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WORLD RIGHT NOW WITH HALA GORANI
US Coast Guard evacuates people and pets from Saint Thomas; Dire situation on half-French, half-Dutch island; Analyst pushes build back better approach; French president surveying the damage in French Caribbean; Criticism mounts over European response to Irma; Paris awarded 2024 Olympic Games; Suu Kyi to address humanitarian crisis next week; Australian actress Rebel Wilson wins defamation case; Telethon raises millions for hurricane victims. Aired 3-4p ET
Aired September 13, 2017 - 15:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
HALA GORANI, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: Good evening, everyone. I'm Hala Gorani. We are coming to you from London. A week after Hurricane Irma
smashed its way through the Caribbean, Europe is now increasing its disaster response.
The very latest on a crisis in the region, the U.K., France, the Netherlands, all now boosting their aid efforts. The British foreign
secretary saw the devastation in the British Virgin Islands himself today.
There he is, Boris Johnson. He described it as a nuclear landscape. Now, the British prime minister announced roughly $33 million in additional aid,
but this does come it has to be sad after mounting criticism over a slow response from the British government to help its territory.
Now Boris Johnson spoke to our Polo Sandoval and answered specifically that question. Why was the response slow? Listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BORIS JOHNSON, BRITISH FOREIGN SECRETARY: Yes, I can, just very quickly, this is the most extraordinary scene of dissemination and devastation that
you know, I think many people witnessed in their lives. It's something I've never seen. So, it's like in many ways nuclear landscape.
But what's extraordinary is the way that people are coming through and I've just been talking to the government of Orlando Smith, the government
(inaudible), they are pulling together.
They are getting the roads open. (Inaudible) security, law and order that's coming up, that's improving. The supplies are coming in a huge way,
but the U.K. government, I want to stress this.
The British nationals here, British nationals, we are here for the long term. We are going to get this place back on its feet.
POLO SANDOVAL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: And finally, sir, your message to perhaps some of those who are frustrated, hoping to get out, and it is --
JOHNSON: Well, absolutely, but, you know, our mission is to restore confidence, to get this place back on its feet and of course, where we will
have assisted departures for those are in most need.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: There you have it Boris Johnson, the foreign secretary of the United Kingdom. Now the numbers are shocking, a staggering 200,000 people
are in desperate need of help across the entire Caribbean.
The death toll now is rising. It stands at 44. You see a map there of Irma's path of destruction. Our Clarissa Ward gives us a view of some of
the damage in the islands.
CLARISSA WARD, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The island of St. Maarten last week one of the jewels of the Caribbean, now a paradise lost. Not a
day went by, she says, without us thinking that we were very lucky to live on this idyllic island. Today, it is just complete chaos.
Six days after Irma pummeled St. Maarten, officials say more than 90 percent of the buildings on the island are damaged or destroyed. Food and
water are still scarce. Power remains out for most. Thousands of tourists were stranded for days.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It was horrifying, absolutely horrifying. I was enough scared in my life.
WARD: The desperation has led to looting and violence. With reports not yet confirmed by CNN of armed men rooming the streets. Dr. Locklin (ph)
and K.M. McClay (ph) were vacationing at this resort on Saint Maarten when Irma struck.
McClay spent several days caring for the injured, but also found himself forced to stand guard against looters sharing this text with a colleague
back home, "Military is trying to control chaos but nothing is safe after dark. Lots of looting. I was on patrol last night with machete until the
sun came up."
And the story is much the same all across the hard-hit Caribbean. On the British Virgin Islands, one resident told CNN that the situation is only
UNIDENTIFIED CALLER: The supermarkets here (inaudible) prices. The gas stations have dealt with the prices. So, we'll run out of cash is just
scary and the gas stations (inaudible).
Help has been slow to arrive to many of the islands where people are struggling to get by day-to-day and long-term officials say full recovery
may be years away. Clarissa Ward, CNN, Guadalupe.
GORANI: So, that's the concern for years away, but there are big issues today right now. Let's go back live to the Caribbean. CNN's Cyril Vanier
is on the Dutch side of St. Maarten. So, talk to us a little bit before we get to the destruction.
We are hearing all these reports of violence of looting. Has that ended? I mean, is the security situation improved now?
CYRIL VANIER, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: Yes, Hala, it's a good question and on Saint Maarten, in particular, there have been a lot of rumors, both
on the French side, which is just down the road and on the Dutch side where I am.
[15:05:11] Look, I have not seen any looting. I have not seen any violence. It did happen after in the immediate aftermath of the hurricane.
I would stress two points that is a distinction between taking food from supermarkets, which I will personally would call super surviving.
I spoke to the French authorities and they looked upon it in the same way. They weren't trying to crack down on that. People are just trying to get
food, water in supermarkets given the circumstances here, and given the fact that governments from the Netherlands or from France were not in a
position to help the population, I think that is understandable.
I would distinguish that from what also happened in the immediate aftermath of the hurricane, which I'm seeing a lot less of now, which is people going
into shops and taking items, consumer goods.
