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tv   Around the World  CNN  December 31, 2013 9:00am-10:01am PST

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you? how about the aston martin vanquish? it's a dominating car for a cool $280,000. if futuristic is more to your taste, the volkswagen xl 1, it's a plug-in hybrid, ecofriendly. look at the mcclaren mp 412 c. a little something to ask san to for next year. thanks for watching, everyone. "around the world" starts right "around the world" starts right now. -- captions by vitac -- www.vitac.com welcome to around the world. i'm suzanne malveaux. you can start popping the corks right now. we are bringing in if the new year, ringing in many parts of the world already, bringing you celebrations. take a look at this. these are live pictures. this is from bangkok, thailand. let's listen in. here comes the countdown.
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whoo! happy new year! whoo! who whoo! >> all right. happy new year. this is one of those amazing moments here. the ball drop there. it descends from 64 stories from the top of a luxury hotel. let's listen in. check out the ferris wheel, as well. [ speaking foreign language ]
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[ speaking foreign language ] >> all right. i can't translate that for you but i know they're having a good time celebrating the new year, of course. i want to get some other celebrations in, as well.
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it is already 2014 in hong kong and anna core ren is joining us on the phone, sara sidner is in dubai, a city that is preparing to put on the biggest fireworks ever the world has neen. anna, happy new year. >> happy new year, suzanne. love to talk to you. we just had an incredible fireworks display here about an hour ago when we welcomed in 2014. a spectacular light show that really lit up the city, it the biggest new year's eve party that hong kong has ever staged. some 400,000 people packed the four shores around victoria harbor to witness this pyrotechnique musical around something like eight minutes. it cost about $2 million. i can tell you now that the crowd absolutely lapped it up. and now slowly is starting to disperse and get back on the ferries and head home. others are heading to the pubs as the party certainly continues.
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i can tell you, suzanne, welcoming in 2014, the big event to people here in hong kong and much of china, of course, is chinese new year which kicks off at the end of january. end of this month. and that, of course, is to welcome in the year of the horse. that will be just as big, if not bigger. but yes, 2014 has officially arrived here in hong kong. >> oh, my. i know it continues in the pubs as you said. this is so over the top. this is amazing. did they outdo themselves this year compaired to last? >> i think they tried to out do themselves every single year. certainly fireworks off barges in the harbor, off some of the tallest buildings in hong kong. you know the city. it's a vertical city. it's a spectacular tribute any day of the week, let an own on new year's eve when the fireworks are out of control. but certainly a lot of planning went into this and the crowds
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absolutely loved it. it's starting to get very cold here. the winds have picked up. but we had clear skies which fantastic. a great way to appreciate the spectacular light show the. >> have a would you feel time tonight and going into the morning and celebrating. it looks absolutely amazing. >> thank you. >> fantastic. i want to bring in sarah from dubai. they don't do anything small where you are, sarah. they're going to go for a world record, right? >> you want to talk about dazzling, this place is going to be amazing. already, it looks very pretty because they've started the light show here at the atlantis, it the palm. we are on the palm. that is the island that was manmade to look like a palm. i want to give you a good look at what is going on behind us because just behind there, these fireworks are going to blow up. we're not talking about your average fireworks display. they're going for the guinness book of world records, going for
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400,000 fireworks in just six minutes. and so you can imagine how crazy that's going to look. it's not just going to be here at the atlantis. there are fireworks that are going to go all across the city. we're on the seashore about 100 kilometers. so about 60 miles or so of the coastline is going to light up. they're doing all kinds of amazing things such as making it look like the sun is rising with fireworks. this is a very choreographed, very beautiful and artistic show but it's going to be loud and crazy. you know dubai, whenever they do something, they want to do it big, they want do do it right and beat everybody else and make a spectacle. the last record kuwait holds the last record for the biggest fireworks display with 77,000. so they're going way far beyond that. it cost a pretty penny. i did want to wish you a happy new year. we've got some of the gear here. we've got three hours and then it's going to be playtime. >> and sarah, are i understand
