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CONNECT THE WORLD
Global Protest In Season Of Discontent; Hong Kong Protesters And Police Clash In Ongoing Campus Standoff; Iraq Spy Chief Warns ISIS Is Rebuilding. Aired 11a-12p ET
Aired November 18, 2019 - 11:00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: These protesters, they are fighting for democracy. They want freedom. They would rather die than live under China.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This goes further than isolated protest on the streets and result some kind of beautiful change but that lead to more moderation
in Iran or hard liners.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It claims that it is the leader of resistance movements around the Middle East but actually today Tehran is supporting
the status quo.
ANNOUNCER: Live from CNN Abu Dhabi, this is CONNECT THE WORLD with Becky Anderson.
BECKY ANDERSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: Well, hello and welcome. This is CONNECT THE WORLD with me, Becky Anderson live from Abu Dhabi where it
is 8:00 in the evening.
Twenty cents -- that is what triggered Lebanon's protests a month ago, after the government proposed a 20-cent a day fee on WhatsApp calls. While
it did seem minor to those looking in, it was the final spark needed to ignite a fire.
And that's a common trend emerging in this season of discontent. We've seen violence erupt in places like Iran, Hong Kong, Iraq and Chile
initially over what might appear like small issues but which touch on much deeper grievances. Big question, what comes next? And will anyone be able
to extinguish these fires? Well, right now, a very tense situation in Hong Kong with a major university under siege.
Protesters and police locked in a standoff where it is just past midnight. Here's a look at what happened earlier tonight when some of those
protesters tried to flee the university, police dragging them and then detaining them. Other protesters ran back inside. Well, this hour some
tried a different tactic to leave rappelling down ropes to the street below before they work quickly whisked away.
Bing Guan is an American photojournalist. He is inside the university and joins me now on the line. And as I understand that there are about six to
800 students in protest is still inside. Just described the atmosphere there. What's going on if you will?
BING GUAN, PHOTOJOURNALIST (via telephone): There's quite a bit of tension at the moment. Some protesters are -- would like to make a break for it.
Others are urging patients and waiting for a superior opportunity to escape. There are clashes last night were certainly among the heaviest
that I've seen in my time in Hong Kong so far. Two SWAT -- armored SWAT vehicles rushed a line of protesters who are holding line with umbrellas
and barricades on top of a bridge near freeway.
It managed to get with -- the car was within probably about two to three meters of the vehicle -- of the protesters' front line before is ignited
and fire for the series of multiple cocktails. Eventually, the police backed off but, you know, as you mentioned earlier this morning was quite
ANDERSON: You've sent some images from inside the university that I want to share our viewers and these images really sort of showing the -- that
the chaos, makeshift barricades of chairs and desks as a defense against authorities. Also and after all of this, of course, this is a university,
some youngsters within remarkable images there, a mass demonstrated what was seemingly advertised as an American diner eating a hot dog, a group on
a vehicle that our viewers have just seen cobbled together out of a campus cleaning machine, possibly.
You know, these images being the juxtaposition of the sort of anarchic scenes, you know, inside with clear signs of students, I don't know,
student silliness to a certain extent. Is there -- is there a real sense of fear about what happens next?
GUAN: At the moment, there's certain -- there's quite a bit of uncertainty still in the air. The police of -- the Hong Kong Police Force's behavior
has been rather unpredictable.
GUAN: It's hot, you know, this morning there was quite a large -- quite a large assault on the campus. Police entered near one of the lower levels
through the atrium after had been - and which triggered a gigantic conflagration. The area was loaded with petrol. Molotov cocktails
protesters began throwing, kerosene essentially stopped the entire atrium on fire. Afterward, police didn't inquire into the campus but protesters
were outside for fighting the clash and quite a number of were arrested.
Some very violently, many of the students, protesters here are not even PolyU students. There -- many of our secondary students are have already
graduated or coming from other walks of life.
