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71 Dead in Russian Plane Crash; North Korea Winds Diplomatic Gold; Porter's Ex-Wife Criticizes President's Response; Al-Shabaab Terrorists Exploiting Somalia Refugees; Questions Remain as North Korean Delegation Heads Home from Olympics; Asian Markets Edging Up after Volatile Week. Aired 12-1a ET
Aired February 12, 2018 - 00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[00:00:11] CYRIL VANIER, CNN ANCHOR: A Russian airliner goes down minutes after taking off from Moscow. There were no survivors. The flight data recorder has been found.
Olympic progress after South Korea engaged directly with North Korea at the Winter Games. Could the U.S. be ready to follow suit.
And save the date, check your TV recorders -- Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will get married May the 19th. We know a bit more about the ceremony.
I'm Cyril Vanier from the CNN Center here in Atlanta -- great to have you with us.
A plane crash has claimed the lives of 71 people near Moscow. This surveillance footage released on the Russian telegram channel MASH shows the moment the jet went down. The plane was headed to the Russian City of Orsk. It disappeared from radar minutes after takeoff. Investigators are trying to figure out what caused the crash.
Matthew Chance has more.
MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, I think I landed here at the airport in Moscow at about the same time that this Antonov 148 aircraft must have crashed at about 50 kilometers away from the Russian capital.
And before we landed at Domodedovo Airport we had to circle on a number of occasions, a number of times around the airport. The pilot came across the (INAUDIBLE) and said it was because there was very heavy snow storms in the area and we have to wait for the tarmac and runway to be cleared.
Now it's not clear whether weather was a factor in the crash of this Antonov 148 but it's certainly something investigators here -- crash investigators say they're looking at.
And of course, over the past couple of weeks Moscow has experienced some of its most intensive snow fall for many decades. And that's quite something given that it's the winter here in Moscow. It's well used to heavy snow fall.
It's never been as heavy as this, not in several decades. In fact, that could well have been a factor. Because there are other factors as well, the Kremlin has issued a statement saying look, we want a full investigation into exactly what happened, instructed all its various departments.
President Putin is issuing a statement through his spokesmen to get to the bottom of this in a political year, an election year. It's important that Vladimir Putin is seen to be doing everything possible to get to the bottom of this.
And of course, President Putin has offered his condolences as well to the friends and the family of these 71 people who were o board that Russian-built aircraft and who died and who lost their lives. And so, you know, the Kremlin is offering his condolences, promising an investigation.
The black boxes, or at least one of them, have been recovered. And so we're waiting now for some clarity from the crash investigators to establish what it was that led to the crash of this Antonov 148 airliner.
Matthew Chance, CNN at Domodedovo Airport in Moscow.
VANIER: After days of high-level diplomacy at the Winter Olympics in South Korea, the question is what now?
North Korea delegation is back home after what is seen as a breakthrough visit to the South. The North's messenger was none other than the younger sister of Kim Jong-Un and she met four times with the South Korean president. There were smiles -- there she is -- there were smiles, handshakes. There was an official lunch. With the U.S. however, it was a totally different story. She got no love from the U.S. Vice President.
Remember this is what the opening ceremony looked like in the VIP box. Mike Pence, screen right; Kim Yo-Jong, screen left -- meters away and nothing. Pence never acknowledged the North Koreans and vice versa.
All these raised the possibility that perhaps North Korea had managed to drive a wedge between South Korea and the U.S. Perhaps they favored a different diplomatic approach towards the North.
The U.S. Defense Secretary James Mattis says the U.S. and its allies in the region are on the same page.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JAMES MATTIS, U.S. SECRETARY OF DEFENSE: I know that people are watching for a wedge between South Korea, Republic of Korea, in others words and the United States. There is no wedge there. The staff -- the military staffs are integrated on a political level in Seoul. There is no, no wedge that can be driven between us by North Korea. (END VIDEO CLIP)
VANIER: Despite that, Mike Pence told the "Washington Post" that the U.S. is now ready to talk with North Korea. Here's his quote. "The point is no pressure comes off until they're actually doing something that the alliance believes represents a meaningful step toward denuclearization. So the maximum pressure campaign is going to continue and intensify. But if you want to talk, we'll talk."
Meanwhile North Korea has left South Korea's president with what could be the defining moment of his leadership, whether to accept an invitation to talks with Kim Jong-Un.
[00:05:05] Paula Hancocks is in Pyeongchang, South Korea. Paula -- in fact I want to start right there.
