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Connect the World

First-Hand Look at Migrant Camp at Belarusian-Polish Border; Some of World's Biggest Polluters Resist Cutting Emissions; U.S. Journalists Sentenced to 11 Years in Myanmar Prison; Migrants Surviving Frigid Temperatures at Polish-Belarusian Border; Rubble to Restoration: Rebuilding Mosul; Israeli Start Up Designs Balloon to Capture Carbon. Aired 11a-12p ET

Aired November 12, 2021 - 11:00   ET




MAX FOSTER, CNN HOST, CONNECT THE WORLD: Hello and welcome to "Connect the World". I'm Max Foster filling in for my colleague Becky Anderson. As men,

women and children freeze and plunging temperatures the war of words over the border standoff between Poland and Belarus is getting hotter.

A Warsaw accusing the Belarusian regime of using nearly 2000 migrants as propaganda, but Poland is under fire by eight groups for pushing asylum

seekers back into Belarus. Right now you're looking at images from the Polish Defense Ministry from earlier today.

Polish authorities saying this video shows migrants crossing the border on the Belarusian side. Now the U.N. is calling the migrant situation

catastrophic and says "something must be done to help them". For its part the EU says it's working to stop people smuggling.

And it's got confirmation that Turkey's flights to the Belarusian capital will be reduced to zero to stop the flow of Middle Eastern refugees. NATO

is just out with a statement slamming what it calls provocation by Belarus and its borders.

It says "these callous actions endanger the lives of vulnerable people". Looking here at exclusive images from the Belarusian side of the border

taken by CNN, the only international news crew there, meanwhile, Russia and Belarus are holding military drills near the Polish border. CNN's Matthew

Chance is exclusively reporting from a camp on the Belarusian side of the border. And earlier showed my colleague John Berman, what he was seeing on

the ground there.

MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yeah, I mean, look, I mean, first of all, John, it's a feat in itself, getting to Belarus. I

mean, you know, there are only a handful of television crews that have been permitted access at this extraordinary moment to come to --.

And as far as I'm aware, I would have been assured by Belarusian officials were the only international crew that had been allowed to come to this

migrant camp on the border of Belarus and Poland.

And I don't know whether I'm filming on my cell phone, so anybody can get a sense of the sort of depth of the camp. There are 2000 people that have

come here from various parts of the world, mainly the Middle East, Iraq, Kurdistan and Iraq, you know, other places in the Arab world, as well as

bringing a lot of people from Kurdistan and at least 200 of them untold, our children, some of them just Babes in Arms.

He said, a lot of people here, I think spin around here look, chopping wood, getting ready to make fires to get them through the very cold nights

here on the border. 600 of the women, the other 1200 are said to be young men, I'm going to flip the camera around. So I can show you some

interesting scenes there, a better look there at the sort of scenes that are playing out unfolding here on the border between Belarus and Poland.

And if you just allow me to sort of walk you down here, we can actually see the razor fence, and you don't need to show your face. I won't do that. The

Razor fence that's been erected by the Polish side to try and prevent the migrants that have flooded into Belarus from moving across into Poland,

which is of course a member of the European Union.

Now as you can see, I think the actual Polish Police and border forces that are standing there on guard all the way down this razor wire barrier to

prevent migrants from breaking through and you get a sense of how long this campus as it stretches down into the distance into the forest, out of


Here's an interesting scene for you. Somebody I came across earlier this lot of the migrants is from Iraq from Kurdistan. They're building these

makeshift shelters because the temperatures as you can imagine in this part of the world in the winter are dropping down. Let me drop inside, they

built a polythene shelter look.


CHANCE (on camera): Hi. Hi, how are you? How are you? Where are you from?


CHANCE (on camera): From Iraq, from Kurdistan.


CHANCE (on camera): Excellent. All right, thank you! Good luck.


CHANCE: Alright, so then just a little sense of the scenes were witnessing here. I should tell you that, you know, both sides blame each other for

this crisis. The western countries including the United States, the European Union, of course, Poland, say that Belarus is using these refugees

as propaganda. It's actually encouraging them to come in and then essentially directing them forcing them towards this border to put pressure

on the European Union.

And to punish it perhaps for some of the support that the EU has given to Belarusian dissidents and for the sanctions that it's put on Belarus for

its various crackdowns on its own opposition figures here in the country.


CHANCE: What the Belarusians say, though, as well as some international aid agencies have to say is that the polls are not doing everything they can

either to protect the rights of migrants, and in some ways, they're not living up to their obligations under international law, but clearly, it is

a very difficult situation.

I've got some news for you from the migrant services at 2000 people in this camp at the moment by the end of the week, that could be as many as 5000

and there are thousands more according to Belarusian officials who are on their way.

