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CONNECT THE WORLD

Kevin-Prince Boateng, AC Milan Walk Off Field After Racial Abuse; Interview with Oliver Stone; Malala Yousafzai Released From Hospital

Aired January 4, 2013 - 16:00   ET

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


MAX FOSTER, HOST: Tonight on Connect the World, two big interviews: a global football star and a Hollywood director. First, the A.C. Milan midfielder who walked off the pitch after being racially abused tells CNN he'd do it again.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

KEVIN-PRINCE BOATENG, AC MILAN MIDFIELDER: I don't care if it's a friendly game or if it's a Serie A game or if it's a Champion's League game, these things will never happen to me again. I would walk off the pitch.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

FOSTER: Also this hour, one of Hollywood's biggest and most controversial directors defends the Venezuelan leader he calls a friend.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

OLIVER STONE, DIRECTOR: I became very fond of Mr. Chavez. I found Hugo to be a warm and giving person.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

FOSTER: Well, a sad and shocking, but in the year 2013 racism in sport is still a reality. Now one footballer is refusing to stand for it any longer. AC Milan player Kevin-Prince Boateng became so infuriated with racist abuse by fans he walked off the pitch.

Pedro spoke exclusively to him earlier today. And he says he'll do it again, that's the interesting bit.

PEDRO PINTO, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: It is.

This was a friendly, which took place on the outskirts of Milan between AC Milan and Pro Patria, which is a lower division team. And Kevin-Prince Boateng and other black players from Milan's team were racially abused. They had monkey chants directed at them from the local supporters.

Kevin-Prince talked to the referee about it and he decided to take a stand. He decided to walk off the pitch. The whole team followed him off as well. And this is the first time, Max, ever that we have seen a game abandoned because a team decided to take a stand against any kind of abuse. And the player is getting a lot of support from around the world. Earlier I had a chance to talk to him about his ordeal, about what he felt, and Prince told me that it's a situation he felt he had to deal with and he had to take a stand.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BOATENG: It started like after five minutes when we started the game, the friendly game, when I had some -- like the group in the corner when they were doing like the noises of monkeys.

So, first of all -- first, I thought they just like -- they just -- I didn't really realize, I didn't want to realize it. But then it happened the second time to Montari (ph). And then I spoke to the referee and I said to the referee, listen, if it happens again I'm not going to play anymore. And like it was not -- the referee was like, yeah, don't worry, don't worry, don't worry. I said to him, yeah, no, I do worry, because it's not nice.

So then the third time I was trying to dribble a play and I heard the voices again, like the noises from them. So that's where I stopped the game and then I shot the ball -- I shot the ball to them and I was like really angry in this moment. That's why I even -- that's why I shoot the ball in the crowd.

PINTO: What did it make you feel, Prince?

BOATENG: Wow, that's difficult to answer, like -- it's like emotion - - like so many emotions. I was angry. I was sad. I was disappointed. And this all came together like -- and I said I'm not going to play anymore. I don't want to play like in a crowd who is doing things like this or in a place like this. I really didn't like it. Like there were so many negative emotions came up in me.

PINTO: I remember a couple of incidents with other black players being abused and they started to walk off the field like Mark Zurro (ph) in Italy, like (inaudible) in Spain, but they were convinced to stay. What made you decide that that's it. No one is going to convince me, because I saw a few players trying to talk to you and calm you down. Why did you decide no, I'm not coming back?

BOATENG: No, because first of all it's not the first time in my life that I have to like hear things like this or see things like this. So -- but now I think like I'm 25 years old and I don't want to see this, sorry I did this (EXPLETIVE DELETED) anymore. I don't want to see these things any more. And for myself, no one convinced me to play again. Like I said straight I'm not going to go on this pitch again. And I'm not going to play anymore. Like they can't convince me to play in, like in a crowd, or a place like this. And there's no one who convinced me, because I made my mind up straight.

PINTO: You got the support of your teammates who also walked off with you. After the match, the manager Allegri and the captain Ambrosini supported your action. What did that mean to you to get the support of everyone around you?

BOATENG: Yeah, it meant a lot. Like, I'm very, very happy that the team stood beside me and even today I had the phone call of the president Berlusconi, he called me and I'm very thankful that he's like -- he's on my side. And he said I did the right thing to walk off and that we don't tolerate any racism in the world, or especially on the football field.

So that makes me -- made me very, very happy to see that I don't stand alone against this, because for me, like I even said in the dressing room after, I said we -- like black and white is the same. We all just have one color and this is our blood color and that's red. So -- and I was very happy that they support me.

Like for me, I don't care if it's a friendly game, or it's a Serie A game or if it's a Champion's League game. If these things will happen to me again I would walk off the pitch. And I think all the people who support me, they will support me even when I do it in a big game.

