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Connect the World

Villages in Kherson Region Face Relentless Shelling; Russian Invasion Drives Calls for Finland to Join NATO; Taliban Order Women to Cover Faces in Public; Ukrainian Hospitals Treating Patients with Complex wounds; Sri Lanka's Outgoing PM Rescued in Pre-Dawn Operation; UNHCR: 450,000 Plus Ukrainian Refugees have fled to Moldova. Aired 11a-12p ET

Aired May 10, 2022 - 11:00   ET




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

ELENI GIOKOS, CNN HOST, CONNECT THE WORLD: Hello and welcome to "Connect the World". I'm Eleni Giokos I'm in for my colleague Becky Anderson.

Now, more news out of Ukraine, a shopping mall, two hotels and a warehouse a symbol of daily life reduced to rubble as Russia lashes out at Ukraine's

key port city of Odessa. Take a look at this footage.

Ukraine says Russia used new hypersonic air to surface missiles and a series of strikes on the city. Farther north Ukraine says it's pushed

Russian troops back around Kharkiv and Russia is now beefing up its forces inside its border. They're launching more strikes from their own territory.

The Ukrainian military says battles are ongoing along the front lines in the Eastern Luhansk region but it says Russia is not making headway. And

the Ukrainian official says there are still about 100 civilians inside the besieged Azovstal Steel Plant in Mariupol, along with many fighters, and I

want to listen to some of those fighters.

They're keeping their spirits up singing a pup song and playing a guitar as the plan takes a pounding. Mariupol sets along the southern Ukrainian coast

and the region vital to Russia's ambitions of linking the Donbas in the east to Crimea and parts of the Kherson region are being relentlessly

shelled. Our CNN's Nick Paton Walsh tells us life is a nightmare for people trapped there.


NICK PATON WALSH, CNN INTERNATIONAL SECURITY EDITOR (voice over): Both nothing and everything has changed here. The front lines have barely moved

on the road to the Southern City of Kherson, the first Russia captured in the six weeks since we were last here.

But instead, since then, almost everything in between has been torn up by shelling that literally does not stop trapping people who physically cannot

flee in the churn of a brutal stalemate. Here in the village of Shevchenko are two neighbors both could--

We moved to the yard as the shells get closer. Lynette still manages to get down to his wife's basement shelter. She's installed a plank on the way

here to help him rest. They used to get dressed up to go to bed. It was so cold down here but mention leaving - a night spent here focused her hatred.

Across the road is Valentina alone. Shells always seem to just miss her.


WALSH (voice over): Overwhelmed, yet hauntingly eloquent it's not so much that life goes on here, but that it has nowhere else to go these men

selling cow's milk although that's not what Leonid has been drinking. Hello to everyone he says 40 times a day and night they shell. Barely a window

was intact shrapnel flying through the class daily. Yesterday was - turn but she can't leave as she's waiting for her son to return from the war in


Our children are all at war. She says my son is a prisoner. If he comes back and if I have gone it's like I've abandoned him. We wait. Hope worry.

He is alive and we will live. On the road out of here the shrapnel rises fiercely above the warmth fields Nick Payton Walsh, CNN, Shevchenko,



GIOKOS: And you can hear the pain in the voices of those people that Nick spoke to an important story there. Meanwhile, Scott McLean joins us live

from Lviv in Western Ukraine. And Scott, of course, we've been watching this renewed attack on Odessa and really crippling the infrastructure the

supply lines.

President Zelenskyy said this is going to have enormous ramifications. But importantly, he also mentioned that after the visit of Charles Michele, the

Russians attacked. Can we draw any parallels in terms of what we saw on the ground there and the visit versus Russia's targets?

SCOTT MCLEAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, perhaps the Russians trying to send a message but what it's really unclear is what the Russians were actually

aiming at? What we know for sure is that Odessa has been struck relentlessly over the past few weeks with these missile strikes and so

officials were expecting a new barrage of missile strikes on May the ninth Russia's Victory Day and frankly, that is exactly what they got with

strikes all up and down the Black Sea coast of the city.


MCLEAN: As darkness falls in Odessa firefighters race to control the flames at a shopping mall in the northern part of the city, after the Ukrainian

military says it was hit by seven missiles. The sprawling shopping center one of the largest in southern Ukraine and home to many well-known

international stores was closed at the time because of a government imposed curfew in effect all day Monday. It's not clear why it was targeted?

