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U.S.-Pakistan Tensions; Closing in on Tripoli; Syrian Dialogue
Aired July 11, 2011 - 08:00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
KRISTIE LU STOUT, HOST: Welcome to NEWS STREAM, where news and technology meet.
I'm Kristie Lu Stout, in Hong Kong.
"It's complicated." The stormy relationship between the U.S. and Pakistan takes another twist as the U.S. withholds hundreds of millions in military aid.
The former editor of the scandal-hit tabloid "News of the World" will be questioned by police, a source is now telling CNN.
And is an NBA giant set to retire. We'll get reaction from Beijing to reports that Yao Ming may end his career.
And we begin with more diplomatic fallout between the U.S. and Pakistan. The U.S. is withholding $800 million in aid to Islamabad. Now, the White House chief of staff, William Daley, confirmed the news on Sunday, telling ABC that the relationship between the two countries is "complicated." But a spokesperson for the Pakistani military tells CNN it has not been informed of the plan. Now, senior U.S. officials say that the move is meant in part to pressure Pakistan to crack down on militants.
On Monday, at least six people were killed when a suicide attacker detonated explosives at a political rally in northwest Pakistan.
Our Reza Sayah has been watching the increasingly tense situation there in the country. He joins us now live.
And Reza, this aid cut is yet another sign of the deteriorating relationship between the U.S. and Pakistan. What is the latest word from Islamabad?
REZA SAYAH, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Pakistani officials, Kristie, are essentially shrugging this off, saying we don't care to the U.S. and they can keep their money. I spoke to the spokesperson for the Pakistani military, and he claims that the Pakistani army has conducted a lot of these operations against militants in northwest Pakistan without the help of the U.S., without U.S. money. And he claims that those operations are going to continue and there won't be any impact.
The problem is those statements don't square with previous statements and demands made by the Pakistani government, demands for the U.S. to give Pakistan more money, more U.S. resources, more military equipment. So I think you see a little bit of gamesmanship on the part of the Pakistani government, military, and certainly some defiance. But if you look at this move from Washington, it certainly has the potential to substantially change the complexion of this very troubled relationship between Islamabad and Washington.
Over the past few years, we've certainly seen a lot of aggressive rhetoric coming out of Washington, finger-pointing, accusations. But this is a move that change the substance of this relationship, because essentially Washington is holding back money and equipment. And the message to Islamabad is that we don't like the way you're cooperating at this point, we're not satisfied with the effort, and if you want to continue to get our money and our help, there's going to have to be some changes.
And it signals a different approach perhaps from Washington, a more aggressive approach. And the problem, Kristie, is this type of aggressive approach in the past hasn't really been that effective with Pakistan. It's always criticized the so-called carrot-and-stick approach.
So it remains to be seen what the coming weeks and months hold, but certainly it underscores how uncertain, how poor this relationship is at this point between the U.S. and Pakistan.
STOUT: You know, this cut of military aid, it affects the relationship. But will it affect Pakistan's ability to fight militant groups?
SAYAH: Well, I think in the short term, perhaps they can get by. But the question is, does the U.S. plan to withhold more money in the coming weeks and months? If that's the case, that could certainly have an adverse effect on the Pakistani military.
This is a large army, one of the largest in the world, 600,000 soldiers. But they're not the best trained army, they're not proficient at counterterrorism, fighting an insurgency. They've depended on U.S. help and U.S. resources. But I think the big question is this relationship and the fact that it's apparently headed in the wrong direction.
And the key right now, I think observers are saying, if these two countries can find common ground, shared interests to turn things around. And I think what's also important to point out, despite all the problems, both Islamabad and Washington recognize that they need one another, so there's absolutely no evidence, despite the problems, that this relationship is going to end. I think the indications are that they're going to continue to struggle and stagger forward despite all these problems.
STOUT: Yes, there's too much at stake to hurt the relationship entirely.
Reza Sayah, joining us live from Islamabad.
Now, I want to take you to Libya next, where rebels and government forces continue to clash. It has been five months since protests first broke out against the rule of Moammar Gadhafi. A month after that, the U.N. Security Council imposed a no-fly zone. And since then, we have witnessed almost daily airstrikes, explosions, and firefights across the country, and the International Criminal Court has issued a warrant for the Libyan leader's arrest.
With so much happening since February, we want to take a moment to remind you how things stand in Libya right now, which parts of the country are under rebel control, and where Moammar Gadhafi still holds sway.
Now, take a look at this map. The opposition movement is strongest to the east. That's near Benghazi. But we want to focus on the west of Libya.
According to CNN's teams inside the country, the rebels are inching ever closer to the capital. For example, they're here in Zintan, in the western mountains of Libya. That is held by opposition fighters, while NATO airstrikes helped drive Gadhafi's troop out of here, the city of Misrata. Now, as for the capital itself, Tripoli, it is still held by forces loyal to Moammar Gadhafi's regime, as is the rest of coastal city of Zawiya, to the west of Tripoli, and Gharyan, to the south.
