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CONNECT THE WORLD
White House Set to Brief Entire Senate Over North Korea; France Claims to Have Proof Syria Used Sarin; French Presidential Candidate Marine Le Pen Lays Out Vision for French Foreign Policy; Slave Labor Conditions in Brazilian Beef Trade; Spanish Great Xavi Talks Dreams, Hopes for Future. Aired 11a-12p ET
Aired April 26, 2017 - 11:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[11:00:17] HANNAH VAUGHAN JONES, HOST: Political and military shows of force: U.S. senators prepare for an unusual White House briefing on North
Korea. Pyongyang flaunts its fire power. We will have a full live update from Washington and Seoul ahead.
Also, Turkey strikes Kurdish forces and the U.S. is not happy. We look at the tangled of alliances and adversaries in and around war battered Syria.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don't know the future. I don't know the future. But maybe it will be a possibility.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
JONES: Talking future plans and present glory with a football legend. We hear from Spanish star Xavi this hour.
Hello and welcome to Connect the World. I'm Hannah Vaughan Jones live in London sitting in
for Becky Anderson. Shows of force on both sides of the Korean demilitarized zone. In the south, parts of a controversial U.S. anti-
missile defense system have been rolled into place. And an official says it will be operational in the coming days.
Plus, U.S. and South Korea have flexed their military might with live fire drills. Meantime, in the north, the leader, Kim Jong-un, supervised,
personally supervised, the country's army day on Tuesday. A government official in Pyongyang tells CNN the artillery exercise was the largest ever
conducted and just hours from now, every single American senator, yep, that's all 100 of them, will be
summoned to the White House for a rare classified briefing.
They will be turning their attention to what U.S. President Donald Trump has called a quote,
problem we have to finally solve. Well, afterwards, House members will get a similar briefing, that
time on Capitol Hill. For more on the growing tensions with North Korea, I'm joined now by CNN Alexandra Field in Seoul and our Sunlen Serfaty is on
Capitol Hill in Washington.
Welcome to you both. Sunlen, to you first, how unusual are these sorts of briefings, not least because of the location of this Senate briefing is
somewhat unusual in itself?
SUNLEN SERFATY, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: That's absolutely right, Hannah. The location of the briefing is what is so unusual about today's
North Korea briefing, that all 100 senators have been invited to attend. Typically, these sorts of briefings take place up here on Capitol Hill.
They have a large enough room that's a secure location to host members of the administration that will brief senators.
So, a lot of Senators were taken by surprise that this meeting ended up being scheduled to be in the White House. The fact that they're holding
this in the old executive office building and they had to set up a specific secure room and an auditorium of that building, in order for this to be in
essence a secure, classified briefing.
A lot of Democratic senators up here having some grumblings about this, wondering if this is just in one word, one source up here on Capitol Hill
called this a dog and pony show. So certainly, some politics at play here.
Because Democrats are wondering if they're just trying to play into a photo op that the president and White House wants to have to show they are
briefing senators on North Korea that then Republican senators up here say this is a useful briefing that they are excited to attend and that the
symbolism of this briefing taking place at the White House is important at the moment with North Korea - Hannah.
JONES: Yeah, useful, useless, unusual, usual, we'll have all our thoughts and our cameras trained on it, though, when we do hear any information of
course from what goes on at the White House. Happening around 8:00 p.m. local time here in London, 3:00 p.m. Eastern Time. Sunlen, thanks.
Let's bring in Alex Field now who is in Seoul for us. And Alex, all eyes will be on what's going
on in D.C. But what exactly does South Korea really want from the U.S. right now?
ALEXANDRA FIELD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Look, they're looking for assurances from the U.S. and they are looking for protection and defense should they
need it against North Korea.
We've been saying for days now that the tension level is high here on the peninsula. This is something we see every year as these annual military
training exercises go on.
But it is the rash of ballistic missile tests that have been happening in North Korea, which
have prompted so much concern for officials in the U.S. They're concerned about regional security interests. They're concerned about the U.S.'s
security interest as North Korea has often stated that it is their goal to mount a nuclear weapon to a missile capable of reaching the U.S., that's
the reason they say that the installation of this missile defense system is critical.
And now you have a U.S. Pacific commander saying the system could be operational in just a matter of days.
[11:05:12] ALEXANDRA FIELD, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The parts are moving at a moment when every move matters. Overnight, pieces of THAAD, a
U.S. designed missile defense system delivered to their deployment site, a golf course in a small village in the southern part of South Korea.