ANDERSON: So to settings, did you feel that there was a sense of naivety from some in there that this wouldn't go this far and then suddenly they
sort of feel like they kind of got themselves involved in something that they wish they hadn't at this point? I mean, you know, look, you're right
to point out, you know, all of these protesters are students, you know, have been acting in a peaceful way.
I mean, they have homemade Molotov cocktails. I mean, they were perfectly happy to show journalists and media earlier on, the sort of defenses, as
they described that they have against these security forces.
GUAN: Certainly, as far as the naivety, how far this might go, I think that was certainly -- that was the case with some of the protesters but not
all of them are quite a bit more level headed and really sort of prepared for the worst. I truly believe that none of -- none of these -- nobody
really wants to be here. None of these protesters really want to be doing this. They'd rather be doing normal things that kids their age do, going
to school, playing with their friends.
But you know, they really feel that the government's action and the police forces brutality has forced their hand. I met a student the other day, who
was 17 years old, looks younger and he had told me that after the battle of the Chinese in Hong Kong, they've never been to the front lines before.
But after seeing what happened on the way that the police rain curiosity on the campus, he said, you know, I took a (INAUDIBLE) that I went.
ANDERSON: Bing, stay safe and we clearly have no idea how this is going to end. I mean, there's obviously a distinct fear that this could go horribly
wrong at this point. So good luck to you and we will absolutely monitor exactly what is going on as we described some six to 800 students
demonstrators still inside that university barricaded themselves in, now not able to leave with security forces outside.
You have been detaining, aggressively detaining those who have attempted to leave earlier on today. We are hearing from the director of Amnesty
International in Hong Kong some scathing criticism directed at police, Man- kei Lam - Tam, sorry, says - and I quote, "By laying siege to Polytechnic University and firing tear gas and rubber bullets of people trying to flee
the Hong Kong Police are yet again fanning the flames of violence when they should be trying to defuse it."
Well, Anna Coren was at the university earlier on, she has and is still in the middle of street protests not far now from the university. And she
joins me now. We have just been talking to a photojournalist who is inside at the university campus who clearly has told us that there is significant
fear inside about what happens next. Anna?
ANNA COREN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes. Look, Becky, when I -- when I was on campus yesterday talking to the protesters there was also a great deal of
fear. We were talking to a 14-year-old girl who wanted to get out.
And she had changed into civilian clothing. And we said, yes, you should try but the -- obviously that the campus was completely cordoned off. I
should also note, Becky, that there were two human rights observers who we were with last night and they two were quite anxious about getting off the
So getting out of the area that we were all in. They asked if they could leave with us. When we finally did leave at 3:30 this morning. They said
that, no, we've got to stay, this is our job. And sure enough, when they did try to leave they were arrested. These were people who just monitoring
police actions, monitoring the violence. So, it certainly speaks to what the photojournalists it says, these protesters are terrified as to what
COREN: Interestingly, there has been a number who've managed to escape and we've seen those incredible images of them scaling down a rope and there be
-- there were these waging motorcyclists who put them on the back end and just drive away. Now, earlier, there was a clearance operation, just a few
minutes whilst you're actually talking to the photojournalists. Riot police raced in, they fired teargas, the protesters ran, these people.
And now obviously, perhaps the protesters, perhaps they're just everyday people here in Hong Kong but they're just making their way out of this area
which would normally be a bustling intersection. The protesters that we've seen that tonight and they have been thousands of them, Becky, the whole
idea was to divert attention, divert the police resources away from the Polytechnic University, so that perhaps more people stuck inside could
Police have said that anyone inside will be arrested, they're calling on all those protesters to surrender peacefully. But from what we are hearing
they are staying push. They say they are going to continue fighting and that they will not surrender, Becky.
ANDERSON: Anna, you've been at this now for nine or six months. We know how destructive these demonstrations have been to be -- to Hong Kong as a
city, to Hong Kong as an economy. Do you now get the sense that authorities are -- have been given permission to or are now in a position
to wind this thing up, however deadly that could be?
COREN: Well, Becky, this is -- this is a first-class city. You know, we are living in the first world here. This is -- this is not third world.