PINTO: Would you urge other players to do the same even if it is the final of a Champion's League, even if it is the final of a World Cup?

BOATENG: Definitely. I would say to everybody, if you feel that you are -- that you don't want to play in this moment any more, because it's -- like it's not nice, you're disappointed, you get angry, definitely I would tell them to walk off the pitch.

PINTO: There's been no direct response from football's governing bodies, from UEFA, from FIFA. FIFA was contacted by us. And they just reiterated their overall position against racism. They didn't reply directly to the case of the Milan Pro Patria game.

How does that make you feel, Prince? And I know for a fact that a lot of people that make decisions in football around the world watch CNN. What would you tell them?

BOATENG: I would just tell them that we have to wake up. We have to open our eyes. Because we live in this time how I said before. It's 2013 and we still have to -- we still have to like live with these things. And I'm sad and angry about that I have to be the one who does this step. Like I have to be the one who walks off the field. There are like so many people, the FIFA or whatever they can do something against it. So they should -- they should wake up and do it.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

FOSTER: He made the point about UEFA and FIFA. Are you surprised, shocked at all, that they haven't got involved in this. It's everywhere, isn't it?

PINTO: It is. I wouldn't say shocked, but I would say definitely surprised, because this was an easy occasion for them to score PR points in the fight against racism if nothing else. They may not have any jurisdiction in Italy for this particular case, but it wouldn't hurt to send out a statement saying that overall they do not support players walking off the pitch, because I know they don't, but in this extreme case Kevin-Prince Boateng did the right thing.

I think it's sad, I agree with Prince. I think it's sad when a player has to take a stand himself where he doesn't feel he has the support of the authorities that are supposed to have their best interests at heart. UEFA, FIFA, why not release a statement saying in this extreme case we stand behind Kevin-Prince Boateng because we will not stand for this kind of behavior from supporters?

I think it's a big missed opportunity by football's governing bodies to take a stand and do so easily.

FOSTER: Could he achieve what they haven't manged to, then, with the racism in football and actually be the catalyst for change?

PINTO: I hope so. He said he feels like he could be a pioneer. And a lot of tweets that have been coming in to my account and I know to his account as well, people are looking at him like a little bit of a hero because he decided enough was enough. And you are hurting fans where it hurts most, which is we can't watch football anymore.

If a team walks off the pitch, Max, that makes the strongest stand of all. And normally it has to be the referee making that decision, but if players unite and decide to make that decision themselves they are really making a huge stand and they're affecting fans and that is really what is going to make the biggest impact is telling fans that you're not going to get to watch the game you love if you act like this.

FOSTER: Pedro, thank you very much for the interview.

You're watching Connect the World live from London. Coming up...

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

STONE: This man was in no way corrupt.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

FOSTER: Hollywood director Oliver Stone talks to CNN about Hugo Chavez from the time he spent with the Venezuelan president.

An extraordinary day for 15 year old Pakistani girl shot by a Taliban gunmen. We bring you the latest from the recovery of Malala Yousafzai now a global icon for human rights.

And you can call it a Goldilocks report. The latest U.S. numbers, job numbers, not too hot, not too cold. We'll bring you right up to date on that.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

FOSTER: You're watching CNN. This is Connect the World with me, Max Foster. Welcome back to you.

Now after weeks of uncertainty Venezuelans are getting the clearest picture yet about the health of Hugo Chavez. For the first time since the president's cancer surgery, the government in -- is using specific medical terms to describe his condition. Rafael Romo has the details.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

RAFAEL ROMO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The medical condition of President Hugo Chavez, recovering from cancer surgery in Cuba is more serious than previously though, according to a top Venezuelan official.

ERNESTO VILLEGAS, VENEZUELAN COMMUNICATION MINISTER (through translator): After the delicate surgery on December 11, Commandante Chavez has faced complications as a consequence of a severe pulmonary infection. This infection has caused a respiratory insufficiency that requires Commandante Chavez to strictly follow medical treatment.

ROMO: Meanwhile, Venezuela is teeming with speculation.

EDWIN RODRIGUEZ, VENEZUELAN VOTER (through translator): Sometimes it looks as if the president is well; other times, not so much. Honestly, we don't know what to believe, what the truth is and what's a lie. Everybody's living in uncertainty.

ROMO (voice-over): The Venezuelan president left his country for cancer surgery in Cuba on December 10th. He hasn't been seen in public since. But Vice President Nicolas Maduro has talked about complications, and that worries many Venezuelans.

CARLOS SALGADO, VENEZUELAN VOTER (through translator): Chavez is a strong man and a fighter. His party is not my party, but as a human being, one can't wish somebody else something bad.

