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WORLD RIGHT NOW WITH HALA GORANI
Trump Visits Florida To Assess Hurricane Damage; Catastrophic Damage Across The Caribbean; Desperation Sets In For Residents Of St. Martin; Myanmar Nearly 40 Percent Of Rohingya Villages Now Empty; Deal Or No Deal On Immigration Reform?; Clinton: Former FBI Chief Comey "Forever Changed History"; WH: No Deal On DACA In Meeting With Top Democrats. Aired 3-4p ET
Aired September 14, 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 begin this hour with the struggle after the storm. In Florida,
the American president, Donald Trump handed food and his wife did as well, the first lady, and met survivors of Hurricane Irma. He pledged his 100
percent support to the state.
In the Caribbean, fresh images of destruction and dramatic tales of survival. CNN has spanned out across the region to some of the most remote
Let's start this hour in Florida where President Trump got a firsthand look at the devastation left by the monster storm. He visited two hardest hit
area today, Fort Myers and Naples.
Mr. Trump met with the storm victims as well as first responders whose quick actions saved lives after Irma roared in. The president promised his
revisit to the state would not be the last. Listen to Donald Trump.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: We love these people and we are going to be back with the help and the job that everybody
does in terms of first responders and everybody has been incredible and by the way, that includes the people that lived here because you see the
people immediately getting back to work to fix up their homes like Bobby and like some of the others.
So, I just want to tell you we are there for you 100 percent. I'll be back here numerous times. I mean, this is a state that I know very well as you
understand and these are special, special people and we love them.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: To his left there was Marco Rubio. Of course, also a contender for the Republican nomination last year who ended up losing to Donald Trump
and the Florida governor as well.
We'll have a live report from Naples in just a few minutes time. But let us turn our attention to the Caribbean where the magnitude of the
devastation in the aftermath of Irma is just becoming clear.
Now we've been obviously covering the story since the storm hit. Our correspondents are spread out right across the islands of the Caribbean.
Communication systems have been all but wiped out some islands.
So, really, we are only now getting new video in from our teams. First, we want to bring you a report from Isa Soares. She is in hard-hit St. John.
ISA SOARES, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Once a lush island covered in rolling green hills and pristine beaches now a battered
wasteland, whipped by the ferocious power of Irma.
On the ground, trees have been shaken naked to their bark. Power lines have been toppled and homes are left teetering on the edge of this land now
stripped bare. Steve Smith was one of the lucky ones. His home partially unscathed. Their next-door neighbor's house a reminder of what could have
(on camera): Completely destroyed.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Completely destroyed and that's kind of way the one above us is also. You can see the refrigerator is in the living room.
Shattered glass doors are his kitchen.
SOARES (voice-over): Despite the changing scenery and the destruction in every corner, Steve Smith isn't budging. This is island perseverance.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It used to be a little bit better. There is just less greenery -- the destructions I'm seeing is horrible. But yes, I'm not
SOARES: The reality may not sustain this optimism. Here there is no water, power and cellular service. The only signal this building in the
By the dark, volunteers delivering supplies are their only connection to the outside world. There were also their first helping hands. Arriving on
shore days after Hurricane Irma hits with water, perishable goods and food.
Meghan, a resident of St. John is staying put for now.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It's hard. I mean, a lot of families have been here for generations and this is their whole world so if you leave, you know,
the question is where do you go and not knowing what you are going to come back to is also a big concern.
SOARES: At Catch-22 only further exacerbated by looting and lawlessness, which according to locals has eased somewhat with the Navy and the Coast
Guard have been patrolling these streets. A much-needed presence for an island that has always feared being forgotten.
GORANI: Isa Soares there. Let's cross to our Clarissa Ward, who made her way to the French side of St. Martin where desperation is setting in for
some residents. We are more than a week after the storm, Clarissa. What is the situation now? Are people getting the aid, the support, that they
need or not yet?
CLARISSA WARD, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: I mean, Hala, aid is coming in, but we are talking about basic aid and is a trickle, and the
scale and scope of the need here is just so enormous.
[15:05:07] We took a drown out yesterday afternoon around some of the hardest hit parts of the island and you can see, I mean, all the trees have
been whipped clean of their foliage. These corrugated tin roofs have been taken straight off the roofs of these houses.
But beyond that, the real concern frankly is the sanitation situation. You don't have any running water here in the French part of St. Martin at the
moment. You do not have any chemical, disposable toilets, not even at the airport where you have hundreds of people gathering every single day.
More than 1,500 each day trying to get out of this nightmare scenario so it is a desperate situation. People very concerned about the health, about
the possibility or potential for some kind of a cholera or typhoid outbreak.
People being told simply just to go to the bathroom where they can that obviously has serious hygiene repercussions. And as we know from covering
previous natural disasters, hygiene, this sort of things, sanitation, it is vitally important to get that under control.
Already we are hearing from residents that there are rats infesting the streets. There's huge piles of garbage all along inside those streets.
