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Facebook Expected To Price IPO Today; China's Rich/Poor Gap Growing; European Banks, Companies Preparing For Possible Greek Exit; Syrian Violence Continues Despite UN Observer Presence

Aired May 17, 2012 - 08:00:00   ET


KRISTIE LU STOUT, HOST: I'm Kristie Lu Stout in Hong Kong. Welcome to News Stream where news and technology meet. And we begin in Greece. The interim government is sworn in, but the country's deep problems remain.

Now Facebook is expected to price its much anticipated IPO today.

And following the football legend: who will take over from Kenny Dalglish at one of the world's most popular football clubs.

Now Greece has a new caretaker government. They also have a date for a new election. Now what it doesn't have is a solution to a financial crisis that European leaders are struggling to contain. Now members of the new government took the oath of office in Athens just hours ago. And voters go to the polls again on June 17. But doubts remain that the politicians can succeed where it failed 10 days ago and agree on a longer term political future.

Now without a fully functioning government in place, Greece would struggle to meet the terms of its bailout plan. And depending on the result of the June election, it may not even accept the terms.

Now all of this risks a default on Greek debt. That in turn risks a Greek exit from the EuroZone. And the domino effect, it could be crippling. Now Banks with exposure to Greek debt would suffer affecting consumers and governments far beyond Greek borders.

And European finance minister would fight to stop all that happening. But that fight has financial limits. A dozen European countries are already in recession, struggling to keep themselves afloat let alone their neighbors. If Greece were to exit the EuroZone, the European central bank would be under more pressure to prop up those with exposure to debt.

But loans come with tough conditions. Now a new wave of austerity across Europe could prolong the economic downturn, make bailouts for other struggling countries simply unaffordable.

Now Greece does still have a bailout deal on the table, but the conditions that come with it are widely unpopular with jobs, wages, and public services all suffering. Now the radical left coalition Syriza wants to renegotiate it. And it is in a position to take most of the votes in next month's election.

Now earlier, Syriza's leader Alexis Tsipras told Christiane Amanpour that he is committed to the EuroZone, but not to the austerity demanded by Berlin.


ALEXIS TSIPRAS, SYRIZA PARTY LEADER: We want to change the austerity measures also in Greece and also in Europe, that's what we want to do. And we want to do this with -- in cooperation with the other forces and the people of Europe, the people who want a big change, because everybody now understand that with this policy we are going directly to the hell.


LU STOUT: Now any Greeks faced with hardship probably feel like they're already there, so what do they think about the prospect of a EuroZone exit? Now Elinda Labropoulou is in Athens. She joins us now live. Elinda first, can you tell us what is the general mood in Greece and in particular what is the situation at the banks? Are people still taking out their money?

ELINDA LABROPOULOU, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: The overall mood is one of concern. The thing is, yes the elections have been called. We do have an exact date, but we don't know what the outcome of that election will be. If polls are anything to go by, the coalition of the radical left is likely to win these elections. It is a party that's pro- euro, but anti-bailout.

But at the same time it is also a party that although it will have the majority of votes, it will still not be able to form a government. It would still need to go into a coalition. And that opens a new question of who would this party be able to possibly go into a coalition with, considering the main players are the same parties that were there at the last election and weren't able to form a coalition government of any kind.

So that creates a lot of political uncertainty. And that uncertainty, that instability is now reflected upon the banks and the way the people are thinking about their money.

As a solution seems less likely, people are trying to find secure options about their options about their money. This has resulted in people considering taking their money out of Greece or out of banks at least. We have seen a raise in the number of people who have done that recently. It's not just a last few days, however, it's something that's been going on for months. Greek depositers have been getting money out of the Greek bank for a long time now. But it's reached the point that even the president of the republic, came out and told his political leaders you know we must find a solution, because this is a phenomenon that's only likely to increase and it's likely to reach panic status later on.

So until political stability if found it seems likely that this is a trend that will continue.

LU STOUT: Very worrying. Now we know that many Greeks don't want austerity, that was loud and clear from the vote 10 days ago. But we've also seen reports that Greeks want to stay in the EuroZone. So can Greece have it both ways?

LABROPOULOU: That's not necessarily a question of having its way. The thing is that austerity just clearly hasn't worked in Greece. Since the first bailout two years ago, recession has continued. Greece is in its fifth year of recession, unemployment has almost doubled, and austerity has lead a lot of people in this prolonged poverty cycle if you like. And this is what people are objecting.

