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CONNECT THE WORLD

Pope Francis Speaks Out on Role of Women In Church, Homosexuality; Interview with Father Thomas Rosica; John Kerry Holds Press Conference On Syria; Racist Reaction to New Miss America; Drone Strikes; Possibility of Winter World Cup

Aired September 19, 2013 - 16:00   ET

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


BECKY ANDERSON, HOST: Tonight, confessions of a Catholic sinner as Pope Francis sensationally opens up about himself and the church's obsession. I'll ask veteran Vatican spokesman Father Thomas Rosica about how the pope's unorthodox views are shaking the Catholic establishment.

Also ahead...

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ms. New York.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ANDERSON: Beauty and her beasts, I speak to newly crowned Miss American about the abuse that she has received online and what she intends to do about it.

And as European football backs a winter World Cup in Qatar, we challenge FIFA on how that will work.

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

ANDERSON: I am a sinner. The frank and honest words from the leader of the Roman Catholic church. In the most revealing and wide ranging interview since his election in March, Pope Francis says he has no right to, and I quote, "interfere spiritually in the lives of homosexuals." And warns his church will fall like a house of cards if leaders don't find a balance between spirituality and politics.

Well, the in depth interview was given to a Jesuit magazine released simultaneously across 16 publications around the world.

For more details, our senior international correspondent Matthew Chance joining us live now from Rome -- Matthew.

MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Becky, thanks very much.

Well, it was the first in depth interview that Pope Francis has given since he took on the papacy six months ago. And of course it addressed some of the most controversial issues affecting the Roman Catholic Church under his stewardship.

He spoke about the role of women. Now previously, Pope Francis has spoken about how the door is closed on the possibility of women becoming priests. That's obviously disappointed many Catholic liberals.

But in this interview, for instance, he spoke about the need to bring women more and more into the decisionmaking process in the Catholic church, saying this, the feminine genius as he called it, is needed wherever we make important decisions. Women are asking deep questions, that must be addressed. The church cannot be herself without women and her role.

And so an example of how Pope Francis in this interview is not so much breaking church doctrine, or trying to change it, but rather sort of trying to change the emphasis, making it not so important to be so hard-line about these issues. The same could be said about the issue of homosexuality.

But of course the church doctrine condemns homosexual acts, but when he was asked whether he approved of homosexuality Pope Francis said this, "tell me, when God looks at a gay person, does he endorse the existence of this person with love or reject and condemn this person? We must always consider the person."

And so it's a sort of change not so much of doctrine, but of emphasis as one Vatican commentator said earlier from condemnation to the emphasis of mercy instead -- Becky.

ANDERSON: Matthew Chance there in Rome.

All right, well since becoming pope, Francis has established a reputation for his directness and humility. And his latest comments highlight his mission to shake up the Vatican establishment. Have a listen at this.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ANDERSON: Becoming pope was only one of many significant firsts for the new pontiff.

JOHN ALLEN, CNN, SR. VATICAN ANALYST: He is the first pope from the Latin America, the first pope from outside Europe in 1,300 years. And of course he is the first pope to utter the word gay.

ANDERSON: While service to the poor is one of the tenets of the Catholic church, critics came to see the often lavish image of the papacy as a sign the church was out of touch with ordinary followers.

Some church observers say Pope Francis' dressed down style from the beginning may be creating some unease, even among the Cardinals who elected him.

RITA FERRONE, WRITER, COMMONWEAL MAGAZINE: I wouldn't be surprised if some of them are wondering what did we bargain for? You know, did we -- did we know what we were getting?

So if I'm living in a palatial residence and I am amassing wonderfully ornate vestments and then here comes Pope Francis and he's living in a guest house and is wearing simple clothes, well I have to look at how I'm putting forward my imagine in my own diocese.

ANDERSON: Christopher Bellitto puts it more bluntly.

CHRISTOPHER BELLITTO, KEAN UNIVERSITY: But in the last 15 or 20 years, we've had this focus on what we call cufflink or Cadillac Catholicism. And I think the era of cuff link and Cadillac Catholicism is gone.

In fact, one of the interesting things I read was a whole series of interviews with men who were ordained priests in April, May, June, right after the election of Francis in March. And what were they talking about? Oh, how much they always admired Francis of Assisi anyway.

So I think that soup kitchens are going to be the new Cadillacs.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ANDERSON: Soup kitchens the new Cadillacs.

Let's find out.

Today's comments don't break with Catholic doctrine, but do reveal the pope's vision for the future of the church, one that is markedly different in approach to what has gone before. His clergy making the changes.

And will Francis be able to make the reforms that he wants?

