Return to Transcripts main page


Muslim Demonstrations Continue; A Look At Sinai Bedouin Torture Houses; Spain, Czech Republic Qualify for Davis Cup Final; A Look At Canopy Skydiving Competitions

Aired September 17, 2012 - 8:00   ET


KRISTIE LU STOUT, HOST: I'm Kristie Lu Stout in Hong Kong. And welcome to News Stream where news and technology meet.

And we begin in Afghanistan where protests continue over a film that is insulting to Islam.

And we get an inside look at the capital of war torn Syria, Damascus.

And as William and Katherine tour the Solomon Islands, the royal family prepares to sue a French magazine for publishing topless photos of the Duchess.

Now the U.S. defense secretary says that the worst of the violence appears to be over, but that has not stopped scenes like these across much of the Muslim world. At the very heart of it is fury over a low budget, online movie that is offensive to Islam.

Now let's take a look at protests around the world. In Afghanistan, nearly 300 demonstrators battled police. It happened on a road in the capital leading to the U.S. embassy. And we will get more from Anna Coren who is live in Kabul in just a few moments.

Now in Pakistan, an effigy of U.S. President Barack Obama was burned. In the northwest police also say a protester was shot dead in clashes.

In Indonesia, there was similar violence reported between police and protesters.

And there could be more unrest ahead. The leader of Lebanon's Hezbollah movement has called for renewed demonstrations over the film. And the movie has also been raising strong concerns in India where the country's external affairs spokesman says Google India has blocked access to the movie's trailer.

Now the protests began nearly one week ago and have grown as word spread about the anti-Islam film.

Now here is Reza Sayah with a round-up of the reaction.


REZA SAYAH, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Washington bracing itself for another wave of anti-American anger on Monday. This time the call for protests coming from Lebanon and Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah. "The whole world needs to see your anger on your faces, in your fists and your shouts," Nasrallah said in a televised speech.

On Sunday, anti-American demonstrations continued in Karachi, Pakistan as police beat back scores of protesters in front of the U.S. consulate. That angry rally followed a flurry of protests over the past few days in places like Yemen, Egypt, Tunisia, Iran where demonstrations railed against a low budget film that insults Islam's prophet Mohammed.

The protests sometimes turned violent. U.S. ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans died when armed protesters attacked the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya. U.S. officials say lost amid the tragedy in dramatic headlines was the fact that most were not massive protests, but crowds numbering in the hundreds, sometimes in the thousands.

SUSAN RICE, U.S. AMBASSADOR TO THE UN: The mobs we've seen on the outside of these embassies are a small minority. They're the ones who have largely lost in these emerging democratic processes.

SAYAH: Susan Rice, the U.S. ambassador to the UN said the attacks on U.S. targets began as spontaneous protests, rejecting earlier claims they were part of a plot to coincide with last week's anniversary of 9/11.

The anti-American protests have fast become the Obama administration's most pressing foreign policy crisis, but the White House faces other urgent challenges in the region. On Sunday, four U.S. soldiers were killed in Afghanistan, the latest in a breakout of insider attacks where Afghan forces target NATO troops.

And Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu continue to ratchet pressure on Washington to set a red line for Iran, claiming Iran is months away from being able to build a nuclear bomb.

BENJAMIN NETANYAHU, PRIME MINISTER OF ISRAEL: I think that there is a common interest of all Americans of all political persuasions to stop Iran. This is a regime that is giving vent to the worst impulses that you see right now in the Middle East.

SAYAH: Washington is putting a lot of pressure on government in the region to crack down on violent protests. And those governments have responded with tighter security and the protests seem to be tailing off.

In the meantime, Libyan officials say they've arrested a number of suspects in the attack that killed U.S. ambassador Stevens. It's not clear who these suspects are at this time, but Libyan officials saying contrary to earlier claims there is no evidence al Qaeda was involved.

Reza Sayah, CNN, Islamabad.


LU STOUT: In Afghanistan, at least 15 police officers have been injured at a protest against the film. Anna Coren is in Kabul. And she joins us with the very latest. And Anna, violent protests today in Kabul. Tell us what happened.

ANNA COREN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yeah, Kristie, it was only a matter of time. I think people were quite surprised here in Afghanistan that we hadn't seen violence over the last few days. And then early this morning there were violent protests near the U.S. embassy, some 300 people took to the streets, attacked police who were trying to stop them from making their way up to the U.S. embassy. They attacked the police officers, some 15 officers were injured including the commander. Two police cars were set on fire along with a number of tires. There were plumes of black smoke coming from that area.

We got within a couple hundred meters, but there were reports that shots were being fired and they were targeting westerners. So our security told us that we couldn't go any further.

