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Report: Iran Ready to Release Detained U.S. Hiker on Bail; America Remembers 9/11

Aired September 12, 2010 - 06:00   ET


T.J. HOLMES, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning,

After canceling yesterday's planned release of three jailed - of one of three jailed Americans, Iran now once again saying it's ready to let Sarah Shourd go. But for a price.

Also, in Kentucky, a man kills five people after reportedly getting enraged over his wife's cooking.

From the CNN Center in Atlanta, Georgia, this is your CNN SUNDAY MORNING. It is 6 a.m. where I sit here at our CNN world headquarters. It's 1 p.m. in Baghdad.

Wherever you may be, thank you for being here. I'm T.J. Holmes. Want to welcome, as always, our troops watching on the Armed Forces Network in Iraq and Afghanistan and around the world. Thank you for what you do and thank you for being here.

Let me tell you what else is coming up over the next 90 minutes of this CNN SUNDAY MORNING.

A prison break in Mexico, but not just any prison break. Eighty- five inmates get out. This happened in the border city of Reynosa. Eighty-five inmates climbed the wall of the detention facility. Many of them believed to be drug-cartel members, or hit men for drug gangs.

Also, it is the smallest Asian nation, and they have some financial problems of their own. But they were still able to come together to try to help the flood victims in Pakistan. We'll tell you what the Maldives has done now.

Also, I want you to look at that picture on the right. Can we take that up full and let our viewers get a look at that? You're driving down the street and you're coming up on this. That would probably cause you to throw on your brakes or swerve because you think you're about to hit a kid in the street. But actually, it's an illusion. A 3-D illusion that's trying to help people slow down a bit. We'll tell you where that neighborhood is and explain that to you in a bit.

But let me get started now with this story out of Iran. Iran now saying once again that it will release one of three American hikers they've been holding for over a year now. We had hoped this was going to happen on Saturday. But then that was canceled. This conditional release - you see the picture of there - Sarah Shourd is her name. But now, they're possibly going to let her go. But it's going to cost.

Reza Sayah is on the story for us in Islamabad this morning.

Reza, good morning to you. How much does Iran want?

REZA SAYAH, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Five hundred thousand dollars, T.J. That's how much they want.

This has been a bizarre process in Iran, and no doubt a difficult one for Sarah Shourd and her family to go through. Of course, initially Iranian officials came out last week and said Sarah Shourd would be released. Then they said she wouldn't be released. And now today, again, they're saying she can be released in exchange for half a million dollars in bail money.

The latest twist came today at a news conference by Tehran's Revolutionary Court prosecutor. The prosecutor saying today that because of Sarah Shourd's medical condition, Iran is offering to release her for that bail money. I don't think there's any doubt that her family is somehow going to come up with that money.

It's not clear at this point when that's going to happen and when she will be allowed to leave the country.

As far as the two other hikers go, Shane Bauer and Joshua Fattal, the prosecutor said today they are not going anywhere. They are going to remain behind bars. The prosecutor saying their cases are about to be completed and an indictment has been issued.

These three hikers were arrested last July, July 2009, when they allegedly crossed into Iranian territory when they were hiking along the Iran-Iraq border. The prosecutor today said they haven't confessed to spying, but there is enough evidence that they spied. And this is a crime where you could face the death penalty.

So T.J., the ordeal far from over for Shane Bauer and Joshua Fattal. But good news for Sarah Shourd and her family.

But T.J., I wouldn't be surprised if this family holds off on the celebration until she actually arrives on U.S. soil, considering what we've seen over the past few days.

HOLMES: All right.

Reza, I wonder if you can help me with something and our American viewers here, because we're used to hearing the word "bail" when someone is in jail. And that means you're going to be let out on the condition that you're still going to be tried for something possibly down the road.

Help us understand the possible difference here. And - and it sounds like, of course, if they let her go, chances are she's not going to go back for any kind of trial or anything. So it almost sounds like a ransom being paid.


Look, the process is - is similar to what happens in the U.S. She still could be charged. They will expect her to come back for a trial. But in the past, a lot of people who have been arrested in Iran, a lot of foreigners, have foregone that bail money and just left the country and never came back.

