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Eight Found Dead in Semi-Truck in Texas; Trump White House; Middle East Violence; Qatar Crisis. Aired 5-6a ET

Aired July 23, 2017 - 05:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


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GEORGE HOWELL, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): U.S. lawmakers agree to impose new sanctions on Russia and to limit the president's ability to water them down.

Also, six months into his administration, we check in with some of Mr. Trump's voters to see if they are still supporting the president.

Plus, memories of their mother: the Duke of Cambridge and Prince Harry give a revealing interview about their last memories of their mother, Diana, Princess of Wales.

Live from CNN World Headquarters in Atlanta, we want to welcome our viewers here in the United States and all around the world. I'm George Howell. CNN NEWSROOM starts right now.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (voice-over): This is CNN breaking news.

HOWELL: It is 5:00 am on the U.S. East Coast.

We begin with breaking news this hour, coming out of the U.S. state of Texas. Eight people have been found dead there, including some children, in the back of a semi-truck. This in San Antonio, Texas.

There were a total of 38 people found inside the tractor-trailer. At least 20 of them are in critical condition. Investigators believe other people had been inside that trailer but got inside cars that had come to pick them up.

Police are treating this case as a case of human trafficking. The driver of the truck is presently in custody, we understand. The trailer was parked in a Walmart parking lot you see here on this map.

People say that the people -- police say the people were discovered when a person from that truck asked a store employee for water.

Now it's unclear at this hour where the semi-truck came from or how long it had been parked where it was found. But the U.S. Department of Homeland Security is investigating this case. Here's the San Antonio police chief with more on it.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) WILLIAM MCMANUS, SAN ANTONIO CHIEF OF POLICE: Late last night we had a call from a Walmart employee that there had been a welfare check on a tractor-trailer that was parked in the lot here. He was approached by someone from that truck, who was asking for water.

Came back with a water, called the police; we arrived on the scene and found eight people dead in the back of that trailer. There were a number of people that Chief Hood will talk about, who were transported to local hospitals.

Checking the video from the store, we found that there were a number of vehicles that came in and picked up a lot of folks that were in that trailer that survived the trip. We're looking at a human trafficking crime here this evening.

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HOWELL: All right, again, a lot of questions, we're sure. But again, the breaking news we're following this hour out of the U.S. state of Texas, eight people found dead in the back of a semi-truck in San Antonio, Texas, in a Walmart parking lot. We'll continue to follow this story and bring you updates as we learn more here on CNN.

Now to U.S. politics and the prospect of new sanctions against Russia over its meddling in the U.S. election. The U.S. president, Donald Trump, has shown little interest in punishing Moscow but veto-proof legislation, well, that may soon hit his desk and it aims to do just that.

The Kremlin says it views such a sanction as negatively, quote, "quite negatively." CNN's Kaitlan Collins has more.

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KAITLAN COLLINS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: House and Senate negotiators announced Saturday that they had come to an agreement on a new bill that would place sanctions on Russia, North Korea and Iran.

Now these sanctions against Russia would be in response to Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election as well as their military aggression in Ukraine and Syria.

Now according to House majority leader Kevin McCarthy's schedule, this could come to vote as soon as Tuesday. It would go to the Senate after that and then it could hit Donald Trump's desk before August.

Now a key party of this bill is a congressional mandate that would require a review if Donald Trump decided to end or ease these sanctions against Russia. This is a key part of the bill that the White House has pushed back on as it has been crafted.

But if Donald Trump decided to veto this legislation, he would almost undoubtedly face backlash from Democrats and Republicans alike, who think that the president should take a tougher stance against Russia.

Meanwhile all this is going on, Donald Trump has been very active on Twitter, blasting Hillary Clinton, James Comey and the special counsel. His most notable tweet Saturday was about pardons, though. Let's take a look.

"While all agree the U.S. president has the complete power to pardon, why think of that when only crimes so far is leaks against us?

"Fake news."

Now this tweet comes after a "Washington Post" report that claimed the president and his legal team were exploring his pardoning abilities and seeing just how far his authority does go.