ROMO (voice-over): Jorge Arreaza, the Venezuelan science and technology minister and also the president's son-in-law has been trying to quell the negative speculation.

"The medical team has explained to us that President Chavez's condition remains stable, but within a delicate state," Arreaza posted on his Twitter account.

JOSE ROJAS, VENEZUELAN VOTER (through translator): Sometimes it's people themselves who start the speculation, saying things that are not true. We just have to be patient and wait.

ROMO (voice-over): But patience is running out for the Venezuelan opposition. Leaders say the Chavez government owes Venezuela an accurate assessment of the president's health condition.

RAMON GUILLERMO AVELEDO, VENEZUELAN OPPOSITION LEADER (through translator): Our demand for the truth is elementary because when a patient is a head of state who's just been reelected for a new term, there are implications that affect the entire nation.

ROMO (voice-over): The highest Roman Catholic authority in Venezuela is calling all political leaders to follow the law if a succession plan is needed.

ROMO: Chavez was reelected in October to another six-year term in office and is supposed to be inaugurated next Thursday. But government officials haven't indicated if he will be able to attend his own inauguration, which may have to be postponed.

The Venezuelan constitution also spells out a succession path that may be used if the president is officially declared permanently absent -- Rafael Romo, CNN, Atlanta.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

FOSTER: Well, one of Mr. Chavez's biggest defenders is Academy Award winning director Oliver Stone. Stone made a documentary that portrayed Chavez in such a positive light that TIME magazine called it a love story. Here's a clip from South of the Border.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

HUGO CHAVEZ, PRESIDENT OF VENEZUELA (through translator): The coup against Chavez had one motive: oil. Bush made a plan. First, Chavez, oil. Second, Saddam, Iraq. The reason behind the coup in Venezuela and the invasion of Iraq is the same: oil.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): For the first time, the poor are treated like human beings.

CHAVEZ: And perhaps this is one of the things that keeps us going. The optimism, faith and hope and the concrete evidence that we can change the course of history. It's possible, Oliver.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

FOSTER: Well, earlier I spoke with Oliver Stone from New York who told me how he regards the Venezuelan president.

(BEGIN VIDOETAPE)

STONE: I became very fond of Mr. Chavez. I found Hugo to be a warm and giving person. I was with him on many occasions. He never -- I don't think he ever -- I think he worked too hard. I think he strained himself - - didn't sleep enough. I remember him always studying. And I remember his warmly with his daughter. And this man was in no way corrupt at all. And I resent these kind of accusations that are thrown wildly at him by a press that hates him. A press that's privately owned that hates him, because he changed the landscape.

So it's been a very controversial -- I put my foot into it. And as a result, you know, I've taken -- made a lot of new enemies in the United States, which I didn't need. But, you know, I believe in the man, I believe in the revolution. I believe in what happened in South America the last 20 years, the last 14 years, excuse me. And I think we needed that, they needed that. The people who voted for him. He won 12 of 13 elections. He won the last one even without campaigning. He is popular in the country with the majority, because he raised the living standard, and that's the objective here.

FOSTER: You compared him, haven't you, you've compared him to Obama, because of what he represents to his people. You just talked about him representing change.

STONE: Very much so. Very much so. I can't -- when you're there, you feel it. Hope, change. You see the -- what people don't take into account is for the previous 20 years the Venezuelan economy had tanked and it was the Reagan policies, the -- the neo-liberal policies that had per capita income in Venezuela had dropped in the previous 20 years.

Chavez was this hope for change and he delivered.

FOSTER: He -- we don't know whether or not he's going to make the inauguration. We don't know what's going to happen politically in the country right now, but what do you think will be the loss if he can't go on to another term? What will he represent to the people of his country?

STONE: Oh, I think he's an extraordinary man and he will be seen as such in history whether he -- I don't know the condition of his health right now. I read the reports. But I have full faith in Nicolas Maduro, his vice president. And I -- I -- and if a new election were necessary next month, I'm confident that Maduro would win, because Chavez has created something that will last after him. It's in that famous line of Zapata, it's not me, it's you, the people. The people have elected him. The people will keep going with this party at least for now.

FOSTER: And you have finally, as you say, made some enemies in the press, in the western press, because they accuse you of not telling an accurate story. It wasn't balanced. It wasn't fair. You're not telling the bad story about his reign, if I can call it that.

You basically come up against them, haven't you? And there is no agreement now. You think you are telling a true story about him.

