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WORLD RIGHT NOW WITH HALA GORANI
Cyberattacks Hit Companies, Governments; White House Warns Syria Could Be Planning Chemical Attack; Senate Delays Health Care Vote Until After Recess; Pew: U.S. Image Suffers Under Trump In Opinion Poll; Supreme Court Reinstates Parts Of Trump Travel Ban; Google Accused Of Breaking E.U. Antitrust Rules; Undercover Video Shows Inside ISIS-Held City; U.S. Pushes for Diplomatic Solution on Qatar Crisis; U.S. Releases Annual Trafficking Report. Aired 3-4p ET
Aired June 27, 2017 - 15:00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[15:00:00] HALA GORANI, CNN ANCHOR: Hello, everyone. Good evening. I'm Hala Gorani. We start tonight with breaking news, a wave of cyberattack
hitting government institutions and businesses all around the world possibly where you are watching this program from.
The hacks have targeted international energy, shipping, communications companies along with government computers in Ukraine. Nina dos Santos has
the very latest for us. What is happening? This is still unfolding, right?
NINA DOS SANTOS, CNN MONEY EUROPE EDITOR: It is. (Inaudible) what we are talking about is according to Kaspersky Labs is one of the internet
security specialist that is looking into this is that about 2,000 computers seemed to have been infected by this malicious software, malware, if you
like, in at least a dozen countries.
Other cybersecurity experts say that 80 companies around the world have been affected by the (inaudible). The numbers are growing obviously as the
states United States trading day continues to get underway. We are starting to hear that U.S. companies are getting affected as well.
It seems to have started at 2 p.m. local time in Ukraine. That's where we saw the first eruptions of this with transport networks, power networks,
government ministries, banks all saying that they are being buffeted by a big cyberattack.
Even the Chernobyl nuclear site has to see -- send its scientists in, in person to measure levels of radiation because their computers weren't
working. That gives you an idea of how confusing the situation is and how dangerous it is.
Hala, it's now spread it seems well beyond countries like Ukraine, Russia, the Russian Oil and Gas Company said that it was buffeted by what it called
a massive attack earlier today. It managed to repel that because it had backup systems in place.
And we've seen the Danish shipping company, Maersk, be affected as well as (inaudible) --
GORANI: This is really a paralyzing situation for these companies, for government institutions, I mean, it makes work -- the workflow extremely
DOS SANTOS: Well, let's take, for instance, WPP, that is another company I was coming to. It's a firm that has more than a hundred thousand staff
around the world. It's operating in almost every country around the world with agencies.
Its own website was taken down and as you can see this is the picture here where it said that they are having issues on their website. They had then
went on to issue a Twitter alert saying that they were confirming that they had been attacked by the cyberattack and taking the necessary measures.
Now we understand in the last couple of hours, Pfizer, the big U.S. drugs giant was also been rocked by this. It seems to be spreading. The
question is, Hala, what is it?
Well, it seems to be something similar to the "Want To Cry" virus that you remember disabled computers in 150 countries over a month ago including
parts of the -- in the U.K.
GORANI: Absolutely. And Nina, we are actually get to that with our next guest. Thanks for explaining the story to us because this is an unfolding
situation sort affecting many countries around the world starting in Ukraine and spreading.
Let's get more on this global chaos. Mark Rasch spent nine years with the U.S. Justice Department prosecuting computer crimes. He is a former
forensic computer analyst. So, first of all how does this spread, this malware?
MARK RASCH, FORMER U.S. JUSTICE DEPARTMENT PROSECUTOR: The typical malware is going spread through a phishing attack. So they will send an e-mail out
to individuals within the affected companies, somebody will click on the link that will install malicious code, and then it will use some kind of
worm to propagate within the company to spread to as many computers as it can.
GORANI: And what's the impact on the computers, on the systems?
RASCH: So what happens is when you get infected, your computer will shut down and reboot. The way this particular piece of malware works is it will
reboot and you will see a screen saying all your files are encrypted, and you have to pay money in order -- what's called "ransomware."
You have pay them I think $300 for this particular one in order for them to send you an unlock key so you can unlock the data. So some of those --
GORANI: So these companies that have been attacked are going to have pay a ransom to unlock their computers?
RASCH: Well, they may have to pay a ransom or they may have to restore the data from a backup. But this one is particularly nasty because it does not
just lock the data, it locks the computer itself. So all the operating systems and files, and software. So you have to rebuild the computer from
scratch and put all the data back onto it.
GORANI: How do you stop it from spreading?
RASCH: Well, there is some normal hygiene that you are supposed to do about "ransomware" and about anti-phishing and things like that. Not
clicking on links. There are lots of things companies can do to try to prevent it from spreading, but if they had done that, they wouldn't have
gotten infected in the first place.
GORANI: But we are seeing it spread quite quickly starting in Ukraine just a few hours ago and now hitting big companies like WPP in the U.K.?
RASCH: It looks like these are opportunistic infections. In other words, the malware is trying to break into any system it can and then from there
to any system it is connected to. It does not seem to be targeting any particular country or any particular industry. Just wherever it can get
in, it will shut it down.
GORANI: It's not political basically.
RASCH: It does not look that way right now.