This is not a developing country. Like you certainly report on in the Middle East where you've seen the unrest, you've seen the violence.
This is a -- this is a first-world city with educated people. It's one of the biggest financial hubs in the world. So the fact that this has been
allowed to drag on for almost six months is extremely embarrassing, I would think to not just the Hong Kong government and the Hong Kong Police Force
but also to the Chinese government.
So how long are they going to allow this to happen? And over the last two days, we've heard the police say that they will use lethal force if they
have to. Now that was quite ominous to hear that. We know that police officers have obviously shot in self-defense, shot at protesters in the
self-defense but to hear that certainly suggests that things are taking a much more (INAUDIBLE) you know, turn and certainly, the violence that we've
witnessed in the last few weeks particularly over the last week has escalated. Where does this end, Becky?
ANDERSON: Hmm. In a car and on the streets of Hong Kong past midnight once again. For the world currently connected by discontent then the
people uniting against power and the Middle East unraveling in armrests, that is up next.
ANDERSON: Well, 2019 may well go down as the year of the protest, the people versus power. And this region, Middle East, North Africa has had
more than its share of the anger that seems to be sweeping across the globe. I'm talking about the demonstrations and revolutions in places like
Sudan, Algeria, Jordan, Egypt, Iraq, and Lebanon. And let us be clear, each of these protest movements is unique but their demands are strikingly
The shakeup of the ruling elite, the tackling of corruption, more jobs and a fairer share of wealth. Those are the demands. You can argue the region
is roiling with people who are now saying to their leaders enough is enough. We'll get you more insight into what is behind this regional wave
of protests. I'm joined now by Vali Nasr in Washington and Jad Chaaban who is in Beirut.
And to both of you, thank you for joining us. As we have witnessed these squares, these streets in Beirut and Lebanon, and in Baghdad and cities
across Iraq and now we are witnessing similar scenes in Teheran Valley. Let me start with you. What is your take on what we are witnessing and
VALI NASR, MIDDLE EAST PROFESSOR, JOHNS HOPKINS UNIVERSITY: Well, what we're witnessing is anger, popular anger, middle class, lower-middle class
and lack of economic opportunity then combined with grievances they have about governance and in some cases, authoritarian rule. In the Arab world,
this is really the unfinished business of the first Arab Spring that initiated that protest for a better future but did not really produce
results and the issues that brought people out in during the first out of spring are still there.
And we're really seeing a second wave of that Arab Spring. In Iran, this has -- to some extent to do with the impact of U.S. sanctions which has
really put a lot of squeeze on the Iranian economy and particularly has hurt the middle class. It has increased the inflation, it has increased
unemployment and the population is obviously very unhappy, it's seeing a precipitous decline in the standard of living.
And it was -- and therefore raising the price of petrol was sort of a trigger to vent that unhappiness. But across the board, things are not
good in the Middle East. We're not seeing stability within the states and then economic factors are pushing the region into sort of some unknown
ANDERSON: Jad, you and I spoke when I was in Beirut covering these protests just a couple of weeks ago. Do you agree with values contention
that this is, you know, enough is enough, that people say holding those in power to account for many will say, the first time in this region?
JAD CHAABAN, ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR, AMERICAN UNIVERSITY OF BEIRUT: Yes. I mean, I largely agree. But there are also factors that at least we've seen
in Lebanon and in other countries is the youth component that young people are really in discontent, they are questioning their parents' generation,
the model of governance that their parents have either voted for or lived with.
And it's the combination of authoritarianism but also failed economic policies and cartels and monopolies that are governing their lives and
preventing them from accessing decent housing, economic opportunities and even interfering in their personal liberties.
CHAABAN: You know, in Lebanon, as you've seen when you're here, we have a lot of young people on the streets and they're demonstrating for the
dignity for the economic price, but also for the social rights, they want to live in peace. They want to live across regions, across success. And
also they want to enjoy concerts, they want to enjoy, you know, modernity. And the system in place, basically all men are against them. Yes.
