Return to Transcripts main page


The Greek Debt Crisis; Deadly Flooding; The Future of Afghanistan; Negotiating with the Taliban; US First Lady Meets Nelson Mandela; Greek Parliament Debating No Confidence Vote; The Maschen Ballet; Wimbledon Day Two; The Indo-Pak Express; Parting Shots of Summer Solstice at Stonehenge

Aired June 21, 2011 - 16:00:00   ET


BECKY ANDERSON, HOST: The battle lines are drawn in Greece ahead of a key confidence vote. At stake, the fate of not just its government, but the country's economic future.

But this story goes beyond borders. These lawmakers could affect your life wherever you live.


If Greece defaults on its debt, you and I may well feel the pinch.

Plus, ahead of a key U.S. presidential speech on Afghanistan, we reveal the sheer extent of the country's narcotic-based economy.

And the Obama women in Africa -- three generations captivates a continent.

These stories and more tonight, as we connect the world.

Well, it's the moment of truth -- a vote of confidence, which could help keep Greece afloat or put the country on the road to ruin.

Right now, its politicians are debating whether to endorse a new cabinet. These are live pictures coming to us from Greece.

If they do, Greece will be on step closer to receiving the next payout from its first bailout.

Without that, the country could run out of money to pay its creditors as early as next month.

But as the protests within Greece grow, so do the problems facing Europe's leaders. A compromise on a second bailout was today dealt a blow by one of the world's biggest credit agencies. Fitch Ratings said it would treat any voluntary rollover of Greek debt by private lenders as a default -- precisely what Eurozone ministers were trying to avoid.

Well, Diana Magnay is monitoring the latest developments from Athens.

She joins us now -- Di, what is the chance of the government losing this vote at this point?

DIANA MAGNAY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, it's not expected to do this vote. We're expecting to get this vote in about an hour's time. And as you say, there has been this debate ongoing since Sunday. Parotine (ph), the leader of the opposition, has the floor. But we still haven't heard any kind of direct -- direct statement from him to his party as to which way they should vote in terms of the austerity package.

But he is right now talking about that mid-term package which will go before the parliament next Tuesday and about the fact that he agrees with the basic principles on it and he thinks that such reforms can lead to the privatization.

But there are many details we just (INAUDIBLE) agree with and that there is a possibility that Greece (INAUDIBLE) is (INAUDIBLE) by (INAUDIBLE) rather than by the actual illness itself (INAUDIBLE) finance ministers.

But it is widely expected that because George Papandreou has a majority in the parliament, his party will rally behind him, in terms of supporting a new government.

The bigger question is where, next Tuesday, when they (INAUDIBLE) austerity package, whether they say yes or no.

But as you can see, Becky, behind me, there are thousands of people gathered in the square tonight. They say this is a very big day for them. They don't really know what a solution could be and if anyone (INAUDIBLE). I think that's a -- an emotion that's shared across the board.

But they feel that they want to show their anger at what's going on, at what is happening now, and at the fact that they don't really have any influence on (INAUDIBLE).


Dana, thank you for that.

There hasn't been a more significant day in the history of the Eurozone and, indeed, of the European project. So, if you are wondering, though, why any of us outside of Greece should actually care about what is going on there, listen up. These figures from the "BIS Quarterly Review" show the countries most exposed Greek debt at the end of last year. Right at the top there, as you can see, France. Now, if Greece collapses, the French government, along with its banks and private investors, could lose some $56 billion to $58 billion. That is a huge number.

Now, you move on, you see where Germany is there. The U.K. also exposed. But just remember, you've got to get outside of Europe to really understand the ripple effects of this. You've got Japan there. But you've also got, of course, the US. And that is really significant.

I do not exaggerate tonight when I say a global financial crisis the likes of which we saw post-Lehman Brothers is a possibility, at least according to some.

So it's no surprise that the U.S. is speaking out, calling on Europe's leaders to work together. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said the Eurozone had the ability to weather the storm, but only if its finance ministers develop a simple, clear and unified approach.

Well, ask most anyone who has a financial stake in this mess, and, frankly, they tell you Europe's approach is anything but clear and unified -- or unified, indeed.

Earlier, Richard Quest spoke to the president of the European Commission and asked him what Jose Manuel Barroso had to say.

Listen up.


RICHARD QUEST, HOST, "QUEST MEANS BUSINESS": Athens act now, Europe will deliver. That was the message again and again from the Europeans. If Athens does what -- do what they need to do, then the money will be forthcoming.

But I think there's now a slight shift in emphasis, as well, from the Europeans, certainly from President Barroso. He's very keen not only to talk about austerity, but about growth, because he wants the Greek people to understand it's going to be painful, but it's not all one way.


But what is the alternative?

The alternative, I can tell you, will be much, much worse. It will be, in fact, default. It will be, in fact, collapse of the -- the Greek economy.

