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Russia Ends Grain Deal; Heat Waves Sweep The Globe; Chinese FM Voices Hope For Climate Deal With U.S. Aired 11a-12p ET

Aired July 17, 2023 - 11:00   ET




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

ELENI GIOKOS, CNN ANCHOR: Hello and welcome back to your second hour of Connect the World with me Eleni Giokos. Coming up Russia says the Black Sea

Grain Deal with Ukraine has been terminated, sending wheat prices up immediately. We explore what it could mean for global food prices.

Now making heat waves being felt all across the globe in Asia, Europe and the United States. This while the climate envoys for the world's two

biggest polluters, China and the U.S. meet in Beijing to see how they can put their differences aside and advance climate policy. And many in tennis

are celebrating what looks like a changing of the God at the top of the sport. How the 2023 Wimbledon winners stunned the world.

Welcome back. Now the head of the United Nations and Western officials are strongly condemning Russia's withdrawal from a critical grain deal. The

agreement had allowed Ukraine to safely export its grain from its Black Sea ports despite a wartime blockage. The effects of Moscow's withdrawal will

be felt worldwide and it raises fears over the fate of global food supplies and the price of grain. Here is UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres.


ANTONIO GUTERRES, U.N. SECRETARY GENERAL: Ultimately, participation in these agreements is a choice. But struggling people everywhere and

developing countries don't have a choice. And that is if millions of people face hunger and consumers are confronting a global cost of living crisis,

and they will pay the price.


GIOKOS: Well, to put it into perspective, Ukraine accounts for 10 percent of the world's wheat markets and is a major supplier of wheat to developing

countries through the U.N.'s World Food Program. Now also today, Ukraine claiming responsibility for an explosion on a critical bridge connecting

Russia to the annexed peninsula of Crimea.

Two people traveling along the bridge were killed. Ukrainian intelligence officials say the damage will hurt Russia's ability to move supplies for

its war in Ukraine. Monday's attack is the second one to take place there. Last October a fuel tanker exploded, destroying a large section of the

road. CNN's Scott McLean explains why the bridge is so important to Russia.


SCOTT MCLEAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, the Kremlin is calling it a terrorist act that killed two adults and injured a child, Russian

investigators they are already on site here collecting evidence. Now Ukraine has not officially claimed responsibility. And it's not clear how

it was done. But a source inside the Ukrainian Security Service has told CNN that the attack on the carriage bridge was a joint operation between it

and its naval forces.

So the bridge itself is right here. It is the only direct link between Russia itself and occupied Crimea. And if you can't use the bridge, it

means you have to go all the way around back through other parts of occupied Ukraine and act -- in order to actually reach Crimea.

The bridge is 12 miles long and that makes it the longest in Europe and it cost $3.7 billion to actually build it and it's divided into two parts one

for rail traffic the other for cars and the Russian say that the rail part of the bridge remains intact and based on this video, that seems to be the

case that looks -- this looks like it was taken from a passing train on the rail section and you can see this span of the bridge seems to be partially

dislodged from its pillars there.

What you do not see in this video or any others that we have is the evidence of any kind of impact crater on the surface of the bridge, so any

impact that there was very likely came from either the side or from underneath of the bridge. Russia says that the explosions were carried out

by two Ukrainian seaborne drones.

In other words, we're talking about an unmanned boat, maybe even a jetski loaded up with explosives though the Russians haven't presented any

evidence to actually support this claim. It is pretty difficult to overstate not only the strategic value of this bridge, but also the

symbolic value as well. Following Russia's illegal annexation of Crimea back in 2014. The bridge was opened by Vladimir Putin himself who led a

convoy across the bridge clearly meaning to solidify the bond between Russia and Crimea which until that point was cut off from Russia itself.


It has been targeted before. Here's just one example. This one was earlier this month when the Russians said that they shot down a Ukrainian cruise

missile that had been headed for the bridge. And Ukraine only recently acknowledged that it was responsible for this blast in October of last year

when a semitruck packed with explosives detonated causing substantial damage to both the road and the rail sections.

It wasn't actually until February of this year that all the vehicle lanes reopened and repairs to the rail side, they took even longer. Now following

that blast Russia responded with missile strikes aimed at energy infrastructure and civilian areas. They were on Kyiv, on Dnipro, on

Zaporizhzhia and all of these other regions and a Russian official in Crimea has already suggested that this latest attack will also not go

unanswered. Scott McLean, CNN, London.


GIOKOS: CNN's Alex Marquardt joins us now from Odessa. Of course, Odessa is a port city on the Black Sea. It is one of those cities that is seen, of

course, benefits from this deal that is now seeing of course, the end of it. We're seeing Russia withdraw. Alex, could you give me a sense of what

you're hearing on the ground in terms of what this means for grain and wheat exports out of Odessa?