Sunrise Tuesday morning shows the flames extinguished and the sheer scale of the damage. Military officials also say one missile started fires at

three warehouses, torching more than 1200 square meters and causing extensive damage.

This is what's left of a seaside luxury hotel complex called the Grand - which used to be frequented by Russian elites and is still owned by a pro-

Russian businessman. Official said no one was killed or injured.

It was one of two hotels hit the second struck south of the city in the seaside village of - not far from an important bridge that has been hit

several times in recent weeks, the only road or rail connection between the southwest corner of Ukraine and the rest of the country. All of this coming

just as European Council President Charles Michele was in the city meeting with the Ukrainian Prime Minister.

VOLODYMYR ZELENSKYY, UKRAINIAN PRESIDENT: Despite the visit of the President of the European Council, Russian troops launched a missile strike

on the Odessa region. This is Russia's true attitude towards Europe. And it has always been like this irrespective of the rhetoric of Moscow.

MCLEAN (voice over): Odessa has been a frequent target of Russian missiles in recent weeks, mostly hitting infrastructure, but now increasingly

terrorizing residential areas too.

GENNADIY TRUKHANOV, ODESSA MAYOR: We worked all night to provide assistance for the people, all our units. Now housing and communal services, count the

number of effective departments, we will provide help.

MCLEAN (voice over): Unclear just what the Russians are trying to achieve here beyond sowing fear among the civilian population?


MCLEAN: Now the Ukrainian says that three of the missiles that hit Odessa were these Russian Kinsel missiles. These are significant because they're

fired from fighter jets. And so they're more difficult often to pick - be picked up by air defense systems because they can be fired from any

direction that the Russians so choose. They are also bigger and longer range than your conventional missile, Eleni.

GIOKOS: Yes, and while we see these attacks in Odessa, so we mustn't lose sight of the struggle in Mariupol. The Azovstal Steel Plant, they are still

soldiers, Ukrainian military stuck inside and some civilians from what we understand what is the latest out of that city?

MCLEAN: Yes so the mayor's office says that all of yesterday there was continued shelling with heavy artillery weapons.


MCLEAN: This is not new this has been happening for the last few weeks, if not months, as people have been taking shelter inside of this steel plant.

What are new though are the people who are inside of there. We've known for a long time that of course, there are hundreds of soldiers, some of them we

are told are wounded some quite badly.

But there are also according to the mayor's office, civilians still left behind the Ukrainians had previously settled and that of course, all of the

women, children, and elderly people were successfully evacuated already.

And so we can only assume that those left behind are men perhaps being treated as soldiers or combatants themselves. We don't know. The men inside

there say that they will not go without a fight. There are also some females, fighters as well. One 21 year old medic put a video on Facebook

saying that she will not go down without a fight.

All of the soldiers say that they won't leave without a weapon in their hand; they are refusing to even entertain the possibility of surrendering

to the Russians. What they would like to see, though, is some kind of a diplomatic deal, some kind of a deal that President Zelenskyy can broke her

to allow them to leave alive in one piece. But it is pretty unclear at this stage of the game when or even if that could possibly happen Eleni?

GIOKOS: Scott, thank you so very much for that update. Now, it's probably the last thing that Vladimir Putin wants to hear. Another NATO country

could be right on his doorstep. Finland's European Affairs Minister tells CNN, his country will very likely apply for membership in NATO, the process

would probably be fairly quick. And more than double the land border Russia shares with NATO members. Our Nic Robertson is following the story in

Helsinki, Finland. Nic, really good to see you! I mean, there was sort of the stance that Finland has always taken of neutrality, major hesitancy to

join NATO. And now with a new risk on the horizon, it seems that the minds of most people are changing.

NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: Yes, they're changing because of the way that they've seen President Putin acting in Ukraine. And

they realize it could be them. It's been, in a way, a peaceful coexistence.

But it was one that was a type of peaceful coexistence that was really forced upon them by the Soviet Union and the Red Army at the end of the

Second World War. This non alignment status that they've had, and really the sort of the side by side living the crossing of the border with ease

between Finland and Russia, something that has gone on for the past 20 or 30 years since the end of the Soviet Union.

That really changed radically overnight when Russia invaded Ukraine. And that's where the groundswell of support for Finland to join NATO has come

from Finland has always sort of been European law facing, if you will. It is a democratic country, very unlike Russia.