And I think that nobody wants that. So what we are trying to do with the Greek, France and partners, is to avoid this kind of collapse by...

QUEST: Right.

BARROSO: -- the combination of these policies, not only austerity, but also growth. And growth, I under -- I -- I repeat, is the key.

QUEST: And unlocking both the money and the Greek will to do what they should have done last year, because that's really significant. The second time around, they've got to get it right.

ANDERSON: Why can't they just default on their debt?

QUEST: Because the ramifications, the ripples, whatever analogy you want to say, would be pretty awful. Nobody would know how much debt there was, who was holding it. Banks would have to write down the debt on their books. They would take losses.

Look, is it going to be Lehman Mach 2?

I don't think it is. We're ready for this one.

But it would be very messy and a tremendous failure for the Europeans.

This is -- this is the European Union.

ANDERSON: But there are people who don't agree with you. There are people who say this is Lehman Mach 2.

Let me put this to you. The politicians are bit players in all of this. It's the markets who will work out what's going on. They will run the Greek debt down, if that's what they want to do.

This is a little bit like you and I being so maxed out on our credit cards, we should never have gone there.

Why shouldn't we go bankrupt at this point and come back competitive?

QUEST: Because if you go bankrupt, am I going bankrupt next?

If -- if Greece goes...


QUEST: -- possibly, then Portugal, then Ireland and then suddenly Spain goes into play. So what they're trying to do is the impossible. Yes, I agree with you. When you've got the economists and you've got the FT and everybody is saying that the level of 300 billion euros debt is unsustainable, you have to -- to try and get that down without having a credit effect.

ANDERSON: But do you agree with me that the politicians are bit players?

QUEST: No. No, I don't agree with you on that, because it's the politicians...


QUEST: -- that actually have to sort this out. The markets will react to what the politicians do.

Now, the European politicians have been stunningly and spectacularly slow at getting ahead of the curve. And it is -- they're clearly not ahead of it yet. And what people like Tim Geithner, who you started off with are saying is, come on, Europe, get your act together.

Now, I know, because people like Christine Lagarde have said to me on previous occasions, that's the way we do things in Europe.

Well, guess what?

Suddenly, the way we do things in Europe has blown up in their face.

ANDERSON: Yes, and watch this space. One thing is for sure at this point, this crisis is far from over. The next date to watch, June the 28th. That is when the Greek parliament is expected to vote on a new austerity package. Watch for that. If it passes, Eurozone ministers should give the green light for Greece to receive its next aid payment when they meet on July the 3rd.

Now, if that doesn't happen, the country could run out of money to pay its creditors by the middle of July. In other words, a default.

You're watching CONNECT THE WORLD here on CNN.

And up next, the new threat in Afghanistan, and it's not the Taliban. Insurgents cashing in on the country's opium economy. We'll have more on that in 10 minute's time.

Hitting the ground running -- Michelle Obama kicks off her South Africa trip with a meeting with Nelson Mandela. We're going to get you live to Johannesburg in 20 minute's time for the latest on that.

First, though, a roundup of stories that caught our eye, including the ash cloud that just won't go away. Hundreds of flights in Australia grounded yet again. That, up next.


ANDERSON: We check.

I'm Becky Anderson.

It's 12 minutes past nine in London.

You're watching CONNECT THE WORLD.

A look at the other stories that we are following for you this hour.

And a volcanic ash cloud is once again causing transport problems in Australia. Tens of thousands of people are now stranded after Qantas grounded all international flights in and out of Sydney and Melbourne. The airline has already canceled domestic flights in and out of Sydney, which, of course, is the country's busiest airport. Now the ash cloud is making its second trip around the world after the eruption of a Chilean volcano earlier this month. The eruption sent plumes of smoke, as you can see here, almost 10 kilometers into the air.

Well, at least 175 people have died in some of the worst flooding to hit Southern and Eastern China in decades. Heavy rains have been battering 13 provinces since the beginning of this month.

CNN's Eunice Yoon has arrived at the flood zone in the area south of Shanghai and sent us this update.


EUNICE YOON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Zhoushang (ph) village has now basically turned into a lake. The main thoroughfare looks like a canal. People are traveling around by boat. And, in fact, the only way that you could tell that this village is actually, indeed, a village and not a lake is that there are electrical poles that are sticking up out of the water.

Now, we managed to get into the village. And the people there are all farmers. So they are raising cash crops like grapes, like peanuts, also raising cotton and ducks. And a lot of these people were getting emotional when they were speaking to us, saying -- one woman told us, you know, you spend so much time and energy into your work and then suddenly everything is gone.