Well, some analysis now. I'm joined by Father Thomas Rosica who -- a spokesperson for the Vatican live -- joining us live in our Rome bureau this evening.

Sir, thank you for joining us.

We last spoke when I was covering the pope in Rome back in March. Back then, I'm not sure you, nor I, would have considered that just six months on we would hear this, "I am a sinner. This is the most accurate (inaudible)

FATHER THOMAS ROSICA, ASSISTANT, HOLY SEE PRESS OFFICE: ...and we have the possibility of being forgiven by god and being part of a church. And it's a church that the lord wanted. It's the lord threw out this net wide. There's some powerful statements here. The lord did not want some narrow church that we can be caught up with our own little issues. But we want to invite everybody into this.

And what we see coming through this interview is the mark of an incredible pastor who is in touch with himself and who is in touch with so many people who are suffering.

ANDERSON: Father Thomas, as we're speaking John Kerry is about to speak at -- in Washington. So let me come back to you. Hold on for this.

JOHN KERRY, U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE: ...in the United States Senate and I witnessed some great debates and some of the best senators there produced some of the best debates that I've seen - sometimes. And some of the senators, I learned, liked to debate about just about anything.

As my pal John McCain was fond of saying, a fight not joined is a fight not enjoyed. But it was also in the Senate where I personally heard former Ambassador of the United Nations-turned-Senator from New York Daniel Patrick Moynihan end more than a few debates with his own bottom-line reminder: "You are entitled to your own opinion, but you are not entitled to your own facts." And those words are really worth using and focusing on as we head into next week's General Assembly meeting in New York of the United Nations.

We really don't have time today to pretend that anyone can have their own set of facts approaching the issue of chemical weapons in Syria. This fight about Syria's chemical weapons is not a game. It's real. It's important. It's important to the lives of people in Syria, it's important to the region, it's important to the world that this be enforced - this agreement that we came out of Geneva with. And for many weeks, we heard from Russia and from others, "Wait for the UN report. Those are the outside experts." That's a quote. "That is the independent gold standard." That's a quote.

Well, despite the efforts of some to suggest otherwise, thanks to this week's long-awaited UN report, the facts in Syria only grew clearer and the case only grew more compelling. The findings in the Sellstrom report were as categorical as they were convincing. Every single data point - the types of munitions and launchers that were used, their origins, their trajectory, their markings, and the confirmation of sarin - every single bit of it confirms what we already knew and what we told America and the world. It confirms what we have brought to the attention of our Congress, the American people, and the rest of the world.

The UN report confirms unequivocally that chemical weapons, including the nerve agent sarin, were used in Syria. And despite the regime's best efforts to shell the area and destroy the evidence, the UN interviewed more than 50 survivors - patients, victims, health workers, first responders. They documented munitions and subcomponents. They assessed symptoms of survivors, analyzed hair, urine, blood samples. And they analyzed 30 soil and environmental samples.

And what did they learn? They returned with several crucial details that confirmed that the Assad regime is guilty of carrying out that attack, even though that was not the mandate of the UN report. But anybody who reads the facts and puts the dots together, which is easy to do - and they made it easy to do - understands what those facts mean.

We, the United States, have associated one of the munitions identified in the UN report, the 122-millimeter improvised rocket, with previous Assad regime attacks. There's no indication - none - that the opposition is in possession or has launched a CW variant of these rockets such as the kind that was used in the 21st of August attack.

Equally significant, the environmental, chemical, and medical samples that the UN investigators collected provide clear and compelling evidence that the surface-to-surface rockets used in this attack contained the nerve agent sarin. We know the Assad regime possesses sarin and there's not a shred of evidence, however, that the opposition does.

And rocket components identified in the ground photos taken at the alleged chemical weapons impact location areas are associated with the unique type of rocket launcher that we know the Assad regime has. We have observed these exact type of rocket launchers at the Assad regime facilities in Damascus and in the area around the 21st of August.

So there you have it. Sarin was used. Sarin killed. The world can decide whether it was used by the regime, which has used chemical weapons before, the regime which had the rockets and the weapons, or whether the opposition secretly went unnoticed into territory they don't control to fire rockets they don't have containing sarin that they don't possess to kill their own people. And then without even being noticed, they just disassembled it all and packed up and got out of the center of Damascus, controlled by Assad.

Please. This isn't complicated.

When we said we know what is true, we meant it. And now, before I head to New York for the UN General Assembly, we have a definitive UN report strengthening the case and solidifying our resolve. Now the test comes. The Security Council must be prepared to act next week. It is vital for the international community to stand up and speak out in the strongest possible terms about the importance of enforceable action to rid the world of Syria's chemical weapons.