STONE: Listen, I'm a dramatist. I'm not a journalist. I don't spend my time there. But I go with the -- with what I see. I've traveled the entire region of Latin America. I've made movies there. I have a fondness for it. I've been to so many countries where I've seen the results of violence, the results of U.S. intervention whether it's Chile and Argentina and Brazil back in the 60s. I've been in Mexico during the drug war. I've seen the horrors of Nicaragua and El Salvadore and Guatemala. And all I hear is about a fuss about a country like Venezuela where there's no signs of this violence, this kind of madness that has swept these other countries.

So where is the standard? And why is the -- for example the New York Times constantly attacking Chavez for how many years? There's not one positive article I've read about it. It's an insane standard of judgment and we've lost track in the same way that's why -- that's why I've been involved with Peter Kosnik (ph) on this untold history of the United States. It's a bigger picture than just South America it's -- the United States' view of the world is what's screwed up.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

FOSTER: And if you want to find out more about Oliver Stone's latest documentary, just head to our blog, CNN.com/connect later tonight where you'll be able to watch my full interview with Stone and historian Peter Kosnik (ph).

I want to give you a sense of how the health crisis of President Chavez is playing out in Venezuela itself. And the main opposition newspaper, El Universal, is leading with the current state of the president's health stating the news that Chavez suffers respiratory failure. In contrast, the government backed newspaper Correo Del Orinoco doesn't mention Chavez's health in its lead, instead focusing on the growing international media storm. National government advises on psychological warfare by the Venezuelan right.

Here is the information minister Ernesto Villegas explaining.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

VILLEGAS (through translator): The Venezuelan government warns its people about the psychological war that the international media have unleashed over the head of state's health with the intention of destabilizing the Venezuelan Republic.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

FOSTER: Well, Villegas's comments come amid rising demands for more information about Mr. Chavez's condition and whether he's fit to take the oath of office on Thursday.

Plenty more still to come here on Connect the World. Just ahead, out of hospital the schoolgirl activist shot by the Taliban is released after life saving treatment here in the UK.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

FOSTER: Welcome back to Connect the World. I'm Max Foster.

You can take a look at the global reaction to Malala Yousafzai leaving hospital on our Facebook page, because this has been a huge story today. And so many people have, indeed, been talking about it. She was of course attacked by the Taliban and came here to the UK for treatment. And there's been very little information coming about her -- out about her, but we got some images today of her leaving hospital. She'll be back for checkups of course. Huge story resonating around the world.

And Deji Dero says, "thank god for your life. You are stronger than the shooter regardless of their muscle. They may be big in stature, the are weak at heart."

Jackson Adigbolo has left this message, "there's no way darkness can prevail over light. God be with you Malala."

And Steve Boisset said simply, "best thing I have heard in 2013 -- wonderful news."

She was of course shot in the head by the Taliban for defending the right of girls to go to school in her native Pakistan. Now, after three months of life saving medical treatment, 15 year old Malala Yousafzai has been discharged from a hospital here in the UK. Matthew Chance has more on her incredible story.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Holding the hand of a nurse, Malala Yousafzai made her own way out of the hospital where she has been treated for her traumatic injuries. She even managed to wave at staff as she was discharged.

A hospital statement said Malala is a strong young woman and has worked hard with the people caring for her to make excellent progress in her recovery. Doctors say she may benefit from being with her family, but will need to be readmitted for reconstructive surgery on her skull in several weeks.

This recovery is far from complete. From the early age of 11, Malala Yousafzai has been an outspoken campaigner for female education in a native swat valley region of Pakistan criticizing the Taliban who ban schooling for girls.

She was shot in the head and neck in October after her school bus was stopped by Taliban gun men who demanded the other children identify her. The attack outraged Pakistan provoking cause for a crack down on militants.

It also made Malala who was evacuated to Britain for medical treatment an international symbol of courage. Hundreds of thousands have signed a petition for her to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

SHAISTA GOHIR, MUSLIM WOMEN'S NETWORK: Although there's activists around the world who are being subjected to violence all the time and are speaking out about their rights, she was a child speaking out about her rights in a very, very difficult context. And she spoke out knowing that she actually could be subjected to violence. And what makes it even more interesting is that she had the support of her family, particularly her father, to actually speak out.

CHANCE: For now though the focus is on her first steps. Malala's father has been given a job at Pakistan's Consulate in Birmingham allowing the family to stay in Britain for the years of therapy and medical treatment that now lie ahead.

Matthew Chance, CNN, London.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

FOSTER: Well, former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown and his wife are among many around the world welcoming the news of Malala's release from hospital. Earlier I spoke to Farzana Bari, a human rights activists in Islamabad and asked her what the reaction has been like in Pakistan.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

FARZANA BARI, HUMAN RIGHTS ACTIVIST: I think we are all thrilled and very happy (inaudible) entire nation was praying for her health. And we are very pleased that she has recovered. And we are all looking forward to have it back. Although we all have do have concern for her -- for her life and -- but I think this is great, great news that she has fully recovered and she's returning -- back to her home.

