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CONNECT THE WORLD
New Zealand's Prime Minister to Visit First Responders, Schools Students; Tributes to Futsal Goalkeeper Atta Elayyan; 108 Children have Died At or En Route to Al-Hol Refugee Camp in Syria; SDF Making Final Push as ISIS Territory Dwindles; Mozambique President Says 1,000 Feared Dead in Cyclone; Cyclone Hit Millions Across Africa in Record Disaster; What Far- Right Terror Has In Common with ISIS; Hamas Accused of Brutal Crackdown on Protesters; Far-Right Candidate Michael Ben-Ari Disqualified for Israeli Elections; Sebastian Coe on Why Inclusion is So Important. Aired 11-12p ET
Aired March 19, 2019 - 11:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[11:00:00] (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JACINDA ARDERN, NEW ZEALAND PRIME MINISTER: He may have sought notoriety. But we in New Zealand will give him nothing, not even his name.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON, CNN HOST: New Zealand's Prime Minister makes clear the attacker will not gain notoriety. Instead, she focuses on the country's courage
during its darkest, darkest day.
Also this hour for you.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Flying sheets of metal have decapitated people. People are very bad here. Now we don't have any help here, you see. We don't have
any help here.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: The devastation as far as the eye can see. Cyclone Idai tears through Mozambique, Zimbabwe and Malawi. And we are just now learning that
could be the deadliest cyclone ever to hit the region.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOMANA KARADSHEH, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Ahmed is 7 months old. He arrived from Baghouz. Care provide here had to take into a local hospital where he
stayed for the past couple of weeks. After treatment we are being told that he weighs about 3.7 kilograms, that is how much a new born would weigh.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: An inside look at camp al-Hol in northern Syria where young children, too young to read and write have witnessed unspeakable horrors.
You are watching CONNECT THE WORLD. I'm Becky Anderson. And you are very welcome. This show is live from Abu Dhabi where it's 7:00 in the evening.
Critics and compassion. Those two words sum up what's on the agenda of New Zealand's Prime Minister in the coming hours. Jacinda Ardern will visit
both first responders and high school students as the country tries to heal after Friday's terror attack.
She's also taking her appeal for gun reform directly to lawmakers and has slammed the tech giants for failing to remove extremist content. Well the
bodies of six victims have now been returned to their families. A total of 50 people were killed.
In solidarity, the Prime Minister has vowed never to utter the name of the man responsible.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ARDERN: He is a terrorist. He is a criminal. He is an extremist. But he will when I speak be nameless. And to others I implore with you speak the
names of those who were lost rather than the name of the man who took them. He may have sought notoriety but we in New Zealand will give him nothing,
not even his name.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Our Kristie Lu Stout is in Christchurch and here on CNN we are also not using his name -- Christie.
KRISTIE LU STOUT, CNN ANCHOR, NEWS STREAM: Absolutely. Becky, it is past 4:00 a.m. here in Christchurch. The Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern, is said
to return to Christchurch this city in morning. She will meet with first responders, as well as families of the victims as they prepare for burial.
So as you mentioned, six bodies have been returned so far. But it has been an agonizing wait for so many families who are here waiting for the return
of the bodies to say farewell and to prepare the bodies for burial in line with Muslim tradition. Now earlier I talked with Javed Dadabhai who lost
his cousin in Friday's terror attacks and he is also here to assist with his burials. This is his story.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JAVED DADABHAI, COUSIN KILLED IN MOSQUE ATTACK: This is very unusual. But at the same time, you know, it's extenuating circumstances. We are quite
aware of the difficulties that the police in the coroners' face. And the resources being quite strict for them as well. But there is obviously
within the community a sense of urgency. They want to have it -- they want to have the -- their dead back to them. And I think not just -- there is
one aspect of the rituals but it ties into the fact they probably cannot start grieving properly until the bodies are in the ground. There is a
sense of unfinished work to be done.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LU STOUT: Javed Dadabhai there saying that many of these families can't even start the process of grieving until these bodies are returned to them.