Look, I want to show you around is because this helps answer your question. This hotel here is about 250 rooms. It was totally devastated. So, this
here really doesn't require any explanation on my part. There is nothing left standing.
This was the patio restaurant area around the pool. There were rooms up there as well and Mark, if you can pan over here, you can see that there is
nothing left, and Hala, I'm still getting back to your point about looting.
But look at this building too, here is where most of the 250 rooms were, all the windows were blown out. If you were in here, you are in danger.
All right. Back to your question, all day long and in fact, just before we started this live shot and I started talking to you, we see people come
here and pick off items that they can use.
We've seen people walked off with, in fact, you can still see one an ironing board, markets items from the shops. They found a crate of beers.
GORANI: Cyril, we are going to get back to you in a moment, but we would like to take you to the White House where Donald Trump has just held a
bipartisan meeting with representatives in Congress about various matters. Let's listen in.
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: -- Republicans and then for the Democrats and (inaudible) very well. Whether we can do
the incredible things, what we are doing and working in a bipartisan fashion obviously would be a positive. But I think something that we all
feel good about.
I want to thank Tom Brady, he's been a friend of mine for a long time. He was there right beginning when he was a professional and I really
appreciate it. Josh Guthimer (ph) for helping to organize this very important gathering. I think it's really -- the whole concept of what we
are trying to do is very, very important.
Inspired by the example of our own citizens, we should be able to come together to make government work for the people. That is why I was
elected. That is why I ran and to provide jobs and opportunities to millions of struggling families.
This includes tax reform that is pro-jobs, pro-growth, pro-family and pro- Americans, very simple, it's all pro-Americans. We have four principles for tax reform, make the tax code simple and fair.
Cut taxes substantially, it will be the largest tax decrease in the history of our country for the middle class. Encourage companies to hire and grow
in America and by doing that we have to reduce the taxes for companies.
Right now, we're 35 percent and really much higher when you wave estate taxes and China is at 15 percent. We wonder why are we not competing well
against China. So, they are at 15 percent and we are at 35 plus, and that does not work.
And bring back trillions of dollars -- we have trillions of dollars overseas, but we'll bring back and we'll bring them back quickly. So, this
is money that Josh and Tom and everybody in this room could tell you.
Everybody has agreed to bring it back to years, but it never gets done so we are putting it down as part of our tax proposal. Another bipartisan
project that is urgently needed is infrastructure and infrastructure investment.
For decades now, Washington has allowed our infrastructure to fall into a state of total decay and disrepair, and it's time now to build new roads,
bridges, airports, tunnels, highways and railways all across our great land.
When we set aside our differences and it is amazing sometimes how little are differences are. We put our country and we put the citizens of our
country first and that's what this is all about.
So, we want to have a great new tax cut and tax reform simplification and massive cuts and we want to get our country working again and competing
again worldwide, and there will be nothing that can stop us.
On top of that, we'll be discussing probably a little bit of healthcare because I know some information come to light, so we'll discussing because
ultimately while we have some Democrats, I can speak for the Republicans generally, but we do want to do something very, very powerfully with
respect to Obamacare.
[15:10:13] It has not worked. The rates are going through the roof. The numbers that you look at, no matter where you go, no matter where you look,
healthcare is failing in our country and we are going to get it change and we are going to get it change fast.
Infrastructure, we'll be talking about, and we'll probably also be talking about DACA because we do not want to get DACA and it's already been a week
and a half and people don't talk about it as much.
We want to see if we can do something with regard to immigration, with regard to the 800,000 people that are now young people. They are not
children anymore. They were children now they are young people.
But we want to see if we can do something in a bipartisan fashion so that we can solve the DACA problem and other immigration problems. So, we'll be
discussing that today and then tonight, I am having dinner with Senator Schumer and Nancy Pelosi and we'll continue some discussions.
So, we have a lot of things in the fire, but I think right now, first and foremost so that we can compete again and especially in light of the fact
that we had two massive hurricanes.
The likes of which I guess to our country has never seen. I don't think they've ever seen. One was the biggest ever in water and the other was the
biggest ever in wind and you put them together and we have devastation in Texas and in Florida, and we've done -- and other parts of our country, by
And I think we've got very high marks for the way we've handled them thus far and we continue to handle them well, but they were there -- they were
very big and very powerful. It was very unfortunate but because of that, more than ever we now need great tax reform and great tax codes.
So, we are here as a group, bipartisan, to try and see what we come up with. Thank you all very much. I appreciate it. Thank you.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (Inaudible).
PRESIDENT TRUMP: Well, I'm a conservative and I will tell you I'm not skeptical and I think that if we can do things in a bipartisan matter, that
will be great. Now it might not work out in which case we'll try and do them without, but I think if we can do in a bipartisan manner -- if you
look at some of the greatest legislation ever passed, it was done on a bipartisan manner.
And so that's what we are going to discuss (inaudible) and if it works out great and if it doesn't work out great, hopefully we'll be able to do it
anyway (inaudible). OK? Thank you.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (Inaudible).