Residents are trying to do what they can, Hala, but they've got little more than their bare hands so they're really limited given the scale of the
GORANI: And we are seeing some of these aerial shots, some of these drone shots, you get a sense really of the scale of the devastation. You are
saying that basic needs obviously, water, and perhaps, you know, food to survive on daily that is for now taken care of.
But the very important issues of sanitation, running water, electricity, things that, you know, if they -- when they do not work cause issues like
disease and even cholera perhaps, what is the timeline for those things getting back on track in St. Martin?
WARD: Well, we heard the French president, Emmanuel Macron, he was here recently. He said himself some pretty ambitious timelines. He said he was
going to try to open some of the schools next week. He talked about getting power back and running water in the next few weeks.
But there is a huge amount of work to be done and while as you said correctly it is just about under control in terms of the most essential
needs, which is food and drinking water, it is by no means smooth sailing.
We saw today some people handing out bottles of water on a flatbed truck and people were literally running from the side of the road shouting
please, please, please, stop, stop. It was almost a chaotic situation as they tried desperately to get a hold of some drinking water.
So, a lot of anger and resentment here. People feel that they have been abandoned by the French government. That it's been nearly a week since
Irma hit that people knew days in advance that this was going to be a huge storm.
That it was barreling toward this island and they would like to see more done more quickly -- Hala.
GORANI: And also obviously in a few weeks, the tourism season is supposed to start. This is what these islands live off of. So, hotel staff,
restaurant staff, people who depend for their livelihoods on this type of work, presumably are not getting any pay and won't be getting paid for many
weeks, if not months to come?
WARD: Tourism for now in St. Martin is done I would say honestly for the near future. It is hard to imagine the scale of the destruction and damage
is so huge and there are other more pressing needs beyond reconstruction now.
Beyond the fact as well, of course, that we don't know really yet where exactly the funding for that reconstruction is going to come from and how
quickly it is going to get there.
It is hard to envisage a situation in which this island which as you say up until a week was a tourism mecca can really bounce back and once again
become a place that tourists walked to.
And that certainly a huge concern to residents because, of course, as you said this is their main stream of revenue, their main source of income.
For now, though, it is just surviving day to day -- Hala.
GORANI: All right. Clarissa Ward, our senior international correspondent on the French side of St. Martin, thanks so much.
Back now to the recovery efforts in Florida, President Donald Trump visited hurricane victims today. We showed you the images at the top of the hour.
Promising the federal government support as they rebuild their homes and their lives.
Let's bring in CNN's Kristen Holmes live in Naples. So how was the president received on his visit today?
KRISTEN HOLMES, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hala, well, first I want to read you a tweet President Trump just tweeted about his trip here. He said, "Just
left left Florida for D.C. The people and the spirit in that great state is unbelievable. Damage horrific, but we will be better than ever."
[15:10:02] And in addition to promising them aid and support, he said he would be back multiple times. But this was really a whirlwind trip. It
just lasted a couple of hours. He flew in. He went down to Fort Myers, both Fort Myers and Naples, the areas he visited were destroyed by
They are probably in the mainland area. Some of the areas that were hit the hardest with those 120 mile-per-hour winds. In Fort Myers, he and the
vice president met with Florida Governor Rick Scott as well as Senator Marco Rubio.
They all met with FEMA. They met with first responders and members of the Coast Guard and then they headed down to Naples and they hit a community
that was hit pretty hard by the storm. It was a mobile park home called Naples Estate.
We have some video here that we can pull up, both the vice president and President Trump giving out lunches. They talked to people. They gave them
water and he was received generally very well.
Remember this is the state that voted for him and he is widely liked here in this area, but we also went to communities yesterday where people were
really hoping to get a glimpse of him, devastated communities outside of Central Naples, a place called Golden Gate and this area was hit very, very
hard by Irma.
There were powerlines still in the street when we drove in yesterday, standing water. This area has about 2,700 children in a four-square-mile
area. So, a lot of children in dangerous situations there.
And we talked to people there and they said that they were hoping that President Trump would come see their situation. They still did not have
power and they wanted help. They said they were not getting access to aid. They wanted to talk him about it directly.
So, you're seeing a mix result here, but the people who met with him today, they seemed happy. There's obviously taking those selfies. People lining
up to get lunches, shaking hands and he was received generally pretty well here in Florida -- Hala.
GORANI: Thank you, Kristen Holmes, live in Naples, Florida where there was some significant destruction there. Even while he was visiting Florida
after all it's a state he knows. His Mar-a-Lago estate is there.
Mr. Trump did not leave the politics of Washington far behind. He was asked questions specifically about what happened in Washington yesterday
and he had a lot to say about several big policy initiatives including immigration reform.
He did have a bipartisan dinner with the minority leaders on Capitol Hill yesterday about DACA, that amnesty program for undocumented immigrants who
came into the United States as children.
We'll be speaking with an elected representative in Washington about that as well. He met with the president yesterday.
Now to this story we have been talking about Rohingya persecution, hundreds of thousands of them had been forced to flee home now empty and the head of
the U.N. is calling the humanitarian situation catastrophic in Myanmar.
