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More Than 100 Dead or Missing after Typhoon Hits Philippines; Catastrophic Floods Threatened to Last for Five Days in the North and South Carolina; Calls for Delay in Kavanaugh Vote After Accuser Goes Public; U.S. Revokes Visa of PLO's Envoy, Freezing Bank Accounts; Pope Expels Chilean Priests Accused of Sex Abuse

Aired September 17, 2018 - 11:00   ET


[11:00:00] BECKY ANDERSON, CNN HOST: After the storm, devastation and frantic rescue efforts. We take you to the Philippines and to Hong Kong to

see what's being done to pick up the pieces.

Not forgetting the powerful storm in the U.S. either. We're live in North Carolina as hundreds of thousands battle power cuts and flooding.

Also, the fate of Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee hangs in the balance. Could Brett Kavanaugh's bid be derailed by accusations of sexual

assault. We're in Washington for analysis this hour. Plus --


PAUL OAKENFOLD, ICONIC DJ: I played great shows around the world, the Great Wall of China, to the base camp on Mt. Everest.


ANDERSON: A legendary deejay rocks one of the most ancient monuments in the world, and we'll hear where he wants to go next.

Hello and welcome. You're watching CONNECT THE WORLD. I'm Becky Anderson from Abu Dhabi. Scenes of utter destruction coming out of Asia as the

scope and scale of the biggest and most powerful storm to hit the earth this year becomes clear. Right now, desperate rescue efforts under way in

the Philippines to find any survivors of a massive mudslide triggered by super typhoon Mangkhut. Dozens of miners and their families have been

confirmed dead while dozens more remain missing as workers dig through the mud. CNN Philippines Gerg Cahiles has the details for us from there.


GERG CAHILES, CNN PHILIPPINES: A few hundred meters from here is ground zero in Mangkhut province. The site of a tragic landslide in the mountains

of northern Luzon. It is an abandoned mining site. But small-scale miners defy danger warnings in the area after it was closed in 2009. Hundreds of

rescue workers are racing against time looking for at least 40 people, mostly miners and their families. They're still missing and believed

buried in mud caused by rains in the aftermath of typhoon Mangkhut, locally known as Ompong. They have so far retrieved 11 bodies.

You can see over there a portion of the mountain that collapsed Saturday afternoon at the height of the typhoon. Now a rampage of soil, mud and

rocks swept a community including a bunk house where people sought shelter. Now authorities say non-stop rains for the past three weeks and gale force

winds triggered the landslide, and families of the missing are still hoping for good news, but no sign of life yet, this after the incident.

Authorities are also not giving up in finding survivors as soon as they can get access inside this previously closed tunnel inside the mining site.

From Itogon, Gerg Cahiles CNN Philippines.


ANDERSON: After slamming the Philippine, typhoon Mangkhut carved its way over to Hong Kong. No deaths were reported there as a result of the

typhoon, but damage to the city was extensive. Let's head over to Kristie Lu Stout in Hong Kong for the latest from there.


KRISTIE LU STOUT, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Becky, in the aftermath of the storm here in Hong Kong, this major metropolis of over seven million people is

slowly returning to normal. Schools are closed, some businesses as well. And the cleanup is well under way.

(voice-over): Nature's turn to defy gravity in high-rise Hong Kong. Four- story waves licked the sides of skyscrapers as typhoon Mangkhut struck here on Saturday. Fresh water cut off. But residents of this tower emerged on

Monday unscathed after the most intense storm on earth this year.

PO Y.C., HEUNG FA CHEUN RESIDENT: We imagine that if people are around, certainly they'll drawback to the sea and not going to survive that.

STOUT: Hong Kong's steel and concrete skyline largely stood up to typhoon Mangkhut. A very different reality outside the big city, here at beach

side villages like Shek O which bore the brunt of typhoon Mangkhut. Buildings here turn to rubble.

[11:05:00] The first indication that Hong Kong's cleanup will be long and arduous. And that traditional seaside communities may have lost the most.

Betty Tsang has lived at the beach at Shek O for 65 years. Nowhere to go in the storm, she watched as it destroyed the only home she's ever known.

She says she cannot begin to consider the future.