There's, of course, the case of Maziar Bahari, the British- Iranian journalist and filmmaker who was arrested after the post- election turmoil in - in Iran. He posted $200,000 bail. He went to the U.K. and never came back.

If indeed Sarah Shourd's family comes up with this half a million dollars, it is very likely that she's going to lose that money. It's very unlikely she'll go back to Iran and face trial.

HOLMES: And - and Reza, one more thing, quickly, if you can, just how serious is her health condition right now?

SAYAH: We're - we're not clear on exactly the details of her medical condition. But her family and her lawyer suggested that she has a gynecological medical condition and that she needs proper medical care and she's not getting it in prison.

Of course, it's been almost 13 months that she's been in prison. And her family and her lawyer are increasingly worried about her health, T.J.

HOLMES: All right. Reza Sayah with the update for us. Reza, we appreciate you, as always. Thanks so much.

Want to turn now to federal investigators. They've now narrowed down their focus after this week's huge natural-gas fire. Actually, it was last week, on Thursday. This was in San Bruno, California.

They've narrowed their investigation down now. They're going to be focusing on this ruptured pipe. They want to answer a few key questions here. Namely, how old is this thing; the maintenance record of it; and also, when was it inspected? Some people in the neighborhood complained of smelling gas for weeks before the explosion.

This 30-inch natural-gas pipeline ruptured - incinerated part of the neighborhood south of San Francisco. Firefighters initially found four bodies, wondered if they'd find more in the charred remains of three dozen destroyed homes.

At one point, the police chief raised the death toll to seven. The city still trying to explain that discrepancy.

Meanwhile, Senator Barbara Boxer has gotten involved, demanding answers to some of those same questions that investigators have. She did tour San Bruno. Seeing the devastation, Boxer asked whether other cities and towns in California faced the same potential danger. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. BARBARA BOXER (D), CALIFORNIA: It's going to take time for the NTSB - typically, the vice-chairman says this very thorough investigation could take a year or more. So I am calling on all responsible parties - PG&E and all the regulators, federal and state, to outline a robust inspection system that begins right now.


HOLMES: Well, a half-dozen people still listed as missing.

We turn to Colorado now, where calmer weather is helping contain a huge wildfire threatening the city of Boulder. Firefighters now say they expect to have it under control by tomorrow, Tuesday at the latest. They've fought the fire all week, unable to stop the flames from destroying 160 homes. Colorado's governor declared a state of emergency this week. Investigators trying to determine what started that fire.

Reynolds, you told me about this yesterday. They were going to get some help. Weren't going to get rain, but were going to get a little relief with the weather conditions possibly (ph).

REYNOLDS WOLF, CNN METEOROLOGIST: A little bit. You're right, T.J. They were expecting a little bit of higher humidity and lower winds. And it shouldn't be - a trend that might continue into Monday and Tuesday. So hopefully, they'll be able to really get a handle on that fire.

Hey, one thing you might be seeing over my shoulder, a little bit of the tropics. And I'll tell you, things are really intensifying out there. T.J., we've got a major storm to talk about. It was - doesn't matter how you say it, "Igor," "Igor." It was a tropical storm; it is now a hurricane. Possibly a major hurricane as we get into Wednesday or perhaps Thursday. We'll let you know if it has any threat to the U.S.

More on that coming up.

HOLMES: No, Reynolds. We got to decide. What's the name of this storm?

WOLF: You know, I started off with "Igor." But there are some people whom I really respect who I've heard say "Igor."


WOLF: So I - I think it's just one of those things, "tomato," "tomato." I'm going to go with "Igor."

HOLMES: You want to go with "Igor"?

WOLF: I think so.

HOLMES: OK. Here on CNN, we need to stick with something. WOLF: Igor.

HOLMES: Igor is what it is.

WOLF: Done.

HOLMES: We appreciate you, buddy.

WOLF: Done and good.

HOLMES: We'll talk to Reynolds here again in a second.

Take a look at this as well. Can you make out what's on this barge? Well, I will tell you even if you can't. It's the thing that was supposed to keep the Gulf oil disaster from happening, that blowout preventer. It did not work, as we know.

Investigators taking a closer look at it to see exactly what caused it to fail.

It's nine minutes past the hour here on this CNN SUNDAY MORNING.


