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Fears Grow Over Safety of Europe's Biggest Nuclear Plant; U.S. Federal Judge Considers Release of Affidavit in Mar-a-Lago Search; Terrorist El Shafee Elsheikh to be Sentenced in U.S. Federal Court; Afghans Reflect on Life Since the U.S. Withdrawal; China's Record Heat Impacting Productivity; Drought Compels Israel to Pump Water into Sea of Galilee. Aired 10-10:47a ET

Aired August 19, 2022 - 10:00:00   ET




MYKOLA STUPAK, LOCAL DISTRICT CHAIRMAN (through translator): I shoot all the time to provoke the armed forces of Ukraine and to spread panic among

the people. We understand that the power plant may explode because of their actions. I just don't understand. Maybe they just don't get it.


BECKY ANDERSON, CNN ANCHOR: Living in the shadow of potential catastrophe, Ukrainians tell CNN of their fears about the damaged nuclear plant under

Russian control. And --


CLARISSA WARD, CNN CHIEF INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Every household had at least one fighter, this man tells us. And every house had people who

were killed by the Americans and their drones. And we are proud of that.


ANDERSON: Exploring the Taliban heartlands one year after the group's rise to power in Afghanistan. And as droughts devastate communities in every

corner of the globe, how one community has come up with an innovative solution to cope.

A very good afternoon. It's 3:00 p.m. here in London, it's 6:00 p.m. in Abu Dhabi. I'm Becky Anderson. Hello, and welcome to CONNECT THE WORLD.

We begin with the war of words and the very real threat at Europe's largest nuclear power plant, in Ukraine. A pro-Russian official responding to the

U.N.'s call to demilitarize the sprawling Zaporizhzhia facility that Russia now controls. That official telling a state news agency it's out of the

question and that Russian forces have strengthened security there.

Both sides accused the other of launching attacks on and around the plant. One shelling reported on Thursday. But no independent inspectors have been

able to access the complex since Russia took control in March. Another Russian official says the International Atomic Agency may be allowed in

next month.

Well, our Sam Kiley has spent much of the past year in Ukraine, he's on the ground for us today in Zaporizhzhia, and Fred Pleitgen has been monitoring

developments for you from Moscow.

Fred, I'll come to you in just a moment. I want to start, though, with Sam who's on the ground in Zaporizhzhia and has been speaking with those living


Sam, what have they been telling? And is it clear what the risks are at this point?

SAM KILEY, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: I think the risks are twofold, Becky. There is the military risk, which of course has escalated

into international concerns at the moment. But also there's a technical risk with the U.N. secretary general just in the last hour or so saying

that the Russians must not and cannot, in his view, under international law take the electricity generated in that plant and reroute into their

occupied territory, notably into the Crimea.

That itself is fraught with wide range of technical issues which ultimately might be more dangerous than the military threat. But on the ground,

ordinary individuals living just in the shadow of that nuclear power station are contending with the military attacks coming from it from

Russian positions, and then the fear on top of that of something much, much worse happening. This is our piece.


KILEY (voice-over): It's an all too routine scene. A Ukrainian home destroyed by a missile. But here the lucky escape of a young couple is

overshadowed by a potential catastrophe. The first Russian rocket hit the local soccer pitch and sent them scrambling into their basement safe from

the second.

After what happened we jump in every sound, Andrei (PH) says. The Ukrainian authorities say that both rockets were fired by Russian troops from the

grounds of a nuclear power station captured in March.

(On-camera): The International consternation over the future of the Enerhodar Nuclear Power Station is very obvious when you stand here. And

you can see the six reactors of the biggest nuclear power station in the whole of Europe. The United Nations, the international community are all

reacting in horror at the mere thought that this could be at the center of fighting.

(Voice-over): Ukraine blames Russia for using the nuclear plants as a fire base and insist that it's not able to shoot back for risk of blowing up the

nuclear facility.

The Russian occupiers shoot all the time to provoke the armed forces of Ukraine and to spread panic among the people. We understand that the power

plant may explode because of their actions. I just don't understand. Maybe they just don't get it, he told us.

The United States, the United Nations and Ukraine have all called for Russia to leave the nuclear plant and for it to be demilitarized.


These demands are growing in volume as the bombardment of Ukrainian towns allegedly from around the six nuclear reactors has intensified.