Ben Wedeman has been following the rebels' progress across Libya for months now, and he says that recent advances have brought opposition fighters within 80 kilometers of Tripoli. He traveled with them to a new frontline not far from the capital.
BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Another mortar round rings out from the hills, aimed at the plains below, at the town of Bi'r al Ghanam. These fighters from Libya's Jebel Nafusa, the western mountains, have fought long and hard to get where they are using the rocky, dusty high ground to harass forces loyal to Moammar Gadhafi. And when they fire, the other side often fires back.
(on camera): So apparently they have come under bombardment here this morning from the town which is only about three kilometers away. This is the last position of the rebel fighters before this town Bi'r al Ghanam. In Bi'r al Ghanam itself, all the inhabitants, the civilians have left. And it's only the Libyan army that's there.
The rebels say that they've gone in several times to grab some equipment, some trucks from the Libyan army, and then come out. But of course this is a critical highway because it leads to Zawiya, a town -- city on the coast, and also to Tripoli as well. They say we're about -- (SPEAKING ARABIC)?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Fifty.
WEDEMAN: Fifty kilometers, about 35 miles from Zawiya.
Azizia, OK. Azizia is one of the southern suburbs of Tripoli, so we're really about as close as we've been so far to Tripoli.
(voice-over): Many of the men here keep their faces covered in front of the camera. They're from Az-Zawiya, a town still under Gadhafi's control, and fear reprisals against their relatives.
Twenty-one year old college student Rashid (ph) is from rebel-held Zintan. He says their immediate goal is to break through to Az-Zawiya, which sits on one of the main highways to Tripoli.
"We will try to reach Az-Zawiya," he tells me, "and help our brothers there, because they've been subjected to the worst crimes. So, as you see every day, we fire rockets on the enemy to drive them away."
At a nearby abandoned quarry, rebels relax in the shade. Lunch here is a simple affair: fresh camel meat and liver, spiced with a hefty helping of black humor.
"God willing," says this man, "we'll string up Gadhafi like this."
During the long hours of boredom, Mustafa tells me, they listen in on the radios to the Libyan soldiers down below. "We hear them speaking," he says, "but they're speaking in code. It's not clear what they're saying."
The message they're sending from the hills to Gadhafi's troops, however, is clear enough.
Ben Wedeman, CNN, outside Bi'r al Ghanam, western Libya.
STOUT: Now, in Syria, government-sponsored talks of activists are continuing for a second day. On Sunday, the Syrian vice president called the meetings a step toward creating a democratic nation, but many activists are boycotting the talks. As someone who did attend said, that violence against protesters needs to stop.
Our Arwa Damon is in Damascus, where those talks between officials and opposition members are taking place. And she now joins us on the line.
And Arwa, many opposition leaders have refused to attend this meeting. So just how credible is this so-called national dialogue?
ARWA DAMON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: That's right. And those opposition members who have boycotted -- and they are most of the prominent opposition members, as well as just about everyone who we have been seeing taking to the streets in the anti-government demonstrations -- are saying that absolutely no dialogue can take place until the violence ends.
There is a very serious trust deficit that exists now between the government and the opposition. And the opposition is saying that if the government wants to prove that it is in fact genuine when it talks about reforms, that violence has to end. Of course, the Syrian government has been maintaining that the violence is simply being caused by armed gangs, that they do not target people, demonstrators.
Now, the vice president also said in his opening remarks at the conference yesterday, acknowledged that this conference was taking place in an atmosphere of mistrust and in an atmosphere of uncertainty. And inside the meeting, the few opposition members who were present there were being quite vocal about their demands. They, too, standing up and saying that if this national dialogue conference is going to succeed, the violence must come to an end.
Now, the government is billing this as being an initial step towards setting up a framework to implement a multitude of reforms that have been promised by the president. And those include a multiparty system.
The individuals who have been attending this conference have been debating the various mechanisms. And at the end of the day today, we are expecting recommendations to be announced -- Kristie.
STOUT: So, Arwa, there is a trust deficit at these talks there in Damascus. Remind us of the violence outside the Syrian capital. What is your understanding of the situation, for example, in Homs and in Hama?
DAMON: Well, according to what we're hearing from activists and from residents, Hama is now a city under siege. The military, according to residents and eyewitnesses and activists, entered -- the city (ph) tried to enter it on the outskirts earlier in the week, and that caused many of the opposition members to in fact refuse the invitation to this conference. One leading opposition member (INAUDIBLE) saying that, "On the one hand, the government is inviting us to come to these talks. On the other hand, the violence is continuing."
In Homs, we have over the weekend been hearing from activists that, again, anti-government demonstrators were being fired on indiscriminately by Syrian security forces. These are claims that the government says are unfounded. Again, it reiterates the point that it's quite simply targeting these armed gangs.