Including his cousin, his cousin who was culled in the brutal terror attack. His name Junaid Ismail, leaves behind a wife and three children,
and also a twin brother who was also at one of the mosques. The twin brother survived.
Now let's keep our focus on the victims, not on the suspect but the victims.
[11:05:00] We know that 50 people have died. We know that 30 people remain in hospital, nine in critical condition including that 4-year-old girl with
gunshot wounds who is battling for her life. And these individuals who are from all over the world. They were immigrants, asylum seekers, refugees
from Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, Fiji, Malaysia, Indonesia. They represented the diversity that New Zealand is so proud of.
And New Zealand has chosen to respond to that act of terror with scenes like this behind me which continues to grow wide and lengths every day.
Every time I come back here it changes. You see additional floral tributes to the victims of the terror attacks and their families as well. Chalk
drawings, wreaths, balloons, a message that says, we are one, they are us. A banner that still hangs there says, we stand together with our Muslim
brothers and sisters. Kia kaha which is the Maori saying for be strong -- Becky.
ANDERSON: Yes. Heart breaking and remarkable. Thank you, Kristie.
Just as New Zealand's Prime Minister said it's important to focus on the lives that were taken, not on the person who took them. And today we want
to share the story of Atta Elayyan a star in New Zealand's futsal team. That is a type of football Tributes are being paid to Elayyan in both the
sporting world and in his ancestral community from where Oren Liebermann now reports.
OREN LIEBERMANN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): For a time Atta Elayyan had found a better life. The 33-year-old Palestinian was a futsal star, a
goalie for the New Zealand national time. Two years ago Elayyan became a father. His wife and daughter in so many of his pictures. On Friday,
Elayyan went to pray in the Al Noor Mosque in Christchurch. A mosque his family says, his father had helped found. When the shooting began, Elayyan
wasn't able to make it out alive. 10,000 miles away in the village of Abu Dis in Jerusalem, Elayyan's community tried to cope with what happened.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): This attack was against humanity, against the right to pray, against life. That criminal touched every human
being, not only Palestinians.
LIEBERMANN: Those who knew the family gathered for prayer and reflection in Abu Dis, the family's ancestral home. The Elayyans say they left Abu Dis in
1967 following the six-day war. Refugees looking for that better live from Kuwait to Jordan the United States and then to New Zealand a life they
thought they found in Christchurch.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): There is no doubt that this attack will make us closer to one another as Palestine's and Jerusalemites because
disasters unify us.
LIEBERMANN: Elayyan's futsal teammates came together for their own moment of silence, trying to make sense of the loss of a colleague and a friend, a
loss on the field they can handle. This was something very different.
RONAN NAICHER, FUTSAL TEAMMATE OF VICTIM: He was just a true, true gentleman, a true leader, someone that was there for everyone. I mean, he
was a really intelligent guy, had his own company.
LIEBERMANN: FIFA mourns Elayyan's death as well. Saying on Twitter, it is with deep sorrow that we announce today that the goalkeeper of this New
Zealand futsal team, Atta Elayyan, was killed in the tragic attacks in Christchurch. Oren Liebermann, CNN, Abu Dis.
ANDERSON: From the fight against ISIS back to the Christchurch massacre, we talked to an expert who says far-right terror has -- what far-right terror
has in common with ISIS. We'll connect those two stories for you a little later. Stay with us.
And a thousand people feared dead after Mozambique was slammed by a cyclone so devastating the U.N. said it could be the worst weather disaster ever to
hit the southern hemisphere.
[11:10:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
ANDERSON: All right. Welcome back. You are watching CONNECT THE WORLD with me Becky Anderson. It's 12 minutes past 7 here in UAE.