Many from Hong Kong's fishing communities emptied into typhoon shelters unsure of whether seaside shacks and cottages could survive. As Mangkhut

moved west of Hong Kong, the weakening storm remains deadly, at least four killed in Guangdong province on the Chinese mainland. In Macau as the

streets empty of floodwaters, the lights of Casino Town are beginning to blink back on and an entire region begins to count its losses.

(on camera): After the strongest storm of the year, there are additional challenges as people across the region pick up the pieces and come to terms

with devastating loss -- Becky.


ANDERSON: Well, that's the story in the Philippines and in Hong Kong. Let's get you to another storm causing death and destruction I'm afraid.

Much of North and South Carolina are under water today as the remnants of hurricane Florence continue to dump rain on the already soaked southeastern

United States. Roads there have turned into rivers in many communities. Officials say the flooding is likely to get worse before it gets better.

The storm has killed at least 19 people in the Carolinas and more than half a million people still do not have electricity. There have been more than

1,000 rescues by boat and helicopter. CNN's Polo Sandoval who has been inside the storm for several days. Joining us now from Lumberton, North

Carolina. What can you tell us from there -- Polo?

POLO SANDOVAL, CNN U.S. CORRESPONDENT: Becky, it seems that Florence has come and gone. There is finally today a break in the clouds. But

everywhere you look throughout parts of the Southeast, you can see those floodwaters remain. In fact, the nearby Lumber River which was a source of

so much devastation two years ago in this part of the country with hurricane Matthew, it is swollen again. It has led to many of this

neighborhood who saw the devastation, to see it again today. History seems to be repeating itself is what neighbors are telling me.

Those rescues have continued, close to a thousand throughout the state of North Carolina alone. Here in Lumberton, North Carolina, there was a

makeshift levee that was holding back some of the flood waters. But yesterday we witnessed this frantic scramble to try to reinforce that

before it finally gave out in some portions. That was compromised. However, that at least bought people some time.

Here close to 1,300 people are in shelters alone. It may be some time before they're able to make their way back into their neighborhoods again.

Let me tell you about what is becoming a main issue now, Becky, with so many people now safe on higher ground, with the access to some of these

communities throughout the Carolinas. A law enforcement official telling me a little while ago that they now have to reassess their situation

because some of those major interstates are flooded right now, so it's very difficult for them to make their way into these communities and out.

ANDERSON: Well to Washington. Thank you, Polo.

To Washington where a bombshell accusation has put the confirmation of President Trump's Supreme Court pick in jeopardy. Democrats and even some

Republicans are calling for a delay to Thursday's confirmation vote of Brett Kavanaugh after Christine Blasey Ford publicly accused him of sexual

assault in an incident dating back to the 1980s. Ford's attorney says her client is willing to testify before lawmakers. Kavanaugh has denied the

allegations, and sources say he's not opposed to sharing his side of the story. The Senate Judiciary Committee is set to vote on his nomination on


CNN White House reporter Stephen Collinson joining us from Washington. And Stephen, let me just off you even more on this before you and I analyze

exactly what's going on here and its impact.

In a "Washington Post" report Christine Blasey Ford, the woman here, alleges that, and I quote, Kavanaugh pinned her to a bed on her back and

groped her over his clothes, grinding his body against hers and clumsily attempting to pull off her one-piece bathing suit and the clothing she wore

over it.

That's partly what we know from the accuser here. What else do we know and how is this going -- how is this being spun by both sides at this point?

[11:10:00] STEPHEN COLLINSON, CNN WHITE HOUSE REPORTER: I think, Becky, the question now is whether Brett Kavanaugh's nomination is in jeopardy.

Republicans have looked to tough this out while the allegations were anonymous last week. Now that Professor Ford has come forward, this is a

much more human story. It's her story against his. And it seems to me that there's possibly no way that this can go forward without this story

now being investigated by the Senate Judiciary Committee which, as you said, was supposed to vote on passing this nomination to the full Senate on


Now, this is unfolding in the changed politics of the me-too era when these kind of allegations are taken much more seriously, perhaps much more

sensitively than they were in years past. So, the Republicans are under a lot of pressure here. They are going to a midterm election where there's a

huge gender gap. 60 percent of women have said that in polls that they're going to vote for Democrats. So, this is a very, very difficult issue.

Although the Republicans, many of whom see this as an attempt by Democrats to derail this crucial nomination, they have to be very careful. I think

they would be taking a massive political gamble if they were to go ahead with that vote and not have testimony from Professor Ford and Brett

Kavanaugh on this issue.

