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Protesters Mark Second Anniversary Of Mubarak Ousting With Tahrir Square Rally; German Foreign Minister Talks UK, EuroZone At World Economic Forum

Aired January 25, 2013 - 16:00   ET


MAX FOSTER, HOST: Tonight, claims of a hijacked revolution. Clashes erupt on the streets of Egypt as the country marks two years since the uprising that swept Hosni Mubarak from power.

ANNOUNCER: Live from CNN London, this is Connect the World.

FOSTER: Tonight, we ask two Egyptians with very different views for their thoughts on the pace of change and if they feel there's anything at all to celebrate.

Also ahead, train technology that's one step ahead of the terrorists.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You press down on the screen. So you film a few sections. And it's only six seconds, which everyone thinks isn't very much...


FOSTER: The tech talker of the day -- tweet me if you know what it is.

First tonight, protesters across Egypt are demanding a second revolution on the second anniversary of the uprising that forever changed the Arab world. Crowds in Tahrir Square are now thinning out a bit as it approaches midnight in Cairo, but earlier mass demonstrations across Egypt turned violent. We're now hearing that several people have been killed in the city of Suez. Nearly 300 people were injured nationwide.

Let's go straight to Reza Sayah with the very latest. He's live for us in Cairo.

It has calmed down a bit, Reza.

REZA SAYAH, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It has calmed down considerably, Max. It's a little after 11:00 pm local time. And we can tell you that most of the protesters here in Tahrir Square have left, that's because about an hour ago police started firing tear gas on the outskirts of Tahrir Square in an apparent effort to get everyone out. And for the most part it worked. Thousands of people were chased away.

A couple of thousand people it looks like are still there in Tahrir Square, certainly not the numbers we saw earlier in the day.

We have seen clashes and violence throughout the day. Those clashes got deadly in the city of Suez east of Cairo, that's where Egyptian state TV reports five people killed in clashes and violence in other parts of Egypt like Alexandria, Port Zaid (ph), Mahala (ph). More than 250 people injured according to Egyptian state TV.

It's hard to believe that it was two years ago today when an uprising here in Egypt eventually toppled then president Hosni Mubarak. Egyptians came and said we're fed up with an oppressive dictatorship. We want our political freedoms, our personal freedoms, a better way of life. Incredibly Hosni Mubarak was toppled. But two years later many Egyptians are not happy. And we saw that today.

The people we saw today are the secularists, the moderates, the liberals who say that Mohamed Morsy, the current president and the Muslim Brotherhood have hijacked the revolution and have undermined the principles of the revolution.

For his part, the president maintains that these protests are unfair. He says that he's maintaining the democratic values of the revolution. And two years later, Max, this is what we have, a country that's divided. A lot of uncertainty. And the question for the president is how is he going to address the very real problems of Egypt when this country is divided -- Max.

FOSTER: I know, Reza, you've been looking at how this is often verbalized or shown through football.

SAYAH: Yeah, there's no question about it. This is a remarkable story about the fanatic fans of the Al-Ahly Football Team. You'll recall a year after this uprising in 2011 a number of Al-Ahly fans were killed in a massacre in a deadly riot in Port Said. A year later many of those victims are still waiting for justice. Many of those fans, those supporters were out here protesting. That's another issue that's applying tremendous pressure on this government, more people here in Egypt demanding justice, Max.

FOSTER: OK, Reza, thank you very much indeed for that. Well, protesters made their voices heard today, but it's important to remember that many other Egyptians support the Islamist government saying it was given a mandate by democratic elections.

Before we debate the country's future, let's remind you of its recent past.


FOSTER: January the 25, 2011, the Arab Spring spreads to Egypt with a day of rage.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Freedom. And we're going to take our freedom.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We saw something I've never seen before, a phalanx of men on horseback and on camels. And they charged through from the pro- regime side directly into the opposition.

FOSTER: After 18 days of violence, celebrations as it was announced President Hosni Mubarak's 30 year rule had come to an end.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): President Mohammed Hosni Mubarak has decided to step down as president of Egypt.

FOSTER: The military assumed control of the country and Egyptians began to vote on their future. A month later they'd overwhelmingly approved a referendum to amend the constitution.

In November, parliamentary elections were held with Islamist parties ultimately winning about 70 percent of the seats.

Next came the historic presidential election. It was held in May 2011. And after a runoff against former prime minister Ahmed Shafik, the Muslim Brotherhood's Mohammed Morsy was finally declared the first freely elected president on June 24.

But within six months, Egyptians were once again protesting in the streets after their new leader issued an order preventing talks from overturning his decisions. President Morsy later reversed his decree, but the damage was done with his opponents accusing him of betraying the Egyptian people.