They're not necessarily objecting to the idea of a bailout and certain terms, but they want to see is the renegotiation of part of its terms at least and this goes across the political spectrum. This is not just a coalition of the radical left. It's just a question of the Geeks how many changes they want to see to the bailout because they're saying that if the bailout stays at is it will only prolong recession in Greece.

LU STOUT: All right. Elinda Labropoulou reporting live from Athens for us. Thank you very much indeed for that.

Now Europe's political leaders will not be drawn into talking about Greece's potential EuroZone exit, but business leaders have already begun planning for it. I'm joined by Nina Dos Santos from CNN's World Business Today. She joins us from London.

And Nina, there is fear of a possible Greek exit from the euro. How are companies and banks across Europe preparing for that?

NINA DOS SANTOS, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yeah, well it's very difficult to get anybody to talk on the record about this, Kristie. First of all, we should also just remind our viewers that the EU leaders have staunchly refused to kind of acknowledge any of this kind of talk on the back of concerns that it would further undermine confidence in the single currency.

Now I did manage to get one company's executive, the CEO of Shell which is a firm that employs nearly 100,000 people, Kristie, to talk about this. And when I ask him, quite bluntly he said, well yes, of course we're prepared. People like us just have to be prepared. He said in his heart of hearts he didn't really want this to be an issue. He didn't think it was eventually going to happen, but people like him had to be prepared.

So it doesn't matter whether you're talking to lawyers across London, hedge fund managers across London, even senior chief executives of these kind of companies in and outside the EuroZone people are perhaps to a certain extent just keeping a look on the horizon further down the line to see whether they can hedge their bets in case this does happen.


PETER VOSER, CEO, ROYAL DUTCH SHELL: We have tried to prepare for that. But as you know if these things to happen one (inaudible). But I still have to believe that actually the European system will work on this issue and will come to the right landing which avoids actually a major disaster and will keep the euro in a certain way together that we can actually benefit from the common market in the longer term.


DOS SANTOS: So that's Peter Voser there, the CEO of Shell speaking to me from their offices in Rotterdam explaining exactly the kind of preparatory work that people at his company have done over, quote, the last few months, Kristie, just in case this happens. He hopes it won't, but just in case.

LU STOUT: Wow, the CEO of Shell preparing for a possible Greek exit.

Now meanwhile, what are political leaders across Europe doing to keep Greece in the EuroZone?

DOS SANTOS: Yeah, we heard from the German Chancellor Angela Merkel just yesterday telling our very own Matthew Chance repeatedly that she backed Greece and wanted it to stay inside the EuroZone. We also heard Mariano Majoy, the Spanish prime minister coming out and saying both similar things.

When it comes to the British prime minister, though, because remember that the UK is outside of the EuroZone. Well, he's been saying some more interesting stuff this afternoon. He delivered a speech in the north of England which he basically said EuroZone countries need to put up or face a potential break up. And this comes just one day after the central bank governor of the British, of the English Central Bank, the Bank of England, Mervyn King said well even Britain is bracing itself for some really, really strong headwinds that could be coming from the EuroZone and so course we do see Greece exiting, Kristie.

LU STOUT: Our Nina Dos Santos reporting. Thank you very much indeed for that, Nina.

Now the war crimes trial of Ratko Mladic has been adjourned indefinitely. The defense claims prosecutors at The Hague failed to properly disclose some evidence. Well, the so-called butcher of Bosnia has charged with war crimes, genocide and crimes against humanity. Nic Robertson takes us through the development of day two.


NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: This is the second and final day of the prosecution laying out its case. And Prossecutor McClusky (ph) focused on Srebrenica, the enclave of about 40,000 Muslim men, women, and children that was overrun by Serb forces in July 1995 where the allegations are Mladic oversaw the execution of more than 7,000 Muslim men and boys.

The prosecutor has explained exactly how he'll reveal that evidence in court when the prosecution actually begins through witness testimony, through documents that they've retrieved and through intercepts. But the way of laying it out makes it very clear, Mladic was in command and responsible for those deaths that he calls genocide.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The VRS had eliminated the Muslim population of Srebrenica from eastern Bosnia with the women, children, elderly men barely existing in refugee camps left crippled almost beyond hope without their fathers, brothers, husbands, sons, and grandfathers.

This was and will remain genocide.

ROBERTSON: The prosecutor also played some very graphic video scenes from Srebrenica. It was video there of how the men and women were being separated, that Mladic and other Serbian military commanders had decided to separate the men from the women and children so that they could execute the men. There was video of that.

There was video of the pandemonium of people in Srebrenica trying to get aboard UN trucks to find a safe way to get out of the enclave.

There was video shown as well of Serbian soldiers telling Muslim men to call their comrades, even their families from the woods to come down to safety. Those men, the prosecutors said, were later executed.