FOSTER: Matthew Chance there on the Belarusian side. CNN's Fred Pleitgen is on the Polish side of the border. What are they saying about these

accusations that actually, the polls are wrong because they should be allowing these refugees in as is the principle of the European Union?

FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, the polls are essentially saying Max that they are going to continue handling this

crisis exactly the way they've been handling it so far. They certainly deny any sort of allegations against them of any sort of wrongdoing.

However, of course, there are some people who are saying that there are some of those migrants who do make it across the border here into Poland.

And that some of them have actually then been sent back to Belarus without being able to apply for asylum here in Poland.

That's certainly something that, of course, is a very difficult with, with international law. How the poles however, they've actually made a new law

themselves making it possible for the Border Services to send people back.

And what they've also done is they've set up an exclusion zone, as they called or an emergency zone, which actually begins right behind me. You can

see there's a checkpoint, so it's about two kilometers away from the border that no media is allowed to go in there, NGOs aren't allowed to go in there


For a long time, European officials also weren't allowed to go in there now some have been able to visit. So the polls have essentially shut the border

area down completely.

They put their 15,000 troops and border officials and they set up what you saw there in Matthew's video, that razor wire fence to try and prevent

anyone from coming through. Now there was apparently a group of migrants that did manage to get through earlier today.

However, the polls were saying that all of them had been detained and that several people had been barred from entering a Poland altogether. So Poland

is essentially saying they believe that they are right in all of this.

And they are of course also getting the support from the European Union also from the United States. Vice President Kamala Harris today also

speaking about the Lukashenko regime and saying that she believes these was provocations by the Lukashenko regime.

NATO, of course, also firmly behind Poland as well. So right now the polls are saying they're not going to handle this any differently than they have

so far. And they're also saying that if they need to, they will beef up their presence here at this border even more bringing even more forces to

make sure that no one makes it across because essentially, they're saying that they believe that this is an attempt at blackmail by Alexander

Lukashenko, Max.

FOSTER: Fred Pleitgen in Poland. Thank you, do stay with us because in just a few minutes we'll speak with Judith -- Southern Sunderland from Human

Rights Watch, she calls the crisis at the Poland Belarus border, an utter failure of the EU to learn lessons.

Now many migrants trying to enter the EU from Libya, the country plunged into chaos a decade ago and for years, has experienced political deadlock.

Today France, the U.S. and Germany, along with the U.N. and other nations want to keep want to help bring Libya closer to stability.

World leaders are meeting in Paris right now at an international summit. They're hoping the North African country will be able to pull off a fair

election next month is a huge asks Cyril Vanier is following developments for us in Paris. Does it feel hopeful there Cyril?

CYRIL VANIER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Max, it is indeed a very, very tall order. Libya has never been a democracy nowhere near that. It has been through

decades of dictatorship under strongman Muammar Gaddafi.

The last 10 years since his ouster have been marked by turmoil by division between East and West in the country and rival factions on both sides. Two

separate governments for a number of years.

And only recently has Libya had a government of national unity that can even purport to speak for the entire country, even that at this stage is

not clear. And even their ceasefire still vulnerable has only been in place a fairly short while relative to the history of Libya.

So these presidential elections that are scheduled to take place the first round of them on December 24 would be the first presidential election in

the history of Libya, so again, a very tall order.

The international community, trying to nudge the country along trying to provide what support it can so that these elections are actually held. Now

there is support ports grassroots support within Libya for these elections given the instability that Libyans have been through over the last few



VANIER: But there is also some degree of concern and fear because if these elections take place, will the results be accepted? And if not, will that

be another trigger point for further violence Max at this stage, it's too early to tell the international community trying to stabilize the country.

FOSTER: Just the thought on Kamala Harris arriving there first big sort of moments on the European stage. How's it going, gone? Obviously, there was

some tension between the U.S. and France to say the least over those Australian submarines.

VANIER: Well, look, I think France and the U.S.; we can now safely say have papered over most of the tensions. France's main position really has been

since that diplomatic crisis erupted that they want actions, not words, because the words of comfort and almost words of apology, I say almost did

come fairly quickly from the United States.

But France has been saying, look, we want to see concretely how we are going to work together in the future, how we are going to rebuild this

trust. There hasn't been really big deliverables in diplomatic terms, but there have been a few increased cooperation on space is one of them. And

really, this trip was heavy on symbolism number one, because of the length of the trip Kamala Harris, the U.S. Vice President staying here in Paris

for five full days Max.

And also because she took part in the Armistice Day celebrations and visited that U.S. cemetery here in France, both events, both events,

underlining the depth of the alliance between the two, and the blood has been spilled on both sides to forge this alliance. So this trip heavy on

symbolism and it's been all smiles each time that Mr. Macron and Ms. Harris have met next.

