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U.K. Election Polls Tighten with Security in Focus; British Airways CEO Apologizes for Flight Delays; Putin Slams Sanctions During French Visit; Trusty CNN Camper Van Rides Again;

Aired May 29, 2017 - 16:00:00   ET


[16:00:00] RICHARD QUEST, CNN ANCHOR: No trading in London or New York. Holidays on both sides of the Atlantic. Late spring break. And our tour

of the United Kingdom begins with Freddie Brexit. It is Monday, it is the 29th of May.

Tonight, British party leaders face-off with the election focused squarely on security. The chief executive of British Airways says he won't quit

after the airlines weekend of misery and woe for passengers. And no delays on our great British road trip, yes, Freddie Brexit, proud chariot of the

road is back in action. I'm Richard Quest. Tonight, live from the capital of Wales, Cardiff, where of course I mean business.

And a very good evening to you from Cardiff where the weather has been pretty awful throughout the course of the day. But if everything we're

told is right it's going to at least remain dry. Well, the politics may be a bit wet or a bit dry but at least the weather tonight is going to be dry

and the details that we're talking about.

Tonight, the polls are getting tighter as the party leaders return to the front lines of the U.K. election campaign. There are ten days to go until

voters head to the ballot box and there is a renewed focus on security and on Britain's future post Brexit. The leaders, the Prime Minister Theresa

May, the leader of the opposition, Jeremy Corbyn, are both appearing tonight on British television. Remember the Prime Minister has refused to

do a party debate on television. Instead they will be grilled separately on key policies. That's happening any time now.

In the opinion polls the conservatives seemingly are up 43 percent. Labour is at 36 percent. Liberal Democrats have 9 percent and UKIP is at 4

percent. Theresa May return to the campaign trail after a week after Manchester's terror attack. And the Prime Minister said this vote comes

down to whom voters want to lead Britain out of the EU and she wants to shift the attention in this campaign back to Brexit.


THERESA MAY, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: It's about a simple question which is who has the will and crucially the plan to deliver on Brexit and make a

success of it. And that's important because those negotiations will start just 11 days after polling day. And there won't be any putting it off. It

won't be possible to stall it. The Europeans are ready. That's the timetable that is being set. So, the question is who do people want to see

on that plane going over to Brussels to negotiate and stand up for Britain.


QUEST: Now the election is next Thursday and we have with us Freddie Brexit a fine van that's going to take us on the road. 1977 by the way,

for those of you that want to know a little bit about the history. We'll tell you more about it later in the program and what Freddie has been

doing. But we are in Cardiff tonight, at the start of our grand tour to meet the voters. A majority Labour area It voted to remain in the EU. On

Tuesday, we move to Newport which is again majority Labour and Newport, perhaps some would say somewhat a university voted to leave. Especially

bearing in mind the resources they get from the EU.

Wednesday and it's business by the seaside. Tourism faces an uncertain future and we're in Weston-super-Mare. Then Thursday, farming at the Royal

Bath and West show. Dependent on EU subsidies, also wrapped up in EU red tape. And our weekend is in Windsor. A conservative strong hold and you

can follow the trip right the way along at #DriveWithQuest. Off he goes. A week has pasted since the deadly attack in Manchester. It'll be a we can

just an hour and 1/2 from now. Putting security issues front and center.

Today, Police issued a new image showing the bomber, Salman Abedi. They're appealing for people who might have seen him carrying a blue suitcase

between May 18th and the 22nd in Manchester. Meanwhile, the British intelligence, MI5 has launched an internal investigation into whether it

missed warnings about Abedi.

[16:05:00] Over the weekend the U.K.'s threat level was reduced. Lowered from critical to severe. So, people here in Cardiff and how they are

reacting one week on from the horrific attack security is very much on voters' minds.


QUEST (voice-over): The local police are here armed and watching with a security presence that was by no means intrusive. It allowed Jill and

Arian Thomas to enjoy their Sunday drink and consider the British Prime Minister, Theresa May, and how she has handled the crisis.

JILL THOMAS, BRITISH VOTER: Well, I think she's a very strong person. I think, you know, she's capable of doing what she says. And I do believe

she is a person that has got principles. And I think people are raw with what has happened and they feel they need strong leadership.

