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CONNECT THE WORLD

Euro Crisis Deepens; Cracks in EU Deal; Euro Drops to 11-Month Low; Markets Down; Euro in "Intensive Care" According to Experts; Investigations Continue into Motive Behind Belgium Attack; UN Secretary General Calls for International Intervention in Syria as Death Toll Rises; Second Round of Egyptian Parliamentary Elections; Former News International Lawyer's Testimony Contradicts Murdoch's; US President and First Lady Welcome Home Troops; Europa League; Football Club World Cup Semifinals; Luke Donald PGA Player of the Year; Afghan Rape Victim Jailed for Adultery Freed; "Time" Magazine Names "The Protester" 2011 Person of the Year; Freedom Project: Google Joins Fight to End Modern-Day Slavery

Aired December 14, 2011 - 16:00:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


BECKY ANDERSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL HOST: As cracks appear in the plan to prop up the eurozone, we'll ask whether the single currency has entered a death spiral.

Live from London, I'm Becky Anderson. Also tonight, freed from the ultimate injustice. The Afghan woman jailed after being raped by a relatively speaks exclusively to CNN.

And from the fight for freedom to anger over austerity. How people power is being rewarded with more than just change.

Well, not even a week since European leaders met in Brussels to hammer out a deal to pull the continent out of the throes of the financial crisis, it appears the summit was not enough to calm the markets.

The euro sank today to its lowest level in almost a year. It touched $1.25 -- $1.295, sorry. Perilously close to its previous low for the year back in January.

Italian five year bonds also shot up, hitting yet another euro era high on the yield and sending ten-year yields back above seven percent, a level seen as unsustainable by most economists.

German chancellor Angela Merkel tried to manage expectations today, saying a solution will take years to form.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ANGELA MERKEL, CHANCELLOR OF GERMANY (through translator): We have decided to correct constructional mistakes that were made at the beginning of the economic and monetary union. The path to a fiscal union in terms of a stability union has not been finished, but we have started it, and I think we will not turn back.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ANDERSON: Chancellor Merkel also addressed Britain's refusal to take part in European treaty reform, saying that the country remains an important EU partner despite its decision. As Jim Boulden now reports for you, Britain is not the only country reluctant to take part, and cracks in the deal are beginning to show.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JIM BOULDEN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It's reality time back at home. In Warsaw, during a larger rally, some protest against Poland's tacit agreement to lose some sovereignty in order to join a fiscal compact while Poland doesn't yet use the euro.

In London, political bickering continues over Prime Minister David Cameron vetoing last Friday's proposed EU-wide treaty for fiscal union.

ED MILIBAND, UK OPPOSITION LEADER: Isn't the sensible thing for him to do to reenter the negotiations and try and get a better deal for Britain.

DAVID CAMERON, PRIME MINISTER OF BRITAIN: I make no apologies for standing up for Britain.

BOULDEN: So, no cracks in the British government's determination not to sign up. But difficulties are appearing elsewhere. Ireland, for one, may have to hold a referendum to agree any changes. Prime Minister Enda Kenny told Parliament there is a lot of detail to be worked out.

ENDA KENNY, PRIME MINISTER OF IRELAND: It is, of now, a political agreement. Obviously, given the nature of what's involved here, there are some very detailed technical and legal considerations that will need to be carefully teased out or analyzed by experts before any legal text is adopted.

BOULDEN: Sweden's finance minister, Anders Borg, said Tuesday, since the country doesn't use the euro, it will not agree to all the eurozone budget discipline rules. On Wednesday, he told CNN --

ANDERS BORGK, FINANCE MINISTER OF SWEDEN: We are ready to uphold this discipline, but it should be clear that, as long as you're outside of the eurozone, these decisions should be taken nationally.

BOULDEN: The Czech government says the proposed pact is still just a blank piece of paper and that it won't just sign that blank paper.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We would like to be present at the table as this is debated, but we are definitely not ready to sign up to it at this moment.

BOULDEN: German chancellor Angela Merkel told the Bundestag Wednesday the path to a stability union has not finished, but there is no turning back, while the Italian prime minister Mario Monti told Parliament the agreement to bolster the zone's bailout fund fell short of what he wanted, and that not all leaders agreed with Germany's assessment that Europe has now done enough to calm markets.

The euro has dipped to its lowest level in 11 months, and Italian bond yields are on the rise again.

BOULDEN (on camera): EU leaders promised to sign off on the fiscal compact at their next summit in March, but will the markets give them that time to fill in the details and fill in the cracks?

Jim Boulden, CNN, London.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ANDERSON: Well, as Jim mentioned, the euro touched an 11-month low today. Let's take a look at how it's done over the past year.