PRESIDENT TRUMP: Looking at a 15 percent rate. We want a 15 percent rate because that would bring us low, not by any means the lowest, but it would
bring us to a level where China and other countries are and we will be able to compete with anybody. Nobody will be able to touch us. So, we would
like to see 15 percent, OK? Thank you very much, everybody.
By the way, lower for individuals, much lower than that for individuals and the rich will not be gaining at all with this plan. We are not -- we're
looking for the middle class and we're looking for jobs, jobs meaning companies. So, we are looking at where the middle class and we are looking
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (Inaudible).
PRESIDENT TRUMP: I think the wealthy will be pretty much where they are, pretty much where they are. If we can do that, we'd like. If they have to
go higher, they'll go higher frankly. We're looking at the middle class and we are looking at jobs. OK? Thank you very much.
GORANI: The president of the United States, Donald Trump, in the Roosevelt Room at the White House there. He was meeting with a bipartisan group of
Congress people, a problem solvers caucus is what it is called, one of the co-chairman of that group, Tom Reed, the New York Republican
The president talked about tax reform, about cutting taxes for the middle class, but also cutting the corporate tax. Also saying something that I
personally did not quite understand, but perhaps Stephen Collinson who will join us in a second, will be able to shed light.
That trillions of dollars are overseas and we will bring that money back. So, we'll ask Stephen what he thinks that means. The president also talked
about infrastructure investment, building roads and improving American infrastructure.
Also, about DACA, course, that is the amnesty program for young people, who were brought in when they were minors into the United States from parents
who came in illegally and that perhaps immigration reform can be achieved in a bipartisan way.
[15:15:04] And also mentioned that he'd be having dinner once again with the minority leader, Nancy Pelosi, and Chuck Schumer as well, another
Democrat there again bipartisan outreach so much so that in fact today in the briefing at the White House, Sarah Sanders had to say that -- and
underline that Donald Trump is still a Republican. So, anybody who might be worried about his party affiliation can be reassured.
Stephen Collinson in Washington. Thanks for joining us. What is Donald Trump doing right now? He has been extending his hand across the aisle
quite a bit.
STEPHEN COLLINSON, CNN WHITE HOUSE REPORTER: Yes. It's very interesting. It all started last week when he did this deal with Democrats to
temporarily for three months lift the boring lament that the U.S. government has to submit to, you know, and he sort of turned his back on
Republican leaders in a meeting in the Oval Office.
I think what's going on is that the president is looking for ways to revive his presidency, to improve his political standing over after a very tough
summer. We've had all sorts of crises for the White House.
Many of them was self-inflicted by the president. It does seem that he is pushing this bipartisanship first of all to perhaps to improve his own
approval ratings, which are the lowest of any president on record to an equivalent time of his presidency.
But I think is clearly frustrated with Republican leaders that they haven't move more swiftly to advance his agenda. They were not able to repeal
Obamacare, the healthcare law, and I think he is wrong footing them in a way is he is making them think, wow, is he going to over and work with
Now the question is, you know, there are still big differences between the president and the leaders of the Democratic Party in Congress on issues
like immigration, on the wall, on tax, he really glossed over them in that meeting.
So, I think the question is really how long does this last and does Donald Trump see it in his interest to keep it going?
GORANI: But also strategically, we've seen in the first few months of his presidency very much say things that have upsets the Democrats and the
center even, and energized his base. I mean, remember after Charlottesville took them quite a while to condemn by name the white
And doing many other things that people said essentially were directed at his base, red meat at his base. Now they must be utterly confused his base
because over the last week, he's really as you mentioned spent a lot of time talking to Democrats and talking about bipartisanship. So, is it a
change in strategy or what is it?
COLLINSON: So, I think Donald Trump's base invest a great deal of trust in him and I think he has a large area and room for maneuver, and one of the
reasons that he won the election was because he styled himself as someone that is not a normal politician who could reach across party lines.
In many ways, he is almost like a third-party candidate in his own party. He is not a classical Republican. He is not that close ideologically to
some of these conservative leaders in Congress. He is much more of a populous.
I think his message of economic nationalism, which did very well in the Midwest swing states in the election is something that is also attractive
to Democratic voters in some of those states as well.
So, I think in many ways is a smart political calculation. I do not think just by having dinner with Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer and doing a few
small-scale deals, he is going to endanger his own political position with his base.
I do think though he is going to irk Republican leaders in Washington, especially as the midterm elections approach, he starts campaigning against
some of those Republican candidates in primary races.
GORANI: And before I get to North Korea, what is the trillions of dollars overseas that Donald Trump wants to bring back? Is that tax revenue? Is
COLLINSON: Yes, basically, that's profits of U.S. companies that operate overseas. The tax regime in the U.S. makes it sort of punitive for them to
bring the money back to the U.S. and invest in U.S. workers. That is what he is talking about. It's one of the huge issues in the big tax reform
push that he is advancing right now.