ANDERSON: You do bring up a very good point, though, his supporters blaming the Democrats for sitting on this story, accusing them of

showboating and judicial hazing. There is a political side to all of this, isn't there? Let's just be very clear for our viewers. I mean, leaving

aside this story from this accuser, there is a political partisan position to all of this, isn't there?

COLLINSON: Certainly. This nomination is the most crucial Supreme Court nomination in years. This -- if Brett Kavanaugh gets to the Supreme Court,

it will mean there are five conservatives on the court and four liberals. That means key issues on gay rights, for example, campaign finance, the

role of religion in American life, abortion, all these are going to be up for grabs, and conservatives have been aiming for this moment for decades.

Democrats have tried everything they can to try and stop Kavanaugh. They've accused the White House of not being forthcoming about his record.

There's intense pressure on Democrats to try and stop this nomination. So, of course, everything is political in Washington, and these allegations

coming at such a late stage are no exception. The question a lot of Republicans are asking is why a senior Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein

knew about this in July but did not bring up any of these allegations, either in the public hearings for Kavanaugh or behind-closed-door hearings

used to bring up sensitive issues. She said she was trying to protect the privacy of Professor Ford who has come forward and made that somewhat

academic. But this is a -- you know, as a human story and a very important issue on the me-too front, this is very, very political as you say.

ANDERSON: It doesn't matter which side of the political divide you are from. And I'm glad that we've discussed the partisanship that goes on in

these Supreme Court nominations and decisions. It doesn't matter which side of the political divide you are from. Here is a story, it seems, that

some will say, oh, boys will be boys. Others will say, no, that's not good enough. This is a new era. Predators will be predators, correct? This is

how this is playing out and rightly so.

COLLINSON: Right. And of course, if you're a judge on the Supreme Court, you are going to be asked to cast a vote on some of the most sensitive

issues in U.S. society, perhaps eventually among them questions of sexual harassment. So, of course, it's very important for many people that the

person who is on that court, regardless of his political leanings is someone of the highest integrity.


COLLINSON: On the other side of this, of course, you have people saying that these allegations were not prosecuted or even investigated when they

happened 36 years ago. Kavanaugh has said that before -- in a statement this morning he said that before he knew who this person was, Professor

Ford, he didn't know anything about this. So, you essentially have the word of Kavanaugh against the word of his accuser. If there is no evidence

that this took place, a lot of Kavanaugh's defenders are saying, well how can he be condemned for something that's not gone through the judicial

process. But as you say, the times have changed and in many ways that's a healthy thing.

[11:15:00] The question is, is this going to turn into one of those spectacles in Washington where everybody escapes it with their reputation

tarnished. It looks like it's going to be one of those things where, if Kavanaugh reaches the court, his reputation will never be the same.

Professor Ford who brought up the allegations is now going to go through the threshing of politics in the United States, her mental health, her

political history, her marital history potentially. All this is going to be looked into by political opponents, by conservatives, and I think this

is going to get very nasty indeed for everybody that's involved.

ANDERSON: Stephen, in a "New York Times" report, billionaire and the former New York Mayor, Michael Bloomberg, today expressed his concerns over

the multiple allegations of sexual misconduct made public this year. He also cast out on the me-too movement and defended Charlie Rose, the

disgraced television anchor who was accused by numerous women of sexual harassment. What did you make of what Michael Bloomberg said? And a

sidebar to this, this was during an event where effectively he was to all intents suggesting he might throw his hat in the ring as a Democrat, as a

Presidential candidate for 2020. What chance?

COLLINSON: Well, you know, if that is his attention, he seems to have gotten on the wrong political side of this issue regardless of what he

really thinks. It's very difficult to see how Michael Bloomberg has a spot in the Democratic Party. All the energy in the Democratic Party heading

into 20 is among minorities, among women voters. The party is tracking to the left. It doesn't look really like the Democrats are looking for a

centrist, a pragmatist, someone, after all, who is sort of a fixture on Wall Street. Who is seen by many liberals as representing the economic

culture that they decried.