FOSTER: Government critics say the Muslim Brotherhood has effectively stepped into Mubarak's old role following a similar dictatorial path. Others dispute that and say Egypt is far better off now than before.

We're joined by two guests from Cairo, Dr. Mohamad ElMasry is a professor at the American University. Gigi Ibrahim is a blogger and activist who was out demonstrating today in Tahrir Square.

And Gigi, do you feel this sense of betrayal?

GIGI IBRAHIM, EGYPTIAN BLOGGER AND ACTIVIST: I wouldn't call it betrayal, but it's basically our revolution hasn't been, you know, it's not done, basically. It hasn't won yet. The fight is still on. And we're continuing and pressuring, you know, to demand for our demands to be met, which they haven't all this time.

FOSTER: Professor I'm wondering this criticism of Morsy. Some calling him a dictator, because he's effectively doing things in his own interests as opposed to the country's. Would you defend that? What's your view on that?

MOHAMAD ELMASRY, PROFESSOR, AMERICAN UNIVERSITY IN CAIRO: Yeah. To me, the biggest concern, the most pressing concern is the anti-democratic positions that have been taken by the Egyptian opposition, or many in the opposition. These are people that were calling on Morsy to step down about two months after he took power even before the controversial November decree. These are people who have refused dialogue, who have refused the results of democratic elections, who were cheer leading when the democratically elected parliament was disbanded. To me, that's a very troubling, because I'm not sure how we can move forward without institutional democracy.

I mean, what we have right now is we have a democratically elected president, a new constitution in place. We're getting ready for parliamentary elections. These are major achievements, but we have to ride those achievements.

I mean, the fact that there are 32 officially registered parties in Egypt right now vying for seats, that will be vying for seats in these upcoming elections, that's a major achievement. I think we need to join hands with the government and try to...

FOSTER: OK. I just want to let Gigi -- are you jumping the gun here? You need to give it more time. Let the political process really follow through. It hasn't been that long since the revolution.

IBRAHIM: We understand completely that democracy is not just through a ballot box. It's -- democracy it's not something you choose every four years or every two months or every six months. Democracy is a full package that you come, you let in the opposition, you have free them to express yourself, you have you are free to protest and to be discontent with the situation. And let's talk about numbers here. I mean, since Morsy came to power nothing has been achieved from what he promised. This is nothing like the revolution had been put on him. He promised to do so much in so little time. He chose that for himself. Nobody told him to say those things or promise these things.

Nothing was -- basically he achieved nothing in those six months. So it's not a matter of time, it's just a matter of political will. And Morsy and the political party that he belongs to has proved all this time that they don't have the political will to adhere to the demands of the revolution. And...

FOSTER: (inaudible) of course is something which really affects the sense of feeling in any country. And Egypt's struggling economy fueling the anger on the streets.

We've got some figures. Consider this statistic that Bloomberg calls a socioeconomic time bomb. It says, unemployment rose to nearly 13 percent last year, meaning more than 3.5 million Egyptians are out of work. But when you narrow it down to young Egyptians from ages 15 to 29 unemployment soars to a staggering 25 percent, Professor ElMasry. And with figures like that, politics almost steps to the background, because people are just obsessed with getting by day to day.

ELMASRY: Yeah, well, you know I come -- I was born and raised in the United States. And I was just reading up on my former state, Minnesota. It took us three-and-a-half years to rebuild part of a roadway there. I think one of the things that Egyptians need to understand is that this rebuilding process is going to take time.

People have been complaining, and I was following some of Gigi's Twitter posts, her tweets, and she was blaming Morsy for the deaths of people in collapsed buildings and in train accidents in recent weeks. And I find this pretty repugnant, because she knows that there were 318,000 buildings illegally constructed in Egypt from 2009 to 2011. Morsy has nothing to do with any of that. And to suggest that he's a killer -- you know, Morsy has made mistakes, and I criticize him for things, but you are right, the economy is a major challenge, but we're not going to be able to get back on our feet while people continue to speak in hyperbole and talk about nothing has been done and nothing has been achieved. This is preposterous.

FOSTER: OK, professor, let Gigi respond to that.

IBRAHIM: Well, first of all, yes it is Morsy's responsibility, because there was nothing achieved in the safety -- you know, the safety measures that he has promised. He has promised that roads will be better. He promised that transportation will be better. He even promised that traffic -- the traffic problem would be solved in 100 days and we see nothing from that.

So, of course it is his responsibility because he is the one in charge. We elected him, whether me or the people, we elected him because we want the things that he promised. And he has completely failed on all of them, whether it be social demand issues, whether it be going to the IMF to getting this loan that will ruin the country because that's what Mubarak did over the past decades. And this is what got us in the first place to kick off a revolution.