GORANI: OK, now, let's discuss North Korea because there seemed to be mixed messages on North Korea from the president and from his U.N.
ambassador. Let's first listen to what Donald Trump had to say about the North Korean crisis.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PRESIDENT TRUMP: We had a vote yesterday on sanctions. We think it is just another very small step. Not a big deal. Rex and I were just
discussing not -- not figure -- I don't know if it has any impact, but certainly it was nice to get a 15 to nothing vote. But those sanctions are
nothing compared to what ultimately will have to happen.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: OK. We didn't hear that from his U.N. ambassador. Once again, she was more measured. Is this again just this kind of war of words, of
dangling the notion that there could be a lot, lot more to come for North Korea if it doesn't --
COLLINSON: I think so in some cases. I mean, I think what the president is showing is absolutely being quite candid.
[15:15:00] I am sure he was quite disappointed with the sanctions. The U.S. have got into this latest round of negotiations at the U.N. looking
for much tougher sanctions, freezes on Kim Jong-un's assets, for example.
But they decided that it was more important with the threat of a Russian or a Chinese veto to step back and get a unified response. What we saw the
U.N. and the State Department, they were saying these were some of the strongest sanctions we've ever seen.
And you have the president tossing down on their strength. You are right. There is a mixed message, but I think there was a certain amount of face-
saving by U.S. diplomats at the U.N., who'd come out there and tried to be a lot tougher.
But I think it is very clear that the president in this statement and previous statements, he is still very skeptical of the idea that diplomacy
is going to solve this, at least without much more tough rhetoric.
GORANI: Thank you, Stephen Collinson there for analyzing what we heard from the president today and also what he said about North Korea. I
Speaking of North Korea, our Will Ripley is inside the country. It's his 15th trip there. He showed how people on the streets of Pyongyang are
reacting to those latest U.N. sanctions.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
WILL RIPLEY, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It's tough to find a traffic light in Pyongyang. Traffic cops direct the flow of cars. The streets
noticeably busier each time I come here, busier at least for now.
The U.S. says the latest U.N. sanctions threatened to cut North Korea's oil supply by nearly a third, which could spike prices for everything from
taxis to energy. A ban on textile exports and the end of foreign labor contracts could further slash the income of this cash starved country.
But if you asked (inaudible) she is not worried. Her refreshment stand has a steady flow of customers. She says life is improving despite round after
round of increasingly heavy sanctions.
We have no problems, she says. Everything I'm selling is made local. We do not worry. We rely on ourselves. Kim Hei-song (ph) casually shrugs off
threats from the United States.
(on camera): The U.S. president, Donald Trump, said that these sanctions are just not a big deal and that there is much worse to come. Does that
worry you at all?
(voice-over): We don't care what the U.S. president says or what the outside world thinks about us, she says, we do not worry because we believe
in the leadership of Marshall Kim Jong-un. Keep in mind, this is a very thin slice of life in this closed country.
Reporters like us can only see what the government allows, but all over the North Korean capital, we see plenty of new construction and increasingly
modern skyline, a mandate from North Korea's leader, Kim Jong-un determined to prove he can grow the economy and the nuclear program, all in the face
of unprecedented sanctions for his repeated violations of international law.
(on camera): You see these posters all over Pyongyang and they pretty much sum up North Korea's official response to increased pressure from the U.S.,
(voice-over): North Korean propaganda is built around their nuclear program. It symbolizes strength independence. It is key to their national
(on camera): Is there anything, anything at all that could get North Korea to walk away from its nuclear program?
(voice-over): Heck, we will never give says (inaudible). If we did, it would mean a destruction. Around town, new posters show a pair of hands
ripping up U.N. sanctions resolutions. North Korea's defiant message, they will never give up their nukes, even if that means life is about to get a
lot harder. Will Ripley, CNN, Pyongyang, North Korea.
GORANI: Well, Will Ripley inside North Korea. He takes you on an exclusive look at the country like we've never before. That is "Secret
State." Watch it Saturday at 8 p.m. in London, 9 p.m. in Berlin.
Still to come, warnings to the U.K., one of Europe's biggest leaders, what Jean-Claude Juncker had to say next.
GORANI: The U.K. will soon regret leaving the E.U. That is the warning from the European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker. He gave his
annual state of the union speech and said that.
But when it came to the future of Europe, his mood seemed to more hopeful as he declared that the wind is back in Europe's fail. Still when it came
to Brexit, Mr. Juncker admitted he had some regrets.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JEAN-CLAUDE JUNCKER, PRESIDENT, EUROPEAN COMMISSION (through translator): The 29th of March 2019, that is the date when the United Kingdom will leave
the European Union. This will be a very sad and tragic moment in our history.
We will always regret and I think that you will regret it as well soon if I might say. Nonetheless, we have to respect the will of the British people,
but we are going to make program. We will (inaudible) will move on because Brexit isn't everything. It's not the future of Europe. It's not to be
old and (inaudible).