ANDERSON: Yes, no. I was going to -- I was going to speak to exactly that point, that we have heard intimately from the authorities, the leadership
in Lebanon. The response to what we have heard from those empower from the protesters is, you know, pretty much you are tone-deaf, you are not
listening. We will not go away. We are a month into these protests. Is there enough momentum to keep these demonstrations going to see real
change? Do you believe real change going forward?
CHAABAN: Well, I think so, you know, we've had elections in the bar association yesterday in Beirut and for the first time an independent
lawyer was elected and on the chance of the revolution, and he was elected mainly by, you know, progressives and independence and against the
coalition of everyone in power including from, you know, from the right to the left to everybody was against him.
There is momentum, of course, it goes up and down. You know, we're not fighting a typical authoritarian regime (INAUDIBLE) we're fighting a cartel
of leadership that in public, they say we're against each others, but in private behind closed doors. They're all conspiring against Lebanese
people. And we're up against a more complicated scenario. They're pushing us for an economic crisis and the financial crisis that they made
And they're testing the limits of the Lebanese population. But I think, you know, the people of Lebanon are very resilient. We've gone through
wars, we've gone through civil wars, we've gone through aggressions and we've always come back. And I think it's only a matter of time. If they
ignore us now they will not ignore us for longer that people will come back, their basic freedom is at stake. And I don't think they will quiet
down unless they see real significant change.
ANDERSON: And you can see that, that momentum continues to exist on the streets. Vali, let's get back to Iran. This is not the first time that
Iranians have taken to the streets an anti-government protests. We did see Iranians taken to the streets and, for example, 2009's Green Movement,
demonstrators protested the reelection of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the focus there was political with the slogan of Where is my Vote?
In comparison, these protests were largely peaceful. At the end of 2017 and early 2018 from anger over politics, to the economy protests were
furious over the sputtering economy, rampant corruption and rising fuel and food prices, and then again this year with the hiking of the fuel prices
but we are seeing a much swifter and a heavy response from Iranian officials valley this time around. Why is that?
NASR: Well, first of all, they learn some lessons from the last set of economic protests as how to deal with it faster in order to quash it more
quickly. And secondly, because of the regional environment, I think, you know, they're watching what's happening in Lebanon and Iraq. And they
don't want sort of Iran in some ways to be tied to that. They also understand that in both Lebanon and Iraq already sort of the conclusion in
the West is that Iran is on its heels.
It's weakening, let's increase pressure on Iran. And then if there are protests also inside Iran, then that might even encourage the United States
to even add to further pressure on Iran. And then Iran and the United States are right now in this very sort of delicate discussion or dance, if
you would, about American pressure, Iranian resistance, whether they would be talks or no talks on the nuclear deal.
And the Iranians don't want the United States to conclude that maximum pressure policies working. And why talk to Iran or why cut a deal, why not
double down on the pressure and increase it much further? So I think this is much more of a regional international concern for Iran than just
managing the people internally.
ANDERSON: Here's what U.S. Secretary Pompeo had to say about what is happening at present, Vali, in Iran.
ANDERSON: As I said to the people of Iran almost a year and a half ago, the United States is with you. To which many Iranians are saying, really?
They see the U.S. is an unreliable and unpredictable partner as it were, perhaps shouldn't use that term. After 14 years of tyranny. Proud Iranian
people are not staying silent about their government's abuse. What do you make of the U.S. maximum pressure strategy that you can argue has brought
Iran to this point?
NASR: Well, maximum pressure has worked in terms of really squeezing Iran's economy, cutting it -- cutting its trade and relations with western
countries creating massive shortages of various kinds, you know, pushing down the standards of living. What it hasn't done is to force Iranian
government to surrender and basically to accept the terms that President Trump has put on the table.
Now, you know, there is a great deal of anger and frustration that is bubbling over in Iran. But there is no yet as yet a mass protest movement
of the size that we're seeing in Iraq or in Lebanon or we saw in Egypt during the first Arab Spring. And there's a good chunk of the Iranian
population that is angry with its own government but does blame their current political crisis on the United States.