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COLLINS: Now a source familiar with the discussion told CNN that a curious Donald Trump was asking questions in an informational way. Donald Trump's lawyer, John Dowd, pushed back on "The Washington Post" report, calling it "nonsense," and saying that his team is cooperating fully with the special counsel's investigation.

Back to you.

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HOWELL: The reaction from the Kremlin towards more U.S. sanctions, well, it's predictably negative. Let's bring in CNN's Clare Sebastian, following this story from the Russian capital.

Clare, any new official word from Moscow about the possibility of new sanctions?

CLARE SEBASTIAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: George, just that two-word response that we got on Saturday from the Kremlin spokesman, Dmitry Peskov.

The economical nature of that "quite negatively," he said, was how he viewed this agreement in Congress on these sanctions, reflects the fact that while the Kremlin has always been very quick to condemn any sanctions from the U.S. or E.U., it is in a situation now where his patience is wearing thin and not just because of this new round of sanctions that we might see as a result of this bill but, of course, existing sanctions.

You'll remember that the Obama administration brought in a set of new sanctions in late December against Russia for alleged meddling in the U.S. election. Russia did nothing at that point and they now say that they reserve the right to retaliate for this and any new sanctions.

The rhetoric has been heating up in recent weeks. The foreign minister in the last week described the seizure of Russian diplomatic compounds in the U.S. as daylight robbery. The foreign ministry has said that a package of retaliatory measures is already in the works.

And the Kremlin has said explicitly that it is running out of patience. So I think the two-word response, "quite negatively," perhaps purposefully understated, reflecting not only how critical they remain about these sanctions but the fact that they are really running out of patience here -- George.

HOWELL: All right. So you know, where this goes still unclear. But if history is a guide, Clare, help our viewers get some context on what Russia could do.

How might that nation respond to a new round of sanctions?

SEBASTIAN: Well, I think if history is a guide, then the response is not always predictable. Traditionally in diplomacy, we have a tit- for-that response. You expel our diplomats, we'll expel yours.

But in Russia's case, they have often opted to what -- for what they have called an asymmetric response. In response to the E.U. and U.S. sanctions over the conflict in Ukraine, you'll remember they banned food imports from a number of European countries.

Another example, back in 2012, when the U.S. sanctions suspected Russian human rights abusers in what was called the Magnitsky Act, Russia a couple of weeks later banned American families from adopting Russian children.

So it's not always an equal and opposite response. But I want to read you a tweet over the weekend from a prominent Russian senator, Aleksey Pushkov.

He said, "If the U.S. brings in new sanctions, we should review our relations in areas that are important to them. Without our reciprocal measures for the U.S., the price will be zero."

So you really get a sense there that the mood here is that they are ready to retaliate and they are not in the mood to take this lying down -- George.

HOWELL: Clare Sebastian, live for us in Moscow, where it is just past noon. Thank you for the reporting.

Now let's get some context by the London bureau chief of "The New York Times," Steven Erlanger.

We appreciate having you with us on the show this hour, Steven. Always a pleasure. Let's talk about the issue of sanctions. The U.S. Congress, they're focused on making this happen for Russia with bipartisan support, despite a president who is seeking warmer relations with that nation.

Here's the question, though: when this bill hits the president's desk, will he have any other choice but to sign it?

STEVEN ERLANGER, "THE NEW YORK TIMES": Well, of course, the president always has a choice. It's not be an easy choice for him -- or it will not be because of course if he signs it, it throws relations with Russia, his bromance with Vladimir Putin, into a deeper freeze.

And if he doesn't sign it, he opens himself up to more questions about why he's so friendly with Russia. I mean, this is one of the fascinating things about Trump. It's one

reason he's so unusual. He's not a traditional Republican. Traditional Republicans, as you see in the congressional votes, are very skeptical about Russia, very concerned to defend the NATO alliance, very angry about the annexation of Ukraine, Russian meddling in the elections, et cetera, et cetera.

Trump doesn't seem too worried about any of those things. I mean, in that sense, he really is going against his own party -- or the backbone of what he now says is his own party. And because of that, is running into this kind of trouble inside --

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ERLANGER: -- the Congress. So it's not an easy choice for him, not at all.