QUEST: The police said to people to enjoy the weekend but be vigilant. Next weekend in Cardiff will be more significant. The city is hosting the

European Champions League Final. A massive football event that will make the capitol of Wales the center of the football world.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Millions of people coming two Cardiff in the next week or so for the champions league. We just need more protection I think on

our border controlling. Allowing the right number of refugees into the country. These poor people are going through terrible, terrible atrocities

in their own land but we need to ensure that our borders are safe.

QUEST: Safe borders is something everyone agrees upon. It's who will best provide them that has this husband and wife Lee and Derick Park


DERICK PARK, BRITISH VOTER: After 40 years we don't agree on anything.

QUEST (on camera): But do you agree that security has become a greater issue in this election now as a result of Manchester.

PARK: Security has become a greater issue in respect of this action. Security. That will be the prime importance of our political leader. And

I think they've lost-- they've taken their eye off the ball a little bit in the past but this is brought it back very quickly.

QUEST (voice-over): Whatever the response the reality of Manchester lingers on.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I can't explain it at the moment. It's still a shock. And I mean, to target children is -- you can't explain it when it comes to


QUEST: Practical solutions for real problems. Now the politicians have to convince voters their party has the answers.


QUEST: Everybody agrees it was an atrocity what happened in Manchester. For the three main parties, the goal is to draw clear lines between there

national security policies. And this is what the manifesto suggests. The Conservatives say they'll strengthen the police and the security services

and include protection of critical infrastructure whilst bolstering responses to things like cyber threats.

Labor says it is going to address growing problems of extreme or violent radicalization, would review the governments antiterror prevent strategy.

And the Liberal Democrats say they will scrap, prevent and replace it with a community based scheme.

So, our student panel tonight, Lucy Golding is representing the Conservative voter. Emlyn Pratt is representing Labour voter. And Usman

Mahmood Bukhari is a Liberal Democrat voter. Let's start with yourself. The Prime Minister when she called this election had a 20-point lead in the

opinion polls suggested by most people. That has almost evaporated to 5, 6 to 10 to 12 points. What has gone wrong? Is it security that's caused


LUCY GOLDING, CONSERVATIVE STUDENT VOTER: Honestly, I'm not entirely sure. It's more gaining traction than the conservatives losing if anything. I

think they have new policies. It will be interesting to new voters especially young people. I'm not sure how founded a lot of the policies


QUEST: On security, for example, how worried are you that security is an issue in this election?

GOLDING: I think recently especially with the events of Manchester, definitely a lot more so. Until now wasn't so much. I think the

government has proved its doing a good prevent scheme. It's been very effective at stopping thousands of attacks where ever it can.

QUEST: The voters don't seem to like many of the policies of Jeremy Corbyn, but Labour has made traction in the polls.

EMLYN PRATT, LABOUR STUDENT VOTER: Well, I disagree with you, they don't like our policies. I'd be glad to hear the Conservative saying that, ah,

they're getting some traction. But I think, you know, people are listening to our policies and that's why we're gaining in the polls. I think Jeremy

Corbyn has been given a very hard time by sections of the media and people don't mind listing.

QUEST: But of this question of radicalization.

[16:10:00] I mean, we're hear at a University, a university that has an Islamic study center, a well renowned and extremely reputable one. But the

Deputy Vice Chancellor was saying it is an issue that people have to be concerned about at universities like this. Would you agree?

PRATT: Obviously, security say big concern and there's an element that people have to be concerned about. In relation to security particularly as

much as you talk about it there's massive cuts to sections like the police and I'm glad to see that Labour will be investing in areas like hopefully

to make us more secure.

QUEST: Your party, the Liberal Democrats, it's difficult to know where the party stands on the question of security.

USMAN MAHMOOD BUKHARI, LIBERAL DEMOCRAT STUDENT VOTER: Yes, security has been much more ambiguous because of the stance of the European Union as you

may know, but I think we've always said that leaving the EU would make security much more --

QUEST: I heard the former Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg, this morning on the radio, advancing arguments for how promotion of security. But the

reality is the U.K. is leaving.

BUKHARI: Yes. And we agree with that, we'll all leave reluctantly, or we go by choice.

QUEST: Are you?

BUKHARI: Reluctantly. But I believe in regard to security with a community based system and I think there's something that both parties have

not picked on, is that -- someone who is constantly was in a community and a lot of people who feel isolated -- alienated. So, with the Americans

arresting case. But we forget that the Muslim community doesn't -- we're not just in general as a community base, we need to look into these people

as to why they feel outcast and why they cannot integrate into society and that's the liberal thing the way I see it.