Their arrival comes hours after North Korea flexed its military muscle, firing off long range artillery in a massive training drill. But its
ballistic missile threat in arsenal that endangers the region today and could reach beyond one day that has the U.S. quickly pushing ahead with a
China and Russia have objected to THAAD, raising concerns about whether its radar could also be used to spy on neighboring countries. But defense
officials in South Korea say the deployment is essential part of preparation for North Korea's advanced nuclear missile threat.
The goal is to make THAAD operational as quickly as possible. Russia's protesters in South Korea pushing back. We can't understand the need to
deploy this right now, he says.
In the village of Sonju (ph), thousands of police hold back hundreds of demonstrators, angry that THAAD is being stalled in their backyard without
The country's former disgraced president signed off on it and since then Park Geun-hye has been impeached, ousted from office, and jailed on
corruption charges, charges she denies.
Candidates in the race to replace her took the debate stage Tuesday night. The frontrunner, Democratic Party candidate, (inaudible) again said the
decision to deploy THAAD is better left to the next president. Hours later, the parts were moving.
FIELD: And as those parts moved in, China again renewed their objections to the THAAD system, calling on the U.S. and South Korea to abandon
deployment of the system, again saying that this infringes on China's own security concerns, but also saying that the presence of the system was
contributing to the rising level of tensions here on the peninsula, Hannah.
JONES: And, Alex, the South Korean presidential elections just around the corner, what kind of impact do you think this rhetoric coming from the U.S.
and the region is going to have on that vote?
FIELD: Yeah, how to deal with North Korea is of course a major topic of this election, which will take place at the beginning of May. The front
runner, as we pointed out, there is a Democratic candidate. If a Democratic is elected to be president here in South Korea, that would
signal a shift from the Conservative Party rule, which was happening here in South Korea for the last 10 years. It could also signal a shift in
policy toward North Korea, the Democrats have traditionally argued for more open dialogue, more open communication with North Korea, a less draconian
stance than the Conservative Party has taken here.
So, certainly that is a key factor. It's something that all of the candidates are being asked. It's matter a lot of people will be voting on
here, of course, Hannah.
JONES: Alexandra Field live for us in Seoul. Thank you.
Now, some other stories on our radar today. That French foreign ministry says it can prove the Assad government carried out a sarin gas attack in
Idlib in Syria at the beginning of this month. The foreign minister says chemical samples from the attack site bear the signature of the Assad
U.S. lawmakers investigating the Trump campaign's ties to Russia say the former National
Security Advisor, Michael Flynn, may have broken the law. They say he apparently failed to disclose accepting tens of thousands of dollars from
Russia's RT television. Lawmakers accused the White House of withholding critical documents, a charge the White House denies.
Pope Francis called for humility, togetherness and tenderness in a surprise TED talk. He warned that world leaders who aren't humble ruin themselves
and others. The pontiff recorded his talk at The Vatican and it was shown at the TED international conference in Vancouver on Tuesday.
Now, while American ships and submarines are on the move near Pyongyang in North Korea, its fighter jets are darting through the skies above Syria and
Iraq fighting ISIS. But, of course, that can be messy. And America is not doing it alone. So now, Washington and its two main partners, are in a
deadly war triangle after Turkish war planes killed dozens of Kurdish fighters from the PKK militant group that it calls terrorists.
But other Kurdish groups who are America's main weapon on the ground against ISIS were also
killed in that strike. Meaning, Turkey is dropping American made bombs on one of America's key allies.
CNN's Ben Wedeman joins me now from Istanbul to help us decipher all of this. Ben, great to have you on the program. It's a chaotic mess in the
region. Can you un-muddy the waters for us? Who is who? And do they actually know who the opposition, who the enemy is?
[11:10:14] BEN WEDEMAN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, you can't really un-muddy very muddy waters, Hannah. And these waters are muddy,
indeed. Basically you have a situation like this, since 1984, the Turkish government, the Turkish state has been fighting a war
against the PKK, the Kurdish Workers Party.
The PKK has an affiliate in Syria called the YPG, the People's Defense Unit, which is backed by the United States in its fight against ISIS. In
the meantime, the PKK also operates in Iraq, particularly in the Sinjar Mountain areas where one of these Turkish air strikes took place.