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: The U.K. will regret their decision to leave. And in the U.K. incident here in London that shocked many people and in fact much further
afield, you may remember this security footage, a woman walking across the bridge was shoved out of the way by a jogger in front of a London bus.
Within four months after the incident, now police are releasing new CCTV images of the suspect. This one was taken from inside the bus that
narrowly avoided the woman. That's the jogger there, and police issued this, they circulated it pretty widely today and they are continuing to
appeal to the public for assistance if they recognize this man to contact the Metropolitan police.
A lot more ahead, getting out of the Caribbean, the U.S. Coast Guard evacuated people from the devastated island of St. Thomas. We'll have a
HALA GORANI, CNN HOST, THE WORLD RIGHT NOW: Well, it's hard to believe it's been a week already since Hurricane Irma hit the Caribbean. And many
in the islands remain stranded with water, food, and power in very short supply.
The US Coast Guard has been evacuating dozens of people and pets from the island of St. Thomas in the US Virgin Islands and transporting them to
Puerto Rico. You see it there in these still images. CNN's Sara Ganim has more on the recovery effort from Saint Thomas.
SARA GANIM, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Just days before Hurricane Irma, a Caribbean paradise. The US Virgin Islands now in the throes of tragedy.
These images come from the Island of St. Thomas, buildings leveled, utility poles broken in two, boats ripped apart and scattered through once
a lively street.
Irma made landfall in this island last Wednesday as a Category 5 hurricane, the strongest to hit the island in modern history.
To show you just how severe the damage here is, this image shows what the islands look like from space before Irma, blanketed with lush trees and
vegetation. After Irma, brown with despair.
From the ground, here is what Saint Thomas' Cancer Center looked like and here is what it looks like now, barely recognizable, gutted. This was the
Sugar Bay Resort & Spa overlooking Water Bay. These images are what the resort looks like now.
One viewer sent in this image of his property on Saint Thomas before the storm; now, it looks like this. Like many homes, his kept its roof, but
many trees surrounding the home are gone.
News out of the islands has been slow-going, following damage to communication systeMs. The US National Guard has been performing search and
rescue by air. And the US Navy has evacuated dozens of people with medical needs from the islands and delivered more than 17,000 pounds of food,
water, and medical supplies.
A number of cruise lines, including Norwegian and Royal Caribbean, are deploying empty ships to get people out. But all those who call these
islands home have a long and difficult path ahead of them.
Sara Ganim, CNN, Saint Thomas.
GORANI: The situation on the half French, half Dutch island of Saint Maarten is especially dire. The destruction is widespread. We were
hearing that 70 percent of structures in some cases are either damaged or destroyed.
There are reports of looting. Islanders are taking desperate measures to feed themselves. This is something that some of them have to do.
Now, the two sisters you are about to hear from survived the hurricane and they say they are grateful to be alive, despite the challenges ahead.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It was devastating. It was me, my daughter, my sister here, my grandson with me. It wasn't easy. The roof went. The
second foot went. We were sour and was in the house all the time when the house collapsed on us there. But thank God, we're alive.
We don't have food. And we're getting through because the cousin neighbor there, they cooked, everybody share, everybody come together, and they help
So, right now, I'm with my sister now for the time being.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This is our home. And we cannot turn our back on Saint Martin.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: My next guest says islands in the Caribbean need to adopt a build back better approach as they recover from the hurricane.
Michael Bociurkiw says he first heard the term while working for UNICEF in Pakistan after the 2005 earthquake there. And he joins me from New York.
So, Michael, first of all, I mean, this is a very different situation from an earthquake in Pakistan or even the Indian Ocean tsunami. This is a
hurricane. These islands deal with hurricane a lot. It was an especially ferocious one. But what do you think needs to be done to protect them
better next time there's this type of weather?
MICHAEL BOCIURKIW, GLOBAL AFFAIRS ANALYST: Well, thank you for having me, Hala. We've seen time and time again hurricanes and tsunamis hit places
like Myanmar, like Pakistan, where we had that big earthquake.
And what's been happening there is people have - officials and communities have actually been adopting new lessons, best practices to rebuild schools,
hospitals, moving people away from vulnerable coastlines.
In my global travels, ironically, in the wealthier world, in the developed world, I see a lot of mistakes being made now, which used to happen in
places like Pakistan and Myanmar.
So, in the piece I wrote for CNN.com recently, I advocated that municipal, state, and federal officials now need to take a really careful look at how
communities are protecting themselves in places like - like in Sri Lanka, for instance. And the big painful decision will be, Hala, is to encourage
people to move away from vulnerable coastlines.
[15:35:17] GORANI: But, I guess, Michael, because I read that in your piece, but the thing is you can't really convince - I mean, I guess you
could, but the Virgin Islands, Saint Barts, Saint Martin, they rely practically entirely on tourism.
I mean, there is the financial sector as well contributing some to the economy, but how do you tell a hotel chain or a tourist sort of structure,
resort to move inland when the whole point is that that's how you attract tourists.