You can see, not bad in May, up there at $1.48, and confidence in the market to that point is something might be achieved. You can see, right back down nearly to where it was back in January at the beginning of the year.

And as you might expect, all the major European markets, at least, today down. The FTSE off 2.25 percent, Paris off 3.3, Philip Banks, of course, that market. The DAX, not quite as bad, down 1.72 percent, one and three quarter percent.

And the Dow Industrials, well, dropping on the back of this lack of confidence in the European markets, as we've seen for many weeks over the past couple of months.

Can anything, then, stop this slide? Well, Michael Hewson is a senior market analyst with CMC Markets with me in the studio this evening. And a good friend of the show joins us from Newport Beach, California. Mohamed El-Erian is the CEO of PIMCO, the world's biggest bond fund.

We spoke, Mohamed, on Friday after the do or die Brussels summit, and you said, and I quote, "The euro is still in intensive care." I don't suppose today's market moves surprise you, then, at all, do they?

MOHAMED EL-ERIAN, CEO, PIMCO: No, it didn't. What did surprise me is how vicious today's move was. So, it's not just about equities and the euro. Commodities -- gold is down five percent, oil is down five percent, silver is down seven percent. This is a generalized deleveraging of the financial system that is now taking place.

ANDERSON: Hold that thought. Michael, what I can't understand is how the euro has been so relatively strong this year, given this steady destruction in confidence in European assets.

MICHAEL HEWSON, SENIOR MARKET ANALYST, CMC MARKETS: Well, I think it's more a symptom of the weakness of the dollar rather than the strength of the euro. The euro started its move higher at the beginning of the ECB's misguided rate signing cycle in April. And obviously, the Fed's been operating a very easy monetary policy since then.

And now, there's no real evidence that the Fed is going to flood the market will even more cheap dollars, and you've also had the fact that the ECB has now reversed both those misguided rate cuts.

So, the interest rate differential has obviously moved back into line, but more than that, I think there's a distinct lack in confidence now that European leaders have got any idea whatsoever as to how they're going to resolve this problem.

And for me, it's binary. They either go to full fiscal union or the euro breaks up.

ANDERSON: Which is what we've talked about, Mohamed, time and time again. Is this a death spiral for the euro at this point?

EL-ERIAN: What's happening now, Becky, is interesting. And it's very simple, because it's what human beings do. There is a combination of disappointment, confusion, and despair with the policymakers. So, what happens when humans have that mix of emotions? They step back.

So, what we're seeing is we're seeing oxygen being withdrawn from these economies as people go back to the sideline and say, "You know what? This is such a mess that I'd rather be on the sideline."

The result of that is a credit crunch. And the thing we worry about is that the eurozone is now going to experience such a large credit crunch that it's going to make the policy response even more challenging.

ANDERSON: Do you buy that, Michael?

HEWSON: Absolutely. It feels like 2008 all over again, where we had commodities, oil prices, equities, everything was basically being deleveraged down and everyone was rotating into cash.

ANDERSON: But guys, then -- Mohamed, who gains out of all of this? Because it's the same amount of money doing the rounds globally, so as we talk about the -- this uncertainty, this volatility, this steady disruption of demand for Europe's assets, and others, as we've just bee discussing, who and what gains?

EL-ERIAN: So, very simple. The money ends up in cash, in bank deposits, but in strong banks. And what do the banks do with it? They put it in the Federal Reserve, in the central banks.

So, basically, the system deleverages and cash holdings go up, and they're held with the central bank. They're not put back to work in the economy.

ANDERSON: Right, so they're held by the Central Bank and the Fed and, indeed, as you've just suggested, Michael, at the ECB. So, that begs the question, why doesn't the ECB then decide or at least take its hat off at this point and say, "Right. We've got this sort of money. Let's go out and buy these bonds. Let's buy these government bonds"?

HEWSON: Because according to Mr. Draghi at his press conference last week, it's beyond the spirit of the treaty, as well as --

(CROSSTALK)

ANDERSON: But surely it's too late --

HEWSON: -- the wording of the treaty.

ANDERSON: -- to be talking like that at this point, isn't it?

HEWSON: Well, it's all about credibility, and I think as soon as the European Central Bank loses credibility, it's lost the game anyway.

ANDERSON: Two-tier Europe or two Europes going forward, Mohamed, in all of this?

EL-ERIAN: It's a political decision, Becky. But we are going very quickly towards what we've been talking about for months now, the corner solutions.

Either we're going to see Europe regain control and probably in the form of a smaller eurozone, or we're going to see fragmentation of the eurozone. But we are very quickly going there. The markets are pressing fast-forward on this process.

ANDERSON: We talked on Friday, Mohamed and I, he said the euro is in intensive care, the orange lights are flashing. Michael, we're approaching Christmas. Any sense of good cheer here?