Now, of course, the problem is that the United States and Turkey are both members of NATO, but find themselves on the opposite end when it comes to
the Kurds and, obviously, the Turks are very worried about anybody who gives any sort of support to the PKK or any
affiliate of the PKK.
So it is a mess. And the fact of the matter is, words isn't going to clear up this mess - Hannah.
JONES: With an almost impossible situation to try to decipher the good guys from the bad. The whole region seemingly in turmoil, particularly in
this battle against ISIS. And that has been epitomized by one story that you came across. Tell us more, Ben.
WEDEMAN: This is a story that takes us from Morocco to the UK to Dubai to Afghanistan to Turkey and finally to Syria involving one British national
and a Moroccan woman. She was barely a woman, almost just a girl, really, who became by pure accident an ISIS wife.
BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: A steady stream of civilians is fleeing Raqqa as the noose tightens on ISIS' de facto capital,
and it's not just Syrians leaving the city. It's also those who came, some against their will, to live in this so-called caliphate.
Twenty-three-year-old Islam Mitat from Morocco has found refuge with her two small children at a guesthouse run by the YPG, the U.S.-backed Kurdish
force fighting ISIS in northeast Syria. Her journey to Syria started more than three years ago with a visit to an online Muslim matchmaking site,
Muslima.com, where she met her future husband, Ahmed Kahlil, a British national of Afghan origin.
ISLAM MITAT, FORMER ISIS WIFE: He was in Dubai, and he told me he have a job in Turkey. So he told me to come with me, he going to do his job, and
we go for holiday too, me and him.
WEDEMAN: The holiday her husband had in mind, however, was in Syria.
MITAT: It's a surprise, to go to Syria. So when we went, when I told him why he didn't ask me, why I didn't take my own decision so I will come or
no, so he told me, no, you're my wife and you have to obey me.
WEDEMAN: They crossed from Turkey into Syria with others like her and ended up in a special guesthouse for mujahidin, those who moved to ISIS' realm.
MITAT: From U.K., from Tunisia, Algeria, Morocco, Canada, Belgium, French, all the world. Everyone is there. Saudi Arabia.
WEDEMAN: Soon afterwards, her husband Ahmed was killed in the battle of Kobani. She was forced to remarry, a German this time, but she divorced him
two months later. She married a third time, an Australian, and moved to Raqqa where she stayed for two years.
MITAT: Honestly, I forget my normal life. And there is the situation in the last months, the situation in Raqqa, it's so bad. Like the bombs of the
coalitions and stuff like this, it's so bad. And sometimes, there's no electricity and water, and there is not too much food.
WEDEMAN: In Raqqa she had one thing in mind, escape.
MITAT: Like for two years, I'm asking people to help me, but everyone -- like someone asked me like too much money. They asked me like too much
money, like more than $5,000, like that.
WEDEMAN: Eventually, she did manage to escape but is now in limbo. Her Kurdish hosts have contacted the Moroccan government. And her father,
through this report, is hoping Morocco's king, Mohammed VI, will intercede. Islam wants to return to Morocco but worries about the future of her
[11:15:14] MITAT: I don't know where I will go. I don't know because now my life is destroyed.
WEDEMAN: A holiday in Syria turned to hell.
WEDEMAN: And Hannah, this is really just one instance, I think, as time goes on and as the noose around Raqqa begins to tighten even more, we're
going to see many more cases like these people from -- with affiliations to Europe, from countries like morocco and
elsewhere who got caught up in that mess, the hell that is this war against ISIS and now are desperate to somehow get home safely - Hannah.
JONES: Ben, we appreciate it. And thank you for bringing us that extraordinary insight into life in Raqqa in such a closed society. Ben
Wedeman is live for us in Istanbul. Thank you.
Now, up next on Connect the World, we'll stay in Istanbul to hear what Turkey's president said about attacking Kurds. That's a CNN exclusive
break it all down, of course with an expert on the ground. So stay with us right here on CNN.
JONES: Hello welcome back. You're watching CNN. This is Connect the World. I'm Hannah Vaughan Jones in London where it's just coming up to 20
past 4:00 in the afternoon local time.
Now, the battlefield against ISIS is as bloody as it is complex. Just take a look at this, it's almost impossible to understand who is fighting who.
Even forces that are supposedly on the same team, same side, they are killing each other as well. In just the last few hours, Turkey, again,
targeted what it calls Kurdish terrorists, but getting caught up in those attacks, America's Kurdish allies.
