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Zuma Speaks Out; Netanyahu Defiant In Face Of Corruption Allegations; Shaun White Dismisses Harassment Allegations As Gossip; North Korea Figure Skaters In Spotlight; Feminist Icon Gloria Allred; Haiti Seeking Arrest Of Former Aid Agency Worker; As Many As 10,000 Workers To Leave Kuwait; Tillerson Stresses Urgent Need To Support Iraq And Syria; Concerns About Impact On Funding Cuts; Love On The Ice. Aired 10-11a ET

Aired February 14, 2018 - 10:00:00   ET




[10:00:10] JACOB ZUMA, SOUTH AFRICAN PRESIDENT: In the process of the discussion, it was clear that people are saying Zuma must go. My problem

was that it is not a thing. It has been said the entire year.


KINKADE: Speaking out as African President Jacob Zuma says that calls for him to resign are unfair, but his Party is going to hold a vote of no

confidence. We go live to Pretoria with the latest.

Also ahead Police in Israel say there is enough evidence to bring corruption charges against Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and he says

that the investigation is going to end in nothing. We will go cross to Jerusalem for what happens next.

And she has been fighting for women's rights for decades and her work is only becoming more and more relevant. My conversation with feminist icon

Gloria Allred is coming up.

Hello and welcome to "Connect the World." I'm Lynda Kinkade live in Atlanta filling in for Becky Anderson. We start with the unfolding turmoil

in South Africa President Jacob Zuma is not going down without a fight. His own ANC Party has demanded his resignation and the country's parliament

is going to hold a no confident vote on Thursday, but just a couple of hours ago the 75-year-old leader took to live television to plead his case

to the people, and in a lengthy pitch he said the decision to remove him from power is unfair.

Let's go directly now to our David McKenzie in Pretoria and David, this was meant to be an interview, but it sounded like a long and rambling speech

for the President to make a case to stay on and he is say all those who said that Zuma must go never provided reasons.

DAVID MCKENZIE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, that is right. I mean in this buildings, the Union building is behind me, that lengthy monologue mostly

that the president gave, he was very unclear whether he is going to resign or not, and the pressure pilling on to him from the opposition and from his

own Party, he want to schedule a no confidence vote in the parliament where they could fire him. In that address as it were on live television, he

played himself as the victim and gave out and aired the dirty laundry of the ANC for the past, the ten days or so of back and forth negotiations and

the chaos within the ruling party and ultimately asked the question, well, what has he done?


ZUMA: I this it is important for me to say this, because out there in the narrative, it looks like as people are saying, Zuma is defiant. I am not

defied, but I have disagreed with a decision taken. I disagree with it and I believe it is baseless.


MCKENZIE: Well, he was defiant throughout that live interview, and he said that he really had done nothing wrong. But the burden of the evidence and

the allegations over many years have shown for many years, in fact, according to other things and his Party that he has many things wrong.


KINKADE: And David, if he does not resign tonight, his own Party the ANC is going to have the no confidence vote tomorrow and how could that play


MCKENZIE: Well, certainly it would be a unified front seems between the opposition and the ANC largely where they just need a simple majority, but

there is also has been dramatic developments here in the Pretoria/Johannesburg region today where you had the hawks, the

investigative high priority crimes units swooping on it, the variety of residents, arresting three -- expected two others to hand themselves in

over a corruption saga that we have are reported on. We visited some of the farmers who have been the victims of this saga and these allegations.


MCKENZIE: For his cattle to survive, this man must take his herds to the cemetery. He says that black farmers in the Free State province have it


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We want to send our children to school. That is the main thing.

MCKENZIE: A few years back the ranchers signed up for shares and cash in a large scale government -financed dairy farm. You were supposed to have

ownership of the cows?


MCKENZIE: Have you received money?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Nothing. Not even a cent.

[10:05:00] MCKENZIE: We are from CNN and we just wanted to see if we could access the property to talk to people. So that the allegation is that

millions of dollars were siphoned away from the dairy project into the hands of other people and not really benefited the community at all. What

do you make of the allegations of corruption?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I would say it is a secondary question to me. I am operating the farm, I don't have million.

