Return to Transcripts main page


Aftermath of Failed Military Coup in Turkey; Officers Killed in Baton Rouge. Aired 11:00a-12:00p ET

Aired July 17, 2016 - 11:00   ET



[11:00:15] JOHN KERRY, U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE: We think it's irresponsible to have accusations of American involvement when we're simply

waiting for their request in which we're absolutely prepared to act on if it meets the legal standard.


LYNDA KINKADE, CNN HOST: The U.S. responding after Turkey says it knows who is behind Friday's coup attempt. We'll look at the different angles

this hour on the crackdown on those involved as it gained momentum.

Plus, trying to make sense of the terror in France. Dozens remain hospitalized after Bastille Day carnage in Nice.

And will Donald Trump unify the Republican Party? A day to go until the convention kicks off. We're live in Cleveland.

Hello and welcome to Connect the World. I'm Lynda Kinkade sitting in for Becky Anderson.

We'll have more on those stories in just a moment, but first we begin with breaking news, another apparent mass shooting in U.S. An official in east

Baton Rouge, Louisiana says as many as three police officers could be dead. Police say they think the situation is under control, but are warning

people to stay away.

We are monitoring this situation for you and we will bring you more details as they come to


Well, let's turn to Turkey now where President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is leading a sweeping crackdown after a failed coup. State-run media says

some 6,000 people suspected in the plot are under arrest right now.

Mr. Erdogan is accusing this man, Fatullah Gulen, of masterminding the revolt. He wants the U.S. to arrest him or extradite him back to Turkey.

And as the political fallout spreads, Mr. Erdogan attended a funeral earlier for some of the nearly 200 people killed in Friday's violence.

Well, our Nic Robertson is in Turkey's capital Ankara, but first Arwa Damon is covering those funerals for us in Istanbul.

But Arwa, the last time we saw you come up live in a report, you were flanked by some pretty vocal and aggressive men. What were they saying?

ARWA DAMON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, they were expressing their frustration with, broadly speaking, the western media because they

and the government and the president himself have, in fact, historically been accusing the west of also being implicit in trying to bring down this


But one does have to also say that at this stage, that kind of aggression is not something that is necessarily common.

We are right now at another funeral where President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is also attendance. And you have a massive crowd that is gathered here,

friends, family, but also strangers coming out to try to express their condolences, to try to come to terms with their sorrow, but also try to

comes to terms with what is it that the country right now going through.

Because yes, this is a nation that was braced for violence, but people were expecting perhaps another ISIS terrorist attack. They were expecting

perhaps the types of attacks and strikes that we're seeing carried out by Kurdish separatist faction the PKK. People were not expecting this kind of

violence. They weren't anticipating that a military coup would bring the country this far to the brink of instability.

And looking at the fallout of all of this, yes, the government remains in power. Thousands of people, though, have been detained. There are

concerns that perhaps government will potentially carry out more sweeping mass arrests of their opponents, of voices of descent who they feel may

threaten their grip on power and has really thrown Turkey into what can be described as an unprecedented chapter, at least in its more modern day

recent history.

KINKADE: And Arwa, as the president attends those funerals today, what is his message to the people there?

DAMON: He is again calling on his supporters and calling on the nation to go out to the streets, to stand firm, saying that their show of force is

not something that can just last for 12 hours, that he perhaps wants to show those whom he says were behind this coup that he enjoys this popular


Because at the end of the day, many will argue, and correctly so, that it was the power of the

people that really prevented this coup from moving forward. He made that call on the night that all of the events happened, for people to take to

the streets. And they did.

And many of them stood in front of these tanks, prevented them from moving forward. A lot of people...

KINKADE: OK. Arwa Damon, we are just going to leave it there for now. We're going to -- we're following a story out of Louisiana. Three police

officers that have been shot. Let's listen in to more on that.



[08:12:04] KINKADE: Welcome back. We want to update you on breaking news of another apparent mass shooting in the U.S. An official in Baton Rouge,

Louisiana, says as many as three police officers may be dead. Police say they think the situation is under control, but they are warning people to

stay away.