ALEX MARQUARDT, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPONDENT: Well, there's certainly fear about what the ramifications are going to be not just here

in Ukraine, but all around the world. We've already seen grain prices go up major questions now about what effect that's going to have on suit food

supplies around the world is as well, of course as the -- as the Ukrainian economy.

That deal was set to expire at midnight here local time. The Russians beat that by several hours. The Russians, we should note are not linking this at

all to the explosion, the attack on the Kerch bridge, they say this was in fact a long time coming.

You remember, Eleni, this deal was brokered a year ago by the United Nations and Turkey, of course, between Russia and Ukraine so that Ukraine

could support -- could export rather this grain from its ports on the -- on the Black Sea, most importantly, most notably the port here in Odessa, so

that that grain could get out to the rest of the world safely.

Now, Russia has been arguing for quite some time now that the deal is one sided that only benefits Ukraine and the West. That in fact, Russia,

because of sanctions is not allowed to export its own foodstuffs or its own fertilizer. And so it had been indicating for some time that this this that

it would allow this Grain Deal to expire.

Now, according to U.N. official I spoke with their decision does appear to be quite final. So the U.N. which is still trying to help Ukraine and

figure out how to get grain and other foodstuffs out of this country. This official tells me that they are going to be focusing on those rail and road

options, because it certainly does seem to them. And they have been at the center of the negotiations, that Russia will no longer be allowing these

ships to leave Ukrainian ports and transit through the Black Sea, Eleni.

GIOKOS: Yes, Alex, I want to talk about the attack on Kerch bridge. This is quite important. This is an important artery linking Crimea to Ukraine, and

of course, an easy route for the Russians. What does this mean for Vladimir Putin right now in terms of access to critical supplies?

MARQUARDT: Well, you have to imagine that it is infuriating to him. This is something that he views quite personally after he annexed Crimea back in

2014. And since then, of course, he's argued that Crimea is very much a part of Russia.

He ordered this bridge built at great expense at $3.7 billion, it's some 19 kilometers long. It is the only direct artery between southern Russia,

between Russia and the Crimean peninsula, which is which has a population of millions of people. And so what it's going to mean that is that at least

for now, that road traffic is going to be crippled.

Anything that would be carried across by car or by truck is not going to be able to get into or out of Crimea. But we should note that the rail lines

are still running. That's vitally important for the for the Russians, we have seen them supplying their troops via rail. We've seen all kinds of

Russian weaponry and armored vehicles being transmitted by rail.

Russia can also access the Crimea peninsula by land. Very early on in the conflict, they established that land-bridge by occupying southern Ukraine.

That's why there's such emphasis by the Ukrainian forces right now to try to cut down south, split those Russian forces and prevent Russia from being

able to access Crimea by land, Eleni.

GIOKOS: All right, Alex Marquardt, thank you so much for that update. Moving on now and classrooms across Russia are slowly becoming more

monuments to the country's war.


It's part of a patriotic program funded by a pro-Putin party and the means to stamp out early seeds of dissent against the Ukrainian against the war

in Ukraine rather. CNN's Claire Sebastian has the story.


CLAIRE SEBASTIAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The marching not perfectly in time. But what this ceremony lacks in military precision, it makes up for with

propaganda value. These children in Central Russia will now get the chance to sit at a new desk blazoned with the face of one of Russia's war dead, a

former pupil at the school killed just three days into the invasion.

His grieving mother struggling through. These so-called Hero desks turning classrooms into bleak memorials of a death toll Russia has otherwise tried

to hide are actually part of a government initiative. Russia's ruling party says they now number over 14,000. They will apparently include veterans of

other wars.

DANIIL KEN, HEAD, ALLIANCE OF TEACHERS UNION: You see is this picture, his name, he was our pupil just several years ago. He tried to save our country

and for young people, very young people, it's hard not to feel painful.

SEBASTIAN: Daniil Ken head of an openly anti-Kremlin Teachers Union now living outside Russia says the atmosphere in schools changed overnight when

the war started. Information so tightly controlled, he says multiple teachers have been fired, some even fined for speaking up.

A fate that Olga, a teacher in St. Petersburg, we've changed her name and disguised her identity for safety reasons, narrowly avoided.

OLGA, TEACHER: I also tried to convince my colleagues that our country has committed a crime. One week later, the director of the school invited me to

talk and she warned me that if I continue, then she will have to appeal to special body of the stage. She meant FSB.