HOLMES: Well, Pakistan is bracing for more rain. As a monsoon retreats from the country now, the new downpour comes as many Pakistanis celebrate the end of Ramadan in makeshift tent cities.

The floods have swamped nearly a fifth of the country, killing more than 1,500 people. The United Nations called the disaster the worst Pakistan has ever faced.

Turn to Indian now, which is right next door. Authorities there are keeping an eye on the Yamuna River. More than 4,000 people in the capital of New Delhi were moved to higher ground yesterday. Officials have closed one bridge and canceled more than two dozen trains. All the evacuees now in tents are being provided food and medicine.

WOLF: Unreal.


HOLMES: Well, you know, stealing, you can really work up an appetite when you're out there stealing stuff. Especially when you're stealing a six-foot python.

So of course, what would you do after you pull off that theft? You have to stop by McDonald's, right?

We'll explain the theft and the pit stop, coming up.

It's 13 minutes past the hour.


HOLMES: A quarter past the hour. Let me give you a look at some of the stories that are making headlines right now.

Mexican police are on a nationwide manhunt today for 85 inmates who escaped from a prison in the border city of Reynosa. The men used a ladder to clear a wall Friday, then disappeared into the surrounding neighborhood, or possibly crossed into the border city of McAllen, Texas. Forty-four corrections officer at the prison have been detained on suspicion of corruption. Police consider many of the escapees drug- cartel members or hit men for drug gangs.

Also, a man shot and killed five people in eastern Kentucky before killing himself. Police say this started as a domestic argument. The AP is reporting, in fact, that the man got enraged over the way his wife cooked his eggs at breakfast time. The man's name is Stanley Neace. That's who the police identify the shooter as.

They say he shot and killed his wife, stepson and three others. Police heard a gunshot as they pulled up to the Neace's trailer and found him dead on the front porch.

Also, a barge hauled the object of some real Gulf oil-work detective work to a NASA facility in New Orleans. The focus here, BP's broken, 300-ton blowout preventer. That's the device that should have prevented the pipeline gusher. Crews pulled it off the ocean floor. Engineers will try to find out why it failed in April and then allowed millions of gallons of oil to spew into the Gulf.

Seventeen past the hour. I'm right back.


HOLMES: Well, 19 minutes past the hour now here on this CNN SUNDAY MORNING.

Reynolds and I want to share a picture with you. This is - what? - the - I think the first surveillance video. Guy's trying to steal a six-foot python. Check this out.

They - they kind of got the deal down. This - this is in Australia, actually. These guys go into a pet shop and they steal this - this six-foot python. They grab a lizard as well. You can make out - I mean, this is some dangerous stuff they're doing here.

Now, they worked up an appetite, apparently, after stealing that python. And now we have a picture, I believe, of these guys in the parking lot of McDonald's. We don't - oh, we don't have that picture, Reynolds.

WOLF: We don't have that picture?

HOLMES: They went to McDonald's. That McDonald's. This is in Australia. But they stole the python and then they went to the parking lot, and then they had some struggles with it.

WOLF: You know, you often wonder, when you see something like this, if they do going to McDonald's, are - are these McRib kind of guys? Maybe hankering a quarter pounder? What - what - what exactly would these guys eat? Large, small fry? You know, are they Happy Meal people. You don't know.

HOLMES: You - you clearly work up an appetite doing all this. But then to have the picture of them in the parking lot. That was the other part of the story.

Let me move on to something else here. Now, Reynolds I don't know if you've seen this video yet. But get a good look at a monitor.


HOLMES: This next story, if you're driving down the street - this happens to be in Canada. But you're driving down the street, and you see that. What do you see?

WOLF: I - I see a kid getting very big. I mean - well, no, no, no (ph). First reaction, it looks like a kid out in the middle of the road playing with a ball.

HOLMES: Look at that closely, folks. If you're just driving down the street, you would think you're about to come up and hit a kid.

Well, that's the idea behind this, and it gives this 3-D illusion. But they're trying a - a new - a new system here to try to get people to slow down by giving this 3-D illusion.

Now, naturally, Reynolds...

WOLF: Right.

HOLMES: could fool somebody. And so what could possibly be the problem here?

WOLF: The problem would be - is that people would - would get - they'd get used to it. They'd become accustomed to it. So that then when you had a real situation with a real child chasing a ball, then you - there you go.