QUEST: On this question of what students want, what is for you the defining issue in this election?

PRATT: I think education from a student perspective has to be the main priority and I think students have been effected by a lot of the policies

of the Conservative and Liberal Democrat government that went before. With tuition fees rising, scoffing of maintenance grants. And things like that

that are effecting students particularly from poorer backgrounds.

QUEST: He's got a point, hasn't he? The money has gone up 9,000 a year it costs. Which is low compared to what they might pay in the United States.

But it's now costing you 9,000 pounds a year.

GOLDING: You might say that but the amount of people actually going to university and the demographics there's almost no real decline. There are

still huge grants in there. There are huge loans out there. The actual figures of people going to university is almost no different whatsoever so

that's more theoretical than practical claim there.

QUEST: Is this an election that had to happen?

BUKHARI: Well, you can argue whether it had to happen or not all you like. It's here. It's happening. But I think --

QUEST: I suppose what I'm saying is, there are many people that feel it has just been all too much. There was a general election, then a

referendum and one might say your party leader said he wasn't going to go to the country. She's reversed herself on national insurance in the budget

and she has reversed herself on social care cap.

GOLDING: That may be true. I don't think that politicians should have to say that they can absolutely never change what they're going to not say or

they're going to do in the interest of the country and I don't think that's necessarily a negative thing. This general election is to strengthen our

hand in Brexit negotiations.

PRATT: Well, I think, you know, if politicians get a bad stick, they're going back on manifesto promises once again elected. I think this is the

first case that I know of any way of a party going back on a manifesto promise before the election. I think it was a bit of vanity election

called by Theresa May because she thought she'd win.

QUEST: You get the last word because you're the third in the polls. It's not often that one finds that situation.

BUKHARI: It's fine but you know, the Lib Dems are the biggest numbers ever. And we shall be growing quite a bit. Fastest growing party but to

go back into in regard ifs the election should happen or not. My personal view is I think it's a very cynical approach to say it was to grab voters

are not, but I think --

QUEST: Oh, come on politicians do it all the time. Good to see you. Thank you very much indeed for joining us. It's going to be a good

election. Any time people get a chance to speak it's well worth it. Many thanks for joining us.

Later in the program the effect on Cardiff. We'll have the Deputy Vice Chancellor who will be giving us the real financial numbers for this


The British Home Secretary is seeking to assure Germany and the leaders of Europe. Amber Rudd, says the U.K. will continue to seek a deep and special

partnership with the EU even after it's no longer a member. Comments are prompted by a new campaign from rhetoric from Angela Merkel after G7 and

NATO meetings that were dominated by friction with Donald Trump. It is the looming cloud of Brexit. Angela Merkel says it's now time for Europe to

fight for its own future.


[16:15:00] ANGELA MERKEL, GERMAN CHANCELLOR (through translator): We are convinced Transatlanticists and precisely because we are you know that

Transatlantic relations are of immense importance for us at all. They rest on mutual values and interests. Particularly when we are in times as we

are now of intense challenges. The last few days showed me that the days where we could completely rely on others are over.


QUEST: Alexander Stubb is the former Prime Minister of Finland, joins me now via Skype from Helsinki. OK, I know she is talking to an electorate at

a time of an election but what did she mean when she said we can't fully rely on some of our allies.

ALEXANDER STUBB, FORMER FINNISH PRIME MINISTER (via Skype): To be quite honest I think her statements have been completely blown out of proportion.

She's basically saying this ever since January and I think she is right. She has analyzed that Brexit and the election of Donald Trump has forced

Europe to take more responsibility about its own future. And I think she was just was very honest about it and I don't think it was too much

election campaigning.

QUEST: Right, but if she is suggesting -- what's the old line, you want the Russians out, the Americans in and the Germans down, what they used to

say after the second world war. Is she suggesting a shift in some way, this was a very bizarre way to do it. At a Bavarian beer festival or some

other odd sort of speech. If it is a major policy change.

STUBB: I don't think it's a major policy change but what I think that a lot of Europeans must understand, that after the election of Donald Trump

the United States has left a power vacuum. And that power vacuum will be filled by someone. Someone who takes the lead on trade. Someone that

takes the lead on values. Someone that takes the lead for instance on military questions. And what she is probably trying to say is that it's

perhaps time for the Europeans to take a little bit more responsibility. It was easy for us to sit around tables and bicker when we knew we had the

full attention back up of the United States. Now that we don't necessarily always have it I think she is right to point this out.