HOWELL: But when it comes to sanctions, this is an issue that actually has bipartisan support so it is not restricted to one singular party here.

If he were to veto this bill, given its wide support, would Congress then have the ability to override his veto?

ERLANGER: Well, you know, from here, it's hard to do the head count and I suspect they'd have trouble doing it. But, you know, Congress is pretty fixed on punishing Russia.

Now the Russians, as your correspondent said, had held off retaliating on Obama sanctions at the very end of the Obama administration, which were meant to punish Russia for Ukraine and also meddling in the election.

And that included taking away from the Russians these two "resorts," quote, things that they have in Maryland and other places that were owned by the Russians. They were taken away.

Putin decided that Trump sounded nice, that they'd have a reset, a new relationship. So they didn't retaliate, they didn't expel any Americans. But now as we see, their patience is running out. They no longer believe that President Trump will be able to create the warmer relationship with Russia that they were hoping for.

So having waited this long, the tit-for-tat will be about the Obama sanctions and then, of course, if there are new sanctions, there may be more retaliation.

But I think a lot of people in Russia are still hoping that the rhetoric of threat will be enough to convince Donald Trump to veto this bill.

Part of what the sanction bill's interesting about, too, is its -- will be its impact on relations with Iran, where Donald Trump is very skeptical about the Iran nuclear deal. And the Iranians are very unhappy about the idea any new sanctions against them as well. HOWELL: Steven, it's also interesting to point out that Congress has included a provision to make sure the president is unable to weaken this particular bill if he signs it.

Let's talk about the president's most recent tweet on another power that is due to the president, his ability to pardon. Donald Trump recently tweeted this statement, we'll take a look at it here.

"While all agree the U.S. president has the complete power to pardon, why think of that when only crimes so far is leaks against us?"

Important to point out in this tweet that it is debatable that the president has complete power to pardon. That is a question that's certainly up for discussion.

But the simple fact that the president tweeted about this issue of pardoning, given the questions that surround him regarding the investigations into the Trump campaign and to the administration, what do you think the reason was behind him putting this tweet out?

ERLANGER: Well, it's a very good question, George. I mean, these tweets are like an arrow into the brain of Donald Trump. I mean, we get a sense from what he's obsessed with from his tweeting. And clearly he's obsessed with the Russia investigation.

There are people in the White House who are talking particularly with the new position for Mr. Scaramucci, that Trump wants to go to war to some degree against this investigation, which seems to be spreading and spreading and spreading, of his campaign ties to Russia.

He's particularly angry that the investigation might even include his financial dealings and, indeed, his tax returns, which he's been very careful not to reveal to the American people.

So I think, you know, what he's worried about is that his family is going to get caught up in some kind of criminal investigation about ties to Russia during the campaign. And that's what's being looked into.

So what's on his mind is pardoning, perhaps -- who knows -- anyone involved in those dealings so they're protected from any criminal charges.

Now does the president have the ability to pardon people?

I believe the president does. There are arguments both ways. But, traditionally, presidents have had the right to pardon.

Now if he's going to be pardoning -- and here we're just speculating, God knows -- members of his own immediate family or his son-in-law, that would create a kind of constitutional question.

What worries me is we do seem to be heading toward a kind of constitutional --

[05:15:00] ERLANGER: -- challenge between the Department of Justice's investigation into these Russian links and the White House's clear intention to try to foreshorten or circumvent or at least circumscribe this investigation so it doesn't go into the heart of Mr. Trump's and his family's financial dealings.

HOWELL: A lot of questions there. Steven Erlanger in London, thank you so much for the insight and the context today.

ERLANGER: Thank you, George.

HOWELL: After a roller coaster six months with the Trump administration, Sean Spicer has handed over his resignation as the White House press secretary. He did that on Friday.

This came just after Anthony Scaramucci, a former Trump campaign adviser, accepted the job as communications director. Sources familiar with the changes say that Spicer opposed Scaramucci's hiring. You can hear Scaramucci's side of that story later today. Scaramucci will be on Jake Tapper's "STATE OF THE UNION." He'll be a guest there. That is 9:00 am in Atlanta, 2:00 pm in London, right here on CNN.

