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Connect the World

Two Migrants Rescued, Five Suspected Smugglers Under Arrest in France; 27 Dead after Migrant Boat Capsizes in English Channel; Suicide Bombing Kills at Least Eight; EU and U.S. to meet with Afghanistan's Foreign Minister; Horror Film "Chhorii" Highlights Female Feticide in India; Bollywood Film Highlights Female Feticide in India. Aired 11a-12p ET

Aired November 25, 2021 - 11:00   ET




ANNOUNCER: Live from CNN, Abu Dhabi. This is "Connect the World" with Becky Anderson.

BECKY ANDERSON, CNN HOST, CONNECT THE WORLD: This hour the deadliest incidents ever in the English Channel expose the incessant exploitation of

migrants and inaction from the international community. I'm Becky Anderson. Hello and welcome back to "Connect the World.

Well, the impact of the migrant tragedy in the English Channel reverberating throughout Europe today. A short time ago the Office of the

French Presidency announced that five countries in the channel region and EU officials will attend an urgent meeting in Calais this weekend to try

and prevent a repeat of what happened on Wednesday where migrant boat collapsed are capsized in the channel.

27 people on board drowned. Two others rescued five suspected smugglers are under arrest. Britain's Home Secretary telling parliament that

international cooperation is essential.


PRITI PATEL, BRITISH HOME SECRETARY: This crisis continues clearly demonstrating we need to do more together. This is a complicated issue and

there is no simple fix. It does mean a Herculean effort and it will be impossible without close cooperation between all international partners and



ANDERSON: Well, there is talk of cooperation today coming from officials in Britain and France, but there is also finger pointing each country's leader

accusing the other of not doing enough to stop what has become a big uptick in migrant boat crossings more than 25,000 across the English Channel to

the UK.

So far this year that's three times the number from last year France's President today describing his country as a transit point for migrants'

intent on making it into the United Kingdom have a listen.


EMMANUEL MACRON, FRENCH PRESIDENT: We are holding this border for the UK. They don't want asylum in France. We will improve our means to increase

protection, but we need to work as partners.


ANDERSON: Well, we are connecting on both sides of the channel. Nic Robinson is in Dover in England. Cyril Vanier is on the French side in

Calais. Let's start with you Cyril just set the scene for us describe where you are and what you've seen?

CYRIL VANIER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Becky, we came to a beach not far from Calais where we know migrants, boat crossings have been taking place

because we wanted to better understand the circumstances of the tragedy that saw 27 lives lost on Wednesday.

There are several lessons to be learned Becky here. Let me give you a 360 degree tour, if you will. Number one I would say is that one, I can

actually see the cliffs of Dover from where I am Becky we're 27 nautical miles from England.

So we are very near the end of this extremely long journey that most of these migrants have undertaken starting from the Middle East. Many of those

who were on that ill-fated vote on Wednesday were coming from Iraq, from Somalia.

So when you're just 40 kilometers away from your destination, it doesn't seem that far anymore, does it? That's number one. Number two, the terrain

all around us I think is an important and underreported part of the story right?

There's 200 kilometer stretch of coastline where the boats can leave from all along here are these dunes that are essentially can be potential hiding

places for migrants and for smugglers. And local police told us today 13 migrants were found in one of these little nooks and crannies just

yesterday, not far from here.

Number three first, let's listen to the Interior Minister of France Becky, who wanted to put the spotlight on the on the smuggling networks. And then

I've got something to show you listen to this Becky.


GERLAND DARMANIN, FRENCH INTERIOR MINISTER: I want to say here that those primarily responsible for this despicable situation are the smugglers, that

is to say criminals who for a few 1000 euros, organized human trafficking from Iraq, Afghanistan, Africa, Asia, and who then use these people to

bring them to Belgium, the Netherlands, France, especially to cross the channel and to go to Great Britain.


VANIER: Becky, this here is what Gerland Darmanin is talking about. This is one of the boats that were provided by smugglers on this very beach for

migrants. It's a dinghy much like the one that capsized on Wednesday. This is about 10 meters long it can it can carry several dozen people 34

migrants got on that boat on Wednesday, the one capsized one like this, and you can see why smugglers would use this. It's cheap to buy.