SEBASTIAN: And then there are the not so subtle curriculum changes. This video on the Crimean bridge, part of a new state controlled weekly lesson

series launched last year called conversations about important things.

It's not just the transport crossing, the speaker explains but a spiritual crossing. No mention of the huge explosion that caused part of the bridge

to collapse a few months earlier.

History is being rewritten in the textbooks. This one now includes the so called special military operation. And it's not just recent history.

OLGA: It is a historic fact that the Russian a state began with the Kyiv, the Kyivskaya Russia so to say. But nowadays, when new textbooks of history

are issued where this idea is removed.

SEBASTIAN: Scenes like this at a school in Crimea will also likely become much more common. Basic military preparation, a throwback to Soviet times

set to officially reenter the school curriculum for older classes.

KEN (through translator): It's a cheap, simple method of reaching a very large audience and to get across the government's position. It is in

essence moral violence against children.

SEBASTIAN: CNN has reached out to the Russian Ministry of Education for comment on the purpose of these changes and got no response. Sitting at

these Hero desks in many schools, an award for only the best students, a morbid incentive designed to breed a generation patriotic enough to accept

a war whose consequences they are sure to inherit. Claire Sebastian CNN, London.


GIOKOS: With punishing heat waves all around the world us climate envoy John Kerry is in China this week for crucial talks with Beijing. That's

coming up next and Italy is bracing for what officials call one of the most intense heat waves of all time. We'll show you how that's affecting people

in Rome, just ahead.



GIOKOS: Welcome back. The world's top carbon emitters are working on a climate deal this week. American envoy John Kerry is visiting Beijing, as

both countries deal with brutal heat waves, record high temperatures, meaning record high stakes. A spokeswoman for the Chinese Foreign Ministry

voiced support for the talks and hoped for an agreement.

MAO NING, SPOKESWOMAN, CHINESE FOREIGN MINISTRY (through translator): Climate change is a common challenge faced by all mankind. As agreed by

China and the United States, China stands ready to follow through on the important common understandings reached between the heads of state of the

two countries at their meeting in Bali, exchange views with the U.S. side on issues related to climate change and an in depth way and work together

to meet the challenges and enhance the well-being of present and future generations.


GIOKOS: U.S.-China relations have been strained by a number of flare ups over the last few years. But the pressing urgency of the climate crisis

might be such that it trumps even fierce geopolitical rivalry. Anna Coren reports for us from Hong Kong.


ANNA COREN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: After the planet recorded its hottest week in history, and extreme weather continues to cause death and destruction

globally, the world's two biggest polluters will hold climate talks in Beijing during a heatwave in the capital. U.S. climate envoy John Kerry

arrived for a four-day trip to China on Sunday,

JOHN KERRY, U.S. CLIMATE ENVOY: As the two leading emitters in the world and as the two largest economies in the world, China and the United States

really need to cooperate on this.

COREN: Both sides are feeling the pain on their home soil this summer. With U.S. states facing intense heat and flooding and record temperatures across

China, where even the pandas are struggling to keep cool.

LAURI MYLLYVIRTA, CENTER FOR RESEARCH ON ENERGY AND CLEAN AIR: Temperature extremes are a frightening reminder of what we're headed for. And the most

frightening part is that global temperatures will keep increasing until global emissions reach zero.

COREN: In Beijing, John Kerry will meet his Chinese counterpart Xie Zhenhua. The pair have worked together on the climate issue for years and

made a key bilateral deal in 2021.

THOM WOODROOFE, SENIOR FELLOW, ASIA SOCIETY: The Holy Grail of this visit from a US perspective would be walking away with an agreement by the

Chinese to protect and isolate climate from the rest of their relationships so that it's not susceptible to a geopolitical flare up as we saw with

Nancy Pelosi's visit to Taiwan last year.

COREN: Since Pelosi is controversial trip and the shooting down of a Chinese surveillance balloon in February, the two sides are now trying to

get back on track. Kerry is the third senior Biden official to visit China in the past month. U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken met with Xi

Jinping last month. And U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen visited last week, where she called on China to give more cash to help developing

countries cut emissions.

Experts hope Kerry's visit will lay the groundwork for COP28, the next Climate Summit hosted by Abu Dhabi in November.

LI SHUE, SENIOR POLICY ADVISOR, GREENPEACE EAST ASIA: They each carry a lot of sway. If they can find a way to agree with each other on certain issues,

then it is much easier for the rest of the world to get on board.

COREN: But with both countries still heavily reliant on fossil fuels and facing economic pressure at home, any progress is likely to be an uphill

battle. Anna Coren, CNN, Hong Kong



GIOKOS: And to put a finer point on why these talks are so important, extreme weather is battering communities across the globe. This is the

three day forecast in the American Southwest. More than 30 cities, 30 cities across the country, recorded high temperatures, record high

temperatures with over 80 million Americans under heat warnings.