Andriy Tuz worked at the plant until he escaped the Russians. But then he was recaptured, he says, and tortured before being released. Now he's in

hiding in Western Europe. And he says the possibility of a disaster is very high.

ANDRIY TUZ, EX-SPOKESPERSON, ZAPORIZHZHIA NPP (through translator): I would say 70 percent to 90 percent if we're talking about the most optimistic

scenario. I'm very worried about it.

KILEY': And civilians in the Russian occupied town next to the plant have been stuck in traffic jams, trying to flee a potential nuclear escalation.

Ukraine's claims that it hasn't shelled the nuclear site cannot be verified. But there's no doubt that Russia has used it as a safe location

to attack Ukraine from.

Ukrainians have been conducting nuclear disaster drills in cities nearby. And both sides have said that some kind of incident is imminent, and could

cause massive radioactive contamination, or a meltdown, a cataclysm that could be felt far beyond Ukraine even in nearby Russia.


KILEY: Now, Becky, one of the really interesting things about this if you think you try to work out in whose benefit or for whose benefit, would an

attack or would a disaster of this Ukrainian nuclear power station be. There's nothing in it for the Ukrainians. It would cut them off from one of

their main sources of power, kill Ukrainians, and cripple their electrical industry. Never mind that the reputational damage they would suffer.

The same goes for Russia. Russia could not cause an attack there or would not if they were behaving rationally because of the fallout could easily

blow into Russian territory, particularly Russian occupied territory. And it would be catastrophic in terms of the military dynamic there. They would

not be able to use their soldiers in contaminated zones. So in whose interest in this is very hard to assess, but ultimately, there are deep

concerns that people are not entirely rational in times of war -- Becky.

ANDERSON: Fred, let me bring you in at this point and get the perspective then from the Kremlin. What are the Russian claims at this point? And do

they hold any water?

FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, it's very difficult to say. But the Russians are saying essentially that the

Ukrainians are shelling the Zaporizhzhia power plant. The Russians don't deny that they have their military there but they do say that they don't

have any weapons that they would be using to fire on Ukrainian positions or on Ukrainian cities, when in fact the Russian Ministry of Defense says that

it's willing to put out high resolution pictures as it said to prove that that is not the case.

Of course we do have the video that we see right now, that CNN has geolocated, showing Russian military vehicles apparently inside that power

plant. It's unclear when exactly those were taken, but the Russians are saying they're not shelling any sort of Ukrainian territory for that. And

they're allegedly offering to provide evidence for that as well. However, there are some pretty serious warnings.

And I do have the latest for you, Becky. Apparently there was a phone call today between the president of France, Emmanuel Macron, and Vladimir Putin,

where Vladimir Putin once again warned about the chance or the danger of a nuclear catastrophe. And he said this is according to the Kremlin read-out.

Vladimir Putin stressed that the systematic shelling by the Ukrainian military of the territory of the Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant creates a

danger of a large scale catastrophe that could lead to radiation contamination of vast territories.

So that's a pretty stark warning there on the part of the Russian president. You have of course heard from Sam that the Ukrainians are saying

-- that they never shelled the Zaporizhzhia power plant. Those of course those claims and counterclaims. What the Russians are saying, what Vladimir

Putin apparently told Emmanuel Macron as well as the Russians want an International Atomic Energy Agency mission to go to that power plant. Of

course Mikhail Ulyanov, Russia's man in Vienna, also said that that could happen sometime in early September.

However, Becky, what the Russians say will not happen is the demilitarization of that power plant. They say they are not going to remove

their forces from there because they believe that that would make the power plant even more vulnerable -- Becky.

ANDERSON: Thanks, Fred.

Sam, let me get back to you. A former worker at the damaged plant telling you in that report that the chance of disaster is 70 percent to 90 percent.

This is clearly very, very worrying. But you were in Ukraine before this war started and you've been on the ground for much of the past six months,

as indeed as Fred Pleitgen. You were there before the invasion began. What's your perspective at this point? Is it clear at this stage whether

there is any end in sight?


KILEY: The end in sight for this conflict certainly from the Ukrainian and international support for Ukrainian perspective could only really come if

the will of the Russian armed forces is broken. And the only way to do that in certainly Ukrainian analysis but also a lot of Westerners that I've been

talking to, and I frankly would agree with it on the ground, notwithstanding which side one might choose.

This isn't a question of choosing sides, a working out how things might go. If the Ukrainians get the sorts of modern weapons that they're asking for

in the quantities that they're asking for, and urgently, they may well be able to break the will of the Russians to fight and cause some kind of

collapse. That is there longer or medium term interest.