QUEST: Even if she is right, Alex, to point this out, there is one fundamental problem, it is the inability of the EU to sort of, to come up

with a common policy other than -- let us just take for example migrants and the dispute within the membership over how to handle the migrant

question. If you start asking for leadership from the EU you pretty much are going to end up out of luck. It's only when national governments

decide to leave that you do get that full way forward, correct?

STUBB: Yes, I think you right and you mentioned the asylum crisis. That's one of the big issues that Europe has to sort out for itself. Remember in

2015 we took in about 1.5 million. Now those figures have come down. And to be quite honest, we must find some kind of a sharing system to do that.

And that's probably the message that Angela Merkel is trying to put forward.

Another thing shall probably be talking about as well is the future of the euro. How are we going to deal with that? What is our security structure

going to be? So, there's many issues that Europe really needs to work on. But if I may, Richard, there's one thing that I do think is very important

to outline and that is common values that we still hold between the United States and Europe. And those common values will not separate us no matter

who is the President or who is the Chancellor, we must in that sense keep the Transatlantic relations alive.

QUEST: You say that Alex, those common values but what are those common values? If you take the current administration there doesn't seem to be

too many common values. President Trump couldn't even explicitly reinforce the Article 5 commitment of NATO when he gave his speech.

STUBB: Yes, well two points on that. First one is, remember what Angela Merkel said when President Trump was elected. She said we would like to

continue to work with you on the values of democracy, freedom, free markets, not protectionism, et cetera, et cetera. We'll work on that

basis. Then the second point is remember the United States still has a very strong system of checks and balances. So, the values that have been

engraved in the U.S. constitution they haven't gone anywhere no matter who is the president. But thirdly I do agree with you to be quite honest I

think Donald Trump standing in front of a 9/11 memorial at NATO and not mentioning Article 5 was in my mind a little bit of bad taste.

[16:20:03] QUEST: Alex Stubb, former Finnish Prime Minister joining us from Helsinki. Thank you, sir.

As we continue tonight, chief executive of British airways apologizes profusely as the airlines chronic IT problems continue to ground flights

and leave passengers stranded. This is QUEST MEANS BUSINESS tonight, coming from Cardiff University where it's a pleasant enough evening at the



QUEST: Union flag flies at half-staff over Cardiff University in memory of those, of course, from the Manchester terrorist bomb. It's GUEST MEANS

BUSINESS tonight, coming live from Cardiff University. It is a bank holiday weekend. And of course, our continuing coverage, the starting of

our coverage as we travel across Britain.

It's the third straight day of disruption for British Airways passengers. Nearly 75,000 customers have been effected by a disastrous IT crash. Now

the crash effected people in 70 countries. That's all the countries that British Airways flies too. The tech crisis is still forcing British

airways to cancel flights. Trade unions have denounced the airline for outsourcing some of its IT work. However, Alex Cruz, the company's chief

executive, has rejected the criticism and says BA will compensate customers.


ALEX CRUZ, CEO, BRITISH AIRWAYS: We are profusely, profusely apologetic about what has happened. We are very conscious of the hardship that many

of our customers have had to go through on the way to their holidays, sometimes on the way to personal events. They also have had to wait in

airport cues. We're absolutely fully committed to fulfill our obligations when it comes down to compensation.


QUEST: Samuel Burke is with us in London and joins us. And Samuel, the issue here is more than just the people effected, although, that is pretty

awful and the size and scale. It really does go to the airline industry here, doesn't it?

SAMUEL BURKE, CNN TECHNOLOGY & BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: Absolutely. On the one hand, you could say great it wasn't a cyberattack. But on the other

hand, this wasn't an unforced error. But you know better than anybody that delays, cancellations and frustrations caused by an IT issue is not

something that just British airways has been facing the last few years.

Let's put up that list for our viewers to see that you and I have been going back and forth on all day long. You had British airways. You have

Delta. They've had two incidents in the past years including a small fire which propelled them to a similar situation to what British are

experiencing in the past few days.

[16:25:00] Southwest Airlines, 2015 and 16, software issues. And just earlier this year United Airlines, they had to ground all domestic flights

in the U.S. for about two hours. Again, a software problem. And what we hear from people over and over again in the tech industry telling us is

that this is more about the relationship that the airlines have with tech. That they haven't made that big investment in overhauling their systems.