And in other corners of the country, the Northeast faces massive downpours and deadly flash floods. This is some of the damage in Connecticut, just

one of the many states getting hit with more rain that it can handle. Much the same across the Pacific as Asia sees record heat and severe flooding as

well. China has now reached its all-time high, over 52 degrees Celsius with four other stations around the country topping 50 and Japan's setting July

records too.

In India severe flooding hit northeastern states, northern states rather especially hard, taking dozens of lives the capital of New Delhi was

inundated as a tributary of the Ganges river rose to its highest level on record. The climate crisis is also taking a toll on South Korea. That

country's president is seeing firsthand the effects of deadly flooding. Authorities say 41 people have now died from flash floods and landslides in

the past few days.

13 people were killed in a flooded underpass in the central parts of the country when extreme weather turned an ordinary journey into tragedy. Our

Michael Holmes has the story.


MICHAEL HOLMES, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Working in mud and against the clock, rescuers in South Korea pump water from a flooded tunnel. Arcs of water

redirected from the ones clogged underpass, revealing some of the vehicles trapped inside. Dashcam video shows how quickly the tunnel filled up on

Saturday. Local authorities say a levee broke after days of heavy rain across the country sending a rush of water through the underpass. Some cars

barely escaping the deluge.

But authorities say 15 vehicles including a bus were trapped in the tunnel along with their drivers and passengers. Divers have been painstakingly

searching for them and have retrieved multiple bodies from the same. Many family members of those thought to be missing gathered at a nearby

hospital. Their misery compounded by the agony of a long wait for information.

One man says he's speechless and says he hasn't eaten for hours while waiting for authorities to brief him. The tragedy has shocked South Korea

some people saying the government should have been better prepared after last year's torrential rains, which were the worst in 115 years. One man

who lives near the tunnel says authorities should have closed it when flooding was expected. He says he feels like this could have easily

happened to him, and he feels like part of himself died too.

Heavy monsoon rains have caused dozens of deaths not just in the tunnel but across the country. 1000s of people forced to evacuate because of floods

and landslides. In some areas riverbanks completely collapsed because of saturated ground. And meteorologists warn it could get worse, with as much

as 300 millimeters of additional rain forecast to fall in some parts of the country over the next few days.

Other parts of Asia are also dealing with intense weather. Southern China bracing for a powerful storm which is expected to lash the area with strong

winds and heavy rains in the next few days. And parts of New Delhi are still waterlogged even though water levels in the Yamuna River with flooded

the city have receded. But the water hasn't drained away yet creating very wet and frustrating circumstances for people just trying to move about the

city. Michael Holmes, CNN.


GIOKOS: Well, it's not just extreme flooding, large parts of the world are trying to cope with scorching temperatures too. The climate crisis doesn't

discriminate. It's just dangerous. I want you to take a look at Europe. The continent could record its hottest ever temperatures this week, especially

in Italy, Sicily and Sardinia. That's the word from the European Space Agency and new research is offering heartbreaking evidence that killer heat

often targets the elderly.

Overall extreme temperatures took nearly 62,000 lives last summer in Europe alone and I want to bring in CNNs Barbie Nadeau who's roasting in Rome.

You've been doing such a stellar job of covering the heat. I wonder how you're coping. Lots of people behind you despite the high temperatures.

Nothing can keep the tourists in. Tell me what people are thinking and feeling? How authorities are dealing with this heatwave?


BARBIE NADEAU, CNN REPORTER: Well, yes, you know, you would never know how hot it is outside. If you look around the Trevi Fountain today, there are

so many people under the blazing sun and this is exactly what authorities are saying not to do. And you know what I think is most interesting about

this is that other Europeans aren't under the sun outside like this because they know to stay inside.

We took a closer look at the rest of southern Europe. And we also took a look at Northern Italy too starting in Venice.


NADEAU: It's not easy work, guiding tourists through the stifling canals of Venice during a heatwave. Italian meteorologists cheekily naming a new

round of heat beginning Sunday after the theory man of the dead in Greek mythology, who carry souls to the underworld.

This gondolier says his boat can at times feel like an inferno and says he has to be careful not to burn himself on the gondola. It's a sign of just

how hot it is in Italy. And officials warn it could get worse, much worse. Meteorologists in Italy are telling people to prepare for what could be the

most intense heatwave of the summer, if not of all time in the country.