The difference in Iran is that there are many Iranians who might think that yes, things are -- the economy is mismanaged, the government is corrupt,
but they would have been able to do a lot more if the U.S. had not completely cut him off from the work. So it's disingenuous for president -
- for Secretary Pompeo to say we are with you but we're not allowing pharmaceutical products, drugs, food coming to Iran.
We're not allowing you to sell your oil. We're not allowing you to transact with the rest of the world. We know you're suffering, we're
causing your suffering but we are with you. And that doesn't really quite fly with the Iranians.
ANDERSON: And briefly, Jad, and finally, it was interesting to hear many in Beirut suggest that they are tired of interference in the country by
outside, actors including the United States. I heard many people say stay out of our affairs when the U.S. said, had issued statements in support of
the protesters on the streets. We've also, of course, much talk of Iranian interference in the country, both the U.S. and Iran blaming each other for
Just so finally, and very briefly, your thoughts, is this a Lebanese- inspired protest by Lebanese for Lebanese? A move up, stay like that going forward?
CHAABAN: Well, largely, yes, I mean, I would say 99 percent, yes. Of course, there are, you know, since it's a revolution that has no
leadership, it's really a protest movement on the streets. There are some groups who want to infiltrate to take it one way or the other. But the
majority of participants were very clear. They just want to leave, you know, live a decent life, they want the rights, they want their country to
be better and they want to have good relations with everybody.
They don't want anybody to profit from this revolution to score points against anybody else. And what's, you know, strange is that, you know,
when the outgoing government, the one that was suffered in the street was sending power. It was -- it received support from everybody, the Iranians,
the Russians, the U.S., and they came to see Hariri and provided them with their support, the friends of Lebanon.
And we -- back then we asked the friends of Lebanon like please support the people, not the government. And I think this is what the people want.
They just want to, you know, progress. they want the new government, they want elections and they want the regeneration of the political space and
definitely less corruption and less grab and and better public services. You know, it's not that complicated. But people really want that.
ANDERSON: But that we're going to leave it there. And we'll have you both back of course. I mean, this story is not going away. And we really
appreciate your analysis and insight to both of you, thank you very much indeed. The protests across the region. Just to add to really understand
the decisions that come out of Iran, you must understand the man at the helm of the republic, Ayatollah Khomeini for an in-depth look into the mind
of the country's supreme leader.
Do use our page @CNN.com/Connect. A profile for you there which might surprise you. Well, coming up in a CNN exclusive interview. The Iraqi
intelligence chief explains why he thinks ISIS is on the verge of a resurgence.
ANDERSON: Well, it is just after half-past 8:00 in Abu Dhabi. This is CONNECT THE WORLD from your Middle East broadcasting hub here in the UAE.
Turkish police arrested four ISIS members who were suspected of planning an attack in Turkey. Officials didn't provide any details on the attack but
state media says the suspects crossed into Turkey from Syria. They were arrested on Sunday in the port city of Adana.
Turkey has arrested dozens more suspected ISIS members since the death of the former ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi late last month. And it
doesn't stop there. The head of Iraq's military intelligence warns that senior ISIS leaders who've taken refuge in Turkey and that recent
communication show that the terror group is preparing to try to free tens of thousands of followers from prisons and camps in Northern Syria. Sam
Kiley interviewed him, here is his exclusive report.
All right. We don't have that. Let's bring Sam up. He is in London for us. As I understand an apology, Sam. Doesn't sound as if we can run that
report at this point, so walk us through what you learned.
SAM KILEY, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, it's pretty straightforward, really begging according to Iraqi military intelligence.
They have secured intelligence that says that nine people that they think are extremely important members of ISIS are in Turkey plotting to break
prisoners out of Northern Syria and elsewhere and restart the Caliphate.
KILEY: And I think we've got the report back. Let's see if it works this time.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KILEY: Hidden among those fleeing the last stand of the so-called Islamic Caliphate are leaders who invaded prisons like these taking refuge in
Turkey, flush with millions of dollars and driven by revenge. They're plotting mass jail breakouts to rebuild the terror network. These
explosive warnings come from Iraq's veteran head of military intelligence in an exclusive interview with CNN.
