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Awaiting Latest Hostage-Prisoner Exchange; Blinken: NATO Support for Ukraine is Unwavering; Pope's COP28 Change of Plans; 9 American Hostages still believed to be Held by Hamas; Pope Francis Cancels Dubai Trip on Doctor's Advice. Aired 9-10a ET

Aired November 29, 2023 - 09:00   ET




JULIA CHATTERLEY, CNNI HOST: It's 9 am here in New York. I'm Julia Chatterley. This is "Connect the World". This hour waiting for good news,

the truce between Israel and Hamas is now in its sixth and possibly final day, with more hostages set to be released.

America's top diplomat declares NATO support for Ukraine is "Unwavering". But does that mean more cash, details just ahead. And Pope Francis cancels

his trip to COP28 Climate Summit in Dubai on doctor's orders.

Welcome once again. It's the sixth day of the Israel Hamas truce with another hostage prisoner swap set to happen in the coming hours. But will

it be the last day of that truce? Well, negotiators in Qatar are working with Representatives from the United States and Egypt to extend the pause

in fighting and hopefully get more hostages out of Gaza.

On Tuesday, Hamas released another 12 hostages that was 10 Israelis and two Thai nationals 30 more Palestinian prisoners were also released. And as

more aid arrives in Gaza, the United Nations says urgent help is needed to operate sewage and water services and keep hospitals running.

The UN says the war is having a catastrophic impact on children and their families with thousands of children reported killed or injured. And

meanwhile, the top Qatari official tells CNN, he's hopeful an extension to the truce will be announced by days end, take a listen.


DR. MAJED AL-ANSARI, ADVISER TO QATARI PRIME MINISTER: We are hopeful that within a couple of hours we will have the release of the final batch. But

also we will be able to announce an extension. We are working on an extension that will be guaranteed by the same provision that guarantee the

release today which is that every day we'd have to include at least 10 hostages coming out and 30 hostages -- prisoners from the Israeli prisons.

And we are very optimistic that we will have good news to share today.

KAITLAN COLLINS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: OK, so you do expect that an extension with the same parameters that are in place right now will be announced once

the six groups of hostages have been released? Is that right?

DR. AL-ANSARI: We are optimistic that we will be able to make that announcement during the day.


CHATTERLEY: Our Ben Wedeman joins us now from Jerusalem. Ben obviously, we're watching as we have been now for a number of days waiting for the

hostages to be released by Hamas and of course, the exchange of prisoners or detainees on the Israeli side as well. But I think optimistic, hopeful

were the important words there on the prospect of extending this truce beyond today, which is also a key question.

BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes. I mean, the all signs indicate that both Hamas and Israel are interested in an extension.

Now there are differences of how long they want to extend. Hamas has said perhaps four days. The Israelis are talking about perhaps two and three.

Negotiators say that as far as the captive still being held in Gaza, there are only enough for two more days of exchanges, if that only includes women

and children. The next phase of course, is men and of course soldiers, Israeli soldiers as well who were taken captive on the seventh of October.

And it's important to keep in mind that Hamas oftentimes extracts at very high price when it comes to soldiers. If you'll remember Gilad Shalit, that

Israeli soldier who's captured in Gaza in 2006, released in 2011, him just one individual was exchanged for more than a thousand Palestinian prisoners

and reservists. So that stage if we even get to that is going to be much more difficult and much thornier Julia.

CHATTERLEY: Yes. And we heard from the Adviser to the Qatari Prime Minister there as well was that there are seemingly parallel discussions being taken

place. The focus of course was on humanitarian releases like women and children then perhaps the men and then to your point on to perhaps


But the demand is on the other side of that, clearly that would be part of I assume a separate negotiation. Can we talk about the Palestinians that

have been released up to now and what happens beyond this?

Because what we did see earlier today as well was the fact that the Israeli operations in the West Bank seem to have stepped up as well. What can you

tell us about what's taking place there and the risk that that becomes a greater flashpoint in these broader negotiations too?


WEDEMAN: Well, there have been a series of Israeli raves throughout the West Bank, but the biggest one began about 9 pm local time last night and

Jenin in the Northern West Bank, where dozens of Israeli mere big vehicles, backed up by bulldozers with drones overhead went into the City of Jenin,

the city was declared a closed military area.