They can hide it local police tell us that they bury these in the ground and then unearth them when it's time to leave.


VANIER: They're fairly easy to construct right? This is the bottom of the boat Becky so it's good in terms of the smugglers business model. And

that's what the migrants get on. This is what they trust, to carry them across the channel with icy cold water and strong winds. That's the story

that we're looking at.

And that is the reason for the human tragedy that we saw unfold on Wednesday. It's also the reason Interior Minister tells us that this was

bought in Germany. And that the migrants often come from Belgium and from the Netherlands. That is also the reason France once a European meeting

here in Calais on Sunday Becky.

ANDERSON: Yes. Thank you, Cyril. Let's get you to Nic, who is at UK's busiest passenger port in Dover, and that you've just heard from Cyril,

what's happening where you are?

NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: Yes, I think what we're seeing here is a facet of this hugely divisive issue of migration, the

UNHCR the UN body responsible for refugees says that more than 100,000 migrants have arrived in Europe, just this year.

It is a divisive issue, because in recent years, it seems to be driving countries towards nationalism to protection of their borders, to populist

politicians who are criticizing governments for allowing so many migrants in and that is very true for what's been happening here in the United


Many people would point to Brexit as being an effect of that, but in the immediate aftermath of the tragedy, yesterday, France's Interior Minister

pointed to the UK and said, you know, the UK's effort to help us is minimal compared to France, his input.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson, after holding an emergency cabinet session late yesterday, said that he hoped that now France would accept the UK

offer to have British officers helping patrol those French beaches, the French, by the way, saying that's not necessary.

They got hundreds of officers there. But that's the level and tone of the discussion that went on in the immediate aftermath. And that just shows you

how polarized and divided things are? The prime minister, however, saying it is key to target these criminal enterprises that are putting the

migrants on these smuggling boats.


BORIS JOHNSON, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: And it also shows how vital it is that we now step up our efforts to break the business model of the

gangsters who are sending people to see in this way. I say to our partners across the channel, now is the time for us all to step up, to work together

to do everything we can to break these gangs who are literally getting away with murder.


ROBERTSON: Yes, Boris Johnson's under huge pressure here at home because his government came to power on the notion that they would combat illegal

migration. I spoke to the local MP here who is from Boris Johnson's party, and I said to her over recent years, hasn't your party's policy on illegal

migration, immigration failed?

She pointed across the channel over there were Cyril is and said no, the problem was with the French who stood by and watch these migrants get on

the boats. It is acrimonious, to say the least Becky?

ANDERSON: Yes. Yes, at the heart of this is a human trafficking story, isn't it? Smugglers who are exploiting these migrants how do the UK and

France and indeed the EU; believe they can smash that model briefly?

ROBERTSON: Briefly, it is to accept that the problem is not just the UK France problem, not just over other differences that they have across the

channel. But these smuggling networks, international criminal enterprises, and they perhaps buy their boats in Germany, that they hold the migrants

until just hours before they put them on these flimsy craft on the beaches of France.

They hold those migrants and perhaps Belgium or the Netherlands. So it's going to take a really concerted effort. You know, just very briefly, Becky

21 years ago I was here in Dover. 58 Chinese migrants were found dead in a truck at the border - at the port right behind me here.

What happened after that was a control to stop migrant smuggling themselves on trucks and crossing by that way that was blocked. That's why we're

seeing a lot of migrants coming by. See, there's a real hope that this tragedy last night will be a galvanizing impetus for those European

politicians who border the English rule here to come together and to make concrete changes that they haven't been able to do before.

ANDERSON: Yes, absolutely to both of you thank you very much indeed, as the sun goes down, both there on the coast in England and in Northern France.

Well, some of the people lost to this tragedy where possibly Iraqi Kurds.


ANDERSON: Prime Minister of the Kurdish Regional Government in Iraq says it appears that way. But they are still working to confirm the victims'

identities. And it's just remind ourselves here we call - we call those who lost their lives migrants. But these are men, women and in this case, once

again, children.

Let's bring in Arwa Damon who's covered the Middle East for decades, including Iraq and the Kurdistan Region. She joins me live now from

Istanbul, Turkey. Just last week, we covering the migrants stuck at the border between Belarus and Poland, many coming from Iraqi Kurdistan. And

now this why is it that so many from that region are fleeing to Europe?