So if he's going to follow the same footsteps of Mubarak he must expect the same outcome from the people. And you can see that from the streets. It doesn't take much to know that the Egyptian people are not satisfied.

FOSTER: Professor, there's a lot of feeling against the government right now, and Morsy in particular. Whatever the rights or wrongs about that, what would you suggest to him to turn things around and get a positive feeling back into Egypt?

ELMASRY: Well, he's got quite a challenge on his hands dealing with - - I mean, you're hearing what Gigi is saying -- she's suggesting -- she wants us to believe that Morsy promised that he would fix the transportation system, which is in absolute shambles in six months, nothing could be further from the truth. It's going to take years and years to rebuild.

I urge President Morsy to respond to the legitimate demands of the Egyptian people. I think he's done some of that. He's made some progress. He's also made some mistakes. And I call on all of the Egyptians -- opposition, those supporters, to adhere to the rules of democracy: respect the ballot box, respect dialogue. When Morsy called for a national dialogue about a month-and-a-half ago and said all of -- everything would be on the table and everyone would be invited, the opposition refused to show up to the dialogue.

It's really hard to make progress under those conditions.

FOSTER: Professor ElMasry and Gigi, we have to leave it there, but you'll both be debating this a lot in the months and years to come. Thank you both for joining us.

Up next on Connect the World, why even its closest ally is bothered by the rhetoric pouring out of Pyongyang. More from the Korean Peninsula ahead.

And then in around 15 minutes how rebel courts are filing a law and order vacuum -- filling, rather, a law and order vacuum in some parts of Syria.


FOSTER: We will judge North Korea by its actions, not its words. That's a declaration from the U.S. envoy to North Korea responding to the latest barrage of hostile rhetoric out of Pyongyang.

North Korea's tough talk is inflaming tensions on the Korean peninsula. And there are signs its closest ally has had enough.

Senior international correspondent Matthew Chance takes a closer look.


MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It's the latest alarming threat from North Korea, this time aimed at its southern neighbor. On the country's evening newscast the presenter talks of the puppet group of traitors, Pyongyang's term for the government of South Korea.

"We will take strong, physical countermeasures," she reads, "if they take a direct part in any UN sanctions."

It's unclear what her state has in mind, but this increasingly blunt rhetoric is part of the fallout of a December rocket launch by Pyongyang and international reaction to it. It was condemned by the UN security council, which imposed more crippling sanctions earlier this week.

And the latest threat comes just a day after this nuclear one broadcast in defiant tone the night before. Satellites and long range rockets will be launch one after another, officials in Pyongyang announced, as well as a nuclear test to target the United States and what they called a new phase of their anti-U.S. struggle.

North Korea has already conducted two nuclear tests in 2006 and 2009. U.S. officials say a third would only deepen the country's isolation. But analysts say that doesn't seem to be of paramount concern to its untested young leader Kim Jong un. And there are signs that even China, Pyongyang's economic lifeline, is increasingly frustrated.

In an unusual step, China voted for the resolution condemning North Korea last week at the security council where it could have used its veto. And in a rare public rebuke, a state run Communist newspaper in Beijing carried this warning, "if North Korea engages in further nuclear tests, China will not hesitate to reduce its assistance to North Korea."

It may prove an empty threat, but Pyongyang is so dependent on China is unlikely to have overlooked Beijing's obvious annoyance.

Matthew Chance, CNN, Seoul.


FOSTER: Malian troops backed by French military are pressing further into militant held territory. A military source tells CNN that the government has taken control of Hombre (ph). And CNN's Nima Elbagir joins us live from Mali's capital Bamako.

Nima, some awful stories coming out.


As the conflict is escalating in the north, those who are able to move down from the Islamist territory -- and I'll tell you the stories we've been hearing (inaudible) that that is increasingly, increasingly difficult. Aid agencies are warning of a humanitarian disaster with tens of thousands trapped on the other side of that front line. But those who have been able to come to the capital Bamako have been speaking to us about some of the incredibly harsh punishment that's been metered out to them.

We met two former truck drivers who were accused of theft. And both of them after being imprisoned for three months were then dragged by their feet from their cells, turbans tied around their wrists and then their hands were hacked off.

This is part of the more extreme Islamic rulings on the punishments that should be given to thieves. But even in the harsher Islamic regimes that normally comes after some form of court, some form of trial is held, this hasn't been happening.

We saw a video of a man being whipped in a public arena in the Islamist stronghold of Gao for daring to smoke a cigarette. And of course women are being forced to be veiled. And we're also hearing reports from aid agencies that children are being forced to fight in the ranks of the Islamists, Max.