GORANI: What about ordinary people what should they be aware of?
RASCH: Well, the most important thing is take all of the ordinary precautions, which are to have an up-to-date operating system, an up-to-
date browser, install the latest and greatest anti-malware and anti- phishing and the antivirus that you can get.
But the other good thing to do is to take all your critical data, all your critical files and back them up and restore them somewhere where you can
get access to them. That way, even if your computer attacked, you haven't lost all your data.
GORANI: You mentioned paying the ransom, how does a cybercriminal collect ransom money and remain anonymous?
RASCH: Well, typically, what they'll use is they'll use a virtual currency. The most common one is Bitcoin and what they will do is they
will have you transfer Bitcoin, a certain amount of money in Bitcon to their Bitcoin wallet then they'll transfer from one wallet to another to
another to sort of hide their identity and be off with the money.
GORANI: Now ordinary people watching in the country the fact that how might they be impacted? I mean, this is really in terms of -- I don't
know, Maersk, for instance, the shipping company, might have issues with shipments, WPP, I do not know how that might impact people. But government
institutions, for instance as well might be paralyzed by something like this.
RASCH: Well, a lot of these companies will have what's called "disaster recovery" in business continuation plans which make them more resilient to
these kind of attacks, but even those require you to be able to restore your data within a reasonable period of time.
So even if you are down only for three hours, five hours or a day, a major down from three, five hours or a day. So there is still a massive amount
GORANI: Right. This is happening more and more often it seems. Mark Rasch, thanks very much. As I mentioned that the top there, spent nine
years with the U.S. Justice Department prosecuting some of these computer crimes. Thanks so much for joining us. We appreciate it.
RASCH: Thank you.
GORANI: Let's turn now to a disturbing a new intelligence from the Pentagon that suggests Syria may be plotting another chemical attack. A
spokesperson reports activity linked to the handling of chemical weapons at Shayrat Airbase, the same airfield the U.S. believed Syria launched a gas
attack from in April.
Now the activity prompted the White House to warn Syrian President Bashar al-Assad that he would pay a, quote, "heavy price" if he carried out a
second chemical weapons attack.
The Syrian airstrike in April killed 89 people. You'll remember international inspectors said they found evidence of sarin gas or similar
So the White House is saying don't go there, don't this again or will take action. The U.S. retaliated at that time with a cruise missile strike.
Let's see what they might do next and also get reaction from Russia.
Pentagon correspondent, Barbara Starr, joins me. Matthew Chance is in Moscow. So first of all, Barbara, how do you read that White House
statement? What could be a plan if there is a chemical attack conducted by the regime or that the U.S. has what it says believes is proof that the
regime has conducted another chemical attack?
BARBARA STARR, CNN PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT: Well, look the U.S. military always has options for any president of the United States and then there
are the typical military options, air, land or sea not to go in overland, but we have seen attacks of Tomahawk missiles in the past, of course, back
So they will have options for him. The question on the table right now maybe what happened? You know, they are keeping a sharp eye on the Shayrat
Airbase, but what happens if you suddenly saw a Syrian plane take off and you thought there were chemical weapons on board and you thought an attack
was imminent. Would you in fact take that plane out of the sky?
Because if you don't, you know that they may be headed for an attack on civilians and you are obligated under international law to try and prevent
that. So it is now beginning to put the White House in a very tough spot. They are hoping even though what they tell us is the reason they put the
warning out, they are hoping the warning will be enough to make Assad not go ahead.
GORANI: So their hoping there will be a deterrent, the warning itself, and Matthew, Russia is saying any intervention on that level would be
acceptable for them.
MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes. They've said it's unacceptable that a kind of strike, if you like, or an action is being
prepared by the United States. They've denounced the suggestion that -- or denounced this warning, at least that the White House has issued to the
Syrian government and the Syrian military for those serious consequences if a chemical attack is carried out.
And also that they haven't seen any information that indicates such an attack is being planned. Russians always this that big military and
diplomatic supporters of the regime of Bashar al-Assad has not changed from any of the language that we've been hearing over the past several hours
about his latest flare-up.
What may have changed though is the fact that the risks are getting much higher are the real confrontation directly between the Russians who were
operating in Syria, of course, and the United States and the coalition they lead as well, and that is a real possibility and a real danger.
GORANI: All right, the risk of escalation there. Thanks very much to both of you, Barbara Starr and Matthew Chance.
We saw the Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, by the way, today visiting a Russian airbase. He is rarely seen outside of Damascus, perhaps a sign he
is feeling more confident these days.
On Monday, the state media there broadcast this video of the president and his wife and children, visiting injured -- it's a still photograph --
visiting injured Syrian servicemen in their home villages in Hamath.
I want to bring in CNN national security analyst, John Kirby from Washington. He is also a retired U.S. Navy rear admiral. Barbara Starr
asked an interesting question. What if the United States observes a chemical attack being prepared in its estimation based on intelligence that
it has gathered. Would it then shoot another Syrian plane out of the sky and then what is the risk of escalation there?
JOHN KIRBY, CNN MILITARY AND DIPLOMATIC ANALYST: Yes, it's a great question to ask and certainly it does -- it could potentially cause a
greater risk escalation, but I think, you know, what's important to go back is look at why they did this.