Forecasters say Rome could top 40 degrees Celsius and possibly break its all-time high temperature and Sicily is predicted to hover near Europe's

current heat record of 48.8 degrees. But it's not just Italy, much of southern Europe and the Balkans are also broiling. In Cyprus, some

residents complained it was too hot to move unless to get a drink of water or find a place in the shade.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The temperature is 46. Oh my God. And it is very terrible now because you can't stand outside.

NADEAU: The hot dry weather, also creating prime conditions for wildfires. The sizzling temperatures in Spain's Canary Islands, making it harder for

firefighters to battle back the flames there. Wildfires, also burning in Croatia, which spread rapidly because of the searing heat and windy


European health officials are advising people to stay out of the sun, and to look after the elderly and the vulnerable. Volunteers were on hand in

Greece to hand out water bottles to tourists, as officials once again change the operating hours of the Acropolis to avoid people visiting during

the hottest part of the day. But some tourists say even that wasn't enough.

CARMEN BISHOP, TOURIST: It was suffocating. I mean, we are from Washington DC and we get a lot of heat there. But it's not like this this, like you

can't find relief. Let me put it that way.

NADEAU: The zoo in Rome, offering frozen treats to cool down the animals. Though some prefer to dip in a water. The next few days could boil down to

finding ways to cope with heat, which could get more difficult if temperatures across Europe go farther into the red than they've ever gone



NADEAU: And you know Eleni, it really looks like those temperatures are going to go up higher. We've had just a sizzling day in Rome, and they're

telling us tomorrow is going to be a lot worse. But what's most important about what we found is the very difference between how people who are used

to the heat all the time deal with it. They stay inside they're not out like this. And the authorities are worried that the longer these tourists

are out here, the harder it's going to be and the more problems they're going to have trying to help them. Eleni?

GIOKOS: Well Barbie, I hope that as you finish this hit with me, you grab your sunscreen, your hats and some water. Stay safe. Thank you so much. And

even here in the UAE which is no stranger to intense heat summer heat, let me tell you, we're seeing the temperature push past 50 degrees Celsius for

the first time this year. That is 122 degrees Fahrenheit.

The National Center of Meteorology says temperatures surged over the weekend. And I can tell you, we stayed indoors. Now Tunisia is dealing with

an unprecedented migrant crisis but a human rights group is criticizing how the country is treating those who arrived there. We'll explain right after

this. Stay with CNN.



GIOKOS: Welcome back to Connect the World with me, Eleni Giokos. Your headlines this hour. Iranian state run media report the feared morality

police are again patrolling the streets to enforce the country's strict dress code. It mandates women must wear hijab or headscarf in public. This

comes 10 months after 22-year-old Mahsa Amini died while in custody of the morality police.

Her death sparking widespread protests and the violent government crackdown. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is pledging to crack

down on those threatening to refuse call ups for military reserve duty in response to his plan to overhaul the judiciary. Mr. Netanyahu was

discharged from the hospital on Sunday after being admitted the previous day for dehydration. He told journalists he feels excellent.

Condemnation is growing in Iraq over the demolition of a 300 year old minaret in the city of Basra. Built in 1727, the minaret was considered a

Heritage Site by the Ministry of Culture. Basra's governor says the move was necessary to expand the road following traffic complaints. He also said

the minaret posed safety concern as it was in danger of falling.

Now the climate emergency is not only making extreme weather worse, it is driving a migration crisis in many parts of the world. On one hand, you

have what's called sudden onset natural disasters like typhoons, which force many people to leave their homes. And on the other hand, there are

slow onset events like droughts and sea level rises.

Now Tunisia is one country that's facing a drought that's destabilizing its agriculture and making its trade deficit even worse. Over the weekend,

leaders from Tunisia and the European Union signed a historic deal, climate change and human trafficking are just some of the issues it focuses on.

Europe pledged more than $1 billion in aid to the country to help a deal with a battered economy and a massive migration crisis.

Experts say 1000s of migrants who would normally try to reach Italy through Libya, are now being routed through Tunisia by human traffickers. But

Tunisian authorities are now coming under fire for how they're handling the situation. Human Rights Watch accuses Tunisia of carrying out collective

expulsions of African migrants in violation of international law.

Migrants in video shared with CNN say they were rounded up and taken to a desert area near Tunisia's eastern border where they were abandoned. CNN's

Nada Bashir has the report for us.



NADA BASHIR, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Beaten, injured and abandoned. These are just some of what Human Rights Watch estimates to be Hundreds of refugees

and migrants recently expelled from Tunisia. They say they'd been stranded for weeks in no man's land here at the country's eastern border with Libya,

closely watched by armed border guards. Many are wounded. They say at the hands of the Tunisia National Guard.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (through translator): They beat all the women, even the children. I've got children myself. They wanted to hit my little boy, but I

protected him. I took all the blows. Some of the women and boys have broken skulls, they beat everyone.