The Israelis are focusing on the Jenin Refugee Camp. We were actually there yesterday afternoon before the Israeli incursion. Now the Israelis say that

this is an anti-terrorist activity in the process. So far we understand that four people have been killed.

Two of them, according to "Doctors without Border" died because they could not access hospitals because the Israeli -- the Israeli forces were barring

them from going to the hospital. In addition to that two Palestinian boys, one aged 14, one aged 9 were shot dead by Israeli forces in and around the


Now when we were there yesterday, what we saw was that this camp, as the roads have been plowed by Israeli bulldozers. Many of the walls are packed

with battles past, there's lots of debris in the street. In fact, residents told us that since August of this year the Israelis have carried out more

than 35 incursions inside the camp.

And of course, the West Bank is a major concern for instance to the United States which is saying that you know the death toll among Palestinians has

exceeded 240 since the beginning of the war in Gaza. And there's a concern that the West Bank could sort of represent a serious challenge going

forward if anybody is interested in some sort of solution resolution of this decade's long crisis.

Now, I did speak to a diplomat, senior diplomat here in Jerusalem the other day who noted that what we're seeing as a result of the prisoner releases

and the detainee releases by Israel of Palestinians is that the popularity of Hamas in the West Bank is surging, Julia?

CHATTERLEY: Yeah, we cannot take her eyes off what's taking place in the West Bank as we continue to focus on the negotiations over Gaza. Vital

point, Ben Wedeman there in Jerusalem for us. Thank you. Now the need for food, clothing and medical supplies for people in Gaza remains as urgent as

ever, even with the ongoing humanitarian pause in the fighting between Israel and Hamas.

Trucks filled with critical aid are getting into Gaza. And the first of three plane (ph) loads of U.S. supplies bound for Gaza arrived in Egypt

Tuesday. The flow of supplies will help, but clearly it's far from -- Larry Madowo is in Cairo, Egypt for us at this moment.

Larry, I think one of the crucial questions is for all the aid that we're now seeing getting in. And I think the Head of the U.S. aide said that it

was 240 trucks per day now. Is it getting to the north, which has clearly been severely impacted over the past several weeks?

LARRY MADOWO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: A lot of it is getting to the north. The Palestinian Red Crescent Julia says that they have been able to send almost

250 trucks to the north, which has seen some of the worst devastation. But the World Health Organization, a lot of other aid agencies also say the

needs are everywhere.

For instance the Spokesperson of the World Health Organization says everyone everywhere has dire health needs. This is partly because in a

place where 1.7 million out of 2.3 million people have displaced with no food, no water, they're crowding.

They're seeing respiratory illnesses. There are real diseases and the fear that more people could die from these diseases than from the bombardment

that they have led to over the past seven weeks. That is why the surge in aid has been coming in through the Rafah border crossing from Egypt into

Gaza has been critical.

U.S. officials' estimates 240 trucks have come in every day with food and water and baby formula and cooking gas and all the other essentials that

they need including winter weather gear as the rainy season and the cold season comes in Gaza, but it's still not merely enough.

The U.N. estimates that they will need at least 200 trucks every day for two months to be able to meet the needs there but at the same time for a

lot of people though under permanent ceasefire like this individual.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We rarely get fuel. This means we can't provide water for the people and this leads to long queues in thousands as we're not able

to operate the facility for the lack of fuel. People arrive here on foot from far, around 10 or 20 or 30 kilometers away just to obtain potable




MADOWO: That is one of the few water desalination plants still operating there. You can see the long lines of people trying to get every drop of

water that they can get. But in assist -- in a place where they don't have enough fuel to run these plants, that's the problem. The sewage system is

at capacity in some places. So the problems here are greater. And if this truce does not get extended today as possible, then that means that for a

lot more people that back to suffering for an indefinite period of time, Julia.

CHATTERLEY: Yeah, it goes back to what we were saying at the beginning of this discussion about the Chief of U.S. Aid Stephanie Powers. And she was

saying that there are some kind of discussions taking place to try and maintain that supply of aid trucks into Gaza even if the truce ends. What

we're hearing on the prospects of that Larry, if anything?