They did this because they had a fast-moving intelligence and indications that perhaps some sort of chemical attack was being prepared. I think was
a wise thing to do to lay that out there and say look, we know what you are doing and look, you know how serious we are about the threat of chemical
attacks in Syria.
So I think that was smart. Now I suspect that if those preparations were to continue apace, the Pentagon would look for options is what we say left
of the boom. In other words, before that aircraft could get loaded up and in the air rather than you know try to get it in the air itself. But yes,
of course --
GORANI: But how is that not leading to conflict with Russia? Because I mean, after the U.S. shot that jet out of the sky because it was attacking
positions, SDF positions of U.S. backfires against ISIS, Russia suspended the deconfliction channel and it says, you know, do not go there again
because this is going to cause problems.
KIRBY: Yes, well, look, I never said --
GORANI: How is this not leading to escalation?
KIRBY: Hala, I never said it was not leading to a potential conflict with Russia. It could. I do not think anybody wants it to get there. That is
why it is important for the deconfliction mechanisms to stay in place and it looks like military to military communications are ongoing.
Look, I think the Russian reaction to this should have been expected. They reacted similarly when we took the strike against that same airfield back
in April so obviously they do not want to see that happen again.
And they do not want to see more than anything. They do not want see their foothold in Syria upset or put at risk by anything the coalition is doing
against the Assad.
I do think and I said this at the time of the Tomahawk strike that the administration is walking a very thin line in terms of putting their thumb
on the scale on the Civil War.
Now they said the strike back in April was simply a reaction to the chemical attacks. If you and this is a big if, if you take some sort of
preemptive action with respect to the potential for chemical attacks, you draw yourself potentially closer into getting involved in the Civil War in
Syria, which is something that militarily we (inaudible) to do.
GORANI: Yes, and also they essentially fired 49 Tomahawk cruise missiles at that airbase and within 24 hours planes were taking off from that very
airbase. Clearly, it did not have much of an operational impact. So if they want to conduct a preemptive strike or even one after a chemical
attack takes place, let us hope that does not happen, then they are going to have escalate that as well.
KIRBY: Well, potentially, potentially. Again, they would tell you that the strike in April was simply a retaliation to a chemical attack and
wasn't intended to render that airfield completely useless and the attacks that we've seen flying out of the airfield since haven't been of a chemical
They were very clear. Secretary Mattis came out very clear a few days after the attack to make it certain that this was about the use of chemical
weapons, and only the use of chemical weapons, and not a move to escalate the conflict militarily into the Civil War itself.
GORANI: Right. OK, but it still -- I mean, what I'm saying is did not render that airbase -- it continued to be operational soon after that
attack. So if do something you have to do more, right?
KIRBY: Well, if you have -- if your intent is to be more completely preemptive of chemical attack, you could argue that yes, you need to do
more. I don't think -- actually I do not think that the Defense Department wants to go there, though, Hala.
I think they -- I think they put the statement out and it was -- it was coordinated at higher levels in the interagency. I think they've put it
out to try to stop the Syrians from doing anything untoward with respect to chemical weapons. I do not think they want to see this escalate.
GORANI: All right. And this in parallel with all the other battles obviously and the fight against ISIS and you name it, and the Syrian
civilians caught in the middle as they have for many years. Thanks so much, John Kirby, really appreciate your analysis this evening.
Still to come tonight, even though they say Obamacare is imploding, Republicans still can't repeal and replace it. We check in on a Trump
campaign promise that maybe in shambles yet again.
Plus, Google slapped with a record-breaking fine of $2.7 billion. Why the European Union says some of the company's search results are illegal.
We'll be right back.
GORANI: One of Donald Trump's major campaign promise is on hold for now. Yet again, the Republican leader in the U.S. Senate has delayed the vote on
a new healthcare bill. Why did this man, Mitch McConnell, choose to postpone the all-important vote to repeal and replace Obamacare?
Because the votes are not there even though Republicans have a majority in the Senate, they can only afford two members falling out of line and at
least five have said they would not support the bill in its current form.
McConnell spoke last hour about what role President Trump is playing in pushing this through.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SENATOR MITCH MCCONNELL (R-KY), MAJORITY LEADER: The president has been very involved over the last week talking to members individually. He
wanted to talk all of us together to today. I think that's helpful and -- look, legislation of this complexity almost always takes longer than
anybody else would hope, but we are going to press on. We think the status quo is unsustainable.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: Mitch McConnell. This is where begin tonight's conversation with CNN political analyst and "Washington Post" columnist, Josh Rogin. So
Josh, why don't they have the votes? They have a majority in the Senate.
JOSH ROGIN, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, basically the Republican caucus is trying to figure out how to appease both moderates on the one side and
conservatives on the other side over a few key issues in this bill and initially they had taken the same fact that the House, which was to favor
the conservatives and pressure the moderates, but they do not seem to have appease either side.
So today you had both moderates and conservatives -- conservative centers in the Republican caucus refusing to support them even to a debate on the
bill and if you don't moved to the debate then you can have the vote. So they realized they weren't going to get it done before the July 4th breaks
so they called it off.