They made it in smaller tech investments. Improving the app. Luggage tracking, automated kiosks but it's really the industry as a whole that

needs to change or they might face regulation from the U.S. and the U.K.

QUEST: Now that's a core issue for the airline industry. Tonight, how is British Airways recovering the network?

BURKE: Well, they're having to do it, first, with humans. They say you have to have this human backup system but what we're seeing right now is

the human backup system. But basically, if this is indeed what British Airways is portraying it as, as a power surge that caused messaging

outages. It really is a question of just being able to switch over to the other system. So, inevitably that's what they're doing but it takes time.

Not only to do that but then to catch up. The computers aren't trained in how to deal with three days now of backlogged flights. So, you can only

have computers do so much until a human comes in and says we have all of these humans there so that's the process that they're going through right


QUEST: Samuel Burke who is in London, thank you.

Gil Hecht is the chief executive of Continuity Software. Gil Hecht joins me from Tel Aviv in Israel. You heard Samuel talking there about the way

in which the airlines have failed to keep up. But no airline knowingly or willingly sort of wants their IT systems to fall over knowing the

interoperability of the system that will ground the airline.

GIL HECHT, CEO, CONTINUITY SOFTWARE: Yes, that's correct. But the reality is that everyone corporate is suffering from down time. Every corporate is

suffering from downtime. In fact, every corporate is even suffering from big loss events, which are way worse. They're just not as common, of


QUEST: So, what do you believe needs to be done? Is it a question of spending more? Or is it a question of spending better?

HECHT: That's a great question but the answer is somewhat complex. When you look at how airlines build their IT systems you look at many, many

layers with hundreds or sometimes thousands of servers. Very, very complex system that in many ways also interact in government services and other

airlines so it's a very complex network of IT components. In general --

QUEST: Hang on. Let me interrupt you. If you're right, if you're right but that's restating the situation. We know it's complex. But the point

is have they become too complex for their own good so that when they fail, they inevitably take the whole network down.

HECHT: Yes, that's a very good question. British Airways just like any other corporate is building many layers of defense. They have their core

production system and then they have, it's like an onion. They have many layers of defense. Many layers of redundancy essentially. The thing is

testing this redundancy is relatively expensive and very time consuming. So, yes, airlines can do a better job by testing more frequently. They can

do a better job by simplifying and designing their high availability and continuous availability systems better. But the bottom line it is complex

and let's also remember one more thing, for airlines, the most important thing is flight safety. The second most important thing is their

availability of systems. It's less important than flight safety, thank god.

QUEST: Gil Hecht from Continuity Software. Thank you.

As we continue tonight. By the way, if you want to follow our voyage or journey across England you can do so. It's #DriveWithQuest. It's also an

opportunity there for you to perhaps tweet me with the issue that you want us to know about. And for those that want to know a little bit more about

Freddie Brexit our fine chariot of the road, well, later in the program we will be showing you what Freddie has been up to over the cold winter

months. How we managed to Freddie -- and Peter, if you zoom in you'll be able to see how we made the change, because U.K. in or out.

[16:30:02] It became quite clear that we had to get rid of the "In", since the people had clearly chosen that the U.K. was going to be out. That was

the best way to do it. Otherwise we'd have had to repaint the whole thing and frankly, that was quite difficult. You get the idea. So, you get the

idea. Now, well, I'm just being honest with you.

One of the U.K.'s most significant exports is education and it comes from foreign students that come here to the U.K. We'll go back to school for a

course in Brexit-ology as we continue. It's QUEST MEANS BUSINESS. We're at Cardiff University, the capital of Wales.


QUEST: Hello, I'm Richard Quest. There's more QUEST MEANS BUSINESS in just moment. When Vladimir Putin says sanctions on Russia are bad for the

global economy. And we'll show you how we got our 1977 camper van dear old Freddie Brexit, back on the road.

But before that, this is CNN and on this network the news always comes first.

British police are asking people to come forward if they saw the Manchester bomber Salman Abedi walking through the city with this suitcase. Police

say he had the suitcase in his possession in the city in the days before the attack and they stress this is a different item than the one used in

last week's bombing.

French President Emmanuel Macron has hosted his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin at the royal palace in Versailles. The two leaders

discussed a range of issues including Syria and the fight against terrorism. When asked Vladimir Putin denied Russia was involved in the

alleged hacking of the Macron campaign saying the claim is not based on any facts.