HEWSON: I'm afraid not. As I -- Mohamed hit the nail on the head. The structural differences between the southern periphery and the northern core are too great. The euro at its current level is way too high for the southern periphery, but it's OK for Germany.

ANDERSON: Since the banks are putting it under their mattresses, why wouldn't -- why shouldn't we, I guess is the question --

(CROSSTALK)

HEWSON: Absolutely.

ANDERSON: -- which begs the answer, you probably should. Both of you chaps, thank you very much, indeed, for joining us.

HEWSON: Thank you.

ANDERSON: You're watching CONNECT THE WORLD here on CNN. Still to come, a nation in mourning. Belgium asks why a day after a deadly rampage in the country's third-biggest city. We're going to be live in Liege for you.

And forget highbrow politicians, big thinkers, or monarchs. The Protester is now being recognized as having the biggest impact in 2001 -- or 2011. Oh, my goodness, I'm ten years behind.

And Google makes an impact as it joins the fight against modern-day slavery, a cause shared by all of us here at CNN.

This is CNN, 12 minutes past 9:00, stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ANDERSON: Welcome back, you're watching CONNECT THE WORLD live from London, here on CNN, the world's news leader. It's 14 minutes past 9:00 here.

Now, her name is Gulnaz and her harrowing story is all too common in Afghanistan. She was imprisoned for adultery after a married relative raped her. Well now, she is free, and CNN's Nick Paton Walsh got exclusive access to Gulnaz after her release. We're going to hear what Gulnaz had to say when Nick joins me live from Kabul about 15 minutes from now.

A look, though, at this point at some of the other stories that we are following for you here on CONNECT THE WORLD.

And tonight, Belgium is in shock. Investigators want to know why a 33-year-old man went on a deadly rampage on Tuesday, killing five people and wounding 130 before turning a gun on himself.

Authorities in Liege say the man had been accused of sexual offenses. They stress that terrorism is not on the radar, and that he acted alone. Let's go live to Liege. My colleague Nic Robertson. Nic?

NIC ROBERTSON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Becky, their best working analysis that the police and investigators have right now is that for some reason, Nordine Amrani went mad, went insane before he began this rampage.

The investigation -- through the investigations, they've found that he shot dead his cleaner, overnighter, a cleaner working in a building where he was known to have grown marijuana in the past, shot her dead in the head, then took his weapons, came here to the Christmas market in the center of Liege, shot and threw grenades, killing people, wounding over a hundred others, and then turning the gun on himself.

So the best the police have been able to come up with so far is to say that he was insane, that he left no suicide note, they say. They have no other indications that would give them to believe that this was done for a specific reason.

However, people here are absolutely in shock. One lady told me that she felt for her this was like 9/11 because Liege has never seen anything like this before. She said now she feels afraid, afraid for her children, children use the bus stop here behind me where the attacks took place.

She -- she and many other people said that they just don't feel as at ease as they were, and that Christmas here won't be the same. But many people are also saying it doesn't matter to them who this attacker was or why he attacked. They say all the sympathy should go to all the people who were injured.

That's obviously not the job of the police at this time, and some elements of the investigation are looking into his ownership of weapons. He's known to have had a hunting license in the past. The police say they've confiscated his weapons in the past. He spent time in jail in part for possession of these weapons. So, that's an avenue of inquiry.

And there is beginning to be a growing thought there -- here that perhaps because he was facing these allegations of sexual abuse and possible more jail time that he didn't want to go to jail, and that was the reason all this began.

But at the moment, the police really don't have that. They're still scratching at the surface of this, Becky.

ANDERSON: Nic Robertson for you live in Liege tonight. Nic, thank you for that.

Well, tonight, the death toll rises yet again across Syria as pressure mounts for an international response to the government's crackdown there on protesters. Video posted online appears to show gun battles in Hama in Syria.

Under cover of darkness, opposition activists say security forces killed at least 11 people there today. Overall, they say Wednesday's death toll now stands at 33.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon is asking the rest of the world, where are you?

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BAN KI-MOON, SECRETARY GENERAL, UNITED NATIONS: In Syria, more than 5,000 people are dead. This cannot go on. In the name of humanity, it is time for the international community to act.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ANDERSON: Egyptians are casting ballots today in the second round of landmark parliamentary elections there. Now, Islamists are hoping to build on their gains from the first round, when they won a majority of the vote, but secular parties have recently stepped up their campaigning.

Egypt's interim military rulers say today's polling has been calm overall and that turnout is strong. The third and final round is in January.

A former top lawyer for the "News of the World" says he is pretty sure that the chairman of News International, James Murdoch, knew about widespread phone-hacking at the paper more than three years ago.