But certainly this is disappointing for the government. They've been trying to keep a lid on this. Obviously we've spoken about this last week when the government banned YouTube so that people couldn't view this inflammatory video that has caused so much rage across the Muslim world. But finally word has got here and people took to the streets in Kabul, Kristie.

LU STOUT: And tell us more about Afghan security and its response. How did they manage this violent protest? And just how proactive are they about controlling any further outbreak of violence?

COREN: Well, certainly there were dozens and dozens of police vehicles that were driving, racing up to this protest along Jalalabad Road , which is on the outskirts of Kabul. Certainly when we drove past the U.S. embassy -- you know, I've been here for a couple of weeks and I've never seen so much security around this area. There were troops there with their flak jackets and their helmets. So they were ready for these protesters. I think they were anticipating a great deal of violence. Obviously we have seen those scenes across the Muslim world. And they were anticipating more violence.

But it looks like the police were able to get on top of it, they were able to suppress this protest, and obviously as a result security has been beefed up across the city -- Kristie.

LU STOUT: All right. Anna Coren reporting live from Kabul, thank you.

And now to Syria where foreign militants are sometimes teaming up with rebel fighters, that's according to a recent UN report. It says Islamist militants could be radicalizing elements of the opposition.

Meanwhile, Iran acknowledges its elite forces have acted as advisers to the Syrian government, but the commander of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard adds that his forces had not taken part in combat. And the foreign ministry says that they are no longer in the country.

And while fighting rages in the Syrian city of Aleppo, residents in the capital Damascus are desperately trying to cling to normal life, but no matter how hard they try the sound of shelling is never too far away.

Nic Robertson reports from Damascus.


NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Driving back into Damascus after an absence of eight months. Clouds of black smoke signal conflict is closing in on Syria's capital. But first impressions are deceptive. At the city's heart it's fabled mosque all appears tranquil. No one flinches when artillery shells explode just a few miles away. Nearby, the ancient bizarre is teeming, stalls all open, shelves well stocked, supplies aplenty.

We've tried talking to several storekeepers here, but they all tell us they're too afraid to talk on camera, worried about what the government might say, worried about what the rebels might do to them. They all tell us that despite the abundance of people here, business is down. And when I asked them about the shelling that we can hear in the background, they tell me they're worried, afraid, afraid because they think the war is getting closer.

And they are right. 10 minutes drive away, destruction by government forces chase the Free Syrian Army. On many days, the death toll around the capital far higher than for other cities.

But where they can, people are trying to hold on to their old lives. For Rama Hamdi that's a few minutes at the beauty salon. It may look like normal life, but it's not.

RAMA HAMDI, BEAUTY SALON CLIENT: Every day we're hearing this boom, boom and everything else. And that will -- there is a lot happening -- going on.

ROBERTSON: You don't worry about it?

HAMDI: I'm worried. I'm worried sick about it, but there's nothing we can do.

ROBERTSON: She tells me she hates the killing, supports neither government nor rebels, wants them to talk, feels stuck in the middle. So, too, the salon's owner.

RAUDA ALAITA, BEAUTY SALON OWNER: You know what it is, I cannot go to the countryside without being worried somebody will stop me. Is it the real army or the other army stopping me? What answer should I answer if they ask me with whom I am? So, it's really difficult now, because you are really stuck in the middle.

ROBERTSON: At a news conference under the banner of unity an array of anything but united opposition figures call for talks with the government.

There is an air of urgency here. The speakers are discussing how the situation is worse than it was a year ago, that they need to be united, that they need to speak with a common voice. But even as these discussions are going on here, you can hear the blasts happening outside, perhaps as close as a couple of miles.

Reality is none of the armed opposition, like the Free Syrian Army, are here. They'd be arrested. The groups gathered here are the ones the government tolerates. They know they are powerless.

"We are demanding from the regime for guarantees of safety of the opposition to come in," he says. "But we can't impose this on the regime."

With nightfall, the city looks serene, but like daytime it's deceptive. The shelling continues. The only talking now is with guns.

Nic Robertson, CNN, Damascus, Syria.


LU STOUT: Coming up on News Stream, protesters in China target Japanese companies as tensions escalate between Beijing and Tokyo over a group of islands in the East China Sea.

And the royals strike back at a magazine that published topless photos of the Duchess of Cambridge taken while she and her husband, Prince William, were on vacation.

Also, green on blue, or insider attacks on coalition forces in Afghanistan are on the rise. Anna Coren looks at what is behind them.