FOSTER: That's good news. Thank you very much Cyril. Now, all eyes also upon Glasgow and Scotland on the final day of the COP26 Climate Summit,

world leaders under immense pressure to make real commitments to fight global warming whilst also protecting their economies.

After 12 days of wrangling, they've come up with a new version of their draft agreement. It includes an unprecedented acknowledgement that fossil

fuels are contributing to climate change. But the language is watered down from previous drafts and could be left out of the file agreement


Protesters gathered earlier to say they won't forget the promises leaders make at the conference. Today's draft keeps language saying that the world

should be trying to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre industrial levels.

And that's more specific than the well below two degrees goal agreed upon in Paris. For much more, let's join Phil Black. He's in Glasgow. I mean,

there does seem to be positive momentum. But the fear is it's just not enough.

PHIL BLACK, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Max, there is certainly progress. And I think the key point is that there's some solid science locked in to this

language, it was in the first draft, it's made its way into the second drought.

And this is the importance of achieving 1.5 degrees of average global temperature increase by the end of the century. Coming into these talks, we

knew what it was going to take to secure that goal to secure an agreement, which ensures the temperatures do not go beyond that point.

And that is because the science has been explicit and clear. The scientific advice that this whole process is built upon says countries have to make

deep cuts now in order to achieve a reduction in global emissions of 45 percent by 2030.

If you don't do that the goal of 1.5 simply slips away. But coming into Glasgow, we've seen a handful of countries, often with big fossil fuel

industries at home, openly saying pretty defiantly saying they're going to walk their own path and essentially, in the short term at least, ignoring

that scientific advice. Take a look.


BLACK (voice over): Throughout COP26, some countries have been talked about more than others, and not for the right reasons. Here's one example.

JENNIFER MORGAN, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, GREENPEACE INTERNATIONAL: I think the greatest disappointment, maybe would also be Australia.

CATHERINE ABREU, FOUNDER & EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, DESTINATION ZERO: Countries like Australia come to these talks without an enhanced Paris Agreement


SARAH HANSON-YOUNG, AUSTRALIAN SENATOR, GREENS PARTY: It is embarrassing being here as an Australian.

BLACK (voice over): Australia has been roundly criticized for coming to Glasgow, and saying it will hit net zero carbon by 2050 without

significantly changing its behavior, especially in the short term.

SCOTT MORRISON, AUSTRALIAN PRIME MINISTER: Driving the emergence of low emissions technologies and fostering their widespread adoption is at the

heart of our plan to reach net zero.

BLACK (voice over): So the Australian Government says investing billions in future technology means there's no need to stop digging, burning and

selling fossil fuels, a provocative theory at a climate conference.

HANSON-YOUNG: Australia's got to do more than that. We are one of the world's largest exporters of fossil fuels. We've got to get out of coal, we

have to stop building new gas fields, and we've got to reduce pollution. And if we want to reduce pollution, we have to stop making this stuff.


BLACK (voice over): But Australia isn't the only holdout. Several big polluting countries have persistently ignored what the science now says is

necessary to get to carbon neutral by mid-century. Countries collectively must make deep cuts now and reduce emissions by 45 percent this decade.

NIKLAS HOHNE, NEWCLIMATE INSTITUTE: There are some countries which clearly proposed a long term target to disguise that they're not changing the short

term target. And I think Brazil is in that category, Australia as well. Russia is in that basket as well.

ABREU: We've heard from countries like Saudi Arabia, real reluctance to embrace the push for more ambition before 2030.

BLACK (voice over): Poor vulnerable countries are watching with dismay.

PERKS LIGOYA, GLOBAL CHAIR, LEAST DEVELOPED COUNTRIES GROUP: When you see countries coming up with targets, say by 2060 by 2070, we will do that. Who

knows by then most of our young kids will be dead.

BLACK (on camera): They're not committing to what needs to be done this decade.

LIGOYA: Exactly, exactly.

BLACK (voice over): Australia's policies and popular at COP26, but it's pavilion is, crowds line up eager for good free coffee next to displays for

a fossil fuel company.

BLACK (on camera): He can't just shun countries out for -- we need to have conversations with them and bring them on the journey towards.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Especially when their coffee is so good.

BLACK (on camera): Yeah, exactly.

BLACK (voice over): Well, outside activists blast an air raid zone, declaring alarm over the little progress made here. A breakthrough was

never likely a COP26. Too many countries are still unwilling to make bold, immediate changes and some have powerful economic and political motivations

for sticking with the status quo.