FOSTER: A great message, a great cheerleader of a lot of the work that you've been doing. How important is she as an agent of change in Pakistan, would you say?

BARI: I think she's become like kind of a symbol of resistance and also she's become like someone who really is showing a path to the country that education and particularly education for women is the fundamental right and the nation should be united, you know, to promote this agenda.

I think she's become like kind of a (inaudible). And I feel that Malala's, if once she lead this movement of education for girls in this country, I feel that the entire nation is going to stand behind. And I'm sure she will -- she will lead this movement and the kind of change which is required in this country where our government is still not spending enough, you know. Actually we're spending the -- one of -- you know, least budget, like 2 percent of our GDP on people's education. We need to raise, you know, the budget and funding.

And there are a whole range of things which needs to be done, you know. I feel once she's back and she will lead this movement, there are people who are going to rally behind and support her in this cause.

FOSTER: We don't know what her plans are when she does get better, but what can she do, specifically, to help your cause? Or do you think her story is actually enough?

BARI: I think she, as I said, like now Malala is become a voice of the people of Pakistan, you know. And I feel that if she just remained focused on promoting education in this country, and in particular girl's education in this country, I think that will make a huge impact, you know. And as I said, there will be younger people, there will be people like us, rights activists, everybody will be behind that. And then we will be able to hold our government accountable to deliver on, you know, which is our constitutional right in Pakistan now, after 18th amendment, that all children should be in schools and education at least up to 16 years is now a free and a compulsory education, an institutional right.

But practically, nothing has been done. And I think if Malala will take the lead in this movement for education, I think the entire nation is going to stand behind and we will -- and I think that will put a lot of pressure on our government to really deliver on this -- our people's fundamental right to access to education in this country.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

FOSTER: Well, coming up, we're going to have the latest world headlines for you, plus US troops arrive in Turkey to support NATO deployment of Patriot missiles near the Syrian border.

Also ahead, the boyfriend of a gang rape victim speaks out about the case that's outraged all of India. And --

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

(CROWD CHEERING)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

FOSTER: Thousands of students shining a light on a global horror. That story ahead later in the show.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

FOSTER: I'm Max Foster, these are the latest world headlines from CNN.

Venezuelan officials say President Hugo Chavez is battling a severe lung infection that's caused respiratory failure. It is the most detailed statement about his health since he underwent cancer surgery in Cuba several weeks ago.

In football, AC Milan's Kevin-Prince Boateng says Thursday wasn't the first time he's been subjected to racial taunting on the pitch. He told CNN if it happens again in a bigger match, he'll walk off the field like he did on Thursday. Italian prosecutors say at least one fan responsible for the abuse has been identified and will face criminal charges.

A young Pakistani activist who survived an attack by Taliban gunmen has left hospital. Doctors at Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham, England, say Malala Yousufzai is making excellent progress in her recovery. She must return to the hospital in the next month for reconstructive surgery.

And this is how the markets on both sides of the Atlantic finished up at the close on Friday. Stocks in New York and London, Frankfurt, all ended higher as investors digested the latest US jobs report. It showed a gain of 150,000 non-farm jobs last month. The unemployment rate remains unchanged at 7.8 percent, though.

Let's get more on those jobs numbers, then, from Felicia, who's in New York. Felicia, what did you make of them?

FELICIA TAYLOR, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It -- honestly, it was an "eh" number. I mean, 155,000 was certainly within the expectations of what we were going to get. It's not necessarily exciting. Yes, of course, it's moving in the right direction.

You can see exactly where we've been in the last six months of 2012, right under 200,000. So yes, it's good, but it's not great. And what we need is great in order for that unemployment rate to come down. We've got about a 2 percent growth rate, we're not going to be able to get that unemployment rate down with that kind of growth.

So, we did see some job creation in the health care industry, manufacturing, construction, and food services. But the construction is probably as a result of Hurricane Sandy, but also a little bit because of the recovering housing market that we've seen.

So, certainly, it's good news. We just want to ramp it up. And the question is, is how are we going to get that growth? Hilda Solis, who is the US labor secretary, has some suggestions on how we can bring jobs back to this economy.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

HILDA SOLIS, US LABOR SECRETARY: We're still trying to encourage more investment here, bringing back those major corporations, multi-nationals to come back here at the US so we can continue to look at investments in manufacturing areas and sectors.

We saw what happened in the automobile industry. We need to continue to move along that line. That's why it's important to have tax credits and breaks for businesses that want to stay here, especially those mid-sized businesses.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

TAYLOR: The thing is, Max, we still have 4.8 million people that are out of work, and the question is, how are those jobs going to get created? And that's really what the problem is.