I'm obviously talking about what is going on in Myanmar with the Rohingya. The government of that country says that almost 40 percent of villages were
where Rohingya Muslims used to live are now empty.
The security crackdown in Rakhine State has sparked a mass exodus. Some 380,000 Rohingya have fled to Bangladesh in just the past few weeks. You
see on the map the -- how long they have to travel by foot.
Well, Alexandra Field visited a hospital in Bangladesh where dozens of Rohingya refugees are being treated and many are describing horrifying
ALEXANDRA FIELD, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: There is nowhere that you can see or feel the pain of this crisis more than at this hospital. We
are seeing Rohingya men, women, and children who tells us that they have lost their families, run for their lives. There is nothing left of their
home and the ones who are here are the most badly injured.
I spoke to a doctor who tells me that he is seeing victims with gunshot wounds. He is seeing landmine injuries. I spoke to one woman, she's 30
years old. She says that she was shot while she was trying to escape, trying to run to safety from Myanmar to Bangladesh.
Her two young children were shot and killed at her side. In total, she lost five members of her family. A 13-year-old girl talks about the fact
that she was trying to escape on foot for 10 days. She was half an hour from the safety of Bangladesh when she was shot. Her mother took three
Another man who is a victim of a landmine explosion has lost parts of both of his legs. When we see him here at the hospital, he keeps pointing to
his face. He is saying something and the doctor translate it.
He tells us that this man is pointing to his eyes and saying that the can't see. He's gone blind. There are more than a hundred Rohingya refugees who
are now being treated at this hospital.
More than 370,000 Rohingyas have crossed the border into Bangladesh from Myanmar since violence broke in Myanmar towards the end of August. The
government there says they are conducting a clearance operation targeting militants.
But the refugees that I'm speaking to here say that they have come under attack from a military that has set fire to their villages, set fires to
their homes and shot at them while they are trying to run with their families for their lives.
[15:15:07] They are here right now trying to heal. They are being treated by doctors, but once they leave here, they tell me they don't know where
they are going. Their best guess is that they will sent back to overcrowded and underprepared refugee camps where surviving members of
their families may have ended up by now. That's the best that they tell me that they have for now. Alexandra Field, CNN, (inaudible), Bangladesh.
GORANI: Desperate situation there for some of those Rohingya Muslims, who've had to flee Myanmar.
Still to come, the guests list was controversial enough, but news coming out of a secretive White House dinner has some Republicans feeling
betrayed. We'll see how President Trump and to Democrats are explaining what happened around the table.
And then this --
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HILLARY CLINTON, FORMER DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: His investigation. He -- I think forever changed history.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: A strong statement from Hillary Clinton about the former FBI Director James Comey. Hear what she told CNN's Anderson Cooper about her
new book, the election, and life after a crushing loss.
GORANI: So was it a discussion, a broad agreement, or a done deal? Words matter in this case and that's why the White House and Democratic
congressional leaders are rushing to try to characterize their talks on immigration reform.
President Donald Trump met with Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer at a private dinner last night. No Republican leaders were at the table. These are the
minority leaders on Capitol Hill.
The Democrats then said an agreement was reached to keep protections for illegal immigrants brought to America as children. But things got a little
bit confusing later on when Mr. Trump tweeted this denying any deal was struck.
The bottom line appears to be they agreed on something, a framework maybe, but still there is more work ahead. Mr. Trump talked about the initiative
and what is likely to happen in this bipartisan move during his visit to Florida.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PRESIDENT TRUMP: We are not talking about amnesty. We are talking about - - we are talking about taking care of people. People that were brought here, people that have done a good job and were not brought here of their
own volition, but very importantly what we want we have to have a wall.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: OK. But the thing is the Democrats said that the agreement excluded the construction of a wall so which is it. Let us talk more about
this with CNN's Dan Merica. He is live at the White House.
So, there is some confusion about what might or might not has been agreed, but I was checking the president's Twitter feed earlier this morning and
his base as we call it, those who follow him, and who supported him from the beginning and are passionate about Donald Trump seemed very, very angry
at him about the things he said about the DACA immigrants. Is he now serve -- is he putting his -- the support of his base at risk with this?
[15:20:05] DAN MERICA, CNN POLITICAL PRODUCER: It seems like he is -- he knowingly is doing that. He knows he is putting some supporters at risk.
He just actually talked to reporters on Air Force One on the way back from Florida and said that many Republicans are with him.
He is not concerned about the response the Republicans have had to kind of this back and forth. I mean, forgive me if I've been a whip flash from
this morning. You had at one point saying that the wall was off the table, and then it was on the table and was part of the discussion.
He's really had this back and forth, and what has happened from that is you had many of these followers of President Trump kind of thinking to
themselves, who do we put in the White House?
I mean, you've had these followers who think about where they are coming from. They campaigned for the president. They went to his rallies. They
chanted things like build the wall.
They said Mexico was going to pay for it and now they are hearing the president saying, not only that, you know, the wall will come later, but
saying that he, you know, has heart and wants to help these 800,000 children really, you know, children and some older people, who came to the
United States as children.