BLACK: Max, you can see these pressures at work in the way the language surrounding coal and fossil fuels has evolved from the first to the second

draft. The first draft talked for the active hand accelerating shift away from coal powered energy and away from fossil fuel subsidies.

The second version talks about shifting away from unabated coal power, which is coal power, where none of the carbon is captured at source, the

technology that still isn't really proven at scale, critics say.

And it also talks about shifting away from inefficient fossil fuel subsidies. Inefficient is a word that is very much open to interpretation

and can give individual countries a lot of wiggle room going forward.

That said the fact that reference to coal and fossil fuels is still in the draft is significant because we've never had that before at one of these

climate conferences. And so we will be looking to see if that continues to survive in the next draft which we expect to receive a little later this


The whole process here is running behind or that's the general feeling as I say at least one more draft to go probably before the final text is then

agreed upon. So finishing tonight is possible but it will be in the wee small hours. The results are every chance this will push forward into the

weekend. Max.

FOSTER: A long day for you Phil, thank you for bringing us that. Now as the COP26 summit comes to a close India isn't giving up call is not amongst the

28 countries that joined an international alliance to phase out coal.

That's despite a pledge by its prime minister to cut India's emissions to net zero by 2070. India currently generates nearly three quarters of its

electricity from coal fired thermal power plants. CNN's Vedika Sud reports from outside of coal plants near New Delhi. She explains why India is

playing the long game when it comes to ending its reliance on coal.

VEDIKA SUD, CNN REPORTER: At COP26 Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced that India will achieve zero net carbon by the year 2070. While

some developed nations pledged the same by the year 2050. According to experts, India will not be able to be enough coal anytime soon.

And here's why. India is not only the second biggest producer of coal after China, but also the second biggest consumer of this dirty fossil fuel. To

wean off coal like I said it will take decades.

A lot of people live below the poverty line here in India, its millions of people I'm talking about. And to pull them out of poverty energy is

critical hence the dependence on both renewable as well as conservative energy.

Narendra Modi at COP26 also mentioned that India's dependence on renewable energies will increase to 50 percent by the year 2030 and as Environment

Minister has said that the historical blame for climate change lies with developed nations.

He also went on to say that climate finance is imperative for developing nations like India. But the fact is that India is the third largest emitter

of greenhouse gases. And on days like today when the air quality index in Delhi and neighboring areas is poor, the need to move to renewable energies

cannot come any sooner. Vedika Sud, CNN in Doddery near Delhi.


FOSTER: The Biden Administration has just slapped sanctions on entities and individuals in Eritrea for their role in a conflict in Ethiopia. The

group's sanctions include the Eritrean Defense Force and People's Front for democracy and justice. The U.S. Treasury Department's as the EDF has been

operating in northern Ethiopia amidst numerous reports of looting sexual assault, killing civilians and blocking humanitarian aid.

Now fighting climate change requires the world's brightest minds to work together of course. Ahead on the show how an Israeli startup plans to use

this balloon to capture carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, plus misplaced justice, an American journalist is sentenced in Myanmar. A rights group is

outraged. We'll have more on that next.


FOSTER: An American journalist detained in Myanmar has been sentenced to 11 years in prison. Danny Fenster was centered on charges of visa breaches

associated with illegal group and for publishing content that incites fear or spreads false news. He's one of several dozen journalists arrested in

Myanmar since a military coup in February. Human Rights Watch says Fenster's trial and sentencing were a complete sham.


MANNY MUANG, HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH RESEARCHER: Obviously, the sentencing is a complete sham, and it's a complete sham trial. And if anything, he

shouldn't be there in the first place and he shouldn't be facing these charges. These are all trumped up. It's not a proper display of justice

simply because there's no such thing as due process in Myanmar.


FOSTER: Ivan Watson has been following the story for us. He joins us from Hong Kong. Just take us through the specific allegations here, Ivan?

IVAN WATSON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Sure. Well, Danny Fenster has been behind bars he's been detained since May. The authorities

in Myanmar grabbed him at Yangon airport when he was flying out of the country.

He's originally from Detroit, Michigan, a 37 year old American who also was managing editor of the English language online news portal frontier

Myanmar. He has been found guilty in a closed court held in insane prison. This notorious prison in Yangon for charges three charges breaching his

visa unlawful association with an illegal group and incitement, essentially spreading fake news.

But his life could get much worse because he is also being charged with violating me and Mars counterterrorism law. And with publishing comments

that hurt the reputation of Myanmar's military, which I would argue and I think many organizations and countries around the world would argue that

Myanmar's Military has done a very good job of hurting its own reputation, since it overthrew a civilian elected government on February 1 in a

Military coup.