BASHIR: In videos Human Rights Watch shared with CNN, migrants describe the horrors they have faced. There is no shelter from the sweltering desert sun

and no food. Some have even resorted to drinking seawater to survive.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (through translator): We need your help, please. We need your help. You have to come and help us. There are babies. We have no

food, we need your help.

BASHIR: The vast majority, According to Human Rights Watch are believed to be from West Africa. They say they were arrested in mass raids near the

port city of Sfax, then bused more than 300 kilometers to the east, unaware of where they were being taken. Now, many of them are still trapped in the

militarized buffer zone that separates Tunisia and Libya.

LAUREN SEIBERT, HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH: I don't know what the government expects could possibly happen other than what is happening, which is people

walking for days in the desert, being pushed back and forth by both sides with nowhere to go and then some individuals reportedly dying.

BASHIR: The crisis comes as tensions grow between two New Zealand citizens and migrants. With the country's president Kais Saied fanning racism and

xenophobia against black Africans. In February, Saied made claims that migrants from Sub Saharan Africa would threaten to change the demographic

makeup of Tunisia and bring violence and crime to the country.

Words which field anti-immigrant sentiment across the country, but also sparked backlash. Now, the President is insisting that all migrants are

treated well in Tunisia.

KAIS SAIED, TUNISIAN PRESIDENT (through translator): The Tunisian people have provided these migrants with everything possible with unlimited


BASHIR: Comments made as Tunisia and the European Union finalize a deal worth more than a billion U.S. dollars, aimed at boosting trade relations

and crucially, curbing irregular migration across the Mediterranean.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And we agreed that we will cooperate on border management.

BASHIR: The deal is set to commit more than $100 million towards securing Tunisia's borders, supporting search and rescue operations and bolstering

the country's anti-smuggling measures. But critics accused the EU of legitimizing Tunisia's hardline tactics in an effort to make it more

difficult for people to reach Europe shores from Africa,

AHLAM CHEMLALI, VSISITING SCHOLAR, YALE UNIVERSITY: They have ignored the fact that he doesn't have any infrastructure in place or resources or even

political will to govern migrant and asylum seekers on their territory.

BASHIR: According to Human Rights Watch, some migrants abandoned at Tunisia's eastern border have now been relocated to in-country facilities.

Meanwhile, authorities in neighboring Libya say they have rescued dozens of migrants from the border and are providing them with urgent care. But there

remains concern that further expulsions could still be ongoing, with many still believed to be stranded at the border.

As the bodies of refugees and migrants attempting to cross the Mediterranean continue to wash off onto Tunisia's shores, there are also

fears that others could be left to die in the desert. Nada Bashir, CNN, London.


GIOKOS: Still ahead on Connect the World we'll check on China's economic recovery. There's a new sign it may be losing steam months after the

government lifted most COVID restrictions, class laid off staffers from Twitter Africa say they still haven't received any severance pay more than

seven months later.




GIOKOS: Welcome back. New data showing that China's economic recovery continues to lose steam, the world's second largest economy expanded at an

annual rate of 6.3 percent in the second quarter, that's slower than expected. And compared to the first quarter, it grew just 0.8 percent. Post

COVID consumer spending has slowed after what appeared to be a strong start. CNN's Marc Stewart joins us from Tokyo.

If you look at that overall number, one would say this looks pretty strong. But it's not good enough for an economy like China, especially after the

zero COVID policy that every -- had everything shut down. Should we be worried?

MARC STEWART, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Right, I think you bring up a good point, Eleni that on the surface, you know, this seems to be strong. But consider

it was one year ago there was pretty much no accurate economic activity happening in China. So it's a dramatic increase from a year ago. But still,

it is not good enough to answer your question.

And right now China has this real struggle of how to raise its GDP, how to raise productivity, basically how to get money moving, and the way that

will likely occur is through investment by businesses or to increase consumer spending. So what is China to do right now? Well, we have been

hearing some cries.

And this is based off of a note I read earlier today from -- from Deutsche Bank. There may be a push louder cries for China to start doing some kind

of stimulus plan which other economies have done around the world to try to get out of the hardship from -- from the pandemic and to increase their


The Chinese Politburo, which is the big legislative body will be meeting later this month. And as that approaches, we may hear these cries to do

some kind of stimulus come a bit, come a bit even stronger. Other options perhaps on the table already. We have seen some rate hikes. But as we have

seen just historically speaking, that does take some time to get things moving once again.

