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AROUND THE WORLD
Mexican Politician Accused of being Escort; Astronomers, Earth is Older, Fatter than we Thought; Chinua Achebe has Passed Away; 50th Anniversary of First Beatles Album; Kenyan Makes Glasses From Trash; The Cyprus Effect
Aired March 22, 2013 - 12:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
RAFAEL ROMO, CNN SENIOR LATIN AFFAIRS EDITOR: She's an aspiring Mexican politician. An entrepreneur, 33-year-old Giselle Arellano has become a celebrity almost overnight in her country, but not the way she'd like to be.
Right after she launched her campaign for a seat in congress, these pictures began appearing on social media.
She says she posed for the lingerie photos as a favor to a friend promoting a party. Her rival saw she worked as an escort in Las Vegas, something she categorically denies.
GISELLE ARELLANO, MEXICAN POLITICIAN (via translator): There has been a lot of speculation about my past on social networks and in the media.
I'm here before you because I have nothing to hide. My conscience is clear and I'm at peace with God.
ROMO: Her critics also claim that her company, Black Rose Concierge Services, offers more than just concert tickets and restaurant reservations.
ARELLANO (via translator): Black Rose Concierge Services provides services to tourists in Vegas. There's nothing more to say. People have been misinterpreting this.
ROMO: Arellano is running for a seat in Zacatecas under the banner of the conservative National Action Party, and she appears to have support from voters, especially women.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (via translator): Let he who is without sin cast the first stone. I'm not going to judge.
I think people should pay more attention to her abilities and talent. If she has what it takes, I think it would be good to have her in the party.
ROMO: Arellano insists she does have what it takes as a successful businesswoman who speaks five languages.
ARELLANO (via translator): (Inaudible). I speak English. (Inaudible). (END VIDEOTAPE)
FREDRICKA WHITFIELD, CO-ANCHOR: All right, Rafael Romo's here now to give us more on this.
So where are we going from here? Does she still have a pretty good chance?
ROMO: She has a so-so chance. The primary election within her party was Sunday, so that's over with.
But what she's doing right now is her own party to get reinstated on the ballot. She says she was discriminated against, that she was a victim of slander, and because she says there's no proof she did what is alleged, she should be allowed to run.
MICHAEL HOLMES, CO-ANCHOR: That's the main point, isn't it? None of this has been proven. How does she get banned? On what ground?
ROMO: The Mexican electoral system is not banning her.
What happened was that her own party, after learning of these allegations -- and this is the PAN -- this is the most conservative party in Mexico -- so the party itself said because of the allegations we would not like you to run and essentially stopped her from running and took her name off the ballot.
But then again the general election is in July and she still has a chance if the court system, the judicial system in Mexico, moves fast enough.
WHITFIELD: So she's saying -- or they're saying that she would simply be a distraction and that maybe she needs to think about backing off.
ROMO: It is true, and I had an opportunity to speak with her. And what she was telling me is, listen, I am a very successful businesswoman. She has two companies in Las Vegas. She is very involved in the migrant community in Nevada and also in California.
So this is not like I decided to run for office overnight. She's very, very distraught, incredibly mad about the allegations, and she says she's going to fight this to the end.
WHITFIELD: All right.
HOLMES: Well, get on it. Keep us informed. Good to see you, Rafael.
WHITFIELD: Thank so much, Rafael.
All right. Leaders are on the move. We turn to the world travels of some major movers-and-shakers.
HOLMES: Oh, yeah, they're all over the place.
We begin now with news about that man there on your screen, the former president of Pakistan, Pervez Musharraf, wants to return home. This is after five years of living abroad.
WHITFIELD: He heads back Sunday to take part in elections coming up in May.
Pakistan had threatened to arrest him in connection with the assassination of a former prime minister.
HOLMES: What happened was a court granted him bail on these accusations. The former military ruler has been living in self- imposed exile in Britain and Dubai.
So because he's out on bail, he can come back.
WHITFIELD: All right, China's new leader takes his first official trip abroad as president. Xi Jinping has traveled to Moscow.
HOLMES: Yeah, this highlights, of course, what is a special relationship between these two countries, trade at the top of the agenda. They spend millions and millions of dollars a year buying and selling from each other.
The Chinese leader heads to Africa next.
WHITFIELD: And Google's top executive is making a rare visit to the world's least wired company, Eric Schmidt is in Myanmar, which is just emerging from decades of military rule.
HOLMES: Yeah, he called for a free and open Internet, that in a country where few people even have cell phones.
WHITFIELD: All right, it's a scientists dream, a new "baby photo" of the universe.