SAAD AL-ALLAQ, HEAD OF IRAQ MILITARY INTELLIGENCE (through translator): Those elements who are currently in areas in Turkey play a key role in the
new effort to recruit fighters. Top-level leaders who fled secretly in the direction of Gaziantep and other areas are key founding members of the
organization. And they have vast amounts of money. They even have investments in Turkey.
KILEY: The General said that he handed a dossier of nine ISIS leaders to Turkish military officials in this room a month ago. We were shown but not
allowed to film. Iraqi arrest warrants for two of those men, which said that they are expert bomb makers and wanted for terror and mass murder.
The warrant says they pose a great danger in the Middle East and to the west. Turkish officials told CNN that they're looking into the
Iraq tracked an attacked, former ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi forcing him from Iraq into Syria where he was eventually killed in October. But
the general warned that the ISIS threat remains potent. About 10,000 alleged fighters and now held in prisons guarded by the Syrian Democratic
Forces. How long they can be contained is unclear since Turkey's recent incursion into the area where it considers the Kurdish elements of the SDF,
a terror group.
The Trump administration has been widely criticized for withdrawing U.S. forces who are working with the SDF from the border area. European forces
have done nothing to help contain the potential threat here and most refuse to repatriate their citizens who joined ISIS. Turkish forces have rounded
up dozens of alleged ISIS members recently arresting 42 people allegedly involved in complex money transfers for the terror group.
But Iraqi military intelligence believes that these prisons and others like it could be attacked at any time. Funded by ISIS leaders living in Turkey.
AL-ALLAQ: We have concluded that the real intention of ISIS is to begin admission they're calling breakdown defenses to storm jails inside Iraq and
Syria to free terrorists.
KILEY: And what do you think should be done about that?
AL-ALLAQ: There should be a large international effort to deal with this, because these criminals could escape camps and go back to their countries.
They post a great danger to countries in Europe, Asia and North Africa.
KILEY: In the nation where the terrorist Caliphate first emerged, a warning that it still has the money and the intent to be reborn.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KILEY: Now, Becky, of course, that a gloom laden fear or prediction that really isn't more in the realms of prediction as far as Iraqi military
intelligence and -- is concerned if those camps and what to do about those people in those camps 70,000 women and children in one, about 10,000 males
suspected of being fighters in the other if they are not sorted out in a semi-permanent way. Things are going to get very dangerous they're saying.
ANDERSON: Yes. Sam Kiley is our senior international correspondent normally based here with me in Abu Dhabi covering the region tonight out of
London for you. Sam, thank you. Still to come, we shine a light on some humanitarian superheroes inspiring advocates who have dedicated their lives
to ending preventable diseases. This is a good news story for you. My conversation with them up next
ANDERSON: Well, it is well-known that the last mile of a marathon is the hardest. The end in sight but the race not yet one. One misstep in the
finish line fades away when it comes to the last leg of disease eradication. The same is true. Something known all too well by those on
the front lines of that fight.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Dr. Salk and his colleagues have beaten an insidious deadly enemy, the scourge of infantile paralysis. The battle has been won.
The war is not yet over.
ANDERSON: Over half a century later, the war against the debilitating disease now in its last Mile. According to the Global Polio Eradication
Initiative, 99 percent of wild polio has been eradicated in the past three decades.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Polio can be eradicated. Two of the poliovirus strains are gone, and only type one polio remains and that only in Pakistan and
ANDERSON: The finish line seemingly inside, but the World Health Organization warning if we fail to reach every lost child, the amount of
annual cases could once again rise to hundreds of thousands. 33 cases of wild polio were reported in 2018. That number has nearly tripled so far
this year. Running until the end of this marathon, the Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, his emirates polio campaign, vaccinating over 71 million
Pakistani children in the last five years.