MADOWO: U.S. officials are talking to Israeli officials to make sure that there are pathways to bring in aid into Gaza, even as this truce is not

extended. But they also say that whatever amount of aid will not be enough that the next phase of this has got to be bringing in commercial goods into

Gaza, whether the truce is extended or not.

Because if people go to the market but they can't buy basic essentials, you can't run a society like that. And that they have to make sure that

whatever activity that Israel continues in Gaza minimizes harm to civilians. But still that you can allow for pathways for people to have a

semblance of normalcy. They can go to market and buy essential goods and kids and civilians are not harmed in that activity. It's going to be

difficult. We don't have an announcement of that yet.

CHATTERLEY: Yeah. But at least the discussions are being had Larry Madowo in Cairo for us for now thank you. OK still to come on CNN, the U.S. says

NATO support for Ukraine in its war with Russia is unwavering, and shows no signs of fatigue, a live report on that ahead. Plus, Ukraine is challenging

Russia's edge in electronic warfare. We'll look at the smart devices being deployed on the battlefield.


CHATTERLEY: Welcome back to "Connect the World". Secretary of State Antony Blinken says the U.S. would like to see a new extension of the ceasefire

agreement between Israel and Hamas after the current one expires in the coming hours. Take a listen.


ANTONY BLINKEN, U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE: We'd like to see the pause extended because what it is enabled first and foremost is, hostages being

released. It's also enabled us to surge humanitarian assistance into the people of Gaza who so desperately needed.


CHATTERLEY: And during those remarks in Brussels, the Secretary also emphasized that NATO allies stand strong in their support for Ukraine in

its ongoing war with Russia. And there's no sense of fatigue. Kyiv has expressed concern that the Israeli Hamas war may be shifting the world's

attention away from Ukraine.


And on Capitol Hill Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer says, he'll bring the Biden Administration's $105 billion national security funding request

to the floor for a vote as soon as next week. The White House has been pushing the aid package that ties funding for Israel and Ukraine together

now for weeks.

Schumer told the Democratic colleagues on Sunday the U.S. must ensure its allies have the necessary military capabilities to confront its enemies.

But as we've now long been reporting, the effort to pass the aid package faces steep hurdles in getting through Congress, since lawmakers are at

odds over the aid bills. In fact, some lawmakers are not even confident the measure will pass this year.

For more let's bring in Clare Sebastian, who's following the story now for us from London. Clare, unwavering support and no fatigue. Even the

Ukrainians themselves have acknowledged that there is fatigue. There's fatigue in Ukraine itself as well with how long the fighting has been going

on. The question is and this is the vital point, can the U.S. overcome its differences and provide the funding that Ukraine desperately needs? Word is

a one thing actions are another.

CLARE SEBASTIAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: This is the big issue, Julia. Because you can say that support is unwavering. But the fact of the matter is they

haven't passed that funding yet. And what is left in terms of U.S. funding essentially has to be rationed meted out in the words of the Pentagon.

Case in point the last U.S. aid package to Ukraine was worth around $100 million. You know, in the earlier months of the year we've seen individual

packages worth in the billions. So the packages are getting smaller. Ukraine is feeling it and yes, they are looking for these kinds of

comments, this optics, this rhetoric that Ukraine's allies still steadfast that there's no fatigue.

But they also want to see concrete support. They want to see more you know weapons, the high tech weapons, the cruise missiles, they've been getting

artillery ammunition is still a big deal. But in the situation that Ukraine is in where Russia still has superior manpower, it still has superior

industrial capacity even with the efforts of Ukraine's allies.

Ukraine is increasingly turning to technology to try to get the edge in this conflict. And one of the areas is an electronic warfare, take a look.


SEBASTIAN (voice-over): It looks like little more than a cluster of TV aerials. And yet this Ukrainian drone has just destroyed a critical piece

of Russia's electronic arsenal. The commander who operated the drone says he wanted his video to go viral.

PAVLO PETRYCHENKO, UKRAINIAN DRONE COMMANDER: On this video other reconnaissance units will be able to see how such antenna looks like in

detail and in the future identify them on the battlefield.