From the Russian perspective, a never-ending war is almost exactly what they're seeking, one of the frozen conflicts perhaps having accrued more

land into their territory and then freezing a conflict which permanently destabilizes Ukraine. Permanently means it might be impossible for it to

really take its part in the community of nations of Western European nations and permanently disable its ability to claim to be a true democracy

across all of its territory because it is that condition ultimately if it were achieved, which would be a very serious existential threat to Vladimir


So militarily a stalemate suits Russia a lot more than it does the Ukrainians. Of course the Russians also have the advantage of more weapons,

albeit more primitive weapons, but above all more people. And issues such as the nuclear power station are quite good distractions within this

ongoing effort as each side tries to maneuver quite literally, physically, on the ground for the best position across a very extended series of

frontlines which suit neither side but probably, ultimately, work better for Russia than Ukraine because they've simply got the numbers to hold the

lines -- Becky.

ANDERSON: Good to have you both. Thank you very much indeed for joining us.

Well, up next, on CONNECT THE WORLD, more details released from the search warrant at Mar-a-Lago. We know now exactly what crimes investigators think

were being committed at Donald Trump's home.

And white flag marked the graves of Taliban fighters killed in battle in Afghanistan. What their loved ones are saying nearly a year after the

withdrawal of U.S. troops.


ANDERSON: A federal judge on Thursday released some details of a search warrant that includes allegations of willful retention of national defense

information and obstruction of justice. We are talking about what is going on at Mar-a-Lago. The judge also says he is considering releasing at least

portions of the affidavit filed to get the search warrant of Mar-a-Lago approved.


He's giving the Justice Department a week to propose what portions of that document should be redacted.

And CNN's crime and justice reporter Katelyn Polantz is tracking developments in the investigation for us.

Katelyn, explain if you will the specifics revealed in these documents and how might they relate to the wider investigation. What's the bottom line


KATELYN POLANTZ, CNN SENIOR CRIME AND JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: Well, Becky, there are four documents that were released yesterday by the judge. They

don't have a lot of words on them but when the Justice Department writes to a court, we look at the words they choose very carefully. So when that

search warrant was released a week ago in court, it laid out that there were three things being investigated, the Espionage Act, obstruction of

justice and the criminal mishandling of federal records.

And all of those things were things that the FBI had reason to go into Mar- a-Lago to seize all of those boxes and materials, take them out of the hands of the former president. With that said, we were not exactly sure

what part of the Espionage Act was being investigated. There's lots of different sections of that law so what was released yesterday there was a

cover sheet that outline the three different criminal codes that the Justice Department has looked at.

One of them they specifically described as the willful retention of national defense information. That's the part of the Espionage Act that's

under investigation. And why that matters now is that that specific implies that it is someone who had access to national defense information

rightfully, and then chose to retain it in a way that would be against the law ultimately. And so when you look back at the people in Mar-a-Lago who

could be in that sort of situation, the former president seems very possible as that person.

Now we're not going to learn more about this right now as far as we can tell. Right now there is going to be this process ongoing between the

Justice Department and the judge where the Justice Department tries to get the judge to agree to black out as much as possible of this affidavit. They

really want to take everything out of it. But we know that that affidavit lays out quite a bit of substantial information about the investigation,

the work they've done, the techniques they've used and why they believe that these particular laws may have been broken.

So we're going to have to wait and see what comes after that process and if there is a charge ultimately as well.

ANDERSON: Stay on it. It's extremely important. Thank you.

A lot more of our coverage on the investigation into Donald Trump from, including analysis by our own Stephen Collinson who says that Mar-

a-Lago search warrant affidavit could be one of the most scrutinized documents in American political history. That is at or on your CNN


Well, sentencing to get underway soon for terrorists convicted in the beheading of Western hostages in Syria including journalist James Foley. He

was murdered on this day eight years ago. His family is expected to talk to reporters very soon. Foley's killer El Shafee Elsheikh could get life in a

U.S. prison for his role in the notorious gang of terrorists known by the captives or by their captives as the Beatles because of their British


The ISIS jihadist was also convicted of taking part in the murders of Steven Sotloff, Kayla Mueller and Peter Kassig all in 2014 and 2015.

I want to bring in CNN's Pentagon correspondent Oren Liebermann.

