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Croatia struggling to cope with migrant crisis, Pope visits Cuba, World's biggest sporting event kicks off

Aired September 18, 2015 - 15:00:00   ET




HALA GORANI, HOST: Tonight on the World Right Now, struggling to cope.


GORANI: This time in Croatia, authorities are overwhelmed by thousands of people pouring over their borders.

Then Cuba is buzzing. Preparations are underway to welcome the Pope. Plus, this --

TRUMP: We have a problem in this country. It's called Muslims. We know our current President is one.

GORANI: Donald Trump's reaction to this question is a must-see. We will have all the backlash.

And later, the enthusiasm of 2.3 million ticket holders is infectious. We're live in the rugby fan zone as one of the world's biggest sporting

events kicks off.


GORANI: Hello everyone, I'm Hala Gorani, we are live at CNN London. Welcome to the program and happy Friday. This is the World Right Now.


GORANI: Tensions are flaring today at the latest flash point in Europe's migrant crisis on the border this time between Croatia and Hungary.

Croatia says it is now overwhelmed by the sheer numbers of desperate people coming into the country.


GORANI: Migrants are being loaded onto packed buses for transport to Hungary, they had hoped to go through Croatia, and then later onto Austria

and then Germany.

That is not happening for many of them. This nation has been particularly unwelcoming to refugees, Hungary. 14,000 migrants poured into Croatia in

recent days before the government closed access roads.

CNN's Ben Wedeman has been tracking the movements of refugees for days now as they look to find alternate routes into Western Europe. He's in

Croatia, near the border with Hungary right now and he joins us now live.


GORANI: Tell us about today and what happened with those desperate refugees trying to make it further into Western Europe but not as able to move as

far as they wanted.

BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Hala we were in the morning on the Serbian/Croatian border where we saw thousands of people

who had crossed over responding to the declaration by Croatia that it would welcome refugees and migrants regardless of their religion or origin into

the country.


WEDEMAN: But what happened is within the space of just 48 hours, more than 15,000 of them flocking into the country really overwhelming the ability of

the Croatian authorities to deal with.

Now late in the afternoon Croatia declared it would be moving those refugees on to Hungary and what we saw is bus after bus picking them up on

that border town and bringing them here, to the Hungarian/Croatian border.

Now what we've seen has been very unusual. We have seen Hungarian policemen escorted these refugees onto buses that bring them into Hungary.

There are about 20 buses just on the other side of the gate.

Now this is a dramatic change of position by Hungary. Now we've heard some rather strong words coming from Hungarian officials. The Foreign Minister

describing the Prime Minister of Croatia's dealing with this crisis as pathetic. They say that within one day the Croatian ability to deal with

the refugees has been a disaster.

So we're not clear why they did it but they opened their border here with Croatia and we've seen bus after bus coming in. People getting off, now the

question is what happens when they get inside Hungry?

Now there were some of those migrants and refugees who were hesitant to board the buses. In fact for a while they refused because these were Iraqis

from Kurdistan, they were worried that they would be mistreated by the Hungarian police because of course they had seen what had happened on the

Serbian/Hungarian border were dozens were injured in clashes with the Hungarian police.

But it's gotten to the point Hala, you speak to these people they are really exhausted. They've been sleeping in the rough for days, many have

spent the little money they had. Many are showing signs of illness. For instance, today was a scorchingly hot day, people were expiring from the

heat, I think they've gotten to the point where they're willing to go wherever they're taken just with the possibility of moving on to safer


They don't know whether they're going to end up in Austria or where, but at this point they have so few other options they've decided to get on those

buses over there and go to Hungary. Hala.



GORANI: All right, headed for the unknown. Thanks very much Ben Wedeman is live covering this crisis, as one border crossing after another shuts in

the face of those migrants and refugees.

Meanwhile Dutch police have made arrests in an alleged migrant smuggling ring.


GORANI: Two Syrians were arrested in the city of Eindhoven as part of a year long investigation into human smuggling networks across Europe. The

traffickers allegedly charged refugees nearly $8,000 each, that's per individual for passage from Turkey to Western Europe.


GORANI: Now while some countries in Europe have welcomed refugees, we've seen it Austria and Germany as well. Places like Hungary have taken a

particularly hard-line approach to deterring migrants. Now the mayor of one Hungarian town has put out a video making his message to migrants and

refugees crystal clear, you are not wanted here.

CNN's Erin McLaughlin has our story.


ERIN MCLAUGHLIN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Despite the Syrian criticism of its handling of the migrant crisis, Hungary shows no signs of

changing its policy towards Syrian refugees. And now a mayor from a small town along the Hungarian/Serbian border is striking out with his own social

media campaign and his message is uncompromising.