MCKENZIE: But records first expose in South African media show that much of the money meant to uplift poor black farmers allegedly paid for a

purpose. A lavish wedding Sun City covered in the local celebrity show Top Billings. Wealthy Indian businessman with an empire that spans media,

mining and energy. The (inaudible) are implicated in this and other corruption scandals. Allegedly profiting from the cozy relations with

President Jacob Zuma. Allegations that they have repeatedly denied.

And it was the Gupta compound raided today by the hawks. That allegation is the tip of the iceberg and so many more over the years, so when

President Zuma says that he does not know what he has done wrong, many in the country point to examples like that. And the question is that in the

next few hours will he use a statement that he has promised to come out, to resign or will he dig in further. His options are certainly being rapidly

reduced with parliament moving to fire him in Cape Town.

KINKADE: Yes. As you can imagine after that speech that he is going to dig in further, but we will see how it plays out. David McKenzie, great to

have you with us. Thank you.

Well Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says that the coalition is stable making clear he intends to weather the storm after police announce

that there is sufficient evidence to indict him on corruption charges. Mr. Netanyahu is downplaying the news saying that the allegations are nothing

and are full of holes like Swiss cheese. It is now up to the Attorney General to decide whether to file charges, and that could take a while.

Mr. Netanyahu is already feeling the opposition leaders are calling for him to resign. Well, our Oren Liebermann is in Jerusalem with more on this

story. Oren police are recognizing the indictment despite Prime Minister Netanyahu's denials, there is enough evidence now when could the attorney

general make a decision?

OREN LIEBERMANN, CNN CORESPONDENT: There is no specific or the set time line for the Attorney General to make his decision on whether to indict

Benjamin Netanyahu, but he is moving slowly and methodically and so we could be talking about weeks and month, but in the meantime, the

interesting question is what about the coalition partners? Do they support him as they have said they will do so far or decide that enough is enough,

and they move on? We have heard from two key coalition figures within his government. One of them said that we will wait to see the Attorney General

decides the other agreed, but also gave a stinging rebuke there saying that Netanyahu did not act up to the standards of his office or did not live up

to the standards of his office, but also said, we would wait to see what the Attorney General decides.

The crack there is evidence that Netanyahu is saying that his coalition is stable, but if not a big majority that he has here in the Knesset behind

him, and so a number of different parties could take him down, should they decide that he is no longer an asset that he has become a liability.


MCKENZIE: Criminal investigation against the Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu are a fight for the very legacy of an Israeli leader. The man

who won four elections and the country's second longest serving prime minister now facing a police statement that the is enough evidence to

indict him on charges of bribery, fraud and bridge of trust in two separate investigation known as case 1,000 and case 2,000. In case 1,000, police

say Netanyahu received hundreds of thousands of dollars from overseas businessmen in the form of cigar, champagne and jewelry. In case 2,000

police say Netanyahu bartered for better coverage in an Israeli Daily newspaper in exchange for hampering a competing paper. Netanyahu has

denied all of the allegations against him saying the will end in nothing. He said that he will not be step down.

BENJAMIN NETANYAHU, ISRAELI PRIME MINISTER (TRANSLATOR): I think about the good of the country and not for personal reasons or the press, but just the

country and nothing is going to stop me from doing this and not even the attacks against me, and believe me they are never ending, and therefore

today is not any different from any other days which I had been through in the past 20 years.

MCKENZIE: The pressure on Netanyahu has grown, and he has been questioned by investigators seven times in the ongoing probe.

[10:10:00] His former chief of staff Ari Harrow turned state witness. Providing evidence in the criminal investigation. Deflecting the blame,

the Prime Minister's list of targets has grown, the media, the police and the Attorney General, the courts and the left. He accuses them trying to

beat him for investigations since he says they can't beat him in an election.

Netanyahu has been in this position before and his first term in the late 90's. Police recommended an indictment against him, but the Attorney

General decided there is not enough evidence, the investigation was dropped an outcome Netanyahu predicts will happen again.


MCKENZIE: The Attorney General has just become arguably the most important person in Israeli politics. Lynda.

KINKADE: All right. Oren Liebermann for us, good to have you staying and press that. Thank you very much.

Well, American snowboarder Shaun White makes history at the winter Olympics, but his legacy is not all golden. The 31-year-old pulled off an

epic win in the men half-pipe, taking home the historic third gold medal in the event, but at a press conference following his victory, while he was

asked about sexually harass a former female friend and he dismiss those accusation as just gossip.