Interesting Eleni, electric vehicles are seen as a way to help China increase its productivity. There are incentives to get Chinese citizens to

buy electric vehicles. And that's been a bright spot in the economy. Also, we can't mention China's economic woes without talking about regulation,

especially in the tech sector. There has been a big crackdown, as we've seen in recent years.

Now, there's some efforts to kind of ease that and make this a little bit more of a business friendly environment. We saw top government leaders meet

with the heads of Alibaba or officials from Alibaba, and from ByteDance, which are big -- are big Chinese companies.

And finally, AI could have a role in all of this, China unveiled some new guidelines about AI, but those two seem to be softening just a little bit.

That's what we're reporting to make this more of a business friendly environment. But Eleni, all of the reality that we have seen, these

realities such as decreased consumer spending, high youth unemployment, some of the issues with the housing sector and -- and the issues that go

around that. Those are very much being reflected in the data that we are seeing from China. So this is going to be a long haul proposition most


GIOKOS: Yes. I think there was hope that it would come roaring back. I just noticed it's almost 1am where you are. Thank you very much for staying up

late to join us. Great analysis. Marc Stewart. Great to have you on.


All right, Twitter owner Elon Musk says due to a 50 percent drop in advertising revenue and a heavy debt load, the platform still has a

negative cash flow. He made the disclosure via Twitter on Saturday. It marks a stark contrast from what Musk told the BBC in April, that the

platform was roughly breaking even and that most advertisers had returned.

Meantime, former employees of Twitter Africa who were laid off after Musk acquired the company claim that they have been ghosted. The former

employees say they've received no severance pay more than seven months later. And an attorney representing them says the last communication from

Twitter or its lawyers was back in May. We've got Larry Madowo joining us now from Nairobi, Kenya for more. Striking imbalance to how African former

employees have been treated here, Larry. What is the latest?

LARRY MADOWO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Eleni these employees that worked for Twitter Ghana Limited. That was the entity that's run the Twitter Africa

office feel that they've been treated differently from employees that left Twitter in North America or in Europe. The -- Elon Musk has said that about

6000 people left the company since he took over. That's what he told the BBC.

But we're talking about 11 people in Ghana. These are the people who were claiming severance from Elon Musk who feel that they have been one of them

told us, they were literally ghosted by Twitter because they didn't even begin negotiations about the severance pay until CNN reported on their

case. And when that happened, they feel that Twitter lowballed them and only offered three months' severance pay.

No stocks vesting, no other benefits, but because it had been already a long process, they didn't want to take on the extra burden of a legal case.

They don't want to go to court, they accepted it. And then silence. I want to read a statement for you from their lawyer Carla Olympio who has been

representing them from the beginning. And she says unfortunately, it appears that after having an ethically implemented their terminations in

violation of their own promises and Ghana's laws, dragging the negotiation process out for over half a year, now that we have come to the point of

almost settlement, there has been complete silence from them for several weeks.

Their attorney says they're considering legal action against Twitter in various jurisdictions, including Ghana. But this just the latest in a long

saga. There's other employees in other parts of the world suing Elon Musk for reneging on his promise to pay them full severance or only paying them

half of that.

But for these Africans, they haven't received a cent. Their last day on Twitter was on December 4. So we're talking about seven months plus here.

And when CNN reached out to the official press account for Twitter to ask about the status of these employees, we got what is now a standard

responsibility. A poop emoji.

GIOKOS: Yes, we all are very aware of that poop emoji. You know, when -- when Twitter came up and opened an office in Africa, in Ghana in

particular, I mean, there was so much excitement of what that meant in terms of the African footprint. That has now swiftly changed.

MADOWO: It's a striking turnaround here because Jack Dorsey who used to run Twitter before was excited about Africa. He talked about possibly coming to

live in Africa for six months. And this office in Ghana was a good entry point into the rest of the continent, it has a big active population of

Twitter users still here on the continent.

And the fact that the world's richest man cannot pay severance to 11 people is especially striking in this case. So that's what we're talking about.

They're not hundreds of employees, it's literally 11 people, some of whom moved to Ghana, from Nigeria or other countries and are waiting for the

severance so they can move back and try and rebuild their lives.

GIOKOS: Yes. Larry Madowo, great to have you on. Thank you so much. Well, ahead on Connect the World, the Wimbledon winners. What the men's champ

says he learned after losing his last Grand Slam tournament and what the woman's champ did that has never been done before. We'll be right back.




GIOKOS: It was the Wimbledon final showdown. Many tennis fans hoped for it delivered and then some. World men's number one Carlos Alcaraz bested world

number two Novak Djokovic in a thrilling five-set match that lasted almost five hours. Today on CNN, Alcaraz talks about what it means to beat

Djokovic after losing to him at the French Open in June.