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you spoke to some folks ahead of time, as well? >> reporter: yeah, you know, we're going to have a good time. i think what's going to happen, suzanne, is behind me it's very dark. i'm not going to pan the camera. behind me they're going to do a countdown on the bridge. unlike just having people do the countdown, they're going to light it up on the bridge five, four, three, two, one and everything's going to go nuts. we asked how much this might cost and we got sort of a figure. first it was millions and then it was 10 million plus u.s. dollars to put on this big old show. >> when this not explored but yes becomes a light show, it will be about 700 meter wide. then we will have a 10 kilometer long sunrise firework over dubai. this is huge. >> now, that was the managing
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director of the atlantis. you heard him say it's going to be huge. and it is. and a lot of people are excited. tens of thousands of people expected out here. and the weather, by the way, don't be jealous. i'm sorry to say this, but it's about 70 degrees and perfect. >> i am jealous. sarah, i'm jealous in so many ways. i'd love to go to dubai and see all of this. she said it's beyond huge. clearly it is going to be beyond huge. >> come on. >> we're going to get back to you when all that starts exploding. sara, happy new year. be sure, of course, tonight you've got to tune in, doing this every year, 9:00 eastern, anderson cooper, kathy griffin ringing in the new year live from times square doing it only like they know how to do it, tonight 9:00 eastern. right here on cnn. it's a good thing these folks stuck on a ship off antarctica seems, you know, one way to spend a new year's. but they're ringing in the new year on ice. the bad weather made it
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impossible for the rescue helicopter to actually reach the ship. so the crew has marked the spot on the ice where it can land. now all they can do simply is wait. here's more from matthew chance. >> suzanne, it's the new plan, in fact, it's the only plan say rescue workers that is going to work right now. they've abandoned all attempts at this stage to reach the stranded research vessel by sea. the pack ice is simply too thick around it for the ice breakers to break through. instead, they're going to be staging an airlift using a helicopter from the chinese ice breaker to fly over to the ship, land on the ice next door and airlift the passengers and some of the crew to safety. but they can only do that when weather conditions allow. this morning, new video, dozens of passengers it walking arm in arm doing what they can to speed their rescue. >> we've just learned the aurora can't reach us. so we're preparing the helipad by getting the team to stomp
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down on the snow and iso the chinese helicopter from snow dragon can reach us when the weather improves. >> the weather conditions are not expected to get better till at least one more day. in the meantime, it the crew has marked the spot in the ice where the chopper can land. once it does, it will transport 12 people at a time to a chinese ice breaker. then a barge will ferry them from the ice breaker to another ship from australia. it the stranded research ship, the academic shah cal ski had set out to study climate change in antarctica and anretrace the steps of douglas mawson who studied life on the continent a century ago but they got stucking in ice. >> really thick. lots of years. lots of years worth of growth. you think we're in trouble here. >> since christmas, three separate ice breaker ships have tried and failed to cut a path
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to the research vessel. once the rescue does happen, a skeleton crew will be left behind, but for most of the 74 people marooned, this is antarctic ordeal may soon be coming to an end. >> we're keeping a close eye on the developing situation. at the moment the winds are still far too high for the helicopter to operate safely. suzanne? >> we wish them the very best. here's more of what we're working on for around the world. first it was stolen credit, debit card information, as well. well, now, there is a problem with the gift cards. that's right. if you have a gift card from target, it might not work. we're going to explain. also up ahead -- >> all of the olympic sites will have physical security, electronic security. everybody will be screened. i think it will be difficult to for someone, for a terrorist to the set off a bomb inside a villager venue. >> but what about the areas around sochi? ahead, we're going to take a look at the increased security
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at the olympic games and why a security director from the atlanta olympics says the terrorists will look at these vulnerable areas instead. plus -- ♪ >> love it. happy new year, countries around the world bringing in the new year. we're going to bring you more sights and sounds from the biggest parties. >> michak this is the quicksilver cash back card from capital one.