Do we know whether Moon Jae-In, the South Korean president is likely to accept the invitation?
PAULA HANCOCKS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well Cyril -- we're getting no guidance officially as to what his answer would be but I think most people would assume it's going to be a yes.
It's a tricky position to be in though, in some ways because obviously the South Korean president needs to have something concrete to be able to come back to Seoul with. He can't just go to Pyongyang for talks and then come back without some kind of concession or some kind of sense that things are moving forward, not just with the inter-Korean relations but also with the nuclear and missile program.
Now we just spoke to the governor of Gangwon Province, this is the province where the Olympics is being held. This is the man who also helped encourage North Korea to come to the Olympics. And he said that South Korea is making sure that they are instep with the United States making sure that they will discuss with the U.S. and with Japan before the decision is made as to whether to go to Pyongyang although he made it sound as though the decision had been made to go but when to go to Pyongyang.
So the timing is a key thing as well because remember, as soon as the Olympics is over, that was when we were assuming that these U.S.-South Korea military drills would resume. Would they be postponed again? Would that even be an option for the United States? Or would that break the momentum that we're seeing between the two Koreas.
There's a lot of questions when it comes to the timing of Pyongyang visit for South Korean president as well as whether or not he'd go. So I think most people assume he would -- Cyril.
VANIER: Over the last few days we reported -- you reported on this breakthrough moment between South Korea and North Korea. They met and the North invited the South to go and visit them in Pyongyang.
Apparently there was also a breakthrough between the U.S. and South Korea behind the scenes. Tell us about that.
All right. All right. We'll get the sound back up.
For the moment we're joined by John Delury, associate professor at Yonsei University's Graduate School of International Studies.
John -- it's great to have you with us. And I know that you've been reading the good work of Josh Rogin in the "Washington Post". He was traveling on board Air Force Two with the U.S. Vice President Mike Pence and he got this quote from the VP saying if the North wants to talk, we'll talk. What do you think.
JOHN DELURY, ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR, YONSEI UNIVERSITY GRADUATE SCHOOL OF INTERNATIONAL STUDIES: Well, you know, there has been a constant difficulty in how to read the Trump administration's signals on where they want to go with North Korea policy.
When the Vice President was here, obviously he had opportunities to start a conversation even if it was to, you know, read the riot act directly to very senior North Korean leaders and he didn't do it.
So whether he's had a change of heart, whether there's a fundamental change in the policy from the Trump administration, I think we probably still have to wait and get other comments from other parts of the White House, of the cabinet.
VANIER: Well, how seriously do you take it? I meant I understand that for the moment we don't have a 100 percent clear read on it. But what they're also saying and what Mike Pence was also adamant about was they're going to continue the campaign of maximum pressure on North Korea. There is no let up even if they do talk with Pyongyang. There is no let up in the pressure.
DELURY: Yes. And that makes sense. I mean actually the original name according to some of the reporting, when the Trump administration first reviewed previous North Korea policies in several they were going to do. They used the praise maximum pressure and engagement.
So originally there was an idea and of course President Trump himself has said many times he would talk to the North Koreans. Talks are a good thing, he's tweeted. So they have left room to engage the North Koreans.
But again, throughout this whole period other members of the cabinet and Trump himself have sent the opposite set of signals. They've called talking to the North Koreans a waste of time, that it's appeasement.
So you know, you hear somebody and frankly in my view what the Vice President is saying now is a smart approach. Certainly you should let Seoul pursue this and see where it can go and see if you can bridge from inter-Korean detente to start to tackle some of the nuclear missile issues. That's smart.
I just think, you know, given the record of the administration we have to at least give it 24 hours to see if this is really the new approach and the new policy.
VANIER: Yes, absolutely.
From your analyst point of view, is there a path for -- that the U.S. can follow that would perhaps get them some results with North Korea bearing in mind what they're looking for. They're looking for steps towards denuclearization.
[00:10:01] DELURY: Yes. There are plenty of steps towards denuclearization. So when you move to that framework you can engage the North Koreans, you do continue pressure but you also selectively lift some of that pressure. You lift some of the sanctions. You also do take steps like delaying the joint military exercises which they've already done, which has been done in the past effectively to get the North Koreans to take steps.
You know, there's a process here where both sides can recognize, ok, we are lost in a long history of hostility, you know. The United States is hostile to North Korea. North Korea is hostile to the United States.