But these two competing and contradicting narratives are somehow going to have to be resolved. Both sides are going to have to agree about what is exactly transpiring in the country before they can in fact move ahead and begin addressing reforms and political dialogue. The opposition is very clear, even the members who are here at this conference, that for the government to prove its intent, that the violence has to stop.
STOUT: Arwa Damon, joining us live on the line from Damascus.
Thank you, Arwa.
Up next here on NEWS STREAM, the "News of the World" is no more, but the phone-hacking scandal may be leaping across the pond from the U.K. to the U.S. And we'll bring you the latest allegations.
And a nation was born this weekend after decades of civil war. We'll bring you the stories of those returning home to South Sudan.
Then, is basketball's Yao Ming retiring? The rumors are swirling. We'll find out where the smart money is betting.
STOUT: Welcome back.
The phone hacking scandal that brought down Britain's "News of the World" tabloid may be growing. Britain's "Daily Mirror" newspaper is reporting some 9/11 victims may also have had their phones hacked. Now, according to The Mirror, a former New York police officer claims that journalists from the paper offered to pay him to retrieve victims' phone records.
Rupert Murdoch, whose media empire included "News of the World," is now in London. Now, he arrived there on Sunday, just as the paper's final edition hit the newsstands.
British police are expected to widen their questioning as the country's politicians meet with the family of a murdered teenager whose phone was hacked.
Dan Rivers joins us live from outside the House of Commons in London.
A lot to get to, Dan, but first, the former "News of the World" editor Rebekah Brooks could be questioned by police. Can you give us more details on that?
DAN RIVERS, CNN SR. INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes. We're hearing from a source that she will be questioned voluntarily. She will attend a police station to be questioned. But she remains in post, embattled as she is, with lots of people calling for her to go.
Chris Bryant is an MP.
Are you one of them calling for her to go?
CHRIS BRYANT, LABOUR MP: She should have gone long ago. If she had a shred of decency in her, she would have resigned, if only because Milly Dowler's phone was hacked and her family was led to believe that she was still alive while she was editor of the newspaper. But I wouldn't believe a word of what you've just said, I'm afraid. Not your fault, but I think News International are spinning and spinning away at the moment.
There's no evidence that she's going to be called to give evidence at all. And I'm sorry, but I think they're lying.
RIVERS: And in terms of how much worse this can get, we've all -- for our international audience, 9/11, for our audience in America, is pretty shocking. Can it get any worse?
BRYANT: The truth of the matter is that what happened here was that whenever there was a major story, the "News of the World" wanted a slice of the action. And sometimes what they did was they gave a mobile phone to victims of crime or some big emergency, and then listened to it. And in other cases, they hacked into their phones.
It's just completely and utterly despicable. And it's extraordinary that anybody could possible think that an organization that allowed that to happen, and on top of that, then, organized a 10-year cover-up of it all, should possible be allowed to take out a further chunk of the British media market.
RIVERS: This has got political dimensions, clearly, with David Cameron. What's your feeling? I mean, how much did he know about all this when he hired former "News of the World" editor Andy Coulson?
BRYANT: Well, either Cameron didn't ask the proper questions, or he's gullible, or, frankly, he did know from the beginning. And I've always been in the first camp, that he was just -- he never asked the proper questions and was rather gullible, which, incidentally, makes it rather worrying when he has, you know, world conversations with President Medvedev of Russia, or whoever else.
But I'm increasingly of the view that he must have known something and he chose to suppress it, possibly because he thought it just related to celebrities and politicians from a different political party from his own. But I think in the end, there's a big question of David Cameron's character in this.
RIVERS: And potentially -- I mean, this is illegal as well. That's a pretty serious allegation, that he would turn a blind eye to a criminal offense.
BRYANT: Well, quite a lot of people in Britain thought for quite a while that people like myself who were banging on about this were obsessives, or we were loony lefties who just hated the Murdochs. But I think increasingly, people are beginning to realize that what went on was a triple-handed scandal.
First of all, the original criminality, which was extensive and systemic in the organization. Secondly, the cover-up in News International itself. And that means that the people right at the top were responsible for it, including the executive and non-executive directors of News Corp. And thirdly, the failure of the police to investigate for whatever reasons.
My own suspicion is because of the relationship between the Metropolitan Police Service and the newspaper concern was far too close. Extraordinarily, they were even dining together on the same day that they were making decisions about whether that newspaper should be further investigated.
RIVERS: OK. Well, thank you very much indeed for joining us, Chris Bryant.
And there will be a statement, we understand, in the House of Commons later today from the culture secretary, Jeremy Hunt, about the BSkyB takeover. We'll have to wait and see what he says, but this is not going away as a story here in London.
STOUT: Yes, that's for certain.
Dan Rivers, joining us live outside the House of Commons with Labour MP reaction just then.
Thank you, Dan.