The North Korean is back in the spotlight at the Olympic games figure skating pair receive a warm welcome and they could be ask for the short

program. They are the only athletes to compete under the North Korea flag and only North Koreans to qualify for the games. Let us get the latest

from CNN sports analyst Christine Brennan and she joins us now from Pyeongchang. Good to have you with us Christine. You were at the press

conference when Shaun White was ask about, the sexual harassment allegations. What did you make of his answers, given what you have found

out about those allegations?

CHRISTINE BRENNAN, CNN SPORTS ANALYST: I was very surprised, Lynda, that he brushed it all off, and he called it gossip. Serious allegations of

sexual harassment and lewd behaviors sending text messages to a woman who was a drummer in his band, by the way he had admitted to sending those text

messages and other allegations as well, so to dismiss it that way, just to say it is as gossip is very surprising. I think that we have that footage

and we can take a listen now.


SHAUN WHITE, U.S. GOLD MEDALIST: I am truly sorry that I chose the word gossip, because it is a (inaudible) of words to describe such a sensitive

subject in the world today and I'm just truly sorry and I am so overwhelmed with just wanting to talk about how amazing today was and share my

experience and every experience in my life I feel like it taught me a lesson and I definitely feel like I am a much more change person than I was



BRENNAN: And of course, that is the "today" show and his apology after the initial press conference, but it is a little surprising to me to be honest

that someone of Shaun White did not understand the magnitude of the question the first time I tried to ask, by the way, the press conference

was unusual in the sense that the moderator with U.S. Olympic committee snowboarding basically only called on men, and I have never seen anything

like that before. We just want to call on male journalists, and we had that going on as well, but it was an unusual day for sure, but important

day in terms on the national conversation of what we think and where we are going with the #metoo movement,

KINKADE: It is certainly fascinating press conference to be surprising and usual that no females were able to ask any questions, looking at a lighter

note, these North Korea figure skaters and they were the only North Koreans to actually qualify for the Olympics on merit, and they certainly impressed

a lot of people.

BRENNAN: Oh, they did. First of all, they are crowd favorites and the crowd and then of course, the North Korean cheer squad there as well,

obviously, with the big issues, and they are endlessly fascinating and of course she the troubling back story of the North Korea no doubt. Cheering

the South Koreans and the North Koreans came later and this is a pair that actually did qualify for the Olympics they were 15th at the world figure

skating championships just 10 months ago in Helsinki, and they are really good. They deserve all of the good scores they are getting, I think they

are headed for maybe a good 12th place finish somewhere between 12 and 15. Bottom-line, they deserve it. They are quite good and for anyone who is

assuming some kind of a sense about that, they look like normal figure skating, they are trained by a Canadian coach, spent two months in Montreal

over this summer.

[10:15:00] They had got a great pedigree, great training and a terrific future and obviously we are seeing that on display on ice here if


KINKADE: Certainly a spectacular site. Christine Brennan, good to have you with us staying across it all, thank you very much.

Still to come, if you think the #metoo movement is something new, think again. Gloria Allred has been fighting against sexual harassment for

decades. My interview with feminist icon up next. Also the fallout from the Oxfam sex abuse scandal is no longer just rhetoric as condemnation

involved in Haiti, say it is seeking an arrest.


KINKADE: You are watching CNN and this is connect the world with me, Lynda Kinkade. Welcome back. Movement unlike any other. One so powerful it

recently landed those at the forefront so-called silence breakers on the cover of Time magazine issue. In 2006 of the #metoo expression took on a

life of its own after harassment allegations against Hollywood executive Harvey Weinstein prompted many people, and mainly women to open, up about

their own experiences of sexual abuse at the hands of famous and powerful me feminist icon Gloria Allred has been fighting on behalf of women for

decades and leading cases against men like O.J. Simpson, Bill Cosby and even President Donald Trump. She is now opening up about her own life and

personal struggles in a brand-new documentary out now on Netflix it is called "Seeing Allred."


GLORIA ALLRED, ALLRED, MAROKO AND GOLDBERG: Today with me, there new women who alleged they were victims of Bill Cosby are here with to describe what

they alleged that Mr. Cosby did to them when they were extremely young and vulnerable.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And for those who will choose not to believe that I am speaking the truth of what happened to me, please know that I wish it

were not true.