It's a member of the European Union. And there have been a lot of politicians here who've, you know, quietly favored, teaming up with NATO

and becoming a member of NATO. And they're partnered on joint military exercises, partnered on military operations in Iraq, and Afghanistan, and

Kosovo, and Bosnia, and Lebanon are all those sorts of places.

But now, Finns really feel this is that hour of need, and the best place to get security is with NATO. And the process is going through Parliament

right now. And it's going through very, very quickly, British Prime Minister here tomorrow - President to meet the President of Finland, the

President of Finland speaks to the nation on Thursday. And that's going to be a defining moment.

And it will define the movement of the country lately towards NATO, which is the biggest geopolitical shift in recent years in perhaps a generation.

And it's exactly the opposite of what President Putin has wanted to achieve.

GIOKOS: It's such a good point, right especially if Sweden also makes that move? But I want to talk about potential risks, because Putin during his

Victory Day speech specifically said that, you know, it was, you know, move of NATO east that forced his hand.

Now, you're going to see a wider expansion of NATO. How does this change Putin's thinking? And does it create an even bigger risk? Would you say?

ROBERTSON: Well, there are significant differences, of course, between Finland and Ukraine, and perhaps most significantly, there are significant

differences in the way that President Putin views them. He viewed Ukraine as part of Russia.

He's already annex part of the territory there. The Donbas region and Crimea that hasn't happened with Finland there's been - there's been cross

border movement. There's been, you know, this non-aligned and status of Finland.


ROBERTSON: But what we've heard now from Russian officials is that if Finland joins NATO, then Russia will rebalance the military situation they

say, potentially move nuclear missiles into the Baltic Sea, you know, just off the coast here.

In Kaliningrad, the view is that they already have them there in Kaliningrad, but it would make the whole region more tense right now. All

passenger trains have been cut between Helsinki and St. Petersburg that there were many trains every day during that journey from Finland to

Russia, that's not happening anymore. So there will be economic consequences.

And there almost undoubtedly will be increased tensions and military consequences, but actual military action, that doesn't appear on the

horizon at the moment.

GIOKOS: Nic, thank you so very much for that insight. And as you say, one of the biggest geopolitical shifts that we've seen in decades much

appreciated. Now ahead on "Connect the World" CNN visits a hospital in Lviv where doctors say they're not treating patients with procedures that

they've only read about in books.

Plus, life in the shadows, the Taliban strips away woman's freedoms across Afghanistan. And I'll be speaking to a leading women's rights advocate in

Kabul, just ahead.


GIOKOS: The Taliban are living up to their fundamentalist roots. And you decree over the weekend orders all women to cover their faces while in

public. If a woman is caught without a face covering her male guardian will be visited and potentially jailed.

This is the latest in a slew of measures chipping away women's rights in Afghanistan since the Taliban took over last year, despite promises to

protect them. CNN's John Avlon has a reality check.

JOHN AVLON, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: You see, during the diplomatic rounds at Doha, with the Trump envoys, the Taliban took pains to present a

new image. They said they'd be more inclusive and responsible.

Not everyone bought into the act, as one analyst wrote in The Washington Post, yes, the Taliban has changed. It's gotten much better at PR. And

here's one tell, the core agreement with the Trump team was that the Taliban would not harbor terrorists. A Taliban spokesman even said it on



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We know it is not in the interest of our people and our country that anyone uses the soil of Afghanistan.


AVLON: Here's the thing. A 2020 UN report showed that promise was already being broken by the Taliban by keeping close ties with al Qaeda. Now, when

the Biden Administration began falling through withdrawal and the elected Afghan government fell, the Taliban assured observers that it would protect

women's rights and media freedoms and offer amnesty to their Afghan opponents.


AVLON: Guess how long that lasted. Within days, the UN reported the Taliban was going house to house, hunting down their opponents. And so much to free

from the press, more than 200 local news organizations were forced to close by December, but the oppression of women remained a Taliban signature.

Their promise to allow girls to pursue an education was stopped literally the day schools reopened. Not only that, the Taliban's ministry for the

propagation of virtue and the prevention of vise real name also decided to ban the presence of women on all TV dramas, soap operas and entertainment


And of course, there were other assaults on equality like bans on women driving unaccompanied and uncovered for long distances. As the economist

says, the Taliban are shackling half the population.

And their draconian policies have resulted in the return of the 90s era music band while reports of violence against the LGBTQ community have

spiked since the Taliban retook control.

But the ideological cruelty is matched only by their governmental incompetence with economic collapse and widespread starvation. Their old

destruction of monuments and soccer stadium massacres may not be far behind.