So I would say to the community of nations: Time is short. Let's not spend time debating what we already know. Instead, we have to recognize that the world is watching to see whether we can avert military action and achieve, through peaceful means, even more than what those military strikes promised. The complete removal of Syria's chemical weapons is possible here, through peaceful means. And that will be determined by the resolve of the United Nations to follow through on the agreement that Russia and the United States reached in Geneva, an agreement that clearly said this must be enforceable, it must be done as soon as possible, it must be real.

We need everyone's help in order to see that the Security Council lives up to its founding values and passes a binding resolution that codifies the strongest possible mechanism to achieve the goal and to achieve it rapidly. We need to make the Geneva agreement meaningful and to make it meaningful in order to eliminate Syria's CW program and to do it with transparency and with the accountability, the full accountability that is demanded here. It is important that we accomplish the goal in New York and accomplish it as rapidly as possible.

Thank you all.

(CROSSTALK)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: On a related subject, can we just ask you whether you think the president might meet with President Rouhani to test the seriousness of what Iran has said?

KERRY: The White House needs to take to that...

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Is it a positive sign coming from Rouhani in these interviews -- in this interview?

KERRY: I think Rouhani's comments have been very positive, but everything needs to be put to the test. We'll see where we go. And at the right moment, I think the White House and the State Department will make very clear what...

(CROSSTALK)

ANDERSON: Right. That was John Kerry speaking there -- sorry I was writing down these notes as he was speaking, because that was a -- that was pretty important what we got right at the end there. That was a speech effectively setting up his appearance at the UN's general assembly next week where world leaders will hook up in New York.

And this issue of Syria incredibly important. Ian, the president might have thought they had wrapped up their work with Syria by the third week in September, but as we know nothing is -- nothing is a done deal yet.

He said these chemical weapons are not -- again it is very important, he said that the agreement that came out of Geneva, that being the one that he set up between himself and his Russian counterpart Lavrov, he said be enforced.

The facts in Syria, he said, just grow clearer by the day. The UN report simply confirming what the States had already said, that chemical weapons were used that he went on to say they were used by the Assad regime.

But it's important we got at the end there, he was asked as he was in the shadows of the room as he was leaving, about Iran. Now you'll be well aware that the Iranian president has spoken to one of the domestic U.S. networks today. And he was asked whether the positive comments, or the comments that came out of the Iranian president were positive, were encouraging. He said these have been positive comments from the Iranian president, everything needs to be talked about. And the White House needs to speak to what they've heard.

He was also asked whether there would be a bilateral meeting between the U.S. president and the Iranian president during your NGA next week. He said again the White House needs to speak to that.

But obviously the Americans are encouraged by what they are hearing out of Iran at present.

Now we're going to take a very short break. We're going to get back to our top story after that. And the revelations of Pope Francis. Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ANDERSON: You're watching CNN. This is Connect the World with me, Becky Anderson. 21 minutes past 8:00. Now the first big test of Syria's agreement to destroy the chemical weapons comes on Saturday when it's due to provide a list of its chemical facilities.

President Bashar al-Assad tells U.S. television network Fox that his regime will honor its commitments to the deal.

Well, one of Syria's only allies, Russia wouldn't say whether it would support action against Syria if it doesn't comply.

President Vladimir Putin says Syria has taken -- already taken steps of good faith, including joining the global ban on chemical weapons. But he couldn't say with absolute certainty that Syria will follow through.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BASHAR AL-ASSAD, PRESIDENT OF SYRIA (through translator): These are specific steps which Syria has already made, but whether it carries out its acts to the end, I cannot say 100 percent. But what I can say that what we have seen up until now in recent time, in the last few days, is I'm convinced that it is possible it be done.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ANDERSON: Egyptian authorities intensify their crackdown on Islamists after raiding a village near the pyramids in Giza. Security forces fought running battles with gunmen as they rounded up dozens of suspected militants. The deputy's security chief was killed in the clashes. Authorities say they were going off of terrorists involved in an attack last month that left 11 police officers dead.

Well, a court in Cairo has postponed a review of charges against former interim Vice President Mohamed ElBaradei. According to state news agency, the hearing will now take place on October 19. ElBaradei is accused of portrayal of trust over his decision to resign from the army backed government after its deadly crackdown on Muslim Brotherhood supporters. ElBaradei left Egypt last month.

Well, a pope today has set out his vision for more women and gay people in the Catholic Church. Today's comments don't break with Catholic Doctrine, but do reveal the pope's vision for the future of the Church.