And entered Obama-era program, got some steps to legalization, that is really tough for them. What you've seen is places like Breitbart News run
by Steve Bannon calling him "Amnesty Don."
People, you know, like Ann Coulter and Steve King, these conservative firebrand figures who backed the president because of immigration reform
distancing themselves from the president.
And Ann Coulter even tweeting we'd rather have President Pence at this point. I mean, that's a big change from where she was when she wrote a
book called "In Trump We Trust." It's a big change and I think that this is a key issue that you are going to see that -- you know, these
conservative Republicans backing off the president because of it.
GORANI: Right. We are testing their loyalty and everybody was wondering what will it take for his base to finally become angry with him and now we
know that it's -- now let's talk about Hillary Clinton. She's obviously on a book tour. She's talked about what went wrong in her campaign and that
hearing disappointment when she realized she'd lost.
She spoke to our own Anderson Cooper specifically about the moment she realized that, you know, she looking back now believes the election was
lost for her and she discussed specifically James Comey, the former director of the FBI. Let's listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CLINTON: What's important to me going forward is as I say I think it is important to focus on what happened because lessons can be learned, but the
more important lessons that will affect our democracy going forward are not about him and his investigation. He I think forever changed history, but
that's in the past.
What is important is the fact that the Russians are still going at us. He himself admitted that before Congress.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: So there you have it. This is one of the many reasons she believed that in the end things did not go her way. What do you think was
-- what did we learn from Hillary Clinton now that she is speaking out so openly about that big disappointment for her last year?
MERICA: Her book is filled with details about how she was feeling on election day, how she is feeling on inauguration day, and it is in a way it
is something we have not heard from Secretary Clinton.
You know, I covered her campaign and there are many times where she wasn't really connecting with the crowds because she didn't really open up and
it's something that she has admittedly so talked about herself.
She's been more cautious than anything ever since she entered the White House in 1982, but on this book tour, and especially the interview with our
own Anderson Cooper, she opened up a bit.
She talked about her relationship with her husband, something she hasn't talked about much in the past. And then on Comey what you've seen is in
progressive interviews and in the book, she gets more angry and more angry at him.
And really when you read the entire book, he is the main factor she thinks for her loss, that October 28th letter he sent to Congress informing people
that he was reopening part of this investigation.
She believes more than anything else that cost her the election. She obviously takes a bit of blame for herself, but that when you boil
everything down and read the whole book that is who she blames.
And that clip that you just played shows that she thinks that he denied her that house behind me, the White House.
GORANI: Dan Merica, thanks very much reporting live from the White House.
Let's get back now to that controversial dinner that President Donald Trump held with Democratic leaders in Washington. Our next guest is a Democratic
lawmaker who recently met with President Trump, who was at that table when President Trump discussed tax reform and immigration reform, Congressman
Josh Gottheimer is joining me from Washington.
Thanks, sir, for being with us. First of all, which is it? Because yes, we've had so many over the last 24 hours different versions of what these
conversations between the Democratic leadership and the president were all about? Is there an agreement on immigration reform? Is it a deal or is
there nothing at all? What is your understanding?
REPRESENTATIVE JOSH GOTTHEIMER (D), NEW JERSEY: I wasn't at the dinner last night, but during the day there was a group of us, bipartisan group
that met with him, Congress people, and the big take away for me was on DACA and doing something about it was that the president sees an
opportunity as do we, to find bipartisanship here.
[15:25:09] Where we both can agree that this is an essential issue. You can have 800,000 young people, children and young adults being sent out of
the country. That is unacceptable. It's not in line with our values and what you saw was an opportunity -- what I we heard from him was an
opportunity to move forward here.
GORANI: But there was sort of the feeling that Donald Trump, the president, would make the -- that would do -- that his support for any kind
of agreement would be conditional on the building and the financing of the wall, but that changed as well later. Is that your understanding that the
well has to be part of any deal?
GOTTHEIMER: What he said to us and what I read about later was they seemed to open to the idea that taking wall out of this and dealing with DACA
separately so that, you know, young people can stay in the country.
He's seemed to open to that and that is what we heard. Obviously, I was not at the dinner last night, but it seems that that was what they agree to
too. I really believe this is one of those moments where you are seeing bipartisanship happen and now we just get it done in Congress.
GORANI: You're in fact the co-chair of the problem-solving caucus, it's the bipartisan initiative as well to try to find solutions to important
problems. I've got to ask you a little bit about the anger from the Republican Party, from some of the more conservative wing of the Republican
Party and the base also of Donald Trump.
That seemed very angry. We've seen it a lot online at the idea that you know, he's having dinners with Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi. What do you
make of that anger?
GOTTHEIMER: Well, you know, I think, listen, you always have to deal with the streams. We saw enduring healthcare, of course, the beginning of this
Congress, right, a very one-sided approach, completely partisan. The extremists were the loudest.
And now you are seeing I believe a shift back to the middle where Democrats and Republicans can come together on things like tax reform,
infrastructure, like DACA and healthcare. We work together.