ARWA DAMON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: You know, Becky, it's quite tragic, because when we're talking about Iraqi Kurdistan, the

Kurdistan region of Iraq, this was in the past known as the other Iraq, that is what it was being promoted as because it was safe. Business was

booming, economic opportunities were widespread, it is extremely oil rich, and investments were just pouring in.

But then since around 2013, that all really began to change. And right now, life has pretty much come to a standstill; the population there has lost

hope. It has lost hope and its own government, which is fraught with rampant accusations of corruption, it has lost hope in the various

different parties that rule this region of Iraq, and it has lost hope and being able to build a future.

And you also have to realize that COVID also had a significant impact on the economy, not just of Iraqi Kurdistan, but of all of Iraq, especially

because it is so reliant on oil revenue, which pretty much froze up with the onset of COVID. And the country hasn't really been able to recover.

So the vast majority of Iraqi Kurds are, in fact fleeing mostly for economic reasons but when we talk about economic reasons that can seem like

a bit of cold terminology. So what does that actually mean? It means that families are struggling to put food on the table, they're struggling to pay

rent, parents are struggling to raise their children and it is human nature, to want to build a better life for yourself, to want to build a

life for yourself and for your children.

Where there is joy, happiness, and a life that has dignity. And sadly, many of those who do live in Iraqi Kurdistan right now, as we have been seeing

with what's been happening. They have lost all of that and that is why they are taking such extreme risks to try to get to Europe.

ANDERSON: Arwa Damon on the story for you Arwa thank you. My next guest is the Head of the organization that tweeted "People fleeing trauma, war and

persecution are further traumatized by European Union borders and dysfunctional asylum systems".

The answer, he said, legal routes for seeking asylum and better mental health support for refugees. Catherine Woollard is Secretary General and

Director of the European Council on Refugees and Exiles. She's joining me via Skype from Brussels.

So ultimately, you think the problem here is a dysfunctional asylum system or asylum systems? Correct, explain?


situation. And the response also has to be multifaceted. So we're recommending, for instance, safe and legal routes for those who need

protection, unblocking family reunification, looking at the situation that causes displacement in the first place.

So focusing on development, security for people not generating displacement through foreign policy that creates conflict or supports repression, and

tackling this situation in that way, so that we can prevent the kind of awful but predictable tragedy that occurred yesterday, and our

commiseration to the families of the victims?

ANDERSON: Yes, absolutely. And we, we echo your words there. Let's pick this apart. Let's start with what more needs to be done from both the EU

side and the UK side. What are your thoughts?

WOOLLARD: So cooperation is essential. Unfortunately, that has become difficult because of the question of Brexit, for instance, but also some of

the political communication from the UK doesn't create much support or appetite for cooperation on the European EU side.

We should also dispel some of the myths here. It's not the case that the UK is doing more than other countries. Our statistics show that only under 7

percent of the asylum applications in Europe last year were made in the UK.


WOOLLARD: So we have as many or more asylum applications in France two and a half times as many as the UK, for instance, or in Belgium from where I'm

speaking to you. So I think some of the communication and language on those issues also has to be taken into account. Cooperation in practice is very


We also condemn the smugglers who put people's lives at risk. But in some senses, they're more a symptom than a cause of the problem. It's high

levels of displacement, and a certain proportion of displaced people and refugees arriving in Europe. A change in asylum policy, both in the EU, for

example, and in the UK, is not a short term solution is it? Certainly it is a solution going forward and one that you are pressing, and you've

explained why.

But ultimately, you're right to point out the short term this sort of tragedy and will continue as long as there are traffic is making money out

of exploiting those who are fleeing parts of the world that offer these men and women and children, no hope, and you're based in Brussels - yes go on.

WOOLLARD: I was going to say in many cases, people have no choice. Unfortunately, refugees are forced to rely on smugglers, when there's no

alternative when there are no safe and legal routes to arrive at safety.

And in the short term, we would also praise the work of the rescue services, the Coast Guards and Volunteer Rescue Services operating in the

channel, which has led meant that similar tragedies haven't been avoided. I think in the medium term, having functioning asylum systems is essential,

as you say, it's not a short term fix.