Still ahead here on NEWSROOM, the U.N. Security Council responds to the latest Israeli-Palestinian violence. We have a live report ahead from Jerusalem. Stay with us.

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HOWELL: Welcome back to NEWSROOM. I'm George Howell.

The U.N. Security Council is set to meet on Monday over the latest wave of violence in Jerusalem and in the West Bank. This after another Palestinian was killed on Saturday in clashes with Israeli forces.

Officials say three other Palestinians were killed in clashes the day before, as were three Israelis in a West Bank stabbing attack. We get more on this story with CNN's Oren Liebermann, following the story live in Jerusalem this hour.

Oren, have there been new arrests in the West Bank?

OREN LIEBERMANN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: There has been a sweep from the Israeli military, specifically around and in the location of the Friday night attack on the summit of Halamish in the northern West Bank.

That's when Israeli military official says 25 Palestinians were arrested who were suspected either of being ready to carry out an imminent attack or of being members of the Hamas militant group. So this is the response and it's not a surprising response in that

sense, from the Israeli military, to try to secure the area as well as sending in more soldiers.

Meanwhile, Palestinian factions have called for today to be a day of rage. And even if that call can be largely symbolic, then --

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LIEBERMANN: -- we don't really see that rage on the streets, it is an indication of where the situation stands right now. It is tense in the West Bank in and around the Old City of Jerusalem. And we'll see where it goes from here.

There are differing reports. Palestinians have called off contacts with the Israeli's at the leadership level.

Does that include security coordination that Israeli military officials says they're trying to see exactly how much of a security coordination has been cut off. And that's critical to the safety of both sides here.

So everything here is right now sensitive today, as are the next few days are critical days here -- George.

HOWELL: Watching this violence escalate over the past several days, Oren, if you could give our viewers some context here as to when this round of violence really started and what might have been behind it.

LIEBERMANN: So when you're talking about this specific round, it looks like it started about 1.5 weeks ago, when three Arab Israelis killed two Israeli police officers on the most sensitive site here, the holiest site for Jews, known as the Temple Mount, and a holy site for Muslims, known as the Noble Sanctuary. In response to that attack, Israel put in metal detectors to try to secure the Temple Mount/Noble Sanctuary and that is what has suddenly created such sensitivity.

It's not about the metal detectors, it's about who controls the holy site. And now it's Palestinians and other Arab actors in the region or other Arab states in the region to say the Israelis are trying to take over this holy site. And that's why this is so sensitive because it's not about metal detectors, it's about a holy site.

We have seen repeated clashes, in which Palestinians have been killed. We saw the attack at that area about a week and a half ago, another attack on Friday night, where three Israelis were killed at a settlement.

And it looks like this could very much be heading toward another round of violence. And this could be the start of it.

The question, what is done today to head that off, as the international community, as you rightly pointed out, George, tried to get involved to keep that from happening?

HOWELL: Just after noon in Jerusalem, Oren Liebermann, live for us. Thank you for the reporting today.

Now the Turkish president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, he is headed to the Gulf region this hour. He'll try to patch up the growing rift between Qatar and its neighbors. Ending Turkish-Qatari military cooperation, now that's just one of the demands being made by Gulf Countries. In order to lift the diplomatic and economic boycott against Doha, hundreds of Turkish soldiers have already arrived in Qatar since this crisis started in June.

Let's bring in CNN's senior international correspondent Ben Wedeman, live in Istanbul, following this story.

Ben, a pleasure to have you here this hour. Clearly Turkey has a stake in this, given its military interest in Qatar.

Can its president truly make an impact here?

BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SR. INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, we did hear the president, before he left Istanbul this morning, describing Saudi Arabia, which is the first stop on his tour, which will also include Qatar and Kuwait.

He described them as an elder statesman who can help resolve this issue. He said that it's in no one's interest to prolong this crisis. Now Turkey is a regional superpower and has a huge role to play in the Gulf as well.