SEBASTIAN (voice-over): Pavlo Petrychenko is stationed on the most active part of Ukraine's eastern front, his unit helping defend the town of

Avdiivka from a Russian onslaught.

SEBASTIAN: Why is it so important to destroy these electronic warfare systems in particular?

PETRYCHENKO: I am grateful to our partners to NATO to the whole civilized world who give us these weapons. All these weapons are highly accurate.

They are guided by satellite systems. Russia tries to counter these weapons with electronic warfare systems.

SEBASTIAN (voice-over): For Russia electronic warfare and invisible battleground where electromagnetic waves are used to jam or even alter

enemy GPS signals, as well as disrupting radio waves, radar and even cell signals has provided an unexpected advantage of Ukraine's more

sophisticated weapons.

U.S. provided guided missiles even some essential High Mars rocket launchers had been compromised. And drones the most frequent victims, this

published by a pro-Kremlin news outlet purportedly shows the moment Russian jammers struck.

KARI BINGEN, AEROSPACE SECURITY PROJECT, CSIS: So GPS jamming is basically brute force power. So think of it if you're -- if your stereos on at home

and you've got low music playing and your neighbors blasting their music next door. And you can hear it and it overpowers your stereo.

SEBASTIAN (voice-over): Ukraine's Minister of Digital Transformation who has spearheaded a 100 fold increase in drone production this year says

electronic warfare is now a top priority.

MYKHAILO FEDOROV, UKRAINIAN DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION MINISTER: The new vision for the development of electronic warfare includes protecting every piece

of equipment every trench, every person, comprehensive protection of the entire battlefield and the rear using electronic warfare.

SEBASTIAN (voice-over): Ukraine is playing catch up here. The Head of the Country's Armed Forces admitting in a recent essay, Russia has "Significant

electronic warfare superiority".

BINGEN: I think what's been interesting is to see these jamming systems being co-located with Russian forces. I think it's really giving insight

into how Russia is integrating them into their military plans and their force movements.


SEBASTIAN (voice-over): And Russia is not trying to hide this. The Official Defense Ministry TV Channel showing off jamming equipment on tanks aimed to

prevent enemy drones getting too close. Then even on state media an armored train said to be kitted out with electronic warfare defenses.

SEBASTIAN: Do you think that electronic warfare is one of the things that could potentially turn the tide in this conflict?

FEDOROV: One tool is not enough to achieve a breakthrough. It needs to be a combination of certain actions. We're never going to have as much manpower

as Russia but technology can change that, we need to continue scaling it up.


SEBASTIAN (on camera): So Julia, they are trying to step off efforts on the one hand to destroy Russia's electronic warfare equipment to automate those

efforts. And on the other hand to better them essentially in this technology, it's increasingly urgent. Over the weekend we saw what local

officials called the biggest drone attack by Russia on the Capital Kyiv since the start of the war.

Now Ukraine was able to take out 74 of the 75 Shahed Drones that were launched towards Kyiv, including using electronic warfare. But the NATO

Secretary General warning today that Russia has amassed a big missile stockpile ahead of winter that they believe Russia intends to use it, so

defenses like this will be critical.

CHATTERLEY: Yeah, these drones have completely changed the face of warfare, fascinating report. Clare Sebastian there thank you. Now the U.S. military

says a search and rescue operation is underway after a military aircraft crashed off the Coast of Japan.

Japan's Coast Guard has said at least one person was killed and six were on board. The Japanese Coast Guard released this image of what's believed to

be debris from the crash. Paula Hancocks joins us live now from Seoul. Paula, what more do we know about what may have happened here and the

hope's rescue efforts or recovery efforts for the five that now are missing?

PAULA HANCOCKS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well Julia, Japan's Coast Guard says that they were alerted to this crash just before 3 pm local time. It's now

almost half past 11 at night, and the search is still ongoing for the five crews that are unaccounted for. We understand there is some three aircraft,

six ships who have been on this search mission.

As you say they have found the area where they see what they believe is the wreckage of the U.S. military aircraft. Now Japan's Vice Defense Chief has

said that the U.S. military has told them that they believe it was an emergency water landing, saying they believe that the pilot tried their

best until the end and was in fact in control of the aircraft until it hit the water.