And as a result of this fiscal cliff, we now have tax hikes. Anybody who's getting paid this week is going to know just exactly how much less they have in their paycheck. That means that they're not going to be spending as much in the economy.

So, there are some major problems ahead for the American workers, those that are lucky enough to have jobs. Max?

FOSTER: And then we keep hearing about the debt ceiling now as well, and I guess it's OK if jobs growth can continue, but do you think the debt ceiling will affect that jobs growth?

TAYLOR: Well, certainly it will, and that's of real concern to a lot of people out there, because if -- if we actually make that deadline and the government doesn't come up with a way to fund what their debts are and we push through that debt ceiling, that means that government workers, the military, social security payments, Medicare and Medicaid, all those checks aren't going to go out, and all those people aren't going to get paid.

And again, they can't pay their rent, they can't buy food, they can't pay for gas. And again, the economy is going to suffer one more time, and there's just not going to be the ability for companies to hire.

At this point, small companies are having to explain to their employees why they have to take money out of their paychecks. And frankly, they may have to let people go as a result of this. So, it's a real conundrum, and at this point, it is absolutely up to Washington to start acting, and hopefully acting before that deadline.

FOSTER: OK, thank you very much, indeed, Felicia, for that.

Now, it was a brutal crime which has left India shocked and outraged. Now, nearly three weeks later, the boyfriend of a gang-raped victim is speaking out, recounting the savagery that took her life and left him badly wounded as well. Sumnima Udas joins us from New Delhi with the details. It's just horrific to imagine that someone saw this unfold.

SUMNIMA UDAS, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: That's right, Max. The boyfriend of the rape victim spoke to the AFP not too long ago, basically describing what happened that night.

He was, of course, with the victim, they were both watching a movie, on their way back home around 9:30 PM when this happened, when the bus driver and his friends basically lured them into the bus.

He said to the AFP he still, quote, "shivers in pain" when he thinks about it. He said, "What can I say? The cruelty I saw should not be seen ever. I tried to fight against the men, but later I begged them again and again to leave her."

He also told the AFP his friend had been violated by -- with an iron bar by those six rapists, and that really explains the severe injuries she suffered within her intestines, according to doctors, and that of course ultimately did lead to her death.

Now, the brutal nature of this gang rape, of course, completely outraged people here in Delhi, but not just in Delhi. The story really resonated across the country, as well, and we've seen women in the most remote parts of the country saying enough is enough.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

(CROWD SHOUTING)

UDAS (voice-over): Indian women fighting back, beating a local politician, ripping off his shirt. He was staying in a village in northern India when he alleged raped a local woman in the middle of the night. The politician's vehicle is not spared either, dubbed with the word "gunda," meaning "goon."

The woman, a middle-aged mother of two. The accused now under arrest and soon to be charged, according to local police, his party leaders disowning him.

BHUBANESWAR KALITA, ASSAM POLITICIAN (through translator): We condemn such kind of incidents, and if he is found guilty, then the law will take its own course.

UDAS: Such stories would normally have gone unnoticed, especially in rural India, where rape is commonplace and the stigma surrounding sexual assault dissuades victims from reporting rape cases.

(WOMEN SHOUTING)

UDAS: But now, what was taboo in India is on the front pages and leading TV news, and the evidence is shocking. A 19-year-old girl in Rajasthan set herself on fire after being harassed by a neighbor for years. She died in hospital Friday. A woman in Bihar jumped off a moving train after two soldiers allegedly tried to molest her.

Indian law is vague on sex crimes, with charges such as outraging or insulting the modesty of women. Now, there are demands for a complete overhaul of the legal framework. The watershed moment, the brutal gang rape of a medical student in New Delhi last month.

(CROWD SHOUTING)

UDAS: Stirring unprecedented public outrage.

R.P.N. SINGH, INDIAN JUNIOR INTERIOR MINISTER: The best tribute to her memory is how each one of us here can work to make sure that this never happens again. The entire country is watching us with great expectations. We cannot fail their hopes. I think we need to set the agenda here with two words: zero tolerance.

UDAS: The home minister has called for more female police officers, a help line has been set up, and one state plans a public website with details of all convicted rapists.

The big question now: whether all the promises made will become reality and help Indian women feel more secure.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

UDAS: Small steps taken by the government today, but as many of these protesters and activists will tell you, it's not just the laws and the policing that really needs to change here, it's also the patriarchal mindset of the people that needs to change, and that's, of course, much harder to do. Max?

FOSTER: Sumnima, thank you very much, indeed, for that.