Even someone like Joe Biden, the form Vice President, is seen by many centrist as too male, too old, and to centrist really to have a good chance

of winning the Democratic nomination. So, it seems even more unlikely that Michael Bloomberg could do so. But, you know, the good thing about U.S.

elections is we get two years to find out. And that's going to be starting just after the midterm elections in November.

ANDERSON: Couldn't make it up, could you? Stephen, as always, a pleasure. Thank you, sir. Steven Collinson in the house out of Washington for you.

As the allegations against Brett Kavanaugh unfold, admit the politics of the me-too movement, some argue that it's becoming harder for Republicans

to simply dismiss the claims. Just how much power does his named accuser now hold? More from Stephen on

Still to come, she's performed alongside Will Smith and Hugh Jackman. Now she's missing. Ahead, what we know about China's leading actress vanishing

without a trace.


ANDERSON: You're watching CNN. This is CONNECT THE WORLD with me, Becky Anderson. Welcome back. It's 7:20 in the UAE.

One of China's most famous actresses has vanished without a trace. Fan Bingbing hasn't been seen in public nor posted on social media since June,

and that is raising concerns. China cracking down on tax evasion by celebrities. But now charges or arrest warrant has been issued for the

actress. As our Matt Rivers investigates.


MATT RIVERS, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): She's not a household name worldwide. But in China, you don't get more famous than

actress Fan Bingbing. She's not a-list, but a-plus list. Think Jennifer Lawrence or Meryl Streep. Which is why the fact that she hasn't been seen

in public since June is a big deal.

Back in May Fan was accused of getting paid on so-called yin-yang contracts. Essentially, you sign a smaller contract and report that income

to the government. But you also sign a bigger contract and get paid the additional amount tax-free. One of Fan's alleged yin-yang contracts was

leaked on social media in late May. She immediately denied the allegations. But the country's tax authority urged investigators to look

into the practice more broadly. One industry source told CNN the tax avoidance scheme is universal in China's entertainment world.

As for Fan, she hasn't been heard from or seen since posting these photos of a Children's Hospital in Tibet back in June. CNN asked both China's tax

authorities and media regulators for comment on the case but hasn't heard back. China's ministry of foreign affairs is the only department to take

media questions every day. Asked about the actress, here is the spokesman?

GENG SHUANG, CHINA MINISTRY OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS SPOKESMAN (through translator): Does that sound like a foreign affairs issue to you, he said

sarcastically. In other words, no comment.

CNN tried to reach Fan herself to no avail. Our only clue to her status comes from this, an article posted on September 6th on a state-run media

website. That said Fan has been brought, quote, under control and is about to receive legal judgment. That article was quickly deleted though and

state media has been virtually silent about the actress since. Certain social media posts about Fan on Chinese Internet have also been censored by


So, for now, the mysterious case of China's highest paid actress continues. We know she's missing. We just don't know why.

(on camera): Now we should note that people disappear inside China's murky legal system all the time. We've reported extensively on the dozens of

human rights lawyers, for example, who have been arrested since 2015. In many cases their families have no idea where they are. High profile

business leaders have also disappeared only to reemerge months later. And we can't confirm that Fan Bingbing has been disappeared by the government

or that she's in custody, but despite her fame, in China it's certainly a possibility. Matt Rivers, CNN, Beijing.


ANDERSON: The Trump administration has revoked the visa of the Palestine Liberation Organization and PLO's representative to the United States and

his family and frozen his bank accounts. A week ago, the U.S. closed the PLO's offices in Washington and told employees there to leave the country

in a month. The U.S. says it is trying to push the Palestinian Authority back to the negotiating table for peace talks with Israel. Ian lee is in

Jerusalem on this. Is this another message that Palestinians are certainly interpreting this, Ian?

IAN LEE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, it's the latest, Becky, from the Trump administration where we're getting outrage from the Palestinians. An Hanan

Ashrawi who is an executive committee member of the PLO. She called it vindictive and also, spiteful and said that this is pressure and blackmail

against the Palestinians.

We need to note that Husam Zomlot, who is the representative of the PLO to the United States, he's been back here since May because of the decision by

the United States to move the embassy to Jerusalem. He was recalled by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. But the Palestinians just see this as

another incident where the Trump administration is just trying to apply pressure. And they ask. They say if the United States was serious about

negotiations, then they would want to keep the diplomatic mission open because those are the people you talk to -- Becky.