But if asylum systems were functioning adequately across Europe, and also if integration and inclusion was functioning across Europe, including in

the UK, there's weaknesses everywhere. And that would also go some way to making the situation more manageable. And the numbers of people arriving in

Europe are manageable.

Even in the UK, the situation is actually a historic low. 20 years ago, there were twice as many asylum applications, the vast majority arriving

now are entitled to international protection. So often, it's a case of rapidly getting the fair decisions, and then moving to inclusion

integration into the workplace, and so on.

ANDERSON: So the Biden Administration is expected to restart it's "Remain in Mexico" policy. Next week. It wasn't its policy; it was the Trump

Administration's policy. But they, but they've been forced to restart this and it forces non Mexican migrants to stay in Mexico until their asylum

case has been processed in the U.S. Is that the sort of solution that you think will help here going forward?

WOOLLARD: Probably not. Most attempts to outsource responsibility from Europe to other regions are doomed to fail. They're just not politically

feasible. And going back to 2003, for instance, the Tony Blair government was already proposing outsourcing of asylum applications at that point to

Albania among other countries, and it didn't work then and it won't work now, there's no incentive of countries to take on these responsibilities.

In addition, we have to underline that there is a right to asylum. This is part of UK, EU and international law. And the vast majority of those

arriving in Europe now, including in the UK, is refugees so putting out the idea that they are undeserving, actually confuses the situation and doesn't

help them move towards more practical answers and solutions.

ANDERSON: Briefly, does it - does it worry you that as we see, these sorts of stories hit the headlines. I mean, this is a real tragedy in the in the

English Channel, hitting the headlines that this helps to push sort of right wing narratives, anti-immigration narratives, and not encourage

politicians to actually get on and do something about this briefly.

WOOLLARD: The extreme right will always exploit this kind of situation. And I think what we want to see is other political parties, deciding on

solutions that are practical and effective, and trying to prevent movement at any cost, regardless of the consequences is not necessarily a - speeding

up as Ireland decision making in the UK, for instance, would be something that would be more effective than misguided efforts to get other countries

to take on responsibility, when actually, the numbers in the UK relative to elsewhere are quite low.


WOOLLARD: Notwithstanding the political sensitivities caused by the dramatic scenes that we see, which can be avoided through Safe Routes being

in place, rather than people having to take these dangerous journeys.

ANDERSON: We're going to have to leave it there. Thank you very much indeed for your insight. Thank you. Ahead on "Connect the World" to the meeting in

this region this weekend make a difference to the suffering in Afghanistan.

Ask the humanitarian Operations Chief for the Red Cross who is outraged by what he has been seeing on the ground in Afghanistan. And another European

nation locks down will tell you which country is taking drastic measures to try and curb one of the world's worst COVID infection rates, that after



ANDERSON: Slovakia is locking down with one of the world's highest COVID infection rates. The country is the latest in Europe to take drastic

measures. For two weeks restaurants non-essential shops will be sharp schools though, will remain open.

People are not allowed to travel outside their districts except to go to the doctor to work or to school. Meanwhile, France refuses to undergo such

lockdowns, but it is strengthening rules already in place around masks around booster shots and indeed around its health or COVID passes.

We're also hearing European drug regulators are recommending Pfizer and beyond Tex COVID vaccine be approved for kids as young as five years old.

And the EU is proposed putting an expiration date on its COVID Pass used to travel at nine months after full vaccination, a booster would be required.

Meanwhile, as the world is already trying to control the highly contagious Delta variant, South Africa's Health Minister warns of a new variant it's

unclear where exactly it emerged. But scientists say it is spreading rapidly.

So far, the variants been detected in South Africa, in Botswana. And in a traveler to Hong Kong who came from South Africa. It's expected to put even

more pressure on the country's health system in the coming days and weeks.

David McKenzie standing by live in Johannesburg, with more on that. But let's get you to Phil Black who is in London with more on this case surge

in Europe.

Phil, booster campaigns, more mask wearing new restrictions in some places and indeed, further lock downs. I mean, you know, this is an effort to try

and put a curb on this surge. Question is will it work at this point?

PHIL BLACK, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Becky, that's right. And what will work specifically countries are desperate to go the route of Slovakia and

Austria as they have in recent days by implementing something like tough lockdown restrictions on non-essential activities.