And there was some very, very graphic video showing some of those executions, bodies of men lying at the side of the road. The prosecution said they slowed down the video. It was shot from a car and you can see bodies lying at the side of the road, bullet holes in the walls behind them: very, very graphic.

And during that, there were times when Mladic was smiling. And there was one moment where Mladic actually gave a thumbs up to the judge. And this was where he was being shown berating the Dutch-UN commander for not disarming the people, the Bosnian Muslim men of Srebrenica. He was saying in the video that that was your mandate in 1993.

Mladic, during that point, actually gave the thumbs up to the judge. And he was smiling when it was recounted in court how Mladic in an intercept had said that this was revenge, that the killing of the Muslim men was revenge for a battle against Turks hundreds and hundreds of years before. And there were gasps from the victims in the gallery when Mladic was smiling during some of this execution video.

Nic Robertson, CNN, The Hague, The Netherlands.


LU STOUT: A disturbing account there.

Now still to come here on News Stream, Syrian president Bashar al- Assad speaks out against his opponents in a rare interview to Russian TV he holds nothing back.

Also, the price of Facebook: how much will it cost you to get in on the action.

And in China, as the economy is growing some people are being left behind. We'll introduce you to a family that is just getting by.


LU STOUT: Welcome back.

Now it is starting to resemble something like a rock concert. Now all this week we've been reporting on frenzied investors trying to get a piece of the action on Facebook's IPO. And just like a rock concert only those with a lot of money, like institutional investors, hedge funds, are able to get in early. The rest of us will have to wait until Friday to start buying shares.

Now Maggie Lake joins us now from New York. And Maggie, will we find out the final IPO price today?

MAGGIE LAKE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: At some point, Kristie. It may not be until after the close of trade, but you know there's nothing really typical about this IPO. Normally there's some tweaking. The price range changes. But there's a lot in motion here, because of outsized demand.

Here's where we stand. The current price range is $34 to $38. That's expected to raise. If it stays there about $16 billion.

We're going to be watching closely to see if that have to tweak it. Remember yesterday they raised the amount of shares that were going to be available because of the demand is expected to easily and far outstrip supply.

But even at -- even at this price range or if they raise it a little bit more we find out it's gone higher, there's a lot of controversy about the pricing surrounding this. And Facebook's decision to sort of use the traditional IPO route through Wall Street bankers, at least one analyst I spoke to said that he thought it was a bad idea. And here's why.


MICHAEL PACHTER, WEDBUSH RESEARCH: I look at this as a wealth transfer from Facebook to Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan, and clients. And I'm not sure why they want to make that wealth transfer.

I understand the argument that it -- perception is that if the stock goes up on the IPO, the company is a great company, but at what price?


LAKE: That's really interesting, Kristie. Pachter and some others say that Facebook would have done better to do a dutch auction, put the shares online, let everyone bid like Google did if you remember, and let the market set the price. That way Facebook gets the maximum amount for this float, individuals get a say in what it is. And everyone gets sort of fair access.

This way, where they priced it, if you're as you mentioned a big client, a privileged client of some of these investment banks, you get access to it at that cheaper price and then it goes to market, soars, those early clients make money and then Facebook loses out on it. And the rest of us are sort of scrambling to figure out if we should jump in.

Michael Pachter says that because of that volatility, the potential for that big pop and some wobbling within that. Retail investors might want to think about staying away for a week, letting some of that volatility calm down a little bit.

But then he does say -- he's not negative on Facebook, he does say he would definitely think about if he thinks it's a seminal event, if it fits your portfolio and your risk profile, he thinks demand is going to continue to outstrip supply for six months until some of those early lock-ups expire.

So people aren't necessarily negative on Facebook, but some people very negative about this method that sort of ensures those insiders an immediate gain if they choose to sell and leave the rest of us sort of watching the circus from the outside, Kristie.

LU STOUT: Hot demand for this stock. Ordinary investors have to wait until well after the market opens tomorrow morning.

Tell us about the supply of the shares. Who is selling Facebook shares in the IPO? There's of course the CEO Mark Zuckerberg, but who else is in line for a major windfall?

LAKE: Yes, some of the early investors in it. I mean, this is always what happens. Some of those venture capitalists who were early investors will be able to sort of, you know, monetize that early investment.

Interestingly when they raise the amount available there are some reports out today that some of those that are going to be selling more shares are a hedge fund, which is interesting, Goldman Sachs, interesting again. What the stock does and how much of a run-up it has, how much of a bounce, and then if it falls back really will depend on whose hands are holding these shares.