It does have several hundred troops in Qatar that are part of a 2014 agreement between the two countries, to establish a base there. But it's only since this crisis began that Turkey dispatched several hundred troops to Qatar.

Now Turkey also has important trade ties with all of the powers in the GCC, the Gulf Cooperation Council, including Saudi Arabia, including Bahrain, the UAE and Qatar. And it is eager to resolve this crisis so those ties can get back to normal.

Turkey is particularly interested in Gulf investments in its large economy. So that's what he's going to be trying to do.

But because Turkey is seen by Saudi Arabia, which is one of the key players in this crisis, as a backer of Qatar, as a backer for the Muslim Brotherhood, which, of course, the quartet that Saudi Arabia is part of, is opposed to, it's going to be interesting to see how Erdogan is going to pose himself as part of this solution, as opposed to, in the eyes of many of Egypt and the other three members of this quartet against Qatar, as part of the problem -- George.

HOWELL: But certainly he is walking a very fine line here, given, you know, his support of Doha but at the same time his support of other nations there in the Gulf region.

WEDEMAN: Yes. And he has come down very clearly on the side of Qatar, along with Iran. So what you have is this is part of this ongoing Cold War between Iran and Saudi Arabia that goes back many --

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WEDEMAN: -- years. But his support for Qatar is really key because Turkey, unlike the Gulf countries which have a lot of oil but not much else, Turkey is a serious country, has a huge military, it's part of NATO, it has a huge, modern economy and, therefore, it does have an important role to play.

Yes, Turkey has been sort of walking a fine line between being a part of the NATO or the pro-Western bloc and also maintaining good ties with Hamas, relatively good ties with Iraq and supporting the Muslim Brotherhood.

But nonetheless, because of Turkey's strategic importance, it does have a role to play in resolving this crisis somehow -- George.

HOWELL: Somehow is the question. CNN senior international correspondent, Ben Wedeman, live for us in Istanbul, following this story. Thanks, Ben.

It's been half a year since U.S. President Donald Trump took office, so we asked some of the people who supported the president to give him a rating, a performance rating so far. We'll give you that response.

And for several days, thousands of protests, they've rallied against efforts to radically overhaul Poland's judicial system and now they're demanding immediate action from the president.

CNN, coming live to you from Atlanta, Georgia. To our viewers across the United States and around the world this hour, you're watching CNN NEWSROOM.

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GEORGE HOWELL, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): It's after 12:30 pm in Istanbul, Turkey, 4:30 am in San Antonio, Texas. This is CNN NEWSROOM worldwide this hour. I'm George Howell with the headlines we're following for you.

And some breaking news out of the U.S. state of Texas. Eight people there found dead, including children, found dead in the back of a semi-truck. This in San Antonio, Texas. More than 2 dozen others were taken to nearby hospitals, many of the people in critical condition.

Investigators are treating this case a case of human trafficking. The trailer was parked in a Walmart parking lot and the driver is presently in custody. We'll have more on this breaking news story as we learn more here on CNN.

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HOWELL: Whatever your opinion about the early morning tweets and almost daily issues of the Russia investigation, no one can argue it has been a busy, it has been an unprecedented start to the presidency of Donald Trump.

Gary Tuchman spoke with some Trump voters in the U.S. state of Florida to see how they feel about the president six months on.

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GARY TUCHMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Izzy's Diner in Palm Bay, Florida, is in the heart of Trump country. The president won big here in Brevard County, helping him win statewide by less than a percentage point.

A half year into his presidency, we came for breakfast to talk to seven Donald Trump voters.

First question for all of you. We start with Izzy, the owner of this fine restaurant.

How would you describe his presidency in one sentence?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think he's doing well.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think he's doing an outstanding job. I just wish more people would get behind what he's doing.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Seems like "Mr. Toad's Wild Ride" to me.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think he's done well. If people would just work with him and not always against him, I think he would make some progress.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I feel like I'm Alice in Wonderland, down the rabbit hole. It has been a disaster.

TUCHMAN (voice-over): Marge Shrimp (ph) is an independent who voted for Trump and who is now not pleased about her decision to do so.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think his presidency right now is worse than what I saw with Nixon and Watergate. It is the most disastrous presidency in my lifetime.