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so folks who live in eastern north dakota still don't note whether or not it's safe to go about their daily lives this new year's eve because two trains crashed and burned yesterday. one of them was hauling crude oil. emergency crews are testing the air to see if the thick black smoke that made it dangerous to be outside, what is the condition now? nobody was hurt in this crash, but firefighters had to let the oil fire burn itself out. a lot of people who live in that area actually left their homes when officials issued that evacuation order. well, we want to take a look at this also. some of the destruction from a powerful storm that tore through western australia.
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cyclone ris teen uprooted trees, knocked out the power for thousands of folks. some of the wind gusts were almost 130 miles per hour. towns covered in debris, still no major reports of major flooding. and first, about 40 million customers had their credit and debit card information stolen, right? now target is dealing with yet another problem. the company says that thousands of its gift cards didn't activate properly. that means if you tried to use one at the store, you might actually show the wrong amount or no amount at all. target says this happened to a small percentage of the cards, and the stores will honor them. apparently it has nothing to do with what happened before which was the data breach earlier this month. still new year's eve here, but already 2014 on the other side of the world, celebrations amazing, are spectacular. want you to take a look at this. these are some major cities around the world ringing in the new year.
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>> three, two, one. >> two, one. >> happy new year! ♪ ♪ ♪ i was shaking at the knees ♪
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♪ the crowd is gone, used to be so easy you and me ♪ ♪ i can the one to make you feel that way ♪ ♪ i could be the one to set you free ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ applause, applause, applause
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♪ ♪ ♪
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♪ light our way with our lantern ♪ ♪ dig, dig, dig, dig. ♪ ♪
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[ speaking foreign language ] whoa! whoa! happy new year! ♪
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smoets may auld acquaintance be forgot and never brought to mind should auld aquaintance be forgot and auld lang syne ♪ ♪ [ singing in foreign language ] ♪
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wow. that's spectacular. amazing festivities around the world. they are starting to party on this new year's eve. there are some folks however, in major russian cities not feeling as festive. this is just days after terrorists struck a trolley bus in a train station. russian social media are full of warnings now not to use public transportation. we're going to have a report on the investigation into those terror attacks straight ahead. just by talking to a helmet. it grabbed the patient's record before we even picked him up. it found out the doctor we needed was at st. anne's. wiggle your toes. [ driver ] and it got his okay on treatment from miles away. it even pulled strings with the stoplights. my ambulance talks with smoke alarms and pilots and stadiums. but, of course, it's a good listener too. [ female announcer ] today cisco is connecting the internet of everything. so everything works like never before.
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to help secure retirements and protect financial futures. to help communities recover and rebuild. for companies going from garage to global. on the ground, in the air, even into space. we repaid every dollar america lent us. and gave america back a profit. we're here to keep our promises. to help you realize a better tomorrow. from the families of aig, happy holidays.
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say 34 people were killed in this week's terrorist attacks. 16 died when a suicide bomber detonated on a trolley bus in vo go grad yesterday. 18 others were killed by a suicide bomber at the city's main train station the day before. both attacks are believed to have been the work of separatists who have vowed to target the winter olympic games just weeks away. diana mag nail is in moscow with the latest on the investigation. >> suzanne, there's a huge
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security sweep going on right now in volgograd. around 5,000 security officials examining buildings, checking people's documents. this as investigators continue to piece together what happened. russian authorities have discovered a link between the two the deadly suicide bombings in volgograd. monday morning's attack on a crowded trolley killed 16. and on sunday, a massive explosion rocked the city's railway station. this chilling stale lance video captures the incident at a security checkpoint when the a suicide bomber detonated 22 pounds of tnt killing 18. authorities sou say both bombs contain similar shrapnel a sign they originated from the same region. the attacks highlight the terrorist threat that russia faces as it hosts the winter olympic games next month in sochi just 400 miles south of the devastation. >> all of the olympic sites will have physical security,
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electronic security. everybody will be screened. i think it will be difficult to for someone, for a terrorist to set off a bomb inside of a village or venue. >> russia's president putin is personally involved in security plans and promising maximum security in sochi. but russian authorities say they will not change security measures they already have in place. confident they're well prepared. u.s. authorities have offered full support to the russian government in ramping up security measures. in a statement, the united states olympic committee says in part, we're always concerned with the safety of our delegation and the sochi games are no different in that regard. an effort by the committee to the avoid a repeat occurrence of the bombing that killed two at the 1996 olympic games in atlanta. >> what concerns meese is when you harden targets, you often force the terrorists to select softer targets. so that makes everything else in sochi and the surrounding area
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vulnerable. >> targets like transportation hubs where tourists and athletes will travel to and from the games. and suzanne, president putin's claim that he can keep the olympics secure really depends also on whether he can control the situation in the north caucasus. he claims that he can. but it would seem as though terrorists are intent on proving that he cannot. suzanne. >> thank you, diana. 2013 has seen many significant international stories from the pope's electioning to nelson mandela's death. we're going to take a look at the top ten stories of the year up next.