If the Facebook bankers have placed it with long only sort of more conservative mutual funds who tend to buy and hold stock, you might not see even if it runs up, you might not see it fall back again.

If they put it with faster money hands like hedge funds, they might sell on that big pop and then that's where you're going to get the volatility. So it does matter who ultimately sort of gets this first placement and who some of the early sellers are who might want to translate that into a quick profit. And with the market volatility we've seen, Kristie, it's awfully hard to blame them for wanting to do that.

So it's going to be interesting, very unprecedented because of the size and interest in this.

LU STOUT: Yeah, very interesting. So we should expect a pop in the share price on Friday, but also a lot of volatility ahead. Maggie Lake, thank you so much for that.

Now not all companies that started off with a bang end up lost in the distance. Do you remember or Geocities? A lot of people hope that this latest one will last.

Dan Simon takes a look at who is counting on the Facebook offering.


DAN SIMON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Real estate agents, car dealerships, and high-end retailers are hoping for a ripple from the Facebook IPO. But nothing is for certain, that is unless you're the guy sitting in this chair.

So over the next five years the state can expect to get $2.5 billion to $3 billion in tax revenue.


SIMON: That's the California State Treasurer Bill Lockyear whose office is expecting a windfall of money from Facebook millionaires, money that could end up in industries like construction. He notes that for every $1 billion allocated, the state could produce...

LOCKYEAR: 20,000 jobs. And these are good jobs in the middle class solid jobs.

GREG GRETSCH, MANAGING DIRECTOR, SIGMA: Clearly the Facebook IPO is unprecedented. And whenever people try to draw comparisons to their IPO they're at a loss, because there are no comparisons.

SIMON: It's produced a little bit of IPO mania. Websites like Who Owns Facebook show individual shareholders' expected net worth.

DAVID SACKS, CEO, YAMMER: Well, there's nothing like a big, conspicuous success to drive the next generation of investment in start- ups. And that's very good for the Valley.

SIMON: Technology executives like David Sacks see the wealth as a broader phenomenon, one that could spawn the next Facebook or technology company.

SACKS: In order for investors to want to keep pouring money into start-ups, there has to be a return. And so there has to be a lottery winner in order for us to keep wanting to fund the next generation of risky start-ups.

SIMON: Of course, the biggest lottery winner is Mark Zuckerberg himself. How he plans to use his wealth is unknown, except that he's already signed on to the Giving Pledge, the Bill Gates/Warren Buffett initiative that encourages billionaires like Zuckerberg to give most of their money to philanthropic causes.

GRETSCH: His goal is not to get rich with this, his goal is to change the world, that's always been the way he thinks, that continues to be the way he thinks.

SIMON: The thinking here in Silicon Valley is that the Facebook IPO is a once in a generation event, destined to change many lives and motivate scores of entrepreneurs to launch innovative start-ups.

Dan Simon, CNN, Menlo Park, California.


LU STOUT: Now one of England's most successful clubs needs a new manager. Coming up, Amanda Davies will tell us who might be in line to replace Kenny Dalglish at Liverpool.


LU STOUT: Live from Hong Kong. You're back watching News Stream.

Now he is beloved by the club's fans, but Liverpool's owners weren't as fond of Kenny Dalglish. Amanda Davies is here with more -- Amanda.


Yes, the search is very much on for a new Liverpool manager after Kenny Dalglish was sacked on Wednesday. Names such as the Wigan boss Roberto Martinez, Newcastle's Alan Pardew and the dormant coach Jurgen Klopp have all been linked with the post in the last 24 hours. But the club chief executive Ian Ayre insisted there's no pressure to find a replacement immediately. Instead, they want to make sure they've got the right man for the job.

Dalglish was removed from his post after 16 months back at the helm at Anfield, but returned from a meeting with Liverpool owners the Fenway Sports Group on Wednesday having failed to convince them that he was the man to take the club back into the upper echelons of English and European football.

He led them to victory in the league cup this year, the first trophy in six years. And of course to the FA Cup final, but it was their disappointing league performance that ultimately caused Dalglish his job.

Well, it's a far cry from the days when Dalglish was hailed as Liverpool's best ever player as well as one of their greatest managers. Dalglish racked up trophies in his first spell at the club, guiding Liverpool to their last league triumph back in 1990. So you can see why he was welcome back to the club with open arms in January last year.

Dalglish was given money to spend as well to invest in the squad. He spent over $170 million on new players, but it just didn't work out. Liverpool struggled in the league, their worst finish in over 50 years. And Dalglish as well was criticized for his handling of the racism charges that were leveled at striker Luis Suarez.