FOSTER: And what happens to those displaced people? Have you found out where they're going or how they've been affected?

ELBAGIR: Well, those who left early on, Max, have been able to make it to the capital, but as that front line has shifted, they have been trapped on the other side of it. And a lot of the aid organizations that we've been speaking to are really, really concerned.

In addition to the conflict, of course people here haven't been able to plant. There is no expectation of any kind of a decent harvest. And with aid agencies unable to get to them, we also confirmed with military sources today that one of the avenues of respite for people out one of the main Islamist held town Gao, a bridge into Niger, that's now been blown up by the Islamists as they try to block the military advance coming towards them, but it also means that for many people this is where they went to pick up supplies. There is no mobile phone coverage in many of these towns. This is where they went to try and make contact with their friends and families and reassure them. That's now completely blocked to them, Max.

FOSTER: OK, Nima, thank you very much indeed for joining us with that.

As Africa prepares to host two major meetings this weekend, the unrest in Mali is also sparking discussion in Davos. Germany's foreign minister Guido Westerwelle sat down with my colleague with Richard Quest.


GUIDO WESTERWELLE, GERMAN FOREIGN MINISTER: The responsibility, first of all, is where the United Nation identified it, in Africa. The African countries, they should sit...

RICHARD QUEST, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: But they are failing to deal with it in that respect.

WESTERWELLE: And this is why we have to enable them by training, by support, by financial assistance and many other things. So I think it won't be successful if we do not have the Africans on board.


FOSTER: Well, Germany's foreign minister went on to highlight what he sees as the risks facing Europe. We'll bring you that right after this break.


FOSTER: It is the beginning of the end for this year's conference in Davos where there's plenty of issues to discuss.

Europe is in the spotlight once against after the British prime minister said he wants to hold a referendum on the UK's membership of the EU.

Our Richard Quest is there with his perspective on what leaders are saying.


QUEST: I think, Max, what you have to look at is the fact that everybody accepts here that for the euro and the EuroZone, the worst is clearly over. But no sooner had they come out of one crisis than it is the question of what comes next. And not only is there the real risk of countries continuing to reform process, but now you have the issue of the UK and its referendum and the future on EU membership.

So I turned to the German foreign minister Guido Westerwelle. And I needed to know how he viewed these developments, particularly the UK and the European Union.

WESTERWELLE: We need to discuss the future of Europe. And we need not only the idea of more Europe, but also of a better Europe.

My point is when I'm listening to the discussion now in Great Britain, my point is that don't make a mistake about one thing. After decades of a partnership to tell your partner in a crisis you change or I leave you does not work in private life and it does not work between countries and the European Union.

QUEST: Let us talk about the economy. The worst is over, so says most people, the euro is safe. Is that your gut feeling?

WESTERWELLE: I think we are not back, but I hope with a bit of fortune, like the French say, I think the worst is over.

QUEST: Everybody is saying Chancellor Merkel talked about it here. The biggest risk is everybody starts, well, it's all over. Let's not worry about it.

WESTERWELLE: This is really the biggest risk that we think that there is more success in some countries in the European Union, the figures are getting better, the statistics are getting better and then we think that what we thought what was necessary as our homework is not necessary any longer. And I think this will be the wrong conclusion.

I just came back from Spain and Lisbon this morning. And I have to say it is so positive to see the latest news from, for example, from Portugal and from Ireland and others. And we shouldn't risk this success by going back to deficit spending and ignoring fiscal discipline once again. And this is my most important issue that Germany does not only ask for fiscal discipline. We know that sort of director is necessary in the community, but growth, growth, growth.


FOSTER: It's often said that Davos is a talking shop, but did you get a sense of progress this year?

QUEST: I would say that is exactly what Davos is. It never pretends to be anything more, really, than a talking shop. People come here, they talk, they listen, they see where everybody else stands on the subject. Nothing ever gets decided. That's not its function.

I did get the feeling this time there's no immediate crisis. But what we do come away from is a realization that the jobs issue, the jobs crisis, the unemployment numbers globally and in Europe, that is very much issue number one.

FOSTER: Richard Quest.

Now the world's news headlines are coming up. And then fleeing Syria's war, what life is like for some refugees in neighboring Jordan.

Bomb proofing public transport: how an English university is working to thwart global terror attacks.

And what could you film in six seconds? Timing is everything for this new video app that's got plenty of people talking.


FOSTER: A warm welcome to our viewers across Europe and around the world. I'm Max Foster, these are the latest world headlines from CNN.

Violent clashes across Egypt today on the second anniversary of the revolution that toppled Hosni Mubarak. State TV reports that four people were killed in the city of Suez while more than 300 others were injured nationwide.