HOLMES: Yeah, it's beautiful, too.
We're learning that the universe is older than we thought. Thought it was pretty old to begin with.
WHITFIELD: Yes, it was.
WHITFIELD: Astronomers are very excited about a new picture of the universe.
HOLMES: Yeah, they're calling it a "baby picture" from the early years. It shows the universe is actually about 80 million years older than previously thought and a little fatter.
WHITFIELD: Still has the baby fat on it or it had some baby fat.
Chad Myers with us now, right, to explain this remarkable photo and how it came to be and all that good stuff.
CHAD MYERS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: I think remarkable is overused, overrated. This picture to me is like you looking at an MRI. I don't know what I'm looking at, but to scientists that means something.
That thing, that red, green, blue thing there means something. And to them it means because we're expanding with the big bang, too, now these satellites, these telescopes can see farther and farther.
The farther you see, the older those pictures are, like lightning. When lightning flashes, the sound comes five seconds for every mile. So now we're looking farther into the light into the future -- or into the past.
It's like somebody that's 65 million years away from us -- light-years away -- looking at the Earth and they would see dinosaurs because dinosaurs are still alive.
But now that we can see farther and farther out there, we're seeing that, yeah, well, it was there then. Oh, it was there then. Oh, it was there then. And the galaxies as they started to explode are a little bit more lumpy than we thought.
The universe is a little more stuff on that side, a little less stuff on that side, some dark matter, some dark energy pushing things away.
WHITFIELD: So, how do we read this?
MYERS: I don't know. Looks to me like the earth has tendonitis. I don't know. I don't know what that means, but it's a cool picture to scientists.
HOLMES: It's an early baby photo, but what does it -- the universe is still expanding, isn't it? So how old do we think it is now?
MYERS: We think it's another 100 million years old.
MYERS: And you think that's kind of a lot, but in -- really in universe time, that's not so much because you're thinking 13 billion, 13.1, 13.4. The farther we see, the more we see, the older it's going to get and I think this is going to be a trend.
We're going to see older and older and older things as we go on.
WHITFIELD: Fascinating stuff.
MYERS: Because the telescopes are getting better. The computers are getting better. We're able to see farther and farther.
WHITFIELD: And the assessment of it, also improving.
HOLMES: Isn't it amazing. There's a photo from that long -- how do you get your head around? You did a good job, though.
MYERS: I tried.
HOLMES: I was following you there for ...
MYERS: I lost you at the dinosaurs, didn't I?
HOLMES: I lost you at Chad.
WHITFIELD: That was fantastic. Thank you, Chad.
HOLMES: Chad Myers.
I did follow him. I did.
WHITFIELD: Yeah, I know you did.
HOLMES: Yeah, all right.
Coming up, turning art -- trash into art. Check out those glasses there, all made from ...
WHITFIELD: Maybe looking at that photo through these lenses then we'll all really understand and see it more clearly.
By the way, this is a Kenyan artist and he's teaching kids to think before they throw things away.
HOLMES: Welcome back, everyone, to AROUND THE WORLD.
Right now parts of central Myanmar are under a state of emergency. Just have a look at those pictures there.
WHITFIELD: Oh, my goodness. About 20 people have been killed in fighting between Muslims and Buddhists.
The trouble began on Wednesday when a Muslim gold shop owner argued with two Buddhist sellers.
HOLMES: Longstanding enmities there in that part of world, though.
An acclaimed Nigerian author has died. Chinua Achebe wrote the novel, "Things Fall Apart," and many other books, too.
WHITFIELD: He won the Man Booker International Prize for Fiction in 2007. Achebe was 82-years-old.
HOLMES: From India now, a story that set off a dispute with Italy, an extraordinary tale.
Two Italian marines accused of killing two Indian fishermen last year have returned to New Delhi to stand trial.
WHITFIELD: They were allowed to go back to Italy last month to vote in national elections and then Rome refused to send them back.
Their return diffuses diplomatic standoff now between the countries.
HOLMES: Yeah, India wasn't letting the ambassador leave until all those guys came back.
All right, it was 50 years ago today, you wouldn't remember this, that The Beatles truly ...
WHITFIELD: You're right. I wouldn't, thank goodness.
HOLMES: Have a listen.
The debut Beatles album, of course, it was called "Please Please Me," was released on March 22, 1963. You weren't even thought of then.
WHITFIELD: Wasn't even a thought.
And it brought the world instant classics like "I Saw Her Standing There," "Love Me Do" and "Twist and Shout."
And what is also amazing is back then -- think of this happening today -- it took a mere nine hours and 45 minutes to record that entire monumental album.