TUCHMAN (voice-over): The rest at our table are registered Republicans who are pleased with their vote.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He can't speak without getting ripped apart. If they just leave him alone and let him do his job. He's the hell of a businessman. Let him run the business.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's like Vietnam. He's being stopped before and every time he gets to these lines means stop.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Where is him bringing together Republicans and Democrats and working his deal with them?

Where is it?

It ain't there. He's golfing. TUCHMAN: The six others at this table say there's an organized effort to undermine the President and there's passion here about the Russia investigation.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It's B.S.

TUCHMAN (voice-over): What's B.S. about?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: All of it. All of it. It's just made up news. I think it's all B.S.

TUCHMAN (voice-over): And regarding Donald Trump Jr.'s meeting with Russians.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Opposition research is part of the political game, is it not?

It's my understanding --

TUCHMAN (on camera): Are you bothered by the fact that was -- it was cited as Russian government opposition?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: As opposed to what, Ukrainian government?

Which is that's a good point --

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TUCHMAN (on camera): -- by some of them in the United States who had the opposition research?

So is anyone bothered by that?

Raise your hand if you're bothered by that.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Not really.

TUCHMAN (on camera): It doesn't bother anybody?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's not illegal, either.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think it's gone.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I didn't say it was.

TUCHMAN (voice-over): I think it's been done for years. I think it's been done a lot.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: By the Russian government.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: By the United States government. Every thing the president is interfering with --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Other elect?

But you guys elected this is any big deal about him. UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No.

TUCHMAN (voice-over): And the Republicans here don't blame Donald Trump for the health care bill failure although...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think he could have used a few more people myself to help him design that bill.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don't think our politicians today care about our country the way they should.

TUCHMAN (voice-over): Do you think that's why the healthcare bill has failed?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, I do.

TUCHMAN (voice-over): But do you think Donald Trump does care?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think he really, really does.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It's not the Democrats that are stopping him with health care. He stood on platform after platform after platform, saying, I can bring these people --

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UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: -- together. I can do it. I alone can do it.

What happened?

TUCHMAN (voice-over): What would you say to Donald Trump if he was sitting at this table?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I would tell him to stop tweeting and get on with business. Get off that social media. That's what I would tell him.

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HOWELL: Gary Tuchman, thank you for that report, again, speaking to voters in Florida.

Now more on the breaking news that we're following. Eight people found dead, including children, in the back of a semi-truck in San Antonio, Texas. Let's bring in now the fire chief for San Antonio, Charles Hood, joining us now live on the phone.

Charles, thank you for being with us. So what we know at this point, eight people found dead. We understand the suspect in custody.

What can you tell us?

CHARLES HOOD, SAN ANTONIO FIRE CHIEF: Good morning. This is a real sad and tragic event that we responded on about 12:26 this morning. We responded on a call for a welfare check in a Walmart parking lot. And units arrived and found multiple people in the back of a

unrefrigerated trailer. Actually, the trailer did have refrigeration but it was not working.

So multiple people in the back of a trailer. So these people were all suffering in various stages of heat distress to heat stroke and, unfortunately, eight of them were dead. We quickly called for a mass casualty incident and had about 29 units responding out there to that.

We ended up treating a total of 30 patients; 17 of those were critical, priority one patients. And so, unfortunately, with heatstroke, a lot of these people are going to have irreparable brain damage. And so that is a real tragedy of this.

And so some of them were in extremely critical condition. We also transported another 13 that were in serious condition. So, again, we utilized seven different hospitals and got all those folks transported.

We had at least two children that were school age. None of them were reported to be dead when we left. So the eight dead were all male. We don't know really the gender or the demographic of some of these patients because they have gone to so many different hospitals.

So the number is solid; but as far as the sex and the -- that information, that'll be forthcoming in the morning. This is going to be a crime incident, San Antonio police department is investigating it.

The one thing that we do have a concern about is some of these people might have wandered out into the brush from that truck. And so we'll do another search in the morning. Hopefully, we have everybody accounted for.