GORANI: So what do they need to do then to get this through? This was one of his campaign promises so it's failing again getting this through
ROGIN: Right. Everybody knows what the basic contentious issues are. It is how you treat people who have pre-existing conditions, whose status and
benefits will change no matter what under -- if the bill becomes law and what you do about this rollback of the Medicaid expansion, which affects so
It's going to be rolled back in some form, but how you do that and what happens to the people who are affected and what kind of offsets there are
that's the key issue especially for moderate. So what's going to happen over the next two weeks --
GORANI: I mean, Josh, just to jump in to explain to our viewers, under Obamacare, people under a certain income level could benefit from Medicare
and this is something that in this new version would be rolled back. So go back to sort of previous lower levels of income, is that about right?
ROGIN: That is right. And in the House version, it would be rolled back at a faster pace, but in the Senate version as it stands, it will be rolled
back at a slower paced but in a more substantial way.
And you know, senators especially Republican senators from states who have depended on that program who have people in their states spending on that
program want some concessions. They want some provisions for those people who will be affected.
And that's what they are going to hear when they go back to their districts next week. You're going to have opposition groups, town halls, all sorts
of constituents complaining about this bill and these senators are going to have to take those complaints into consideration.
Meanwhile, back in Washington, there will be horse trading and will be deal making and the White House would go out of its way to try to find things
that they can give to these senators in these affected states, get them to yes.
GORANI: Well, I guess, this is just how a bill, you know, support in Congress. I mean, this is nothing new in the United States. This is the
question of how much support Donald Trump has at home as well among voters. His popularity has gone down.
And in fact, in the rest of the world outside the United States, I am sure you've seen this Josh and maybe some of our viewers have as well. But for
those of you who haven't, this is a new Pew poll on confidence in Donald Trump versus Obama.
You look at in Sweden, for instance, 83 points down, Germany, 75 points down, France 70 points down. Here in the United Kingdom, 57 points down.
I mean, this is all compared to the percentage that president -- former President Barack Obama scored in those same countries. What do you make of
ROGIN: You know, well, it's really -- the numbers are shocking in of themselves. But what really stuck out me in this Pew global survey of the
world attitudes towards the United States not just that people around the world, especially in countries allied with United States are looking down
at -- are not supporting President Trump have their attitudes towards the United States as a whole have also reduced by double digits in many cases.
Not as largely as their disapproval of President Trump, but this speaks to the overall decrease in confidence that other countries have that the
United States under a President Trump will do the right things and advocate for the right things on the world stage.
That sort of has a chilling effect on the U.S. ability to sort of marshal support, again, especially amongst allies, to do the things that we think
are right and positive in the world.
GORANI: And another unpopular measure, by the way, is the Trump travel ban and the United States Supreme Court has upheld some aspects of the original
ban. Can you tell us more about that?
ROGIN: Sure. Well, the Supreme Court has decided to hear the case of the travel ban in October when they come back into session. Meanwhile, they
have allowed parts of it to go into effect. You know, this is seen as a partial victory for the Trump administration because, of course, until now,
none of it could go into effect based on the lower court ruling.
But what the Supreme Court has done is they have said that people who do not have a bonafide relationship with the U.S. person can be kept out of
the country and who are those people? Those are refugees. Those are not students not businessman, but people who are really in the most desperate
So even this temporary measure will affect many people in very horrible circumstances and then broader issue it seems will be debated in October
and nobody knows it could go either way.
GORANI: Josh Rogin as always, thanks very much.
Josh and I were discussing the travel ban there. Now so many of our viewers live around the world. Some of you are citizens of some of those
countries. Here is how this could affect you.
Now if you are already a visa holder, the ban shouldn't affect you. That was a major cause of chaos during the first rollout. Those most likely
impacted people seeking visas, who do not have ties with the U.S. including refugees.
The operative phrase from the Supreme Court's unsigned opinion is bonafide relationship with the person or entity. This is where things become a
little unclear. It seems to indicate that if you have a family or a job offer or scholarship or something like that, you can still seek a visa.
If you're a citizen of Syria, Iran, Yemen, Libya, Somalia or Sudan, but what relationships fall into that category could be up to the Trump State
Department to decide and that's where it becomes rather unclear.
Google has been slapped with a record-breaking fine from the European Union for allegedly violating antitrust laws. At the heart of the issue are
Google's search results, and whether the search engine favors its own shopping service over competitors.
Because if you are like most people you pick the top results, uses Google's manipulation, not just against the law. It is hurting you, the consumer.
Here's CNN's Isa Soares.
MARGRETHE VESTAGER, EUROPEAN COMMISSIONER FOR COMPETITION: What Google has done is illegal under E.U. Antitrust rules.
ISA SOARES, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): This little box is giving Google a huge headache. It is the root of a $2.7 billion fine
from the European Union by far the largest ever of its kind.
Search for almost anything you could buy online and write the top Google will first offer you a box with a selection of that product say jeans. If
you go further and click on it, Google directs you to its own Google shopping page.