Mayor Laszlo Toroczkai appears in the slickly produced YouTube video. It's macho tone is undeniable, where its guy hangs out with border guards while

a man on a motorcycle patrols the countryside. There's a helicopter, even horses, and plenty of shots of the newly built razor-wire fence and a

warning, cross the Hungary's border illegally and you'll end up in prison.

This week Hungary's policy towards migrants was on full display. Police fired water cannons and tear-gas into Serbian territory. The Government

Spokesperson said it was in response to young men armed with sticks, stones and bottles. This, the day after new laws were introduced to crack down on

the flow of migrants.

Now a crime to enter Hungary without the right papers, there's the possibility of jail time for anyone caught damaging the newly built border

fence. All points to what Toroczkai makes in his video. He's been the town's far right mayor for almost two years.

On the villages website he welcomes tourists. Theirs is no welcome for refugees, anything but. It warns residents about the potential health

dangers of touching anything that may have been left behind by a migrant. At the end of his video Toroczkai offers up a final piece of advice; he

tells them not to trust human traffickers and to travel through Slovenia and Croatia instead of Hungary. And there's even a Google map of an

alternate route to Germany in case anyone is in need of directions.

Erin McLaughlin, CNN, London.


GORANI: Pope Francis is preparing to visit Cuba, a country buzzing with the possibilities of a new era. He arrives in Havana, Saturday, tomorrow, the

third Pope to visit the communist state in the last two decades.


GORANI: This time however it is different of course because of restored diplomatic relations with the United States. Let's go live to Havana. Our

Patrick Oppman is there. talk to us about the mood right now the day before, Patrick.

PATRICK OPPMAN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: We're really just a day away from the Pope's arrival here, and it's going to be an elaborate

production to have the Pope here in Havana for two days, the first stop on his multi-stop tour of Cuba and the U.S.

This is not something you see everyday here, the pope on the front of the communist party daily newspaper, (Granma) but they've been playing the

pope's message to Cubans on T.V, that was also unprecedented last night. And Cubans are learning much more about this Pope.

Of course this is the first Pope who can speak to them in native Spanish and there's a lot of excitement that we're expecting Cubans to come from

around the island, Cuban Americans to come from Miami, perhaps in greater numbers than previous papal visits. And so there is a lot of excitement.

But you know really the Cuban Government has had less time to prepare for this papal visit than any other.

They had the Embassy opening just last month so they are racing to get everything ready Hala. When we were driving back to the bureau, people were

still painting buildings, still painting the streets and getting every last thing ready, and it looks like they'll have everything just about squared

away for the Pope to land in about 24 hours, Hala.

GORANI: OK, big logistical enterprise. Let me ask you a little bit about the Cubans. I mean of course Cuba is a communist state, it was declared an

atheist state. I believe half of Cubans describe themselves as atheist. The Pope is the leader of the catholic church. How does this excitement, I

mean is the excitement then more about the individual than about the spiritual - the spiritual nature of the Pope's visit to Cuba?


OPPMAN: It's a great question, and it's a bit of both to have a global celebrity and that is what the Pope is. It's always very exciting to put

Cuba in the center of the world's eye.

And of course, you know, you're talking to Cubans who are not Christians, who are not Catholics but they say they feel they owe a debt to this Pope

for his crucial role Hala in unfreezing the U.S./Cuban relations.

But then as well we're experiencing something of a spiritual reawakening across this island. For most Cuban's lives they were simply not allowed to

show their faith, it was not something they grew up, they lost Catholic traditions and now less and less the government is impeding them from

exercising their faith and that could be Santeria, that could be other forms of Christianity. But increasingly I think years ago when I went to

Catholic churches here there was nobody and now more and more - you're seeing more people at processions, more people at Catholic services, and

this is why the Pope is coming to give a new sense of spirit ignition for the Cuban Catholic church.


GORANI: Patrick Oppman, in Havana, thanks very much. You'll be part of our team covering this important visit over the weekend.

A lot more to come this evening on the program.


GORANI: Donald Trump's words often get him in trouble but now it's what he did not say that is igniting controversy, coming up next.

And Iranians chanting death to America and Israel. We'll take you live to Tehran where anti-west sentiment is rife despite a newly minted nuclear

deal. We'll have the very latest on that coming up.





GORANI: We may be more than a year away from the actual U.S. Presidential election, but America, there's no doubt about it is hooked already, and in

fact many of you around the world.