Now the government has evacuated over half of the villagers here and, in fact, they sponsor this boat service. And on camera, most of the villagers said that they were very upbeat about what the government has been doing. But off camera, they were much more pessimistic, saying that the government really should provide more compensation and also hasn't really done enough to try to drain the water. In fact, many of the people here said that the waters will probably take another week to subside.

Eunice Yoon, CNN, Zhoushang.


ANDERSON: Well, a senior adviser to Yemen's president says Ali Abdullah Saleh will return home this Friday ready to rule. The president's political fate has been the subject of intense speculation, of course, for weeks, ever since he went to Saudi Arabia for medical treatment after his compound came under attack.

Yemeni opposition leaders are dismissing reports of his return, calling them "false rumors."

Well, Hillary Clinton is defending her quiet diplomacy, she calls it, regarding Saudi women fighting for the right to drive. Last Friday, several women defied Saudi customs and got behind the wheel. They want the U.S. secretary of State's support. But Clinton says she isn't the story.


HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON, SECRETARY OF STATE: This is about Saudi women themselves. They have joined together. They are acting on behalf of their own rights. This is not about the United States. It is about the women of Saudi Arabia. And what these women are doing is brave and what they are seeking is right.


ANDERSON: Well, Clinton's spokesman says the secretary of State has discussed the issue privately with Saudi officials.

Well, London police say they have arrested a 19 -year-old in connection with the hacking of Sony and its gaming company, Sega. Now, more than two million accounts, you'll remember, were compromised. And Sony says the attack will cost the company more than $170 million.

The arrests prompted speculation that police caught the leader of Lulzsec. But the hacker group denied it in a Tweet.

Well, the mayor of Belfast calls it a tense and dangerous situation. Hundreds of protests -- Protestants and Catholics clashed overnight, some hurling petrol bombs, bricks and stones, others firing guns. Police say at least two people were injured. The violence erupted after leaders on both sides said homes in their respective communities were attacked.

Well, the Republican race for the U.S. White House in 2012 just got a little bit more crowded. Jon Huntsman, the former governor of the state of Utah, formally announcing his election bid earlier today.


JON HUNTSMAN (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We're not just choosing new leaders, we're choosing whether we are to be yesterday's story or tomorrow's. Everything is at stake. This is the hour when we choose our future. I'm Jon Huntsman and I'm running for president of the United States.

Thank you all.


ANDERSON: Yes, he is. If Huntsman wins the nomination, he'd be running against his former boss, President Barack Obama, in next year's election. In what many called a smart political move at the time, Mr. Obama appointed Huntsman ambassador to China in 2009. He resigned that post earlier this year.

Well, he accelerated the war with the 2009 surge. Tomorrow, he'll tell the world how he is winding it down. We're going to preview the U.S. president's major announcement on Afghanistan right after a short break here on CNN.

Then, it's Michelle Obama's turn in the limelight tonight. We're going to see how South Africa is rolling out the red carpet for the U.S. first lady. You're 90 seconds away.

Stay with us.


ANDERSON: Welcome back.

You're watching CONNECT THE WORLD.

I'm Becky Anderson in London for you.

Now, we are just a day away from a defining moment in the U.S.-led war in Afghanistan. President Barack Obama is set to spell out at least part of the end game, announcing a timetable for withdrawing 30,000 U.S. troops who made up the surge back in 2009.

Now, an administration official tells CNN 10,000 of those troops will be home by year's end, while the remaining 20,000 will return by 2012.

Well, the war machine in Afghanistan, of course, is big business.

So what happens when Western money dries up, once all of the coalition troops return home?

Well, there are very real concerns that Afghanistan could develop into a narco-state.

Our Nick Paton Walsh is in Kabul with that part of the story for you tonight -- nick.

NICK PATON WALSH, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, absolutely. As you say, there are concerns amongst NATO that there's a trebling, frankly, in the opium price here in Afghanistan this harvest because of a blight on the crop last year. And that's causing many farmers who, over the past few years, had turned away from opium and begun to grow the crops like wheat and saffron, heavily promoted by NATO, they've gone back to the drug, because, frankly, the profits here are irresistible and they need that kind of cash given the huge uncertainty ahead in the coming years.

Anyway, we went to the north of the country to see eradication methods being used on one particularly remote valley.


WALSH (voice-over): We're heading north into the remote hills for a glimpse of Afghanistan's future. The war here in Badakshan is not against the Taliban, but against a business so profitable, growing so fast, many worry it's Afghanistan's only option when the West pulls its troops and money out -- opium.

With an Afghan task force racing through the valleys to disrupt this year's harvest, for a while, NATO let opium growers be, focusing on the surge against the Taliban. But here it's expanding faster than anywhere in the country and risks getting out of control.

(on camera): Stopping this harvest is particularly important because the price of opium has risen dramatically, threatening to flood a record amount of cash into Afghanistan and also into the insurgency.