(on camera): The European Commission argues that by promoting its own business and banishing other search websites around the full-page off
search results. What Google is doing is really denying anyone else a chance to compete and denying consumers with what it calls a genuine
(voice-over): Well, in a statement to CNN, Google's general counsel said the company respectfully disagrees, "When you use Google to search for
product, we tried to give you what you are looking for," it says. "Our ability to do that well isn't favoring ourselves or any particular site or
seller. It's the result of hard work and constant innovation based on user's feedback."
Foundem is a shopping site based in the U.K. and the lead complainant against Google. CEO Shivaun Raff says the business has been devastated by
Google and they are just a tip of a global iceberg.
SHIVAUN RAFF, CEO, FOUNDEM: The fact is that Google is the gateway, which means that is serious traffic in revenues through the global digital
economy and when it starts taking its incredibly dominant position in search and leveraging it into adjacent markets such as comparison-shopping,
travel, and local search. It can stir an enormous amount of the traffic in revenue of those sectors into its own service and away from competitors.
SOARES: The woman at the center of this is Margrethe Vestager, the E.U.'s competition commissioner, and this is just one of three cases she's opened
into Google. And after demanding Apple Pay $14.5 billion in back taxes last year, she's getting a reputation for going after America's tech
VESTAGER: Our courts will hear nothing about bias. They want the fact of the case evidence, the case law. Our work has to stand up in court.
SOARES: For Google and its nearly $100 billion in cash, this fine is likely just a drop in the bucket. The trouble is that this ruling requires
Google to change its behavior and stop prioritizing results within 90 days.
It's precedent that could have far ranging and long lasting implications after all this is their bread and butter. This is their business model and
Google will now have to do a lot of its own searching. Isa Soares, CNN, London.
GORANI: In the U.K., the fallout from horrendous fire at Grenfell Tower is moving far away from London. Take a look at this graphic, the U.K. says 95
high-rises have been found to have the cladding similar to that used at Grenfell and every single one, every single one of them on this map failed
a safety test.
That number is expected to rise as well as more tests are conducted. They didn't give the precise locations for the 95, but CNN have identified 46 of
them. Prime Minister Theresa May says there needs to be a national investigation into the use of cladding.
In the meantime, residents of those buildings are asking, is it safe for me to stay in my own home.
Still ahead on THE WORLD RIGHT NOW, Syria's president climbs into the cockpit at a Russian airbase as the White House warns a second chemical
attack might be in the works. A member of parliament, Kristine Blunt (ph), is my guest next from London.
And later in Raqqa, ISIS prepares for battle as the civilians trapped under its reign of terror prepare for freedom.
[15:30:00] We have exclusive video from inside of the besieged city, coming up.
GORANI: Let's return now to that ominous warning from the White House that Syria may be plotting another chemical weapons attack. The Pentagon
reports suspicious activity at Shayrat airfield.
That's the same airbase the U.S. believes Syria launched the gas attack from back in April, a strike that killed 89 people. You'll remember some
horrific video emerging from that. International inspectors said they found evidence of sarin gas or a similar substance on some of the survivors
and the victims.
Let's get perspective on this new intelligence from Crispin Blunt. He's a Conservative British Member of Parliament and the Chairman of the Foreign
Affairs Select Committee in the U.K.
We heard from Michael Fallon here in Britain that your country would support new action against the regime if it's found it used chemical
weapons again against civilians. What kind of action would it support?
CRISPIN BLUNT, MEMBER OF PARLIAMENT, UNITED KINGDOM: Well, he also said if the action was necessary, proportionate, and legal as qualifying British
support. And, of course, it begs the question as to whether British support would be simply rhetorical and giving political support to the
United Sates, whether the United States would be asking as to assist with the operation.
And, of course, the United Kingdom is flying the second number of missions after the United States in the whole Iraq/Syria region. So it's not
unreasonable that the United States might expect us to be going beyond just rhetorical support.
GORANI: All right. So this isn't necessarily military support.
BLUNT: Well, I think that it might be. The last operation clearly met those tests of necessity, proportionality. And legality is more difficult.
But the fact that the American response was very precise, aimed at the airfield from which the chemical strike came, and then was not part of an
escalation and to a widening of the conflicts and a widening of the American actions against the Syrian regime, you could argue that it passed
the necessary test for a legal action by one state in pursuit of enforcing Chemical Weapons Convention requirements.
GORANI: So you'd need parliamentary consent in the U.K.?
BLUNT: Well, that's obviously the big problem. I have actually done some work on our paper, which I'm hoping to get published anytime now, about the
kinds of tests that would need to be met for the United Kingdom to agree support and whether you then have a parliamentary debate.
[15:35:00] And in circumstances like this, the parliament, in that sense, giving permission in advance of any potential action, trying to identify
the circumstances in which British participation would be supported by parliament. All of these are quite difficult tests because you don't want
parliament to be involved in trying make judgements in the middle of a developing military situation.
GORANI: But you must be concerned about escalation here when the U.S. shot that Syrian warplane out of the sky a few weeks ago. It suspended the
deconfliction channel. It's saying don't do it again.
You must have some concern especially today, Nikki Haley, the American Ambassador to the U.N., also said Russia and Iran should also be on notice.
How worried are you?