Listen to this figure. Around 38 million people tuned in to CNN for this week's Republican debate at one point or another. A day after that

gripping event, frontrunner, Donald Trump, is sparking a new controversy, this time it's more about what he didn't say.

Senior Washington correspondent, Joe Johns explains.


DONALD TRUMP, REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: A lot of people are saying that bad things are happening --

JOE JOHNS, SENIOR WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT: A new controversy for Donald Trump just a day after CNN's GOP debate.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There's a problem in this country, it's called Muslims. We know our current president is one. You know he's not even an American.

TRUMP: We need this question, this first question.

JOHNS: The Republican frontrunner back in the headlines after his vague and evasive response to the anti-Muslim supporter at a Town Hall in New


UNIDENTIFED MALE: But anyway we have training cramps growing where they want to kill us. That's my question, when can we get rid of them?

TRUMP: We're going to be looking at a lot of different things and you know a lot of people are saying that --

JOHNS: Trump taking heat for not correcting the man the way senator John McCain did while running for President in 2008.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I can't trust Obama. I have read about him and he's not -- he's not -- he's a - he's an Arab. He is not --



MCCAIN: No ma'am, no ma'am.

JOHNS: This morning on the Today show Chris Christie saying he would have taken the route the McCain took.

CHRIS CHRISTIE, REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: If somebody at one of my Town Hall meetings said something like that I would correct them. I'd

say now the President's a Christian and he was born in this country. I mean those two things are self-evident.

JOHNS: Trump's camp claiming the Billionaire did not hear the question about Obama being a Muslim saying "The media want to make this an issue

about Obama, but it's about him waging a war on Christianity."

Still Democrats are quick to pounce. Hillary Clinton at a substance abuse forum in New Hampshire earlier in the day tweeted not denouncing false

statements about the President and hateful rhetoric about Muslims is disturbing and wrong, cut it out.


GORANI: Well CNN's political analyst, Josh Rogen joins me now from Washington, live.

Let's talk a little about the question that was thrown at Donald Trump at that event. We have a problem in this country, it's called Muslims. Our

president is one, we know that, when can we get rid of them? Donald trump is saying I didn't hear the question. Are people buying that explanation?

JOSH ROGEN, CNN'S POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, no people in Washington are not buying that explanation.


ROGEN: Mostly because Trump's reaction is not an isolated incident and fits into a narrative about him that goes all the way back to when he was one of

the key voices in the movement calling for Obama to produce his birth certificate implying that he wasn't born in this country.

Repeatedly Donald Trump has been asked if he believes that Obama is a Christian, and his answer as been well he says he is one and I take him at

his word, which is short of saying yes. And Donald Trump as opposed to John McCain who you showed in the clip responding very differently to this type

of racist sentiment has -- is not fighting against this group of people in the Republican party who are pushing this agenda. That's his base, that's

where he draws the primary support that he's enjoyed and he's not trying to alienate them.

In fact, as you saw with the response from his campaign, he is doubling down on his commitment to serve that base.

GORANI: But let - and Josh you mentioned that this is where he gets his support from. Well I'm going to show our viewers the latest CNN ORC Poll on

Americans who believe that Barack Obama is a Muslim.

29% of Americans overall believe Barack Obama is a Muslim. 43% of Republicans believe Barack Obama is a Muslim. 54% of Trump supporters

believe this. So the question is, will this hurt him here, what he is saying about Barack Obama and about his response to the criticism that he

didn't correct that man was essentially he's waging a war on Christianity?


ROGEN: Right, well the answer is that it won't hurt him amongst his existing supporters but it could hurt him very badly amongst those people

who he's asking for their support as he tries to evolve his candidacy from one that siphons off 30% of the Republican party to one that can appeal to

a broad base of Americans in both parties.


ROGEN: So we're at this crucial moment of the campaign and I think you saw this in the debate where Trump is trying to evolve into a frontrunner and

take his place amongst the serious candidates.

So, doubling down on the strategy of playing to the fears and even racist feelings of those on the fringe of one side of the Republican party, it not

only hurts his chances to become more mainstream and more acceptable to a broader range of Americans, it hurts his party's chances in that respect as



GORANI: But you could argue Josh that even more troubling than this assertion that Barack Obama is a secret Muslim is the fact that this man

asking the question, his question ended with how do we get rid of all the Muslims.


GORANI: I mean at best he's calling for a mass deportation of Muslims, at worst, I don't even want to think about it. And there you have Donald

Trump sort of not really pushing back against that either.