My group worked on, which I as you mentioned, part of the problem solvers caucus, worked on a solution healthcare to get premiums down and get choice
up. And what you hear, what I hear back home from most people, you can take the extremes out of that is that they want us to work together.
They want us to sit at the table with the president, with Democrats and Republicans, and get something done and move forward. And so, yes, you
might hear noise from the extremists, but actually what I'm hearing more of from most Americans, a lot of people back home by me is, hey, you are at
the table. You are working on things for us to make things better, get taxes down, infrastructure built, that is good.
That is what they want and they want me actually advocating for them and working with anyone as long as it is good for the country. So that is what
I am hearing more of. You know, obviously the extremes are always going to be loud. You know that better than anyone, right, you hear it all the
time. But I really believe for most Americans is in the middle.
GORANI: But do you think Donald Trump, the president, is changing his strategy? In the last week, we've seen him reach out a lot across the
aisle to Democrats. Is this a new Donald Trump or what is your thought on that?
GOTTHEIMER: Well, the era of bipartisanship is a new in the couple of weeks. I am hoping that it continues. I think this is much better for
governing and I think it's what the country wants, we'll see.
He said to us yesterday, I'm giving bipartisanship a try. Let's see if this -- let see -- I think that is where he is and I think is what -- I
believe that is what would at least seem to be of where he is headed right now, but I think we've got to be patient with this.
Getting things done, of course, takes a lot of work. When we are working across the aisle, you have got to work together. That's a lot of hours and
a lot of nights, but I believe in the end the product and this is something we talked about at length in the table yesterday.
The product in the end if you do it in a bipartisan way, what you produce will be much better and more durable for the long run, right, if it is done
together. If it's done on the one-sided way or jammed through, I think a huge swath of the country feels left out and not part of the solution.
So that is what we are really focused. I think he is going to see that. Now we got to get it done. I believe DACA in solving that is actually a
great way when you got bipartisan opportunity. Now it is up to us to all work together and get it through.
GORANI: And it wasn't just DACA, also, you were at the table sitting to the right of the president when he talked about his tax reform proposal.
Many people have criticized what they know about it as saying this will be a tax cut for the rich.
He said no, it actually will not give more tax breaks to the rich although many analyses would contradict that statement. Do you support his approach
to tax reform, the president's approach?
GOTTHEIMER: Well, I think we have to see the details, right, so I'm always little low to comment until I read it and actually get into specifics. I
like the idea certainly of broad-based tax cuts where you are addressing, not just bigger businesses, but small or medium-size ones.
He talked about that yesterday and of course, making for the middle class and working families actually have some relief, to me, that is great. I,
of course, spoke out -- I'm from New Jersey. I am also worried making sure that we treat all states the same.
You can have it where the state local tax deduction is eliminated, which would to be a big tax hike on states like mine like New Jersey. I talked
to him about that too, but I really see if we if we work on the right kind of reform.
A good opportunity here to get tax relief. But, now, we've got to get into the specifics.
And so, of course, Way and Means, when we get back to the committees, are going to produce documents and we'll see what the president proposes and
then we can see if it's in line with what he was talking about.
HALA GORANI, CNN HOST, THE WORLD RIGHT NOW: All right. Rep. Josh Gottheimer, Democrat from New Jersey, thanks so much for joining us on CNN.
We really appreciate it today.
GOTTHEIMER: Thank you so much for having me. I appreciate for having me.
GORANI: All right. Thank you. A quick break. North Korea, one of Mr. Trump's top foreign policy challenges, now the South Korean President tells
CNN, there won't be a nuclear arms race on the peninsula. This is an exclusive interview and it is ahead.
GORANI: No nuclear weapons in my country. That is the message from South Korea's president in the face of an increasingly bold North Korea.
President Moon Jae-in spoke to CNN in his first TV interview since Pyongyang claimed it successfully tested a hydrogen bomb. He spoke to our
MOON JAE-IN, PRESIDENT OF SOUTH KOREA (through translator): North Korea continues to make very wrong decisions, so I'm very frustrated and I'm
saddened to see this. It's a very reckless choice made by North Korea that is not helpful to North Korea itself or inter-Korean relations and
threatens world peace.
PAULA HANCOCKS, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Now, Kim Jong-un has stated he will never give up his nuclear weapons. It is part of state
ideology. He has written it into the constitution. Do you truly believe that you can convince Kim Jong-un to give up nuclear weapons?
JAE-IN (through translator): I believe maybe North Korea through its development of its nuclear program wants to guarantee regime security and
maybe North Korea through being accepted as a nuclear power state, wants to sit down at the negotiating table with the US for North Korean-US
However, the international community will never accept a nuclear North Korea and, in particular, my country will never accept a nuclear North
HANCOCKS: But, Mr. President, South Korea relies on the United States for the nuclear umbrella, so the protection from Washington. But now the
United States is potentially a threat from North Korea as well. Is it time for South Korea to have its own nuclear weapons?
JAE-IN (through translator): We need to develop our military capabilities in the face of North Korea's nuclear advancement. I do not agree that
South Korea needs to develop our own nuclear weapons or relocate tactical nuclear weapons in the face of North Korea's nuclear threat.