We are watching this story closely and we'll bring you more details as soon as they come to


Well, let's get to another major story we're following for you right now in Turkey where President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is leading a sweeping crackdown

after a failed coup. The world, of course, is watching that unfold very closely. Washington, especially on alert because Turkey is a key ally in

the U.S. fight against ISIS.

Earlier, CNN's Jake Tapper spoke to the U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry.


JOHN KERRY, U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE: We don't have all the details of what has happened with respect to the coup.

What we do know is this. I talked three times yesterday with the foreign minister of Turkey. They assure me that there will be no interruption of

our counter-ISIL efforts. It is a fact that there were difficulties at Incirlik.

But, apparently, there may have been some refueling that took place with the Turkish air force with planes that were flying in the coup itself. And

I think that has something to do with what's taken place there. It's not focused on us.

They have absolutely assured us of their commitment to the fight against Da'esh. Their foreign minister will be coming to Washington with their

defense minister in three days for a major conference that we have with 45 countries, foreign ministers, defense ministers, to keep pushing forward on

the strategy against Da'esh.

So, Jake, I expect that operations will get back to normal very quickly. But we don't know the details of the coup. And I think the Turkish

government itself is trying to figure out the full measure of who was involved and how.

TAPPER: Has this affected the fight against ISIS, or, as you call it, Da'esh?

KERRY: No, it has not.

According to our commanders, there might have been a minor delay here or there or something, but it has not affected the fundamental direction or

commitment to the fight.

TAPPER: As you know, on Saturday, the president of Turkey, Erdogan, demanded that the U.S. arrest or hand over one of his enemies, Fethullah

Gulen, the person he is holding responsible for this coup, who is living in self-imposed exile in the Poconos in Pennsylvania.

Is the U.S. going to comply with this demand for extradition?

KERRY: Well, first of all, we have not had a formal request for extradition. That has to come in a formal package.

It has to come with documentation for the request and go to the Justice Department. And we will deal with it. I made it very, very clear to the

foreign minister of Turkey yesterday, the United States is not harboring anybody. We're not preventing anything from happening.

We have never had a formal request for extradition, and we have always said, give us the evidence. Show us the evidence. We need a solid, legal

foundation that meets the standard of extradition in order for our courts to approve such a request.

So, we're waiting for that. They tell us they are putting it together and will send it to us. But we think it's irresponsible to have accusations of

American involvement, when we're simply waiting for their request, which we're absolutely prepared to act on if it meets the legal standard.

[11:15:38] TAPPER: Did U.S. intelligence have any idea that this attempted coup was about to happen?

KERRY: I don't think anybody's intelligence had information, particularly the Turkish intelligence. The answer is no.

This is -- the nature of a coup, you rarely have indicators that something's about to happen.

TAPPER: Let's turn now, if we can, sir, to the terrorist attack in Nice on Saturday. ISIS claimed responsibility for inspiring that horrific truck

attack that killed 84 people, wounding more than 200.

Does the U.S. have any intelligence to back up this claim by ISIS that it, at the very least, inspired the attack?

KERRY: Well, there is public information that has been leaking out from France from the investigation itself regarding a -- quote -- "very rapid

period of radicalization."

We know, obviously, what everybody now knows publicly, that he was a Tunisian who was given permission to live in France. But we have -- we had

no knowledge of him as a radicalized individual. And, at this point in time, we're waiting for the investigators, and we're helping the

investigation in any way that is possible.

Our hearts go out to everybody in France. This is the third major terrorist attack in France. It's very, very difficult for the French people. We

understand that. There are 85 people in the hospital now, 20-plus in the intensive care unit.

So, we are working with the French to try to put the pieces together, but, you know, this is one of those things, Jake, it's worse than the needle in

a haystack. If you have no indications of somebody, and you don't have any track record of radicalization, and, all of a sudden, over a week or in

some period, somebody with apparent mental problems anyway decides to go do great harm to people, it is not hard to do that.

And governments and law enforcement have to be able to get this right every hour, every day, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year.


KINKADE: U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry speaking there.

We're going to return to our breaking news story out of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, with reports of up to three police officers shot dead. Listen