ROGEN: Right, and it's not just what he said or what he doesn't say, it's his reaction. People are not just judging Trump by his words. He's the

frontrunner, they're judging him by his character, by his personality and he doesn't seem bothered by that at all. And I think that's something that

his opponents in the primary and if he ever makes it to the General Election will refer to.

Because all you have to do is watch that clip and you get a sense of the man that Trump is and how he feels about this kind of racism, and it's

really stark when you watch it, it's really hard to look away from and it's really hard deny.

GORANI: And Josh, I want to quickly ask you about other Republican candidates.


GORANI: Because correct me if I'm wrong, but I think only Chris Christie of New Jersey came out and said that he would have reacted differently to that

question, no other Republicans it seems really attacking Trump on this. Why not?

ROGEN: Well actually I have seen Senator Lindsey Graham put a posting on the social media site, Sidewire criticizing Trump's remarks. Graham of

course a very close friend of John McCain's and was with him on the campaign trail in 2008.


ROGEN: The next opportunity will be tonight, there'll be a heritage forum that Trump has mysteriously pulled out of at the last minute and you can be

sure that all of the candidates will have to weigh in. And I think what you'll see is most of the candidates, criticize Trump for these remarks.

And then you'll have some of those who are hoping to appeal to the same portion of the Republican Party that Trump capitalizes on try to navigate

sort of how not to criticize but also how to appear statesman like. And that'll be a tough needle to thread.

GORANI: Well we'll see the next - what the next poll reveals as far as Trump's standings in the polls among Republican voters. Thank you very much

Josh Rogen and have a great weekend always nice talking to you.

ROGEN: Thank you, you to, likewise.

GORANI: So the Democratic frontrunner now, Hillary Clinton was a prime target during Wednesday's Republican debate. She sat for an exclusive

interview with CNN's Wolf Blitzer to respond to some of the allegations made against her by Republican candidates.


WOLF BLITZER, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Carly Fiorina said if you want to stump a Democrat, she said ask them about Hillary Clinton's

accomplishments as Secretary of State. If you were on that debate stage with her what would you say is your number one accomplishment as Secretary

of State?

HILLARY CLINTON, DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: You know, Wolf, I didn't get to see all of their debate but I saw enough of it to know that

this is just the usual back and forth political attacks, the kinds of things you say when you are on a debate stage and you really don't have

much else to say.

I didn't hear anything from any of them about how they are going to make college more affordable or get down student debt or get equal pay for equal

work for women. What they're going to do to make sure that we deal with the challenges of raising incomes for hard-working people. So I don't really

pay a lot of attention to this kind of rhetoric that heats up the debate stage. They're all trying to vie for more attention from obviously the

Republican party. I'm going to let them decide how best to do it.

BLITZER: And let's talk about another source of criticism you received last night this one from the New Jersey Governor, Chris Christie. He said at

the debate you can't tell the American people the truth, those were his words about your e-mail, the whole controversy. He says you should be

prosecuted for having a server in your basement he says with national security secrets running through it. He says Russians, Chinese and even

18-year-olds could have hacked into your server. You think that was possible that they hacked into your server?

CLINTON: There's no evidence of that. And again, this is, you know this is overheated rhetoric baseless charges trying to somehow, you know, gain a

footing in the debate and in the primary, and it really doesn't deserve any comment.


GORANI: Hillary Clinton, there. Her early lead in most polls has slipped recently. Bernie Sanders is pulling ahead of Clinton in the key states of

New Hampshire and Iowa in some surveys.

Coming up, the U.S. Federal reserve leaves its key rated unchanged.


GORANI: And global markets are decidedly unimpressed. We'll talk through the numbers with Richard Quest coming up.





GORANI: Markets are reacting negatively today, it's a sad Friday for stock markets. The U.S.. Federal Reserve's decision to leave its key lending rate

unchanged has not been welcomed. It's been stuck, by the way, the key rate near 0% since 2008.

CNN's Richard quest has been tracking the markets closely today as Quest Means Business coming up at the top of the hour, and he's in New York.

So Richard, why if the Federal Reserve left its key rate unchanged therefore making it cheaper to borrow money and spend it why would equity

markets be unhappy about that?

RICHARD QUEST, HOST QUEST MEANS BUSINESS: I could give you anyone of half a dozen technical reasons Hala why the market's showing, but frankly

none of them hold water for the reason that you've just said.

That the market, cheap money remains for another month at least, so why should the market be down?


QUEST: And it is very heavy down. If you look the market was off more than 200 points and nearly 300 and now we're almost at the low point of the day

with that crucial half an hour still to trade, we're off 295.