WATSON: And then unleashed a deadly crackdown on peaceful protestors one that has escalated since then. Now Danny Fenster's parents, they spoke to

CNN back in May, after his original detention and appealed for his release, take a listen.


BUDDY FENSTER, SON JAILED IN MYANMAR: Their efforts to squelch journalism and get the word out are -- it just kills, it kills life and it kills

freedom. It kills truth. And I think that they're, they just need to let him go immediately. He has not committed any crime there.

ROSE FENSTER, SON JAILED IN MYANMAR: It's a total nightmare. It's a total feeling of no control. Its heart wrenching. It's just, it's, it's, excuse

me, I'm sorry. It's just not something you want anybody to go in, go through any parent. Anybody that cares about anybody, these are human

lives, and these are people not just numbers, and I just want my son home no matter what it takes.


WATSON: If Fenster is found guilty on the two remaining charges he could have face up to life in prison, the United Nations Office of the High

Commissioner for Human Rights, has deplored this initial sentencing and called it a closed door unfair trial. Max.

FOSTER: How concerned should we be about the freedom of the press about just getting facts out of the country?

WATSON: You know, human rights activists are saying that Fenster's case is just an indicator of a much wider crackdown on journalists in Myanmar since

the February 1 coup with that same U.N. agency, claiming that journalists have been under attack since the February 1 cue, Human Rights Watch going

on to kind of detail what's been going on in the country since then, take a listen.


MUANG: There's virtually no press freedom, at least eight independent outlets have been banned or have been classed as terrorists. We've also

seen at least 95 journalists jailed since February one and this is these are statistics from the Assistance Association for political prisoners.


WATSON: In fact, the UN Human Rights Commissioner office they say that 126 journalists have been detained currently, at least 47 remain in detention.

I personally know of journalists from Myanmar who are either in safe houses have gone into hiding to evade the authorities or have simply fled the

country since the Military coup of the February 1. Max.

FOSTER: OK, Ivan, thank you. An explosion during Friday prayers injured at least 15 people of mosque in eastern Afghanistan. It happened in Nangarhar

province. The director of the provinces information and culture department tells CNN a mine placed inside the mosque exploded. There's been no claim

of responsibility so far.

The U.N. is voicing his concern over Sudan's new ruling council the country's army chief as was sworn in on Thursday is head of the new panel.

He created the Council to lead Sudan following the Military takeover last month, despite international pressure to reverse the coup.

Now ahead on this show, we return to our top story. The 2000 migrants stranded and freezing the Poland Belarus border, we'll speak with Judith

Sunderland from Human Rights Watch; she calls the disaster, a failure of the EU.



FOSTER: Returning to our top story this hour thousands of migrant's men, women children are camped along the Poland Belarus border, fighting to

survive. They're living in tents and facing even colder temperatures in the coming days.

You'll see how they're collecting wood there to burn at night. The border crisis has been bad for weeks but the U.N. now says it's catastrophic. The

Polish border guard says it's been seen hundreds of attempts by migrants to try to cross the border fences this week.

Some have been detained or sent back to Belarus. Both sides blame each other for this crisis. My next guest writes "the evidence that border

barriers actually prevent irregular entry over the long term is mixed to say the least. What's clear is that walls and fences divert people to more

dangerous routes, but can also directly result in loss of life and limb."

Judith Sunderland is the Associate Director for the Europe and Asia Division of Human Rights Watch. Her recent work includes EU asylum policy,

both migration, and Mediterranean asylum seekers. She joins me live from Milan, Italy. Thank you for joining us. You're actually quite critical of

the EU in terms of this dispute when you know; the broader coverage seems to be critical of Belarus. Just explain where your concern is.


responsibilities on both sides of this of this border and in this very grotesque situation. Belarus has obviously been manufacturing this crisis

for a number of weeks now.

But Poland with the backing of the rest of the EU is essentially pushing people back over its border, sometimes violently, sometimes accompanied by

theft and extortion. And that is what has really exacerbated this crisis and created the situation where we have thousands of people trapped in

subzero temperatures along this border.

FOSTER: Our reporter is amongst the migrants, they're interviewing some of them, a lot of them from the Middle East; explain the route they might have

taken to get there.

SUNDERLAND: Right, well, yeah, our understanding is that most of them are Iraqi Kurds. They're also Syrians, they are also Afghans. Which leads me to

remind everybody that that we're talking about around 2000 people on this border that has caused this tremendous panic.

And is leading Poland to engage in what is clearly unlawful violent pushback at a time when around 5000 Afghans are crossing into Iran every

single day, right, just to put things into perspective. So it's clear, there is a decent amount of evidence that the government of the -- has been

facilitating travel from a variety of countries, including Iraq and Syria, to Minsk.