LU STOUT: Now, anti-Japanese protests have been escalating in China as Beijing and Tokyo clash over the ownership of a group of islands in the East China Sea. They're called Diaoyu in China and Senkoku in Japan. And many fear that this dispute could hurt trade ties between Asia's two largest economies as Chinese protesters target Japanese businesses inside China forcing factories to shut down and employees to go into hiding.

Now the Japanese electronics company Panasonic said on Monday that it has suspended operations at three of its Chinese plants after two were damaged by violent protests.

Now the protests were triggered by recent events. But as Stan Grant reports, the dispute is deeply rooted in history.


STAN GRANT, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: This is a protest China is happy to allows. Such public anger is normally banned here, but not when it's aimed at old foe Japan. Japan's embassy in Beijing and consulates across the country targeted, Japanese owned businesses attacked, and calls for a boycott of Japanese products. The protests may be staged, but the anti-Japanese feelings come naturally.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): If that bastard Japan is too out of line, we can use force. We are as strong as them, at least in military.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): I think China should use force, since it impact the fundamental interests of our nation. There is no need to consider further on this issue.

GRANT: The flashpoint, a dispute over who owns what China calls the Diaoyu Islands. Japan asserts its control of the rocky outcrops for over a century. China says it's claim dates back hundreds of years.

"There shouldn't be any discussion on Diaoyu Island, it has always been a part of China."

Chinese analysts like Wo Shiang Jiang say this is a fight rooted in history and age old hatreds. Diaoyu, or as Japan calls them Senkoku, have been won and lost in war. Japan says China ceded sovereignty when it lost the Sino-Japanese war in 1895. Japan's surrender in World War II clouded the issue again. Japan says it won back the islands in a 1972 treaty with the United States.

"The U.S. handed over the island to Japan for its own purpose during the Cold War," Wo Shiant Jiang says. "So personally I think the U.S. should take the blame for the dispute on Diaoyu Island."

China's foreign ministry says the U.S. should stay out of this dispute.

"We hope that the U.S. can earnestly honor its principle of not taking positions on the Diaoyu issue," this spokesman says.

And there's another factor, China is preparing for a leadership transition and amidst Communist Party infighting. Right now is suits the power brokers to have public anger directed at an enemy outside rather than an enemy within.

Stan Grant, CNN, Beijing.


LU STOUT: And as Stan mentioned, the dispute comes at a delicate time for China as the country prepares for a once in a decade leadership transition, which is expected to elevate this man, Vice President Xi Jinping to the presidency. On Saturday, Xi was back in the spotlight, making his first public appearance in two weeks.

Now during his unexplained absence, Xi canceled several meetings, including one with visiting U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, sparking international concern about his health. Now officials now say that Xi will meet U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta in Beijing this week. And the state run Xinua reports that Xi is expected to attend an international trade fair as well.

Now some people have seen a bit too much of the Duchess of Cambridge. Now the royal family is taking legal action to hide revealing pictures of Catherine. We'll have the latest just ahead. Stay with us.


LU STOUT: A dramatic view of Hong Kong there.

Welcome back. You are watching News Stream.

And you're looking at a visual rundown of all the stories on the show. And we've shown you the continuing anti-U.S. protests across the world. And alter, I'll tell you how one man plans to satisfy the demand for leopard skins and save leopards.

But now, let's turn to the controversial photos of Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge. In a few hours, lawyers for the British royals will appear in a Paris court. Now remember, a French magazine called Closer published topless photos of Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge taken while she was sunbathing at a private Chateau if Provence.

Now the images have also appeared in Ireland and Italy. And the incident is particularly sensitive for the royal family given the paparazzi's relentless pursuit of William's mother, Diana, who died in a high speed car crash in Paris in 1997.

Now the Italian magazine Chi has now also published the topless photos of Catherine. And it sparked outrage in 2006 when it printed a photo of a fatally injured Diana at the scene of the crash. Now both Chi and Closer are owned by Italian former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi, but a palace spokesman says that the couple is only taking legal action in France for now.

Now William and Catherine are currently in the Solomon Islands. And they are on a tour of Southeast Asia to celebrate the queen's diamond jubilee. Royal correspondent Max Foster joins us now live from Honiara. And Max, can you tell us what action will the lawyers for the royal family take?

MAX FOSTER, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, they're using whatever they can. In France, they're looking at all options: a civil case. And that's going to be (inaudible). And it's about sort of potentially get putting the editor into jail or a big fine. But the main priority right now is an injunction to stop the magazine in France from publishing any more pictures or republishing and actually making sure that the existing pictures come offline as well.

A separate complaint has been made to prosecutors from the palace asking for prosecution, a criminal prosecution of the photographer who took the pictures. The problem is, no one knows, apart from the magazine, who the photographer is, but they've lodged the complaint anyway, whether or not that name is revealed depends on the magazine. I don't imagine they're going to reveal it anytime soon. But it's a real message from the palace that they're taking this extremely seriously.