ALLRED: It is always personal to me if a woman has been a victim of an injustice and has been hurt.


[10:20:00] KINKADE: Well, Gloria Allred joins us now, live from New York. Good to have you on the program Gloria.

ALLRED: Thank you Lynda.

KINKADE: You had been a long advocate for gender equality, a champion of sexual abuse victims and a lot of our international audience may not know

that you yourself survived a horrific rape when you were a young and single mom. How did that shape the path that you took as a lawyer?

ALLRED: Well, it certainly was part of my life experience to be raped at a gunpoint and certainly my life experience is the reason that I am so

committed to asserting and vindicating women's rights and helping them to provide justice, and it is also the reason that I can understand why

persons who are victims of gender violence think that they will not be believed, because I thought that I would not be believed over what I

thought would be the denial of a very powerful man, a doctor in Mexico. So I open up about that in the documentary on Netflix "Seeing Allred" but also

in the documentary, we see so many women coming forward and telling what they say is their truth about Bill Cosby. We see the accusers of Donald

Trump and we see so many others who have found the courage to speak out and I call this the year of empowerment of women.

KINKADE: And it is certainly the year of empowerment, and you have taken on so many high profile case, and as you mentioned Bill Cosby, Harvey

Weinstein. When did you realize that they were not ordinary cases?

ALLRED: Well, when I realized that many of the cases that I am bringing are against rich and powerful and famous men on behalf of women who allege

that they were victims of injustice by these men, sexual assault, sexual harassment, violence and rape. And these are issues that women have been

living in fear of in terms of speaking out about them, because they were afraid, but now fear is being abandoned as a weapon that has kept them

silent. So we will see in the Netflix documentary, and we see that the women are finding the courage to fight through their tears, and fight

through the pain to move from what I call victims to survivors to fighters for change and helping to change the laws. That is so exciting and so

empowering and I'm so proud of them.

KINKADE: As you should be. And you are also Gloria involved in a case, against President Trump.


KINKADE: What is the status of that case and how difficult is it to take on a sitting President.

ALLRED: yes Lynda, that is the case of Summer Zervos versus President Trump, and she is one of the women who spoke out and said that again what

she said is her truth during the Presidential campaign. She alleged sexually inappropriate conduct by then candidate Trump and that is after we

heard the "Access Hollywood" tapes in which he alleged that he could kiss a woman without her consent and he could grab her by her private parts,

because he is a star, and he denied on CNN in a debate with Hillary Clinton denied having actually done that when Anderson Cooper asked him, and he

said that it was locker room talk, and he threaten the women who spoke out during the campaign and called them liars and said that what they said was

fabrication and fiction threat to sue them after the campaign. I called on him to retract, he did not so on behalf of Summer we filed that lawsuit in

New York three days before the inauguration, and the President at this point is seeking a motion to dismissed, to have that granted we opposed

that, he replied we argued early December and the honorable Jennifer Scheckter, New York judge has it under submission and that we are expecting

her decision could be any day or could be next month or as soon as she is ready to publish her decision.

KINKADE: Right. That should happen now, pretty in the near future. Looking at the White House, this is a White House that is overshadowed by

sexual abuse, and harassment allegation, and we are now learning that President Trump's personal lawyer paid porn star Stormy Daniels $130,000 to

stay quiet and on top of that the staff secretary Rob Porter who resigned in disgrace this week was kept on despite the fact that the FBI had warned

the White House about his domestic violence history. Gloria, what does that tell you about the state of the White House?

[10:25:00] ALLRED: Very, very troubling, Lynda. I do know Michael Cohen and I have dealt with him when I said an issue involving then private

citizen Donald Trump when he excluded a transgender woman from the Miss Universe/Miss Canada pageant solely on the account of the fact that she was

born male. But in any event, I was successful to getting her back in and having a victory over then Mr. Trump, but what I am concerned about is that

are the are more questions than answers with the response of Michael Cohen that he paid certain amount, allegedly personally, to Stormy. I think that

there needs to be investigation of that. I think that the New York State Bar will have a lot of questions about that, and I wouldn't be surprised if

he is asked to answer those questions having to do with ethics if the state bar opens an investigation into him. And why he paid the money. Having

said that, I am very concerned also about the whole Rob Porter issue in the White House.