(voice-over): In one year, the price has tripled. That's because uncertainty about Afghanistan's future means traders are hoarding the drug. This could generate record profits, the United Nations drug control chief here revealed to CNN.

JEAN-LUC LEMAHIEU, UNITED NATIONS OFFICE OF DRUG CONTROL: We can definitely see a record profit of this harvest, meaning that those who benefit the most, the traders, which are not necessarily always the insurgents, will have a big incentive to continue the conflict to make sure that the opium business, as well, can continue to provide the huge profits we witness today.

WALSH: Eradication is the simplest way of breaking the chain that puts heroin on city streets. But here, it wipes out the livelihoods of people who have nothing, creating enemies where before life was simple.

The villagers who huddle on a roof, mourning their lost crop. It's not safe to approach, the police say, who have come prepared in case the overlords behind this $1.5 business take issue. Mohammad, who lost his leg in a blast in Kabul and his $1,000 dollar opium crop to these police, still has six children to feed.

MOHAMMAD, FARMER (via translator): We grow poppy because of poverty. Without it, we go hungry. We didn't grow it for four years here, but the government gave us no help, so we started again.

WALSH: Mohammad won't discuss who he would have sold his crop to, but those cartels are the big worry here. The war funds about two-thirds of the economy. And when NATO's money dries up, it will have to be replaced with something.

Opium is the easy answer. And along with it comes warlords and fears of a narco-state. Here, far away from the war, growing opium is a simple economical argument -- the easiest and often the only money to be made.


WALSH: Now, if that opium trade does grow in the coming years, it won't just be the insurgents here that people are concerned about. It's also what they refer to as the narco-mafia here, that kind of parallel back economic structure that works alongside, away from the government, the criminal networks, the people, frankly, in the government who are alleged to support those criminal networks, really, already weakening a very weak Afghan government here.

Now, the line, really, people say, between a narco-state and a failed state is incredibly slim and you have to remember, the reason why America and NATO came here in the first place was to rescue Afghanistan from being a failed state -- Becky.

ANDERSON: Frightening stuff.

Nick, thank you for that.

Nick Paton Walsh in Kabul for you this evening.

Now, you'll remember that the United States, of course, went to war in Afghanistan after the September 11th attacks, overthrowing the Taliban government for giving al Qaeda militants safe haven. Well, now, nearly 10 years on, the U.S. acknowledges it may need Taliban cooperation to bring the conflict to an end.

Brian Todd explains.


BRIAN TODD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: (voice-over): The Defense secretary staunchly defends what U.S. officials are calling preliminary contacts with the Taliban, not negotiations, but feelers.

ROBERT GATES, SECRETARY OF DEFENSE: Look, we -- we ended up talking to the people in Anbar Province in Iraq who were directly killing -- had directly been involved in killing our troops. That's the way wars end.

TODD: contacted by CNN, U.S. and German officials won't comment on a report in "Der Spiegel" magazine that German envoy, Michael Steiner, is mediating contacts between the Americans and the Taliban. Robert Gates says the State Department is involved.

But "Der Spiegel" says the CIA is also taking part. The CIA won't comment.

Who would the Americans be dealing with?

Not Taliban leader, Mullah Omar -- at least not directly. He's one of the world's most wanted men -- a religious fanatic who's called the Commander of the Faithful. He's had 10 years since 9/11 to denounce al Qaeda and hasn't done it.

As for others, the Taliban banned photography some years back, so getting pictures of these men is problematic.

(on camera): But experts say there are a few Taliban figures who could be players. There's Tayeb Agha, Mullah Omar's personal secretary, who has also acted as his spokesman. It's not clear if he still holds those positions or not.

There's Mullah Abdul Salem Zaeef, the Taliban's former ambassador to Pakistan. He was once in U.S. custody but was released.

Mulla Wakhil Ahmed Muttawakil, the former Taliban foreign minister, he was also once in American custody.

And Abdul Hakim Mujahid. He was the Taliban's representative in the U.S. before September 11th and is said to be living in Kabul.

Still, experts say it's likely none of these men would represent all of the Taliban. Critic James Carafano also says this.

JAMES CARAFANO, HERITAGE FOUNDATION: The Taliban and al Qaeda are ideological cousins. They are one and the same in the sense that from -- from -- in terms of their approach toward the United States. You are never going to get a deal with the Taliban that's not, if left alone, that's going to take you right back to September 10th, 2001.

TODD: But the Taliban has been weakened militarily since then and there are other changes since 9/11. I asked CNN national security analyst, Peter Bergen, about possible advantages to contacting the Taliban now.

PETER BERGEN, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: You can kind of create splits in the Taliban movement. Some people might be tempted to kind of make an agreement. You also can gather intelligence about who they are, what they're thinking.

TODD: But there are risks just in talking.