Will this -- will this be one that is markedly different in approach to what has gone before?

Well, for some analysis I'm joined by Father Thomas Rosica, a spokesperson for the Vatican, live in our Rome bureau.

I want to just read you what the pope said today on homosexuality. And we're going to bring that up no the screen for you now. "Religion has the right to express its opinion in the service of the people, but God in creation has set us free." He also said today it is not possible to interfere spiritually in the life of a person."

He doesn't offer any concrete changes of policy, but how do you interpret what you have heard on the gay issue?

ROSICA: What we see happening over the past six months since Pope Francis's election is a change, perhaps, in the tenor, the tone of speaking about human beings, of speaking about the church, speaking about God. And I think one of the reasons why Pope Francis has been able to touch so many, many people is he's not fudging on church doctrine, but he is saying that church doctrine, church teaching exists to free people, not to enchain them.

ANDERSON: But is it right or wrong, father. Father Thomas, you know the answer that a lot of people want, is he going to change church doctrine? Are we going to see a change in attitude by the church towards homosexuals or gay and lesbians.

ROSICA: I may know the answer that people want, but I'm not here to say what people want, I'm here to talk about what the pope said. And if we listen very -- if we listen very carefully to what he said, we don't reduce people to orientation, to sex, to simply being you're this or you're that. The pope is saying we look upon people with love. We respect their dignity. And that most people who bear burdens, whether it having had an abortion, suffered through a divorce, a broken relationship, homosexuality, people are often hurting so deep that they stay away. And the pope is saying you have a place in the church. You have a special place in God's eyes. You are not far from the mercy of God.

ANDERSON: All right. I understand what you're saying. With respect, sir, I understand what you're saying, yes.

ROSICA: ...touch people so deeply.

ANDERSON: I get it. All right.

The church on women, he said, cannot be herself without the women and her role. The woman is essential for the church. He also said, and I wonder if you can interpret this for me, he said he was wary of female machismo. What do you mean by that?

ROSICA: That's right.

Well, first of all, he used another expression that you didn't quote. He spoke about the feminine genius, which was a very beautiful expression introduced into our vocabulary by blessed John Paul II, by Pope John Paul. In John Paul's letter about women (inaudible) as well as a letter -- a pastoral letter written to women.

What the pope is saying is, how can we possibly function as a church, make important decisions, carry forward this great mission of the church without involving women in very significant ways. We don't just involve women and give them male roles, or say you fulfill this. But we respect a woman who is different than a man, who brings to the table -- who brings life to the church very important gifts.

ANDERSON: I understand what you're saying again what he didn't say was we'll be looking for women priests going forward, please apply. Did he? Nor will he?

ROSICA: If you think for one minute, if you think for one moment that the priesthood is the top of the line and only somebody who is dressed like this or works in the building behind me is the most important person in the church, I think you're wrong.

What we're called to, men and women, whether we have a collar or not is holiness. And in this living out of holiness and experiencing God's mercy, it's for all of us. In fact, some of the most powerful people in my life have not been priests, but they've been women, and particularly coming from the United States where I was born it was the effect of women religious in my life, nuns, sisters. They may be a dying breed, but they're very significant people who have transformed culture, for example, in the United States through education, through hospitals, through work with the poor.

So I think we have to separate ordination as some kind of a power trip. Ordination, I consider this, as ultimate service. It's laying down my life...

ANDERSON: Father Thomas, I think you'll also understand that many, many women around the world -- hang on, my love - many, many women around the world have been looking for ordination. So to a certain extent you would be dismissing them if you just moved on. But I get what you are saying at this point.

And I would like to say it doesn't surprise me that women have had a great influence on your life. So we're going to have to leave it.

ROSICA: I would be nothing without the important role of women with whom I've had the privilege of collaborating, of working as colleagues, as equals and even as superiors, as bosses.

But it's not about that, because I think the language of ordination so often has been linked to power and authority. The language of ordination is about service...

ANDERSON: All right. OK, we're going to have to leave it there, sir. I'm going to have to take a break.

ROSICA: At this moment in history, ordination is not...

ANDERSON: All right.

I'm so sorry. We are going to have to take a break, but because we've had this breaking news with John Kerry on Syria this evening I could talk for hours to you. And I'm sure our viewers would want that. But you know what, we thank you very much indeed for joining us.

The latest world news headlines are just ahead. Plus, she has been crowned the most beautiful woman in America. Now the racist backlash that's followed has inspired her to take action. We'll speak to Miss America Nina Davuluri. That up next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ANDERSON: This CONNECT THE WORLD, I'm Becky Anderson at half past 8:00 out of London, these are your headlines.

