boxes, seizing ballot -- detaining Catalan Government Officials, also

blocking websites. So, well, we've been seeing people just coming up taking the street and chanting that they want to vote. They are just

claiming democracy.

ANDERSON: Well, the government claims that it is illegal of course, so let's take a look at the key issues behind what is this independence vote

and why it's happening now, Catalonia a semi-autonomous region, with its own culture language in the history, of course, support to break away from

Madrid has gained momentum since 2010 when Spain suffered a financial crisis while the region has considerable powers in areas such as tax

collection, some feel too much money get redistributed to other areas of Spain that aren't as wealthy as Catalonia.

There's some of the issues Catalans have with Madrid. But when it comes to succeeding independence, and if you strip of demotions and fervor out of

this, Sara, where does this leave the average Catalonian? Do they want to go at it alone or not?

CANALS: Well, I think this is a crucial matter, in order to understand this whole crisis, I mean, it's true that Catalonia has its own identity,

its own language, its own history and tradition, and historically, the majority of Catalans were not grow independence, were not separated.

[11:35:10] But of -- as you said, Catalan is one of the wealthiest regions in Spain, and because we've -- we go back as you said to 2010, Spain has

reluctant to -- has been reluctant to negotiate, for example, mortification on the wealth distribution system. And all of these things, the reluctancy

of this modification and also the unwillingness to dialogue and talk about a possible referendum has fueled this feeling of leaving Spain, of

independence (INAUDIBLE) in the region. But it's crucial to understand that back in the days in 2010, I mean, before --

ANDERSON: Oh, technologies just let us down, but you heard Sara's thoughts, saying -- Sara is a journalist we met during weekend in Barcelona

when -- rough weekend recently when the city came to a halt of course after the terror attacks there not able to get out back on even when, you know,

we'll keep you well upstate in what's going on in Catalona as this vote in this referendum continues. So that -- so what a weekend has been for a

search in national identity as the Catalan's push for independence to Spain.

Let's take you back the Kurds in Iraq, that was beginning of the week of course, Baghdad's stepping up effort to isolate the Kurds after their

overwhelming vote for independence Monday, an agreement among Iraqi riling Turkey, its effect to band all flights to and from the semi-autonomous

Kurdistan region, it seems Iraq's Kurds are on a collision course with their regional and global power that has to be said.

U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson says, their referendum lacks legitimacy. Well, from Iraq across the border to Syria, another state

struggling with a poison of ISIS and what is becoming multinational and very messy fight in recent weeks. The focus -- excuse me -- has been on

the eastern province of Deir Ezzor and the city by that name, it was held by ISIS for years, but government emersion troops claim the victory weeks

ago, Russian forces gave Fred Pleitgen rare access last month.

FRED PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Flying into one of the most important and most brutal battlefields in Syria. Protected by

heavily armed gunships. The Russian Army took us to the former ISIS stronghold Dier Ezzor. We've known the Syrian and Russian Army has managed

to put the ISIS back, there's still are a lot ISIS fighters here in this area. That's why taking the helicopter is the safest way to get to Dier

Ezzor. After landing in this dusty desert town close to the Iraqi border, the Russian army takes us to the city's center. ISIS ruled most of Dier

Ezzor for more than three years, and besieged government-held parts of the town. Now, commerce is returning here.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): Russia is a friend, a very, very good friend. We like Russia, we respect and appreciate them. What Russia

did for us is so great (INAUDIBLE) too great to describe.

PLEITGEN: The Syrian Army backed by Russia is pressing on, releasing this video of forces crossing the Euphrates River, a move aimed in beating ISIS

back even further, but which also puts them at odds with American Allied Forces trying to push to Dier Ezzor as well.

MAJOR IGOR KONASHENKOV, SPOKESMAN, RUSSIA (through translator): Our forces have already pushed ISIS about five to six kilometers away from the city on

the left side of the Euphrates. But the most important thing is the blockade on the city has been lifted and the people are receiving

humanitarian aid.

PLEITGEN: Russia believes they will oust ISIS from its remaining territory in Southeastern Syria very soon. But the U.S. and its allies are also

moving towards this part of Syria leaving Washington and Moscow with a task of avoiding a clash when ISIS is gone. Fred Pleitgen, CNN, Deir Ezzor,


ANDERSON: Well, since Fred Filmed that report, there were being some developments that showed just how fluent the situation is. ISIS launched a

series of counterattacks on Thursday the fight against the Syrian army and its allies, since their victory around Deir Ezzor last month. Monitoring

groups told CNN that the Syrian Army and Russian forces still not recaptured key roads, but Reuters news agencies reporting that the Syrian

forces and their allies did repel this attack, citing a military media unit run by Hezbollah.


ANDERSON: Back for its 43rd Season, Saturday Live picked up where it left off, taking jam of the job at President Donald Trump. This Sunday, his

response to Puerto Rico crisis, no treat, no quote was left unspoofed and it is out parting shots this hour.


[11:40:07] ALEC BALDWIN, AMERICAN ACTOR: Yes, Mayor, you wanted to talk to me?