[15:35:04] To respond to North Korea by having our own nuclear weapons will not maintain peace on the Korean Peninsula and could lead to a nuclear arms
race in northeast Asia.
HANCOCKS: Mr. President, we've certainly seen a stronger military response from South Korea to the North Korean test, the long-range missile test, the
decapitation drills. Does South Korea have an assassination squad that's ready to take out Kim Jong-un, if need be?
JAE-IN (through translator): South Korea and the US have firm combined defense capabilities to neutralize the threat in the early stage, if North
Korea actually make nuclear or missile provocation.
However, we do not have a hostile policy towards North Korea. We do not have the intention to attack North Korea and we do not have the intention
to reunify the Korean Peninsula in an artificial way or in the manner of absorption.
GORANI: South Korea's President Moon was speaking to Paula Hancocks. CNN has had incredible access, it has to be said, to the country's northern
neighbor. Our Will Ripley has reported from inside North Korea 15 times in just the last few years.
This Saturday, he gives us an exclusive look at the country. That is "Secret State." Watch it at 8 pm in London, 9 pm in Berlin on CNN.
Now to something completely different. It calls itself a leading reputation management agency. But now, Bell Pottinger, one of the biggest
PR firms in the world, is suffering a catastrophic fall from grace.
It is accused of stirring racial hatred in South Africa. It ran a campaign using the slogan white monopoly capital to describe opponents of President
Jacob Zuma and it caused tremendous outrage.
Now, Bell Pottinger is no stranger to controversy. It's worked with people like Asma Assad, Oscar Pistorius, General Pinochet in the past even. But
now, the company has lost so many clients and investors that its British arm has basically gone bankrupt.
So, where did it all go wrong. Let's bring in David McKenzie from Johannesburg. Why was this the hay that broke the camel's back for this
DAVID MCKENZIE, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, I think it was a long slew of scandals that eventually, as you say, was one too many for
They were hired by a company here in South Africa, run by two Indian expat brothers which had a lot of allegations of corruption leveled against them
in relation to their relationship with President Zuma and others. So, they hired the Pottinger to come in and help their reputation.
But the strategy that this PR firm used was effectively, and allegedly, to sow racial division in this country. Once that information came out and
kind of leaked on social media, there was an outrage among South Africans.
They pushed online. The opposition pushed in the UK and through the court system. And you really had a reputation company losing its entire
Now, the Middle Eastern and Asian have split. They've been rebuked and removed by the regulatory authority in the UK effectively. They wanted to
sell the company. They couldn't sell it. So, now, they've been put into administration now.
Hala, it might not be - this is the first perhaps, but might not be the last multinational that has faced issues around corruption in South Africa.
You've had, just in recent days, KPMG, the auditing firm; McKinsey, the consulting firm, all tainted by a similar brush in their relationship with
this company run by these Indian expats.
Both KPMG and McKinsey deny any wrongdoing, but it does show the level of alleged rot in this country and how that rot can spread to very reputable
companies, in those cases, and certainly, in the case of Bell Pottinger, completely caused the collapse of this famous PR firm.
GORANI: All right. David McKenzie, thanks very much.
To our top story now, the aftermath of Hurricane Irma. The British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson says the UK is considering using its foreign aid
budget to help its overseas territories that were so hurt by the storm.
He laid out what the UK is doing right now to help victims. Remember, there was a lot of criticism about the slow response. But he talked about
what the UK could do now at a news conference with his American counterpart Rex Tillerson.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BORIS JOHNSON, BRITISH FOREIGN SECRETARY: Our immediate task is to ensure that aid reaches everyone in need. And today, there are nearly 1,000
British military personnel deployed in our Caribbean territories, supported by RFA Mounts Bay and two Puma transport helicopters.
[15:40:00] More than 40 tons of aid has arrived, including 1 ton of food and enough shelter for 13,000 people.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: Currently, the road to recovery in the Caribbean is going to be a very long one, but in the middle of despair, we are also hearing stories of
incredible kindness. That happens all the time during natural disasters.
Neighbors save neighbor. There was this story from our Sara Ganim. She is one of our many correspondents reporting from across the region. Here is
her story now from St. Thomas in the US Virgin Islands.
SARA GANIM, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Michelle Cox, Eugene Connors and their 5-year-old daughter Cynthia lived in this once beautiful
neighborhood on St. Thomas, overlooking the US Virgin Islands and all of their beauty.
EUGENE CONNORS, HURRICANE SURVIVOR: Obviously, it had a great view. Things were great for four years, but when this hit, it was a bad location.
GANIM: Last week, when Hurricane Irma came roaring through, their home crumbled on top of them.
MICHELLE COX, HURRICANE SURVIVOR: I was stuffing towels into the rafters to stop the leaks from coming in. Cynthia was screaming. And I got this
phone call from this number I had never seen before.
GANIM: A man who they say knew their landlord was watching from across the valley.
COX: He says I'll come get you. The minute I walked out on to that slammed door was her. We slid from one end, slammed into the other side.