US troops have begun arriving in Turkey to support NATO's deployment of Patriot missiles. Turkey asked for the help after repeated cross-border shelling from Syria. Nick Paton Walsh is following developments for us tonight from Istanbul.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

NICK PATON WALSH, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, late on Thursday night, Turkish media reporting that nearly 30 US military personnel flew into the southern city of Gaziantep, staying at a hotel there before they conducted site surveillance as to where these two Patriot missile batteries were to go.

US officials from the embassy confirming on Friday that, yes, the process has begun of US personnel and equipment flying into the southern military base of Incirlik.

This, of course, is part of the US contribution to NATO's response to Turkey asking for extra defensive help along that very volatile border with Syria. Holland and Germany also expected to both contribute two Patriot missile batteries and hundreds of troops to support that particular deployment.

What this does is put the world's largest military machine, NATO, right on the doorstep of this very bitter and brutal 21-month-long, now, civil war. The reason for this deployment was, of course, Syrian regime shells landing inside Turkey, prompting Turkey's request to NATO.

That tension has died down, but what has changed is the escalation in the conflict. Rebels are certainly on the ascendance in the north, pressing down hard on Friday on a helicopter base called Taftanaz, which they're trying to take to stop the regime's ability to project air power across the north.

But as the Assad regime gets more desperate, many concerned they'll reach into their arsenal, perhaps to the more deadly weapons inside of it, fears of chemical weapons, which they deny having, and US accusations of Scud-type missiles have already been used.

NATO says its equipment and people are there purely to defend Turkey, but at the end of the day, they have, as some say, skin in the game, they're right on the doorstep of this civil war. Perhaps, were a shell to go astray, that may cause some ramifications for NATO's Patriot deployment there.

All eyes watching this, and certainly NATO making the key point, this is purely defensive. But now, a significant escalation, certainly psychologically on what's happening in that border area.

Nick Paton Walsh, CNN, Istanbul.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

FOSTER: Live from London, this is CONNECT THE WORLD. Coming up on the show, the woman behind one of the most recognizable business names in Turkey. It is a new year for our Leading Women series.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

FOSTER: It is a new year, of course, and the first of our Leading Women in 2013 says success wasn't just something she wanted, she says it was her duty to strive for. Becky has her story.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

BECKY ANDERSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Whoever coined the term "it's a man's world" has never met this woman.

GULER SABANCI, CHAIRWOMAN AND MANAGING DIRECTOR, SABANCI HOLDING: This is the century of us. This is the century of woman.

ANDERSON: A powerful force in her native Turkey, a mover and shaker across the globe.

(APPLAUSE)

ANDERSON: She runs a multibillion-dollar family empire that dates back generations. For her, it's more than just a job.

SABANCI: It was my duty to carry the flag.

ANDERSON: As chairwoman and managing director of Sabanci Holding, she's carrying the flag at the largest industrial and financial conglomerate in Turkey, with businesses in more than a dozen countries in sectors that include energy, cement, and retail.

This business tycoon is Guler Sabanci.

In Turkey, the name Sabanci is among the most recognizable. The family's financial prominence began in the early part of the 20th century in the city Anatolia. The textiles business was among their first enterprises.

Today, the maritime city Istanbul is the global backdrop for the Sabancis. The family name has also come to symbolize education, philanthropy, and an appreciation of the arts.

ANDERSON (on camera): What a collection.

SABANCI: Yes.

ANDERSON: This is remarkable.

(CROSSTALK)

SABANCI: Isn't this beautiful?

ANDERSON: Guler, I didn't even know that there were this many Monets in the world.

(LAUGHTER)

SABANCI: Yes, they exist.

ANDERSON (voice-over): I met Guler Sabanci at the Sakip Sabanci Museum in Istanbul. It was once the family's summer home.

ANDERSON (on camera): It's remarkable, 2002, this became a museum, right?

SABANCI: Yes, my late uncle, Mr. Sakip Sabanci, was alive at that time, and we named it under his name, because he has donated his two collections.

ANDERSION (voice-over): Sabanci's uncle is a legend in the family. He was the force behind the company's growth over several decades. After he died, Guler Sabanci took over the top job, back in 2004.

SABANCI: It was a challenge. It was not an easy task to take after him.

ANDERSON (on camera): Do you remember that time? Do you remember your first day at work?

SABANCI: Yes, I do. I do, I do, I do remember very well. And I do also remember my first announcement to the Sabanci employees. I told them that don't ever expect me to fulfill what Mr. Sabanci has had. I am just nearly going to be responsible of the business together with my team.

ANDERSON: What's the strategy for the group going forward?

SABANCI: The group has been growing in the past ten years, average 12 person max. So, the target for the next ten years is to grow higher than this. We are constituting about 5.5 percentage of the total tax revenues of the Turkish government, 5.5 percent.