So if not that then what precisely we heard the French option today which is to double down on its health pass system which is essentially a system

that tries to make life very difficult for the unvaccinated.


BLACK: This is something you have to show, in order to do a lot of everyday activities and especially to do the things that French people like to do,

like go out to dinner and go to cafes and bars and so forth.

You have to show that you're vaccinated or show that you have natural immunity through infection under the new rules. People who don't want to be

vaccinated will have to be tested every day for those health passes to be valid.

And even for the vaccinated, they are going to have to undergo booster shots within two months of being eligible. So the health care system will

nudge people towards ensuring their vaccines are as up to date as possible.

On top of that, they are introducing masks now in indoor settings that's going to be compulsory from this weekend. So that the hope in France is

that all of that will be enough to avoid the health, economic social impacts that come with restrictions and lockdowns.

But the truth is we can't be sure that at this stage. France is in a reasonably good position because it's the vaccine level overall is pretty

high 75 percent of the population other countries, notably Germany and others that are dealing with really big pigs.

They are not as in a good position. And the part of the problem and perhaps a significant part of the problem going into winter for Europe right now

with the Delta variant surging is that vaccine levels remain really patchy they are not consistent from country to country, region to region.

And that is why we are hearing from European health officials that vaccines alone will not be able to protect people enough over these winter months,

other steps will be necessary. Becky.

ANDERSON: How significant is it that the EMA is now allowing the vaccine to be taken? The shots will be taken by youngsters very briefly.

BLACK: So it depends on how quickly it then gets. We're talking about the Pfizer and BioNTech vaccine which has been approved or recommended for

approval by the European Medicines Agency for children that age.

It now requires a final approval from the European Commission. It depends on how quickly that can happen. But certainly, if and when it does happen,

then yes, that's another portion of the population that can start to build up significant immunity. And that will help slow the spread as soon as

that's possible.

ANDERSON: Thank you, Phil. David, Phil talking about the surge in the Delta variant, which is blamed for so much of what is going on in Europe. What do

we know about this new variant that has been found in South Africa? And I guess further to that, what do we not know at this point?

DAVID MCKENZIE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, they're two very good questions. You know, Phil's talking about the current state of the pandemic. This

really could be Becky about the future state of the pandemic a new very discovered confirmed today by South African health officials.

It's been seen in at least three countries, Botswana, South Africa, and from a traveler from South Africa to Hong Kong, as it's a stormy night


Well, one of the reasons to be worried is this variant they say shows more than 30 mutations, just in the spike protein alone, some of them have been

seen before in previous variants, some of them are unknown to scientists, they'll have to study it in the coming days.

Another early sign that is worrying it appears at least to be causing a rise of infection, where I'm sitting here in Johannesburg and in this

province, Becky. But again, there's a lot we don't know.

They don't know definitively whether it can break through immunity from previous infection, how the vaccines will interact with it. And

importantly, whether it's more transmissible by the - than the highly transmissible Delta variant that Phil was talking about.

So early days it's important to stay on top of this, they say and in the coming weeks, we should know whether this is something to take very

seriously indeed, Becky.

ANDERSON: David, Phil, thank you. Just ahead hunger horror stories coming out of Afghanistan. So who is coming to the rescue? Well, I will put that

question to the humanitarian operations chief for the Red Cross up next, and Bollywood takes on one of society's biggest issues. I'll speak to the

start of a new film, just ahead.



ANDERSON: The Islamic group al Shabaab has claimed responsibility for a suicide bomb explosion that killed eight excuse me in Somalia's capital,

Mogadishu, 23 others were injured, including several children.

The blast went off near to schools and the former president's home. Please say the target was a United Nations Security convoy. Crowds of protesters

are back on the streets of several cities in Sudan.

Opposition groups are condemning Sunday's deal between the recently reinstated Prime Minister and the country's military leader. The agreement

says the PM will lead a transitional government of technocrats and we'll share power with the military one month after they ousted him in a coup.

Well, the world will be watching this region where we are this weekend, see what can be done to help the people of Afghanistan. Country's foreign

minister is expected to sit down in Doha on Saturday with envoys from the U.S. and the EU, now humanitarian and political issues are set to dominate

the discussion along with the issue of frozen assets.