HOLMES: And the other part people are concerned about is that possibly, what if you see that, and you think it's a real child, and you swerve, and then you actually do hit, God forbid, a child or you hit another vehicle, because you're swerving, trying to miss what you think is a child.

WOLF: That's a terrifying prospect.

HOLMES: Isn't it?

WOLF: It really is. Scary stuff.

HOLMES: But yes, once you get used to it - ah, you'll just speed through that neighborhood again.

All right. One more I'm going to share you with here. Reynolds, you will love this one.

Have you seen this yet, folks? It's kind of blown up on the Internet. But this is kind of an Internet sensation. This is a clip from an upcoming season of "Amazing Race." The contestants are supposed to launch watermelons at targets. And one young lady doesn't use this slingshot so well. She pulls back - we - we don't have that video?

Well, I - I got stories here I don't have videos for. I can't - how can I tell the story without the video?

WOLF: You know, we're still good storytellers. I bet you can convey this message beautifully just - just right here, old-fashioned style.

HOLMES: You're supposed to pull on the sling.

WOLF: Well, basically, a slingshot.

HOLMES: Slingshot.

WOLF: Right.

HOLMES: And launch the watermelon.

WOLF: So instead of a rock, you've got a giant fruit.

HOLMES: Watermelon.

It doesn't go the direction it's supposed to go, and it comes right back and smacks the girl in the face.

WOLF: You know, they have this thing called - you know what, Darwin's theory. You know, survival of the fittest. And - and - and basically, you know, when you have something that's - that's not really smart, maybe it's - it's best gone the way of the dodo bird.

I'm not saying that this is a good thing that it happened to her. By all means, you don't want anyone to be hurt. But there we go. We're seeing it. We're seeing it. There it goes.

HOLMES: Have we got it now?

WOLF: Oh. Oh.

HOLMES: It comes by. OK. OK.

WOLF: That's so unfortunate. Oh, this is just so bad.


HOLMES: OK. No matter how good of a storyteller you are, that video tells the story better than I ever could.

She appears to be OK. But that is painful, if you're trying to launch a watermelon and it clearly ricochets and goes right back and hits you.

WOLF: Not the - not the original objective. Going out this direction is the way you want to go. Going backwards, not so much.

HOLMES: Here we go again.

WOLF: Backwards and to the left.

HOLMES: This is a try. And right in the ....

WOLF: Boom! Yahtzee. Wow.

HOLMES: We believe she's OK. We think.

WOLF: Well, I mean, healthwise. But I mean, you kind of wonder. Is - is there some kind of - is she going to have some issues? You know, I mean long-term. That - that you - you don't end up - you don't walk away from that unscathed.

I mean, sure, bruises can heal. Bumps can go down. But - but I'm thinking long-term effects, this is not going to be good.


HOLMES: All right. It's 23 past the hour. I'm glad we finally got that video for you.

WOLF: Can you imagine her in the - in the produce section of a grocery store? Every time she sees a watermelon, she's going to go nuts, man.


WOLF: It's pretty scary.

HOLMES: Coming up here, we're going to take you to the tiny Asian country - the smallest Asian country there is, Maldives. They've got their own problems there. But they're trying to help out. Their problems are so bad that they actually had to have an underwater summit last year to bring attention to their problems.

Now, they're focusing on the problems of another country, their neighbor, trying to help them out.

It's 24 past the hour. Reynolds and I are going to try to figure out the long-term mental health of...


HOLMES: And good morning. Welcome back to this CNN SUNDAY MORNING.

A live look this morning in New York City. September 12, 2010. We, of course, saw all the commemorations yesterday, the ceremonies marking the nine-year anniversary of those attacks of September 11.

You can still make out just a bit, this picture we're showing to you here. Every year, they put those two beams of light to show where those towers, essentially, once stood. And that goes over the skyline of New York. They just do it for one night. They do it one night, on September 11.

And you can see the - well, the sun's coming up, starting to get daylight. You can't make it out as well. But - but it was up last night. Always a - just a beautiful sight to see those two beams of light go up into the air to symbolize the Twin Towers and where they once stood.