Now of course the priority at this point is to find any of those that were still on board. We understand also that there are concerns in Okinawa for

example the Governor of Okinawa, where the majority of the U.S. troops are stationed, has actually asked the U.S. military to ground these aircraft,

the Ospreys until an investigation has been done into what exactly happened.

The cause of this crash at this point is unknown. In Tokyo though, Japanese officials the government is saying that that's premature saying at this

point the priority is to save lives. But there have been a number of incidents and accidents with these Osprey aircraft just a few months ago in


There were three U.S. Marines that were killed and several more seriously injured in an accident a crash during training activities there. And last

year there were five U.S. Marines killed in California during a training accident. And then also four U.S. service members killed in Norway during

the training exercise with NATO. So certainly this is a concern.

We have the Governor of Okinawa saying that it is prudent to ground these aircraft. But at this point, the priority is on the search and rescue

mission. We understand from those in Tokyo saying the priority has to be at this point to save lives. And they can look at the aircraft itself later

on, Julia?

CHATTERLEY: Yeah. Paula, very quickly, just for completeness. Have the U.S. military responded in any way? Because I think a lot of us when they heard

Osprey were, as you point out they recognize the name because we have seen a number of incidents over just the past 18 months or so. Have they

responded on that request for grounding them?

HANCOCKS: No response. And of course it is a request. It's not a binding request. But no, they haven't replied to that.

CHATTERLEY: Interesting. Paul Hancocks, thank you. Now coming up, a little later there's been a change of plans for one of the biggest names expected

at the COP28 Climate Summit later this week in Dubai, the details next.



CHATTERLEY: Welcome back. I'm Julia Chatterley in New York and you're watching "Connect the World". And more now on our top story. Negotiators

are still talking trying to extend the truce between Israel and Hamas now into its sixth and possibly final day.

A top Qatari official says he's hopeful for an extension announcement by day's end. Israel has also been given the names of another group of

hostages due to be freed sometime today. Since the truce in Gaza began last Friday, Hamas has also released 81 hostages.

And Israel has freed 180 Palestinians from prison, many of course, of whom were detained but never charged. Oren Liebermann joins us now from Tel

Aviv. Oren, once again we're waiting to hear the details of when those hostages are released into the hands of the Red Cross and the prisoners of

course released or detainees released from Israel.

But I think our focus once again needs to be on the prospect of hearing about a further extension of this deal. What it may look like and perhaps

whether the terms of this alter given that they're running out of women and children to hand back?

OREN LIEBERMANN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Julia, you're absolutely right. We're looking at two different countdowns right now. The first is in the

immediate term here, the countdown until the release of the final group of hostages under the current extension of the agreement. There was the

original four days, and then these additional two days.

So if there is no extension we're in the final day we expect 10 more Israeli women and children to be released. One of our key questions will

there be any Americans on the list? There were three that should have been able to be released and set free from Hamas captivity.

Under the agreement, one already was that's four-year-old Abigail Edan. Now we're waiting to see who the two others are. And then shortly after that we

expect to see of course the release of 30 Palestinian women and children from Israeli prisons.

Then it's the bigger countdown. And that is to the end of the truce and what might be the resumption of fighting, which would be early tomorrow

morning. Israel has promised essentially to go even bigger in its campaign once the fighting restarts. And Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has made

clear the fighting will restart.

Now it's worth noting that countries have expressed quite a measure of optimism that the deal and the truce can be extended for the release of

more Israeli women and children. But this is as you pointed out only a finite number. Once you get past the women and children you then have to

look at different groups to set free elderly men and then men and women who are soldiers.


The question there is do you need an entirely new agreement? And if you do, do you have the time to even negotiate that as the clock ticks down here?

Remember, the initial agreement took weeks of delicate negotiations. And even if you have the basis on which to build with that agreement the new

terms, the new ratios how it works, all of that may need to be figured out once again when time is running out.

CHATTERLEY: Yeah, and what we heard from the Adviser to their Qatari Prime Minister earlier, he was talking to our colleague, Kaitlan Collins. He

talked about the prospect of parallel discussions taking place with regards not only what happens as far as the women and children are concerned but

also potentially the men, potentially the soldiers too.