So it's easy to see why CNN's Nic Robertson memorably described the rural conservative Taliban as the most unlikely of populists, brutal myopic, the

epitome of intolerance.

Populism fundamentalism, authoritarianism, they're all related in their belief that might makes right, the rejection of modernity and self-

determination. So why am I mentioning this now, because it's happening, because it's a reminder of some basic troops.

First, U.S. withdrawal from the world does not increase peace, prosperity and justice, but frequently does the opposite. Second, progress is not

permanent or self-sustaining.

The educational gains of generation of women and girls are being wiped out by fundamentalists in Afghanistan; the war on women is not some bumper

sticker there. It's an everyday assault on freedom and equality.

Finally, fundamentalists never really want to change. After all, they're fighting change, what they want is power. And the return of the Taliban is

a bloody reminder of what Maya Angelou once said when someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time. And that's your reality check.

GIOKOS: A slew of broken promises, and I want to bring in journalist and woman's rights advocate Mahbouba Seraj in Kabul, Mahbouba, thank you so

very much. In fact, you and I spoke last year as the U.S. was exiting.

And I won't forget that you actually warned us of this, you said that the Taliban will break every single one of the promises they were making. I

want you to give me a sense of what it's like for you specifically, and for the people around you, if you leave home right now, what do you need to

wear? And if you do not comply, what are the consequences?

MAHBOUBA SERAJ, WOMEN'S RIGHTS ADVOCATE: Well, if I need to, if I leave home right now, I have to wear my huge abayas that I have, I have to cover

my head, not like the way I'm covering it like this, because this is you know, this is a nice, nice, that's proper cover. But I have to cover it

like completely.

And then I also have to cover my face. Because if I don't do that, then on the street, there is a possibility that these people you know, the vice and

virtue guys wear their white coats or whatever it is that they're wearing, they might stop me in the middle of the street.

And they might give me a hard time or give me a warning and then - or whatever. It all depends on who it is and what time of a day it is, and,

and what do they have, as far as you know, backup is concerned, if they have people that can really do some damage.

It's - disrespect her on the street and yell at her and beat her or whatever, they will do it. Anything, anything as far as disrespecting a

woman that they can do, they will do anything at all.

GIOKOS: Mahbouba, I want to ask you whether woman wants to take this fight on whether they want to fight back they've been trying to make themselves

heard since the Taliban took over and of course, their rights been chipped away slowly, since the U.S. exited.

SERAJ: Yes. Yes, but I think this time, this is really carrying it a bit too far. Because of the very simple fact that the African woman was wearing

hijab, we were all covered, hijab means cover does not mean cover your face.

The part of the face cover is not a part of the hijab, for us, especially for the Muslims, according to Islam, and according to the, to the Hanafi

that we are the Sunnis that we are, and Hanafi sect that we are following.

So you know, it's not written in Quran and it's not we don't have to do that. But they want us, they are forcing us.


SERAJ: And this is such an intrusion, to our privacy, to respect to women, to our lives. It's that they have to get into it. And it's not theirs to

get them to. This is ours. And one other thing that this - by punishing the men, they are bringing about more violence against women in this country.

GIOKOS: And you're right, they're hiding behind religion blaming, you know, saying that this is part of sort of the religious decree, I have to ask you

this. And you and I, again, we spoke about this, you know, last year, and you said that you were upset with the way that the U.S. conducted itself.

And you've said this, again, that you're angry with how the whole world has responded to Afghanistan? What would you like to see the world do right

now, when you see young girls not going to school, when you're seeing your rights being chipped away slowly? I mean, it is it is shocking, to watch

from afar.

SERAJ: You know, I don't think U.S. as a government, or anybody for that matter, really cares for the woman of Afghanistan anymore. The only ones

that care for the woman of Afghanistan should be the woman of Afghanistan themselves and the woman of the world, as women bodies, not as a

government, not as a country, not as a power, but as women bodies.

Because you know, we should really stand next to our sisters; if that is the only thing I want from them. I don't want anything from the countries

of the world from the governments, because they will promise and that promise is never going to take place.

And I have seen it. So you know it's like it will be something asking for something that is not going to happen. So what's the point? But as women of

this country, I--

GIOKOS: Mahbouba, do you have any cyclic, can you fight this? Can you fight against what the Taliban is doing? As you're saying even men are being

targeted right now that if women do not comply, the men will be punished.