American golfer TIGER WOODS has been arrested in Florida on suspicion of driving under the influence. We don't know whether he tested positive for

alcohol or drugs, his golf career has been on hold due to a back injury.

President Donald Trump honored America's fallen on Memorial Day at Arlington National Cemetery. Mr. Trump laid a wreath at the Tomb of the

Unknown Soldier and called those that lost their lives in military service angels. The president is returning to domestic duties following his first

overseas trip.

A tiger killed a female zookeeper at the Hamilton Zoo near Cambridge here in the United Kingdom. Zoo officials are calling it a freak accident and

counting on a full investigation. The tiger never escaped its enclosure and was never a safety risk to visitors.

[16:35:00] The deputy vice chancellor here at Cardiff University said she's already feeling the effects of Brexit with a drop-off in applications to

international students. This election could have a profound effect on British Universities. Prime

Minister, Theresa May, is under intense pressure to exclude certain international students from immigration numbers. The same numbers that she

has pledged to bring down. At stake, 430,000 international students that come to British universities each year in fact, the U.K. hosts more than

any other country except the United States.

Those students generate $33 billion if you look at the entire economic effect to the economy. It helped support nearly a quarter of a million

jobs up and down the country. So, before the referendum the UK's university's produced world class students and world class research and

they do it with more than a billion dollars in funding each year from the EU in collaboration. Before the referendum I spoke to the vice chancellor

at the University of Cambridge and remember what he said? Remember what he warned about the research funded by the EU and what would happen if Brexit



LESZEK BORYSIEWICZ, VICE CHANCELLOR AT THE UNIVERSITY OF CAMBRIDGE: The European Union money funds major collaborations on global challenging

areas, allows us to work together easily with colleagues from Switzerland and from anywhere on the continent of Europe, and it's those collaborations

that will result in new treatments for cancer, attempts of getting at dementia. Major international programs. That's what really counts.


QUEST: So that's the situation. Well, Brexit has now been voted on. It is going to happen so his worst-case scenario maybe about to arrive. The

British governments promised it will continue funding research for now at least. Bearing in mind the threats, the fear and the worry. Karen Holford

Is the deputy vice chancellor here at Cardiff and she told me it would be ridiculous and foolish in her words to cut research ties with the EU.


KAREN HOLFORD, DEPUTY VICE CHANCELLOR, CARDIFF UNIVERSITY: We have always worked closely with our Westminster MPs and local government, the Welsh

government AMs to reform them and support them and to let them, you know, let them know of our concerns.

QUEST: What are your concerns?

HOLFORD: The first thing is research funding and access to the brilliant communities of collaboration. The second thing I guess is to retain and

attract the best students and staff. The best and brightest from all over the world but particularly the EU.

QUEST: Isn't it unrealistic for universities to think they can continue to benefit from EU funds after the U. K. has left the European Union?

HOLFORD: I don't think it's unrealistic because the benefits of collaboration are far bigger than the funding issue so we want to make sure

that we have a position where we can contribute fully in both ways. So, we contribute to the EU at the moment and take funding out of the EU.

QUEST: Collaboration will continue of course. You collaborate with other parts of the world all the time and you have a sense of some excellence

here but it all comes down to money and the reality is you're not probably going to be able to get your hands-on EU money.

HOLFORD: The networks need to be funded and it's the means by which they're funded that need to be discussed with our politicians so they need

to negotiate how we're going to carry on funding the research and networks and ability to collaborate with EU. The research papers that we publish,

50 percent of them are written in collaboration with other scholars all over the world. It would be ridiculous and foolish to cut out the EU.

QUEST: That was the fear going into Brexit referendum. That's now happened. The result is not what you all wished for but are the fears

starting to come to fruition?

HOLFORD: I think certainly, yes. In terms of EU students applying for U.K. university there is around about 8 to 10 percent drop in applications

this year and that's really unusual because over the past few years universities have seen a steady rise in applications from the EU, so we're

already seeing the affects but I think also there's the uncertainty because students have been uncertain, so once there is certainty I think that we

will reach a position where we be built again on that.


[16:40:00] QUEST: That is the deputy vice chancellor. Joining me now is Sophie Timbers the president of the Cardiff University students' union.