U.S. backed forces in Syria have captured some of the ISIS fighters behind a deadly suicide bombing in January. Now the attack in Manbij killed four
Americans -- you may remember this -- and 10 other people. It was the deadliest single incident for American forces in Syria since the conflict
Meanwhile, there is a disturbing report about the fate of children caught up in the conflict, specifically at the al-Hol camp in northern Syria. The
International Rescue Committee tells CNN that since December more than 100 children -- these are kids -- have died either at the camp or on the way
there. We are covering all angles of the struggle with ISIS in Syria. Joining us now, CNN's Jomana Karadsheh and our CNN international
correspondent, Ben Wedeman. And what me start with you, Jomana, because you have firsthand reporting from al-Hol camp where you have met some of these
kids whose lives -- well, explain. They have no lives effectively. Explain.
JOMANA KARADSHEH, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Becky, as is always the case in these conflicts it is the civilians especially the children who bear the
brunt of the wars. And that is exactly what we saw visiting al-Hol camp here in northern Syria a few days ago.
KARADSHEH (voice-over): The aid workers cokes as few words from the boy. His language classical the Arabic, the boy, Indonesian. Growing up in
ISIS's crumbling caliphate to parents who traveled across the world to voluntarily join the terror group and its manmade hell. They didn't make it
out. But in the last few days he did. Along with eight other Indonesian orphans. With no parents for us to ask permission from, we can't show their
faces. They are now 250 children at Al-Hol camp in northern Syria who emerged from the war against ISIS without families, without relatives.
SHERIN MURAD-ISMAIL, UNICEF CHILD PROTECTION OFFICER: They arrived at the camp in the worst case -- or the worst form. Because they are injured. They
are traumatized. They are mentally -- I think they have also mental disorders.
KARADSHEH: In tent next door the impact of the horrors lived through short lives play out in ways so painful to watch. Eight agencies say children
here have witnessed the acts of brutality and were trapped under bombardment in Baghouz.
[11:15:00] They're now showing signs of psychological distress including nightmares and withdrawal.
The vast majority in this overcrowded and underfunded camp are children. More than 40,000 of them stranded here. No one expected so many to pour out
of the half square mile that remains of ISIS's so-called caliphate.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): This is an emergency. You have to help us fast. We have called on aid groups and foreign governments to
assist us especially at al-Hol camp. Because this is going to turn into a disaster when it comes to things like health care and things like food and
KARADSHEH: The worry is outside aid will be slow to come for this camp associated with ISIS. The most helpless caught up in the politics of the
aid they now so desperately cling to.
KARADSHEH (on camera): Ahmed is 7 months old. He arrived from Baghouz on 25 February and he was severely malnourished. That UNICEF and care provide
here had to take into a local hospital where he stayed for the past couple of weeks. And right now after treatment we are being told that he weighs
about 3.7 kilograms, that is how much a new born would weigh.
(voice-over): The majority here never had a choice. ISIS's lethal legacy still defining their future.
KARADSHEH: And Becky, since our visit, one government, the French government has repatriated five orphans under the age of 5. But at the same
time they've also had more than 3,000 arrivals at this camp and they're expecting more. That brings the population of a whole camp that is already
stretched over capacity to about 70,000 -- 70,000 people. And it's important to remember here that the vast majority of them are not ISIS
family members, not wives and children of ISIS fighters only. The vast majority there are also displaced Syrians and Iraqi refugees who now
finding themselves in this camp living side by side with the same people they blame for destroying their lives -- Becky.
ANDERSON: Jomana, that report I know will hit people in the craw. I mean, these are the kids who have survived. Some might call them the lucky ones.
We know over 100 probably more have died on their way to or at that camp. Let's just concentrate on the kids for the time being. What are those
officials and workers who you met at the camp -- and I know you spent some day there? What do they expect to happen to these children next?
KARADSHEH: Well, that is the big question. No one really knows what is going to happen next. Right now the focus is an emergency response, as it
was described by aid groups right there at the camp when we spoke to them. And camp officials saying they have to deal with what they have right now.
Which is this mass influx of people who have arrived at the camp over the past few weeks and this is as we mentioned far more than they had expected
to leave that tiny ISIS pocket.