And of course to your point, the question then as we look to the Israeli side and what they're willing to do as far as releasing detainees and

prisoners? We're obviously expecting that to take place today. But the quantities that come into play for those individual buckets of hostages.

LIEBERMANN: Absolutely. As of right now, the Israeli Prime Minister estimate of the number of hostages is 161. That includes 35 women, not all

are eligible to be released under the current deal, because some are soldiers, some might be foreign nationals, that's another group included in

that 161.

There is also a finite number on the other side, that is to say Israel has now put out a total of 350 Palestinian women and children who could be

released from Israeli prisons. After today's exchange there will be 210 released so that leaves 140. And if this process continues even that number

begins to run down.

So if Qatar is able to have these parallel negotiations there needs to be essentially a growing group on both sides Israeli hostages that Hamas is

willing to release Palestinian prisoners that Israel is willing to release. And this all has to go and come together very quickly. The international

pressure is there.

The U.S., the Qataris, the Egyptians and many, many others want to see this truce extended. I would say that domestic pressure is there on Israel with

all the families here wanting to see hostages released. But it has to coalesce in negotiations and come together. And that has always been the

biggest question.

CHATTERLEY: Oren Liebermann, great to have you. Thank you so much for that report. Now, America's top diplomat says he's focused on extending the

pause in Israel's offensive in Gaza to get more hostages out and more aid in. Secretary of State Antony Blinken heads to the Middle East later

Wednesday, his third trip to the region since the start of the Israel Hamas war.

It comes as the White House urges Israel to be more precise in its targeting of Hamas, wants military operations resume to help limit

casualties. Arlette Saenz is at the White House for us. Arlette, there's a clear three pronged focus here. It's about the truce. It's about hostages.

It's about aid and also perhaps a calibration of their focus once this war resumes beyond the truce. Let's start with the hostages though, the

American hostages in particular.

ARLETTE SAENZ, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Yeah, Julia. The White House is hopeful that there will be two American women released from captivity in

the coming days. They haven't been able to pinpoint exactly when or if they have assurances that that will happen.

But it is believed that there are two women who had fall into that category of the 50 men -- women and children that had initially been negotiated to

be released by Hamas. Now it comes as there has been a lot of pressure in these negotiations as they are seeking not just to get all the hostages out

but the American hostages out.

Of course there are nine total that are still being held. They had released that four-year-old Abigail Edan on Sunday. And so the White House is

watching in the coming hours whether to see any if any Americans will be part of this latest release.

And at the same time top administration officials are really focused on working towards extending this pause, extending the truce that is currently

exist between Israel and Hamas. You heard Secretary of State Antony Blinken saying that will be a key focus for him as he heads to Israel a bit later


We're also expecting the Special Envoy for Hostage Affairs, Roger Carstens. He will be in Israel to work with Blinken on this as well as meeting with

the families of American and Israeli hostages. And CIA Director Bill Burns has been very plugged in on these talks.

He was in Doha yesterday meeting with Egyptian, Qatari and Israeli officials trying to work towards an extension in that truce. Officials

believe that there are currently enough women and children being held by Hamas that could allow for a two day continuation of the truce.

And then there would be talks about trying to extend this to a broader group to include elderly men and then potentially Israeli men and women

soldiers. But it all comes as the Biden Administration has really been trying to play a heavy emphasis, heavy role in these talks with President

Biden himself engaging with leaders as well.


Now, Blinken said that one of the goals in trying to extend this truce would be getting more humanitarian aid in and getting hostages out. But the

administration is also looking ahead to what happens when the fighting resumes.

Senior administration officials say that they have urged Israel to be more precise, more surgical in their targeting of Hamas to try to avoid as many

civilian casualties as possible. That is something that President Biden and Blinken have stressed that more care needs to be given to ensuring that

civilian lives are protected.

Of course, the President facing some domestic pressure here at home politically on the issue of a ceasefire as well. But all eyes in the coming

hours will be on whether those American hostages getting out the White House saying that they're hopeful it could happen.

CHATTERLEY: Yes, we'll continue to watch. Arlette Saenz for now from the White House, thank you. "Connect the World" we will return in just a

moment's time, stay with us.