Well, whoever takes over has a pretty tough job to bring Liverpool back into the Champion's League spot. Let's just have a look at Liverpool's league position every season since they last won the league 22 years ago. You can see the decline of the club culminating over here to this side, their eighth place finish this year.

Incidentally it seems to be Andres Villas-Boas who is the favorite for the job at the moment, but more on that throughout the day here on CNN.

So let's move to the NBA, though, and the Los Angeles Lakers are in real danger of being eliminated by the Oklahoma City Thunder despite leading 75-68 with just two minutes left in game 2. Kevin Durant led a late charge with this steal and slam. Under 30 seconds to go, it's Durant again on the way to his 22 points for the night. Oklahoma City take the lead.

One last chance for the Lakers. Steve Blake gets an open look at a three from the corner, but it's no good. So the thunder win 77-75 to take a 2-0 lead in the series.

That's it for me for now, Kristie. Back to you.

LU STOUT: OK, Amanda, thank you very much indeed.

Up next here on News Stream, the violence in Syria shows no sign of easing. And according to the country's president, it's actually on the rise. We'll tell you who Bashar al-Assad blames.

And looking for a better life, but finding it more misery? We'll meet the Afghan teenagers left on the outside in France.


LU STOUT: I'm Kristie Lu Stout in Hong Kong. You're watching News Stream and these are your world headlines.

Now proceedings in the war crimes trial of Ratko Mladic have been suspended indefinitely. According to Hague says prosecutors failed to disclose significant evidence at the appropriate time. Now Mladic's defense team is now being given time to examine it. The former commander of the Bosnian-Serb army is charged with war crimes, genocide, and crimes against humanity.

Now Greece has a new caretaker government just as there are worries that Greece will default on its debt. The next general election will be held on June 17. Now the country was thrown into political limbo by inconclusive election results 10 days ago as voters punished their leaders for harsh cost cutting.

Now this video is said to show Syrian government tanks firing on the city of Khan Shekhoun. Now CNN cannot verify when or where it was taken. Activists report at least four people were killed when Syrian forces opened fire in the suburb of Damascus. It comes as a confidential UN report found that Iran is supplying Syria with arms in violation of a ban on weapon sales.

Now Syrian President Bashar al-Assad lashed out at his opponent in an interview on Russian television. He called opposition forces terrorists and blamed them for the fighting in Syria. Also, he said he would not bow to international pressure to step down and end the violence. And he had another name for the protests of the Arab Spring.


BASHAR AL-ASSAD, PRESIDENT OF SYRIA (through translator): I don't want to say that the position of the authorities has changed if we take into consideration the developments in Syria, the events in Libya and other countries. For the leaders of these countries, it's becoming clear that this is not spring, but chaos. And as I have said, if you sow chaos in Syria you may be infected by it yourself. And they understand this perfectly well.


LU STOUT: Now President Assad also said that there has been an increase in terrorist attacks since the arrival of UN observers.

And for more on this, Mohammed Jamjoom joins us now live from Beirut - - Mohammed.

MOHAMMED JAMJOOM, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORREPSONDENT: Well, Kristie, President al-Assad says that there's been more terrorist attacks since the arrival of the UN observers, meanwhile the opposition there says that the crackdown by the Syrian regime has continued despite the presence of the UN observers. The fact of the matter is, the violence there has continued. More and more of the international community saying that this peace plan by the UN and Arab League envoy to Syria Kofi Annan is really in tatters despite the presence of those UN observers.


JAMJOOM: More trouble for the beleaguered international mission. The UN observers themselves came under attack Tuesday in the besieged Syrian town of Khan Shekhoun when their convoy struck an improvised explosive device. This amateur video purports to show the moment of the explosion and its chaotic aftermath. The vehicles drive off and the crowd, clearly frightened, begins to run away.

All this happening, according to opposition activists, as a massacre was taking place at the same time in the same town.

It's hard to verify these claims independently, but in this video, anti-regime demonstrators inch closer to security forces. They chant anti- government slogans as the soldiers stand by. Then suddenly the shooting begins.

Opposition activists say more than 20 people were killed in the town in Idlib Province Tuesday and that anti-government funeral processions were the target of multiple and sustained attacks by security forces who used heavy weaponry against them.

But the rebels fought back. In this video, a man wearing a military uniform and carrying an RPG launcher proudly advertises the damages they've inflicted on the regime.