And Hala every Dow stock these sort of numbers is down. Apple's the least dirty shirt, just off a fraction, but Merck, Caterpillar, Goldman, they're

off the best part if not more than the 3%.

So the answer to the question is that people are saying is twofold; firstly global growth is slowing down and therefore it takes its toll on everybody.

If that is what the Fed was warning about, the Fed's statement talks about China, external growth, and if that's what its warning about Hala, then

people are saying hang on is it worse than we thought. And the second technical reason, a rotation out of equities and into bonds. But the logic

of it doesn't hold water.


GORANI: So it's not the interest rate decision which really technically wouldn't make sense, it's just the idea behind not raising the interest

rate now. But, you know, there was so much enthusiasm on the currency markets for this interest rate rise that the dollar had rallied quite a bit

and now it's losing ground again, so is that trend also reversing itself?

QUEST: Well the dollar you can pretty much put absolutely on a technical front. Because obviously if the interest rate hike isn't happening now then

the dollar becomes less valuable in that sense on an interest rate differential.

But I think once again, we're way beyond mere technicalities. Here you're really looking at psychology. You're looking at the gut feeling of is the

global economy strong, is it got great (inaudible) and weaknesses and what this is reflecting today is the general worry that the Fed is seeing

something that they're not really telling us about. And - in fact there's one survey out this afternoon that suggests up to 40% of traders now think

the first interest rate hike may not happen until 2016. So the cheap money, which incidentally the U.S. does not need, the cheap money continues for

the time being.

GORANI: All right, Richard Quest, thanks very much. And you'll never get me to stop talking about technicalities, never, I'll hold on to them until the

bitter end. Thanks very much and we will see you at the top of the hour.

You're watching The World Right Now. Still ahead, angry chants in Iran against Israel and the United States


GORANI: We'll see what triggered the mass rally, we're live in Tehran.






GORANI: A look at our top stories. After chaotic scenes at the borders, Croatia and Hungary are now working together to move refugees westward.


GORANI: Migrants packed onto busses and trains in Croatia today after that country declared it cannot accommodate any more people. The buses are

headed for Hungary where the migrants will be allowed to continue their journeys apparently, but we will keep an eye on the flow, of course.


GORANI: Cuba is preparing for the arrival of the Pope Francis on Saturday. He's expected to say papal mass in Revolution Square in Havana Sunday.


GORANI: His visit comes amid historic thawing relations between communist, Cuba and the United States.


GORANI: Japan's upper house of parliament has just approved a highly controversial new military bill that will now allow the country's military

to fight overseas and defend its allies.


GORANI: The law is the most dramatic shift Japan's pacifist policies since the end of World War II.



GORANI: Iranians filled the streets of Tehran to protest what they call Israel's invasion of the Al-Aqsa Mosque. The chants of death to Israel and

death to America come just one day after final attempts to defeat the Iran nuclear deal failed in the U.S. Congress.

Frederick Pleitgen takes us among the crowds.


FREDERICK PLEITGEN, CNN SERIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Only weeks since the signing of the nuclear agreement in Tehran a massive show of

anti-American and anti-Israeli sentiment.

The demo called for by Iran's religious leaders as a reaction they say to recent unrest at the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem and also against perceived

American cultural influence in Iran.


PLEITGEN: We are never going to have any relations with Israel and the United States, this woman says, and we only talked with America over the

nuclear program.

I want to tell the Americans that I hate them she says and damn and death to Israel and to America.

Thousands of hardlined protestors marched after Friday prayers, many waving Hezbollah flags. At the prayer sermon itself, the same sentiment, the

speaker making clear Iran's religious leadership is still highly distrustful of America.

Many hardliners here are afraid of a general improvement in U.S/Iranian relations. That's why the religious leadership of this country is sending a

clear message, even after the nuclear agreement they will not change their stance towards the U.S. and towards Israel.

Among the speakers, the supreme leaders' military adviser, a former leader of the elite revolutionary guard.

The Americans are looking to penetrate into our cultural and political affairs he says. They want to undermine the revolution but with the help

of god, the guidance of the supreme leader and your help, this trick will not work.

Moderates say they want further cooperation with the west and possibly even America, as conservatives shout their point of view for the world to see.

Fred Pleitgen, CNN, Tehran.


GORANI: Well Fred Pleitgen joins me now live from Tehran where he heard some of those messages firsthand. In an interview today Fred with Iran's

vice president, tell us what she told you today.

PLEITGEN: Hi Hala, yes it certainly shows some of the divisions that appear to be around here in Iranian society. On the one hand you have the people

like the ones that we saw today who were very skeptical of the nuclear agreement, who are very skeptical of any further involvement with the west

and with the United States.