VANESSA BAYER, AMERICAN ACTRESS: Yes, Mr. President, I'm so glad to have you on the phone. I'm begging you, Puerto Rico needs your help.

BALDWIN: I hear you loud and clear and you called the best person for the job. Trust me, I know things are as a local, say, Despacito. We want to

give you more help to you, we'll you get immediately probably about Tuesday or Wednesday (INAUDIBLE)

BAYER: Mr. President, that's not good enough.

BALDWIN: Well, you should have paid your bills. FEMA takes a few days unless you joined FEMA Prime.

BAYER: What are you talking about?

BALDWIN: Never mind, I don't know if you know this, but you're in an island in the water. The ocean water, big ocean, with fishes, and bubbles,

and turtles that bite. We want to help you, but we have to take care of America first.

BAYER: Wait, you do know we're a U.S. territory, don't you?

BALDWIN: I mean, I do, but not many people know that, no.

BAYER: Sir, we just need help, please?

BALDWIN: Well, that woman was sort of nasty.


ANDERSON: Uh-hmm. The audience might be laughing but only to alleviate the heartache that we all feel too, we're actually sorry for the people of

Puerto Rico. I mean, reminder, they are waging the help prior, they still need food, water, shelter, and medical supplies for all of those affected

by Hurricane Maria. You can help at, need (INAUDIBLE) organizations where you can donate your time or your money.

I'm Becky Anderson, that was CONNECT THE WORLD from the team working with around the world. It is a very good evening.


[11:45:09] JOHN DEFTERIOS, CNN FINANCIAL ANALYST: Coming up on "MARKETPLACE MIDDLE EAST". This region has one of the lowest international

rates of women in the labor force. We assess the social and economic cost.

NOUR AL HASSAN, CEO, TARJAMA: Half of the society sitting at home not working, you have a paralyzed economy.

DEFTERIOS: And four months into the Qatar crisis. It's costing the country billions and having not knockdown effects across the region.


DEFTERIOS: Here in the United Arab Emirates, they have one of the highest rates of women in the workforce in the region. It's actually one of the

great success stories, but in the Middle East and North Africa, the numbers tell quite a different story. Of the 20 countries in the world with the

lowest rates of women in the workforce, 16 are in the MENA Region. This is spite evidence that equal access to jobs boosts GDP and contributes to

long-term economic growth. Salma Al Balushi is brushing up on her flying techniques at the Etihad Airways Simulator. She was among a growing number

of female pilots with the airline, but a decade ago, when she joined, she was one of the first.

SALMA AL BALUSHI, PILOT, ETIHAD AIRWAYS SIMULATOR: It was a huge thing when they told female in aviation as pilots. The difficulties for us as

female, it was just hard to part to convince and the society at that time that I want to go to aviation and it's a -- it's a mixed environment. Oh,

I'm going to be wearing a uniform.

DEFTERIOS: The UEA has actively encouraged women to enter the workforce, as the result, 47 percent of females in the country are in the labor force

rising to two-thirds in the public sector.

AL BALUSHI: I'm not going to say that my life is perfect, balancing is actually needs to -- so much support. My first support is a work the way

they managed our schedules and everything, but it takes more support from home also. The way my husband supports me and the way my mom, she's the

biggest there supporting pillar, and she takes care of kids if I'm away, and if my husband is working.

DEFTERIOS: But in other countries, rates remained low. In Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, and Jordan, around 20 percent or less of its female

population are in the labor force. One woman trying to address that imbalance is Jordanian, Noor Al Hasa. She established a translation of

contact creation business back in 2008.

AL HASSAN: If you look at Jordan today, a majority of high paid jobs go for men, if you go to employers today due to maternity leaves and other

reasons, they prefer hiring a man versus a woman. Most of the women, even if they work, the second she gets married, she drops out of the workforce.

DEFTERIOS: Ninety percent of her more than 400 full and part-time employees are women working across six countries in the region.

AL HASSAN: I push my female, big parts of it falls on companies like us. We can't only depend on government that can't really fill this huge gap, we

have 60 full-time Jordanian women in our team. Women want to work.

DEFTERIOS: According to the international monetary fund, if (INAUDIBLE) governments would have encouraged female participation in the workforce

between 2000 and 2011, it would have added a trillion dollars that of economic output. That's a big number. Let's bring in Sophie La Ray, she's

the CEO of NASABE, a business facilitation company, that is a huge number. We've seen some success, but only pockets. What's holding up further

progress would you suggest?

SOPHIE LA RAY, CEO, NASEBA: I think nothing is holding up anymore, but what has been taking place in the past was an economy that was driven by

oil. Since the oil price has dropped, we have seen a massive change, I would even say a paradigm shift where governments are leading knowledge-

based economy, they have to pave the way towards a more sustainable economy and more sustainable countries. And women economy empowerment is out of

the pillars of that strategy.

DEFTERIOS: It sounds a little bit radical, would you go as far to suggest that need a quote system to move this along at a faster phase?

LA RAY: Well, it has worked, it has worked in Europe. In the region, if not being put in place, except for Dubai, whether we got to vote, well,

it's part of a cultural shift that has to done in minds of people, but as well, sometimes you have to initiate some push to make it work. To make it


DEFTERIOS: It's also simple math if you live better than half of your population on the sidelines, you just don't have that economic prowess or

output that you normally would have in the society?