Tom Crone's testimony contradicts Murdoch's version of events. Murdoch acknowledges that he replied to an e-mail about phone-hacking, but he said he didn't fully read it before responding. Well today, Crone said he personally showed the e-mail to Murdoch back in 2008.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TOM CRONE, FORMER LAWYER, NEWS INTERNATIONAL: Certainly discussed was the e-mail. Not described as before Neville, but the damning e-mail and what it meant in terms of further involvement beyond -- further involvement in phone-hacking beyond Goodman and Mulcaire.

And what was relayed to Mr. Murdoch was that this document clearly was direct and hard evidence of that being the case.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ANDERSON: US president Barack Obama and his wife, Michelle, welcomed US troops home from Iraq today at a military base in North Carolina. Obama marked the end of the war, which began back in 2003 and officially draws to a close this month. He acknowledged the soldiers' sacrifice and thanked them for their service.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: So, as your commander- in-chief, and on behalf of a grateful nation, I'm proud to finally say these two words, and I know your families agree, welcome home.

(CROWD CHEERS)

OBAMA: Welcome home!

(APPLAUSE)

OBAMA: Welcome home!

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ANDERSON: Well, the Europa League is whittling down and its numbers, well, they're like this, now, as the group stage nears an end and Paris Saint-Germain are fighting for their lives. We're going to get you the results and all the action after the break.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ANDERSON: This is CONNECT THE WORLD live from London, welcome back. I'm Becky Anderson.

Now, Paris Saint-Germain faces a tall task if they were to advance in the Europa League. The club ended tonight's match against Athletic Bilbao in third place, needing a win and some help to reach the knockout stage.

They pulled out a 4-2 victory on two very late goals, but Salzburg's win over Slovan Bratislava moves them into the last 32 over Paris Saint- Germain on a head-to-head tie-breaker.

Another scalp goes. Mark McKay joins me from CNN Center with more on PSG's exit from the European competition. We've seen this before, haven't we? I guess spending money doesn't always translate to success these days.

MARK MCKAY, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: No, it doesn't, and this is not, Becky, what the Qatar Investment Authority, who bought a 70 percent controlling stake in the club, looking for as they splashed out all kinds of euros on players, of course the biggest being the French transfer record, $55 million for Javier Pastore.

We saw going in that they had spent a record $117 million on nine new players. And oh, by the way, they could spend even more money, perhaps, in the coming weeks and months as reports suggest that David Beckham could come over.

You know, that title is out of the way for PSG, Becky, but they still have the French League crown they can keep their eye on. But you're right. Money, whether it's euros or dollars, can't buy you success. At least, it's not guaranteed, is it?

ANDERSON: Well, euros won't buy you anything these days, I don't think.

(LAUGHTER)

ANDERSON: Listen, Barcelona, on the other hand, of course, maintaining their success in recent years. I believe they're now in Asia looking for yet another trophy. What's that all about?

MCKAY: Well, they certainly are, yes. This team has certainly gotten its bang for the buck, so to speak, Becky. Barcelona is indeed in Japan looking to play in the final of the Club World Cup. First they have to get by Qatar's Al-Sadd on Thursday. That's in one semifinal match.

But we already know one finalist, and it is a Brazilian team, Santos. And what they did on Wednesday was spectacular, and what they did was showcase the talents of one player we're going to be watching a lot.

It was Santos versus Kashiwa Reysol in one Club World Cup semifinal, and Becky, check out this goal. Incredible, from Neymar. This young man has made a name for himself. Well, take a look, and again, this is the one that put Santos ahead. Oh, brilliant! Now, a little later --

ANDERSON: Woo!

MCKAY: Yes, you like that. It was Santos going ahead 2-nil through Borges. So, Santos is in control --

ANDERSON: Oh, please.

MCKAY: -- of the match, but the Japanese side will pull one back in the 54th minute. Hiroki Sakai in the 54th makes it 2-1 Santos, but the Brazilian side would put it away in the 63rd minute. This is one incredible kick that goes right around the wall, Danilo sealing the victory for Santos. Becky --

ANDERSON: Oh.

MCKAY: -- they are in the Club World Cup final --

ANDERSON: Oh!

MCKAY: -- waiting to see the winner between Barcelona and Al-Sadd.

ANDERSON: How exciting! What a match! Now, who needs David Beckham and his free kicks when you've got one like that.

Listen, very quickly, I know in golf Luke Donald made history last week. He's adding to his accolades once again, I believe.

MCKAY: Yes. This has been one incredible year, and he is very humbled to receive the US PGA Player of the Year award. This was voted on by his peers. Wow, what a year. What a trophy, huh?

That was -- that kind of capped what he did this year, Becky. What a great year for the world number one. He has done everything except win a major. You think this is a little bit of momentum for Luke Donald heading into the new year? Maybe he will win his first Major in 2011.