CARLOS ALCARAZ, IMBLEDON MEN'S CHAMPION: Yesterday was totally different. You know, I prepare mentally totally different before the match and you

know during -- during the match say I've dealt with the pressure so much better than -- than I did you know, in French Open. It was just about

mentally you know, I know that physically I'm -- I'm really well, I'm prepared, you know, to -- to play this this kind of matches, this kind of

Marathon. I'm really, really proud to be able to play at this level, you know, five hours against (inaudible) you know, it's something that I

learned a lot from.


GIOKOS: And the woman's final a stunner. Unseeded Marketa Vondrousova defeated succeeded Ons Jabeur. Vondrousova is the first, the first unseeded

woman to win at Wimbledon. Patrick Snell is here with more of these matches. Wow. It was incredible to feel the excitement over the weekend.

Let's start with Alcatraz and Djokovic. I mean, I listened to Djokovic's commentary afterwards and he was so complimentary of Alcatraz. But for him

it was such a loss, right?

PATRICK SNELL, CNN WORLD SPORT: Yes, it was a devastating loss, Eleni for Novak Djokovic. Look what was at stake for him. This is why I give huge

credit to the 20 year old from Murcia, Spain, Carlos Alcaraz. Djokovic was going for a record equaling 24th Grand Slam title, a fifth Wimbledon crown

in a row and also just in good measure, an 8th men's singles title to emulate the great Roger Federer.

So much at stake, but Novak just wish he hadn't lost out Wimbledon in a decade in 10 years. That is the magnitude Eleni of just what Alcatraz has

achieved here. It's marvelous video as he gets his hands on his first ever Wimbledon crown. We shouldn't be too shocked by the fact that he's won the

Grand Slam after all, he is the reigning U.S. Open champion, a massive triumph for him last year in New York City.

But this is wonderful to see. And here's the frightening thing for all his rivals out there, Eleni. He's still as I say only 20 years of age. He grew

up idolizing Rafael Nadal. Nadal, one of the first online to pay tribute to him via social media, a wonderful weekend for Carlos Alcaraz.

GIOKOS: It's amazing what you can do by the age of 20. We should have all done better, I think. Incredible work. Vondrousova and Jabeur, I mean, that

was that was just completely shocking, right? I mean, this is something nobody had expected.

SNELL: I mean, for Ons Jabeur, it's particularly devastating because this is now the third time she has lost in the Grand Slam final, twice now. It's

happened at Wimbledon. She was a beaten finalist last year. And it was just not to be for her. I do feel her time will come, you certainly hope so. But

we must give credit to the inspirational Marketa Vondrousova at 24 years of age, this player from the Czech Republic I don't think many that are

scripted this, Eleni ahead of the tournament.

History has made as you just said the first ever unseeded woman to triumph in the singles there at Wimbledon. This is a tournament that goes back

close to 150 years. I love what she had to say as well afterwards. We had the narratives of her cat back home in Prague, she had to get a cat sitter

ahead of -- ahead of the final. Her husband flew in for the final.

There was the narrative as well of her tattoos as well as how as a reward to her, she's going to get herself another tattoo. But I want to hear now

from Vondrousova as she spoke movingly about her husband Stefan, a man who never normally shows any emotion whatsoever. Take a listen to this.


MARKETA VONDROUSOVA, WIMBLEDON WOMEN'S CHAMPION: He's like this all the time. But I think when I -- when I came to the box, he -- he cried and I

saw him after also and he cried a lot. So I think that's the first emotion I saw him over the eight years. I think he cried on the wedding day also

but that was it for the -- for the eight years. So that's it.



SNELL: Wonderful, wonderful emotion. The husband, he doesn't normally do emotion.

GIOKOS: I love this because tennis makes you cry, it makes you laugh, it brings up so much emotion. That is the magic of sports. Patrick Snell,

great to have you with us. Thank you so much.

Well, Lionel Messi's new team has formally introduced the football legend.


COMMENTATOR: Lionel Andres Messi.


GIOKOS: A cheering crowds shrugged off a two-hour rain delay to greet Messi, now a member of Major League Soccer Inter Miami. Team co-owner,

David Beckham was among those embracing the seven-time (inaudible) winner as he walked onto the field. Messi's deal runs through the 2025 season,

he'll be paid up to $60 million a year.

His first match is this Friday, and we can tell you that ticket prices are soaring. And we're soaring out of here as well. What a great way to end a

Monday. Thank you so much for joining us. I'm Eleni Giokos. That was Connect the World. I will be back tomorrow. One World with Zain Asher is