Kristie, I spoke to the Duke and the Duchess today. And it's clear both of them are still very upset by this. I mean, she feels humiliated by these pictures. And he feels very angry. He referred to the Diana reference there. His mother was hounded by the media right up until the end, really. He doesn't want to see that happening with his wife. And that's why they're taking this so seriously. They're making an example of Closer magazine in France, Kristie.

LU STOUT: Now this legal drama aside, the royal couple is on their tour of Southeast Asia. They have been in Solomon Islands. What happened there today?

FOSTER: Well, it's amazing, really, because if you look at the media and actually speak to the crowds here, they're not interested in that story at all. They've been so looking forward to this event. They know it's a once in a lifetime opportunity for them. The queen is head of state in this country. And so they've all turned out to all of the events here. And the couple have been all smiles for them.

They wanted to carry on professionally with this tour. And they've been putting on a great show really for the crowds, so you wouldn't know that they've got all these problems in the background. But certainly, you know, this morning they met the prime minister. It was a really fun occasion. They went in to meet the cabinet. And the cabinet seemed more excited than anyone to meet this young couple. They were taking photographs of the couple with their camera phones.

And then they went into a market square and met big crowds. And they rode off to a desert island where they're staying tonight. And they are flanked by these two swimmers dressed as sharks. Incredible scenes, amazing opportunities for the photographers, ironically, Kristie. But they're all approved photographers, so there's a differentiation there.

LU STOUT: Yeah, and as the royal couple they travel overseas, how do they protect their privacy? What measures are taken?

FOSTER: Well, you know, this is the big thing, isn't it? If they're on an official tour like this they are in a closed -- they're in a hotel. We know -- we saw them in the hotel and we were speaking to them in the hotel. You know, they're on -- they're working full-time on these events.

The point about the French pictures is that they were on holiday in a private situation. And they had a right to privacy according to them. I mean, there's a big debate about whether or not they can have privacy, but the palace and Williams is certainly making the point that there needs to be a line somewhere. Everyone, no matter how famous, deserves a private life. And they're saying this defines what it private for them.

There might have been a debate about the Harry pictures when he was naked, but there's no debate about this as far as they're concerned.

LU STOUT: Max Foster reporting live from the Solomon Islands, thank you.

Now you're watching News Stream. And coming up next, inside job. Now this Afghan man claims that he killed two U.S. soldiers several years ago. Now those green on blue attacks are now on the rise and we have an exclusive interview.

And later, a look at South Africa's endangered leopard. Find out how faux fur and religious rituals could save the cats' lives.


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

Now the Japanese electronics company Panasonic has temporarily suspended operations at some of its factories in China after violent protests. Anti-Japanese demonstrations took place in several Chinese cities over the weekend. It followed Tokyo's purchase of a group of islands also claimed by Beijing. Now Beijing is promising to protect Japanese cities and property.

In Afghanistan, at least 15 police officers have been injured at a protest against an online film that is offensive to Islam. A senior police official says nearly 300 people took part in the demonstration in Kabul. He says two police vehicles were burned. Now tensions have been high across the Muslim world over the video which was privately produced in the U.S.

And in Afghanistan's Logmin Province villagers chanted "Death to America" after a NATO airstrike that killed civilians. Now ISAF apologized after denying there was any evidence of the deaths for hours. It happened early Sunday morning at a time when women often go out to collect fire wood.

Now it has been a deadly weekend for international forces in Afghanistan. It is believed that Afghan policemen were involved in killing four NATO troops on Sunday. And two British soldiers were fatally shot by an Afghan police officer on Saturday.

And those so-called green on blue attacks have now killed more than 50 troops this year. Anna Coren spoke to one Afghan man who claims to have killed U.S. forces in the past. And here is her exclusive report.


COREN: In a small house in a Taliban controlled village is a man who claims to be responsible for a green on blue attack. With his face covered to hide his identity he pulls out his police uniform, something he hasn't worn since the attack on the 2nd of October 2009.

On patrol with U.S. forces in Wydek Province in central Afghanistan this father of two says he waited for an opportunity to launch his premeditated attack.

"The Americans went inside the nearby school for a break," he explains. "They took off their body armor and put their weapons down. At that moment, I thought it was the right time so I took my gun and shot them."

Two soldiers were killed: 25 year old Sergeant Aaron Smith and 21 year old Private First Class Brandon Owens. Three other soldiers were injured, including Captain Tyler Kurth .

When asked why he turned his gun on the U.S. soldiers training him he said, "Because Americans were oppressing people in my country. They were burning copies of the holy Koran and disrespecting it."