ANDERSON: That's some responsibility.

SABANCI: Yes.

(LAUGHTER)

ANDERSON (voice-over): Guler Sabanci says it was inevitable that she join the family business. When she was a child, her grandfather, who launched the businesses, would take her to the factories, planting a seed for the future.

After graduating from college in 1978, Sabanci took up a job in the family's tire factory and worked her way up.

ANDERSON (on camera): You felt, though, discrimination both within and outside of the company as you grew up as a woman within the --

SABANCI: Yes.

ANDERSON: -- managerial realm.

SABANCI: Especially when you want a leadership role, when you want a managerial role. It was not only in my country, there was a bankers' club in London, I was very interested to have lunch there, and they said, no, we can't go. Was there no women bankers in 85, 86, in UK? I'll bet there were. But they were not allowed to the bankers' club.

ANDERSON (voice-over): Sabanci says no matter what she's confronted, she approaches it simply with this:

SABANCI: God give me the courage to change the things I can change, God give me the patience to accept the things I cannot change, and give me the wisdom to know the difference. This is my motto in life.

ANDERSON: Another powerful conviction is her commitment to helping young girls. One of the ways is through her work with Girls Not Brides, an organization fighting against child marriages.

SABANCI: It is the girls' human right, very basic, very basic human right, that they should have the opportunity to study until 18 years old.

ANDERSON: We'll learn more about Guler Sabanci in the coming weeks.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

FOSTER: Well, next week, you'll meet this month's other Leading Woman, an internationally recognized artist from India. And for more on who she is, do head to cnn.com/leadingwomen.

You're watching CONNECT THE WORLD right now, though, and when we come back, thousands of students in the United States coming together to say enough is enough. That story, up next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

FOSTER: Well, of all the problems in the world, few are as cruel and as overlooked as human trafficking. Around the world, at least 27 million people are victims of sexual slavery or forced labor. In Atlanta, thousands of students have gathered to take a stand against this global horror. Jim Clancy has the story.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JIM CLANCY, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): More than 60,000 young Christians from around the country and around the world held candles aloft in the frosty air. Their own faces shine back at them from a massive cube set up outside the Georgia Dome. Faces of those who have pledged to light up the world and put an end to human trafficking in their lifetimes.

(CROWD CHEERING)

BRYSON VOGELTANZ, PASSION 2013: Slavery is trapped in dark places all over the world. It's trapped here in Atlanta, in the shadows, it's in the shadows in Mumbai, India, it's in the shadows in Cambodia. It's in the shadows around the world in brothels and factories. These 60,000 students, they're going to shine a light on slavery.

(CROWD CHEERING)

CLANCY: For many, this is a journey of the Christian faith, one that brings them here to the Passion Conference to worship, pray, and learn. For the past two years, they've been focusing on the unholy scourge of sexual slavery and forced labor: the 27 million victims, the billions of dollars churned out by robbing men, women, and children of their freedom. These young men and women are determined to change that.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Truth is spoken here, and where truth is spoken, things change.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're going to raise the awareness, we're going to fight for those who don't have a voice. And we're just going to tell people about it. We're going to let this world know that there's an issue and we're not OK with it.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: To just know that this is out there and -- it has opened my eyes to all this. I had no idea this was really going on. And then, I just want to be able to help as much as I can.

GARY HAUGEN, PRESIDENT, INTERNATIONAL JUSTICE MISSION: The reason I'm so excited about this generation is that they have an understanding that they don't want to tolerate slavery, they don't want to tolerate mass atrocity in the world and do nothing about it.

CLANCY: Gary Haugen's International Justice Mission is just one of more than a dozen groups singled out by Passion organizers for support.

VOGELTANZ: This is about students starting a journey of justice, that their entire lives would count for justice, their entire lives would count for freedom, and that's happening here.

CLANCY: Last year, the event raised $3.5 million, with 20,000 more participants this year, tablet computers were used to help speed the donation process. Some of the money comes from the students themselves. More was raised in their communities. It will be used to help raise awareness, rescue victims, and help them restore their lives.

CLANCY (on camera): These Christian students have all donated their money, and now they're posing for pictures that will make a personal statement: we're in it to end it. Each and every one of them knows that human trafficking hangs like a darkness over the world, but they're making a personal commitment to being the ones to hold the candles to shine the light of freedom.

(CROWD CHEERING)

CLANCY (voice-over): Jim Clancy, CNN, Atlanta.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

FOSTER: You, too, can take a stand. Do go to cnn.com/freedom for our latest reporting on all of this, as well as information on hotlines and charities engaged in this battle, which really is truly global.

I'm Max Foster, that was CONNECT THE WORLD, thank you so much for watching.

END