And so what are we going to do to change some of those fundamentals? What can I do to make you feel more secure? What can you do to make me feel more secure?
So, you know, North Korea can stop its nuclear testing. It could allow international inspectors back into its nuclear sites so that we at a minimum understand more of what they're doing and pause the progress so they don't keep developing more weapons in their arsenal.
There are a lot of things you could get the North Koreans to do short of complete denuclearization that would be very positive for American security. But you only get those things when you start talking to the North Koreans directly.
VANIER: All right. John Delury, coming to us from Seoul, South Korea -- always a pleasure speaking with you. Thank you.
Coming up after the break, one of the women who accused the White House staffer Rob Porter of physical abuse responds to the U.S. President Donald Trump after he appears to dismiss her allegations.
And factors that could keep U.S. markets volatile again this week -- we'll be talking about that. Stay with us.
[00:11:31] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
VANIER: The White House is struggling to contain the fall out over its handling the scandal surrounding Rob Porter. Porter is the White House staff secretary who resigned last week amid domestic violence allegations.
One of his ex-wives, who says she was abused, wrote an op-ed for "Time Magazine" on Sunday. Jenny Willoughby writes that President Trump implied she was a liar when she emphasized Porter claim of innocence over her claim of abuse.
Mr. Trump's aides showed up in force on the Sunday television talk shows to defend General John Kelly, Mr. Trump's chief of staff for keeping Porter employed despite allegedly knowing about the abuse allegations, at least in part, for months.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KELLYANNE CONWAY, COUNSELOR TO THE PRESIDENT: I spoke to the President last night. I told him I'd be with you today and he said please tell Jake that I have full faith in chief of staff John Kelly and that I'm not actively searching to replace him. He said I saw that all over the news today. I have faith in him.
MARC SHORT, WHITE HOUSE LEGISLATIVE AFFAIRS DIRECTOR: I think there are probably some, in the process, some lack of communication between different elements in the White House. I don't know, to be honest. I don't know who knew what when at this point. And I think all the stories about replacing General Kelly are mostly being fed by people who are unhappy that they've lost access to the President under General Kelly's leadership as chief of staff.
So no, I'm extraordinarily pleased with the job the chief has been doing; everybody in the West Wing is. The President is, as well. I think that talk about the chief's departure is much ado about nothing.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VANIER: Joining me now columnist for "Metro Papers" and political analyst Ellis Henican who joins us today from New Orleans. You're back home. You're back home. I hope you're enjoying it.
ELLIS HENICAN, POLITICAL ANALYST: Happy Mardi Gras to you, my man.
VANIER: And his usual foil and friend on this show, conservative CNN political commentator Ben Ferguson. He joins us from Texas. Gentlemen -- there are two different things to kick this off.
First of all, here's what one of Rob Porters ex-wives wrote today. "In light of the President's and the White House's continued dismissal of me and Colbie, I want to assure you my truth has not been diminished. I own my story. And now that I have been compelled to share it, I'm not willing to cover it up for anyone.
And for any men, women or children currently in situations of abuse, please know it is real. You're not crazy. You're not alone. I believe you."
Kellyanne Conway senior adviser to the President then said to CNN on Sunday morning there was no reason not to believe the allegation. Listen to this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CONWAY: In this case, you have contemporaneous police reports. You have women speaking to the FBI in (INAUDIBLE) of perjury. You have police reports. You have photographs.
And when you look at all of that pulled together you realize that Rob Porter did the right thing by resigning.
JAKE TAPPER, CNN HOST: It sounds like you believe the women.
CONWAY: I have no reason not believe the women.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VANIER: Lastly let's remind ourselves of Mr. Trump's tweet on Saturday. "People's lives are being shattered and destroyed by a mere allegation," wrote the President. "Some are true, some are false. Some are old, some are new. There's no recovery for someone falsely accused. Life and career are gone. Is there no such thing as due process?"
So Ben -- this story is about one thing only, the President's moral compass. Why does Mr. Trump show no empathy for credible victims?
BEN FERGUSON, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Look, I think he needs to do a better job in the future or clearly listening and looking at the stories of women. I understand that when someone is close to you and you're shocked by these allegations and you haven't seen this in their character.
I mean we even heard from one of the two ex-wives who said she has no reason to believe that in his professional life he isn't perfect. He was perfect when she was married to him. Clearly he was able to, I think, defraud a lot of people that he worked with to think that he was an incredible, amazing guy.