Pope Francis describes himself as a, quote, "sinner" in an interview with a Jesuit magazine. The Vatican leader also said women must play a key role in church decisions and that the church has no right to interfere spiritually in the lives of homosexuals.

US secretary of state John Kerry says the UN Security Council must pass a binding resolution demanding that Syria follow through on its commitment to destroy its chemical weapons. Kerry spoke moments ago saying a new UN report makes the case against the al-Assad regime even stronger. He says there is no indication that Syrian rebels possess chemical weapons and could have launched an attack.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JOHN KERRY, US SECRETARY OF STATE: We really don't have time today to pretend that anyone can have their own set of facts approaching the issue of chemical weapons in Syria. This fight about Syria's chemical weapons is not a game.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ANDERSON: A White House spokesman says the US is willing to have bilateral negotiations with Iran if it's serious about complying with international demands over its nuclear program. Iranian president Hassan Rouhani told NBC News his country has no intention of developing nuclear weapons ever.

A 5.3 magnitude earthquake has struck the Japanese prefecture where the crippled Fukushima nuclear power plant is located. There's been no damage, according to Japanese media reports. No tsunami warning, either, has been issued.

She's hailed as the ideal American woman: beautiful, intelligent, talented, and charitable. Those are the qualities judges in the Miss America pageant look for in their queen, and which they found earlier this week in Nina Davuluri. Not so charitable, the reaction to the crowning of the native New Yorker, who also happens to be of Indian descent.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CHRIS HARRISON, HOST, MISS AMERICA PAGEANT: Miss America is -- Miss New York!

(CROWD CHEERS)

ANDERSON (voice-over): Crowned Miss America 2014, and then the judging really began.

STEPHEN COLBERT, HOST, "THE COLBERT REPORT": The first time a woman of Indian descent has won the crown, and I for one could not be happier for her. And Twitter, as usual, could not be happy.

ANDERSON: Within minutes, social media erupted with racist remarks. "Great. Miss America is a terrorist. This is just wonderful," read one tweet. "Miss America?" another questioned. "You mean Miss 7-11?"

American late night television shows doing their best to make light of the backlash.

CONAN O'BRIEN, HOST, "CONAN": I think her parents are from India, yes.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yay!

O'BRIEN: Yes! Yes! You'll love this. The judge asked her, "Why do you want to be Miss America, what will you do with the prize, and how do I get my laptop to reboot?"

(LAUGHTER)

COLBERT: And I for one condemn this Twitter backlash as pure xenophobic reactionary hate speech, which would be completely fine if she were an Arab, but she's not.

(LAUGHTER)

ANDERSON: The 24-year-old aspiring medical student is the daughter of Hindu parents who moved to the US from India before she was born in Syracuse, New York. Davuluri considers herself American, but has also embraced her Indian roots, as demonstrated in the pageant on Sunday when she performed a Bollywood dance in the talent section.

Surprisingly to some, the newly-crowned Miss America has also spared debate in India, where some commentators have described her as "too dark to win a Miss India pageant."

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Let's not be hypocritical. There is as much racism in our country as there is, perhaps, in America. We are as squeamish about complexion as, perhaps, the rest of the world is. If you look at your classified matrimonial columns, they're replete with "fair complexion."

ANDERSON: So, too, Indian commercials. Skin whitening products are regularly endorsed by celebrities, but not former Miss India, Nicole Faria, who says she's proud of her darker skin.

NICOLE FARIA, MISS INDIA 2010: It's a wrong perception. Just -- I think it's just a way of selling their product, saying that you'd look prettier if you were fairer. But then, color is skin deep and beauty has nothing to do with it. Nina's win has put India back on the map, so two cheers for Nina, and I'm really, really proud of her.

(CROWD CHEERS)

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ANDERSON: Let's see how Nina herself is dealing with all of this. She joins me now, live from New York. Hasn't been to bed, I don't think, much since the -- since the awards ceremony, so congratulations and well done and thank you for joining us. Were you surprised by what was a pretty vitriolic response by many people online to your victory? How does that feel?

NINA DAVULURI, MISS AMERICA 2014: Well, I wasn't surprised. It was something I actually expected because I had experienced it as Miss New York on a smaller scale, and I knew that should I win Miss America, I was going to have a similar response, but on a much larger scale.

So, that being said, for every negative comment, tweet, or post that I received, I had dozens of positive encouragements, thoughts, and support from Americans across the country, not only the Indian community, but really the world, for that matter --

ANDERSON: Yes.

DAVULURI: So, it's been really amazing.