BOCIURKIW: Yes, exactly. But there are measures that can be taken, that have been taken by, for example, resorts south of Colombo in Sri Lanka.
And that means building stronger structures.
It also means, Hala, for example, staff and visitors also need to be trained in how to react during a disaster.
During the Indian Ocean tsunami, most of the millions of people in 13 countries, who had to suffer through that, didn't even know what a tsunami
is. Now, they do. And now they know how to react to it and better prepare. So, that's a big step that needs to be taken.
Building back better isn't only about physical infrastructure, of course. It's also a mindset - training people how to deal with disasters. And very
quickly, it also means pre-positioning supplies, vaccines, things like water that are already there. It's a very costly exercise, but one that
can ultimately save lives.
GORANI: Exactly. But who pays for that?
BOCIURKIW: Well, it's a good question. For example, in Haiti, there's a build back better approach being promoted by people like World Food
Program. And these UN appeals for building back better are chronically underfunded because it's a long-term process.
However, they have raised enough money to do things, for example, introduce terrace farming in Haiti, which will prevent water from cascading down
hillsides when there are heavy rains.
I would even advocate for a build back better world summit where the bright minds, who have a lot of experience in this area, can come together with
officials from the developed world and put into place measures for areas that you cited.
GORANI: All right. And for anyone who's interested in more possible solutions, they can check out your piece on CNN.com. Michael Bociurkiw,
thanks so much for joining us. We appreciate it.
BOCIURKIW: Thank you. Thanks.
GORANI: And there was a shocking event in the US. Millions of people are facing days without electricity after Hurricane Irma uprooted buildings and
brought down powerlines.
Florida was the hardest hit. And for that reason - these downed power lines and the lack of electricity - we're hearing tragic reports that six
people died at a single nursing home there. CNN's Miguel Marquez has this.
MIGUEL MARQUEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: They lost power on Sunday during Hurricane Irma. This morning around 4 o'clock in the morning, police
started getting distress calls from the facilities. They came by to check it out.
And they found that three people - it was very hot in the facility. Three people were dead. Three others died later. They were trying to transport
them and get them to care.
One hundred and fifteen elderly people in total were transferred out of this facility. This facility is now closed. And the police here in
Hollywood, Florida are conducting a criminal investigation.
I want to show you. This raises a lot of concern for Floridians and for people around the country and around the world because this is an elderly
retirement area. There are a lot of these facilities that people count on.
The facility you're looking at right now, there are two of them here. It's the rehabilitation center at Hollywood Hills and the Larkin Community
Hospital. All the patients were in there. Both those facilities have now been shut down and are under criminal investigation.
The hospital - Memorial Hospital is right across the street. It's about a 50-meter walk to the hospital. So, it is not clear why at 4 o'clock in the
morning if their generators failed.
An employee tells us that the power failed on Sunday during Irma. They had a generator in the building. They rented other generators that they
He said he left last night and it was comfortable enough, all the electricity was on. The company is now saying that they suffered a power
GORANI: Miguel Marquez there reporting on the death of nursing home residents in Florida.
In the Caribbean, the damage is so bad that the French president went to tour his country's territories there. Emmanuel Macron has been in Saint
Maarten since Tuesday. He has promised that power will be restored, running water will return, and schools will reopen in the coming weeks.
He ordered the deployment of 2,000 security personnel to street patrols after reports of some issues with looting. Let's talk about the French
response. Melissa Bell is live for us in Paris.
[15:40:01] Emmanuel Macron is there. His popularity rating has declined. He was accused sometimes of being a little too imperial. And I understand
that he slept on a cot and showered out of a bucket. Is that the case?
MELISSA BELL, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes. Far from imperial, on this particular occasion, Hala. But he is being accused of having
orchestrated of something of a PR stunt.
We are told by the Elyse (ph) that he slept on a camp and that he washed himself with a bucket because (INAUDIBLE) that's how those were there
obliged to live. So, he's been much criticized for that.
But, over there, in these French territories, which have really looked to Paris over the course of the last week for help, there has been a great
deal of criticism of French action, or inaction rather, Hala, and the fact that more should have been done sooner.
So, yes, Emmanuel Macron really went out there relatively quickly, but there were all of those days when the inhabitants of Saint Maarten and
Saint Barts really felt that they've been abandoned.
And this is in a context where these are French territories that typically feel sort of left behind by Paris. Once again, of course, this feeling
came back this time with a vengeance.
So, yes, Emmanuel Macron went, did as the locals, went out to meet the people, took the tears to be fair, really went out and mingled with them as
many - as much as he could.
But, really, people in Saint Maarten and Saint Barts feel that much more should have been done much sooner to help them get through this.
GORANI: But what would they have wanted. We've heard that criticism from the British Virgin Islands, for instance, about the UK. We've heard
criticism as well from other Caribbean islands that are overseas territories of European countries. In this case, specifically, what is the
crux of the complaint?
BELL: They think locally that this was seen coming a good couple of days before it actually hit. It was a week ago today at 6 AM local time that
Irma spent an hour and a half, Hala, over Saint Barts, causing extraordinary devastation, 95 percent of Saint Maarten destroyed.