SERAJ: Absolutely. But this is the time for the men of Afghanistan to stand next to the women. I mean, for God's sakes, what have they seen from these

women? Have their women been really going on the streets of Kabul all of these 20 years without a job? That's not the truth.

And they know that, the men know that, that the women are covered the woman or good woman, the woman is standing next to them in behind them at all

times in life.

Don't you think it's about time that these men should stand next to us? And ask the government, what do you think you're doing to our women? This is

their right. They don't have to cover their faces. There's nothing wrong with that.

As their husbands and their brothers as their fathers, we allow it. So who are you, as the government? Or as the ministry of vice and virtue, why

should they come and get involved in the people's lives?

GIOKOS: Absolutely. You know, honestly, really, we wish you, you know, all the strength to overcome these draconian rules. And of course, we'll be

speaking to you as time passes Mahbouba, thank you very much for your time.

SERAJ: Thank you.

GIOKOS: Now moving on, and focusing on what's happening in the economic realities being faced globally, particularly in the U.S. Of course,

inflation is rocking global markets.

It is a big fear and we are waiting to hear from U.S. President Joe Biden, relatively soon. We will be crossing live to Washington DC. He is set to

deliver remarks on steps of his administration taking to talking rather to tackle rising prices, and we'll bring you the comments as and when we get


Now Mr. Biden, meanwhile, also considering an unprecedented visit to East Jerusalem and that's according to an Israeli official, ahead on the show

with Hadas Gold with more on that.

And her interview with Israeli Intelligence Minister one year since the bloody 11 day war between Israel and Hamas. And doctors in Ukraine facing

some of the biggest challenges of their careers as they treat people injured on the front lines. That's all coming up.



GIOKOS: Ukraine is getting more support from western allies as it continues to defend itself from Russian attacks. Germany's Foreign Minister made an

announcement an unannounced rather visit to Ukraine today, she met with Ukraine's president saying her country will reopen its Embassy in Kyiv.

Ukraine's government criticized Germany earlier in the war for being too slow to provide military support. But that's changed after Turing Butcher.

The German Foreign Minister said military aid is needed to prevent further atrocities, take a listen.


ANNALENA BAERBOCK, GERMAN FOREIGN MINISTER: Weapon delivery has been that there cannot and will not be any more terrible war crimes which I have seen

again today in your country, especially in the east.


GIOKOS: And some Ukrainians injured on the frontlines of going to hospitals in Lviv. Isa Soares visited one hospital where doctors are treating

patients in ways they've never previously imagined.


ISA SOARES, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): Dmytro is in shock. His body pierced in organs punctured multiple times by shrapnel from shelling just

outside his home in Kharkiv, a battleground in eastern Ukraine.

At first he was very tough he tells me and then I came to terms with everything that happened to me, his voice almost a whisper. He tells me he

regrets not listening to his elders that fateful day.

SOARES (on camera): How are you feeling after you known clearly some horrendous few days?

SOARES (voice over): I never thought that I would say it. You have to protect yourself to the maximum and follow all the rules that are told by

adults, he says. The 19 year old who lost both his parents before the war was evacuated by train and transferred here to Western Ukraine's biggest

hospital where he's undergone multiple surgeries and spent weeks in the ICU.

Dmytro's doctor tells me he too is struggling to make sense of the injuries he's been seeing.

DR. HNAT IHOROVYCH HERYCH, SURGICAL DEPT. HEAD, LVIV FIRST MEDICAL UNION: I done some operation that I only read from the books. And my colleagues from

the Austria, in Germany they also have some experience, but they've seen such serious disease.

SOARES (voice over): Dmytro's part of a steady stream of patients who have been evacuated from the frontlines and arrived in Lviv or medical trains

like this one, an impressive wartime operation with an inbuilt ICU carriage, which travels back and forth between the frontline and the east

with critically injured patients.

It's a journey the little Sofia also had to make when she left Mykolaiv in southern Ukraine. The nine year old just out of the ICU, is now recovering

after a piece of shrapnel measuring one centimeter entered her brain as she made her way home.

She's very strong. She hasn't even cried when she got wounded, her mother tells me. Visibly exhausted her mother shows me photos of happier times,

now relieved her little girl is turning a corner.


SOARES (voice over): At first when she started breathing independently and was still in Mykolaiv, they let me walk into the ICU. I walked in and

unexpectedly, she said Mommy with tears in her eyes.

I was so happy that she remembered me and that she didn't lose her memory, she says. Sofia's neurosurgeon tells me he's never seen a case like this.