ANDERSON: All right, good. When you have -- and rightly so. We've got a lot on trolling here at CNN, and it's pretty grim when you get any kind of abuse online, and the sort of abuse that I've seen that you've got online over the past 72 hours is pretty disgusting stuff, so good for you for dealing with it the way that you are.

How about this issue -- and I brought it up in the report that we used to come to you -- about you being potentially too dark-skinned to ever win a Miss America.

You're not the conventional -- your skin isn't the conventional standard of Indian beauty, and we heard that being discussed on TV shows across India over the past couple of days, and they were talking about the racism that you've received in the States. How do you view that? Is that something that India needs to get over?

DAVULURI: Absolutely. Well, and it's also the idea of wanting what we don't have, because everyone wants what they don't have. And so, when I grew -- obviously, I grew up in America, and everyone would say, oh, your skin is so beautiful, you're so tan, and here, the general trend is to tan. We spend so much money on tanning products.

And in India, it's the opposite. We already have such great, wonderful, tan skin, and it's trying to make that lighter. So, I've seen both sides of it, and people just really need to accept who they are and embrace it.

ANDERSON: Sure. Beauty pageant winners and Bollywood actresses almost always fair-skinned, aren't they? Skin whitening products make up something like a $400 million industry in India. How do you feel about that, and what do you think should be done about it?

DAVULURI: Well, I really just wish that we could all just embrace our differences and our ethnicities and our backgrounds and not feel the need to change who we are as people. And that's something that I went into the Miss America competition doing. I knew that if I was going to win Miss America on my terms, it had to be in my way. And I would just encourage everyone to be themselves.

ANDERSON: Nina, many people would argue that these pageants are a relic of the past, of a bygone era, that it's pretty sexist stuff to see women strutting around in swimsuits and dancing for a tiara, as it were. Do you buy that? If you weren't Miss America, be honest?

DAVULURI: Well, I understand that obviously we have -- many people only see the one night of the live telecast, and with that, we have a swimsuit in competition, and that's just reality. Is a swimsuit required for the job of Miss America? No, but obviously we are on television, and we need viewers.

That being said, what I love about the Miss America organization is that we're very much scholarship and service-based. So, I won $50,000 in scholarship money to further my education, and I plan on attending medical school.

So, that is has been a wonderful avenue for me to promote my platform as well, celebrating diversity through cultural competency, which is so timely --

ANDERSON: Sure.

DAVULURI: -- and relevant right now, as well as continue my education.

ANDERSON: The French have banned these mini Miss pageants, as it were. Would you -- do you support that sort of ban, and would you put your own kids, little ones, into a pageant like the one that you've just won?

DAVULURI: Well, I started competing when I was 16, and I started in the Miss America's Outstanding Teen program, which is meant to be a feeder into the Miss America system. And through that, I gained $25,000 in scholarship money, and I was able to graduate debt-free from the University of Michigan with that scholarship money.

ANDERSON: All right.

DAVULURI: And so, I definitely think that you have to have a maturity level to be able to handle the job, because the job of Miss America is you're a spokesperson. You have to well-rounded and --

(CROSSTALK)

ANDERSON: So, what is it, actually?

DAVULURI: -- you have to be able to listen to what your service cause --

ANDERSON: Let me ask -- yes. Let our international viewers know what the job actually is, because I'm interested as well.

DAVULURI: Yes. Yes, well, it is a full-time job. I'm traveling across the entire country. I'm in no place for more than 48 hours, I've been told, and I'm an ambassador of the Children's Miracle Network hospitals, so I'll be visiting the children across the country.

I'm also promoting STEM education and working with the Department of Education, specifically women, in science, technology, engineering, and math, as well as a new partnership with Joshua Bell and Music Through Education.

ANDERSON: Good. All right.

DAVULURI: Another that sets the Miss America organization apart is that we have the talent competition, so really cultivating the fine arts --

ANDERSON: All right, good stuff --

DAVULURI: -- in younger children.

ANDERSON: -- that sounds like a very, very, very busy agenda over the next year. This story had garnered a lot of attention from our viewers. Let me, Nina, just get you some of the responses from our Facebook and Twitter pages.

Maria said, "Congratulations to Miss America. She represents the diversity that is the US population." Keira from --

(AUDIO GAP - EMERGENCY ALERT SYSTEM TEST)

ANDERSON: -- from Morocco has said whether she'll take advantage of her title to represent the American woman. Will you?

DAVULURI: Absolutely, that's the job of Miss America, and that's what I'm going to do this year.