Remember, most of Afghanistan's nearly nine and a half billion dollars in reserves has been frozen by the U.S. and other governments since the

Taliban takeover. And aid organizations are really crying for help the U.N. repeatedly wanting the billions of dollars in aid is needed to keep Afghans

from starvation this winter. Just how bad could it get?

Well, the WFP says nearly 23 million Afghans are at acute risk of food insecurity. That's more than half of the population. Almost 9 million of

them may reach emergency levels of hunger. Well, my next guest has just returned from Afghanistan after a six day visit and he has written this. I

am livid. Pictures viewed from afar of bone-thin children rightly elicit gasps of horror.

When you are standing in the pediatric ward in Kandahar's largest hospital looking into the empty eyes of hungry children and the anguished faces of

desperate parents, the situation is absolutely infuriating. It's so infuriating, because this suffering is man-made."

Let's bring in Dominik Stillhart, the Operations Director of the International Committee of the Red Cross. He is responsible for overseeing

the humanitarian operations carried out by the organization's 20,000 staff.

He joins us now live from Geneva. And I want you to tell our viewers more about your trim from what you witnessed. What is it that Afghans need most


DOMINIK STILLHART, OPERATIONS DIRECTOR, INTERNATIONAL COMMITTEE OF THE RED CROSS: Good evening, Becky, and thank you for having me. What Afghan the

most today is a minimum of essential service provision? And, you know when I was in that hospital in Kandahar in the south of Afghanistan.

And I saw how the number of malnourished children that were admitted to that hospital have essentially doubled since August this year.


STILLHART: And global malnutrition rate among children below five in the region of Kandahar is 30 percent up compared to last year, you just realize

how much this country is at the brink of a humanitarian disaster.

And what is really needed most now is very, very essential service provision. Put some food on the plates of the families allow them to heat

their homes, winter has set in temperatures are - have gone below freezing point.

And these are just some of the various central services that are required, including, of course, health services in the hospitals and primary health

care sectors.

ANDERSON: The U.S. has frozen $9 billion in funds meant for Afghanistan. Should that money be unfrozen and by whatever mechanism is agreed on, be

sent to the people of Afghanistan?

STILLHART: I really believe and I plead with the international community to find solutions that allow maintenance of these essential services.

And that indeed, requires injection of liquidity and cash because that whole economy in Afghanistan has shrunk by a staggering 40 percent since

the end of August, because of the suspension of bilateral aid that was actually responsible for paying 80 percent of the state budget.

And 550,000 employees in the health sector in the education sector, municipal workers, they are responsible for that essential service

provision. And these money needs to get to these people in order to maintain these basic services.

ANDERSON: So what are you proposing should be done? Look, many countries in the West refused to recognize the Taliban as Afghanistan's government. And

that is the reason why this money has been frozen. What do you propose should be done?

I mean, you've met with the Taliban, would you encourage countries to recognize them at this point is that part of the solution?

STILLHART: That is not for me to decide whether recognition is necessary. What I believe is that it is possible to channel money into these essential

services, whilst the political legitimacy crisis is ongoing, and the question of recognition remains on the table.

We have for instance, started exactly last Sunday an initiative, supporting 18 of the major hospitals with 4500 beds, 5100 employees. And we are

supporting these hospitals with salaries for the employees with running costs as well as with medical supplies.

And we have agreed with the leadership in power now that we will channel money directly to the hospitals. And I was there last Monday in - Dasht-e-

Barchi Hospital, which is the biggest maternity hospital in Kabul, where health staff of that hospital got money into their hands right into their

hands without being channeled through the ministry.

ANDERSON: And I spoke to Marie - and Youssef just earlier on in the week. And the Pakistanis really imploring the international community to get on

and find some sort of mechanisms, get this money.

I want to give you an opportunity to speak directly to the international community here. Please be as specific as you can. What is needed at this

point, and are you saying that failing some sort of agreement or mechanism to pump money into Afghanistan? People will quite frankly, die of

starvation this winter.

STILLHART: My message to the international community is this is not the time to let down the Afghans. They have suffered for decades of conflict

violence and war.