Becky, I'll see you, "WORLD SPORT" in just over an hour.

ANDERSON: That's -- yes, thank you for that. I was going to tease that, but good on you. What a ridiculous trophy that is. Anyway, Mark, thank you.

Still to come on CONNECT THE WORLD -- Mark up in an hour, of course. On this show, an Afghan woman who was sent to prison after revealing she was raped by a relative is now free and she's talking exclusively to CNN. You're going to hear the harrowing story of Gulnaz.

Also, what do Barack Obama, Pope John Paul II, and now The Protester have in common? News of an unusual accolade coming up.

And Google's game-changing investment. One of the world's most valuable companies steps up to try to end modern-day slavery. All that up in the next half hour, stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ANDERSON: This is CONNECT THE WORLD here on CNN. A quick check of the world news headlines at this point.

Just five days after a crisis summit to save the euro, the currency sank to its lowest level since January. Leaders have been trying to hammer out a deal to drag the eurozone out of its downward spiral. So far, nothing has stuck.

In grief-stricken Belgium, police are puzzled. They say they don't know what led to Tuesday's gun and grenade attack in Liege. Five people were killed and 130 were wounded. The suspected gunman apparently took his own life. Authorities have ruled out terrorism.

More bloodshed across Syria. Opposition activists say Wednesday's death toll has risen to 33. The UN is asking the international community to take action against Syria's violent crackdown on pro-democracy demonstrators.

And Pakistani president Asif Ali Zardari has been discharged from a hospital in Dubai. He spent a week there stirring rumors that health problems may lead him to step down. A spokeswoman has said he was undergoing, quote, "routine tests" for a heart condition.

U.S. president Barack Obama and his wife, Michelle, welcomed troops returning from Iraq today at Fort Bragg in North Carolina. The war officially draws to an end this month after nearly nine years.

And those are the headlines.

An Afghan woman imprisoned for adultery after a relative raped her is now free. Her name is Gulnaz, and she'd been serving a 12-year sentence after reporting that a cousin's husband had raped her two years ago.

Well, sadly, her case is not unique. There are many similar stories from women in Afghanistan. Now, Gulnaz is talking to CNN about her ordeal, and our Nick Paton Walsh gained exclusive access to her at a safe house in an undisclosed location. He joins me now live from Kabul this evening. Nick?

NICK PATON WALSH, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Absolutely. A few hours ago, we spoke to Gulnaz in that undisclosed location.

Last night, senior officials came to the jail where she had been for a number of months, now, two years, in fact, bearing the decree from the president saying she should be released and bearing no conditions on that release. She is not having to marry her rapist as a condition of her departure from jail with her daughter.

Now, let's listen to what she had to say to us earlier on.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

WALSH (voice-over): Jailed for adultery because the man who raped her was married, mother to the child of her attacker, whom she's been pressured to marry.

Gulnaz's plight highlighted globally the injustices suffered by many Afghan women, but late Tuesday night, after a pardon from Afghan president Hamid Karzai, she was released to a woman's shelter in Kabul.

And these are the first pictures of her, a free woman, with her daughter, who's name, Muska, means "smile," a little confused about where they are, but delighted their lives have changed.

GULNAZ, RAPE VICTIM (through translator): I am very happy that President Karzai understood my pain and heard my voice after I did the TV interview and he pardoned me.

WALSH (on camera): Her case has also brought controversy, some conservatives in society questioning whether or not she was raped.

And there is pressure for her to marry her attacker from traditionalists who think that will help absolve her family from the dishonor of her assault. So, we asked her, free to talk now, if she was raped.

GULNAZ (through translator): Yes. He did. Yes.

WALSH (voice-over): And if she had complete choice, would she marry her rapist.

GULNAZ (through translator): No. If I don't have to. I would not even care about him. I hate him. The only thing I want is to go home from here to my brothers and live with them. That's all I want.

WALSH: But rape still carries stigma. Even her brothers have found it hard to accept her daughter.

GULNAZ (through translator): When my brothers used to visit me, they would ask me not to bring the child to them, because they did not like her. But I always told them she was my daughter and had nothing to do with the man.

I love her like I did at the start. I want her to be well-educated, and I don't want her to be illiterate. I want her to be a doctor or anything that she could become.

WALSH: Her pardon, a bold step by President Karzai, setting a precedent for the dozens of others on similar charges, her lawyer said.

KIM MOTLEY, GULNAZ'S LAWYER: I think this is huge. I think this is definitely setting precedent for Afghan women that are in a situation such as Gulnaz. I think the government has definitely recognized that what happened, not only outside the justice system was incorrect, but that what happened within the justice system was incorrect.