Well, next year, we're going to be coming up on the 10-year anniversary since those terror attacks. Yesterday, of course, the nation paused to remember.

CNN's Sandra Endo taking a look back at the day we saw yesterday.


SANDRA ENDO, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): ...bell marks 8:46 a.m., when American Airlines Flight 11 hit the North Tower of the World Trade Center, and a nation was changed forever.

At Ground Zero, where work continues on a permanent memorial, mourners gathered Saturday to pay tribute to the nearly 3,000 lives lost on September 11, 2001, when 19 hijackers took over four commercial airliners. And those planes crashed into the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and Shanksville, Pennsylvania.

In Washington, President Obama laid a wreath for the 184 victims who died at the Pentagon.

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: This is a day of remembrance. It's a day of reflection.

ENDO: And in Shanksville, first lady Michelle Obama and former first lady Laura Bush prayed in remembrance for the 40 victims who perished aboard United Flight 93.

(on camera): This open field is where the plane crashed here in Shanksville, Pennsylvania. Construction is under way for a permanent memorial, and they hope the first phase will be completed by the 10th anniversary of this tragic day.


HOLMES: Well, like we mentioned, investigators are narrowing their search into what caused that deadly pipe explosion in San Francisco - just outside of San Francisco.

CNN has now obtained exclusive video of people reacting to the blast as it happened. But at the same time, a lot of people as well out there, in your neighborhoods, wondering, can something like this possibly happen in my neighborhood? Just how widespread are these possible underground pipelines that need to be checked, need to be inspected a little more often? Maybe a little old.

Our Josh Levs looking into that for us.

Some scary stuff here. Everybody wondering: Could my neighborhood go up like that?

JOSH LEVS, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: Yes, you know, you might not realize - most people don't - how incredibly many miles of these pipelines lie beneath our country. It's in the millions.

I'm going to tell you how many are carrying what's called "hazardous liquid."

It's coming up next.


HOLMES: Good morning, everybody. Welcome back to this CNN SUNDAY MORNING. I'm T.J. Holmes. It is 6:30 where I sit in Atlanta, Georgia; 5:30 in Little Rock, Arkansas, 3:30 out in San Bruno, California. Wherever you are, glad you're right here with me.

I'm going to give you a look now at some of the stories we're keeping a close eye on, including in Iran, where they have now put a price on the release of the American hiker Sarah Shourd. She is one of three Americans jailed in the Islamic Republic for more than a year. State media reports, quote, "A Tehran prosecutor as saying he's prepared to release her on $500,000 bail." The three hikers have been detained in Iran since July of last year on suspicion of espionage.

Also, a suspected U.S. drone strike kills five presumed militants in Pakistan this morning. Intelligence officials tell CNN the strike consisted of two missiles fired into a suspected militant hideout in North Waziristan. The region borders Afghanistan. Officials say similar drone strikes last week killed 29 suspected militants there.

And from the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico to the center of a federal investigation, you're looking at, on that barge there, the blowout preventer from the BP oil disaster. You know the preventer that did not prevent a blowout. It is now in the hands of investigators in New Orleans. Authorities used a barge to move the 300-ton device along the Mississippi River. Investigators will now try to determine why it failed and allow millions of gallons of oil to spew into the Gulf of Mexico.

Want to turn back now to San Bruno, California, now, where federal investigators are focusing on a decades-old natural gas pipe that may have been the root cause of Thursday's devastating explosion and fire. Four people are confirmed dead, six more now are still unaccounted for. The neighborhood pretty much reduced to rubble. CNN's Ted Rowlands has the latest on the investigation.


TED ROWLANDS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): Surveillance video from inside Lanardi's (ph) grocery store, a quarter mile from the explosion, shows the power of the blast and then chaos.

Watch closely. At first, people stop what they're doing. And then a few seconds later, the doors are literally pushed in by the force of the explosion. Frantic customers are seen running from one of the exits while others tried desperately to get out of the store.

One of the victims, 20-year-old Jessica Morales, worked at this very store. Jessica's friend, Dayna Hernandez, showed us Jessica's FaceBook page which, today, is filled with condolence messages. According to Dayna, Jessica's boyfriend, who is hospitalized with third degree burns, was with Jessica when she died.