Thank you, good to see you here. All right listen, what for you is big issue here, bearing in mind place like Cardiff up to 4 percent of the

budget comes from EU money? That could go.

SOPHIE TIMBERS, PRESIDENT OF THE CARDIFF UNIVERSITY STUDENTS' UNION: Yes. The biggest problem I think and especially for students is having their

voices heard from the start. The fact is that Brexit caused quite a bit of a controversy across the student population. There's lots of questions

around what will be the outcome here and it will be a topical conversation over the course of the general election.

QUEST: Brexit is going to happen. You can't revisit that debate as much as you wish to so for universities and students, is it jobs? Is it

overseas students coming in here. Is it the ability for your members to go overseas, what is the big issue for you?

TIMBERS: Well, ultimately there will be a whole variety of issues and it would difficult to pin down exactly what the key issue is. There's a lot

around things of the NHS. Graduate employment as well. So, you come to the university, you are spending a lot of money on tuition fees here. What

actually is the prospect afterwards and what will the feature hold for students and that in itself is an important issue? Things like NHS and

making sure that there's appropriate health care for us and our futures as well.

QUEST: On this question of security, this university has a very well renowned Islamic center. How difficult is it to allow freedom of speech

but to maintain an air of decorum that you don't want radicalization or hate speech on campus?

TIMBERS: Lots of people have different views and opinions and it's important at university to be able to have the freedom of speech here at

Cardiff. Our population voted on a motion to allow students to have a platform and talk about issues and have that freedom of speech here at

Cardiff and that's important.

QUEST: It's a narrow dividing line, though isn't it? Between that and end up with a pro fanatical viewpoint.

TIMBERS: They have the ability to vote on what stance we take as a student's union and how we support our students and what views we take so

actually the students have the opportunity to be able to inform the students union as to how they respond to that but Yes, it is a fuzzy

boundary around kind of actually as long as we sit, we always say as long as it's within the law then we support it of course and making sure they

have the opportunity to have their voices heard.

QUEST: So, when the deputy vice chancellor says to me earlier, she says look we work within the law, we work within the police. If we feel there

are people being radicalized in this university, then obviously we have a duty to report that to the authorities. Do you agree with that?

TIMBERS: I can't answer that question. I'm not allowed to have a view or opinion on that because we have such a variety of views but I would say

that present agenda is something that we have to conform to legally and we support our students.

QUEST: Asking whether you believe people shouldn't be radicalized?

TIMBERS: No, I think they're just making sure that student versus the platform to be able to speak and have their views and opinions but

ultimately, we should be supporting students and any activity that they want to host on campus.

QUEST: Within the law.

TIMBERS: Within the law. Absolutely.

QUEST: Could be a good election.

TIMBERS: It's going to be a very interesting election and we have to make sure that as many students vote as possible because they have really good

influence here at Cardiff central.

QUEST: Good to see you.

TIMBERS: Thank you.


QUEST: We'll have more talking about students and how they are reacting as we continue later in the program, now a new exhibition at the palace of

Versailles celebrates Peter the Great's first visit to France. 300 years later Vladimir Putin met Emmanuel Macron there this Monday a complicated

and thorny relationship was on display. We'll have that in a moment.


QUEST: It was a mostly quiet day on the markets in Europe. London was closed. Paris and Frankfurt were flat, but Milan was down 2 percent. That

the reason Italy is looking ever more likely for an early election and that brings uncertainly for the banks and so obviously, that took its toll on

the Milan market. It's Memorial Day in the United States so no trading on Wall Street. A remarkable scene at the Palace of Versailles in France as

the President Emanuel Macron welcomed Russia's political leader Vladimir Putin. They speak in detail about Ukraine and in a tense wide ranging

press conference Mr. Putin called for the west to lift economic sanctions on his country.


VLADIMIR PUTIN, PRESIDENT, RUSSIA: So, I appeal to you as well as representatives to the French media. You should fight for the lifting of

restrictions on the global economy. Free marketing competition and can help the development of the world economy.


QUEST: Now just by sanctions weighing on the economy Russians harnessed the kind of siege mentally using home grown resources to skirt the

financial meltdown that many had predicted. Matthew Chance has more from Moscow as part of our series, Marketplace Russia.