Last fall, a man passing himself off as a key Taliban mediator was flown to Kabul on a NATO aircraft. He even reportedly received a lot of money from the allies. He turned out to be a complete imposter.

Brian Todd, CNN, Washington.


ANDERSON: All right. OK. This Obama speech -- his announcement on this troop drawdown for Afghanistan, incredibly important. You can see it right here on CNN. We'll have live coverage of his speech early Thursday, at 1:00 in the morning in London, 2:00 in Paris and Berlin. And you can work out the times locally for yourselves there.

Well, coming up, a warm welcome for Michelle Obama. The U.S. first lady meets with the former South African president, Nelson Mandela.

Plus, all the action from day two at Wimbledon.


ANDERSON: A very warm welcome back. You're with CONNECT THE WORLD. It's just after half past nine in London, I'm Becky Anderson. These are the headlines for you this hour.

Greece's parliament is, as we speak, debating whether to approve a new cabinet. If the vote passes, the country will be one step closer to receiving its crucial next bailout payment. Without that, the country could run out of money to pay its creditors by the middle of next month.

Two suicide bombs exploded in central Iraq, killing at least 22 people. Another 23 were injured when the bombs went off at the governor's house in Diwaniya province. Police officers and civilians were among the victims. The governor was unhurt.

We're learning details about the US president's plan to withdraw 30,000 troops who made up what was known as "the surge" in Afghanistan. A source tells CNN Barack Obama will announce Wednesday that 10,000 of those troops will be home by year's end. The remaining 20,000 will return next year.

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has defended her decision to take a back seat in the debate over women drivers in Saudi Arabia. Saudi women got behind the wheel Friday and demanded they be allowed to drive. Campaigners are urging Clinton to vocally support them. She says it's a Saudi issue, not an American one.

A former US ambassador to China is joining the race for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination. John Huntsman declared his candidacy early on Tuesday and is already campaigning in New Hampshire.

Those are your headlines this hour.

Michelle Obama has met with the former South African president Nelson Mandela as part of a week-long visit to the continent. Now, among other things, the US first lady is there to promote women's education, but she won't be alone. She's brought along her daughters, a niece, a nephew, and her mum.

For more, we're joined by CNN's Nkepile Mabuse, who is in Johannesburg -- a cold Johannesburg -- for you this evening. What were they up to today, Nkepile?

NKEPILE MABUSE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Mrs. Obama has been interacting with people from different sectors of society. But of course, Becky, the big headline from today is Obama meets Mandela.

When the White House first announced that the first lady of the United States was coming to southern Africa, we repeatedly asked whether she would meet the former president of South Africa, Nelson Mandela, and the White House said that it would depend on Mr. Mandela's health.

Of course, he's 92 years old. He actually turns 93 in a couple of weeks' time, and he is frail, he is old, and he has been sickly. He was admitted in hospital early this year.

But I think Mrs. Mandela -- Mr. Mandela probably admires the Obamas just as much as they admire him, and I'm sure he enjoyed the visit just as much as the first lady did, Becky.

ANDERSON: Yes, I would've been very surprised if he hadn't made it. Although, as you say, he is terribly frail these days. How warm a welcome have they had in South Africa?

MABUSE: She's front page news. And I think South Africans -- many South Africans who have had a chance to interact with you have been taken aback by just how humble she is. People are using words like "approachable."

And they have selected 75 young women from across the continent to spend time with Mrs. Obama. And I actually spoke to some of these women, and they really had to work hard to get on this list. Let's take a look.


MABUSE (voice-over): Their parents are too poor to pay for early education. Here in the shanty town of Diepsloot, Johannesburg, preschools are considered a luxury. But Brendah Nyakudya says making them affordable and widely available should be a priority.

BRENDAH NYAKUDYA, FORUM PARTICIPANT: Stats were showing that children who never went to preschool had a higher probability of actually dropping out of school at a later stage.

MABUSE: So, for the past six years, she and her partner, Caleb, have been raising funds to educate South Africa's impoverished children. This is one of the tree nursery schools they've started.

For her work, Nyakudya has been chosen as one of 75 young African women who will meet and spend time with first lady Michelle Obama on her six-day trip to southern Africa.

NYAKUDYA: And what happened? Somebody -- I got a phone call, and someone said to me, "You've been picked to be nominated as one of the 75 women," and I'm like -- so, first I think it's a prank, because how often does that happen?

So, I'm like, "Sorry, who am I speaking to?" And she gave me more information, and I was like, "Are you kidding me?" So, it was a surreal moment. It was just amazing.

MABUSE: For two days, she will engage in various activities with the first lady, who's expected to focus on leadership and democracy on the continent.

MABUSE (on camera): By elevating young people, uplifting their own communities, Michelle Obama's trip is seen by the White House as very much in line with her husband's Africa policy, a policy geared at empowering Africans to empower themselves.