DAYNA HERNANDEZ, BLAST VICTIM'S FRIEND: He tried to go back in and save her, but he couldn't do anything because the fire, I guess, was getting her.

ROWLANDS: At least four people lost their lives in this tragedy and cadaver dogs are being used to search for the missing. But because of the intensity of the blast, it is possible, investigators say, the missing, if they were killed, may never be found.

Meanwhile, pressure is building for answers as to exactly what could have caused this explosion.

SEN. BARBARA BOXER, (D) CALIFORNIA: Many questions must be answered by all of us whose job it is to protect our people. What was the cause of this blast, of course, first and foremost? Were there reports that there were odors escaping from the pipeline? If there were those reports, what actions took place in response to those complaints? Does danger lie in similar pipelines in populated areas? Is there enough monitoring going on?

ROWLANDS: The local gas company, PG&E, says they're scouring through records to verify reports that people smelled gas in the days before the explosion. More than a thousand people showed up to a community meeting, many of them demanding answers as to when they would be able to get back into their homes and if their neighborhood is truly safe.

(On camera): The National Transportation Safety Board is the lead agency in the investigation. At this point they have not come to any conclusions. And they warn that it could take months before a cause is determined. Ted Rowlands, CNN, San Bruno, California.


HOLMES: All right. It is 35 past the hour now. Want to bring in Josh Levs.

Josh, a lot of people, you sit in your neighborhood, you never think something like this could happen. But I found myself, in my neighborhood, saying for a second, wow, could something like that happen here? People don't realize just this network of pipelines that might be running right through your neighborhood.

JOSH LEVS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It is huge. People don't realize it. It is pretty much everywhere. No matter where you are in this country.

I'll show you some that will help bring it home. In fact, let's do the map first. Take a look at this. Let's zoom in. These blue lines, this is from the Department of Energy, these blue lines everywhere you see them, those are interstate pipelines in this country and the red lines are intrastate, inside the state. And you can see they are absolutely everywhere.

In fact, you have this huge mess of them, especially down here in the South, through Texas, Oklahoma and that region. All over the country, no matter where you are, you have a massive mess of lines.

Let me give you some statistics about them so you understand the big picture here and how this is impacting -- see if I can get there, how this is impacting - no, it is not working.

I'll tell you about it a little bit. Let's go to some of these iReports. And I'll talk to you about how widespread these are. This is what we know right now; 2.5 million miles of these lines exist underneath our country. And what we're hearing is that there are at least 3,000 companies that oversee all these different lines. Now, clearly these instances, like we have been seeing in this iReport lately, are very unusual. This is not the kind of thing that happens very often.

So, the fact that these are underneath us does not automatically mean you're in danger. This isn't to scare you. But the reality is these lines, when you have 2.5 million miles of these lines, enough to go all the way around the Earth a 100 times. And we have 3,000 different companies overseeing them this is when you start to get a lot of the questions we're getting now. Some lawmakers in Congress are saying this. And also you're hear something people around the country saying this, including some of these iReporters, who went out safely-I'm going to emphasize this-they only safely go out and take these pictures. We talked to them before we show them on the air.

They're saying, look what is being done, is enough being done to oversee all the millions of miles of lines that are in this map. And this, T.J., is what a lot of people are concerned about right now. There are questions being raised about whether more needs to be in general, whether this was so unusual that enough is already done, or if general, we need a much stronger network overseeing all of this, all over the country, that unfortunately could result in something tragic like we saw here in California.

HOLMES: Never imagine something like that could happen to a neighborhood, three dozen homes destroyed by a gas pipeline explosion, something like this, Josh.

LEVS: You got it.

HOLMES: We appreciate it this morning. Thanks so much.

It is 37 past the hour now.

I want to tell you about the biggest prison break in Mexican history and it came from a facility that is quite close to the U.S. border. We'll tell you why prison guards are also in trouble this morning.


HOLMES: It is 42 minutes past the hour.

Reynolds, we have seen these cases time after time since 9/11. People have to be careful what they say on an airplane.


HOLMES: You have to be. This case in point out of Las Vegas. FBI now looking into a passenger's comment, as the plane was going from Vegas to Phoenix. Now put this in perspective, the plane took off and it had mechanical problems so it had to turn back around and land in Vegas again. Already passengers are upset.