Now, given that the people working on the final "News of the World" were soon to be unemployed, reports that managers feared that they'd use the pages to take shots at them, that shouldn't be a surprise. Now, they apparently called in senior figures from sister publication "The Sun" to proofread the issue and make sure that nothing slips through. But did they check the crossword?
And you see that the crossword contains thinly-veiled references to the scandal from clues like "criminal enterprise" and "string of recordings," to answers like "disaster," "menace," and "deplored."
Now, talks will restart in Washington about the U.S. debt crisis. The U.S. president, Barack Obama, will meet with Republican and Democratic leaders to discuss raising the legal limit on U.S. government borrowing. The government says if a deal is not reached in the next three weeks, the U.S. will default on some of its obligations. The new IMF chief, Christine Lagarde, has warned of what she calls nasty consequences if they can't come to a deal.
Now, we'll have much more on the debt talks in the next hour of CNN on "WORLD BUSINESS TODAY," and we will hear from the U.S. president live on CNN. He is due to speak in just over two-and-a-half hours from now, and we will bring that to you live when it happens.
He entered the NBA with plenty of fanfare, but reports say that Yao Ming's career could come to an early end. We'll get reaction from Beijing, next.
STOUT: Coming to you live from Hong Kong, you are back watching NEWS STREAM.
Now, one of the NBA's giants may be walking away from the game. There are reports that Yao Ming could retire from basketball. The Chinese star has been plagued by injuries in recent years, and of the 164 games his team has played in the past two seasons, Yao played in just five of them.
Let's get more perspective on Yao from someone who knows him. In 2002, Yao watched the NBA draft from CNN Beijing with our Jaime Florcruz. And he joins us now live.
And Jaime, what sort of reaction are we seeing to reports of his retirement?
Jaime, it's Kristie in Hong Kong.
JAIME FLORCRUZ, CNN BEIJING BUREAU CHIEF: Yes. Hello.
STOUT: Just wanted to make sure you could hear me. Reaction in Beijing to all of the news and speculation about Yao Ming walking away?
FLORCRUZ: Well, there's a huge dismay and disappointment. Many Chinese still hoping against hope that the reports are not true.
Basketball is big here. Many Chinese live basketball. Some 300 million play it. And many of them watch televised NBA games, mainly to watch Yao Ming.
So they hope that the reports are not true, they hope that Yao Ming will not retire, because they think it will be a big loss for Chinese basketball. They still hope that Yao Ming could lead the Chinese national team in next year's London Olympics. And then if Yao Ming retires, they think that their team will be much, much less competitive -- Kristie.
STOUT: And Jaime, if he does walk away -- let's look at his career as a whole -- what will his legacy be?
FLORCRUZ: Huge. He's a big center. He's averaged over 19 points. And of course he rebounded a lot.
He's also very big off court: China's big ambassador, the most recognizable face overseas, a smiling giant. And so many Chinese hope that he could continue to play this role, and they hope to see the end of the Ming dynasty -- Kristie.
STOUT: Jaime Florcruz, joining us live from the Beijing bureau.
Thank you, Jaime.
Now, in less than three hours, Tiger Woods will make an announcement on the Golf Channel. And the only information we have on it comes from a cryptic tweet that says this: "Monday, 11:00 a.m. Eastern Time: Special announcement concerning Tiger Woods on Golf Channel."
Now, Woods has already said that he will miss next week's British Open because of injuries. And he hasn't played since May because of problems with his left leg.
We'll keep you posted with any updates.
And now to the Tour de France, where there was a painful day for many riders on Sunday. A massive crash took out several riders early on, but that was nothing compared to what happened next.
A TV car bumps into Juan Antonio Flecha. And as the Spanish rider tumbles, he sends the trailing -- Johnny Hoogerland goes into a barbed wire fence. Both men were in obvious pain, but they were able to incredibly continue in the race. And thankfully, for them, Monday is a much deserved rest day.
You're watching NEWS STREAM. And still ahead, we'll take you to South Sudan. And in one man's words, they were born in war, they grew up in war, and married in war. We'll look back at one historic day.
And we'll take a look at the challenges facing many South Sudanese in the months and years to come. Stick around for that.
STOUT: I'm Kristie Lu Stout, in Hong Kong.
You're watching NEWS STREAM, and these are your world headlines.
The U.S. his withholding $800 million of aid to Pakistan's military. That is a third of the security aid the U.S. sends to Pakistan. Senior officials say it is an attempt to pressure Pakistan to crack down on militants, but they also say it's payback for Pakistan's decision to expel U.S. military trainers.
The Syrian government says it is a step toward democracy, a national dialogue between the government and activists that is now in its second day. But some opposition members are not attending, and activists at the meeting are demanding that the authorities end violence aimed at demonstrators.