ALAA TUTAINI, COMMANDER, MARTYR WALEED AL-NISR (through translator): (inaudible). The commander of the Martyr Waleed al-Nisr battalion in (inaudible) suburbs on the 15th of May, 2012 during the visit of the international observers to the city of Khan Shekhoun. The security forces (inaudible) started shooting randomly at a funeral procession. With god's help, we managed to destroy one tank from the regime's forces.

JAMJOOM: The UN says three of their vehicles were damaged, but that none of their observers were injured. While they were stranded overnight and given shelter by rebels, the next morning they were able to depart and make it back to safety with the help from the Syrian government.

It's not clear if the observers were the target of the attack, but the incident is raising more questions about the effectiveness of this monitoring mission. Many already believe the UN-backed peace plan will inevitably be judged a failure. And while overall about 200 monitors are in Syria, they've not deterred Bashar al-Assad's forces.

This is how the head of the mission put it when he first arrived in Damascus.

GENERAL ROBERT MOOD, CHIEF U.N. MONITORING MISSION SYRIA: 10 unarmed observers, 30 unarmed observers, 300 unarmed observers, even 1,000 unarmed observers cannot solve all of the problems.


JAMJOOM: And of course one of the major objectives of the mission, an agreed upon cease-fire, now looks more distant than ever -- Kristie.

LU STOUT: Especially if the violence drags on. And Mohammed, reports of more clashes in Tripoli, Lebanon. Is this another instance of spillover violence from Syria?

JAMJOOM: This is spillover from Syria, Kristie. We've heard today form internal security forces in Lebanon that in Tripoli, in that northern port city, at least 10 people have been injured. The clashes are continuing, that they've been intermittent. There's more army that's up there right now too now. We've also heard from the national news agency in Lebanon that a child was killed due to violence in the overnight hours.

This latest round of clashes was sparked because of the arrest of a man named Shadi Mawloui (ph). The Lebanese government accused him of being an operative with an al Qaeda inspired group, that he's a jihadist, but his family says no. In fact, he's a sympathizer with the Syrian rebels and that he's been providing aid, food, and shelter to Syrian refugees.

But it just goes to show what a volatile mix they have up there in Tripoli. Tripoli is a city where you have a Sunni enclave. It's a majority Sunni, but you also have an Alawite neighborhood, therefore the city really mirrors the sectarian divide of the fight that's going on in Syria -- Alawite versus Sunni.

Those two neighborhoods, a Sunni neighborhood and an Alawite neighborhood, have been clashing intermittently ever since the arrest of this man. And it's the kind of violence that if it continues, you know, analysts have said that it really could be a destabilizing factor in the country here in the months to come -- Kristie.

LU STOUT: Mohammed Jamjoom reporting. Thank you very much indeed.

Now in a nation hammered by war and poverty, the promise of a better life is difficult to resist, but many young people who leave Afghanistan for France find that reality falls far short of expectations. Now Dan Rivers meets some of those struggling for acceptance and shelter on the streets of Paris.


DAN RIVERS, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORREPSONDENT: He's just 14-years-old, alone and far from home. Like all these teenagers queuing up for bed for the night in Paris, they've all risked their lives to escape poverty. Most are from Afghanistan.

Almost all these children were smuggled to France by people traffickers. Their families paid thousands of dollars hoping for a better life for them in the west, but this is the reality, a grim wait for a bed, hoping charity worker Venus Colin will pick them so they don't have to sleep on the streets again.



COLIN: Isn't it for you?


COLIN: It is for me every night to see that people that families are ready to send their children so young so they can have a better life, because there they don't have no hope.

RIVERS: The staff now have to make a really difficult choice. There are 45 children here, but there's only space inside for 25. So 20 of them are going to sleep out on the streets in this appalling weather.

Venus picks the youngest. The rest are left on the street.

Mohammed is typical, orphaned by war and disease he shows me the park where he lived for months after arriving in Paris. A relative paid $4,000 for a chance for a better live yet this park became his home.

MOHAMMED, REFUGEE: That time is difficult time for me in my life.

RIVERS: But now Mohammed has got help. He shows me the reception center run by a charity France Terre D'Asile. It gives children like him a safe place to hang out, watch films, socialize and play, often something totally lacking in their tough upbringing in Afghanistan.

MOHAMMED: And we have in Afghanistan just work or fight, no other...

RIVERS: Just fighting.

MOHAMMED: Yeah, just fighting.

RIVERS: Mohammed shows me his home on a map. He traveled more than 6,000 kilometers risking frost bite and border patrols as he climbed mountains to cross Iran and Turkey.

And how long did it take you to get to France, how many months?

MOHAMMED: 9 months.

RIVERS: 9 months. And you traveled in a car?