Apparently a couple was on the plane, and a man, woman, maybe got into it. He said something that just has been deemed right now inappropriate, so the FBI had to get involved. People had to be taken off the flight. He was questioned for a little bit, nobody arrested, but still I think it is another -- and yesterday, September 11th, it is another good reminder, you have to be careful what you say on the plane.

WOLF: You really do. It is a very sensitive time. What set him off in the first place? Out of Fresca on the plane? What happened? What got him mad in the first place?

HOLMES: Who knows. But he was leaving Vegas, he just lost some money.

WOLF: Yeah. And going back again. You got to watch what you say.

HOLMES: You do. Again, another cautionary tale here, folks, you can't just say anything on a plane these days. Whether you mean it or not, people will take it as a threat oftentimes.

WOLF: Speaking of saying things, do you like "Eye-gor" or "Igor", in terms of saying the name of this storm.

HOLMES: You had me on "Eye-gor" yesterday. So, I thought it was "Eye-gor".

WOLF: But doesn't Igor seem better? You know the evil assistant of-you know, Doctor Frankenstein.

HOLMES: This thing is kind of evil.

WOLF: The bad news about it is we do expect the storm, with maximum sustained winds of 75 miles an hour, to actually intensify over the coming days. That is the bad news. The good news is that the way it looks, from now through possibly well into next week, this thing may not affect the United States at all. At least it may affect it indirectly. We might have some heavy surf along the coastline, but direct hit on the United States, or really anyone, it looks like this may stay out to sea, which would be called a fish storm. There are areas of possible development we'll watch later on this morning. (WEATHER FORECAST)

HOLMES: It is about a quarter to the top of the hour here on this CNN SUNDAY MORNING. Stick around. We're right back.


HOLMES: Well, about 10 minutes until the top of the hour now.

And a cry for help from below the Indian Ocean. Take a look at this. We shared this story with you last year here on CNN SATURDAY & SUNDAY MORNING.

These are cabinet ministers from the Republic of Maldives. The island nation held a global warming summit underwater. This was last fall. Got a lot of attention at the time, but they're getting attention this morning.

And we're sharing the story about them for a different reason. Going to get back into this underwater summit in a second but we love showing that video. They were using hand signals there, Nadia, to actually communicate during the meeting. Our CNN Editorial Producer Nadia Bilchik here with us as well.

Now attention for another reason, amazing what they're doing.

NADIA BILCHIK, CNN EDITORIAL PRODUCER: They're having a tough time. Here is this group of islands in the Indian Ocean and they're very concerned about rising water levels, so concerned that they say in 90 years time, by the year 2100, they'll probably be completely underwater.

And yet they have managed to get together on Friday, Ramadan, the end of Ramadan, Ede, and raise money for Pakistan. They raised a million rufiyaa. Now just to explain, $1 buys you 12.75 rufiyaa. So let's all go off to the Maldives, right? So it is about $78,500. And this is a country themselves that are experiencing a difficult time. Tourism is down. It is rebounding, but it is down.

And the broadcasters and the entertainers and politicians got together and said let's have a help Pakistan telethon day. And just so magnanimous, the entire country got together to raise this money for fellow Muslims, for flood victims, and just very heart warming.

HOLMES: This was supposed to be a time of service during the end of Ramadan. It looks like they chose to serve. Again, this is a tight -- the smallest Asian country in population and land.

BILCHIK: Only 400,000 people. And they raised all this money. They raised some money before, so altogether they gave an enormous amount of money to Pakistan flood victims at a time that they needed it. So a good Sunday morning story.

HOLMES: It is. In the grand scheme of things, as much money as they need in Pakistan right now, the $77,000 doesn't sound like a huge contribution from a country, but for them, that is a really huge gesture.

BILCHIK: They raised the million rufiyaa for the telethon and then 3 million prior to that.

HOLMES: You have another feel good story.

BILCHIK: And another good news story. More charity, this time, maybe on a smaller level in Taiwan. A man is arrested last week for stealing a bicycle. The police investigate, they find the man is so poor that he's stolen the bicycle to give to his daughter to drive to -- to ride to school and also he goes to the hospital often. He's very ill. And he needed this bicycle.