Well, Turkey doesn't care so much about that, but Washington is not pleased, to say the least. Now just last week, in a worldwide exclusive,
CNN's Becky Anderson spoke to Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan about just this issue. Take a listen:
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BECKY ANDERSON, HOST: Did you, with President Trump, discuss further cooperation on
Syria? And does that support include you supporting Syrian Kurdish troops on the ground in the eminent fight against Raqqa?
RECEP TAYYIP ERDOGAN, PRESIDENT OF TURKEY (through translator): Right now, of course, we've had telephone conversations and I'm receiving a positive
signal. And beyond that positive signal, there are disagreements inherited from the Obama management administration. And organizations such as PYD
and YPG and being in solidarity with them, to form a coalition with them, is something that we do not approve, which has always been the case.
Supporting a terrorist organization for the purposes of destroying another terrorist organization such as Daesh is not something that we've approved
(END VIDEO CLIP)
[11:20:25] President Erdogan speaking to Becky Anderson here. And Mr. Erdogan is acting as freely at home as he is beyond his borders.
In just the last few hours, Turkish police rounded up more than a 1,000 people, all accused of having links to the man he blames for being behind
last year's attempted coup.
Well, for more on all of this, let's get back to Istanbul where Jared Malsin, the Middle East bureau chief for TIME magazine joins us live.
Jared, welcome to the program. Let's talk about the domestic front, to start off with. These mass arrests, President Erdogan flexing his new
muscle power very, very quickly. What's been the reaction there, though?
JARED MALSIN, MIDDLE EAST BUREAU CHIEF, TIME: Well, this is really a continuation of a political crackdown that's been going on since last year.
President Erdogan survived a military -- a failed military coup last July, which realy accelerated an
attempt on his part to restrain critics of the government, to go after perceived opponents. And, of course, he won this very narrow disputed
victory in a referendum to expand his own power on April 16, and that is expected to give him
more leeway to go after his opponents, while at the same time kind of stirring up more opposition to what is perceived as a power grab and, you
know, following a referendum victory that was disputed.
JONES: Yeah, you said there that the referendum itself was very narrow victory for Erdogan, and indeed it was. I mean, we're talking about a
1,000 arrests, though, just today. And 47,000 people in the country have been detained since the coup last year. How is this being reported in the
press, or talked about in the streets in Turkey?
MALSIN: Well, in Turkey, the media are for the most part under the control of organizations that are sympathetic to the government. At this point,
this is when you tune into the Turkish media you'll hear a monolithic viewpoint. Turkey is also a country with a huge
number of journalists. Just this week, Reporters Without Borders called this the largest prison for journalists in the world. And so it's very difficult to hear opposing
viewpoints unless you're going to turn to the internet or to social media.
And I think there's a growing kind of sense of apprehension and anxiety about this in the street about people expressing their viewpoints freely.
And this is - it's important to emphasize that this is really a shift in Turkey, which is a country with a strong tradition of parliamentary
democracy. And for many in Turkey's opposition, even some who have been sympathetic to the president in the past, this
represents a shift away from democracy and open debate.
JONES: Flexing his muscle power on the foreign fields as well. Militarily, we have been talking about these strikes, Turkish strikes on
Kurdish forces, on Kurds, that actually ended up taking out American allies as well.
What is the biggest threat to Turkey at the moment? Do they consider the biggest threat to be Kurdish separatists or ISIS?
MALSIN: Yeah, that's a really important point. I mean, the United States and Turkey were already on a collision course here with these air strikes
against Kurdish forces in Syria and Iraq. This place is the U.S. and Turkey, hurdling along that collision course even faster, because from
Turkey's point of view, Kurdish advances in Syria simply mean replacing one terrorist group, ISIS, with another which is the YPG, which is an off shoot
of the PKK, which is a Kurdish militant group which is fighting the Turkish state inside Turkey.
And so from their standpoint, this is taking one security threat and replacing it with one that is equal to or a greater threat to their
security. And it's a real political dilemma, because from the United States' standpoint there simply isn't a better option in terms of rolling
back ISIS in Syria. And the Trump administration seems determined to proceed with a strategy for taking the city of Raqqa, which is the de facto
capital of ISIS in partnership with those same Kurdish forces.
JONES: The United States had said that it's not pleased, shall we say, about these strikes on the Kurdish forces. Will that rattle President
Erdogan? Will it make him change course?