Just remind our audience of the aftermath of James Foley's death and tell us exactly what is expected from this sentencing, if you will.

OREN LIEBERMANN, CNN PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT: Becky, it has been a long and difficult journey to get to this point. As you pointed out it was eight

years ago today that the video of the beheading and murder of James Foley became public but the story of his captivity begins even before that

because he went missing about a year and a half earlier in Syria as he went there to report.

He was known for his bravery, his courage in going into conflicts zones, and reporting on the human side of a conflict. And that was his goal in

going into Syria. He has spoken to his family just a week before his abduction, a week before his disappearance, and in the long agonizing way

to find out what happened to him only to see that video that was ISIS propaganda of his beheading. His murder become public.

It was sometime after that that El Shafee Elsheikh was captured by Syrian Democratic Forces and then eventually brought to trial. That trial finally

commenced earlier this year. In a two-week trial Elsheikh's lawyers tried to argue that he was simple members of ISIS, not the ISIS Beatle known by

the name Ringo as prosecutors argued. The jury didn't buy that at all and he was convicted.

We now await sentencing and will hear not only from the mother of James Foley, Diane Foley, after the sentences are handed, but also from the

parents of Kayla Mueller who was also abducted and murdered by ISIS during that period in Syria. So an eight-year, perhaps you might even say a 10-

year journey to get to this point. And we'll hear from the family of James Foley shortly.

ANDERSON: Yes. The James W. Foley Legacy Foundation is a way for his mom to advocate for the freedom of Americans abroad. What do we know about that as

part of his legacy, Oren?


LIEBERMANN: It's an incredibly important part of his legacy and one that continues to do work not only on behalf of his family but on behalf of so

many others. We recently saw them in the news and continue to see them in the news with, for example, Brittney Griner detained in Russia, Austine

Tice who went missing in Syria. And yet those are only the bigger names, the names we have heard of because they are in the news. But if you go to

their Web site you'll see they advocate for more than 60 other Americans wrongfully detained overseas.

This is part of his legacy. His mother started this foundation less than a month after his murder of ISIS and the ISIS Beatles. And it's an incredibly

important part of keeping the stories out there and keeping pressure on the U.S. government to make sure that there are ongoing efforts to try to bring

these people home no matter where they're detained or where they're held overseas -- Becky.

ANDERSON: Oren Liebermann is at the Pentagon for you. Thank you, Oren.

Well, the death toll has risen to 21 after an explosion ripped through a crowded mosque in Kabul in Afghanistan. People say -- police say 33 other

people were wounded. The blast happened Wednesday during evening prayers. No one has as yet claimed responsibility. It is the latest in a string of

explosions and shootings in Afghanistan, already killed dozens of people in recent weeks.

Well, Kabul's emergency hospitals treated 27 victims from the blast, five minors are among them including a 7-year-old boy. The hospital's medical

coordinator talked about the victims' conditions and how the hospital is coping with an uptick in mass casualty events. Have a listen.


DEJAN PANIC, EMERGENCY AFGHANISTAN MEDICAL COORDINATOR: Thirty percent of the admitted patients are in severe condition and serious condition, and

they've underwent major surgery. So vascular explorations, muscular repairs and intra-abdominal injury repairs and management. So this is something

that is demanding quite a lot of time, resources and expertise.

Two, let's say, minimize the possibility of complications and reduce the mortality. It's a reminder that the field this hospital is very much

needed. That the war, as much as it's publicized that it's finished, that there is peace in Afghanistan, still there is something going on. So it's

not my place to comment why and who is responsible for it. But definitely there are people and civilians are getting injured and that they are

suffering and that they are dying from bullet shrapnel. It's evident.


ANDERSON: This week we've been marking a year since the Taliban's return to power. While someone in Afghanistan live in fear of the Taliban's strict

interpretation of Islamic law, others prefer them to life during the U.S. occupation, which they remember as brutal and deadly.

Chief international correspondent Clarissa Ward reports from Afghanistan.


WARD (voice-over): There were no tears in the Tangi Valley when U.S. forces left Afghanistan. The landscape is awash with white flags, marking the

graves of Taliban fighters killed in battle. Among them is the son of Nabi Mubarraz (PH).

(On-camera): This is your son?

(Voice-over): He tells us he was killed during a U.S.-supported Afghan special forces night raid on the family home in 2019. Video of the

aftermath shows the scale of the destruction. After a protracted gun battle, the house was leveled, killing a second son of Mubarraz's (PH), as

well as his niece and her daughter.