BLUNT: No, of course, one should be concerned. And at least, what I would say, the confidence from the first American military action in response to
the earlier chemical strike, that that was very precisely calibrated. I don't think it's a strike --
GORANI: But it had no impact. It was precise and --
BLUNT: Well --
GORANI: -- and it was on a smaller scale, but the base was operational within 24 hours after.
BLUNT: Sure. But I think if you were the Syrian regime, with a lot of destroyed aircraft, you might be taking a rather different view as to its
impact. They may have got the base back up and running again, but a lesson was meted out.
And I think the Americans have been pretty responsible in this case where they've got intelligence of apparent preparations, making perfectly clear
that they know these preparations are going on, and sending a clear signal now. You are on notice. Do not be so foolish as to go down that path
again to use chemical weapons against your own people.
GORANI: Well, let's hope for the sake of Syrian people that they don't. I just want to ask you just a couple of questions on Brexit. We're hearing
from your government now, finally, after a year of keeping everyone in suspense, about how they plan on treating E.U. citizens in this country.
And critics have said this is nowhere near a guarantee of citizens' rights in the U.K. They will be given something settled status but going into no
detail about what happens if they leave and come back.
Who would police it? Who would resolve disputes? What if the people don't apply within the window? I mean, it just seems like there are so many
unanswered questions now. When will we get more details?
BLUNT: Well, in any elements of immigration policy and status in the country, it is hideously complicated in terms of legality. And people who
are seeking to make those arguments have pointed to some of the inevitable difficulties that will result from any statement of policy.
This is a clear statement of policy that European Union citizens in the United Kingdom can have confidence and can be assured that they are wanted
in the United Kingdom. We want them to remain and that their status is assured. And that they will be able to apply in a rather simpler way than
at present for indefinite leave to remain --
GORANI: That's 3.2 million people.
BLUNT: -- if they meet the qualifying dates.
GORANI: 3.2 million people --
GORANI: -- in about a year, you're going to process. How much is that going to cost? Where is the administrative staff coming to do all this
BLUNT: Well, all those questions would be answered. But if you make the application process rather simpler than the 86-page form people have to
currently prepare and process, then it's going to be rather easier to do. And you're going to be able to meet the administrative challenge.
But many of these people already have been in the U.K. quite long enough to have indefinite leave to remain in the U.K.
GORANI: All right. Do you believe it will take two years to come to some sort of agreement on all these complex points, including immigration,
trade, customs, all of the rest it.
BLUNT: Well, that's --
GORANI: Do you think, in two years, it will be wrapped up?
BLUNT: No, part of the challenge of this is the clock is running. And it's a very steep challenge to get a deeper comprehensive free trade
agreement, which was where the United Kingdom, and I hope the European Union, wants our relationship to end. If that can't be achieved within two
years, then people are looking at a transition arrangement.
I personally have written about a possible two-year transition period within the European Economic Area as part of the transition towards that
deeper comprehensive free trade agreement following two years negotiations, dealing with some of this difficult issues about citizens' rights under
reciprocal rights of British citizens in the E.U. as well as the Northern Ireland border and all the other issues that have to be resolve in the
course of the negotiations.
GORANI: Crispin Blunt, chairman of the Foreign Affairs Select Committee and a member of parliament. Thanks very much for joining us on CNN.
BLUNT: Not at all.
GORANI: Appreciate it.
BLUNT: My pleasure.
GORANI: Turning back -- I should say, more in Syria now where ISIS' grip on its self-styled capital, Raqqa, is visibly sleeping. Civilians there
have lived under the terror group's so-called caliphate since 2014. But now, as the Syrian and U.S.-backed forces get closer to the city and as
ISIS prepares for a street battle, ordinary people are taking back their freedom.
[15:40:00] Our Nick Paton Walsh walks us through exclusive video of life in Raqqa.
NICK PATON WALSH, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): This is what a reign of terror looks like when it is in collapse. The
traffic is normal. So is the market.
But you can tell ISIS are losing here on the streets of Raqqa, the capital of their fast shrinking caliphate from one thing. It's actually pretty
easy to film them in secret.
Using a hidden body camera could be a death sentence for this activist. But in this besieged streets, mined with sand bags, encircled by American-
backed Syrian fighters, they just don't fear ISIS anymore.
So even this foreign fighter, Abu Aisha from Belgium, is a target as he makes a frontline fashion choice. And elsewhere, two Russian-speaking
fighters appear to discuss airstrikes.
TEXT: We have a problem at the moment. I forgot even the radios. I said to Khalid, "Do you have them?" He thought he returned them to the base. I
said, "Let's go there." But apparently, they've already attacked and the battle's been going on for a day already.
TEXT: The planes have been striking the whole day, chasing them. It hit them right on the nose. Planes have been striking, vehicles are striking
PATON WALSH (voice-over): Here, Abu Lukhman, the Egyptian, looks for this military police Tunisian man, Abu Mariam. They didn't find him.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm his brother, brothers.
PATON WALSH (voice-over): Streets are covered with canopies meant to shelter ISIS fighters from frying coalition drones above. But despite the
war, the market is breaming. Even the wounded, hobbling around.
Under siege, why is there so much food. Well, it's shipped in from nearby regime held areas, we're told. Comrades, alive and well, in the caliphate.