MALSIN: Well, it's a continuation and a kind of escalation of a debate that you've been seeing between Ankara and Washington for a couple of years
now. And I think things are starting to come to a boiling point where you have a direct confrontation, Turkey striking Kurdish forces that are
directly allied with the United States in Syria. And there's a need for both of these -- all sides here, really,
to really hash out these important issues, or else this is going to continue. Once U.S. backed forces move into Raqqa, if indeed they proceed
with this strategy of supporting Kurdish forces in Syria, from Turkey's standpoint, they expect those same forces to turn their attention back to
Turkey and continue the kinds of attacks on security forces and civilians inside Turkey that have claimed hundreds of lives
in the past, even in the last couple of years.
JONES: Very interesting. We've been saying it's a mess. It sounds like it very much is, but thank you for clearing up some of the points there
with your analysis.
Jared Malsin from TIME magazine in Istanbul. Thank you.
Now do stay with us here on Connect the World, the latest word's headlines are just ahead.
Plus, a show of U.S. military might on the doorstep of Russia. We'll see why the world's most advanced combat jet was deployed to a base in Eastern
[11:30:18] JONES: Now, we're hearing from the other French presidential candidate who
will face off against Macron on May 7. Marine Le Pen says the world is witnessing a populist uprising against the elite class. She spoke to
CNN's Melissa Bell during a special program on the French network TF1. Here's part of their exchange.
MARINE LE PEN, FRENCH PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE (through translator): What is happening is certainly a revolt against elites. The people get the feeling
that the elites have been working for their own personal interests and they have forgotten the huge responsibility that they've got in regard to
people. And so people are saying we want to take back power. We don't trust the elites anymore. We need to take back the power. And we want to
be sovereign once again. And that's probably what happened with Brexit, and probably what happened with the election of Donald Trump
whose campaign was conducted in extremely difficult circumstances, because he was confronted by a wall, which was almost impenetrable - media,
actors, singers, and performers were all against him. Everything that makes up the oligarchy. This distrust is now spreading across Europe.
MELISSA BELL, CNN PARIS CORRESPONDENT (through translator): You're right, it is spreading throughout Europe, and that's something we've been
following very closely, and indeed in the run-up to this first round, we felt this anger building in France and got the feeling that you could in
fact, succeed. Your difficulty now, though, in the run up to the second round is that you will have to convince the other parts of the French
electorate, 50 percent of them, that you are not the candidate of anger and that you can bring them together around a single common project.
What is your strategy?
LE PEN (through translator): Just look at how our president of the republic has been behaving in relation to other countries as well as those
people immediately around him of which, of course, Mr. Macron is one because he's the candidate of Hollande. I have never seen an attitude as
this. I'm completely level-headed and clear in this respect. I am absolutely against double standards and for a multi-polar world. I think
that what the nations of the world cannot put up with are double standards. The French are often reproached for their arrogance and for giving lessons
to other people. I don't have that vision at all. I want a peaceful relationship with all the nations, with the United States, with Russia, and
with the UK.
What have we seen in the last couple of months? We've seen the U.S. president more or less insulted by the President of France, those who voted
for Brexit insulted as well, as for Russia, well, I don't want to even say how the president of France talks about Russia.
This means we're at war with everyone - with Poland, whom we call all kinds of names, with the Greeks. But I don't have that vision at all. Once
again, I believe that I am the candidate who is capable of having absolutely peaceful relations with all the nations of the world, because
what nations want is respect. Everyone wants to be respected. And that goes for the French as well -- their way of life, their choices, their
identify, that's exactly the policy which will be mine.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
JONES: Marine Le Pen there was speaking to CNN's Melissa Bell. And it's a powerful sight that sends a powerful message: the world's most advanced
combat jet is now flying the skies over Estonia, a country on Russia's doorstep. CNN's Fred Pleitgen got an exclusive first-hand look at the
FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): America's newest weapon, the F-35, in the skies over Eastern Europe, right
where confrontations with Russia frequently happen. CNN was given exclusive access to the U.S. stealth combat jet's first ever forward deployment.
Training with allied air forces is central experience for the crews, a pilot tells me.
BRYAN BLACKBURN, U.S. AIR FORCE: We're continuing to forward deploy and bolster our native allies. And so, it's just our cooperation and to bolster
the NATO alliance.
PLEITGEN: We rode along on a tanker plane refueling the F-35 as they transited to Estonia -- a country on the border with Russia and worried
about Moscow's aggressive posture in recent years.