And from there, people have either made their own way to the border, or they've indeed been shuttled there, sometimes violently. We have documented

a lot of abuse on the Belarus side against these women, men and children.

FOSTER: But isn't that the argument on the European side that is a manufactured crisis, and this is a creation of Belarus and potentially

Russia involved as well. So therefore, it's not a human rights crisis in the form that they should be responding to under the EU sort of principles.


SUNDERLAND: Right, well, that's patently false. I mean, the fact that it has been manufactured, facilitated, orchestrated, to some degree or even to

some great degree by Belarus does not leave the EU and Poland, in particular of its responsibilities and of its obligations to respect the

rights and dignity of these people.

There are European and international laws that govern the way these States should be responding to asylum seekers at their borders. And certainly

creating or allowing this tremendous humanitarian catastrophe to develop is not what they should be, what they should be doing.

And honestly, we wouldn't be in this position. The EU wouldn't be over the barrel as it were, and susceptible to this kind of blackmail by a country

like Belarus, if it were not so dysfunctional, if it were not in such disarray and if migration, governance were not such a divisive issue in the


So this is going back over the years, we've seen constant failure of the EU as a bloc to adopt rights respecting migration, governance, policies, and

really work together to share equitably responsibility for people in need like those along the golden Belarus border right now.

FOSTER: OK, Judith Sunderland is from Human Rights Watch, thank you very much for your insight there, only going to get work worse apparently, if

there isn't much movement on this crisis.

Cuba hoping its beaches fills up with tourists again. Meanwhile, as it gets ready to welcome travelers for the first time since the early days of the

pandemic. We'll look at how the country is preparing for its big reopening. And it'll likely be a long time before this Iraqi city is found on any

travel bucket lists, but UNESCO is working to give Mosul, a massive facelift.


FOSTER: The streets of Havana may get some new faces starting next week as Cuba gets ready to lift its strict border restrictions on international

visitors. The islands had been off limits to visitors for most of the Coronavirus pandemic.

Now the government hopes a surge of tourism will help revive its economy. CNN's Patrick Oppmann joins me now live from Havana. You're going to have

some new faces, as I say, Patrick.

PATRICK OPPMANN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Absolutely. It's pretty deserted in these parts these days. Cuba has had some of the strictest COVID

restrictions anywhere in the world. There are almost no flights in or out of the island travelers who do arrive have to quarantine, go undergo

several PCR tests before they're able to leave their hotel.


OPPMANN: But that is all changing as you said Max starting on Monday; Cuba says that it is ready to receive international visitors if it is safe to do

so and that they are badly needed for this island's economy.


OPPMANN (voice over): Workers in old Havana make final repairs ahead of Cuba's big reopening. For most of the pandemic, the island has been closed

to international tourism. Nearly all international flights were canceled.

Visitors had to quarantine. Once packed colonial squares and bars were Ernest Hemingway down mojitos were all been abandoned? It hit the many

Cubans who depend on tourism particularly hard. For 30 years -- says he made living selling drawings to tourists in front of Havana's cathedral. He

told us he hasn't sold a single one during the pandemic.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: My hope now is to be able to provide for my kids, he says. I have three kids and we were going hungry.

OPPMANN (voice over): Starting on Monday Cuba will increase international flights and welcome back tourists. Now visitors who are fully vaccinated or

have had a negative PCR test 72 hours before arrival will no longer have to quarantine.

Cuban officials say the massive effort to vaccinate the population with homegrown vaccines has allowed them to welcome back tourists and their

badly needed hard currency. A population keeps getting vaccinated, he says. Everything indicates our scientists have made a discovery of great value

for our people. And I think we are very well positioned. We are optimistic.

But the pandemic isn't the only impediment preventing some tourists from coming. Sanctions implemented by the Trump Administration and continued by

the Biden Administration severely limit the ways Americans can visit the island and prevent them from staying in government run hotels.

OPPMANN (on camera): Throughout the pandemic the Cuban government is continued to build new hotels like never before. But many of these projects

began when U.S. Cuban relations were much improved, and U.S. tourists were flooding the island. Now even as COVID travel restrictions are lifted, most

Americans won't be able to visit because of U.S. sanctions.

OPPMANN (voice over): Some tour operators say clients may be wary of visiting Cuba after widespread anti-government protests shook the island in

July. The Cuban government responded with mass arrests in lengthy jail sentences, which lead to more U.S. sanctions.

COLLIN LAVERTY, CUBA EDUCATIONAL TRAVEL: And so when things get challenging between the United States and Cuba or there's a lot of political turmoil or

other negative kind of flashpoints on the ground that certainly dissuades people from looking at Cuba as a destination.