But, again, we're very fortunate that we do not have 38 dead bodies in the back of that vehicle because that really, really could have happened. So it is a tragedy, it's bad but it could have been much worse.

HOWELL: Charles, we understand that investigators are treating this as a case of human trafficking. It's still early in the investigation, so I don't mean to ask too soon if you're not able to answer this question. But I'm sure you've spoken to some of the people who were on that truck.

Any indication of how long they were there?

HOOD: You know, I know there's video information that they're looking at. But, again, the majority of these people were in no condition to talk to any of them. Of the majority, those 17 were unconscious.

And so a lot of that other information, I know the police department will have investigators at all of the emergency rooms and, you know, to follow up. But, again, we didn't have a lot of conversations with the majority of these people. So it's really unknown how long they were there, but the great thing is that they were found and they weren't there another night because, if they would have been, none of them would have survived.

HOWELL: Charles, that is an understatement for sure. Thankfully, they were found in time. Thankfully, they got out of there. But, again, we understand the situation, eight people were found dead, including some children, in the back of this semi-truck there in San Antonio. Charles, thank you for being with us.

You're watching CNN NEWSROOM and we'll be back after the break.

HOOD: Thank you.

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HOWELL: Welcome back to NEWSROOM. I'm George Howell.

In Venezuela, the opposition is increasing pressure on the nation's president, Nicolas Maduro. Opposition leaders are calling for a two- day nationwide strike this coming week.

On Saturday, police clashed with protesters. They're trying to stop the president's plans to rewrite the constitution there. Mr. Maduro, though, is not backing down, despite the threat of economic sanctions from the United States.

In the meantime, a violinist who has become a symbol of anti-Maduro protests was wounded on Saturday. The 23-year old has become famous for playing the violin while clashes rage on.

He tweeted a video from the hospital, saying that the bullets will not stop the opposition. About 100 people now have died in around three months now of protests.

Anger is growing in Poland over what some see as a power grab.

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HOWELL (voice-over): Many people coming together, chanting, "We want a veto."

This after the upper parliament passed a controversial new bill on Saturday. It gives the government the power to remove all of the country's supreme court justices and to pick their replacements. Poland's president has 21 days now to either sign or veto that bill.

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HOWELL: More demonstrations are planned in the coming days. All of this to try to influence the president to reject that bill.

Our Muhammad Lila has this report from the Polish capital.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) MUHAMMAD LILA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Thousands of ordinary people here in Poland continue to flood the streets to protest what they say is a move by the country's ruling party that would infringe their basic democratic rights.

If you look around, you'll see many people hold holding candles. They say those candles are a symbol of hope and they're chanting slogans, like "free court system" or "we want a veto."

And this all has to do with a controversial piece of legislation that's been proposed by the country's ruling party. If that legislation is approved by the country's president, it would give that ruling party unprecedented power to appoint and remove the country's supreme court judges.

And here is why that's important. If you think back to Democracy 101, one of the basic hallmarks of a free and stable and healthy democracy is an independent judiciary.

Well, these people here are protesting, saying that if this bill becomes law, then this country will effectively no longer have an independent judiciary because whoever is ruling the country, in this case the Law and Justice Party --

[05:45:00]

LILA: -- would be able to appoint supreme court judges that support that country's own mandate.

Now for its part the ruling party says that this is part of the democratic process. And the ruling party should be allowed to have that control over the supreme court system.

But if this flood of protests that we've seen not just in Warsaw but in fact right across the country is any indication, there are tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands of people right across the country, that are demanding that the president veto this legislation.

And that's really what it comes down to, the last effort or the last hope really of the protestors who are protesting is that the president will exercise his veto power.

And all eyes now are going to be on a meeting that takes place Monday between the president and the head of the country's supreme court system. We know that this legislation will come up.

And we know that the president himself has 21 days to decide if he is going to approve it or if he will listen to the demands of the protestors and veto the legislation. Certainly, that's something that many of the opposition parties are hoping for -- Muhammad Lila, CNN, Warsaw.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

HOWELL: Lech Walesa is also against this bill. He says the changes could weaken Polish democracy. Listen. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

LECH WALESA, FORMER PRESIDENT OF POLAND (through translator): Our generation led Poland to freedom in an incredibly difficult situation and based it on the separation of powers.