"There was a lot of blood spilled," a voice says off-camera. The rebuilt living room is now a shrine to the dead.

(On-camera): What was your reaction when American forces left a year ago?

(Voice-over): I said that peace has come to Afghanistan, he says. There will be no more mothers becoming widows, like our mothers and sisters who

were widowed, and our children killed.

Across this rural Taliban stronghold, American forces were seen as invaders, who brought death and destruction with their night raids and

drone strikes. Peace has brought a chance to air long-held grievances. At the local market, we're immediately surrounded.

Every household had at least one fighter, this man tells us. And every house had people who were killed by the Americans and their drones. And we

are proud of that.

Shere Mohammed Hamas (PH) is treated like royalty here. His brother is believed to be responsible for downing a helicopter full of U.S. Special


(On-camera): So he's taking me to the spot where he says his brother shot down a Chinook.


(Voice-over): It was August 6th, 2011. Hamas (PH) says his brother was hiding behind the trees and shot the Chinook down with an RPG as it

prepared to land by the river. Thirty Americans were killed, the single greatest loss of American life in the entire Afghan war.

There were a lot of celebrations, and not just here, he tells us. It was a big party.

(On-camera): I'm sure you can understand that it's hard to hear that people were celebrating about the deaths of dozens of Americans?

(Voice-over): This was a heroic achievement because the people who were killed on this plane, they were the killers of Osama bin Laden, he says.

And Sheikh Osama is someone who was the crown on the head of Muslims. So definitely the people were happy about this.

Days later, the U.S. says it responded with a strike that killed Hamas's (PH) brother. Another white flag raised in a valley where martyrs were made

and views hardened.

Clarissa Ward, CNN, Tangi Valley, Afghanistan.


ANDERSON: Ahead on CONNECT THE WORLD, workers in one Chinese province have a few days off but it's not under the best of circumstances. How the heat

wave there is impacting the economic outlook. And scientists in Israel are set to use new technology to pump drinking water into a very old sea. That

after this.


ANDERSON: Welcome back. I'm Becky Anderson in London. Normally in Abu Dhabi for you. The time here is half past 3:00. It is half past 6:00 or just

before in Abu Dhabi. You're watching CONNECT THE WORLD.

Two areas in China have ordered factories to halt operations for about a week. The goal is to conserve energy amid a record heat wave that's taxing

the country's power grid. This, as my colleague Selina Wang now tells us the shutdowns are raising concerns of supply problems far beyond China's

borders. Have a look at this.


SELINA WANG, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): A scorching heatwave grinding work on the world's factory floors to a screeching halt. As China battles

its worst heatwave on record, factories in the key manufacturing hubs of Sichuan province and Chongqing City have come to a standstill. For about a

week, power is being saved for its more than 100 million residents amid a crippling crunch, but the diversion threatens an economic jolt.

It hits factories for semiconductor companies like Intel and Texas Instruments, and suppliers of Apple and Tesla.


Most importantly, Sichuan is rich in one of the world's most important commodities, lithium.

DENNIS IP, PURE RESEARCH, DAIWA CAPITAL: Sichuan produced like 30 percent of the lithium hydroxide for China. So we think that this is going to

affect the lithium supplies in the short run. Very likely we are going to see the lithium price going up.

WANG: Lithium is essential for technologies like electric cars and smartphone batteries. While experts say the impact will be minimal if the

shutdown only lasts a week, if they drag on, it threatens to snag already strained global supply chains and hike up prices for global consumers.

The power cuts are yet another headache for factories after COVID-related shutdowns. It could encourage the U.S. and Europe to move more of their

battery supply chains back home.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Also kind of strengthen people's belief that you can't rely on China too much for the battery materials processing.

WANG: This is China's strongest and longest heatwave on record lasting for more than 60 days, pushing temperatures above 110 degrees Fahrenheit in

some regions. It's put extreme pressure on the power grid because of spikes in air-conditioning use and hydropower plants that are struggling to meet

demand. Droughts are sweeping across the country. Parts of China's longest river, the Yangtze, and other reservoirs have completely dried up. Fire

trucks are sending water to places struggling to get enough drinking water. Villagers line up with their buckets.

In the south, the heat and droughts are ravaging crops, impacting 159 million acres of arable land. Many regions are taking desperate measures.