MOHAMMED: Through Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran, Turkey, Greece, Italy, French.

RIVERS: A long, long way.

MOHAMMED: It's long, long way, but it is dangerous for everyone.

RIVERS: Aid work Beatrice Allan says the boys are told by smugglers there will be jobs waiting for them in France. She recently had to explain to one teenager that's not allowed.

BEATRICE ALLAN, FRANCE TERRE D'ASILE: Having to explain to a 14-year- old that it's illegal for him to work here was exceptionally distressful for him. And he didn't even want to get in touch with his family back home, because he didn't know how to say it to them.

RIVERS: These boys must prove they're under 18. Without papers, that's often impossible, meaning their best hope is getting into a charity hospital like this. When it's full, they sleep on the street, their dream of a better life in the west remains just that.

Dan Rivers, CNN, Paris.


LU STOUT: Heartbreaking story. Now what I am about to show you was considered classified up until last week. Now it is a mock-up of Osama bin Laden's compound in Pakistan. It's now on display at the Pentagon. U.S. Navy SEALs used it to prepare for last year's raid that killed the al Qaeda leader. And it was built exactly to scale by a little known defense agency. The National Geospacial-Intelligence Agency provides satellite images to U.S. spies. And it took about six weeks to built this out of Styrofoam and acrylic. And in addition to bin Laden's compound, it also includes the surrounding farmland.

And as you can see, it is extremely detailed. There's the barbed-wire fence right around here and the red van parked out in front.

And this helped U.S. commanders learn the height of every wall and which gates to go through. They also had a life-sized replica so they could count the number of steps it would take to find bin Laden.

Now coming up next here on News Stream, in China economic growth is leading to a lot of change, but not everyone is sharing in the boom. An inside look at those left behind.


LU STOUT: Welcome back.

Now China's economy and status on the global stage are on the rise, but for some of its citizens life is standing still. Now Stan Grant reports the gap between rich and poor continues to grow. And the poor are becoming more miserable.


STAN GRANT, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: "This is where we live," Ding Shin Chung (ph) points to the one bed where his family sleeps: there's his wife, a son at school, and another son 8-years-old and intellectually disabled, all of them squeezed in here to this one room rundown house in Beijing. It's a tough life, even harder when they think of their son.

"The gap between rich and poor is still huge," he says. "We can never compare with them. We just compare with ourselves."

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (through translator): If we have food and clothing, we are content. For my children, if they are born in my family I need to do my utmost to take care of them. I will do it with all my energy.

GRANT: Ding (ph) is a driver, but times are tough and work is hard to find. In a good month he might make a few hundreds dollars. It is hardly enough to plan for a future.

"We don't even think about the future," he says. "We don't have the strength. It is useless to think of it.

Ding Shin Chung (ph) is among the hundreds of millions of people left behind by Cina's economic miracle. The boom growth is over. The gap between rich and poor growing every more wide.

Ding (ph) doesn't blame the government. He says life even for the poor is better than it used to be. But he scoffs when I ask if the rich think they're better than people like him.

"If you are poor, people look down on you. If you are rich, they hate you."

This life here could very well become a thing of the past. This is a Hujong (ph) area, or a courtyard area where the poor are crammed in together. But it's rapidly disappearing. These houses are being knocked down for much flashier, more expensive apartments.

China's happiness has been measured by America's National Academy of Sciences over the past 20 years. While the poor are less happy, it also finds that money does not bring contentment.

Despite all their hardship, Ding (ph) and his wife believe they have something many of the rich have lost: happiness in the small things, family and in an officially atheist country their faith in god.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (through translator): Our belief in god helps us. I have taken care of my sons for eight years, without god we would be in despair.

GRANT: Fu Shaolin (ph) looks to Christianity, not the Communist Party. For this family, they may only have a room and a bed, but they say it is enough if they have each other.

Stan Grant, CNN, Bejing.


LU STOUT: A touching portrait of a family there.

Now time now for a look at your global weather forecast. Mari Ramos joins us for that -- Mari.

MARI RAMOS, CNN WEATHER CORRESPONDENT: Hey, Kristie, we're going to start in South America, first of all, and talk about an area that has been suffering from very severe flooding. Let's go ahead and roll the pictures, first of all. You're looking at one of the larger cities in Brazil, the city of Manaus, the capital of the state of Amazonas which is right there in the middle of the Amazon rainforest. That right there says highest levels of the Rio Negro River.

The Rio Negro is the world's largest black water river. And it flows into the Amazon. It's actually its largest tributary. Well, it's at its highest levels in more than 100 years. It's flooding portions of the city that have not flooded before. It's -- when you look at this, you can see how significant the flooding has been. Thousands of families have been affected. And there's a big concern, because of the population density where this water is pouring into the city as you can see there and the risk for disease.