OPPMANN (voice over): Cuban officials say they are now open to visitors. But to rebuild the islands tourism industry, they may have a long road

ahead of them.


OPPMANN: And Max opposition activists have also called for more protests on Monday, the same day that Cuba's reopening day, international visitors the

Cuban government is fuming about this.

They say the United States is behind these -- this call for protests which they say will not be allowed and that that opposition activists here in the

U.S. government are trying to essentially sabotage Cuba's recovery but these activists say they are merely calling for more freedoms, the right to

protest and the release of political prisoners. Max.

FOSTER: OK, Patrick in Havana seems to be busy. Thanks for joining us. The U.N. organization UNESCO has taken on countless projects as it was founded

in 1945. But it's the latest mission might top them all the goal is to restore culture to a city in ruins. Jomana Karadsheh brings us powerful

images from the massive reconstruction mission underway in Mosul.


JOMANA KARADSHEH, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice over): This is the sound of music when silenced by terror, the sound of a resilient population

turning the page on a dark chapter of Mosul's history, one that made Iraq second largest city synonymous with ISIS and it's so called caliphate, one

that reduced much of Mosul into rubble, shattering the lives of millions.

Countless lives were lost here. During its reign of terror, ISIS tried to literally erase thousands of years of Mosul's rich history, culture and


OMAR MOHAMMED, IRAQI HISTORIAN: As a historian it's beyond just it's being painful. When you know the history of the city and you witness the

destruction of everything you have learned about. This was the most brutal moment in the history of the city of Mosul, a brutality that will never be



KARADSHEH (voice over): 80 percent of Mosul urban landscape was destroyed by ISIS and the battles for liberation according to the U.N. More than 800

years of history were wiped away when the grant al-Nuri mosque and its iconic Al-Hadba Minaret were blown up in 2017.

The monumental -- churches and many other sites were also devastated. But four years after the defeat of the terror group, Mosul is rising up from

the ashes. Thousands of tons of rubble and explosives have been removed from these historic sites, paving the way for reconstruction set to begin

in the coming weeks and months.

Reviving the spirit of Mosul, as it's dubbed, is the most ambitious reconstruction campaign undertaken by the United Nations cultural agency in

recent years. UNESCO's initiative funded by the UAE, the EU and others will create 2800 jobs much needed by this community. And change is already

visible with the ongoing restoration of 122 heritage houses in the Old City.

PAOLO FONTANI, UNESCO DIRECTOR FOR IRAQ: The idea of rebuilding Mosul is not just the fact of rebuilding stones or houses. But it's really the idea

of rebuilding a spirit of a city that has always been a symbol of connection among the people, whether religion or culture, the city of

publishing, the city of books, the city of art.

This is not just an exercise in rebuilding heritage, but it's really a willingness also to bring back cultural identity to bring back the spirit

of leaving together.

KARADSHEH (voice over): It is that spirit of peaceful coexistence that ISIS tried to destroy. By ripping apart the very social fabric that made Mosul

the city it was for generations, a home for Iraq's different ethnic and religious minorities.

MOHAMMED: But historic at the same time, I chose the most is insignificant, it can't have important impact and positive impact on the people. Trust can

be so the Mosul, but what are the conditions? There are many, but we have to start with reconstruction.

KARADSHEH (voice over): Visits by world leaders this year, including the first ever by a pope brought the world's attention to the city and gave its

people hope that Mosul will not be forgotten.

MOHAMMED: Just don't give up on that most of the people of Mosul. It is an important example of resilience and recovery. Don't give up on those

people. They are literally rebuilding their life step by step.

KARADSHEH (voice over): Healing the wounds of a city that is lived through an unimaginable help will not be easy. But Mosul's long road to recovery

begins with bringing back to life when ISIS reduced to ruins. Jomana Karadsheh, CNN.


FOSTER: Now head on the show big ideas for a big problem how an Israeli startup plans to use this balloon to capture carbon dioxide from the

atmosphere and help fight global warming. Plus, that's challenging Beijing will tell you all about one artist who's raising his voice against

injustice in China.



FOSTER: The Chinese government has tried to shut down the work of distant artists in China, Hong Kong and now Italy but Italian officials have

refused to let that happen. Our Ben Wedeman spoke to the artists about his work and his effort to take on Beijing?


BADIUCAO, ARTIST: No, it's not just --

BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice over): China is seen red over an exhibit in the northern Italian city of Brescia hosting

Chinese Australian Artists known as Badiucao.