Having escaped from the scene, he claims he was later captured by the Taliban who thought he was a policeman.

"When I told them I had killed Americans, they took me to a safe place, gave me new clothes, then they drove me to Quetta, Pakistan where the Taliban welcomed me very warmly like a hero."

He says he later moved to Iran for three years, returning to Afghanistan only recently after being told it was safe.

"They said Americans were not everywhere like they used to be. The Taliban had brought security and I should return home. I'm happy to be back in my country."

Green on blue or insider attacks as they are known within the military have sharply increased this year here in Afghanistan. It's an alarming trend that has coalition forces extremely worried and every single time there is an attack the Taliban immediately claims responsibility.

COL. TOM COLLINS, U.S. COALITION FORCES: the Taliban lie and we know they lie. We think they overstate their influence on these tragic incidents. We think somewhere around 25 percent of them are insurgent related to some degree.

COREN: The majority of attacks, according to the coalition, are related to personal grievances, cultural differences, and the psychological fatigue of an 11 year war that is about to enter its 12th year.

And while trust has been undermined, forcing new measures to be put in place to protect international troops, the Afghanis are determined to ensure these insider attacks don't derail this vital partnership.

SEDIQ SEDIQI, AFGHAN INTERIOR MINISTRY SPOKESMAN: We will continue to work together. We have been working for the last 11 years. We have built very good relationship together. And this will continue despite any -- any effort by the Taliban to make us separate. That will not happen.

COREN: But for this 30 year old Afghani, he believes these attacks won't stop.

"I know they will increase. I know more people will do what I did."

Anna Coren, CNN, Kabul.


LU STOUT: Chilling testimony there. Now let's go to Thailand next. Reports of flooding there. Mari Ramos joins us from the world weather center with more -- Mari.

MARI RAMOS, CNN WEATHER CORRESPONDENT: Kristie, you know, again I want to repeat that, this is not the situation or the same situation we had last year when we had such extensive flooding across parts of Thailand, particularly in the capital Bangkok. We're talking about some of the northern provinces. While the flooding is extensive, it's not at the same levels, at least not yet. But that fear is there.

Let's go ahead and roll the pictures, because what you're looking at here is pictures from some of the northern provinces. Many Thai provinces have already been affected by floods and landslides. It's been raining pretty heavily. We're getting toward the end of the monsoon here. And so provinces across the north, in particular, have been affected with breaches in the canals and levees that have inundated literally thousands of square kilometers of land already, many people having to be forced out of their homes, many others trapped by the flood waters.

Now in some cases in the central parts of Sukuthai for example has continued to rise. The flood embankments have continued to break there. And in some cases, the water is about half a meter high. And that continues to be a big concern.

But you've got to remember how Thailand, the geography, how this is situated. That water eventually has to drain down into the gulf there, the Gulf of Thailand. And what happens is eventually all of that water, or most of it anyway, will continue to runoff into the larger rivers. And the largest one is the Chao Phraya River, which runs right through the middle of Bangkok.

Last year, when we had that happen, many of those flood defenses were breached, even in Bangkok proper, and it caused extensive flooding taking a huge toll not just on people, but also on the economy of Thailand in the longer term.

So, again, this time around, while there are flood advisories across even Bangkok proper we haven't had that kind of flooding. But they are monitoring those monitor levels very, very carefully as they continue to drain farther to the south.

One of the concerns is that with the additional rainfall that combination of the runoff water and the additional rainfall we could see some problems with flooding even in Bangkok proper. And then we have a very active monsoon trough right now across this area. And what that means is, yeah, it's going to rain. And in some cases, we could get over 100 millimeters or more in one day. And what happens is that combination like I was saying of the runoff and the rain. And that could really cause some problems.

I think this time around, though, the heaviest rain will actually be over here across Cambodia and then down over into Vietnam, that's going to be the areas where we're going to have the more significant rainfall. So that's definitely something to monitor.

One other thing that we've been watching is the monsoon. It does continue its retreat. We had those late monsoon rains across Pakistan last week. We're beginning to see an improvement in the weather there even though there's still a lot of standing water.

Now last but not least I do want to show you some pictures, though, that we have from what was Typhoon Samba. Samba made landfall with winds of over 155 kilometers per hour as it approached the southern tip of the Korean peninsula earlier today. It caused some flight delays, it caused some problems. And there were huge waves that were slamming into the coastline there. The storm has weakened. Now it's moving past South Korea and we're expecting it to continue moving to the north very, very quickly as it weakens.

Let's go ahead and check out your city by city forecast.