First of all, I don't like calling it domestic abuse. Let us call it what it is. These are allegations of spousal battery. We saw that photo of the

black eye of one of the wives. Apparently, they knew about this for some time the White House did. Stop appealing to your base, I would say,

President Trump, which is mostly men, and start being truthful about these kinds of issues, and right on point, and in other words, let us call it

what it is, and I think that it is important to address the women who have been so brave in speaking out, the ex-wives, and telling again what they

say their truth and what about that restraining order and what about the protective order having been issued. This is, and there has been due

process. Let's not talk about there has to be due process for the (inaudible). There has been due process if a temporary restraining order

was issued a protective order. And now it is time for the apology to these ex-wives and to the American people for not taking action against Rob

Porter much sooner.

KINKADE: Very well said. What I would like to show is another clip from the powerful documentary "Seeing Allred. Let's take a quick look at this.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We don't think that our daughters should have to trade sexual favors in order to get a raise.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: How do you think that we get on this show?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I want to see you on my dressing room after the show. I know.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She talked about sexual harassment when nobody wanted to talk about it.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Let the woman prove that she is psychologically injured to sue for sexual harassment in the workplace.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She has kept pushing and fighting and now more people are talking about it.


KINKADE: And as you have just heard, you have been a fighting this fight for a very long time. It is personal. What has it been like for you,

Gloria Allred to watch the #metoo movement unfold, and do you fear it is short-lived or do you think this is a turning point?

ALLRED: I do think it is a tipping point, a turning point in the terms of women feeling that they can do something about sexual harassment, rape or

sexual assault. In addition to some of them speaking out on the #metoo movement and more than half a million or maybe it is a million now at this

point all around the world, and many are contacting me from all over the country and as a matter of fact other places in the world wanting to know

what are their legal rights? Is there something they can do? Is there some action they can take to make these men accountable? And the answer in

many cases, yes, there are steps that we can take to help women achieve justice, but it is about accountability in some form.

The power dynamic has shifted, Lynda. It used to be that the persons who were victims were the on the defensive and the accused were on the

offensive and now it is a shift. Now the victims are on the offensive and the accused are on the defensive with men waking up every day saying, I am

going to be next? Well, if they don't the harass women, and if they don't harm women, they have nothing to fear. It is time for them to acknowledge

what they have done and to bring justice to the women that they have hurt. And again, these women are courageous, they are role models for people in

their family, and I say to women all over the world, watch the documentary "Seeing Allred" and see women standing up for themselves, and you can do it

too, wherever you are and you can speak truth to power and win justice.

KINKADE: You certainly can. Gloria Allred, a great Netflix documentary "Seeing Allred." And I will be sure to check it out in full. Thank you so

much for joining us.

ALLRED: Thank you, Lynda.

KINKADE: Well still to come on CNN's Connect the World. coming up, thousands of Filipino citizens may travel home for free after a killing in

Kuwait put their plight in the spotlight.

And it was meant to rebuild a crumbling landscape in a country devastated by an earthquake, but now Oxfam's support is crumbling around the globe.

We will have that in a live report next.


KINKADE: This is Connect the World and these the top stories this hour. Just hours ago, South African President Jacob Zuma used a live TV interview

to protest calls for his resignation. His own ANC party is demanding he relinquish power and the country's power and has set a no-confidence vote

for Thursday.

Well, the opposition leaders in Israel are calling on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to resign. The police announced that there was

sufficient evidence to indict him on corruption charges. Mr. Netanyahu says the allegations amount to nothing. Israel's attorney general will now

decide whether to file the charges.

[10:35:00] U.S. President Donald Trump has been briefed on a shooting at a National Security Agency facility in Maryland. And the NSA says that the

incident took place at a vehicle gate.

An aerial footage shows a black SUV that seems to have crashed the barriers. The NSA now says that the situation is under control.

Friends and family members say that several Russian paramilitary contractors are among more than 100 men killed by U.S. air strikes near

Deir ez-Zor, Syria last week.

The Russians have been privately contacted to support the Russian military in pro-Syrian government forces. Well condemnation is no longer enough.