(on camera): With the deployment of the F-35, the U.S. is sending a very clear message both to Russia but also to its partner nations, that it's
willing to put its newest and most advanced asset into this area to make sure it's allies are safe.
Russia's air force is increasingly flying planes like the nuclear capable TU-95 bomber around this area. NATO jets often scrambling to intercept
President Trump has only recently stopped calling the NATO alliance obsolete. Now, the F-35 deployment, another welcome sign of American
commitment, Estonia's defense minister tells me.
[11:35:15] MARGUS TSAHKNA, ESTONIAN DEFENSE MINISTER: This is very important to send this message, that this is the border of NATO, this is
the eastern border of (inaudible) that is we are ready to protect them.
PLEITGEN: As part of this deployment, the F-35 crews get to know this contested airspace and practice cooperation with other NATO air forces. As
tensions with Moscow show no sign of easing, this plane could become a staple of NATO's eastern fringe.
JONES: We're live in the studio with more.
This F-35 jet then is good news for NATO, something of a slap in the face to Moscow.
It of is, and it certainly is very important to not just Estonia, but many other NATO partners especially there in the northeastern part of NATO. So,
you're talking about Poland, Latvia, Lithuania and then of course Estonia as well.
These are the areas where you frequently have Russian planes that are close to the area, but also countries that generally are quite worried about some
of the moves that Russia has been making over the past couple of years.
The Russia, for their part, of course they feel very differently about all this. They accuse NATO of militarizing the border area with Russia. They
say that that's a threat to them.
So, yes, in many ways it is a show of force towards the Russians and certainly not something that they will appreciate, especially with a lot of
the rhetoric that we've been seeing over the past couple of years.
JONES: Fred, thanks very much indeed.
We're going to take you now, though, live to D.C., to Washington, where Donald Trump, the U.S. president, is currently signing another executive
order. This is the antiquities act executive order. Let's just listen in.
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Eliminating the ability of the people who actually live in those states to decide how best to use that
land. Today we are putting the states back in charge, it's a big thing. I'm pleased to be joined by so many members of congress and governors who
have been waiting for this moment, including Governor Herbert of Utah. Thank you. Thank you, governor; Governor LePage of Maine who, by the way,
has lost a lot of weight. I knew him when he was heavy, and now I know him when he's thin. And I like him both ways, OK? You've done great job.
Governor Calvo of Guam, thank you. Governor Torres from the Northern Mariana Islands, thank you. Thank you, governor.
I also want to recognize Senator Orrin Hatch, who believe me, he's tough. He would call me and call me and say you got to do this. Is that right,
Orrin? You didn't stop. He doesn't give up. And he's shocked that I'm doing it, but I'm doing it because it's the right thing to do. But I
really have to point you out, you didn't stop.
And Mike, the same thing, so many people feel Mike Lee, so many people feel so strongly about this. And so I appreciate your support and you're
prodding and your never ending prodding I should say, because we're now getting something done that many people thought would never ever get done.
And I'm very proud to be doing it in honor of you guys, OK, thank you.
All together the previous administration by-passed the states to place over 265 million acres, that's a lot of land...
JONES: If you are joining us, President Donald Trump is signing yet another executive order there in Washington. It's called the Antiquities
Act executive order. And you can see there it's about federal land. Basically it gives him the power to review national monument designations
that his three predecessors, three previous presidents have made. That's over more than
So, previous rules that have safeguarded federal land could now be overturned by Donald Trump, the new U.S. president, and that is just what
he's just about to sign as an executive order.
Live from London, this is Connect the World. Coming up, Brazil is known for its grass-fed beef, but it often comes at a high cost for some cattle
workers. How a friar is battling labotr exploitation on Brazilian ranches.
[11:41:48] JONES: You're watching CNN. This is Connect the World. I'm Hannah Vaughan Jones in London. Welcome back.
In this episode of the Freedom Project we look at Brazil, renowned for its grass-fed beef. But workers on some cattle ranches in Brazil labor for
years with no pay, even that industry sometimes involved slave labor.
Our Shasta Darlington has a look at how one man is fighting back.
SHASTA DARLINGTON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Here in northern Brazil cows feast on a rolling pasture carved out of the semi-Amazon jungle. The
famous grass-fed beef are stable at home and shift off to foreign markets from Hong Kong to the U.K.
Few consumers even think about the human cost. Xavier Plassat, however, has made it his life's mission. A French Dominican friar on the front line in
the battle against extreme labor exploitation, what Brazil defines as modern day slavery.