You know, Kristie, I wonder if people in France feel like it's been kind of like a dreary summer like it's been raining too much. Well, actually it's been very dry. These are pictures of some sunflowers behind me. This is in Toulouse and just to give you an example of how dry continues are still across some of these areas, you know these sunflowers are completely dry, dried out. They have not had enough rain. The ground level water is actually very low. It's been a very dry summer. And as we head through the next 48 hours, the next two days, we're not expecting anything significant as far as rainfall pretty much across the entire continent as you can see. We really could use the rain, especially in the southern half of the continent where we still remain under very dry conditions, the drought does persist.

We have one weather system starting to approach here from the west, but most of that is going to fizzle out before it brings us anything significant. It will be a little bit more humidity so that's good to help fight some of the fires that are burning there. Another weather system coming in here across the west.

And the other thing is, is going to be the temperatures. It has been relatively cooler, not as bad as last week, but we're going to see another little dip here in temperatures here as we head through the next 24 hours. And you can see that. These are green colors that you see kind of taking over the map over the next couple of days indicates those cooler temperatures starting to see the blues, Kristie. Times are a changing. Back to you.

LU STOUT: That's right. Ah, the green, the blue coming in. Mari Ramos there, thank you.

Now this week the CNN Freedom Project and Fred Pleitgen, they traveled deep into the Sinai desert to uncover torture targeting African refugees. And here is a preview. And a warning, viewers may find the images disturbing.


FRED PLEITGEN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Sheik Mohammed takes me to the safe house where 14 Eritreans are recovering after recently escaping from a human trafficker's compound.

The men are in a bad state: malnourished and weak, they're still very scared and ask us to conceal their identities. But they want to show us the scars on their bodies that give an indication of what they've been through. The wounds have not yet healed, some are infected. They say they were almost constantly abused by people smugglers.

The men alleged the traffickers would melt plastic on their backs, use electric shocks and more. All of them say their families in Eritrea and elsewhere were blackmailed into paying huge sums, but still they were not freed.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): After we arrived in Sinai, we were taking to a house where they told us to pay $3,500. And they tortured us and said if you do not pay $3,500 we will kill you. So we got scared and we contacted our relatives. They paid the $3,500, but instead of releasing us they just took us to the next room. Then they chained our hands and legs together and hung us upside down and started beating our feet. They melted plastic on our skin and just kept constantly hitting us. And they said if you do not pay $33,000, no one will come out of this alive.


LU STOUT: Oh, some brutal images there.

Now tomorrow, we'll bring you another look at this lawless region along Egypt's border with Israel. Fred Pleitgen, he has the story of African migrants who were victims of rape and a powerful tribal leader who is working to help refugees who flee the Bedouin torture camps.

Now you are watching News Stream coming to you live from Hong Kong. And still to come, religious traditions in South Africa could push wild leopards to extinction. But now one man is trying to fix a real problem with an artificial solution.


LU STOUT: Welcome back.

Now in traditional Zulu culture, only the royal family was allowed to wear leopard skins, but in the last three decades that has changed. Today, leopard skin has become a key part of the costume for members of South Africa's ShemberChurch . Now Nkepile Mabuse looks at one man's efforts to satisfy the need without sacrificing the leopard.


NKEPILE MABUSE, CNN INTERNAITONAL CORRESPONDENT: It's a crucial day for Tristin Dickerson and a potentially critical moment for wildlife conservation in South Africa. His mission to save the leopard from extinction has landed him an unlikely partner. The ShemberChurch of Southern Africa . It's one of the biggest traditional churches in Africa, boasting an estimated 5 million followers. The elders here tell us that every male member of the Shema congregation aspires to own leopard skin attire.

For two and a half year, Dickerson has been trying to introduce the church to an alternative: fake fur. From outright resistance at first, now the leadership has warmed up to the concept.

Dickerson's first stop a tiny office where one of the senior preachers awaits.


It's nice, yes?

MABUSE: He hands him a few samples. The preacher is pleased with the quality, but is not totally sold.

MHLANUBANZI MJADU, SHEMBER BREACHER (through translator): It's beautiful, but it's not the real thing. It's like a blanket. After some time, it will wear out. Real leopard skin can last for more than 20 years. This one I can wear when it's raining or keep it as a back-up to preserve the real thing.

MABUSE: It's not quite the response Dickerson was hoping for. But he's not deterred. His target market is in these crowds and not in the leadership.

DICKERSON: He had a fake one, made out of (inaudible) that was old, so I gave him this one just to see how the response would be from the crowd. And it gathered a response. But not -- as I'm sorry, when you dance with the other dancers I cannot see. I need to change with my old one.