As he shows me her CT scans.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I will give chance not more than 1 percent.

SOARES (on camera): So the shrapnel came through the front.


SOARES (on camera): All the way perforated all the way to the back of the skull.


SOARES (voice over): Dr. Mykhailo tells me he operates on as many as five children every week, proof perhaps that even the most innocent are not

immune to the scars of Russia's war. Isa Soares, CNN, Lviv Ukraine.


GIOKOS: All right, so if you're a regular viewer of the show, you'll know that Jerusalem has been a huge focus, as it is at the epicenter of

increased violence between Israelis and Palestinians.

And today, marks one year since that violence escalated into a horrific 11 day war between Israel and Hamas in Gaza, leaving hundreds dead, most of

them Palestinians.

On that grim anniversary, Hadas Gold spoke with the Israeli Minister of Intelligence. She joins me now live from Tel Aviv Hadas, good to see you.

This anniversary comes as we're seeing renewed attacks as well as risks. What did the minister tell you one year on?

HADAS GOLD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, it's been a very tense period, the last month and a half here or so, there have been at least six attacks targeting

Israeli since late March, leaving 18 people dead. Israeli military's increased its raids in the West Bank, leaving at least two dozen

Palestinians dead.

And we've seen those clashes in Jerusalem at the Al Aqsa Mosque compound, also known as the Temple Mount. And what the Minister of Intelligence

Elazar Stern told me is that they don't think that there is a main organization behind these recent attacks or these recent tensions, which

makes them harder to predict and harder to stop.

This day, last year, Hamas fired rockets towards Jerusalem in response to clashes and tensions that were happening there. What is your assessment of

what Hamas is doing now?

ELAZAR STERN, ISRALI INTELLIGENCE MINISTER: I think that first of all, they learn the lesson. And the lesson is that to take such a step like shooter

walk it on Jerusalem, later on Tel Aviv. In the end of the day, it caused the damage not only in Tel Aviv or in the --, but maybe even more in Gaza.

Or even more than that today on people, I hope that because they also take care about their own people, not because they change their mind about the

destruction of Israel, or about if they can legitimize Israel existence, unfortunately, not.

They only make the consideration to their own benefits. I don't think that their motivation is only to cause damage for Israel. I think they also want

to cause damage to the Palestinian authority in order to replace them. It's, you know, it's very, very high level of priorities.

GOLD: Do you get a sense that Hamas is somehow organizing or leading these recent attacks?

STERN: We have not found direct way that the terrorist received in direct order form the Hamas, of course, the incitement take place have a huge

influence about this young terrorist.

And as I have told many times, it begins with the education you know, it's not the issue where the border should be or a square kilometer --. The

issue of enhance the table of encourage that they will begin in the books in the elementary school.

GOLD: And I do want to note Eleni regarding that Stern's assertion that terrorism is encouraged in Palestinian schools. This is a long running

complaint and claimed by Israelis.

And while an E-report did find that some textbooks show antagonism towards Israel in the Palestinian curriculum, a couple of months ago, the Director

General of the curriculum at the Palestinian Ministry of Education defended their work saying that they're accused of terrorism just by mentioning

Palestinian consonance and saying I'm quoting here the occupation is the main enemy and the curriculum is national sovereignty par excellence Eleni?

GIOKOS: We also know what we've heard reports that Joe Biden might be visiting East Jerusalem. Would this be sort of viewed or perceived as a

gesture in support of Palestinians?


GOLD: Yes, so I actually have confirmed with an Israeli official that President Biden is considering visiting foreign to East Jerusalem to a

specific hospital in East Jerusalem during his upcoming visit that it's expected to take place in late June.

This hospital is part of a network of hospitals that had their funding cut by former President Donald Trumps who would definitely be seen as a

symbolic gesture to the Palestinians.

Also, because no previous U.S. president in recent history has gone into east Jerusalem some of the way that Joe Biden would potentially go. And

keep in mind, of course, that President Biden Administration has promised to reopen the consulate in Jerusalem, the American Consulate in Jerusalem

that largely serves Palestinian something that the Israeli government very strenuously does not want them to do Eleni?

GIOKOS: Hadas Gold, thank you so very much for that insight. It's good to see you. Right, so coming up on "Connect the World" the U.N. Chief is

seeing firsthand what the refugee crisis is like calling Moldova Ukraine's most fragile neighbor.