So the police, rather than arrest him, they give back the bicycle to the original owner, but what they do is they raise money, these two policemen, to give to this family.

Now, so poverty stricken is this man in Central Taiwan that he lives in a container near a cemetery. Very, very poor. Now, are we saying stealing is right or wrong under any circumstance? No.

HOLMES: Of course not.

BILCHIK: But the compassion of these two policemen to raise the money and give this man and his daughter a bicycle.

HOLMES: That's a great story this morning.

BILCHIK: Two happy stories, and charity, let's all be magnanimous and charitable. Man's humanity to man.

HOLMES: Nadia, why don't you stick around, let's talk about more humanity right now for a little while. I need to go to commercial break in a second.

Nadia Bilchik, always good to are you contributing to us on the weekends. We appreciate having you and appreciate your work on those stories, bringing them to us.

BILCHIK: Thank you.

HOLMES: Thank you so much.

Coming up, a lot of you all will remember in school, or might remember your kids doing this right now. You do drills in school. There are some earthquake drills, or tornado drills, where are they having to do drills in case of gunfire breaks out? We'll tell you where this is happening. It is eight minute until the top of the hour.


HOLMES: You remember fire drills in school? We had a lot of tornado drills where I went to school in Arkansas. But every child in the U.S. has been through some kind of drill at one time or another during the school year. But students are practicing gunfire drills at a school in Mexico. They're learning what to do when bullets start flying. Another disturbing reason that Juarez, Mexico, known as the murder capital of the world, because of its drug cartel wars. Our Raphael Romo reports.


RAPHAEL ROMO, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): At the blow of a whistle, children immediately drop to the ground and cover their heads. This is not a physical education exercise. For these children in Juarez, the most violent city in Mexico, it is a lesson that may save their lives.

"We teach them not to run," says this police officer, in charge of the training who adds that the most important thing is for kids not to panic, and start running in all directions. The security program was created earlier this year after a man was shot to death just outside a school. The school now looks like a military compound with bars all around it and barbed wire over its walls.

This father of a student at that school says that the shooting happened during recess when some parents bring snacks to their children, and students get out to the playground. Somebody could have been killed by a stray bullet.

This school principal is grateful that so far no child has been killed or wounded in spite of the frequent violence around schools.

"It is very unfortunate that our children nowadays have to live with this environment," says the school principal, who fully supports the security training program.

(On camera): There was some controversy surrounding the program when the governor of the state of Chihuahua, where Juarez is located, said it sent the wrong message. But school officials said their priority is to keep children safe and this program may do just that if shooting erupts just outside the classroom. Raphael Romeo, CNN, Atlanta.


HOLMES: Good morning.

After canceling the release of one of three jailed Americans, Iran once again saying Sarah Shourd can go, but for a price.

And Igor, now at hurricane strength, we'll tell you where this storm is headed.

Hello to you all from the CNN Center in Atlanta, Georgia. This is your CNN SUNDAY MORNING, 7:00 a.m., where I sit here in Atlanta. Wherever you may be, thank you for being right here with us.

Well, will she or won't she be released? We have been getting different stories and some would say even a run around possibly from Iran. But a prosecutor now saying that Sarah Shourd will be released, but bail needs to be paid first. This after saying her release was canceled because the judicial process was not complete. She is one of three Americans being detained in Iran. Been detained there for the past year.

Our International Correspondent Reza Sayah live for us covering the story for us in Islamabad.

How much do they want, Reza?

REZA SAYAH, CNN INT'L. CORRESPONDENT: Iranian officials, T.J., are saying give us $500,000 in bail money and we will release Sarah Shourd. This whole process has been a bizarre one in Iran. Of course, initially, Iranian officials came out last week and said Sarah Shourd will be released. And then they said, no, she's not going to be released.

Again today, they're saying she can be released in exchange for $500,000 in bail money. The announcement was made today at a press conference by Tehran's Revolutionary Court prosecutor. The prosecutor saying, according to state media, that because of Sarah Shourd's medical condition, Iran is offering to release her, and allow her to go home in exchange for that bail money.

I just got off the phone with a lawyer representing all three hikers, and he tells me that everything is in place. They are waiting for the $500,000 to be deposited into an account. The Swiss embassy is going to play a role in all of this. Of course Iran and the U.S. do not have-