MABUSE: (inaudible) is protected by the convention on international trade in endangered species, or CITE. And the sale or possession of its parts is illegal in South Africa. Those who want to wear it as traditional gear, including Zulu royalty and high profile individuals like President Jacob Zuma, are required to have permits issued by the state.

But at these gatherings, trade in skins is done openly with no law enforcers in sight.

DICKERSON: So these are real leopard skins.

MABUSE: 3,700 ran.

DICKERSON: Yeah, 3,700. There's another one over there. And all these other pieces that are also real leopard skin.

MABUSE: This preacher tells me he bought his for more than $300. He says he had no clue that trade in leopard parts is illegal, nor did he know that the leopard is a threatened species.

He admits that it's becoming harder and more expensive for members to get the real thing. And sees Dickerson's intervention as a possible solution.

MJADU (through translator): It would be very sad if the leopard became extinct because those who will come after us will be robbed of the opportunity to witness its beauty. That would be very sad.

MABUSE: For Dickerson, it's back to the drawing board. The feedback overall has been mixed. Some members are not happy with the price, others have a problem with the quality. The church has been offered a share in the profits as an incentive to change mindsets. Dickerson is determined he's not turning back. He's committed to find an alternative the Shember will buy giving the leopard a fighting chance.


LU STOUT: Such a beautiful animal. Now you're watching News Stream. And a week after making history the emotional homecoming of the U.S. Open champion Andy Murray returns to his hometown in Scotland. Alex Thomas will have that and a world sport update next.


LU STOUT: Welcome back.

Now it was plagued by terrible weather and threatened to run into an extra day, but there was eventually a winner of the women's British Open golf championship. And Alex Thomas can tell us why it rewrote Asia's record books -- Alex.

ALEX THOMAS, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Kristie. For the first time, the winners of the year's four major women's golf tournaments are all from Asia after two South Korean champions and one from China, Jiyah Shin completed the clean sweep by claiming the British Open at Hoylake on Sunday.

The weather conditions up in Liverpool that forced Friday's action to be called off entirely were still causing severe problems on Sunday. And Shin was one of the few players to cope with the high winds, racking up nine birdies over her final two rounds, both of which were played in one day because of the weather delays. Even on the Sunday, the action was interrupted by heavy rain.

So this was test of mental strength as much as physical skill, but the 24 year old was able to conquer all the obstacles placed in her path. She got up and down from a bunker at the 15th to make another birdie. And then this was the chip that clinched her second women's British Open title at the 18th. Although in fairness, the result had been beyond question for some time.

Shin finishing 9 under par. None of her rivals were under par.

Now David Ferrer says Rafael Nadal is fundamental to Spain's chances of defending their David Cup title even though they qualified for the final without the former world number one.

Ferrer was speaking after playing an integral part in his country's semifinal victory over the United States in Spain over the weekend. He had to step up to the leading role, because of Nadal's injury. And despite losing the opening set of his second singles match, this one against John Isner, Ferrer recovered to take the next three sets and put the 2011 champions into the final yet again.

Well, while Spain's victory wasn't a surprise, Argentina's defeat in Buenos Aires probably did raise a few eyebrows. Tomas Berdych was the star of the show for the Czech Republic. A big smash at the net helping him take the opening set of his reverse singles by 6-3. In the second set, here's Berdych again leading 5-3. And he goes on to win the set 6-3 again the scoreline there.

Berdych never in any real danger in this match. He closed it out in straight sets. And hasn't lost any of his singles or doubles matches in the Davis Cup all year. Astonishing record.

Now the new U.S. Open champion Andy Murray is back where it all began visiting his hometown of Dunblane in Scotland over the weekend. Large crowds lined the streets waving flags and cheering on the 25 year old following his Olympic and grand slam tournament breakthrough victories this year, even some typically bracing Scottish weather didn't put a damper on the occasion. Murray's U.S. Open win was his first major title coming at the fifth attempt after four previous losing grand slam finals, even standing beside the golden post box that was set up after his Olympic medal.

Now for the second time in eight years, NHL owners have locked out the players after the two sides failed to come to an agreement on a new pay deal. There was still an impasse when the deadline of midnight eastern time on Saturday came and went. It all comes down to money. The two sides trying to work out how to split $3.3 billion in revenue. Training camps won't open until a new agreement is reached. The new NHL season is set to open on October 11. No games have been officially canceled or postponed yet, but the entire season was called off in 2004 after the last lockout.

Now many of you watched James Bond's starring role in the Olympic Opening Ceremony a month or so ago. You may not have realized that the parachuting sequence is actually a sport in its own right with a world championships and everything. The next one is in Dubai in November. Our own intrepid Kim Newsome was sent to find out what canopy skydiving is all about.