ANDERSON: You have a back and forth over the PLO office, of course, the U.S. has blocked funds for coexistence projects. Just explain what those

projects are and the impact that the freezing of these funds will have.

LEE: Well, this is part of the over $200 million that the United States gives to the West Bank and Gaza. This is about $10 million, so a small

chunk of that pie. But what this money does, is it helps with coexistence programs that gives Israelis and Palestinians together to help them see eye

to eye and help them to actually meet each other. Which is important in this kind of conflict to have both sides look and see the other person as a

person instead of just the other. And so, these kind of programs have been going on for quite some time. They've had a fair amount of success. And

so, this money -- this decision by the United States pulls that money out.

Jason Greenblatt, who is the assistant to President Trump, he's also part of the international negotiations that are taking place here. He said that

both Palestinian and Israeli kids will lose and these programs are meaningless if the Palestinian Authority condemns a plan. They haven't

seen a peace plan that the Trump administration says that they're trying to put forward.

But then we have to go back to what the Palestinians are saying. They say action after action against them isn't going to make them more willing to

work with the Trump administration. As far as the Palestinians are concerned, they don't see the United States as a neutral arbiter to any

sort of peace negotiations -- Becky.

ANDERSON: Ian Lee's on the story out of Jerusalem this evening, thank you, Ian.

Another huge Middle East story that we're following closely here, the war in Yemen. Coming up tomorrow a follow-up to our story about Saudi led

coalition bombings there and the American companies that made the bombs. Nima Elbagir identifies at least 11 incidents of air strikes on civilians'

areas using U.S. made arms.


NIMA ELBAGIR, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): You can see here the moments before the planes arrived, killing 21 people, 11 of

them children. This is part of the missile tell used in the attack. A weapons expert help CNN trace it traced back to the U.S. made GBU-12 bomb

manufactured by Raytheon.


ANDERSON: Tune in tomorrow to see Nima's the full report "Made in America," first on connect the world, 7:00 p.m. here in Abu Dhabi, 11:00

a.m. in New York. Work out the times wherever you are watching in the world. And wherever you are you are more than welcome. This is CONNECT

THE WORLD. Coming up on this show, Pope Francis expels a Chilean priest accused of sexual abuse. We are live in Rome with the details on that

after this.


ANDERSON: You're watching CNN. This is CONNECT THE WORLD with me, Becky Anderson. If you're just joining us, you're more than welcome. It's half

past seven in the UAE wherever you are watching.

Turning back to our top story, rescue workers in the Philippines are racing against the clock digging through mud and debris for survivors after a

massive landslide triggered by typhoon Mangkhut wiped out the side of a mountain.

Major move by Pope Francis in response to the sexual abuse scandal plaguing the Catholic Church. He has expelled a high-profile Chilean priest one

many regarded as a hero for standing up for human rights during Pinochet dictatorship. Cristian Precht Banados has not been criminally charged. He

previously denied allegations. Senior Vatican analyst, John Allen, joining me now from Rome. He's also editor of Crux, which is an independent

website covering Catholicism. Why, John, is this so significant, sir?

JOHN ALLEN, CNN SENIOR VATICAN ANALYST: Well it is significant, Becky, not because Pope Francis is expelling someone from the priesthood. Since the

beginning of the sexual abuse scandals, that has happened thousands of times. The significance is simply this particular priest. I mean, as you

say, he was considered a national hero in Chile. He actually won a national prize as a hero of the fatherland for his role under the late

Cardinal Enrique Silva during the Pinochet years. Cardinal Silva and his team led by Father Precht were considered to be the biggest thorn in the

side of the Pinochet dictatorship, a great voice of the people. Now, of course, Precht is the latest casualty of this massive sexual abuse scandal

that has been unfolding in the Chilean church and is exiting the priesthood in disgrace. And so, in that sense it's an attempt I think by the Pope and

the church to show a degree of resolve -- Becky.

ANDERSON: John, do you believe at this point that the Vatican is getting the message, that action is need? The groundswell of opinion out there

that says these allegations of sexual harassment are not allegations of sin, but allegations of crimes and accountability is need.