And they say that more should have been done to prepare them. They've been living without water, without electricity, without - they feel - terribly
much help and without you mentioned those crucial security forces.
So, 2,000 on the ground. Emmanuel Macron says there will be 3,000 by the end of the week. But people have been dealing with looting and tremendous
amounts of insecurity. They think that this should have been dealt with before, that they should have seen this coming, got the troops on the
ground earlier, and got all of those things that are even now being taken by air lift.
The most important one reminded Emmanuel Macron today - said Emmanuel Macron today since World War II, the medicine, the water, the shelters, the
tents, all of these should have been sent even before the storm hit in order to help those who are there to try and get through it.
And you mentioned the criticism, of course, in the British Virgin Islands, but these are French territories to a different degree to islands like
Guadeloupe and Martinique, but still they're not departments, they're nonetheless French overseas territories. They depend directly on Paris.
And so, this failing on the part of the French government, I think, is felt all the more keenly.
GORANI: All right. Melissa Bell, thanks very much. Live in Paris. And staying in Paris, there is some good news for the French capital. It's a
confirmation of the fact that the international Olympic Committee confirmed in the last hour that the city will host the 2024 games.
Los Angeles was also awarded the 2028 games. These announcements, as I mentioned, were expected. The two cities were the only two candidates left
in the running for both Olympics. One was going to go to one and one was going to go to the other.
Still ahead, she has remained silent during a humanitarian crisis the United Nations calls catastrophic. But Aung San Suu Kyi will soon address
the violence that caused a mass exodus of Rohingya from Myanmar. What will she have to say? We'll be right back.
[15:45:53] GORANI: Myanmar's de facto leader is ready to end her silence about a military campaign that critics are calling ethnic cleansing. Aung
San Suu Kyi has cancelled a trip to the UN General Assembly next week. She'll give a national address on the Rohingya crisis instead.
Now, background to this, nearly 400,000 Rohingya Muslims - men, women and children - have fled to Bangladesh in the past few weeks to escape a
security crackdown. The UN calls the humanitarian situation catastrophic, tantamount to ethnic cleansing, and it's only getting worse.
Suu Kyi has come under fierce criticism for not speaking up for the Rohingya minority in Myanmar, especially since she is after all the Nobel
Peace Prize laureate and democracy icon.
Our next guest has called her silence shameful. Anushay Hossain is a contributing writer for CNN, "Forbes" and "Women in the World".
We know that, Anushay, Aung San Suu Kyi will address her countrymen and women next week. What do you think she'll say based on what she said in
ANUSHAY HOSSAIN, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: I don't really have that much hope left for Aung San Suu Kyi. I think that during this recent crisis, where over
400,000 Rohingya has spilled on to Bangladesh just in less than three weeks, we really have to look for a solution beyond Aung San Suu Kyi.
I don't know what she can say. Her silence has been devastating. Her silence has been disgusting. And more importantly, it has condoned the
violence. And I think we can't really -
GORANI: But it's more than silence. She called the reports fake news. She said that there is no such thing as ethnic cleansing going on in the
HOSSAIN: Exactly, exactly. And in the past, she has even reprimanded journalists and reporters from identifying them as Rohingya. So, I really
don't think that we can expect any solution to come from her.
And, currently, as the international community looks away, it is Bangladesh which is the only country and our leader Sheikh Hasina who is currently the
only leader to be actively doing anything to save the Rohingya.
We have opened our borders. We're absorbing the refugee population. The Bangladesh government has donated 2,000 acres of land. We've created a
And just the other day, our prime minister said, while she was visiting the refugees that have poured into our borders, that if we can feed 160 million
people, we can feed 700,000 more.
But the international community must step up. And we must put pressure on Myanmar, whether or not Aung San Suu Kyi recognizes Rohingya or not, to end
the atrocities on their end. We have seen since the spike of violence -
GORANI: As you know, Anushay, the Burmese government would say there were some militant attacks against our security forces.
GORANI: We had to respond.
GORANI: And during our response, the people fled because the militants themselves were the ones burning their own villages and driving civilians
out. This is what Myanmar is saying.
HOSSAIN: Exactly. They're saying that now and they said that in their past. That is their go-to response. But what they cannot deny is the
collective punishment of this population, the denial that these people are ethnic, Rohingya ethnic population of Myanmar.
And I think that we can't accept their explanations no longer. It is a humanitarian crisis. And the international community must put pressure on
Myanmar to end the persecutions on their end.
And if they keep saying that this is a security clampdown and using that to justify their actions, the collective punishment of these people is not
acceptable. And ethnic cleansing cannot happen on our watch.
GORANI: Now, there is group, by the way, I'm sure you've seen this, and many of our viewers have already responded to this, 12 Nobel Prize
laureates and other dignitaries have urged the Security Council to intervene.