A military source confirms to CNN that extremists in Mali have bombed a strategic bridge. It follows an advance by French and Malian troops on the key Islamist stronghold of Gao. The fighting comes amid mounting concerns of alleged abuses by both the militants and Malian soldiers.

North Korea is warning the South of what it calls "strong physical countermeasures." Pyongyang's rhetoric against Seoul comes one day after North Korea made inflammatory remarks aimed at the US. The latest threats broadcast by North Korean state television follows the imposition of tougher UN sanctions earlier this week.

New video showing NATO's Patriot missiles being moved into position along the Turkish-Syrian border. NATO hopes the batteries will reach initial operational capability this weekend. The missiles will help defend Turkey from a possible attack from Syria.

Now, the United Nations has described the exodus of Syrian refugees into Jordan as, quote, "absolutely dramatic." Overall, more than 678,000 Syrians have now fled the civil war, creating a refugee crisis across the region. That number includes those waiting to be registered.

Here's the breakdown: Turkey has taken in more than 156,000. Lebanon is just a fraction the size, but is sheltering over 155,000. Another 67,000 Syrians are waiting to be registered. Iraq -- well, Iraq is sheltering more than 77,000 refugees, and Jordan has more than 151,000. An extra 53,000 are waiting to be processed there.

Thousands of Syrians are arriving daily into Jordan's main Zaatari camp. Many have fled war, but their lives are still a daily battle, as CNN's Mohammed Jamjoom now reports.


MOHAMMED JAMJOOM, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It's been an exodus of refugees from southern Syria. In the past few days, at least 20,000 have crossed over from Syria into Jordan, many of them now here at the Zaatari Refugee Camp. This is a camp that houses over 60,000 Syrian refugees, many of the new arrivals in this part of the camp.

They are building what are their new homes. These are tents that were provided to them by the UNHCR, whole families putting them up now, taking whatever belongings they could bring with them, crossing over from extreme violence when they were in Syria here to their new home.

Many of the residents we've spoken with here today say that the conditions aren't as good as they had hoped, and that they worry about that because they're cold at night and they're not getting the kind of aid they say that they will need.

JAMJOOM (voice-over): Like this injured man, who arrived two days ago and still hasn't had access to a doctor.


JAMJOOM (on camera): He's saying that he's asking just for some help, just for some medicine, just for some treatment.

The Jordanian government has said that they are not going to block refugees from entering into this country. They say that they are going to continue to try to assist the Syrians coming into this country. They say even though they've gotten so much aid already, they're going to need a lot more in order to help these refugees that need so much assistance.

Mohammed Jamjoom, CNN, from Zaatari Refugee Camp outside Aman, Jordan.


FOSTER: Earlier, the UN undersecretary-general for humanitarian affairs, Valerie Amos, spoke to CNN from Davos, Switzerland. She says it's important to keep up efforts at refugee camps outside Syria, but also to remember that civilians who are still inside the country, need help as well.


VALERIE AMOS, UN UNDERSECRETARY-GENERAL FOR HUMANITARIAN AFFAIRS: We need to get the supplies to them, we need to try to keep the infrastructure going. We need to make sure the roads stay open.

There are some parts of Damascus, now, where they're only getting power for six hours a day. All of this is having an impact on daily life. So yes, the numbers are going up, it's becoming more and more difficult for my colleagues in the UN Refugee Agency, for all of us working in Humanitarian Affairs, but we know that we have to keep focused on it.


FOSTER: Now, inside Syria, the opposition is in full control of some areas, but the lack of government doesn't necessarily mean the absence of law and order, as Ivan Watson, explains in this exclusive report from Aleppo.




WATSON: A city at war. Despite constant danger here, hundreds of thousands of Syrians can not afford to flee. Somehow, life has to go on.

WATSON (on camera): Some Syrians have clearly gotten used to living in a state of war, but that doesn't mean that they want to live in a state of anarchy, and some judges, lawyers, and clerics have gathered to try to create a system of court in rebel-held territory.

WATSON (voice-over): At the offices of a group that calls itself the United Courts Council, officials sign documents and shuffle papers.

WATSON (on camera): Is it a real court here?

HUSSEIN HAJ, LAWYER: Here is the first court in Aleppo, big court, because it's a city, big city.


WATSON (voice-over): When explosions rock nearby neighborhoods, these legal workers don't even flinch.

This self-appointed court opened only four months ago. Locals line up for birth and death certificates, even though this place operates without authority from any central government. In the personal affairs court, lawyers argue over who gets custody of a house in a family dispute.

Marwan Gayed is a former judge. He defected from the Syrian government and is now the general prosecutor for this fledgling rebel judicial system.