Teaming up with leaders in Polio Eradication including the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, this fight is just one of the Crown Prince's many
commitments in his Reaching the Last Mile Initiative.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You're an inspiration to all of us.
ANDERSON: Connecting the world's most vulnerable with support innovation and development. MBC has contributed more than 300 million U.S. dollars
over the past decade to end preventable diseases including malaria, guinea worm, and river blindness. The biennial REACH Awards celebrating those at
the front lines of disease elimination, humanitarian superheroes, continuing the unwavering work of those before them for the generations to
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: So important these humanitarian superheroes are currently here in Abu Dhabi for those REACH Awards. And only I spoke to one of the award
judges, former New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark and two of the finalists, Olivia Ngou, a malaria activist from Cameroon and the Saudi
women's health researcher and advocate, Dr. Fatimah Saeed Alhamlan. They told me now, now is the time to speak up and accelerate action.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Ellen, you wanted to REACH Award judges, how did you get involved?
HELEN CLARK, FORMER NEW ZEALAND PRIME MINISTER: I was approached by the Office of His Highness, the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi. I thought what a
fantastic initiative to really value recognize award around heroic efforts to eliminate these diseases that are still killing and disabling people.
So I said why not?
ANDERSON: So often the unsung heroes, healthcare workers and researchers are in the words of Sheikh Mohammed driven to help others by pure
ANDERSON: We've just seen a short film Olivia about polio being in its last mile. You grew up in Cameroon, you have first-hand experience of just
how devastating the consequences of -- for example, malaria. What mile is malaria on and just describe your own story as it were?
OLIVIA NGOU, MALARIA ACTIVIST: Yes, so I grew up in Cameroon and growing up in Cameroon, I had malaria several time but I was very lucky because I
was able to have access quickly to services to treat malaria in quality services with quality treatment. Unfortunately, not everyone had that
opportunity. And still today, we have a lot of people who are at risk of dying malaria. So I'm very proud of the work that I do as a malaria
advocate to work towards ending malaria.
And particularly in my work, I actually just make the communities realize the essential role that they can play in ending this disease. So Malaria
is a disease that we can prevent and treat, and in the communities have a really essential role to play in that.
ANDERSON: Fatimah, you have made an incredible social impact in Saudi Arabia regarding women's health. You lead a transformational project
trying to eradicate cervical cancer by 2050. Walk me through that project.
FATIMAH SAEED ALHAMLAN, SAUDI WOMEN'S HEALTH RESEARCHER AND ADVOCATE: So to start off with cervical cancer, it's the easiest cancer to prevent. And
if you look at cervical cancer worldwide, it used to be number two. Now it's dropped into number four due to the vaccination program and due to the
screening programs. So -- and so do we do have less cases in comparison to the world.
So we decided why we don't eradicate cervical cancer. We are talking about the last mile here. So I think we are close to reach the last mile. We
are hoping to reach the last mile by 2050. And even the WHO they're trying to do it by 2019. So I think we are going in the right direction. We
believe if you educate the people now, if you're talking about empowering the community, again, if your people are educated, they will go seek help
either as a cervical screening, either as a pap test or vaccination for their kids.
So you get everyone involved, they will help you in this movement and hopefully, we eradicate that easy.
ANDERSON: Helen, disease eradication can only work if we come together as a world. What do you forecast as the trajectory of multilateralism in
today's increasingly nationalistic world and how important is it that we stay together in efforts like this?
CLARK: Incredibly important to have partnerships around which is why the Crown Prince coming together with the Gates Foundation at the summit
emphasizing the need to eliminate river blindness, second biggest cause of blindness in our world today. Elephantiasis debilitating, but neglected
tropical disease. We're not at the right at the last mile with malaria yet we've still got polio out there.
We're going to have to have a major effort across governments, private sector, communities, the NGOs, but we can do it.
ANDERSON: Much discussion at present about the climate crisis. This is, of course, an issue. It seems that politicians are divided or not that --
not the rest of it. But the politicians are perhaps divided on specifically when it comes to the notion of disease. Eradication. What's
CLARK: My message to the health professionals is speak up. Because we're rather focused with the impacts with respect to the big natural disasters.