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welcome back. from the election of pope francis to the chemical weapons attack in syria, 2013 saw a lot of important and interesting international stories. my coanchor michael holmes takes a look at the top ten stories of the year. >> number ten. >> we're getting word of a deadly shooting involving is international sports icon oscar pistorius and his model girlfriend. >> the plo olympian admits to
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the shooting reeva an steenkamp on valentine's day but he says it was all an accident. >> oscar pistorius appearing before the magistrate. he was clearly upset, at times sobbing, crying >> pistorious nicknamed blade runner for the prosthetic legs he uses for sprinting was charged with premeditated murder. he's fighting that charge saying he mistook steenkamp for an intruder. number nine, the royal announcement heard around the world. >> the duchess of cambridge was safely delivered of a son at 4:24 p.m. local time. >> god save the queen. >> the fountains of trafalgar square illuminated in blue light. >> the new royal heir in the united kingdom. >> baby george was born in july to prince william and his wife kate. number eight. >> tens it of thousands of people have poured out onto the streets in what is another demonstration against the government. >> about a year after the arab
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spring ushered in egypt's first democratically elected president, mohamed morsi is then ousted in a military coup. many egyptians frustrated by what they saw as the slow pace of change and the rise of islamic fundamentalism. number seven is, after decades of distrust and a diplomatic gridlock, there's a thaw with iran. >> the phone call that's making history. president obama called iran's new president hassan rouhani. >> and in november, a break-through in geneva. >> a deal has been reached, a deal involving iran and six world powers. >> the preliminary deal limits iran's ability to the work towards a nuclear weapon and loosens some international sanctions. critics say it doesn't go far enough. >> number six. >> all around us, you hear the sounds of windows breaking, the sounds of large objects falling and crashing to the floor. >> typhoon haiyan wipes out
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entire towns in the philippines. one of the strongest storms to hit any country ever. >> the smells in tacloban are overwhelming, the smell of death, the smell of decay. >> more than 5,000 people killed. number five, terror at a mall in kenya. gunmen opened fire, killing dozens and taking many hostages. >> everyone here in nairobi is on a razor's edge. i'm standing just a short distance away from the westgate mall that is under siege in its third day. >> surveillance cameras capture this chilling video of gunmen shooting their way through a supermarket in the mall and al qaeda affiliate al shabaab in somalia claims responsibility. number four, grief and gratitude as the world says good-bye nelson mandela. >> he's now at peace. >> reporter: the former south african president and nobel peace prize laureate died at the
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age of 95. >> behind me you can see a crowd. they've been dancing and singing almost nonstop since the news came. >> his life celebrated for ending apartheid and creating a democratic and inclusive south africa. for ten days, south africans and dignitaries from around the world honored the man who taught the world about compassion, patience, reconciliation, and freedom. >> now, we see nelson mandela making that final journey. >> reporter: number three -- >> a person who says he leaked top secret information about a u.s. government surveillance program has emerged from the shadows and identified himself. >> the u.s. manhunt for edward snowden turns into an international game of cat and mouse. >> the man who's been spilling u.s. intelligence secrets is on the move. but where is his final destinationing? >> first, hong kong lets him go, then russia refuses to extradite him. snowden's leaks were a major embarrassment for the nsa,
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revealing the extent the agency was spying on americans. as well as southwest international leaders and citizens. number two -- >> the pope resigns. the leader of the catholic church stepping down at the end of the month. >> pope benedict becomes the first head of the catholic church to resign in 600 years. the 86-year-old said it was because of poor health. >> the bell is ringing here in rome. the big ring. that means one thing, john allen. what does it mean? it means we have a pope. >> the curtains are open. the cross bearer is coming out. and there he is. >> dubbed the people's pope, francis has laid out a vision of a more inclusive catholic church, focusing on compassion for the poor and afflicted. number one. the civil war in syria. more than two years of fighting, some 100,000 have been killed, more than 2 million are