Haiti says it is seeking the arrest of a former Oxfam worker who paid prostitutes during earthquake relief efforts. Some are said to have been


Haiti is asking for the U.K. to help. Its foreign ministry says the behavior was inhumane and deeply criminal. And Actress Minnie Driver is

stepping down as one of Oxfam's global ambassadors saying that she is horrified by the sexual abuse allegations.

And the British Government has warned that all agencies, if they do not protect their staff and beneficiaries, the government will pull funding and

won't work with them. CNN's Cyril Vanier is on the ground in Haiti's capital and joins us now.

And Cyril, we are seeing what seems to be this culture of denial. Oxfam claims that it was apparent, but then you look at this man who was the

director during the disaster relief operations after the Haiti earthquake and it seems there was this pattern of abuse at the jobs that he had

previously held.

CYRIL VANIER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, absolutely, Lynda, and that makes this whole story all of the more disturbing, because there are reports that

what is alleged to have happened in Haiti also happened in Africa back in the early 2000s. So we are talking almost 10 years before the Haiti Oxfam


Let me detail it for you. Consider the timeline and consider also who we are talking about. We are talking about a Belgian national. He is in his

60s now, and Belgian (ph) van Hauwermeiren is his name and he had a long career in the aid business, the charity business.

He was working for a charity called Merlin in Liberia in the early 2000s and now the reports are that he had to leave that post because already at

the time he was paying for prostitutes and that was called to the attention of his superiors. That did not stop him from being them being employed by

Oxfam and Chad being their country director there.

And same thing, allegations against him of using prostitutes, him and his staff, and both him and at least one other member of his staff were, then

not only not sacked, but promoted and sent to Haiti, where he was once again a country director.

Despite the fact that Oxfam -- we know from the internal documents and from the good journalism about the Times of London, despite the fact that Oxfam

had misgivings about his conduct towards women.

In Haiti, he admits to having done the same thing, brought prostitutes over to his villa. Again, that didn't stop, and that wasn't the end of the road

for him. Oxfam forced him to resign in a way that was just under the public radar at the time, without disclosing why.

And he was then able to find employment with yet another charity -- a French charity, this action against hunger in Bangladesh. And when you see

all this time line, you realize this was only possible as you put it, a culture of impunity.

It means that people at the highest levels time and time again wanted to get rid of the problem rather than actually address it in the way that is

being done now and address the problem head-on, and the fact remains to those days.

Roland van Hauwermeiren, this Belgian national, he was working until very recently into charity business and for the moment, he has not had to face

the consequences of his acts.

KINKADE: Yes, not yet at this point in time. Well, Cyril Vanier, good to have you in the story in Haiti for us. Thank you very much.

Well, a deadly in Kuwait has placed the plight of domestic workers in the Persian Gulf in the spotlight once again. A murder in Kuwait spiked

reaction in Kuwait. The Philippines is pulling people out. Here is the shocking details.


KINKADE: They flooded in to the Manila airport amid crowds and cameras, some covering their faces. As many as 10,000 Filipinos workers in Kuwait

are expected back in their home country after the Philippines government offered free flight to its domestic workers.

President Rodrigo Duterte has ordered a ban on the employment of overseas foreign workers in Kuwait after abuse, as well as the death of several

women, including 29-year-old domestic helper Joanna Demafelis. Her body was found in a freezer at her employer's apartment. Authorities say she

could have been there for more than a year.

[10:40:00] President Duterte has bound to support the workers upon their return.

RODRIGO DUTERTE, PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES: I want total ban and they can come here we will have to support them.

What do you mean subsidize them, you come home. And I will sell my soul to the devil to look for money so that you can come home and live comfortably


KINKADE: CNN ask the Kuwaiti Foreign Minister about Duterte's ban and he condemns it.

SHEIKH SABAH AL-KHALED AL-SABAH, KUWAITI FOREIGN MINISTER (through a translator): This escalation will not serve the interest of either Kuwait

or the Philippines. The only solution is to cooperate and collaborate on details of the very sad and unfortunate event that happened.

KINKADE: Claire Hobden of the International Labour Organization also took issues with Duterte's plan.

CLAIRE HOBDEN, INTERNATIONAL LABOUR ORGANIZATION: This will prevent Kuwaiti's government from seeking domestic workers from other countries of

origin. So it is not a long term solution, it won't replace the measures they should be taken in the countries destination.