But let's be clear about this. When you have these types of allegations come up, this has nothing to do with politics. For me this has everything to do with a simple issue of right and wrong. You do not put a hand on a woman -- period.
Now, I understand the President's point as well saying look, we do need to have due process. But I think when you look at the evidence that has come out here and Kellyanne Conway I think clearly stated it, there is no reason not to believe these women and I think the White House moving forward has got to do a better job in these situations of clearly stating and listening to women and what they're saying on certain issues like this.
HENICAN: Look, so why can't the President say anything other than defend the guy in the abuse case -- right? The problem, Ben, isn't communication. The problem is belief.
[00:19:51] This is a president, who for whatever complicated, psychological, legal and self-protective reasons in every single case like this can only do one thing -- and that is disrespect the women and give the man every single benefit of the doubt. And let me tell you, this one is not falling very well.
VANIER: I have to --
FERGUSON: Look --
VANIER: Ben -- I have to tell you, Ellis is kind of taking the words out of my mouth because this is another data point that's interesting. Apparently the President has a very different message privately from what he put out on Twitter and his public pronouncements on this.
Kellyanne Conway says that he's very disturbed. So if that's the case, Ben, then why doesn't he just say that publicly?
FERGUSON: Look, I think he's got to do a better job of saying that publicly. We've got -- you know, let's talk --
VANIER: All he has to do is --
VANIER: It's not that he has to do it better. He just has to do it period.
FERGUSON: Again -- you talk about politics for a moment. And I think not only does the President have to do a better job here, but politicians in general have to do a better job here.
Remember you had Hillary Clinton put up on Facebook Super Bowl Sunday that she put her campaign ahead of an accusation against one of her staffers and her own campaign. And they think about themselves or how it makes them look personally instead of maybe doing the right thing.
We've seen this time and time again by politicians when they are put in a position like this.
VANIER: All right.
FERGUSON: So I agree with you. Both parties and both leaders in both parties -- they've got to do a better job on this stuff.
VANIER: So it's not just about the morals, you're right. Obviously he's the President, he's a political animal. It's also about the politics of this.
But this I -- but I don't understand that part either. The President could have --
FERGUSON: But my point -- what I was saying is --
VANIER: Hold on. Hold on.
FERGUSON: -- let me be clear though.
VANIER: Yes. FERGUSON: This is an important point. When I say this is not political to me, my point is there's a simple time in life regardless if you're running office, you're Republican or Democrat --
VANIER: You should know right from wrong.
FERGUSON: -- when it's the issue of right and wrong.
FERGUSON: And this is a right and wrong issue. And that's my point I'm saying here. Take politics out of this and make it about right from wrong for the President.
VANIER: And Ben -- all credit to you. All credit to you -- you said this exact same point on this show before when we're talking about Roy Moore a couple of weeks back. I remember.
The question is the President could have easily distanced himself from all of this. He could have said, you know, he didn't know about the allegations; that it hadn't risen to his level until the very moment that Rob Porter was fired. It could have been believable. What do we know?
HENICAN: Look, look --
VANIER: Why did the President -- Ellis, why did the President decide to weigh in and attract this criticism then?
HENICAN: Wait, wait. This is not a political issue. It's not fundamentally a communication issue. It really is a character issue. I mean there is something wrong with Donald Trump on issues like this. Time and time again, he is unable to do anything other than going to attack women.
I mean I've got a theory about it. I think he takes it very personally. He looks out there and he sees a dozen more women who make very personal and direct complaints about his own behavior.
He thinks if I give aid and comfort to the women in any other case, it's just encouraging them to come after me and that's going to be trouble down the line.
I mean there is a pattern here. There is a reason for it. And I'm sorry. It's not a matter of sloppy PR -- Ben.
FERGUSON: I didn't say it was sloppy PR. And again, you need to listen to me because you and I actually I think in a bipartisan way agree with one another on this one.
HENICAN: I hope so.
FERGUSON: Again, I did not say anything about PR. I said that you have to take politics out of this and that people that are elected officials and those running for office have got to do a better job when things like this happen of not thinking about this through the political lens of what does this mean for my White House or what does this mean for my campaign with Hillary Clinton and her putting out on Super Bowl Sunday that oh, well she made a mistake.
And only making that assumption on Facebook during Super Bowl Sunday where people are paying attention to it.
VANIER: Ben -- let me interrupt you for a second. Let me interrupt you for a second because I want to go a little further on Ellis' point. I think it's important.