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refugees. in august, the chemical weapons attack kills hundreds. >> it's absolutely horrifying. we've seen a video showing the bodies of lifeless children. >> reporter: syria denied responsibility. >> u.s. is making a case for military intervention in syria. >> reporter: the u.s. on the brink of military action. but a last-minute deal brokered by russia averted an international crisis. the agreement dismantles syria's chemical arsenal but left bashar al assad in power. a civil war raging, and a civilian population still suffering. >> it's been quite a year. as you just heard, as well, more than 2 million syrians are now refugees living in neighboring countries. and many of them are children. cnn's impact the world is trying to help them. here's unicef ambassador lucy
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liu. >> hi, i'm lucy liu and we can make an impact for syrian children. there's civil war going on that is creating absolute pandemonium and people are fleeing into lebanon, into jordan, into iraq. these children are suffering. they have lies, scabies and they've lost family. that he can't go to school, they're not getting the medical attention or nutrition they need. there's going to be a lost generation of children if this continues. children deserve to have a childhood. what happens on the other side of the world isn't just their business. it's our business because we share the same water. we share the same environment. if we understand that, we are actually one community. then it makes the world so much smaller and much more tangible for people to understand. unicef is currently desperate for donations to syria. it's our duty as human beings to give back. join the movement. impact your world.
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cnn.com/impact. oh! checking your fantasy league? nah, just my 401(k) statement. hm. nice. where'd you find the money for that? i just been saving a little every month. [laughs] i can't seem to save anything.
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well, what about all this? what about the money you're spending? [laughs] what money? it's gone before i can get my hands on it. i got a pizza for a todd? hey, can somebody spot me? announcer: when it comes to financial stability, don't get left behind. it's $5.47. announcer: get tools and tips for saving at feedthepig.org. it's hard to describe, because you have a numbness, but yet you have the pain like thousands of needles sticking in your foot.
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it was progressively getting worse, and at that point i knew i had to do something. once i started taking the lyrica the pain started subsiding. [ male announcer ] it's known that diabetes damages nerves. lyrica is fda approved to treat diabetic nerve pain. lyrica is not for everyone. it may cause serious allergic reactions or suicidal thoughts or actions. tell your doctor right away if you have these, new or worsening depression, or unusual changes in mood or behavior. or swelling, trouble breathing, rash, hives, blisters, changes in eyesight including blurry vision, muscle pain with fever, tired feeling, or skin sores from diabetes. common side effects are dizziness, sleepiness, weight gain and swelling of hands, legs and feet. don't drink alcohol while taking lyrica. don't drive or use machinery until you know how lyrica affects you. those who have had a drug or alcohol problem may be more likely to misuse lyrica. ask your doctor about lyrica today. it's specific treatment for diabetic nerve pain.
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this just in. department of health and human services announcing now that more than 2 million people are enrolled in both the federal and state marketplaces, that, of course, the health care site that the government is administering. both state as well as federal marketplaces. this is good news for many who are trying to get health insurance and, of course, the administration trying to catch up after a pretty rough and rocky start with the website. but now we are told over the 2 million mark. we're going to have more information. the secretary of hhs, kathleen sebelius will have more details as she reports and briefs reporters later this afternoon. we're also going to have more at the top of the hour with our white house correspondent jim accost ta. he is the undisputed biggest name in the history of formula one racing. today michael shumacher remains in critical condition in a coma. it was just two days ago that he
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needed emergency brain surgery after a horrible ski accident in the french alps. jim boulden is in grenoble, france at the hospital where family and friends are gathered. what is his state? is he getting better? >> yes, suzanne, the doctors did confirm at a press conference a few hours agoing that michael shumacher had a second operation overnight. the reason they said the swelling in his brain went down and left a little bit of the pressure off his brain as it was swelling inside his skull. they removed the bruise, if you will. they're saying it's still very touch and go, hour by hour. they're not using the word optimistic at any stretch of the imagination. they are saying things are looking a little bit better overnight but it is still hour by hour, suzanne. >> jim, our prayers are with him and his family. let us know if you have more details. i want to go to washington. jim accost ta is to.