ALLEN: Well, Becky, as you and I have talked about before, I think they're getting a message, but only to a certain point. They have certainly

understood there has to be accountability for the crime of sexual abuse of a minor. That's what this move with Father Precht in Chile is about. The

problem is, what critics will tell you, is that there is no similar accountability for the coverup of that crime. I mean, you take the case of

Chile. There are two cardinals there. The current Archbishop of Santiago, Cardinal Ezzati, and the former Cardinal Archbishop of San Diego, Cardinal

Errazuriz, both have been accused by victims of knowing about sexual abuse committed by clergy and failing to act, of covering it up. In other parts

of the world the same pattern holds.

[11:35:00] I mean, we just saw a report within the last 48 hours, Becky, that over the span of 1945 to 2010 more than half, 20 out of 39 of the

bishops of Holland have been accused of covering up for predator priests. And while there seems to be swift and sure justice for priests who abuse,

the justice for bishops who cover it up is anything but swift or sure. And I think most people would say that is the massive piece of unfinished

business left to do -- Becky.

ANDERSON: John Allen on the story out of Rome for you this evening. Viewers, we are live out of Abu Dhabi. This is CONNECT THE WORLD. I'm

Becky Anderson.

Coming up, as Syria moves closer to an all-out assault on the rebel stronghold of Idlib, Russia and Turkey are talking about how to avoid a

humanitarian crisis. That after this.


ANDERSON: You're watching CNN. This is CONNECT THE WORLD. I'm Becky Anderson for you. Let's get you back to our top story, an important one.

Rescue workers in the Philippines racing against the clock digging through mud and debris for survivors after a massive landslide triggered by the

typhoon there wiped out the side of a mountain. Want to get you a report from the scene.


ALEXANDRA FIELDS, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): -- doing what they can for as long as they can hoping that maybe they'll find

someone alive.

DAVID OTING, RESCUE WORKER (through translator): This is the first time I've seen this kind of landslide, this massive, and almost everyone is

affected. Even the miners are helping the rescuers, the police. Everyone is giving their best.

FIELDS: Nearby families of those trapped wait nervously for news, and their anxiety mounting as rescuers retrieve a few dead bodies from the

ground. More could be on the way. Authorities don't know exactly how many, but say dozens are still beneath the rubble. They've been there

since Saturday when Itogon, a few hours north of the capital, Manila, was hit by the full force of super typhoon Mangkhut.

[11:40:00] The gale force winds and endless rain brought down part of the mountain, the landslide trapping mostly miners and their families in one

place they hoped they'd be safe.

RODEL ULINA, MINER: The national please came to warn the people. They thought it would be safe her here in the bunkhouse. So, the people came

right here to stay for safety reasons.

FIELDS: Rodel Ulina works in the mines and he's now helping with the rescue efforts. He was staying just above the bunk houses, but some in his

family weren't as lucky.

ULINA: My cousins are there, some of my cousins are there, we don't know. So, we continue to recover them.

FIELDS: In this race against time, this mining town is not ready to give up. But as hours, days go by, hope is fading. Alexandra Fields, CNN, San

Jose City, the Philippines.


ANDERSON: And of course, stick with CNN for more on that as that story develops.

Russian President Vladimir Putin, and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan are meeting right now to, they say, discuss the situation in Idlib

and Syria. Russian planes have been bombing rebel positions there for several weeks while Turkey has been sending in weapons and equipment to

support the rebels. Some 3 million people live in the province and there are fears of a humanitarian crisis if Russia and Syria try to drive the

rebels out. Well CNN's Matthew Chance, monitoring this from Moscow. Two powers, Matthew, with very different agendas here, correct?

MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, that's correct. Russia and Turkey are allies in many ways. They've got strong

trading alliance. They've worked together to try and sort of forge a political solution in the conflict in Syria. But when it comes to the

issue of Idlib, this final province which is under rebel control, they are on opposite sides. Of course, the Russians backing their Syrian ally,

Bashar al-Assad and their Iranian forces as well. That are also on the side of Bashar al-Assad. So, champing on the bit to go into Idlib and to

destroy what they regard as a hot bed of terrorists.

I mean, the Russian Foreign Minister articulated it recently. He described the province as the last hot bed of terrorists which is using the civilian

population as human shields. And he called on this festering abscess to be liquidated. And so, very harsh language the Russians are using.

On the other side, the Turks are looking at that in absolute horror. Because they've already kind of catering 3.5 million Syrian refugees that

have fled the conflict into their territory. And they worry they will have to open the borders again and let hundreds of thousands, perhaps millions

more. There are 3 million inside Idlib -- into their country which they very much want to avoid.