This shop even seems to offer to change dollars.
Sand bags give shelter from air strikes but also defensive positions when street-to-street fighting reaches here. But some locals have already made
this hostile terrain.
One activist from the group, Ahrar al-Furat, telling us how he pins night letters, death threats, to the doors of ISIS informants. We can only get
to them, he says, by leaving message on their door, like, we know who you are.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): This soon stops them. And some of our friends started writing the word "free" on the walls of ISIS buildings.
Then locals started, the elderly writing it on walls and children on chalkboards, making ISIS wonder, who are these people?
PATON WALSH (voice-over): It's getting ugly for ISIS here. They've moved their prisons here. Top commanders have fled. Their lieutenants only
drive arounds in low profile normal cars. Their enemy is literally at the gates. ISIS' worlds vanishing fast. And this may be among the last times
we glimpse into their warped way of life.
Nick Paton Walsh, CNN, Erbil, Northern Iraq.
GORANI: Right now in Washington, the U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is meeting with his Qatari counterpart. The meeting is significant as it
comes in the middle of the one of the worst diplomatic disputes the Middle East has seen.
The Gulf nation is facing a list of demands and the boycott imposed by many of its neighbors. Many people say these demands are unrealistic. Qatar is
never going to abide by them.
Tillerson is urging dialogue between both sides of the rift. After all, both sides are U.S. allies.
Let's go to Abu Dhabi. Nic Robertson is there.
All right. Let's talk a little bit about, I mean, how far is a resolution? How likely is a resolution to this dispute between the Gulf countries and
NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: Yes. What the Gulf countries are asking for really seems to be beyond what Qatar has given any
indication that it's about to give in to.
I think, you know, when look at some of the demands -- like shutting down their television station, Al Jazeera, like severing ties with Iran with
whom they share a massive natural gas oil field of their coast, some of those demands -- and we've heard Turkey's response to the demand that
Turkey's military base that's being constructed inside Qatar should be shut down as well.
Those demands seem very, very steep. Officials we've talked to, whether in the United Arab Emirates or what we've heard from the Saudi Foreign
Minister recently, these are very clear demands.
They've come out of a sense that Qatar has been backing groups like ISIS, like Hezbollah, like al Qaeda, like the Muslim Brotherhood. And the
demands is from their regional allies, that that should be stopped and those connections should be terminated.
These are very, very stiff demands. I think the short answer to your question is, in the deadline, it was given 10 days which is the Sunday or
Monday coming up right now. That is just way too short to believe that anyone can broker any kind of compromise, you know, from what is very, very
serious face off right now.
[15:45:02] GORANI: All right. And briefly, the U.S., well, it's doing what it can right now. Rex Tillerson is trying. You would think the
Saudis would listen to the United State at this stage if the U.S. tells them to try to come up with some sort of a compromise, but not in this
case. Why not?
ROBERTSON: You know, Saudi Arabia is going through a change. The region is going through a change. I mean, we're talking very big picture change
But, you know, Saudi Arabia is emerging as a bigger, stronger, bolder player on the international stage and on the regional stage, and it's
making clear its feelings. And certainly, that is absolutely causing ripples here.
Rex Tillerson is expected to meet with the Kuwaiti Information Minister and other Kuwaiti officials later this evening. There'll be a meeting.
There'll be a dinner. The Kuwaitis are sort of the go-between between the Gulf States and Qatar in this dispute.
But, you know, it's a very, very deep hole right now. Both sides seem boxed in by a deadline by these very serious full-on demands. You know,
the diplomatic rift here shouldn't be underestimated.
And it does come down, fundamentally, to a changing view of what the power balance should be on the region. And that seems most strongly embodied by
Saudi Arabia and the Emirates right now.
GORANI: Nic Robertson, thanks very much. We'll see what happens when that 10-day deadline as it approaches and once, in fact, it passes.
This is THE WORLD RIGHT NOW. Among the worst offenders for human trafficking is how the U.S. is describing China in a new report. What does
it mean, though, for relations between the two countries? We're in Washington, live, next.
GORANI: How do you end modern day slavery? It's a big question.
Earlier, the U.S. State Department released an annual human trafficking report. This one this year was heavily critical of China. It was named as
one of the world's worst offenders. It was downgraded to the lowest tier they have, alongside Iran, Russia, and Syria.
U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has strong words for Beijing, saying it has not taken serious steps to end its own complicity in trafficking.
But he said he was hopeful, though, nonetheless.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REX TILLERSON, UNITED STATES SECRETARY OF STATE: Human trafficking is as old as humankind. Regrettably, it's been with us for centuries and
But in the expression of this act, as I read that one line to you, it is our hope that the 21st Century will be the last century of human
trafficking. And that's what we are all committed to.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
[15:50:00] GORANI: All right. Well, there's, you know, more than 85 years to go in this century, so hopefully that effort will be fruitful. Linda
Kinkade is there at the State Department with more.
So why China this year? Why was it downgraded, according to the State Department?
LINDA KINKADE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, 187 countries, Hala, were ranked in this report, and China was a key focus. And it's quite surprising, you
know, the fact that President Trump has had warmer relations with President Xi.