WHITFIELD: So to celebrate the 50th anniversary, a London auction house is putting some Beatles artifacts on the block. Whoa.
HOLMES: Among the items, a first-pressing -- oh, I'd love to get my hands on that -- of "Please Please Me" and a series of unpublished photographs of the Fab Four. Fifty years. Give me a break.
WHITFIELD: Unbelievable. Huh, very impressive.
All right, a Kenyan artist -- you're going to find this very impressive too --
WHITFIELD: Who spent his childhood living across from a trash heap, is now turning garbage into something very inspiring.
HOLMES: His name is Cyrus Kabiru, and he shows us how he gives, in his words, trash another life.
CYRUS KABIRU, ARTIST: This one, I call it face book (ph). As you can see the (INAUDIBLE). This one is called "Dictatorship." They are not heavy. They are not -- they are very light.
I'm Cyrus. I'm an artist from Kenya. The exhibition is called "C- stunners." C for Cyrus. Stunners, something stunning.
I don't use glue. I don't use shortcut. I don't use machine to make my glasses. I only use my hand. It's made of beads and metal. This one is "Mosquito." I grown up on a place where all (INAUDIBLE) the garbage facing their garbage and I used to say, when I grown up I want to give trash another life.
I'm trying to show how I can bring the waste together and make something different.
KABIRU: I'm an artist from Kenya. I love nature. And this one way of saving our nature.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What's your favorite pair?
KABIRU: All of my -- all of them. My glasses, they're all my favorites. I'll show you how to make the glasses using maybe wire. (INAUDIBLE) decided to use this thing.
NORMA SILVA, PRINCIPAL, UCLA LAB SCHOOL: You can see that they're intensely focused on the work that he's doing. They begin to see the potential of the materials in so many different ways. So it's exciting for them.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think I might like make some more stuff when I get home.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It would make me think, like, if I throw something away, it makes me think like what that could have been.
KABIRU: I'm trying to show them how to give trash a second chance.
KIDS: Thank you, Cyrus.
WHITFIELD: Oh, how fun.
HOLMES: Yes, fun stuff.
WHITFIELD: The innovation that brought that kind of -- you know, the smiles to the kids.
HOLMES: Yes, it is truly art.
WHITFIELD: And big people too.
HOLMES: And when we come back, we're going to tell you about this tiny island nation and its impact on the economic world.
WHITFIELD: We'll explain why so much is invested in Cyprus.
HOLMES: All right, give you a little bit more detail and perspective on the financial crisis in Cyprus.
WHITFIELD: Lawmakers there are still trying to hammer out a way to save the nation's banking system.
HOLMES: Yes, now, they're working on what they're calling a plan b. But as the sun goes down in Cyprus, there is still no deal on the table.
WHITFIELD: There have been huge protests, however, in the streets of the capital and long lines at the ATMs as people try to withdraw their cash.
HOLMES: Yes. And that's because the banks have been closed all week. There's a lot at stake. The European Central Bank has laid down Monday as the deadline to hash out a plan or there will be hell to pay in the banking sector.
WHITFIELD: So, why do the financial problems of little Cyprus matter so much?
HOLMES: Tom Foreman's going to tell us.
TOM FOREMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: How is this possible? How can a small island nation off the coast of Greece, how can tiny Cyprus with just over a million people be rocking the economic world? Two reasons, because it is an absolutely massive offshore banking center, and because it's become something of a battle front on the future of the Eurozone.
Cyprus is, of course, a member of the Eurozone. It uses the euro as its currency. And yet even though it's teetering on the edge of bankruptcy, it has so far rejected a bailout offer from the Eurozone saying the terms of that deal are just too steep. Specifically what the Cypriots don't like is the idea that they would have to tax the bank accounts of their own citizens and those of foreigners in their country to help pay back this loan to bail them out. They don't like the idea of that at all.
Who's pushing it? Well we don't know where it came from, but we know that a very strong Eurozone member, Germany, has been talking a lot about accountability. The idea that if you have a bailout like this for Cyprus, there has to be some really strong participation from Cyprus in paying it back. And maybe there's no other way for them to pay it back.
That is what has spurred so much talk about Russia of all things. Why Russia? Why would Russia be so interested in all of this? Well, there's a historic connection between Russia and Cyprus, but more importantly, many, many Russians have many, many millions of dollars in those Cyprus banks as an offshore tax haven. Enough so that they may control half of the accounts there in Cyprus. The Russian government does not want that money lost to its citizens for investment in Russia, for building in Russia. So the idea has been floated that maybe Russia will step in and find a way to help pay back the Eurozone bailout if it comes to that.