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ing a developing story. we're hearing that more than 200 folks having managed to enroll in both the federal and state marketplaces for health care. is this a milestone, 2 million, i misspoke. 2 million. is this a milestone? >> i think it is, suzanne. the obama administration, health and human services all had problems in the initial couple of months in terms of enrolling people online in the federal marketplace on healthcare.gov. the state-based health exchanges were doing a little bit better exceeding what the federal government was doing. now it seems because of those repairs made to healthcare.gov by the end of november, december has been a big enrollment period for this program. and so now the department of health and human services is now confirming that 2 million americans, more than 2 million americans have signed up for insurance through obamacare either through healthcare.gov or the state-based marketplaces. another interesting thing to
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point out, suzanne, is that health and human services secretary kathleen sebelius will be holding a conference call with reporters 90 minutes from now to talk about some of this. they also put out a blog today that sort of walks americans it new enrollees in obamacare what they need to do for january 1st, reminding consumers to have insurance cards with them, their paperwork ready and also acknowledging there might be some people out there who thought they signed up for obamacare but because of the problems with the system, we've talked about this, suzanne, the back end of the system where people think they've enrolled for insurance through obamacare but perhaps that paperwork did not get to the insurance company in one piece, that there are some tips for those consumers, as well and acknowledgement that some of the consumers may have some problems. it's something we're going to be watching as we head into the new year. >> we'll get back to you. i know there will be a lot of information coming out in the conference call you'll be on later this afternoon. jim, thanks. appreciate it. we're talking about marijuana
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here, buying pot, smoking pot becomes legal just a few hours away in one u.s. state. it happened with a lot of fanfare but quietly, marijuana also became legal in one country in south america. we're going to tell you where and why a growing number of ex-presidents want to actually see pot legal in their countries, too. that's next. (typing) ♪ (typing) ♪ we are now in a position to look at the other worlds of our solar system. ♪ our values call upon us to care about the lives of people we will never meet. ♪ we realize the importance of light when we see darkness.
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♪ peace, democracy and freedom for all. ♪ age is sinking in for david beckham. ♪ for my mother. ♪ when you finally get to that point of acceptance there's nothing more beautiful. ♪ say my name. ♪ ♪
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to help secure retirements and protect financial futures. to help communities recover and rebuild. for companies going from garage to global. on the ground, in the air, even into space. we repaid every dollar america lent us. and gave america back a profit. we're here to keep our promises. to help you realize a better tomorrow. from the families of aig, happy holidays.
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\s tomorrow, landmark day for the pro pot movement. you can call it that. that is when anyone 21 years or older will be allowed to legally buy up to one ounce of marijuana in the state of colorado. one ounce is about the same that's in 25 to 30 average size cigarettes. it will only be for sale in especially licenses shops. colorado will be the first place in the entire world where it will be government regulated from the time it's planted until in the hands of the consumer. seed to sale. colorado's residents made it happen. they voted to legalize pot last november. washington state not far behind. marijuana will become legal there later in the year. people won't be able to smoke pot in public though, only on private property. and one place marijuana will not be allowed is in any of colorado's international airports. and officials at the denver international airport say that they will search for pot but if
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they find it, they will take it. marijuana is also legal for the first time in latin america. in one country, uruguay. the president pushed it and the parliament approved it. and now it is a done deal. so the people there can grow a limited number of plants, keep a limited amount of marijuana for their personal use. it is all regulated and overseen by the government. so we want to the bring in rafael romo, senior latin affairs editor to talk about how did this happen? we've been following this throughout the year. it's finally there. >> today is the if first day anywhere in the world in uruguay that you can actually legally grow marijuana, and it's completely legal but people don't get any ideas. it's only uruguayan citizens. if anybody's thinking about flying to uruguay to start growing their own, that's not going to be allowed. it's part of a movement that has happened and grown in latin america over the last ten years.