WALSH: The future's unclear. Her brothers may not be that welcoming. She may still face pressure to marry, but she's free in a woman's shelter who can help her understand the risks and hurdles ahead, and able to give Muska many more choices for their future.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

WALSH: Now, it is still unclear exactly what happens to Gulnaz in the immediate future. She is in that safe place. It's not clear how her family are going to react towards her, and it's not clear whether that pressure from traditionalists in Afghanistan for her to marry her attacker will persist.

But certainly from the intervention of Afghan president Hamid Karzai, there is a definite improvement in her situation right now and the months ahead are significantly improved from the months behind. Becky?

ANDERSON: Yes, OK. So, her future slightly unclear at this point, but at least out of prison at this point. As you rightly pointed out, Nick, sadly, her case not unique, though, in Afghanistan.

WALSH: No, by no stretch of the imagination at all, and you heard there from her lawyer the hope that this may set some kind of precedent in the future, pointing out that the presidential decree is based on law currently in existence.

Also presumably relying upon a recently passed law, the elimination of -- basically, a law improving women's rights here in Afghanistan, which people have been leaning upon as a hope to get women in this situation who are jailed for what is known as "moral crimes," but have actually been sexually assaulted.

To enhance their legal standing, hoping that perhaps President Karzai's one action in this one case may, in fact, benefit dozens, perhaps hundreds of women in jail because, basically, they've been attacked. Becky?

Nick, out of Kabul this evening. We thank you very much, indeed, for joining us. Nick Paton Walsh, there, with his exclusive interview.

Well, coming up next on CONNECT THE WORLD, they are changing history already, and they will change history in the future. That from "Time" Magazine as it announces an unusual choice for its Person of the Year, 2011. Just ahead, reaction from two demonstrators who can safely say they share in the prize.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ANDERSON: Taking a stand against drug violence, demanding political freedoms, fighting for a fairer global economy. 2011 has galvanized protesters around the world, and while their individual causes may be different, this year's demonstrators are all united in one campaign: the need for change.

Well, this worldwide outburst of people power has led "Time" magazine to choose The Protester as its 2011 Person of the Year. "Time's" managing editor says 2011 was the year that, quote, "everywhere it seems people said they'd had enough."

And we should mention that "Time" magazine is part of Time-Warner, CNN's parent company.

In a moment, we'll hear from two protesters. First, though, a look back at some of the best pictures from demonstrations around the world.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

(POLICE SIRENS)

UNIDENTIFIED CORRESPONDENT: Did you ever imagine this would be happening in Egypt?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Never.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: One month ago, I would never imagine. And for me, I'm a young man, and I always believed that my generation will make history.

(POLICE SIREN)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Banks have sold us out, and we're not getting anything back from it. The economy's still in decline, and it's time we took regulation to the banks and fixed this mess.

(CROWD CHANTING)

UNIDENTIFIED CORRESPONDENT: Demonstrators on camelback and horseback started charging in.

UNIDENTIFIED CORRESPONDENT: The Occupy Wall Street hash tag quickly became the most popular topic on Twitter, with users sharing their views.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Tomorrow is going on. No one is going to go home.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're in this until the end, even if it means we're going to die, because people have died for this, and we're -- all of us are prepared to die for this.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ANDERSON: Well, joining me now are two people who can share the "Time" magazine accolade. From New York, Occupy Wall Street protester Kanene Holder and from Cairo, Dalia Ziada, who is the human rights activist and regional director of the American Islamic Congress.

Dalia, first, you must be delighted, aren't you? Do you feel part of this prize today?

DALIA ZIADA, REGIONAL DIRECTOR, AMERICAN ISLAMIC CONGRESS: Yes, definitely. It's a great choice, a great selection by "Time" magazine because the -- and I think they were very wise that they did not name a specific protester, but they gave it to every protester on the globe.

It's amazing how non-violent action and strategies proved to be as effective as such. And I think it's a great honor to see that, to think that I've been educating people for so long, which is non-violent action and strategies, how to protest, how to make changes through these tactics has now been credited --

ANDERSON: Yes.

ZIADA: -- by big magazines like "Time" magazine.

ANDERSON: Kanene from Athens to the Arab Spring, from Moscow to your very own protest, it seems there is a global tipping point for frustration. But the end seems to be somewhat -- some distance away at this point, doesn't it?

KANENE HOLDER, OCCUPY WALL STREET PROTESTER: Well, Martin Luther King said that the arc of the universe is long, but it also bends towards justice. And so, we understand that we are part of a protracted struggle and that everything that everybody does makes a difference.

And so that's why we're so excited, we're so engaged in this civic engagement, in this activism which is, again, peaceful.

But again, the leverage of the 99 percent allows for everybody in America and throughout the world to realize and question what is wrong and to search and to find and engage in that curiosity, in that uncomfortability to find a solution.