But today, the U.S. State Department said in its report that China has failed to curb state sponsored forced labor. And it concluded that China,
it has failed to meet the minimum requirements to end human trafficking. Well, China immediately responded, calling the report irresponsible, and
saying it's doing everything it can to fight human trafficking.
As you've also seen in the features Ivanka Trump, the first daughter and presidential adviser, attended today, she has made this issue a key
priority for her. As you'll remember, she attended a listening session at the White House earlier this year with some key advocates. And she also
accompanied President Trump in his first foreign visit where, in Rome, she met with survivors of human trafficking.
And today, she helped to honor eight heroes who've helped to end human trafficking. This is what she had to say about why this issue is personal
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
IVANKA TRUMP, ADVISER TO PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: As a mother, this is much more than a policy priority. It is a clarion calls to action in defense of
the vulnerable, the abused, and the exploited.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KINKADE: Now, Hala, the State Department also announced a new initiative to end modern day slavery. Already, they have allocated $50 billion to it.
They're hoping to raise $1.5 billion to go to wars future prosecutions, prevention, and protection of victims -- Hala.
GORANI: Thank you. Linda Kinkade is at the State Department.
Check out our Facebook page, facebook.com/halagoranicnn. We'll be right back.
GORANI: Queen Elizabeth is getting a pay raise. In fact, it's a whopping 78 percent increase. Her annual payment this year will be about 76 million
pounds, and it will continue for 10 years to pay for renovations at Buckingham Palace, like new pipes. New pipes cost a lot, believe me.
Much of her income comes from properties that make money for the government, and a lot of that money goes to the royal family's security and
travel. There are other expenses though. British media reports that more than a million pounds was spent replacing doors at Windsor Castle.
Critics of the monarchy say it's all a huge waste of money.
Have you tweeted to your friends to stay woke or maybe you've wondered if we ventured a post-truth era of politics?
Those words are the newest entries in the Oxford English dictionary. Being woke means to be aware and informed, especially in discussions on politics
or social justice. Post-truth was Oxford's 2016 word of the year, meaning when objective facts are less important than emotions or personal beliefs.
The dictionary has a new last word, and I've been given a little primer on how to pronounce it. Can you see it? It's Z-I-Z -- sorry, Z-Y-Z-Z-Y-V-A.
Can you say it yet?
[15:55:04] It's zyzzyva, the name for a genus of tropical weevils. It's a high score for scrabble players too.
The last word used to be -- can you say that again, Nic? Zythum, which is an ancient beer.
There you have it. Now, you know. Now, you're woke.
If you ask U.S. President Donald Trump when something's going to happen, a news conference, a policy update, an investigation, he'll likely tell you
to wait two weeks. Don't take his word for it, though, as our Jeanne Moos reports. Trump time isn't always the same as calendar time.
JEANNE MOOS, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Waiting for something coming out of the White House? Just give it two weeks. To get
something mythical about wiretaps?
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: To the forefront, over the next two weeks.
MOOS (voice-over): A decision on the Paris Climate Accords?
TRUMP: Over the next two weeks.
MOOS (voice-over): A plan for cutting taxes.
TRUMP: Two or three weeks, that will be phenomenal.
MOOS (voice-over): Except that ended up being 11 weeks before a one-page outline of a tax plan came out. The President sounds like a contractor in
the "Money Pit."
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: How long do you think that will take?
PHILIP BOSCO, ACTOR: Two weeks.
SHELLEY LONG, ACTRESS: How long will it take to put this place together?
BOSCO: Two weeks.
TOM HANKS, ACTOR: Two weeks? Two weeks?
BOSCO: You sound like a parakeet there. Two weeks, two weeks.
MOOS (voice-over): It was Bloomberg News that first noticed the President parroting two weeks.
TRUMP: Sometime over the next two weeks, as to NAFTA --
MOOS (voice-over): Want to know how well the U.S. is doing against ISIS?
TRUMP: We're going to be having a news conference in about two weeks.
MOOS (on camera): Three weeks later, still no ISIS press conference. So what did the President do? He said it again.
TRUMP: We're going to be having a news conference in two weeks on that fight, and you'll see numbers that you would not have believed.
MOOS (voice-over): The number not to believe is two weeks. And to think Donald Trump once made a cameo in a movie called "Two Weeks' Notice." In
which Hugh Grant wore a tie so long, he looked like a Trump caricature.
TRUMP: I hear Kelson finally dumped you.
HUGH GRANT, ACTOR: Not exactly, no.
MOOS (on camera): The President may have trouble sticking to a calendar but that doesn't prevent his face from being plastered on a few.
From the "Out of Office Countdown" calendar showing how long the Trump administration has to go to Donald Trump's greatest quotes calendar.
TRUMP: Part of the beauty of me is that I'm very rich.
MOOS (voice-over): Very rich but not very punctual. Jeanne Moos, CNN.
TRUMP: Over the next two weeks.
MOOS (voice-over): New York.
GORANI: You don't have to wait two weeks, just two minutes, for the news to continue on CNN. That's coming up next with "QUEST MEANS BUSINESS."
I'm Hala Gorani. And I'll see you same time.