KIM NEWSOME, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Tandem dives. I know that you do -- you instruct tandem dives. What's the difference between that and what you're doing today with all of this action here?

GREG WINDMILLER, GOLD KNIGHTS CANOPY PILOTING TEAM: Everybody knows that skydiving is an inherently dangerous sport. This is one of the -- they consider the more dangerous ones just because of the fact that we're usually utilizing very small parachutes.

The difference between canopy sky diving and this is we can actually take risks during this and try new things and experiment and try to advance the sport through our experimenting and research and development basically. With tandem skydiving we take another individual's life in our hands, we take an innocent person and strap them on in front of us. So in that facet right there, we don't take any chances whatsoever. Everything is by the book, straight up, exactly how it should be.

Our next event we're actually shifting to is called distance, where we do multiple rotations to build up speed. We dive that speed towards the ground and we transfer that speed across the ground to the ultimate goal is to drag wire at the gate and then your first point of contact is as far as you can go down the course.

NEWSOME: OK. So that's distance.

Then we also have accuracy.

WINDMILLER: It's what we do is we do our turns again. We build speed, but we don't try to build as much speed as possible, because we have to control that. And then we drag our foot through the water through a series of gates.

NEWSOME: And for third is...

WINDMILLER: The third is my favorite -- your's and mine. The third is speed. Speed is exactly what it is, it's brute force, power, small parachute, going as fast as humanly possible and that -- that's the one I love the most.

70 meters which is about 240 foot long. And right now I currently hold the world record at 2.093 seconds, which is about 80 miles an hour give or take.

I really don't consider myself an adrenaline junkie. I love doing this because it is fun, but for this there is an adrenaline rush to it. I don't feed off of it, I just try to remain safe and do what I know to be right and utilize common sense and hoping it works our right.


THOMAS: And you know what, Krisite, I know that Kim Newsome there really wanted to have a go, but she wasn't allowed to, too dangerous. Back to you in Hong Kong.

LU STOUT: Oh, too bad. Anyway, an incredible report there. Love the video. Alex Thomas, thank you.

Now bicycle messengers are often fearless as they speed through the streets to get to their destination, but for pedestrians, they are more than just an occasional annoyance. Now Richard Roth tells us in New York City officials are trying to put the brakes on reckless riders.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Jackson Hole, what would you like to order?

RICHARD ROTH, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It's a New York way of life.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: How would you like your burger cooked?

ROTH: The city that never sleeps never misses a meal as long as there is takeout, food delivery available 24/7. The race is on to get that matso ball soup to your door. But also on the menu is danger.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I'm a little terrified of them when they ride on the sidewalk.


ROTH: Politicians in New York say unsafe bikers is a top complaint from the people.

Food deliveryman Alex Mendoza says he obeys the traffic rules. At the end of this food run the customer tipped, but remains ticked off.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I don't like the idea that delivery people going the wrong direction to deliver.

ROTH: New York says it's doing more than spinning its wheels.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're going to start enforcing...

ROTH: Transportation department teams are dropping in on restaurants first with warnings, proposed new laws, increase penalties, and enforcement. If commercial messengers of any kind fail to wear helmets and reflective vests, plus company ID.

JAMES VACCA, CHAIRMAN, NEW YORK CITY TRANSPORTATION CMTE: We have too many commercial cyclists in this city who think they are driving in the Wild Wild West.

ROTH: Bike hits man is also a frightening new tradition in New York. Statistics vary, but one study said 550 pedestrians in New York end up in hospitals each year after being struck by cyclists.

Nancy Gruskin has fought for better education for delivery cyclists.

NANCY GRUSKIN, WIDOW: My husband Stuart was struck and killed a little over three years ago by a delivery biker speeding in the wrong direction.

ROTH: A new movie, Premium Rush, showcases with exaggeration commercial bike messenger's need for speed.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, we got a hand deliver.

ROTH: There are some 50,000 commercial cyclists in New York.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I feel like messengers never get their due.

ROTH: Seven of his messengers have been killed in accidents. A top messenger, Diablo, and others say don't blame the biker. Pedestrians don't look up.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They're not using a crosswalk.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You're right. They don't respect us. And all we don't respect the pedestrians.

ROTH: Controversial bike lanes don't always help. Riders often run into obstacles. So customers may have to cool their heels while the hot food sits at red lights.

JANNE APPLEBAUM, NEW YORK CITY RESIDENT: Yes, it's a scourge. But again, I will shoot the yuppies, before I will shoot the delivery guys, because the yuppies come from a place of privilege, the deliver guys are just trying to feed their families and their families back home.

ROTH: Richard Roth, CNN, New York.


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