This is the most important thing that we managed to do. If anyone wants to disturb this most important victory, you, the young people, cannot let that happen. So that there is no doubt, I will always be with you, despite my condition, even if they arrest all of you here.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HOWELL: One resident of Warsaw told CNN he remembered how his own parents protested in 1989 against Poland's then Communist regime. He called these demonstrations, quote, "the same moment."

British Princes Will and Harry say that they regret the last phone call that they had with their mother, Diana, the Princess of Wales. In a new documentary for ITV and HBO, the Duke of Cambridge and Prince Harry, they revealed that they were in a rush to end the conversation so they could go play.

William, who was then 15 years old, and Harry, just about 12, had no idea that phone call would be their last. Their mother died in a car crash on August 31st of 1997. "Diana, Our Mother: Her Life and Legacy" celebrates her life and work 20 years after her tragic death.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

HENRY, PRINCE OF WALES: Our mother was a total kid through and through.

When everybody says to me, you know, so she was fun?

Give us an example.

All I can hear is her laugh in my head. And that sort of crazy laugh of where there was just pure happiness shown on her face.

Once she said to me, be as naughty as you want, just don't get caught.

She was one of the naughtiest parents. She would come and watch us play football and smuggle sweets into our socks. I remember walking back from the football match and having five packets of Starbursts. The whole sock was just bulging with sweets. I started looking around at the top box, throw it in and lock it up.

PRINCE WILLIAM, DUKE OF CAMBRIDGE: There are a couple of memories I have that are particularly funny. Just outside this room, where we are now, she organized, when I came home from school, to have Cindy Crawford and Naomi Campbell waiting at the top of the stairs.

I was probably a 12- or 13-year-old boy. I have posters of them on my wall. And I went bright red and didn't quite know what to say. And sort of fumbled and pretty much fell down the stairs on the way out. I was awestruck. That's a very funny memory of her loving and embarrassing me and her being sort of a joker.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HOWELL: They're opening up more about that.

This is CNN NEWSROOM. We'll be back after the break.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[05:50:00]

(SPORTS)

HOWELL: The legendary Tour de France ends in just hours from now with the last dash through the city of Paris. Front-runner Chris Froome of Britain will be wearing the yellow jersey as the cyclists speed down the Champs-Elysees to the finish line there.

Barring any last-minute upset in Sunday's final stage, Froome is virtually assured of winning his fourth tour title. He finished Saturday's 20th stage with a commanding 54-second lead.

The fourth and final round of the British Open is presently underway. American Jordan Spieth is leading the pack and he'll be trying to make some golf history. Our Alex Thomas has more.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ALEX THOMAS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: He's not another Tiger Woods but he's the closest golfer since Tiger's heyday to match that excitement and record breaking. Jordan Spieth taking a huge grip on this open golf championship, coming in terms of the final round after a perfect round of 65 on Saturday.

Jordan Spieth of course hitting the headlines when, as a 19-year old, he became the youngest PGA Tour tournament winner for more than 80 years. He did it again in 2015, winning the Masters and the U.S. Open.

And now he is poised to lift the claret jug, which will make it three out of the four majors that any male golfer can possibly win. And he's done it at such a young age, just 23. His closest challenger is fellow American Matt Kuchar, just three strokes back.

But on a day of perfect scoring conditions, both men were rather outshone in terms of scoring by South Africa's Brandon Grace. He's the first man every to shoot a 62 in a major golf championship. And the funny thing was, when he holed his final putt, he didn't realize at the time he had broken the record.

He had to wait for his caddy to tell him he'd done it -- Alex Thomas, CNN, Royal Birkdale.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

[05:55:00] HOWELL: Alex Thomas, thank you for the report.

(WEATHER REPORT)

HOWELL: That wraps this hour of NEWSROOM. I'm George Howell at the CNN headquarters in Atlanta. "NEW DAY" is next. For other viewers, stay with us. Your world headlines are next. Thank you for watching CNN, the world's news leader.