KINKADE: The Kuwaiti Foreign Ministry says that there were 276,000 Filipino workers in the country in January. According to the Philippine

Statistical Authority, there were 2.2 million Filipinos overseas working in 2016. An overwhelming 57 percent located in the Middle East, 6.4 percent

in Kuwait.


KINKADE: You are watching Connect the World. And still to come a mission in the Middle East. The U.S. secretary of state affirms America's

alliances, but now with the hefty price tag has been place on one nation's recovery.


KINKADE: To Iraq now where the end of the war against ISIS did not mean the end of pain and devastation. Iraq says that the country that needs

more than $88 billion to rebuild.

ISIS has seized Iraq -- had seized Iraq's second city Mosul as well as other areas in the north and the west. And Iraq declared victory over to

the group in December.

With the lasting damage cause canned by ISIS is one of the biggest problems facing America's top diplomat on these trip to the Middle East.

Speaking in Kuwait, Rex Tillerson said if community is in Iraq and Syria cannot return to normal life, we risk the return of conditions that allowed

ISIS to take and control vast territory.

And of course, many in the region no longer live in their home country, instead they are among the hundred of thousands of refugees in places like

this, in Jordan, which is where the U.S. secretary of state is.

Tillerson reaffirmed Washington's relationship with Amman and spoke about a host of issues facing the wider region. Well, our senior diplomatic

correspondent Michelle Kosinski is in Amman with the latest.

And, Michelle, despite the fact that the U.S. said it proposed this substantial cut to foreign aide, especial their countries that are against

U.S. policies.

[10:45:07] And we have heard from Rex Tillerson saying that we're going to see a further expansion of aid in Jordan.

MICHELLE KOSINSKI, CNN SENIOR DIPLOMATIC CORRESPONDENT: Yes, and just to hear the numbers and see the situation as regards Iraq, I mean to know that

it is going to take at least $80 billion to get it back to where it is.

And to see the prime minister of Iraq in Kuwait, which Iraq invaded not so long ago, looking for help, and to see that, you know, Secretary of State

Tillerson is there saying that Iraq is now open for business and looking for investments there is a surreal scene really after years of war fighting


The good news is that ISIS is defeated in Iraq and there is some investment going in. And yes, you know, over the last few days, we have heard this

surprising rhetoric coming from the White House.

And especially the president himself both in the statements he has made and in tweets, saying things like, calling it a mistake and stupid that the

U.S. has spent, as he put it, $7 trillion in the Middle East over the last -- more than a decade.

And even though many dispute that number saying it has been nowhere near $7 trillion, but now that the secretary of state is proving on this trip that

one way to smooth things over and to show the U.S. commitment is to spend more money.

I mean just today, they have signed a memorandum of understanding with Jordan that they are going to spend $6 billion, more than that actually,

over the next five years, that is an increase in aid to Jordan.

Even though spending for Jordan had already been at a high. So it proves that yes, the U.S. is going to spend money in the Middle East despite oddly

enough what the president says, but when it serves the U.S. interests.

Secretary of State Tillerson also announced on this trip, more than $200 million in additional assistance for stabilization for Syria. So we are

likely to see more of that over the long term and possibly more announcement such us funding, even while he is traveling through the Middle

East. Lynda.

KINKADE: All right. We will wait to hear those further announcements. Michelle Kosinski, good to have you. Thank you so much. Well, Rex

Tillerson says the Trump administration is committed to Middle East peace.

But after the U.S. said it was moving its embassy to Jerusalem, and that it announced it was cutting funds, Palestinian refugees found out U.S.

sincerity. Ben Wedeman has marked from their worst.


BEN WEDEMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Mohamed (ph) Awali doesn't like the way the medicine goes down. His parents hold the jumpy 2-year-old still as the

Doctor Saleh (ph) checks how much he has grown.

She works at the busy Beirut clinic run by UNRWA, United Nations Relief and Works Agency which since 1949 has provided basic services to millions of

stateless Palestinian refugees.

The Trump administration has slashed $65 million from the its annual contributions to UNRWA, demanding reforms at the agency, cutting all

funding to UNRWA's activities in Lebanon and Syria. Mohamed's (ph) father, Ahmed, worried that the finding cut is the first step towards dismantling

UNRWA altogether.