A source tells CNN that police may question the chief executive of News International about illegal phone hacking at "News of the World." Now, the source says Rebekah Brooks will be asked what she knew about the scandal that is engulfing Rupert Murdoch's media empire and throwing a major takeover deal into doubt.
An explosion at a naval base in southern Cyprus has killed 12 people, including five firefighters and two sailors. At least 35 others were wounded. The blast was caused when a grass fire spread to the base and ignited dozens of munitions. Now, the explosion also knocked out power at the nation's largest electricity plant nearby.
Now, it is the world's newest country. On Saturday, some people cheered, while others cried, as South Sudan's flag was hoisted for the first time in the capital, Juba. And seen from this perspective, it seems to be moving closer to a break in the clouds, an image that could symbolize the people's hopes for better times ahead.
Now six months ago now citizens of the south voted to secede from the north. Now Fighting between the north and south is believed to have played in some 2 million lives over the past two generations.
Now speaking at Saturday's official celebration, South Sudan president Salva Kiir said his people cannot forget, but most now forgive and most forward.
Now CNN's Nima Elbagir witnessed Saturday's celebrations. And we'll be going to speak to her live there in Juba in a couple of minutes, but earlier she spoke with some of the many people who were forced to flee their homeland years ago and now independence have returned.
NIMA ELBAGIR, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Emanuel Luka is a primary school teacher in Khartoum. He grew up, like many southern Sudanese in the north after his family fled the civil war. Emanuel, like tens of thousands of other southerns, is still trying to move all his family and all their belongings.
EMANUEL LUKA, SCHOOL TEACHER: A lot of challenges that we're facing when moving our things, because it is difficult and also it is going to cost more finance to bring all the things, all the family, all the luggage.
ELBAGIR: Six months after the referendum in which southern Sudan voted to secede from the north, and many of those who have safely arrived, are still waiting for the South Sudan government to allocate them land. Emanuel is squeezed into two adjacent plots with 50 of his extended family.
The excitement of returning home, though, has rendered Emanuel philosophical about the delay. He says he's just trying to learn how to deal with a new country and a new government and hopefully get what his family needs.
LUKA: I don't know exactly all the corner. I came to learn from the beginning.
ELBAGIR: But Emanuel is still luckier than most.
Thousands of Southern Sudanese arrive here at this port in the River Nile. Many of them seeing their ancestral lands for the first time. Since then, though, fresh conflict has erupted between North and South Sudan, leaving thousands more stranded upriver in the north.
Esther Joseph is 9 months pregnant. She says she was desperate to have her baby in the south, an independence baby. So she risked the treacherous journey. And when she couldn't get any further safely, her husband raised the money for a plane ticket for her and her four children.
ESTHER JOSEPH, RETURNING RESIDENT (through translator): I left from Khartoum to Raam (ph). And then from Raam (ph) to Malakal. In Malakal I had to catch a plane to come here. I arrived only two weeks ago.
ELBAGIR: The journey took her six weeks.
JOSEPH (through translator): We had to leave other relatives to stay behind and try and bring our belongings. But I'm so happy that I'm here in Juba. I only wish all the people I had to leave behind could see it with me.
ELBAGIR: In spite all the dangers and discomfort for those who are returning home for the first time after nearly three decades of civil war at least for now it seems to have been worth the wait.
STOUT: And Nima joins us now live from Juba.
Nima, the south's new president has pledged better times ahead, but just how much hope, how much optimism is there for the future of South Sudan?
ELBAGIR: There's an incredible degree of optimism, and incredible amount of hope. And that's part of the problem, Kristie. The people's expectations were raised along with that flag on July 9th. They genuinely wanted independence, not just because they wanted as they said in their own words to be free, but also because they thought that that would change their standard of living. And yet, after independence, they wake up in exactly the same position as they were before.
Tens of thousands of them are living under trees along that disputed border line, tens of thousands of children are acutely malnourished. And out of one in seven children born, they will not reach their fifth birthday, Kristie.
STOUT: And there's also the issue of the fraught relationship between North and South. Now Sudan's president Omar al-Bashir, he congratulated South Sudan over the weekend on their independence, but will the two sides be able to get past their bitter relationship?
ELBAGIR: Well, Bashir's presence at the independence ceremony was seen as a very welcome sign of pragmatism. And the way in which Bashir was welcomed by Salva Kiir was also seen as the maturity on the part of both sides. But now they have to put actions behind those gestures. They still have no agreement on security arrangements. They have no agreement on the border. And most importantly, the reality is that these two nations are still tied by the umbilical of the oil infrastructure. The oil comes from the south, but has to be refined in the north and taken to market from there.
So there's really no way that they can survive economically and go forward without finding a way to create a new relationship of good neighborlyness. Whether they can, whether they can mature -- and we have reports that even as Bashir was sitting at that independence ceremony, from (inaudible) on the ground (inaudible) we heard these reports, his forces were early bombarding in the Nuba Mountains.
So we have gesture, what we don't have yet, Kristie, are solid actions.