I think it's important. The politics of this is Ellis said it seemed pretty transparent. Mr. Trump stands accused of misconduct by 13 women. He says they're all lying so if he sides alleged victims in other cases it's going to look like double standard.
HENICAN: Here's the thing --
FERGUSON: I think you can defend yourself -- let's be clear. I think you can defend yourself and say that on certain issues on one thing, it doesn't mean you can't talk about on the other. I don't think that's the reason for the President not --
VANIER: Well, that was going to be my question to Ellis. Is the President now hostage to this line of thinking.
HENICAN: I think he's in a real jam, honestly because every single time he talks about this, he gets in deeper. For instance today, in the tweet about due process, we really need due process.
I think Senator Gillebrand made the -- obviously pushed, ok Mr. President, are you ready for some due process? We'll get you same due process on this question. I'll line them up -- one to 13 and we'll go through due process for every single one of them if that's what you want.
So yes, any time this issue comes up in any context, it is deeply and virtually uncomfortable for Donald Trump.
VANIER: Yes. The due process part honestly struck me too because Mr. Trump's obviously leaving himself open to criticism. You think of birtherism, Central Park 5, calling for Hillary Clinton to be locked up -- he hasn't always been an advocate of due process.
Gentlemen -- thank you so much for coming on the show.
HENICAN: Thank you.
VANIER: Now to Somalia where the terror group al-Shabaab is profiting from the country's humanitarian crisis. In an upcoming CNN exclusive, our Sam Kiley reports the al Qaeda-linked terrorists are extorting money from aid groups that are trying to help victims of famine and drought. [00:25:05] Here's an excerpt.
SAM KILEY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: This man was a Shabaab tax collector for eight years. Merchants bring in food for sale to refugees pay al- Shabaab to get to Baidoa and tax them there, too.
And if they don't pay.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They capture and kill.
KILEY: He told me that Al Shabaab made about $3 on every bag of rice delivered to Baidoa.
So this doesn't work. You're saying it doesn't work. The U.N. is still indirectly paying tax --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Absolutely.
KILEY: -- to al Shabaab.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Absolutely.
VANIER: So watch this exclusive report from the town of Baidoa in Somalia later Monday on CNN.
And upcoming, U.S. economic reports are keeping any of the investors on edge. So what's in store for the Dow? We'll start by checking in with Asia markets ahead.
Stay with us.
VANIER: Welcome back to CNN NEWSROOM. I'm Cyril Vanier.
CYRIL VANIER, CNN ANCHOR: Your status report on day three of the Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea. The wind is not letting up. The women's giant slalom has been postponed to Thursday. The women's slope-style snowboard event started late; in fact, several competitors crashed mid-run of because of the fierce winds. It is the second day that weather has interrupted competitions.
And inside the arena, where the effects of wind are not felt, Canada claimed its first gold of the Games in the figure skating team event. The event played out over three days with eight separate skates. Canada clinched the victory after amassing an insurmountable lead in the seventh skate.
So here is a look at the medal board as it currently stands. Germany right now lead the medal count with three goals, but in total medals, Norway's front of the pack. It has got eight.
There is more wind in store for PyeongChang, South Korea.
VANIER: U.S. markets were extremely volatile last week.
So is that going to continue?
Investors are watching for inflation data coming out on Wednesday. Remember, the Dow plunged about 1,300 points last week. That is the worst decline in two years and it had a ripple effect in markets around the world. So far in Monday's trading, let us look at Asia. Most of the Asia Pacific markets --
VANIER: -- are edging up. Ryan Patel joins me now from Los Angeles. He's a global business executive and, like the entire business and financial community, he looks at this closely.
Ryan, are you going to be watching nervously when U.S. markets open on Monday?
Or are you not one of the worriers?
RYAN PATEL, GLOBAL BUSINESS EXECUTIVE: No, I'm watching this entire week, not just on Monday. You've got a lot of -- last week obviously, like you said, was a pretty historic week for being down the last few years. But this week, you think about it, on Monday, you're going to see the administration's plan on budget on the infrastructure spending as well as this budget.
On Wednesday you mentioned the consumer price index report comes out. That is really, really important when it comes to the inflation. If it's hotter than normal, that will cause a little more inflation worries.
You also see restaurant sales, earnings are to come out, retail sales, earnings of companies are going to come out this week. So it is -- people will be watching this week and even Japan's economic growth data is going to come out Wednesday, too.