XAVIER PLASSAT, BRAZIL-BASED DOMINICAN FRIAR: The main point about slavery is that somebody wants to make profit with zero cost. And here more than
everywhere is easy. You want frontier of farming or wrenching.
DARLINGTON: Araguaina a typical frontier town where the mechanic shop looks like a triage center for tractors and the only markets are farmers markets.
PLASSAT: How are you?
DARLINGTON: Good to see you.
It's here that Plassat works with the Catholic Pastoral Land Commission or CPT. Coordinating the national campaign against exploitation. He says
roughly 25,000 Brazilians are lured into slave- like conditions every year.
PLASSAT: The roots is mainly the extreme vulnerability of the entire communities who are, have no access to the rights.
DARLINGTON: But he's fighting back with a network of agents and informants in those same communities who sent tips to federal authorities. This has
gotten some of the church activists killed.
PLASSAT: I don't say we want to be martyrs. It's not the -- we tried to be present to share the suffering and to help them.
DARLINGTON: With the help of the Pastoral Commission more than 50,000 workers have been rescued since 1995 when the government created it's anti-
exploitation mobile units.
Joao Luiz da Costa is one of them. He was rescued in a raid at the day before. He tells me he hadn't been paid for seven months but never wanted
to ask for help.
JOAO LUIZ DA COSTA, RANCH WORKER (through translator): If my family had found me in that situation I would have been so (Inaudible). I prayed to
God for help I've never been a burden on any.
DARLINGTON: Now Costa is staying at a safe house provided by the Pastoral Commission.
So, from what Joao is saying the commission really has reputation among real workers this is where they go when they need help.
PLASSAT: Yes, it seems to be.
DARLINGTON: But Plassat warns that Brazil is in danger of sliding backwards as it cuts spending on the mobile units.
PLASSAT: Today they work with, I think four national teams. Eight years ago they had 10 national teams.
DARLINGTON: Government inspectors themselves say diminishing resources lead to huge delays in following up on those tips.
One of the main tools used to shame employers and to compliance has also been undermined. Every year, the labor men as republishes a dirty list of
companies cut exploiting workers. But recently, its publications has been repeatedly blocked. Then there's the increasingly powerful rural lobby in
the national Congress which has push to relax Brazil's very broad definition of slave labor.
Most important, Plassat says, Brazil has failed to tackle the root of exploitation.
[11:46:13] PLASSAT: Impunity, greed, vulnerability, misery, if you don't address at the same time all of it, you will have probably the same persons
coming back to the same cycle of slavery.
DARLINGTON: The question for now remains, at what cost is our beef being produced?
Shasta Darlington, CNN, Araguaina, Brazil.
JONES: And coming up on Thursday, modern day slavery in Mexico. Rafael Romo meets a woman who spent three decades as a domestic slave.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RAFAEL ROMO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: She was forced to do housework and care for the other children. She was not paid and she remembers the lady of the
house gave her only leftover scraps to eat and not giving her a bed.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (through translator): She would say that we indigenous people were used to sleeping on the floor like animals. She had a sofa but
wouldn't let me use it because she said I was going to ruin it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
JONES: We will have her story and more on the victims of slavery in Mexico, that's Thursday on the CNN Freedom Project.
Live from London, this is Connect the World. Coming up, a World Cup, four Champions Leagues, eight La Ligas, Xavi has done it all. Now he tells our
Becky Anderson about his next goal.
JONES: You're watching CNN. This is Connect the World. I'm Hannah Vaughan Jones. Welcome back.
A Brazilian footballer who was convicted of murder has been ordered to return to jail. Bruno Fernandez D'Souza was released on a technicality
back in February and was signed up by the club Boa Esporte (ph). But a supreme court panel ordered the reinstatement of his detention. He was
convicted of homicide, kidnapping, and hiding the body of an ex-girlfriend and sentenced to 22 years in jail.
Now, football supporters around the world will be watching closely as Barcelona and Real
Madrid fight it out for the La Liga title. Among them will be Xavi. The Barcelona legend joined Qatari club Al Saad (ph) in 2015. And not content
with eight, eight La Ligas, four Champion's Leagues, two European Championship, oh, and a World Cup for good measure, he tells our Becky
Anderson that he has serious ambitions to be a coach.