STOUT: And more on Salva Kiir and his new government. Are they ready for the task of governing this new country? How prepared are they?
ELBAGIR: Even before Salva Kiir took his oath of office, there has already been a lot of concern and a lot of complaints from international governors about the levels of corruption and the lack of transparency in his government. If you can imagine that you have a rebel force that's been trying to unify and keep all these different factions and tribes together to win against a common enemy for over half a century and now it's time to pay back a lot of these favors if you're trying to keep people happy. So there are accusations of bloated government, of patronage coming down from the top.
Although Salva Kiir did try to quiet some of those concerns. Even during his oath of office he said we know that there is corruption and my message to those who would abuse their positions of power and rob the Southern Sudanese people is that if you're not prepared to serve then stay home or we will make you stay home.
Now if he can now make good on that pledge the international community and people here are really just waiting and hoping, Kristie.
STOUT: Nima Elbagir joining us live from Juba. Many thanks indeed Nima for your series of reports and live updates on South Sudan, the world's newest nation.
Now up next here on News Stream, in India tiger poaching has been banned for decades, but for some it's a way of life going back centuries. And coming up next, we will get a rare look into India's tiger poachers.
STOUT: Welcome back.
Now Britain's Prince William and his new wife Catherine have returned to London after a 12 day tour of North America. The royal couple won over crowds from Canada to California. And Prince William won a trophy in a charity polo match. Max Foster is our royal correspondent. He joins us now live from Los Angeles.
And Max, tell us more about the couple's visit there to L.A. And what kind of impression they made there.
MAX FOSTER, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, a whirlwind as it was in Canada. They visited all sorts of places. We were running along aside them. Very, very busy trip.
They started off with a reception back on Friday where they met David Beckham in the garden of the house they were staying in. Then we had a polo match. And William said he was looking forward to letting loose in that after a buy few days. And he won the match. His team won the match. And Catherine presented him with a trophy.
Then you had the big red carpet event on Saturday night. And that was an event for BAFTA to promoting young, British talent, but everyone very much adjusted in the A-listers turning out. You had Barbara Streisand there. You had Tom Hanks. You had all the really big players. And they were almost nervous about meeting the Duke and Duchess. And I think that really says so much about this visit to Los Angeles. They've been confirmed not just as stars, but probably the biggest stars in the world.
Even Piers Morgan was invited in there. He said exactly that to me as I spoke to him on the red carpet.
And it was all about fashion as well, Kristie. There Catherine wearing an Alexander McQueen dress. Everyone thinking that was a triumph. And her fashion has been a big factor in this whole visit, of course.
STOUT: You followed the royal couple from Canada to California. What are your thoughts of the overall tour? Do you think it was in the end a success?
FOSTER: I think it certainly was. Even Canada, for example, the Canadian government organized its itinerary which was phenomenal really, the sort of detail that you get about what's going to happen when. But even when you knew everything what was in the schedule, you have this phenomenal reaction wherever they went. So that was surpassed expectations in many ways.
And here in California, the public weren't allowed the same sort of access. And that disappointed some people. But whoever they did come into contact with, they were impressed by. And, you know, here they are at a -- in the city arts which is in a really deprived area of Los Angeles. And they're dealing with young children who are homeless. And Catherine throwing in her artistic skills into the event. Instead of signing a book actually, they actually put their hand prints into ceramics, which will be kept there at school.
But they really bonded well with the children there. And people saw that on TV.
STOUT: That's good to hear and good to see.
Now what did the royal tour look like behind the scenes? Was it all very, very carefully choreographed from the security detail to all the media appearances? What did you see?
FOSTER: Yeah, it was -- it's all very organized. You have to sort of apply for accreditation for position weeks if not months ago at all these events. And they prioritize who can get to these events. And we got into most of them, which is great. And there is a big security detail wherever they go. And there was the U.S. security, there was the royal security, there was all sorts of security involved. There were lockdowns, effectively, particularly where you saw there at the inner city arts school, the whol area was locked down. You had helicopters and outriders. It was a big security operation.
And I can tell, I spoke to St. James' Palace today and they're saying the royal couple are looking forward to going back to North Wales. They're going to disappear for awhile. And I'm sure they're looking forward to just chilling out a bit after all of this.
STOUT: Yeah, Englesea will be a different scene altogether. Max Foster joining us live from California. Thank you, Max.
Now let's take you to India next. Now tiger hunting has been banned there for decades, but poaching goes on. In a rare interview, Mallika Kapur talks to a community that says for them tiger hunting is a tradition and a means of survival.
MALLIKA KAPUR, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: A century's old method that can still kill. Here India's most skilled tiger hunters, they're talking to outsiders for what may be the first time. And they're eager to show off.
"This is the trap we use to catch all kinds of animals -- deer, tigers -- people use guns and swords, but with this homemade weapon, nothing is sparred," says 35 year old hunter Kohinold (ph).