I'll speak to the U.N.'s deputy High Commissioner for Refugees about the work being done there. And just ahead the pain of inflation and nerves over

a volatile stock market as President Joe Biden is gearing up to address the American people. We'll bring you those comments when he speaks in just a

moment, stay with CNN.


GIOKOS: Welcome back. I'm Eleni Giokos. And this is "Connect the World". And while we continue our coverage of Russia's invasion of Ukraine, we want

to get you up to speed on some other stories that are on our radar right now.

Ferdinand Marcos Jr. is vowing to work for all people of the Philippines after his apparent presidential win, and official results from Monday's

election show he won with a historic majority crowds of angry Filipinos protested outside the election commission in Manila over the alleged

election irregularities.

The Shanghai government has released guidance for COVID control workers conducting disinfections. Complaints have emerged across China of workers

entering apartments without permission and damaging things in the process.

Guidelines include better communication with families and only disinfecting places that are frequently touched. Sri Lanka's Outgoing Prime Minister is

now at an undisclosed location after deadly antigovernment clashes overnight.

Dozens of homes and cars were torched across Sri Lanka in the unrest. As security source says, the Sri Lankan military rescue the Prime Minister,

after protesters tried to get into his house.

From politics now to money and we're watching the global stock markets and they've been wracked by nerve rattling volatility pressure.


GIOKOS: Returning to Wall Street after U.S. stocks fell to the lowest levels in over a year on Monday. Here is how all prices are faring as well.

We're seeing immense volatility; they sank Monday in the steepest one day decline since late March.

And as you can see, Brent crude is down just over 2 percent and WTI is also losing 2 percent at this point, its soaring inflation. That's the big

worry. And that's why the White House says President Joe Biden will deliver a speech shortly about fighting it.

And as you can see on our screen, we are watching those pictures right now to see when Joe Biden will be addressing the nation. We've got Matt Egan

standing by for us in New York, Matt, really good to see you.

I mean, you know, we know that the Federal Reserve has the mandates, and it has to be completely independent. It's interesting that we're waiting for

Joe Biden to address the nation inflation is going to be one of those really big sticking points. What are you expecting?

MATT EGAN, CNN REPORTER: Well, Eleni, inflation really is the biggest problem facing the economy right now. It's also the biggest problem facing

financial markets. It's the number one reason why voters are negative on the economy.

And so President Biden needs to acknowledge the pain that families are feeling right now, as they fill up at the gas pump. They go to the grocery

store, they go to the mall, they're paying more they're experiencing sticker shock.

And President Biden also plans to try to draw a contrast between what his administration has done what he wants to do, and what Republicans are

proposing. He will call out some proposals from congressional Republicans that the White House says would actually raise taxes on millions of


And the president plans to talk about what he's done in terms of trying to tamp down gasoline prices. We know that is a big sore spot for consumers.

So we should prepare for him to talk about the record setting release of oil from emergency reserves, and efforts to get more ethanol gasoline out

to people unclog the ports as well.

But Eleni, I think the truth is that presidents have limited power here, I mean, there's no magic wand to make inflation low again, that that's just

not something that presidents have the ability to do.

And, and some of the steps that he could take might be a bit more unpopular. I mean, in theory, the president could remove a lot of the

tariffs that former President Trump imposed on China.

But we know that being tough on China is actually pretty politically popular even if it's contributing to high inflation, there could be an

increase of legal immigration. That's another controversial topic.

But at the end of the day, you know, it's really the job of the Federal Reserve to maintain price stability and inflation is so high that even the

Fed is going to have a hard time bringing it back down.

The Fed is talking about a lot of interest rate increases over the coming months. And the concern among Investors and some economists is that the Fed

could end up making a mistake and it could end up raising interest rates so much that it actually slows down the economy or even causes a recession,


GIOKOS: Exactly. But inflation also has its own risks. I come from an emerging markets and I know what that looks like. So I think the Federal

Reserve has a tough job ahead.

We'll be hearing from Joe Biden in just a little while. Really fascinated to see what he'll come up with, Matt Egan, really good to see you. Thanks

so much. Now up next, Ukraine's neighbors have been stepping up to help Ukrainians.

I'll be speaking to the deputy High Commissioner for the U.N.'s refugee agency of - Moldova is helping.



GIOKOS: Inflationary fears are rocking global markets and we're waiting to hear from U.S. President Joe Biden soon. He is said to deliver remarks on

the steps of his administration and what they're planning to do to tackle rising prices.