And then you have the reformers around President Rouhani and the vice president Masoumeh Ebteker, who says of course there could be further

relations with the United States, here's what she said to me in that interview.



MASOUMEH EBTEKER, IRANIAN VICE PRESIDENT: It's a balanced settlement and it sees all aspects of the issue. Particularly the lifting of the economic and

the nuclear sanctions, that's what's very important for our country. And it gives Iran the opportunity to play the role that it should play in the


PLEITGEN: There are some countries who fear Iran playing a bigger role in this region?

EBTEKER: I think that's -- we're already working on that matter (inaudible) has been visiting different countries in the regions creating

an atmosphere of trust, of trust and confidence in the fact that Iran is playing a role with respect to trying to resolve the conflicts, trying to

bring about peace and civility, and trying to confront extremism and terrorism in the region.

PLEITGEN: Could that also mean cooperation with the United States in certain areas?

EBTEKER: That would mean cooperation with the global community, including the United States. We've always had cooperation at different levels

before, of course limited, for example, with respect to Afghanistan and respect to elicit drugs, and now I think the priority will be to implement

the sentiment properly in a balanced way, to ensure that the deal is properly implemented in all of its different aspects. I think that is the

priority that we have in our relationships with the United States.

PLEITGEN: There's some pretty strong rhetoric coming from especially the Republicans.

EBTEKER: We have the spoilers on both sides. On both sides there are people attempting to undermine the deal. Well they -- both sides I think they

have their concerns, but the most important thing is that the majority, at least in Iran we're confident the majority support, a balanced and just

settlement which also ensures the dignity of the Iranian nation. And I'm it's the same on the other side, the American people are also looking

forward to a deal which would insure peace and prosperity and civility in the world.


PLEITGEN: And all of this Hala, of course, comes against the back drop of ever more foreign delegations coming here into Iran.

The next one that's due to arrive this weekend is a Dutch delegation, of course also employees of many companies that we personally have also seen

on flights here into Tehran. It seems that many are gearing up for this country opening up at least in a business sense more towards the

international community. But at the same time you do have a lot of skeptics of the nuclear agreement and certainly also further involvement

with the west, especially with the United States.

It certainly does appear that any sort of normalization of the relations between the U.S and Iran does still seem to be quite a far way off, Hala.

GORANI: All right, but still, a business opportunities on the horizon, and people trying to stake their claim early. Thanks very much. Fred Pleitgen

is live in Tehran.

By the way you can always head to the Facebook page, That's where we put up some of the best

interviews but also its where we like hearing from you, and you have certainly contributed to the discussion today. So head there halagoranicnn

- and chime in.

Among the other stories we are following, a U.S. Official tells CNN four Russian fighter jets now arrived in Syria.


GORANI: They're believed to be at an air base near Latakia, a key government strong hold in the country.

The Russian President -- and you see it there by the way in the Western part of the country, right on the Mediterranean. Russian President Vladimir

Putin acknowledges providing military support to the regime of Bashar al Assad, a move that deeply concerns Washington.

Today the U.S. and Russia renewed high level talks to discuss their roles in Syria. The White House gave details between a phone call between the

two country's defense ministers.


JOSH EARNEST, WHITE HOUSE SPOKESMAN: Secretary Carter did have the opportunity to speak to his Russian counterpart today, and they agreed in

the context of those conversations to discuss further mechanisms for de- confliction in Syria, essentially making sure that the actions of our counter-ISIL coalition don't come into conflict with any Russian military

actions that they may have planned for Syria.


GORANI: De-confliction is a word I have to admit I learned today, but it appears as though the definition is one country's military action and

another country's military action whether they're on the same side or opposite sides shouldn't conflict with each other. So that's what the two

defense ministers discussed.

There's another complication for the U.S. in Syria. American troops had been training a group of Syrian rebels, we've been reporting that over

several weeks. But now the Pentagon says many of the fighters have simply vanished. CNN Pentagon Correspondent, Barbara Starr has that story for us.



BARBARA STARR, CNN'S PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT: A shocking admission by the U.S. General running the war against ISIS how few U.S. trained Syrian

rebels are left.

GEN. LLOYD AYSTIN, U.S. CENTRAL COMMAND: It's a small number and the ones that are in the fight is -- is -- we're talking four or five.

KELLY AYOTTE, U.S. SENATE REPULICANT: As I see it right now, there's four or five U.S. trained fighters, let's not kid ourselves, that's a joke.

STARR: It was supposed to be the showcase of the U.S. effort in Syria, a $500-million program to train 3,000 rebels this year alone.