And so, we've seen three meetings in as many weeks between Vladimir Putin and President Erdogan of Turkey. This is the latest in those series of

meetings in which they're trying to reach some kind of compromise. There was some hope offered by President Erdogan before these talks began in

Sochi in southern Russia where they're taking place now. He said that afterwards -- and I'm paraphrasing it here -- we will have a joint

statement that will offer a new hope to the region -- is the phrase that he used. But so far, we have not heard what deal, if any deal or any

statement has come out of those talks. In fact, the two leaders are, as we speak, talking as far as we're aware -- Becky.

ANDERSON: Matthew Chance out of Moscow for you this evening. This is CONNECT THE WORLD. We are live from Abu Dhabi.

The sound of my youth. A world-famous deejay, a few banging tunes, a happy-go-lucky crowd. It looks like an ordinary concert, right? But this

won't have happened for thousands of years. Oh, and it's connected to the Great Wall of China and Mt. Everest. Confused? You should be. I'm going

to explain. Up next.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The ancients who built Stonehenge behind me built that has a great solar club

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Back here are all we find are the remains of the day.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: To me today is the real new year.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Something in the air.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The energy here is unbelievable, from another dimension, yes, totally.


ANDERSON: An ethereal enigma and at times well a bit weird really. But no one can quite put their finger on what we are looking at here, an alien

worm hole, a giant clock from our ancestors? Maybe. Even after hundreds of years of archaeology on steroids, we're not really sure what Stonehenge

is. And even at this very moment the stones huddling together like elders at an ancient council, towering and defined against time and man, always

conspiring to keep their other worldly secrets safe after some 5,000 years. But now, even they are in for a treat, seeing something they never have.

CNN takes you along as one deejay boldly rocks out where no one has before.


NEIL CURRY, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Stonehenge is a mystical, magical place. A Neolithic monument preserved and protected from the 1.5

million annual visitors who are kept at a distance from this prehistoric puzzle. But more than 4,000 years after those mighty stones were erupted,

a new building is being constructed here, a deejay booth.

PAUL OAKENFOLD, ICONIC DJ: I never felt electronic music should stay in nightclubs. I've played great shows around the world, from the Great Wall

of China to base camp on Mt. Everest. It brought a smile, as you can see, to my face to do something that was, first of all, unique. Most

importantly bring awareness to these wonderful locations that we have around the country as part of English heritage.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There are lots of different theories about Stonehenge and how there might be musical connections. What we know is it's a place

where people gathered, a place where people may be celebrated, so music absolutely could have been part of that. Some believe some of the stones

have musical properties themselves. But what we do know is that Stonehenge has inspired a creativity and an artistic expression through music for


CURRY: The Beatles never played here, not even the Rolling Stones. Many have asked permission but have been politely declined until now. This is

the first time a deejay has performed at Stonehenge.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: But at Stonehenge you're not allowed to have amplified music. So, it was really important that we could find a way of

playing music at Stonehenge in a way that respected the monuments. We used silent disco technology where everybody wore headphones to listened to Paul

record his new album. And it worked really, really well.

OAKENFOLD: We respectfully lit the stones up. I did a very unique show where I played a live set to sunset. We had an incredible sunset.

CURRY: Hollywood actor, Andy Circus, was among only 50 people invited to the experience, listening to Oakenfold along with fellow superstar deejay,

Carl Cox. Sales of the new album will help English Heritage to protect and preserve the ancient monument for future generations. Neil Curry, CNN,



[11:50:04] ANDERSON: The stars then literally lining up for that with that glorious sunset painting the sky in vibrant delight over you right now.

Paul Oakenfold joining us, he's a legendary deejay like no other who pioneered a whole new sound of music back in the '80s. Picking up awards

and Grammy nominations along the way, was once anointed the world's most successful club deejay by the Guinness book of records. You are part I of

my youth, mate. How was it?

OAKENFOLD: It was wonderful, thank you. It was a very unique show, as I mentioned earlier. Just the support as an Englishman, the English

heritage. And for me it was just wonderful and I really enjoyed it.