CHATTERLEY: Welcome back to "Connect the World". The Leader of the COP28 Climate Summit denies using the talks to strike oil deals. Sultan Al Jaber

is hitting back at allegations that have been suggested by some leaked documents. Meanwhile, thousands of people are expected in Dubai for the

summit, which kicks off on Thursday.

There will be a notable absence. Pope Francis will not be attending on the advice of his doctors. The Vatican sees the Pope is just getting over the

flu. I want to bring in Barbie Nadeau from Rome for us. Doctor's orders take President's Barbie and we need to take care of him certainly. What was

going to be so taxing about this summit for him?

BARBIE NADEAU, CNN REPORTER: Well, you know, this is a very important issue for Pope Francis. It has been for the 10 years that he has been in charge

of the Catholic Church. And he had 20 bilateral meetings scheduled to meet with leaders that would be there. So it's very, very important meeting for


And he was very, very regretful and one can understand probably not in agreement with his doctors. You know even the journalists who were

traveling with the Pope had their final briefing yesterday. But last night the Vatican said doctors say he just can't go.

He did go though and he did attend his Wednesday audience this morning. And he walked in on his own two feet almost in defiance it seemed at times, but

his voice was weak and he didn't read his prepared notes. He had an assistant priest read those for him.

So he's -- you know he's getting over flu. He's turning 87-years-old next month. And you know he has been in ill health. We've seen him in and out of

the hospital three times in the last two years, Julia. So it would have been risky to go even though it's so important for him this cause.

CHATTERLEY: Certainly. I was looking at the schedule and I think he'd been scheduled for 30 meetings with Heads of States and Government Officials

just in terms of the time of year and the prospect of catching something from some day. It feels like a wise decision to me.

NADEAU: Yeah, you know I think so. But this Pope is really hard to get to stop. You know he really does work round the clock. He has so many meetings

all the time in Rome.


He's very, very energetic for some at his age. But you know he has a lung inflammation. Last week he went to a local hospital here in Rome and had a

CAT scan. It wasn't a lung infection, but he lost half of his lung when he was a young man to a lung infection.

And so he's not working I guess full capacity you could say when it comes to these respiratory issues. But he's also been in ill health this year. He

was just in the hospital for a surgery in June, spent 10 days in the hospital at that time.

And as any of us would worry about an elderly parent or grandparent, you know 87 is getting up there and he is not at the best of health. And so you

know doctor's order is really what he's got to do, Julia.

CHATTERLEY: Yes, and he's abiding by them. Barbie, great to chat to you, thank you for that. Now, if you're planning to travel to Paris next year

for the Summer Olympics, be prepared to pay a higher fare in the metro. Authorities say the cost of a single metro ride will almost double. But

that won't apply to residents though who hold monthly or annual passes.

The President of the Paris Regional Council called it fair pricing. The increases will last from July 20th to September 8th. And while we're on the

subject of Paris quality, PSG OMG, the last minute penalty saved the day for the Paris Saint-Germain in a crucial Champions League face off against

Newcastle. The controversial call perhaps remains the talk of the football world. And Amanda Davies joins us now to discuss. It may be controversial,

but the scorecard stands and that's what matters.

AMANDA DAVIES, CNN SPORTS ANCHOR: Yeah, but it hasn't stopped the debate Julia. VAR, once again Video Assistant Referee dominating the conversation.

It was a case of so close yet so far for Newcastle. 97 minutes, they had made a goal up against Paris Saint-Germain, on course for a vital three

points that could well have taken them that step closer to a place in the knockout stage of the Champions League.

But a handball or was it -- was awarded when the ball bounced off the chest on to the arm of Tino Livramento which gave Paris Saint-Germain the penalty

which Kylian Mbappe duly converted. So the debate rumbles on. All the rules fit for purpose.

It is VAR fit for purpose and we have plenty more on that debate. It certainly keeps us entertained even if Newcastle fans aren't very happy.

It's coming off in just a couple of minutes in World Sports.

CHATTERLEY: Yeah, my father is a Liverpool supporter. But if he'd been watching I would have heard him yell all the way over here in New York,

because he has very choice views on VAR. Amanda, more details on that coming up with "World Sports". And I'll be back at the top of the hour.

Stay with us. You're watching CNN.