Now what happens next, officials here from the mainly Kurdish, Syrian Democratic Forces, they're saying they are calling on the governments of
these different countries to take back their citizens. And so far, they say there's been not much of a positive response. This is of course when it
comes to the foreigners. And of course when it comes to the Syrian and Iraqis it's a whole different issue -- Becky.
ANDERSON: Ben, if I can bring you in at this point. I mean, you've spent, what nearly 50 days, I know on the ground. You've been as close to as
anybody to the last remaining sliver, as we've calling it now for weeks of ISIS territory. I just want to bring up a graphic that I hope will give our
viewers a sense of the shrinkage going on as far as the SDF, the U.S. become forces are concerned. But you're on the ground. You've been
extremely close to the area. Ben, what remains of it? Who is still there? And how close are U.S. backed forces to actually, you know, nailing this?
BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: They're very close, Becky. What we know is that all that remains is just a sliver. Literally a
sliver of land among the reeds along the Euphrates river. They're no longer occupying that junk yard of a camp that -- where there was really a
stalemate for weeks. They are now just pushed to the banks of the Euphrates river. It's not at all clear how many of the jihadi's families are left.
[11:20:00] We're told by Mustafa Bali, the spokesman for the U.S. back Syrian Democratic Forces, that the jihadis are indeed using families,
perhaps even their own families as human shields. So it does appear that after many false starts and perhaps many boys crying wolf too many times
that we may be on the verge of seeing an end to ISIS as a territorial entity, though not as a terrorist insurgency -- Becky.
ANDERSON: Yes, and you make a very good point. Ben, two questions to you. Is it clear why intelligence was so wrong when it came to just how many
people were left in Baghouz, the last of the so-called ISIS caliphate? And should we now expect to see the end of the sort of apocalyptic scenes of
these men in lines, thousands them, it seems, ISIS fighters, or those associated with the group, coming out of that territory?
WEDEMAN: Well, if the I and my colleagues got a dollar for every time we wondered or asked one another why the estimates on the number of people,
jihadis and civilians inside that last packet were so off, we'd be very rich people and we could probably retire.
Clearly the U.S. backed Democratic Syrian Forces and the U.S.-backed coalition wildly underestimated how there could there be so many people
inside. A month and a half ago we were being told -- and we were reporting that the SDF was saying -- there were 1500 civilians and 500 jihadis
inside, not the encampment, but the town of Baghouz which is much larger. They just didn't do the math. They did not understand how many people had
pulled back. Pulled back over a long period of time from the fall of Raqqa in the summer of 2017 and as those towns along the Euphrates were taken in
the last five or six months. So a huge mistake and that doesn't speak well of the intelligence capabilities of both the SDF and the U.S.-led
As to whether we are going to see more apocalyptic scenes, as you describe them, of hundreds of jihadis lined up in the desert, I think we may see one
final scene as the last jihadis surrender. But hopefully that's the end of that. But it's not the end of ISIS just the end of ISIS as a pseudo state -
ANDERSON: And finally let's talk about this purported audio that we've heard from -- it's not purported audios. It's audio from a purported
spokesman of the group that in the past 24 hours. What was said?
WEDEMAN: This is what many people were in fact where spectating one of those rare pronouncements by the so-called khalif or the caliph Abu Bakr
Al-Baghdadi. That wasn't that it. It was another message of defiance from a spokesman for the organization.
Now what's interesting in all of in is that there's no indication that any of the leadership of ISIS has been captured within this last pocket. It
appears most of the most important people have gotten away. And of course foremost among them Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi. We have not heard from the SDF
that any of their sort of the top leadership has been captured. So that appears that what's left inside are the fanatics but not the ones who want
to live and shall we say fight another day -- Becky.
ANDERSON: Yes, Ben and Jomana we appreciate it. Obviously, you know, you're on the ground, your reporting has been remarkable. And to both of
you thank you. We're going to leave that story there for the time being. It's for the going away though. You can get more on CNN. And we will of
course as the show in the region spend as much time as is appropriate on this story as we seek to see the last of that ISIS caliphate.