ANDERSON: Listen, hardly anyone even gets a chance to step inside the stone circle, never mind perform at Stonehenge. How did this all come

about? More importantly, how on earth did you keep this a secret from the Druids and the rest of us?

OAKENFOLD: Yes, it was very difficult in terms of keeping it a secret. Because we didn't want the place to be overrun by thousands of people. So

many months ago, we worked alongside a team of people from the English Heritage. We worked on what we could do and how we could do it in the

right way. And the real message here is not about me playing Stonehenge. It's about bringing awareness worldwide to a younger demographic who may

not have been to some of our wonderful locations in the country and helping support them financially. And for me to be asked to do that means a lot.

ANDERSON: Yes, it can't be too often that you play in front of 50 when I know it's normally thousands. Amazingly having your tunes bounce off

5,000-year-old ruins, maybe not the most unusual place that you've played. You name check a couple. Let's roll a quick clip of you really giving it

some at the highest party on earth.


OAKENFOLD: It's been a long trek. Ten days to get up here, plus 4 days setting up. So, we're two weeks in. We pulled it off.


ANDERSON: You played that in the freezing winds at the world's tallest mountain. You mixed your sound on top of the Great Wall of China. You've

done Stonehenge. What's next? The Moon?

OAKENFOLD: Who knows? First and foremost, I never set out to play these places. It just kind of came about naturally. With Mt. Everest, it was

very difficult. I never hiked or slept in a sleeping bag. I mean, that was tremendously hard, but I trained for that. I mean, there's some

wonderful locations around the world, especially in the Middle East, I mean, the pyramids, Petra, Masada. Who knows? I mean, if we can help

support and bring awareness to these places in the right, respectful way, then I'm up for it. I love history. I love traveling and I'm very lucky

to be part of some of these events that I get asked to perform at.

ANDERSON: Paul, the interest in electronic music in this region is huge. I know that I will speak for many when I say I can't wait for you to get

out to the Middle East. Any up and coming talent we should keep our eye on in this region out of interest?

OAKENFOLD: Yes, I think it's -- listen, there's great talent around the world. And in the regional that you're in, I'm sure there's some young

great deejays, producers, singer/songwriters. Wherever I travel, I always encourage people to come up to me, give me music. I own a record label.

We're about putting music out from people around the world. Who knows? Maybe there's someone watching this show who makes music. Let's give them

an opportunity to share that with the world.

ANDERSON: Amazing, amazing. You look like you're having a good time.

OAKENFOLD: You could say that.

[11:55:00] ANDERSON: I know we've lost a couple of characters, legendary deejays out of your world just recently. It does sort of beg the question

I guess, you know, is there a point at which you think, you know what, I'm had such a god time at this -- I say this with the greatest of respect.

Someone called me a veteran TV anchor the other day. So, with a greatness of respect, none of us are youngsters. You're never too old to be too cool

for school as it were. Do you fancy jacking it in at any time soon?

OAKENFOLD: I'm very aware I'm coming towards the end of my career. I've spent over 30 years in electronic music. And the industry has been really

good to me. And where I am at the moment in my career I can help support, give back to the next generation. I feel passionate about that and I feel

passionate about the places that I get asked to play and bring awareness, whether it's to -- with Mt. Everest it was children's charities locally.

Or with English Heritage, making people aware that we need to help support and look after these great places for the next generations to come. So,

that's where I am. And that's what I enjoy doing.

ANDERSON: Paul, it was a rhetorical question. You will never, ever be anything but too cool for school. You make a lot of people very, very


OAKENFOLD: Thank you.

ANDERSON: I'm so pleased that you got out to this part of the world. And like I say, I grew up with you, as it were. So, I can't wait until you're

out in this part of the world. Good luck, mate. Look forward to having you back very, very soon.

OAKENFOLD: Thank you so much, and I look forward to coming out to that part of the world, bye.

ANDERSON: You're on. Before we leave we're connecting you to just how old your world really is. Stonehenge was built about as long ago as the mighty

pyramids of Giza, 5,000 or so years back, give or take a little here there. So long ago that Cleopatra, the famed Egyptian queen was actually born

closer to the opening of the first pizza hut in Cairo than she was to those undying monuments and the legacy of her own empire being built. The Henge

even older than them. Amazing, right.

That was CONNECT THE WORLD. We leave you with some fantastic sights and sounds from that once in a few thousand-year concert.