[11:50:25] XAVIER HERNANDEZ CREUS, SPANISH FOOTBALLER: They love football. They love football a lot, a lot, a lot. Football is just (inaudible) of
their passions. They love sport in general. Qatar is investing a lot in sport. And above all, in the World Cup. The have the tournament in just
under six years. And it's a very, very clear objective to be competitive. And so that's why (inaudible).
ANDERSON: It is unlikely that the national team will qualify for 2018. Some people are saying the dream is over before it's even begun. What do
you say to that?
CREUS (through translator): It's a shame because they have good players, a good team. The objective here is compete at the 2022 World Cup. I'm here
to help them be more competitive, (inaudible) the best we can.
ANDERSON: Are you absolutely confident they can pull this off and that this will be a fantastic tournament in 2022?
CREUS (through translator): Yes, I'm totally certain it will be an extraordinary tournament. (inaudible) relatively small. Players won't
have to travel far and fans will be able to see many games in a day. It will be an historic World Cup. I also (inaudible). I want to be a
football manager. I want to be a manager. (inaudible) Jordan, Lebanon, Nepal et cetera. I'm not just (inaudible) to play football, I'm
ANDERSON: You are on record as saying that after these stint as a player, you're looking to get into coaching. There will be many people hear in
Qatar who hope that you would be considering the job as coach, I'm sure, here going forward to 2022. So, tell us, what are your plans?
CREUS: I don't know. I don't know.
(through translator): I want to be a football manager. I want to be a football manager. But it's a long way away, the World Cup is in 2022.
It's an objective to help them have a good tournament. And then, in my mind, I have it to come back to FC Barcelona.
ANDERSON: If you are offered the Barca job once you've got your coaching qualification, would you take it? First job out of school as it were?
CREUS: I don't know the future. I don't know the future. Maybe it will be a possibility.
JONES: In tonight's Parting Shots, the White House has been churning out dozens of executive orders. U.S. President Donald Trump just signed one on
the use of parkland. We saw that about 20 minutes ago. And he's about to sign another now to review education. As Jeanne Moos reports, they are
giving the president's critics plenty of material.
JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): President Trump rarely seems happier than when he's signing executive orders.
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Anybody want to watch me sign?
MOOS: And he's getting lots of practice.
TRUMP: We're very proud of this one.
MOOS: He'll have signed more executive orders in his first 100 days than any president since World War II.
TRUMP: Doesn't get much bigger than that.
MOOS: Though he used to bash President Obama for doing it.
TRUMP: And he goes around signing all these executive orders. It's a basic disaster. You can't do it.
MOOS: Oh, yes, he can.
TRUMP: So do we have the executive order, please.
MOOS: But holding up an executive order can leave the president holding the bag. Make that the fox or the panda or the microwave. At the Twitter
account "Trump Draws," the president draws like a kid and spells like one, too. Often the drawings relate to the news. For instance, when the
president informed China's leader over dessert that U.S. missiles had been launched against Syria --
TRUMP: And we had the most beautiful piece of chocolate cake that you've ever seen.
MOOS: That resulted in this.
"New York Magazine" says an L.A. visual effects artist, who wants to remain anonymous, told the magazine the Twitter account wrote itself when he saw
the leader of the free world holding up paper.
MOOS (on camera): There's even a meme generator that lets you create your own executive orders.
MOOS (voice-over): For instance, you could decree, grab them by the you know what jokes shall be banned. Or after an audience in Berlin dissed his
daughter, hissing at Ivanka Trump shall be punishable by flogging. So the next time the president holds up one of those executive orders, blowing his
own horn, that order could keep on trucking who knows where.
Jeanne Moos, CNN, New York.
[11:55:11] JONES: OK, I'm going to make up an executive order right now. I, Hannah Vaughan Jones, hereby request and require that you surf on over
to Facebook.com/cnnconnect. It's got all the best stuff from our show today and every other show, of course. You can also find me on Twitter.
I'm @HvaugahnJones. So, do get in touch.
Now, before we round out the show, United Airlines just took another public relations hit, but it doesn't involve a passenger, well not exactly. The
airline is expressing its condolences for the death of a 10-month-old giant rabbit named Simon on a flight from London to Chicago. Well, this is the
rabbit that sired Simon. As you can see, it's one of the largest in the world.
Simon's breeder says the bunny had a check up before boarding the plane at Heathrow and was
perfectly healthy. United for its part says it's investigating. RIP Simon.
I'm Hannah Vaughan Jones, that was Connect the World, thanks so much for watching.