ANDERSON: All revolutions, somebody pointed out today, begin with protests. But Dalia, not all protests become revolutions. And Egypt's a classic case in point, that once an institution takes hold, it can itself develop different goals.

And with the military, of course, in Egypt, we've seen that, haven't we? And until the army steps away from the political sort of -- environment, perhaps change won't happen as quickly as you would have liked?

ZIADA: Yes, actually, it's what we are hoping now, but I don't think the military is planning to leave soon. They have given promises, now. We are having elections, and I think if they continue, if they do not fulfill their promises, we should continue protesting as well.

But I would like to affirm a point, here. Protesting is only one tactic of so many non-violent tactics. I think we should learn more, we should develop ourselves, we should expand our knowledge, and try to use other ways to make this change happen.

Because I think the military, as we've learned a lesson in January, the military also learned a lesson, and they know how to deal with the people now, or to deal with the non-violent activists in a way that prevents them from reaching their goals. So, we need to adapt as well.

ANDERSON: Kanene, if 2011 was the year of protester one can only wonder what 2012 will bring, of course. Success or disappointment?

HOLDER: I think this is a total success. We stand on the backs of others who have been protesting, being active for hundreds of years. For the Noam Chomskys and the Fela Kutis and the Bob Marleys of the world, we are also that person.

There is nothing different between those people and ourselves, and that's the beauty of being the "Time" person of the year, meaning a protester.

And it just -- it's just a myriad of different things that you just have to stay tuned to in terms of what Occupy has up our sleeves next.

ANDERSON: Yes, OK, so that's from your side. What about in Egypt? What does 2012 bring at this point, do you think, Dalia?

ZIADA: I think Egypt and the whole world will not see a year as fruitful and intense as 2011 again, so we need to make the best benefit from it and, hopefully, we continue building on the successes that we have achieved in 2011 and continue with the same spirit.

Even those of us who are turning, now, into political life should keep this activist spirit with them, should be a protester even when they start to be politicians. But a politician with a protester's spirit.

ANDERSON: How -- it's about fostering that spirit, Kanene, isn't it? And it has been the most remarkable year. You must've been delighted when you woke up this morning to find out that "Time" had made you all their People of the Year. Again, fostering that spirit as you move on to the next level, it's a challenge, surely, isn't it?

ZIADA: Yes, I think so.

HOLDER: Yes -- and thank you -- and thank you so much, Dalia, for also speaking to your end in terms of what's going on in Egypt. And again, our occupation has been inspired by what was going on in Egypt and Tunisia.

And also what happened in Wisconsin, you know? Right here in America, for months. So again, I think that this movement is in three cycles. There's advocacy for issues, awareness for those issues, and then holding people accountable.

So, awareness, advocacy, and accountability. And that's for anybody. And that's why we're not aligned with an particular party. There is no affiliation. We are saying whoever you are, these are our issues.

We are the 99 percent. OK? We have the leverage. We have people power. And that is so beautiful. We are all whistle-blowers.

ANDERSON: Good stuff. Both of you --

HOLDER: And I think that when people realize that, it's huge.

ANDERSON: I've got to leave it there. We're going to take a very short break. Delighted for both of you this evening. We thank you very much, indeed, for joining us. Thank you. Special night.

You're watching CONNECT THE WORLD with me, Becky Anderson. When we come back. Google launches a multimillion-dollar barrage in the battle against modern-day slavery. CNN's Freedom Project spotlights how that can change the lives of thousands of victims. Do stay with us.

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ANDERSON: Well, another group steps up and takes a stand. Google now joining the fight to end modern-day slavery. The internet giant unwrapping $11.5 million in grants today. It's one of the biggest corporate donations of its kind for a cause that is shared by us here at CNN.

Our Freedom Project, to see the directly or indirectly has helped some 2,000 people out of slavery this year. Hala Gorani shows us why there is no time or money to waste.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

HALA GORANI, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It's just one example of modern-day slavery, more than 500 men, women, and children forced to work for months in a brick kiln in southern India. Enslaved to pay back a debt.

SAJU MATTHEW, INTERNATIONAL JUSTICE MISSION: The owner decides when the laborers will eat, when they sleep, whether they're free to leave or not.

GORANI: Here, a government raid leads to freedom.

MIRA SORVINO, ACTRESS, U.N. AMBASSADOR-AT-LARGE: There's an endless supply of poor people trying to better their lives, and they will accept almost any offer however almost unbelievable that it could help them.

GORANI: In the fight for the most basic of human rights, CNN has brought you their stories.

SARA SIDNER, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Investigators say this seven-year-old boy became the key to exposing the inner workings of a criminal gang that, for years, had been snatching children off the street, crippling them purposely, and then forcing them to beg.