"And this is called kirka (ph). It's made out of metal. We bury it in the ground. The tiger would walk in from here -- this is the road -- and snap."
These hunters belong to the Phardi tribe, a nomadic community that today still relies on hunting for survival.
"The tiger would be trapped in this area and then we beat it with sticks. We keep flogging the tiger until it dies.
" It only takes us five minutes to beat a tiger to death says this hunter."
The Phardis have been hunting tigers for centuries. Prized for their unparalleled skills during the British Raj. Today, they're deemed criminals.
JOSE LOUISE, ENFORCEMENT AND LAW MANAGER, WILDLIFE TRUST OF INDIA: Pardis are, unfortunately, responsible for a large number of tiger killings in India. Because they hunt the tigers, they hunt other animals, and they sell tiger parts. So they're actually kind of source of wild tiger products.
KAPUR: Phardis play a key role in the global network that trades in illegal wildlife. They don't know how much the kill is worth or even where it goes.
"I have no idea what they do with the skins and bones. They used to take it abroad. All I know is we kill the tigers. Killing tigers is our main job. We're hunters. Think of it like farming, he says.
The Phardis are commissioned by established sporting rackets who then take the tigers and the tiger parts across the India-Nepal border and into China.
KOHINOOR, PHARDI HUNTER (through translator): We used to sell tigers for 5,000 to 10,000 rupees, but now it's gone up to at least 50,000 to 60,000 rupees. For that kind of money, who wouldn't kill a tiger?
So the slaughtering of this endangered species continues. According to government data, some 16 tigers died from poaching last year. The Phardis say their community still poaches one or two tigers a months.
BELINDA WRIGHT, WILDLIFE PROTECTION SOCIETY OF INDIA: Unfortunately, most of the professional tiger poachers who are extremely knowledgeable tiger killers, they -- they're what we call repeat offenders.
KAPUR: Right now the government is focused on boosting security at the country's 39 tiger reserves.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We spent a lot of money on protecting tigers and ensuring that tigers are not poached, but these guys, it'll take half a day's work for them to go and kill a tiger. So maybe it's time to think about rehabilitating those people.
We have to think about giving them alternate livelihoods and drive them away from this particular culture.
KAPUR: A culture, the hunters say, they desperately want to change.
"We're ready to burn all our hunting equipment. They can take all our traps. We will stop hunting forever, but we do need an alternative to feed our stomachs," say Bhaktooram (ph).
Until that happens, the Phardis say they will continue to hunt the same way they've done for generations.
Mallika Kapur, CNN, India.
STOUT: Now Transformers 3 may be a hit movie in the U.S., but Megatron fans in China are missing out. Now why? Well, Beijing has imposed a moratorium on new foreign films. For almost one month now, no new movies made outside China have been released in China. It seems Beijing wants the nation to watch something else, like the Beginning of the Great Revival. It is a $12 million state sponsored propaganda movie that honors the Chinese Communist Party on its 90th anniversary.
Now the movie has been released in more than 6,000 theaters along with massive publicity. And on the face of it, China is giving its homegrown movies home court advantage by shutting out foreign flicks.
But there may be another strategy at play. Now take a look at this from the China Digital Times. Now here are three pictures of actual movie tickets for the beginning of the Great Revival. And according to the site, the tickets were modified and used for three different movies to boost the film's box office numbers. Now they were posted by Chinese netizens on the popular microblog Xinlang Weibo.
In fact, one Weibo user @mojiuran (ph) writes this, quote, "no matter what movie you'll be watching, you'll only get tickets from Beginning of the Great Revival. This is called stealing the box office. And there are pictures to prove it."
Now, it is East Africa's worst drought in some 60 years. Some heartbreaking images from a region short on food and clean water after the break.
STOUT: Welcome back.
Now rainfall in the horn of Africa has tapered off over the past 10 years that is according to the UN's World Food Program. And this year, the agency says that the rains never came. And the small amount that fell only served to wash seeds away.
As Michael Holmes reports hundreds of thousands of people have had to leave their homes in search of food and water.
MICHAEL HOLMES, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: The situation is too widespread to escape: east Africa in its worst drought in more than 60 years. Displacement at refugee camps seem like the best hope for survival, but they too are parched and overcrowded.
This is Dedaab in Kenya, the world's largest refugee camp. It has already surpassed its limit more than four times. Intended for 90,000 people, the UN says there are now more than 380,000.
This is four year old Bashir Hasan (ph). He's trekked for two weeks with his brothers and mother to get here from their home in Somalia. They wait with all the new arrivals from Somalia to receive official refugee status. It appears to be an organized system. Buses are loaded. Children help each other as they board.
The buses take them to a registration office to receive refugee cards which will entitle them to receive food rations.
22 year old Aisha (ph) and her four year old daughter Salada (ph) wait to board.