Now when we talk about this area I want to show you a couple of things. The highest level, like you said, in 100 -- more than 100 years, since they've been keeping records. And the majority of the municipalities are in emergency level. We're talking about statewide here in the Amazon. More than 75,000 families affected, as I was telling you. And one of the concerns is, is because of the way these rivers are it takes a long time for them to get filled up, but it also could take months for the river to drain and be above that 29 meter level that we're seeing already over those areas.

There has been some very heavy rain across the Amazon. This is actually a good thing, right, because if you get a lot of rain you'll have less wildfires, or less forest fires in this area. However, the flooding has been extensive across some of these regions in contract to the south. They're suffering from drought and they could really use some rain. The rain will stay in the flooded areas. The drought area remaining very, very dry.

With my last few seconds, I want to show you some pretty dramatic video from the other side of the world. Let's go ahead and roll the pictures from Switzerland. Take a look at this Kristie. Did you see that? This is a landslide that is -- happened late on Monday and into Tuesday as you can see. They're in Switzerland. This is in the southern portion of Switzerland in an area that -- there's not a lot of housing here, but it did cause some damage to a nearby village. There were some evacuations originally. You can see how at times it almost seems as if the river turns into water almost -- I should say the land turns almost into water. Gravity, of course, playing a huge roll here. We're talking about very steep mountains there.

They don't know why the landslide happened. It's not like they've had a lot of rains recently. But of course we're always fighting gravity when it comes to things like this. The roadway also has to be closed for a time as this was going on.

They're still, of course, keeping people out of that area. Very dramatic indeed. Back to you.

LU STOUT: Yeah, very dramatic. Incredible video there of that landslide that just left a gash in the side of that mountain.

Mari, thank you for sharing that with us. Mari Ramos there.

Now if you are skeptical that there is no limit to the power of the human mind, you better stick around. We'll show you exactly how the drink on the left makes it to the way to the mouth of the paralyzed woman on the right.


LU STOUT: Welcome back.

Now slowly but surely Kathy Hutchinson is doing something she hasn't been able to do for the last 15 years, she is picking up a cup of coffee and taking a sip. Now Hutchinson was paralyzed by a stroke, but she's able to control that robotic arm with her brain.

Now scientists implanted a chip smaller than this coin in her motor cortex, that part of the brain controls voluntary movement. And the device translates the brain's electric signals into different movements. And those neural impulses have been mapped by a computer. In this case, it all came together to bring a straw to Hutchinson's mouth and put a smile on her face.

Now Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg is having a pretty good week. He turned 28 on Monday. And the IPO tomorrow could net him billions more dollars. And now he's being immortalized in song as Jeanne Moos reports.


JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORREPSONDENT: Face this Mark Zuckerberg, the movie about you takes two hours.

JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE, ACTOR: Drop the "the" just Facebook.

MOOS: But it takes less than four minutes to tell your life story in Zuckerberg: the Musical.


MOOS: Using songs borrowed from Cats.


MOOS: Borrowed from Hair, borrowed from Westside Story.


MOOS: You'll find this musical on YouTube, not Broadway.

JOE SABIA, CO-FOUNDER, CDZAMUSIC.COM: Everyone that you see performing is a Julliard trained musician, pretty much.

MOOS: It's the latest release from something called the Collective Candenza, CDZA for short.

Zuckerberg: the Musical covers every phase of Facebook from...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Scene number seven, expansion.


MOOS: To Facebook's role as the champion of Democracy.


MOOS: CDZA says it creates music video experiments. Their first experiment was called.

SABIA: A history of lyrics that are not lyrics.


MOOS: Put your lips together for their next video.


MOOS: The history of whistling.


MOOS: 26 songs covering 98 years.


MOOS: Now to ride the noise of Facebook going public and hoping you'll like their song about the like button.


MOOS: And finally, we get to Mark Zuckerberg taking Facebook public.


MOOS: Go ahead and mock Markie, but CDZA doesn't just sing about Facebook, they're on it.


MOOS: Jeanne Moos, CNN, New York.


LU STOUT: Now what are Facebook employees doing to prepare for the big day? Well, they are holding a hackathon, that's an all-night coding session where they're encouraged to work on any project they choose. Now past hackathons came up with features like chat, or the like button. And Facebook often boasts about its hacker culture. They even renamed the road bringing its offices to Hacker Way.

And that is News Stream, but the news continues at CNN. World Business Today is next.