Central Hubei Province is firing rockets into the sky with chemicals to help clouds produce more rain. Videos of staff pouring ice cubes into

swimming pools have gone viral, as did this woman's video diaries showing her bag of live shrimp cooked after she was outside for an hour.

Office workers are sitting around giant ice cubes to cool down because of power cuts. Some cities are operating subway stations in near darkness to

save energy. Other residents are sleeping in subway stations to take refuge from the heat.

China's heatwave is expected to get worse, so all of this might be the new normal.

Selina Wang, CNN, Beijing.


ANDERSON: As you will be well aware, China is far from the only place enduring this extreme heat and drought. The drought leveling in

northeastern United States has hit 40 percent. Large parts of the western U.S. remain under severe drought despite monsoon season bringing some

relief in the southwest.

Meteorologist Chad Myers joining us now with the outlook.

We spoke earlier this week about high temperatures in the American south and southwest. But I want you to zone in, if you will, on New England

because as I understand it that is also suffering from drought. Not an area that's used to this heat.

What's going on and how are residents coping, Chad?

CHAD MYERS, CNN METEOROLOGIST: It really has dried in a flash type of dry event where it just has not rained in four weeks. Period. Now, I mean, New

York City is going to be 32 today. The people of Chongqing City, it's going to be 44 there in China, they would take 32 in a heartbeat. So, yes, even

in New York it's been 38. So when it's that hot and it's cooler it feels OK, I guess. But it's the dryness.

It is the dryness that's affecting all of these areas here. Apple orchards, fruit orchards, dairy farmers, gardeners, millions of people here now

walking on grass that sounds like you're walking on dry hey. Nothing about three or four weeks ago. Very little in the way of drought. But I'll put

you back here to where we are right, that drought is in the extreme category. And this is the amount of rain they're going to see in the next

five to seven days. Nothing, no rain whatsoever, the drought continues and maybe even expands.

So the flash drought, it's quick. It becomes -- it happens because things are very hot and because there is really no rainfall. Now the megadrought

we have in the southwestern United States, it hasn't rained enough. By average, for the past 20 years, that is a megadrought. 20 years' worth of

insufficient moisture to grow the kind of things that want to grow here. So from Vegas back all the way over to Los Angeles and especially into Texas,

significant drought.

But the problem is, Becky, think of like an adobe brick, or if you're going to build a brick out of mud, what do you do? You put it in the sun and you

bake it and you get it hot and all of a sudden it actually does turn into a brick. Well, that's what they have across parts of Texas. Their ground is

like an adobe brick. It's just completely hard. So when you pick up these almost 500 millimeters of rain over the weekend, it's not going to soak in.

It doesn't soak into a brick.


There's going to be more flash flooding in places that are in a drought. That's how fast these things change.

ANDERSON: Chad, I lived in Phoenix, Arizona, 30 years ago and I remember reporting on stories about megadroughts. At that stage I'm not sure we'd

call them those then, but there were concerns about the Colorado River of course back then and now we are back in familiar terrain, of course this

year of 2022.

It's always good to have you, sir. So important.

MYERS: Thank you.

ANDERSON: Thank you very much indeed.

Well, from the United States to China, and in the Middle East, one of Iraq's most mystical and lush regions is being battered by the effects of

climate change. Mesopotamian Marshes, home of the biblical Garden of Eden, what's once a green wetland area, designated a UNESCO world heritage site

in 2016. But years of drought have reduced it to dried out streams and muddy water if there's any water at all. Many Iraqis who have lived off the

land say they no longer have enough revenue to support their families. Look at that.

Well, in Israel, technology to deal with diminishing water supplies is now available. The problem is that there is not so much a lack of water but a

lack of usable water.

Hadas Gold shows us how crews are preparing to pump desalinated water into the Sea of Galilee.



HADAS GOLD, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The Sea of Galilee in northern Israel. This ancient place of pilgrimage has been sustaining life for

thousands of years. But recent times have seen this freshwater lake shrinking to historically low levels, forcing the government to act by

leveraging the country's expertise in water technology.

(On-camera): This is part of the Ashdod Water Desalination Plant, one of five such plants along the coast of Israel. After the seawater is pumped

through the desalination process, the sweet water is held here in this 100,000 cubic meter reservoir. The water, under this tarp I'm standing on

right now.