MARWAN GAYED, GENERAL PROSECUTOR, UNITED COURTS COUNCIL (through translator): This is a temporary council, an emergency solution. We came to work here to maintain law and order inside liberated areas.

WATSON: But even a temporary judicial system needs jails. There are about 100 people detained downstairs in what looks an awful lot like a dungeon.

WATSON (on camera): The prison guards have divided cells in this basement. They've established a cell for female prisoners, for male civilian prisoners, and down at the end of this hall, for military prisoners, some of whom come from the government army and some from the rebel Free Syrian Army.

WATSON (voice-over): A court founded by rebels has imprisoned rebels accused of committing war crimes.


WATSON: A fighter named Abu Younus swears to God he is innocent, and then collapses on the floor. The warden says he's accused of leading fighters into a battle that resulted in the friendly fire deaths of many rebels.

Like most of the inmates, this imprisoned rebel does not want to show his face.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): I'm a member of the Free Syrian Army and the captain of a battalion. I tortured a pro-government fighter and he died.

WATSON: The conditions here are cold, dark, and grim. In the women's section, we find an inmate accused of being a government spy. She repeatedly salutes Syria's embattled president. "May God give victory to Bashar al-Assad," she says.

The scene down here isn't pretty. But one of the Muslim clerics who's been appointed a judge for military crimes insists these temporary measures are necessary.

MOHAMMED NAJIB BANNA, MILITARY CRIMES JUDGE, UNITED COURTS COUNCIL (through translator): We believe that our work now will prepare us for the day when the regime falls, because then there will be anarchy.

WATSON: The judges say they're using a criminal code based in part on Sharia Islamic law, and they are trying to export their experiment in law and order to other rebel-held cities and towns. It is a desperate plan, they admit, to stop Syria from descending any further into chaos.

Ivan Watson, CNN, Aleppo, Syria.






FOSTER: A test explosion that could have a major impact on real life. How a group of researchers is working to beat terror attacks.


FOSTER: An English university is working hard to make life tougher for terrorists. Researchers say they've found a way to blast-proof trains. Senior international correspondent Nic Robertson is with me now in our London studio to explain how it works. It's a fascinating study, isn't it? NIC ROBERTSON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It is. A lot of it has been done in a laboratory. What's incredible about this is they have to do studies, stress tests, all these different sorts of things on all these sort of compounds and components.

And then they feed that into the computer, and the computer can model this electronically, and then they can take all that modeling and then put it into real life, and that's what they did, built all these sort of different components in the train to see how it would work.



ROBERTSON (voice-over): Windows explode, shattering into lethal shards. Seats, doors, and posts become unguided missiles. This dramatic slow-motion video shows what a terrorist bomb does to a train.

CONNOR O'NEILL, SENIOR RESEARCH ASSOCIATE, NEWRAIL: When we did the initial test on the decommissioned vehicle, we were quite surprised with the large amount of debris.

ROBERTSON: In this university laboratory, researchers are trying to change that and revolutionize train safety.

O'NEILL: The speed at which these object travel is very, very high and can cause some severe injuries. If we can reduce the amount of debris, we can reduce those injuries and hopefully reduce fatalities.

ROBERTSON: Terror attacks in London in 2005, killing 52 people on the rail and bus network, and the multiple terrorist bombs detonated on Madrid trains, killing 191 people in 2004, triggered research by a European consortium.

Newcastle University in the north of England took the lead, with simple, cheap fixes to hold fittings like lights and speakers in place.

O'NEILL: We've implemented a tethering technology, which is a thin wire which will help retain them in place, so even if they do become detached from their mountings, they'll actually stay pretty much in position.

ROBERTSON (on camera): In a carriage like this, it means the post, the glass, the seats, would stay in place. They would be manufactured to bend with the explosion. They wouldn't fly around and become dangerous debris.

ROBERTSON (voice-over): O'Neill shows me the results of his three years of research: scores of materials tested, the best built into what he says is a more bomb-proof train.

O'NEILL: This is our prototype, which we built including new technologies to try and improve the performance of the vehicle.


ROBERTSON: Plastic coating on windows stops them shattering. Those that do fly out are emergency exits and remain intact. Doors don't fly so far, and there is far less debris.

ROBERTSON (on camera): The changes, if and when they are made, could impact a huge number of people. According to the American Transport Association, 4.5 billion rail journeys are made very year, and in Europe, according to European Government Office of Statistics, it's 8.5 billion rail journeys made a year on mainline trains and commuter networks, like this one.

ROBERTSON (voice-over): Which is why mass transit has already become a target for terrorists. Making trains safer is far more than an academic exercise.