DAN RIVERS, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Aid groups say many of the Cambodians are put on fishing boats here in the Thai port of Samut Prakan.

They join a vast armada of ghost ships crewed by slaves, which can be resupplied and stay at sea for years. Their only chance of escape is on the rare occasion the fishing trawlers approach land.

GORANI: Beyond these stories, somewhere between 10 and 30 million more.

P. RAMASAMY, PROFESSOR, LABOR EXPERT: Theoretically, these things are not allowed. But then in -- in actual reality, these things, they're widespread.

GORANI: Today, Google says it wants to join the fight.

GARY HAUGEN, PRESIDENT AND CEO, INTERNATIONAL JUSTICE MISSION: This is a completely groundbreaking investment. I think it's historic, actually.

GORANI: Groundbreaking because the millions Google is donating could help free tens of thousands of people, especially if the groups who work to eradicate modern-day slavery cooperate and share resources and information.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Hello, National Human Trafficking Resource Center, how may I help you?

HAUGEN: Google has taken on a certain part of the puzzle, but it's a big puzzle. What are some of the other parts of that work that we might take on? So, I think this is giving a good entry point, now, for other corporations to join the fight and find their way of making a difference against one of the ugliest but most preventable disasters taking place in the world today.

GORANI: And because awareness is vital in the fight, even a small investment can sometimes make a big difference.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We need to do something. You need to stop, think, and speak. From Venezuela, I'm taking a stand against slavery.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ANDERSON: And you don't have to be a big business. You, too, can take a stand. Get involved. Just go to Google's home page and click the link for a wealth of organizations and options that will show you how to make a difference.

And as Hala just told us, Google's multimillion-dollar commitment could help free thousands of modern-day slaves. Well, Hala's joining us now live from Washington.

And this initiative, as we've pointed out, nothing new to CNN. We've been making no bones, Hala, over the last year about the importance of ending modern-day slavery. What's Google saying about their involvement?

GORANI: Well, Google is saying that they were, in the case of one Google executive, touched by some stories they read about and witnessed firsthand in India, for instance, where there are issues with modern-day slavery.

Now, the sum, the total sum, Becky, $11.5 million, you can look at it two ways. It's either a lot of money or, in the grand scheme of things, when you think of the scale of the problem, up to 30 million people affected by the scourge of modern-day slavery, not so much.

I asked one Google executive a little bit earlier why she decided to push Google to contribute one portion of their charitable donations to the fight against modern-day slavery, and Richard Quest, our colleague, as well, spoke to her, and here's what she had to say about why Google in particular felt it wanted to get involved. Listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JACQUELLINE FULLER, DIRECTOR OF CHARITABLE GIVING, GOOGLE: We're a company of engineers, and we love technology, we love data. What we see in this issue is an area where fundamental human rights are being violated.

But there are real solutions in place, and solutions that can be scaled. And there's great data and evidence on these groups who are making a difference on the ground. So, we wanted to back these heroes on the front lines.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GORANI: Well, one of the big issues, Becky, isn't just how much money is contributed or donated to these organizations, it's also awareness.

In Western nations, for instance, many of the products that we consume every day, activists say, could have been made using slave labor, for instance. And the awareness issue is something that these organizations are having to fight for, as well.

Now, I asked the International Justice Mission here in the United States, one of the executives from that group, why she believed that people weren't made aware of this major and basic human rights issue as much as other human rights issues, and this is what she said about that.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

HOLLY BIRKHALTER, INTERNATIONAL JUSTICE MISSION: It's more that people don't know, and that's why I think that information combined with opportunities to act is so critical, both in the US and in India.

The Indian -- educated class actually does not know about bonded forced labor that is literally slavery, it's against their own laws, but they don't see it. They don't see it because they don't live in poor villages, and it's hidden from view.

But you just take off one layer and then those stories are there for the learning and for the telling. And that's what, I think, gets people interested in getting their government to respond.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GORANI: And Becky, of course, that is the big question. Once awareness is raised, will governments respond? Will leaders put pressure on these organizations that might employ slave labor, and that's going to be the big test on whether or not the initiative is a success. Becky?

ANDERSON: Good stuff. Hala, thank you for that. Hala's in Washington for you this evening. And you can learn more about the CNN Freedom Project on our website, cnn.com/freedom. There you can get facts about modern-day slavery, see what you can do to help fight it.

We'd also like you to join in what is a global conversation about ending modern-day slavery. You can connect with us on Facebook, that is facebook.com/CNNfreedom. Twitter users can find us at twitter.com/CNNfreedom, and be sure to use the hash tag #endslavery in your tweets.

I'm Becky Anderson, and that was CONNECT THE WORLD, thanks for watching. World headlines and "BACKSTORY" here on CNN up after this short break. Stay with us.

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