Well we go now to Mozambique where 1,000 people are feared dead in what the United Nations says could be the worst weather-related disaster ever to hit
the southern hemisphere. The devastating cyclone Idai made landfall in the Mozambique port city of Beira five days ago. It barreled in with winds of
up to 170 kilometers per hour. Unleashing storm surges and floods that burst the banks of two rivers and flattened the city.
[11:25:00] Well the storm now moving inland to Zimbabwe and Malawi. The U.N. says 2.7 million people are still in its path. Joining me from the
capitol of Mozambique is the country spokesman for UNICEF, Daniel Timme, and we thank you for joining us. As is often the case in disasters like
this it's the kids, the children who are suffering most. What is your understanding of the situation on the ground?
DANIEL TIMME, MOZAMBIQUE SPOKESMAN, UNICEF (via skype): Thank you for having me, Becky. Indeed we are facing a humanitarian disaster of major
dimension. And it has developed over a long time and slowly as you might know the whole thing began with a tropical depression over the north of
Mozambique which had already caused severe flooding. And the problem is now that the cyclone hit in the city of Beira, in Sofala Province, a population
which was already in despair. There were already hundreds of thousands of people displaced. And when this happens then another cyclone hits. We see
dire situations like this. And you can imagine that it affects in particular the most vulnerable people in this situation. And this is
unfortunately children and also women.
ANDERSON: Yes. This line isn't great but I'm just going to persevere, Daniel, because this is important. You have an appeal. It's an emergency
appeal. How much do you need? These appeals always compete with other fundraising activities from any U.N. agency. Just how important is it that
you get these funds and you get them now to help the people who are suffering most as we look at pictures out of the region.
TIMME: Yes, the appeal -- the appeal was done last Friday, right after the cyclone hit. And the humanitarian community was asking for $42 million for
the initial immediate needs. But as things are unfolding, we are expecting the needs to rise dramatically. The problem is that at the time on Friday
we couldn't really oversee the dimension of the disasters because all communication lines and also the geographical access to the region were
completely cut off. And only slowly as we managed to bring in our teams by air, we understand the dimension of this disaster and we share our concern
with the government of Mozambique that we will need much more international aid in the weeks and months to come.
ANDERSON: Got it. Good luck, Daniel. We thank you for coming on. Daniel Timme is UNICEF spokesman in Mozambique.
You're watching CONNECT THE WORLD with me Becky Anderson. We are out of Abu Dhabi where the time is 27 minutes past 7:00.
We're going to take a very short break. After that, their enemies are different but their grievances and methods can look extremely similar. In
the wake of the Christchurch massacre, we talk to an expert about how white supremacist violence echoes other forms of terrorism.
And then a brutal crackdown on protesters in Gaza, but this time the repression comes from within. We'll explain in a live report from the
region after this.
[11:30:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
ANDERSON: You're with CONNECT THE WORLD. I'm Becky Anderson. You are more than welcome if you are just joining us it's after half past 7:00. We are
broadcasting to you from Abu Dhabi which is our Middle East broadcasting hub here at CNN.
This hour, we've been keeping across two major global stories. In both have perhaps more in common than you think. Let's see what connects them. In New
Zealand, the Prime Minister has vowed never to utter the name of the man who carried out the Christchurch massacre on Friday. Instead, she urged
everyone to remember the 50 victims who were gunned down inside two mosques in that city. She did describe the attacker as a terrorist, a criminal and
In Syria we are hearing from a U.S. defense official, that American-backed forces have captured a handful ISIS fighters they say are linked to the
January suicide attack in Manbij that killed four Americans. We know the group has inspired, on many occasions claimed, attacks in Europe and the
U.S. This is ISIS of course continues to hold out in what is this final sliver of land in Baghouz.
So what connects an apparent far-right white nationalist with jihadist. Well our next guest says there are striking similarities between the far-
right extremism and other terror ideology. I want to bring in Alexander Meleagrou-Hitchens. He's the head of research at George Washington
University's program on extremism. So you are quoted in a recent "Atlantic" article -- which is an extremely good article -- saying that both of these
share a sick belief in the power of mass killings, also have an ingrained sense there is a deep rooted and historic conspiracy to destroy the group.