FOSTER: I know that you also looked into the psychology of passengers in these situations, and that also comes into play here, doesn't it.

ROBERTSON: It does. Part of the study here is to look at after the crash, what can be done there. And they studied terrorist acts of violence since -- for the last 50 years, studied over 800 of them. And they found passengers were just generally after an incident like that wait. They won't want to go out on the rails.

So they thought, protect the driver, so they've been looking at protecting the driver, because he will be a focal point to help people out of the train, and he'll be a communications point with people on the outside. So they're looking at protecting those lines of communication, too.

FOSTER: And communication between the driver and his office, as it were, I guess.

ROBERTSON: Yes. So, what you've -- what they're trying to do in the train is foam down the speakers so that the speakers inside the train are still connected to the driver so that he can still talk to the passengers and make sure his radio equipment and the -- power that supplies that doesn't get disrupted by the explosion.

Because he can talk to the rescuers and say, OK, we're so far down the tunnel, we've got these types of injuries, and generally make it safer and better for people after the accident as well.

FOSTER: An interesting study, but in reality, it's about whether or not the train companies adopt this. Is there any sense that it's being commercialized anytime soon?

ROBERTSON: They're certainly hearing a lot of interest from commercial companies, but this is sort of already been designed for the information to be passed onto this consortium of rail networks. But the threat's there.

Germany last year in Bonn, a bomb foundered a station. 2010, an al Qaeda threat against US rail networks. 2008, another al Qaeda threat against the Long Island rail network in New York. 2006, another bomb plot on German rail lines interrupted.

So there will be, probably, public pressure for these rail companies to do something and act on this, because the threat remains.

FOSTER: Nic, thank you very much, indeed.

You're watching CONNECT THE WORLD. When we come back, a stunning result from the Africa Cup of Nations that has this team on the cusp of a spot in the East Eight.


FOSTER: The men's final at the Australian Open is set. Patrick Snell joins me now for more. Andy Murray beginning to make a habit of reaching Grand Slams finals. Good news for the UK.

PATRICK SNELL, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: Good news for fans of Andy Murray, that's for sure. But fans of Novak Djokovic will be hoping, Max, that he can win the Aussie Open for a third straight time, and what would be a fourth time overall.

But you're quite right, Andy Murray certainly in great form when it comes to majors and getting from the semifinals to the finals. He's shown a great deal of self-belief, I think. This is now his third straight Grand Slam final appearance. That is quite an achievement.

Djokovic, I think, on a little bit of a mission. He's the reigning world number one, and I feel that he feels that he will want to do -- exact a little bit of revenge over Murray. Of course, these two meeting in the final of the US Open last September in New York City, and it was Murray who won that one.

This is a fascinating one. It's almost too close to call, Max. I am going for Djokovic purely because I think he's going to be better rested, Murray just coming through his five sets and Djokovic winning relatively easy. His semifinal in three against the Spaniard David Ferrer.

When it comes to Grand Slam head-to-head, you can see Djokovic there with that 2-1 advantage. But I just like the momentum Djokovic has built up, but Andy Murray, he's such a tough competitor. It's going to be a fascinating finale on Sunday. But that's my tip, Djokovic to win it in four sets, Max.

FOSTER: Yes, and turning our attention to football as well, Patrick, a tremendous result from the Africa Cup of Nations.

SNELL: Fantastic. This is a standout result in many ways. Burkina Faso winning it, taking the three points with a thumping four-nil victory on Friday in their Group C match up with Ethiopia. The score line is incredible, because this is a tournament thus far, Max, that hasn't exactly yielded many goals. And wouldn't you know it, all of a sudden, along come four in one game.

Two key stats for me. This snaps Burkina Faso's 18-match winless run at this tournament dating back to 1998, that's the year that France hosted the FIFA World Cup, would you believe. And what's more incredible, they scored three of their four goals with just ten men on the pitch at the time. Quite incredible.

They had their keeper, Abdoulaye Soulama, he was red-carded on the hour mark for handling outside the box. Wouldn't you know, they go and score three more. It was one-nil at the time, four-nil the final. Alain Traore, he's got two more, that's three for the tournament for him, and he is certainly enjoying a rich vein of four-minute days.

Other game, 1-1 between Zambia and Nigeria. So, look at that Burkina Faso top in the group with four points. They have a two-point advantage ahead of the next batch of games. Another win for them, and they will seal a place, Max, into the quarterfinals of the African Cup of Nations. That would be quite an achievement for Burkina Faso, Max.

FOSTER: Indeed. Patrick, thank you very much, indeed. Much more from Patrick on "World Sport" in around 40 minutes from now.

Twitter has launched a new app that's got people talking. It's called Vine. Let's -- you record as well a whopping six seconds, would you believe, of video, and then upload it onto your Twitter timeline.