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three latin america presidents have all spoken publicly about the need to legalize marijuana. let's listen to what president have i sent fox told us last year about this issue. >> i'm absolutely convinced public opinion is totally in favor of legalizing separating the violence problem from the health problem and doing that you will take out from criminals all the money that they have today. and i will weaken them so that they will come back to normal. >> now right now the situation is that the federal government in mexico says yes, we can open a debate about it, but we are against legalizing marijuana. similar to what's happening here in the united states but mexico city has already taken steps to legalize marijuana similar to what's happening in uruguay. they're going to try to allow marijuana clubs where as many as
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100 people can legally smoke and grow marijuana plants. they're talking about personal possession of as many as 30 grams. so that's beginning, it's only in the legislative process but it's a good possibility that it may happen. >> what is behind this? essentially trying to take the crime, the profit out of all this? >> the main idea is when it comes to drug trafficking, the drug itself is not as bad as the trafficking part. they want to separate what they see as the health issue, the addiction problems from the illegal underworld of drug trafficking so that they can control both better. >> all right. rafael, thank you. happy new year. >> you too. >> and it is already 2014 in sydney, australia as well as hong kong. tonight a million people will ring ring in the new year in of course, new york's times square. that, of course, where richard quest goss a close-up tour of the crystal ball that's going to drop, up next.
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1 million people expected to freeze tonight. this is in times square. you'd better bundle up to watch the crystal ball drop tonight. some highlights of the evening, supreme court justice season na sotomayor will do the honors of pushing the button.
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richard quest went behind the scenes to check it out and see the ball up close. watch. >> times square, they call it the crossroads of the world. for good reason. where are you from? >> asia. >> we're from france. >> argentina. >> we're from texas. >> i come from ecuador. >> toronto. >> reporter: all these people come midnight eastern standard time will have their eyes trained up looking to the top. for new year's eve. it is a century old tradition that has brought millions of revelers to the crossroads at times square to take part in this annual event. but to glimpse this icon of chronology up close requires a feat of effort. >> this is the way. up to the 22nd floor. we're getting quite close. and then several flights of stairs to get to the roof at 1
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times square. >> oh, my goodness. out of the blue, suddenly, there it is. ♪ it is a stunning object weighing almost 12,000 pounds. up here, we find the people who deal professionally with the timekeeping apparatus and the chief executive of phillips lighting america who is in charge of making sure the light from this ball dazzles not only times square but the world. so what's different about this year's from previous years? >> it really is about the transformation that lighting is undergoing, richard. so what you see is we have taken this ball from the technology of incandescent and halogen to led. we have approximately 32 thousand 256 leds.
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>> how many? >> 32,0002856 leds. >> 32,000. >> for 107 years, this ball has been falling down the flagpole in times square to bring in the new year. >> what keeps it fresh, of course, is innovation and new technology. but frankly at the heart of it, well, if someone suggested that you do this, they'd think you were mad. and yet, it's worked for more than a century. richard quest, cnn, number one, times square. >> love it, looking forward to. north korean's kim jong-un has been testing one of his favorite projects, a fancy new ski resort with a hotel, heliport and cable cars. the state agency says he ordered officials to open it to the public as soon as possible. the resort made headlines a few
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months ago when switzerland refused to let north korea buy ski lifts. kim likes his sports, a huge water park opened in october in the capital. thanks for watching "around the world." happy new year. happy new year. "cnn newsroom" starts right now. -- captions by vitac -- www.vitac.com right now, obamacare is moving closer to its enrollment goal. we'll talk about what some brand new numbers mean for the program and what it means for the president. right now, robots replacing tsa agents. eyeball scans instead of boarding passes. could it be the future of airport security? also right now, your iphone at risk? a new report says the nsa may have accessed almost everything on the device including your voice mail, e-mail and perhaps even your location.

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