We couldn't get up. The wind was just pushing up against it. Then he came out and he grabbed Cynthia and ran out the door and there was John and
Dalton waiting for us.
I want to go home. I want my home.
CONNORS: We didn't know them and had no idea who he was.
GANIM (on-camera): He was a complete stranger?
COX: He's just the bravest guy in the whole world, him and his son. I mean, height of the storm, trees are falling down, rain coming down like
crazy, the winds were up to almost 200 miles per hour.
They were telling us he just drove in and out, leaving to get us. I did see the roof flying that way when we were running. And it's a miracle it
didn't hit his truck.
GANIM: What would have happened if he hadn't come?
CONNORS: I really believe we would have been dead. Just the level of destruction. I mean, or at least seriously injured. So, we're very
GANIM (voice-over): John and his son took these videos of the storm on their way to the rescue. He is now letting them stay in his house.
And across the island, people like Eugene and Michelle have also lost their homes to Irma. The worst storms that natives say they've ever experienced
on this island. Many say they will stay to help rebuild. But Michelle and Eugene are not sure.
COX: Our extended family, as we call them, then friends that we made and shared things for three years, and we want to stay with them and rebuild
and restart our lives, but I'm scared. We don't have a place of our own. It's hard to get food, water, gas.
It took us three hours just to get ice.
GANIM: For now, they are simply in shock over what they've lost.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Dad, it's a good thing John saved us.
COX: Good thing John saved us, yes.
GANIM: Sara Ganim, CNN, St. Thomas.
GORANI: This is THE WORLD RIGHT NOW. Coming up, we get into a subject that is causing controversy here in the UK. A survey is saying that
children as young as five are wearing hijabs to school and some Muslim women are saying that's not right. We'll have that discussion coming up
[15:46:18] GORANI: Well, it is a tragedy that shook all of Britain to its very core. You might remember this. We covered it extensively here on
At least 80 people were killed when Grenfell Tower erupted in flames. The images were absolutely shocking; at the time, the stories of survival
harrowing. The tower still, by the way, stands charred on the London skyline, a grim reminder of the horror.
Earlier, an inquiry was opened in this country to find out what happened and why. The chairman, a gentleman by the name of Martin Moore-Bick, said
he wanted to find out the truth, and hopefully those survivors and those people who say they need to understand what happened to their building will
get that truth. We'll keep following that story.
Now, to a topic that has caused conversation and controversy here in the UK and, frankly, in other countries. Thousands of schools are allowing girls
as young as 5 years old to wear the hijab, the headscarf, as part of their approved school uniforms.
It comes in a survey in "The Sunday Times" newspaper and it has caused some outrage. Here is some of what a group of campaigners have to say. This is
an affront to the historical fight for gender equality in our secular democracy and is creating a two-tiered form of non-equality for young
Muslim girls. At a time of rising religious extremism from all faiths around the world, this is not a time for the state to diminish our
collective rights, but to robustly defend hard-won freedoms and progressive values."
One of the people who wrote that letter was an Amina Lone. She is the co- director of the Social Action & Research Foundation. And she joins me in the studio, a former - as well - parliamentary candidate running as a
Let me ask you this. so, what we're seeing is young girls, some as young as 5 years old, wearing a hijab to school because in this country, in the
UK, schools get to decide what is acceptable school uniform. It's not centralized. It's not central government that decides that. What is your
reaction to it?
AMINA LONE, CO-DIRECTOR, SOCIAL ACTION & RESEARCH FOUNDATION: Our reaction was this letter, which I wrote and campaigned for to look at the school
policy and a number of women supported me, Muslim women, ordinary women, who were just really concerned about the increasing religious and political
activity in our schools, particularly our primary schools. So, it has no place in Islam. There is no religious justification for covering.
GORANI: For prepubescent girls to wear headscarf, that's certainly not a religious requirement.
LONE: No, no, it's not a religious requirement. It's a cultural understanding. And the thing about Islam is that there's no theological
tradition, so there's not one source that you can come. There is the Quran, but people interpret - take that in different ways.
So, what my family may have taught me, a different family may have taught somebody else. But Islam, to me, is about compassion and peace and about
fighting social justice.
So, this letter and this campaign is about saying, look, we need to fight for justice and for the gender equality for young Muslim girls.
GORANI: So, what do you think schools should do? Because, I mean, the government authorities and officials say, look, if the school wants to
decide to allow the burqa, they can do it. We can't tell them not to do it. What do you think the solution is?
LONE: Well, the government can, but they're choosing to kind of have hands-off. The government is contradicting itself because on the one hand
GORANI: They are not delegating that decision to the schools.
LONE: They are not delegating, but they also contradict themselves because they have - there are lots of policy and lots of work around integration.
And so, they are saying to Muslims, you need to have (INAUDIBLE), you need to integrate.
Well, if you're allowing schools to not to set their own policies, which is a direct contradiction of integration, because it separates you. A young
girl at 5 or 6 covering her head separates her from her class fellows.