[11:50:09] LA RAY: According to the world bank, if you unleash women economic principles? You can generate about $12 trillion of growth

worldwide, it's the -- it's the lots of money, it's no longer a question of epics or existing to do, a nice thing to do, it's just -- it's just making

complete friends.


DEFTERIOS: Almost into the economic embargo into Qatar and the situation can be best described as a political stalemate. It's not good for business

in the broader region, and certainly not Doha, which has had to move into emergency mode. On June 5th, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates,

Bahrain, and Egypt, severe diplomatic ties and transport links with Qatar. They accuse it of supporting terrorism and destabilizing the region.

Accusations which Qatar denies. So far, it has been very costly with Qatar pumping $40 billion into support its economy and financial system in the

first two months alone.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Certainly, the impact it's been most felt in the trade, terrorism and the banking system, from a trade perspective, imports are

down somewhere in the vicinity of about 40 percent, compared to the equivalent months last year. That's because of the closure of the lands,

sea, and air, routes for importing goods into the country.

DEFTERIOS: It's estimated of $30 billion fled its domestic banks during June and July. Higher import costs have led to food inflation, some food

product are now being sourced from Iran and Turkey, ahead of the 2022 World Cup, Qatar had been spending a half billion dollars a week on its

infrastructure projects.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Certainly, the extent to which we're seeing construction material imports, usually coming in via Dubai or via the land

bridge Saudi Arabia, that is being affected, and they have had to be redirected by other ports, we can see an increase in cost there, and also a

significant trailing out of the timing.

DEFTERIOS: But this crisis is not only impacting Qatar but the whole region and Bahrain, in particular, is feeling a pinch.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Bahrain, my largest, the largest exposed to the Qatar crisis, specifically from a trade, from a services perspective, from FDI

perspective, it's still relatively small, so it wouldn't go blowing that out of proportion, but I would say from in their perspective of Bahrain's

financing needs and also from Bahrain's banking system needs. This is where the newer effects of the potential spillover this will have -- will

be felt.

DEFTERIOS: Robin Niblett is the director of Chatham House in London. We caught up with him to discuss why does it make or break situation for

Qatar's young Emir. Sheikh Tamim, this is his first big test, because we had to prove to the Qatari people he can manage it and to the outside world

that he's strong enough to resist the pressure from Saudi Arabia and others?

ROBIN NIBLETT, DIRECTOR, CHATHAM HOUSE LONDON: You know, this is a test of wills of a new generation. So it's not Tamim against King Salman, Tamim

against crowned Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

[11:55:10] So it is in a way he can't fail, because this is a test of which of the new generation are going to determine the future of the gulf. And

my impression would be that if you are -- Tamim at this time, this is a moment we have to demonstrate your metal, so he needs to be able to set a

tone that he is a survivor, that he's there for the long term, he's a young leader, but least assured he can be there for 20, 30 years.

DEFTERIOS: How much damage does this cost for the broader Gulf States? Does it rattle this idea of an open market that's willing to grow, wants to

grow, is it open to the open to the outside world?

NIBLETT: I think this is can only be seen as a negative player on the attractiveness of all Gulf States of foreign investment. Most people who

will invest or companies that will invest into the gulf will want to know that the overall environment is benign, and that overall environment is

defined by the health of the oil sector. And the all sector is unpredictable, it seems to be kept around $55 a barrel. So if you're going

to be making a choice to invest anywhere in the world, and you see that there's a real spat that's emerged between the leaders, it seem to be very


And, you know, at the same time you're saying if you're the leader of Saudi Arabia, we're launching the vision 2030 for Saudi Arabia, you think whole,

well -- but this is somebody playing poker, you're asking me to invest at a time that you're embarking on a really high stakes player with one of your

neighbors, which is more important to you. Getting the upper hand on a diplomatic standoff within the Gulf or are you really committed to the

investment in the region?

Because I'm going to have to make a choice of political risk and you're raising my political risk when you already have a bad relationship with

Iran, Iraq is unpredictable, you got the war in Yemen, Syria is unresolved, you know, it really makes one feel that a foreign investor I'd say this is

a government just focused more on its geopolitical position in this economy.

DEFTERIOS: Since we have this coalition going against Qatar, but no structure we then say the Gulf Cooperation Council itself, did they need to

move into something that is much more driven by governance rather personal relationship or even if I can say it tribal relationships very hardcore?

NIBLETT: The GCC seems to be -- to be a reflection of the political structure, of its memberships, which is extremely tightly controlled

internal government structures, whether it's one the dominance which is Saudi Arabia, and therefore, the Gulf just reflects centralized control and

then the centralized controlled of a dominant player which is Saudi Arabia. Unfortunately, the spat with Qatar has ended up just exposing for the world

of the GCC in ways you has the structure of power relationships amongst a few families.

DEFTERIOS: Robin Niblett Chatham House on the Qatar embargo which proving difficult to solve, but also raises the question about governance within

the gulf cooperation council to avoid sudden shocks. Political or otherwise.