BADIUCAO: It's almost impossible that you can avoid offending the Chinese government these days. Anything could be sensitive, anything could be


WEDEMAN (voice over): So sensitive that the Chinese Embassy in Rome recently requested that the Mayor of Brescia canceled exhibits scheduled to

open Friday. I have to say I had to read the letter twice because it surprised me says Deputy Brescia Mayor Laura Castelletti. It was an

intrusion on the city's artistic cultural decision.

CNN's repeated requests to the Chinese Embassy for clarification went unanswered. Badiucao moved to Australia in 2009. His art and uncompromising

critique of the Chinese Communist Party three years ago, a show he was scheduled to hold in Hong Kong was canceled after he tweeted his family was

threatened by China. The exhibiting pressure however, is going ahead.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It was a matter of artistic freedom of expression.

WEDEWEN (voice over): Badiucao has teamed up with honest content of the Boston Celtics, painting shoes for content with messages, championing the

cause of oppressed minorities in China. Content himself is an outspoken critic of China's alleged abuse of its Uyghur Turkic Muslim minority.

ENES KANTER, BOSTON CELTICS FORWARD: -- the leader of China, Xi Jinping and the Communist Party of China I'm calling you out right now, in front of the

whole world, closed down the slave labor camps and free Uyghur people and stop the genocide now.

WEDEMAN (voice over): Words like that and art like this strikes a raw nerve in China, which denies claims of genocide and mass incarceration.

Increasingly angry in China is also an Iran nerve for multinational corporations.

BADIUCAO: They're so into the money market in China, that they were risking that for what's nice --

WEDEMAN (voice over): Badiucao says he's regularly harassed online, and occasionally threatened by those who object to his work his art war by

other means against a system that has grown ever more powerful in recent years.

BADIUCAO: So it's -- like a better world. And that's how you can use visual language or use internet meme to kind of dissolve the authority of

censorship --

WEDEMAN (voice over): -- in the battle at the moment.

BADIUCAO: I think there's a long fight. It is too early to tell who will win.

WEDEMAN (voice over): That this exhibit is happening a small win, perhaps Ben Wedeman, CNN Brescia Northern Italy.


FOSTER: The COP26 Climate Summit wraps up in Scotland today, and we are looking at big ideas from some of the world's greatest minds that might

help leaders meet their net zero carbon emissions targets. CNN Meteorologist Tom Sater shows us how one company is looking to the skies.


TOM SATER, CNN METEOROLOGIST (voice over): High above Northern Israel, a little hydrogen powered balloon makes its way up to the sky. It's not

carrying any passengers, but a technology created by an Israeli startup that has high hopes of removing large amounts of carbon from the air.

Their plan thin fleets of such balloons into the sky, where they will trap carbon dioxide and bring it back to Earth for recycling. The company is

named High Hopes Labs a reflection of their mission, what they hope to achieve with the help of a mechanism and the carrier of these balloons that

separates the solidified carbon dioxide present only in higher altitudes where the gas naturally freezes and stores it in the pressure tanks that it

carries with it.

NADAV MANSDORF, CO-FOUNDER & CEO, HIGH HOPES LAB: The beautiful thing is that capturing gas is very easy when it's close to freezing temperature. So

imagine when you wake up in the morning in winter, morning and you see a layer of thin ice on the leaf and it's very easy to capture. The same thing

is with carbon.


MANSDROF: The payload go up with a balloon connected to a balloon the air goes through the payload and in the middle of the payload imagine some kind

of pressure only the -- only the carbon because it's freezes in this temperature so and then it feels the can get it down and repeatedly every


SATER (voice over): Facilities to remove carbon dioxide from the air already exist, but traditional ground based methods require a lot of energy

and resources. Swiss startup called "Climeworks" that specializes in carbon pulling from the air expends anywhere between 600 to $800 a ton.

The goal of high hopes technology is to make the whole process of extracting large volumes of CO2 from the air easier and cheaper. The

research team has already done small scale tests and found promising results.

MANSDROF: Without carbon capture direct from the air, or the climate events we saw on the last few years of fires and flows and other disasters will

increase and be more painful.

SATER (voice over): In the next few years, the lab plans to launch larger balloons, each with the potential to capture a ton of carbon a day while

keeping costs below $100. Another stride in the fight against the world's climate crisis, as countries pledge net zero emission goals. Tom Sater,



FOSTER: Finally four new crew members are making themselves at home on the International Space Station.


UNIDENTIIFED FEMALE: First through the hatch is going to be NASA Astronaut Kayla Baron some hugs there, and you can hear --


FOSTER: -- the moments of celebration after they docked to the station on Thursday and joined this existing crew. The newly arrived astronauts will

spend six months there conducting scientific experiments. That was the new crew last night from the Kennedy Space Center, Florida on Wednesday. Thanks

for watching. "One World" with Eleni Giokos is next.