(Voice-over): For decades now, Israel has taken seawater from the Mediterranean and treated it with a process called reverse osmosis,

providing nearly all of the country's tap water. From Ashdod, a pipeline pumps water from all the desalination plants north to Israel's main water

filtration facility near Haifa. From there, a new 31-kilometer pipe is being laid eastward to connect via stream with the Sea of Galilee. The end

is in sight. The $264 million project is due to be completed by next year.

NOAM SHOA, ENGINEERING DESIGN MANAGER, MEKOROT: It sounded a strange proposition from the beginning. But very soon we understood the value it

has to the national market itself, and also it contributes to other challenges, such as global warming, development of agriculture in the

entire Sea of Galilee region, and also with our neighbors, the Kingdom of Jordan here.

This is another part of the solution that will help us maintain the provision of water to the Kingdom of Jordan as per the existing treaties.

GOLD: This 1.6-meter-wide pipe will be able to carry 120 million cubic meters of water per year. But only what's needed to replenish the lake will

be released at any time.

SHOA: The uniqueness of this project is that it gives us almost infinite flexibility. If you look at the system from end to end, we can basically

take the water where it is available, desalinate water at the center of Israel, and just divert it and transport to wherever it is needed.

GOLD (on-camera): The desalinated water will end up here at the Sea of Galilee. Now this lake used to pump out the vast majority of Israel's

drinking water, but now the water will be flowing in the opposite direction.

(Voice-over): The need to do things radically differently was driven home to authorities by the most recent five-year-long drought which ended in


DR. GIDEON GAL, DIRECTOR, KINNERET LIMNOLOGICAL LABORATORY: They looked at what happened. A five-year drought conditions when the lake level was

really low. They looked at the future climate change and what's going to happen with rainfall in this area. And also looked at, you know, the

increase in population and projected increase in demand of water and realized that 30, 40 years from now there's going to be a serious problem

in maintaining lake level in the lake and maintaining water quality.

GOLD: As for concerns about what non-native water could do to the lake's ecosystem, research so far suggests it won't make much of a difference and

may actually help the lake fight the effects of climate change by increasing the turnover rate of the water and cooling it down.

GAL: The risk of introducing desalinated water is a risk that is worthwhile taking. As long as, you know, it's a certain quantity. We don't talk about

huge quantities of water.

GOLD: It's a scientifically uncomfortable and unprecedented step Dr. Gal says he wishes they didn't have to take but one the realities of climate

change is forcing upon them.

Hadas Gold, CNN, the Sea of Galilee.



ANDERSON: Read more about the effects of the heatwave in the Middle East in our newsletter. Meanwhile in the Middle East, we'll bring you these

stories, the latest big stories from the region. And to get that just go to I'm going to be partial here. That is an

extremely good read. But I know you'll agree with me when you sign up.

All right. I'm sure you'll allow me that given we are in familiar face in Abu Dhabi. Ahead in sports a Ukrainian boxer prepares to defend his

heavyweight title. Why there is much more on the line than just his championship belt. More on that after this.


ANDERSON: Speaking of heavyweights, as we were just before I went to the break, a Ukrainian boxer served his country's military, fighting a

different kind of battle this weekend. Oleksandr Usyk will face Britain's - - let me start again. Anthony Joshua in a heavyweight world title rematch in Saudi Arabia. Usyk called boxing child play compared to war.

Amanda Davies is here with much more on what is this anticipated fight. I have always picked me off when I see these boxers. They could be

intimidating, really, when I screw up their names.

AMANDA DAVIES, CNN WORLD SPORT ANCHOR: AJ is much easier than Anthony Joshua. No, I mean, this is a fight with so much history between the two.

It was Usyk who beat Anthony Joshua back in September. Unanimous decision that. But so much has happened not only for Usyk but for the country of

Ukraine since then. And he was one of the people, when war broke out in February, he was one of the first people we spoke to from the bunker as he

was defending his country.

He's been given special dispensation since March to leave Ukraine to be able to prepare for this fight. He said, though, really quite reluctantly.

But he said he's going to use this platform, use this stage as not only fighting for himself to keep hold of these heavyweight belts but also for

pride for the people of Ukraine, and he said as soon as this fight is over, he is going to back and he's going to put on his uniform once again.

ANDERSON: Oleksandr Usyk, I am so sorry that I mispronounced your name. Please don't come after me. Good lad. He's a good lad and we'll keep an eye

on that. And there's more on that of course in "WORLD SPORT" coming up with Amanda Davies, I'll be back after that.