What do they get in exchange? Maybe some of the natural gas rights from Cyprus in the future. No one really knows. This is all speculation at this point. But the mere fact that it is being speculated, the idea that maybe a non Eurozone member would be the key to bailing out a member of the Eurozone, has made some people very uneasy about the future of the Eurozone itself, if that's the way it's going to go. And that is the reason that tiny, tiny Cyprus is creating such very big waves.
WHITFIELD: Thank you so much, Tom Foreman.
All right, turning wine into water. That's the mission of this former bartender.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DOC HENDLEY, FOUNDER, WINE TO WATER: We're able to have such a huge lasting impact and it really, like you said, is quite simple. It's fixing a broken well or providing a simple water filtration system to a family. And it changes their whole lives.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HOLMES: His name's Doc Hendley. I chatted to him a little bit earlier on CNN International. He wants to change lives one drop at a time by providing clean water for millions of people. A fascinating guy.
WHITFIELD: All right, he's already making an impact.
HOLMES: He is.
WHITFIELD: All right, did you know that 780 million people in the world don't have access to clean water?
HOLMES: It's just amazing, isn't it, in this day and age.
HOLMES: It's true. But today is World Water Day, which is the U.N.'s attempt to draw attention to that very troubling fact. And here's another fact for you. Almost a third of the world's population doesn't have access to proper sanitation. A third.
WHITFIELD: That is a remarkable number. So earlier you spoke with someone who is trying to make a big impact.
HOLMES: I did.
WHITFIELD: And he actually is.
HOLMES: Yes, his name is Doc Hendley. There he is there. He's the founder of a group called Wine To Water. A former bartender who now spends his life providing clean water to people in developing countries. The group raises money from wine tastings and he makes a lot of money doing that, by the way. He was honored as a CNN Hero four years ago. Now his latest project providing water filtration systems at camps for Syrian refugees.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DOC HENDLEY, FOUNDER, WINE TO WATER: Because we're able to have such a huge lasting impact. And it really, like you said, is quite simple. It's fixing a broken well or providing a simple water filtration system to a family. And it changes their whole life. So simplicity is actually one of the reasons why I love what we do because the little small, simple things can have a huge impact.
HOLMES: And tell me how a bartender ends up doing this? And how it evolved and the whole wine into water thing?
HENDLEY: Well, back in 2003 is when I learned about the global water crisis and I just decided, you know what, I might just be an average guy, bartender, but I think I can do something about this. I think I can raise some funds.
So we put on these Wine To Water events and I was able to raise quite a bit of money quickly, which surprised me. And then I decided, you know what, I wonder if I could actually do this work myself in the field. And I had an amazing opportunity to travel to Darfur, in Sudan. And now we're in 15 different countries around the world. And I guess that overnight it's been a little bit of a whirlwind change of direction from tending bar back 10 years ago.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WHITFIELD: Wow, overnight and going global.
HOLMES: A great story.
WHITFIELD: Huge. Yes, that's a wonderful story.
So if you want to know more about Hendley's group, go to winetowater.org.
HOLMES: Check it out. A fascinating guy.
Want to have a look at what's trending on Twitter at the moment.
Sanjay Dutt, a famous Ballywood actor, was sentenced to five years in prison for gun possession.
WHITFIELD: Oh, my goodness. It's in connection with the bomb attacks in Mumbai in 1993. Dutt was convicted of possessing illegal weapons supplied to him by men who were later convicted in those bombings.
HOLMES: Yes, what he says is that the weapons were meant to protect his family. So he denies it all.
We want to share some candid photos from around the world now.
WHITFIELD: All right, let's go to Australia. HOLMES: Oh, yes.
WHITFIELD: You're favorite.
HOLMES: It's always got to be something wacky, doesn't it?
WHITFIELD: OK. Here we go. Oh, did you know it would be something piggy like this.
WHITFIELD: A pig diving out of a cage during a performance at the Sydney Royal Easter Show.
HOLMES: Nothing special about that.
The show, though, is an agricultural shore. It's been around since 1927 (ph).
WHITFIELD: Oh, and they look like they're having fun there. Kids splashing around in a well in India.
HOLMES: Yes, as we said, it is World Water Day. Many Indians don't have clean water as well. Eighty percent of untreated sewage flows into rivers and pollutes that country's water supply.
And on that note, that's it from me. Thanks for watching AROUND THE WORLD. But you're done with me, but do carry on.
WHITFIELD: Oh, OK. I'll try.
WHITFIELD: It was great being with you this week. Have a great weekend.
HOLMES: See you again soon, I hope. You too.
WHITFIELD: All right. Thanks so much, Michael.