IMAN RAPPETTI, NEWS ANCHOR: We've always honored women.

MABUSE (voice-over): News anchor Iman Rappetti, who will host one of the Obama discussion forums, expects the first lady to inspire, but says the work should continue long after she has left.

RAPPETTI: Do we want to see more female CEOs, more black African CEOs, more female leaders at an NGO level, activists? We've had them in the past, historically. We've got great examples to draw from. It's just going to be a great inspiration for the future, and these are the building blocks.

MABUSE: With leaders like Nyakudya and her partner, communities like these believe much more can be achieved.

VIOLET NZIMANDE, TEACHER: They've made a lot of difference because, by starting this school, they improved our lives. They pay our salaries. With that salary, we can put bread on the table. Without them, we'll be no one.


MABUSE: Tomorrow, the first lady will speak directly to all Africans when she delivers her keynote address in Soweto, Becky.

ANDERSON: Good stuff. And Nkepile, we thank you very much, indeed. Your reporter tonight in Johannesburg.

Before we take a short break, I just want to take you back to Athens tonight, incredibly important debate going on in parliament, now. This is a debate for confidence, effectively, in the Greek parliament. There's a no-confidence vote tonight.

This could mean the end of any austerity aid coming Greece's way. They could effectively default on their debt, as it were, by the middle of next month. The Greeks need this vote of confidence tonight.

This is the debate going on live as we speak. Of course, we'll bring you the results as and when we get it. Let's listen in.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): -- Mr. Samaras, the opposition leader, asked for elections today. It's not newest in the European Union, the dissolution of the government of legal parliament, nothing is news or a surprise anymore. Thus, anyone has an impression that if Mr. Samaras had the responsibility to handle issues, would the perceptions have changed?

ANDERSON: Lots of to and fro tonight about just how good the Greek parliament is and whether they should be allowed to stick around. A vote of confidence in the Greek parliament, the debate going on as we speak.

We'll bring you that result -- a crucial result, not just for Greece, remember, but for Europe and the US and Japan, where Greek debt is held by many, many banks. And many of you and I as those who buy shares and have bank accounts around the world.

All right, an important vote, the result as we get it.

Still to come on CONNECT THE WORLD this hour after this very short break, stay tuned for what's known as the Maschen Ballet. You may wonder what goes on behind the scenes at Hamburg's port. Turns out it's a performance of ultimate precision. That, next, here on CNN.


ANDERSON: Welcome back. Now, chances are, just about anything you've touched, driven, or eaten today has come from another country, and it is often quite a journey.

Here at CNN, we are looking at some of the world's biggest transportation hubs. Whether it's fruit or electronics, our new series The Gateway reveals what it takes to get goods into our homes.

Well, Hamburg is one of Europe's busiest ports, but it's not all about ships. Behind the scenes, high-tech choreography is going on at what is a famous rail yard.


ANDERSON (voice-over): One by one, freight wagons are added to trains, destined for all corners of Europe. This is Maschen, Europe's largest rail marshaling yard.

You've probably heard of "Swan Lake" or "The Nutcracker," but you probably won't know the Maschen Ballet.

Choreographed over 104 tracks, this is a continuous performance of unrelenting precision. And it needs to be. Rail yards like this are the backbone of Hamburg's industrial port.

Rather fittingly, Hamburg can also boast the largest model railway in the world. Miniature Wonderland has 12 kilometers of track, 890 trains, 11,000 wagons, and 200,000 tiny figurines.

ANDERSON (on camera): Well, out in the real world, the train credentials of Hamburg's port are equally as impressive. It's the most important transport hub for rail containers in Europe.

ANDERSON (voice-over): When a ship arrives at one of Hamburg's four container terminals, it's set upon by a mechanical army. From a single ship, 160 containers can be unloaded each hour.

ANDERSON (on camera): Well, that is the key site over there. Those enormous cranes you can see are used to lift the containers off the ships. They're stacked here in the yard, and then dispatched on a freight train like this.

ANDERSON (voice-over): Roughly 30 percent of all cargo in and out of Hamburg's port is moved by rail. It's a vast network, fanning out across Germany into eastern and southern Europe and north to Scandinavia.

At several key junctions around the port, tracks converge at rail yards like Maschen. It's here where individual wagons are sorted out and configured into trains heading to specific cities.

TORSTEN FRAHM, DB SCHENKER RAIL: It's everything which comes from China or from the Asian countries. It's also form South America, it's whatever you can buy, it's going through Maschen.

ANDERSON: The stage for Maschen's synchronized ballet is set about 10 kilometers south of Hamburg's port. One side of the yard heads south, the other side, north.

FRAHM: It's seven kilometers, 700 meters wide, and there are roughly 700 to 800 people working here.