For the white nationalists that means that the Christian West is in decline. For jihadist the belief that Islam is under attack. And extremists
also similar in their use of -- or more to the point, their weaponization of social media to spread their perverse views. You are laying out some
striking parallels. Just explain further if you will.
ALEXANDER MELEAGROU-HITCHENS, RESEARCH DIRECTOR, PROGRAM ON EXTREMISM, GEORGE WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY: Sure. They're essentially driven by a similar
type of psychological or dynamic, and that is a shared sense of- sharing a collective identity with a group that is facing an existential crisis.
Usually as a result of a far-reaching conspiracy to undermine or destroy their group, be it a race, religion or a culture.
They often believe they are acting as a part of a sort of vanguard for the ingroup. Believing that most of the members of the group that they are
representing are not acting on their behalf or in their defense. So they are trying to act as catalyst to get more people to wake up to it. They
also have a belief in the inherent virtue of the violence they are undertake, essentially believing that the ends justify the means. And often
we like to describe or think of terrorists as evil or monsters. And they may well be but they believe and are driven by a sense that they are doing
[11:35:00] Their actions are going to help both their group and maybe the wider world. The altruism of the extremist is a very powerful driver
ANDERSON: So we should equate the horror of both, right? I mean, neither one is less horrific than the other.
MELEAGROU-HITCHENS: Well, certainly not. You know, the dynamics that drive them and the factors that drive the individuals in the groups are very,
very similar. They may have some slightly different histories but we have to understand that the drivers largely overlap.
ANDERSON: I'm just -- and thank you. I'm just looking at Donald Trump's tweets of late. I have to say, you know, an enormous amount over the
The fake news media is working overtime to blame me for the horrible attack in New Zealand. They have to work very hard to that one so ridiculous.
Let me point out to you in our viewers why I'm talking about him. Because he has spent the weekend lashing out, saying, you know, I'm being blamed
for this. He's not being blamed for this, for what happened. He is not blamed for actually attacking people in a mosque. He is being blamed for
not standing tall and saying, white supremacism is wrong and that the source of extremism that we have seen displayed by that criminal, that
terrorist in New Zealand, cannot be supported. It's his rhetoric that people criticize. Correct. How important is the sort of rhetoric that we
were hearing from Donald Trump in this wider context?
MELEAGROU-HITCHENS: Well, I think, you know, after attacks like this there is a sort of scramble to figure out whose fault it was or who inspired it.
On the whole we are seeing people like the President or like other commentators who discuss issues related to Islam and Europe and immigration
as essentially driving or helping motivate the attackers. Now we have to -- people should be aware of the sort of consequences of pushing conspiracy
theories. They can lead to others deciding to take more extreme actions to change the situation.
But in the end, you know drawing a kind of moral equivalence is danger. Most of these individuals are not calling for any type of violence in
response. Maybe more can be done to denounce the violence to acknowledge the impact of spreading conspiracy theories and what that can have. But we
have to careful not to sort of start finding political opponents that we don't like and blaming them for massacres taking place.
ANDERSON: Alexander, so you have laid out a very cogent way the parallels that we might see between the far-right extremism and the sort of jihadist
terror that we are well aware of. And there are clearly some parallels that are worth really considering. I wonder, should we be surprised? And the
second question is, what do we do about it?
MELEAGROU-HITCHENS: Well, should we be surprised about the parallels? No, I mean for people who have studied political extremism, terrorism over the
years. If you, you know, if you don't focus on only one specific group, you're constantly seeing similarities in both the type of individuals who
are driven to them and how the ideas formulate and motivate people to take part in violence.