We'll bring you the comments when we get them. As you can see those pictures we're waiting for Joe Biden to take the podium. All right, so

today the U.N. Secretary General is visiting Moldova and he says he's grateful for the help Ukrainian refugees are receiving there.

Antonio Guterres tweeted that people fleeing war in Ukraine have found shelter and hope there and are getting legal assistance and medical

support. So far, Moldova has welcomed more than 450,000 Ukrainians.

Kelly Clements is the Deputy High Commissioner for the U.N.'s refugee agency. And she joins us now live from the Moldovan Capitol with more on

the agency's efforts to help Ukrainians.

Thank you so very much, Commissioner for joining us. I have to say we've been speaking to so many refugees that are fleeing Ukraine, and they have

most harrowing stories to share.

Give me a sense of what you're hearing on the ground and just how Moldova is offering support and assistance.

KELLY CLEMENTS, UNHCR DEPUTY HIGH COMMISSIONER: Well, thanks for having us. You know, this is really quite a remarkable situation. And what we found

here in Moldova is nothing but an outpouring of support and hospitality at the local level volunteers, local authorities, the government; they have

really taken in the people fleeing the war in Ukraine with open arms and an open heart quite literally.

And this has been something you've seen across the country, as you said over 450,000 have either come through the country on where to other

locations, or for almost 100,000 people.

They've actually stayed in Moldova, staying close to Ukraine, staying close to their homes, to the people that they've left behind, waiting for a safe

opportunity to return.

So we've seen you know, the stories, as you've mentioned, are harrowing. And this fear about what might happen across the border, of course, has

been the reason for people to remain here in Moldova and not to return.

Although we did see, I just returned from Palanka from the border crossing point between Ukraine and Moldova. We did see a few families starting to go

back very carefully and obviously with a bit of trepidation in terms of what they will find on the other side.

GIOKOS: Commissioner, you know, Antonio Guterres said that Moldova is Ukraine's most fragile neighbor. I want you to give me a sense of the

pressure that it's, you know, putting on the Moldovan resources at the moment and what kind of support it needs.

CLEMENTS: Yes, so this is a country of 2.7 million. It's a very small country, obviously a non EU state. It has had to welcome put kids in

school, offer some health services, accommodation, ways for people to be able to support themselves.

But what's really extraordinary about what's happening here in the Republic of Moldova is that most of the refugees that have remained here, those

100,000, 95 percent have found homes in with private families with host families, Moldovans, and that's quite extraordinary.

We know the numbers, the vast majority over 90 percent are women, children. And many with small children or school aged children. And even today,

talking to some of those families and young people in terms of what they need, they need an education, they need to continue their education, some

are coming, quite traumatized, psychosocial needs and services.

So the health care is quite important and also a way for people to take care of their basic requirements, their basic needs and to protect them.

This is not more as a time where predators really take advantage.

And this is something that the Moldovan government and the people here have been very careful in terms of the efforts to combat trafficking, combating

sexual exploitation, abuse, and so on.

GIOKOS: Commissioner, you mentioned something really vital. This is a small country, it doesn't have a big population, and yet it's taking in half a

million refugees.

What is the long term plan you mentioned, some people are opting to return to into the unknown risks. But what is the long term plan and how are you


CLEMENTS: Well, this was something that the president asked the Secretary General for very explicitly this morning. He was here as a sign of

gratitude and solidarity and she asked for help on contingency planning.


CLEMENTS: And so we plan for every scenario, we plan for much larger numbers of refugees coming to this country. We plan with the government in

lockstep in support of them on accommodation, on immediate requirements that may be needed.

And then thinking long term in terms of the services that are under tremendous stress, how we can better support them? So we've got a number of

scenarios that we've worked through with the government, a number of partners here to support.

And the Secretary General really offered all support to the government and to the people of Moldova in this very critical and delicate time.

GIOKOS: Kelly Clements, thank you so very much for your insights and sharing your experiences in Moldova with us, really good to see you.

CLEMENTS: Thank you.

GIOKOS: We are still tracking the White House right now to see where the Joe Biden is going to come out shortly and when he does, we'll bring you

that live speech.

He will be addressing the nation on inflationary pressures of volatile markets and what that mean, there's going to mean for the American people

and we'll bring you that as soon as it happens.

And thank you so very much for joining us on "Connect the World". CNN's coverage of the Russia invasion of Ukraine continues. I'm Eleni Giokos in

Abu Dhabi, I'll see you tomorrow.