They wrote an open letter saying in part, "A bold change in approach is needed by the United Nations and the international community if there is to
be an end to this cycle of violence against the Rohingyas. The government of Myanmar needs to be told that international support and finance is
conditional on major change in policy toward the Rohingya."
And Desmond Tutu, by the way, one other thing, Anushay, called Aung San Suu Kyi his sister and he said, "look, if this is the price you're willing to
pay for political advancement, maybe it's a price that's a bit too steep." Those were his words.
[15:50:13] HOSSAIN: Exactly. And we've also seen the Dalai Lama in recent days speak up as well. The idealization and the romanticization of Aung
San Suu Kyi, if it doesn't end now, I don't know when it will end.
When I was growing up as a little girl in Bangladesh, even I used to just look up to her and fantasize and romanticize her and just wonder what this
woman with her beautiful flowers behind her hair, what kind of threat did she pose to the military in her country that was keeping her hostage and
keeping her prisoner for so long.
But I think it's time for the international community to face that Aung San Suu Kyi is not going to come and save the day. In many ways, she has
broken all of our hearts by the lack of sympathy and humanity that she has shown the Rohingya.
GORANI: Would you change your mind if next week - she is not going to the UN. She would normally be at the UN General Assembly meeting next week.
If she came up and said the Rohingya Muslims are part of our country, they are Burmese citizens, what's happened to them is wrong, if she said those
words, would that change your mind?
HOSSAIN: Definitely. I think the world would gladly, gladly accept Aung San Suu Kyi coming and saying those words. But, really, my hope for that
is incredibly dim. At this point, it just might be too little too late.
But if she came out and accepted the Rohingya and puts an end to these atrocities - a lot of people are questioning what power she actually has.
But I think it's undeniable that, on the international stage, she has the most powerful voice. She could sway international opinion to save the
Rohingya. So, let's hope that's what she does when she speaks.
GORANI: All right. Anushay Hossain, thanks very much for joining us. We appreciate your time on this story.
We've been discussing the political responsibilities of the de facto leader. But if you want to hear the firsthand accounts of people forced to
pick up their lives and run, fathers who are carrying newborn babies and wicker baskets, it's all on our website. You can visit CNN.com/Rohingya.
We'll have a lot more coming up after the break on CNN. We will be right back.
GORANI: Actress Rebel Wilson has scored a big win against what she calls a bully. She has Bauer Media viciously tried to take her down in one of
their gossip articles with a series of false claims.
An Australian court agreed with her to the tune of $3.6 million. Sharnelle Vella from Seven Network in Australia has the story.
SHARNELLE VELLA, " THE SEVEN NETWORK" REPORTER (voice-over): Rebel Wilson made it big in Hollywood and has now landed the biggest defamation payout
in Australian history.
UNIDENTIFED MALE: I think she's going to be absolutely stoked and she'll probably say she crushed it..
VELLA: Awarded AUD 4.5 million, "The Pitch Perfect" star was originally willing to settle for just AUD200,000.
JUSTICE JOHN DIXON, VICTORIAN SUPREME COURT JUDGE: The damage suffered by Ms. Wilson warrants a substantial damages award to vindicate her and nail
VELLA: Bauer Media published eight articles which branded Wilson a liar. They claimed the comedian fabricated details about her upbringing, age and
connection to Walt Disney. The lavish lies meant Wilson missed out on two Hollywood movie roles.
(on-camera): The judge based his decision on three facts. He said Bauer Media used a paid source with an axe to grind and then failed to properly
investigate the allegations. It then repeated them when it knew they were wrong and waged a campaign of lies to increase profits.
[15:55:19] JOHN DIXON, VICTORIAN SUPREME COURT JUSTICE: The publications had a long-lasting and profound impact on Ms. Wilson.
VELLA: Rebel has always made it clear this is never about the money and was always about standing up to bullies.
PETER FORD, ENTERTAINMENT CORRESPONDENT: Those usual suspects to turn up in the magazines week after week are probably thinking, should I have a go
VELLA: Bauer Media in considering whether it will appeal Rebel Wilson, who has vowed to donate the money to charity.
Sharnelle Vella, "Seven News".
GORANI: Finally, does this voice sound familiar to you?
GORANI: That's Stevie Wonder with a very appropriate message at the Hand in Hand Hurricane Relief Benefit.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
STEVIE WONDER, MUSICIAN: We've come together today to love all the people that have been devastated by the hurricanes.
When love goes through the action, it prefaces no color of skin, no ethnicity, no religious beliefs, no sexual preferences, and no political
persuasions. It just loves.
As we should begin to love and value our planet and anyone who believes there is no such thing as global warming must be blind or unintelligent.
Lord, please save us all.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: Well, celebrities did come out in droves. They answered phones. Beyonce, Oprah Winfrey, George Clooney. They have raised tens of millions
of dollars and the money, obviously, will benefit the survivors of the hurricanes.
And check out our Facebook page, facebook.com/HalaGoraniCNN. I'll see you same time, same place tomorrow. I'm Hala Gorani. "Quest Means Business"