Let's think about the impact on human health. The increase of diarrheal disease, the malaria and other mosquito-borne diseases coming to higher
altitudes than before. The risk of heat stress for people in the most impacted countries.
If you're going to be in South Asia or the Sahara or the Horn of Africa, working outside heat stress with a planet that's hitting for three degrees
scenario is horrific. So let's hear the voice of the health professionals now to add to all the other scientists who are in on this cause.
ANDERSON: What is your message, Olivia, to those watching this today?
NGOU: My message is very simple. We need to eliminate malaria. Malaria needs to remain a global health priority. In the past, malaria has shown
its capacity to research.
NGOU: The world has made we've made great progress between 2000 and 2015, we reduce mortality -- child mortality of malaria by 50 percent. But it
seems recently we have to start to see resistance in Southeast Asia. So it's time that the world comes together in this disease once and for all.
And I believe we have the tools and we can actually put the end of -- end in malaria by 2050 or 2030 but it's totally possible.
ANDERSON: You have got a passion for that. We hear you, we hear your words. And to you, Fatimah, your message?
ALHAMLAN: Yes. We should accelerate the pace and that's why we are here today. Government, non-government and private, they all got together to
accelerate the pace and we all believe that no one should die of preventable disease as simple as that.
ANDERSON: Fantastic. Good luck.
ALHAMLAN: And thank you.
ANDERSON: Thank you.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: You simply cannot disagree with what our finalists had to offer there. You're watching CONNECT WORLD live from Abu Dhabi. Coming up.
Photographers have always provided pictures from the front line. Haven't they? But in Lebanon's protest movement, the protesters themselves are
documenting the most powerful images. That is just ahead.
ANDERSON: We've been watching the drama unfolding tonight in Hong Kong. A university that remains under siege and protesters not far from the campus
of taking to the streets. Once again this all follows one of the most violent outbreaks in nearly six months now of unrest in the city
(INAUDIBLE) you tried to flee the campus were corralled by police. This video appears to show a protester knocked to the ground and dragged.
Police allowed the Hong Kong Red Cross inside the campus earlier to treat and evacuated injured protesters, hospital officials say more than 60
people have been admitted today. Well, after a period of relative calm, people in Lebanon back on the streets, protesters gathered outside, government headquarters on Sunday to
mock a month of protests against the country's leaders as politicians struggled to form a government and solve Lebanon's biggest economic crisis
since the Civil War.
Nabih Berri who is Lebanon's Parliament Speaker saying earlier today that "The country is like a sinking ship that will go under unless action is
taking." While you're parting shots tonight, we are staying right there in Lebanon. History is as it is said made up of stories from different
perspectives and representations of Lebanon's protests show just that. Omar Imady is a photographer from Tripoli, the city that is emerged as the
heart of the protest movement seeking to highlight the beauty amid meet the conflict from above.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
OMAR IMADY, PHOTOGRAPHER: These people are here to claim their rights. I'm one of them. Their pain is my pain. So I felt I owed to my country
without hesitation to come down with my drone to show everyone the beauty of this revolution and show that the people attending it are humble, kind,
democratic, and most importantly, united. (INAUDIBLE) which is everyone means everyone.
Each and every one of the protesters is putting away his religion and his political party in which he believes. We do protest from time to time but
this time is totally different. The people are fed up from the rulers and the corrupt system. I was really involved in the protest of Tripoli, which
was the start of the revolution in Lebanon. It was surprisingly leading all the other cities and excessively motivating the people to continue and
fighting for their rights.
As I was taking part of the protest, I saw this beautiful scene. I just want to show that here in Lebanon and especially in Tripoli, we are giving
a lesson to the whole world on how to protest without any violence and how we can transform this action into an organized revolution, full of tears
and joy at the same time. We wish for a country resembles its people and not its politicians.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: A bird's eye view of protests. They're truly beautiful images. I'm Becky Anderson. That was CONNECT THE WORLD. Thank you for watching.