AUSTIN: Well we certainly won't at the pace we're going, we won't - won't reach the goal that we had initially established for ourselves.

STARR: Austin also acknowledging his own intelligence director under investigation for altering intelligence reports. The White House, for the

first time, asked if the President still has confidence in his commander?

EARNEST: Well of course he does, and I think it's important to note, and I made a reference to this yesterday, General Austin, to his credit, sat

before that congressional committee, you know, took the oath, faced the cameras, and delivered some hard news.

STARR: And the Pentagon now defending how involved Defense Secretary Ash Carter is in overseeing the war.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He is actively engaged in every aspect of this fight.

STARR: But Carter has deferred to Secretary of State, John Kerry, to lead U.S. discussions with Russia about its military involvement in Syria.

Russia now averaging two flights daily into Syria, bringing in troops and weapons.

The latest commercial satellite imagery capturing four Russian military helicopters on the ground, the first combat aircraft. One U.S. intelligence

estimate, up to 500 Russian troops already there. The Russian Foreign Minister has told Kerry it's all to fight ISIS.

JOHN KERRY, U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE: I am not taking that at face value, because we look at the type of airplanes or the type of ammunitions and so

forth and it obviously raises much more serious questions about what is happening.


STARR: Some military officials I speak to are expressing their frustration, saying there are ideas on the table how to improve things, but they need

sign off from the Pentagon and the White House. One official telling me, "we are fighting with two hands tied behind our backs."

Barbara Starr, CNN, the Pentagon.

GORANI: This is the World Right Now.


GORANI: The rugby world cup has kicked off and with more than 2 million tickets sold the British economy is banking on a win.






GORANI: All right, take a look at the Dow Jones. The losses are accelerating on this Friday. We're down now more than 300 points.

The Dow Jones industrial average almost 2% lower.


GORANI: Let's return to our top story tonight. More than 473,000 migrants and refugees have come to Europe by sea so far this year according to the


In recent weeks CNN has been following migrants making the often dangerous journey clear across the continent.

Here's Ivan Watson with a look back at some of their desperate travels.


IVAN WATSON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: The migrant trail into Europe begins aboard small dangerously over-loaded boats a virtual flotilla

of inflatable rafts and dinghies that embark day and night from the coast of Turkey. Smugglers charge passengers around $1,200 per person for a trip

to nearby islands in Greece.

People cheering as they landed on the beach, spilling, exhausted out of this raft. I imagine that there were more than 30 people in this small boat

and they spill up onto the beaches with their belongings and backpacks with the orange life jackets that have become a kind of unofficial uniform for

the migrants.

A tiny island barely able to cope with the flood of people landing on its beaches. The new arrivals register for permission to take a far more

comfortable ferry to the mainland.

ALESSANDRA MORELLI, UNHCR: The 70% of the refugees and migrants landing here are Syrians. Then we do have a 30%, among this group we find Afghans,

we find Pakistanis, we find Bangladeshis.

WATSON: They include young Syrians like 19 year old Kuman Albeni. Why did you decide to leave Syria?

KUMAN ALBENI, SYRIAN REFUGEE: Because it's dangerous now. I can't continue study. I want to start my life. Like if i go to Germany, i want to

start my life from zero. I want to study I want to - would like to get married, maybe.

WATSON: Eventually the migrants and refugees arrive here, on Greece's northern border with Macedonia where thousands of people cross every day.

The Macedonians quickly direct them to buses and trains heading north. They pay their own way, and some cheer as they embark on the next leg of the

migrant trail. We follow the great migration north across Macedonia and then up the length of Serbia until the travellers suddenly hit a wall.

This week Hungary erected a new fence closing its border.

But what are you going to do now?

WAEL NOER, SYRIAN REFUGEE: I have to wait, no choice. No choice, no way to go back to Syria.

WATSON: Why not?

NOER: Because I don't want to go to a regime in Syria.

WATSON: The government would arrest you?

NOER: Yes.

WATSON: For Wael Noer, a musician from Syria, it was the first time he stopped moving in days.

The migrant trail is improvised and evolves quickly, with Hungry closed travelers quickly turned west towards Croatia, where the government

announced on Wednesday migrants and refugees were welcome. But what a difference a day makes.

More than 7,000 people streamed into Croatia in less than 36 hours, and the numbers clearly catching the authorities by surprise. These are scenes that

Croatia probably did not anticipate when they opened their border on Wednesday. Mass hysteria as people unwilling wait for government transport

heave are against the police. The crowd breaks through and another country is overwhelmed by the human flood.