ANDERSON: Good on you, Nina. Thank you very much, indeed, for joining us. Do let us, viewers, let us know what your thoughts are on all of this. You can get in touch at facebook.com/CNNconnect, have your say. You can tweet me @BeckyCNN, your thought please, @BeckyCNN.

You're watching CNN live from London, this is CONNECT THE WORLD. Coming up, the 2022 World Cup in Qatar in the winter? Find out why a summer World Cup may be too hot to handle.

And do they cause too many civilian casualties? We're going to discuss the controversial topic of drone strikes. Those stories coming up, stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ANDERSON: NATO has launched an investigation into a drone strike in Afghanistan. This attack took place just under two weeks ago in the eastern province of Kunar. NATO personnel said 10 enemy forces have been killed in the strike and there were no reports of civilian casualties. But a senior Afghan official claims eight women and children were killed.

Well, the use of drone and civilian casualties has long been a source of tension between the Afghan president and his international allies, and it's not just an isolated problem. From Yemen to Washington, drone strikes have become what is a hotly debated issue.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

CAROL COSTELLO, CNN ANCHOR: A drone strike has killed the number two leader of the Pakistan Taliban.

MOHAMMED JAMJOOM, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: This is the third day in a row in Yemen that there have been drone strikes. In the last two weeks alone, there have been at least seven.

CROWD (chanting): Stop! Stop! Drone attacks! Stop! Stop! Drone attacks!

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We only target al Qaeda and its associated forces. And even then, the use of drones is heavily constrained.

SHAHZAD AKBAR, PAKISTAN LAWYER: Drones are creating not just one generation, but generations of jihadists, because if you kill a father, his son will come, and then if you kill the son, his grandson will come, and this is what is happening.

ANDERSON (voice-over): Every since the US says it conducted its first drone strike on Pakistan soil in 2004, the technology has been hotly debated, not least over the risk of civilian casualties.

There are no official figures, but the Bureau of Investigative Journalism, an independent organization, estimates that 363 CIA drone strikes have killed upwards of 2,634 people in Pakistan, including at least 473 civilians.

During a counter-terrorism policy speech in May, President Barack Obama did acknowledge the loss of innocent lives.

OBAMA: There's a wide gap between US assessments of such casualties and non-governmental reports. Nevertheless, it is a hard fact that US strikes have resulted in civilian casualties. A risk that exists in every war. For me and those in my chain of command, those deaths will haunt us as long as we live.

ANDERSON: According to a US Defense Department study, despite working thousands of miles from the front line, drone pilots are no better off in terms of mental health problems than traditional pilots fighting in war zones.

It's a consequence of modern warfare explored in the new short film "Drone Strike." Director Chris Richmond says he wanted to show the human side of this controversial story.

CHRIS RICHMOND, DIRECTOR, "DRONE STRIKE": They exist within -- where they're able to maintain the sort of normality of 9:00 to 5:00 shift working pattern where they can drop their kids off at school, then go to work, go into the theater of war remotely, and then come home again and essentially, they are still handling the act of killing.

ANDERSON: And his work has certainly struck a chord, winning best short film at the recent Rhode Island International Film Festival, a prize which puts "Drone Strike" in contention for an Oscar.

RICHMOND: It's just remembering that there's -- it's a very human story. There's -- from both sides of the drone pilots themselves and the consequences to the populations living underneath where the drones operate.

And because they spend up to 16 hours in the sky, the populations that live below them are increasingly a sense of anxiety. They're constantly a reminder that they're up there, and everyone who's living beneath them knows that at any time, they could be striking on a target that you may well be next to.

ANDERSON: As the US withdraws troops from Afghanistan next year, the number of drone strikes is expected to drop in the region, but many critics argue the damage has already been done.

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ANDERSON: Coming up after this short break on CONNECT THE WORLD, FIFA's vice president tells us why in 2022 we might have our first winter World Cup.

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ANDERSON: Ten to 9:00 in London. Now, today, Europe has given its backing to move the 2022 Qatar World Cup to winter over concerns that the summer heat may be too hot to handle. Well, UEFA has unanimously agreed that the tournament should not be played in June or July, but a final date has yet to be determined.

Now, that decision ultimately lies with football's governing body FIFA. They are expected to discuss that date change at their meeting at the beginning of October next month. So, when will the 2022 World Cup be held? Well, I spoke with FIFA vice president Jim Boyce earlier to try and find out for you. This is what he says.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JIM BOYCE, VICE PRESIDENT, FIFA (via telephone): I think it's unfair to ask me that question, because what has to happen now is that the people who are involved, including the people from Qatar, they sit down and they work out a situation that's going to cause a minimum disruption that possibly can be had to football, not only in Europe, but throughout the world --

ANDERSON: All right --

BOYCE: -- and I think it's time for them now to sit down and work out dates that are going to be hopefully suitable in the best interest of everybody that the World Cup is played in proper conditions.