Let's face it, six seconds doesn't sound like very much, but already people are showing videos on how to make steak tartar and what their pet dog's daily routine is. A little earlier, I hit the streets of London to see what people think of the new app.


FOSTER: You press down on the screen, so you film a few sections, and it's only six seconds, which everyone thinks isn't very much, and then you can build a sort of sequence.



FOSTER: And then you publish it straightaway. Like a tweet picture.


FOSTER: Yes. It's owned by Twitter, they just bought it. Do you use video at the moment on Twitter?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, I've not really thought about using video like that.

FOSTER: Would this make you do it, then?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes. Yes, definitely.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I do think it's a good idea, but it's a bit short.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I do -- I do think it is quite short.

FOSTER: Longer. A minute?


FOSTER: Would you like a minute?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Not a minute, because I don't normally watch a video for a minute, but I'd say at least 20 seconds would be good.


FOSTER: Too short or the next internet hit? Well, from CNN New York, I'm joined by Peter Pachal, he's tech editor of Thanks for joining us, Pete. What do you think of the six seconds?

PETER PACHAL, TECHNOLOGY EDITOR, MASHABLE.COM: I think Vine is super fun. I think six seconds is actually just fine for what it does. You can actually do a lot in six seconds. I've seen a lot of creativity so far with people using the app.

And six seconds doesn't ask a lot of the viewer. It's basically not much more than viewing a photograph. I think Vine has a lot of potential.

FOSTER: What's very, very clever about this is the way it works, and you effectively just touch the screen and it records whilst you're touching, and then you touch it again and it records again. It edits for you, and it immediately goes up. So, its simplicity is a big selling factor. It's got that sorted, hasn't it?

PACHAL: Yes, it's super easy to use. But what -- as soon as it arrived in the app store, basically the crew at Mashable, everyone in the office started doing Vines and sort of competing with each other to do more creative ones and sharing them amongst each other.

And I sort of hold the office up as a bit of a barometer as to what social services are good and what aren't. And we like it, our community appears to like it. There is -- there's a big ease of use factor, for sure. I think to add a lot more features would actually make it too complicated and people would be less willing to engage in. Although it does need a few more features, I think.

FOSTER: The point here is, is they're moving into video, right? So, we're used to the text, we're used to the stills, and now they're moving into video. So in terms of Twitter, social media, could it be a revolution? Because we already have YouTube.

PACHAL: I think it has a lot of potential. We already have YouTube, but that's a whole different thing. This is -- like I say, it's a little more analogous almost to sharing photos. I would compare Vine more to Instagram in sort of capturing an experience or capturing something that you want to express very quickly and that doesn't ask too much of people on the other end.

And the other aspect is that those animated GIF videos online are extremely popular. They're all over sites like Tumblr. This provides a really easy way for anyone to create that kind of experience and share it really quickly, and I think it's just going to go viral.

FOSTER: It's going to be expensive, isn't it, for users because of the data it uses up?

PACHAL: Well, theoretically. I actually haven't looked at the numbers and exactly what Vine does. That's actually a very good thing to check out.

But the fact that it's only six seconds and it's probably using some kind of compression when it uploads it, it's probably not using up as much as, say, a YouTube capture or even your iPhone's capture. A lot of people just share videos either through e-mail or what have you. So, it's probably going to be using a lot less than what you're already using in a mobile experience.

FOSTER: And it was interesting to see that Vodafone stepped in here and didn't allow access to -- sorry, Facebook stepped in and said that they wouldn't allow access to their platform on this. So that's just pure competition, right? They just don't want a Twitter service going into Facebook?

PACHAL: Yes. The thing is, both of those services are getting so large and so -- intersecting with the same advertisers, the same people, and basically, they're competing for the user's time as well, so it's very interesting that Facebook has decided to wall itself off from Vine. Basically, you can't find your friends on Facebook and connect to them and start sharing your stuff via Vine.

But yes, I totally agree, this is basically more indication that these two services are competing very strongly, and there's not a lot of love loss between them.

FOSTER: No. Peter Pachal, appreciate your time. Thank you very much, indeed. We'll see how it goes.

What do you think? Will Vine be a hit or a miss? That's the question we're asking on our Facebook page. Just head to to join the conversation, and you can check out the team's first attempts at Vine by searching on Twitter for hash tag #ConnectTheWorld.

In tonight's Parting Shots, Crocs on the loose. The search is on in South Africa for thousands of crocodiles that escaped from a farm. Workers near the Botswana border were forced to open the crocodile farm's gates to relieve pressure from rising floodwaters. Some 15,000 slipped out, more than half of them remain at large.

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