ANDERSON: The timing of every movement is orchestrated by computers high above the yard. Signals and switches, arrivals and departures.


ANDERSON: It is, though, a simple hump in the track and the laws of gravity that remain at the heart of this operation. Wagons are pushed up an incline and over the other side. Switches in the track make sure that each wagon is funneled to the right train.

HEIKO KURA, SWITCHYARD ENGINE DRIVER, DB SCHENKER RAIL (through translator): This is a 291, built in 1975. She's top-notch, she's good. Great old technology.

ANDERSON: Heiko Kura has been working with locomotives since the early 1980s. He's been driving up and down this hump for 11 years.

KURA (through translator): So, now I align myself, move the gears to the center. I'm assigned a position, I press start, confirmation to the Hump Master. Once I've done that, he takes over and the whole process becomes automatic.

PETER HOCHE, "HUMP MASTER," DB SCHENKER RAIL (through translator): We have a train in the wrong lane on 52.

The nice thing is, it's not just a conveyor belt job. Every day, there's something new. It's always a new challenge to organize the arrival of freight trains. And I like being able to step in and take action quickly in order to make a difference.

ANDERSON: On average, 3,500 wagons are processed each day at Maschen. That amounts to 150 trains, often 700 meters in length.

FRAHM: Maschen is growing with the overall international logistic market. As long as we transport goods all over the world, the harbor is growing, Maschen is growing as well.

ANDERSON: Like the port and its railways, a miniature wonderland is attracting more and more business.

ANDERSON (on camera): Well, the new star attraction here is this. It's a $5 million replica of Hamburg Airport. But it's the rail network that really keeps this place moving.

ANDERSON (voice-over): And it's the same at the port. Last year, Hamburg's port railway moved over 40 million tons of cargo, the best results in its 145-year history. The ballet at Maschen remains critically acclaimed.


ANDERSON: Just one of a series of reports in a new show here on CNN called The Gateway.

Well, let's just get you back to the debate going on in the Greek parliament. It's a confidence vote, debate ahead of that. This is the Greek prime minister, as he stands, at least, at present. If there is a no-confidence vote, of course, he'll lose his job.

An important debate, not just for Greece, as you know, but for Europe and the world's economy. If Greece can get this vote through, that'll mean that the Europeans and the IMF will indeed provide them with the next loan that the Greeks need in order to not default on their debt.

If they don't get a vote of confidence tonight, well, all bets are off, and things could get very, very messy. Watch this space. CNN will bring you the result of this debate as and when we get it.

Still to come, we'll have the latest from Wimbledon for you. It's week one, of course, including the "Indo-Pak Express." We're going to meet a pair with the hopes of two nations behind them.


ANDERSON: All right. Day two at Wimbledon. There may not have been any big surprises, necessarily, but there certainly were some big stories out there. Don Riddell joins us now. Don, kick off, one of the Williams sisters, what a story.

DON RIDDELL, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: Incredible match for Serena Williams out on center court today, Becky. This is a player who has been absolutely phenomenal over the years. She's won 13 Grand Slam singles titles.

She's done it by being a real fierce, tough competitor. She doesn't shed tears for her opponents, she doesn't usually cry for herself but, today, very, very different.

Remember, she's had an absolute nightmare year. She cut her foot on a piece of glass in a restaurant shortly after winning Wimbledon this time last year.


RIDDELL: She had two operations on that. Earlier this year, she had a blood clot in her lungs. It could have killed her, to be honest. It could certainly have ended her career, and there she was, back out there on center court today.

She won the match. She beat the French woman Aravane Rezai in three sets. And afterwards, we saw Serena absolutely blubbering. She was just overcome with emotion. I suspect that she thought she would never be back out playing a match at Wimbledon on center court again, and there she was, out there, and winning.

I'm not sure how much further she can go in the tournament, but that was quite a moment.

ANDERSON: It really makes the hair stand up on the back of your hands.

RIDDELL: Yes, I think so.

ANDERSON: She's such a star. Federer?

RIDDELL: He won again.


ANDERSON: That's not a big story, is it?

RIDDELL: What else do you want to know? Well, I'll tell you what is a big story. I mean, this is a guy that's won Wimbledon six times. He's an absolute legend. He's won 16 Grand Slam titles, and he's the third seed at Wimbledon.

But I think a lot of people are saying he's still got a fantastic chance this year. This year, he made it look very easy today. A straight sets winner in just an hour and 20 minutes against the Kazakh player, Mikhail Kukushkin.

ANDERSON: Well done. Listen, the other big story out there today is one of two guys, who I'm sure won't win Wimbledon, but our viewers will remember them from last year. They had one of the most epic games, I think, in the history of tennis. Back out there --

RIDDELL: It was epic, it was historic, thrilling. Eleven hours and five minutes it was last year.