"We are scraping by for now, he says, but if they cancel UNRWA, will be a big catastrophe." The Palestinians in Lebanon are at best second-class

citizens barred from skilled professions and denied health and education services by the Lebanon state.

And UNRWA's Galilee secondary school, students try to concentrate on the chemistry lesson. Generations of Palestinians have seen education as the

best way to escape poverty. With UNRWA's future at stake following the cutting of American funding however that escape route could be blocked.

For the Palestinians in Lebanon, UNRWA is their social safety net. Here, they get medical treatment and they get their education, and for these

children, no education could mean, no future. The U.S. isn't practicing what it preaches says 11th grader Sally Sabah.

SALLY SABAH, PALESTINIAN REFUGEE: Isn't it enough that we don't have a home, we don't have anything right now in Lebanon actually just because we

are Palestinians, and they are also going to take the thing that we care about most which is our education, and that is just a violation of the

human rights that America claims to teach us.

WEDEMAN: The agency's Lebanon Director Claudio Cordone warns that extremists could find work for young minds, idle by lack of schools.

[10:50:03] CLAUDIO CORDONE, UNRWA LEBANON CLAUDIO CORDONE: If we have close them, that means 37,000 kids are going to be in the streets and

either, they are not going to school at all or they may also be recruited by groups and others.

WEDEMAN: For these students, the slashing of funds could ring in the end of their education. Ben Wedeman, CNN, Beirut.


KINKADE: And still to come, the frozen and tense Winter Olympics may not scream romance to all of us, but for these love birds, ice proves to be the

perfect setting to begin a relationship. I will have a look at their story next.


KINKADE: Well, at today's Parting Shots come courtesy of cupid's boy this Valentine's day. It seems love's messenger apparently shoots arrow that

not only flight to the air but hit targets on ice.

The Winter Olympics have seen countless figure skating couples take to the rink, dancing passionate routines based on love stories, but romance is the

real deal. Christina Macfarlane has this report on the love to some competing at the Olympics.


CHRISTINA MACFARLANE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Four years of marriage, and life threatening illness and one broken leg, and just look at them. Chris and

Alexa Knierim are melting the hearts on and off of the ice.

CHRIS KNIERIM, OLYMPIC TEAM: I have to be in profession mode while we're doing the big tricks to make sure I am not wondering because of her good

looks, but in between is where I can just look at her skating, and, you know, I think that people in the audience can see the connection.

MACFARLANE: These love birds are the first married couple from the U.S. to compete at the Winter Olympics in 20 years. How does being in love help

your performances on the ice, because it really matter.

ALEXA KNIERIM, OLYMPIC TEAM: I think we just share like, we are soulmates, so when we are skating together, we really feel like we are just when in

person together out there.

And it is very special for us, because we know it going to go beyond just a skating career, but this is our life, and we will be able to tell our kids

about it. And so it goes much deeper than just the traditional pair team.

MACFARLANE: But the past to Pyeongchang has been far from easy. In 2014 after Chris broke his leg, the couple has been sidelined for a year. Then

soon after they were married, Alexa was diagnosed wit a rare potentially fatal stomach illness.

A. KNIERIM: It has been the hardest two years pf our lives together, fortunately we have had each other to lean on. The Olympics is so special

to us, and we have been lacking the joy and happiness in life, and it is so nice to still be here at the games to feel that.

MACFARLANE: What it mean to you both to compete here on Valentine's Day at the Winter Olympics?

[10:55:02] A. KNIERIM: Well, that will be really, really special. I think we will be the only married couple in the world to say that they got to

skate at the Olympics on Valentine's Day.

C. KNIERIM: Absolutely.

A. KNIERIM: So, we are setting a record there.

MACFARLANE: But no matter where they end on the scoreboard, this pair had already struck gold. I love it. Christina Macfarlane, CNN, Pyeongchang.


KINKADE: Christina is feeling the love there. The couple did take to the ice this Valentine's Day, dancing their short program, crossing the

finishing line wit eight year and it clearly paid off. They finished 14th overall and qualified for Thursday's free skate. So we will have to tune

in to see if more sparks fly tomorrow.

Well, if you are in the mood for love and great stories, you will adore our Facebook page, just head over to it on this Valentine's Day, I'm Lynda Kinkade, and that was Connect the World. Have a very happy Valentine's Day and thank you for watching.