MATHEW CHANCE, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENCE: It's been slapped into international sanctions among other things it's intervention in

Ukraine. The global oil price on which the economy depends has plunged but Russia has still managed to avoid the financial collapse that many

predicted would bring it to its knees. It begs the question how has Russia stayed so resilient. Part of the answer is self-sufficiency. Only Russian

beef is served. The last few years have seen a boom in production here helped by a government ban on most western food imports. Agriculture of

course for a small fraction of the Russian economy.

The real secret of Russia's survival has been its tough economic policies. Policies like the decision in 2014 to free float the Russian ruble. An

earlier economic crisis the kremlin tried to support the currency spending billions propping up the market. This time it devalued dramatically

boosting export earnings helping the state meet ruble denominated budget expenses but that also meant ruble savings and wages saw their real value

slashed. Pensions have also been frozen and worth far less than before the crisis. Russia may be resilient but as always, the price of this economic

downturn has been paid by its people. Matthew Chance, CNN Moscow.


QUEST: As we continue tonight from Cardiff we're going to show you behind the scenes of dear old Freddie Brexit. The wheels go round and round and

Freddie is 40 years old this year but how did we get Freddie ready for this trip? After a long, cold, hard, winter? Stuck in the garage? After the



QUEST: Scotland, England, Ireland and Wales all tied up in monkey's tails. Now it is popular nursery rhyme here in Britain. On the back of Freddie

Brexit, we have the union flag. It is often called the union jack, but actually its real title is the union flag. And you can see it there


Underneath it is the European Union flag. Now within that flag you have the flags of England, Scotland and Northern Ireland represented but no

Welsh flag or Welsh dragon. It's often perceived that Wales was annexed by England before the union flag came into existence and wasn't represented.

YouGov says that the union jack is less popular in Wales because of that very point. Wales itself is a proud

Keltic nation known for its Saint David the patron saint and daffodils. If you take an industrial history here well just look at it. This

principality, this country had everything from mining down the pits, beaming daffodils and rugby and local and global icons come from here.

Sir Tom Jones. Dame Shirley Bassey. Wales also enjoys a devolved government housed there and Wales voted for Brexit which is somewhat

surprising, since if you look at the amount of money that comes in from the European Union it's actually positive versus negative right before the

country. Now Labor has a majority of the seats at Wales. The issue is whether Labor will lose that majority in Wales. So, in that scenario

Freddie is back on the road and it's perfect that we started here. Risen from the ashes driving us through this snap election but it wasn't easy to

get Freddie ready for the road.

It's been a long, cold, lonely winter for poor old Freddie Brexit locked up in storage,

ignored and unloved ever since that referendum last year. Dragged out for a brief rainy day when the sun didn't shine, a very sorry sight beside the

sea. Not even Freddie predicted he would be needed so soon after Theresa May called a snap general election.


[16:55:00] THERESA MAY, PRIME MINISTER, GREAT BRITAIN: We believe that government should call a general election to be held on the 8th of June.



QUEST: All hands to the pump to get Freddie ready again. So, Freddie passes his road worthy tests. And freshened up for another big road trip

just like last year's Brexit journey. Oh, happy days in Cambridge. And the caravan park where Freddie was in his element. Once again Freddie will

help us understand the British people as they make their political choice. This year, he will embark on a weeklong trip from Cardiff the capital of

wales to the mining heart land of Newport. The seaside wonder and ending the week outside of the royal residence at Windsor Castle.

There's one final thing we need to do to prepare Freddie for his latest journey. The decision on U.K. in or out has been made. Britain is

leaving. Let there be no doubt as the prime minister herself has said many times Brexit means Brexit. So, join me all aboard as Freddie returns to

the road and we keep our fingers crossed.


QUEST: We do indeed hope that Freddie makes it all the way. It's a fine ride out from London. Now for the enthusiasts out there you can find it at

CNN That's where you'll find out the history of Freddie and remember you can download our show as a podcast. It's available from all

the main providers. We will have our Profitable Moment after the break.


QUEST: Tonight's Profitable Moment from Cardiff University in Wales. Managed to get the students together without promising them free beer but

these people are the future. These are the people that will maybe not decide this election but will certainly decide the way this country moves

forward in the post Brexit world and that's why we decided tonight we had to come from a university because the future frankly doesn't rest with

people like me over 50. It rests with these people and they're in their early 20s let us say. You have the future in your hands. And that's QUEST

MEANS BUSINESS for tonight. I'm Richard Quest in Cardiff. Whatever you're up to in the hours ahead I hope it's profitable. I'll see you in Newport