Months into this migrant crisis, Europe still does not know what to do with all of these people.

Ivan Watson, CNN, Tovarnik, Croatia.


GORANI: Well for something completely different after the break.


GORANI: Keith Richards from the Rolling Stones has released his first album in more than 20 years.

That is still ahead.






GORANI: In the last few minutes, one of the biggest sporting events in the world, the Rugby World Cup kicked off in England with a spectacular opening



GORANI: The extravaganza will see 20 worlds from around the world compete in 48 games. But the winners won't just be on the field, the U.K's economy

is expected to benefit to the tune of around $1.5 billion. That's because around half a million tourists are expected to come and watch games. $2.3

million tickets have been sold so far.

The first game between hosts, England and Fiji is halfway through. I've been hearing some screaming in the news room from my chair here in the

studio. Let's go live to CNN's Christina MacFarlane who is watching with fans in London. Christina.


CHRISTINA MACFARLANE, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well Hala, we are just a few minutes away from half-time here at the opening match of the

Rugby World Cup.


MACFARLANE: And I can tell you that England, the home nation are looking very comfortable indeed. They are currently leading this match 18-8 against

Fiji and looking extremely comfortable here on home turf.

As to host nation of course, Fiji, (INAUDIBLE), a very nervous start but they are beginning to claw their way back, who can blame them? They're in

a stadium of 82,000 fans on the opening day here of the Rugby World Cup, and we are a little bit away from that. We're here in the fan zone where

fans who haven't been able to get into the Twickenham stadium are packed into this big, enormous blue tent. 6,000 of them to watch this game, and

of course this tournament is being billed as the biggest and most expensive World Cup in history.

2.3 million tickets have been sold and 500,000 fans are expected to visit from overseas. Many of them whom we've met here tonight. Five and six

different nations I've been speaking to and the excitement is palpable.

We are into half-time and I can tell you Hala, there's a lot of national pride at stake tonight. England haven't won the World Cup since back in

2003, and it's very important to them to get off to a flying start here tonight in what is essentially one of the most competitive Rugby World Cups

in recent history.


Anyone of the seven teams could win here and of course England need a win tonight. And it looks as things stand like they're going to get.

GORANI: Christina MacFarlane, thanks very much. And to our viewers, apologies for any rude language used by some of the people standing around

Christina and even some of the rude gestures even.

All right, let's move on to something slightly more refined and artistic.


The Chinese (inaudible) artist, Ai Weiwei is in London and hanging out with the founder of WikiLeaks. Ai Weiwei posted this selfie on instagram after

he visited Julian Assange.

The two men posed with their middle fingers raised, the artist has only recently been allowed to leave China following a four year travel ban.

Assange has been hauled up in the Ecuadorian embassy in London since 2012 to avoid being extradited to Sweden to face rape allegations and we're

blurring out the middle finger there, but you can, I'm sure, find it on line and imagine the picture in your minds quite easily.


GORANI: I'm having trouble saying the word "Richards" tonight. Is that crazy? I don't know what's going on. Keith Richards is rock and roll

royalty from his hell raising younger days to his millions of album sales with the Rolling Stones. Now for the first time in more than 20 years he's

releasing a solo album. Sherisse Pham has more.



SHERISSE PHAM, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT. He is rock 'n' roll royalty. Keith Richards out with a new album this week, the first in 23

years. Yes, this drug-snorting chain-smoking Rolling Stone legend is still around.

NEIL MCCORMICK, MUSIC CRITIC, DAILY TELEGRAPH: Keith Richards is probably the icon of rock 'n' roll.

PHAM: He's one of the most talented guitar players of all-time, the man behind tracks that are already music legend. At the height of the Rolling

Stones popularity Keith Richards spent plenty of late-nights here at the Bag O' Nails, drinking smoking and probably doing a lot of other stuff we

can't say on CNN.

And while he's an old-school rocker, Richards is all over new media promoting the album on his twitter account, launching a new documentary on

Netflix, and bringing in sales on iTunes.

MCCORMICK: He is kind of the great survivor of rock 'n' roll, he retains the spirit, that kind of a rebellious insouciance swagger that people

thought rock 'n' roll was bad. That's why people love him because he survived.

KEITH RICHARDS: I mean you just hang on to it as long as you can, because it is one of the best feelings in the world. It may be only rock 'n' roll,

but i am telling you what --

PHAM: At 71, it doesn't seem like he will be retiring anytime soon.

Sherisse Pham, CNN, London.


GORANI: Well, this has been the world right now, and if it's your weekend, have a great one. Thanks for watching. Quest means business is up next.