Then, the government needs to take some responsibility for that. It's not OK to say, oh, well, it's just their problem because it's actually our
[15:50:01] GORANI: Why do you think that schools then are allowing, as part of the school uniform, hijabs on very young girls? Is it because they
don't want to offend? Is it because they feel that if they forbid it, they'll be seen as Islamophobic? What do you think it is?
LONE: I think that there is fear. Absolutely people are scared of being called racist or be seen as anti-Muslim. But there is also pressure within
communities and parents to push for a really conservative form of - an ultra-conservative form of Islam. The global war going on in Islam.
GORANI: Yes, let me - there was a TfL, so this is a Transport for London road safety campaign, which is basically a cartoon that featured what looks
like a 3, 4 or 5-year old girl - let's put it up - wearing a hijab. This was, by the way, then taken down.
GORANI: But what do you make - do you feel that this normalizes the wearing of the hijab on young children?
LONE: It absolutely normalizes, but also, it's being dishonest -
GORANI: Sorry, Amina, I have to interrupt you because the President of the United States Donald Trump has said something about - I believe something
he said after Charlottesville. Let's listen to how he is characterizing his statement now.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We're working on a deal for DACA, but a lot has to do with the amount of security. We want very heavy
security at the border. We want surveillance, we want a lot things at the border. And, ultimately, we don't want to them to obstruct with the wall.
But just so you understand, we're renovating massive sections of wall right now and, essentially, they'll be brand new and we'll be able to use them.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: (INAUDIBLE).
TRUMP: DACA now and the wall very soon. But the wall will happen, thank you.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: (INAUDIBLE).
TRUMP: Say what?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: (INAUDIBLE).
TRUMP: If you, what?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No, not anymore.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: (INAUDIBLE).
TRUMP: We're not talking about that. We're not talking about amnesty at all. We have not talked about amnesty. There will be no amnesty. We're
not talking about that as part of this grand gesture. Thank you.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: All right. So, there was just a brief statement by the President of the United States Donald Trump talking about the wall and denying that
amnesty for DACA recipients and beneficiaries. Basically, those brought in as children with parents who were undocumented as part of any deal that he
will make with immigration legislation.
So, there you have it. That was a brief statement by the president.
I want to get back to Amina Lone and let you finish your thought there on this road safety campaign where we saw this young girl wearing hijab.
So, we were talking about the normalization of an outfit, of a garment on a head that you believe is wrong. What did you make of that campaign when
you saw it? And how do you think that we can move forward from these types of images?
LONE: I don't mind being interrupted by the president. I was really dismayed, but also quite angry and quite - we're really going down
dangerous territory when we start normalizing these kind of images or making it seem like this is acceptable.
It's not acceptable. It's not Islamic. And it's distorting my faith. And I think the media has a responsibility, but also us as ordinary citizen
GORANI: But what you suggest? Because you could go down the French road and basically forbid it and then you'll have entire communities that feel
victimized and they'll say they're just the Islamophobic. They wouldn't tell - they're not likening wearing a cross to wearing a hijab when you're
5, but it could be interpreted that way.
LONE: It could. And we certainly had lots of support, but we've had a backlash. I'm a Muslim woman. The women that are fighting predominantly
led by Muslim women. We are saying this is not part of Islam. It is cultural and we are a secular democracy.
So, don't ban it. Of course, we shouldn't ban it. People should have the choice to wear what they want. However, we may -
GORANI: You're saying in public schools, it shouldn't be.
LONE: In primary schools, full stop, it should not be part of uniform because it is not supporting the values of gender equality, it is not
supporting the values of liberty and freedom, and it's also - you are bowing down to pressures of something that's very controversial.
GORANI: Where does this mainly happen? This is in predominantly Muslim neighborhoods, London, other parts of -?
LONE: Mainly in cities and in areas where schools are not sure about what the requirements are. But I go back to the point that there's no -
GORANI: But what if you told a family - parents of one of these girls, your daughter can't wear this anymore, what if they decide not to send her
to school, for instance? Would it be a price worth paying?
[15:55:00] LONE: I think it's a price worth paying. Because you then have to - they have to provide an education for that child because I think that
the bigger value is that we need to support the democracy that we have, which is secular, but it also supports minorities.
And I think that what this does is feeds into a narrative for the far right, which says, well, look at all of them, they don't integrate, they
cover up all their women. But, actually, that's not Islam and we shouldn't be propagating that kind of Islam.
GORANI: Certainly. Now, 5-year-olds are required to cover their heads. Amina Lone, thanks very much. Appreciate your time on this issue. We will
be right back. Stay with us.
GORANI: Finally, this hour, a rare sighting from the animal kingdom. A pair of giraffes that are - take a look - hopefully be white, captured on
camera for the first time ever, so we wanted to share that with you.
This mother and baby were filmed in Kenya's Garissa County. They have a rare genetic condition, so they - it inhibits pigmentation in their skin
cells. It's similar to albinism. It's thought to be only the third sighting ever of a white giraffe. And there you have it for all of you.
Check out our Facebook page, Facebook.com/HalaGoraniCNN. This has been THE WORLD RIGHT NOW. Stay with us. "Quest Means Business" is coming up.