ANDEROSN: Well, what would your preference be?

BOYCE: I don't want to speculate on the months, because that would be wrong.

ANDERSON: But come on -- yes -- come on, what would your preference be?

BOYCE: My own personal preference would be probably for the end of January and February. And I'll tell you why I'm saying that. A lot of leagues actually do close down in the winter, a lot of leagues, for example, in the likes of countries like Scandinavia, the Baltic countries. They can't play during this period because of weather conditions.

So, I think that it has to be -- they have to sit down and they have to look at the minimum disruption that's going to be possible. So, as I say to you, I think it -- people have to sit down, they have to come up with the best solution, but that's only a personal preference, as I say --

ANDERSON: Right.

BOYCE: -- and I hope it's down to the people involved for them to sit down and work out the best dates, Becky.

ANDERSON: Certainly, surely, it's not going to be the EPL, the English Premier League's, decision, because they do play over the winter. It will be disruptive. Are you telling me today that the EPL and the English FA are onboard at this point?

BOYCE: Well, let me put it to you this way. It was unanimous -- it was a unanimous vote by all of the countries involved, including the FA from England, and they all agreed that this competition simply could not take place in the heat of Qatar in the summer.

So, you're asking me a question I obviously -- the Premier League have already stated their objections to it taking place, but as I say, this is the interests of football, that's all, really, Becky, that I am interested in, and I genuinely hope that people can sit down and work out a solution.

It's a one-off. There's nine years to plan the World Cup, and surely the common senses can be overcome.

ANDERSON: Now listen, European countries weren't bidding for 2022. Does this move, now, do you think, hurt relations with countries who were bidding for the World Cup, like the US, like South Korea, like Japan, like Australia? They'd have wanted a summer World Cup.

BOYCE: Yes, I can understand --

(CROSSTALK)

ANDERSON: And could have organized one.

BOYCE: -- I can truly understand that there's people here going to be upset, Becky. I was not a member of the FIFA exco at the time when the World Cup was awarded to Qatar. At the moment, the World Cup is in Qatar. They have said that they are quite prepared to host the World Cup at whatever time in the year FIFA want to host it.

So, the Qataris have said if you still want the World Cup at the end of June, beginning of July, they will host it. They will air-condition the stadiums, they will air-condition, they say, training pitches. But they can't air-condition the country.

And I came back from Brussels this year and I stopped off in Dubai at the end of June. The temperature then was 38 degrees, and you virtually couldn't walk about. So, you have to think of the thousands of spectators who will be going to Qatar. You --

ANDERSON: No, I get that.

BOYCE: -- health problems, people in hospitals. So, at the end of the day, common sense has to prevail here, and I'm glad to say that it looks like at long last, common sense is prevailing --

ANDERSON: But I guess, Jim, I --

BOYCE: -- but yes, I do understand -- I understand people's objections.

ANDERSON: With respect, sir, I guess the point that I'm making was was it a mistake, ultimately, to give the World Cup to Qatar when this is a summer tournament. There were other organizations around the world who easily could have put this tournament on in the summer.

And now, there is this huge debate going on about whether the tournament hasn't been sort of ripped apart as a result of FIFA's decision to award it to Qatar. What's your response?

BOYCE: My response to that is quite simple: a decision has been made, the decision was taken by FIFA --

ANDERSON: Was it a good one?

BOYCE: -- that I was not a member of at that time --

ANDERSON: Was it a good one?

BOYCE: -- and yes, you're quite right. Probably all that should have been taken into consideration. But at the end of the day, as I've said to you, my only interest is in the interest of football and trying to make sure that the World Cup's played in proper conditions.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ANDERSON: There you go. Tonight's Parting Shots, just before we go. Have you ever wanted to fly like an eagle? Well, take a look at this footage. This is a view over the spectacular French Alps taken from what appears to be a camera strapped to the back of an eagle.

The video's caused a sensation online since it was uploaded to YouTube on Monday. According to the video's description, the flight took place over the Mer de Glace or the Sea of Ice, Glace, on the slope of Mont Blanc.

So, how was it done? Some are suggesting a small GoPro type camera was attached to the bird. So far, though, the video has yet to be authenticated. Tell us how you think that was done. Perhaps it was a blue screen? Who knows?

I'm Becky Anderson, that was CONNECT THE WORLD, @BeckyCNN is the Twitter handle. Get in touch, thanks for watching.

END