So Monday will be telling but the rest of the week later will be even more telling to see what's going on.
VANIER: OK, what school of thought are you in?
What we've seen over the last 10 days, is it a welcome correction of the market or is it the beginning of something more worrying?
PATEL: No, it's a correction for me. For me, I always believed we were ready for correction. I do not think that we're completely out of it yet. I think it's got to balance a little bit.
But if you've got -- you got to understand, from what we saw in 2008 to now, the economy as a whole is much better than it was in 2008. Obviously the deficit is a worry but when you talk about jobs and employment rates and all those kind of things, we're in a better spot.
I believe we just overheated as a whole. Last year, think about this, we didn't have really any kind of down days for 12 months, it's kind of unheard of. And I think we need time for a little bit of a correction.
VANIER: The markets have been pretty calm and predictable since -- you mentioned 2008 -- they've been pretty calm since that date. Now they seem volatile again.
What was the exception and what is the norm?
PATEL: Well, the index obviously has increased but the exception is that you've got -- you look at the tax reform; people are trading above what the actual benefit would actually be and not really knowing.
And like you said, predictability is something that is what investors want, when companies and earnings start to happen. It kind of does not become this clear picture and, more importantly, when you talk about inflation for the rest of the year, there is maybe potentially 3 to 4 times hike. That also creates this nervousness that runs -- a panic, you can kind of say, we saw a huge selloff.
So you kind of get to see some of these abnormal trading patterns because of this irrational reaction to some of these things.
VANIER: Tell me something, Mr. Trump took credit when the markets were going up.
Is he to blame for the U.S. market going down?
PATEL: Well, if you're going to take credit, you take the blame. I think -- you know, I don't like to say you blame one single person and one person takes credit. It's obviously this hasn't gone on for about eight -- about eight years running with unemployment rate. I think the most important thing here is what are you going to do again with Trump's administration plan, did tax reform and the cuts, it's the deficit, did that help or not?
And, yes, I think at the end of the day, this is a part of -- this is not an administration of choosing to when it raises interest rates or not. So you've got to -- if you're going to take credit for it, you'd better take credit for it when it goes down as well.
VANIER: What goes up must come down, Ryan Patel, thank you so much for joining us on the show. We appreciate your insights.
And royal watchers do stay with us. We will have details about Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's big day. What to expect for their wedding after this break. (MUSIC PLAYING)
VANIER: Kensington Palace is sharing new details about Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's upcoming wedding. So we already knew the date, May 19th, and the majestic location. But now we're learning a bit more about how it is all going to go down. CNN's Max Foster has the latest on this.
MAX FOSTER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: We're starting to get a better sense then of the shape of the royal wedding day. The service will start at noon in St. George's chapel in Windsor Castle.
The couple will say their vows in front of the Archbishop of Canterbury. He is the most senior official in the Church of England. This isn't a state occasion because Prince Harry isn't in the direct line for the throne.
But it is a big national occasion, which is why it is being presided over by the Archbishop of Canterbury.
Now approximately an hour later, after the couple are wed, they will leave the castle in a carriage and they will process through Windsor in a carriage procession. The palace said in a statement that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are hugely grateful for the many good wishes they received since announcing their engagement.
They are very much looking forward to the day and to be able to share their celebrations with the public. Huge crowds are expected to see them in the carriage procession.
Once they get back into the castle, they'll join the congregation for a reception in the grand St. George's hall, which is usually used for state banquets.
And in the evening there will be a more private affair, hosted by Prince Charles for the couple's close friends and family. We're heading towards May the 19th and we're getting a better sense of how the day will look -- Max Foster, CNN, London.
VANIER: We're almost done but one more thing before we leave you. It was just a little too kooky not to show you.
An artist in Tokyo has found just the perfect way to clean up her cat's hairy mess. So what she does is she takes the fur from her three cats, the fallen fur, mind you. And she turns it into wigs and hats for them to wear. So she started the -- what does this look like to you?
She started it with a Donald Trump hairstyle wig after the #TrumpYourCat became popular during the 2016 U.S. presidential election. Now she's expanded to hats that look like animals. She's creative that way.
She posts pictures of the furry fedoras on Instagram. And laugh if you want, but her account has more than 800,000 followers. I've barely cracked 2,000. Seriously.
Thanks for watching. I'm Cyril Vanier. "WORLD SPORT" is up next after a quick break and I'll be back with a full look at world news at the top of the hour.