ANDERSON: And they drew each other again.

RIDDELL: I know, would you believe it? Do you like your movies?


RIDDELL: Do you like blockbusters?


RIDDELL: Do they ever make good sequels?


RIDDELL: No. Same with tennis.


ANDERSON: Well, do we want it?

RIDDELL: It was over in two hours and three minutes. So disappointing.


RIDDELL: We actually thought it might go into tomorrow, because they were playing fairly late tonight. But no, they got it done, John Isner got it done in straight sets. He won that match, two hours and three minutes.

They could have played a match of that length five and a half times in the time it took them to play last year.

ANDERSON: Remind us who he was playing.

RIDDELL: Nicolas Mahut.

ANDERSON: There you go.

RIDDELL: So, John Isner, he won last year, he's won again tonight in quicker circumstances.

ANDERSON: Yes, good stuff. Don, thank you.

RIDDELL: All right.

ANDERSON: Don Riddell, your sports anchor this evening.

Well, there's a team in the doubles tournament that has two countries behind them, India and Pakistan. Rohan Bopanna and Aisam-ul-Haq Qureshi are known as the Indo-Pak Express, and they say they'd be happy to share a Wimbledon title. Have a look at this.


ROHAN BOPANNA, INDIAN TENNIS PLAYER: We met for the first time in India when there was a junior tournament going on, and Aisam was one of the top juniors from Pakistan who came there.

AISAM-UL-HAQ QURESHI, PAKISTANI TENNIS PLAYER: Unfortunately, there are no Pakistanis on the tennis tour, so playing with an Indian or Indians is the easiest thing for me.

The response has been unbelievable from both sides. I've been to India a few times after I partnered with Rohan, and everybody respects me a lot there.

Last year, when we made it to the finals of the US Open, I told him he was the most popular Indian in Pakistan. And more than all the Bollywood stars, you know?

BOPANNA: It's a great feeling to have, two countries supporting one team. Somebody asked us if you'd play in the Olympics together. They don't realize that, obviously, two different countries.

QURESHI: So far, the highlight of the career this year has been the French Open quarterfinals. I've never made it to the second round, past second round, in my career, and this year, we had a great run.

Both of us are top ten in the world in doubles for the first time, and Indo-Pak Express is number five in the world, so it's just been great.

BOPANNA: I think my favorite moment has to be ten days ago when we won our first title together. We had lost a lot of close finals the previous year. We really wanted to make sure that we had a title, and I think for me it's definitely one of the highlights for this year for sure.

QURESHI: Both of us made our first advance in quarterfinals in Wimbledon last year, and that's when, actually, people started taking notice of the Indo-Pak Express, and that led us to make it to the US Open finals last year, as well.

I really hope that 2011 can be the most special year for the Indo-Pak Express and for myself, also, during Wimbledon. Just playing here and on these grounds, it's like a dream come true. I never imagined a kid from Pakistan would be playing in the Wimbledon grounds next to Roger Federer or Rafa Nadal or next to Rohan Bopanna, here.

BOPANNA: We are very confident about our chances here at Wimbledon, especially because the way we've been playing, we know we have the game to go out there and beat all the best players out there, so I think we can definitely go through all the way to win this title.

Of course, there's the top players like the Bryan brothers. Obviously, we know if we do play well, we always have a chance.

QURESHI: I really hope that I can get the Wimbledon title for Pakistan and Rohan can get a Wimbledon title for India.

BOPANNA: I don't think there's any other team or any other sport where you have two countries supporting one team, which is really, really great, and we're really happy, and thanks to all of them that they come and support us.


ANDERSON: And those lads start their quest for their title tomorrow at Wimbledon.

And tomorrow night here on the show, we speak to one of the greatest boxers of all time. Sugar Ray Leonard tells us about his battles in and out of the ring. That is tomorrow, here, this time, on CONNECT THE WORLD.

Well finally, tonight, your Parting Shots. And today, it's the longest day of the year in the northern hemisphere known as the summer solstice. Well, thousands of people braved the early-morning chill to mark the occasion at Stonehenge in southwest England.

The famed circles one of Britain's most popular tourist attractions and is a sacred site for Druids and Pagans. But many were just there for a good time and to see the sun rise.

Some were having a little bit too much fun, police arresting 20 people and made 50 drug seizures, we are told.

All right. I'm Becky Anderson. We are still watching what is happening in the Greek parliament for you. Their vote of confidence expected to start any moment, now. This is the current prime minister, won't be for long if the -- if there was a no-confidence vote in his parliament.

It's an incredibly important vote, not just for Greece, but for Europe, the euro zone, the euro and, indeed, for the rest of the world. Stick with CNN, of course, as soon as we get that vote, we will bring it right to you.

News headlines and "BackStory" will follow this short break. Don't go away.