As far as what to do about it, there are a number of different things. I think we can begin by looking particularly at the education systems and at
least from the Western perspective and Western schools, really encouraging people to undertake a lot more. Understand what it means to approach
something critically, to think critically, to verify and understand sources where things come from. Education is going to be a big part of it. And I do
also think simply understanding the nature of the attack and the attacker has to be a big part of it. I have to say I'm not a big fan of not naming
killers or attackers in the idea that we are deny them the oxygen of publicity. I think we can trust the public to take all the information and
in order to better understand something rather than become a terrorist as a result.
ANDERSON: Your insights valuable, sir. We thank you for coming on. You're an expert on the subject tonight.
Well Amnesty International is warning of shocking human rights violations by Hamas security forces in Gaza. Saying a crackdown on freedom of
expression has reached alarming new levels.
Amnesty says Hamas is using force to break up peaceful protests against the rising cost of living and poor economic conditions in Gaza.
[11:40:00] It says hundreds of protesters have been subjected to beatings, arbitrary arrest, detention, and even torture. I want to bring in CNN's
Oren Liebermann in Jerusalem. Oren, the details if you will.
LIEBERMANN: Well these protests started just in the last couple of days under the banner of "We Want to Live" protests. And there are hundreds of
protesters across something like a dozen sites in Gaza. Basically protesting against the economic conditions, the poverty, the lack of fuel,
electricity and the difficulty of the living conditions in Gaza. In a way - - in a way they're like the so-called "Great March of Return" protests along the Gaza fence and that they started as grass roots protest. But
those were directed at Israel. Hamas quickly coopted those.
These protests, the "We Want to Live" protests are directed at Hamas. And that makes it far more difficult for Hamas to deal with them. There was
some harsh criticism from Gazans pointed at Hamas on social media which is very unusual since Hamas controls the Gaza strip so tightly. And that has
been the response according to Amnesty International, also the United Nations. Hamas responding with a brutal cracked down on the protesters,
including human rights violations, as well as -- according to Amnesty -- torture of some of these protesters as well as beatings and arrests.
The U.N., the special coordinator for the Middle East peace process, Nickolay Mladenov, calling on Hamas to respect human rights and says he's
alarmed by the brutal beatings of journalists and human rights workers. Becky, Hamas for its part says there were mistakes by its security forces
but it insists that it respects human rights.
ANDERSON: All right. Oren, I want to turn to the Israeli election's now. Just weeks away, of course. Campaigning is in full swing. But the Supreme
Court just banned one far-right candidate as I understand it from the ballot. Michael Ben-Ari, is head of the Jewish Power Party. What led to
this decision? Explain.
LIEBERMANN: So this was an extreme right party, the Jewish Power Party. Michael Ben-Ari was its leader. Let's back up just a little bit here. There
were a number of petitions filed against him, his party, as well as a joint Arab party and one of the far-left Israeli politicians in that party.
Essentially asking to banned from the upcoming elections. But Israel's high court only banned Michael Ben-Ari from running. The Attorney General agreed
with this and his opinion before that decision -- and I'll read you some of what led to his decision on that.
He said, in Michael Ben-Ari's speech in May 2018, he said the Arabs are making a war against us in our country. We need to call this dog by its
name. They are our enemy. They want to destroy us.
It was language that that Mendelblit said equates to racism and incitement and he should be banned from running in the election. The high court agreed
8 to 1 barring Michael Ben-Ari, the extreme right politician, from the Jewish Power or Jewish Strength Party, from running in the April 9th
election. All of the others, the joint Arab party, as well as the far-left politician, have been allowed to run.
ANDERSON: Interesting. All right. And that election of course a couple of weeks away. We are talking April the 9th, that is a Tuesday. And we will
join for coverage of that very important election.
I also want to mention a new campaign ad ahead of the election that's causing a huge stir on social media. It depicts Israel's right-wing justice
minister as a model endorsing a perfume called fascism. It's actually a spoof ad meant to mock critics of her controversial policies but, Oren,
some say this ad has back fired in a big way.