Life in Dedaab is a little better than where they came from. 8 year old Fatima (ph) carries firewood back to her family's tent. There is a Doctors Without Borders clinic. Malnourished children receiving high calorie paste to suck on and IV drips.
There's a lot of waiting, but it's for the essentials -- to see water filling your jerricans, to see food being poured into your bag, what a feeling it must be.
Just outside of food distribution point in Dedaab hundreds more hope of getting access to this much needed aid, a process that seems never ending.
Michael Holmes, CNN, Atlanta.
STOUT: Some very desperate scenes there. And with more of the drought and the long-term outlook for the region, let's go to Guillermo Arduino. He joins us from the CNN weather center. Guillermo.
GUILLERMO ARDUINO, CNN WEATHER CORRESPONDENT: Kristie, he said it -- Michael said it: neverending. And it's a big problem. We have been hit twice in a row by la nina. So the rains were very scarce in the region and sparse. And now we see pretty much the same. So the outlook is awful.
So let's take a look at what we are going to see -- what we have seen so far, especially look at the horn, so moderate to severe, or in some cases extreme drought in the area. So we see -- so we see -- so we see that we have interesting here -- can we -- I need to adjust the shot, please because I've lost myself on camera four.
So I was looking at what was going on with the ITCZ, because that's what we have missed. And that's what we said in the last story. So I was looking at this, and this is usually the showers that we get constantly in the area. You see we missed the June/July showers here on the horn of Africa. And we are not going to see any more showers, unfortunately, because when we look at the outlook and July to September we see that forecast is really bad, so we are not likely to see any more rain.
So let me transition now to another story. And we have the situation here in the Korean Peninsula with a lot of rain. And we have gotten over 300 millimeters of rain. Unfortunately, the rain will continue. It's a stationary boundary that is bringing more rain to the Korean Peninsula.
Parts of China also that have been hit by a lot of rain continue to see the presence of the same system that is promising more rain. And when you look at this map, if you focus on the Korean Peninsula area, you see more rain. We see that in the next two days we get more rain into the Shanghai area as well.
And we're looking closely at two areas that the Joint Typhoon Warning Center think that we are going to see the likelihood of tropical development. And the reason why we are nervous about these two areas is that if they turn into the Korean Peninsula they would complicate things, the same into China.
We're in the middle of typhoon season, so we are likely to see more formations and the humidity will continue to be very abundant.
Temperature wise, you know, it continues to be warm all over. We're talking about temps in the 30s all across the region. That monsoon flow is very near, if not over Pakistan already. That's why you see the contrast between Islamabad and Mumbai in this case. And so Pakistan is waiting for those refreshing rains, Kristie. And we're waiting for them, too, but it's taking its time.
STOUT: Yeah, that would be good news for the people there. Thank you very much for the forecast. Always great to see you Guillermo. Take care.
Now scientists are studying the effects of global warming in one of the coldest places on the planet. I'm talking about the Arctic Circle. But while the raw beauty of the Arctic's Resolute Bay is enough to take your breath away, so are its sub-zero temperatures. And all this week we'll be following environmentalist and CNN special correspondent Phillipe Cousteau as he journeys north.
PHILLIPE COUSTEAU, CNN SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT: Resolute, Canada, population 250 people on a good day. This sleepy outpost is about as north as you can get in Canada during the dark winter months and still find shelter from the unbearable temperatures.
Resolute Bay is the staging point for most expeditions from the Canadian side of the Arctic, ours included. It'll be our first chance to dig our boots into the snow and ice and get acclimated to temperatures between 30 and 40 below. Our mission will ultimately bring us to the Arctic Ocean where an elite team of scientists is conducting research at a temporary camp on top of the floating ice.
Otherwise these are fine.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: These are great.
COUSTEAU: OK. What else?
But first things first, in the Arctic everything stars with preparation and organization: no exceptions.
The knife, the tools, very different things. We're all good.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sleep bag liner, this is one of your insulation layers.
COUSTEAU: I need to know how to use every single piece of clothing and equipment. And John will check even the smallest detail.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Always go to bed with dry socks on. You don't want to have cold, wet feet.
COUSTEAU: This is a two layer mitten.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Baby wipes. This is the way we take baths out there.
COUSTEAU: Bundled up just right and knowledge in hand, I'm ready to give it a go.
STOUT: Phillipe Cousteau there.
Now it's time now to go over and out there. And if you have the Monday blues, well here is a unique way that staff in America let off steam.
Yep, employees at Adaptive Computing in the U.S. state of Utah, they blew up their vice president's car. Do not worry, he was not inside it. Now two ireporters, they sent in this footage and apparently the stunt was a reward for the sales team who has surpassed their 2010 revenue target. And the staff, they sat around eating hot dogs, while the tastefully teal vehicle became barbecue. They described it as, quote, one heck of a morale boost.
And that is CNN News Stream, but the News continues. World Business Today is next.