STILLHART: And they need the international community to help them through this winter. And what is required is a little bit of flexibility. Setting

up a mechanism that allows money to flow into the hands first and foremost of the very people who are working in the health sector, education sector

and municipal workers, who are exactly the same people who have been working in these sectors before.

And it is entirely possible; it is entirely possible to find such a mechanism without necessarily recognizing the new leadership in


ANDERSON: How long does the world have briefly?

STILLHART: It is now, we cannot there is no way we can wait for another six months, it is now this whole - it is now - it has to start because people

start dying. As I said, I was in that - nearby hospital in the south of Afghanistan.

And there is a rapid increase of children, malnourished children that are admitted to this hospital and that is just a sign how bad the situation

already is. And it is only getting worse day after day.

ANDERSON: With that, we'll leave it there. I hope the world is listening to you Sir, thank you very much for coming on. This is - could be a more

important story at this point. Thank you, taking a short break back after this.


ANDERSON: Today on "Call to Earth" the world's largest starfish, the sunflower sea star has been decimated by a mysterious plague, which has

caused populations to decline up to 95 percent since 2013, wreaking havoc on delicate ecosystems from Alaska to New Mexico. That is, until now.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A lot of people when they think of top predators in the ocean, they might think of something like a shark. And that's exactly what

you should be thinking about when you think about the sunflower star. It's the largest sea star in the world.

So it eats all kinds of organisms on the sea floor, from shellfish to sea urchins moving their little tiny feet underneath to glide across the sea

floor and then strike fear into organisms that they encounter.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So when they eat, they actually swallow the entire prey hole. And it sort of seems a little counterintuitive to say that a predator

helps to keep more species around. But that's actually what happens and so, when the top predators are present, you have a much more diverse and high

functioning ecosystem.


Harbor Laboratories of the University of Washington. The sunflower star existed along a very, very wide stretch of the coastline all the way from

Alaska down to northern Mexico.

Starting in about 2013, there was a syndrome that started to appear all up and down the west coast of North America, where sea stars of all varieties

started to show this wasting syndrome, which is this horrible effect that causes the sea stars to essentially melt.

Sunflower stars are really, really hard hit. And they were down in this region to probably five percent of their historical numbers. And in some

areas in the south, like off of California we haven't seen sunflower stars for years.

When a predator that's a key member of an ecosystem like sunflower stars are disappears, you know, there are really, really broad cascading effects.

And that's what we're actually seeing in places like California, where kelp forests are declining.

And that's, that happened right around the same time as the sea star started to disappear. Kelp is just so fundamental to the health and well-

being of the ocean. Its habitat for an incredible number of organisms, it removes carbon from the atmosphere.

And what we've seen is essentially a shift in the habitat from this diverse, highly functioning ecosystem with many different kinds of species.

And now we see mostly barren habitat with a lot of sea urchins. And sea urchins eat kelp.

And so right now, our populations are sort of out of balance. And we think that one of the contributing factors for that is the loss of one of their

major predators, the sunflower star.

We feed them exactly once every two days. So in 2019, I was first contacted by the Nature Conservancy in California, because they were interested in

whether it would be possible to breed sunflower stars through their lifecycle. We have a new generation of sunflower star juveniles growing in

the lab right now.

Then the next goal after that is to see whether or not sea stars out a year old, whether they can survive out in the wild. What we really want to do

is, in addition to trying to restore the populations that are there actively, we also want to maintain the health of ecosystems where they

exist now.

And you know that extends to all manner of things that all of us can do to protect our local waters and our ecosystems. They're all connected, and

they're connected to the health of the sunflower star.

And they're connected to the health of our ocean ecosystems and to our own health. You know, we're learning something about an endangered species

here. And information that we hope will inform upon our ability to be able to preserve this species and others like it in the wild.


ANDERSON: What are you doing to answer the call; you can tell us with the #calltoearth. We will be right.



ANDERSON: Today is the United Nations International Day for the Elimination of Violence against women. It begins a two week campaign for raising

awareness about what are devastating issues. It is an international issue felt particularly painfully and profoundly in India.

A 2018 Thomson Reuters survey found that the country is the most dangerous place in the world to be a woman. According to India's national crime data

over 28,000 alleged rape cases, for example, were reported last year, that's one roughly every 18 minutes.