LIEBERMANN: Well we'll see the effects in the upcoming polls until April 9th. But the fact that we are talking about CNN, the fact that it's gone
viral seems to indicate that at least for publicity sake -- if you believe any publicity is good publicity -- it had its effect. We're all talking
about the right-wing justice minister, Ayelet Shaked. In this video she is seeing spraying with fascism perfume as the narrator there says, reducing
judicial activism, appointing judges. And then right at the end she says, to me it smells like democracy. It is her knock, it is sort of her campaign
as the justice minister. A role she still wants to try to curb what she sees as overstepping by the judiciary here. And that's the big play she is
making before the elections. But as you pointed out, it is a bit of a spoof in a sense. It's designed to get her publicity. And from that sense, so far
at least, it's worked.
ANDERSON: Yes. All right. Oren, thank you. Oren Liebermann is in Jerusalem on various strands of kind of wider stories there. Election as I said,
Still ahead, it's this year's largest sporting event on the planet we are told. The Special Olympic World Games right here in Abu Dhabi. Coming up
we'll hear from one of the world's most famous faces in athletics on the importance of inclusion in sport.
First up, though, from museums to modern housing. A Japanese architect setting the bar for aesthetically inspiring designs. Stay tuned for our
leading women series ahead.
[11:50:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
ANDERSON: Well the Special Olympics World Games are underway in Abu Dhabi. If you are a regular viewer you will be well aware of that. This year makes
history as the largest games ever. And with more than 7000 athletes from 200 nations around the world the message of unity has never been more
clear. Have a look at this.
[DIFFERENT SCENES AT THE SPECIAL OLYMPIC WORLD GAMES]
ANDERSON: Well just look at some of those faces, some of those medal winners. It's all about inclusion. Yes, that's the spirit of these games.
And someone who knows a lot about the Olympic spirit is the President of the International Association of Athletics Federations, Lord Sebastian Coe.
Now as a former track and field athlete he's won two Olympic gold medals himself. And he masterminded the London 2012 games. Coe's sheer excitement
for these Special Olympics -- as well as my own -- was captured at this year's opening ceremony.
SEBASTIAN COE, PRESIDENT, INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF ATHLETICS FEDERATIONS: This is the first time I've actually walked out with a British
team in an opening ceremony. So for all sorts of reasons it was quite a unique experience. And I've never done it before.
It was just really nice to be surrounded by the team. And we've gone from isn't it great that they are just there, to be really critical now about
ANDERSON: We are in a region where people with intellectual disability in the past haven't been part of society. But these games are particularly
important to a region like this, aren't they?
COE: It does remove stigma. It does remove misunderstanding. It can remove discrimination.
ANDERSON: You have had a prolific career, currently heading up the IAAF. How does inclusion figure in your vision for athletics going forward?
COE: My instinct is that young people have -- don't just look at your activity, whether it's sport, whether it's politics, whether it's the
media, whether it's a charity, whether it's a university, whether it's the arts and culture community, as being simply that. They ask a much more
fundamental question. Does your organization look like the world I live in? And if they don't feel an emotional connection with what you are doing,
then they'll move onto something else. And actually the sadness of it is it probably won't be sport.
ANDERSON: Second term for you at IAAF.
COE: We now have an election oversight panel. Everybody has to be vetted, including me.
[11:55:00] If I go through that process, I hope that I'm in a position to continue the journey. I love what I'm doing. I will go to my grave knowing
that sport can flick the dial like nothing else. It's the most potent social worker in any of our communities. It's probably the deftest soft
power if only people realize how to use it properly.
ANDERSON: Great words. I got a taste of the Olympic spirit here earlier today when I hit the court with my unified tennis teammates. What a day,
even though my special athlete partner and I lost 3-0. And that was my ropey game believe me not hers. Also joining us at the unified tennis
event, American athlete, Loretta Clayborn. She is definitely a force to be reckoned with. Clayborn was born partially blind and was unable to walk or
talk until the age of 4. She is now a world-class runner. This is her with medals in dozens of Special Olympic events.
I'm Becky Anderson. That was CONNECT THE WORLD. Thank you for watching.