Well, India also suffers high rates of female feticide and the practice of selectively aborting female fetuses, which has led to skewed sex ratios

across the country. And that is the focus of Bollywood's latest horror film, Chhorii, the world premiere on Amazon Prime tomorrow. I recently

spoke to the star of that film, Nushrratt Bharuccha about what this film represented to her, have a listen.


NUSHRRATT BHARUCCHA, INDIAN ACTRESS: Truly, and honestly, the reality of the world we live in, it's horrifying. I've always believed that the

horrors human beings are capable off are just so scary and so, so vile.

Sometimes you're literally shaken right to your gut that I'm sorry, we human beings are capable of doing something like this to other human

beings. It's just scary. I think that's on a thought level. And also the fact that this film needed to be made this topic, this subject. What this

says, needs to be said it needs to be said not just once, multiple number of times.

Becky, the basic facts or the statistics of the reality of the situation are so grave that when I read it, and when I saw it, I'm like, how is this

reality of a world that I'm living in? It just shocked me.

ANDERSON: This is a horror film. Why do you think that genre made most sense in telling this story?

BHARUCCHA: Because of the terror - of the facts of it. There is no other way you can say something that is so horrifying, as a reality and the truth

of the world that we are in then horror.

We can't say this to people in a milder way because the statistics have reached that horrifying sort of figure. We can't say this to people in a

humorous way because there is no, you can't make light of the situation. It's a grave situation.

You got to take it seriously. It has to literally hit you in the gut and shake you up to say that no, no, no. If this continues like this, the

future is really blurred. We can't walk into a future like that.

ANDERSON: You play a character who is the victim of an age old societal belief and practice around female feticide, which is the selective abortion

of female fetuses, which is banned in India, but across many rural cities, there are still skewed sex ratios of birth. What do you believe are ways to

change social attitudes towards women and girls?

BHARUCCHA: You know, Becky, this is such a large question. And wow, where do I even begin? Education at the core of it, civic sense at the core of

it, social sense at the core of it, human's value of human life value of the world around you at the very basic core of it.

How does the world today function under such atrocities? I don't get it. So I live in a world which is far from the reality of this. And when I read

it, and when I saw it, I felt I felt disconnected. I said no, this can't be the world I'm living in.

And the fact that I sit back and think that wow, I'm lucky. I am privileged that I'm on this side of the spectrum. That in itself is a terrifying

statement to say. How can we live in a world today where I feel like just living and surviving is a privilege.

ANDERSON: You belong to the Borah community, your mama's understand it, underwent female genital mutilation. Some years ago you were really

outspoken about this for syphilis, about this.

BHARUCCHA: I still am, yes.


ANDERSON: And how does your experience as a family, speak to you, your passion for the work that you do?

BHARUCCHA: My family, I think has been one of the most important and the most credited sort of source of me being the way I am today. So I did, my

mom went through that I was not circumcised.

Not just my mom, but even my grandmother, if you want to call it who comes from the older generation with those practices, prevalent in her time,

said, no, my granddaughter will not go through this, we will not do this to her.

What brought about that change in thought, in my mom and my grandmother, I will never know I was a child. All I can tell you is it gave me a new lease

of life. They gave me a platform to be who I wanted to be, apart from what was done in terms of traditions and customs over the years.

They gave me a new mean, if it wasn't for them, I don't think I'd be here at all. I think I'd be far from here. And I feel like the more families

like mine, if they can kind of question it, if they can get up and say it at a very basic level.

That no my granddaughter or my daughter will not go through this. No, I will let my granddaughter and daughter does this. Just that basic thought

can really change generations of things that have been done and followed and give raise to a new me and lock more girls who can be new means of

themselves. If a family can do that, I think we really, we really can have a better future.


ANDERSON: Well, India's Nushrratt Bharuccha leaving us with a message of hope the families can make a change for the better that will last for

generations. Well, it is Thanksgiving in United States and a holiday classic is back.

The 95th annual Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade is just wound down in New York City this year. People were able to line the streets to watch the

giant balloons and floats. Last year was spectator free due to COVID.

Happy Thanksgiving to those of you who are celebrating and thank you wherever you're watching around the world for joining us, it's very good

evening from the team working with me here in Abu Dhabi and those working with us around the world.